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For a great tutorial, check out the Baking Bible Bake Along with ROSE'S ALPHA BAKERS. The link is on the left side of the blog. We will also be posting "OUT-BAKES" from the book, on this blog, including step-by step photos and other extras.

Welcome to My Scratch Baking Blog!

Oct 24, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose

Update 2009: Click here if you want to comment on this entry.

there's a new presence in my vocabulary and it's called a blog. it's not even in the oxford dictionary or on my spell check yet but it has quickly become one of my favorite words! i'm rose levy beranbaum, author of 8 soon to be 9 cookbooks, host of the pbs show "baking magic with rose," and now host of this brand new blog "real baking with rose."

when people ask me what my proudest accomplishment is, without hesitation I tell them it is my connection to the world through my work. since writing the cake bible in 1988 I have received thousands of letters and more recently e-mails with responses and questions. I probably could have written another book in the time it took to answer them all but it was worth it. sharing my recipes, ideas, and stories, I have received so many more in return. is there a better feeling than having touched another person's life in a favorable way? I've met kids who have grown up with cake bible birthday cakes, people who have launched businesses with the recipes, and even a woman in holland who taught friends from egypt how to make my bread recipe so that when they moved to a small town in italy with no bakery they would not be deprived of artisan bread. I recently heard from a woman in samoa who is making my multi-grain bread for her german husband who missed the bread of his childhood. story after moving story--this is the power, immediacy, and joy of the internet to join people from all over the world, enriching our lives and connecting us to the universe.

but just as the sheer volume of correspondence was threatening to overwhelm me and it seemed unlikely that I was going to be able to continue answering each person personally, my kindred baking spirit tim bennett, product manager for gold medal flour, came up with the fantastic idea for this baking blog hosted by general mills. it grew out of our lively e-mails talking about our latest baking adventures and ideas, and new recipes and often proud digital photos. tim thought it would be great to share these baking gems with other interested people as a sort of interactive baking diary. I was enraptured by the idea.

I'm especially proud that my blog is sponsored by general mills because in addition to depending on their flour for so much of my baking, many years ago I was the winner of the general mills betty crocker home-maker of the year award in my high school in new york (music and art). I didn't realize at the time that the prediction of this award now hanging in my kitchen would come true. the certificate says that I possess many of the qualities that would make me a good home-maker, and in fact that was all I ever wanted to be. but I have been fortunate, through my work, to have been able to extend some of these qualities further to the outside world. now, with this blog, I feel I truly have come a full circle. another fortunate coincidence is that my new publisher for my upcoming cake book, john wiley and sons, also publishes the betty crocker cookbooks!

as the purpose of this blog is sharing and extending our baking knowledge and abilities, I invite you to share your baking experiences and to put forth questions. believe me I know what it's like when doing a recipe and something doesn't work and there's no one to go to for the answer. I assure you that if you are wondering about something you are not alone. and if I don't know the answer I'll bet that one of our soon-to-be many blog members will have some ideas on the subject.

of course I will post questions only that seem to be of general interest and will still try to respond to those that are more individual in nature when time allows.

so let me start the ball of dough rolling with a favorite cake recipe which defines the title of my blog: "real baking," and an explanation of why I think it is the only way to bake. (see the blog "why real baking")

PLEASE NOTE: THIS THREAD HAS BECOME TOO LONG SO I'VE RESTARTED IT AS WELCOME TO MY SCRATCH BAKING BLOG 2009!

Comments

thank you norma for that beautiful posting and thank you anonymous for alerting me to the oversized thread on this posting! i'll close the thread and open a part two.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/ 4/2009 06:30 AM

Happy Independence Day to everyone. I made the Patriotic Cake from the cake bible and when my son saw my tattered cookbook, then the cake, he commented that I must use this cookbook a lot. He's in the Navy so he was touched by the cake. For everyone who has a son, daughter, loved one, SO who is of service to the country, enjoy this special day. They serve so you have the right to your liberty and freedom...bake them that CAKE!!!

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Every time I click on this thread my browser freezes and crashes half the time. I think it is getting too big.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/ 3/2009 06:07 AM

As I sit here thumbing through my Cake Bible that fell apart, I am remembering all the wonderful cakes that have been part of my family celebrations for so many years. I'm making the Patriotic cake from the Bible for the 4th of July, having found some gorgeous blueberries and raspberries at the local farm stand. For any of you who think baking from scratch is daunting, it isn't if you trust Rose.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/ 2/2009 10:30 AM

I love that idea...

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I put the loose pages on the Fridge with a magnet. I've kept the pages for the recipes that I use most often as well as the section with the weights and measures for different ingredients (so useful when using recipes that list ingredients volumetrically...I weigh everything). I've got my new cake bible, pristine and pretty on the shelf but use my loose pages quite a bit.

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of course save the pages--so convenient to work from unbound book!

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/ 2/2009 09:55 AM

Well, sob, The Cake Bible officially fell apart yesterday as I was thumbing through it for the 4th of July cake. I ordered another one from Amazon and it reminds me of how my brother came over one day to see my copy of "The French Chef" taped together and so dog eared that he brought one home from GBH for me (his office was next to the Queen's). Scratch bakers rule!!!

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thank you dear norma!

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/ 1/2009 10:00 AM

I wanted to share that every time I make the genoise au chocolat from The Cake Bible, I get raves. I made this cake again over the weekend, adding Nutella for a little zip. It was a great hit. For all you scratch bakers, this is a very versatile cake which can become a classic in your recipe book. If you don't own The Cake Bible, add it to your list. Rose's other books are also phenomenal.

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ly, that is one of the lovliest things anyone has ever posted to the blog. i should frame it and put it where i can see it often--in fact i will!

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
06/21/2009 10:11 AM

Big Y ... will look that up....thanks, Julie

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For Norma and anyone else in Massachusetts- I found Better for Bread flour in a local Big Y supermarket, can't wait to try it!

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Do you know that feeling that you get in the pit of your stomach when you see someone doing something amazing? Your heart just opens up and feels like it's overflowing with love and admiration, that is the feeling that I get when I cook with your recipes. I can hear you speak in your clear beautiful voice reassuring me that it will work and that I will be a great baker. Thank you Rose, for your love and belief in all of us, and for sharing yourself with the world. You are an angel straight out of the (cake) bible.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
06/17/2009 06:10 AM

Without a doubt, Rose is the Queen!!! Only Julia's recipes were as perfect

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
06/11/2009 09:50 AM

I'm interested in what chocolate great baker's prefer...if I can get it, I use European chocolates. Otherwise, I bake with ScharffenBerger. I have a baby shower cake to make and am entertaining suggestions for a "different" recipe

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
06/11/2009 09:48 AM

I gave up and am ordering it on the Internet. Email me directly so we c an stay in touch... I bake for fun and as a hobby but I'm pretty good at it

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Nancy Sullivan
Nancy Sullivan
06/ 8/2009 05:47 PM

I just made Mousseline Buttercream for the first time, I used it with a White Velvet Butter Cake that I filled with Lemon Curd mixed with a bit of the frosting. I was the best tasting and easiest frosting to work with I have ever made (I usually make american-style buttercream with powdered sugar, or added cream cheese, and this was so much more decadent without being so sweet). Anyway, I added some paste food coloring to a bit for decoration (writing, a few flowers and leaves) and it looked grainy, not a smooth color at all. Is it normal for this recipe? Any suggestions to correct for next time (as I am sure that someone will ask for that killer frosting again..)

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Norma, I too live in Massachusetts and the stores here don't seem to carry the "Better for Bread" flour. If you come across a retail supplier of it, please post back- I'll do the same.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/30/2009 07:17 PM

Thanks, Marie. As I posted earlier, I used to prefer Gold Medal. I will look for it on the Internet.

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Even in Minneapolis, the home of Gold Medal, it's not available in every grocery store. When I find it, I buy it and now prefer it to King Arthur.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/30/2009 05:03 PM

Honestly, I had never heard of that flour before. I hope it is not a regional favorite because I know my local grocery stores do not carry it. I always baked with Gold Medal flour until we moved to the remote hick area of Massachusetts.

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didn't mean to be snippy about it--just couldn't resist--but honestly you will fall in love with this flour! it's available in most supermarkets around the country. thanks for being so gracious about it.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/30/2009 04:40 PM

I was unaware that Gold Medal made a special type of flour. I will try to find it locally. If not, I'll order it via the Internet. Thanks for updating me.

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did you happen to notice that this blog is sponsored by gold medal flour?! do try their "better for bread" flour and judge for yourself.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/30/2009 08:58 AM

Regarding bread machines...i prefer to make my bread the old fashioned way. Also, used unbleached flour (King Arthur's)...the superior flour for bread

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it also sounds like your dough is too stiff so that there is not enough water to form gluten and causes stress on the motor of the bread machine.

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Hi Ted,

There are a lot of variables here, so maybe you could provide more details about what type of recipe you are making, but my first thoughts would be that either the dough isn't being sufficiently kneaded or that your ingredients are old (gluten does get old rather quickly--I think it has a life of about a year and a half if I remember correctly). Have you tried kneading the dough by hand after it has been in the machine to see if you can get the gluten to develop? Perhaps your machine is going out again.

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I have had bread dough failures rarely, but it is annoying when it happens. The dough lacks elasticity, it just pulls apart. The dough rises poorly, but it does rise some.

I typically knead in a bread machine and have worn out two of them, so I bake a fair amount. Gold Medal refered me to you after going through all the usual questions.

This most recent time, when I recognized that the dough was not right, I added 2 tablespoons of Gluten and it did not help.

Any ideas?

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Hi Patty,

The pita dough will double inside the fridge.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/27/2009 12:32 PM

The Cake Queen...the Bread Queen...made a chocolate genoise cake from the Cake Bible and my family devoured it in minutes... regarding the Splenda question...cut the amount down that you use instead of sugar...when i cook for diabetic friends, I reduce the amount of sweetener

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Patty Brogan
Patty Brogan
05/27/2009 12:24 PM

Dear Rose,

Hi! I've got a quick question about your pita bread recipe. The directions for the first rise say to "let the bread rise" in bold type but then just tells you to put it in the fridge. Do I let it double after pulling it out?

Thanks for your help. I'm just venturing out of sandwich loaf territory. The very first recipe I tried, the flax seed loaf, was so tasty and so perfect that I almost never moved on!

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Jason, let me chime in. what you are doing is exactly correct. there are a few solutions that work for me:

1- use a non-stick pizza pan.
2- use parchment on a cookie sheet and if you are using a stone, you could slide the parchment to bake directly on the stone w/o the cookie sheet (you will love this method, also for bread baking).
3- use a pizza pan that you only wipe off after each use and not wash off, the baked-on oil residue from each previous pizza is an excellent non-stick coating. in fact, i normally bake more than once, so when i reuse the pan it never sticks after the first pizza is done.

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Hello Rose,

Thank you for your beautiful Bread Bible. I love it ... have made many recipes from it.

I have a question about the pizza recipe. I've made it a handful of times. Always tastes great, but it sticks to my pan, and I have to chisel it off with a spatula. This despite oiling the pan very well.

It never sticks in the middle, only around the edges.

This led me to believe it was because as I spread the dough towards the edges of the pan, some of the oil from the pan was getting absorbed into the dough, therefore there was not enough oil remaining on the pan to keep it from sticking.

I tried putting a little extra olive oil under the outer circumference of the pizza crust, but this did not help.

Just wondering if you might have any suggestions for this.

Thanks!!

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/21/2009 09:55 AM

What I love most about the recipes in any of Rose's cookbooks are that they need not be tested first before trying them...each is perfect

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my peach crostata was excellent the next day and not soggy. if the berries are very juicy you may want to concentrate the juices or it will be soggy even the same day! (do a search for peach galette.

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I am going to bake a berry crostata and want to know whether I can bake it a day ahead or whether the crust will get soggy. I plan on using raspberries, strawberries and blueberries in the filling.

California Baker

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marlayne, i'm so touched. i'm glad you will be able to continue to make special cakes for the special people in your life--it is far better than doing it for a living. thank you for posting the link to your beautiful cake.

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Marlayne Genereux
Marlayne Genereux
05/ 7/2009 01:28 PM

Hello :)

My aunt bought me the Cake Bible 3 years ago since I wanted to become a professional cake maker. Sadly because of a foot injury I can't :(. I wanted to say I love the book,it's one of my most treasured possessions.

I made my friend's wedding cake and everybody kept telling me how amazing it was :) Here's a picture of it!
http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c39/Nephtalim/n682050050_4071774_6957.jpg

I might not be able to do cake decorating for a living, but I'll make able to make some nice ones for friends and family members :)

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laura, i only just now received notice of your posting as i didn't realize my blog was not alerting me when people posted for many weeks now.

trilfes are great--i have TWO in my upcoming book. i wish you great success with your book--wonderful idea. i'm sorry ii haven't the time to look at your book but i thank you for offering to share your work.

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Rita, self rising flour has baking powder and salt already added! When your muffins have too much leavening (baking powder), they will do exactly as you describe -- rise and then sind in the middle.
You'll need to reduce or omit the baking powder or baking soda in your recipe when you use self-rising flour. I'm sorry, I don't have that information at hand but I'm sure someone else will be able to look it up.

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Hi Rose;

I have a recent problem with my muffins. I found a recipe I love and only vary the fruit. For several batches they came out perfect. But the last two batches I made sunk in the middle - a huge sinkhole! The last time I made them (an hour ago I cut back the liquid just by a tiny amount, but they still sank. The time before, I increased the dry ingredients - still the same sinkhole. I did buy a different flour, it is self rising. Could that somehow make the muffins sink in the middle?

Thanks, Rita

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Laura Johnson
Laura Johnson
03/19/2009 12:17 PM

Rose,
You probably receive letters like this frequently. I am in the process of writing a cook book. The unique thing is . . . it's a cook book based on Trifles. As far as I know, no one has researched and focused on the Trifle. My cook book includes my own original recipes, hints, photos, etc. Would you be willing to glance over my book? It's not very large, and shouldn't take up too much of your time. I'm no one special, just an average woman with a passion for cooking. I live in Alexandria Indiana, also known as "Small Town USA". Thank you for your consideration,
Laura Johnson

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Patti Applebaum-Taylor
Patti Applebaum-Taylor
03/18/2009 05:03 PM

Hi Rose,
I must be your biggest fan! Thank you for bringing so much good baking back to the home. For years I've enjoyed your books and recipes.
I wanted to let you know I purchased your book The Bread Bible and have found it AMAZING! I usually get books from the library but had an opportunity to purchase it from a friend’s book store. I've made the Cinnamon Crumb Surprise...everyone loved it. I'm looking forward to exploring the book in its entirety! Much thanks again, I'll keep checking on your blog. All the best. Patti

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Rose,
I would like to delete a couple of postings that I started on your blog. Can this be done?
Thank you,
Lori V.

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Hello again, Michelle. Glad to hear your 20-cake wedding went well!! Any pics you could share with us over on the forum?

A few quick thoughts on your questions:
1. Add a little more butter to the milk chocolate buttercream. Sometimes high quality milk chocolates have extra cocoa butter and/or higher percentage of solids, necessitating extra butter. FYI, same thing happens with Creme Ivoire.

2. Have you tried the Domingo cake? It's somewhat dense/fudgy/moist and the flavor is mellow and round yet intense. It is heavenly paired with a hazelnut frosting.

The chocolate fudge cake heads in the opposite direction from Domigo, it's very light, moist and fluffy, with a bittersweet/intense/complex chocolate flavor.

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Michelle,

It's not a recipe from the cake bible, but my favorite chocolate cake recipe is from Cooks Illustrated (called "Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake") I feel it definitely has a light texture, not exactly but similar-ish to a box mix with a great chocolate flavor. Its a bit more involved and pricey to make (lots of eggs and butter) but I could send you the recipe.

Oddly enough, the easiest scratch-chocolate cake recipe I've made has also gotten great reviews from friends. (Although in a side-by-side comparison the Cooks Illustrated cake won unanimously) Its HERSHEY'S "PERFECTLY CHOCOLATE" Chocolate Cake (you can just google it). The batter is super liquidy when you make it, but it turns into a pretty light and airy cake.

Alternatively, what about a recipe for a chocolate sponge cake. It may have the lightness they want- although I've never made it so I'm not sure how chocolately it'll be.

Jackie
(p.s. I'm not a professional, but after getting into cake decorating I've started to become more picky with my cakes :)

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Thank you so much everyone for helping me with the 20 wedding cake thing! I applied many of the suggestions and worked it out...wheeewh!! A couple other things now though...

1.) I just recently did a cake for an engagement party. She wanted a rich chocolate cake on the inside with a chocolate buttercream between layers but with a white buttercream on the outside with piped chocolate damask design. I have to say, the finished product looked great. For stability, I used a mouselline buttercream on the outside which was fab as usual and so consistent, but I had a problem with the inside buttercream. Since the bride is a fan of Milk Chocolate, I used Rose's Milk Chocolate Buttercream recipe for the layers and the weirdest thing happened. I'm sooo embarrassed!! I guess the inside buttercream got really hard and separated from the cake layers when cut. Though they said the flavor was good, the fact that it was hard put them off and got messy when cutting. I asked if it had been refrigerated and they said they had it at room tempertaure for hours before serving. Any ideas what happened? When I was making it, it was creamy and easy to spread, although I must say now that I think of it, I did notice it getting harder than usual on the sides of the bowl in the time it took to frost the layers. Any ideas why it got so hard so quickly?
2.)Also, I have a request for a cake to be similar to how they described it 'like the Duncan Hines Chocolate Fudge Cake, very chocolatey flavor and soft with a light moist feeling when eating" I have to say, I've used many of the recipes in The Cake Bible and none to date have come out with the consistency of a box mix. Any ideas what I can come up with to get that sort of end result for the client but in a 'top-shelf' kinda version without compromising on quality and depth of flavor? I've had this sort of thing come up before with people who in ignorance only associate cake with one thing... or that's just what they like I guess. Short of just sending them to Costco (shoot me first), they are willing to spend the money on a quality cake, and I have to say I need the money, I would like to however come up with something that suits the tastes of the area and educate them at the same time with something better, they're just not ready for the full-fledged good stuff if you know what I mean.

I'm starting out slow and am new to the 'business' of cake and could use the input from the seasoned veterans. Thanks!

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BobtheBuilderturnedBaker
BobtheBuilderturnedBaker
03/ 9/2009 11:56 AM

Ms. Rose,
surfing along looking for equipment and gadgets and stumbled upon your site. I'm reading your book! I'm baking your bread!!
Of all the things I might like to say I must say thank you. I am baking my way through you book with very satisfying results. Even errors of omission or sequence have yielded very good results. I'm having so much fun.
thanks again

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In my surfing, I came across a website, fooddownunder.com, that has quotes that appear to be from the owner of the site, however, the words are almost EXACTLY from Rose's The Bread Bible, in her recipe for "Levy's" Real Jewish Rye Bread, including how her father brought home bread from the Bronx and her grandmother served the bread with radishes...etc. Is this of interest to you guys?

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Dear J, i sure hope you can have access to the flour from Italy, as there is NO BETTER for bread baking. 00 will work excellent.

The wheat grown in Italy is protected, so their pasta is as consistent as centuries ago. I believe they prohibit the import of any foreign country wheat seed!

Italian 00 has "magical* protein content, never spongy, never wet, specially on sourdough or long fermentation breads, or on issues like ciabatta or focaccia coming spongy with USA flour. The oven spring is so strong, too without using a flour that in the USA would need to be so high in protein to a point the bread comes out hard!

I am so jealous! as bringing Italian 00 to Hawaii is only a job of not more than 5 lbs every two years!

Some bread baking I did in Italy:

http://www.hectorwong.com/roselevy/BasicSourdoughBreadItaliaSleepingWithIt.html

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Thank you Annie for your suggestions for flours, I have clicked on to Shipton Mill website a few times and have considered using their Mail order service. As for Bacheldre flours, I can buy them quite near to where I live, in fact I have tried them before, they are slightly more expensive but I know they are good. Would you use their bread flour in the recipes where AP unbleached flour is specified? I thought it might be too high in protein.
I must thank Julie also for responding to my comments.

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I have been baking in the UK now for over four years (frequently using the BB) and after much trial and error I have found Shipton Mill Organic Number 4 to be the best white bread flour. I buy it in 16kg bags but it's available in smaller quantities on their Web Site www.shipton-mill.com. For wholemeal I use their Organic 100% Wholemeal Flour. Jeannette, I think you are in Wales and you have the most wonderful mill there - Bacheldre Watermill - which produces fantastic flour. I can't get it in large quantities but I use their Spelt, Rye and Fine Wholemeal - www.bacheldremill.co.uk. All these flours work with Rose's recipes. Believe me I've tried most of them and make some over and over...

If you want any more information, I'd be happy to help.

Annie

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Jeannette, I think the main factor in choosing flours is protein content (and consistency of that content) and bleaching. Bleaching shouldn't be an issue, as most of the BB recipes use unbleached, which is available in the UK.

If you are able to match the protein content of a UK flour to its American counterpart, you should do very well. On page 550, she discusses this issue and lists the protein content of a wide range of flours.

Perhaps someone from the UK can list substitutions that have worked for them?

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I am in the UK and have just received my copy of RBB this very week. I must admit I was a bit miffed to see on most recipes that Rose specifies brands of flours which are not available over here but I shall get round that in some way. For instance, I know of people, some of them on this blog, who use the book and live over here so they must have found flours that work successfully. It will be a case of experimenting to find the flour that gives the best results!

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I am in the UK and have just received my copy of RBB this very week. I must admit I was a bit miffed to see on most recipes that Rose specifies brands of flours which are not available over here but I shall get round that in some way. For instance, I know of people, some of them on this blog, who use the book and live over here so they must have found flours that work successfully. Ot will be a case of experimenting to find the flour that gives the best results!

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John.J. Swain
John.J. Swain
03/ 4/2009 12:55 AM

Dear Kevin:

It is truly a shame that you feel as negative as you do and have to put that in print. I can tell you from my own experience that there is quite a difference in flours. Several years ago as the amount of bread that I was baking became ever greater, I decided to save some money by buying a cheaper, bulk brand of bread flour. I decided to get a 25 pound bag of what was called "Bread Flour" from Costco. Well, I can tell you right away, that the results were simply not the same. My bread was not consistent. I wound up giving most of that whole 25 pounds of flour to someone else, who really didn't care as much as I did about consistent quality. Naturally, this flour was not in any way bad, but did not give me the results that I had come to expect from my own baking skills. I had been using Gold Medal's "Better for Bread", and because it was moderately more expensive, even on sale, than the Costco variety, I wanted to save some money. Ever since that choice, I have returned to Gold Medal flours, and because lately I have been baking quite a bit of sourdough bread, I am using mainly the unbleached all-purpose variety of Gold Medal flour. I have consistent and usually excellent results with it.

It is easy and somewhat understandable to criticize someone who uses a certain brand name of a product. However, I think that anyone who is as good of a general baker, pie maker, cake maker, and producer of all sorts of wonderful breads, such as Rose, needn't prostitute herself to a company merely for a savings of a few dollars on flour. Most likely, because she has so many books that are truly wonderful and sell well, she makes enough from the sale of her books to compensate for not having to push any specific brand. Therefore, when she says I like such and such, I have to give her a nod of respect, because she has so much more experience than I do. As we all mature in our cooking and baking prowess, we get to like certain products and use those products over and over again. I have a certain kind of soy sauce that I like. I like a certain kind of orange juice, I like a certain cereal and on and on and on. When I find something that works for me, I usually stick with it, but as noted above, occasionally I try to be a little bit "cheap", and I usually regret it. Good ingredients, and consistency of results are more important sometimes than price.After all, when it comes to bread, which is often only salt, water, yeast (or sourdough) and flour, the flour is the main variable and understandably, the key ingredient. Have you tried making Rose's focaccia, ciabatta, or cinnamon swirl breads yet? WOW!!

Keep up the good work Rose!

Sincerely,

John J. Swain

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dear Kevin, I am sorry you feel this way, if I may, here is the true fact:

king arthur did not pay anything to rose for bread bible. you can use any flour you wish, but if you wish to accomplish the same results of bread bible, you should use the same flour rose used.

try one recipe with the same type but different brand, and you will get different bread results. try one recipe with a different type of flour or brand and you will get even more different results.

flour is the basic and most predominant ingredient on bread. it is with bread baking that you can tell how different results happen when using different brands/types of flour. protein content, milling, wheat origin, etc, all varies with the brand of flour.

so you know gold medal's better for bread was not available when rose wrote bread bible and now is rose's flour of choice.


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Kevin Parker
Kevin Parker
03/ 3/2009 08:08 PM

I'm sorry but this "Bread Bible" is a real downer to me. With all of the references to King Arthur ingredients, it's obvious that the author has signed up for a marketing piece. Bad news, Rose. And your recipes are below you. Fess up!!

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Yah, best ingredients a must.
I've been using the new Cuisinart 7qt. stand mixer, always butter, parchment, etc... Ive been using the butter called for as well as those other suggestions and have followed the bible 'religiously' when mixing, measuring, etc. I have not tried the teflon lining or experimented with exact positioning but will. Thanks so much!

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oh yah, and those cupcakes....impressive indeed!!!

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Genius Hector! Thank You. You da' man!

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
02/17/2009 08:15 AM

For Michelle...

One other thought...are you using only the best ingredients?

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
02/17/2009 08:07 AM

Michelle, you are absolutely right...I should not have discouraged you and I am sorry. My thoughts on this after I posted...

1. Equipment...are you using a Kitchenaid to whip up your batter? This would be well worth the investment. Also, teflon lined cake pans (the expensive ones) are important to the final result. Always butter/flour and sometimes use parchment. (Rose suggest "Baker's Joy")
2. Do you add oil/butter to the cake mixture? I always melt butter and add it to my cake batter or add a little bit of vegetable oil.
3. Is your kitchen temperature controlled (air conditioned in the summer)...sometimes this affects thawing out, etc...If you live above 3000 feet, atmosphere is a problem (see Rose's comment in The Cake Bible).
4. Cover your frozen cakes with linen when you remove them from the freezer.
5. The position of the cake pans in the oven also could dry out your cakes. (Rose comments about that in The Cake Bible).
6. Brush the cakes while warm with a syrup mix before wrapping and freezing. (See Rose's recipes in The Cake Bible).

Good luck. Your comment reminded me of some of the natural disasters I had when I ventured out to bake wedding cakes and regret my negative comment.

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Pues si, Michelle. If you want 8" square, I would use 16x12 pans, but only 2" or even 1" deep. You can cut 2 8x8 and 2 8x4 layers, the last ones can easily be glued together. Deeper pans are very challenging to bake fully cooked.

What is the exact final height you want the cakes? Actually, 8x8 cutout cakes, with frosting, can easily end up 9x9 instead, so actually cut the layers a bit less than 8". You can ask your friend if it will be acceptable that 1" or so on the bottom of the cake is a sheet of styfoam? I would, because it is a time saver to adapt the end product to your maximum possible available effort. What I mean is that I wouldn't loose double the amount of sleep to make a cake exactly the size initially discussed!

Line your oven racks with quarry tiles, preheat for 1 hour, and you can fit 3 half sheet pans indeed, as I had for the 500 plus miniature 'cupcakes' on Rose's World Cake.

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Oh, and Hector, the cake sizes are 8" squares. She wants them to look like presents/gift box with a fabric ribbon. Decorating should be relatively simple and a snap. The consistency and taste of the cakes by biggest concern. I'm gonna definitely ditch the 3" deep pans as suggested and get 2" deep, 8" x 8" and also try your sheet pan idea. Gracias Amigo!
Michelle

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michelle, thank you! I am god, but Rose write bibles!!!

you may want to wait till her new book come out this fall. When is your D-day?

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Rozanne and Julie, you guys are dolls! Thank you too! Great tips! I'm gonna try all the suggestions and see which I am most comfortable with and can execute the most successfully. If you think of anything else, I'm open and appreciate all the experience you guys have and input. You're the best!

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Hector, you are a god! Thank you soooo much! I greatly appreciate your attentiveness and practical help. I will give it a shot and let you know how it goes! Thank you, thank you!

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Norma, thank you for your input. I'm sure you were well meaning but you have really bummed me out.

a) Nothing ventured, nothing gained

b) Questions are common to advancement. Don't we all strive to rise to a level of our own incompetence? I do have the Cake Bible but it did not answer these questions. (I read it cover to cover. If it did, I missed them. If you knew, your information of where would have been most welcomed.)

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Michelle, you are a good friend! If you do decide to go with the chocolate butter cake try Rose's suggestion for applying a ganache syrup on the cake.

Here is what she posted on another thread. It works like a charm. However, try to use 2" pans as opposed to the 3" ones. Good luck and let us know what you end up doing.

“the perfect solution to making my chocolate cake richer without being denser is to apply a ganache glaze to the interior of the cake. (you are going to LOVE this!)i’ve only done this on a 9 inch layer so you’re going to have to work out the proportions but it’s easy.
for a two egg recipe, use 3 ounces/85 grams of bittersweet chocolate 51 to 61% but no higher, and 6 ounces/175 grams of heavy cream.
when the cake is baked, as soon as it comes out of the oven, poke deep holes with a wooden skewer all over the cake and brush in half the warm glaze. actually i found the directions i wrote up for the 9 inch layer:
While the cake is baking, prepare the glaze:
Break the chocolate into pieces and process in a food processor until very fine. Scald the cream (heat to the boiling point. Small bubbles will appear around the edges), and with the motor running, pour it through the feed tube in a steady stream. Process a few seconds until smooth. (Alternatively, grate the chocolate, place it in a small bowl and stir in the scalded cream until the mixture is uniform in color. Transfer the chocolate glaze to a small bowl and keep it warm.
When the cake is baked, place it still in the pan on a rack and with a wooden skewer, poke holes all over the top. Use a brush to dabble half of the chocolate glaze onto the cake. It will take about 10 minutes. Invert the cake onto a flat surface, such as a card board round or plate, which has been covered with plastic wrap or waxed paper. Peel off and discard the parchment and poke holes all over. Dabble with the remaining glaze, brushing a little onto the sides of the cake as well. Cool completely, for 1 or more hours, until the chocolate is firm to the touch.
do let us know how you liked it. since you have so much time i’d encourage you do to a trial version.

Reply to this Posted by: Rose Levy Beranbaum | August 20, 2006 5:22 PM #“

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Ooops, the last two posts were meant for Michelle, not Sandra!

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Sandra, I had another thought about frosting, if you don't want to do the mousseline you could probably get a beautiful smooth finish with the chocolate cream glaze or creme ivoire, though I think the sides may need some adornnment as they can be harder to get smooth. With any of Rose's chocolate frostings, pay attention to chocolate liquor content, if you use a 72% instead of 53%-60%, your frosting will be firmer and need more butter or cream.

Since you are filling with chocolate mousse, you can probably get three cakes frosted out of a double batch of mousseline (that's 3 cups of frosting per cake).

Good Luck!

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Sandra, my heart goes out to you, that's a huge undertaking. You're a real friend! I'll try to help with what I can.

I suspect a large part of your problem is the 3" high pans- Rose states somewhere on the blog that her recipes don't work for 3" pans. Trying to bake a too-deep cake layer will definitely result in a heavy, dry/overbaked cake. Use the right size pan!

I made the chocolate fudge cake a week ago, and I can tell you that it is more light and moist than the All-American chocolate cake, and that it seemed to remain moist quite a while longer as well.

I also wanted to agree with Hector, if you are looking for a light, less buttery cake, go for the genoise or even biscuit.

You can add more butter to the milk chocolate buttercream if it's too firm, but be careful as it may become too soft to sit out on the tables for an extended period. Or you can just use mousseline, which is so reliable. I paired the chocolate fudge cake with vanilla mousseline, it was a lovely combination.

Good Luck!

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Michelle, I would suggest the Triple Chocolate Cake with the moist chocolate genoise and filled and frosted with the light whipped ganache. It can't get any lighter than this! Freezes well, 3 months or so.

What size cakes you need? width and height. You may want to consider square or rectangle cakes, sized from square or rectangular sheet pans, that way you can fit more cake in your oven and bake one large sheet and then cut it into individual cakes without waste as it is a square or rectangle.

There is no adjustments in baking powder for this cake as it needs none. But be careful when folding the batter and adding the chocolate, to prevent deflating.

Another good option is making Biscuit de Savoie, it is even lighter. I have successfully made chocolate version with cocoa.

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
02/16/2009 09:05 AM

a) Never commit to something you don't know how to do without experience

b) Buy the Cake Bible and all your questions are answered

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Rose, I need your help big time! I got several issues going on here! I'm just getting into baking for hire and am a one gal show. I've successfully done tiered cakes for events but now my friend has asked me to do 20 table centerpiece cakes for her wedding. With a willing heart of course I said yes but am now a bit stressed and uncertain. Not for lack of trying, I haven't been able to produce the right result and time has become my enemy in additional experimentation on my own!

1.) I was hoping to maybe be able to do 5 a week, complete them and freeze them. I'm concerned about the properties changing and in the 11th hour this being a disaster. They do not like the heavier/denser euro style cakes/genoise with syrups. They lean more toward the softer but moist, mousse for filling, buttercream for outside. I would greatly appreciate advise or wisdom you can share. Which recipes for cakes, frostings and fillings do you suggest to pull this off successfully and any adjustments I would need to make to the recipes? Am I gonna have a problem with the thaw and serve aspect of this strategy, sweating, properties changing, etc? Ugh!!!

2.) I've tried several recipes and am getting a bit frustrated and disappointed. They have all come out heavy/dense and a bit drier than expected. I thought for sure the last one would be it, the chocolate fudge cake, but it did not come out light and moist but still heavy and drier. I used the magi strips with a 9" square pan. Was it the square pan? Was it because I use 3" pans? Was it because I did not divide the batter among two pans? Since I have a small home kitchen, I was hoping to save time and space by doing the cakes in 3" pans at one shot each, and cut the layers rather than separate each layer in a different pan. That way, for the use of two pans at one cooking period, I could yield the two cakes. How can I achieve the result of a tasty, softer and moist cake that I need to do this? Which recipes are best for this and what do I need to tweek?

Incidentally, the larger tiered cakes I've done recently, although looking great and still tasty, have definitely been heavier/denser than I think they should have been and not what people expected to get I think. Also, I just tried the milk chocolate buttercream when I did the fudge cake and it got really hard when I refrigerated and never really settled back to soft even when leaving out, so I know that one is out of the question for the freezing strategy. I thought it might save time and be easier than the mousseline buttercreams that I am used to doing. So far, my chocolate mousse filling has been stable for the inside layers ( I added a bit of gelatin and worked like a charm), I am confident with the mousselines but they are more time consuming to make and definitely take more time to get them to a nice and smooth finish (since not using a fondant). I need quicker but stable that will produce a nice finished product outside and in and have not found the right balance yet. Please help this large-hearted but passionate and zealous rookie!

I greatly, greatly appreciate your time and attention with much indebtedness!!!

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sandra, this is great news! we used to go to stroudsburg very often since we spend weekends and summers in hope. the arts cinema closed but seems to have reopened thank goodness. i'll definitely have to check out this bakery at our earliest opportunity!

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Hello Rose,
I am always excited when I come across a bakery. It is becoming more rare in small towns where all baked goods are sold at supermarkets. I live in Stroudsburg, PA and recently discovered a new bakery called Soni's Flour Shop in Stroudsburg and their web address is www.sonisflourshop.com. The baker/chef Soni told me that she uses your book for all cakes and has never gone wrong. It is a cute little bakery very French, much needed in a town like Stroudsburg. Just wanted to share with you and your fans.
Sandra

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Hi all --

I've located Gold Medal flour at Partridges, near the Sloane Sq tube station. I'd forgotten to check there -- maybe it was the $15 price tag on a bag of Hershey's kisses at Xmas 2007 that stuck in my mind and kept that option from occurring to me. While it's a little pricey, I think this is the most expedient solution.

I checked out Kate four, but I don't have the time or patience to go to all that trouble! If I had a lot of time on my ends, it would be interesting to check it out from a scientific prospective.

Thanks to all,

Pam

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that is disappointing. i hope you find another source--i'm sure it must be available as it is a much appreciated grain. if you find it, the best thing is to buy a large supply of the whole grain as it keeps indefinitely if not ground.

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i just wanted to let you know that arrowhead mills is no longer manufacturing kamut flour. i started using it about a year ago at your suggestion in the bread bible and absolutely loved it. i used up the last bit of what i had yesterday in some lavosh. i haven't been able to find it in any stores recently in manhattan, and out of desperation called arrowhead mills. they stopped making it because it wasn't selling.


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Many thanks, Jeannette! The issue seems to center on bleached vs. unbleached flour, but I used to use unbleached Gold Medal or Pillsbury flour, so there must still be something different in UK flour. Wonder if it's the dampness here? Still, it was comforting to see that someone else experienced the same exact problem. I think I'll have someone send me a bag of one of the aforementioned flours, unless Partridge's carries either. Thanks again!

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There has been a lot of information on this site about the differences in US and UK flours. I am also in the UK. The best thing you can do is put Kate Flour in the search box at the top of this page and you will have lots of help in deciding how to get over the problems. Best of luck!

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Hello Rose -- I am an American living in the UK and am having unsatisfactory results (largely in texture) with my formerly tried and true recipes here. What could be the reason(s)? Is their flour, baking soda/powder, butter, etc. different? I do know the temp in my electric oven (which is about the size of a boot box) vacillates. Any light you or anyone can shed on this would be great -- I have lost all confidence in my baking!
Thanks,
Pam

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Dear Rose
It was in Agust 2007 that i started my blog and posted pictures of cakes that i have made all along. With the year 2008 coming to an end, i wish to thank you for your enocouraging words and the guidance. May the year of 2009 be more wonderful and good for all.

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I have a question, and I don't know who I should ask, so naturally I thought of you and all the great bakers here. I have a legal home bakery in Ohio operating under the cottage foods laws. I can't sell goods requiring refrigeration. I have a lady who wants a red velvet cake with that cooked flour and milk icing (the flour and milk is cooked and cooled, then added to the creamed butter and sugar). Would this icing require refrigeration? She wants this for celebrating Christmas, and I don't know what to tell her! Any help appreciated, thanks!

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Jeffrey, we are eager to see your masterpiece. You could post a link on your blog entry or create a Forum entry which allows you to upload pictures. You can also feel free to email me your pictures and I will post a link for you. My email address is inkasoy@hotmail.com

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Jeffrey Folinus
Jeffrey Folinus
12/19/2008 07:32 PM

I thought this would come up with the original post....what we have completed is Notre Dame in gingerbread.

(If you ever do an update, I would be glad to correspond with you about some suggestions, but perhaps not on the blog...)

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Jeffrey Folinus
Jeffrey Folinus
12/19/2008 07:28 PM

We are done! How do we get photographs to you?

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Hi Rose:
I recently started baking bread, starting with the no-knead method and have since bought your Bread Bible and started some recipies. Is it possible to use your recipes for the pugliese or ciabatta and cook it in a dutch oven like in the no-knead method? I have found that is the only way I'm able to get a steamy environment successfully, and my wife won't let me clutter up our cabinets with the steam bread baker you have written about. Will the dutch oven method work for "kneaded" bread? Thanks, Seth

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Hello Rose, I am freezing the dough after it rise, that is correct is it?!
(I hope so!)
Ivana

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Tracy Pickle
Tracy Pickle
12/ 8/2008 02:04 PM

Rose,

I had to change the ratio of water to flour for the focaccia recipe. 1 1/2 cups water to 3 cups flour (Baltimore humidity might have something to do with it). Amazing results. Everyone loves it. We coat top with olive oil and then a fine layer of homemade red sauce, followed by some dry oregano, red pepper flakes and a generous dusting of parm. Okay, so it's more like a pizza when we're finished. :)

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Ivana Crawford
Ivana Crawford
12/ 6/2008 04:42 PM

Thank you so much Rose!!
Ivana

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Hi there, I want to know why every time I make brownies (not from scratch) once the cooking time is up the contour of my brownies are rock solid but the rest is fine. WHY WHY WHY
Jojo

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vasily musorin
vasily musorin
12/ 3/2008 07:15 PM

Hi Rosalia,my name Vasily I will make breaad by my self,wHAT IS TEMPERATURE. vASILY

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Hi Ivana - Rose posted an answer to your question, but I can't find it at the moment. She said you can freeze yeast dough, but some yeast will be killed in the process and suggested you increase the yeast by 20%.

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ivana, you can certainly freeze bread dough but since some of the yeast will die in the freezing process add a little extra--say 20% more. good luck on the surgery. it is admirable that you want to keep up precious traditions and use your recovery time to be as self-indulgent as you need to be--life rarely gives one the opportunity to be required to rest.

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Ivana Crawford
Ivana Crawford
12/ 3/2008 09:33 AM

Hello Rose, I posted a question last night on freezing dough. But I can not finded, maybe it did not go through, that is why I am asking again, Is it possible to freeze bread dough?
Thank you,
Ivana

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Rose,
I have been making your stained glass cookies ever since interviewing (in Fort Worth) you for your "Rose's Christmas Cookies" book tour. I can no longer find Brach's Sour Balls.
Can you tell me where to get a substitute that will work well in these fabulous cookies?
Thanks!
Anne Isham
Author of Eat (More)Chocolate - Lose Weight (Anyway): The Chocoholic's Survival Guide and Practical Handbook
512-267-4861
www.chocomonkie.com
anne@chocomonkie.com

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i'm sorry but substitution is not my area of expertise. you'll need to do some research in books or on line that are designed specifically for lactose intolerance. i'm afraid you'll find that substitutions may be acceptable but are never entirely like the original. that is the reason i am recommending recipes that are made traditionally with non-dairy products.
as for clarified butter, if you remove ALL the milk solids and have only the clear yellow butterfat there is no lactose in that. but perhaps you should consult a nutritionist for the final word on what you can or must not eat.

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I am so excited for your book next year! That is going to help out a lot! However, until then, are there specific substitutions I can use for this year? I would love to make some of my traditional desserts but without the lactose.
Also, the clarified butter, is there any lactose in it or does the lactose get separated out through the cooking process? I have been trying to understand clarified butter for a week now and am scared to use it due to the fact that I don't know if all the lactose is taken out of it through the clarifying process.

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oil cakes that have other intense flavors going on such as pumpkin spice cake, flourless chocolate rolls, or chiffon cake are an excellent choice. also cakes that call for clarified butter such as génoise. the milk solids in the butter have been removed so it's 100% fat--sometimes referred to as butter oil.
next year this time you'll have a huge choice of oil cakes from my upcoming book!

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I have recently become "VERY" lactose intolerant. I've been learning a lot about what I can and can't have and am very proud of my quick lessons. However, holiday baking is right around the corner, and I was wondering, what is a good rule of thumb when it comes to using substitutions for butter? I have researched a lot of information online, but nothing that makes me feel more confident about using either shortening/lard or vegetable spreads that are dairy free. I am the one who both my husband's family and my own rely on for all the holiday cookies, bars, cakes, and pies. I really don't want to spend 2 weeks baking things that I can't have or even try to make sure that my friends and family will enjoy it. Please help! I am at a loss and am feel like I am going to be running out of time very soon!

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1- oven temperature wasn't hot enough so butter melter prior to crust setting.

2- crust wasn't refrigerated prior to baking.

3- you stretched the crust on the pan rather than rolling and tucking.

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why do the sides of my single crust always fall down during baking time?

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sheeba pillai
sheeba pillai
11/26/2008 12:19 AM

Hi Bill
I feel may be the oven temperature may be at fault - is your oven getting hotter ? From my personal experience the kind of leaking you described happens when the Cheesecake is baked at a higher temperature than required or may be the cheesecake has to be baked in a " bain-marie" or water bath ?
Best of luck Bill
sheeba

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thank you teresa for your lovely feedback.

bill, i don't think there is any change in sour cream as long as you used the full fat one and not one of the many low fat varieties. is it possible that your oven is off and baking slower than before? i can't imagine why else this would be happening and no one else has reported this problem.

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To my embarrassment, I stumbled upon your blog a few months ago and I must admit- this is my absolute favorite blog. I wish I had known this helpful information was out there sooner. I am at an intermidiate level baking professional cakes. Just something I do for fun. Since I found your newsletter, it has halped me tremdously. I can hardly wait to buy your "Cake Bible". After reviewing everyone's tips, information and opinions you all have given me treasured and invaluable knowledge. THANKS!

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Dear Rose,

Your cheesecake recipe produces the greatest cheesecake I've ever eaten. I've made it at least 100 times, but lately I've noticed that the cake is "weeping" liquid quite a bit as it cools (and afterwards), and the texture seems to be getting softer ever time I make it. Obviously I have not changed any ingredients, proportions, or procedures: are you aware of a "fix" for this? Has there been some sort of change in the way sour cream is processed?

Thanks,
Bill

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Robin Ann Pennington
Robin Ann Pennington
11/17/2008 05:05 PM

Dear Rose,
A million THANK YOU's!!! I'm so very happy to finally be able to express to you how much I've enjoyed your book!
I found 'The Cake Bible' close to 20 years ago when I first started seriouly baking and decorating cakes. The wealth of knowledge and "Tips for success" you share has been is priceless!! My copy is coming apart, I've referred to it so often over the years, and just last week I again made the Golden Wheat Carrot Cake and frosted it with White Chocolate Cream Cheese icing!! It is FABLOUS!! God Bless YOU!

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yes, they are called briochette, and they work very well, especially because they are small. as far as i know, and everything i have researched, there is no danger in baking with silicone.

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Phylliss Crist in Costa Rica
Phylliss Crist in Costa Rica
11/15/2008 04:49 PM

Dear Rose,
You are my Queen of Recipes, too! Your books are so informative - I've enjoyed a lot of success with the Pie, Cake and Bread ones and look forward to the future publications. I also enjoyed your t.v. show but don't find it anymore---I complained to PBS. I'm writing because you are so enthusiastic about baking in silicon - a thoughtful friend asked whether there are any health risks involved in that. And I am wondering if brioche "tins" are available in silicon and, if so, would you recommend using them? Thank you!

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cherries when mixed with some sugar will last for several years in a decent freezer and pie crust can keep well for about a year if the temperature is low enough but you're right about a non-frost free keeping it the best since it doesn't go through a freeze thaw cycle to keep the frost from building up.

glad you enjoyed my favorite pie!

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Hi, Rose. I haven't written in a while, but I had to let you know that over a year ago I baked a cherry pie using your recipes in the Pie and Pastry Bible. It was actually a set of three pieletts using the 5in Emile Henrys. The crust was the Deluxe Flaky, my favorite. Yesterday I baked the last one, and it was as fresh and wonderful as if I had just made it. An important piece of information is that it was stored in our deep-freeze that is NOT frost-free. Otherwise it could not have lasted so long. I know I have said it before, but I just love your books. Thank you so much for the hard work you put in to them. The quality of the information shows in the results of the baking.
Thanks,
Kerry

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bette, i've spent so much time reading your note to my dad, sending it to everyone who would appreciate it, that i suddenly realized i forgot to thank YOU!

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Bette Snyder
Bette Snyder
11/ 2/2008 11:58 AM

Rose: Your Bread Bible is one of my very favorite bread books. My husband and I attended two Halloween parties yesterday and he decided to make his carmelized onion spread to take to both events. We usually serve this with crackers, but I decided to make your Jewish Rye bread instead, shaping the recipe into two bagettes and slicing the bread rather thin. The bread was a huge hit. I have never had so many compliments on anything I have ever baked before. I now intend to make loaves when I need to give someone a special gift. Several people said, "I don't usually like rye bread, but this bread is great. Where did you find it?

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thank you susan for your beautiful posting!

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Susan LeVine
Susan LeVine
10/ 2/2008 07:53 PM

Rose,

I just made your white cake with apricot buttercream frosting for a bridal shower. That led to a request for a wedding cake. I haven't made one since your very first--the one that appeared on the cover of Bon Appetit in the late '70s. Prior to that I had never made a wedding cake, or fondant, or lemon curd, or marzipan roses. I never used a pastry bag either! Your instructions were so thorough, so explicit, so easy to follow--it truly was...a piece of cake!

Have a wonderful trip and a happy, healthy year, Rose.

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Susan LeVine
Susan LeVine
10/ 2/2008 07:52 PM

Rose,

I just made your white cake with apricot buttercream frosting for a bridal shower. That led to a request for a wedding cake. I haven't made one since your very first--the one that appeared on the cover of Bon Appetit in the late '70s. Prior to that I had never made a wedding cake, or fondant, or lemon curd, or marzipan roses. I never used a pastry bag either! Your instructions were so thorough, so explicit, so easy to follow--it truly was...a piece of cake!

Have a wonderful trip and a happy, healthy year, Rose.

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what a lovely comment from my namesake!

do check out the postings called book production--this sat. will be # 11 3/4!

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Rose: I am SO EXCITED to find your website/blog!!! I bought the Cake Bible years ago - the pages are falling out, it has drippings of butter, chocolate, strawberries, cream . . . but it took my interest in baking to a level that I never imagined. It truly has been a part of so many wonderful celebrations - birthdays, baptisms, holidays - as well a part of those days when sometimes you just need to bake a cake! I just wanted to say thanks for all the work and effort that must go into your books.

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I try to get to recipes off this site, but all I do is spend time reading replys. I want to know do you have any recipes for making aouthern biscuits with bread flour? or corn bread.

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Carol Petrie
Carol Petrie
09/10/2008 12:12 PM

Dear Rose,
I have never blogged before, but I love this site and the books I have. I am looking forward to your new baking book. I have 2 questions.
1. I noticed an Angel Food Cake recipe that you shared. Now that I really want to use it I can't find it. Could someone please direct me to where it is? I have looked under recipes.
2. I baked the Chocolate Cake. The taste was fabulous, but the texture was mealy. What did do wrong?
Thanks for your help.

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Travis Hodgdon
Travis Hodgdon
08/28/2008 11:50 PM

I just thought you should know about my recent mistake. I have been a professional baker before, but I am now back in school for music, specifically organ. The other day, I thought I would try to make your "La Brioche" cake from the cake bible, as I was bored and had extra butter sitting around. I foamed my yeast and judged it adequate, and proceeded to make the dough. Obviously, it was either too cold in my house or something went wrong. The dough never rose properly, so I put it in the refrigerator with the intention of feeding it to another generation of yeast. Two days later, I tried again and to no avail; the darned dough just wouldn't rise. So, I kneaded the two together and baked it anyway. To my surprise, it rose in the oven, not dramatically, but nicely enough, and turned out to be absolutely delicious. But, I guess anything with 10oz of butter in it would be. Just sharing.

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Travis Hodgdon
Travis Hodgdon
08/28/2008 11:49 PM

I just thought you should know about my recent mistake. I have been a professional baker before, but I am now back in school for music, specifically organ. The other day, I thought I would try to make your "La Brioche" cake from the cake bible, as I was bored and had extra butter sitting around. I foamed my yeast and judged it adequate, and proceeded to make the dough. Obviously, it was either too cold in my house or something went wrong. The dough never rose properly, so I put it in the refrigerator with the intention of feeding it to another generation of yeast. Two days later, I tried again and to no avail; the darned dough just wouldn't rise. So, I kneaded the two together and baked it anyway. To my surprise, it rose in the oven, not dramatically, but nicely enough, and turned out to be absolutely delicious. But, I guess anything with 10oz of butter in it would be. Just sharing.

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John J Swain
John J Swain
08/18/2008 08:55 PM

Dear Rose:

I had recently posted comments about your focaccia recipe, which is truly incomparable. Yesterday I had over-refreshed my 100% hydration white sourdough culture, and as a result, was trying to think of a recipe in which to use more than a cup of it. Your focaccia recipe came to mind.

Here's what I did:

I used your recipe, with the following modifications:

300 grams of the very active, recently refreshed 100% hydration all-purpose white flour starter(Whew!! A mouth full!!!)

Reduce water from 442 grams to 292 grams
Reduce flour from 390 grams to 240 grams

Regular yeast in original recipe totally eliminated

The dough came together rather quickly on the KitchenAid paddle after only 10 minutes instead of 20! ( I think my starter's gluten is already fairly well developed)

3/4 tsp. of sugar
3/4 tsp. salt

The dough almost quadrupled in 3-4 hours.

I let it rise in the well-oiled sheet pan for about 2 hours afterwards.

The rest of the recipe was all yours, and the results were great. Good way to use up some extra sourdough starter.

Wish I could send you a couple pictures of the results. The crumb glistened, if one can describe the moist gelatinized crumb of this bread-like treat in such a manner! I always top it before baking with: Kosher salt, pinch of garlic powder, fresh rosemary, and a good dose of grated Romano cheese.

Hope you're having a great Summer.

John J. Swain

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thank you john and suzanne for your great postings!

suzanne, your last name practically guarantees that you will be a successful baker!

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suzanne miller
suzanne miller
08/16/2008 08:09 PM

Just had to respond to (& thank you for) your "Holy Bread!" article--your response to the NY Times "The Secret of Great Bread: Let Time Do the Work" article (2006). I had been experimenting with recipes for Pugliese & Ciabatta breads, and was completely unimpressed with recipes I had found in a rudimentary search online. I basically ended up with a plain white bread, shaped like a loaf of French (yawn).

Then I stumbled upon your recipe and met with stunning success with my very first attempt. Not being a baker by any stretch of the imagination, I felt like I'd found the holy grail or discovered a planet or something; yet my giddy enthusiasm seemed justified by the comments & voracious appetites of my family & friends for this bread.

I thought I would share with you & your readers some things I did differently-- if only because I am at that age where I would rather make due with what I have on hand than go out & spend $100 or more on a special piece of cookware or special ingredients, if possible.

After a very successful maiden voyage, I increased the recipe by 50% to give me a loftier loaf, using my old 10" cast iron dutch oven, with its matching Pyrex glass lid. I had no wheat bran or cornmeal on hand to dust the dough with, so I used a whole grain wheat farina ("Cream of Wheat") instead; a fine substitute, it turns out.

Next, I just couldn't bring myself to handle that sticky wet mass just to knead it a couple of times before its final rising, so I got my big wooden spoon & folded the dough over itself several times until it became a uniform mass again, before letting it rise the last 2 hours before baking. Turns out, the dough couldn't tell the difference after all.

Here's my lazy bonehead version of your amazing artisan bread recipe:

4-1/2 cups unbleached wheat flour
2-1/4 cups water
1/2 teaspoon yeast granules
2 teaspoons salt

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap & put in a place to avoid drafts for about 18 hours. Then, stir the mass down to a uniform consistency, taking care to get all the pieces of dough off the sides & reincorporated into the mass. Cover again & set aside for 2 more hours.

Preheat the oven (with the dutch oven inside) to 450 degrees. Sprinkle wheat farina lightly on the bottom of the dutch oven. Gently drop in your dough & sprinkle lightly with more farina. Cover & bake for 40 minutes. If the bottom smells brown, but the top is not (as mine has consistently turned out to be), turn the loaf over--bottom's up--to lightly brown the top for 5 minutes longer. Give the loaf a thump, looking for that wonderful hollow sound, then take bread out of your pot & allow the loaf to rest on a cooling rack.

Then break out the butter, but try to let the loaf cool enough to avoid burning yourself too badly! :>)

Thanks again, Rose: You made my day!

suzanne miller

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John J Swain
John J Swain
07/25/2008 02:32 PM

Comments
Dear Rose

I just need to let you know that you really have the only good focaccia recipe that I have ever made!. All of the others use so much less water and the extra hydration is what makes it great. I love watching it and knowing that some time at around 20+ minutes, it will(guaranteed!) come together and clean the side of the Kitchen Aid and make a great, very fluid dough. Have to remind myself to add the 3/4 tsp. of salt and sugar at that time.
I have used the focaccia as the "pizza bottom" for a pizza with an Alfredo sauce, strips of pre-sauteed chicken, black olives, and oil-packed artichoke hearts. I bake the focaccia and then top it, and pop it back in the oven for a few(4-5) minutes. Fabulous!
By the way, I have a dedicated non-stick sheet pan for my focaccia, because it has a tendency to stick to a scratched pan, even with a lot of olive oil. I have convinced so many people to buy "The Bread Bible", after they have tried my breads which I regularly make from it. I have also convinced them to go to: http://www.oldwillknottscales.com and buy an inexpensive scale that measures in grams and start baking bread as the pros do, using weights, not volume. Thanks for a great book!

John J.

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I just purchased a Zojirushi bread maker as it had great reviews,My old bread maker was a west bend which they no longer make ,I made lots of wonderful bread with it.I made my first loaf today with this one and had fresh Gold Medal bread flour and yeast and all the correct ingredients.The outside is as hard as a rock and the top fell in.Their troubleshooting in their book does not help at all,does anyone out there have a BBCC-X20 bread maker that may know what is wrong?

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adina, i don't know what you are doing exactly or what kind of flour you are using but try BLEACHED all purpose flour which is stronger and it surely won't fall apart.

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Norma, I'm so sorry that happened to you. That person was wrong to accept the credit for a recipe you developed and so willingly shared. Certainly not a very good "friend", and it sounds like you were very gracious despite her very non-gracious behavior.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/20/2008 03:30 PM

Although I am planning to publish, the reason I am reluctant to share a recipe that I specifically developed is based on the following true example. I spent nine months developing a stuffed mushroom recipe. A friend asked for the recipe. I gave it to her, with detailed directions, omitting nothing. Five days later I attended a party where the friend brought my mushroom recipe. She told everyone it was her recipe while I stood there dumbfounded. Obviously, I did not contradict her. I do share recipes I do not plan to publish. I also told the person who asked for the recipe that I used to omit something. I no longer do that if I share a recipe. It just seems to me that it would be a broach of etiquette not to give someone credit. I have been taught to accept compliments graciously and be equally gracious in declining to give a recipe and to give credit where credit is due.

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For two 16"x2" chocolate butter cake layers you will need to multiply the chocolate base recipe by 14. You will also need to multiply the level 4 baking powder amount for chocolate cakes (1 1/8 tsp) by 14, so the total amount of baking powder you’ll need to make two 16"x2" layers of chocolate butter cake is 15 3/4 tsp (or 5 tablespoons plus 3/4 teaspoon; or 77.14 grams).

Yes the batter will weigh 12 lbs, or 6 lbs per pan.

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I can understand not wanting to share a recipe that is proprietary or is in the process of being published, but I can't imagine any other reasons for not sharing.

When I'm asked for a recipe, I NEVER omit a critical step or ingredient (quite the opposite, I go overboard and provide extremely detailed directions).

Btw, when I receive a compliment on a dish, I ALWAYS credit its source.

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i hope you have worked this out. i can assure you taht the rose factor works perfectly--i spent a very long time working it out--but if you have any doubts whatsoever about your mathematics it's best to call a local college math dept. and offer to pay even a student a small amount to check it for you as that's a lot of batter to risk.

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if you're planning to publish the recipes explain that you can't give them out until they are published. if you aren't planning to publish them, then i would share them but only if giving all the information necessary. it's your right not to share them as well but i would never leave out something critical as the person who is making them feels they have failed, or else blames you--don't you agree.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/20/2008 06:11 AM

Hi, Rose! I look forward to the new cookbook. This is an interesting question that I'm sure many of your readers will understand. When you are asked to share a recipe, how do you respond? I used to leave out a critical component or not share a technique. Yesterday I made a fresh fruit cobbler that drew rave reviews. However, I worked on this recipe for a year before it was completed to my satisfaction. Should I feel badly about sharing?

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It sounds like she may have used a sweet pastry dough rather than a flaky pie dough. Look up in any good pie and pastry cookbook for a sweet dough for baking tarts. Rose of course has a great one in her Pie and Pastry Bible, and it has also been posted on-line:
http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/recipes/RLB%27s%20Sweet%20Cookie%20Tart%20Crust.pdf

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I thought I already sent you a note but can't find anything about it so here goes again,I've made pies for years but here while back my brother (who is 87 and I bake him pies and bread) said his neighbor lady made him a pie and the crust tasted just like a cookie,I tried several that I found on allrecipies and etc but they either stuck so bad you couldn't get them out of the pie plate or didn't taste good.do you have a good one I could try?

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I am excited that you are online and I have a question regarding the Rose Factor. I am making a wedding cake and the bottom layer is a 16" chocolate cake. I am having difficutly doing the equation for the recipe. I am trying to figure out the Baking Powder part but in all when totaled, the recipe said it would make 12# of batter. Doesn't this sound large for a 16"? Also, any comments on the Baking powder amount would be appreciated also! Thanks!!

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well i have the absolute chills reading this! what a great way to start a marriage---i can think of none better.

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Hi Rose! I just wanted you to know that my Fiance purchased the Bread Bible and we both love everything about it! We feel like you're right in the kitchen with us every step of the way.
I've been baking buttermilk biscuits and angel biscuits from my Grandma's recipes half my life but, until this book, I've never attempted bread. Yesterday we made basic sourdough from our starter and it was wonderful! We are so proud and so grateful to you for all your wisdom and help. You're the best!
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Lisa and Ed
Texas

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Hi Hector,

I'm back! I just tasted some of my week old chocolate pound cake. It's not bad. On the dry side, but on the whole, I think it would be welcome for my friend in Iraq. I do have a question about your prior comment, though. I have the Cake Bible published in 1988. I looked at the All-American Chocolate Butter Cake recipe and I don't see anything about adding a syrup. So, how is a syrup made and is the syrup poured over the cake when it comes out of the oven? I was also wondering if you think the Down Home Chocolate Mayonnaise cake would be a good option? I thought it might stay more moist. Would that cake be o.k. baked in a loaf pan? Thanks, Hector.

Ellen

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Ellen, I don't believe on experienced bakers! You can strike perfection without experience, and that is what I believe each time I try a new recipe even for a important client or occasion where failure is not a choice!

If your butter based cakes came out a bit dry, add syrup to it. It works wonders. Rose's Chocolate Layer Buttercake recipe calls for optional syrup, but I made this option required. Cake is wonderful moist and without using added butter/fat. I do the same for all her butter cakes that I serve/freeze after 1 day, as she suggests.

Most commercial butter cakes, have tons of butter, margarine, or oil, to keep them "moist" for long time.

Happy 4th. Making pizza, slicing whole leg prosciutto san danielle, got some farmers market melon.

Thanks for the report back.

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Hi Hector,

Thanks for your thoughtful response. Compared to most folks posting here, I am only an beginner to advanced beginner baker. Of course I've been baking for many years, but I was just following recipes. I never thought about the why's and how's. I never thought about the fact that baking as a way to preserve eggs and dairy. I made the chocolate bread (chocolate pound cake) recipe from the Cake Bible last night. It was a bit dry. However, I wrapped it up and put it away for a week to see how it does. I am also considering a zucchini bread recipe that I have as an alternative. Thanks again, Hector, and have a great 4th of July.

Ellen

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Ellen, key point is remove the air and make it airtight. I use my vacuum packer. Most of the condensation will form outside the wrap, and the little that forms inside the wrap with the cake is the cake's own moisture and desirable.

Never release the vacuum or open the wrap until cake has thawed, this is when ambient humidity rushes in and condensates on the cake. In your case, this will be no problem, as the cake will arrive completely thawed after that week in transit.

Some cakes get smashed when in vacuum pack (like sponge cakes, or very tender butter cakes), what I do is to wrap the cake tightly with plastic wrap (stretch tite brand), freeze overnight, then put this inside the vacuum bag but not vacuum all the way; just until you see most of the air gone and the bag taking shape of the cake; this way there is no strong negative vacuum that will smash the cake when thawing.

Warnings said, I always take cakes out directly from the freezer. The same for buttercreams and many other foods that can sit at room temperature.

Regarding cookies, most butter cookies lasts for weeks inside an airtight container.

And how lovely, to get cake in the mail on 120 degree weather, yes it will smell like out of the oven. Tell your friend to put the box under the sun for 1 hour prior to opening!

Lets remind ourselves, that baking cakes, is an ancient form of preserving eggs and dairy. Just stay away from the components that can't sit at room temperature (like uncooked dairy, whipped cream, custards, etc).

Please send cake. Cookies are more common to send. I am sure your friend will be more impressed when he/she takes the cake!

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Matthew,

Thanks for responding. I have Rose's cookie book and have made a lot of the recipes. I was thinking that cookies might dry out too much during the week or so they were in transit. However, the gingerbread cookies do keep for a long time. I'll consider it. I think doing a test cake is also a good idea. Thanks, again.

Ellen

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Ellen, if you're open to sending something besides a cake, Rose's cookie book has a whole chapter called cookies for sending. Cookies would certainly be easier to send. If I were going to send a cake, I think I would consider making a small bundt pound cake, put it in a covered tin, and soak it in some type of syrup with alcohol. If you tried that, you could keep a test cake around for a few days and see how it holds up.

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Hector,

Thanks for your help. I was wondering about freezing the cake. Do you think there would there be too much condensation created during the defrosting? As an aside, his mother send him a cake and he said that when he opened it, the cake tasted like it had just come out of the oven. The day time temperatures have been averaging 120 degrees.

Ellen

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You're right Patricia, a fruit cake will stay moist and fresh for a long while and I think it was me who put the recipe on for Amy's wedding earlier this year. The only disadvantage I would think would be the weight of a fruit cake if sending it in a parcel, it would put the cost up quite a bit. Aside from that I would think it would be very welcome as it would lastwell in transit and not be fragile if knocked about a bit!

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Ellen - how about a fruit cake? They stay moist for months. I believe one of the bloggers posted a recipe on the forum.

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Adina, your issue has been reported and this blog and discussed. Can be many factors. Perhaps the flour has changed? Are you mixing enough to develop structure?

Or perhaps your baking powder has changed? Are you using too much or it is much fresher now?

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Ellen, that is commendable. Either butter cake will travel well for a week. A loaf size will bake just as usual, it may dome a little more, but that is pretty and characteristic of loaf cakes.

You can freeze the cake and pack it insulated (with styrofoam, or a few layers of aluminum foil and newspaper). This will extend shipping time and freshness by 2 or 3 days as it would be the time the cake will take to thaw and reach room temperature while in transit.

Can you send me one as a trial?

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Hi,

I want to bake a cake to send to a friend serving in Iraq. I think a loaf size would travel best. Any thoughts on which recipe from the Cake Bible would work best? What adjustments need to be made to baking time for a loaf size? It will probably take about a week to get to him. Thanks in advance. I know he would be thrilled to get a cake!

Ellen

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Adina Simonson
Adina Simonson
07/ 1/2008 06:26 AM

I need help. My favorite cakr in the whole world is the golden butter cake from the Cake Bible. I have made it a number of times and it has been perfect.I made it again and this time the whole cake fell apart in little crumbs.I made it twice more using fresh ingredients, checking my oven, and being super careful in every thing I did.The same thing happened. The cake looked beautiful and then fell apart. I have thought and thought and don't know what to think. Can you help me? I don't want to have to stop making the cake.Please,please,please.
Adina Simonson

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Adina Simonson
Adina Simonson
07/ 1/2008 06:24 AM

I need help. My favorite cakr in the whole world is the golden butter cake from the Cake Bible. I have made it a number of times and it has been perfect.I made it again and this time the whole cake fell apart in little crumbs.I made it twice more using fresh ingredients, checking my oven, and being super careful in every thing I did.The same thing happened. The cake looked beautiful and then fell apart. I have thought and thought and don't know what to think. Can you help me? I don't want to have to stop making the cake.Please,please,please.
Adina Simonson

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Hi Hector,

Thanks! That's good to hear. I will try & send a photo of the finished masterpiece.
Your help is greatly appreciated.

Sara

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Sara, I would say YES, be sure it is frozen airtight, thawed airtight, and when fondant is applied you don't refrigerate. /Hector

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Dear Rose,

My mother and I are making my wedding cake for my wedding Saturday August 2. It's been lots of fun for the last several months practicing your delicious recipes from the cake bible. We've decided to make a yellow butter cake covered with fondant. We don't have time to make the cake immediately before the wedding so we're making it a month before and freezing it frosted with a thin layer of buttercream. We are thinking of defrosting the cake the Wednesday before the wedding, covering it with fondant on the Thursday, and assembling the 3 tiers on the Friday. Do you think the cake will still taste and look great on the Saturday? Any advice you may have would be really helpful.

Sincerely,

Sara

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Rose, would you pass on to your webmaster that the site redesign is causing me some viewing problems? The top title and the new right side area are showing up just fine, then I have to scroll way way way down to view the left side area and the main article. I'm viewing the blog with Internet Explorer 6 on a PC. I tried adjusting the text size bigger or smaller and making the window wider, but neither thing helped.

I have a Mac at home, if I have problems there too, I'll let you know.

P.S. I like the idea of the redesign a lot, actually! Just not quite working for me...

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here are my cupcakes inside the miniature panettone molds. no more blue roses left... yeehhha!

http://www.hectorwong.com/roselevy/PanettoneCUP-cakes.html

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Agreed - I only space tiers like that when I'm going to stack them on site. When the cake is transported pre-stacked, cold buttercream is a wonderful "glue".

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oh yes--thanks for mentioning! i wouldn't dare transport a cake that was raised slightly above the buttercream. this is only when you're putting it together in place--not moving it.

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i haven't removed my fear habit to dab buttercream between tiers, my 1/4 or 1/8 is filled and works magic like glue to prevent shifting while transporting... stronger than cement when cold is the buttercream. If I need to keep the 1/4 or 1/8 clean, I place a layer of nonskid pad under the cake board above, non skid pads are so readilly sold nowadays.

Just finished my memorial day weekend hosting small lunch with roasted chicken. Cake was "cupcakes" made from scraps of Rose's yellow butter wedding cake fitted on miniature panettone paper molds. Cake moistened with a generous drizzle of amaretto sauce, then topped with some of my last grand marnier buttercream blue roses. Rose's yellow cake IS so tasty and refined, most people note it to me as the best "cake" they have tried.

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thanks patrincia--i've been so busy revising i forgot to answer this question right away! even 1/8 inch will work if you're careful to slip the offset spatula or pancake turner between it and the cake without touching the buttercream. just to be safe you can spray the bottom of the spatula with nonstick spray.

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Penny - yes, some of the buttercream will stick to the cardboard of the upper tiers. That's one reason why I like to leave about 1/4" of space between my tiers - the space can be disguised with a nice piped border.

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Hi, Rose - Love your blog - especially your comments highlighted in pink. As you know, the Cake Bible is what got me interested in baking and launched me into my career as a caterer and cookbook author. I'm making my first tiered cake with your mousseline buttercream and am planning to use straws to support the upper tier. If the straws get cut to the same height as the top of the frosted cake - no columns, doesn't the buttercream come off the cake and onto the cakeboard of the tier above it? Most decorators don't know the answer to this because they use frosting with powdered sugar and crisco in it(yucch), which crusts over. Hope you can help.
Best regards,
Penny

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jacqui, the 'tweaked'recipe didn't work perfectly bc the original was perfectly balanced. you can't just add things in such radical quantities and expect the same results. adding extra vanilla is one thing but cognac and in such a large quantity will totally throw off the balance. that's why liqueur and syrup is added to cakes such as génoise AFTER baking!

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p.s. did your lard/butter mixture still have the taste of the lard? i adore a lard crust but don't like the flavor for sweet pies--only for savory.

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kristine, i trust you got my e-mail saying yes and how to give correct attribution.

deb, by now you can tell ME how the clarified butter experiment worked. i tried it of course when working on the pastry bible but clarifying butter denatures it and it does not perform like lard. it is a totally different type of fat structure.
as far as the water content, you are right--clarifying it removes the water so if you wanted to do a calculation you would just add the percentage of water that the butter called for in the recipe contained (info in the cake bible).
do tell us what happened!

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Annie, I use Pi all the time!

thanks for sharing your math.

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Pi x radius squared it is. It's easier if you convert to centimetres. 3 inches equals approx 7.5cm and 12 inches is approx 30cm. The area of a 3 inch cookie is 44 square cms. (3.75 x 3.75 x 3.14 (pi)). The area of a 12 inch cookie is 706.5 square cms (15 x 15 x 3.14). So the factor for one 3" to one 12" is 16 (706.5 / 44). Of course, one rarely makes one 3 " cookie on its own so if your recipe makes 12 x 3" cookies then you muliply your recipe by 16/12 = 1.33. However, if you get 16 cookies from your current recipe just make the same amount! As for baking times - someone else will answer that.

I use this formula all the time and can virtually make any cake in any sized tin - it's also very useful when converting from round tins to square and vice versa. If you want a different height (particularly useful for tarts) you need to use volume (pi x radius squared x height). Pi is approx 3.14.

Good luck!
Annie

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Duhhhhhhh, Now why didn't I think of that! I'll let you know how I made out. I plan on baking a "monster cookie" and placing a 8-9 inch cake in the center of it then decorate the exposed portion of the cookie. Thanks for your input. By the way, I have 4 of your books in my cookbook home library. Can't wait for your new addition. Regards, Mike

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mike, if you don't get a response on this posting try on the forums. i've never made monster cookies. probably what you need is a mathematician to figure out how to increase the surface area of a 3 inche cookie to that size. i think pie R2 will be involved! or, just try 4 times the size of a smaller cookie--that's what i would do!

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Hi Rose, I'm an on again off again cookie baker. My cookies always come out great. I want to try baking MONSTER cookies 10 to 12 inches in diameter. Where do I begin calculating the amount of dough necessary. Your expertise on the subject is invaluable. I await your reply with eager anticipation.

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Dear Rose,

I am working on a church cookbook and would love to reprint your pita bread recipe in it. We have a huge international food fair every year and one of our specialties is Middle Eastern food. The cookbook is small (about 40 recipes) and will encompass only things we sell at that fair. It will be sold at the fair (which is called Glendi - Greek for "party") and through our church bookstore on Sundays only.
Of course, we use purchased pita bread at Glendi, but I thought it would be nice to give people a recipe for it, and I know that yours works!(I make it a lot,especially during Lent when we eat a lot of hummus!)
Please let me know if I may do this, and if so, how to obtain "official" permission from you.
FYI, our church's website is: www.saintseraphim.com
There are photos of the fair there, under "Glendi"
and the site for the food fair is:
www.glendi.net
a full menu can be viewed there.
Of course, if you grant me permission to use the recipe, I'll send you a free cookbook! People come from all over for our home cooked international specialties!

Thanks,
Kristine

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I recently bought a pasta attachment for my Kitchenaid stand mixer and wonder if anyone has ever used it to roll out puff pastry?

It may be a bit stiff in the early stages but at the later turned, folded and rolled I wonder if it would be possible...

I'm thinking of it as a mini commercial style sheeter that professional bakers use but it may not be up to the task.

I'm going to try it out later this week to test it out and look forward to any comments before then.

Thanks,
Janet

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Roseann, The Bread Bible has a nice explanation of autolyze.

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Hello Rose, just discovered your wonderful website. Thanks for sharing. One of your bread recipes mentioned the word "autolyze". My dictionary definition of this word didn't let me know where it fits in a baking recipe. Help!

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Thanks for the tips Hector. I'll review the link you sent - hopefully this will solve the problem.

Patti

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Patti, there is a small section on Cake Bible that talks about flour and what can be a inter exchange between cake and AP flour, plus corn starch indeed. I would give it a try, plus the new findings from Kate's Flour, all priceless.

You may want to see this video with Rose and her latest findings on flour:

http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/2008/01/hectors_great_video_tape_of_my.html

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Hi Rose - I don't think I've seen Gold Medal bleached AP flour here (Nova Scotia, Canada). Would you suggest changing this to cake flour? If so, how much?

Do you think changing the mixing method to your approach would help?

Thanks again,
Patti

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Hi I want to know if you could give me the update on the butter pound cake that I would like to make, to put into a 14 inch round cake pan. If you could let me know how much sour cream do I need for that size? I would love to get your new book, but unfortunately I need it before May 17th. I'll get your new book though..sincerely, Leah

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i'm quite sure it's unbleached so try gold medal bleached all purpose.

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I need to figure out why my cake is falling in the middle. I have made this recipe 3 times and with the same result each time. The flavour is delicious and the texture is similar to a carrot cake. Any other cakes I bake come out perfectly in the correct amount of time, so I think I can discount oven temperature issues.

I've read through the Cake Bible and the blog and have found that falling in the middle is likely due to a lack of structure or too much leavening.

The recipe doesn't have any baking powder, just baking soda (see recipe below) which I thought was due to the acids in the other ingredients.

I thought that I would try using Rose's method for combining the ingredients to hopefully create more structure. I thought I would put the butter and 3/4 c of the apple butter (looks like applesauce) in with the dry ingredients in Rose's second stage & beat for 1 1/2 mins to increase structure.

Do you think there might be an error in this recipe? I got it from a magazine and it has also been printed in a book with the same measurements - but perhaps it wasn't tested properly??? By the way, I used Robin Hood All Purpose Flour for this recipe - I'm not sure if it is unbleached as there is no comment on the package.

Here's the recipe:
2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
2 ¼ tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
3 medium apples (Granny Smith) cored and peeled
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup dark-brown sugar
1 ½ cups unsalted butter
3 large eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup apple butter
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350

Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl & set aside. Shred apples on a box grater. Transfer to paper towels, press gently to drain. Transfer to a medium bowl and toss with ½ cup of the flour mixture (above) to coat completely.

Put sugars and butter in to the bowl of an electric mixer with paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Add remaining flour mixture, mix until just combined. Mix in vanilla, apple butter, and oil. Add shredded apples and mix until combined.

For an 8" pan, it calls for baking at 340 for 1 hr and 15 mins.

Thanks for your help. I would really like to perfect this recipe. It's so delicious alone but when iced with a caramel buttercream it is unbelievable.

Thanks,
Patti

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Melissa, which recipe did you make?

I like baking by weight as well. I think it's so much easier than measuring everything out.

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Just wanted to add something rather unrelated to the most current subject, but a revelation to me...I made my first 2 cakes from the Cake Bible a week ago-two pound cakes. I measured based on weight instead of volume (ounces of flour instead of cups) and even with using unbleached flour, they came out beautifully! The recipe called for 1.5 c. of flour, but when I weighed it, I only needed 1 cup. I actually had to take 2+ TBLSP of eggwhites out to get the right weight! The cakes were so moist...my husband said he only wanted a taste of each and ate both pieces! I added 2 tablespoons of orange rind to one and made a fresh OJ/sweet marsala wine glaze to go over it.

Looking forward to making the white spice pound and golden butter cream cakes next!

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Maryjo Warstler
Maryjo Warstler
04/22/2008 12:01 PM

Hunting for an authentic Cuban Bread Recipe.

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how does the dry yeast become activated? i don't think this won't work this way. i've already tried mixing the dry yeast in the flour.

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how does the dry yeast become activated? this won't work this way.

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Hi Rose! I received a "tweaked" recipe of your from a friend. She calls it Vanilla Cognac cake and it's based off of your Sourcream butter cake recipe (pg 35 in the Cake Bible). Added to your recipe is 2 TBS Vanilla extract and 1/4 Cup Vanilla Cognac. I made it in 2x10" round pans and double the recipe. It rose nice and high while baking to fill the pans but when I took it out of the oven the cake shrunk down evenly on top to about 1 1/2" high and shrunk from the sides about 3/4" total diameter. Does this cake normally do this or do you think it's because of the extra liquid in it? It does make a tasty cake as I fill it with raspberry filling and frost with Vanilla Cognac Italian Meringue(sp?) buttercream.

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Hi Cathryn - click here for yeast substitutions (scroll to the bottom of the page). Hope it helps!

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I have a question regarding an old family recipe that has me stumped. The recipe is for Kifli cookies.

Problem: Yeast cake is crumbled and combined with flour and sugar; then allowed to rest for 20 minutes. I live in Georgia and unless I want to buy 100# at a time, I can't find yeast cakes! I've even called the manufacturer and they can't think of a solution in how to use the dry active in this application. Imagine my executive husband carefully holding these precious yeast cakes, on ice, on a plane from NY!

The dough is put together in the following way: mix the yeast, sugar and flour and let sit for 20 minutes. Cut lard/butter into flour/salt mixture then add sour cream, vanilla and yeast mixture. Combine and let rest in ice bowl for 2 hours. This dough is then rolled thin with confectionary sugar, cut in triangles and then rolled with a raspberry or appricot filling.

Can you think of an alternative way of making this dough successfully without the CAKES!

They are the best cookie on earth --- Help!

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Oops, I forgot. My mistake!

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:)

I've been doing genoise and biscuit so much in the past couple years that all I use my Rumford for is for flaky pie crust!

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Hector... I'm sure you use several cans of baking powder in the time it takes most of us to use one :).

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I keep my Rumford baking powder vacuum packed and in the refrigerator. It greatly extends shelf life.

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Ok. I got bubbles GALORE!! So do I assume my oven temp is off, even though the thermometer I had showed it to be accurate??

Do I up my oven temp a little, and if so, how much? 360 or 375??

I also found a date in small print on the baking powder and it says it was made in Jan '07, good for 2 years.

I'm open for ideas. Now flummoxed and a bit irritated. I don't want to throw away MORE cake. How would you guys handle this??

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Oh, DUH!! My brain must be in neutral today. Thanks for reminding me.... (deep red blush of embarrassment...)

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Stacie - you can test your baking powder without baking... just pour hot water on some and see if you get a reaction (bubbles).

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Judy, how about any of the yellow butter cakes? Then drizzle Meyers rum, cover airtight, and refrigerate for 3 days!

If you want raisins, soak them in rum overnight, airtight. Drain and coat thinly in flour, then add to your cake batter.

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Bill, I am not the expert in cupcakes neither on baking powder, since my cakes are mostly chemical leavening free. But I've known that sinking centers are normally due to an oven that is not hot enough.

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Hi Rose! I wanted to tell you that I love you Cake Bible. I have surprised a many of people with your wonderful recipes! I do have a question. I want to make a good rum cake but I do now see a recipe for it in your book. What cake should I use for the base cake and whay type of rum would you prefer? I would like a really good recipe. Thanks so much for your speedy reply.

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You're right, Bill....doesn't sound like a baking powder issue for you. Wonder what is causing that? Unless you have a cold spot in your oven....
or a gremlin.

I wish I could take my baking powder back and demand a refund. But I can't find the receipt. What really frustrates me now is I'm out of time to bake this week. So I can't really play with a new batch of baking powder to see if that's the problem. Guess I'll have to get creative and try to piece together some time between now and next Wednesday, when I'm off work again. :-(

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Stacie:
I've had a similar problem. Some of my cakes have been sinking in the center...but not all. Interestingly, I baked two layers on the same shelf/rack in the oven. One sank, one didn't. It didn't sink all the way down...so I used it as it was, made it the bottom layer, and leveled it off with buttercream. It wasn't that low in the middle...but it never used to happen before. I'm not so sure it is the baking powder here...since both layers were mixed in one batch, and only one sank. I have a fairly good oven, and I don't think that the temp varies so greatly from the left side to the right side on the same shelf.

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Oh, I see... sounds like the cakes are baked, but not structurally sound. I bet your new batch of baking powder is to blame... I'd return it to your supplier and demand a refund.

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Hi-

Thanks for the response....

I didn't use baking strips since I've never had to....ever. And I've never had this problem before now. I started with a 6in chocolate butter cake from the cake bible, then made a recipe from Dede Wilson, her white chocolate cake. Both did the same thing. Cooked around the sides, sank straight to the pan in the very center. It looked perfect right up until the last 10 min. I'm going to buy some more baking powder, and hope that fixes it. (but if it does, it means throwing away a HUGE quantity of baking powder from my bulk purchase.....that would stink, even though I'd be glad to have solved the problem!)

The chocolate cake had a regular (same as usual) grain/texture, and the white chocolate one had a coarser grain. Both taste fabulous. But I can't serve them like this!

Thanks for helping me....if you have any other "baking pearls" I'd be grateful.

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Hi Stacie - Rose is vey busy with production of her new book, so maybe some of us bloggers can help. Sounds like you're on the right track to solving your problem. What recipe are you making? Are you using insultated baking strips around your cake pan? If not, the sides will be done before the center (underbaked center = fallen center). I would also try a new container of Baking Powder - one from a different store (different batch).

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Hi ROse-

I love your Cake Bible and use it constantly. It has always been super reliable and have never once had a cake turn out badly.

But lately every cake I make sinks in the center. I've been super careful measuring: I've gotten a thermometer for my oven and it reads accurate. I don't know what to do. Just yesterday I had to throw away a cake because it sank to the bottom of the pan in the center, but the sides were nice and high. The same this morning. The grain is a little coarse. I checked the "understanding cakes" section and it mentions that the most common causes (other than substitutions and incorrect measuring) are too cold oven (checked that already), undermixed batter (pretty sure it's not that, as I time my mixing), and too much baking powder. I have decided that most of this trouble started sometime around when I purchased my new container of baking powder, but I am measuring it very carefully. And old baking powder causes poor volume and compact texture, right?? Not sunken centers?? I'm so lost and extremely frustrated, so if you can help, I'd be so grateful. I'm wasting lots of time and ingredients here...grrr....

Thanks for any assistance you can offer

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rose,

My preference for bread is not moist and chewy but airy and drier. Is using long rise process of bread making going to give me results which I prefer?

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Deb Cazavilan
Deb Cazavilan
03/26/2008 09:25 AM

Rose, I am new to your blog, but not new to your books. I have been collecting them since the first Cake Bible way back when. It frequently sits on my night table and has many stained and tattered (well loved) pages.

I am a professional baker with a very small business in the midwest. I am about to launch a "pie making" venture and have been rolling my way through dozens of recipes to perfect my own signature crust. Enter Rose's Cream Cheese Pastry (which I am planning on making today)

Scientific Question:
I had this idea. . . that butter and lard together made the best crust. Lard offering it's flakiness, and of course butter for its unmatched flavor. I had ALOT of pies to make, so I took a 5 pound tub of lard and whipped it (20 quart hobart) with a couple of pounds of butter. I then scooped 6 ounce portions onto a plastic lined cookie sheet and froze them for easy grabbing from a ziploc baggie. It worked fantastically well.
Here's my question. . . .
Since lard is the "performer" in the equation, I thought about making the butter more like lard by clarifying it.
Yesterday, I melted 3 pounds of lard in a large hotel pan.
I melted 4 pounds of butter in a large pyrex microwaveable measuring cup.
When the solids had sunk to the bottom, I carefully poured the butter into the melted lard, leaving behind the solids.
I chilled the mix for a couple of hours, then removed this huge slab of lard/butter to a large cutting board.
I sliced up the fat into 1 inch cubes and right into several ziplocs for the freezer. Plan to weigh my chunks as needed.
Can you anticipate what might result?
Have I created a fat that will taste more like butter and act more like lard?
How does removing the moisture from the butter need to be calculated when approaching a recipe. . . .like your cream cheese butter pastry.

Also, I thought I would save the solids to use for the liquid part of the recipe(s). Might add a little vinegar as well.

I would love to know your thoughts, and will be happy to report back my results!

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Hi Karen - You bet you can freeze them! Just be sure to wrap everything as airtight as possible. Do a search here on the blog.... there is a lot of discussion on the topic.

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karen pieper
karen pieper
03/18/2008 03:26 PM

i just bought heavenly cakes cupcake kit, french vanill, and cannot wait to try them; with easter just around the corner, i like to have a lot of my dinner/dessert items prepared ahead of time; is it all right to make the cupcakes, freeze them, and then defrost the day yu will be eating them and icing them at that time? don't want to take a chance if somewhere in the baking/freezing stage something goes wrong; please advise.

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http://www.hectorwong.com/roselevy/MousselineButtercreamGrandMarnier.html

on the subject of mousseline and adding liquor. 15.3 cup batch, Grand Marnier.

I prefer to whip the liquor on a much larger bowl than my 6 qt KA, it is less messy since the clumps of buttercream become very slippery in contact with the liquor and tend to jump off from the mixer's bowl.

3 pictures as been incorporated until heavenly emulsified.

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Oh, and by the way...I have on occasion talked about baking, very late at night, in my underpants. Just so you know...chopping frozen buttercream with a meat cleaver is something I never do late at night in my underpants...for many many reasons.

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Patrincia...yes...that was me! You're good...although I'm problably the only person who's been whining about an office move lately. My last couple of postings have come up anonymous...so that was me...the cleaver chopper of frozen butter cream (bill).

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Bill - Best of luck moving your office! we look forward to your return.

Others - I'd heard once that there is one (and only one) brand of microwave oven that will actually soften butter properly... does anyone have any idea which brand it is?

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microwave is uneven and attacks fat first so it's losing some of the liquid out of suspension.

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Just an idea here. When I have butter cream in the fridge or freezer that I plan on using at a later date, I store it in ziplock freezer bags. Then I take it out of the bag, put it on a cutting board and chop it into pieces with a big chef's knife or cleaver. In small pices, it comes to room temp much much quicker...and no chance of damging it with a microwave. (Since my kitchen is so tiny, and I didn't use the microwave often, I got rid of it when I renovated...so I needed to come up with other ways of getting from point A to Point B.

To Rose and all my cake buddies: I'm in the process of moving my office, and my internet connection has been on and off the last few days...and may be off for a week or so...so sorry that I've been absent from be blog...and will be absent even more in the next week or so. Everyone: Keep baking! I miss you all!

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then it is science.

YES, the texture/emulsification of the buttercream improves with the alcohol, I always notice. In fact, when I incorporate the butter to the meringue, I don't wait until it all becomes smooth; once I dump the alcohol on it, the clumps turn into silk!

think of cleaning your greasy hands with alcohol, fat gets dissolved.

QUESTION: when I microwave (very carefully, 5-10 second intervals) refrigerated mousseline (that has liquor), I notice liquid accumulating on the bottom. Seems that it can be the water portion of the butter, or of the liquor? It resembles the liquor when I first make the buttercream, accumulating on the bottom of the mixer's bowl before it incorporates. What is happening? Seems that things have gone bad, but all I need is be patient, and whip the buttercream again, and it turns back to heaven.

I love using the microwave to quickly bring to room temp refrigerated or frozen buttercream. It is unbearable to plan ahead or wait until nature warms things up!

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just want to chime in that alcohol seems to have a magic effect on butter creamsand sauces, even helping them to emulsify should they start separating

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great Patrincia, and this just makes me think (I haven't post on that), whenever I add the suggested amount of liqueur on the Mousseline Buttercream, the greasy taste and impression of butter is smoothen out, becoming "less greasy." It must be that urban legend says that alcohol dissolves and cuts off the fat!

And similarly, if adding the suggested fruit variation on the Mousseline Buttercream, a similar thing happens.

I just never ever use the Mousseline Buttercream alone. Can it be Ying and Yang?

BTW, my right hand wrist is still swollen from piping 200 large roses (the picture I posted is for the medium ones I did last week). For these large roses, I used my giant JB Prince piping bag, it was so heavy that I had to lean the bag on an inverted pot and push against it with my fist, instead of squeezing with my palm! This just makes me think on getting a foot triggered air pump and connect it to my piping bag...

I am going to copy this post on your Magic Buttercream post, which is full of nice info...

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I would add all the lemon too - it really just "brightens" the overall flavor of the buttercream (doesn't make it taste lemony).

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Aviva, may I cheap in. Literally if you x3 the BC, you should x3 the lemon juice by all means. However, people's individual perception of taste on lemon varies: it is up to your personal taste to determine if you want more or less lemon juice, also, lemon juice varies in acidity from lemon to lemon. I would add to taste if that is your concern.

Personally, I add the full amount, as I never complain when there is too much lemon on something sweet.

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Hi Rose,
I have made your white chocolate cream cheese buttercream x3. Do I add the lemon juice x3? I had the idea of using this buttercream to top a red velvet cupcake, but am not so sure if the combo will work with the tang of lemon. What happens if I don't add the juice?
Thanks again for being so easily accessible! How lucky we "fans" are!!!!
Aviva

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Thanks. That sounds fairly easy (I hope). My personal copy of the PPB will arrive tomorrow. The ones we made last year were from Claudia Roden's book, and the dough was really delicious, but rolling it out was a nightmare that I would not like to revisit. The funny (?) part of last year's experience was that my husband wanted to make poppy seed filling from scratch. Apparently the poppy seeds were rancid, though they didn't smell bad directly from the jar. As the cooking progressed, my husband eventually announced that he thought he was being poisoned by bad fumes, and we finally decided that the poppy seed filling was a no-go. We hope this year will be less exciting.

Beth

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we discussed this over dinner and eliott, expert and appreciator of hamantaschen vetoed my idea of danish saying that it is a cookie dough. so i recommend using the sweet pie dough in the pastry bible and the lekvar filling or even the poppyseed filing.

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Rose,
I've just ordered your PPB (only had it from the library previously), so still don't know if there's a recipe for hamantaschen. Above, on this thread, you say you don't like them. But, the time is now upon us, and I've only made them once before (last year), and the recipe I used was too difficult (in that it didn't come together as described). That being said, the ones I studied today on epicurious also were reviewed with many problems with the dough coming together. I thought, "I need Rose's help; surely if there's a recipe in her book, then I will not have these problems." So, Rose, if there is no recipe for hamantaschen in the PPB, can you suggest one of your pastry dough recipes that would be most appropriate? Thanks so much. If the hamantaschen recipe is in the book, then I'm sorry for the bother, but perhaps some other people can also write in with hamantaschen hints. I'm strictly a bread baker these days, so am quite out of practice on pastry.

Beth

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I have come to realise that the best chocolate cake is achieved with the best cocoa. Most cocoa powder for baking has something added to it making it anywhere between 60 to 70% cocoa.

There is a cocoa product on the market in the african shops which is from Ghana and 100% cocoa. try that with your choclate cakes and you will notice the difference.

It is called Brown Gold natural cocoa powder. It is 100% cocoa.

Replace 10% of your flour for baking with this product and you will see the difference in taste, and quality.

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I can share these, as I am jumping into the business world, if not already there or been pushed at by my people!

1- Regarding fear of "just peeling onions" as an apprentice in a bakery. It is true, you may be stuck just weighting, washing, mixing, or portioning, but it is never for ever, maybe weeks, months, or if any a year!

2- Regarding fear of "having to make the same things over and over" in you own a bakery. It is true, you will need to bake what sells and lots of it, but once business is smooth you hire staff and have them run the lines. Then you stay at home or at your test kitchen and work on new recipes, what you love most doing!

3- Culinary school is great, and the typical 2 year degree "doesn't teach you anything." It is true, it is for people that don't know how to even crack and egg on the most part or for people that want to learn how to bake. But the diploma counts, so best if you go to culinary training for just a short period certificate or by been an apprentice under a bakery with name recognition!

I believe, that your character, your personality, and samples of your work is what will take you far. Aren't these what people will pay you for?

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if you are planning to do this from home then i would say no, but if you are opening a location then the best training for volume and other unexpected things would be to apprentice to a baker! there are so many wonderful people on this blog who are doing this kind of thing from home that i suggest you also post this on the forums, tell them specifically what your plans are, and see what their suggestions might be. best of luck!

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Robyn Adams
Robyn Adams
02/22/2008 02:12 PM

Dear Rose,
I have been a fan of yours for quite some time and just love the latest edition of the Cake Bible. I have had a dream of starting a small business catering cakes. My question is, do you feel it is necessary to receive professional culinary training before embarking on such a business? I would truly love to have your opinion. Thanks so much.

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Belmari Bauer
Belmari Bauer
02/21/2008 12:44 PM

Thank you very much for your response. Yesterday I received The Bread Bible. Just going through the pages. Love your introduction. Just making a wishlist of the equipment you suggest.Will keep you posted in my new adventure. Thanks again for your help and inspiration. Regards, Belmari Bauer

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This is in response to Salma's Query - for a substitution for sour cream in Pakistan & India -
For rich butter cakes like chocolate cakes or brownies etc you can use THICK Yoghurt instead of sour cream & it really works well OR
Stir 4 tablespoons of melted butter [ at room temperature ] in to 3/4 cup of thick yoghurt till blended & smooth , then refrigerate for just an hour - NOT MORE [ otherwise the melted butter may solidify ]& use in place of 1 cup sour cream .
For Cheesecakes - this is my suggestion & i hope it works - since single cream [ also called Table Cream ] has almost the same fat content as sour cream , - set the single cream just like how we make dahi or yoghurt only difference being use Single Cream instead of milk OR you can also sour it with lemon juice & use it especially if you are making Lemon Cheesecake .
Hope it really works for all of you especially Salma !

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what a sweet story! you obviously have a wonderful step daughter who really appreciates you.
Re the revised Cake Bible, if you go to a chain book store such as Barnes and Nobles they all seem to have the most current printing which has the little round medallion on the upper right hand corner that says revised equipment and ingredients OR you could call Jessica's Biscuit and tell them I suggested you call to ensure that you get the revised edition. If they can't help you ask for the owner David Strymich and give him my best regards while you're at it!

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Belmari Bauer
Belmari Bauer
02/17/2008 11:25 AM

Dear Rose:
First of all hello from Puerto Rico. I have been baking for a while (since I was 13 years old and I am 56) and last year I received The Cake Blble as a gift from my stepdaughter. I have never read such a great book in baking.I just ordered today The Bread Bible to start baking bread for me a new adventure. I would like to give my daughter on her 30th birthday a copy of your new revision of the Cake Bible. Have tried getting it in the web, even on ecookbooks.com and what they have available is the 1998 edition. Can you please tell me where to get it. I am also looking forward to have the spanish version distributed in the US. Keep on with your great work you are really an inspiration. Thanks for your help. Belmari Bauer

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I would like to try making a Lady Baltimore Cake. I have come across various recipes in different locations. I am wondering if someone can suggest a good recipe and where to find it? As well, some of the recipes I've found call for figs to be used for the filling while others call for dates; is one better than the other? If the recipe calls for figs could dates be substituted? Thanks for your help.

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bill kindly posted this here as he couldn't find where you had posted the question. i just want to add that using a water bath helps to equalize the temperature so that the outside doesn't become dry and cakey before the center is baked.

Earlier today I read a posting from someone with a cheesecake problem...i didn't responda at that time...and now I can't find the post (yes...Bill is a computer ninkinpoop (spelling)) so I am posting the answer here...hope who ever needs the info ...sees it.
I don't know what cheese cake recipe you are using but Rose recommends an instant read thermometer and an internal temperature of 150 degrees Farenheit. I have used this method and it works perfectly. I also have another cheese cake recipe...rather different from the cordon rose cheesecake recipe in the cake bible - it contains 2 1/2 pounds cream cheese 1 3/4 cups sugar 5 eggs 2 yolks, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla 1/4 cup heavy cream 3 table spoons flour...I'd been using this recipe for 20 years...long before I found the cake bible...and this recipe also comes out perfectly at an internal temp of 150 degrees...I don't know if it works for all cheese cakes but it certainly works for these two recipies.
I always take my cheese cakes temperature...(that sounds odd) before removing it from the oven...perfect results every time!

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HI! I love baking and especially love cheesecakes. I recently baked one for an outing and used a recipe I'd made before which called to bake it for 60-65 minutes. So, I baked it as usual and let it go 65 minutes,at 300 degrees and it seemed to have set, jiggling a little in the middle, but when we cut into it, it was slightly creamy in the middle and I was mortified! Is this something that is normal? I've never made one that came out like that-it was just a tad in the very center and the rest of the cake was fine. No one noticed aside from me, but I am a perfectionist:) I thought perhaps I had the wrong idea of what a cheesecake should come out as! Then reading some postings it was mentioned that one was creamy, then suedish, then cakelike around the edges...so, just looking for some advice as I'm very afraid of overbaking them:) Thanks

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I think there was a problem with the old posting. Here it is again:

Directions for posting a photo.

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Jeffrey, I've not yet made Rose's Cathedral, but have some experience using lighting for cakes. Try to avoid fluorescent, it is lower wattage and heat (a concern), but the color is too white and won't light up your cathedral as nice as a warmer incandescent bulb. Unless you use a special fluorescent with color on it. Also, the newer LED lights, don't generate any heat, but don't use because they don't generate any light neither!

Re: making holes in the base for ventilation, I've always did since I live in warmer climate. But for the cookie cathedral it may not be an issue, since cookies can stand warmer than cakes.

I can't wait for pictures.

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Cecelia, Matthew has posted some instructions, please read the thread, it works.

http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/2006/02/sourdough_starter.html#comment-58883

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Rose,

I wanted to post pictures of my nephew's wedding cake but am a technology idiot. The pictures are jpg files, if that makes a difference. Can someone tell me the easiest way to post a jpg file?
thanks

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Jeffrey, it's been many years, but I seem to recall that I used a low wattage incandescent bulb not fluorescent. I did not make any holes in the base. As further reassurance, several people have made the cathedral successfully from the directions in the book. Everything you need to know is listed in the recipe directions. Give yourself plenty of time and it will be a most enjoyable experience for all of you. Be sure to photograph the results to post on the blog for all to enjoy.

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Jeffrey Folinus
Jeffrey Folinus
01/ 6/2008 07:17 PM

My wife and my 9-year-old daughter have a mother-daughter Christmas Cookie Decorating Party each year. This year, it involved 60 dozen cookies, with a portion going to a shelter for mothers and children.

For 2008, my daughter and I are planning to do the Gingerbread Cathedral. Can you provide some guidance on the fluorescent light? Should we also have holes in the base (inside the cathedral) for ventilation?

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Tracy, it is always great to hear new success stories. This keeps us baking motivated.

I most definitely need to expand my bread horizons and try baking more breads from The Bread Bible. But for now, 'my bread' is the Basic Sourdough Bread. I bake it almost weekly, slice it, and freeze it. Even refrigerated it stores extremely well, specially for my purpose: I reheat the bread on my cast iron panini grill, making the most delicious toasts or paninis!

I am playful, and manage to bake the Basic Sourdough Bread each time a little differently. I try different shapes, water percents, flours, seasonings, and rising methods. The worst I got, was a very dense and heavy bread which made wonderful croutons!

I may need to get a third copy of The Bread Bible, so the pages on this bread don't get so worn down!

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that's funny--my friend marguerite thomas also gets her bread at the farmer's market. she's the one on the link on the left of the home page under "wine review on line." say hi if you run into her!

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It's empowering! I no longer have to wait until the weekend farmers market to buy my bread which is shipped up from DC. After the results we've gotten from the Bread Bible we now look at the bread we've been buying and shake our heads in disbelief. Thanks, again!

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i'm so happy to hear this. it's been called to my attention that balto is somewhat bread bereft!

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FINALLY...I'm able to make a bread that no one else in the city of Baltimore seems capable of. A beautiful crumb filled with voids surrounded by a crispy crust. Your ciabatta recipe is definitely a hit. I look forward to the perfect results I will get when I tackle the pugliese. Thank you so much for sharing your recipes.

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Cream of coconut is very sweet...you can't just replace the milk with it...the recipe will not be balanced. I use a recipe for coconut cake that I found on epicurious.com It is very moist and firm...and would work very well for layers in a wedding cake. I make this recipe a lot and I always get rave reviews on it. If you go to this web address you should find the recipe

www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/102696
Good Luck...

Bill

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
12/14/2007 06:59 AM

When I make a coconut fruit cake, I start with a yellow cake batter and add flavorings (such as coconut) as well as vanilla. I made the first one as a pineapple upside down cake, added coconut flavoring and served with coconut ice cream. It disappeared quickly

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i think at least one of our fellow bloggers has done this. this would be a good question to post on the forums!

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Rose,
I would like to develop a coconut/peach wedding cake. I was thinking of adding cream of coconut to the cake batter and was wondering if I could successfully substitute some of the milk for the coconut? Any suggestions of which cake recipe would be best to start with? Also, I was thinking of adding some cream of coconut to a buttercream and adding in peach slices when torting it. Any suggestions are appreciated.
Thanks again,
Lori V.

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kelp has other nutrional benefits but if you want to replace it with salt i would use only 3 teaspoons so it would be 2% of the total flour.

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I know nothing about blogs but read about yours in the Washington Post today. I want to make your Bone a Fidos dog biscuits from your Rose's Christmas Cookies book but don't have any kelp powder and don't live near a health food store. What can I substitute for the 4 teaspoons of kelp powder? Is salt okay? The same amount.

Thanks

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Sue, re making large batches of flaky cream cheese pie crust, I have, but you do need a LARGE food processor. I have a 12 cup, and it does marvelous with 1 and 2 recipes. 3 is ok but looses flakiness (over processing). 4 is overflowing but do-able.

I would recommend to finishing processing the large quantities of dough by hand in a large bowl, with a pastry blender, so you don't melt the ingredients with large processing times.

The dough freezes well, and it is a blessing to have it always ready!

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Hi, I'd like to know if it is possible to double or triple the pie crust recipes (flaky and cream cheese pie crust).
Thank you

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Hi Rose and Jeannette
I just finshed making a three-tier cake with an african theme. I would like you to visit my site and please leave a comment for me to cherish.

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Thanks Jeannnette and Rose. Encouraging words always helps to move further in the path of continual improvement. My blogsite is http://sugarcraft-india.blogspot.com (if you put search on google as: sugarcraft or anamika singh + sugarcraft, you will find the blog site - The sugarcrafter. I have started slowly to make cakes on demand and its challenging to feel happy oneself before the beholder. Thanks for your words and time. It always helps.

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anamika please list your site again--i seem to have lost it but will bookmark it this time!

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Anamika, you are a real artist! You must be in high demand doing such beautiful work, I think all the cakes are fantastic!

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Dear Rose
I recently made a 5-tier wedding cake for an indian bride in Botswana for their wedding. Tried the fusion of thoughts and blended the classical cake with indian marriage theme. Please do check it and comment !

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i'm overjoyed to hear this!!!
if you like, post the photos on the forum--it's easy. but let us know if you do so we can find them!

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Congrats Cecelia!!! I can't wait to see a photo.

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I just want to thank everyone for their help, and especially thanks to Rose for such a wonderful book. The wedding cake was the best I've ever made! Everyone, especially the bride and groom, loved everything about it. The White Chocolate Whisper Cake was so delicate, moist and delicious! The fillings were delicious, but it was the frosting that really "iced the cake". I made the white chocolate mousseline buttercream, and it was heavenly. No one left icing on their plates (I was checking). I even had one person who was hanging around the cake, scooping up icing left on the cake boards! I'm uploading pictures to my computer tonight and will try to post one. It was truly the best wedding cake, except for my own, that I've made. Thanks again for all the tips and suggestions I received from everyone. Happy Baking! and Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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Rachel - check out some of Rose's other buttercreams - you might like the white chocolate varieties.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
11/19/2007 08:22 AM

Just thought I would post a quick holiday tip...

We have a very small crowd for Thanksgiving and I've been thinking about ways to present a variety of desserts without having to make pies or cakes that will leave a lot of leftovers (or end up being thrown out). I decided to make a variety of tarts and little cakes that can be presented on trays. This will allow each guest several choices rather than limiting their choices to one or two pies. The bonus is that the tarts can be frozen if not consumed.

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Just made my first Cake Bible Cake -- White Velvet -- and it was the best cake I've ever tasted! Light, fluffy and flaky, just like Rose said in the book. I told my boyfriend I wanted it for my wedding cake. I used white chocolate cream cheese buttercream icing and wow--what a hit! Just a comment. I found that icing too cream cheesey for me, so I added confectioners sugar and it turned out perfectly. Thanks!

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Cecelia:
Hi. I''m glad the buttercream worked out for you. I have only made the white chocolate whisper cake in a very small pan (7"). I didn't have any trouble with it..but it is much easier to handle when it is so small. good luck with the final cake.

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Hi Cecelia - so glad the bride was pleased with the Mousseline variation!

I love the White Chocolate Whisper Cake is sooooo wonderful! I find it much easier to torte, fill, and frost when well chilled. I use cardboard rounds to support the layers during transfer too. I hope that helps - can't wait to see a photo of your finished cake!

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Thanks to everyone for their comments. This past weekend's success was with the mousseline bc. I did add white chocolate, and vanilla. The bride's first comment before tasting was that it "looked suspiciously like that butter frosting". We all kept our mouth's closed . . . and after she tasted it, she loved it. As Bill so elegantly stated, what could be better than butter? So, the wedding is this weekend and we've finally decided on the white chocolate whisper cake, raspberry filling in one tier and lemon in the second tier, and a white chocolate mousseline covering all the tiers. The trial version was delicious! Although I have to say the cake itself was so tender and delicate that it didn't torte very well, and fell into delicious pieces. I don't know if that is the norm for that cake? I thought I would make thin layers rather than torting the 1 1/2 inch layers. Has anyone had this problem? You couldn't tell under the frosting that the layer broke, but it was difficult to handle. The flavor made up for any difficulty though - absolutely delicious! Thanks everyone so much for your comments and help! I'll try to post pictures.

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love those speckles!

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Lately, I've been making it with 30g flour, 5g bran, and 1g germ in place of the whole wheat flour. The flavor is equally wonderful, and the crumb is beautifully specked with flecks of bran.

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sometimes instead of the whole wheat i use corn flour (not corn starch)!

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for the past few years i've been making the basic hearth bread and sometimes even use sourdough!

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Wendy, I had the same dilemma. Rose's book Celebrations recommends store bought bread cubes lightly seasoned rather than home made, for her turkey stuffing. I've tried it, and I am glad I did (store bought rather than home made). I've chosen one brand of rather large bread croutons, naturally seasoned with only a few herbs, salt and parmesan cheese.

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Rose-

What bread would you suggest baking for use in stuffing/dressing? I usually dry the bread and then rehydrate with homemade chicken stock then adding veg and spices before baking along side the bird. I've tried so many of your recipes with great sucess every time---but I am unsure which one will hold up the best in this application.
---Wendy

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Fresh fruit can be obtained by ordering via the Internet if you prefer not to use canned or frozen fruit for pies and desserts for the holidays. In most cases, these arrive very quickly if you order prudently. Just Google for "fresh fruit for pies" or so forth.

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personally i find mincemeat too sweet and intense so i fold it into vanilla icecream (see pastry bible). la cuisines has a great variety of mincemeat.
frozen sour cherries are excellent.

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Amy - I was just reading about mincemeat in the pie and pastry bible today. On page 641 Rose says, "I don't make my own mincemeat simply because the most fabulous mincemeat I've ever tasted, Vintage Mincemeat, is made by postilion in Wisconsin and is available from La Cuisine (Alexandria, VA).

Also, I believe Rose freezes sour cherries for use in pies throughout the year.

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Hi Rose !!! I had a request to make a mincemeat pie for thanksgiving and have never made one. Do you recommend those jarred bottles of mincemeat? And a cherry pie this time of year - are frozen cherries suitable? Thanks a bunch.

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that's an interesting idea i think well worth trying. it still will dry on the outside so you may want to brush it with cocoa butter to help keep it moist. do let us know!

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Rose,
Can Almond Paste be added to Fondant to achieve a Marzipan taste? I have a client who wants Marzipan on their cake instead of Fondant.
Any thoughts would be appreciated,
Lori V.

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Cecelia, not sure if using corn syrup instead of sugar-water will work, it may be the reason of the runny buttercream.

when you burn the sugar-water too high you will see crystals or strings on the egg white whip. when you burn the sugar-water too low, you will notice a runny buttercream.

It has become extremelly obvious for me, specially after whipping more than a dozen batches of 18 egg white mousseline buttercreams!

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I should add that I use the tablespoon of vanilla in place of the 1 cup of liquer in the recipe.

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You can also beat in some melted white chocolate. (about 4-6 ounces per pound of butter). This will actually stiffen the butter cream a little...help with piping (although it pipes really well as it is) and cut the "buttery taste" Good luck...keep us posted

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I agree - add more vanilla to the Mousseline recipe. I add like a tablespoon for a wedding cake sized batch huge batch of buttercream (after whipping, the color is only the slightest shade darker - hardly noticable at all).

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Cecelia:
Yes...the Creme Anglaise needs to be really chilled...that will definitely effect the stiffness of the buttercream. If you are doing a wedding cake, however, I would use the mousseline buttercream...in my experience it pipes better and holds shape better and will hold up out of the 'fridge better. If the Bride thinks it is too buttery (as some people have told me ...can you imagine! too buttery! what is better than butter!) try beating a little vanilla extract into the buttercream - a teaspoon or two- to taste, added at the end. It will cut the "buttery" flavor...and I love vanilla in everything! Use a sugar and water syrup, and make sure you cook it to the temperature recommended in the cake bible. The Temperature of the syrup is crucial in a Butter cream. Good luck

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I forgot to ask about this in my earlier note. I made the cream anglaise the same day as I made the frosting. Usually, I make this the night before, so the custard will be thoroughly chilled. I made sure the cream anglaise was cool, but it wasn't chilled cold, as if it had been chilling all night. Could that have been a problem with the silk meringue bc being too loose? After reading the comments you gave me, I believe I cooked the syrup too long/high, and that was probably the main reason for the loose batter, but I'm not sure what affect the cream anglaise had on the frosting either. Again, thanks for all your help.

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Thanks for the comments. I must have cooked the sugar syrup to high. I actually used corn syrup in place of the water, as in the neoclassic bc recipe, but cooked it to what I thought was the specified temperature. Since I used the corn syrup, I must not need to cook the syrup so long, or to the higher temperature. Tomorrow I'll be baking the final "trial" version of the wedding cake for next week. I tried the mousseline bc, but the bride thought it was too buttery. Maybe I'll try it one more time. One more question . . . if I use the corn syrup as in the neoclassic bc, should I not cook the syrup using a thermometer, but just cook until a full rolling boil then pour into glass cup? Thanks for all your help!

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thanks jeannette. meantime, 1 US cup=236 grams or mll

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Grace, if you have Rose's Cake Bible you won't have this problem because all her recipes have metric and imperial as well as American cup measurements included. That was the main reason I bought it but it has some wonderful recipes in it as well!

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hi rose, Can you please convert the american one cup mesurement to metrics as i cant find it in any cooking books that i have for the convertion.Most of my books are in Kg and grms so when i read an american recipe bk with a measurement in cups i always have to estimate.Thank you.

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it will also become runny if the temperature of the sugar is too high.

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Cecelia, sorry to hear that. Did you burn the sugar until the recommended temperature? If under, the buttercream is too runny like how you describe. Beating the butter excessively won't cause any more runny.

The Mousseline Buttercream is stiffer, but it will also become runny if the sugar has not been heated to the recommended limit.

good luck.

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I made the silk meringue bc this past weekend for a trial cake in preparation for a wedding cake in a couple of weeks. The frosting came out very loose, VERY loose. I was able to get it to stay on the cake, but it was not strong enough to hold any decorations. It was also too light to hold in my filling, so I had filling oozing out of the frosting between the layers. It tasted great but was quite the disaster in the looks department, and certainly not something that could ever leave my house! The cream anglaise was made that morning, and was cool when I added it, but not so chilled as if I made it the night before. The butter was soft, and I beat it for a very long time, longer than usual, so maybe I beat the butter too long? I added 6 oz melted white chocolate to the recipe as well. The white chocolate was of a good quality, and I've added it before without any trouble. I've never had a frosting come out so loose on me like this. I tried putting my bowl of frosting in the fridge to stiffen it up, but it was still soft after a couple of hours. It did eventually stiffen up, but that was quite a few hours later. I've saved the frosting, hoping to be able to mix with other saved frosting, to use in some of the decorations, but am hesitant to mix it. Has anyone ever had this problem? And, what did you do to correct it?

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Tips from The Bread Bible on French Baguette:

Use fresh flour, not older than 3 months, including the time it sat at the grocery store shelf. Use the right kind of flour for baguettes: unbleached AP, preferably KA European-style artisan flour.

Very wet dough, slow rise, overnight refrigerator retarding after shaping.

Steam.

As for how to shape a baguette, please refer to page 70 to page 72 of The Bread Bible, there are nice illustrations. Just too extensive to blog this one. Perhaps you can google this.

Hope this helps.

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Zach Townsend
Zach Townsend
10/20/2007 02:37 PM

I think what would be helpful is for any of us who have a copy of the Bread Bible to provide some detail, if practical. (I'm currently without my copy because I gave it to someone). We can't assume everyone has immediate access to it to refer to it.

It's probably too late, but is there some one who can get their book and write up something quickly to the chef to help him out?

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Chef Chemp, I am afraid 'no-one' will be able to tell you the answer on this blog. Refer to the book The Bread Bible, it is 'extensively' well explained.

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If anybody knows how to bake French baguettes in a baguette pan? I need a reply in about 2 hours. It would be great if anybody knows.

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Does anybody know how to bake French baguettes in a baguette pan?

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Thanks Norma, I thought about using my coffee bean grinder, but didn't. I'll have to give it a try. The cake is so incredibly moist and delicious. Even with the course almonds, the texture was very different, but the taste of the cake was exceptional. I'll try your suggestion! Thanks so much!

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
10/ 8/2007 03:44 PM

Cecelia, I use my coffee bean grinder and it works like a charm

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I have a recipe for an almosd cake that calls for freshly ground slivered almonds. I've tried it before, and it's the most delicious cake, but I would like to get the almonds more finely ground. I've used a food processor in the past, but it leaves the almond meal a little course (great for biscotti but not for cakes). I'm sure it's a silly question, but will a nut grinder grind the nuts into a very fine powder? If not, can I substitute almond paste - and if I use the almond paste, how much sugar should I reduce from the recipe?

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Rose,
I have a bride who would like her wedding cake made using the sample I gave her of your Golden Grand Marnier Cake. Can you give me any suggestions and tips to convert the recipe for a 5" - 9" - 11' & 14" cake?
I would also like to torte and fill this cake. I was thinking a ganche filling possibly? Any suggestions?
Thank you,
Lori V.

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Hey Jackie - I just found a note I wrote about whipping the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla together while the cream cheese is still cool, not room temp (if the cream cheese is too warm, the finished frosting will be too runny). Anyway, you'll love the way it tastes.

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I should clarify that the previous recipe doesn't firm up enough to use as a frosting on the side of a cake, but it can be used on top of the cake as well as used for the filling. It's also good used as the filling for fruit tarts.

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Jackie - here you go... this recipe doesn't firm up enough to use as a frosting, but it works very nicely as a filling (and it tastes wonderful, especially with fruit).


1 8oz package cream cheese, room temp
1 cup white sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream


In a small bowl beat whipping cream until stiff peaks form; set aside.
In a large bowl combine cream cheese, sugar, salt and vanilla. Beat until smooth, then fold in whipped cream.

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Thanks for the advice. I'm not really planning on making an actual strawberry shortcake- I was just trying to modify the idea for a cake (i.e. home-made white cake with fresh berries in the filling). Its for a 6th b-day party so that's why I wanted to cover and decorate it in buttercream. I guess what I worry about is the buttercream frosting will become very hard in the fridge and will need a few hours to soften up (so it doesn't taste like you're eating butter!) But that probably wouldn't work with a whipped cream filling.

Perhaps I'll just frost the entire cake with the whipped cream/cream cheese frosting or stabilized whipped cream and just do the decorations in buttercream (so its not a big deal if they harden up) Patrincia- would you mind posting the recipe when you get a chance?? It sounds great!

Thanks again for all your help!

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Hi Jackie - you could also fill your cake with a combination of whipped cream with a bit of room temperature cream cheese to make it a bit firmer. If interested, I have a good recipe I could share (it must stay chilled though).

I assume your strawberry shortcake will be completely covered in frosting rather than the more traditional cake, filling, strawberries, cake, filling, strawberries (otherwise your cake will dry terribly if you make it 2 days in advance).

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Jackie, I feel to help you.

The stabilized whipped cream will hold for 2 days, but it needs to be in the refrigerator.

The mousseline buttercream from The Cake Bible IS NOT overly sweet. How do you make the 'classic kind' buttercream?

It is not always the sweetness of the cake that turns people off, but also the fat content. The mascarpone frosting may be heavier than the mousseline buttercream. Also the white cake, specially if it is cake mix.

The cake I would make for your coworker is a Biscuit de Savoie moistened with syrup (there is just no other cake as light). I would frost with either super stabilized whipped cream provided the cake can be in the refrigerator at all times and until serving time, or if not then mousseline buttercream which is divine with fresh fruit conserves.

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I've been asked by a co-worker to make a 6 year olds B-day cake. She doesn't like chocolate or things that are overly sweet but she does like strawberry shortcake.

The party is on Friday but I'll have to make/decorate the cake on Wednesday (and give it to her on Thursday) since she's not coming in on Friday.

Soooo- this is what I was thinking:
White cake filled with strawberries and whipped cream, topped with vanilla buttercream (the classic kind, not the overly sweet kind with powdered sugar). And here are my questions:

1) If I use stabilized whipped cream, will it hold up as a filling with sliced/diced strawberries for 2 days??

2) If stabilized whipped cream is no good, what other alternatives are there to whipped cream filling (other than buttercream)? I was thinking a mascarpone frosting could be good or a pastry cream (although I'm trying to stay away from pastry cream b/c I've never made it before and don't want to experiment on something as big as a kids birthday cake!)

Thanks in advance for all your advice!

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Cecelia, THANK YOU, if you want chocolate filling with chocolate color, try the chocolate ganache recipe from TCB; it holds well in the warmth as Patrincia can attest (see her chocolate wedding cake entry on this blog).

If you like a chocolate buttercream, try the mousseline buttercream with chocolate, it is more warmth stable than silk meringue, and really it is a delicious chocolate buttercream!

As for the white silk meringue buttercream on top, do use the mousseline, too, more warmth stable.

Be aware that mousseline is warmth stable only if you heat the sugar to the correct high temperature, lower temperature will turn the mousseline softer, and higher would break the whites.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
10/ 1/2007 02:41 PM

I think I would go with a white chocolate ganache...fudge on white can be very complicated unless well chilled between stages and could leak through with extreme temperature fluctuations. Also consider whether you can control temperature of the cake and the area where the wedding reception takes place.

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Thanks to everyone for their help and comments. It was another successful baking weekend! Patricia I'm going to take your suggestion. Hector, your Etheral Pear Charlotte looks beautiful! Now a question. I'm working on another wedding cake and the bride wants a chocolate filling. I have a recipe for the most delicious chocolate ganache that is almost a fudge, absolutely divine. However, I'm not sure how well it will hold up in the Florida weather. I'm going to try the chocolate silk meringue this weekend. Any additional tips or suggestions? It will be with a white cake with silk meringue buttercream on top.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
09/27/2007 07:09 AM

No, I did not. Email me at njdrood@comcast.net

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Norma - did you get my email address? I haven't received the email you wanted to send me. (black forest cake?)

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Thanks Marsha!

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
09/25/2007 10:13 AM

Here's my recipe: 4 ounces of white chocolate; 1 tbl. butter; 1 tbl. corn syrup...melt carefully in a mixing bowl over steaming water, mix well

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So I replace the mineral oil with corn syrup?

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
09/25/2007 10:03 AM

Corn syrup works equally well...use the white one

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Dear Rose,
Where can I purchase mineral oil for the white chocolate glaze recipe? Ihave been searching online, but the oils I have found are for wood butcher blocks. Is that the same oil? Please point me in the right direction.

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Yes, I have a Calamansi Lime tree and it is so versatile. The juice is sour like a lemon/lime, the skin is sweet like candied orange.

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Hi Norma - you can email me directly at preitz@hughes.net

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
09/23/2007 10:24 AM

Patrincia, I tried to access your website to post something to you and it would not open. Please email me because I want to send you something about my Black forest cake. nj

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Kristine - I just googled Musk/Calamansi Limes... they're flavor is a cross between an orange and a lemon. Sounds like it would be a good substitution for lemon.

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hi! i am kristine from the philippines. i would like to know if it's okay to substitute the juice and zest of musk limes or calamansi limes for lemons. lemons are not readily available here...

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Angela, at the bottom of the e-mails that you receive there is a link to unsubscribe or to block all notification. Just click on it and you shouldn't receive any more e-mails.
Hope this helps.
Rozanne

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I'm attempting to be removed from this chat string.

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sure if you use margarine. i have wonderful scone recipe with currants in the pie and pastry bible and ginger scones to die for in the bread bible

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I've seen you on public tv when living in Canada. Now I'm in Ireland and need your help. Scones please. No Dairy. Is this possible?
Thanks.

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Hi all - somewhere here,I believe convection ovens were mentioned, Rose says she uses one, and elsewhere it was quoted that she has turned in her 'vintage' Sharp one for a KitchenAid, I think. I would like any ideas about what qualities I should seek/or not? It will have to be small [counter top] and not pricey. Thanks for advice. Joan

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John,
Since you like the cake bible so much, you should also purchase the pie and pastry bible, which contains Rose's recipe for Gâteau Saint-Honoré. Rose uses both Tahitian and Madagascar beans in her recipe.

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/23/2007 06:25 PM

Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Products are the best in the world, I use them exclusively. If there is a better one out there, I do not know about it.

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Rose/Bloggers,

First off, I want to thank Rose for writing the Cake Bible...it's less than 4 months old to me and already more worn than my tattered Harry Potter books. LOL

Anyway, to my question...
I've been having tons of fun with making cakes and decorations from scratch, but there's only one variable that I keep a curiosity about. Do you have a specific type of Vanilla Bean that you prefer to use? Out of the 3 strains that really are vanilla beans, I just can't decide which is best for what I'm doing. My next project to tackle is at the challenge of my father, and that is the infamous Gateau Saint-Honore, which calls for vanilla at every turn it seems.

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Hi Joline, just my 2 cents worth here. Yes soaking sounds like it should work. Most breads that use whole or broken grains soak these overnight, it not only softens them but also helps the enzyme activity in the grains to start and brings out more flavour. You probably need to estimate the final amount of water to add to the dough by feel, my guess is the recipe uses a rye flour of a different grind? Most doughs turn out a decent bread if they feel at least slightly tacky, as far as I've experienced. Happy baking!

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Joline Fretheim
Joline Fretheim
07/19/2007 03:07 AM

I am making old world rye bread, I bought pumpernickel rye coarse ground, it's so coarse that the bread is extremely dry, how do I make a moister bread, I use water, salt yeast, honey, molasses, chocolate, coffee, balsamic vinegar, flour. it tastes wonderful but the coarse ground is just too dry.
I thought about soaking the grains over night? would that help.

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Joline Fretheim
Joline Fretheim
07/19/2007 03:01 AM

I am making old world rye bread, I bought pumpernickel rye coarse ground, it's so coarse that the bread is extremely dry, how do I make a moister bread, I use water, salt yeast, honey, molasses, chocolate, coffee, balsamic vinegar, flour. it tastes wonderful but the coarse ground is just too dry.
I thought about soaking the grains over night? would that help.

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Hi Bonnie - Rose is away for a few days. I would classify her baking recipes as "gourmet" rather than "healthy". They use full fat, real butter, pure sugar, etc. You could check out a few of her books from the library to get a feel for them, but I don't think they are what you are looking for.

allrecipes.com has a section called "healthy living". Click on it and you will find lots of recipes that I think would be more in line with what you're looking for.

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I typed in sponge cake, pound cake and angel food cake healthy recipes into google and I saw your site listed. I am almost 46 years old and I have had several issues with stomach and breast health, plus my husband is a diabetic. I am looking for some good recipes for cakes that are easy, but would fit into the healthy eating category. Do you have any suggestions for me? We are hoping to be able to eat healthy, but still have the good taste. Hopefully, you will have some recipes up your sleeve!!

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Rose, happy (belated) anniversary! It sounds like you have a wonderful, loving marriage and you really support each other's efforts.

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penelope--funny you should write about your 50th anniversary the day before my 31st! i'm sure you're far from the 50th though.
you'll be happy to hear that i have a fabulous poppyseed cake--so dense with poppyseeds it looks like chocolate at a quick glance. you probably won't be happy to hear that it won't be out til the book is published in fall of 08 but that's just a minute away! it's a recipe i waited for over 7 years and comes from salzburg.

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Thanks Rose. I will do a test run of the white chocolate cream cheese frosting on some chocolate cupcakes before I use it on the wedding cake.
Jo-Ann

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Lori V - here is a post Rose made about cake flour:

"i haven't found any difference between the only 3 cake flours that are bleached and unleavened: swans down, soft as silk, and queen guinevere (king arthur's)"

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
07/11/2007 01:24 PM

Responding first to the cream cheese frosting, I use mascarpone and vanilla added to the regular ingredients and add a shot of kahlua for chocolate cake.

I love King Arthur flour and use it all the time.

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Rose & Cakers,
Just wondering if anyone has ever used King Arthur Queen Guinevere Cake Flour?
If so, how were the results compared to Swans Down Cake Flour?
I'm still in search for a supplier of cake flour at wholesale in quantities of 100 lbs at a time.
Thanks,
Lori V.

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many people enjoy the flavors of lemon and chocolate but even if not, there's not enough lemon to conflict. it just hightens the taste of the cream cheese frosting. the best thing, of course, is to make a small batch and try it.

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Hi Rose,

Forgive me if this is a duplicate that I thought I posted on July 9th.

Any how, I want to make your white chocolate cream cheese frosting. Do you think it would work well with a chocolate cake? I guess the lemon juice in the recipe is what throws me. Any suggestions?

Thank you, Jo-Ann

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penelope kenez
penelope kenez
07/10/2007 12:11 PM

I have been trying to recreate a cake I enjoyed in Hungary: poppy seed and Hungarian sour cherries were prominent in the batter (no icing). A one layer, very light, moist, dark (from the poppy seeds) cake studded with the tart (pre-cooked) cherries. I can use fresh poppy seeds (I have a grinder) or the "Solo" poppy seed paste (but that has a lot of corn syrup in it).

BTW, I only recently discovered "The Cake Bible" and I love it,though I haven't been much of a cake baker. So much interesting information there makes me to want to decorate! I must learn to make fondant before my 50th wedding anniversary. Thanks for the inspiration!!!

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Thanks for the responses and links. I can't wait to get the book and get started!!

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Here is the link of the Mexican Killer Kahlua Chiffon Cake. It is an incredible recipe for Chiffon cake, luscious, spongy, springy... and it doesn't use one gram of baking powder! It has an incredible crumb "unique and characteristic" for chiffon cakes. And it isn't that oily at all! You need to use a sharp serrated knife to get to it (a cake knife would smash it like a cushion... once my Mom sat on thinking it was a pillow and not a chiffon!).

http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/2007/05/happy_memoria_day.html#comment-44136

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Congratulations on getting back into your house!!! Happy baking too!

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Rose's melting pot contains that recipe for kahlua cake

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I am trying to find which of your books has the recipe for Mexican Kahlua Killer Chiffon cake. I saw pictures made by Hector on this blog the other day and thought I had bookmarked it, now I cannot even find those pictures. I really would like to get your book that has this recipe but do not even know the name of the book. I would like to find that picture again also but have not found it today after looking and looking.

We have just recently moved out of our FEMA trailer and back into our house (unfinished but liveable) and am trying to restock my kitchen and start cooking again. Your cake sounds like a great one to make for our moving back in celebration.

Thanks in advance for help.

Glenda

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general mills has an excellent cake flour for food service--i seem to remember it is called white as snow. sounds like you need to connect with food service or bakery suppliers for higher volume wholesale prices. alternatively, contact general mills and ask for a distributor in your area.

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Lori, I also notice this note on the website: "If you're having trouble finding one of our food products in your local area, please send an e-mail to service@luzianne.com, or call 1-800-535-1961. Please tell us which specific product you're looking for, the city and state you live in, and your contact information. And we'll be happy to help you find it!" Maybe you could call them and ask about buying it wholesale somewhere locally, rather than online.

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Lori, see if this link is any help to you: http://www.luzianne.com/display_template.cfm?ID=c-18

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Lori,
I was just reading about this in the Cake Bible a few days ago:

"Caters have told me that when they get 100-pound sacks of cake flour of a different brand than these (Swan's Down or Softasilk), they do not get as fine a texture in their cakes. . . A case of Swan's Down cake flour, containing twelve 2-pound boxes, can be purchased by calling their toll-free number." (page 428)

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Rose,
I have always used Swans Down Cake Flour for all my cakes. Now that I am making 2-3 large cakes a week, I need to buy a lot of it. I am trying to find a local wholesale distributor but am having problems.
Do you still recommend that Swans Down or can you recommend one you like better?
Thank you,
Lori V.
Pastries By Vreeke

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Hi Jen, your mentioning of this trick by grandma to whiten white clothes brings back a long forgetton memory.It was a traditional way when bleach was not common. These clothes were mostly school uniforms and they were meant to be perfectly white. How hard grandma /mothers tried to keep them white.I think now the bleach actually turn white clothed yellow.How clever!

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Jennifer Schmitt
Jennifer Schmitt
06/14/2007 02:45 PM

WOW! So many great responses!

Most people don't mind the slight coloration of a high quality (egg white based) buttercream when they taste how superior the flavor is.
I agree, but I would like to be prepared. I can't wait to try these ideas out!

Is this the same reason why many people with white hair end up having violet hair after a bad hair coloring job?
LOL. Nope. They always had white hair, and they were trying to make it gray. But blue was the closest to gray that hair colorists have come up with for coloring pure white hair.Thank goodness that it has gone out of fashion!

Thanks everyone!
jennifer

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Yes, ...remember the bluing (sp?) grandma used to use to whiten clothes when they had become yellow from over-bleaching?? Same concept! :-) I recently bought the same stuff & found it still works like a charm.

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it was called white-white.
also don't forget that yellow and blue=green!

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i would also check with wilton as they used to make something of this nature--i think it was called whitening.

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Jen, THAT IS A TERRIFIC TIP!!!

Is this the same reason why many people with white hair end up having violet hair after a bad hair coloring job?

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Jennifer, another tip for you. In the color world (paints as well as buttercream!), violet cancels yellow. So, if you add a VERY small dab of violet coloring to your buttercream (I use Rose's Mousseline most often), it will whiten like magic! Not completely, mind you, but quite a lot. It is also easier to mix other colors you might need from this whitened buttercream, instead of starting with the creamy/yellow original color. Wilton also makes an icing whitener that helps a lot - most people don't care for the taste of their products, but you don't have to use much to make a big difference. Hope this helps you!

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Snow white fondant is edible, but not as delicious obviously. Rose's recipe from TCB is easy to make and tastes better than other recipes (and it tastes way better than the pre-packaged stuff).

Most people don't mind the slight coloration of a high quality (egg white based) buttercream when they taste how superior the flavor is. I suppose you could also try using clear vanilla (which is artificially flavored), but I don't know if it would make that much of a difference in the color of your finished product (and it most likely won't taste as good as real vanilla).

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Hi Jennifer, there is a tip on Cake Bible regarding how to make white white buttercreams. Re: moussline (the most delicious and light, not so sweet, buttercream in the world), be sure to use a liquor who is clear.

Also, if you shine the cake with white flouorescent bulbs (compact fluorescent or such), it will look WHITE. Try stage your cake with a few flood lamps fitted with cool white compact fluorescent bulbs. On the other hand, if you do find a true white buttercream, most weddings are in banquet rooms that have warm lighting, so the cake will not be white-white. White shines with the shade of the room lighting.

Another trick is that on top of the mousseline frosting, you can apply a thin layer or glaze of another white-white not-so delicious frosting.

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Hi Jennifer, there is a tip on Cake Bible regarding how to make white white buttercreams. Re: moussline (the most delicious and light, not so sweet, buttercream in the world), be sure to use a liquor who is clear.

Also, if you shine the cake with white flouorescent bulbs (compact fluorescent or such), it will look WHITE. Try stage your cake with a few flood lamps fitted with cool white compact fluorescent bulbs. On the other hand, if you do find a true white buttercream, most weddings are in banquet rooms that have warm lighting, so the cake will not be white-white. White shines with the shade of the room lighting.

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Jennifer Schmitt
Jennifer Schmitt
06/14/2007 01:02 PM

Hi Everyone,
Does anyone have a tip for creating a white frosting for wedding cakes? As you know, all the buttercreams have the slight yellow tint from the butter. Rose's mousseline is close to white, but not bridal white. IS there any "edible" and delicious white icing?

Jennifer

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Norma - your castle cakes sound wonderful - you should post some photos.

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
06/12/2007 07:09 AM

PS --- the cake base is either a spice or carrot cake (these most accurately simulate European castles. The candies are special ordered from the Internet...google cake candies and find the best...my favorites are the new edible pearls

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
06/12/2007 06:48 AM

When I make my castle cakes, I spend a minimum of several hours decorating them for special occasions. They are so pretty that people don't want to eat them...the glaze allows the "castle" to look real...frosting would scotch that attempt. I create a glaze using corn syrup and colorings to "paint" the cake, coordinating the colors with colored paint brushes to keep it straight. I use special candies to create the features of the castle. The result is well worth the effort. The cake is never dry and no, don't refrigerate it

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HI, I am making a castle cake for a party. I made a maderia cake what icing do I use. It only says to use apricot glaze before putting fondant. Won't that be dry. Also how long after fondant do I leave room temp. I understand it should not go in fridge. Any suggestions really appreciated. I love your cake bible...have had it for years!

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Jennifer Schmitt
Jennifer Schmitt
06/11/2007 10:57 AM

Has anyone heard about Guittard's "Don't Mess With Our Chocolate" campaign? Everyone should check it out and respond.

jennifer

http://dontmesswithourchocolate.guittard.com/whatsthisabout.asp

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Regarding the eggless, flourless, chocolateless brides cake above - or whatever it ended up being - I would like to post this comment to all brides- to-be out there. THE WEDDING CAKE ISN'T JUST FOR YOU! I've never understood why someone who has such odd, particular requirements would serve a wedding cake to reflect that. Sure, the bride takes a bite and if there are allergies, those must be addressed. But then there are 180+ guests, on average, to consider! I've had brides tell me "No, sorry, I don't like buttercream, I don't like cheesecake, I don't like chocolate, I don't like...etc., etc.," to the point that the wedding cake becomes a lifeless, unrecongnizable-as-a-cake mass
that is completely unmemorable and that no one at the reception touches.

The wedding cake is a celebration of the event, and yes, should reflect the bride's overall tastes - but all those guests that got dressed up, schleped themselves to the church, bought an expensive gift, sat through the way-too-long ceremony, stayed for the reception, waited in line to congratulate you, tolerated your drunken relatives, deserve a deliciuos cake to enjoy.

In all my experiences with dealing with these types of requests, I've concluded that brides that insist on having a cake that only has elements they enjoy, are selfish.

Here is a suggestion if you are the vegen-vegetarian who doesn't like chocolate, buttercream, eat flour, hates vanilla extract or anything remotely resembling ingredients in a cake: Have one small decorative cake made for you and for the cutting ceremony that gives you a piece to save for the first anniversay, then, for the "real" wedding cake, serve something delicious that the majority of the guests will love in a cake and are going to remember.

Yes, the day is about you, but you've invited guests to enjoy the day with you, so really it's not ONLY about you -- save the "it's all about me" attitude for the honeymoon. :)

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
06/ 1/2007 04:57 AM

Regarding the china pattern, google search with images or contact "Replacements, Ltd."

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Rose,
I recently made some raspberry conserve and used it in my Buttercream this afternoon. I noticed when I opened the jars they were more the consistency of jelly. Usually they come out a bit watery. Just wondering what caused this and what should the consistency of both the strawberry & raspberry be? I am never really sure how long (minutes) to reduce the liquid. It always tastes fantastic though.
Thank you,
Lori V.

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i love that--corriher land!
i'm so sorry i can't help you with the china pattern as all the "props" were rented.

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Rose, So glad to find this site. I hail from the land of Corriher and proudly own all of your books, all but 2 are falling apart at the binding from over-use if there's such a thing with a cookbook! Just made the pugliese today and the chocolate chocolate-chip bread is in the oven as I write this. The white velvet butter cake made the best strawberry shortcake last week, so good my 4 year old neighbor who ordinarily won't touch berries, ate every crumb and drop of juice. Julia taught me to cook and you taught me to bake and I am forever grateful for your formulas which never fail me. Now the question- what is the name of the china pattern of the cup & suacer in 'Melting Pot' , p. 241 for the w\lemon/white poppy seed pound cake? I just love the fleur de lis and wondered if you'd share the name? Do you know if it's still available?
Merci un mille fois from Atlanta, K

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i don't understand why you are questioning this. YES! your 4 point sequence is exactly it. mix everything in one batch if you have a large enough mixer and enough oven space to bake all the layers at once.
this is the best i can do.
if you still don't understand, please show the instructions to someone else who perhaps can give you a different perspective. there are only so many ways i can rephrase an instruction without losing my mind.

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I'm sorry Rose for all the questions.
Do I have this right?
1)Mix all dry ingredients for both the 11" & 13" together in the mixer.
2) Add all the butter & remaining milk for both the 11" & 13" into the dry ingredients and mix as usual.
3) Incorporate all the milk mixture for both the 11" & 13" as usual.
4) Voila - Pour required batter into the 4 pans.
I think my question was/is is there a way to multiply the base recipe for all 4 pans at the same time? Instead of measuring twice; once for the 11" and once for the 13".
Thank you, Thank you & Happy Memorial Day!
Lori V.

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you are missing nothing. mix all the batter together and dispense the appropriate weight into each pan.

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Rose,
Yes, I understand that.
So for my two cakes (2) 11" & (2) 13" can I mix ALL the batter together? If so, can you explain? I think I am missing something.
Lori V.

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the rose factor is the number of times to multiply the base.
the weight of batter for each pan is given so that's all the info. you need to do it.

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Rose,
I have been calculating away using your charts for your base recipe for yellow & chocolate cakes. I understand that if 2 cakes fall under 2 different Levels, you need to mix the batters separately. But if I have say (2) 11" pans & (2) 13" pans and they both fall under Level 3 but with different Rose Factor's there anyway to mix all the batters together? I have read the instructions over may times but am still unclear about this.
Any assistance you can give me would be great.
Thanks again,
Lori V.
Pastries By Vreeke

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Lori - I place 2 identical rectangular racks together (touching side by side), and very quickly flip the cake pan down onto the racks, then the cake falls out onto the racks (Rose's sturdy recipes do well this way). If you do this, you'll have to make sure the cooling racks are positioned in a place where you won't have to move them - wait until the cake is completely cooled and then you can transfer it onto a cardboard circle. Hey, I wonder if a suspended oven rack might work???

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i've used the rectangular racks from food service that fit onto baking carts. they aren't as close together as i'd like but it's all i've found.

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Rose & Bakers,
I have been in search of a cooling grid that can accommodate an 18" cake. What do all of you use to hold such a large cake for cooling? The smaller the grid the better.
Thank you,
Lori V.
Pastries By Vreeke

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Norma - I see. Do you prefer the flavor, texture, etc? Do you share your award winning recipe for pie dough?

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Norma Piermarini Marshall
Norma Piermarini Marshall
05/23/2007 07:34 AM

I've never had a failure using Crisco instead of oil. Also, my award winning pastry dough for pies is based on melted Crisco (butter flavored) and/or a hint of lard. Lard works great for pastry with meats. One note about cakes that I'm unsure has been posted yet...always add your flavorings at the very end of the mixing process

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Norma - just curious, why do you prefer melted Crisco over oil in oil-based cakes? and why the butter flavored Crisco in your pie crusts in stead of actual butter?

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Norma Marshall
Norma Marshall
05/23/2007 06:54 AM

I gave up on oil based cakes long ago. What I did was substituted melted Crisco. If you use melted Crisco, the two stage formula works and your cakes will come out great. I also use butter flavored Crisco for my pie crusts which always come out perfect.

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