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Jan and Feb Bake-Off Themes
Posted: 06 January 2010 09:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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OK, Annie, are you sure you want to invest me with that kind of power??? cheese

We did chocolate as a Bake-Off theme in the Fall, and so far we do seem to have four people in favor of citrus for Feb with two in favor of chocolate, so it seems like citrus for Feb might be the way to go.

For those of you who would prefer chocolate, there are some recipes that combine both (RHC true orange genoise and TCB orange choc crown), or you could post chocolate creations separately. 

Now I’m go to go work on my baby cakes for tomorrow…

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Posted: 06 January 2010 09:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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Sorry to respond late on this issue. Citrus being so wonderful and timely for Jan-Feb, it would be nice to focus on it exclusively for a whole month. How about if we make a note to do that next year? Say, in January?

Meanwhile, the resolutions theme has struck a chord for this month. Feb. is more traditionally about chocolate and is, in any case, getting late for some citrus varieties. So here’s my compromise. If you’re a lover of citrus (count me in!), work it into your baking in one or both months. Re: January, citrus is a natural for resolutions - so healthy! Could also be made in small portions. And for February, as Julie points out, oranges go so well with chocolate.

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Posted: 11 January 2010 06:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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Yeah I’m all for citrus in February. I’m not sure I understand the January theme, haven’t been here for a while, but that’s no problem, I don’t think I’ll have time in the next few weeks anyways….  Unless my not at all out of Rose’s cookbook but no knead whole flour breads count grin

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Posted: 11 January 2010 07:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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Here you go, Silke! Pretty wide open. Depends what your resolutions are, if any.

Julie - 06 January 2010 04:45 PM

....the “resolutions” theme for January, that is, small portions (baby cakes, etc.) or any Rose recipe that reflects your own resolutions (bread, whole wheat).

For February, there was concern that the citrus theme is a little late. Many varieties will be out of season by then, and certainly by March, most will be out of season. Meanwhile, other people thought about doing chocolate because of the traditional link with Valentine’s Day. There it stands. The easy compromise is to have chocolate as the theme and citrus lovers can do chocolate plus citrus.

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Posted: 11 January 2010 07:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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Thanks Carolita. My head was spinning as I was reading through it. Since my one resolution is to not have resolutions that’ll be an easy pass…

February and March are prime Meyer lemon time down here, but I guess I’m just lucky. Chocolate plus orange sound very yummy, perhaps I can do an even more orangy variation on the featherbed (of which I still dream…)

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Posted: 12 January 2010 09:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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I’m all for Resolutions (healthy whole wheat) for January and citrus for February. “Small portions”? I just eat two servings then.  smile

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Posted: 02 February 2010 12:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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Carolita - 11 January 2010 11:09 PM

For February, there was concern that the citrus theme is a little late. ...  The easy compromise is to have chocolate as the theme and citrus lovers can do chocolate plus citrus.

Just to confirm, we’re doing chocolate for the February theme, right?  Citrus baking can be included if it includes chocolate, but feel free to bake and post separately if the project you’d like to do doesn’t have chocolate.

Happy Baking!

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Posted: 04 February 2010 04:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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This weekend’s selection from the Heavenly Cake Bakers is the True Orange Genoise. I’m planning on making it for that submission as well as the Feb Bake-Off Themes (2 birds w/ one stone WOHOO smile). Also, will be making 1/2 recipes from now on - we’re cutting back since our blood sugar level is a bit high (I wonder why grin.

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Posted: 04 February 2010 05:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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i’ve just begged my doctor to test my diabetes, and so glad my insurance company agreed to it!  you have to lie and say you are always sleepy after eating, thirsty, wake up 3 to 4 times during the night to urinate.  results:  no blood sugar.  but if i was borderline, it will be a good time to know!

always exercise, and eat only small portions.  because i have so many cakes, my small portion means 1 tablespoon of cake a day.  even when i share my cakes with regular friends, now i only bring 1 slice per person or to be shared with 2!  of course, my friends complained at the beginning, it is very rude to bring a half eaten cake (that is how they defined my single slices of cake, beautifully cut and plated, though), but i told them:  i will bring small quantities of cake but each time you see me!  now they are trained and happy.

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Posted: 04 February 2010 09:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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That is good idea, Hector.  I am glad that I am learning through this forum to bake smaller cakes or single layers.

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So many recipes - so little time.

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Posted: 12 February 2010 12:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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I love my small cake pans. Most of what I do goes in the 6” or the 4” pan. I made two chocolate oblivions yesterday, one each size. The small one is for this summer’s bride as a taste test, the larger one will this weekend’s dessert. If the cake is great, you really don’t need big portions. I made the chocolate featherbed for my husband’s birthday. We were supposed to be 4 for dinner, so I made 1/3 of the recipe, and then 8 showed up. And everybody commented that because it was sooo good they didn’t really need more than the small piece they got. And it was all guys!

I think there is this theory that after the first 3 bites your taste sensations go down, which is why when you go to a 3 star restaurant you get these menus with 10 courses, where each course is just a mouthful or two. Therefore - small cakes!

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Posted: 12 February 2010 01:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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Silke, where did you get 4” cake pan?  Do you actually mix enough to bake just two 4” layers or do you divide the batter between 6” and 4” or something else and 4”?  I would like to do the chocolate featherbed.  I think making 1/3 is a great idea.

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Posted: 12 February 2010 01:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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The chocolate featherbed is a sheet cake. Turns out if you do 1/3, it becomes square, not rectangular, which I think looks nicer, anyways, so you don’t need a smaller pan for it. The recipe calls for 2 batches of the batter, so to get to 1/3 of the final product, you have to make 2/3rds of one batter, and spread it into about a 12"x12” square. Your final cake will then be 6"x6” as it calls for 4 layers. I made a bit more of the ganache, about 1/2 of the recipe, so I had enough for the outside of the cake.

I got the 4” pan at Sur La Table. Turns out it’s 1/4 of the volume of a 8” pan, so it’s easy to get there from the recipes in the book. If I make a 6” I make about 1/2 of the batter, and yesterday I made the full recipe, and just filled the 4” pan to the brim for a nice high cake.

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