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Old 07-27-2005, 08:24 AM   #1
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My Baking Progress Report

I couldn't find anywhere else to post this so I decided here would be fine. I'm just creating this thread so that I can keep track of what I've been doing and others are free to observe and comment.
To get you up to speed, I'm a young man who has a great interest in the world of baking and pastry making. Overall, I just love to cook. I've just started to create baked goods and pastries so I've decided that I would start myself off before I attempt to get a job at my local bakery.
I'm kind of in biscotti-mode right now but I'm planning on making cinnamon swirl cookies with vanilla drizzle. I'lll be making something once or twice every week.

Here's my first and latest creations, Cinnamon Vanilla Pecan Biscotti. *note: they're thicker cut in preference of my brother and father.

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Old 07-27-2005, 09:14 AM   #2
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Great start, swifty! Be sure to keep us posted.
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Old 07-27-2005, 09:35 AM   #3
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Swifty, your photo isn't showing up - here's a really good site for image hosting that Crewsk shared with us last year: http://www.imageshack.us/

Also, please share your recipes, when you can - cinnamon, vanilla and pecan together sound fantastic!
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Old 07-27-2005, 11:22 AM   #4
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Cinnamon Vanilla Pecan Biscotti
2 tbsp of softened butter
3/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp of vanilla
2 cups of AP flour
2 tsp of baking powder
1/4 tsp of salt
1/2 tsp of cinnamon and (optional)allspice
1/2 cups of roughly chopped pecans

-Preheat oven to 350F. Meanwhile, in a large bowl beat butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla until smooth. In a medium bowl, sift and combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, (optional)allspice, and pecans. Add flour mixture to egg mixture. Mix until just combined(I find using your hands is better).
-Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead a couple times. Divide in half and shape halves into 8" logs. Place logs on a baking sheet 3" apart that has been lined with parchment or sprayed with nonstick spray and flatten each log into a rectangle that is about 3" wide.
-Bake for 21-25 minutes, until firm and starting to crak ontop. Cool logs on baking sheet on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, reduce oven to 275F.
-Once cooled, Use a serrated knife to cut each log diagnolly into 1/2" slices.(For better results, I chilled the once-baked in the refrigerator for a bit). Replace slices cutside down oto baking sheet and rebake in oven for 15 minutes. Flip cookies and bake for another 15 minutes. Cool on wire rack before serving.
Makes 2 dozen biscotti. I like to store them in a tightly closed paper bag at room temperature. they maintain a desirable dry and crisp texture.

This recipe is still under works. I'm tinkering with the amount of cinnamon and vanilla I use to balanace it out.
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Old 07-28-2005, 04:34 PM   #5
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My latest endeavor!
Its another biscotti but this is the last, I promise.
Almond Blueberry Biscotti

I played around with different flavour extracts and fillers. This biscotti was a huge hit with my family and friends and is now officially my signature biscotti recipe!
Almond pieces, dried blueberries and almond extract gives the biscotti a great sweet taste and it made the house smell delicious. Lol.

I think my next adventures will be cinnamon swirl cookies(I should really get to it) and brownies of some sort.
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Old 07-28-2005, 04:57 PM   #6
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They look delicious, swifty! Keep up the good work!
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Old 08-19-2005, 01:09 PM   #7
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Well today I got my first break from work and play and finally baked something.
Today, I made what I like to call "A Touch of Citruberry" cheesecake bars.
Lemony cheese topping with blueberries mixed in.
Sorry but I don't have any photos at the moment.(camera is broken
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Old 08-19-2005, 01:40 PM   #8
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Swifty, what great pictures! I do the same thing you do. I've got various pictures all through DC of my creations.

Is biscotti hard to make? For some reason they've always intimidated me, I think it's the whole baking it twice thing.
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Old 08-19-2005, 01:43 PM   #9
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htc, biscotti is not hard to make. With the baking twice thing, I think the trick is to let the first-baked loaf cool down a bit longer than the recipe says before cutting it into biscotti and throwing it back in the oven. That's how I goofed on my first batch for the holidays last year.
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Old 08-19-2005, 05:04 PM   #10
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I'm baking challanged. =/ Sweet stuff is always hit-or-miss with me, but I can "cook" up a storm! Why is that, I wonder? So huge kudos to you and your successes!

Would you mind posting your recipes? The almond / blueberry biscotti sounds yummy. I figure I won't get any better at baking if I don't practice and that one sounds like a great one to start with.

Let us know how those cinamon swirls come out too! Post that recipe too if they turn out like you excpected!


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Old 08-19-2005, 06:53 PM   #11
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I'll get those recipes posted up for you either tonight or tomorrow morning. I'm "cooking up a storm"(as someone put it) at the moment. Tonight's the big potluck and my appetizer debut! Lol. I hope the guests like my creations - I made little pastries filled with bbq(honey-garlic flavour) ground beef and since the host asked for something ethnic, I skewered bitesize pieces of Korean rice cakes and Korean style beef balls with toothpicks. They were really cute(about the size of a marble!)
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Old 08-19-2005, 06:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudbug
htc, biscotti is not hard to make. With the baking twice thing, I think the trick is to let the first-baked loaf cool down a bit longer than the recipe says before cutting it into biscotti and throwing it back in the oven. That's how I goofed on my first batch for the holidays last year.
Ya I noticed that happened with me too. I also noticed from my several attempts that sticking the logs in the fridge for a little bit made slicing the biscotti much easier. With the second bake, if you find that your biscotti seems soft when you fniish baking it, don't put it back in the oven. Biscotti will firm up while they cool. Becuase of this, I generally like to bake my biscotti only for the minimum amount of time given.
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Old 08-19-2005, 07:06 PM   #13
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My Almond Blueberry Biscotti
2 tbsp of softened butter
3/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp of almond extract
2 cups of AP flour
2 tsp of baking powder
1/4 tsp of salt
1/2 cup of chopped almonds(unblanched).
1/2 cup of dried blueberries
-Preheat oven to 350F. Meanwhile, in a large bowl beat butter, sugar, eggs and almond extract until smooth. In a medium bowl, sift and combine flour, baking powder, salt, Blueberries,and almonds Add flour mixture to egg mixture. Mix until just combined(I find using your hands is better).
-Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead a couple times. Divide in half and shape halves into 8" logs. Place logs on a baking sheet 3" apart that has been lined with parchment or sprayed with nonstick spray and flatten each log into a rectangle that is about 3" wide.
-Bake for 21-25 minutes, until firm and starting to crack ontop. Cool logs on baking sheet on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, reduce oven to 275F.
-Once cooled, Use a serrated knife to cut each log diagnolly into 1/2" slices.(For better results, I chilled the once-baked in the refrigerator for a bit). Replace slices cutside down oto baking sheet and rebake in oven for 15 minutes. Flip cookies and bake for another 15 minutes. Cool on wire rack before serving.
Makes 2 dozen(ish) biscotti. I like to store them in a tightly closed paper bag at room temperature. they maintain a desirable dry and crisp texture.
One thing I always like to tell others who I give my recipes to is that you can easily make your own "signature" biscotti.
Simply replace the blueberries, almonds with whatever you like and play around with different extracts.

I once tried using mint extract with chocolate chips and white chocolate chunks and I was pleasantly surprised by a "cool" tasting biscotti.

Others you might want to try could be rum extract with dried pineapple and coconut(Caribean style! )

Or even banana extract with and assortment of dried fruits like cherries and apricots for a fruitcake delight(Can you say Christmas at Grandma's? )
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Old 08-19-2005, 07:09 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by htc
Swifty, what great pictures! I do the same thing you do. I've got various pictures all through DC of my creations.

Is biscotti hard to make? For some reason they've always intimidated me, I think it's the whole baking it twice thing.
No, to be honest, biscotti was the first thing I had baked in my entire life! I was more intimiadted by overbaking a pound cake or oatmeal cookies rather than baking sometihng twice.
How ironic!
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Old 08-21-2005, 01:28 PM   #15
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Camera is still broken...but I did some more baking today.
I got really bored so I did some requests. I made chocolate chip oatmeal cookies for the girlfriend and peanut butter biscotti for the brother. They turned out great!
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Old 08-21-2005, 06:30 PM   #16
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I don't want the recipes...just send me some of the finished product! lol
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Old 08-21-2005, 09:25 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KAYLINDA
I don't want the recipes...just send me some of the finished product! lol
Just think.
I'm only just starting.
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