Author Topic: Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop  (Read 7021 times)

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Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #210 on: May 25, 2019, 01:19:18 PM »
...Dresden stollen (the one I make, not anybody else's -- they are usually horrid),
Recipe? My Oma made the best ever- but she no longer does any baking. I once asked her for some recipes, but it turns out they were all in her head and measuring by sight with "a little more of this" or "a little less of that." Not very helpful..

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #211 on: May 25, 2019, 01:20:05 PM »
I found out what happened to my chocolate chunks: they sank to the bottom of the pan. My cake now looks like the floor of a rabbit hutch.
They look good enough to eat. May not win any awards in the local count fair- but the look tasty enough to me.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #212 on: May 25, 2019, 01:39:19 PM »
Oh I wish I had a plum tree like Grandma used to!  One of my folks' neighbors has one of those little yellow French ones which must be the sweetest fruit on earth, and you know how they just dump in a very short time and you're scrambling to get rid of them.  We just gorge; none ever see the inside of an oven.

I see other people making damson muffins; there's even a Waitrose recipe for them, though it has yogurt which is typically a scroogish calorie-counting measure when it comes to baking and is to be avoided.  It would be worth a shot.

Yes, you have to hurry but end up wasting a lot anyway. There a brief window where they're just right and then they get over ripe and that's that. I made a particularly nasty chutney with some a couple of years ago. I tried to convince myself it was good but only ended up feeling ill for several days. I couldn't get the taste of vinegar and burnt sugar out of my mouth.

Damsons aren't easy to find in shops, you end up buying them from nearby farms. In Kent, particularly, you can buy farm produce by the side of the road, fresh asparagus etc. I thought maybe damsons would work as long as they don't get too wet.


Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #213 on: May 25, 2019, 01:41:58 PM »
They look good enough to eat. May not win any awards in the local count fair- but the look tasty enough to me.
Thanks. Lest I be accused of whining again, they're OK. The texture is pretty good but I need to boost the flavour a bit next time. Still, not bad for a first attempt.


Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #214 on: May 25, 2019, 01:46:25 PM »
Quit whining and buy some good quality jam for those muffins.

You can freeze them, too.

If your muffins go stale you can still use them. Split the muffin in half, spread it with melted butter and toast in the oven until golden brown. Eat as is or with vanilla ice cream.

You can also make bread pudding with them. You will need 2 cups worth of stale muffins cubed. Place them in a bowl. Whisk together 2 large eggs, 3 cups of of milk, ½ cup of sugar, and your choice of spices. Pour the mixture over the muffin cubes and let it set for 20 minutes. Transfer it all to a greased baking dish and bake for about 1 hour at 325°F.

I wasn't whining, madam. I made a perfectly good point, and others agreed with me. So put that in your piping bag and do with it as you will!

Loath as I am to admit it, the jam idea is a good suggestion.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #215 on: May 25, 2019, 02:04:20 PM »
Recipe? My Oma made the best ever- but she no longer does any baking. I once asked her for some recipes, but it turns out they were all in her head and measuring by sight with "a little more of this" or "a little less of that." Not very helpful..

Oh you are lucky to have it in your family!  People's recipes vary widely and usually treat them like bread, too light and dry.  It all depends on what you're used to.  I started with this guy's recipe https://www.davidlebovitz.com/stollen/ (which he based on the Melissa Clark/Hans Röckenwagner recipe you can find online) years ago because of the high ratio of butter he uses (1 cup/4 cups flour, plus another 3/4 cup poured over after baking). 

The dough is more like cookie dough, though it does rise more than you'd think.  But the pics give a good idea of the texture -- super dense, with barely any crumb.  I honestly don't think they bake all the way through if you make big loaves -- too dense -- but the trick i came up with is to freeze the loaves before sugaring to kill off any lingering yeast flavor.  I think this reproduces some of the effects of aging for weeks as you see some people do.  IMO erring on the underbaked side of things is worth it here for the moisture it preserves in the middle. 

I don't use cranberries or ginger and put way more cardamom and both rum and brandy extracts in it (extracts are the way to go; use real rum to soak the raisins), and wrap them around a giant marzipan log.  People say marzipan is not authentic for a real Dresden stollen but for me that's kind of the point of the whole thing.  And I have a theory that the marzipan originally served to replace a doughy center, like the hole in a donut.  They make thin, beautiful, perfect slices.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #216 on: May 25, 2019, 04:52:26 PM »
Looks like they came out pretty well.  I have to let them cool then I can sample.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #217 on: May 25, 2019, 04:58:51 PM »
Looks like they came out pretty well.  I have to let them cool then I can sample.

Have you had any professional training? The stuff you turn out looks a bit more polished than the dabblings of an amateur.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #218 on: May 25, 2019, 05:02:23 PM »
Looks like they came out pretty well.  I have to let them cool then I can sample.

Those are beautiful!  They look perfect.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #219 on: May 25, 2019, 05:03:01 PM »
Have you had any professional training? The stuff you turn out looks a bit more polished than the dabblings of an amateur.
No, just a talented amateur.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #220 on: May 25, 2019, 05:06:24 PM »
No baking on the grill tomorrow, it will be busy smoking a rack of ribs.  I couldn’t wait any longer and tried one.  Texture good, you can taste the whole wheat flour but it doesn’t overpower the yeast tang from the long rise.  I’ll make them like that from now on.  I follow the original Julia Child French bread recipe and substituted 1/3 of the white flour with white whole wheat flour.    Here is a link to the recipe.  https://andreasrecipes.com/the-daring-bakers-make-julia-childs-french-bread/

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #221 on: May 25, 2019, 07:03:23 PM »
No baking on the grill tomorrow, it will be busy smoking a rack of ribs.  I couldn’t wait any longer and tried one.  Texture good, you can taste the whole wheat flour but it doesn’t overpower the yeast tang from the long rise.  I’ll make them like that from now on.  I follow the original Julia Child French bread recipe and substituted 1/3 of the white flour with white whole wheat flour.    Here is a link to the recipe.  https://andreasrecipes.com/the-daring-bakers-make-julia-childs-french-bread/

I'm glad they turned out; they look wonderful.  That's quite a recipe!  Between all the boards and canvas and batons it sounds like they are going sailing.

I do like how they are clear about the time rising requires.  99% of recipes just use the same "one hour until doubled in bulk" language when that so rarely happens, especially if you have loaded your dough up with sugar and butter as I am wont to do.  For years I thought I was doing something wrong.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #222 on: May 25, 2019, 07:11:20 PM »
I'm glad they turned out; they look wonderful.  That's quite a recipe!  Between all the boards and canvas and batons it sounds like they are going sailing.

I do like how they are clear about the time rising requires.  99% of recipes just use the same "one hour until doubled in bulk" language when that so rarely happens.  For years I thought I was doing something wrong.
It is important to do the triple rising as the first rise.  I do use the canvas for the final rising.  I tend to make the round rolls because I only have a 12 inch baking stone. I have made the batards before I moved and had quarry tiles in my oven.  The steam trick is the other key to proper rising in the oven and a crunchy crust.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #223 on: May 25, 2019, 07:24:12 PM »
Do the rolls keep for long, or will they all go the same day?

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #224 on: May 25, 2019, 07:24:43 PM »
It is important to do the triple rising as the first rise.  I do use the canvas for the final rising.  I tend to make the round rolls because I only have a 12 inch baking stone. I have made the batards before I moved and had quarry tiles in my oven.  The steam trick is the other key to proper rising in the oven and a crunchy crust.

What do you use for steam?  A hot brick or stone in a (presumably metal) pan, or ice cubes?  I know all the bakers in Chinatown use steam to get those wonderfully pillowy sweet rolls.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #225 on: May 25, 2019, 07:28:11 PM »
What do you use for steam?  A hot brick or stone in a (presumably metal) pan, or ice cubes?  I know all the bakers in Chinatown use steam to get those wonderfully pillowy sweet rolls.
I heat a pan in the oven and put in 8-10 ice cubes.  I have also sprayed the rolls with an atomizer when they go in, at 3 minutes and 6 minutes.  That works well too.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #226 on: May 25, 2019, 07:29:52 PM »
Do the rolls keep for long, or will they all go the same day?
They keep for a day or two.  They usually don’t last that long.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #227 on: May 25, 2019, 07:31:42 PM »
I heat a pan in the oven and put in 8-10 ice cubes.  I have also sprayed the rolls with an atomizer when they go in, at 3 minutes and 6 minutes.  That works well too.

Cool, thanks!  I will give that a shot.  For sweet rolls I don't want a crispy crust, of course, but I put them in plastic while still slightly warm and let them steam gently in there; that should take care of it.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #228 on: May 26, 2019, 08:26:28 PM »
I used my no-knead bread recipe as the crust for a pan pizza.  It came out pretty good.



Note the crumb.  It's thick crust, but not like eating bread with a topping.  First rise is the long one.  Then I dump it into the cast iron skillet and fold it over on itself, then second rise.  I'm inspired by Whozit to do a second boutique rise and then the third rise in the skillet.



It was really good.  One of the things that I liked about it was cooking it in a cast iron pan.  When it looks finished, I check the bottom.  If it needs more time to cook the crust properly, I do it on the stove top.  And as always, I used a pizza stone.

It takes a whole day to prepare.  By contrast, I can call and have one delivered in 20 minutes.  I sure like the taste of this one, though.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #229 on: May 28, 2019, 07:26:19 PM »
Thanks. Lest I be accused of whining again, they're OK. The texture is pretty good but I need to boost the flavour a bit next time. Still, not bad for a first attempt.

Baking is not something with an immediate feedback loop like, say, masturbation.  You’re going to put in some time with things that turn out to be duds.  Keep practicing.  Its not something that bothers the neighbors, like your violin playing (or masturbation). 

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #230 on: May 28, 2019, 07:58:21 PM »
I used my no-knead bread recipe as the crust for a pan pizza.  It came out pretty good.



Note the crumb.  It's thick crust, but not like eating bread with a topping.  First rise is the long one.  Then I dump it into the cast iron skillet and fold it over on itself, then second rise.  I'm inspired by Whozit to do a second boutique rise and then the third rise in the skillet.



It was really good.  One of the things that I liked about it was cooking it in a cast iron pan.  When it looks finished, I check the bottom.  If it needs more time to cook the crust properly, I do it on the stove top.  And as always, I used a pizza stone.

It takes a whole day to prepare.  By contrast, I can call and have one delivered in 20 minutes.  I sure like the taste of this one, though.
Nice! Looks good! Well done,  I imagine it would be better than the 20min delivered one, albeit took more time to make.  I'm hungry now and I already ate.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #231 on: May 28, 2019, 09:07:52 PM »
Here's one that has always been a best seller for me.  They can be used to make an excellent meatball sandwich, or can be served with spaghetti, or simply a la carte.

Slow Cooked Cheese Stuffed Meatballs

500 g ground beef
227 g mozzarella cheese
300 g (approximately) spicy Italian Sausage
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
2 eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1 jar pasta sauce (tomato and basil, or to your taste)

1)  Cut mozzarella into roughly 15 mm cubes (or whatever evenly divides from your block of cheese).  Strip the casings from the sausage and finely chop.

2)  Put all of the ingredients (less the cheese) into a bowl and mix until uniform.

3)  Form a ball of about 25 mm or so and insert a cube of cheese.  Form the mixture around the cheese until covered.  Do this with the remainder of the cheese and mixture.

4)  Line a slow cooker with a layer of pasta sauce.  Form a layer of meatballs over the sauce.  Add more sauce to cover the meatballs, then repeat with another layer of meatballs and sauce.

5)  Cook on high setting for 2 to 2.5 hours.  Allow to cool, serve warm.

NOTES

The results are highly dependent upon finding a good, spicy Italian sausage.  There is no such thing as spicy Italian sausage in the country where I live.  When I return from a trip to the USA, I bring back several packages of my favorite brand, frozen.  I have forgotten the weight of what I use, four sausages of about 300g or 10.5 oz, something like that. 

I highly recommend using a food processor to chop the sausage.  I've done it by hand and it is a chore.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #232 on: May 28, 2019, 10:44:25 PM »
Here's one that has always been a best seller for me.  They can be used to make an excellent meatball sandwich, or can be served with spaghetti, or simply a la carte.

Slow Cooked Cheese Stuffed Meatballs

500 g ground beef
227 g mozzarella cheese
300 g (approximately) spicy Italian Sausage
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
2 eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1 jar pasta sauce (tomato and basil, or to your taste)

1)  Cut mozzarella into roughly 15 mm cubes (or whatever evenly divides from your block of cheese).  Strip the casings from the sausage and finely chop.

2)  Put all of the ingredients (less the cheese) into a bowl and mix until uniform.

3)  Form a ball of about 25 mm or so and insert a cube of cheese.  Form the mixture around the cheese until covered.  Do this with the remainder of the cheese and mixture.

4)  Line a slow cooker with a layer of pasta sauce.  Form a layer of meatballs over the sauce.  Add more sauce to cover the meatballs, then repeat with another layer of meatballs and sauce.

5)  Cook on high setting for 2 to 2.5 hours.  Allow to cool, serve warm.

NOTES

The results are highly dependent upon finding a good, spicy Italian sausage.  There is no such thing as spicy Italian sausage in the country where I live.  When I return from a trip to the USA, I bring back several packages of my favorite brand, frozen.  I have forgotten the weight of what I use, four sausages of about 300g or 10.5 oz, something like that. 

I highly recommend using a food processor to chop the sausage.  I've done it by hand and it is a chore.

Thanks!  I have been looking for a good recipe for doing meataballs in the crock pot to freeze in portions for those times when you just want a meataball.  Are you using the parmesan in the green can or grating a wedge of cheese?  I only ask because the green can seems more binder-y with all the cellulose.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #233 on: May 28, 2019, 11:07:27 PM »
Thanks!  I have been looking for a good recipe for doing meataballs in the crock pot to freeze in portions for those times when you just want a meataball.  Are you using the parmesan in the green can or grating a wedge of cheese?  I only ask because the green can seems more binder-y with all the cellulose.

If you have to ask you can’t afford it. ;)

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #234 on: May 28, 2019, 11:24:16 PM »
Thanks!  I have been looking for a good recipe for doing meataballs in the crock pot to freeze in portions for those times when you just want a meataball.  Are you using the parmesan in the green can or grating a wedge of cheese?  I only ask because the green can seems more binder-y with all the cellulose.

I'm using a version of Kraft which is sold here -- so yes, the green can.  It helps along with the bread crumbs to hold everything together.  Of course, like with any recipe you are free to tinker and optimize it.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #235 on: May 28, 2019, 11:47:29 PM »
I'm using a version of Kraft which is sold here -- so yes, the green can.  It helps along with the bread crumbs to hold everything together.  Of course, like with any recipe you are free to tinker and optimize it.

Thanks, nothing wrong with the green can.  I grew up with it and still pour it on like snow on a mountain when confronted with a boring old plate of spaghetti.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #236 on: May 28, 2019, 11:54:32 PM »
Thanks, nothing wrong with the green can.  I grew up with it and still pour it on like snow on a mountain when confronted with a boring old plate of spaghetti.

Throw a few of these meatballs onto that boring old plate.  It will get you laid.  It's that good.  But...you have to choose wisely when selecting Italian sausage.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #237 on: May 29, 2019, 12:09:29 AM »
Throw a few of these meatballs onto that boring old plate.  It will get you laid.  It's that good.  But...you have to choose wisely when selecting Italian sausage.

Haha step five be sure everything is shipshape and Bristol fashion before serving.  Ok yeah there are some good Italian markets here; I will not skimp on that.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #238 on: May 29, 2019, 01:59:24 AM »
I decided to make good old Mrs. Beeton's seed cake while waiting for my pan from over there to arrive.  Mrs. Beeton is often mentioned in reverent tones by people who've never cooked out of her book but she has a checkered reputation among what you might call food reenactors for the 19th-century equivalent of copypasta without testing.  At least it's authentic Victorian and you know people made it that way.

Shreddie's recipe looks more like a modern sponge cake into which a few seeds have fallen but this is a proper old recipe with steps that are strange to modern bakers so I hope the results are truly something different.  I followed her recipe exactly instead of using one of the modern adaptations which rely on dubious interpretations like eggs were smaller back then so use 4 instead of 6 and the exact size of a 19th c. wineglass.  You find a lot of these suggesting that you add milk because the batter is too dry, which should tell you something.  I chose to interpret the "wineglassfull of brandy" as more of a balloon goblet to forestall any aridity.

Here you cream the butter and whisk the eggs separately (ok) but then, once everything is mixed, beat the whole thing for ten minutes.  That is a long time to work flour intended for a cake and modern technique warns you to expect a tougher result from the gluten developed, but we shall see.  The batter did become whiter (a visual cue mentioned in a lot of old recipes) so you know you are beating air in.  It was pretty stiff but still spongey, about the texture of marshmallow fluff, when I scooped it into the pan and rose about an inch in the oven, not counting the dome -- not bad for just eggs.

When researching Russian recipes for pryaniki a few months ago I came across several that encouraged kneading the dough for 20 minutes even after adding their leavening (baking soda and vinegar in most cases, which they mix so it fizzes and then dump in -- weird, but it works) which is quite unlike how you usually make a cookie.  You get a chewier texture, but I wouldn't call it tough; it's kind of nice.

Here it is fresh from the oven.  As basically a pound cake not baked in a tube pan I expected some cracking but that is a lot.  It is a giant muffin.  It took the full two hours at 350 to give a clean toothpick.



I put it under the top of an old Tupperware cake carrier to cool.  You see a lot of mysterious instructions for these old cakes to wrap for several days.  The usual explanation is to allow the flavors to develop, but mostly I think it's to allow the moisture to equalize throughout the cake -- the crust is pretty hard right now.  I am hoping covering it will let it steam a bit and hasten this process.  When cool I will wrap in foil and keep for at least a couple days before cutting.

Mrs. Beeton's recipe is titled "A Very Good Seed-Cake" which should probably be understood in relation to the "Common Seed-Cake" above, enriched by beef drippings instead of butter and without brandy or spices, rather than a taste that popped her mobcap off.  They were a lot more concerned with showing off expensive ingredients than we are since we can get that stuff for pennies nowadays.



For those of you keeping score, there's a near-identical recipe in Amelia Simmons's 1796 "American Cookery", using three more eggs, entitled "A Cheap Seed Cake".  ;D   Don't feel bad; the standard of living was higher over here.  That's why people came.

Bakegab: The Bellgab Bakeshop
« Reply #239 on: May 29, 2019, 03:51:02 AM »
I decided to make good old Mrs. Beeton's seed cake while waiting for my pan from over there to arrive.  Mrs. Beeton is often mentioned in reverent tones by people who've never cooked out of her book but she has a checkered reputation among what you might call food reenactors for the 19th-century equivalent of copypasta without testing.  At least it's authentic Victorian and you know people made it that way.

Shreddie's recipe looks more like a modern sponge cake into which a few seeds have fallen but this is a proper old recipe with steps that are strange to modern bakers so I hope the results are truly something different.  I followed her recipe exactly instead of using one of the modern adaptations which rely on dubious interpretations like eggs were smaller back then so use 4 instead of 6 and the exact size of a 19th c. wineglass.  You find a lot of these suggesting that you add milk because the batter is too dry, which should tell you something.  I chose to interpret the "wineglassfull of brandy" as more of a balloon goblet to forestall any aridity.

Here you cream the butter and whisk the eggs separately (ok) but then, once everything is mixed, beat the whole thing for ten minutes.  That is a long time to work flour intended for a cake and modern technique warns you to expect a tougher result from the gluten developed, but we shall see.  The batter did become whiter (a visual cue mentioned in a lot of old recipes) so you know you are beating air in.  It was pretty stiff but still spongey, about the texture of marshmallow fluff, when I scooped it into the pan and rose about an inch in the oven, not counting the dome -- not bad for just eggs.

When researching Russian recipes for pryaniki a few months ago I came across several that encouraged kneading the dough for 20 minutes even after adding their leavening (baking soda and vinegar in most cases, which they mix so it fizzes and then dump in -- weird, but it works) which is quite unlike how you usually make a cookie.  You get a chewier texture, but I wouldn't call it tough; it's kind of nice.

Here it is fresh from the oven.  As basically a pound cake not baked in a tube pan I expected some cracking but that is a lot.  It is a giant muffin.  It took the full two hours at 350 to give a clean toothpick.



I put it under the top of an old Tupperware cake carrier to cool.  You see a lot of mysterious instructions for these old cakes to wrap for several days.  The usual explanation is to allow the flavors to develop, but mostly I think it's to allow the moisture to equalize throughout the cake -- the crust is pretty hard right now.  I am hoping covering it will let it steam a bit and hasten this process.  When cool I will wrap in foil and keep for at least a couple days before cutting.

Mrs. Beeton's recipe is titled "A Very Good Seed-Cake" which should probably be understood in relation to the "Common Seed-Cake" above, enriched by beef drippings instead of butter and without brandy or spices, rather than a taste that popped her mobcap off.  They were a lot more concerned with showing off expensive ingredients than we are since we can get that stuff for pennies nowadays.



For those of you keeping score, there's a near-identical recipe in Amelia Simmons's 1796 "American Cookery", using three more eggs, entitled "A Cheap Seed Cake".  ;D   Don't feel bad; the standard of living was higher over here.  That's why people came.

I think that the variable would be flour and not egg size.  I believe that wheat flour up until the 19th century did not have much gluten in it, compared to now.  Also, the equipment used would play a role.  Were you beating with an electric mixer?  Obviously not available in 1775, and so maybe ten minutes of hand beating is really just to aerate it, as you suggest.