Powdered Donuts in Cake Form! Run, Don’t Walk.

Cakes are often reserved for special occasions, from dinner parties to birthdays to weddings. But what about Tuesday afternoon pick-me-ups and Sunday morning brunches? Enter: writer, photographer, and stylist Yossy Arefi’s newest cookbook, Snacking Cak…

Cakes are often reserved for special occasions, from dinner parties to birthdays to weddings. But what about Tuesday afternoon pick-me-ups and Sunday morning brunches? Enter: writer, photographer, and stylist Yossy Arefi's newest cookbook, Snacking Cakes, a collection of 50 everyday recipes, from Cocoa Yogurt Cake to Powdered Donut Cake (below!). If you're familiar with Yossy's first book, Sweeter Off the Vine, you won't be surprised to learn there are many fruit-dense wonders here as well, like Blueberry Ricotta Cake and Orange–Poppy Seed Cake With Fresh Raspberry Glaze. In this excerpt, Yossy explores what a snacking cake is anyway. We highly recommend reading it while snacking on cake.


So, what exactly makes a cake a snacking cake? I certainly didn't invent the concept, and it depends a little bit on who you ask, but to me a snacking cake is a single layer cake, probably square, covered with a simple icing—or nothing at all—and it must be truly easy to make. It’s a cake that makes an ideal breakfast to-go, wrapped in a paper napkin, and a perfect little sweet to have alongside coffee in the afternoon.

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Skillet Cranberry and Apple Cake

This easy skillet cake with cranberries and apples highlights some of my favorite fall flavors – in a lightly spiced batter.

This easy skillet cake with cranberries and apples highlights some of my favorite fall flavors – in a lightly spiced batter.

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 Fall and winter are such cozy seasons for baking that I find myself with something in the oven at least a few times a week. This skillet cake is a wonderfully versatile recipe that you can really serve any time of day.

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This post is sponsored by Lodge Cast Iron. Their new bakeware line is gorgeous, sturdy, super versatile (hello, stove to oven to table!) and sure to become some of your favorites. I’ve used Lodge Cast Iron for years in my kitchen and I was very excited to learn about their new line of bakeware including this Baker’s Skillet which is perfect for everything from a savory quiche to a simple and comforting cake like this one. 


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Have a slice with tea or coffee in the afternoon, but make sure to save a bit for breakfast the next day too. Or, you can dress it up with a little bit of confectioner’s sugar and whipped crème fraiche for a gorgeous, low lift dessert.

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 The addition of rye flour here makes the cake exceptionally tender and I love the addition of tart cranberries for both color and a little pop of bright flavor that offsets the sweet and spice. If you don’t keep rye flour you can substitute and equal amount of all purpose or whole wheat flour, and feel free to sub pears for the apples too. 

Skillet Rye Cranberry Apple Cake

Makes one 9 or 10-inch cake

 3/4 cup (150g) light brown sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted

2/3 cup (160g) crème fraiche

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup (130g) all purpose flour

1/2 cup (65g) light rye flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/2 cups peeled and chopped apple, from 1 large apple

3/4 cup (75g) fresh or frozen cranberries

4 teaspoons crunchy sugar like turbinado 

Confectioners sugar and whipped crème fraiche to serve, if desired

1. Position a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously butter the Lodge Bakers’s Skillet or 9-inch cake pan

2. In a large bowl, whisk the brown sugar and eggs until pale and foamy, about 1 minute. Add the melted butter, crème fraiche, and spices. Whisk until smooth and emulsified. 

3. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and whisk until almost combined. 

4. Switch to a rubber spatula and add the cranberries and apples. Fold to combine making sure no streaks of flour remain.

4. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top of the batter with an offset spatula. Sprinkle the sugar over the top. 

5. Bake until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes. Set the pan on a rack to cool. Serve warm or room temperature with a dusting of confectioners sugar and whipped crème fraiche if desired.

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Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake with Maple Olive Oil Glaze from Snacking Cakes

This one-bowl Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake with Maple Olive Oil Glaze is as easy as can be. It’s a great alternative to pie for Thanksgiving too. The maple olive oil glaze is sweet and savory all at once and has the most velvety texture.

This one-bowl Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake with Maple Olive Oil Glaze is as easy as can be. It’s a great alternative to pie for Thanksgiving too. The maple olive oil glaze is sweet and savory all at once and has the most velvety texture.

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If you’re feeling to tired or to stressed for pie this Thanksgiving, or maybe you just don’t like pie (I know you’re out there!) - let me humbly suggest this Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake that comes together in one bowl without much fuss. You have probably guessed this already, but it’s a recipe from my new book Snacking Cakes!

It has all of the warm spices you could possibly want, and is topped with maple olive oil glaze and a pinch of sea salt for a sweet and savory vibe that makes it a great snack for anytime of day. You might even want to make one now to snack on as you’re cooking today and tomorrow…Just a thought!

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It’s the perfect size for the small gatherings we are all having this year, and if you have leftovers they make an excellent breakfast the next day. We baked it as a loaf for the book, but you can certainly bake it in a round or square pan too.

Stay safe out there everyone. Happy Thanksgiving!

Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake with Maple Olive Oil Glaze from Snacking Cakes

Pumpkin cake isn’t just for the fall, and this version, spiked with a bit of allspice and black pepper, has a hit of warmth that makes it more exciting than your average pumpkin spice mix. The glaze has a sweet and savory thing going on that pairs beautifully with the spices. If you prefer your pumpkin cake unadorned, feel free to skip the glaze and just sprinkle a few tablespoons of untoasted pepitas over the top of the cake batter before it goes into the oven.


Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake

1 cup (200g) light brown sugar

2 large eggs


1 cup (230g) pumpkin puree


½ cup (120ml) olive oil

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground cardamom

1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

A few grinds of black pepper

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1½ cups (190g) all-purpose our

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

2 tablespoons chopped toasted pepitas (optional)

 

Maple Olive Oil Glaze

1 cup (100g) confectioners’ sugar

2 tablespoons olive oil


2 tablespoons maple syrup


1 to 2 tablespoons hot water

Pinch of kosher salt

Chopped pepitas (optional)

Flaky salt (optional)


1. Position a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter or coat an 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick spray. Line the pan with a strip of parchment paper that hangs over two of the edges.

2. MAKE THE CAKE: In a large bowl, whisk the brown sugar and eggs until pale and foamy, about 1 minute. Add the pumpkin puree, olive oil, cinnamon, cardamom, allspice, pepper, and kosher salt. Whisk until smooth and emulsified.

 3. Add the flour, baking powder, and baking soda and whisk until well-combined and smooth.

4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, tap the pan gently on the counter to release any air bubbles, and smooth the top of the batter with an offset spatula. Sprinkle the pepitas over the top if you are not going to glaze the cake.

5. Bake until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes. Set the pan on a rack to cool for about 15 minutes. Then use the parchment paper
to lift the cake out of the pan and set it on the rack to cool completely.

6. MAKE THE GLAZE: Combine the confectioners’ sugar, olive oil, maple syrup, 1 tablespoon of the hot water, and a pinch of kosher salt in a medium bowl. Whisk until smooth, adding more water as necessary to make a thick but pourable glaze.

7. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake and sprinkle with the pepitas and flaky salt, if desired. Let the glaze set for about 20 minutes before slicing the cake. (Store the cake, well wrapped, at room temperature for up to three days.)

Use Another Pan

LOAF: Bake in a 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan until puffed and golden, and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. You’ll need a half batch of glaze to coat the cake in a thin layer.

ROUND: Bake in a 9-inch round pan until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes.

SHEET: Double the ingredients for the cake and bake in a
9 x 13-inch pan until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes. Double the ingredients for the glaze, too.

Dress It Up

Add a dollop of Brown Sugar Whip (page 180) or a scoop of ice cream (or both!) to slices of cake before serving.

Flavor Variations

PUMPKIN CHOCOLATE CHIP CAKE: Prepare the cake as directed, then fold in ½ cup (85g) chopped bittersweet chocolate just before pouring the batter into the pan. Top with Cocoa Glaze (page 135).

 RYE PUMPKIN CAKE: Substitute ½ cup (65g) light rye flour for the all-purpose flour. This version is also quite nice with a bit of chocolate folded into the batter.

Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie

This Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie is a perfect Fall treat. With a crisp, tender all butter crust, this lattice topped beauty would be perfect at any holiday table.

This Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie is a perfect Fall treat. With a crisp, tender all butter crust, this lattice topped beauty would be perfect at any holiday table.

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I’ve partnered with Bob’s Red Mill and Bake from Scratch magazine to be part of their Better Baking Academy this year, and I’m talking about one of my favorite subjects - Lattice Topped Pie. Each month they share a new recipe with lots of in-depth step-by-step photos tricks and tips. Head over to Bake from Scratch to see their technique for adding lattice to the top of a custard pie. 

For this recipe, I went with some of my favorite fall fruits - apples and cranberries with a generous amount of apple cider caramel mixed in. The caramel is also delicious on its own or on top of ice cream, I’m sure you’ll find a way to use it. 

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Lattice topped pies can seem intimidating because at first glance, but once you try it, you realize it’s not as scary as it seems. Here are some tips for pie dough success!

Some Pie Dough Tips

  • Keep everything cold. That means making sure your butter is cold and cubed and the water is icy. You can even chill your bowl and flour if you want to go the extra mile. I usually don’t do this because I work quickly, but it’s a great way to buy yourself some extra chilled time. 

  • Hydrate the dough properly. Add enough water to the dough so it holds together easily, but not so much that it’s wet. Dry dough is a pain to work with because it will fall apart on you and wet dough will be tough and chewy. If you have any dry spots in your dough you can sprinkle a few drops of water just in that spot to hydrate. 

  • Don’t overmix. Make sure that the dough is well and evenly mixed, you can even knead it a few times, but don’t go crazy and knead it like bread dough. You want to press it together firmly, while making sure there are distinct flat bits of butter in the dough that will puff up and make it flaky.

  • Let it rest. Give the dough some time to relax and hydrate. It will make the dough easier to roll out and flakier in the end.

  • Keep it cool (again). There is nothing more frustrating than trying to maneuver warm, melty, falling apart dough into a woven pattern. If they are tearing on you and you get frustrated, try transferring all of the lattice strips to a parchment lined baking sheet to chill for a few minutes while you gather your composure. Better yet, do this before you start weaving if you are worried about it. 

  •  Have Fun! Don’t worry about it too much! No one will notice if your strips aren’t all the same size! Add some decorative cutouts if you are feeling it!

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This filling combines some of my favorite fall flavors into a gorgeous and delicious holiday showstopper. The cider caramel is just as good on its own as it is combined with these gorgeous fall fruits. Make sure to save the extra to drizzle on top of the warm slices of pie. 

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Sponsored Post: This post was created in partnership with Bob’s Red Mill and Bake from Scratch magazine.


Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie

 Dough adapted from Bake from Scratch magazine

Pie Dough 

Makes 1 (9-inch) double crust

 4 cups (500 grams) Bob’s Red Mill Organic All-Purpose Flour

1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar

1 tablespoon (9 grams) kosher salt

1 1/3 cup (303 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes

13 to 14 tablespoons (195 to 210 grams) ice water

 

Cider Caramel

Makes about 1 1/2 cups 

 1 cup (200 grams) sugar

1/4 cup (60 grams) water

1/4 cup (60 grams) butter

1/2 cup (120 grams) heavy cream

1/4 cup ( 72 grams) boiled cider syrup (see note)

1 teaspoon (4 grams) vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon (1.5 grams) kosher salt

  

Filling

 3 medium baking apples  like mutsu or honey crisp (about 450 grams), peeled and thinly sliced

3 cups (345 grams) cranberries

1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar

4 tablespoons (32 grams) cornstarch 

2 teaspoons (4 grams) cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Pinch salt

1/2 cup (125 grams) cider caramel

Make the dough: In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, and salt. Using your fingers to press and cut in each piece of cold butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs and butter is pea-size to walnut-size, flat shards. Make a well in center, and add 13 tablespoons (195 grams) ice water. Stir with fingers, and knead dough together just until dry ingredients are moistened. Add additional 1 tablespoon (25 grams) water if needed. Alternatively, in the work bowl of a food processor, place flour, sugar, and salt; pulse until combined. Add cold butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs and butter is pea-size. With processor running, pour 13 tablespoons (195 grams) ice water through food chute in a slow, steady stream just until dough comes together. (Mixture may appear crumbly. It should be moist and hold together when pinched.) Add additional 1 tablespoon (25 grams) water if needed.

Turn out dough, and divide in half (about 530 grams each). Shape each half into a disk. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Dough may be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

Make the cider caramel: Combine the sugar, water, and butter in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until the sugar melts and turns deep amber in color , about 10-15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat then carefully whisk in the cream, cider syrup, vanilla, and salt. Mixture will bubble vigorously. Let the sauce cool to room temperature before using.

Assemble the pie: On a lightly floured surface, roll half of Pie Dough into a 13 1/2-inch circle (3/16-inch thick). Transfer to a 9-inch pie plate, pressing into bottom and up sides. Freeze until firm, 20 to 30 minutes.

Prepare the filling: In a large bowl combine the sliced apples, cranberries, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Toss gently to combine. Drizzle the caramel over the top and stir gently.

Assemble the pie: Transfer the filling into the chilled pie dough and press gently to compact the fruit. 

On a lightly floured surface, roll remaining Pie Dough into a 14-inch circle (1/8 inch thick). Using a pastry wheel, cut 2 inches off one side of dough; set aside. Starting at cut edge, cut 12 (3/4-inch-wide) strips; set aside any unused rolled-out Pie Dough. Place 6 strips horizontally over the filling. Fold back alternating strips, and place 1 strip vertically across horizontal strips; unfold strips. Repeat weaving with remaining strips, starting and ending at 1-inch marks and spacing strips 3/4 inch apart. Using kitchen scissors, trim strips even with the bottom crust, leaving about 1/2-inch overhang. Roll the bottom crust up and over the trimmed lattice and press gently. Use a fork dipped in flour to press the rolled edge down onto the pie pan. Use scissors to trim the fork-crimped edge flush with the pie pan. Place the pie on a baking sheet. 

 If desired, use small decorative cutters or scissors to cut remaining rolled-out Pie Dough and scraps and place on baking sheet around the pie. Refrigerate until firm and ready to use, 20 to 30 minutes.

Bake the pie: Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C) with a rack set in the bottom third. 

 In a small bowl, whisk together 1 egg (50 grams) and 1 teaspoon (5 grams) water. Brush lattice with egg wash. Brush bottom of each cutout with egg wash, one at a time, and place around outside edge of lattice, overlapping slightly. Brush tops of cutouts with egg wash. 

Bake the pie for about 1 hour or until it is deep golden brown and the juices are bubbling. If the edges begin to darken before the filling is bubbling, tent the edges with aluminum foil. Let cool before slicing. Serve with additional cider caramel sauce.


Note: Boiled cider can be purchased or you can make your own. For this recipe, add 4 cups of apple cider to a large pot set over high heat. Bring the mixture to a full boil, and cook until reduced to 1/2 cup, stirring occasionally. This will take about 30 minutes but keep a close eye on it. It will darken slightly and thicken to the consistency of thin honey when ready.

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Banana Cream Pie

Classic Banana Cream Pie with a cookie crumb crust, vanilla pudding, fresh bananas, and fresh whipped cream is the treat you need right now.

Classic Banana Cream Pie with a cookie crumb crust, vanilla pudding, fresh bananas, and fresh whipped cream is the treat you need right now.

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This Classic Banana Cream Pie is from Erin Jean McDowell’s STUNNING new MASTERPIECE - The Book on Pie (affiliate link). This book has something for everyone from brand new beginners to experienced bakers looking to up their game.

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There are recipes for everything from perfect dough to some of the most beautiful decorative crusts, juicy fruit fillings, and towering gorgeous toppings I’ve ever seen. For my first bake from the book, I wanted to choose a classic and also something with PUDDING and whipped cream. Because, hello, pudding is an incredibly delicious food that doesn’t get enough credit.

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Erin’s version of this classic has a roll out crust, but had some chocolate cookies and biscoff to use up (and I didn’t have the patience to chill pie dough) so I went the crumb crust route, but I don’t think Erin would mind. The book is made to mix and match crusts, toppings, and fillings to your hearts content, and every recipe has amazing troubleshooting tips and variations too. Happy Pie Baking everyone!

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Classic Banana Cream Pie

Excerpted from THE BOOK ON PIE © 2020 by Erin Jeanne McDowell. Photography © 2020 by Mark Weinberg. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved. 

MAKES: ONE 9-INCH/23-CM PIE

DIFFICULTY: MEDIUM

FILLING

452 g / 2 cups whole milk

118 g / 1/2 cup heavy cream

150 g / 3/4 cup granulated sugar

37 g / 1/3 cup cornstarch

3 g / 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

56 g / 2 large eggs

64 g / 3 large egg yolks

28 g / 1 ounce / 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

10 g / 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 

One 9-inch / 23-cm pie crust (see below), blind-baked, and cooled completely

450 g / 3 or 4 medium bananas, peeled and thickly sliced

Full Batch of Classic Whipped Cream (page 111/below)

1.     Make the filling: In a medium pot, bring the milk and heavy cream, to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

2.     Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the granulated sugar, cornstarch, and salt to combine. Add the eggs and yolks and whisk well to combine.

3.     When the milk mixture comes to a simmer, pour about one quarter of it into the eggs, whisking constantly to temper them. Pour this mixture back into the pot, whisking constantly. Reduce the heat to medium-low, switch to a silicone spatula, and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and large bubbles break the surface. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter until it’s melted and the pudding is smooth. Stir in the vanilla.

4.     Strain the pudding into the cooled pie crust and spread into an even layer. Cover the filling with plastic wrap placed directly against the surface and refrigerate until fully cooled and set, at least 2 hours (or up to 24 hours).

5.     When ready to serve, remove the plastic wrap and arrange the bananas in an even layer on top of the pie, overlapping the slices so they are well packed together. Spread, spoon, or pipe the whipped cream topping on top. 

MAKE AHEAD AND STORAGE

The crust can be blind-baked up to 24 hours head. The pie can be prepared through step 4 up to  24 hours ahead and kept refrigerated. Store leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

 Basic Crumb Crust

MAKES: ONE 9-INCH/23-CM PIE

DIFFICULTY: EASY

Crumb crusts are even easier than press-in cookie crusts. You don’t even have to bake them—see the variation at right. The crumbs can be made out of cookies, crackers, cereal, pretzels, even potato chips! Sometimes sugar or other flavorings are added to the crumbs (here the sugar is optional), and then fat (usually melted butter) is added to bind the mixture to form a crust. The crumbs can be coarse, for a crunchier texture, or finer, for a smoother texture. Different base ingredients will behave differently, so the first time I test a crumb crust with a new ingredient, I always have a little extra on hand in case I need more crumbs, or a little extra melted butter, should it be needed.

Crumb crusts don’t generally require chilling before baking, but you can refrigerate for up to 1 hour or freeze for 15 minutes, if desired, to firm them up before baking. I’m also including information in a chart on page 40 to help you adapt this easy recipe for any pan size.

 210 g / 1¾ cups cookie, cereal, chip, or cracker crumbs (I used half chocolate cookies and half biscoff -Yossy)

Up to 50 g / ¼ cup granulated sugar (optional) (I skipped it because my cookies were very sweet - Yossy)

2 g / ½ teaspoon fine sea salt

85 g / 3 ounces / 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more if needed

1.     In a medium bowl, stir the crumbs, sugar, if using, and salt together to combine. Stir in the melted butter and mix to combine. The crust should easily hold together in clumps when you press it together between your fingers (if it doesn’t, add a little more melted butter, 14 g /  1 tablespoon at a time, until it does).

2.     Press the crust evenly into the bottom and up the sides of an ungreased 9-inch / 23-cm pie plate: First make an even layer in the bottom of the pan, then press the rest of the crumbs up the sides (or halfway up the sides—see page 61). Sometimes I use the bottom of a small dry measuring cup to help press the crust in evenly; this is especially helpful in the corners of the pan.

3.     Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C (don’t use a Baking Steel/stone when baking a crumb crust). To parbake the crust, bake (no docking or pie weights required) for 10 to 12 minutes, until it begins to lightly brown at the edges (or, for darker crumbs, smells lightly toasty). To blind-bake the crust, bake for 15 to 17 minutes, until it is deeply golden brown and/or smells toasty.

PIE PEP TALK

What to Do When a Crumb Crust Shrinks: One of the most common problems I’ve seen with crumb crusts is that they can shrink or slump down the side of the pie plate when the crust is parbaked. Luckily, this is easily corrected. If you notice that your crust is starting to shrink, remove it from the oven and use a crust tamper (see page 20) or a small metal measuring cup to press the crust that slumped down back up the sides of the pie plate. If this happens consistently when you make crumb crusts, try tamping them down more aggressively and/or refrigerating for 30 minutes before baking.

Classic Whipped Cream

MAKES: 141, 283, OR 422 G / 1, 3, OR 4 CUPS, DEPENDING ON THE BATCH YOU CHOOSEDIFFICULTY: 

DIFFICULTY: EASY

It’s never a bad idea to serve pie with plenty of whipped cream. Think your pie is sweet enough? You can leave the sugar out—ain’t nothin’ wrong with plain ol’ whipped cream. For a luxurious twist, try the mascarpone variation below.

 FULL BATCH (for generously covering the whole pie)

235 g / 1 cup heavy cream

50 g / 1/4 cup granulated sugar

5 g / 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

1.     In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment, whip the cream on medium-low speed until it begins to thicken, 1 to 2 minutes. Increase the speed to medium and add the sugar in a slow, steady stream, then continue to whip to medium peaks. Add the vanilla, if using, and mix to combine.

 MAKE AHEAD AND STORAGE

Plain whipped cream is best made just before it is used, but you can intentionally under-whip the cream (to just under soft peaks), then finish by whipping by hand when you’re ready to serve. It will hold this way for up to 4 hours. The mascarpone variation can be made up to 6 hours ahead and held in the refrigerator. Whip a few times gently to refresh before using.


Excerpted from THE BOOK ON PIE © 2020 by Erin Jeanne McDowell. Photography © 2020 by Mark Weinberg. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved. 


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Snacking Cakes is out Today!

Today’s the Day! My book Snacking Cakes is officially out in the world. I think you all are going to love this book full of easy, one bowl cakes that can all be baked in an 8×8 or 9-inch round pan!

Today’s the Day! My book Snacking Cakes is officially out in the world. I think you all are going to love this book full of easy, one bowl cakes that can all be baked in an 8x8 or 9-inch round pan!

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There are 50 base recipes with TONS of variations with suggestions to mix and match the toppings. I tried to hit every possible cake craving in these pages, and there is lots of room for you to experiment on your own too!

Simple Sesame

Simple Sesame

Minty Chocolate Malt

Minty Chocolate Malt

You can sub in your favorite fruit or nuts, add some chocolate chips, and add a bit of whole grain flour too if that’s your jam (it’s definitely my jam). I hope you find inspiration and joy in these recipes!

Vanilla Buttermilk Cake with Strawberry Frosting

Vanilla Buttermilk Cake with Strawberry Frosting

Order snacking cakes here!

Find it wherever books are sold - especially at your local indie bookstore. They need us right now!

Berry Cream Cheese Cake

Berry Cream Cheese Cake


EVENTS!

I have two virtual events this week

10/28 with Book Larder and Olaiya Land of Lioness - Sign up Here

10/29 with Now Serving and Valerie Gordon of Valerie’s Confections - Sign up Here


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Chocolate Mousse Tart with Browned Butter Oat Crust | Raaka Baking Chocolate

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One of my very favorite chocolate makers in NYC, Raaka Chocolate, is launching a new line of baking chocolate today! They are starting with two delicious varieties,  Oat Milk 58% cacao that I used in this chocolate mousse tart and Maple Dark 75% cacao. They will launch two more varieties in the coming weeks, and they have cacao powder and cacao nibs too! I got a sneak peek of all four varieties and I have enjoyed baking with (and just plain eating) these little chocolate discs so much. 

This decadent Chocolate Mousse Tart with Browned Butter Oat Crust is definitely fit for a special occasion, but isn’t too tricky to put together. The crust is the easy-peasy pat in the pan variety and the mousse is just as good on its own as it is in this buttery, crisp, toasty crust. You could even just make the chocolate mousse and skip the crust all together, but don’t skip the billowy whipped cream! 

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 Raaka Chocolate is unroasted which highlights all of the natural fruitiness of cacao so it’s flavor profile might be a little different than your everyday chocolate, and it is so, so tasty. They are also a company that values the community of growers, producers, and makers whose livelihoods depend on cacao and chocolate and are very transparent about their sourcing practices. You can read all about it on their website. Let me know if you try it!

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 This post was sponsored by Raaka Chocolate.


Oat Milk Chocolate Mousse Tart with Browned Butter Oat Crust

Makes one 9-inch tart

This decadent chocolate tart is more than the sum of its parts. The toasty-oaty crust provides a perfect base for rich and decadent chocolate mousse made with Raaka’s sublimely delicious Oat Milk chocolate. The mousse is delicious on its own for gluten free folks too. 

Browned Butter Oat Crust

1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter

2/3 cup (60g) rolled oats

1 cup (130g) all purpose flour

1/3 cup (35g) confectioner’s sugar

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Water, as needed

Oat Milk Chocolate Mousse

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 tablespoons strong coffee or coffee liqueur

3 large egg yolks

Pinch salt

4 ounces Raaka Oat Milk Chocolate finely chopped, plus a little more to garnish

1 1/4 cups heavy cream, divided

Heat your oven to 375ºF and lightly grease a 9-inch removable bottom tart pan.

Brown the butter: Melt the butter in a small saucepan set over medium heat. Make sure to use a pan with a light colored interior so you can see the milk solids change color. Continue to cook the butter, stirring occasionally, scraping the milk solids off of the bottom and sides of the pan as necessary. After a few minutes the milk solids should turn golden brown and smell toasty. Transfer the toasty browned butter to a heat safe container and let it cool slightly.

Add the oats to the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times until the oats are broken up a bit. Add the flour, confectioners sugar, and salt and pulse about 10 times or until the mixture looks like coarse sand. Drizzle the butter into the mixture and pulse until combined. The mixture should hold together easily when you squeeze it in your hands. If it seems very dry, add water 1 teaspoon at a time until it holds together.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tart pan and press it evenly into the bottom and sides of the pan. Use the bottom of a measuring cup to make the crust smooth and even. Bake the crust until it is golden brown, 20-25 minutes. Set it on a rack to cool completely.

When the shell is cool, make the mousse. 

Whisk 3/4 cup of the heavy cream to soft peaks and store in the refrigerator while you make the rest of the mousse.

Set a heatsafe bowl over a pan of simmering water to make a double boiler. Add the sugar, coffee, egg yolks, and a pinch of salt to the bowl and whisk the mixture until it is very hot to the touch (about 160ºF), pale yellow and doubled in volume. 

Add the chopped chocolate and whisk until smooth. Off of the heat, add a heaping spoonful of the whipped cream and whisk it into the chocolate mixture to lighten it a bit. Add the rest of the whipped cream and gently fold to combine. Pour the mousse into the cooled shell, smooth the top, and refrigerate until firm, about one hour. Just before serving whip the remaining 1/2 cup cream to soft peaks dollop it over the mousse. Grate a bit more chocolate over the top and serve.

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‘Coffee’ Coffee Cake from One Tin Bakes

This recipe for “Coffee” Coffee Cake is from Edd Kimber’s wonderful new boo…

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This recipe for “Coffee” Coffee Cake is from Edd Kimber’s wonderful new book One Tin Bakes which features 70 recipes that you can make in a 9x13 pan. It’s such a smart idea and Edd truly covered every possible type of bake in this book. There are so many incredible recipes that it was tough to pick just one, but this cake has everything - toasty crispy streusel, coffee and cinnamon filling, and a moist tender sour cream cake. It comes together pretty quickly too, which is my favorite kind of bake.

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This is the sort of cake that I can’t stop eating all day, in fact, I ate it for two meals the day I made it! It’s so homey and comforting with just enough coffee and spice to make me keep coming back for more, and the toasty, nutty brown butter in the streusel is an A+ move!

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Edd very kindly gave measurements in imperial and metrics, but do yourself a favor and just use a scale it’s so much easier, especially for this type of book that was written in metrics and converted. I hope you all pick up a copy of this book from your favorite Indie Bookstore, they need us more than ever - check out IndieBound.com and Bookshop.org for your local shopping options.


“Coffee” Coffee Cake

from One Tin Bakes by Edd Kimber

serves 12-15

For the Brown Butter Streusel

125g (4 ½ oz/1 stick + 1 tablespoon) unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing

160g (5 ¾ oz/1 ¼  cups) plain (all purpose) flour

115g (4oz/ ½  cup + 1 heaped tablespoon) caster (superfine) sugar

½  teaspoon fine sea salt

For the Espresso Swirl

100g (3.oz/⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons) light brown sugar

3 teaspoons instant espresso powder

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

For the Sour Cream Cake

175g (6oz/1 ½ sticks + 1 teaspoon) unsalted butter, at room temperature

300g (10 ½oz/1 ½ cups) caster (superfine) sugar

315g (11oz/2 ½ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs

180ml (6 ¼ fl oz/ ¾ cup) sour cream

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), Gas Mark 4. Lightly grease the baking tin and line with a piece of parchment paper that overhangs the two long sides of the tin and secure in place with metal clips.

Start by making the streusel as it needs to chill a little before baking. Mix the flour, sugar and salt together in a bowl. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat, stirring frequently. The butter will melt, sizzle and splatter and then start to foam. As it foams, little golden brown flecks will start to appear. Before these flecks burn, remove the pan from the heat and pour the butter over the dry ingredients, using a fork to stir until it all clumps together. You’re looking for a mix of fine crumbs and big chunks. Pop the bowl into the freezer.

Next, make the espresso swirl. Mix together the sugar, espresso powder and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.

For the cake, place the butter and sugar into the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on medium speed for 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy.

Meanwhile, mix together the flour, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl. Add the vanilla to the butter mixture and mix briefly to combine. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until fully combined before adding another. Add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the sour cream, starting and finishing with the flour.

Spoon two-thirds of the cake batter into the prepared tin spreading into an even layer. Sprinkle over the espresso swirl then dot small spoonfuls of the remaining batter all over the top, covering as much of the swirl mixture as possible before gently spreading so that all of the swirl mixture is covered. Sprinkle over the streusel in an even layer.

Bake for 45–50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for about 15–20 minutes, before using the parchment paper to gently lift it out on to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, cut into portions and serve.

Store in a sealed container for 2–3 days.

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Snacking Cakes!

Hi! Hello there! How are you? I hope you are holding up ok. I have been kee…

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Hi! Hello there! How are you? I hope you are holding up ok.

I have been keeping a secret, and I’ve been nervous to share this news with you because wow the world feels upside-down right now, but I guess now is as good of a time as any to tell you: I WROTE AND PHOTOGRAPHED A NEW BOOK! It’s called SNACKING CAKES and it will be published by Clarkson Potter this October if all goes according to plan.

Phew.

Snacking Cakes is full of one-bowl cake recipes that you can make with minimal ingredients, some simple tools (no electric mixers necessary!), and an 8x8 (or 9-inch round!) pan. There are 50 recipes, but they all sneakily have flavor and pan variations making the true count of recipes much higher than that. It’s got it all from bright citrusy cakes to rich chocolatey ones, and everything in between. There is truly something for everyone and they are the kind of cakes you can make any day of the week. That beauty on the cover is a Cocoa Yogurt Cake that comes together so quickly, and lasts for days on the counter. You can top it with a glaze too, but only if you feel like it. This one is vanilla bean, but there are lots and lots to choose from.

I know I haven’t checked in here in a long while and the truth is I took the summer off of blogging to work on some photography projects, and teach at my beloved Melisses. Then, the minute those projects were wrapping up I found myself writing this VERY FUN book full of TRULY EASY, very SNACKABLE CAKE recipes for any occasion…like moving into a new apartment or a low key birthday or making it through work on a Monday. I kinda wish I could just send it to all of you right now because I know you are all baking at home a lot more than usual and I’d love to share these recipes with you. Alas, that isn’t the way that book publishing works.

I’ll be back soon with more info, but if you’d like to and can swing a preorder (please do, this is such a weird time to be publishing a book!) there’s a link over in the sidebar. Take care of yourselves and others out there.

xx

NEW DATES: Cooking Workshop and Retreat in Andros, Greece – Summer 2019

Allegra and I had such a wonderful response to our Summer workshop this year that we added a second set of dates – August 25-28!!I’m so excited to announce that I will returning to…

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Allegra and I had such a wonderful response to our Summer workshop this year that we added a second set of dates - August 25-28!!

I’m so excited to announce that I will returning to Greece to be the guest chef for a Cooking Workshop and Retreat with Allegra Pomilio at Mèlisses in Andros, Greece August 25-28 2019. During this short and sweet retreat we will cook communal meals, relax by the pool, and discover some of Andros' most beautiful beaches.

There are a few different styles of rooms available at a few different price points and registration is open now! Click through to learn more about this beautiful place, our workshop, and to reserve your spot. Allegra can answer all of your questions about the house. See you in Greece!

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photos of Mèlisses and Andros by Renee Kemps