Laminated Doughs

Laminated Dough

Bakeshop Skills Class this week covered laminated doughs. Layered fat and dough are what create these doughs. The layers are created by encapsulating a layer of fat into the dough, flattening it and then rolling it out, and folding it over and over. There is a lot of resting time in between rolling out and folding the dough. Depending on the dough, it can take several days to complete the process. For this reason, there are no finished products this week to share, they will be baked off in next weeks class along with fried doughs.

The more layers one creates the flakier the finished product. The amount of layers also creates more “puff” when the dough is backed. The fat, usually butter or margarine, holds water that when cooked at the right temperature (400° or higher) creates steam that gives the dough height. Some doughs, such as croissants and danishes, use yeast which creates a flakier and softer product. Doughs that don’t use yeast result in a crispier crust than those that do.

There are several different ways of creating laminated dough. In class we covered the techniques of two different methods. One is known as the American Method – which is the basic pie dough method, only the butter is left in slightly larger than marble sized chunks before folding and rolling, rather than pea sized. The other method is known as the butter block method, where butter is mixed with a little flour, wrapped in the dough as a block, and kept at the same constancy of the dough while rolling and folding.

The rolling and folding is not complicated, once one gets the hang of it. The folding is probably the hardest thing to learn. The first kind of fold is called a single fold, and it resembles a business letter being folded. Once the dough is rolled out it is folded like a business letter and then returned to the specified resting method and time. This can be repeated many times depending what kind of dough you’re making. The second method, double folding, is similar to folding a book cover. Once the dough is rolled out both ends are folded to the center and then folded in half again. Depending on the recipe a combination of both methods or just one method can be used. The most important thing is to keep your edges square so each layer is equal before folding, or your butter layers will not be consistent throughout the pastry effecting its height and texture.

I had read about folding before and never really understood what I was supposed to do. I created the graphic below to help describe two folding methods that are used. Hopefully these diagrams are a little more helpful to someone than the ones I had seen in the past. Next week is our last class where we will be doing baking, followed by our field trip the next week. I can’t believe the class is almost over, it seems to have flown by.

Folding Processes

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

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Peanut butter cups are so incredibly addictive, maybe its the fat, or the protein, most likely it’s both. This candy has only six ingredients and takes less than a half hour to make. If you have kids, it makes a great after dinner or weekend project. These didn’t last long, all of them were gone within 24 hours.

This recipe uses creamy peanut butter, but you can use chunky or any kind of nut butter.

Chocolate Peanut butter cups ingredients

The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need semisweet chocolate, milk chocolate, peanut butter, butter, powder sugar and salt. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

Powder sugar, salt, and butterAll mixedChocolate and Peanut butterAll melted together

In a small mixing bowl, combine half the peanut butter, butter, powder sugar and salt. Reserve for later. Be sure to mix until its smooth and fulling incorporated.

In a heat resistant bowl over simmering water, melt the chocolate and half a cup of the peanut butter. You could also do this in the microwave, but I find I have better control of the heat using a double boiler when melting chocolate. Either way, be careful not to burn the chocolate.

Lined tray with first chocolate layerDrop the penut butter mixture in the centerTopped with chocolate

Drop a teaspoon of the chocolate mixture into paper-lined miniature liners. Top each with a teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture. Finish off by topping with another teaspoon of chocolate mixture. If the chocolate starts to set to quickly, put it over the simmering water to loosen it up again. Refrigerate until set.

Chocolate Peanut butter cups

Recipe: Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Adapted from: Taste of Home, Homemade Peanut Butter CupsPrint Recipe
Yield: about 36 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (9.1 ounces, 260g) creamy peanut butter, divided in half
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup powder sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (12 ounces, 340g) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup (6 ounces, 170g) milk chocolate, coarsely chopped

Instructions

  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine until smooth, 1/2 cup peanut butter, butter, powder sugar and salt. Reserve for later.
  2. In a heat resistant bowl over simmering water, melt the chocolate and half a cup of the peanut butter.
  3. Drop a teaspoon of the chocolate mixture into paper-lined miniature liners. Top each with a teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture; top with another teaspoon of chocolate mixture.
  4. Refrigerate until set.
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Chocolate Molasses Cookies

Chocolate Molasses Cookies

About every six months Mark asks for some kind of molasses drop cookie. They remind him of being a kid. He usually asks for the kind with white frosting on them, but thats about the only guidance I glean from him. This time he emailed me links to several recipes, which I dissected and made my own by combining two recipes and changing the techniques used. These come very close to the cookies he remembers.

The chocolate is more flavorful than the molasses in these cookies. They are soft, tender and hold up fairly well outside the refrigerator for a few days. The only cravat – the icing will stick to the other cookies when stacked. If all the cookies aren’t going to be eaten right away, frost them half an hour before serving them, or if you prefer, skip the frosting and dust them with confectioners sugar instead.

Chocolate Molasses Cookies Ingredients

The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need semisweet chocolate chips, unsalted butter, all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, dark brown sugar, an egg, dark molasses, vanilla extract, and milk. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

Place the butter and chocolate in a water bathMelt the butter and chocolateCombine the baking powder, flour and saltWhisk until incoperated

Melt the chocolate chips and butter in a heat resistant bowl over a double boiler. Remove from heat to cool. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.

Combine the chocolate mixture with the brown sugar, vanillia, and molassesall combinedfold in the beaten egg yolksAll folded in

Stir the dark brown sugar, beaten egg, molasses and vanilla extract into the cooled chocolate mixture.

add the flour mixtureAll mixed up1 tablespoon portionsOut of the oven

Add flour mixture to the chocolate mixture, stir until just combined. Place the dough, by tablespoon, on a parchment lined baking sheet, two inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes or until tops begin to crack and cookies are still soft to the touch. Cool on the baking sheet for five minutes; then transfer them to a wire rack.

Make the icingCombine powder sugar, butter, vanillia and milkStir until thick liquid consistancyDrop ontop of cookies with a fork and allow to dry

For the icing, mix the confectioners sugar, butter, and vanilla in a small bowl. Add the milk one tablespoon at a time until it is spreading consistency. Drop a tablespoon of the icing on each cookie and allow to dry. Be sure to have parchment paper underneath the wire rack to make clean up easier. The frosting will not dry solid but rather dorm a solid skin over the top.

Chocolate Molasses Cookies

Recipe: Chocolate Molasses Cookies

Adapted from Grouprecipes.com/Chocolate Molasses Cookies and Eatathomecooks.com/Moosehunter CookiesPrint Recipe
Yield: 36 cookies

Ingredients for cookies

  • 2/3 cup (4 ounces/113 g) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces/113 g) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups (6.9 ounces/196 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup (5 ounces/142 g) dark brown sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons dark molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Ingredients for vanilla icing

  • 2 cups (8 ounces/226 g) confectioners sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (28 g), softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 to 4 (44 to 59 ml) tablespoons milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Melt semisweet chocolate chips and unsalted butter in a heat resistant bowl over a double boiler. Remove from heat to cool.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.
  3. Stir the dark brown sugar, beaten egg, molasses and vanilla extract into the cooled chocolate mixture. Add flour mixture, stir until just combined.
  4. Place the dough by tablespoon on a parchment lined baking sheet, two inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes or until tops begin to crack and cookies are still soft to the touch. Cool on the baking sheet for five minutes; transfer to wire rack.
  5. For the icing, mix the confectioners sugar, unsalted butter, and vanilla in a small bowl.  Add the milk one tablespoon at a time until it is spreading consistency.  Drop a tablespoon of the icing on each cookie and allow to dry. Be sure to have parchment paper underneath the wire rack to make clean up easier.
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Bread: Flatbread

Flat Breads - Focaccia with Herb Garlic Oil

Flatbreads were the topic in this weeks class. A flatbread is usually made with flour, water, and salt and then rolled into flattened dough and baked. The lecture in class was very short this week, since most of the knowledge needed is just an expansion of the previous two weeks (lean dough and rich dough).

We discussed freezing breads for later use. Double wrapping the bread will ensure no freezer burn. The best way to reheat frozen bread is in an oven for five minutes at 400°F. Cover the frozen bread with foil for soft breads or leave uncovered for crusty breads. Most frozen breads will keep up to a month in the freezer.

Types of pizza crust very greatly. The key to getting a thin crust that is crispy is to use less toppings and minimal sauce. Using too many toppings inhibits the bottom crust from getting crispy, even when baked on a pizza stone. A pizza peel and pizza stone should not be expensive, they are readily available for under twenty dollars. Once can also make their own stone using a baking sheet and terracotta titles. The most important thing to remember is to heat the oven with the stone. If a stone is added to a hot oven it is likely to crack.

The Mixing Process

The method used here is similar to lean dough. The exceptions are in the final proofing, the kneading process and the baking.
Scaling Ingredients: measuring out the ingredients.

  1. Kneading: using a dough hook or by hand. Development of the dough is not critical, usually mixed until just combined. Since its literally flat, the structure provided by the development is not needed.
  2. Bulk Proofing: Place the dough in a warm moist environment. Be sure to cover the dough so it does not form a skin. The dough should double in size.
  3. Punching: punch down the dough to develop flavor.
  4. Repeat steps 3 and 4: depending on the recipe this can be done several times.
  5. Scale Dough: portion the dough into desired finished product.
  6. Shaping: This step consists of letting the dough rest to loosen the gluten in order to give your more control of the dough and shaping the dough into the desired shape.
  7. Proofing: This step is most often skipped all together or shortened when working with flatbreads. Since the doughs need only to rise a little the proofing is not needed.
  8. Baking: depending on the recipe the bread may be washed with oil, herbs or nothing at all.
  9. Cooling: if you east your bread before it has cooled sufficiently the texture will be doughy still.

Here is what we made in class:

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Gluten Free Biscuits

GluteFree Biscuits

Sometimes a biscuit just hits the spot. Making a biscuit without gluten often produces bad results. This recipe, however, creates biscuits that are nearly identical to their gluten filled counter parts. The texture and flavor are soft and buttery. I’ve halved this recipe in the past with great results as well. The biscuits, covered, will keep for up to a week.

The secret to this recipe is grating the butter, that is ice cold, into the batter.

GluteFree Biscuits Ingredients

The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need brown rice flour, corn starch, soy flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, xanthan gum, butter, milk, water, cider vinegar, and an egg. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

mix the flours, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and xanthan gummix the flours, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and xanthan gumGrate the butter into the flour mixtureGrate the butter into the flour mixture

In a large bowl mix the flours, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and xanthan gum until completely combined. Grate the butter into the flour mixture using the small holes a box grater.

Mix the butter into the flour so that there are no large balls of grated butterAdd the milk, water, vinegar and beaten egg to the flour and stir until the dry and liquid ingredients are incorporatedAdd the milk, water, vinegar and beaten egg to the flour and stir until the dry and liquid ingredients are incorporateddrop the batter onto a greased pan in uniform sizesBake for about 15 minutes, until golden brown

Mix the butter into the flour so that there are no large balls of grated butter. Add the milk, water, vinegar and beaten egg to the flour and stir until the dry and liquid ingredients are incorporated. Using a large spoon, drop the batter onto a greased pan in uniform sizes of your choice. Bake for about 15 minutes, until golden brown.

Recipe: Gluten Free Biscuits

Adapted from: Gluten Free Cooking SchoolPrint Recipe
Yield: 16 servings

Ingredients

  • 16 large biscuits
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
  • 2 cups corn starch
  • 1/2 cup soy flour or sorghum flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons. salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons xanthan gum
  • 1 stick of butter (ice cold)
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 1/4 c. water
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 egg, beaten

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. In a large bowl mix the flours, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and xanthan gum until completely combined.
  3. Grate the butter into the flour mixture using the small holes a box grater. Mix the butter into the flour so that there are no large balls of grated butter.
  4. Add the milk, water, vinegar and beaten egg to the flour and stir until the dry and liquid ingredients are incorporated.
  5. Using a large spoon, drop the batter onto a greased pan in uniform sizes of your choice.
  6. Bake at 350°F (177°C) for about 15 minutes, until golden brown.
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Chocolate Cashew Tart

Chocolate Cashew Tart

Chocolate and nuts make one of the best combinations. This recipe originally called for pine nuts, however, Mark has a thing for cashews. You should be able to change out the cashews for about any other nut you like with good results. The same is true of the orange liqueur and apricot jam. If you don’t like orange, switch out the liqueur and jam to raspberry extract and jam, or any other combination that you like. If you don’t use alcohol in your baking feel free to replace it with an extract of your choice (just be sure to add some water to make the same volume of liquid called for in the orange liqueur).

Chocolate Cashew Tart Ingredients

The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need granulated sugar, unsalted butter, eggs, vanilla extract, bread flour, semisweet chocolate, zest of an orange, toasted cashews, orange liqueur, salt, apricot jam, and ganache. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

Combine the sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla in a mixing bowlMix at low speed until combinedAdd the flour Mix until the dough is smooth

Combine the sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla in a mixing bowl; with the dough hook, mix at low speed until combined. Add the flour and mix until the dough is smooth.

latten the dough between two pieces of parchment paper Roll out the dough to 1/4 inchLine the panLine the pan. Reserve in the refrigerator

Flatten the dough between two pieces of parchment paper and press out as flat as possible. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until firm enough to work with. Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thick and line an 11 inch diameter tart pan. Reserve in the refrigerator (it must be cold before filling).

Put the chocolate, butter and orange zest in a heat resistant bowl Melt together over a double boiler Melt together over a double boilerGrind sugar and cashewsGrind sugar and cashews

Put the chocolate, butter and orange zest in a heat resistant bowl. Melt together over a double boiler. Set aside and keep warm. Grind the cashews with one and a half ounces of sugar to a fine flour-like consistency. If you grind too much you will end up with cashew butter, so be careful not to grind past the flour stage.

Whip the egg yolks to the ribbon stageWhip the egg yolks to the ribbon stagemix in the orange liqueurmix in the orange liqueur

Whip the egg yolks to the ribbon stage and mix in the orange liqueur.

Whip the egg whites and the salt to a foamWhip the egg whites and the salt to a foamAdd sugar to soft peaksAdd sugar to soft peaks

Whip the egg whites and the salt to a foam. Gradually add the sugar and whip to soft peaks.

Combine the nut mixture with the chocolateCombine the nut mixture with the chocolateAdd the egg yolksAdd the egg yolks

Combine the nut mixture with the chocolate. Add the egg yolks.

Fold in the egg whitesFold in the egg whitesSpread the apricot jam over the bottom of the cold short dough lined panSpread the apricot jam over the bottom of the cold short dough lined pan

Fold in the egg whites. Spread the apricot jam over the bottom of the cold dough lined tart pan.

Pour the chocolate mixture into the lined and jam covered crustBake Warm the ganache until its melted and liquid, then spread it quickly over the top of the tart Warm the ganache until its melted and liquid, then spread it quickly over the top of the tartSprinkle the remaining cashews over the top and allow to set

Pour the chocolate mixture into the lined and jam covered crust. Bake at 350°F (175°C) for about 35 minutes. Let the tart cool. Remove the tart from the pan. Warm the ganache until it’s melted and liquid, then spread it quickly over the top of the tart. Sprinkle the remaining cashews over the top and allow to set.

Use any ganache you like. I used the ganache I posted last week (5/05/2010).

Chocolate Cashew Tart

Recipe: Chocolate Cashew Tart

Adapted from Chocolate-Pine Nut Tart; The Professional Pastry Chef: Fundamentals of Baking and Pastry, 4th EditionPrint Recipe
Yield: 16 servings

Crust

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces (40 g) granulated sugar
  • 4 2/3 ounces (133 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 (17 g) an egg
  • Splash of vanilla extract (1/16 teaspoon/1 ml)
  • 5 2/3 ounces (162 g) bread flour

Instructions

  1. Combine the sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla in a mixing bowl; with the dough hook, mix at low speed until combined.
  2. Add the flour and mix until the dough is smooth.
  3. Flatten the dough between two pieces of parchment paper and press out as flat as possible. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until firm enough to work with.
  4. Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch (3 mm) thick and line an 11 inch (27.5 cm) diameter tart pan. Reserve in the refrigerator.

Filling

Ingredients

  • 7 1/2 ounces (128 g) semisweet chocolate
  • 4 ounces (113 g) unsalted butter
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • 3 ounces (85 g) toasted cashews
  • 3 ounces (85 g) and 1 teaspoon (5 g) granulated sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) orange liqueur
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp (2 1/2 g) salt
  • 2 ounces (58 g) smooth apricot jam
  • 4 ounces (113 g) ganache

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees C.
  2. Put the chocolate, butter and orange zest in a heat resistant bowl. Melt together over a double boiler. Set aside and keep warm.
  3. Reserve an ounce (28 g) of the cashews for the topping. Grind the remainder with one and a half ounces (42 g) sugar to a fine flour-like consistency.
  4. Whip the egg yolks to the ribbon stage and mix in the orange liqueur.
  5. Whip the egg whites and the salt to a foam. Gradually add another once and a half (42 g) sugar and whip to soft peaks.
  6. Combine the nut mixture with the chocolate. Add the egg yolks, then fold in the egg whites.
  7. Spread the apricot jam over the bottom of the cold dough lined tart pan. Pour in the chocolate mixture.
  8. Bake at 350°F (175°C) for about 35 minutes. Let the tart cool.
  9. Carefully remove the tart from the pan. Warm the ganache until it’s melted and liquid, then spread it quickly over the top of the tart. Sprinkle the remaining cashews over the top and allow to set.
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Bread: Rich Dough

Rich Bread Doughs

This weeks class covered rich doughs. Rich doughs are yeast based doughs that contains butter, cream, some kind of fat or eggs. Rich dough produces a bread that is soft with a tender cake-like texture. The added fats shorten the gluten strands, making the finished product tender and soft. These are easier to make in a home kitchen than lean doughs, there is no need to steam or slash rich doughs.

This week class was smaller than usual, which was nice for learning when a dough is properly formed. After kneading in a machine for about eight minutes a “window test” is performed to ensure the yeast and gluten are developed enough before proofing. Basically a small ball of the dough is stretched thin and analyzed. Properly formed dough should stretch thin and translucent, reviling a smooth texture. It’s difficult to describe in words, so it was nice to have smaller groups when working on this.

During the kitchen time in the class we covered techniques on how to shape different doughs. We shaped a traditional braided Challah and cloverleaf, lip shaped and shark’s-tooth rolls. The Cinnamon Swirl loaf we made also involved shaping the roll, in order to create the inner swirl of cinnamon, before placing it in the load pan.

Rich doughs follow a nearly identical method as lean doughs:

  1. Scale ingredients
  2. Mix/kneed
  3. Bulk Proof/ferment (usually two times original size)
  4. Punch
  5. Repeat steps three and four
  6. Scale individual pieces/loaves
  7. Shape on/in baking container or surface
  8. Proof (usually one and a half times the original size)
  9. Egg wash
  10. Bake (usually between 350° – 375°)
  11. Cool

Here is what we made in class:

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Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate ganache is used as a glaze, icing, or a filling. It’s commonly believed it was invented around 1850 in Switzerland or in France. It is easy to make, consisting of roughly half chocolate and half cream, depending on its use and recipe. Using a higher quality chocolate will result in a better flavor and texture.

Chocolate Ganache Ingredients

The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need an egg yolk, granulated sugar, vanilla extract, semisweet chocolate, and heavy cream. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

Egg, sugar and vanilliaLight and fluffyChocolate and cream

Whip the egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Cut the chocolate into small pieces (or use chips), place in a saucepan, and add the cream.

Melt over low heat until 150 gegreesCombine at low speed with the egg mixtureChocolate Ganache all ready to be stored

Heat the chocolate and cream to 150°F (65°C), stirring constantly.

Stir the hot cream mixture into the egg yolk mixture and keep stirring for a minute or so to make sure the sugar is melted.

Chocolate Ganache

Let the ganache cool and store in an airtight container as needed. This ganache will last for a week unrefrigerated, and up to a month in your fridge.

Recipe: Chocolate Ganache

Adapted from The Professional Pastry Chef: Fundamentals of Baking and Pastry, 4th EditionPrint Recipe
Yield: 12 ounces

Ingredients

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 ounces (28 g) granulated sugar
  • A splash of vanilla extract, about 1/16 a teaspoon (1 ml)
  • 7 ounces (199 g) semisweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy cream

Instructions

  1. Whip the egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy.
  2. Cut the chocolate into small pieces, place in a saucepan, and add the cream. Heat to 150°F (65°C), stirring constantly.
  3. Stir the hot cream mixture into the egg yolk mixture and keep stirring for a minute or so to make sure the sugar is melted.
  4. Let the ganache cool and store in an airtight container as needed.
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Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

It always amazes me how many people are unaware of rhubarb. Almost every time I purchase it, I have to explain to the cashier what it is. My mom once accidentally dropped a piece of raw rhubarb in a stranger’s pocket at a Mariners game. Fearing the man would think she was being fresh, she just left it there for him to discover on his own. A couple innings later, he found it, and you could tell by the look on his face he had no idea what the little piece of red vegetable was, or how it got into his pocket.

I grew up in Seattle and my parents planted rhubarb in our back yard. We all liked rhubarb pie and even ate rhubarb as a snack, plain without sugar. I prefer rhubarb pie without the strawberries. However, for those of you who like the mix of strawberries and rhubarb, this is a good recipe with a nice balance of the two. The strawberries were very watery, as is the case in rainy years, so the first attempt failed, the pie was more like a soup. The second attempt worked perfectly. The trick was making sure the eight venting slits were large enough so that they did not close up during the baking process.

Crust ingredients

Starting off with the crust. The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need all-purpose flour, salt, sugar, vegetable shortening, unsalted butter, and ice water. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

Process flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor until combinedProcess flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor until combinedAdd the shortening and process until the mixture has the texture of coarse sandAdd the shortening and process until the mixture has the texture of coarse sandScatter the butter pieces over the flour mixturecut the butter into the flour until the mixture is pale yellow and resembles corase crumbs

Process the flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor until combined. Add the shortening and process until the mixture has the texture of coarse sand. Scatter the butter pieces over the flour mixture; pulse the butter into the flour until the mixture is pale yellow and resembles coarse crumbs, with butter bits no larger than small peas.

Turn the mixture into a medium bowl. Sprinkle 6 tablespoon of the ice water over the mixture.With a rubber spatula, use a folding motion to mix. With a rubber spatula, use a folding motion to mix. Divide the dough into 2 balls and flatten each into a 4-inch disk Wrap each in plastic and refrigerate at least 1 hour

Turn the mixture into a medium bowl. Sprinkle six tablespoons of the ice water over the mixture. With a rubber spatula, press down on the dough with the broad side of the spatula, using a folding motion, until the dough sticks together, adding up to two more tablespoons of ice water if the dough will not come together. Divide the dough into two balls and flatten each into a four-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic and refrigerate at least an hour.

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Ingredients

Now for the pie filling. The recipe and detailed instructions are at the end of this post. For this recipe we need vegetable oil, rhubarb, sugar, arrowroot, salt, strawberries, vanilla extract, egg. Looks like we have it all. Ready, set, bake…

Heat the oil in a large skilletAdd the rhubarb and 1/4 cup of the sugarstirring frequently, until firmrefrigerate until coo

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until smoking. Add the rhubarb and 1/4 cup of the sugar and cook, stirring frequently, until firm. Refrigerate in a large bowl until cool.

Roll the dough between two large sheets of parchment paper to a 12-inch circleRoll the dough between two large sheets of parchment paper to a 12-inch circleTransfer the dough to a 9-inch pie plate Leave the dough that overhangs the lip of the pie plate in place and refrigerate until needed

Roll the dough between two large sheets of parchment paper to a 12-inch circle. Transfer the dough to a nine-inch pie plate by rolling the dough around the rolling pin and unrolling over the pan. Working around the circumference of the pan, ease the dough into the pan corners by gently lifting the edge of the dough with one hand while gently pressing into the pan bottom with the other. Leave the dough that overhangs the lip of the pie plate in place and refrigerate until needed.

mix together 3/4 cup of the sugar, the arrowroot, and saltmix together 3/4 cup of the sugar, the arrowroot, and salt In a large bowl, toss together the strawberries, cooled rhubarb, and vanilla In a large bowl, toss together the strawberries, cooled rhubarb, and vanilla

In a small bowl, mix together 3/4 cup of the sugar, the arrowroot, and salt. In a large bowl, toss together the strawberries, cooled rhubarb, and vanilla.

 In a large bowl, toss together the strawberries, cooled rhubarb, and vanillaSprinkle the sugar mixture over the top and stir to combineSprinkle the sugar mixture over the top and stir to combineSpoon the fruit evenly into the pie shell and pack lightly.

Sprinkle the sugar mixture over the top and stir to combine. Spoon the fruit evenly into the pie shell and pack lightly.

Roll out the second piece of dough to a 12-inch circle and place it over the fillingRoll out the second piece of dough to a 12-inch circle and place it over the fillingTrim the edges of the top and bottom dough layers and tuck the rim underneath itself so that the folded edge is flush with the pan lip.  Flute the edges or press with a forkTrim the edges of the top and bottom dough layers and tuck the rim underneath itself so that the folded edge is flush with the pan lip.  Flute the edges or press with a forkCut 8 slits in the dough topBrush the top of the crust with the beaten egg and sprinkle evenly with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar.

Roll out the second piece of dough to a 12-inch circle and place it over the filling. Trim the edges of the top and bottom dough layers and tuck the rim underneath itself so that the folded edge is flush with the pan lip. Flute the edges or press with a fork. Cut eight slits in the dough top (make sure they are large enough that they will not come back together when baked). Place the pie in the freezer for ten minutes. Brush the top of the crust with the beaten egg and sprinkle evenly with the remaining tablespoon of sugar.

Place the pie on the hot baking sheet and lower the oven temp to 425°. Bake until the top crust is golden, about 25 minutes. Rotate the pie from front to back and reduce the temp to 375°. If it looks like your slits have come back together, use a knife to separate them again. Continue baking until the juices bubble and the crust is deep golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes longer. Cool on a wire rack until room temperature; three to four hours before serving.

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Recipe: Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Adapted from Baking IllustratedPrint Recipe
Yield: One Nine Inch Pie

Crust

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, chilled
  • 12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 6-8 tablespoons ice water

Instructions

  1. Process flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor until combined. Add the shortening and process until the mixture has the texture of coarse sand. Scatter the butter pieces over the flour mixture; cut the butter into the flour until the mixture is pale yellow and resembles coarse crumbs, with butter bits no larger than small peas.
  2. Turn the mixture into a medium bowl. Sprinkle six tablespoons of the ice water over the mixture. With a rubber spatula, use a folding motion to mix.
  3. Press down on the dough with the broad side of the spatula until the dough sticks together, adding up to two more tablespoons of ice water if the dough does not come together.
  4. Divide the dough into two balls and flatten each into a four-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour before rolling.

Pie FIlling

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds rhubarb, ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 5 cups)
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons arrowroot
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 lbs strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until smoking. Add the rhubarb and 1/4 cup of the sugar and cook, stirring frequently, until firm, about five minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and refrigerate until cool.
  2. Remove one piece of dough from the refrigerator. Roll the dough between two large sheets of parchment paper to a 12-inch circle.
  3. Transfer the dough to a nine-inch pie plate by rolling the dough around the rolling pin and unrolling over the pan. Working around the circumference of the pan, ease the dough into the pan corners by gently lifting the edge of the dough with one hand while gently pressing into the pan bottom with the other. Leave the dough that overhangs the lip of the pie plate in place and refrigerate until needed.
  4. Adjust an oven rack to the lowest position, place a rimmed baking sheet on it and heat the oven to 500°.
  5. In a small bowl, mix together 3/4 cup of the sugar, the arrowroot, and salt. In a large bowl, toss together the strawberries, cooled rhubarb, and vanilla. Sprinkle the sugar mixture over the top and stir to combine. Spoon the fruit evenly into the pie shell and pack lightly. Roll out the second piece of dough to a 12-inch circle and place it over the filling. Trim the edges of the top and bottom dough layers and tuck the rim underneath itself so that the folded edge is flush with the pan lip. Flute the edges. Cut eight slits in the dough top. If the pie dough is very soft, place in the freezer for ten minutes. Brush the top of the crust with the beaten egg and sprinkle evenly with the remaining tablespoon of sugar.
  6. Place the pie on the hot baking sheet and lower the oven temp to 425°. Bake until the top crust is golden, about 25 minutes. Rotate the pie from front to back and reduce the temp to 375°. Continue baking until the juices bubble and the crust is deep golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes longer. Cool on a wire rack until room temperature; three to four hours before serving.
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Bread: Lean Dough

Bread - lean doughs

We started our five week venture into breads in this weeks class. We start with lean doughs. These are doughs that consist of flour, salt, yeast and water. Lean doughs are distinguished from rich doughs because they lack added fats in the dough. Bread making is a complex process that relies on technique, geography and ingredients. For example, a San Francisco sour dough bread can only be made in San Francisco because of the natural yeast spores in the air. If one follows the same recipe or even has the same sourdough starter and makes it outside of the San Francisco region the bread will not turn out the same because it will lack these natural yeasts.

There are three main types of yeast used in bread making. Fresh Compressed yeast is a paste that must be devolved in water. This kind of yeast molds easily and has a short, two week, shelf life. As a result it is not common in commercial stores. Instant Yeast is yeast that can be added to dry ingredients and does not need to be rehydrated to work. Active Dry Yeast needs to be activated with warm water (100° – 110°). Yeast dies at 140° so its important to make sure your proofing and activating is done at the correct temperatures.

Yeast is a living organism that eats the sugars in the dough and produces carbon dioxide (makes the dough rise) and alcohol (flavor). The yeast dies when the internal temperature of the bread reaches 140° which stops any further rising. The alcohol is evaporated as the bread cooks, but the flavor remains. Pounding down the dough, having it raise several times, creates better flavor by getting rid of the carbon dioxide and making more sugars available to the yeast to create more alcohol for added flavor.

Gluten, the protein found in wheat, is formed by agitation and moisture. The more agitation the stronger the gluten strands will be. All purpose flour is not recommended for bread making, it contains less gluten than bread flour and will produce subpar results. The longer one mixes the dough the more gluten will be developed. When making bread with whole wheat it is important to use at least 50 percent white bread flour or the dough will be too dense and not rise as expected.

The Mixing Process

There is a 10 step process used in bread baking. Sometimes some of these steps are skipped in order to shorten the time needed to produce the bread.

  1. Scaling Ingredients: measuring out the ingredients. Unlike most other baking applications, the ratio here may need to be adjusted do to the humidity in the flour. Its important to keep the yeast and salt separate before mixing them in the dough after the yeast has been activated or the yeast will be killed.
  2. Kneading: using a dough hook or by hand. The dough should reach a stage where it is smooth in appearance, elastic and not sticky.
  3. Bulk Proofing: (also known as rising or fermentation) Place the dough in a warm moist environment (around 80°). Be sure to cover the dough so it does not form a skin. The dough should double in size.
  4. Punching: punch down the dough to develop flavor.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4: depending on the recipe this can be done several times.
  6. Scale Dough: portion the dough into desired finished product (rolls, loafs, etc).
  7. Shaping: This step consists of letting the dough rest to loosen the gluten in order to give your more control of the dough and shaping the dough into the desired shape.
  8. Proofing: This is the final proof, the dough should rise to one and a half times its original size.
  9. Baking: this step includes slashing the bread with a razor if needed to allow steam release (the slash will create an opening of 90°), creating steam in the oven if called for (thick crusts), and the actual baking of the dough. Bread is done baking when its internal temperature reaches 180°.
  10. Cooling: if you east your bread before it has cooled sufficiently the texture will be doughy still.

Here is what we made in class:

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