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Pastries and Viennoiseries

Lemon Poppy Seed Bundt Cakes, Great for Breakfast

Posted by on May 30, 2013 in Cakes, Cakes, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tutorials | 4 comments

Lemon Poppy Seed Bundt Cakes, Great for Breakfast

My niece, Grace, graduated this past May and we hosted a graduation brunch in her honor for our family. She was going to be  celebrating with friends that evening; brunch was perfect for the family party. Sydney and I wanted to serve pastries, however a cake or cupcakes would be too sweet for the time of day. Lemon poppy seed cake with a dusting of icing sugar fit the “program”.  Sydney thought the rose shape would be dainty without looking childish.   We baked one large pan and two 6-piece pan, I completely forgot to grab a...

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Gluten Free Pâte à Croissants

Posted by on Feb 27, 2013 in Family Hour, Gluten Free, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tutorials | 40 comments

Gluten Free Pâte à Croissants

I adore a warm buttery flaky croissant with a strong cup of coffee.  A friend, Nancy  asked me if I could bake some gluten free croissants (she has celiac disease) I was hesitant, but she was persuasive. Sydney explained I should go out of my comfort zone and try to create a flaky gluten free croissant, the worst that could happened is the gluten free croissants would not turn out. I reminded Sydney I am a perfectionist and have a problem with failure, I become panicky. Sydney replied back the only way to learn anything new is to fail and...

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Stollen, A Christmas Family Tradition

Posted by on Dec 12, 2012 in Cakes, Family Hour, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tutorials | 2 comments

Stollen, A Christmas Family Tradition

Every year at this time, for the past eighteen years, Sydney and I bake a Christmas Stollen. When Sydney was small, her job was to roll the almond paste (her favorite flavor) and pour all the ingredients, as she grew up so did her baking capabilities! This year as we were baking our Christmas Stollen I realized it would be the last time we would bake a Stollen together for at least six years; Sydney has been accepted to The George Washington University for the spring semester, she leaves the first week of January. Next year I will be baking...

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Christmas Cranberry Pound Cake

Posted by on Dec 5, 2012 in Cakes, Family Hour, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tutorials | 18 comments

Christmas Cranberry Pound Cake

  I am going through a fresh cranberry phase, Sydney and I have been finding ways to develop recipes that incorporate cranberries; putting them in stollens, brioche pockets, cookies, and a cranberry white chocolate cake. I believe we have started a new family holiday dessert tradition. This past Sunday we had friends over for dinner, the dinner consisted of bolognese, warm pancetta spinach salad, garlic bread, steamed green beans, and to finish the meal we had cranberry white chocolate pound cake. I must admit I was on “pins an...

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Caramelized Pear Almond Tart

Posted by on Nov 28, 2012 in Family Hour, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tarts and Pies, Tutorials | 2 comments

Caramelized Pear Almond Tart

The day after Thanksgiving our family’s tradition is put up the trees and decorate them and the whole house while waiting for Sydney’s favorite holiday tart, an almond cream tart. The recipe has been handed down from my great great grandmother, through the years I am sure each generation has changed the recipe a little. My change was to use crème frâche versus mascarpone, but this year I also caramelized the pears. I actually added crystalized sugar and flamed them with a torch. I must admit neither Sydney nor I had intended to...

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Sydney’s 20th Birthday, We Need a Special Cake

Posted by on Sep 12, 2012 in Cakes, Inspirational, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 4 comments

Sydney’s 20th Birthday, We Need a Special Cake

I will warn you ahead of time, this will be a heartfelt article, if you want to jump to the cake recipe/instructions please feel free. Sydney, my miracle child after ten miscarriages, turned twenty. I know every parent claims time passes quickly, but her twenty years snuck up upon me. I remember deciding I would treasure ever moment with her; I not only cried when she went to kindergarten, but I neurotically remained at St Mary’s the entire day. I was becoming a fixture on the stairs to the point Sister Susan offered me a volunteer job...

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Kiwi Strawberry Macarons, Perfect for Late August

Posted by on Aug 22, 2012 in French Macarons, Gluten Free, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tutorials | 3 comments

Kiwi Strawberry Macarons, Perfect for Late August

I was preparing a kiwi strawberry salad when I had an epiphany: kiwi strawberry macarons for a late August flavor. Sydney adores macarons, in fact we always have macarons in our house for her and her friends to snack on. I described my flavor macaron fusion to Sydney, who thought the macaron would be amazing. I was so excited to test the combination, I began to separate my eggs at that moment. Alas I had to wait a few days for the egg whites to age, in the meantime I dehydrated the kiwis. Since most people do not own a dehydrator I will...

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Crème Cheese Muffins

Posted by on Jul 25, 2012 in Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, Tutorials | 4 comments

Crème Cheese Muffins

Taste like a Crème Cheese Cake! My husband, DF, seems to always be waiting for his favorite breakfast; Sydney and I bake all day long for our business, we are exhausted by the end of the day and generally put DF’s request off for another day. Saturday evening DF and I were having a quiet moon light drink on the deck, when he sheepishly asked if I had baked his muffins. He reminded me of a pouting little boy anxiously awaiting for an ice cream sundae only to realize there isn’t any ice cream left. I must...

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French Madeleines, A Luscious Petit Dessert

Posted by on May 16, 2012 in Cakes, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 2 comments

French Madeleines, A Luscious Petit Dessert

Last week a client, who is also my accountant, asked if I could bake a special dessert for a baby shower she was attending. Madeleines were the first pastry that came to mind.  Madeleines are a french petit gateaux (little cakes) with a light delicate taste. The first time I had the opportunity to taste one of these beautiful shell shaped madeleines I was hooked, and actually went to a speciality bakeware store to buy a madeleine pan. Generally, I am uncomfortable buying a pan that is only for one type pastry, but  madeleines are the...

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Gluten Free Pâte Croissant, Perfect for Passover

Posted by on Apr 4, 2012 in Gluten Free, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 42 comments

Gluten Free Pâte Croissant, Perfect for Passover

  During Passover, Sydney and I have had numerous requests for gluten free croissants. We have created recipes for our gluten free clients, friends, and family members. I must admit the individuals who are gluten free seem to grow each year. My nephew was born with Celiac disease. Celiac disease is a digestive disease that damages the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food. People who have celiac disease cannot tolerate gluten, a protein in wheat, rye, and barley. Gluten is found mainly in foods but may also...

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Glacé Citron Panettone, Homemade

Posted by on Dec 29, 2011 in Cakes, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 4 comments

Glacé Citron Panettone, Homemade

Well the rum soaked dried fruit, the Glacé Citron and Glacé Orange, and the panettone rested overnight; hopefully you are well rested too. It is time to finish our panettone project, but I thought you might enjoy a bit of food history first. Panettone is rich traditional christmas cake/bread. Panettone made its debut in Milan around the late eighteen hundreds. Folklore has it that, Anthony, a baker, loved a daughter of a wealthy man. Being a humbled baker he needed to win the father’s approval, so he set out to bake a cake/bread so...

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Panettone with Rum Soaked Glacé Fruit

Posted by on Dec 28, 2011 in Cakes, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 0 comments

Panettone with Rum Soaked Glacé Fruit

Every Christmas, New Years, and Easter I buy a panettone for our holiday special breakfast; this year I completely spaced out ordering the flavor we enjoy. When Sydney and DF started talking about Christmas French Toast; I figured I could go online and overnight a few. However I found they were out of our favorite flavor, panic began to set in. I had ruined our traditional Christmas and New Years breakfast. Not only did I feel awful, but I did not have any idea how I was going to “come clean,” so to speak, with my family unit....

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Brioche à Tête, The Sweetest of Them All

Posted by on Dec 28, 2011 in Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 0 comments

Brioche à Tête, The Sweetest of Them All

Brioche is Sydney’s all time favorite bread, I remember her gumming brioche prior to having all her teeth; her eyes would widen as she watched me tear the brioche à tête. It was in fact the first laminated dough I taught her to work with. Since that faithful day we have created tarts, muffins, pockets, holiday stuffing at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and of course Sydney’s signature Cinnamon Rolls. I must admit this is my favorite viennoiseries/pastries to create with Sydney; we tend to become boisterous and lively, so much so DF has...

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Stollen for Christmas: The Rise and Bake

Posted by on Dec 6, 2011 in Creations, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 3 comments

Stollen for Christmas: The Rise and Bake

It is thought of that Stollen originated in 1329 as a result of a contest offered by the Bishop of Nauruburg. Bakers in the Dresden region produced a wonderful bread baked with the finest butter, sugar, raisins, candied citron and other specialty ingredients. “The Bishop enjoyed the stollen so much that he ordered a quantity of grain saved for stollen only.” “Stollen during Medevil years baked in loaves weighing 30 pounds! Stollen became such a part of Dresdeners’ lives that it was cut and served with special, stollen...

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I’ve Been Stollen Away This Christmas

Posted by on Dec 6, 2011 in Creations, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 3 comments

I’ve Been Stollen Away This Christmas

Some traditions in our family are 7 to 9 generations old, while others are only a year or two. Traditional stollen joyously came into our lives last year, the moment Sydney realized almond paste was rolled into the center, it became an instant favorite. We created it twice last year and for the first time this year. It is a lengthy process, but well worth the effort. The entire house smells like Christmas for days; besides Sydney and I have a merry time together. Stollen is a sweet yeast bread with rum soaked raisin and candied citrus fruit....

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Pain au Chocolat

Posted by on Sep 21, 2011 in Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries | 4 comments

Pain au Chocolat

Nothing is quite better than pain au chocolat, croissant dough and bittersweet chocolate, Sydney used to adore them. When Sydney was in middle school, science and math were her nemesis; I knew if she could see how she uses math and science everyday she would conquer both. Science is the basis to every baking recipe, and math is how to figure the quantities of measurement; I would bring her into the kitchen after school and allow her to choose a pastry to create for her to share with her friends at school. One afternoon she choose pains au...

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Yummy in My Tummy, Almond Croissants Just for You

Posted by on Sep 21, 2011 in Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 0 comments

Yummy in My Tummy, Almond Croissants Just for You

Croissants are buttery, flaky, and distinctive;  almost everyone is familiar with the croissant as a staple of French cuisine. The croissant brings to mind a flaky, buttery pastry often served with coffee, or perhaps filled with almond, cheese or chocolate for breakfast, snack, or even dessert. It amazed me to find, though their are many theories, creator of the first croissant recipe is unknown. What is known for sure is August Zang, the Austrian artillery officer, founded a Viennese Bakery in Paris in approximately 1839. The famous...

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Wanting a Refreshing Summertime Dessert; Petit Gâteaux Charlotte

Posted by on Jul 21, 2011 in Cakes, Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 6 comments

Wanting a Refreshing Summertime Dessert; Petit Gâteaux Charlotte

Everyone who is familiar with Sydney and I know we love to have friends join us on a pleasurable, exciting culinary journey.  I can’t help but think of a baton relay race, as I map the delectable experience. The importance that all the components are equally balanced and work together for a common goal. The journey begins with a visual lead, the artistry brings you towards the food. The “baton” is then passed to an aromatic aroma, which should entice your senses, you can almost taste the creation in front of you. The...

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Wiggle My Nose and Tickle My Taste Buds, Bonjour Brioche Cinnamon Rolls

Posted by on Jul 14, 2011 in Home, Pastries and Viennoiseries, x | 14 comments

Wiggle My Nose and Tickle My Taste Buds, Bonjour Brioche Cinnamon Rolls

Brioche Cinnamon Rolls have a special place in my heart; it was the first laminated dough Sydney and I created for a recipe. From as far back as I can recall cinnamon rolls and Sydney have met for breakfast daily. When she was very young I used a white bread dough base, but that all changed when Sydney experienced a brioche cinnamon roll, while in Chicago visiting family. From the aroma of the first bite of that light airy and flaky brioche cinnamon roll that entered Sydney’s nose and palate she was in “taste bud heaven.”...

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