Wow, I don't suck at making desserts!

March 21, 2011

Applewood, Muscovado sugar, fenugreek

Because I work from home, I see my mail carrier, Fed Ex dude, and UPS guy in the neighborhood nearly every day.  Over the past two weeks, every time the UPS guy would back his big, brown, boxy truck up the tiny street to my house, I'd get excited.  And every time, he'd deliver something to my friends across the street, or to the people next door.  Not to me.  And it was driving me crazy.

I kept refreshing the order status/delivery tracking website to find out when my package was due to arrive, and every day for nearly a week it kept telling me my order was "out for delivery."  Most people suffer from this type of UPS Tracking Obsession when they've ordered an iPad or a laptop or Kinect... or something equally as awesome and fun.


Yeah.  I was obsessing over the delivery of sawdust.  Applewood sawdust, to be precise.

I know, I know.  Judge away...

No one's really sure how or why it got lost in the shuffle, but a two-pound bag of finely ground wood chips made its way to my house last week, and I was rarin' to go. 

I made this over two days, since two of the dish's elements had a 12-hour period in which they needed to steep or dehydrate.

Let's get to it.

I toasted the applewood sawdust for 15 minutes in a 350F-degree oven.


I transferred the sawdust to a glass mixing bowl, then brought some whole milk to a boil.  I turned off the burner and poured the milk into the bowl with the sawdust and stirred to incorporate it.


I covered it with a plate and let it steep in the fridge overnight.


Also that night, I whisked muscovado sugar with some egg whites, spread the mixture thinly onto a sheet of acetate, and then put that sheet onto one of the racks in my dehydrator at 150F degrees, so it could dry out overnight.


The next day, I got to work on the rest of the dish.

Time to make the ice cream.

I know I've said it before, but I've been trained well in this department, thanks to David Lebovitz.  Thanks to him, I make nearly all my own ice cream (buying Jeni's Ice Cream is the only exception).  But I'd never included guar gum or glucose in my ice creams before, so I was curious to see what the texture of the final product would be.

To start, I whisked three egg yolks with some sugar:


I brought the applewood whole milk (with sawdust strained out) and cream to a simmer, then tempered the egg yolk-sugar mixture with some of the warm liquid, then poured the tempered yolks into the saucepan with the rest of the warm milk and cream:


I whisked the heck out of it while it cooked over medium heat:


And when it had gotten thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, I removed it from the heat.  I whisked in the glucose, and then poured the whole mixture into the blender.  I added some guar gum and whacked the crap out of it for about two minutes on high speed.


Because I don't own a PacoJet, I had to cool and process it the old-fashioned way.  Well, the semi-old-fashioned way, I guess.  I poured the mixture into a bowl that was nested in a bowl of ice to start the cooling process.


Then, when it had gotten to below room temperature, I poured it into my ice cream maker (not very old-fashioned).


After about 15 minutes, it was frozen enough to begin the next step:


I scooped it into a large Ziploc bag, cut off one of the corners, and used it like a pastry bag to fill six acetate-lined cylindrical molds with ice cream.


The book calls for smaller cylinders to be used, but these are the ones I have, so I just went with it.  It ended up making a portion larger than one bite, but that's fiiiiine by me.

I put the filled molds into the freezer for about two hours.

Meanwhile, I started working on the fengreek syrup.  I steeped some fenugreek seeds in hot water:


Then, I strained them, kept the water, and threw away the seeds.

I melted glucose and sugar over medium heat until it became a golden-brown liquid:






I then added the fenugreek water little by little and kept stirring to incorporate it, bringing it to just under 240F degrees (239F to be exact).  

I filled a bowl with ice water, and gently lowered the pan of hot fenugreek syrup into it so it would cool:


Thing is, after just a few minutes, it had totally hardened, and wasn't syrupy at all.  Couldn't move on to the next step in the book, which would've been putting it into a squeeze bottle.  Nope.  No way, no how.  It was like tamarind paste.  Or a really stale taffy.  Not hard-candy hard, but stiff and barely pliable.  Those divots you see below are my fingertips, pressed down on it really hard:


No worries, though.  I decided I'd just rewarm it to be able to drizzle it over the dessert in its final plating.

The muscovado sugar and egg white combo had dehydrated, so I broke it into shards:




And then?  I plated the dessert.

I removed the ice cream cylinders (they popped right out), unwrapped the acetate from around them, rolled the ice cream in the muscovado shards, then topped it with some of the fenugreek syrup, as well as some finely ground fenugreek seeds.

Like this:


I made six of these, took a bite out of one and Tweeted this:

Picture 3

The ice cream? Smooth.  The muscovado shards?  Crunchy and sweet.  The fenugreek "syrup"?  Hardened a bit and stuck in my molars, but I didn't care. 

Seriously, you guys: make this if you get the chance.  Or, adapt the ice cream recipe to your liking.  It was so silky smooth and this really can't-put-my-finger-on-it kind of earthy. The ice cream itself wasn't really sweet at all... which made the muscovado flakes even more relevant and necessary because they added a really nice texture and sweet crunch.  And, the fenugreek flavor was mmmmmmellow and delicious.  I always forget how much I like fenugreek, and then I have something with it and obsess over it for a week or two, and then forget about it all over again.  I have some leftover fenugreek powder, which I'm sure I'll be sprinkling on everything over the next few days.

So, so easy and so, so good.

Up Next: Chicken Skin, black truffle, thyme, corn (I think)

Resources: Applewood sawdust from; Natural By Nature whole milk; Organic Valley heavy cream; Domino sugar; Smith Meadows Farm eggs; glucose from L'Epicerie; guar gum from Terra Spice; muscovado sugar from Yes! Organic Market; fenugreek seed from TPSS Co-op.

Music to Cook By: A Silent Film; The City That Sleeps.  The band, A Silent Film, reminds me of everything I loved about the music of my junior high and high school days -- you know, the era of fun pop and Brit pop.  The early-to-mid '80s.  On this album, The City That Sleeps, there are some Ultravox influences, a little OMD, a bit of Cocteau Twins, some a-Ha, a dash of The Ocean Blue, and a smidge of something more au courant: Snow Patrol.

Read My Previous Post: Goose, blood orange, sage, roasting goose aroma

October 25, 2010

Sponge Cake, tonka bean, dried cherry, vanilla fragrance ... or as I call it, Twinkies for grownups

Ever have one of those weekends where everything is awesome?  As in, it's Sunday night and you're not even sad about it because everything that happened over the past two days was just fun and great and relaxing and energizing all at once?

Not tryin' to be all braggy, but this weekend was just one of those two-day respites that was chock full of good things: time in front of a roaring fire roasting hot dogs and marshmallows with friends; celebrating a friend's birthday; making travel plans; having a sweet conversation with a dear friend on the west coast; finding Bionaturae gluten-free pasta on sale; getting a pedicure and foot massage; incredible bounty at two farmers' markets; learning that I can now listen to my Pandora channels through TiVo; finding $20 in the pocket of a jacket that's been in the attic since spring; getting great feedback from a client; reading the amazingly supprtive comments on Ruhlman's blog post; watching the bee balm bloom one last time; sitting next to Yo-Yo Ma at dinner; finishing the Sunday NYT crossword puzzle in record time; finding this much-loved cartoon clip from my childhood; sunny skies and crisp air during the day and a bright, shining moon at night; and, breaking the code on gluten-free sponge cake.

Earlier in the week, I'd planned to cook all weekend.  I was going to make stock, do a brisket, make some pho, work on recipe development with a chef friend, and tackle two Alinea dishes.  Instead, a bunch of good stuff just kept happening and I reveled in it, tossing the to-do list and just going with the flow.  Sunday lunchtime rolled around and my sweet tooth kicked in, so I got to work on making this dish.  I was such a happy camper, I wasn't even stressed out about figuring out how to de-glutenize the sponge cake.  I just took a deep breath, cranked the Pandora Funk Channel, and got to work.

Last year, I wanted to make sponge cake for something else, and I scoured the internet for recipes so I could figure out the correct ratios of gluten-free flour substitutions. I tried three different versions of it, using three different recipes, and all of them were crap.  The cake wasn't spongy and didn't roll (let alone bend), and it tasted all wrong.  So, I decided I'd follow the recipe in the Alinea cookbook, and do my own flour substitutions knowing what I know now about how all these different flours work together.

I never reprint the recipes from the book on this blog (because you should buy it; you really should), but in the case of the sponge cake, I'll give you the exact measurements since I adapted the heck out of it... and because I want my fellow non-glutenites to be able to make this and love it.

I preheated the oven to 300F degrees, and instead of spraying the sheet pan with non-stick cooking spray, I lined it with parchment (works better for gluten-free baking in my experience).  In my mixer, I combined 7 eggs, 225g sugar, 15g Trimoline, 140g grapeseed oil, and 5g kosher salt, and mixed it on high speed for 3 minutes.


While that was mixing, I combined the following dry ingredients in a separate bowl: 90g potato starch; 80g white rice flour; 40g tapioca flour; 15g xanthan gum; and, 15g baking powder.  I remember what cake flour feels like, to the touch, and I knew this combination would be dang close to it.  I also knew that the properties of these flours would work well together and do what traditional cake flour does -- produce a batter that can hold sugar and fat without collapsing, while yielding a light and fluffy cake with a tender and silky crumb.


I whisked them together before adding them to the egg mixture, which I did by folding them in gently with a rubber spatula.  Last, but not least, I added 120g whole milk and 20g maraschino cherry liquid, folding that in, also, with a rubber spatula.


I poured the cake batter onto the parchment-lined baking sheet and put it in the 300F-degree oven for 20 minutes.  And when it was done, it looked like this:


Evenly cooked, light golden-brown, darker (but not burnt) at the edges... I almost did a whoop and a holler, but needed to let it cool before doing the taste (and bendy) test.

 While that cooled, I started the neutral caramel rectangles.  I heated isomalt, sugar, glucose, and a little water to 316F degrees and poured it onto a Silpat-lined baking sheet to harden:






It only took about 30 minutes to harden and cool to room temperature, after which time I broke it up into a million little pieces and ground it (in small batches) in my spice grinder (which is actually a coffee bean grinder I use only for spices and powders):



I put the powder into a fine-mesh strainer and lightly tap-tap-tapped it on the side as I hovered it over a Silpat-lined baking sheet, allowing the powder to fall evenly across the surface of it to create a sheet of powder:




I put the sheet of powder into a 350F-degree oven for about 3 minutes, turning the sheet pan 180 degrees halfway through, until it was completely melted:


Then, the book instructs you to cut small rectangles while the caramel is still warm and pliable.  Which I did.  But it was not exactly the cleanest cutting job in the world:


And all across the land, pastry chefs wept.


While the caramel rectangles were hardening, I made the tonka bean cream.  Except, uh, I adapted that, too.  I only had a few tonka beans in my possession, and needed them for the tonka bean froth.  So, I made coffee bean cream instead.  I KNOW.  How can you not love coffee as part of your dessert?

In a saucepan, I brought milk, heavy cream, maraschino cherry liquid, sugar and two tablespoons of gently crushed (in a mortar and pestle) coffee beans to a simmer.  I turned off the flame, covered the pot, and let it steep for 10 minutes.


Then, I poured the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl for the next step, which is adding gelatin sheets (that were soaked in cold water for five minutes):


I poured this mixture into a clean saucepan and reheated it, while whisking together egg yolks and salt in a clean bowl.  I then tempered the yolks with some of the warm coffee-milk mixture, then poured the tempered yolks into the saucepan with the coffee-milk mixture and brought it up to a simmer, whisking constantly.

When it was done, I poured it into a glass bowl that was nesting in a bowl of ice, to cool it to room temperature, before putting it into a siphon canister and chilling it for an hour.  I also made the tonka bean froth, but took no photos (explained in the Music to Cook By section below), though you'll see the frothy goodness in the final plating photos at the end of the post.

Meanwhile, the sponge cake had completely cooled and was ready to be cut into rectangles, and then enveloped by caramel rectangles.

Look how spongey and bendy and rolly it is! 


This pleases me greatly.  I foresee many a buche de noël in my future.

I cut rather generous rectangles here (deviating from the book's recommendation), and inserted a vanilla bean into the end (because when heated, as it soon will be, it unleashes the most lovely aroma):


I topped each one with a caramel rectangle, then put them in the oven for about 3 minutes until the caramel had melted down around the edges, and the cake was warmed.



Then, I flipped them over and did the same thing on the other side.  The caramel rectangles began to break apart when I was working with them, so I just made sure enough pieces were on them to envelop the cake (which you will see in the final plating photos; 'cause my sugar-wrapping skillz aren't that great).

Time to plate the dish.  Or, uh, glass it, I guess.

First thing in the glass was a healthy shot of coffee-bean cream from the siphon canister (into which I'd discharged an NO2 cartridge, so the coffee-bean cream had that soda water buzz to it).  Then, I placed a sponge cake into each glass, which I topped with tonka bean froth and some grated dried cherry.




Remember what Twinkies taste like?  Well, imagine a not-chemical-tasting Twinkie with the creaminess on the outside (eminently a better decision) and coffee to go with.  Also, imagine it warm.  And with no assy-tasting aftertaste that coats the roof of your mouth.

That's what this tasted like.  It was awesome.  Really and truly.  I am still a little shocked that my instincts were spot-on in making the sponge cake.  I guess I'm better at this gluten-free baking thing than I thought I was.

So, because I made the rectangles, like, twenty-seven times larger than the book recommended, you couldn't exactly lift them up by the pod to eat them.  That's okay.  We're all friends, so we used our fingers (and the spoons I graciously provided).  The first bite was nicely coated in the coffee-bean cream and the froth.  After the first bite, we dunked them back into the glass, and the cake started absorbing the liquids, and HOLY MOTHER OF JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE was that the right thing to do. Each bite was pure pleasure and delight, and the cake was just warmed enough that it felt even fresher and more delicious.

Oh, but what's that you see in the photo below?  An uneaten dessert?


Shock! Gasp! Horror!

One of my trusty tasters had taken sick just a few hours before and didn't make his way over to my house. Pity, that.  An extra dessert for the cook, my friends insisted (as they snacked on leftover pieces of sponge cake)...


Even better the second time.


Next Up: Licorice Cake, orange confit, anise hyssop, spun sugar

Resources: All flours from Bob's Red Mill; Smith Meadows Farm eggs; Domino sugar; Trimoline, isomalt, and glucose from L'Epicerie; Monini grapeseed oil; Safeway brand maraschino cherries; Clabber Girl baking powder; Natural by Nature milk; Organic Valley cream; King Arthur Flour gelatin sheets; tonka beans from that witchy-wiccan-whateveritwasonlinestorethatisnowoutofbusinesssoican'tlinktoit; David's kosher salt; soy lecithin from Terra Spice; vanilla beans from my pantry.

Music to Cook By:  Pandora Radio.  The Funk Channel.  Where they also sometimes play disco, which will inspire you to want to do your own wildly choreographed version of The Hustle in your kitchen and I'm here to tell you that's probably a bad idea especially if your kitchen is as small as mine is but sure fine go ahead and try to replicate those moves you've seen on So You Think You Can Dance even though you most certainly are not a dancer and have no idea what you're doing but don't come crying to me when you whack the hell out of your wrist on your countertop when you spin around doing that windmill-lookin' thing with your arms because I tried to warn you.

"Read" My Previous Post: Tomato, balloons of mozzarella, many complementary flavors

NOTE: Harold McGee's new book, Keys to Good Cooking, is out.  You can listen to his interview with NPR "Fresh Air" host, Terry Gross, by clicking here

September 27, 2010

Chocolate, warmed to 94 degrees

I can make a grocery list without the phone ringing off the hook.  I can shop for food without having to abandon my half-full grocery cart in the middle of the store to attend to a client's media crisis.  I have food in the house, and I have time to cook it.  My days are still busy, but much more manageable, now.  My nights even more so.  I am getting more than 5 hours of sleep.  I feel like I can breathe again.

Over the past week, late at night I've found myself standing in the front yard, looking southward in the sky staring at the waxing-then-full-now-waning moon, with Jupiter just below.  This past weekend, my neighbors and I had a roaring fire going in my copper fire pit, and we roasted hot dogs and marshmallows for s'mores.  We started at 6 o'clock on Saturday night and didn't turn in until well past midnight.  We listened to the pair of barred owls in the woods hoot and call to each other, and saw one of them swoop down my street, just under the street light at the end of the block, before flying to its tree in the woods.  We stuffed our faces with s'mores and drank wine.  We listened to the kids debate who was more annoying: Miley Cyrus or Selena Gomez (it was a tie).  We took turns with the binoculars to look at Jupiter's moons ... something we'll not be able to see again in our lifetime.

It's things like this that bring me back to center and recharge my batteries.

*   *   *   *   *

My nephew and his grandpa (my dad) have something very important in common: an undying, almost-addictive love of chocolate popsicles.  I grew up in a house with a freezer full of chocolate ice cream (from which great milkshakes were born) and Fudgesicles galore, because my dad loved the stuff (and it was the '70s: where there was always dessert after dinner).  Now that my dad is a little older, he's changed his snack and dessert portion sizes to that of a popsicle.  We will not go into my theory that eating seven popsicles is probably worse than a scoop or two of ice cream.  But that is neither here nor there.  Ahem.

Every time my parents babysat their grandson this summer, the little guy would run and jump and act like a crazy dude around noon -- not just because it was the time my dad came home from the office for lunch, but because it meant there would be chocolate popsicles for dessert.  Grandpa is #1 in this kid's heart, but chocolate popsicles?  Not even a #2.  More like a #1.5.

After they ate lunch, my laptop would bbbrrrrrrrriiinnnnggggg with an incoming Skype call, and my nephew could hardly wait to tell me about his dessert: cha-LOCK-a-lit possickles.  To hear that two-year-old little monkey butt say "cha-LOCK-a-lit" was hilarious.  So, of course, I asked every conceivable question that could result in him using that word/pronunciation in his answer.  It never got old.

So when I scanned the Alinea cookbook and my now-outdated cooking planning calendar (thanks a lot, job) to figure out what I wanted to cook next, I read this recipe to myself as Cholocolate, warmed to 94 degrees.

And away we go...

I spent some time among some glorious, bountiful fig trees in northern California in early August, but the fruit was still green and hadn't yet ripened.  I hear they're now out in full force, and it was all I could do to not hop on a plane back out there to pluck them off the tree myself.  Instead, I drove to Whole Foods and picked up a few boxes of figs—a fruit I really didn't "get" for years and years, and now can't imagine living without:


The first element of this dish I needed to work on was drying figs for bergamot tea.  So, the day before I knew I was going to serve this dish, I halved a whole mess o' figs and dehydrated them overnight at 150F degrees:



I did two racks of them, which came out to just under the 125g of dried figs I needed.  Not bad for a guesstimate.

I put the dried figs into a bowl until I needed to use them, and got started on the chocolate mousse, which also needed to be dehydrated.  Here's my mise en place (egg whites, sugar, salt, egg yolks, chocolate):


I melted the chocolate in a bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water:


And, as it was melting, I whipped the egg whites (and salt) until they became frothy and were just starting to get foamy:


I added the sugar and kept whipping until just before the stiff-peak phase:


See?  Just soft peaks:


I removed the chocolate from the burner, took the bowl out of the saucepan, and stirred to make sure the chocolate (which in my head as I type this looks and sounds like cha-LOCK-a-lit) was completely melted. I also whisked in the egg yolks.  Then, I folded in a third of the whipped egg whites: 



And after that was pretty full incorporated, I added the rest of the egg whites, folding them in gently until it was a creamy, smooth mousse:


I spooned the mousse onto a Pam-sprayed, acetate-lined dehydrator tray (I filled 3 of them):


And, I set the dehydrator on 150F degrees, and let it dehydrate for 8 hours.  The book said it would need 6 hours, but I know my dehydrator well enough (and the humid day I was cooking) to know I'd need longer.


While the chocolate mousse was in the dehydrator, I made the cassia ice cream.  Since I couldn't find cassia buds, I used cinnamon sticks instead, which I simmered and let steep in some milk:


After the cinnamon steepage, I poured the liquid through a fine mesh strainer and into a bowl where I added some already-soaked gelatin sheets, sugar, milk powder, glucose, and condensed milk and mixed it all with my immersion blender:


I processed it in my ice-cream maker and put the ice cream in the freezer to harden further.  You'll see the ice cream in the final plating photo (but man, did it ever smell goooooood while I was making it).  Oh, and ***TANGENT ALERT*** while the ice cream was processing, and the figs (below) were simmering, I used the leftover sweetened condensed milk to make what I think might be the best thing in the whole world: dulce de leche:


Alright, let's get back to the recipe.

Time to braise some figs.  I halved 12 figs and simmered them in some ruby port and dry red wine (along with a little glucose and sugar) for about 30 minutes:


I strained the figs and let them cool, and reduced the fig braising liquid to a glaze:



I let both of them come to room temperature before combining the figs and the glaze in a small deli container for storage until I needed them to serve the dish.

Next to last: I made the bergamot tea.  This couldn't have been easier.  In a small-ish saucepan, I combined the figs I'd dried the night before, sugar, water, and salt and brought it to a boil.  I turned off the burner and added some Earl Grey tea leaves, covered the pot, and let it steep for 5 minutes.  [Now, I'm not a tea lover, but there's something about the smell of bergamot in Early Grey tea that makes me feel all cozy inside.]  After it had steeped, I poured the liquid through a cheesecloth-lined fine-mesh strainer into a bowl and let it come to room temperature.  Then, I added some Ultra-Tex 3 and blended it with my immersion blender for 3 minutes, per the book's instructions.  I let it rest on the counter until it was time to plate.


The last step was, perhaps, the trickiest.  Bringing chocolate -- chunks of a plain old bar of chocolate -- to 94 degrees.  It's melty, but not melted.  It's soft, but not gooey.  It's silky and shiny, but not gloppy.  It needed to retain its shape, but be soft enough to to push a pin through it with no resistance.  And, it had to be done while the chocolate pieces were already resting atop the pieces of dehydrated chocolate mousse.

The book suggested leaving it on the stovetop with the oven turned on, and hinted that it might take 20 minutes to reach 94 degrees.  I know myself (and my lack of experience, especially when it comes to being successful at making desserts), so I allotted 45 minutes for this step.  Which, it turns out I needed.

I placed the pieces of 64 percent cacao chocolate onto the squares of dehydrated mousse, and laid them on a Silpat-lined baking sheet.  I didn't want to put them directly in the oven, because I knew it would be harder to control the heat. 

So, I placed them on the stovetop, right near the oven vent... where it gets really warm.  So, how warm should the oven be to generate the kind of heat I needed to bring the chocolate to 94 degrees, without getting too hot that it would melt?

200 degrees?


300 degrees?



Close.  But still no increase in the chocolate's temperature.

I turned my oven to 425, and checked the chocolate's temperature every minute.  Slowly it climbed from 74 degrees... to 76, then 77, then 82... and then stayed there for a few minutes.  It inched up a degree at a time, until it got to 94 degrees (94.3 actually) and I turned off the oven and removed the chocolate from the stovetop and started plating.



First in the bowl?  Four braised fig halves, in their glaze.  Next to that went the cinnamon ice cream.  On top went the 94-degree chocolate-topped dehydrated chocolate mousse, which was topped with bee balm flowers (bergamot flowers are out of season right now).  My friends carried their bowls out to the table, and I poured in the tea around the base of the dessert:


Pretty, isn't it?  But how did it taste?


She's gonna kill me for posting that photo, but I don't care.

This dessert was really, really good.  Even better than I thought it was going to be.  Almost as good as being able to see most of Jupiter's moons.  Seriously. 

These ingredients were so wonderful together.  I also loved how the soft warmth of the chocolate tempered the ice cream.  The figs were sweet, but not overly sweet, and the wines were noticeable but not at all overpowering or domineering.  The tea added a really nice aromatic quality to the dessert in addition to tasting really good.  The texture of the dehydrated mousse was crunchy and chewy, and tasted like a compressed brownie.  In fact, I have some leftover dehydrated chocolate mousse and leftover cinnamon ice cream, so as soon as I hit the Publish button on this bad boy, I'mma make myself an ice cream sandwich.

But you guys?  This dessert?  Worth it.  Maybe it's because I've been so stressed out for the past month, but this, combined with fire pits, planet-gazing, hot dogs, s'mores, and wine, has made for a pretty memorable September.

Up Next: Tomato, balloons of mozzarella, many complementary flavors (I don't want to wait until next summer to do this dish, and this is the last week for tomatoes here in DC)

Resources: Figs from Whole Foods; Sandeman ruby port; The Squid's Fist wine; glucose from L'Epicerie; Domino sugar; Twinings Earl Grey tea; Ultra-Tex 3 from Terra Spice; cinnamon from HMart; Natural by Nature whole milk; gelatin sheets from King Arthur Flour; Organic Valley nonfat powdered milk; Borden sweetened condensed milk; Green & Black's 72% cacao chocolate; Ghirardelli 64% chocolate; eggs from Smith Meadows Farm; David's kosher salt; bee balm from my garden.

Music to Cook By: XTC; Oranges and Lemons.  I think "The Loving" might be in my top 20 favorite songs of all time.

Read My Previous Post: I made lamb stock, and all is well with the world...

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