Sunday, May 24, 2015

Too good too be true (WW Cake Recipe)

Cleaning out the filing cabinet, I found this recipe. It was in a notebook circa 2003. First of all, let me say that I do not remember this recipe. So, I don't know if it's too good to be true or not. The paper does look as if I used it at least once in the kitchen. Perhaps I will try it again. 

Here is the recipe: 
1 yellow butter recipe cake mix
6 oz. very vanilla low-fat yogurt
2 eggs or egg substitute
1/4 c. unsweetened apple sauce
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 c. melted butter

Mix together all ingredients and pour into a greased and floured 9"x13" cake pan.

Then, stir together:
2 eggs or egg substitute
1/2 tsp. vinegar
1 lb. powdered sugar
16 oz. fat free cream cheese
1 tsp. vanilla

Pour this mixture over the cake batter. Bake at 325 degrees for 35-45 min. or until it bubbles in the center and it begins to brown.

Top with sliced fruit of your choice. Makes 12 servings.

The points calculated on the notebook paper are not valid under the current WW points plan. As they were calculated under the old system. 

Bon appétit! 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Tales of a Frustrated Bilingual Baker

Tonight, I am flustered and frustrated over a seemingly easy recipe. 

Nutella Tart


Tarte tiède au chocolat et au Nutella

I am the proud owner of two lovely choco-rrific books: Larousse du Chocolat and Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme by Dorie Greenspan. These books have lots of overlapping recipes... or so it seems.

My husband says my frustration is a little over the top, but I'm annoyed. 
The ingredient ratios are different. Not only that the "translation" of amounts is off. 

Example: according to Greenspan 3 1/2 ounces of butter = 7 tablespoons = 200 grams. I'm not buying it! A regular stick of butter is 8 TBS = 4 oz = approx. 113 g. 

la recette de Larousse du Chocolat
250 g de pâte sucrée (Sweet pastry dough)
150 g de Nutella 
150 g de chocolat à 55% de cacao (bittersweet chocolat)
150 g de beurre (butter)
1 œuf (egg)
2 jaunes d’œufs (egg yolks)
20 g de sucre en poudre (granulated sugar)
80 g noisette (hazelnuts)

The recipe of Chocolate Desserts
1 baked 8 3/4 in (22 cm) tart shell made from Sweet Tart dough
2/3 c. (200g) Nutella
4 3/4 oz (140 g.) bittersweet chocolate
7 TBSP (3.5 oz; 200 g.) unsalted butter
1 large egg
3 egg yolks
2 TBSP sugar
1 c (140 g.) hazelnuts

Oh but why should the differences stop there? They both say to melt the butter and chocolate separately. However, one asks you to whisk the sugar into the egg and then fold in the chocolate, then the butter. The other asks that you fold everything into the chocolate. YIKES! 

This is too much after a day of teaching little ones! 
I hope my tart comes out of the oven okay. Wish me luck! I mean I was the one brazen enough to make this for the first time for guests. LOL

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Salmon Pizza with Creme Fraiche

I thought a Salmon pizza sounded good, so I looked around and compared some recipes and ingredients. I found this recipe online and made a few tweaks to make it my own. The original called for some things we don't eat. After making it, I wonder if it would be good with caramelized onion or confit d'oignon and just a squeeze of lemon juice. I also saw recipes with cream cheese. So maybe cubes of cream cheese instead of dollops of creme fraiche? I may try it again. I might add some crushed red pepper flakes for heat. This recipe has lots of steps but it is very easy. See below for a link to the original. It may be what you are looking for. :)

Salmon Pizza


10 oz. sockeye salmon (pin bones and skin removed)*
pizza dough
olive oil
1 lemon
1 cup sugar, divided
1 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 red onion, sliced thinly
2 Tbsp. salt
1 tsp. each fresh dill, parsley, basil, and thyme
mozzarella cheese
Crème Fraîche**


Make pizza dough. If frozen, defrost salmon. Pre-heat your oven to 475°F. (The original recipe says "as hot as it will go", but I backed off just a little.)

Heat up a skillet on medium high heat with a little olive oil. Slice the 1 lemon thin, coating the slices in about ½ cup sugar and place in the skillet to caramelize. Once some color develops, remove the lemon slices with tongs and let cool (HOT SUGAR makes nasty burns!) on a plate, then finely chop and set aside.

REMOVE AS SOON AS COLOR DEVELOPS! I left mine a little too long and I got caramel with lemon. It wasn't burned, but difficult to handle. 

Next, in a bowl combine 1 ½ cup red wine vinegar, ½ cup sugar and 2 Tbsp salt in a bowl. Add in your thinly sliced red onion and let it marinate. I suggest breaking the rings apart so you get an even marinade on the onion.

Chop up the herbs, When the oven is way hot, drizzle the salmon with olive oil and salt it to taste. Place the fish on a baking dish and place in the oven, baking until medium rare. Remove and tent with tin foil.

While the fish cooks, shape dough and top with mozzarella and dot with crème fraîche, or do what I did: Smear on creme fraiche and top with mozzarella. When you pull the salmon out, put the pizza in and bake until it looks like you want it to. (This will depend on the thickness of your crust and your oven, so check it after 8 to 10 minutes.)

Dollops? oops. I don't follow directions well, do I? 

Once it's done, slice your pizza and then break up the salmon onto the pizza, topping it with the caramelized lemon, freshly ground pepper, and herbs. Drain the red onion and squeeze it to remove excess vinegar and throw it on your pizza and drizzle with some olive oil. ENJOY!

Sorry, it's blurry! I was excited! 

*I used a 10 oz. frozen bag because that's all I could find here in the desert. I baked my salmon with the skin on, skin side down. It is easy to remove from cooked fish.

**Crème fraîche: You could buy it, but it's easy to make it yourself: 1 part buttermilk to 2 parts heavy cream. Let sit covered at room temp for 24 hrs. then refrigerate. If you use "whipping cream" and not "heavy whipping cream" your product will turn out too liquid. It should be the consistency of a soft sour cream. If this is scary to you, I knew a chef that made mock crème fraîche by stirring lemon juice and a pinch of salt into heavy cream. It's quick, it's easy and the health dept. doesn't yell at you for it.☻