Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Day 5 Of Rosie's Christmas Baking.

Rosie got a lot done today on the baking front: Marbled Chocolate Fudge, Peanut Butter Fudge, Rum Balls, which called for Vanilla Wafers, which I didn't have so I had to make, Butter Rum Caramels, and Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles.
First, I made Marbled Chocolate Fudge.
My ingredients: 3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 10 ounces white baking pieces
In a heavy sauce pan over low heat, I combined the chips, milk, and salt, and melted the chocolate.
Keep stirring.
Coarsely chop the white baking pieces.
When the chocolate mixture is fully melted and nice and smooth, remove from heat.
Stir in the vanilla and add in the white baking pieces, stirring until just blended.
Pour chocolate into a wax paper lined 8 x8 baking dish, pressing to spread out.
I used an offset spatula to spread evenly. The finished product - Marbled Chocolate Fudge. Next, I made a Peanut Butter Fudge.
The ingredients: 2 sticks butter 4 tablespoons cocoa powder 1 cup peanut butter 3 cups powdered sugar
Remember, whenever you measure dry ingredients, use the scoop and sweep method for accurate measurements.
First, I melted the butter and added the vanilla.
And added the cocoa.
I turned the heat to a very low simmer and added the peanut butter.
And stirred it to a very smooth consistency.
Next I added the powdered sugar.
Whisk away, until well mixed and smooth.
Pour and press fudge mixture into a buttered 9 inch square pan. Refrigerate about an hour or so before cutting into pieces.
And here's my Peanut Butter Fudge.
Next, I was going to make Rum Balls, but gosh darn it, the recipe called for Vanilla Wafers. So I had to make a slight detour, and make my own Vanilla Wafers, since I had none on hand.
Vanilla Wafer ingredients: 1 stick butter, softened 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 cup sugar 2 teaspoons vanilla 1 large egg white 1 TB cream 1 1/3 cup flour 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
I creamed the butter, salt and sugar.
Beat in the egg white.
Added the vanilla.
And added in the cream.
I mixed the flour with the baking powder and added that to the butter mixture.
Then I loaded my piping bag with the batter, used a large plain tip, and piped nickle sized mounds, 1 inch apart on parchment paper. Halfway through with the plain tip, my hands were getting tired, so I got a larger tip, not plain, but a star tip so I could finish. Piping's a lot of hard work.
Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
My very own Vanilla Wafers. Oh my, but these were good. OK, slight detour, but now I'm back on track. On to the Rum Balls.
My ingredients: 1 stick unsalted butter 1/2 cup powdered sugar 3/4 cup chocolate chips 2 eggs, beaten pinch of salt 1 3/4 cups vanilla wafer cookie crumbs 1/2 cup chopped walnuts 1/4 cup rum 1 1/2 cups sweetened coconut
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, I combined the butter, sugar, and chips.
I stirred constantly until butter was fully melted and mixture was smooth. Slowly whisk in the beaten eggs into the chocolate mixture, until fully incorporated.
Ooh, this is looking goooooooood.
I removed the pan from the heat and added the salt and cookie crumbs, stirring.
Add in the walnuts, stirring.
Add in the rum.
I'm kinda worried at this point, since this mixture is really soupy. But, I forge ahead.
I covered the rum ball mixture with plastic wrap and refrigerated it ... overnight.
So no Rum Balls until tomorrow. Hopefully, the mixture will thicken up. My next little confection is Butter Rum Caramels. And my goodness, I know I did a mise en place and took pictures of it, but dang if I can find it. Anyways, imagine, if you will, a lovely, composed, balanced photograph of my ingredients, which would be: 2 cups packed light brown sugar 1 cup heavy cream 1/2 stick unsalted butter 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon rum 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
First, I put the brown sugar, cream, and butter in a heavy saucepan.
Added the salt and rum.
Heat the mixture, stirring, over moderate heat until it comes to a boil.
Stir frequently, until thermometer reaches 250 degrees, about 15 minutes.
Remove from heat, and add in the leftover 1 teaspoon of rum and the 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla.
Pour into a buttered parchment lined 8 inch square pan. And my goodness, I started licking the spoon after pouring this in and the rum and caramel is absolutely delicious.
Refrigerate until ... tomorrow. You'll just have to wait and see the Butter Rum Caramels. Gosh, I can't do everything in one day. Finally, my last little goodie for today. Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles. First, the hazelnut base.
Hazelnut base ingredients: 1 cup toasted hazelnuts 3/4 cup flour 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 stick unsalted butter 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate 2 large eggs
I ground the toasted hazelnuts in my food processor, then whisked with the flour, sugar, and salt.
I melted the butter in a sauce pan, then removed from the heat, and added the chocolate, whisking until smooth.
Keep on whisking.
Add in eggs, whisking.
One at a time, whisking until smooth.
Finally add in nut flour, whisking until just combined.
Turn batter into a buttered and cocoa-powdered 8-inch square pan.
Spread evenly. And bake in a 350-degree oven for 20 minutes. Cool the base completely, then prepare the ganache topping.
Ganache ingredients: 2 large egg yolks 1 cup heavy cream 1/8 teaspoon salt 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate
Bring cream and salt to a boil in a small, heavy saucepan.
Whisk yolks.
Add half of the heated cream to the yolks, in a slow stream, whisking constantly, to temper the yolks.
Add the yolk mixture back into the remaining cream and cook over low heat, whisking, until slightly thickened.
Whisk constantly, until temperature registers 170 degrees.
Remove from heat, and add chocolate,
whisking until smooth.
Pour ganache over hazelnut base.
Spread evenly, cover, and refrigerate overnight. So it won't be until tomorrow that you'll be able to see my Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles AND my Rum Balls AND my Butter Rum Caramels. And that's it for tonight. Tune back in tomorrow for Day 6 of my baking and the rest of today's results. Perhaps on Day 7, Rosie will rest. But then again, probably not.


Marilyn said...

Wow. Now I'm tired again. Those poor, beautiful vanilla wafers. All that work and then they just get crumbled. BTW, do you suppose your cookies were more moist than boxed cookies would have been and that affected the mixture? Just guessing here, so feel free to ignore the baking-challenged person.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Oh Mar, I didn't use all the cookies for the crumble. Still have plenty more for gift giving!

And you may be right about the moisture content. And you, of all people, are certainly not
baking-challenged, dear.

I think the mixture just needs to sit overnight in the fridge and behave itself, and everything will be fine in the morning.

Unknown said...

It is this time of year that I *really* wish I was one of your neighbors.

Sara said...

Rosie, all your desserts look beautiful! I am impressed that you made your own vanilla wafers.

Anonymous said...

Rosie, you are so ambitious. Last year, I made your gingersnaps and they were a huge hit. I have a request for more this year. Are you going to make them again? (I still have your recipe.) I don't bake often at all--mostly yeast breads, but I do make a mean peppermint bark, layered with bittersweet and white chocolates. Xmas is pretty much when I bake at all.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

notmuchofacook, I haven't made the gingersnaps yet, but they're on my list. I also make a really good Nut and Berry Bark (pistachios, dried cranberries, and white chocolate) that's quite delicious. They're both upcoming.