Tag Archives: pies

A Pie In The Hand Is Worth Two In The Mouth

I spent yesterday evening hanging out with my good friend Allen, who will soon be departing for Colorado, and what better way to say farewell than to make some awesome food. Allen is the world’s biggest fan of Smitten Kitchen, and so the recipes we used came from there. For dinner we had pasta with sugar snap peas, lemon and ricotta, which was super tasty – recipe here. Then came the rhubarb and cream cheese hand pies.

Hand pies. Who knew such a thing existed? When I saw the picture I was like, hey they’re kind of like pasties. But no, no they’re not, they’re like 100 times better than any pasty you have ever eaten. Okay, so maybe you’ve had some really good pasties, but trust me.┬áThe beauty of these things is that they’re hand-sized (no s**t), so you can have one as a snack or you can eat three…I ate three. Also, awesome for picnics. I think I might eat them all summer.

We formed a kind of production line where I was responsible for rolling out and cutting the pastry into squares, Seb was on egg-wash duty and Allen did fillings and put the tops on. And then we all switched about a bit, because I can’t cut straight – anyone who has ever seen me cut a slice of bread will attest to this. Allen took over and suddenly the pies became much more square. I videoed a bit of Allen constructing, so you can see how delicious they are:

They’re pretty straightforward to make (even more so if you have 3 of you assembling them), and only take 15-20 mins to cook. You can find the recipe here. I think if Peyton & Byrne is my favourite book, Smitten Kitchen might be just about to become my favourite website.

Also a quick shout out to the lemon curd cupcakes I made the other day for Father’s Day – AMAAAZING. For a more extensive post on this subject, click here.

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Probably the Chocolatiest Cake Ever Baked (TM)

SO. There’s been rather a delay in updates. The main news that has occurred over this three month silence is that one Jordi Wieler is returning to England! Hurrah! So perhaps this will continue in a slightly less transatlantic way.

The main baking news of the last three months is that I started making peanut butter pies, which have become wildly popular with my boyfriend. No one else really gets the chance to eat them, because he demolishes them so quickly – a whole 10″ pie within 24 hours. I’m not sure impressive is the word I want to use, but it’s definitely something like that.

Anyway, to the topic today, which is chocolate! It was my dear friend Laura’s birthday on Monday. Laura loves chocolate in a way that most people love their pets…or maybe even more than that. It’s hard to say. She heroically gave up chocolate for Lent, and to many people’s surprise, managed to stay strong and go the whole 40 days without caving in (so proud of Laura). So even though she’s been able to eat chocolate for a few weeks again now, I vowed to make her the chocolatiest cake I could find.

A Chocolate Brownie Gateau.

This cake is not for the faint-hearted. Or the easily sickened. The cake itself contains 1lb of chocolate, and the icing is made from even more chocolate and double cream. The slice I had was at the widest end not much more than an inch, and I had difficulty finishing it. So if you’re feeling extravagant, or you just love chocolate as much as Laura does, here is the recipe:

450g plain chocolate

225g unsalted butter

3 eggs

225g light muscavado sugar

75g self-raising flour

1 tsp vanilla extract

175g chopped walnuts

For the filling:

150ml double cream

100g plain chocolate

1. Preheat the oven to 190C or Gas Mark 5. Grease 2 7″ cake tins and line with baking paper. Roughly chop 115g of the chocolate and set aside.

2. Break the remaining chocolate into pieces and melt with the butter, in a bowl set over a pan of lightly simmering water. Beat together the eggs and sugar. Stir in the melted chocolate, sift in the flour and add the vanilla extract, chopped nuts and chopped chocolate.

3. Divide the mixture between the two tins and bake for around 30 mins, until the surface has a sugary crust and feels firm. Loosen the edges with a knife and turn onto a cooling rack, leaving the cakes in the tins until cool, then remove.

4. Break the chocolate into pieces and put into a pan with the cream, heat gently until the chocolate melts. Allow to cool, then whisk until stiff and use to sandwich the cakes together.

This recipe came from Easy Everyday Desserts.

Finally, a picture of Laura and Julian cutting the cake as if it was their wedding day.

Image

(Laura just texted me saying she had some of the cake for breakfast. Seriously.)

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