Sunday, April 8, 2012

Chewy Macaroons should equal love at first sight

It was such a beautiful weekend I decided to do a little baking for the heck of it. Now these macaroons are probably one of the easiest cookies to make in my baking arsenal, and some of the simplest ingredients. Whip this up for someone you care about and believe you me, they'll be thanking you profusely! They are light and fluffy, and sweet as a kiss!

Also, this recipe is expedited by a stand up mixer. Mine is named Scarlett, and she is beautiful. However, you do not need to go out and purchase one just for this event, a hand mixer will do fine.

Here is the recipe:


*This batch makes roughly 12 cookies, I'd double this recipe if I were me.
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 6 tablespoons of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of something else 
    • You can use any sort of mix in that is DRY. For your first batch I would suggest coconut, or chopped up chocolate chips, or both! Don't use anything that is juicy though, it'll make your macaroons mushy. I'd suggest dried fruit if you want to add that component. But you can fold in basically anything you'd like that would go well with sugar :) this gives you the ability to use the same standard recipe, getting good at it, and mixing things up from time to time.
Baking instructions--

  1. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Line a baking pan with parchment paper, or grease if you do not have parchment paper.
  3. Separate your egg whites, crack your egg in half, and separate the yolk from the white in a separate bowl. Let the egg whites come close to room temperature. 
  4. Beat egg whites, vanilla and salt on medium high speed with a mixer with the wire whisk attachment until soft peaks form.
  5. Gradually add sugar, one tablespoon at a time while beating on medium high speed until stiff peaks form. Mixture will turn yellowish white to white.
  6. Fold in your your sweet add in throughly.    
  7. Using a spoon, drop mixture (about one healthy spoon full) onto baking pan, ensuring there is space between each cookie. 
  8. Place cookie sheet into oven and bake for 25 minutes, or until lightly golden.
  9. Remove from oven to cool, and transfer to wire rack.
  10. When the cookies are done, you can add a bit of flair by melting some dark chocolate (or anything else meltable that goes well with sugar...) once the cookies are done you can drip chocolate over the top.

Step 4 - beating egg whites before adding sugar (what it looks like done)

Step 5 - beating egg whites after adding sugar (what it looks like done)

Step 6 - folding in your sweet

Step 7 - dropping mixture onto a baking sheet 
Step 8 - lightly golden after baking
Step 10 - adding a chocolate drizzle 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Desperation comes in many flavors

"It was very sweet of you to make me such a nice meal last night. However I don't think I have romantic feelings for you. You are a sweet guy and have a lot going for yourself. I hope you understand and maybe we can just be friends?"

I baked a cake. And not just any cake. I baked a chocolate hazelnut meringue cake. And this cake was to DIE for. 3 light delectable layers of perfectly baked egg whites and sugar, held together with lushes amounts of homemade whip cream and flakes of dark chocolate. Granted, I could have done a slightly better job at marbling the cake. It is harder than it appears to pour melted chocolate into freshly beaten meringue. That must have been it, that thing that turned him off of me, it was my marbling.

I won't even begin to mention to you (whoever you are reading this) the other things I made for this...gentleman. Lets just say it was an amazing meal of stuffed, bacon wrapped chicken, pan fried green beans and garlic potatoes.

And what did this extravagantly prepared meal that took about 7 hours of my life to throw together (I'm telling you, that was some chicken and one awesome cake...)? Nothing. Not even a flirty grab of the leg, or arm over the shoulder. Which prompted my text to my suitor asking if anything was up, and the quoted response above.

I made a cake.
Chocolate Hazelnut Meringue Cake.
Recipe from pg. 324
Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2011
I made a cake out of desperation.

You see, I'm looking for love. And I'm super fed up with this awful dating trend I've been on. It seems to be impossible to find a man who's interested in me, with a lick of personality, gainfully employed, educated, and vaguely attractive.

So what am I doing about this? I'm writing a blog. And here we are, finally defining the theme. This blog will be a baking blog. A baking blog with dating experiences mixed through it, because ladies, gentlemen and others who fall outside of standard gender norms, I am not going to stop making cakes for my dates. Because one of these days a man is going to take a bite of one of my cakes and fall in love...with me.

When I can I'll post my recipes and any tips I can provide to you if you would like to replicate my experience. I'll always try to avoid violating any copyright laws (I'm assuming I can't copy and past recipes from a printed cookbook onto the web). And I'll post pictures of my accomplishments (and any failures).

So join me, on a journey.