17-23: Mocha Éclairs

17-23: Mocha Éclairs

As part of my Mother’s Day brunch this year (MD2017), I wanted to push my limits by attempting some of the hardest pastry recipes in the book. I tested my skills not only with 17-44: Homemade Danish Pastries, but with this recipe as well, 17-23: Mocha Éclairs.  My mom always referred to éclairs as something that challenged her when she was learning to cook and bake, and that a well-executed one was something that really impressed her. With that in mind, I knew this recipe was a must-do.

I may have to make a few adjustments to Simply Delicious‘ version of the recipe–first of all, there’s no chocolate listed anywhere in this recipe, and it’s advertised as “mocha”, which is coffee AND chocolate. We may have to do something about this “slicing the tops off” idea as well.

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16-54: Lemony Cottage Cheese Pie

16-54: Lemony Cottage Cheese Pie

Whenever I think of lemons, I can’t help but think of Lemongrab from Adventure Time, my favorite, lemon-insipred, animated character. From my research, there are two other major characters who are lemon-themed, Lemon Meringue from “doll commercial hidden in a cartoon” Strawberry Short Cake and Honey Lemon, one of the main characters from Big Hero 6, a 3D animated feature film released by Disney in 2014 . I haven’t had a chance to check this movie out yet, but if it ever pops up on Netflix, I’d watch it. Now that my rant about cartoon characters is complete, enjoy this entry about 16-54: Lemony Cottage Cheese Pie, a really weird lemony pie. 🍋

Serving this pie on top of a tapestry featuring a creepy little girl must somehow enhance the flavor of this otherwise weird lemony pie. The background tapestry is probably the most interesting and tasteful part of the entire photograph. 

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15-49: Chocolate Pudding Deluxe

15-49: Chocolate Pudding Deluxe

The other of two desserts that I made for this year’s Thanksgiving (TGV 2016) was 15-49: Chocolate Pudding Deluxe (the first was 16-52: Apple Nut Saucepan Torte). With my family, it’s REQUIRED that there be a chocolate dessert option when having a big dinner, so I decided to give this one a whirl–I thought it’d be a nice contrast of flavors and textures when compared to the other options (the aforementioned torte and a pumpkin pie my mom made). 🍫

15-49-chocolate-pudding-deluxeThis was the third dish I made, continuing the Wednesday 11/23 portion of my holiday cooking marathon. Since the pudding needed to chill, I thought letting it rest in the fridge overnight would give it the best chance of holding together when served the next day. 🍮

Other dishes I made on this night (Wed. 11/23): the dressing for 1-10: Seafood Louisiana Cocktail, cranberry sauce, 16-52: Apple Nut Saucepan Torte, and a roasted garlic & herb butter to serve with 17-5: Hot Seedy Rolls.

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14-3: Grand Marnier Soufflé

14-3: Grand Marnier Soufflé

My posting’s slowed down a bit (and my husband Adam has been cranking out his posts like crazy), but I am still cooking (and eating) from this book. It’s good to take breaks every so often, and rather than abandon the blog for those break times (as I have in the past), I’m glad that he’s here to keep it alive and to lend another voice besides my own. Just wanted to get that out there. I’ll pick it back up to speed soon, but for now I’m enjoying watching it be interpreted through someone else’s eyes for a bit.

I find myself with extra heavy whipping cream now and then due to other cooking activities, and I’m the only one in the house that can consume it without much gastrointestinal distress. When I have excesses of ingredients, I try to find Simply Delicious recipes to burn off that kill two birds with one stone–using up a recipe AND the cream, 14-3: Grand Marnier Soufflé is one of those recipes.

14-3 Grand Marnier SouffleI’ve permanently borrowed a bottle from my parents (when you’re in your 30s your parents don’t seem to mind if you raid their liquor cabinet), and it’s what we’ve been using for flambéeing and any other instances that call for brandy/cognac/Grand Marnier. Why buy a brand new bottle when there’s plenty of barely touched ones sitting at their house? 🍾

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4-11: Potato Soufflé with Onions

4-11: Potato Soufflé with Onions

I’ve been making a lot of potato recipes lately. There’s a 10 lb. bag in my pantry I’ve been working my way through, so expect a few more potato recipes over the next few weeks. We’ll start here with one I’ve made before–4-11: Potato Soufflé with Onions.

4-11 Potato Souffle with Onions
More of my handwriting. I’ve made this one before, and this time I remember the circumstances and my adaptations–see what good notes will do for you?

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