A co-worker’s birthday is always a good time to remind my team that they are glad they hired me. This time, though, a super sweet baklava, or a big ass kugelhopf wouldn’t do the trick. This coworker likes their food light, not overly sweet, and beautiful. Well fuck. That rules out a lot of what I make. A frangipane tart though, that’s always a crowd pleaser, and a Bakewell Tart isn’t overly sweet, I mean the crust is barely sweetened at all. That’ll do, pig!
So I made the crust, and it rolled out so beautiful and thin that I thought the whole thing was going to go to shit because I’ve never made a crust so easily. In fact, it seems like usually I should just use the rolling pin as a can opener because every time I get the thing out I have trouble, but not this time! I blind baked the crust and let it dry out nicely because as my gurl Mary Berry says, no one likes a soggy bottom.
I made the filling before putting my little girl to bed, and when I went to pour it into the crust it didn’t pour. It was a big thicker than I remembered, and I really had to work at it to get it nice and even in the crust. As for the berries I had placed at the bottom of the crust…well…they moved to where they wanted to be and I had no choice in the matter.
In the end, though, the tart was well received by my coworkers. They’re still happy that they hired me. And I got to use my beautiful tart pan. That is success, my friends.
Like the Bûche de Noel, this Festive Panettone Pudding has become somewhat of an advent tradition since my dad passed away/baby was born. As I’ve said before, as soon as Christmas time rolled around after becoming a father, I felt the drive to become the most Christmas Tradition laden family on the planet. At the same time I was burying my grief over the loss of my dad in delicious holiday foods.
The good men of Sorted Food really caught my eye with their Chocolate Panettone Pudding, which I renamed Festive Panettone Pudding because, well, cranberries. I love these tart bitter little shits in everything at this time of year. They’re also the only food on the traditional North American holiday table that comes from North America. CULTURALLY APPROPRIATE. This bread-pudding style of dessert strikes me as very British Isles, too. ANCESTRALLY APPROPRIATE. And it calls for a Panettone. ADVENT APPROPRIATE. It’s a very appropriate dessert for this time of year.
Basically, you take 8 eggs, (4 whole, 4 extra yolks), 2 tbsp of sugar, orange zest, and cinnamon, whisk that shit right up with 250ml of cream, then rip up and dunk the panettone in it and toss it in a pan. Crush up some chocolate (whatever you have leftover from your other holiday baking) and toss a handful of fresh cranberries in it, then goosh it all up with your hands until it’s a dense, muddled mess. Then pat it down into your baking dish and let it sit for about half an hour. Once that’s done, toss it in a 400F oven for 20-25 minutes, pull it out and serve it. DELICIOUS AND EASY.
You can even make it after the kids are in bed because it doesn’t call for a mixer. It would probably be good if you poured some booze on it too, but I’m not sure what kind would be best. Anyhow, go over to Sorted Food, watch the video, try the recipe, thank me later.
Baking in the morning is generally not something I do, because who the hell can do anything precisely before about 6 cups of coffee? Well, my mother in law was in town last weekend and she’s a delightful little lady who apparently sees my instagram posts and wanted baked goods.
About the same time, mommyPrimate had just started a new job, and she had a few things to get done on Saturday. Funny enough, the only time anyone can focus meaningfully on anything is when babyPrimate is napping, so mommyPrimate needed the morning to work. As luck would have it, she had a plan for breakie already that was basically a frittata and scones, so I said, “Don’t you worry mommyPrimate, I will handle this!” Then I guzzled my coffee and got to baking.
So scones are actually damn simple. I quickly put the dough together, formed it into a circle, brushed the top with egg, and popped it in the oven.
When this came out of the oven I felt like I’m basically a fucking magician. They were a little lighter than scones I’ve had in the past, not too sweet…delightful.
Scones are a go!