Wednesday, February 3, 2010

recipe updates, the lack thereof, and ingredient fangirlery

Citrus season! It's my favorite. Last week I bought a box of clementines and revisited this clementine cake recipe -- except, just to experiment, I subbed half the almond meal for white flour, and added two tablespoons of butter, and coated it in a thick ganache (double the recipe) instead of just a sprinkle. Came out better than the original, I thought, if you don't mind it not being gluten-free. (Though you could, instead of white wheat flour, use an equal amount of sifted rice flour). Next time I'm thinking I'll add maybe a quarter teaspoon of ground cloves to the batter to make it taste just a little like Christmas.

Having yet more clementines to use before they went all squishy, I boiled another one for a couple hours and pureed it like I would've for the cake, but then added the puree to this oatmeal cookie recipe (instead of the tangerine zest). Completely awesome. Also, instead of the drunken raisins, I made a half batch (half a bag) of sugared cranberries, except I just drained them (instead of draining and coating with sugar) after they were done cooking, and then stirred/mashed the cooled cranberries into the oatmeal cookie batter. They were a tiny bit tart, but played really well with the clementine flavor. Just add a minute or two to your bake time -- the cranberries contain a lot more moisture than raisins, so these cookies will need it.

In not-changing-recipes news, I made these cocoa-only brownies that momma Deb of smitten kitchen posted a recipe for, and I never missed the melted chocolate. At all. Best fudgey brownies ever. Wouldn't change a thing. (Though if you can find some and don't mind shelling out a few cash dollars, I absolutely recommend Droste cocoa powder. My local Whole Foods carries it, and it's available on Amazon, and it's dark and rich and so deep that it has a tinge of berry flavor. And the box doesn't have a scary nurse on it anymore, but apparently that design is where the term Droste effect came from, so I thought I'd show you the picture anyway.) But yeah, go make these.

Also, guys, a word about whole wheat flour. (This is partially a note to self, 'cause I keep forgetting.) You can safely substitute a quarter of the white flour in a recipe for whole wheat flour, and it'll add a bit of a nutty flavor (and nutrition) but won't really impact the texture or taste. Substituting out a third of your white flour for whole wheat is pushing it, texturewise. More than that, and you'll have a grainy yucky thing on your hands.

Anyone know of any good resources for recipes that are meant to use whole wheat flour? Also, has anyone tried any of the "white whole wheat" flours that're on the market? King Arthur makes one, and I trust them (and their geeky baking & management ethics) utterly, but haven't tried it. (p.s. -- If you aren't following their blog, you should go do that. 'Cause sometimes they put pudding on top of cake and then brulée the pudding. You heard me.)


Stephanie said...

I have used King Arthur's white whole wheat flour, it's awesome. It's very subtly whole wheat and due to the fine milling, you can't see the particles.

the grammar monkey said...

I'm nearly out of flour -- perhaps I'll grab a bag of it the next time I'm at the store.

jules said...


That's all I got.