Cake Artisan - Serving up the sweeter side of life - cakes, recipes, pastries, books, products and more.

Print this Article

Ok, this recipe needed a “do over.”  A huge part of the online baking community is about sharing, that’s a large part of why we do this: a shared love of food and cooking it.  We all see recipes and foods online or in cookbooks that we like and it’s perfectly fine to go ahead and make them and then to write about your experiences.  But, and here’s the point… I saw this recipe for yummy cookies on Caroline’s Chocolate & Carrots blog and thought I’d see how they turned out since I have more than one friend these days who has a reaction to flour products but still likes a sweet, baked treat.

In my haste yesterday to:

  1. Gather up two dogs to take them to the vet for shots
  2. Wash my car and vacuum the inside in 105 degrees
  3. Go to the post office, video store, bank, City building, library
  4. Get Starbucks
  5. See what Hobby Lobby had on sale
  6. Buy lunch
  7. Grocery shop for our healthy eating lifestyle change
  8. Go to the gym
  9. Do some work for a client or two (need money from time to time…LOL)
  10. Remove the covers from both air conditioner condensers to clean them and help Hubby(and about destroy both in the process),

I hit the “publish” button on my WordPress post instead of “save draft” which inadvertently posted a half baked article which didn’t give any credit to Caroline and her recipe at all.  Luckily for me, she was very understanding and polite about it… Sorry Caroline..

Anyway, here is the recipe and they are really great cookies so you must bake them!

One of the first things I do before I bake is set all my ingredients out and all of the equipment I’m going to be using… This is called mise en place or putting everything in it’s place. You can read more about that term here…

Mise en place - putting it all in order ready to bake!

Mise en place - putting it all in order ready to bake!

Ingredients:
  • 3 Cups powdered sugar
  • Cups of dark or Dutch Processed cocoa powder
  • Teaspoon salt (we use Kosher)
  • 3 to 4 large egg whites (room temperature)
  • 1 Tablespoon of GOOD vanilla (I use Madagascar)
  • ½ cup chocolate chips (I used good ‘ol Nestle Semi-Sweet)


Method

  • First off, preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) (F to C temp converter here)
  • Prepare your baking sheets with silicon mats or sprayed parchment
  • Combine all dry ingredients into a bowl (flour, cocoa powder and salt)
  • Fold in 3 egg whites and then vanilla
  • Only beat until mixture is moist and fudge brownie like.  If it’s too dry then add an additional egg white.
  • Fold in chocolate chips
  • Using a tablespoon, place cookie mix onto prepared baking sheets, leaving room as they will spread. (I got 12 on a half pan sized baking sheet)
No flour, no fuss, fudgy chocolate chip cookies

On the tray

Bake for approx 14 mins or until the tops begin to crack. They will have a shiny gloss finish to them.

No Flour, No fuss, fudgy chocolate chip cookies by Cake Artisan

Finished Cookies

Haha… my first embedded video..

 

Points to consider:

If you are using a convection oven adjust the temperature down by about 25 degrees and you can usually reduce your bake time by a minute or two.  Keep an eye on your cookies as all ovens vary a little.

Many variables can affect your baking… humidity, altitude and the age of your products.  For example, the older the flour  is the drier it can be, therefore often requiring the addition of more liquid than normally called for just to get it to the right consistency… don’t panic, there is NO FLOUR in this particular recipe, this was just an example of a variable.

Enjoy and happy baking!

(4) Comments    Read More   

Print this Article

Egg Nog from scratchThis quick post is so a friend can share in this recipe… but hey we are all friends here on the internet so give this yummy egg nog recipe a shot!  It does have alcohol in it so beware.

Ingredients:

1/3 Cup + 1Tbs. Sugar

1 Pint Whole Milk

1 Cup Heavy Cream

3 Oz Bourbon

1tsp Grated Nutmeg

4 Large Eggs

 

 Method:

The parts are made in stages and then combined, so firstly:

Separate Whites from Yolks. Yolks into one bowl and whites into another.

Whip yellows at high speed until they lighten in color.

Add 1/3 cup sugar.

Add Cream to Milk and then the entire mixture to the yellows.

Add nutmeg.

Mix.

Add Bourbon

 

Chill mixture while cleaning mixer and then do this bit:

 

Whip whites at high speed to soft peaks

Add sugar and whip to stiff peaks

 

Then:

Integrate the yolk mixture with the whites by carefully stirring in.  Don’t destroy all the whites fluffy goodness as they give a lightness to the nog.

 

ENJOY!

(0) Comments    Read More   

Print this Article

My husband mentioned that he’d seen a Paula Deen recipe for pink lemonade cake.  I thought that sounded really nice and would be a great Summertime dessert.  After looking at Paula’s recipe online and the comments by users who had found it “too dense” “too this” or “too that” I decided to run with her basic flavour idea but to tweak it and hopefully turn out something really nice.

This is what I did.  It’s really easy and very tasty.

Pink Lemonade Cupcake Batter by Cake Artisan

Pink Lemonade Cupcake Batter

I took a box of white cake mix and prepared it as directed on the box except that I don’t like to use oil in my cakes so I replaced the 1/3 cup of oil with an equivalent 1/3 cup of natural, unsweetened apple sauce.  To the mix I then added three heaped tablespoons of the Country Time Pink Lemonade drink mix and also added a dash of Madagascar Vanilla and about a tablespoon of lemon zest.  I decided I wanted my cake to be more pink than the pale colour it was currently so I added a dash of pink food colouring until it was pink enough for me.

Ingredients so far:

1 box of Moist White Cake Mix

3 egg whites (no yolks)

1/3 cup natural, unsweetened apple sauce

1 & 1/4 cup of water

3 heaped tablespoons of Country Time Pink Lemonade drink mix powder (not diluted)

1 tsp of Madagascar Vanilla or Vanilla Essence

1 tablespoon of fresh lemon zest

Country Time - Pink Lemonade

Country Time - Pink Lemonade

Pink food colouring

 

(Baking purists are probably rolling their eyes at my suggestion of using a box mix and then the addition of pink food colouring.  It worked for what we were doing here so I’m ok with it.  If you aren’t, there are plenty of from scratch white cake recipes out there to delight your pure little baker’s hearts.)

Even though I have a passion for baking we try not to keep too many goodies in the house because we both could stand to lose some weight.  So we send our goodies off to work with my husband and I’ve heard his coworkers think this is ok.  Since they are headed for the office I decided to make cupcakes as they are far more manageable than needing to find a knife and plates for carving up a larger single cake.

Next I created a tasty complementary frosting.  I pretty much always go for my basic cream cheese frosting and just change it up a little to suit what it is that I’m making.

Frosting:

Crusting cream cheese buttercream

5 heaped tablespoons of Country Time  Pink Lemonade Drink Powder

Pink Lemonade Cupcake by Cake Artisan adapted from Paula Deen's Pink Lemonade Cake

Pink Lemonade Cupcake

After the cupcakes came out of the oven and cooled I frosted them with a generous swirl of buttercream and some sugar sprinkles just to make them shiny.  So that’s it folks.. really a quick and easy recipe and perfect for summer mealtimes or snacks.  Enjoy!  And remember if you have any questions don’t hesitate to email me.  I try to answer all emails even if they may take a couple of days to get you your response.

~ Colleen

 

 

(3) Comments    Read More   

Print this Article

Red velvet, while synonymous with Valentines Day and now popular for weddings, is just plain gorgeous to look at.  To be totally honest, red is my absolute favourite colour and any chance I get to wear it, look at it or eat it I do.  Not that many red foods around when you think about it… and I don’t really eat very much red meat.

Sooo let’s get busy and make some delicious red velvet cookies to be enjoyed and shared all year around.  But wait, just think how cute they would be for Christmas or Valentine’s Day as well!

This recipe calls for Dutch Processed Chocolate.   So what’s the difference between that and regular unsweetened cocoa powder you ask?   First off, Both types of cocoa powder are unsweetened and therefore bitter when tasted alone.

Dutch-Process Cocoa or Alkalized Unsweetened Cocoa Powder:

Has been treated with an alkali to neutralize its natural acidity. Because it’s neutral and doesn’t react with baking soda, it must be used in recipes calling for baking powder, unless there are other acidic ingredients in sufficient quantities used. It has a reddish-brown color, mild flavor, and is easy to dissolve in liquids.

Hershey Dutch Processed Cocoa
Hershey’s Dutch Processed Cocoa

 

Ghirardelli Sweetened Cocoa
Ghirardelli Cocoa
Unsweetened Cocoa:

Has a complex chocolate flavor while the Dutch-process is darker and more mellow. Its intense flavor makes it well suited for use in brownies, cookies and some chocolate cakes. When natural cocoa (an acid) is used in recipes calling for baking soda (an alkali), it creates a leavening action that causes the batter to rise when placed in the oven.

Ok, on to our recipe:

Ingredients:

3 1/4 cups (355 grams) all purpose flour
1/4 cup (75 grams) unsweetened Dutch processed cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon (4 grams) baking powder
1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 3/4 cups (350 grams) granulated white sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons of Red Food Coloring.. I used the gel type

For Red Velvet Cookies:

1. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder.

2. In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 3 to 4 minutes). Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and the food coloring then beat until combined.

Red Velvet Cookie Dough by Cake Artisan
Red Velvet Cookie Dough

Add the flour mixture and beat until you have a smooth dough.

3. Divide the dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about one hour or until firm enough toroll.

4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in the center of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

5.    Remove one half of the chilled dough from the refrigerator and, on a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch (1 cm). (Keep turning the dough as you roll, making sure the dough does not stick to the counter.) Cut out desired

Red Velvet Cookies by Cake Artisan
Red Velvet Cookies

shapes using a lightly floured cookie cutter and transfer cookiesto the prepared baking sheet. Place the baking sheets with the unbaked cookies in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes to chill the dough which prevents the cookies from spreading and losing their shape while baking.

Note: If you are not going to frost the baked cookies, you may want to sprinkle the unbaked cookies with crystal or sparkling sugar.

Bake cookies for about 10 – 12 minutes (depending on size) or until they are firm around the edges. Remove from oven and let cookies cool on baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling. Frost with royal icing, if desired. Be sure that the frosting on the cookies dries completely before storing. (This may take several hours.) Frosted cookies will keep several days in an airtight

Red Velvet Cookies Iced by Cake Artisan
Red Velvet Cookies

container. Store between layers of parchment paper or wax paper.

Makes about 36 – 4 inch (10 cm) cookies.

BEST frosted with a cream cheese frosting.  I use the recipe on my site here and thin it with some milk to make it more like a glaze if I don’t want heavy frosting.  Also, I have rolled out fondant into the same shape as the cookie and placed it on top of a thin layer of the frosting which gives a nice finish!

For a final finish on my fondant covered cookies I used an impression mat to make pretty patterns.. and then dusted with pearl dust.. there is no limit to what you can do with these or any other cookies!  Happy Baking!

(18) Comments    Read More   

Print this Article

In response to a question today I thought it might be interesting to visit why some recipes use mass (weight) instead of by volume (cups) or by count.  Baking is a science people. Unlike a lot of savoury recipes, adding a dash of baking soda or a smidgen of yeast probably won’t get you the best possible baked product.  Baked goods rely on chemistry and the correct ratios of leavening agents to do the job.  You don’t guess at the temperature of the oven and consider near enough to be good enough.  No, we follow the guide and hope like hell we have it right.  We have ALL read our ingredient lists incorrectly.  Heck, it seems the older I get the more often I am likely to forget an ingredient altogether!!

For most of history, most cookbooks did not specify quantities precisely, instead talking of “a nice leg of spring lamb”, a “cupful” of lentils, a piece of butter “the size of a walnut”, and “sufficient” salt. In Europe, cookbooks used mass (“weight”) rather than volume, though informal measurements such as a “pinch”, a “drop”, or a “hint” (soupçon) continue to be used from time to time. In the U.S.A., Fannie Farmer introduced the more exact specification of quantities by volume in her 1896 Boston Cooking-School Cook Book.

Today, most of the world prefers measurement by weight, though the preference for volume measurements continues in North America.

Flowers measuring cups

So pretty!

In domestic cooking, bulk solids, notably flour and sugar, are measured by volume, often cups, though they are sold by weight at retail. Weight measures are used for meat. Butter may be measured by either weight (14 lb) or volume (3 tbsp) or a combination of weight and volume (14 lb plus 3 tbsp); it is sold by weight but in packages marked to facilitate common divisions by eye. (As a sub-packaged unit, a stick of butter, at 14 lb [113 g], is a de facto measure in the U.S.)

Cookbooks in Canada use the same system, although pints and gallons would be taken as their Imperial quantities unless specified otherwise. Following the adoption of the metric system, recipes in Canada are frequently published with metric conversions.

Different ingredients are measured in different ways:

Liquid ingredients are generally measured by volume worldwide.

Dry bulk ingredients, such as sugar and flour, are measured by weight in most of the world (“250 g flour”), and by volume in North America (“1/2 cup flour”). Small quantities of salt and spices are generally measured by volume worldwide, as few households have sufficiently precise balances to measure by weight.

Meats are generally measured by weight or count worldwide: “a 2 kg chicken”; “four lamb chops”.

Vegetables may be measured by weight or by count, despite the inherent imprecision of counts given the variability in the size of vegetables.

Chopped or cut-up meats and vegetables are generally measured by weight, except in North America where they are measured by volume.

Metric measures

In most of the world, recipes use the metric system of litres (l, sometimes L) and millilitres (ml, sometimes mL), grams (g) and kilograms (kg), and degrees Celsius (°C). The word litre is always spelled liter in the USA.

The English-speaking world frequently measures weight in pounds (avoirdupois), with volume measures based on cooking utensils and pre-metric measures. The actual values frequently deviate from the utensils on which they were based, and there is little consistency from one country to another.

Most blog recipes tend toward the home-based cook and most of our recipes use volumetric measures.  However, from time to time you are going to come across a recipe that is based on mass or weight.  Most of the Western world uses mass measurements and with our world becoming such a small place through the use of technology it helps to know how to deal with alternative measurements and why it’s a good idea.

Mass or weight measurements tend to be far more accurate than a cup o’ this or that.  This is largely due to the fact that a lot of the baking cup sets are just not accurate, having been designed to look pretty rather than to be completely precise.

References:

Griffin, Mary Annarose; Gisslen, Wayne (2005). Professional baking (Fourth ed.). New York: John Wiley. p. 6. ISBN0-471-46427-9. Retrieved 2010 Dec 15. “Volume measure is often used when scaling water for small or medium-sized batches of bread. Results are generally good. However, whenever accuracy is critical, it is better to weigh.”

(4) Comments    Read More   

Print this Article

Thank you to all who dropped an email wondering where I’d gone from the blog.  Well the quick answer is my Dad passed away after battling cancer and I just needed some time to get going again.  Thanks again.  Colleen

(4) Comments    Read More