Happy Pi Day!

In celebration of Pi Day, I’ll be featuring two delicious recipes from the Modernist Cuisine at Home cookbook: Flaky Pie Crust and Sous Vide Vanilla-Cinnamon Pastry Cream. Both of these pi-inspired recipes can be easily altered to incorporate different flavors and ingredients making the possibilities as endless as pi’s digits.

Every great pie starts with an amazing crust and any filling you can dream up.

Flaky Pie Crust

Once you’ve completed your pie crust, you’ll need a delicious filling. We recommend trying Modernist Cuisine’s Sous Vide Vanilla-Cinnamon Pastry Cream, an easy and delicious cream pie filling.

Vanilla Pastry

You’ll notice that both of these recipes require you to prepare ingredients sous vide, a method of low-temperature cooking that often employs a hot water bath. The team at Modernist Cuisine have developed an easy and approachable way you can prepare food sous vide using just your kitchen sink, a Ziploc bag, and a kitchen thermometer. Watch Maxime Bilet, coauthor of Modernist Cuisine, show you how to use this simple and fun sous vide method:

If you’re interested in learning more about sous vide cooking, Modernist Cuisine at Home’s Cooking Sous Vide chapter has more details on this and other clever sous vide techniques, including how to cook sous vide in the oven or in an insulated cooler.

Not only will these two recipes help you make delicious pies, we think they’re especially appropriate given Modernist Cuisine at Home’s scientific approach to cooking. We hope you enjoy, and again, happy Pi Day!

French Macaron Recipe

macarons (1)

The Holidays inspire giving and spending more time with family…and baking! All over the world, people spend their holiday season with friends and at home whipping up their favorite tried and true cookie recipes. These recipes come from grandmothers and cookie parties and hidden pages of dusty cookbooks, and, don’t forget, your favorite cooking blogs! But what about those delicious treats that you buy for others or are lucky enough to be gifted, what if you could make some of those at home for yourself and loved ones.

One of my favorite treats any time of year are the light and scrumptious French Macarons. They are so tasty and decadent and airy enough to leave you feeling not the least bit guilty. Okay, maybe a little, but they are totally worth it.

Top 10 North American Pastry Chef Tariq Hanna from Sucré New Orleans has released his top secret French Macaron recipe for you budding pastry chefs at home. Once you have tried these delicious bites at home, you will be making them time and time again, your friends will be demanding it!

If these Macarons sound delicious but you would rather keep your kitchen tidy, don’t hesitate to head on over to Sucré’s website to purchase a variety of macaron flavors or one of their delicious king cakes! Sucré offers seasonal and traditional macarons. Don’t forget to share with your friends.

French Macaron Recipe
 
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Tariq’s Top Secret French Macaron Recipe
Ingredients
  • 250g TPT = almond powder and icing sugar – sifted
  • 100g sugar
  • 100g egg white
  • 25g sugar
  • * add color as desired
  • Filling:
  • 200g pistachio paste or other flavoring
  • 200g butter cream
  • * Amounts of flavors, pastes etc. will vary with personal taste
Instructions
  1. To make the macarons, sieve the sugar and the TPT very fine. Put aside.
  2. Now whisk the egg white together with the second part of sugar at middle speed.
  3. Gradually whisk the egg white mixture to become very stiff. * if cooking the sugar for the meringue cook to 245° F and follow the standard procedure for making a cooked meringue adding color in the end.
  4. * Add natural powder color
  5. Fold the TPT mix into meringue.
  6. Setting: With a whole nozzle pipe, pipe small discs on a baking parchment. Bake for 2-3 minutes at 200° C/ 392° F closed, 8-10 min at 170° C/ 338° F open. Remove from the oven and let the macarons cool.
  7. Whisk the pistachio paste with the butter cream and pipe the mix on the macaroons.
  8. Pipe the filling between two macarons and sandwich them.

macaronsbox

Please let us know how this extra special recipe works for you and how it wins over your friends and family.

Bon appetit!

Caramel Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s cookie exchange season!  If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably got a few go-to cookie recipes stashed up your sleeve that you make over and over again because they’re just that good.  I love my go-to cookies—recipes become classics for a reason, right?—but one of the best parts of the holiday season is trying out new recipes and sharing the secrets to your favorite goodies with others.

These Caramel Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies are definitely a holiday classic, for a few reasons.  First of all, they’re filled with all sorts of yummy goodness: you’ve got triple the sweet with two types of chocolate and chocolate caramel candies, all balanced out by the salty chopped cashews.  It’s your basic chocolate chip cookie, but upgraded—what’s not to love?

These cookies are also incredibly easy to bake, so they’re perfect for if you have a cookie exchange in 2 hours and need to make something fast.  There’s only 20 minutes of prep time required and the entire process takes just 50 minutes from start to finish.  They’re familiar enough that everyone at your party will reach for one, but so memorable that you’re practically guaranteed to get asked for the recipe.

What’s your favorite holiday cookie recipe?  Post your no-fail recipe in the comments if you’ve got one, and be sure to give these cookies a try!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Caramel Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies
 
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Ingredients
  • PAM® Baking Spray
  • 1 cup Blue Bonnet®-stick (1 cup = 2 sticks)
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 pkgs (1.7 oz each) chocolate-covered caramels, quartered
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped cashews
  • ½ cup premier white morsels
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. Spray your baking sheets with cooking spray; set aside.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder baking soda and salt in a small bowl; set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, beat Blue Bonnet and sugars with electric mixer until creamy.
  5. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well. Gradually add the combined flour mixture and beat well.
  6. Stir in caramel candies, chocolate morsels, cashews and white morsels.
  7. Drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart.
  8. Bake for 12 minutes or until golden brown.
  9. Cool for 2 minutes on cookie sheets, then transfer the cookies to wire racks. Cool completely.

This is a guest post by Meredith Kimelblatt on behalf of PAM®.  Visit pamcookingspray.com for more baking tips to help out with your holiday cookie exchanges this month.

Ice Cream Sandwiches

July is National Ice Cream Month and Today is an entire day dedicated to celebrating ice cream. TasteSpotting is partnering with Dreyer’s/Edy’s Slow Churned Light Ice Cream to feature your gorgeous ice cream cakes, ice cream sandwiches, ice cream sundaes, banana splits, floats, milkshakes, all day.

You will need

Store bought chocolate cookies, large

Ice cream of your desired flavor, mint is especially refreshing

Directions

Spread the cookies with softened ice cream. Top with another cookie. Wrap each sandwich with plastic wrap and place in the freezer until ice cream hardens. Un-wrap and enjoy!

{Review} Graeter’s Ice Cream

I got the greatest email the other day. Subject line read “Oprah’s Favorite Ice Cream”. As I read through the email I got to the line that said “Does this ice cream live up to the hype? We’ll let you be the judge. We’d like to send you samples to taste-test” Um, yeah. Do you really need ask a girl if she wants to sample some ice cream?

The flavors they sent me were Vanilla Chocolate Chip, Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Chocolate Chip and Mint Chocolate Chip. In addition, when they say chocolate chips they actually mean HUGE chocolate chunks! If you like some ice cream with your chocolate this is the ice cream for you! Even directly out of the freezer, these HUGE Chocolate Chunks were still soft and chewy.

Graeter’s Ice Cream is seriously the creamiest and smoothest ice cream I have ever put in my mouth!!

The ice cream itself is luscious, but the chocolate chunks really steal the show. My favorite out of all the flavors was the Mint Chocolate Chip.

If my descriptions were not enough to convince you, take Oprah’s word for it – Graeter’s is her favorite kind of ice cream!

My husband and I finished off the delicious Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip!

Graeter’s ice cream is now available at Kroger and Winn Dixie so next time you are grocery shopping pick up a pint or two or three or four because you will not be creamy chocolaty heaven!

DISCLAIMER: I was sent four pints of Graeter’s Ice Cream to review for free, but these opinions are entirely my own.