Tuesdays with Dorie – Rugelach

Well, I’m not doing so well with this blogging business.  Seem to go in fits and starts.  And I always remember that it’s Tuesdays with Dorie week on the Sunday night before!!!  Last couple of weeks have been recipe and baking light – have fallen back on a couple of slow cook meals that I’ve done in one go and reheated every night, as the house DIY and baby growing take their toll.  Luckily, I remembered this week that the recipe was Rugelach and had handily scanned the recipe so I had it on my phone and could check the recipe in the supermarket.  Seems I didn’t read the whole recipe though, as you’ll see it made for a tasty but messy substitution!!!

Sooooo – I had no idea what Rugelach was before I read this recipe and had never tried them before.  Rugelach are a tasty pastry of Jewish origin – often made in a crescent shape (like a croissant).   This recipe was for more of a “cut” cookie – when rolled up they reminded me a little of a cinnamon bun. It’s made with a cream cheese pastry, spread with a fruity jam like paste, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar (you had me from here alone!), then nuts and dried fruit, and rolled. From looking at a couple of the posts already up, seems you could bake them flat (like a sausage roll), or standing up like a cinnamon bun.

I’d never made a cream cheese pastry before, but this turned out really great, and I’ll definitely be looking out for more recipes that use it. The recipe said to have the butter and cream cheese at room temperature, but again due to lack of organisation (and impatience), I used cold butter and cream cheese. The dough was light and kind of flaky with that slight tang from the cream cheese.  Delish!  Turns out it’s also pretty great cold, as I’ve just eaten my second one from the leftovers in the fridge as I type this!!!

Chilled Pastry

My lack of organisation meant I didn’t really follow the rest of the recipe properly after the pastry.  I was too disorganised to make the lekvar (like a thick jam) myself, and I forgot to buy nuts.  So I used this really great plum jam we had, and instead of nuts…….  chopped chocolate.  It was actually delicious – the combination of jam, cinnamon and chocolate worked well.  Although it was VERY messy to bake (which might have somethign to do with the fact I didn’t chill it after rolling it up – again the impatience!!!).  The chocolate and jam and sugar kind of caramelised and spread over the baking tray, although when I took them out of the oven I just used a spatula to kind of push it all around the tray and back towards the pastries and they looked ok (well you can judge from the photos).  And tasted GREAT!!!!!

The rolled pastry with jam and cinnamon sugar

Ready to roll....

Cut and ready to bake

The hosts this week are The Urban Hiker and My Baking Heart – the recipe can be found at either of their sites….

The finished (sticky and messy!) product!

* PS – I’ve learnt early on that the recipes in this book make WAY too much for just the two of us in this house – so I made 1/3 of the recipe.  It made about 10 large-ish bun sized cookies/pastries.  (There are only 2 left).  And I was left with a heap of cinnamon sugar.  So I might have to make some more of the White Loaves and use it to make cinnamon bread or buns instead!!!!

**PPS – I promise I’m going to get my act into gear and start posting properly.  And taking some proper photos (that aren’t last minute in the middle of the night).  Promise.  Really.

 

 

TWD: Baking with Julia – White Loaves

So, it’s the first recipe of the Tuesdays with Dorie group I’ve joined. This week the recipe was White Loaves, hosted by the hosts of the group over at TWD, Jules and Laurie.

I’ve been looking forward to trying this recipe since I saw it was on the list, as the last time I made bread was years ago and it was really dense and not so great. I was hoping my baking had improved over the years, and of course my recipe horizons have opened up considerably since then.

I’ve been a bit distracted the last few weeks, with summer holidays and long weekends keeping me lazing on the beach and reading books rather than baking, but the weather has been too windy for boating this final long weekend (Waitangi Day for those of you who are out of NZ) so I finally got organized on Sunday night and got baking, for fresh bread to have on Monday morning! A little last minute, but who could blame me with a view like this!!

I decided, after reading a few of the comments on the TWD site, to make my loaf with a cinnamon swirl, seeing as we were heading home and unlikely to eat a loaf of plain bread before we leave. Also, I love cinnamon, especially for breakfast.

I found the recipe pretty easy to follow and execute. I was a little worried about making it away from my KitchenAid and dough hook, but it wasn’t too hard, I guess because I halved the recipe and only made one loaf instead of two. I’d read from others in the group that their mixers didn’t handle the dough that well, must be from the quantity so next time I try this at home I’ll have to remember to make a half recipe again too.

The loaf turned out great. I proved mine in the fridge overnight so I could bake in the morning and I don’t think it rose as much as it could have if baking straight away. But it was still light with a great crust and crumb. Definitely way better than my last bread making attempt!! The cinnamon swirl was also a great addition, next time I make it with cinnamon I’ll add more sugar to the dough (over the amount specified in the recipe), but this recipe is definitely getting added to my favourites list, plain or fancy.

Recipe #1 – success!!!! In two weeks time, we’ll be making chocolate truffle tarts. And by then I’ll be in my new house with my new kitchen, so stay posted as I have a flurry of things to post about in the meantime!

* the recipe can be found on the hosts sites as above
** check out the other bakers who have baked this recipe also on Tuesdays with Dorie
*** I used instant yeast and apparently didn’t knead mine as much as some of the other bakers (there was talk of KitchenAid mixers having fits but I didn’t have mine so I kneaded by hand and only for 3-4 minutes! – note to self – read the recipe more….) – but still turned out ok….