You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Festive’ category.

Welcome to our Holiday Bakealong challenge. Each month, we’ll announce a new recipe for you to try, along with helpful tips and step-by-step instructions here on our blog. We invite you to bake one of our favorite holiday recipes, this stunning Cinnamon Star Bread, then share a photo of your creation, tagging it #bakealong. Enjoy!

Picture1

You want to bake something extra-special for the holidays. A real show-stopper, as delicious as it is gorgeous. Not only is this loaf gorgeous; it’s your best cinnamon bun dream come true. Multiple layers of cinnamon-sugar encased in tender bread beg you to pull apart, slice, or nibble. Each warm and aromatic bite is better than the last.

CINNAMON STAR BREAD

For the Dough

2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup instant potato flakes

1/4 cup nonfat milk powder

3/4 cup+ 2 to 4 tablespoons lukewarm water

1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 teaspoons instant yeast

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 teaspoon kitchen salt

For the Cinnamon Filling

1 large egg, beaten

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoon cinnamon

Method:

  • Sift the flour, potato flour, and dry milk through a strainer to prevent any lumps.

  • Combine all dough ingredients and knead by hand to make a soft, smooth dough.

  • Place in a lightly greased bowl, cover and let it rise for 60 minutes, until doubled.

  • Divide dough into 4 equal pieces. Shape each into a ball and rest for 15 minutes.

  • On a lightly floured work surface, roll out 1 piece of dough into a 10-inch circle.

  • Place circle on a piece of parchment, brush a thin coat of beaten egg on surface.

  • Sprinkle with 1/3 of cinnamon-sugar, leave 1/4″ of bare dough around perimeter.

  • Roll out a second circle the same size as the first and place it on top of first circle.

  • Repeat layering process with egg, cinnamon sugar, dough, leaving top circle bare.

  • Place a 2 1/2″ to 3″ round cookie cutter in the center of the dough circle as a guide.

  • Cut the circle into 16 equal strips, from the cutter to the edge, through all the layer.

  • Using two hands, pick up 2 adjacent strips. Twist them away from each other twice.

  • Repeat with the remaining strips of dough so that you end up with 8 pairs of strips.

  • Pinch pairs of strips together to create star shape with eight points. Remove cutter.

  • Transfer star on the parchment to a baking sheet. Cover and let rise for 45 minutes.

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Brush with egg and bake for 12 to 15 minutes until golden.

  • Remove bread from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

  • Dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 10.

KAF November Bakealong Challenge

 

 

Advertisements

Turn this simple cake into a visual masterpiece by baking it in a special Bundt pan.  The dense, flavorful crumb of this rich butter cake from Sweetapolia takes the shape of the Bundt pan curves and slides out effortless after it has cooled to room temperature. Use real vanilla beans and nothing else to distract you from the subtle fragrance these tiny seeds impart to your finished cake; you will be able to smell them all over the house once your cake comes out of the oven. I was lucky to get my hands on some gourmet beans from Madagascar [courtesy of my good friend, the Wolfman] but if you cannot find good quality ones, vanilla paste might be the next best alternative. This Bundt cake is so good that it disappeared overnight almost as soon as it was ready to cut and serve and I should warn you that there is the risk of potential fights over the last piece of cake here.

VANILLA BEAN BUNDT CAKE

Ingredients:

For the Vanilla Bundt Cake

3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour, sifted

1 teaspoon (4g) baking powder

1/2 teaspoon (2g) baking soda

1/2 teaspoon (4g) kitchen salt

1 cup+2 tablespoons (255g) butter, softened

1-3/4 cups (350g) granulated sugar

2 vanilla beans, halved lengthwise

4 large eggs, at room temperature

1/4 teaspoon (1.25 ml) pure lemon extract

1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk, room temperature

For the Vanilla Bean Glaze

1 vanilla bean, split and scraped

2-3 tablespoons (30-45 ml) whole milk

About 1 cup confectioners’ sugar

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Butter a Bundt pan and dust with flour, knocking out excess.

  • Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Beat the butter and sugar in an electric mixer.

  • Beat at medium speed till pale and fluffy for about 5 minutes. Scrape seeds from vanilla beans with knife.

  • Add to the butter mixture and beat until well combined for 1 minute. Add eggs one at a time, beating well.

  • Beat in lemon extract until well combined. At low speed add flour mixture and milk alternately in batches.

  • Start and end with flour mixture, mixing until just combined. Spoon batter into pan and smooth over top.

  • Gently tap pan on counter to eliminate air bubbles. Bake until skewer inserted into center comes out clean.

  • Cool cake in pan for 1 hour, invert onto a rack and cool it completely to room temperature for about 1 hour.

  • For the glaze, split vanilla bean and scrape seeds into milk. Add confectioners’ sugar gradually until thick.

  • Once the cake has cooled, drizzle glaze over top. Sprinkle with sugar pearls if desired. Serves about 20-25.

Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake

A popular treat from North India, the besan laddoo is traditionally served as prasad, an offering made to God or to mark festive occasions like birthdays and weddings. Unlike other laddoos which involve painstaking methods of preparation, the technique of making besan laddoos comes as straight forward and relatively foolproof such that you will get it right on your very first attempt. The only catch is to get your besan/chickpea flour perfectly roasted over a low flame until it loses its raw smell and texture without letting it burn.

The rich, characteristic taste of the besan laddoo depends on this crucial step, so roll up your sleeves and make sure that you keep stirring the hot besan until it turns golden and fragrant. Usually a generous amount of clarified butter is required to get that distinctive melt-in-the-mouth texture, so do not skimp on the desi ghee if you can help. The khoya helps to bind the mixture well and make it less crumbly though it does reduce their shelf life a bit. Make this easy yet flavorsome laddoo for your brothers on Raksha Bandhan and share the love!

BESAN LADDOO

Ingredients:

2 1/4 cups besan

1/4 cup semolina

1/2 cup ghee, melted

3/4 cup powdered sugar

1/3 cup khoya or mawa

1/2 teaspoon cardamom

1/4 cup almonds, chopped

1/4 cup cashew nuts

Method:

  • Heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the cashew nuts and sauté on low medium flame.
  • When they turn golden brown, remove from the pan from heat and place cashew nuts in a bowl to cool.

  • Add almonds to ghee, sauté on low flame for 3 minutes. Remove from pan and place with cashew nuts.
  • In the same pan, add remaining ghee and allow to melt and turn warm, not hot. Slowly, add the besan.

  • Roast on low flame till besan turns color and gives lovely aroma after at least 30-35 minutes of cooking.
  • Turn off heat and remove roasted besan to a wide plate and allow it to cool. It can be slightly lukewarm.

  • Melt 1 tablespoon ghee and roast semolina on low flame for 7-8 minutes and add it to the roasted besan.
  • Meanwhile, add 1 tablespoon of ghee to the same pan and sauté the grated khoya for some 2-3 minutes.

  • Turn off flame and remove it from pan. Grind the roasted cashew nuts and almonds to a coarse powder.
  • Add the nuts to roasted besan. Add powdered sugar and mix to combine. Finally add cardamom powder.

  • Mix gently to combine and shape this mixture into small, lemon sized even balls. Leave to set on a plate.
  • Place cashew nut on top as garnish. Laddoos have a shelf life of 2 weeks at room temperature. Makes 12.

Besan Laddoos

About Me

PrerrnaMirchi
Mauritius

My Baking Adventures

Daring Bakers

Blog Archives

© 2010 Inspiredtobake

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of material from Inspiredtobake without permission from the author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, as long as they redirect to the original content on this blog.

 Subscribe in a reader

Inspired To Bake

Promote Your Page Too

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3,746 other followers