Category Archives: Scones and Breads

Apple Pie Dessert Panini with Salted Caramel

A few week-ends ago I borrowed a Panini press to experiment a little.  I’ve had some good café lunches and wanted to try some of these recipes at home.  As a result, we Panini-d our way through the entire week-end and this Apple Pie Dessert Panini with Salted Caramel was born.

Apple Pie Panini1

I don’t have very many kitchen appliances and I don’t follow too many food fads and now I know why.  I become slightly obsessed with a new toy or idea, and I make a ridiculous amount of food with it for a while.  Remember the cupcake craze?  I didn’t just make cupcakes for every acquaintance I knew, I opened a cupcake shop and made thousands!  That cupcake craze nearly did me in.  And when I bought our first deep fryer?  This place smelled like a fish and chip shop for weeks.   Our arteries are still recovering.  So yup, when I borrowed that Panini press, I dashed to the grocery store and bought all kinds of breads, meats and cheeses and melt-y things to put inside.  I became a bit of a freak about it, grilling something, and then wiping it down and trying something new.   I’m not kidding when I say, I made something in it for every meal.  As you know, I have teenagers, so when I started making grilled sandwiches again for dinner, a lot of eye rolling ensued.  It was getting to be time to back away from that Panini press, before I started planning my next sandwich shop.  I’m not even kidding.

But I lured those teenagers back with dessert (I’ll take any small victory with my teens at this point)!  I presented them with some golden raisin bread, oozing with brown sugar cream cheese, cinnamon sugar and apple slices.  I topped it with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream and salted caramel sauce while still warm.  All melt-y and sweet and gooey, this Panini dessert was a real winner.  It was a fitting end to a week-end of Panini’s, and a super quick dessert to throw together.

Apple Pie Dessert Panini via SweetRevelations

Just to prove to you how over the top I can be, we ate this insanely good treat, and then I packed the press up to return it to its rightful owner.  I had to get it out of here, before the next days meals rolled around.  But not before I made a batch of homemade cherry pie filling, and showed up at their door with a bag of fresh egg bread, and ice cream.  Then I proceeded to invade their kitchen and make dessert Panini’s for them.

True story.

Salted Caramel via SweetRevelations

Happy week-end everyone!

Apple Pie Dessert Panini with Salted Caramel

  • 2 raisin bread slices
  • butter to spread on bread
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar cream cheese (store-bought)
  • very thinly sliced apple (you will only use 1/4 of it)
  • cinnamon sugar (mix 1/4 tsp cinnamon with tsp sugar)
  • vanilla ice cream

Salted Caramel Sauce

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  1. Make the salted caramel sauce first.   You will have leftovers, so cut the recipe in half if you need to.  But seriously, why would you?  In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar and water over medium-low heat and stir until the sugar dissolves.  Increase the heat to medium- high and bring to a boil, without stirring.  Use a wet pastry brush to wash down any sugar crystals on the side of the pan if you need to.  Boil until the syrup is a deep amber color, about 7 minutes.   Remove mixture from the heat and very carefully whisk in the heavy cream. The mixture will bubble a lot but keep mixing. Stir in the unsalted butter, and salt. Bring back to the stove on low heat and stir until you have a smooth sauce.  Allow the caramel to cool.   The salted caramel sauce will keep in the refrigerator up to 2 weeks.
  2. While the Panini press is heating up, butter one side of each slice of raisin bread.   Flip the bread over, so the buttered sides are on the bottom.  Spread the cream cheese on one piece of bread.  Layer some apples slices on top of that.  Sprinkle the apples with the cinnamon sugar, and top with the last piece of bread, buttered side out.  Place on the press and grill for 3-4 minutes, until the bread is golden and crispy.  Remove, slice the sandwich in half and top with vanilla ice cream and salted caramel sauce.

 

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Filed under Ice Cream, Sauces and Syrups, Scones and Breads

Cranberry Swiss Zopf Bread

I hope that you enjoyed the holidays where ever you may have been, with the people most important to you.  We had a busy few weeks and I’m just settling back into a routine.  Although I have thoroughly enjoyed my daily naps, hockey games and endless hours reading, it looks like Christmas threw up in here!  It’s time to get things tidied up.

Swiss Loaf- SweetRevelations

Usually, on week-ends, when I set my mind to an afternoon of cleaning, I start off right away with making some bread dough.  I spend a few quiet minutes mixing and kneading, and when the bread is left to rise, I get straight to work.  Must be something happening in my subconscious about settling in for a few hours of work, to make the house in order again, with a sweet, yeasty, warm reward at the end.   I’ve been kneading homemade bread for years and the comfort it brings me is unmatched to any other item I bake.  There’s a swish and roll on the countertop while kneading, sometimes the only sound in the house, as I do my work.  Some of my best thinking happens in these moments.  I do think of my ancestors, living in a simpler time, doing the same thing for their family.  Perhaps my great-grandfather, a cook, baking fresh bread and biscuits for his children!  It’s more about the process for me, the kneading and then resting, allowing the ingredients to do their magic.   A simple task really, that takes a few hours from start to finish, that this whole house gets to enjoy.  This weekly, sometimes daily, mixing and kneading ritual for me, centers around spending time in our home, making it a home, and inviting my family to share in this good wholesome food with me. Not to mention the smell, that intoxicating, welcome home smell, that really is like no other.

swiss bread- SweetRevelations

I regularly use fresh or dried fruits in my breads and biscuits.  Often adding fresh berries, when I can.  For the most part, fresh fruits do very well in breads and biscuits as long as they aren’t overripe and super juicy.  Fruits actually help the leavening process, by adding some extra sugar for the yeast to feed on.  This time, I opted for a pretty Swiss Braided Zopf, a gorgeous recipe from King Arthur Flour, that I’ve made many times.  I didn’t actually mix the berries in the dough this go around, but quickly tucked them in all of the nooks and crannies just before the second rise.  The recipe uses sour cream and eggs and produces a rich tasting, not too sweet, moist loaf, with a tender crust.  Perfect for coffee break.   Or breakfast toast.  Or French Toast.  Or Bread Pudding.  You get the idea.

Swiss Braid- SweetRevelations

Don’t let working with yeast intimidate you.  It’s really pretty straight forward, and with fast acting yeast, it’s almost impossible to mess up.   Most bread dough does very well with an 8-10 minute kneading time.  It generally doesn’t need to be complicated or fussy.  Bread dough is usually pretty forgiving, and you can work on some of your errors the next time you bake a loaf.  As with all baking, it’s a learning process, but so worth it!  At the end of the day, you’ll end up with a stunning loaf that your family will drool over.   You won’t be able to butter it fast enough!

I’m curious to know from you, dear friends, what are some of your baking or food traditions?  Are you starting new ones, or continuing on with some of the kitchen love you grew up with?  This year I will really be more focused on sharing more of my food traditions and stories with you.  I’ve loved writing about my bake shop experiences, but really, the heart of this baker, started a long time ago in my childhood home with some great teachers.  It has only increased as I’ve become a homemaker, in this amazing community with access to outstanding farm to table foods and locally sourced ingredients.  I’m going to share with you more about my passion for using simple ingredients, and a no-fuss approach to creating new food traditions while still embracing the old.  Lets make homemaking the new food trend for 2016 every body!

Thank you, as always for a wonderful blogging year.  I do so appreciate you.  Happy New year!

Renee

xo

  Cranberry Swiss Zopf Bread

*from King Arthur Flour

  • 3/4 cup full fat sour cream
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 egg and 1 egg white, lightly beaten (reserve remaining yolk for glaze)
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (thawed)
  • 3 tablespoons slivered almonds

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, yeast and salt. Set aside.
  2. Warm the sour cream to lukewarm in a microwave, for approximately 15 seconds, stirring once removed. Add the melted butter and stir.  Add the flour mixture to the sour cream mixture, then stir in the egg and 1 egg white. Stir until the mixture comes together to form a shaggy mass, then set it aside for 15 minutes.
  3. Knead the dough, by hand, until it’s smooth and elastic, for approximately 8-10 minutes (or use a mixer and a dough hook too if you have it).  Place dough in a greased bowl, cover the bowl with a tea towel, and set the dough aside to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until it’s doubled in bulk.  I usually put mine out of the way, on top of the fridge.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly greased countertop and knead it gently a few times, to expel the excess carbon dioxide. Divide it into three equal pieces, and roll each piece into an 18-inch log. Braid the logs together, pinching them at both ends and tucking the pinched ends under.
  5. Place the braid on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and tuck fresh cranberries in all of the folds and crevices.  Cover it again, and allow it to rise for another hour.
  6. Whisk the remaining egg yolk with 1 tbsp. water, and brush the braid with this glaze. Sprinkle with almonds.  Bake the bread in a preheated 375°F oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until it’s golden brown and shiny. Remove it from the oven and let it cool on the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely. Zopf is traditionally served at breakfast, toasted or not, and makes an outstanding French toast too!

 

 

 

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Skillet Cranberry Orange Scones

Get your skillet out!  Spoil your family this week and make Skillet Cranberry Orange Scones for breakfast.

If you’ve been following me for a while, you know about my weakness for this quick bread, because it’s so incredibly versatile.  I rolled thousands of scones when I owned a bake shop, and still regularly make them for home.  These buttery scones are bursting with cranberries and orange zest, and then glazed (twice for good measure) with a sweet orange glaze.   I’ve really come to love baking a small batch in the skillet, and the presentation is simple and beautiful.

Cranberry Scones SweetRevelations

Often people mistakenly think that scones are bland, dense, and dry.  I can assure you, these are not.  The trick with scones, is to handle the dough as little as possible, use good quality frozen butter, and fresh buttermilk.   A batch of scones is easily mixed in 20 minutes or less, is done by hand, and they can be prepared ahead of time, frozen and baked as needed.   I know right?  I can’t talk these things up any more, they sell themselves!

cranberry scones, sweetrevelations

With the holidays approaching, I always, and I mean always, have a batch ready in the freezer.  They are the perfect tea time treat when company arrives, make an excellent gift, and are a delicious addition to any holiday brunch table.  I can also bake up a few in the morning, right from the freezer, for the kids before they head off to school.

cranberry scones- sweetrevelations

I bet your kitchen is in full swing with holiday baking.  I hope you might take a few minutes to mix up a batch of scones and have a much deserved coffee break!

Happy baking friends,

Renee

Skillet Cranberry Orange Scones

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp orange zest
  • 1/2 cup butter, frozen
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp orange extract
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (full fat works best)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries

Orange Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp orange juice

 

Preheat oven to 415°

1.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, salt and zest.  Use a cheese grater to grate the frozen butter into the flour mixture.  Mix gently with a fork to coat the butter with the flour mixture.

2.  In a separate small bowl mix the buttermilk, extract, sour cream and egg.  Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour buttermilk mixture in.  Mix gently to incorporate.

3.  Knead dough on a floured surface, maximum 1o times.  The idea is to knead very little to keep that butter cold.  As best you can, fold in the cranberries with your hands.  Pat the dough into a circle about 6 inches in diameter.  Cut the dough into eight even wedges, but still keeping it in the circle shape.  Place the scones into a well seasoned skillet (a circle of parchment on the bottom works well too).  Bake for about 25-30 minutes, until dough is cooked and scones are golden.

4.  While scones are baking, mix the powdered sugar and orange juice into a smooth glaze.  Once scones are baked, drizzle with orange glaze while they are still warm.

Notes:

  1.  Don’t worry if you don’t have a skillet.  You can use a round cake pan, lightly sprayed with baking spray, or bake the scones on a cookie sheet lined with parchment.
  2. Scones do very well in the freezer.  Roll a batch and freeze on a cookie sheet (before baking).  Simply bake from frozen, adding additional time as needed.
  3. This recipe doubles nicely.  I usually make a double batch, baking one up and freezing the other for later.

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Reese Krantz Cake

It’s officially fall now, which means I start baking all of the glorious recipes that signify autumn (think pumpkin everything!) and I get back into the routine of baking different kinds of bread every week-end.  It’s something I’ve done for years, and a process that I get so much satisfaction from.   There are so many amazing yeasted bread and cake recipes out there to try, and literally nothing makes the house smell better!

Reese Krantz Cake

I do especially love to make yeasted coffee cakes, or sweet breads, for friends and company.  Krantz Cake is one such treat; a stunning, chocolate-y swirled, sweet yeasted cake that is rolled and twisted into a beautiful decadent loaf.  Once baked, it is brushed generously with a simple syrup that creates a shiny loaf that’s almost too pretty to eat!  I decided to make a Reese version, and bake it in a springform pan instead of a loaf pan, which created this gorgeous twisty cake.  The folks at Hershey’s Canada kindly sent me some Reese Spread to try, and I knew as soon as I licked that first spoonful, it was destined to be in a yeasted cake.

The process couldn’t be simpler, and I easily adapted my homemade white bread recipe to include more eggs and butter.  I left this rich egg-y dough to rise and then spread it with 2 gloriously chocolate-y, peanut-y, cups of Reese Spread and sprinkled it with chopped peanuts before baking.  Once out of the oven, I brushed it with a simple syrup and left it to cool.  I had to guard this warm, delicious cake with my life as others were eager to dig in!  Once cool, the flavor was just as I suspected, a sweet, soft yeasted cake full of little pockets of Reese peanut butter decadence.  Reese swirls everybody! Reese swirls!

Reese Krantz

Don’t be intimidated by working with yeast.  I used a rapid rise version, which requires no proofing and is simply added to the flour at the beginning of mixing.  Most Krantz recipes call for refrigerating the dough overnight, but I’ve opted to skip that step with outstanding results.   A stand mixer makes this process ridiculously easy and there is very little hands on time.  The dough has two rise times before baking, which leaves plenty of time to do other things in between.

Reese Krantz Cake

I’ve made this a few times already.  The last time I promptly divided the cake into thirds and delivered it to friends.  Honestly, something this good is meant to be shared.

Happy peanut-y, chocolate-y, finger licking Reese baking friends,

Renee

Reese Krantz Cake

  • 4 1/2 cups of flour (up to 5 cups if needed)
  • 2 tsp rapid rise yeast
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup milk, warmed to 110°
  • 1/2 cup soft butter cut into chunks
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 cups Reese Spread
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp. chopped peanuts
  • 2/3 c water
  • 12 tbsp. sugar
  1. In a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment, add two cups of flour, the yeast and honey.  Stir for about one minute.  Add another cup of flour, the milk, and salt.  Mix until dough starts to combine.  Add another cup of flour, the eggs (one at a time) and slowly add the butter.  Add the last 1/2 cup of flour and knead the dough for 3 minutes, adding an additional 1/2 cup if needed, just until the dough starts to pull away from the side of the bowl.  It will be tacky to touch.  Place the dough in a large bowl sprayed with non-stick spray, cover with a tea towel and leave in a warm, draft free area for 2 hours.  The dough will rise very little.
  2. After the first rise, roll the dough out, onto a floured surface, into a rectangle that is approximately 15″ x 20″, with the longest side facing you.  Spread the dough with the Reese Spread (right to the edges) and sprinkle with the 1/2 cup of chopped peanuts.  Roll the dough up into a long tight log and use both hands to even out the long piece.  Using a sharp knife slice the entire log in half (lengthwise), exposing the gorgeous layers of Reese Spread and dividing the log into two long halves.  With the cut sides facing up, gently press together one end of each half, and then lift the right half over the left half. Repeat this process, but this time lift the left half over the right, to create a simple, two-pronged twisted plait, keeping those Reese layers at the top.  Gently place this twisted dough into a well sprayed 10″ springform pan, winding it as best you can, to make it fit. Sprinkle with the remaining peanuts. Cover again with the tea towel and leave to rest for an hour.
  3. Bake at 375° for approx. 27 minutes.  While the cake is in the oven, make the simple syrup.  In a small saucepan bring the water and 12 tbsp. of sugar just to a simmer.  Remove from heat.  Once cake is removed from the oven, brush all over with most of the simple syrup while it’s still hot.  I didn’t use it all, there were a few teaspoons of syrup left when I was done.  Release the pan once the cake is cool.  This cake kept very well in a covered cake carrier for a few days.  It never lasted longer than that!

Notes:

  1.  This cake can easily be made in two 9″ loaf pans.  Once the dough is twisted, cut it in half and place each piece in a well sprayed loaf pan.  Cover with a tea towel for an hour and bake as directed above.

 

*This post has been sponsored by Hershey’s Canada and I have been compensated both monetarily and with product.  All opinions here are my own.  I wouldn’t endorse any product unless I thought it was fantastic and I’m happy to share it with you!

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Skillet Apple Scones {with Maple Butter Drizzle}

Fall is here which means it’s apple picking time everybody!  I’ve been heading to local markets every few days, to buy varieties picked fresh from our local orchards.  They’re so, so good.  Good for eating, amazing for baking.  It’s my favourite time of year, and means the leaves are turning colour, temperatures are changing and the days are getting shorter!  It’s truly the best time of year for baking.

applescones

As you know, I love my Sunday mornings and often I’m up before the others to bake something fresh.  I’ve posted my favourite scone recipe a few times, which is so versatile, and it’s easy to adapt the recipe to whatever fruit is in season (these Peach Scones are brilliant).  Apples are an excellent choice too!

I opted for baking in the skillet this morning, which makes for a beautiful presentation.  The scones are rustic looking and full of apple flavour and great texture.  Often people tell me they don’t enjoy scones because they find them dry.  These couldn’t be further from that, moist inside with chunks of cinnamon-y apples and drizzled with an amazing Maple Butter that a friend gave to me.

applescone

You don’t need to bake these in a skillet.  You can easily roll and cut them as I’ve done in this Glazed Cherry Almond Scone recipe.  Bake some now and throw the rest in the freezer for later.  They bake up perfectly, right from frozen, and make an excellent breakfast treat or fast dessert with tea when company arrives.

apple scone

Happy fall baking friends,

Renee

xo

 

Skillet Apple Scones

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, frozen
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (full fat works best)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup chopped apples mixed with 1 tbsp. brown sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • small apple sliced thinly for garnish
  • Maple Butter for drizzle

Preheat oven to 415°

1.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, cinnamon and salt.  Use a cheese grater to grate the frozen butter into the flour mixture.  Mix gently with a fork to coat the butter with the flour mixture.

2.  In a separate small bowl mix the buttermilk, sour cream and egg.  Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour buttermilk mixture in.  Mix gently to incorporate.

3.  Knead dough on a floured surface, maximum 1o times.  The idea is to knead very little to keep that butter cold.  As best you can, knead in the cinnamon apples.  Pat the dough into a circle about 6 inches in diameter.  Cut the dough into eight even wedges, but still keeping it in the circle shape.  Place the scones into a well seasoned skillet (a circle of parchment on the bottom works well too), and top each wedge with two apple slices.  Bake for about 20-25 minutes, until dough is cooked and scones are golden.  Eat warm and drizzle with Maple Butter.

Notes:

  1.  My Maple Butter was from Gilbertson’s Maple Products.  Amazingly good.  My jar is hidden in the back of the fridge.  Some things aren’t meant to be shared, like colds, chocolate, bad photos, and really good Maple Butter.

 

 

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Fresh Strawberry Muffins

Muffins are one of my favourite, quick treats to make.  Usually little fuss is required, all can be done in one bowl, and there’s plenty to share.  Muffins are also an excellent school or work snack and generally freeze very well.  I like to freeze them in individual bags so everyone can grab and go as needed.

 

strawberry muffins

 

And sometimes you can dress them up with a wee bit of whipped topping.  And since muffins are thought to be generally healthier for you than cupcakes, these are still considered healthy.

You’re welcome.

 

strawberry muffins

See the fruit in there?  Large pieces of sweet, juicy, red farm fresh strawberries.  We are still lucky to have some available locally, so my crew can enjoy these muffins all summer long.

This is a recipe that one of my gal pals shared with me.  I have to say it hasn’t disappointed, I’ve made it many times!

Have you got a favourite muffin flavour?  An easy muffin recipe that freezes well and makes a good school snack?  Please share it with me in the comments!

Enjoy the rest of your summer friends!

Renee

 

Fresh Strawberry Muffins

adapted from, Home of My Heart

  •  1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  •  3/4 cup sugar
  •  1 egg
  •  2 cups all-purpose flour
  •  2 tsp baking powder
  •  1/2 tsp kosher salt
  •  1/2 cup milk
  •  1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  •  1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries, chopped
  •  3 tsp sugar
  •  1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • whipped topping for serving (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°

1.  In a small bowl, mix flour, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.

2.  In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and mix well.  Add flour mixture and milk alternately to the butter mixture.
Gently fold in strawberries.

3.  Spoon batter into muffin pans, lined with muffin liners or sprayed with non-stick baking spray, until about 3/4 full.  Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over muffins.   Bake for approx. 20 minutes.

 

4.  Let cool completely and top with whipped topping and a strawberry if desired.  They are just as excellent without!

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Apple Coffee Cake

This cake is kind of confusing….

It’s a coffee cake, made with a sweet buttery brioche dough, full of apple slices, and topped with an oat streusal topping.

It’s kind of like an apple crisp.

It’s kind of like a coffee cake.

It’s kind of like a sweet bread.

It’s kind of awesome!

cake

If you’ve been following me for a while you know about my love affair with bread (this is awkward because I believe I’m also having an affair with chocolate, cake and frosting…but let’s carry on).  I started making bread several years ago and it’s something I still love to do.  There’s nothing quite as gratifying.  Honestly, don’t let  yeast scare you.

I’ve made this several times and I’ve never made the same cake twice.  It’s made with Brioche Dough from The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes.  These folks aren’t lying, they’ve really created some masterpiece yeasted doughs that literally take only five minutes prep.  This is one of my books that is completely dog-eared and never leaves the kitchen.   The dough can be made up to five days ahead and refrigerated.  At a moments notice you have a rich, buttery Brioche Dough ready for this Apple Coffee Cake, sticky buns or doughnuts.   The options are endless!

 

slice

I added pepitas, dried cranberries and walnuts along with the apple to the cake this time.  My last one had blueberries and pecans.  Both were sensational.   The cake is fully assembled and then left on the counter to rest for a little over an hour.  Then it’s into the oven and done in an hour.  Nothing to do after but wait for it to cool so you can cut it and enjoy it.

That’s my kinda cake.  Uh bread.  Umm Apple Crisp?!  You get the idea.

I’m sharing the link here to the BreadIn5 website,  for their Brioche Dough.   You will not find a simpler recipe for Brioche Dough anywhere.  Just mix it and leave it, literally.   The following is the recipe for the cake.

Apple Streusal Coffee Cake

*adapted from BreadIn5

For the Topping:

  • 1 cup large flake oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup pepitas
  • 1 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1.  To make the streusel, place all of the ingredients in a small bowl and mix until combined.  Set aside.

For the Cake:

  • 1 pound of the chilled Brioche Dough
  • 2 1/2 small apples thinly sliced – I used honey crisp apples
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • streusel topping (above)

To make the cake:

Preheat oven to 350° and grease and flour an 8 x 3 inch cake pan or springform pan.

1.  Mix the apple slices, cranberries and brown sugar in a small bowl and set aside.

 

2. Split your pound of brioche dough into two equal pieces.   Roll out each piece to be a circle slightly larger than the cake pan.  Place one dough circle in the bottom of the pan.  Top with half of the apples and 3/4 cup of streusel.   Place the remaining dough circle on top and layer again with apples and the remaining streusel.

3.    Let the cake rest, uncovered, for an hour and 20 minutes.  Bake for approx. 45 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.

4.  If you used a cake pan, invert the cake onto a plate and then quickly invert back to a cake plate.

 

Enjoy!

Renee

 

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Glazed Cherry Almond Scones

Fresh bread is my nemesis.  Warm out of the oven, it gets me every time.  It doesn’t matter what it is, biscuit, fresh loaf, cinnamon buns or scones there is no smell better than that of bread, in any form, baking in the oven.

scone[1]

I find the whole process of kneading and rolling so comforting.  Always have.   For the past few days I’ve been down and out with a bad cold.  The constant coughing when I lay down has left me restless and unable to sleep.  So I find myself in the kitchen early in the morning rolling dough to feel better.  Yesterday it was these cinnamon buns, today scones.

It seems everyone in this house wins when mom doesn’t feel well!

scone 6[1]

This is my favourite recipe that I’ve shared with you before.  It’s so incredibly versatile.  When you can use fresh fruit do so, it’s worth it.   Montmorency cherries and buttery flaky glazed bread under a blanket of almond glaze.  I’m feeling better already!  These are frozen cherries that I typically use for pie but they offer an amazing sweet and tart flavour to the scones.  The simple almond glaze is a must.   I tried this flavour recently at a local bake shop and was smitten with the combination!

scone 2[1]

No butter or additional spread is needed.  Warm and glazed these scones are simply enough all on their own.  Bake some now and freeze the rest for another morning.  These would be an excellent make ahead item for Christmas morning!

scone 4[1]

Glazed Cherry Almond Scones

  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup butter, frozen
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup sour cream (full fat works best)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups frozen tart cherries
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • chopped almonds to sprinkle on top

1.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt.  Use a cheese grater to grate the frozen butter into the flour mixture.  Mix gently with a fork to coat the butter with the flour mixture.

2.  In a separate small bowl mix the buttermilk, sour cream and egg.  Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and pour buttermilk mixture in.  Mix gently to incorporate.

3.  Knead dough on a floured surface, maximum 1o times.  The idea is to knead very little to keep that butter cold.  Roll into a large rectangle, about 22 inches by 12 inches.  Spread whole cherries all over the surface of the dough.  Starting with the longest side, roll the dough up towards you into a log.  Tuck in the seam.   You should be left with a log about 22 inches long.  Pinch the ends together and press down on the log to slightly flatten it.   Keep the seam on the bottom.

4.  Cut the log in half.  Cut each half in half.  Cut each quarter in half.   You will be left with 8 squares.  Cut each square on the diagonal to make 2 scones, for a total of 16 scones.

5.  Bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes or place unbaked scones on a parchment lined cookie sheet and freeze for at least an hour.  Place frozen scones in freezer bags for easy storage.  Bake from frozen.  Combine the powdered sugar, milk and extract and the glaze warm scones.  Top with chopped almonds.  Enjoy!

 

 

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Perfect Fresh Peach Scones {For Your Freezer}

I made these scones this morning.

I made these scones yesterday morning.

I probably will make these scones tomorrow morning.  And the morning after.

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I’ve been making scones first thing in the morning for a really long time.  When I had the bake shop, I baked thousands of scones at the crack of dawn.  Literally.  Hand rolled and cut, these were one of our most requested items.   Some with just a sprinkle of sugar on top and some with a sweet sugar glaze.

Who doesn’t love a fresh warm buttermilk scone straight from the oven?   Rolled and layered with chunks of fresh seasonal produce, it’s the perfect morning snack or tea time treat.

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The beauty of this scone recipe, is the versatility.  Switch out the peaches for fresh pears and some ginger.  Remove the cinnamon and add lemon zest and fresh blueberries.    Throw in some cinnamon and raisins.

It requires minimal mixing and next to no kneading.  The less you work it, the better.

I roll new flavours all summer long as produce comes into season.  Then I freeze unbaked scones on a cookie sheet.  Once frozen, I store them in a freezer bag and bake as needed all fall and winter long.

peachscones3

 

I throw a few into the oven each morning as I’m getting ready for work.  Then a quick wrap with saran and the kiddo’s can grab a warm one on their way out the door.

Isn’t that the best way to start your day?

The recipe makes a generous amount of scones, bake some today and freeze the rest!

Do you have a favourite scone recipe?  I would love to hear about it!

Enjoy!

 

Fresh Peach Scones

  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup butter, frozen
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup sour cream (full fat works best)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 medium fresh peach, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp melted butter and cinnamon sugar for topping (2tbsp sugar + 1 tsp cinnamon)

1.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, salt and cinnamon.  Use a cheese grater to grate the frozen butter into the flour mixture.  Mix gently with a fork to coat the butter with the flour mixture.

2.  In a separate small bowl mix the buttermilk, sour cream and egg.  Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and pour buttermilk mixture in.  Mix gently to incorporate.

3.  Knead dough on a floured surface, maximum 1o times.  The idea is to knead very little to keep that butter cold.  Roll into a large rectangle, about 22 inches by 12 inches.  Spread thin peach slices all over the surface of the dough.  Starting with the longest side, roll the dough up towards you into a log.  Tuck in the seam.   You should be left with a log about 22 inches long.  Pinch the ends together and press down on the log to slightly flatten it.   Keep the seam on the bottom.

4.  Brush the scone log with the melted butter.  Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.  Cut the log in half.  Cut each half in half.  Cut each quarter in half.   You will be left with 8 squares.  Cut each square on the diagonal to make 2 scones, for a total of 16 scones.

5.  Bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes or place unbaked scones on a parchment lined cookie sheet and freeze for at least an hour.  Place frozen scones in freezer bags for easy storage.  Bake from frozen.  Eat warm!

 

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Apple Cranberry Bread Pudding

Are any of you returning to work or school this September?  This whole house is, including me.  My boys are headed off to their first year of high school to join their sister.  I’m returning to the classroom to spend time with some of my favourite young people.

Fall is my favourite time of year.  Even though I do love the summer holidays, I love getting back into routine and the first crazy days of the school year.

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I start baking all of those warm comforting desserts with the spices and flavours that scream autumn.  First of the season apples are out and I’m all over it.  We have plenty of orchards and markets around here.  I usually make several apple pies ahead for the freezer.  In the dead of winter, there’s nothing better than an apple pie that reminds me of the warm, breezy days of fall.

applebreadpudding

Bread pudding is a simple and versatile dish that can be eaten as a warm gooey breakfast  treat or comforting satisfying after dinner dessert.  I filled mine with thinly sliced apples, cranberries and walnuts then topped them with a dollop of local Apple Butter and a drizzle of caramel sauce.   Outstanding.

It’s full of fruit and nuts so it has to be good for you right?

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Enjoy the rest of your summer everyone.

 

Apple Caramel Bread Pudding

*makes 7-8 3.5 inch ramekins or one large 9 inch pie plate

  • I used half of a slightly stale sour dough loaf, ripped into chunks
  • 2 small apples, peeled cored and very thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of cloves
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 2  cups half and half cream
  • 3 eggs

Butter ramekins and set aside.  Preheat oven to 350°

 

1.  Rip bread into chunks and place in a large bowl.  Add apples, nuts and cranberries and mix well, set aside.  In a medium bowl, mix all remaining ingredients.  Pour over the bread and apple mixture making sure to soak all of the bread.  Let the mixture sit for 20 minutes or so until all of the liquid has soaked in.  The mixture can be used right away or refrigerated for a few hours until ready to bake.

2.  Fill each ramekin with the bread pudding.  Place the ramekins in a larger container (I used a 11 x 15 cake pan, a roasting pan would work too) and fill with an inch of hot water.  The water bath ensures the bread pudding bakes with moist heat.  Bake for 35-40 minutes.

3.  Serve warm with caramel sauce, Apple Butter, or fresh whipped cream.

 

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