Wow, it has been what feels like forever and a lifetime since I last posted (oh right, it was). My apologies. I am so excited to be kicking off the new year with the CTB Ladies again! We have a great new book that is open on my night stand…A Homemade Life (as Marilla mentioned). If you are reading along with us….have some kleenex handy…its a doozy (Thanks Jeanine ). I am especially excited because I will be cooking this year with my very first Stand Mixer (bow, bow, bow). Her name is Lucy, and she’s a fantastically sexy red-head (She’s a little loose with the butter and the sugar…gotta keep an eye on this one). She is very excited to join the team and has already whipped up lots of goodies!
Before we got started though, I still owe a post about Gesine Bullock Prado’s book, Confections of a Closet Master Baker..which is now known as “My Life from Scratch” (this is how long it has been since my last post…book names are changin for chimp’s sake). I never reviewed her book at the time of reading because at that time, to be honest, I didn’t care for the book. I don’t blame Gesine…I was so unhappy with where my life (or lack thereof) was when I read it, I think I just was irritated that anyone else was happy. Since then, I have read her book three or four times and I am semi addicted to her blog. Her recipes are NO Fail and completely fantastic. Not only that, but Gesine really lives life to its fullest. She has become a great inspirtation and her book has become one of those “that book changed my life”. What can I say, when my mom saw the Bucket List she HAD to go back to school. When I read this book I HAD to do, well anything but what I was doing. So, I sadly left some fantastic co workers, happily left a two hour commute, relocated my work to part time and I will officially be launching a new business endeavor (plenty of shameless plugs on the way) that combines social work, cooking and some Healthy Moms Happy Babies thanks to the good kick in the arse from Gesine (and with the support of friends, family and the CTB girls).
But enough about me…onto those recipes. I have made almost everything in her book, but have taken minimal pictures. Gesine’s story was really one of her becoming comfortable in her own skin, accepting what she loved, and making a life (and a living) out of it. It was a hilarious account and I completely related to several parts in the book. My favorite recipe is most definately her golden eggs recipe. I have made them as reccomended in the book (always in muffins pans). I have also changed the flavoring to lemon and blueberry (use lemon extract instead of vanilla, lemon peel instead of nutmeg, and add blueberries) and cinnamon apple. The batter can take it so do what you will to it. I would just advise to make sure you really whip the butter and sugar well. Mine also came out a lot better when I used superfine sugar So I would also say to give that a whirl.
For the cake:
Nonstick baking spray
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg
½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
5 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ¼ cups nonfat buttermilk
For dipping the eggs:
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon mixed together in a small shallow bowl
Preheat the oven to 325. Spray your molds with nonstick spray (I, obviously, use egg-shaped molds. You can use a muffin pan or any other small baking molds.) Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.
In an electric mixer fitted with either the paddle or the whisk attachment, whip the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. This can take up to 10 minutes, depending on the temperature of your butter. As you’re whipping away, stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure all the butter is incorporated into the sugar. You can’t make magic without a lot of patience. So keep whipping and keep scraping.
Add the eggs one at a time, whipping after each one until the egg is fully incorporated into the batter. Scrape down the bowl every now and again as well. Add the vanilla.
Once all the eggs are incorporated, alternate adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk, mixing slowly. After they are well incorporated but not overbeaten, take a rubber spatula and fold the batter a few times to make sure everything is evenly distributed and the batter is smooth.
Distribute the batter into your molds, filling each cavity a little less than halfway. Bake for about 15 minutes. Baking time varies depending on the size of your mold, so check for a very light golden brown color and make sure the cake springs back when you touch it.
Unmold your little cakes and while they are still warm, dunk them quickly in the melted butter, then dredge them in the cinnamon and sugar.
Gesine notes that these make 12 eggs. I ALWAYS get more than that. ALWAYS. I have also made this as a cake by taking out the nutmeg and adding a little more vanilla.
Next up…A Homemade Life