Tag Archives: Pecans

Pastel de Tre Leches

28 Sep

Its Daring Baker challenge time again!!

Inma of la Galletika was our Sept. 2013 Daring Bakers’ hostess and WOW did she bring us something decadent and delicious! Pastel de Tres Leches or Three Milk Cake, creamy yet airy, super moist but not soggy.. just plain delish!

Pastel de Tre Leches

I have been quiet busy with life, but I am bless the day I decided to join the Daring Bakers Challenge!! This forum has been a constant source of motivation to me and with the members sharing these awesome challenges and bakes, it pushes me to do my bit too 🙂

Pastel de Tre Leches or The Three Milk Cake is very popular in many parts of Central and Southern America, although the origins of the tres leches are disputed.  When made without butter, it is a very light cake, with many air bubbles. This distinct texture is why it does not have a soggy consistency, despite being soaked in a mixture of three types of milk. So, in simple words, it is a sponge cake soaked in three types of milk, evaporated milk, condensed milk and heavy cream. 

 INGREDIENTS

Vanilla Sponge Cake

  • 5 large eggs (separated)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

Three milk syrup

  • 1 can (14 ounce) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 can (12 ounce) evaporated milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 teaspoons rum (I used 4 teaspoons of coffee)

Topping and/or filling

  • Fresh and cold whipping cream
  • Fresh fruit (I used strawberries)

Preparation: Sponge Cake

Preheat oven to moderate 350 degree fahrenheit. Prepare a 9 inch round cake pan.

Separate the egg whites from the yolks, and beat the egg whites on medium speed, about 3 to 5 minutes. When soft peaks form slowly add the sugar in small batches and whip until stiff peaks form (~5 minutes).

In a medium bowl beat egg yolks at medium-high speed for about 5 to 6 minutes, or until the egg yolks become pale colored, creamy and puffy. Stir in vanilla. Gently fold the egg yolks with egg whites until just combined while trying not to lose any volume by over mixing.  Fold in the flour by sprinkling it in parts over the egg mixture. Mix until just combined (over-beating will result in a denser, flatter cake).

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake in the preheated moderate oven for 25 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean. Let it cool on a wire rack. Once it cools down, poke holes all over the cake to better absorb the three milk syrup.

Preparation: Milk syrup

In a saucepan add the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, heavy cream and cinnamon stick and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and continue boiling for 5 minutes. Remove it and let it cool. Once it cools down add instant coffee or a flavor of your choice. Gradually brush the milk syrup into sides of the cake (including the surface) until it is absorbed. Refrigerate overnight to give the cake enough time to soak up the syrup.

Pastel de Tre Leches

Layer on some whipped cream onto the cake and around its edges and decorate the cake top with fresh strawberries or any fruit of choice.  Decorate the cake’s edges with some crushed pecans to add a little crunch to it and  Voila!! The cake is now ready to be devoured :D, of course one slice at a time 😛

Pastel de Tre Leches

The recipe shared by Inma is just perfect, the cake isn’t soggy at all, it is just perfectly soaked and simply delicious!! It still surprises me that the yummiest things on this earth are so easy to bake.

So till I get around to posting about my next bake, stay blessed and keep baking 🙂

Chocolate Brownies

22 Jun

Everyone loves chocolate!! And there are a very few people who can resist a chocolate brownie. Well, I definitely can not, especially the moist, rich and chocolate oozing fudge kind 🙂  Brownies without nuts are good too, but I adore it when the small pieces of nuts pop-up unexpectedly. So, a slice of chocolate brownie and a scoop of vanilla ice-cream is heaven for me. Just the idea of it makes me want to dig into one 😀

Chocolate Brownie

I have made brownies at home before, but never from scratch. When I first started baking I used to be mystified that actual brownies, that taste so good can actually be made out of a box bought at a grocery store and with so little effort too. So, last weekend for the first time, I decided to bake a batch of brownies form scratch and oh boy…am I glad I did 🙂 These turned out to be perfect. The recipe I used is called Katherine Hepburn’s Brownies, probably because it is her recipe. These turned out just like the article promises they will be.

So, without much ado, here is the recipe. I added pecans to the batch that I baked, however, I am pretty sure that they can be baked without any nuts as well!!

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 oz unsweetened baker’s chocolate or 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup roughly chopped pecans/walnuts

Pre-heat the oven to 325 degree fahrenheit. Butter a 8*8 inch cake pan.

Melt butter and chocolate chunks/or cocoa in a small pan stirring continuously until well blended. Remove from heat and stir-in sugar. Whisk in the vanilla extract and eggs, followed by salt and then the flour. In the end, fold in the pecan pieces.

DSCN3207

Pour the mixture into the well buttered square pan. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes. Just like its important to make sure that the brownies do not have more flour than required, we also need to make sure that they are not over-baked. So, even though the recipe source I used recommended baking for 40 minutes, I removed them from the oven when they passed the toothpick test (~ 30-35 minutes)

I should mention here that the brownies were a bit crumbly and difficult to cut, so I suggest using a very sharp knife for slicing, however they came off pretty neatly from the baking dish.

Chocolate Brownie

Just writing this blog makes me want to have one, that’s how good they were!! If you have never tried baking brownies from scratch, this recipe has my thumbs-up, so try them out, and in case you already have a go-to brownie recipe I would say, try them out anyways 🙂 , since one can never be content with just one slice of brownie!!

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