Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Momofuku Confetti Cookies

I have a strange fascination with Christina Tosi, creator of the Momofuku Milk Bar in NYC and all its delicious byproducts. I can't really explain it. Maybe it's wonder at how such a tiny person can survive solely on junk food. Perhaps I am awed by her genius in creating dessert flavor combinations that are totally innovative, such as cereal milk ice cream and corn cookies (made with freeze dried corn. They are the essence of corn. I love those cookies so much.) 

 I picked up the Milk Bar cookbook from the library and was totally enraptured. All the recipes are built of certain basic components, brought together to create very different products. For example, this recipe starts with a birthday cake milk crumb, an integral part of the finished cookie. I read the book cover to cover and then did it again. 

These cookies...are unlike any cookie I've ever had. Huge, pillowy, and with an incredible texture and flavor. Tosi claims it is the 10 minute creaming process, and I'd have to agree. I had no idea butter and eggs could get so fluffy by themselves. So, sorry guys, but these cookies just really can't be made without a stand mixer.  They're more work than the average cookie, but so worth it. The remind me a bit of my guiltyguilty pleasure...eating dry box cake mix. Have you ever tried it? Next time, sneak some. Omnomnom.

Oh, and if any of you come across freeze dried corn, please tell me. I'm desperate for a corn cookie. 

Confetti Cookies
from Christina Tosi

Makes 15 massive cookies!!!!

16 tablespoons (225 grams, 2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups (300 grams) sugar
2 tablespoons (50 grams) glucose or 1 tablespoon (25 grams) corn syrup
2 eggs
2 teaspoons (8 grams) clear vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups (400 grams) flour  
2/3 cup (50 grams) milk powder
2 teaspoons (9 grams) cream of tartar
1 teaspoon (6 grams) baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoons (5 grams) kosher salt
1/4 cup (40 grams) rainbow sprinkles
1/2 recipe Birthday Cake Crumb (recipe follows)

Birthday Cake Crumb
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons (25 grams) light brown sugar, lightly packed
3/4 cup (90 grams) cake flour
1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) baking powder
1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) kosher salt
2 tablespoons (20 grams) rainbow sprinkles
1/4 cup (40 grams) grapeseed oil (or canola oil.)
1 tablespoon (12 grams) clear vanilla extract

1.For the Birthday Cake Crumb: Heat the oven to 300°F.

2.Combine the sugars, flour, baking powder, salt, and sprinkles in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on low speed until well combined.

3.Add the oil and vanilla and paddle again to distribute. The wet ingredients will act as glue to help the dry ingredients form small clusters; continue paddling until that happens.

4.Spread the clusters on a parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pan. Bake for 20 minutes, breaking them up occasionally. The crumbs should still be slightly moist to the touch; they will dry and harden as they cool.

 (Mine didn't need 20 minutes, you don't want them to be very brown).

5.Let the crumbs cool completely before using in a recipe or scarfing by the handful. Stored in an airtight container, the crumbs will keep fresh for 1 week at room temperature or 1 month in the fridge or freezer.

6.For the Confetti Cookies Combine the butter, sugar, and glucose (corn syrup) in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and cream together on medium-high for 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the eggs and vanilla, and beat for 7 to 8 minutes.  
(Don't skip this 10 minute creaming step- it is what makes their cookies so good! You want the mixture to get really fluffy, pillowy and pale.)

7.Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, milk powder, cream of tartar, baking soda, salt, and rainbow sprinkles. Mix just until the dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. (Do not walk away from the machine during this step, or you will risk overmixing the dough.) Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. 

8.Still on low speed, add the birthday cake crumbs and mix in for 30 seconds—just until they are incorporated. 

9.Using a 2 3/4-ounce ice cream scoop (or a 1/3-cup measure), portion out the dough onto a parchment-lined sheet pan. Pat the tops of the cookie dough domes flat. Wrap the sheet pan tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 1 week. Do not bake your cookies from room temperature—they will not bake properly. 

10. Heat the oven to 350°F.

11.Arrange the chilled dough a minimum of 4 inches apart on parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pans. Bake for 18 minutes. (I would try 15 and check them after that)  The cookies will puff, crackle, and spread. After 18 minutes, they should be very lightly browned on the edges (golden brown on the bottom). The centers will show just the beginning signs of color. Leave the cookies in the oven for an additional minute or so if the colors don’t match and the cookies still seem pale and doughy on the surface.


12.Cool the cookies completely on the sheet pans before transferring to a plate or an airtight container for storage. At room temp, the cookies will keep fresh for 5 days; in the freezer, they will keep for 1 month.

Thursday, May 24, 2012


It's so strange having so much time at home alone. My parents at work, my brother at school, and my sister not coming back from college for another 1 1/2 weeks. I haven't been alone like this for months. And though I've been saying that I can't wait to get away from all the people and just luxuriate in my solitude, now that I have it, I miss my friends. D'aw. Such is the nature of life.

I think a part of what I miss is having the large crowd to cook for. I could bake anything and know that it would always get eaten. But I didn't have the time or space to do so. Now that I have the time, I don't have the people to eat my things! This is the face I am currently making to express these emotions.

I am trying to make practical foods for my family. But it's very difficult when I just want to make a massive, three layer cake. Every. Day. So let me know if you need something like that, haha. Anyway. Popovers are like the easiest thing in the world to make. I kid you not. And I'm fairly certain a special pan is not necessary. A plain ol' muffin pan will do just fine. 


 2 eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
a bit of butter for the bottom of each cup
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Place your pan in the oven while it preheats.
In the meantime, in a medium bowl beat eggs slightly, Beat in flour and until just smooth; being careful not to overbeat. Remove pan from oven and place a piece of butter in the bottom of each cup. Fill custard cups 1/2 full.
Bake at 450 degrees F (230 degrees C) for 20 minutes. Decrease oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and bake for 10 minutes more. Immediately remove from cups and serve piping hot.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Sticky Chocolate Honey Cake

"Aw crap," I muttered. Batter was oozing out of the pan into the bottom of the oven. A vision of the dorm burning down before my eyes flashed by. Focus, focus. Pull the pan out of the oven, shut it off. Panic briefly. Call my mother for advice. Scowl. Taste the batter. Lord, that's good. 


Gah. This was supposed to be a beautiful birthday cake garnished with honey caviar. But I wasn't just going to give up! Thankfully there was a piece of foil in the bottom of the oven that caught most of the goo, and then I just...stuck the pan back in. 

 So obviously it's less like a cake and more like a...bog. Or something. But it was soooo moist. And the honey gave it a different, special sort of sweetness. I'm certain that if I hadn't er, filled the pan so high, it would have been beautiful. On a side note, this was my last post at school for this year, and I'm currently writing from my cozy bedroom. Dorm life cooking will resume in September, but for now, enjoy a summer of fancy home food! 

Oho, I cut it into a slice! It almost looks normal! 

Sticky Chocolate Honey Cake 

4 ounces semisweet chocolate, broken into pieces
1 1/3 cups soft light brown sugar
2 sticks soft butter
1/2 cup honey
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda (baking soda)
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 cup boiling water
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup honey
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar


Take whatever you need out of the refrigerator so that all ingredients can come to room temperature, and while that's happening, melt the chocolate from the cake part of the ingredients list in a good-sized bowl, either in the microwave or suspended over a pan of simmering water. Set aside to cool slightly.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, and butter and line a 9-inch tin.
Beat together the sugar and soft butter until airy and creamy, and then add the honey.
Add 1 of the eggs, beating it in with a tablespoon of the flour, and then the other egg with another tablespoon of flour. Fold in the melted chocolate, and then the rest of the flour and baking soda. Add the cocoa pushed through a strainer to ensure you have no lumps, and last of all, beat in the boiling water. Mix everything well to make a smooth batter and pour into the prepared tin. Cook for up to 1 1/2 hours, though check the cake after 45 minutes and if it is getting too dark, cover the top lightly with aluminum foil and keep checking every 15 minutes.
Let the cake cool completely in the tin on a rack.
To make the glaze, bring the water and honey to a boil in a saucepan, then turn off the heat and add the finely chopped chocolate, swirling it around to melt in the hot liquid. Leave it for a few minutes, then whisk together. Add the sugar through a sieve and whisk again until smooth.
Choose your plate or stand, and cut out 4 strips of baking paper and form a square outline on the plate. This is so that when you sit the cake on and ice it, the icing will not run out all over the plate. Set the thoroughly cooled cake on the prepared plate. Pour the glaze over the cold honey cake; it might dribble a bit down the edges, but don't worry too much about that (Or form a cake around the whole thing. That's cool too).

Monday, May 14, 2012

Secret Recipe Club - No Churn Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

I hate sharing a freezer. Besides the fact that there are large and mysterious cuts of meat in there, people will eat your stuff. Even if it has a name on it. I made a beautiful, perfect bowl of ice cream and spent time rearranging the scary meats so the bowl would stand up straight in the freezer. When I came back to retrieve it, the bowl was tipping side and someone had stuck their fingers in my ice cream. 

Ewwwwwww. What would prompt someone to do that? If you are reading this, I hope you are ashamed. I would have gladly given you a large scoop if you had asked me. But noooo, you had to surreptitiously stick your fingers in there. How am I supposed to know what else you've touched? Yuckyuckyuck. 

Ahem. Anyway. Let me tell you a bit about the blog I was assigned for Secret Recipe Club this month. It's called Crumbs and Chaos (I enjoy that name very much) and is run by four sisters! That's so cool. If me and my sister had a blog together, I think it would get very silly ^_^ I found this recipe in Becca's section of the site (Rebeccas unite!) and couldn't resist. I love ice cream, and I am terrible at making it. I thought maybe if I tried a new technique, it would work out for me? Totally yes. It's a bit fluffier and softer than typical ice cream, but it's great to know that I can make ice cream without a machine, huzzah! 

Oh, and freezer thief? I'm coming for you. 

No Churn Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

1 1/2 teaspoons MINT EXTRACT

In a bowl, beat cream until fluffy (this took about 1 1/2 minutes).  Set aside.
In another bowl, mix together sweetened condensed milk, mint extract, chocolate chips and food coloring. Gently fold in the whipped cream.  Pour mixture into a freezable container and freeze until firm.  See how easy that was?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Brioche Cinnamon Rolls

It's getting to that point in the year where I just don't want to do anything anymore. I don't want to study. I don't want to eat cafeteria food. I don't want to share a kitchen with strangers. There are ten days left in my sophomore year of college. It's insane. When I was younger I was terrified of being at this stage of my life. How am I going to learn how to drive a car? Pay bills? Write research papers? 

It hasn't been as scary as I thought. It's kind of mundane, actually. It's not as if I was in 4th grade one day and 20 years old the next, having to deal with the world. You ease into it. Time's nice that way (maybe to make up for all the instances when time isn't so nice). On a side note, when I was young, I thought 20ish was a perfectly reasonable time to get married. People have their lives figured out by then, right? Hahahahaha. Oh, me. 

Right now, all I want to focus on is sinking my hands into some buttery, silky dough and forgetting all of my troubles. It works pretty well. Believe you me, brioche dough makes some killer cinnamon rolls (Literally! Not literally. I don't want to kill you.)'

Brioche Cinnamon Rolls 
(This dough makes enough for a double batch of cinnamon rolls. I divided it in half and made some plain brioches as well)
adapted from Dessarts

50 mL water, 100-115F-ish
5 eggs
4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
3 3/4 cup flour (you may need a bit more)
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup plus 2 Tbs cold butter
Temper your butter by wrapping it in plastic and patting it down with a rolling pin. You want it soft and cold but not melted. Store it in the refrigerator while you prepare the rest. Mix warm water, sugar, and yeast, let sit until super foamy. Combine yeast mix, flour and eggs in a bowl, knead until smooth, using a stand mixer or your hands.
Gradually add in the cold tempered butter. Work the dough until it is smooth and satiny. Be sure to scrape the dough off the sides and paddle during mixing (If you're using a stand mixer. Otherwise, just knead the heck out of it). Place the dough in a large oiled bowl and let it rise for 1 hour. Punch it down into a ball, wrap in plastic tightly and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least four hours. You may want to double wrap it and put it in a bowl in case it expands out of the plastic.

Cinnamon Rolls (makes about 15 rolls)
Half batch of brioche dough (recipe below)
2 Tbs cinnamon
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 Tbs butter, softened
1/4 cup cream cheese
3 Tbs milk
1 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Roll out the brioche dough on a floured surface (preferably a cool surface) into a 15 by 11 inch rectangle to 1/4 inch thickness. Spread the butter over the dough leaving a 1/2 inch border. Spread the cinnamon sugar evenly over the butter. Roll the dough lengthwise. With the seam side down, cut the dough at 1 inch intervals. (I used dental floss to get nice clean cuts)
Place the rolls on a baking sheet. Try to tuck the roll tails under each roll. Cover them with plastic and a kitchen towel. Let them rise until doubled. Bake at 350°F until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove from baking sheet to cool.
Combine the cream cheese, milk and sugar in an electric mixer and whisk until smooth. Drizzle or pipe over the rolls.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Pocky + Butter Mochi

"These are all free, right?" said a visibly tipsy guy in a bro-tank and backwards hat, gesturing at our table.
"Nope, they're all for the Taiko Club bake sale!" I chirped pleasantly, silently chastising him. Of course it's not free. Nothing's ever free. And isn't 11:00 am a little early to be drunk? But by that time he'd walked away in the middle of my sentence. 

Guys, I'm worn out. I've got enough on my plate right now without having to deal with inconsiderate people. I'm trying to talk about this without sounding all self righteous, but I just don't like having to deal with public displays of buffoonery. Mer. 

Mkay, enough negativity. What's cool in my life right now? I went to an amazing Kina Grannis concert. I figured out how to cold brew tea. And I made some awesome foods for a successful bake sale! We've talked about mochi on here a few times before. I believe this is my most delicious result. You can't go wrong with eggs, sugar, butter, and coconut milk. Gooey happiness. And pocky? A much loved Japanese snack food that consists of a biscuit stick dipped in chocolate. Can't go wrong with that.

adapted from Not Quite Nigella 

Make 65

  • 1 Tbsp icing sugar sifted
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
  • 4.5 Tbsp milk, lukewarm
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbsp butter at room temperature
1. Combine the yeast, honey, and lukewarm milk in a small bowl and stir to combine. Mix the dry ingredients on a low speed.
2. Add the yeast mix to the dry ingredients. Mix together on medium speed to form a dough. Add butter and 4ish Tbsp water and continue mixing until the dough is firm and elastic. 
3. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
4. Preheat the oven to 180c/350F. Divide hte dough into two and knead the dough until smooth then roll it out into a rectangle. Roll it out to 4mm thick (1/4 inch). With a ruler and a sharp knife,  cut 5mmx15cms strips and carefully transfer these onto a lightly greased baking tray or greaseproof paper lined baking tray.
5. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes (watch it, it may take a bit longer or shorter). You want it golden brown, not light yellow as it will not “snap” properly.

Decorate however you want! I did chocolate, sprinkles, coconut and almonds! 

Butter Mochi

  • 1 (16 ounce) box mochiko sweet rice flour
  • cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 (14 ounce) cans coconut milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13x9x2" pan. In a large bowl, sift together mochiko flour, sugar, baking powder, and mix well. In a medium bowl, combine coconut milk and eggs, and mix well. Make a well in the dry ingredient and incorporate the liquid ingredients.Stir in melted butter. Pour into pan, and tap pan to settle batter. Bake for 45-60 minutes until golden brown. Cool at least 2 hours before cutting.