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June 2010 Baker's Stash

 


Fresh raspberries become Fresh French Raspberry Tart


Dear Friends and Fellow Bakers,

It’s so nice to be back in my own kitchen. I’ve just finished the food shoot for my new cookbook, The Baker’s Four Seasons. It was hard work, as well as fun and fascinating and the results look gorgeous. The photos are off on their way to my publisher.On the very last day of the shoot, the photographer also put Vivaldi’s Four Seasons on the studio Ipod playlist. That is the incredible, renown music that inspired me to write this new cookbook. So hearing Vivaldi in the studio, as we wound up the five day shoot with some vignette and new author shots reminded me of the special journey that is more than mid way. 

Since I first pitched The Baker’s Four Seasons, so much has happened on the home front and the work front. The book went from concept to manuscript and now is visually realized. It has also inherited a new publisher and editor (publishing is not for the faint of heart) but I am ever and always this book’s birth mother. And as a proud mother, I am thrilled to have sent it off and on its way – with Vivaldi’s lyrical music escorting it out the door.

 I am also just back from Toronto where I attended the Hay House I Can Do It event with speakers such as Christiane Northrupt, Wayne Dyer and Marianne Williamson. Also in attendance were some 4000 upbeat participants. It was a feast for the intellect and the soul. The bottom line to everything in life seems to be meditation, self acceptance and great bread. Ok, that’s my spin- I think great bread enhances all else.

I also had a revelation lately – also about food. At the tango festival in
Montreal, I noticed all the dancers came and went – eating all the time. Sure, they were all in shape but I’ve never seen such a non-stop food fest. Dancers toted pastries and croissants, huge baguette sandwiches, cookies, and hunks of cakes. For myself, I tend to eat lean and watch my sweets and yet watching the gusto of these tango-gourmands, I was struck with how I create beautiful baking and only nibble on the treats. I hold back on calories or relegate myself to a few bites –always thinking it’s too much an indulgence. Silly, if you think about it – considering I am making foods for others. And so I wandered around the corner from tango and found a pastry shop that featured the most gorgeous custard and raspberry tarts. I had one. I sat outdoors at a café table, had a scalding hot coffee and the tart and enjoyed the tart – every last crumb. Next day, I bought a mille feuilles. And the next day? Salad with a fresh baguette. I began to realize one should eat according to appetite and taste and just….enjoy. Did I gain anything? Only insight but not a pound nor an ounce. My palate and my appetite seem in synch.
This month, please enjoy a few summary treats (including a French Raspberry Tart), and take the time to appreciate the day, the weather and the pure honest taste of good food, done right. And for graduates I wish you happy convocation and for dad's and grand-dads, I wish you a lovely father's day up ahead.

With warm wishes for summer and always, happy baking,

Marcy Goldman
Author, Master Baker
www.BetterBaking.com
Est. 1997
Fresh French Raspberry Tart 
Nothing beats raspberries and cream in a thin, golden tart shell. You can make one big tart or several smaller ones. Make the custard a day before if you have time otherwise, earlier in the day. For a lighter filling, you have the option to fold in whipped cream to the pastry cream for a variation that makes for a slightly lighter filling that is no less rich and inviting. Use a pre-baked pie shell or preferably, tart dough (pre-baked) Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
Chocolate Crinkle Brownie Cookies
Lovely chocolate pillows, crinkled on top with slight ridges on the side. they are slightly crisp on the outside and lusciously brownie-like on the inside. You can finish these three ways: simply sugared (rolled before baking), sifted with confectioners' sugar, and glazed in milk chocolate (my favorite).

1001 Hummus Recipes FREE! 
Almost anything can become an outstanding hummus, that traditional chick pea spread. Beet hummus is in, as is lentil or squash hummus. Change the spices, change the starch and you have a new spread. Great as a dip or as a spread for summer sandwiches – and super healthy too. Bistro Style Apple Tarts

Bistro Style Apple Tarts 
Using store-bought puff pastry makes these tarts quick and easy as well as a sweet delight. Bake these free form or in tart molds. You can also make these a bit more interesting by spreading the pastry first, with custard (pre-made custard). Then lay on the apples and bake. The custard bakes into a thick, sweet, bottom layer that offers visual interest and added taste appeal.

Blueberry Chocolate Chunk Blondies 
Gooey, rich and summery squares. Big hunks to munch on at the outdoor terrace at work or strolling in the park. This classic bar soars to new heights with contemporary touches of berries and white chocolate

Orange, Tea, and Raisin Fruitcake 
What a cake! There are tons of pineapple cakes and each is quite different. Year ago, I had a request for this cake. But the requestor only gave me some bare bone elements supplied: i.e. the cake takes pineapple and features a condensed milk topping that you pour over cake. With those brief notes, I created a vintage pineapple cake that is great hot, warm or cold and is an old school recipe that is so darn good, it's timeless. You also have a choice of putting on the brown sugar and nuts before it is baked or in the batter.
Stuffed Feta and Greek Olive Bread FREE 
This is pure picnic and party fare. Zesty and chock full of summery tastes. Good hot or cold. Thin cold slabs work well alongside a pitcher of fresh lemonade. This offers all the gutsy, great tastes of a Greek Salad but stuffed into a rustic bread. These is a hefty, rustic, neo-sourdough, inflated with chunks of feta, studded with black olives and decked out in sundried tomatoes, and a shower of fresh pepper, parsley and olive oil. It's a meal in itself.

 Walnut, Beet and Baby Greens Salad with Special Pesto Cheese Dressing 
Jarred pesto is the basis of this zesty dressing.

Previous Monthly Essays from A Note From Marcy:

Essays to tickle your funny bone, wake up your inner baker, twinge on your heartstrings, or make you smile and say, ‘I’ve know the feeling; I know the place”. If you missed an essay, or a season in baking or inner sensibility, we invite you to stroll through our archived Notes From Marcy.

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