July 28, 2012 |
Pate-a-choux is the stuff of magic in the kitchen. Pipe a soft, sticky dough onto a baking sheet and slide it into a hot oven. In mere minutes the dough puffs up - practically exploding to double, even triple, its original size - right before your eyes. Out of the oven, pate-a-choux cools to a golden-brown shell, crisp yet delicate and lighter than air. It's downright mesmerizing. Maybe you've never heard of pate-a-choux, but you've no doubt savored it at one time or another. Also known as cream puff dough, it's the magic behind crisp éclair shells and towering cream puff pastries, savory profiteroles and cheesy gougères.
October 7, 2009 |
You can tell when a dish has made it into the mainstream by looking it up in the dictionary. There you'll find entries for sushi, taco and pho. I still have to italicize as a foreign word bao , the term for Chinese steamed bread and filled buns, but my hunch is that I won't have to do that for long. Bao is on the rise, and that's not just because it features leavened dough. Just check Costco, supermarket chains such as Vons/Pavilions and Ralphs, and of course, any nearby 99 Ranch.
May 6, 2010
Tips for better biscotti baking — If the dough is too sticky to work with, chill it in the refrigerator for at least an hour. — Wetting your hands makes it easier to form the dough logs. — After the first baking, let the logs cool on the cookie sheet for about 20 minutes. Many recipes suggest cutting them into diagonal slices, then laying the slices flat on the cookie sheet. This requires you to flip over the slices midway through the second baking.
December 7, 2005 |
STAND in line at any cappuccino bar and your eyes are drawn to the pastry case, where pieces of streusel-topped "coffeecake" wink back at you temptingly. Don't waste the calories. Coffeecake -- real coffeecake -- is not just a cold, sweet hunk of generic cinnamon-topped cake gobbled down in the front seat of your car. Real coffeecake is a Sunday-morning experience. It begins (if you're a lucky houseguest) with the unforgettable aroma of bread filling the house on a winter's morning, a yeasty smell so tantalizing that it seduces you out from the cozy bedcovers and down to the kitchen.
June 24, 2010 |
If you're on a quest for the holy grail of noodles, then go to the newly opened Beijing Restaurant, a homey restaurant on the second floor of one of the classier strip malls in San Gabriel. In fact, everything here that involves any manipulating of dough is excellent. Turn to the largest section of the menu, labeled "pastry." It's an academic investigation into meat-plus-dough possibilities, an extended set of variations of the theme of dumpling and noodle. All of the dough is made fresh and by hand, shaped into dozens of subtle variations.
December 23, 2010 |
As a cook, I am prone to enthusiasms and sometimes, perhaps more often than occasionally, they can be a bit excessive. I readily admit that. But, please, trust me on this one: Frozen gougères are the best thing I've discovered this year. No, really. Doubt me? Think about this: a crisp, crusty savory cream puff, lighter than air but rich with the utterly irresistible fragrance of browned Gruyère cheese. And here's all you have to do to fix them: Remove from freezer; place on cookie sheet; bake for a half-hour.
February 18, 1996 |
Last year, Janet Evanovich's wild and woolly "One for the Money" introduced a new heroine for our times, the naive but fiercely determined novice bounty hunter Stephanie Plum. Stephanie, who can give Kinsey Millhone and V.I. Warshawski lessons in attitude--she is after all, from New Jersey--won the hearts of critics and readers alike with her smart mouth and hard-boiled manner, neither of which quite manage to mask her underlying vulnerability. She returns in the new Two for the Dough, just as outwardly tough and just as self-doubting.
January 13, 2011
Real Jewish rye bread Total time: 1 hour, 10 minutes, plus rising and cooling times Servings: Makes 1 round loaf (8 to 12 servings) Our recipes, your kitchen: If you try any of the L.A. Times Test Kitchen recipes from this week's Food section, please share it with us: Click here to upload pictures of the finished dish. Note: Adapted from "The Bread Bible" by Rose Levy Beranbaum. Specialty flours and barley malt syrup are available at select well-stocked markets, health food, cooking and baking supply stores, as well as online.
December 29, 2012 |
Dear SOS: I just returned from a lovely stay at the Savoy Hotel in London. For tea, we had the most wonderful scones that I have ever had. Do you think the pastry chef would share the recipe? Suzanne Cole Los Angeles Dear Suzanne: These adorable scones, delicate, flaky and not overly sweet, may look small, but they pack a lot of flavor. Buttermilk lends a subtle tang, enhancing the richness of the egg and butter, and a bit of dried or candied fruit adds a nice surprise with every bite.