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Showing posts from 2014

Ooey gooey can’t-believe-they’re-pareve “Turtles” (we ate them, so I can’t show you what they look like).

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If only I had taken a picture.  But Shabbos was early, one of the earliest of the year.  And now, they’re all gone.  I hope that tells you how yummy these are.  Like, “I can’t-believe-these-are-pareve” yummy.Imagine hunks of gooey caramel, topped with lightly toasted pecans and just the right amount of dark chocolate.  You know, sort of like Turtles?  Except these guys are easy to make at home, out of regular coconut milk.  And no, they really truly do NOT taste like coconut.  (Not that I mind the taste of coconut; it’s the texture I can’t stand.)Special tools? I usually hate nonstick, but I happen to have this heavy-duty nonstick muffin top pan.  This also comes in handy before Rosh Hashanah to make honey cake tops, which are absolutely divine.  You could also use a whoopie pie pan, or make these in silicone baking cups.

3 magic ways to keep it clean: getting sticky dough off your hands.

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So you made bread.  Good for you!Now what do you do with those ooky, ooky fingers?  Try one of these three magic tricks to get your hands sparkly again in no time.1)  Get scrapingGrab your trusty bench scraper.  It doesn’t have to be fancy, but I haven’t found any other tool that works as well.  Now, just like you’re stripping paint from the wall, gently SCRAAAAAAAPE the dough together.  Off your palms, the backs of your hands, between your fingers, wherever it’s stuck.  Once you have most of the dough loosened, you can rub that around your hands to get the rest off.  Don’t throw it away.  Just ball it up and toss it in wherever the rest of your dough is rising.  2)  Fight flour with flour

Janis Dohmann’s (and now my) Pecan Pie

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This has been my go-to pecan pie recipe for YEARS (maybe since the late 90s?).  But when I went to the site today, I discovered that the recipe was GONE.Shock, horror, dismay!Happily the Wayback Machine remembers everything.  So I was able to dig up an archived copy of the recipe.  (If you’re curious, you can also visit my old Geocities site, going as far back as 1999.)Here’s what the page originally looked like:I’m reposting the recipe here without permission as a public service.  If you are the copyright holder (Janis Dohmann and family, I suppose), and you don’t want this recipe to stay up here, then please just let me know nicely and I’ll take it down.NOTE 1:  Because my pie pan is rather deep, I usually make 1.5 times this recipe (ie 3 eggs instead of 2, 1.5 cups of corn syrup, etc.)NOTE 2:For Israelis who have trouble finding corn syrup, I substituted about 1/3 invert sugar, made with this Marshmallow Syrup recipe (I didn’t have Cream of Tartar, so I substituted a small squirt o…

5 bread baking myths you've got to stop believing - NOW.

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When you love baking as much as I do, you become an evangelist.
After we moved to Israel, and our whole lives were topsy-turvy, the only time I felt like things were at all “normal” were when I was making bread.  Those breads were rudimentary at first – hey, we didn’t even have an oven.  But they kept me grounded. 
I was so ecstatic when all our possessions arrived, including my gorgeous cast iron loaf pans, plastic dough bucket, and other beloved bakeware, accumulated over the years.  It was time to get my hands floury and really start baking again.
I love how centered and grounded baking makes me feel, but can’t help wondering why other people seem to think it’s hard, or complicated, or just not something they have space for in their lives.  We all have time and space to make bread.  Sure, it takes a while, but very little of that is active prep time.  A bread that takes 36 hours from start to finish may have less than ten minutes of actual stirring, kneading, mixing and forming l…

The ugliest challah

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I had such high hopes… but it turned out so, so badly.  Well, tasty enough.  But UGLY as sin.It all started with a video that showed a beautiful, trim Israeli lady making the most gorgeous braids with the kind of ease that you only acquire after having made thousands of them.I watched it.  Naomi Rivka watched it.  We were inspired – hooray!As soon as I started to pull of this complicated six-braid, everything began to go horribly wrong, starting with the ginormous octopus contraption you see at the top of this post.From there, I created a not-too-shabby looking braided thingy…And then tucked it together to resemble – um, a mummified dog?Yuck, says Naomi Rivka.Meanwhile, she herself was inspired by another technique she’d seen in the video to create a round challah, wrapped with a band to make it more regal.  Beautiful!Just to make the situation even more ridiculous, it turned out there wasn’t room on my (entire-oven-sized) baking pan for both of our challahs… so, ever the martyr, I sa…

With love from Israel: mega-easy pareve “rogelach”

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Many social media people have been worried over the last few days:  apparently, if you Google “Israel,” you get all kinds of dire, terrible images.This post is my attempt to fix that.So why is the word “rogelach” in quotes up at the top?  Because if you just google rogelach (or, as I did, rugelach), most of the recipes you’ll find involve cream cheese, and possibly milk and butter.  It seems that us pareve people are in the minority when it comes to rogelach.And because dairy does such incredible, delicious things when it lives inside a dough, these can never be truly “real” rogelach.  But they can be a tasty, rogelach-shaped puffy cookie on your Shabbos table (or any other day of the week’s table), and some weeks, it just doesn’t get better than that.I started with regular leftover challah dough.  If you need a recipe, you can try my Reliable Challah recipe.If you happen to have leftover dough sitting around, you may find these so easy you’ll wonder why people bother going out to bak…

The taste of s’mores in Israel

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Quit kvetching.  At least, that’s what everybody says when I blog about the problems I’ve had baking here in Israel.  Which, just to recap, range from teeny tiny oven in small, hellishly-hot kitchen, to weird fake ingredients (tzimkao, vanillin sugar), to things that are missing altogether or wildly expensive (maple anything, corn syrup).Fair enough; you’re more likely to be successful in your aliyah if you adapt quickly and learn to savour the wonderful foods that can be found here, rather than moping about what you miss from “back home.”  In truth, I don’t even say the words “back home” because this IS home.But one thing I’ve found myself missing – heaven help me! - is the taste of s’mores.  Particularly the delectable S’mores Bars in this pareve recipe.  Cleverly, these bars recreate the gooey goodness of s’mores in a versatile dessert-bar form.  After searching for a perfect “s’mores dessert” for a whle, I finally discovered this recipe and have now made it many times over the las…

Recipe: Old cake, new cake… on Shavuos, we have two cakes!

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And no, they’re not both cheesecakes… although one is; a special all-Israeli cheesecake for which you can find the recipe a bit further down.  And okay, both are dairy-based; sorry to anyone who can’t have dairy at this very milky time of year…(In fact, since I started to write this, my husband decided to make a classic North American lemony cheesecake, deapite my predictions of doom that it wouldn’t work with Israeli cheese… so we may end up with three cakes.) With all of my dooming and glooming about baking in Israel, I was happy to receive a recipe from my ulpan teacher on Sunday night which she guaranteed would work with Israeli ingredients – given that she’s never baked it anywhere else.  I figure as an old dog making aliyah, it’s time for a new trick… with cheesecake.Except, except, except… her cheesecake doesn’t have a crust.  Heresy!  I couldn’t bake a crustless cheesecake.  Honestly, I was about to pour it into the pan (#26, according to her instructions, which took some mea…

More delicious kosher morsels!