Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Hazelnut orange quinoa pound cake

After a few days in the 80s last week, guess what’s going today? You are right, it is snowing again! We expect 5 inches of snow tonight. I was sure it wasn’t over yet…. Global climate change? More like global climate chaos. And what do I do? I bake again. Both last cakes, the stout chocolate cake and the Gugelhupf, I took to work, and they were gone in 60 seconds. This time I am only making a small one, a gluten-free one, for a friend of mine who was recently diagnosed with gluten intolerance. It is one of my favorite cakes, gluten free or not --- with quinoa flour, hazelnut flour and orange zest it just has a luxurious flavor and texture. 


Hazelnut orange quinoa pound cake

  • 6 TB of butter, at room temperature
  • 2 large organic free-range eggs
  • 1/3 cup plain low-fat yogurt
  • zest of one organic orange
  • juice of 1/2 orange
  • 1/3 cup hazelnut flour
  • 1/3 cup quinoa flour
  • 1/3 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Fleur de sel
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Confectioner’s sugar

Preheat the oven at 350 F. Spray a small round bundt cake pan with baking spray. In a bowl, mix the different flours, the baking powder, and the Fleur de sel. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, cream the room temperature butter with the sugar until creamy and fluffy (placing a stick of butter in the microwave for 15 seconds brings it to the right consistency if you take it right out of the fridge). Add one egg at a time, waiting until the first one is well incorporated before adding the second. Add in the yogurt, vanilla orange zest and orange juice. Add the dry ingredients and mix until well. The dough will be a bit sticky.

Fill the bundt cake pan with the dough (it will be about 3/4 full) and bake the bundt cake for about 35-40 minutes, or until the blade of a sharp knife inserted in the middle of the cake comes out dry. Let cool for 5 minutes before unmolding, leaving the cake to cool on a rack. To serve, dust with confectioner’s sugar.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Gugelhupf, Take 2

Rainy days can have something cozy about them, puttering around in the kitchen, cooking quinoa and lentils for the week, cuddling with the cats, watching old movies, writing letters. And taking glamour shots of the Gugelhupf from last night.  

gugelhupf_baked GH2

Saturday, March 24, 2012


There we go again: late night baking. Ever since I laid eyes on Heidi’s chocolate cake I not only coveted the cake, but also the bundt cake pan. She found hers in an antique store so I made it my mission to scour all of Maine’s antique places along Rt 1 this summer for old bundt cake pans. Since I am not that patient I bought the Nordic Ware heritage bundt cake pan from Williams Sonoma, which is beautiful. Tonight it looked at me like it needed to be inaugurated, with a German bundt cake, the classic marbled Gugelhupf. I made another small one for taste testing. It is wonderfully light. 

4 extra large eggs
 1 1/2 cups (325 g)sugar
1 ts.pure vanilla extract
16 TBS (2 sticks)room temperature butter
3/4 cup + 1 TBmilk (or butter milk)
3 cups (440 g)all-purpose flour
1 ½ ts.
1/2 ts
baking powder
baking soda
1/4 ts salt
1 TBspiced rum
1 ts
 instant espresso powder

baking spray

Preheat oven to 350F. Have all ingredients at room temperature (especially  eggs, butter and milk). Sift together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Also, sift together the cacao powder and instant espresso in a small cup, and stir with the 2 TB of milk until smooth. Using a standmixer with a flat beater, beat the butter until it is creamy and smooth, ca. 30seconds. Add the sugar and continue beating until the mixture is creamy and fluffy (ca. 5 minutes). Add the eggs, one at a time. Stop the standmixer once in a while to scrape down the sides. Once the eggs are incorporated, add in the vanilla extract and the rum. Turn the stand mixer off,  add in the sifted flour in 1 cup parts. Once sifted in, mix in by hand with a silicone spatula. Turn on the stand mixer again, and incorporate. Turn speed to very slow, and add in 1/3 of the milk, and then speed up again. Alternate between flour and milk, and beat each addition until it is fully incorporated.

Pour 2/3 s of the batter into a separate mixing bowl, and mix the remaining batter with the cacao powder/instant espresso/milk mix. Prepare the bundt cake pan with a baking spray and pour in half of the 'white' batter first, then add the 'chocolate' batter and finish with the remaining 'white' batter. Draw a skewer once through the batter for a beautiful marbeling (or not).

Bake the bundt cake at 350F for 55-60min or a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean and the Gugelhupf removes slightly from the sides of the pan. Transfer the cake pan to a cooling rack and let it cool for 10 min. Turn the cake pan, and slightly tip on the pan until the Gugelhupf comes out. Cool the Gugelhupf on the cooling rack for at least 2 hours. Sift confectioners sugar for decoration.  Serve with a side of coffee and maybe some fresh whipped cream with a dash of sugar and vanilla extract.

Makes at least 16 portions. gugelhupf1LR

Monday, March 19, 2012

Chocolate Stout Cake

Ever since I laid eyes on Heidi’s Chocolate Bundt Cake, I knew I had to make it. Today, I finally bought the remaining ingredients I did not have, a bottle of cream stout beer and yogurt, I even made it maple yogurt. After a long day at work it was the best thing to do to relax and take my mind off things: an elaborate rich novel cake. Cake with dark beer and chocolate? Sounds good to me.

I made the original recipe, and since I own only smaller bundt cake pans, I made 2 smaller ones sand 1 tiny one (guess, who ate half of that cake already?). You cannot really taste the beer in the cake, and I think the cake might be best after a few days. But even out of the oven, it is delicious and light. 


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Dark Rye Pumpernickel Waffles

I have been experimenting with savory waffles for a while (e.g. rice waffles with miso, and cinnamon bacon waffles). Yesterday,  I experimented with adding lentils und hummus to a basic waffle recipe, but this recipe still needs a little bit of tweaking. However, today’s dark rye waffle recipe came out great; the waffles taste like fresh dark rye bread with a distinctive flavor. I had some with hummus for lunch--- fabulous! They would be great for Rueben sandwiches or just with some butter and cheese, or an omelette.


Dark Rye Pumpernickel Waffles (makes 7 small waffles):
In a mixing bowl, add the flours, baking powder, cumin seeds, and sea salt and stir well to mix. Add the warm water to the flours and mix it in so that there are no lumps in the dough. In a small saute pan, melt the butter and add the cacao, espresso, and molasses, and mix it all through (the molasses will melt, too). Don’t let it get too hot or cook too long – it is enough for the butter to melt and the molasses to just mix it and thin out via the heat (alternatively, place these ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 90s, stir and microwave for another 10s). Take off the stove, cool for 5min, and mix into the waffle dough mix. This mix will give the waffles their distinctive deep rye flavor. Mix well with the dough – it already smells wonderful.

Heat a waffle iron on a higher setting (mine has settings 1-8, and I chose 6), and preheat the iron. Spray with a baking spray (it has some flour in the spray). Once the preheating is finished, fill a 1/4 cup of the mix in the middle of the waffle iron. Slightly center the dough, press iron down, and time the ‘baking’ for 5 min. If you use a waffle iron that makes thicker waffles, increase the baking time. These waffles are best if they are well-baked and slightly crispy since it is more of a bread than a waffle dough. Continue with the rest of the batch in the same way. Should make 6-7 waffles using a 1/4 cup or 3 waffles using 1/2 cup.

Bl_waffles black_waffle_dough