Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Baking for Family

My mom, brother, and his three kids visited for six days. As promised, I provided a bottomless cookie jar.

Raisin Bran Chewies, with a few tweaks -- I used equal amounts butter and shortening instead of all shortening, and brown sugar instead of granulated sugar.

And Marcy Goldman's Big League Chocolate Chip Cookies (from The best of better baking.com). In this recipe as well, I use the half butter/half shortening combination.

I made about seven dozen the week before they arrived, stowed them away in the freezer, and brought them out a bag at a time. They lasted exactly six days, with a few left over for the long drive home.

For breakfasts I took photos of only a couple of items. Herb Baked Eggs...

...Pumpkin Spice Scones...

And one of the last couple days I opted not to bake at all.

In between dog walks that doubled as air-out-the-teenage-boys walks, and trips to the playground to entertain the 4 year-old, I made a German Chocolate Cake for some friends' birthdays.

I took a chance and sent it out of the house without first tasting it myself, but it got rave reviews. I used the chocolate ganache-type recipe as specified in the recipe, but I found it didn't harden as I'm accustomed to, so I left instructions for it to be refrigerated as long as possible. Next time I'd like to make some sort of sheet of chocolate to wrap around the cake. The look of a short wall of chocolate containing the coconut topping appeals to me.

My brother requested a carrot cake for his birthday, so I made Cuisine d'Or Classic Carrot Cake, another Marcy Goldman recipe, this one from Jewish Holiday Baking.

I had a wonderful week visiting family I haven't seen in too many months (years, to be truthful), and baking for them was very satisfying.

My next project is this coming weekend, the Daring Bakers' Challenge. Stay tuned.

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