This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.
So my mind ran off with itself regarding this challenge. I had visions of making these tuiles and shaping them into curlicues and spirals and then using them to decorate The Businessman's birthday cake.
I was humbled. I think I spent too much time imagining the finale and didn't pay full attention to the execution.
The batter came together nicely. I refrigerated it for a few hours and then rushed to make them. I tried to pipe long lines of dough which I thought I could wrap around wooden spoon handles for the curlicues. I baked them about 6 minutes and tried to lift one up to form it while still warm. It was a little underdone, I think, and stuck to the parchment. I tried to drape the parchment over a rolling pin and the sticks cracked on me:
My kids thought they were edible.
Then I tried the stencil thing. I pulled a sheet of plastic stencils that are meant to be used for scrapbooking--there were images of palm trees, starfish, clouds, etc. This was the smartest thing I had done thus far. The stencils came out of the oven beautifully. I let them cool flat. Unfortunately, the palm tree was a little underdone and broke when I tried to lift it.
Above: Beach shapes and blobs.
At this point, I was trying to make dinner, separate fighting kids, and clean the kitchen and the charm of tuiles had worn off. The cookies were inhaled quickly and all evidence destroyed.
What I learned:
- Stop thinking grand until I've had practice
- Try again later--perhaps Valentine's Day
- Refocus my DB efforts and remember this is supposed to be fun!
Following is a recipe taken from a book called “The Chocolate Book”, written by female Dutch Master chef Angélique Schmeinck.
Recipe:Yields: 20 small butterflies/6 large (butterflies are just an example)
Preparation time batter 10 minutes, waiting time 30 minutes, baking time: 5-10 minutes per batch
65 grams / ¼ cup / 2.3 ounces softened butter (not melted but soft)
60 grams / ½ cup / 2.1 ounces sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 sachet vanilla sugar (7 grams or substitute with a dash of vanilla extract)
2 large egg whites (slightly whisked with a fork)
65 grams / 1/2 cup / 2.3 ounces sifted all purpose flour
1 table spoon cocoa powder/or food coloring of choice
Butter/spray to grease baking sheet
Oven: 180C / 350F
Using a hand whisk or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle (low speed) and cream butter, sugar and vanilla to a paste. Keep stirring while you gradually add the egg whites. Continue to add the flour in small batches and stir to achieve a homogeneous and smooth batter/paste. Be careful to not overmix.Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to firm up. (This batter will keep in the fridge for up to a week, take it out 30 minutes before you plan to use it).
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grease with either butter/spray and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. This will help spread the batter more easily if using a stencil/cardboard template such as the butterfly. Press the stencil on the bakingsheet and use an off sided spatula to spread batter. Leave some room in between your shapes. Mix a small part of the batter with the cocoa and a few drops of warm water until evenly colored. Use this colored batter in a paper piping bag and proceed to pipe decorations on the wings and body of the butterfly.Bake butterflies in a preheated oven (180C/350F) for about 5-10 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown. Immediately release from bakingsheet and proceed to shape/bend the cookies in the desired shape. These cookies have to be shaped when still warm, you might want to bake a small amount at a time or maybe put them in the oven to warm them up again. (Haven’t tried that). Or: place a bakingsheet toward the front of the warm oven, leaving the door half open. The warmth will keep the cookies malleable.If you don’t want to do stencil shapes, you might want to transfer the batter into a piping bag fitted with a small plain tip. Pipe the desired shapes and bake. Shape immediately after baking using for instance a rolling pin, a broom handle, cups, cones….