Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Dulce de leche

I love dulce de leche! And it's so easy to make..I think it's way easier to make than the caramel sauce because you don't have to worry about burning the sugar. It just takes much longer, that's all.

This is Alton Brown's recipe. It seems that every Romanian blog or blogger that mentions dulce de leche thinks that the only way to make dulce de leche is by boiling a can of condensed milk in water for a few hours. Yes, that is one way to do it, but it's easier and "healthier" to make dulce de leche from regular milk.

I always have caramel and dulce de leche in my fridge because they are soo good on ice cream.My husband also likes apples and caramel together but I don't really care for that combination.

Ohh, you can see the vanilla seeds.Sooo good!

Caramel sauce (RECIPE)

As I said, we only need sugar,water,heavy cream,vanilla extract, a pinch of salt and very little butter (optional).
We need 1 and 1/2 cups sugar, 1/3 cups water,
1 and 1/cups heavy cream. THAT'S IT!

So, we put the sugar in a sauce pan.
GENTLY pour the water over the sugar. You do not want to splash sugar on the walls of the pan.

Turn on the heat on low and cook it until the sugar dissolves. DO NOT STIR to make the sugar melt faster. It is very important to leave the sugar alone at this time. Once it all melts, you can stir;)

Once the sugar is dissolve you can insert the candy thermometer and you can stir whenever you feel the caramel needs to be stirred. 

From this point on, do not leave the caramel unattended. It can burn easily within seconds.

The original recipe says to let the caramel reaches 350 F degrees, but to me that seemed too much.I took it off heat when it reached 330 F and looked like this:

Take the pan off heat, pour the heavy cream and be careful as the mixture is going to bubble up and need to get burned. Return the pan to heat and cook it for another 2-5 minutes until the caramel melts into the heavy cream.

Take the pan  off the heat. The caramel is going to look very thin and runny. Don't will thicken up a lot as it cools down.

You can add butter if you want to while it is still warm.

And this is how it looks when it cools down:

My husband has a lot of caramel with his apples:

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Carrot Cake

Today it's my husband's birthday! Happy Birthday sweetheart!
I just found out few days ago (we've been married for more than 5 years now) that he likes carrot cake. Never made it, never had it. So yesterday I made one. It's Alton Brown's recipe. I have always liked chemistry so Alton Brown is my kind of chef, and "Good Eats" is my kind of show!

In the flour, I mixed in nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.. We also need sugar, vegetable oil, yogurt (I actually mixed 1/2 yogurt and 1/2 sour cream for more richness),eggs, brown sugar and of course carrots. I also added a tad of buttermilk to make the cake even moister.
The icing is just a plain cream cheese icing:cream cheese, butter, vanilla extract and powdered sugar.Simple yet delicious!
Please excuse the childish drawings on the cake. Me and decorating are not good friends. I was trying to "make" carrots LOL

Monday, June 28, 2010

Plum Cake "Tatin"

I've said it many times: I love Ina Garten, I love her show Barefoot Contessa, I love her personality, and I love her husband (not that way, although he looks incredibly good for his age...but he's equally funny and smart and spontaneous and all those qualities you want in a man. They are such a perfect fit!)
Two days ago I tried another recipe of hers called Plum Cake "Tatin". It turned out pretty well, but the next time I'm going to make this recipe I'll use the type of plums suggested. The kind I used (forgot how they're called) were much juicier and you can see the juice soaking up the cake (which wasn't necessarily a bad thing). I followed  the recipe exactly except I used a different type of plums, I added some nutmeg in the cake batter, and I just noticed that her picture then her recipe calls for the plums being arranged cut side down. I didn't see that partt and I arranged my plums cut side up in my dish...oopsy!

So, we butter a pie dish, slice and pit the plums, then we make a caramel syrup out of water and sugar and pour it over the plums.

We then make the cake batter (sugar, butter, sour cream,eggs, flour, baking powder, lemon zest, nutmeg and salt),pour the batter over the plums and bake it.

After it cooled for about 15 minutes, we turn the cake upside down on a plate

And ...tada.. we have an upside down plum cake.

 Thank you Ina! Your recipes are always wonderful!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Heirloom Tomatoes Salad with Goat Cheese

I LOVE heirloom tomatoes! They are beautiful and tasty!.And I love the combination between tomatoes and goat cheese.I added some spinach, onion, olive oil and salt. Easy and fast to make and healthy too on top of that:) 

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Pineapple Upside Down Cake/Tort Ananas

I propose a game...un jeu. Let this be a "no words" recipe...just images...and "you" figure out the recipe!
{Tip:the order of the pictures it's important too;)}

Sooo you can play my game OR you can go on Foodnetwork to get Emeril Lagasse's pineapple upside down cake recipe.. it would be easier ;)! Emeril Lagasse rocks!!