Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Test Kitchen - Day 1

Just the other day I was telling Juan that if I ever became a baker I would want to work in a test kitchen rather than a bakery. This is pretty funny of course because I don't have serious plans to become a professional baker but a girl can dream, right? But today, I decided to try my hand at turning my humble kitchen (I should take a picture of it sometime) into a test kitchen. Maybe someday I'll also have a warehouse like this one.

This all started a few months ago when Christy posted a blog about some cookies that she ordered on etsy. I have to admit that even though I only saw a picture of the cookies I have been obsessing over them ever since. They were berry filled shortbread cookies. I love shortbread cookies, but to add berries to them just seemed divine. On top of that they looked like scoops of ice cream. Remembering these cookies last week I decided to do a search online for a recipe and only came up with shortbread cookies that had jam in the center, not a bad cookie, but not what I was looking for. Then I found that the etsy shop had closed!

Who should I turn to? King Arthur. First off, they wrote my all time favorite cookbook, Whole Grain Baking. And, have you seen their blog? It's beautiful, really. They have wonderful recipes, great stories and beautiful pictures showing each step. (OK, the truth is, if I ever become a professional baker I want to work in the King Arthur test kitchen. )

So, I thought I'd ask them what I should try and they answered me in less then a day!

So, here's what I came up with with the help of the baking gods:

Start with the Scottish Shortbread recipe on page 332 in King Arthur Whole Grain Baking

Cut down the amount of butter by half, in this case 1/2 c. Cream the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla.

Then, add 1/2 c of pureed strawberries. Cream together.

Procede with the rest of the recipe as directed (my picture for this step didn't come out).

The recipe says to bake them in the bottom of a cake pan and then cut into 12ths. I decided to do this with half and the second half I decided to try in little balls, like I remembered.

I have to say, both came out really good. Next time I may try replacing more of the butter with berries and I definitely will try this with raspberries and maybe even blueberries.

A special thanks to MaryJane @ The Baker’s Hotline for answering my question!

Next mission, to find the recipe for Superior's pink cookies, because they really are superior.