Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Desserts A Plenty

I had a good amount of egg yolks, whites, and cream leftover after the wedding, so before I left SF I wanted to use it all up so it wouldn't end up in the trash.

- olive oil ice cream + fleur de sel ganache: When I arrived at my parents' house for the holidays, I mentioned that I had an ice cream base to spin and their eyes lit up as they inquired what kind. Olive oil, I said (adapted from a David Lebovitz recipe), and immediately their faces looked of disgust. After I made it my dad was like "it tastes too oily"... who would've thought. I used a really good bottle of olive oil that Mike gave me that was actually kind of old, so it probably didn't taste as good as it would have if it had been fresh. I made a quick 1:2 ganache using the leftover bittersweet chocolate from the truffles I made for the wedding and some fleur de sel to give the ice cream some contrast.

- leftover "vanilla" cupcake batter + vanilla buttercream

- leftover lime cream => lime meringue tart, pate sucree shell: Since the lime cream (adapted from a Pierre Herme lemon cream recipe) wasn't intentionally made for a meringue pie/tart it didn't really hold when I put it in the oven and the entire thing deflated by the end of the day. Usually you just use citrus curd, and not a cream that is mostly butter.

- butterscotch pudding a la tiffany from top chef holiday special: I put this, unwrapped, in a bag with a bunch of other stuff and left it in the hallway of my parents' house, and when I finally remembered I left it there, it was partially eaten! Sneaky little Bonnie (sister's dog)! This had very dark caramel flavors from the brown sugar, and was extreeeemely rich, but my dad made me throw it out since he was afraid Bonnie's germs might get us sick.

- round chinese pineapple cake vs. rectangular: We went to my cousin's new house on Christmas day, and they had a container full of round pineapple cakes. I had never seen them before, but they tasted exactly the same as the rectangular ones, except without all the extra cakey parts. Since it didn't have corners, there was a pretty even ratio of cake:filling, which made it ten times more enjoyable to eat since the cakey part is usually really dry. No pictures of it, but if you ever see it... trust me... it is a much improved eating experience!

- Egg custard tarts from Golden Gate Bakery: My family had dinner at the House, and stopped by Chinatown for a little pre-meal snack. As always, there was a line, but they are so worth it. Sure, you can find them for cheaper than $1.15 elsewhere, but there is no bakery in the bay area that makes them better. Always the best when eaten on the sidewalk - hot and fresh out of the oven! (The House isn't as good as it used to be, btw, although it was still packed).

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