The new cookbook I received this week is: Bouchon Bakery!
It is an amazing cook book that I would recommend to anyone who is really interested in baking and wants some quality recipes. However, the book is very long winded (much like this post!) so it is not for a quick recipe.
I have wanted to get my hands on this amazing cookbook for a while, but it wasn't first on my Internet shopping list.

Speaking of Internet shopping list, I will soon be purchasing a new lens for my camera and am very excited to do so! I have been looking at a few but I have finally decided on a Nikon 35mm 1.8f for good depth of field shots I cannot achieve with my current lenses. I am extremely excited about this!

This week, I obviously wanted to make something from the pages of my new cookbook, so I settled for what I saw on the cover. The Better Nutter. It's a bakery-suited rendition of the Nutter Butter, and I would really recommend this recipe for many different reasons. First, being that you can work around all the fancy ingredients, which I had to do because I was baking at my cabin and the north woods has limited diversity in their grocery store products.
Second, is because this recipe teaches many fundamentals of baking, and if you've perfected those, it should be a walk in the park... but if your like me and just think you've perfected them, it serves as an eye opener. Some of these fundamentals include: basic buttercream, dough handling, egg whites, butter incorporation, and other good stuff. So it is all around a good recipe to start from in this cookbook.

How did I do with it? Well, due to a time crunch I did not let the dough firm up after rolling it out, so I just kind of shaped the cookies with my hands, thus creating a not-so-perfect looking cookie. However, the buttercream in this recipe was one of the best buttercream recipes I have found. It is relatively simple and creates a perfectly set buttercream. So, I have tackled the issue of runny buttercream. Just have to conquer those French Macarons... stay tuned 'till next week!

Better Nutters

From (with a few small changes): Bouchon Bakery
Yields anywhere from 6 to 10 cookies (depending on what size cookie cutter you use)

For the cookie:
30g Unsalted roasted peanut halves
198g All purpose flour
9.1g Baking soda
3.8g Baking powder
210g Unsalted butter at room temp.§
86g Creamy peanut butter
106g Brown sugar
54g Eggs
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
106g old fashioned oats

Chop peanuts coarsely and set aside. Place flour in a medium bowl, sift in the baking soda and baking powder, and whisk together. Place the butter and peanut butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment. Cream the butters on medium-low speed, until it has the consistency on mayonnaise and holds a peak. Add the sugar and mix for about 2 minutes until fluffy. Scrape down the bowl to add any unmixed areas to the mixture. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix on low speed for 15 to 30 seconds, until just combined. The mixture may still look broken, but that is fine, just don't over beat the eggs.
Add the dry ingredients in 2 additions, mixing on low for 15 to 30 seconds after each. Scrape the bottom of the bowl to incorporate any dry ingredients that have settled there. Add oats and pulse on low about 10 times to combine. Then, add the peanuts and pulse again.
Mound the dough on a large piece of plastic wrap, cover, and refrigerate for two hours. Place the dough between two pieces of parchment paper, and roll out to a 1/4 inch thick sheet. Place on a cookie sheet and put in fridge for another hour. Peel of the first layer of parchment paper and quickly cut out rounds from the dough using any size cutter you wish. Arrange the cut rounds on a lined sheet pan*
Push the cookie trimmings together and repeat the process until you have reached the maximum number of cookies you can cut from the dough. However, only out the dough in the refrigerator long enough to firm up, which will be less than 2 hours. (I would say anywhere from 15 to 45 min).
Once you have all the cookie rounds cut, place a piece of plastic wrap over the sheet pan a refrigerate for 2 hours.√
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the frozen cookies on two sheet pans lined with parchment paper. Bake the cookies until golden brown, 16 to 18 min. (However this really depends on what size cookie you chose). Reverse the pan halfway through baking. Set the pans on potholders to cool for 5 min before transferring the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.

For the Buttercream:
75g egg whites
150g and 33g granulated sugar
42g water
227g Unsalted butter cut into 1/2 inch pieces, at room temp. §

Place egg whites in a bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment.
Place the 150g of sugar in a small saucepan, add the water, and stir to moisten the sugar. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, and simmer until the syrup reaches 230 degrees F. Letting the syrup continue to cook, turn the mixer to medium speed, gradually pour in the remaining 33g sugar into the whites, and whip until the whites are beginning to form very loose peaks. If the whites are ready before the syrup reaches 230 degrees F, turn the mixer to the lowest setting just to keep them moving.
When the syrup is ready, remove pan from heat. Turn the mixture to medium-low speed, and slowly add the syrup. Increase speed to medium-high and whip until the bottom of the bowl had returned to room temp and the whites hold a stiff peak. (About 10 min).
Reduce speed and add the butter, a few pieces at a time. If at any point the mixture looks broken, stop adding butter and increase the speed of the mixer until mixture looks fully incorporated, then continue to add butter. The buttercream can be kept in the refrigerator before piping on the cookies, but will needed to be whipped before piping to reach a consistency it can be piped at.

For Assembly:
(Whew! Almost there!)

You'll need:
The finished cookies
The finished buttercream
175g creamy peanut butter
And a dash of kosher salt

Combine together the buttercream, peanut butter, and salt. (If your buttercream is too hard, it will need to be whipped for a minute or so). Stir together until fully combined. Turn half the cookies over and pipe spirals of the buttercream starting from the center. Cover the butter cream with another cookie, and continue this process with all the other cookies. Refrigerate for 15 min to let the buttercream set a bit to bring out its amazing taste. Congratulations! You've made it through! Sit back and enjoy your creation.

Recipe notes:

*You may have issue with this step if you did not cut the cookie rounds fast enough. You can be like me and just make the cookies with you fingers, or you can put the cookies back in the fridge until the dough becomes firm again.

√ Remember when you are making this recipe the dough will spend 5 to 7 hours in the fridge or freezer.

§Be sure butter is at room temp for incorporation; otherwise there will be tiny pieces of butter floating around in your dough!

Until next week!

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