Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Baking Chez Moi - Brown Butter and Vanilla Bean Weekend Cake

Brown Butter & Vanilla Bean Weekend Cake is the first recipe in Dorie Greenspan's Baking Chez Moi (p. 6), a 477-page cookbook filled with uncomplicated contemporary and specialty desserts from all over France.

Baking Chez Moi is divided into seven sections: Simple Cakes; Fancy Cakes; Tarts & Galettes; Baby Cakes & Petite Pastries; Cookies & Bars; Fruit, Creams, Frozen Desserts & Candies; and a section called Basics - with tart doughs, pastry creams, fillings, sauces and the like. As with Around My French Table, Dorie garnishes most recipes with an enlightening description, tips for preparation, personal story, suggestions for variations, and gorgeous food photography.    

This cake is like a pound cake, but taken up to a more sophisticated level with nutty brown butter, seeds scraped from a fragrant vanilla bean, and a splash of dark rum. Dorie uses Armagnac in many of her recipes, sweet and savory, so I had an excuse to break out my bottle to use that in place of the rum. I was correct in my assumption as to why this cake is called a Weekend Cake...if you make it on Friday night or Saturday morning, it is destined to be devoured by Monday morning...a slice with coffee, a slice with afternoon tea, a slice after dinner with some Armagnac or port, a slice toasted the next morning...OMG, I ate the entire cake! Not really, but I could have!

...the concept of a weekend cake is: a simple, sturdy cake that will last the weekend,
that can be put out to be nibbled by family and houseguests,
that will be as good for dessert as it will be for an end-of-the-afternoon snack
or an end-of-the-morning tide-me-over.

I was going to write about a few highlights the past few weeks - like photographing a cooking class with Pamela Sheldon Johns, hanging out in the kitchen at Leroy's for the monthly Chef Collaboration Dinner, and an awesome photography shoot with my Meetup group, Pacific Photographic Society, but I'm just too tired tonight...and it's only Monday! 

I will let a few photos tell the story tonight and plan to share some of Pamela's "Peasant Italian" recipes in future posts. You can always visit (and Like!) Newf in My Soup's Facebook Page to see photo albums of special events and photography outings ;-)

A few of Pamela's cookbooks

Pamela Sheldon Johns

Involtini di Maiale - Pork Rolls stuffed with Ricotta and Spinach

Chef Collaboration Dinner at Leroy's Kitchen & Lounge, with Amy DiBiase of Tidal and Green Flash Brewery

First Course: White Shrimp, Sea Bass Ceviche, Salmon Crudo
Green Flash Beach House Ale Saison

4th Course: Dry aged Prime Rib, Anson Mills green faro, spiced
persimmon chutney, Green Flash Grand Cru

PPS MeetUp Ramona Hawk Watch - Ferruginous Hawk

PPS Meetup Ramona Hawk Watch - Screech Owl

Good night!

Tuesdays with Dorie is an online cooking group where anyone can bake along. We bake with two books – Baking with Julia and Baking Chez Moi. I am baking along with the Baking Chez Moi group, which bakes two recipes per month and posts on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month. We are asked to refrain from including the actual recipe in our posts, to promote the publishing industry and encourage others to buy the cookbooks.


yummychunklet said...

I'm drooling over those pork rolls! Great post!

Patty Price said...

Beautiful cake! Great photos ..I wish I had another piece of weekend cake ;)

Kathy said...

Simply beautiful cake! Gorgeous photos! Happy Tuesday!

Leah said...

Your photo is so beautiful! As were all of your other food pix! Great blog!

Kayte said...

Gorgeous cake, gorgeous photos. Oh my goodness the food photos! :-)

Liz Berg said...

Oh, yeah, I'd eat a slice of this cake ANY time of day! Yours looks divine, Denise!

Zosia said...

Lovely cake. Armagnac sounds like a delicious addition to it.

Cher Rockwell said...

The cake looks wonderful, but I have my eye on those involtini!

caramelizelife.com said...

If only the cake lasted all weekend but in my home it was devoured quickly.
I loved the hawk photos, it reminded me of a hawk tour we took in Ireland- so fun!
cheers to you!

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh I love your photography!!! Beautiful pictures and cake!

Cathleen | My Culinary Mission said...

Gorgeous photo of the cake! Nice presentation.

Teresa said...

Lovely photos, as always. This cake could be gone in a weekend, for sure!

Margaret @approachingfood said...

Your photos look fabulous! And in my house, a cake like that would be gone in a flash!