Recipe #37: Summer Vegetable Tart

Next Tuesday, July 16th, the Tuesdays with Dorie group will be baking the Summer Vegetable Tart on page 436 of Baking with Julia. But I’ll be in France for the next two weeks on a 15 day river cruise, enjoying first hand some delicious French food and wine!!!!

Yesterday I went ahead and baked the vegetable tart so I won’t keep getting behind on the recipes.  It’s made with phyllo dough sheets layered in a tart pan for the crust. I wish there had been a photo, because I wasn’t completely clear what the instructions were telling me to do with it.  The recipe called for mushrooms, but I substituted swiss chard because I have LOTS of chard in my garden. I added a red bell pepper, a yellow bell pepper, an onion, some garlic, and two 4 ounce packages of goat cheese.  The crust is baked unfilled and the vegetables are sauteed in a skillet, then the goat cheese in mixed in to make a creamy filling.  After the ring is removed from the tart pan, it holds up better than I expected it to.  We liked it, but we thought it was a little too heavy on the goat cheese.  Next time I think 4 ounces would be plenty. Au revoir and bon appetit!

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Recipe #35: Tomato and Cheese Galette

So, I skipped recipe #34 because MY DAUGHTER GOT MARRIED LAST WEEK!  But this week I’m just washing all those beautiful table and chair coverings and putting away all the vases and candles, so plenty of time for a little Tomato and Cheese Galette.  (If you’re interested, check out a few wedding photos on the photographer’s blog:  Simon and Kate’s Wedding)  They are honeymooning right now, so no Galette for them.  Maybe I’ll make them one when they get home because it was super easy and “excellent” (to quote my mother).

The recipe can be found in the Baking with Julia Cookbook, or on several blogs that came up on a google search, one of which is here.

The galette pastry dough is the same one we made for the berry galette, recipe #14 Mixed Berry Galette. Not intimidating, comes together well in the food processor, and is tender and flaky.



I had some store bought tomatoes that looked less than delicious, so I roasted them in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes, then broiled them for about 5 minutes. I forgot to buy fresh basil at the store, so I rummaged in the freezer and found some pesto that I made last summer from my garden basil.  I spread a layer of pesto on the rolled out crust, then a layer of shredded mozzarella and monterey jack.  I picked some swiss chard and spinach from my garden, sauted it with a little garlic, and added it as the next layer.  I topped it off with the roasted tomatoes, then a little more cheese.  After folding up the edges into a pleated little package, it went into the oven at 400 degrees for 45 minutes (a little longer than the recipe called for).  We loved it!


Recipe #33: Savory Brioche Pockets and #8: Pecan Sticky Buns

Since I missed the making of the brioche dough and the sticky buns the first time around last May, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to divide the dough and make half into the savory pockets and the other half into the pecan sticky buns.  The Tuesdays with Dorie host for the pecan buns was Lynn on her blog, Eat Drink Man Woman Dogs Cat.  The host for the savory pockets this week is Carrie on her blog, Loaves and Stitches.  The recipes can be found on their blogs or in the cookbook Baking with Julia.

After I made these, I found the video of Julia Child and Nancy Silverton making both the sticky buns and the savory pockets.  It might have been helpful to watch this first! Baking with Julia: Sticky Buns

The dough turned out just like it said it would in the recipe and the finished products tasted delicious.  I mixed up the dough yesterday and refrigerated it overnight.  This morning I used half of it to make the sticky buns.  The key word for this recipe is BUTTER.

First you make the sponge and watch the flour on top crack. Cool.


Then you beat the butter into submission and add it to the sponge with more flour.IMG_2003Nice squishy dough, that gets to rise for 1 1/2 hours, deflate, then refrigerate overnight.
IMG_2006 The next morning, I took half of the dough and rolled it out, with more butter added.IMG_2007After resting and re-rolling the dough, it’s sprinkled with cinnamon-sugar, chopped pecans, and placed into a cake pan with MORE butter and brown sugar on the bottom.
IMG_2010IMG_2009After another rising, the rolls are baked for 27 minutes.
IMG_2012They turned out really well.  I’ll make these again for sure!IMG_2013IMG_2016Then for dinner tonight, I made the rest of the brioche dough into the savory pockets with the mashed red potatoes, goat cheese, caramelized onions and asparagus. Labor intensive, but very good.  I’m feeling like a real baker today…


Recipe #29: Mocha Chocolate Chip Cookies

I’m almost caught up now after making these luscious mocha chocolate chippers.  The recipe is on page 330 of Baking with Julia, or you can get it from our host, Peggy, at Galettista.  One of these days I WILL attempt those daunting croissants that take 3 days to make.  Many of my fellow Tuesdays with Dorie bakers have made them and their photos show that it can be done.

So, to the cookies at hand.  This is an all butter, no shortening, cookie dough that requires a little extra time to chill in the fridge before baking so they won’t spread out too much.  There were decisions to be made in this recipe.  First, choice of chocolate. I went with a combination of 3.5 ounce bar of Lindt 50% cocoa dark, a 3.5 ounce bar of Ghirardelli 72% dark, and 10 ounces of semi-sweet Nestle’s chips. Why? Because that’s what was on the chocolate shelf of my kitchen cupboard.  Next, do you have coffee powder sitting around?  Hmmm, I didn’t have that, so I used some freeze dried espresso granules and ground them up with my mortar and pestal (I love using it…I feel like a chemist!).  And then, to add dried apricots or not.  I think not. Maybe next time.IMG_1943I used my large cookie scoop which made 36 cookies instead of the 48 the recipe said it would make.  Warm out of the oven these cookies were just oozing melted chocolate.IMG_1953I’m headed over to have happy hour with my friends in about an hour. We’re planning a bridal shower, so we’re going to need sustenance.  I’ll bring the cookies.IMG_1956


Recipe #30: Rustic Potato Loaves

With 3 recipes to catch up on that I missed due to back surgery and a trip to Texas, I’m grateful for the extra Tuesday in April to be able to get one of them posted.  This week I made the potato loaves that I missed on April 2nd.  If you want the recipe, it’s on page 138 of Baking with Julia, or check out the blog of our host for the week, Dawn at Simply Sweet.

This is a fun bread recipe to make and it turned out really well without a lot of effort. I started it at 5:00 and it was hot and ready to serve with dinner at 8:00. Not many bread recipes can be whipped up that fast and easy.

The first step is scrubbing, boiling and then drying out some russet potatoes:



The potatoes are mashed in the mixer with proofed yeast and olive oil:

IMG_1915Switch to the dough hook and add the flour and salt, kneading for 11 minutes (not 10, not 12) until it is miraculously transformed from crumbly to soft and sticky.



After a 30 minute rest in a covered bowl, the dough is shaped into 2 discs and rolled into torpedo shaped loaves.  I took Dawn’s suggestion and added bacon, cheese and scallions to one of my loaves before I rolled it up.

IMG_1918(The little flecks in the dough are the potato skins.) After a 20 minute rest, the loaves are popped into a 375* oven onto a hot stoneware baking sheet, seam side up. You spray a little water inside the oven to add steam, or add ice cubes in the bottom of the oven. And they turn out like this:



IMG_1921Butter, eat and savor:





Recipe #31: Madeleines

You may have noticed that I skipped right from Recipe #27 to #31.  After a super busy six week break, I am back. The madeleine recipe was a great way to jump back in.  Easy, tasty, and required a fun outing to the kitchen store to buy new madeleine pans.

Check out our host Katie’s blog at Counter Dog for the recipe, photos and see how her madeleines turned out.  Here’s a look at mine and the process from start to finish:

Get out the cookbook,

Get out the cookbook,

turn to page 334,

turn to page 334,








bake, cool,

bake, cool,





Recipe #27: Boca Negra

Easy to make, chocolately goodness with a little bourbon added.  Need I say more.  In fact, I’ll let our hostess of the week, Cathy, tell you the Boca Negra story.  Mine came out a little gooey, more like pudding than a cake.  But still very delicious.  I should probably  cook it a little longer next time and see if it gets a little less gooey and a little more cakey, but the recipe said to cook it for “exactly” 30 minutes.  I made 3 little cakes instead of one 9″ round so I could share with more of my friends.   I’ll try this one again.  Pictures are worth a thousand words…


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IMG_1710Happy hour at the Wobbly Bobby with friends calls for beer and chocolate!  Cheers!