Cake: Yazdi Cakes
These Persian cakes are so simple and delicious. I used this recipe that had rosewater, apple, and cardamom in them. They were like muffins in texture and were so wonderfully fluffy and satisfying. I had to make my own rosewater for the recipe, as I didn’t know where to find any to buy, but it was easy and tasted really nice. I made the leftover rosewater into a syrup for mixed drinks. But these cakes were so a pleasant addition to our dinner and a party we hosted later that evening.
The only issue I experienced during this bake was that I forgot to pick up the toppings, so they didn’t have the beautiful crust of sliced almonds and Muscovado sugar on them, which would’ve added another layer of subtle, yet complex, flavour.
I wanted to try making vegan macaron, and I found this recipe using aquafaba. I decided to do my own flavours though and did rosewater and chocolate. I forgot that a food processor is rather necessary for macaron recipes though, and I don’t have one. So that was the first of many problems I encountered. Sadly we lost the photos of the hilarious way this bake turned out, so I don’t have evidence of the somehow edible (and quite tasty) mess that I ended up with.
After realising the importance of the food processor, I attempted using my coffee grinder. I cleaned it thoroughly and let it dry completely, but coffee grinders are much too small and very ineffective for blending flour mixes. I also forgot to account for the added moisture from the rose water, and as a result I failed to add an extra tablespoon of flour. That might not sound like much, but trust me it takes the cookies from holding form to being giant blobs/puddles. After letting the piped cookies dry slightly, I came back to find they had all run together. I didn’t know what else to do, so I baked them like that and they came out like very thin, but very large pieces of meringue that tasted similar to macarons. And because they were the size of my baking sheets by that point, they broke and crumbled as I tried to remove them from the silicone baking mats. Eventually I flipped over one of the light pink, meringue-esque “cookie” spread some of the vanilla and rosewater buttercream. Also, the buttercream had slightly curdled from the addition of too much liquid. Then I managed to place the second giant piece on top to from the sandwich.
But it was indeed edible still, and it tasted amazing. So that’s a plus.
I was so excited to try making one of these syrup-soaked treats! I found this page that had multiple recipes on it, and I chose to use the top one so that it would be easiest to find if I accidentally closed my browser. Plus, it had rosewater and cinnamon in it, so I was sold!
My cake turned out a bit crumbly instead of just dry and fluffy. I’m not entirely sure what caused that, but it happened and made cutting the cake into diamond shapes very difficult. It also made it difficult to serve. I also didn’t have a deep dish to soak them in, so I used a slightly large spring-form pan that I have. It was very messy, as syrup seeps through the cracks. Then after all of that, I forgot to take the pieces out of the syrup to store them after we had our first tries and took the first batch of photos (also lost at the same time as the macaron ones). So when we went to take more, they were soggy and mushy piles instead of syrup-soaked cake. Apparently I’m not very good at storing baked goods lately.
Bread: Pan de Muerto
This was another bake that I had been looking forward to loads. The flaky pastry-esque texture of Central American bread? Yes, please! I used this lovely recipe. I decided to do two large Pan de Muerto instead of a lot of little ones, which was simultaneously a good and bad decision.
I didn’t know yet, but our oven now runs hot by about 25°F. This means the outside of any baked goods cooks way faster than the inside. As a result, the wet dough of our very large Pan de Muerto didn’t cook fully inside. In fact, it was literally raw at some parts. Had I done more, smaller Pan, then they would’ve probably cooked all the way through. Oh well, the parts that were cooked properly tasted amazing and had the perfect texture.
I was still scared of choux pastry at this point, as I’ve not done it very much and have had a fair amount of struggles with each attempt thus far. But I found a great recipe and had learned from my mistakes during the profiteroles during my second bake of the #faithbakes65 challenge and a couple of other undocumented bakes along the way. This turned out beautifully!
The only part that wasn’t quite right was the fact that my piping bag that is the proper size for this kind of project is the one that busted its seem. However with a good amount of care and a touch of tape, it worked rather well. But my worry about the piping bag reopening made my piping a bit uneven, so one side of the Paris-Brest ended up a bit flatter and wider than the other. But I had a lot of fun making this one, and it turned out so well!
Have you ever tried any of these bakes? How did you like them? Let me know in the comments!