Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

A good stay-at-home Easter weekend: lots of baking!

I couldn't resist acquiring yet more cookie cutouts, this time an Easter bunny and an egg, which I used with my usual brown sugar cookie recipe.

I had thoughts of decorating the cookies with the kids, using lots of garishly colored royal icing. I have the food coloring, the sparkly sugary nonpareils... They would have loved it. But I didn't have the energy to make this a family project. And I don't like to eat royal icing (except on Christmas gingerbread cookies... which I never get to post about as Christmas time is too busy).

So I used dark and white chocolate instead. I didn't temper the chocolate. I simply melted it directly in the microwave in one of these squeeze bottles that I bought in case I might one day want to decorate a plated dessert with artful swishes of raspberry coulis or chocolate sauce. The chocolate hardened nicely, and while it isn't particularly shiny it was firm enough to withstand being wrapped up in a cellophane bag as a small gift.

I also made brioche, this time from Sherry Yard's Secrets of Baking. I just love brioche, and find it quite easy to make, provided you have a stand mixer.

Last night I also made (and froze before baking) croissants, for brunch guests tomorrow morning. I'm crossing my fingers these come out better than the last batch...

Oh and I nearly forgot: on Friday I made my first attempt at soft pretzels. I'll be experimenting more with these, the shaping alone is lots of fun.


linda said...

Somebody has been very busy ;) Love your chocolate decorated cookies. Tried Sherry Yard's brioche too, was the first time ever, thought it was good.
Happy Easter to you and family too!

Aran said...

I love Easter for all the wonderful homemade things it can involve. Great job with the cookies and the brioche!

Tanya said...

So cute! I wish I was more motivated to do cut-out cookies for every season. I'll try to pick up some easter cutters on sale when the stores finally open up again.

farida said...

Hmmm, makes my mouth water... Beautiful looking yummies you've made. Nice blog!

vlijtig said...

Love your cookies! We did make some eastercookies too, but not as perfect as yours. Next time I'm going to try your brown-sugar-cookies-recipe.

Astrid said...

Linda - Thank you! I guess I should write up Sherry Yard's recipe, I think it's now my regular brioche recipe.

Aran - Thank you!

Tanya - Actually I wasn't very motivated to make cut-out cookies, as I'm more into a bread obsession these days. But the girls like these cookies... Today I actually let them make their own, with chocolate icing and all. L managed pretty well, but C just poured as much chocolate as possible on one coookie, then ate it. Oh well.

Farida - Thanks! Maybe one day I'll try your zebra cake...

Vlijtig - I saw a picture of your lamb cookies on your blog, nice! They look similar to my brown sugar cookies.