"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Posts tagged “baking

Notice -“Booming Stats” on Abandoned Blog Today

Five years ago I tried to create a recipe blog from my grandmother’s wooden recipe box and my mother’s recipe cards. I’d forgotten all about it until today when I got a notice from WordPress. Screen Shot 2016-07-27 at 11.13.43 PM.png

Throwback Recipes Blog

I didn’t stick with this blog for very long.

There were SIX followers. Throwback seemed as if the recipes weren’t really relevant nowadays.

It stopped seeming like such a cool idea.

But today I got a notice “Your stats are BOOMING!”  On the Throwback Recipes blog.  Rhubarb Cake recipe and the home page

And 65 hits (that’s booming after zero) are from El Salvador, 2 are from United States and 1 from Australia. And in just ONE hour.

So thought I would share about my abandoned blog that got rediscovered today.

Did you ever start a blog and abandon it?

It’s always nice to receive those notices from WordPress.

Here is the Chocolate Pound Cake recipe my mother made

 

 

 

 


Cherry on Top of a Burnt Almond Torte

Cherry on Top

The fun weekly photo challenge by Michelle W.   I should get in the car and head to a local ice cream shop but it’s really humid and hot and we’ve already been out for dinner.  Wish I knew the Cherry on Top challenge beforehand but then I remembered a Cherry on Top I photographed six years ago.

The following was posted in May 2010.  Since then the Burnt Almond Torte was declared America’s Greatest Cake Here’s the article Thank You, Pittsburgh, For The Greatest Cake America Has Ever Made   (By the way, I never saw a cherry on top of a Prantl’s Burnt Almond Torte)

Burnt Almond TorteAnd here is the original writing from my May 2010 blog post

Burnt Almond Torte and Copycat Recipe

Different regions prefer certain pastries, baked goods.  Burnt Almond Torte is popular in Pittsburgh. I’ve seen it as a wedding cake. tiered!  Who brought the recipe here I don’t know but many Pittsburghers LOVE it.  I’d never tasted one until we moved here.  This one is from the Oakmont Bakery.  Joan brought it to dinner one night.  We split it three ways. Don’t know who ate the cherry.  Not me.  But before we devoured it, I photographed it.  Here is a link to the Recipezaar Copycat Prantl’s Burnt Almond Torte recipe in case you want to have a taste of Pittsburgh Pastry/Dessert.  I hear there’s one where chocolate is involved.

Checking the Copycat Recipe is still valid, YES!!!

The Molasses Swamp is now a Chocolate Swamp post was a slow low day on the blog today.  Bet this Cherry on Top will top it!!

 


Vanilla, Almond, Orange, Anise

Pure

The bottles of extract all say Pure so they must be, right?

Fun weekly photo challenge Jen H. 


A Pie Map, Not a Pie Chart

This is an honest to goodness pie map !

My two friends flew in to visit me in Pittsburgh.  Earlier today we visited the Frick Mansion, Clayton. 

Discussing dinner options, Steve suggested Grant  Bar and Lounge in Millvale.

This map shows where all the pie eating people hail from and because Kristin ordered a coconut cream pie to go, she and Linda got a pushpin to stick on the Grant Bar and Lounge Pie Lovers map- their cities are Gainesville and Boston. (We got a tapioca to go, too) and there are some pickled beets in the take away container.

Kristin and Linda are nurse midwives I met in Fort Knox, Kentucky in 1975 and Linda on right delivered my son Mark, 40 years ago this month!


Portuguese Orange-Olive Oil Cake

Did some research for a Portuguese dessert and this cake came up in two places.  Recipe for Orange-Olive Oil Cake.

I went across the Allegheny to Labriola’s and bought a new Zoe Olive Oil as recommended in the recipe. Fresh eggs. And five navel oranges were five dollars at Whole You-Know. 

Zested three oranges and squeezed four to get 1 1/2 c of juice. 

Used a tube pan as I did not have a light colored bundt pan. Baked it 1 1/4 hours. 

Make it at least a day before serving. I did.  

 Will let you know what the verdict is after Friday night dessert. I usually don’t make a new recipe to share, untested.

  

   
 
  
I put it on a glass cake stand after it cooled. 


Bread and Salt Adventure

Maybe you read Mark Bittman’s farewell article A Slice of Heaven in Pittsburgh (in the NYTimes) about the Pittsburgh bakery- Bread and Salt.

My neighbor and I went over to Bloomfield and got in line to order our lunch. We took it to go.

Open Friday, Saturday and Sunday you need to plan ahead.

You can order via email. If you ordered bread or pizza online you don’t have to wait in the line.  Just go ahead to the counter, pay and pick up.

Samples of bread are in bowls on the counter. Here are a couple of loaves.  They are sold by the pound so you can get exactly what you need, you don’t have to buy the whole loaf.

IMG_2629

 

 

Here is Laura on her first day of work. She was gracious to let me photograph her.

That’s a ricotta/almond cake.  They weigh the bread and pizza. It was Laura’s (smiling on right) first day

 

IMG_2651

 

We sampled all four types offered on Friday.

IMG_2635

We had a nice lunch back at my neighbor’s.

Lots of fresh veggie toppings.

The one on the right is the Rosa pizza with oregano.

The classic Margherita was my favorite.  The combination of basil, fresh  mozzarella and tomatoes so fragrant and delicious. Next time I plan to try the bread.

IMG_2687

Writer Hal Klein has an article in Pittsburgh Magazine describing the breads, the baker Rick Easton  and the bakery

If you plan to go, be sure to click the Bread and Salt link to check on hours of operation.


Change: From Dough to Cookies

Change is this week’s photography challenge and Friday I posted my children as they are all grown up with families of their own.  I’ve looked at quite a few fellow bloggers posts and didn’t see this one yet but I might have missed it.  So many possibilities for posts illustrating change.  

I was baking some cookies, noticed the mixing bowl of dough, and I thought- change.

I went to the other room and got the real camera instead of the phone.

The light seemed nice in the kitchen.

 

cookie dough

Oatmeal Crisps from the Farm Journal Cookbook (1972 ed.)

 I cut the recipe in half and left out the coconut. You could add nuts and/or raisins.

My minor adjustments to the original recipe below.

 

cookies

1 C butter, room temp ( I happened to have Irish butter on hand)

1 C brown sugar

3/4 C white sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 C flour

3 C Bob’s Red Mill Oats

1 t baking soda

1 t salt

dash of cinnamon and dash of ginger

Bake about 11 minutes @ 350

 

Thanks to Kristin Snow for the challenge this week. You have to check out her blog Snowmads

Excerpt from her blog is below.  You will be inspired for adventure after reading it.  

“Who are the Snowmads?

We’re Jason and Kristin Snow, a travel-addicted couple who walked away from cubicles and conventional lives two years ago to roam full-time, gaining valuable perspective on life and meeting new friends at every turn. We hope to inspire others to follow their dreams and collect experiences instead of things. Please feel free to share some travel tips right back at us whenever possible — we love hearing from you!”


Aunt Georgeann Brought Cupcakes from Regent Square

Four of the grandchildren are visiting for the weekend, along with their parents. Saturday night we had dinner and guests. Aunt Georgeann came to see how they’d grown. She arrived with a big pink box.

Sweet!


She knew there was almond, lemon, red velvet, and a carrot cake with the sliver of candied ginger, plus two chocolate with espresso frosting.  A dozen sweet cakes.We needed a key but came up with a solution.

She’d stopped off in Regent Square at Vanilla Pastry Studio Molly gave me this birthday gift of a  Rooster Harkerware piece just yesterday.

Aunt Georgeann cut them in half so the kids could decide what they wanted to eat. It was fun to try the different flavors. 


  

You can see everyone enjoyed the treat! 

I took one of the leftovers and put it on a cupcake stand Joanne gave me years ago.

Practicing my food photography.

 I wanted to show the big pink box!


One More Plum Torte Post

JJBegonias post of Marian Burros Plum Torte has inspired many to bake one.

My friend Roberta made a couple and gave me one she baked but unfortunately Steve and I ate it without thinking about photographing it,

I made one for my friend Josie’s parents and then her sister Carol made one and Josie sent me a photo of it on the phone. Looks like they paired it with a cup of coffee.  Mmmm.

Carol's plum Torte

 

Then here is the one I made

IMG_1540

 


Happy Day or 1-2-3-4 Cake?

 If you’ve been following the blog since the beginning, you might remember the photos and recipes.On several occasions, I’ve posted our  “go to” birthday cake recipes.
 My sister got me the one Swan’s Down vintage cake pan in Omak, Washington when were visiting our brother one summer.
I did mail a birthday card to my sister.  (Unusual for me that it wasn’t belated)
In my family, we’d try to get it in the octave, as my mom would call it.  Enjoy your day!
cakepans

Happy Day Cake Recipe-

For Birthdays it was the 1-2-3-4 Cake recipe or the Happy Day Cake recipe on the back of the Swan’s Down Cake Flour box, frosted with Penuche icing.  My mother would put the saucepan into a sink of cold water and then beat it by hand once it cooled. I can hear the ring of the metal loop at the end of the pan’s handle. And as I remember it she added a dash of vanilla extract.  My dad would pour milk over a slice and eat it with a spoon.   Cake and frosting recipes below photo.

Happy Birthday to my sister Mary who gave me the vintage pan

Happy Day Cake

2½ cups sifted cake flour

1½ cups sugar

3 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

1/2 cup shortening, at room temperature

1 cup milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 eggs

Sift flour with sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir shortening to soften. Add flour mixture, ¾ cup of the milk and vanilla. Mix until all flour is dampened, then beat two minutes at medium speed. Add eggs and remaining ¼ cup milk. Beat one minute longer. Pour into two 9-inch layer pans that have been lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pans; remove from pans and cool thoroughly on racks.

This cake also may be baked in three 8-inch layer pans for 25 to 35 minutes, or in a 13- by 9-inch pan for 30 to 35 minutes. Batter may be spooned into 36 medium paper baking cups in muffin pans, filling half full. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes.

Penuche Frosting   Butter is Key

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar, more or less
  • hot water, optional

Preparation:

In a saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter. Add the brown sugar. Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium low and continue to boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the milk and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cool to lukewarm. Gradually add sifted confectioners’ sugar. Beat until thick enough to spread. If too thick, add a little hot water. Frosts top and sides of a 2-layer cake or a 13×9-inch cake.

————————————–

p.s. Last year I mailed an actual cake but this year it will be virtual

and another connection was the post when my friend J sent me a cupcake tree to Ohio when I was visiting


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,570 other followers