Thursday, August 25, 2011

Waffles of Insane Greatness

They are called this because, 1- they are incredibly good and 2-that's what everyone else calls them in the blogosphere. But let me just tell you...they are mmm, mmm good. These are my hubby's absolute favorite waffles in the world. They are crispy on the outside and fluffy goodness on the inside. They are pretty easy to put together, but just know- they do have to sit for 30 minutes before you can cook them. So plan accordingly. I doubled the recipe below- so it will make about 10 waffles.

Here's what you'll need:
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup cornstarch
1 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
3 tsp. sugar
1 cup milk
1 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs, lightly beaten

½ tsp. vanilla extract

In a medium sized bowl, mix the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. Set aside.

In a small bowl, mix the milk, buttermilk, oil, egg and vanilla. *Note* If you don't have buttermilk, a little lemon juice mixed with milk will work- just be sure that you let the two sit together for a few minutes to make it buttermilk.

Combine the flour mixture and the liquid mixture until just combined (there may still be a few lumps) and let sit for 30 minutes.

Pour into your waffle maker, wait until they are golden brown and enjoy!


Monday, August 22, 2011

German Keks Kuchen

At long last, here it is, the thing you have been waiting for ever since we left Germany...
The highlight of every German birthday party, the classig Keks Kuchen, or Cookie Cake. The problems in producing it over here were 2 of the main ingredients, the Palmin, and the Cookies. I finally found both. The Palmin is a very hard coconut oil, and using the coconut oil we can get here and making one alteration to the recipe takes care of that problem. The cookies were quite another story. I found these at Honk's and bought 3 packages. But that is not a reliable source, since they buy bulk items and you get the luck of the draw. So if you can't find these, use anything like them, or in a pinch, use clubcrackers and leave out the pinch of salt. It should work.

(One issue of this recipe however is, that it contains raw eggs, three of them in fact, so, if that is a problem, this cake is not for you. Otherwise, generations of Germans have enjoyed it, and it hasn't killed me... so far) So, here is the Recipe:

German Cookie Cake Ingredients

About 54 tea biscuits
7 oz (200gr) coconut oil, melted and cooled
14 T (200gr) sugar
3 T Cocoa
3 T Nesquick chocolate drink powder
1 cup ganache (about 1/3c heavy cream with 1c semisweet chocolate chips, melted together in the microwave (2min) and stirred until smooth, slightly cooled)
a pinch of salt (leave that out if you are using club crackers)
3 eggs


Prepare ganache in the microwave, melt the coconut oil on low on the stove.

Cream the eggs and the sugar until light and creamy. Add the cocoa , salt and Nesquick. Slowly pour the melted coconut oil into mixture, in a fine stream, while beating, then add the ganache in the same way.

Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap. Have the plastic wrap piece big enough to have some hang over the sides. Now spread some of the chocolate filling in the bottom, covering it well (this will be the top of your cake, so don't be stingy, you don't want to have cookies poking thru). 3-4 T of the filling should do.

Next layer in the cookies. Cut them to fit.

Alternate filling and cookies, making sure you cover the entire layer each time.

The next layer would be cookies
Your last layer should be cookies.
Now fold the plastic wrap over the cookies and refrigerate over night. To get the cake out of the pan , if it doesn't come willingly, dip the pan briefly in hot water. Invert it onto a long serving platter, peel the plastic wrap off and smooth the chocolate to cover any cookies that might poke out. I had made way too much ganache, and melted my leftovers and used that to cover any unruely cookies.

The cake tastes best if you let it sit a day or so, because then the cookies get a bit softer. But who can possibly resist this and not cut into it right away?
Oh my goodness! I am 8 again! If I close my eyes, I am back in my mom's kitchen, reliving a cherished moment of my childhood.