Some recipes have to be made in big batches as they are favourites. The summer squash salsa from Irmela Erckenbrechts cookbook “Zucchini” is a such a family favourite. It taste great as spread on fresh bread, as dip for nachos, as barbeque sauce or as fast dinner with pasta. And so we normally quadruple the amount given in the book directly.
And last year, when the sister moved last summer we carried carefully the many, many glasses freshly made salsa down stairs of the old flat and up the stairs into the new one. And were rewarded at the end of the day with salsa and nachos – a story with happy end.
The recipe is great to use some of the giant summer squashes which had reached one kilo ore more, growing hided under leaves. I got some of these giants from a colleague and – of course – we cook salsa with them. And so Winter can come, we are stocked with 20 glasses salsa now 🙂
A reader told me about “Schulmäusen” (School mice), a small sweet roll filled with hazelnut praline. She tried to bake similar rolls in a spelt variant but struggled with them getting to dry. My brain worked a while on this idea in the background and came up with a recipe at the end – just in time for school start. As the name “Schulmaus” is a brand name, I decided to call my rolls Spelt mice and formed most of them like a mouse, too. But if you do not roll one end into a long tail, then you get the original form, too.
They are not a healthy snack, but a treat for small and big ones with a sweet tooth. The crumb is fluffy and the filling creamy – a good way to make school start a bit sweeter!
Some month ago the sister of my dearest and me agreed to bake a wedding cake for some friends of her. And so we spent a lot of time on pinterest, collecting ideas and inspiration.
Slowly a plan for the decoration emerged and finally we had a plan for the cakes as well: Punch torte, Nussnougat-Quark-Cake and Sacher Torte would be the perfect cakes. We baked some tiny test cakes for the bride and the groom, they tried them and liked them, too. Especially the punch torte was a favourite. And as we changed this recipe quite a lot it deserved its own recipe.
There are big changes in the job lying ahead of me and so we decided to take a short vacation to refill our energy. But to find a free vacation home in the middle of the summer was a bit troublesome. But finally we found a beautiful one at the border of the “Alte Land”. The Alte Land is one of the most prominent growing area for fruits in Germany, especially for apples and cherries. A dream place for a food blogger! Beginning of August we were just in time for the very last cherries and first Damsons and Mirabelle plums. And as the vacation home kitchen was well equipped with an oven baking cake was a must. A damson cake for my love and a cherry streusel cake for me, baked in two small ceramic dishes. But the cake will work well in a “normal” spring form, too.
The dough is my “normal” dough for plum cake, a mixture of yeast dough and short crust. It is a fluffy dough that stays fresh for a long time and which keeps the fruit juice in the dough very well. A perfect cake for lazy summer days!
I love “Hörnchen” the halfmoon shaped pastry made of sweet challah or brioche dough since my childhood. And since I made the delicious Kifle I catched the “Hörnchen” fever once again. And so it was out of question what the third recipe for my vegan “one for all” sweet spelt dough had to be. They can be baked with reduced or no sugar, too. Then they are great with hearty spreads as well.
To achieve the form of this soft, fluffy breakfast pastry it is important to roll the dough out into a long and very thin oval and then roll it up again with some tension. To prevent them from touching each other while baking I worked the dough in two batches.
For a shiny brown crust I used a glaze made from roasted starch and water and applied before and after baking. The shine of this glaze is nearly as strong as the traditional egg glaze. Optional sprinkled with poppy seeds, this “Hörnchen” are the perfect breakfast treat fitting not only for those with dietary restrictions!
Since several weeks I have two packages of Emmer and Einkorn sitting in my pantry, waiting for me to create a recipe with them. But I was always to short in time as I had to do a lot of recipe testing for the upcoming bread baking courses and for a magazine article. And so they where pushed deeper and deeper into the depth of the shelf. Sorting my baking supplies brought them back to my mind, as well as a package of dark roasted malt. And so I decided to combine Emmer and malt in one bread.
As I did not want to use a hot soaker or water roux, I decided to use a hydration of about 70% and a long period of stretch and fold in combination of a cold fermentation. With the stretch and fold the dough gains enough strength and the long fermentation give the flour enough time to soak up the moisture. But nevertheless is this a dough on the rather soft side and so it is needed to flour the proofing basket very well!
Due to the dark malt, the bread develops are dark crust and crumb with a malty flavour followed by nutty notes of the Emmer. The sweet Starter which is the only leavening agent develops a deep complexity without any acidity. This is a bread which I love!