Showing posts with label Culinary Institute of America books. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Culinary Institute of America books. Show all posts

13 October 2010

Halloween: Caramel Apples From Culinary Institute of America

Check out how easy and less expensive it is to make your own caramel apples for the spooky season.



From Denny: One of the pleasures of childhood during the spooky silly Halloween season was when one of our neighbors, the local baker, used to make awesome candied apples. They were beautiful and his wife gave them out every year at the door as she congratulated the kids on the creativity of their costumes.

Fast forward into adulthood and now chefs have taken off with their own versions of the candied apple, offering all kinds of variations like the caramel apple, the caramel apple with nuts and the chocolate coated apple.

Of course, the food companies got on the trend wagon and now have sent the price of those same childhood delights soaring into the stratosphere price wise. The Culinary Institute of America is here to show us how easy - and far less expensive - it is to make our own caramel apples! To get the freshest apples that are not coated with wax like the grocery store versions, take a trip to your local farmers' market to pick up your area's apple stars of taste.



Caramel Apples

From: Chocolates and Confections at Home with The Culinary Institute of America

Makes: 12 to 18 apples

Skill level: 1


Ingredients:

12–18 Apples
12–18 sticks
4 oz (½ cup) Water
1 lb (2 cups) Sugar
1 can (14 oz) Sweetened condensed milk
12 oz (1 cup) Light corn syrup
6 oz (12 tbsp, 1½ sticks) Butter, unsalted, soft
1 tsp Salt
2 tsp Vanilla extract


Directions:

Clean and dry the apples. Insert a stick into the stem end of each apple. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Combine the water, sugar, condensed milk, corn syrup, and butter in a heavy-bottomed 4-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly with a heat-resistant rubber spatula.

Continue stirring while cooking until the batch reaches 245°F. This is a good estimation of the required temperature. When the thermometer reads 240°F, begin testing the caramels using the spoon technique outlined on page 30 (below). The cooled piece on the spoon should be firm but not hard when the caramel is properly cooked.

Stir in the salt and vanilla extract.

Pour the caramel into a 2-quart saucepan or other narrow, deep, heatproof container.

Dip the prepared apples in the hot caramel. Allow the excess caramel to drain off and place on the prepared pan. Allow to cool fully, about 20 minutes. Any excess caramel can be poured onto parchment paper or into a buttered pan, allowed to cool, and cut and wrapped.

Caramel Apples with Nuts: Before the caramel has cooled completely, roll the dipped apple in chopped toasted walnuts or pecans.

Chocolate-Coated Caramel Apples: After the caramel has cooled entirely to room temperature, melt and temper 2 lb/5¹⁄³ cups milk chocolate, chopped into ½-inch pieces, and dip the apples. Roll in chopped toasted nuts before the chocolate sets fully, if desired.


Keys to Success from the Culinary Institute of America:

• If using supermarket apples, wash off the wax for the caramel to adhere.

• Caramels tend to foam during cooking. Use a larger than normal saucepan to prevent boiling over.

• A few degrees can make a big difference in the finished product: Undercooked caramel will be too soft, and overcooked caramel will be too hard to bite.

• If the caramel gets too thick during dipping, rewarm it by stirring it over low heat or in the microwave.


Spoon Technique for Testing Sugar:

Place a small bowl of ice water next to the saucepan of cooking sugar.

As the sugar boils, spoon small samples of the syrup out of the saucepan and immerse the spoon holding the syrup in the ice water.

Allow the syrup to cool for several seconds, then remove the spoon from the water.

Take the cooled sample of syrup between your thumb and forefinger and squeeze it to evaluate the consistency.


*** Here's the Culinary Institute of America's newest cookbook they are promoting:



Chocolates and Confections at Home with The Culinary Institute of America



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24 September 2010

Sesame-Ginger Truffles From Culinary Institute of America

A simple tasty recipe worth of gift giving during the holidays.



From Denny: With the holiday season approaching, how about trying out a few new recipes to give as gifts or delight your guests when entertaining? I'm always up for a new recipe when it comes to chocolate delights! :) This gem of a recipe comes from the folks over at the Culinary Institute of America. Their cookbook is linked to Amazon Books where you can save on the retail price if you decide to purchase it.

I have a veritable library of wonderful cookbooks. Cookbooks are a fun way to get inside the head of a culture if you are exploring ethnic food. Cookbooks from professional organizations like this one are a great way to find out just how much you do know and fill in the blanks with valuable information.

Sesame-Ginger Truffles

From: Chocolates and Confections at Home with The Culinary Institute of America

Makes: 48 pieces

Skill level: 2


The nontraditional combination of sesame and chocolate is brought to life with the addition of ginger. Fresh ginger gives the best results.


Ingredients:

4 oz (1/2 cup) Heavy cream
1½ oz (2 tbsp) Light corn syrup
1 oz (1/4 cup) Ginger, peeled and grated
1 oz (2 tbsp) Tahini
8 oz (1 1/3 cups) Dark chocolate, pistoles or chopped in ½-inch pieces
1 tsp Toasted sesame oil
1/2 oz (2 tbsp) Chopped crystallized ginger (optional)
12 oz (2 cups) Dark chocolate or dark compound coating, chopped in ½-inch pieces, for dipping
Toasted sesame seeds or finely chopped crystallized ginger, for garnish (optional), as needed

Directions:

1. Line a 9 × 13–inch baking pan with parchment paper.

2. Combine the cream, corn syrup, and grated ginger in a 2-quart saucepan and bring to a boil.

3. Remove from the heat. Add the tahini and chopped dark chocolate or pistoles to the cream and stir until smooth and homogeneous.

4. Stir in the sesame oil.

5. Strain the ganache through a fine-mesh strainer.

6. Stir the crystallized ginger into the ganache, if desired.

7. Pour the finished ganache into the baking pan to make a thin layer and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour or more until the ganache is firm.

8. Put the ganache in a mixer bowl and mix on medium speed using a paddle attachment for 30 seconds. Or stir vigorously in a mixing bowl by hand, using a spatula.

9. Allow the ganache to rest at room temperature for 5 minutes. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

10. Using a #100 scoop or a teaspoon, scoop out balls of ganache and place on the sheet pan at room temperature.

11. When all of the ganache has been scooped, roll each portion by hand into a round ball.

12. Melt and temper the chocolate for dipping using the procedure on page 36. If using compound coating, follow the heating instructions on the package.

13. Dip the ganache centers in the tempered chocolate or compound coating using one of the techniques illustrated on pages 44 and 45.

14. After dipping, but before the chocolate sets fully, garnish with toasted sesame seeds or finely chopped crystallized ginger as desired.


Keys to Success:

• Make sure the ganache has enough time to firm in the refrigerator.
• An hour is a good guideline, but it is okay to leave it longer, even overnight if desired.
• Resting the ganache after mixing allows it to harden slightly, which makes scooping much easier.




Chocolates and Confections at Home with The Culinary Institute of America


*** THANKS for visiting, feel welcome to drop a comment or opinion, enjoy bookmarking this post on your favorite social site, a big shout out to awesome current subscribers – and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email updates!

*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor
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