The macaron-phobe has finally become a macaron-pro. I know, modesty isn’t one of my strongest suits, but hey, this is a moment I’m really proud of. The amazing thing with confidence is that it allows you to experiment, break a few rules. And I want to share the fruits of my success with you.
Tag Archives: candy thermometer
As human beings we have a tendency to over complicate things and somehow, down the lane these things get the reputation of being difficult. One of these seemingly difficult things is attaining, a beautiful, deep auburn caramel of course.
The word “tempering” throws many people off and rightly so. That too in noncommercial kitchen setups (Indian homes) were humidity is at its peak, tempering chocolate can be even more daunting. I’ve done a little bit of research, pulled up information from great places and collated it together for you. We need to get down to basics though; you can’t just buy a piece of chocolate and begin to temper it. You have to know what tempering is and more importantly you need to know your chocolate.
What is tempering?
To use chocolate for dipping or coating, your chocolate needs to be tempered. What you essentially do when you temper chocolate, is making the chocolate stable so that it remains solid without melting even at room temperature. Chocolate is also tempered for that lovely gloss and a brittle snap, characteristics that we find in chocolates we buy from a store. The key is to not get intimidated by the physics of chocolate tempering – just blindly follow the instructions, warming, stirring, cooling, warming, so on and so forth.
For me, anything deep fried is delicious, unless the stuff is sodden with oil or burnt. I love throwing things into the oven and let it do its work but now and then I like playing with fire, I mean, a wok, some oil and a bit of splutter and flutter.
Sometime ago, I searched for homemade cream cheese recipes on the net. There were quite a few that popped up, but most of them used rennet as the coagulating agent. For those of you who didn’t know this, rennet is an enzyme obtained from the stomachs of calves, lambs and such other mammals. Vegetarians, sorry to burst your bubble, but most store bought hard cheeses (with the exception of soft Philly cream cheese) have rennet in them.
The recipes of cream cheese that didn’t use rennet seemed long winded, complicated and not so convincing. So my search for homemade cream cheese recipe was put to an end and I continued buying Philly cream cheese even though it was an expensive proposition; now I couldn’t stop making cheesecakes, could I?
My previous post on homemade ricotta was well received, so I thought why not include another indispensable ingredient from the cheese family to the DIY repertoire. Like many Italian cheeses, Mascarpone is exotic and the word exotic is often synonymous to expensive.
But the good news my dear readers is that mascarpone can be made at home in less than 30 minutes (excluding the setting time) and definitely less than Rs 100.