What else did I make for Thanksgiving?

I also made a Lemon Tart, which ended up being a Lemon-Lime tart because I had some limes that were going bad. How does a lime go bad? Ok, I was going to make a stupid joke here, but I'm not.

And here's my modified recipe, taken from The Joy of Baking

Lemon-Lime Tart


1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1/3 cup + 2 TBSP confectioners sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces


7.5 oz cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated white sugar
3/4 cup fresh lemon and lime juice (approximately two large lemons and two limes)
3 large eggs
2 TBSP Lemon Zest
2 TBSP Lime Zest


1 1/2 cups of heavy cream
1/3 cup of superfine sugar
1 TSP of cornstarch
Lemon/Lime Zest


Preheat oven to 350 deg Fahrenheit. Grease a 12 inch tart pan.

Mix together the ingredients for the crust in a food processor or you can mix them in by hand until the crust begins to come together into a ball. Once this happens, press the crust evenly into the greased tart pan. Cover and place the pastry crust in the freezer for 15 minutes to chill.

When the pastry is completely chilled, bake until the crust is golden brown, about 13 - 15 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool while you make the filling.

In your mixer place the cream cheese and beat until smooth. Add sugar and beat until incorporated. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until thoroughly combined. Add remaining ingredients (reserve 1 TBSP of the lemon and lime zest mixture) and process until well blended and smooth. Pour filling into pre-baked tart shell and bake for approximately 25 - 30 minutes or until filling is set. Transfer tart to a wire rack to cool and then cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least an hour.

For the topping, simply whisk together your heavy cream, cornstarch and sugar until stiff peaks form. Top the completely cooled tart with your topping and sprinkle on the remaining lemon-lime zest.

This turned out to be a little tarter (no pun intended) than I would presume the original recipe was. I think it's because of the addition of the lime juice. But I like it, it's kind of like a key lime tart without having to use the key limes.


Daring Bakers Challenge - November 2008

So I finally got back on the wagon, the baking wagon that is and decided to commemorate this Thanksgiving by making the Caramel Cake with Caramel frosting. The challenge was thought up by not one, not two but three daring bakers:

Dolores, of the blog Chronicles in Culinary Curiosity
Alex, from Blondie and Brownie
Jenny of Foray into Food
and for all those with gluten-free challenges (which thankfully I don't have), the hosts turned to Natalie of Gluten-a-Go-Go

Now on with the challenge! The actual recipe came from this site and was authored by Shauna Fish Lydon. You can find the recipe and instructions at website.

I was going to link to her name and bio, but this post has too many links and not enough cake in it yet.

The cake itself was relatively easy to make; however, the actual baking time was a half an hour longer than originally stated in the recipe, which did cut into baking time for other Thanksgiving treats. I was happy to see that the longer time didn't mean a messed up cake. Take a look for yourself,

Another thing I got to use in this challenge was my brand-spanking new candy and deep fat fryer thermometer! I was pleased to see that the "brown and smoking" sugar and water mixture needed for the caramel syrup was actually registered on the thermometer as "soft crack." My brothers got a kick out of that description.

In any case after much boiling and melting and mixing and baking, I ended up with this,

My only additional step that wasn't in the recipe was making a wash of dark rum and vanilla and brushing it all over the cake to add a little punch to all the sweetness.



Orange = Fall

Of course this means that I need to bake something orange! I was tired of making all things chocolate (blasphemy, I know) and all the falling leaves, dotting the lawns in my neighborhood, clogging my windshield wipers just brought to mind this color of the Fall.

So I trolled the Internet, my fingertips cookbook and found the following recipe on epicurious.com. I decided to change the recipe around a little with the flavorings, and I didn't have large eggs so I found that substituting 2 Jumbo eggs for 3 large eggs did not damage the integrity of the recipe.

So here's what I made:

And here's the modified recipe!

Carrot Cupcakes with Orange Icing


For cupcakes
2 cups of grated carrots
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Dash of allspice
Zest from a large orange
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 Jumbo eggs (or 3 large, as the recipe says)
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup of golden raisins

For icing
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice

Make cupcakes:
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Line muffin cups with paper liners.

Coarsely grate enough carrots to measure 2 cups using large teardrop holes of a box grater.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg in a bowl.

Whisk together oil, eggs, brown sugar, granulated sugar, grated carrots, orange zest and vanilla in a large bowl, then stir in flour mixture until just combined. Then add raisins and fold into batter.

Divide batter among muffin cups and bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted into center of a cupcake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.

Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and cool completely on rack, about 1 hour more.

Make icing:
Sift confectioners sugar into a bowl. Whisk in zest and 2 tablespoons juice until smooth. If icing is too thick, add more juice, 1 teaspoon at a time. Dip top of each cupcake into icing, letting excess drip off.

I used mini muffin pans and they are cute, bite-sized and perfect for your next holiday party, or just to parcel out during the week for yourself. Mini bites means mini guilt. (ha!)