Friday, December 23, 2016
I love busy days and this close to Christmas there is no time to waste... lol
I did my baking yesterday, meaning I am in charge of desserts at the Christmas dinner. It is held this year at Marcia's house. She is my daughter's mother in law... oh wow say that three times.
Anyway, she is hosting the dinner since my daughter did Thanksgiving. I am off the hook because we hosted it all for the past ten years, and now I got a naughty dog who is a little demented when it comes to company and he is too old to shut into a room of leave outside or the day. Also I need a new cookstove, but the problem is it's a downdraft and I can't get a new one in our area for a reasonable price. There are also other reasons I can't just replace it... but that's a different story. So I have a countertop convection oven which I love, but it doesn't accommodate a big turkey or a large cookie tray.... so we adapt and quite happy do so.
Anyway I got off track... so I did my baking yesterday. Instead of a large cake or some pies I made a whole bunch of cupcakes that will become the basis for my desserts... I bought clear cups to individualize the portions and for portion control of course... they just won't know it ha ha... So I make a version of the black forest cake by layering chocolate cake with cranberry/orange filling (home made) and whipping cream. I use the light one versus the no fat one, I find the no fat version has an unpleasant aftertaste in the brand we use. I grate real chocolate over the top and make it look real festive.
My second dessert is a ricotta orange cake with a graham cracker bottom. Again, I make this in individual servings in clear cups. This is a real yummy cake that is made from plain jello, ricotta, mandarin oranges and whipping cream, mixed together and filled on top of the graham cracker crust or bottom in this case and left to set in fridge overnight. On Christmas morning all I have left to do is place a mandarin orange on each and a speck of whipping cream. It comes out like a cheese cake, but so much tastier...
My third offering is called Donauwellen... a German cake that is served like a sheet cake for large Birthday gatherings or special occasions. Donau is a river in eastern Europe and wellen means waves... henceforth it explains the wave like layering of the ingredients. i baked layered cupcakes for this with yellow cake on the bottom and dark chocolate cake over it. This is placed in the cup and topped with cherry pie filling, homemade vanilla buttercream and a thin film of melted chocolate brushed on. It will set like a sheet of chocolate. Since all of it is just spooned in and left to settle on its own it's not even and thus represents a wave like pattern. It's a bit time consuming from start to finish but it is so worth making it... once in awhile.
... and last but not least I make the dinner rolls on Christmas morning for they have to be fresh and almost still warm. I make the initial yeast dough in the bread machine, but then shape set and bake them in a large stone dish. They are simple and need little attention, but they are time consuming for all the wait time for it to rise at every stage.
So that's my part in the Christmas dinner. My son in law is making the turkey (yes, they decided on turkey) and between my daughter and her mother -in -law they got the rest. ... and no, they do not know yet what they get for dessert.