Dec 08 2010

Bread for Breakfast

Published by at 6:02 pm under Brunch,Cooking Classes,Dessert

Fact: Banana Nut Bread is a perfectly acceptable breakfast. So are muffins, Pumpkin Bread and scones; never mind that all of those things are basically cake, and that you’re eating them before 9 am.

Until recently at school, we’ve focused on yeast and steam as “raising agents,” or things that make food puff up in the oven (scientific, I know). But we since dove into the complex world of baking powder and baking soda, which are important ingredients that give us cookies, scones and cupcakes.

In sum, baking soda is an alkaline, and it has to be mixed with an acid for the rising to occur — usually in the form of buttermilk when you’re baking sweets. Baking powder, however, does the work for you. It’s baking soda plus tartaric acid, so you don’t have to worry about needing the extra acid in the buttermilk.

The recipes we worked on ranged from Cherry Scones to Pumpkin Squares to Gingerbread Cakes and Streusel.

Don’t worry, most of this went to charity. After a small feast, of course.

I made an Pernod-Scented Olive Oil Cake with Almonds. It was my first brush with the now-trendy olive oil cake, and I see why butter has generally prevailed in baking: The mild, slightly grassy flavor doesn’t love sugar the way other fats do. I’ll save my oil for salad dressings and sautéing, I think.

Most of our baked good were made by one of two methods: The creaming method, in which the butter and sugar are whipped together, and the cut-in method, in which cold butter is incorporated into the flour first. The latter makes for a flakier final product, and I highly recommend it, considering how these scones turned out. Which leads me to wonder…

… Why don’t I make scones more!?

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Bread for Breakfast”

  1. Sharonon 10 Dec 2010 at 9:15 am

    Love scones….you are really learning some great things…..

  2. Danaon 21 Dec 2010 at 10:42 am

    You really encourage me to make my own bread and cakes. Thanks.