Thursday, February 25, 2016

Day 14: Petits Fours Demi-Sec

It's taken me a few days to have time to post about class on Tuesday. We focused on the second type of petit four: demi-sec or semi dry. These are still cookies but more cake-like. Madeleines, financiers, macarons, macaroons (they are different), and other meringue based cookies.

One of our class was absent so there were only six of us; we divided into two groups. In addition to baking the four recipes we'd made the day before that needed to rest for a day in the fridge, each team made two flavors each of macarons. Our team made lemon and coffee; the other made raspberry and pistachio. Each was filled with the appropriate flavored ganache. I piped all the coffee ones and made the ganache for it; another one of our team did the assembly. I did help pipe the lemon ones, too! The lemon ones were good but the coffee ones were sublime. Mmm.

Our class also made madeleines, pistachio financiers, raspberry financiers, various almond meringue cookies, and two different kinds of macaroons. After we finished all the assembly, we set aside more cookies for that event.  All told, in two days we set aside about 30 dozen cookies for the event. The rest were divided up amongst the crew and any extras shared with the savory students; in return they gave us steak!

That evening we had our second lecture about fruits, herbs and spices. This week was spices and we were tasked with making either cookies or ice cream with unusual spices. I made an ice cream with Aleppo peppers and toasted fenugreek. It had a nice kick in the back of the throat and the fenugreek provided a maple-y flavor. I really liked it... although some of my classmates thought it was weird, I think! Because I had my ice cream base set up quickly, I offered to and ended up making the evening's snack: baba ganoush. Eggplant was roasted and then processed with tahini, lemon juice, salt, cumin, and garlic. It was served with toasted pita bread, kalamata olives, and parsley. It was a perfect dinner to offset the cookies and ice cream.

I'm getting so spoiled with all this terrific food! So is my family. My father-in-law said he won't be satisfied with regular cookies anymore.

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