As the 2023 holidays approach, bakers and candymakers are getting busy. There are gift-boxes to plan, supplies to purchase, and inevitably, the baking and the making. Sadly, and despite our best efforts, not all results will be up to snuff. Here’s where we can share our failures, our less-thans, and our projects-gone-awry or which otherwise didn’t pass the muster.
I’ll start, and offer up my first practice pumpkin pie of the season. I attempted to make the entire thing from scratch (including growing the pumpkin), but my go-to pie-crust wasn’t up to the task – the texture was off and the slumping was something serious. The filling was delicious, but going by looks alone, I’d be reluctant to bring this to the holiday table. Thanks to this community, I’m rethinking this one as a pumpkin tart which I’ll attempt sometime in the near future (and post results).
November is almost upon us. What ugly is in your oven (or on your stove)?
That looks lovely. Sure, it’s not glossy-paper stunning, but it looks homemade with care, which almost always tastes better to me. The crust is golden and thr filling is a gorgeous color. (And it’s not cracked, which seems to be my Achilles heel).
I can make lovely pie crust, but the Pillbury premade ones are very, very good, and ready to use at a whim (which is usually when I make pies). They have actual lard in them, so the flaky is great.
Samesies. Ive been the pie baker in my family since I was 14yo (50 long years ago!), always making my own crusts, but the Pillsbury crusts work for “I feel like making quiche…or pie now and I have only an hour before dinner.”
Oh I love this topic and will, sadly, have much to contribute! My pie crust always looks like this so I just cut out a few leaves or pumpkins from the crust and put them on top in hope of distracting people!
Add me to the list (of bakers) that will be contributing to this thread.
I usually have pretty good luck with homemade pie crusts, as I use “Butter Flavored Crisco” as the fat. Although, I think I was in a bit of a hurry the last time I made a quiche and my crust looked horrible. I just wet my hands and patched it up (in the quiche pan). I par-baked it slightly, so it would kind-of meld together, then filled it up. Sunshine didn’t notice, so it was my little secret.
Ladies and gents - we are all our own worst critics. I’d bet that unless a soufflé has fallen, or a loaf of bread bakes into a brick, or cookies can be used as hockey pucks (Go B’s!), our faulty bakes are really not as bad as they are in our own minds.
But I will be interested to see what we all think are hellacious bakes.
A loaf of bread (brown rice / sorghum, gluten-free) that stuck to the pan. I call the second photo “the good, the bad, and the ugly” and it apparently sent my 13yo into a fit of giggles. It tastes good, though.
There was a great bakery/café in Ottawa, called Café Marie Antoinette, that used to make a “Brioche aux fruits”. It consisted of a large brioche, top knot cut off, body hollowed out, the bottom coated in a layer of chocolate, and filled with boozy pastry cream and fruit; it was great!
This is my attempt at replicating it, with my first foray into brioche making. Somehow the top broke when I was replacing it. Ugly, but tasted good all the same!
I told spouse I’d make two loaves of bread for a project he has in mind. Used a white sandwich bread recipe from NYT and neglected to add the two eggs until I was about half way through kneading the dough in my KA. Ugh. Stopped, beat eggs and added them, along with more flour to offset the liquid. It was a yellow mess. Eventually I dumped it out on the counter and kneaded by hand and it came together nicely. Rising now. I also noticed the yeast (fridge stored) was a couple of years past best by date so I added a little sourdough starter discard. We’ll see what happens.