Crumbs and sweets, your making Jan - Feb 2022

After much thinking/talking and not much baking, I finally got down to it with Italian wedding cookies from Bravetart. It was not so overwhelming after all, especially because I asked my 2 elves to actually do the portioning and shaping. 40 cookies of 9-10 gr batter each. The cookies taste very nice. More sophisticated than the average home cookie I’m used to baking. Very short and crumbly, a hint of chocolate and a nice coconut flavor throughout. Not particularly sweet which I appreciate.


Snow falls, baking’s on. Food Wishes, Chef John’s recipe for lemon poppy seed muffins. I baked 6 large vs a 12 muffin tin-no bake time chg needed. Added a touch of almond extract and used up my Burlap and Barrel poppy seeds. We prefer no icing.


Cinnamon rolls from Bravetart. The recipe came together pretty easily. I need to work on how to roll out squares or rectangles, rather than circles. Otherwise, you get uneven dough, unevenly filled, on each end. You’ll see that in my bottom row roll particularly. I think I will actually roll them out and then try cutting the sides off to make a rectangle after, and before rolling. That might do the trick. The other difficult thing about this recipe was an instruction to roll the dough to a particular size and then use an offset spatula to smear the filling evenly on. Well, the dough was soft and the filling was less soft, and just getting it even meant I pressed out the dough to a larger size than called for. I’m not sure how to fix this. Generally - the rolls were a delight. I would personally halve the amount of sugar in the filling and I wouldn’t miss it. But a warm puffy roll on a Sunday morning - can’t be beat. My older kid, god bless him, didn’t like. He said he’s not into cinnamon and I should have believed him. I’m interested in your thoughts as to what type of spice or flavor I could sub instead but keep the dough and frosting the same. There can be no nuts. I’m wondering whether maybe ginger sugar or crushed dried citrus peel…Or as above @Rooster some poppy sugar.


Poppy filling sounds good to me. Very nice bake!

The last time I made these (diff recipe source tho) I used apple butter as the filling, rolled tight and sliced the roll with unwaxed dental floss (an internet tip). Then I frosted half with whipped unsweetened goat cheese and dusted half with nutmeg.

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Apple butter usually has cinnamon in it, but fruit jam is a possibility. I bet apricot would be lovely. I also used floss to cut! It does a great job being precise without squeezing the roll, and is actually in the recipe. However I do not have the patience of an engineer to be sure. So many of them were cut to uneven sizes, and then I tried to even them up this morning after a night in the fridge.

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No cinnamon in the apple butter we made. Jarred likely would though. Apricot sounds really good. Pistachio butter also appeals to me. To keep the dough squared my Aunt used a ruler I just trim with a pizza cutter and then spread the filling.

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Or finely chopped or ground walnuts and touch of lemon, like poteca filling? I, too, avoid cinnamon but am certainly not against simple butter and sugar, white or brown. Brown → butterscotch/caramel flavors.

The kid who doesn’t like cinnamon is allergic to nuts - so none of that. But I may try apricot. The other thing I was thinking was spreadability, so something like a honey/butter/candied ginger might be nice. I’ll play around with it. :slight_smile:

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No nuts but yes to caramel!

I look forward to your future experiments! Poppy seeds it is!

Buttermilk sourdough starter recipe:


  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 dash filtered water
  • 2-3 TBSP flour white or rye flour
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds


  • Combine buttermilk, water, flour, and caraway seeds in a glass jar (or in another non-reactive container.

  • Lightly cover and leave in warm, undisturbed spot. Check every day for progress. You can also stir it.

  • Depending on the environment (temperature, moisture, wild yeasts), this can take about 7 days.

  • Your sourdough starter is ripe when it has a pleasant sour smell and is bubbly and foamy. You can also drop a bit in some water: if it floats, it’s ripe, if it sinks, it needs a few more days.

Has anyone used this method? Results?


Nigella’s clementine cake tho I used Honeybells. I microwaved the oranges then put them in the vita mix with the eggs and sugar (food processor was out in the very cold pantry;).
I added vanilla and pinch of salt. Such a simple wet cake - delicious!


Sounds and looks delicious (as always).

I used up a quart of NJ blueberries picked during a farm visit held in the freezer and baked in a butter crust (scraps leftover from a pie lesson with my niece). Pie for two heavy on the blues!


Oh yum, looks delicious, blueberry pie is a favorite!

Alice Medrich chocolate brownies and King Arthur Baking recipe for small batch rice pudding.

I used dutch chocolate powder in the batter and full fat coconut milk in the pudding instead of heavy cream. A few green cardamom pods for flavor.


Bravetart triple oatmeal cookies. This is the 3rd recipe I’ve made out of this book (also wedding cookies and cinnamon rolls) and I am impressed! I agree with Saregama or Mariacarmen who said it was sugar heavy. That’s true, and I’ll start to make downward adjustments. But, everything I’ve made has been really tasty. And although some of the recipes are scary full of time and technique, these cookies were very straightforward albeit had a long ingredient list. And they are much better than the Quaker oats recipe which has been my lifetime go-to. I followed the recipe to a tee, other than subbing dried cherries for dried cranberries. I also didn’t realize how much I like/miss nuts in baked goods, until the nut allergic kid went to college and I have that possibility again.


They look nice and chewy.

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Fabulous cookies. Oatmeal and dried cherries are a match made in heaven.

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Chewy in the middle and crispy on the edges, which I think is the perfect combo.