Every new book from Martha Stewart is cause for celebration, and with Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook, she returns to bring the pleasures of baking to readers at every level, from beginner to expert and beyond. A culinary compendium packed with more than 200 foolproof recipes for the best baked goods, Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook takes readers by the hand and guides them through the process of creating an irresistible variety of cakes, cookies, pies, tarts, breads, and much more.
This essential addition to every cook's library is rich with tips, techniques, and the mouthwatering and stunning recipes for which Martha Stewart is so well known. Covering a delectable array of topics from simple to sophisticated, including biscuits, muffins, scones, cookies, layer cakes, specialty cakes, sweet and savory pies and tarts, and pastries and breads, she provides a dazzlingly delicious yet crystal-clear, vividly illustrated repertoire of recipes. There are cakes that are elegant enough for formal occasions, such as showers, weddings, and dinner parties, and basic favorites meant to be enjoyed every day and then passed down through the generations. Every chapter includes indispensable visual equipment glossaries and features vital make-ahead information and storage techniques. Organized for maximum clarity and practicality, the handbook also offers step-by-step how-to photographs that demystify even the most complex and nuanced techniques. These culinary building blocks will turn good bakers into great bakers, and make great bakers even better.
Filled with time-honored classics, such as Marble Cake with White-Chocolate Glaze, Apple Pie, Challah, Baba au Rhum, and Croissants, as well as lots of new surprises, Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook will be reached for again and again, no matter the season or occasion.
"Here, you will find the recipes and how-tos for the popovers you dream about, and for the simple crumb cake that you always want to whip up on Sunday morning, and for the double-chocolate brownie cookies that will make you a bigger hero with the after-school crowd, and for the citrus bars that you could only find in that little bakery that's no longer under the same management. . . . Baking offers comfort and joy and something tangible to taste and savor. We all hope that these recipes provide you with years of pleasure." --Martha Stewart
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November 01, 2005
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Excerpt from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook by Martha Stewart
Apricot-Cherry Upside-down Cake
Makes one 8-inch cake
In traditional upside-down cake recipes, the fruit is first caramelized in a skillet. In our simplified version, the butter and sugar are creamed and spread into the cake pan; then the fruit is layered over the mixture and topped with cake batter.
* 1 stick (1/2 [.5] cup) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
* 1-1/4 (1.25) cups sugar
* 5 to 6 medium fresh apricots (about 1 pound), halved and pitted
* 12 ounces fresh sweet cherries (such as Bing), stemmed, pitted, and halved
* 3/4 (.75)cup all-purpose flour
* 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fine yellow cornmeal
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 (.5) teaspoon salt
* 1/4 (.25) cup almond paste (not marzipan), crumbled
* 3 large eggs, separated
* 1/4 (.25) teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 1/2 (.5) teaspoon pure almond extract
* 1/2 (.5) cup milk
Preheat the oven to 350* F. Butter an 8-by-3-inch round cake pan, and line bottom with parchment paper. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat 2 tablespoons butter with 1/4 cup sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Spread evenly over bottom of prepared pan. Arrange apricot halves, cut sides down, in pan. Fit cherries into any gaps between apricots. Pack down the fruit slightly with your hands; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat remaining 6 tablespoons butter until smooth, about 1 minute. Add almond paste and cup sugar, and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the egg yolks, and beat until well combined. Beat in vanilla and almond extracts. Add the flour mixture in two parts, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending with the flour; beat until combined, and set aside.
In the clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Gradually sprinkle in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, and beat until soft peaks form. Fold a third of egg-white mixture into the batter with a spatula. Gently fold in remaining egg whites.
Spread batter over fruit, smoothing with an offset spatula. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool slightly, about 15 minutes. Run a knife or small offset spatula around the edges to loosen, and invert cake onto a serving plate to cool completely. Cake can be kept at room temperature, loosely covered with foil, for up to 3 days.