Sunday, 22 July 2012

Hairy Bikers Bakeation Challenge - Austria

I really enjoyed watching this episode and just adored the mountain scenery.  I knew there would be a few chocolatey recipes to tempt me, but my first offering for this episode is Monica's Breakfast Bread or Godkipferl!  Now bearing in mind 'Monica' bakes for the monks in a monastery, Godkipferl is a very apt name for these little goodies as it translates as 'Gods Crescents'. 

A relatively quick bread to make as you mix the ingredients and knead for 5 minutes before leaving the dough to stand for 15 minutes.

The dough is then divided into 6 portions, which are then divided by 3 again.  Then you get plaiting!  I can't remember the last time I plaited anything, but it was fun rolling out the dough into sausage shapes and then creating a little crescent shape.  Very satisfying.

They are then placed on a floured baking sheet and left to rest for 5 minutes.

Then you brush with an egg yolk and dredge with sugar.  Can you see how yellow the egg yolk is?  These were egg yolks from my friend Cathy's chickens.  They are very happy chucks and it shows in their lovely eggs and also benefits my baking.  Lucky me!

The crescents are then popped into a preheated 160c fan oven (or 180c static oven) for 25 minutes until well-risen, golden and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

And boy do they rise!  Look at these babies!  Delicious with butter, jam and / or honey.  The texture is like a bread croissant if that makes sense and pulls apart in layers.

Edit to add:  I think these are best eaten on the day you make them, so unless you have a Monastery to feed, you may want to try halving the recipe.  You can, of course, reheat them in the microwave, which is perfectly adequate.

Today saw an attempt at a Hairy Bikers Austrian Chocolate Cake or Schokogugelhopf.  I mean really, how can you resist a name like that!  It was all a bit of a rush as I had a roast lamb on the go too, but it was fun to make.

Firstly the round ring tin is greased and dusted with ground almonds.  Its the first time I've had the excuse to use this tin, so it was good to retrieve it from the depths of my baking cupboard.

The chocolate is melted over a simmering pan of water, stirred, then set aside to cool for 15 minutes.

What a joy to have some sunshine, not only for my plants, but also to make the most of a warm greenhouse to soften my butter!  Perfect and speedy.  The butter and icing sugar are creamed together before adding 4 egg yolks one at a time.  For this recipe I was lucky enough to use some duck eggs that I had been given.  The recipe called for large eggs, so I felt this was a good substitute.  Duck eggs give an extra richness to baking.  This was then blended with the dry ingredients.

Add in the melted chocolate and then gently fold in the whisked egg whites, so as not to lose the air created when whisking them, but blending enough that you have no white spots left in the cake batter. 

Pop into the greased baking ring and place in a pre-heated 170c oven.  For this recipe I used a fan-oven and the cake only needed 30 minutes.  I think this was due to it being a big tin.  The cake rose well and came away from the sides nicely. 

Now being in a bit of a rush, I confess I failed to make the chocolatey topping that should have adorned the cake.  Instead we ate it warm with some cream drizzled over it.  Not a bad compromise.

Thank goodness for having my friend Raph and family back in our road - I have more people to share the baking love with!

Next time its Italy.  Gotta be some good bread recipes in that one!

Happy baking!

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