Daring Bakers: Filled Pâté à Choux Swans

This month's Daring Bakers Challenge filled me with excitement the second it was posted. Kat of The Bobwhites was our August 2012 Daring Baker hostess who inspired us to have fun in creating pâté à choux shapes, filled with crème pâtissiére or Chantilly cream. We were encouraged to create swans or any shape we wanted and to go crazy with filling flavors allowing our creativity to go wild!

For me, there was no choice other than swans. I have been wanting to make these for a while but never found the excuse. What a perfect excuse this was.

“But calm, white calm, was born into a swan…”

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Daring Bakers Challenge: Crazy For Crackers

Our July 2012 Daring Bakers’ Host was Dana McFarland and she challenged us to make homemade crackers! Dana showed us some techniques for making crackers and encouraged to use our creativity to make each cracker our own by using ingredients we love.

The challenge required us to bake two crackers using two of three methods: hand rolled, pasta machine rolled, or the icebox method. I don't own a pasta machine, so the choice was immediately made for me.

Unlike the last two challenges, these are something I've baked before. I've never blogged any of my recipes, however, so it was a good excuse to return to two of my favourite recipes and share them with you guys.

Let’s crack some open…

Daring Bakers Challenge: Going Batty for the Jubilee

This was my second month partcipating in the Daring Bakers challenge and it didn't disappoint. Mandy of What The Fruitcake?! came to our rescue last minute to present us with the Battenberg Cake challenge! She highlighted Mary Berry’s techniques and recipes to allow us to create this unique little cake with ease.

As with the challah, I'd never herd of a Battenburg Cake before, much less eaten one. I love being able to learn about something completely new.

Normally I would try a unique variation of a classic recipe given, but Mandy's classic Battenburg looked so lovely. Besides I love almond buttercake, and loved the symbolism behind the pink and white squares said to represent the four princes of Battenburg. Classic it is.

Plenty more under the cut…

Daring Bakers Challenge: Challah Back, Y’all!

A few months ago I joined the Daring Kitchen, but it took until now for me to find the time onions to participate in a challenge. I'd just been saying to my boyfriend that I wanted to try baking bread, when I logged on to check what this month's challenge was.

May’s Daring Bakers’ Challenge was pretty twisted – Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood challenged us to make challah! Using recipes from all over, and tips from “A Taste of Challah,” by Tamar Ansh, she encouraged us to bake beautifully braided breads.

Cause I ain’t no challah back girl…