December 4, 2012

Fresh from the Oven: The Old Farmer's Everyday Baking Almanac {Giveaway}

Many of my go-to dishes are from The Old Farmer's Almanac cookbook, which I received as a gift a few years ago. I reference it all the time for classic dishes like macaroni and cheese and biscuits.  Naturally I was eager to see that they've published a cookbook especially for baking--The Farmer's Everyday Baking Almanac.
It's as good as my original book, and especially handy this time of year.  I made the Pecan-Top Apple Pie last month which came out perfectly.
I do wish I had dressed it up with the recommended Caramel Sauce, however I didn't have the time to do so.  Though the pie was sweet enough on its own.

I like that the Everyday Baking Almanac includes tips and tricks for better baking, like why the best way to use eggs is at room temperature (cool eggs affect the consistency of butter and other room-temperature ingredients in the dough).

I do wish that the book was more substantial in appearance; it has the look and feel of a magazine, rather than a book.  While the amount of recipes is great (118), I wish it was available in hardcover or was spiral bound for posterity.  The photography is excellent, and unlike the Everyday Cookbook, most recipes have a photo to go along with them, which is something I appreciate.

There are so many tempting recipes in this book, like the Chocolate Mud Bars. They might be great with a teaspoon of peppermint extract and some crushed candy canes to make them more festive for the Christmas season.

CHOCOLATE MUD PIE BARS

From The Everyday Baking Cookbook, page 54

CRUST:

1 ¼ cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

FILLING:

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
¾ cup sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
¼ cup cake flour
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

DIRECTIONS:

Butter an 8-inch square baking pan and set aside.

For crust: Combine the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl. Mix well with your hands. Add the melted butter, stir well with a fork, then rub the ingredients together well with your fingers until thoroughly mixed. Press the mixture evenly in the prepared pan to form a level layer on the bottom with a lip extending about ¼ inch up the sides of the pan. (Do not prebake the crust).

For filling: Combine the butter and chocolate in the top of a double boiler over not-quite-simmering water. When melted, whisk to smooth, then remove the pan from the heat. Scrape the chocolate into a medium bowl and cool to lukewarm. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Whisk the sugar, eggs, and vanilla into the lukewarm chocolate. Stir in the cake flour, mixing until smooth. Stir in the walnuts. Scrape the batter over the crust and smooth with a spoon. Bake on the center oven rack for 35 minutes only - no longer. Cool on a rack. Refrigerate an hour or so before slicing. Serve at room temperature. Makes 16 bars.

WIN IT!
For you bakers out there, I have a copy of The Everyday Baking Almanac to give away!  Please enter via Rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received a copy of the Everyday Baking Almanac for review.  All opinions are my own.

36 comments:

  1. I make some Dulce de Leche Mexican Chocolate cupcakes that are always quite popular!

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  2. My go to is a Brandy Chocolate Noel Log
    (d schmidt in widget)

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  3. persimmon cookies

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

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  4. I make Monkey Bread for breakfast every year.

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  5. Favorite go to is brown sugar cut out cookies.
    slrdowney at hotmail dot com

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  6. I like to make fudge as gifts and for dessert.

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  7. apple pie and raspberry linzer cookies

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  8. my favorite is a very old fruitcake recipe I make

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  9. Lasagna - any kind. Make it ahead, and you're set.

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  10. Pumpkin bread is my favorite and also stuffed shells.
    twinkle at optonline dot net

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  11. My thing is pecan pie. I have an old recipe from my grandmother and it's sooooo good (and full of calories). :-)
    -Audra Weathers
    Snowflake Day Play at gmail dot com

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  12. We love to make puppy chow for the holidays! Thanks for the chance, justicecw at hotmail dot com

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  13. Pecan sandies. Everyone always likes them.
    jtmagmom73(at)gmail(dot)com

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  14. i make some aweomse cranberry sauce. so easy! cranberries, win pineapple and whatever sugar you want to use, sugar, honey, agave, stevia...until its sweet enough for oyu.

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  15. Banana Walnut bread.

    diane(dot)wortman(at)gmail(dot)com

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  16. I'm in the mood for making bread.
    Diane Baum
    esldiane@gmail.com

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  17. Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies :)

    ktgonyea at gmail.com

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  18. warm apple crisp with ice cream-Dorothy Deakyne mtpapa47(at)gmail(dot)com

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  19. I make rum balls that are easy and delicious!

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  20. Grandmother's plum pudding recipe!

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  21. i like to make a pecan pie during the holidays
    susansmoaks at gmail dot com

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  22. I like to make winter bark & peppermint bark during the holidays...easy & fast! tylerpants(at)gmail.com

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  23. I just love apple pie, so good. :)

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  24. Thanks for the giveaway... sweet potato pie !

    senorpiero [at] yahoo [dot] com

    Bryan E.

    ReplyDelete

I'm a good listener...comment away!

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