On a beautiful fall day, September 27th, we went to the opening day of the State Fair of Texas. We learned about hydroponic gardening in the greenhouse, saw the llamas, goats, lambs, swine and horses. We toured the Creative Arts building – where we saw the “Glue a Shoe” contest, the famous butter sculpture, award-winning quilts and all sort of handmade crafts. Walked the Midway and enjoyed our Fletcher’s Corny dogs. It was a picture perfect day!
Our favorite Lone Star llama!
Best of the State Fair of Texas . . . the Funnel Cakes!
Leaving the State fair, I wondered if we could make the Funnel Cakes in My Texas Kitchen?
Frying Funnel Cakes!
Top Five Funnel Cake Questions:
Are there any special ingredients? Funnel cakes are made with simple, kitchen staples, milk and a couple of eggs.
How will I know if the oil is hot enough? The oil should heat to350º.
Last but not least . . . Is it worth it to make funnel cakes at home? Yes, Funnel Cakes are so easy to make at home. They are delicious. Your friends and family will love the Funnel Cakes and you for making the treat!
The Angel Food cake gets its name because the airy, light cake is said to be the “food of angels”.
What’s the Secret?
The secret to making Angel Food cakes is room temperature egg whites. They will whip up to a higher volume!
Why cream of tartar?
Cream of tartar stabilizes the egg whites. Add the cream of tartar to the egg whites, just as they become frothy, continue whisking, adding the sugar and other ingredients until the egg white mixture is are stiff, but not dry.
Featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show. "Best of Show" in the State Fair of Texas 2009 cake contest. Susan Apple Graass - Dallas, Texas
Cake: 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 T. baking powder, 1 t. salt, 1 cup vegetable shortening, 2 cups whole milk yogurt, 2 cups sugar, 6 separated, 2 T. lemon zest
Glaze: 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup sugar, 6 lemon peels(leftover after juicing lemons)
Lemon curd filling: 1 t. unflavored gelatin, 1/2 cup lemon juice, 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1/8 t.salt, 10 egg yolks, 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1/2" cubes
Icing: 2 pounds confectioners' sugar, 1/4 to 1/3 cup Limoncello, 1 pound room temperature unsalted butter, 1 pound crisco®, 1 t. salt, 1 t. vanilla
Meringue garnish: 4 room temperature egg whites, 1/2 t. cream of tartar, 1/2 cup plus 1 T. superfine sugar, 1 cup confectioners' sugar
Cake: Preheat oven to 350º. Grease 3, 3 X 8-inch round cake pans, place 3, 8" parchment paper rounds in the pans; set aside. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer. In another bowl, whisk the vegetable oil, yogurt, sugar, egg yolks, lemon zest, and vanilla. Slowly blend the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Whisk the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Fold into the cake mixture. Pour into the prepared cake pans. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes on racks. Invert cakes onto racks and cool completely.
Glaze: Stir water, sugar, and lemon peels in a small saucepan over medium. Heat until sugar dissolves, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat, cool, and strain. Set aside.
Lemon curd filling: In a small cup, sprinkle the gelatin over 1 T. lemon juice; set aside. In a 2-quart saucepan, heat the remaining lemon juice, sugar, and salt until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is hot but not boiling. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks, slowly add about 1/2 to 1 cup of the hot lemon mixture to the egg yolks; whisk together. Return the egg yolk/lemon mixture to the original mixture, stirring occasionally heat until the mixture reaches 170º. Remove the pan from heat and stir in the gelatin/lemon juice mixture; blend until gelatin is dissolved. Stir in the butter. Pour through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean bowl. Press a plastic wrap directly onto the surface. Refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours.
Meringue: Preheat oven to 200. Place a Silpatº in a jelly roll pan; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites until frothy, add the cream of tartar, continue beating. Continue beating and gradually add the sugar. Beat until the whites are stiff and glossy, but not dry. Whisk in the confectioners' sugar. Spread onto the prepared pan. Bake for 2 hours or until dry but not brown. Set aside. Cool.
Icing: Add the confectioners' sugar, Limoncello, salt, and vanilla to the bowl of an electric mixer. Whisk until thick like a pancake batter. Add the butter and shortening, continue whisking until the mixture is thick and creamy, scraping down the sides occasionally.
Assembling the cake: Place 1 cake layer on a serving plate, brush with the glaze, spread 1/2 of the lemon curd on top, Repeat with the second cake layer. Place the third cake layer on top of the cake. Spread a generous amount of icing on the top and sides of the cake. Smooth out the icing. Break pieces of the meringue chips and decorate the top and sides of the cake with them.
For years, I have been trying out biscuit recipes and making changes to develop one that is just right . . . the result is here today.
Check it out . . .
Light, Airy Biscuits
I’m serving homemade biscuits with Blackberry Jam in honor of St Michael. Today is the Feast day of St. Michael the Archangel. St Michael is known for fighting Lucifer(Satan) and driving him out of heaven, he landed on a blackberry bush. The tradition is serving blackberry jams, tarts, pies or desserts on his feast day.