Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year

Happy New Year all!
Hopefully this New Year will bring tons of joy and happiness to everyone, as well as making all the New Year's resolutions come true. If you are one of the people who says to lose weight, I would say on this day, "NOT YET! But afterwards, you can." Its still the holidays, we can still splurge the some extra calories.

My idea of a simple splurge would be to make a Croquembouche (Cream Puff Tower). This seemingly simple and very elegant dessert consist of a somewhat dry exterior "puff" with a custard filling, then it is drizzled with hot burned sugar (known as Caramel), so everything can stick together.

Unfortunately, I didn't have the time to make the custard filling, so I decided to go with a whipped cream filling. I used the cream puff recipe from Gale Gand (Cream Puffs) and I added a few more steps to the process to make a drier product so the whipped cream filling doesn't soften the exterior puff too quickly.

Once all the cream puffs were cooked and cooled, the caramel must start cooking since you need hot sugar to stick everything together. In the meantime, make the cream filling and start piping everything. Lastly, line a cake round with wax paper and then start building. Depending on how many cream puffs you have made, that will decide how tall the tower is. In this particular day, my best friend and I made 3 batches of Gale Gand's Cream Puffs recipe (which came out to be about 40+ puffs). The tower was made with about 20 of the cream puffs. After building the tower, my finished product looked something like this:

This New Years day party I attended a Potluck hosted by one of my close friends. We were able to choose which course to bring, so I've chosen the Pasta course and the Dessert. Little did I know that there were going to be more than one dessert but it's always healthy to share the stage with everyone's creations. When everyone came in, the table looked something like this:

The buffet menu consisted of:
Bacon wrapped Quail Eggs
Chicken Drumstick Curry
Medium Shells in a Homemade Meat Sauce
Tomato Mushroom Fettuccine in a Alfredo Sauce
Pizza Hut Tuscan Pasta
Muffin Size Egg Tarts 
Cream Puffs
Cream Puffs Tower
No bake Cheesecakes (which were in the fridge)
and then some drinks.

There was a whole Roasted Chicken that was bought on the later part of the party.

It was fun and I enjoyed the party. Hope everyone learned a bit. Feel free to comment! The upcoming post will be the continuation of my love for Cantonese Cooking. You will have to wait and see what I come up with.