I hope you tuned into Duff Till Dawn on Food Network (the new cake competition series on Food Network!) and happen to catch myself and my partner Kara Andretta from Kara’s Couture Cakes! Yeeaaah we brought our “A” game and…. well… OH you thought you could get the results that easy?! I can’t tell you silly! Wouldn’t want to spoil it for anyone who has it still floating around on their DVRs. If you haven’t caught the episode, or don’t live in the states, you can get access to one through iTunes here>> Duff Till Dawn, Season 1.
Kara pulled out her all the stops, as per-usual, and created the most delicious cakes to ever grace my pallet. She pulled out 3… yes THREE… flavor combos (where most on the show usually only pull out one)! I kid you not, I saw drool… straight UP DROOL on the audience’s lips.
Kara unleashed a secret ingredient not so well known here in the states… why you ask? Why isn’t this secret weapon a staple in all pantries? Welllllll… cause it’s ILLEGAL IN THE STATES! WHAT!!!??! Yeah that’s right. But only in the states… this bean, called the Tonka Bean, in it’s raw form is illegal. If you ate, I dunno 75 of them in one sitting (you NEVER WOULD, this is meant to be used very sparingly like it’s sister spice, Nutmeg), you could run into some problems. It is widely used in the Europe without any restrictions. Learn more about the Tonka Bean and this outdated law here: TONKA BEAN.
Bring apricot into the mix and WOW the taste buds of, I dunno……Kevin Smith!! And I quote: “you turned me onto apricots!”
With out any more delay…
Oh the crunchy deliciousness to follow…
Pine Nuts 2/3 c
White Sugar 1/4 c
Water 2 TBSP
Butter 1 TBSP.
What to do:
– Combine water and sugar in a medium sauce pan and cook to 234°F (the sugar will still be clear at this point)
– Remove from heat and add pine nuts.
– Stir continuously and quickly to coat all nuts with sugar; they will begin to crystallize and should separate rather than clump.
– Place the pan back over medium heat and stir continuously. This will toast the nuts as the sugar begins to caramelize (this is when the sugar begins to look amber like the picture below).
– Add butter to the nuts once the sugar has caramelized and coat evenly.
– Pour the caramelized pine nuts out onto a silicone baking mat and spread out, separating them into individual pieces or small groupings as much as possible while they cool.
– Once cooled, chill in the refrigerator for 5 minutes.
– Remove from refrigeration and place in a plastic ziplock bag, then crush with a rolling pin.
Time to put it all together!
Next recipe coming to you from Kara and myeself, our Southern Take on Chocolate Cake. Light chocolate cake soaked in bourbon simple syrup, salted caramel American buttercream, and bourbon candied pecans.
Don’t drool on your keyboards… that’s gross 😉
Guess what else we have for you?! All those hard to find delicious pastes (we use them in all the Duff Till Dawn Trio of recipes)
GET YOUR PASTE PACK: Pastry Portal
5-pack includes 2oz containers of each:
And… free shipping!!