quelle est une doorknob?

the joke is. a girl is like a doorknob. at one point or another in her life, everybody gets a turn at her.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

ode to my grandparents

so big k's theme for the month had me slightly stumped. there are so many different foods that warm my soul. so i decided to pull up memories of some pretty important people in my life. i was raised by my paternal grandparents until i was about 10 or 11. they are a comfort to my soul. it is because of grandpa that i love swiss cheese, mama celeste pizza, and sour apple jolly ranchers. it is because of grandma that i love spicey food, pâté, wonton soup, and phở . i remember weekend mornings having breakfast with them. grandma would warm up a mug of milk for me, and grandpa would sneak a spoonful of sugar in. there'd be sliced oranges or ritz crackers to munch on. as i got older, grandpa would take me to pastry shops and always, always, always he would get me a napoleon. i would sit at the table and happily eat my pastry while he sipped his coffee and smoked his cigarette. grandma was no slouch. she made cream puffs for me. that stuff was so good! i was called bánh bèo face for a good reason.

so i decided to make a hybrid of both pastries. i'd make the body of the cream puff but use the napoleon cream and icing. that's my twist.

the batter was a bitch to stir. this was before i added eggs. i just hate babysitting at the stove, it's not my favorite.

once the eggs were fully incorporated in the batter, it became slightly too pliable for my liking. the whole piling it high up etc is a crock. don't sweat it.

the first batch, i followed the recipe to a T. i reduced temp, turned oven off, ignored the puffs and they came out hard. they smelled good tho, exactly like how i remember them to smell.

the second batch came out much better, i ix-nayed the whole 20 minute wait in the turned off oven. eff that.

the Napoleon cream filling came out well, taste wise. but in retrospect, i should've done a cream puff filling. the napoleon cream filling is to be spread between layers. whatever, it still tasted good.
verdict: a lot of work that really, helped me keep my mind off random drama. i'll definitely make these pastries again, just not combined. my new roommate Crystal was tastetester and she had 3!

For the Cream Puffs, i used this recipe.
For the Cream Filling and icing, i used this recipe.


Kelcy said...

omg, yum! i want to eat that batter!

i really like your grandparent story! nice memories....

Trish said...

Um. WOw. I wish I could be your roommate when you're cooking/baking.

Laser Hands said...

I hate you Lan! I'm kidding. Thanks for enlightening me on why I love those things soo much. Next time I am in San Jose, I am totally going try to con my way into them tasty treats, although I guess this recipe is manageable ... and the napoleon topping is completely INSANELY BRILLIANT!

AlabamaGal said...

This looks soooooooooooooooooooo good. I had some of these when I was in Chile, a friend's Mom made them for me and I have been thinking, I need to try to make those. And now... after seeing your pictures I am thinking it again. LOL


Girl Japan said...

You did a fantastic job.. ! This look awesome.

Angry Asian said...

michelle -- it's totally manageable! let me know if you get stuck on something, good luck!

girl japan -- thank you!