Saturday, November 21, 2009

gotta mention this honey

A few months back, baker friend, Ken Slove, Lovin' Oven Cakery in Round Lake Beach, mentioned he was selling honey in his store. Jars and bear shaped plastic containers. Said he was doing well with it. We always bought honey from a local honey farmer, Wallanches farm, over in a forgotten part of Illinois. They packed it in years ago, urban sprawl proved more financially advantageous, than spending your day getting stung by bees. He used to tell me "You get used to the stinging". What? Guess it's like gettin' used to oven burns. Anyway, they had nice honey. So I contacted this local farmer that Ken mentioned. His name is Robert Gaylor. He brought it a few hundred pounds of bulk honey, in five gallon pails. It's the most incredible honey I have ever seen. It is the colour of the apricot pancake syrup I used to see in an International House of Pancakes. And the flavour, just wonderful. The buckets come in marked "Gaylor honey". It's a little pricey, but worth every penny.

I gotta say, this year, we've had nicer pumpkin pies, than ever. Most bakers have issues with their pumpkin pies cracking. I can honestly say, in thirty five years, I haven't seen six cracked pies. But this year, they hold their shine longer than ever, they don't shrink at all. It's gotta be the honey. We baked pfeffernuss on Tuesday. Same thing, softer than ever. We baked them, cooled them overnight, coated them the next day, they are soft as cake. From our pfeffernuss dough we also make "Spitzkuchen". We roll the dough into long strings, bake 'em, and cool them overnight. The next day we cut them into trapezoids, and run them thru our chocolate enrober. One of my favorite Christmas cookies. C'mon, honey dough pieces, covered in chocolate. What could be better? Oh, our stollen.

Former queen of the Bennison croissant throne, Carla Hess, took a few of our new stollen to New Jersey, for the Thanksgiving holiday. Interested to hear what she has to say.

Gotta get upstairs, long day ahead of us. Gonna be non-stop from now until Thursday afternoon, 3pm.

Although, got some huge orders for next weekend. Loads o' gingerbread houses. Oh well, we are closed Christmas day and the 26th. We'll get a break then.


Blogger Laminatrix said...

Holy Stollen, Bakerman!!

All I have to say is that it's a good thing we put one of the stollen in the freezer immediately, because the other one is more than half gone (and that's just from the efforts of my parents and me).

The molds defintely even out the bake--it's moist and consistent all the way through. I'd probably up the marzipan just a tad, or spread it more evenly, but damn, it's good.

If you open a position at the bakery for stollen-tester, I know three people who will volunteer . . . all named Hess.

November 22, 2009 at 8:20 AM  
Blogger Jory Downer said...

Told ya!!!! Call Dresden, give 'em fair warning.

November 23, 2009 at 8:05 AM  

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