You may have noticed I have disappeared. I have (sort of) been keeping up with baking, just not the blogging part. To prove it, here’s my chocolate babka and my ginger pannetone from the Modern Baker Challenge.
Neither of these turned out exactly right. In one case, the results were still delicious, in the other case not at all.
First the chocolate babka. As I may have mentioned before, I have found my doughs made from the Modern Baker to be far too wet. I don’t know exactly what’s going on–I don’t think it’s something environmental (damp weather, etc) because it doesn’t happen with other recipes. While this wasn’t fatal to the babka (far from it–I was begging visitors to take the final produce so that I wouldn’t eat it all), it certainly made it nearly impossible to handle. I wanted to put it in my kugelhopf mold but I barely got it on to a cookie sheet. Rather than “shape” the dough I did my best to cajole it into something approximating a loaf. Still–sweet dough with chocolate and walnuts? Of course it was good. I’d make it again, but I’d have to add a bit more flour!
As for the ginger-scented pannetone–um, it ended up in the trash. I don’t know what happened. Was the taste of ginger too strong? Did I spill excess vanilla in accidentally? Was I just too distracted while I was kneading to develop a good crumb? Do I just not like ginger as much as Nick Malgieri (a quick glance through the cookbook certainly indicates he is a fan)? In any case, I’ll be sticking to my other pannetone recipes in the future.