"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister

A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!

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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Reader's Gallery Photo Gallery #3

This set of photos of buttery ensaymada in the making came from OS. Thanks for sharing your photos and tips in the email below that you sent to me!

Hi Manang,

It's me again. This time I'm sharing my experience using your Buttery Ensaymada recipe. I have lots of pix. I divided the dough into 3. The instructions in your buttery e. said to follow the rolling and shaping of the previous (supersoft e.) and so I wasn't sure if I needed to slather the rolled dough with softened butter since this recipe has a generous amount already. I still brushed it with melted butter anyway. Batch 1&2 I sprinkled with sugar in the middle (just wanna try if it will add a little sweet taste in the dough, minus topping). Batch 3, brushed with butter but no sugar. And comparison was...nothing. The taste was just the same. I opted to sprinkle sugar coz when I made the SSE, the dough was not as sweet. But you know what, If I make the buttery again, I will not fill it with sugar anymore, it is just flavorful plus I changed the way I put the topping.

I also tried baking a batch and just made use of a lined baking sheet and see what happens. Uhm, I did not like the result (presentation-wise as seen on the photos). And so 2 batches I made use of the tins. I may get the next bigger size of tins next time coz I wanna see if the dough will super rise since it will have more room to expand. The reason why I said this is when the cut dough that has risen on the baking sheet had 3pled in size and the ones in the tins doubled, but I think it did not rise to the fullest. So the result was it is a bit dense which is not a bad thing coz the dough was still tender to the bite. I meant to ask if yours were not dense (red ribbon and goldies are airy/fluffy) or was it just my way of making them? Any suggestions? I wish I can improve them next time, they're a little bit heavy for me. But no matter what, the husband still loves 'em! (Actually, these Buttery Es are treats for him and a surprise waiting for him on the table when he comes back home tonight here in Southern CA 5.25.09, he flew to Nashville,TN for a few days)
I also used sharp and mild cheddar cheese to compare- I liked the mild one. I also wish to share a couple of things. It may not be new to you or with some of your readers but I would still mention it anyway.

You may notice in the photos that I used a pastry mat for rolling and shaping. The light bulb just went on a few months back, haha! Others might only use it when they make pastries and pies diba? The only main reason was dealing with a sloppy work surface. Atleast with this one, It was so convenient to dust with flour and roll and....most of the time when i roll my dough, naliligaw ng landas kung saan saang direksyon napupunta kaya I just rotate the mat towards me and I conveniently work on it again. And you just pick it up and no sticky mess left on the surface.

And for those, or even you that haven't tried using "I can't believe it's not butter" brand (which I call FAKE butter, ang haba kaya ng name nya) I would say give it a try, it does replicate the taste of regular butters. And it is a little healthier, plus it is way faster when it comes to softening.

Before making your SSE, I searched some ensaymada pictures online and found a local bakery that was featured on flickr (i think) and they had a bowl filled with "buttercream frosting" and the Es were frosted. So I did it the same way instead of separating butter from sugar. I handwhipped it together and it was easy to spread and then dunk it again in plain sugar and pat the cheese that it helped it stick on the top.

Another important thing that is helpful with my cooking is keeping a log/notes of every observations and comparisons that I can possibly put critique on my dish down to my kitchen arsenal. And adding notes to what to try for next time. And it is always cool to ask. In my case, my family. I call them 'my guinea pigs". I always ask for their comments and suggestions to help improve, if not, enhance the flavor and if I should make it again or not. If it's not a hit then why bother? Or if I liked it, I only make it for myself and make some alterations.

I know these are so stereotype, but I just thought I would share anyways. Afterall, cooking is a never-ending learning....and never-ending boo boos (see i have gained so many scars from cuts and burns too, bad trip!) Yeah I cut myself with the tin while washing 'em, no fun! Lalo na when i make "SISIG" non-stop chopping. But it's all worth it!

Manang, gising ka pa ba? Haha! I apologize for this long e-mail. It is just my way of therapy kase.

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