Rosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon Sugar

Rosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon Sugar 

  Spring has always been a favorite season of mine.  It gives me a great amount of inspiration to see things sprout from the loneliness of winter and flourish into something beautiful and vibrant.  It’s like painting with an entirely new set of colors.  “What will I paint this month?”, is a metaphorical question I ask myself at the beginning of each month, as each new month brings its own palette of colors in various form. In the baking and photography sense, these forms are the vegetables, fruit, and flora that each month has to offer.   

  Now, here we are, stepping into the month of April. To be completely honest, it never felt as if I was in March all this time. It was so warm most of the month, with a few cold days here and there, even a bit of snow.  Many flowering trees that normally bloom in April have lost most their petals and have begun the next step unfurling their green leaves.  The crabapple trees are on the verge of blossoming, this I’m particularly excited about as they’re breathtaking in full bloom. I often enjoy this view in mid-April, but I’ll be seeing it a little earlier this year. 

Rosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon Sugar

  I’m excited to start combining the different flavors and scenes April has to offer. Much of my recipes these past couple weeks have focused mainly on citrus with some sort of herb or spice to accompany it. The last thing I baked was this Pull-Apart Cinnamon Grapefruit Bread with Earl Grey Lavender Glaze, and this week I bring to you these soft and feather-light Rosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon sugar. 

  Beignets are rather easy to make, especially if you are familiar with homemade doughnuts.  Both are processed in a similar manner, though, beignet dough is left to rise slowly in the refrigerator overnight, giving the end product a pleasant yeast flavor. Once they’ve been taken out of hot oil, they are rolled around in sugar which is given a subtle lemon flavor by rubbing the sugar granules in lemon zest. Lastly, they’re filled with a luscious pastry cream flavored using fresh lemon zest and rosemary leaves. They are, in a sense, an adieu to the citrus season for me.  A delicious one at that.

Rosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon Sugar  Rosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon SugarRosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon SugarRosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon SugarRosemary Lemon Cream Filled Beignets with Lemon Sugar

ROSEMARY LEMON CREAM FILLED BEIGNETS WITH LEMON SUGAR


 beignets:

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

1/2 cup warm water (110°F)

1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

3 large egg yolks

2 1/4 cups unbleached bread flour

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 cup warm water

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed + softened

oil (canola, vegetable, etc), for frying

 

 rosemary lemon cream:

1 cup whole milk

1 rosemary sprig, slightly mashed

1 tablespoon lemon zest

1/4 cup whole milk 

2 large egg yolks

1 tablespoon cake flour

1 tablespoon corn starch

1/4 cup sugar

lemon sugar:

1 tablespoon lemon zest

1 cup granulated sugar

 

 method:

 for the beignets

  1. In the bowl of an electric standing mixer, add the yeast and warm water and slightly stir to combine.  Sprinkle in the flour and let it sit until it’s dry looking about 10-15 minutes.  Add the sugar, egg yolks, flour, sea salt, and water.  Mix the ingredients on medium speed with the dough hook attached; the dough should come together quickly, but if it looks dry within the first minute of mixing, add extra water until it comes together(you don’t want it clumpy).  Continue mixing the dough for 5 minutes, then stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl with a spatula and sprinkle with a bit of flour. Mix for another 5 minutes.   Afterward, it should be smooth, soft, and elastic with a slight stickiness to it. Once again, scrape down the bowl.  Add the softened butter and mix on medium-high until it all comes together.  This may take a few minutes and it will look separated at first, but it will soon come together forming a shiny, smooth, and elastic dough.  Remove the dough from the mixer and place in a large bowl lightly greased and floured.  Cover with a thin towel and let the dough rise in a warm, dry place for 1 hour to an 1 and 2o minutes.  Once doubled in size, release the gasses by gently punching down the dough.  wrap the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for two hours.  After two hours have passed, release the gasses one last time, then cover again(tightly) and place in the refrigerator overnight.
  2. Lightly flour a large, flat surface and turn the dough out onto it.  Set aside a large baking sheet covered with a thin cloth and then dusted with flour.  Cut golf ball sized pieces of dough out.  To shape, simply cup your hands and roll a dough piece in between your palms, until it’s a smooth ball.  Gently flatten the ball between your palms until you have a sphere shaped piece of dough.  Place it on the prepared baking sheet and repeat the process until all the dough has been shaped.  Space each piece about 3 inches apart.  Prepared another baking sheet if needed.  Cover with a thin towel and let them rise again in a warm, dry place for 1 hour to an 1 and 15 minutes.  On the last 20 minutes of rising, fill a medium sized pot with a couple inches of oil and heat to 340°F(you want to keep it around this temperature to evenly cook the beignets through).
  3. Meanwhile, set aside a large plate and add the sugar and 1 tablespoon lemon zest.  Rub the zest and the sugar between your fingers until all the sugar has a coating of lemon flavor to it.  
  4. Once the beignets have finished rising and the oil preheating, gently scrape one beignet from the baking sheet and slide into the hot oil, quickly flip the beignet once in the oil.  Cook 2 minutes on each side until golden brown.  Remove from oil with a slotted spoon and just slightly dry the oil from the surface of the beignet, then roll around in the lemon sugar until coated.  Set on a wire rack to cool completely before filling.  Continue this process until each beignet has been fried and sugar coated.

 for the cream filling:

  1. In medium sized saucepan, add the milk lemon zest and rosemary sprig.  Bring to a boil over medium heat then remove from heat.  Let it sit for 10 minutes, then remove the zest and rosemary.  Bring the milk back to a simmer over medium-low heat.
  2. Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, sugar, and a pinch of sea salt.  Add the egg yolks and 1/4 cup of milk and whisk until smooth. Pour half of the hot milk into the egg mixture while whisking constantly.  Then using a strainer, pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan of milk.  Turn the heat to medium and continue to whisk the mixture constantly until it becomes thick.  Stop stirring for a few seconds to see if the mixture is boiling, if so, continue whisking for 1 minute, then remove from heat and pour into the prepared pan and evenly spread around. Place another piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the pastry cream to ensure a skin doesn’t form.  Place in the freezer until fully cooled(about 15 minutes).  
  3. Stir the pastry cream and spoon into a pastry bag with a large, round piping tip attached.  Poke a hole into the side of each beignet and pipe in the pastry cream until all the beignets are filled.  Enjoy.

Lemon Layer Cake with Coconut Buttercream Frosting

  With the vast amount of flowers on display for Valentine’s Day, there was only one reasonable excuse for me to buy a lovely bouquet: cake.  It is nothing extravagant, just a simple lemon layer cake.  Four, delectable and moist layers might I add, with the right amount of lemon to them.  I about gave up on the recipe, to be honest.  Twice it failed on the density and moist scale, with a mouthfeel like cornbread.  The lemon flavor was just right, though.  The third time was the charm, and with the addition of applesauce, the outcome was just as I wanted: a moist, tender crumb with layers that rose nicely.

  Over time I have tried many buttercream methods, from meringue buttercreams to your standard American buttercream.  One of my favorites will always be German Buttercream, it’s absolutely amazing.  So, I have gotten in the habit of basing most my buttercreams on a flavored custard.  It’s easy to infuse with different flavors and is never too sweet.  For this lemon cake, I infused coconut flakes into the milk, which then goes into eggs and sugar to create a smooth custard.  Due to the presence of egg yolk, I wasn’t able to keep it white in color, instead, it’s a pale yellow.

lemon layer cake from afar

lemon layer cake from afar

These warm February days have had me aching for spring to arrive.  It was one of the reasons that spurred me to create this very spring-like cake.  I’ve already noticed changes everywhere, however small they may be.  The days are getting slightly longer and the tulips have begun peeking out from beneath the loose soil; the birds have become even more melodious in song as the days grow increasingly warm and longer.  Those may be just a few changes, but they’re enough to fuel me through the remaining days of winter.  I love spring as it inspires me to continually change and grow, whereas in winter something seems to die within me, along with the fallen leaves.  It’s hard to find inspiration, so I always feel stuck, like nothing can grow.  But, come spring or just things that remind me of spring, I find that those parts of me were just dormant, like buds on the trees and shrubs; just by a few days exposure of warmth, they are reminded their time to bloom is near.  

 On the subject of seasonal change, there will be much change to this blog come summer: a complete renovation, including a new name.  It has been in the back of my mind for some time now.  When I started this blog, I really needed a name to get things moving, so I pulled one from thin air, and as it turns out, one I’m very unhappy with.  To me, ‘The Sticky Spatula’ is a bit hollow.  I would like a title with meaning, one that’s flexible with the content I want to produce.  I would like to share more of my photography that isn’t strictly baked goods, and I feel my current title keeps me in a box, so to speak.  None of this is in the works yet, but it will be in the next month or so, hopefully.  I’m excited about these changes, but at the same time frightened as I’ll be switching to a different platform.  I can only hope the move will be smooth and without losing any of my current content.

close up flowers on lemon layer cake

top of lemon layer cake

sliced lemon layer cake view

slice of lemon layer cake

slice of lemon layer cake


LEMON LAYER CAKE WITH COCONUT BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

cake

260 grams cake flour ( 2  1/3 cup ) 

30 grams unbleached all-purpose flour  ( 1/4 c )

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

300 grams sugar ( 1  1/2 c )

12 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp.

2 large, whole eggs + 1 large egg yolk, room temp.

2 teaspoons pure lemon extract

1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce

1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest

130 mL almond milk, room temp. ( 2/3 c ) 

coconut buttercream

1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

2 cups whole milk

3 teaspoons cake flour

3 teaspoons cornstarch

1 large egg yolk

1/3 cup sugar

1 1/4 cups unsalted butter, room temp.

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

pinch of salt

METHOD:

for the cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease and line with parchment paper two, 6-inch (or two eight-inch) pans.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric standing mixer with whisks attached, combine the butter and sugar.  Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 6-7 minutes.   Scrape down the bowl with a spatula and add the lemon extract and egg yolk, beating on low until just combined.  Add the two whole eggs and beat until combined, about 20 seconds.  Add one-third of the flour, half the milk, the applesauce, and lemon zest; beat on medium speed until just combined, then scrape down the bowl.  Add the remaining milk and another third of the flour and beat until just combined.  Scrape down the bowl once more and add the remaining third of the flour, beating until no flour is seen(about 10 seconds).
  4.  Pour the batter equally amongst the two prepared pans, making sure they’re no more than half full.  Spread around evenly.  Bake for 30-37 minutes, checking for doneness at 30 minutes.  They’re done when the cake springs back up when lightly touched with your finger.  Remove from oven and let them cool in their pans for 10 minutes.  Then, using a sharp knife, loosen the cake from around the edges of the pan and invert onto wire racks to cool completely.

for the buttercream

  1. Line a tall baking sheet with plastic wrap and set aside.
  2. In a medium sized saucepan, add the milk, coconut flakes, and sugar and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Once boiling, remove from heat and let it sit until cool to the touch.  Once cooled, pour into a blender and blend until smooth.  Pour the milk through a very fine-meshed sieve or a straining bag over a clean, saucepan.   Discard the coconut pieces(or re-use by toasting in the oven).  Measure out 1/4 cup of the milk and set aside, then bring the saucepan back to a boil; removing from heat once it begins to boil.  
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, cornstarch, egg yolk, and the 1/4 cup of cooled milk.  While whisking the egg mixture, pour in half of the hot milk.  Strain the egg mixture back into the remaining milk and continue to whisk over medium heat until thickened and smooth.  Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and spread around evenly.  Cover with another layer of plastic so it doesn’t form a skin.  Place in the freezer until cool to touch(it should not have a hint of warmth to it, nor should it be cold).
  4.  With an electric hand mixer with whisks attached, beat the butter along with a pinch of salt, until smooth.  Add the cooled custard and powdered sugar and beat until pale in color and fluffy.  It may look curdled in the first stages, but continue to beat until it comes together.  

assemble the cake

  If the cakes have a dome, be sure to level it off before commencing the second step.  Once each cake has been leveled off, carefully halve each cake into two smaller layers.  You should have four, equal layers in total.  Place the first layer bottom side down on a cake board/stand/plate.  Spread about 1/2 cup of the buttercream around evenly using an offset spatula.  Place the second layer evenly on top of the first, and add the same amount of frosting.  Continue to frost and stack each layer until all the layers are intact.  Use the remaining frosting to frost the top of the cake and around the edges.  Decorate with fresh flowers and coconut flakes, even dried lemon slices.

Lemon Curd Filled Doughnuts with Chamomile Glaze

  It’s nice to be back on here and in my kitchen baking again.  I slowed way down on my social media activeness and from baking, to spend some time with my sister for a couple weeks in Florida.  Taking a mental and physical break for a while was a much-needed thing for me.  My mind is now refreshed and full of new ideas for this month!

  So, it seems today is Friday AND National Doughnut Day you say?  Can a Friday really get any better than that?!  Of course, I had made doughnuts; delicious, chewy, fattening doughnuts.. filled with.. LEMON CURD.

lemoncurddonut-(9-of-16) lemoncurddonut-(12-of-16)

  I had never even tasted lemon curd until I made these doughnuts today.  Yep, you read that right.  I went with looks when the idea came to my mind.  The only thing I knew I had tasted in this recipe was my doughnuts, haha.  In the end, they came out just as I’d thought them to(I love it when that happens)!

  The lemon curd is super easy to make.  I did a bit of googling to get an idea of how it’s made and came back with 4 basic ingredients, I just had to make the right amount.  It makes just enough for 12 nicely sized doughnuts.  I could have eaten it all by myself as it was sooo good.  It has the perfect amount of sweet and tanginess.

lemoncurddonut-(14-of-16) lemoncurddonut-(16-of-16)

  You can’t have a doughnut without glaze or some other sugary topping on there, so I made a simple glaze from confectioners sugar and chamomile tea.  Chamomile tea goes right along with lemon!

lemoncurddonut-(4-of-16) lemoncurddonut-(8-of-16)

Lemon Curd Filled Doughnuts with Chamomile Glaze
Serves 12
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
5 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
5 hr
DOUGHNUTS
  1. 1 1/8 cups milk, hot(but not boiling hot)
  2. 4 tablespoons sugar
  3. 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  4. 4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  5. 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. 2 1/2 teaspoons quick-rise yeast ( I used Red Star)
LEMON CURD
  1. 5 large egg yolks
  2. 2/3 cups sugar
  3. 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  4. 1/3 cup fresh lemon zest (about 4 medium sized lemons)
  5. pinch of salt
CHAMOMILE GLAZE
  1. 2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
  2. 4 tablespoons chamomile tea
  3. pinch of salt
LEMON CURD
  1. Fill a medium sized pot with 2 - 2 1/2 inches of water and bring to a simmer over high heat.
  2. Once the water is on a simmer, turn the heat on low to keep it at a simmer so it won’t boil. Place a large mixing bowl over the top of the pot (make sure the bowl doesn't touch the water).
  3. Add the egg yolks, sugar, pinch of salt, lemon juice, and lemon zest to the bowl; whisk constantly till the mixture is thick, about 10-12 minutes. Be sure that the water stays at a simmer and not a boil or it will curdle the eggs.
  4. Once the mixture is thickened, pour the curd into a fine meshed sieve over a small bowl and strain out all the pulp. Discard the pulp(or eat it!), then cover the curd with plastic wrap, being sure the plastic touches the top of the curd so it won't form a tough skin. Refrigerate for 3 hours.
GLAZE
  1. Use ½ cup of hot water and place two chamomile teabags in it. Steep 10 minutes then cool. Whisk together the sugar and 4 tablespoons of cooled tea till combined. The glaze should be thick, but not too thick. Use when ready.
DOUGHNUTS
  1. In a large electric standing mixer with dough hook attached, add the milk, sugar, and lightly beaten eggs; mix on low till combined. Add three cups of flour, salt, and yeast. Mix on medium-high speed till it all comes together, then slowly add the remaining 1/2 cup in. If the dough is still wet after adding all the flour, add 1/4 cup more until the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Add the butter, one tablespoon at a time, till each piece is incorporated in the dough. Once the butter is incorporated, the dough should be shiny and elastic, also slightly firm when touched ( it's OK if it sticks a tiny bit).
  2. Lightly grease a large glass bowl with about 1/2 tablespoon of butter. Remove dough from mixer and turn out onto a lightly floured surface; knead into a ball, then place it in the greased bowl and cover with a thin towel. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 40 minutes to an hour, till it's doubled in size(you can heat your oven till it's warm inside then turn it off and rise the dough in there).
  3. Once the dough has doubled in size, punch down and turn out onto a floured surface. Roll the dough till it’s about 3/4 inches thick, then using a 3 inch in diameter cookie cutter(or a cup) cut out as many donuts as you can. Roll and cut-out any remaining scraps till all the dough is used. Place the donuts on a large, lightly greased pan, spacing them 2 inches apart from each other. Cover with a thin towel and rise in a warm place for another 40 minutes to an hour, till doubled in size.
  4. Once the donuts have risen, fill a large pot with about 5 inches of oil. Heat the oil to 356°F-366°F, use a thermometer to make sure the oil stays at the right temperature. Once the oil is hot enough, place two donuts inside the oil and fry them about 50 seconds on each side. Use a slotted spoon or ladle to remove them from the oil and transfer them to a wire rack to dry. Once all the donuts are fried, allow them to cool till they’re just warm.
  5. Using a knife, poke a hole in the side of each donut. Fill a pastry bag with the lemon curd and then fill each of the donut holes till all the curd is used. Dip or pour the glaze over each donut while they’re still warm. Enjoy!
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT
  1. Thermometer
The Sticky Spatula http://stickyspatula.com/

Meyer Lemon Cream Filled Ginger Cookies

   I know it’s already been a week since the new year started but, Happy New Year a little late!  I was off of here for a couple weeks enjoying time with all my family, but I’m back now!

gingerlemon-(14-of-18)gingerlemon-(10-of-18)

  Since it’s officially citrus season, I’m probably going to start bombarding you with all things orangy-lemony-grapefruity on here, so sit tight!  I’m starting it off with these ginger cookies that are filled with a lemon cream filling.

gingerlemon-(7-of-18) gingerlemon-(4-of-18)

They’re super easy and don’t take up a lot of time in the day.  Also, the lemon cream is like, THE best thing.  I had to stop myself from eating the bowl once or twice…

gingerlemon-(9-of-18) gingerlemon-(13-of-18)gingerlemon-(15-of-18)

Meyer Lemon Cream Filled Ginger Cookies
Yields 20
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 min
COOKIES
  1. 3/4 cups (1.5 stick) butter, room temperature
  2. 1 cup sugar
  3. 1/3 cup molasses
  4. 1 large egg, room temperature
  5. 3 cups all-purpose flour
  6. 2 teaspoons baking soda
  7. 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  8. 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  9. 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  10. 3/4 teaspoons ground allspice
  11. 1/3 cup sugar, for rolling
LEMON CREAM FILLING
  1. 8 ounces cream cheese
  2. 3 3/4 - 4 cups powdered sugar
  3. 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  4. 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from meyer lemons)
  5. 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest
COOKIES
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, spices, salt, and set aside.
  3. With an electric mixer, beat the sugar and butter till creamy. Add the molasses and beat till combined. Add the egg and beat till combined. Scrap down the sides and gradually add flour in 1/3 increments, beating till just combined each addition.
  4. Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper. Scoop the dough out and very slightly roll the piece into a ball(don't roll it smooth, leave some cracks in it) it should be about 1 inch in diameter. Lightly coat the dough balls in sugar and place on the pan, spacing each ball 2 inches apart from each other.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 12-13 minutes. Let them cool on the pan 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
LEMON CREAM FILLING
  1. Beat the cream cheese till smooth, add the lemon juice and beat till combined. Add the powdered sugar and lemon zest and beat well. Transfer into a piping bag with a #12 round tip attached.
ASSEMBLE
  1. Pipe the lemon cream onto the flat side of the cookie, leaving about 1/4 inch of space around the edges. Squish another cookie onto the cream a gently press them together till the cream comes out to the sides(but does't flow out). Repeat till all the cookies are assembled. Let them sit for an hour to let the cream harden.
Special equipment
  1. Piping bag
  2. #12 round tip
The Sticky Spatula http://stickyspatula.com/