Baking Fail – Blueberry Hand Pies

These sad little blueberry hand pies were a bust, and borne out of my impatience 🙁

I generally have excellent results with King Arthur Flour recipes. This one would have been pretty fabulous had I worked the dough properly.

The recipe has multiple steps – make your pie dough, let it chill, make your filling, let it cool down, put your pies together, then bake. You’ll need a bit of patience!

Winging It Always Works…

I did everything right until rolling out the dough into squares. Instead of measuring correctly, I eyeballed it CUZ THAT’S HOW I ROLL. So I had some thick dough pieces, some thin, and some with no tops because I ran out of dough 🙁

At this point I had to roll and re-roll the dough to correct my sizing issue, but by then my dough was soft and half-melted while I rolled them back out.

I even thought to myself, ‘Maybe I should chill these first…the butter in the dough isn’t firm anymore,’ but ignored that sage advice because I was in a rush to get it done.

My result was a mass of too-quickly-browned blueberry hand pies that were raw in the middle.

Upside – they tasted pretty good! Which tells me it’s not King Arthur Flour’s fault – it’s most definitely my own. Note that the original recipe even TELLS YOU to refrigerate the dough if at any time it becomes too hard to work with. See how perceptive I am?? 😉

The moral of the story is once I start rushing through a step in my baking (which I truly love doing!), then maybe it’s time to take a break and call it a day 🙂

Original recipe here.

 

Baking Fail – Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

This was a frustrating one 🙁  How did I get these melted snowballs in the first place? Read on!

I had some tasty leftover lemon curd from this recipe and because food waste drives me nuts, lemon meringue cupcakes seemed a perfect way to use it up completely. The cake was a yummy vanilla batter and I piped the rest of my lemon curd into the finished cupcakes. No baking fail to be seen. So far so good.

The crowning achievement of this recipe was to be the beautiful, lightly toasted meringue swirled perfectly on top. Unfortunately, the stars were not aligned, because said achievement didn’t materialize.

What happened, tiff? I’m dying to know!

After 15 minutes of beating whites to death and still not getting stiff peaks, I realized I was wasting my time. I either had a bit of fat in the bowl or on my beaters or too much moisture in the air, but either way it wasn’t going to happen. So I did what I usually do in times like these – I improvised!

Surely adding some butter to my soupy meringue would fix this problem. It will be a buttercream/meringue hybrid that I invented and would get wealthy when I sold the recipe to the highest bidder.

It actually tasted fine, like a light buttercream, and piped sorta okay onto the cupcakes. Now to complete my work of art, I decided to put this BUTTERcream/meringue mixture under a very hot broiler!

I did have this internal conversation right beforehand:  ‘Maybe this won’t work, because there’s now plenty of butter in here, and butter melts,’ but I did it anyway, because why not?

Within seconds, my piped swirls are smooth, bald-headed white caps. I now know I should’ve listened to my gut! I’m still learning this particular life lesson apparently 🙂

I could attempt these again, but I’m not about to whip up more lemon curd just to fill a cupcake. Maybe I’ll try in the future when I need to use up leftovers.