Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Tasty Tuesday--"Back in the Day Bakery"

Yes, I am indeed alive and well. I have about 2.5 minutes to sit down and blog! I am almost out the door for a few days with my family on Tybee Island! This will be my first trip to Tybee and I am so excited!

To make up for lost time, this Tasty Tuesday post will include 2 recipes from my new favorite cookbook, Back in the Day Bakery.

Oooh, I just had an idea. Maybe I can swing by the actual Back in the day Bakery on my way back from Tybee since its right in Savannah! Yes, yes that will happen. Here are the two recipes I've made from the cookbook so far, and both were so good.

1.  Lovely Lemon Loaf
you will need a crazy amount of lemons for this---like around 15-20. I'm not usually even a fan of lemon cake, but this just looked too good to pass up. And it is amazing--so moist and tart and sweet at the same time.
For the Loaves
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temp
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
2 cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs
1/3 cup grated lemon juice (from 6-8 lemons)
1 cup fresh lemon juice

For the Lemon Soaking Syrup
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice

For the Glaze
2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
lemon zest for sprinkling (optional)

1. Position rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 350. Butter and flour 2 9x5 in. loaf pans.
2. Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a large measuring cup, mix together buttermilk and vanilla.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (5-7 minutes). Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the flour mixture alternating the buttermilk mixture in three additions, beginning and ending with flour. Stir in the lemon juice and zest.
4. Divide batter evenly between the prepared loaf pans and smooth the tops with a spatula. Tap the loaf pans firmly on the countertop to remove air bubbles. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour. Cool the loaves in the pans for about 10 minutes before unmolding.
5. Meanwhile, to make the lemon soaking syrup: Combine the sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring often. Once the sugar dissolves, continue cooking the syrup until it turns a deep golden yellow, about 5 minutes.
6. When the loaves are cool enough to handle, transfer them to a cookie sheet lined with parchment. Poke holes in the cakes with a skewer and pour lemon soaking syrup generously over each cake. Let stand for at least 10 minutes.
7.  To make the glaze: In a small bowl, whisk the confectioners' sugar and lemon juice until smooth and  creamy. Pour the glaze over the tops of the loaves and allow the glaze to drip down the sides. Sprinkle with lemon zest. 
Cakes will keep at room temp for 4 days wrapped in plastic wrap.

2.  Chocolate Chip Cookies
I made these when my family was visiting a few weeks ago and they lasted half a day--all 24 huge cookies were gone. I've made a lot of chocolate chip cookie recipes, and this one beats them all.
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoons fine sea salt
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temp
2 cups semisweet chocolate chunks
Fleur de sel for sprinkling (or just coarse sea salt)

1. Position rack in lower third of oven and preheat to 350. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
2. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and sea salt; set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, vanilla, and both sugars on medium sped until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes.
4. Add the eggs and mix for no more than 1 minute; the eggs will not be fully incorporated. Turn the speed down to low and add the dry ingredients in thirds, beating until just combined, 1 to 2 minutes. With the mixer running, sprinkle in the chocolate chunks, beating until just combined, abut 1 minute.
5. Use a large ice-cream scoop of a 1/4-cup measuring cup to form the cookies and pace on the prepared cookie sheet, leaving 2 inches between the cookies. Lightly tap each cookie with the palm of your hand and sprinkle with the coarse sea salt. (To me, this is what makes these cookies so good!)
6. Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, for 15 to 18 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking time for even doneness. The cookies should be golden brown around the edges but till light in the centers. Let the cookies cool on a wire rack. Store them in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

I have so much to tell you guys about what's been going on around here over the last few weeks, including a big teaching announcement, but it will have to wait until after my Tybee trip! 


  1. Have lots of fun and take lots of pics! I want to try both of those recipes!

  2. Oh my goodness, I love Back in the Day Bakery!! My sister lived in Savannah for a while and it was always a must to visit when I was in town.

  3. These look yummy! I hope you had a great vacation! I came across you through pinterest. I hope you'll drop by my blog and join up with the Palmetto Bloggers! We are having a meet up in September and we'd love to have you join us!