Put a Ring on It – Ladyfinger Practice

2010.May.23 Sunday · 3 comments

in Food & Recipes

One of the things that hadn’t occurred to me in returning to school was the whole theme of exams. Yes, cooking school has exams. I can still remember how nerve-wracking the final was when I went to culinary school many moons ago. But, here in pastry school, Roberto assures us that the exams are not difficult. Our upcoming masas finas exam will cover all the stuff we’ve gone through up to now, including this last week’s learning to make strudel and phyllo dough…

Pastry class 11 - strudels

At this exam, at least, we will have semi-recipes, i.e., we’ll each get our test assignments, along with the quantities of ingredients – we don’t have to memorize all the various amounts of grams and milliliters and such – but, we have to know what to do with them – no instructions will be given. So that means a bit of practice, just to make sure I remember how to do the various things we’ve covered in those first eleven classes. We begin back with class 1 and the sponge cake type doughs. I’ve made enough sponge cakes over the last couple of months that I’m comfortable with those, so on to some of the specialties – we’ll start with vainillas, or as they’re usually referred to in English, ladyfingers.

Vainillas practice

Into the mixer (this can be done by hand too, it just takes a lot longer), 5 eggs, 150 grams of sugar and a dash of vanilla extract.

Vainillas practice

Butter your vainillas mold – and yes, they do have their own mold.

Vainillas practice

Meanwhile, get those eggs a-whippin’.

Vainillas practice

The idea is that they form a thick, oozy sort of batter that becomes a creamy white color.

Vainillas practice

Sieve in 200 grams of cake flour.

Vainillas practice

And carefully fold it in with a spatula until it’s well incorporated.

Vainillas practice

Get your piping bag ready, with a wide, plain round tip.

Vainillas practice

Pipe out the vainillas – preferably a bit more evenly than I did.

Vainillas practice

And bake, for about 15 minutes until just golden brown. Remove from the mold and let cool. This recipe makes two dozen ladyfingers if piped correctly, so you either need a bigger mold, two of them, or just re-butter and refill as soon as the first batch are out of the oven.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Candice May 23, 2010 at 10:41

I bet they don’t have that music while you bake .. loved it .. The ladyfingers look good .. Is there such a thing as a chocolate ladyfinger? 🙂

dan May 23, 2010 at 11:04

They might in my kitchen!

There is – you can add cocoa powder to the recipe – drop the flour down to 170 grams and put in 50 grams of cocoa powder sifted in at the same time, but you also then have to add a little leavening – the cocoa acts against the rise of the eggs, so also add in 5 grams of baking powder at the same time as the flour and cocoa.

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