TLBRAN Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (1287601)

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Biscotti Toscani

Reviewed: Jun. 2, 2003
I am not a big fan of biscotti, but I am trying to find a nice dessert with a longer shelf life (for gifts) and also something tasty to sell during the holidays. This is my first attempt at making biscotti & I was a little intimidated. I am happy to say that making biscotti is so EASY! I followed the directions of the recipe except I didn't have orange zest. Instead, I added 1-2 tablespoons of Grand Marnier. The biscotti was a HUGE hit. I tested it at a party & everyone thought I should sell it to Starbucks---so much fresher and tastier! After mixing the dough, I let it sit in the mixing bowl for 10-12 minutes so that it could set up. It made it easier to handle (wet hands helped with the stickiness). Also, I baked the biscotti dough on Silpat sheets and had no problems with sticking. I used a serrated knife & had no problems slicing the biscotti. Also, I added a few extra minutes to the second baking because I like a drier biscotti. I can't wait to experiment with more biscotti recipes!!
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111 users found this review helpful

Quiche Lorraine I

Reviewed: May 21, 2003
This was the third type of quiche I made for a PTA brunch I catered last week. This recipe is pretty traditional, but I loved the onions and the cayenne pepper. I sauted the onions in a little butter first. I also reduced the amount of salt based on previous suggestions. One of the guests at the brunch said she had been making Quiche Lorraine for over 20 years and she liked this quiche better than her own! She asked for the recipe too. I would definitely make again, but would like to experiment with the addition of vegetables. Very yummy. Thanks for the recipe!
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93 users found this review helpful

Garbage Quiche

Reviewed: May 21, 2003
This was one of the 3 types of quiches I made for a PTA brunch I catered last week for 50 women. I made 2 Garbage Quiches (as deep dish quiches) and they both went so fast!!!! I couldn't believe how much people loved them-the gruyere is awesome! I made one quiche with bacon and the other with grilled chicken and both were hits. The green onion and tomatoes were such a complement. I can't wait to try this quiche again with other vegetables--so many options. By the way, I did re-name the dish--I didn't think Garbage Quiche was too appealing! Ha Ha
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2 users found this review helpful

Asparagus Quiche

Reviewed: May 21, 2003
I baked 2 of these quiches for a PTA brunch I catered last week. I made a few changes based on previous suggestions. I sauted the chopped asparagus in butter first & added 2 tbsp finely chopped shallots that had been sauted in butter. Also, I substituted grilled chicken (cut into small cubes) for the bacon and increased the salt. The quiche tasted great to those who liked asparagus, while others thought the asparagus taste too strong (I personally liked the taste). The only problem was a soggy crust bottom (the filling is very moist). I will blind bake or pre-bake crust next time (for about 10-15 minutes)and cover the crust to avoid burning. I will try again with bacon!
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55 users found this review helpful

Barbecued Beef

Reviewed: Apr. 22, 2003
I have made this dish using a beef chuck roast twice and a pork loin roast 3 times. I personally like the pork better, but my family likes them both. I serve on buns or over rice w/ a salad. I usually reduce the vinegar just a bit for family preference. Also, I trim the meat thorougly before cooking to eliminate fat in the BBQ sauce. I tried the suggestion of making a second batch of BBQ sauce once, but found that I had trimmed the meat enough to eliminate most fat. Plus, I liked the flavor of the BBQ sauce that had been cooking all day with the meat. This dish is great for parties, family events, etc. This recipe is a keeper!
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82 users found this review helpful

Ultimate Lemon Cake

Reviewed: Apr. 22, 2003
I often have clients request "lemony" cakes in my home dessert business. I have several "old reliable" recipes, but I was intrigued by this recipe. I made the cake 3 times as an experiment with friends & clients & the response was consistent (& I agree): the lemon flavor is good, but the cake is way too dense (egg yolks versus whole eggs). The cake was easy to make & I didn't have any problems with the cake coming out of the bundt or tube pan. I always use Baker's Joy spray (plus parchment paper for tube pans) & never have problems. I did like the glaze and decided to use it with another recipe on this site. I modified the Kentucky Butter Cake recipe and then glazed the cake with the lemon glaze from this recipe. The result was good--a lemony cake that was moist and not too dense.
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50 users found this review helpful

Easy Valentine Sandwich Cookies

Reviewed: Mar. 13, 2003
I made over 400 Valentine Sandwich cookies for my dessert business clients this year using this recipe. I personally don't like crisp/cut-out sugar cookies, but everyone went NUTS over these cookies. My niece has me make them for softball games, parties, etc.--she loves them. After making so many of these, I can offer a few suggestions: (1) refrigerate dough for 2-3 hours (I made over 30 batches of dough & often let it refrigerate overnight). I always put the dough back in the refrigerator between batches. (2) I used 2 tsp of vanilla & eliminated the almond extract. (2) When I rolled out the dough, I used confectioners' sugar (10X) NOT flour--I even re-used previously roll-out dough without any problems. The confectioners' sugar gives the cookie a little extra flakiness. (3) I sprinkled colored sugar on the cookie with the cut-out section before baking-the colored sugar looks nice with the contrast of the frosting coming through the cut-out. (4) I baked the cookies on Silpat, but parchment would work too. (5)I used a different frosting: 2 cups confectioners' sugar (10X), 3/4 tsp vanilla and 4-6 tbsp half & half or whole milk, plus food coloring. The frosting was always a big hit. (6) I individually bagged the cookies in cellophane cookie bags & everyone commented on how freshed they stayed. I will be using this recipe for St. Patrick's with shamrock cookie cutters; green sugar & green frosting! Thanks for the recipe!
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202 users found this review helpful

Chocolate Pound Cake III

Reviewed: Dec. 17, 2002
I have a dessert business & several clients asked for a chocolate pound cake for the holidays. After experimenting with several cookbooks, I tried Shelley's recipe. What a success. This cake is very moist, rich and has the best chocolate taste. After making the cake 2-3 times, I made a few minor changes. I cream the butter and sugar for 5 minutes (with stand mixer; longer with hand held mixer) and mix 30 seconds after adding each egg. I can adjust the amount of coffee depending on the client, but 2 tsp is perfect. I use a dark 12 cup, 10 inch bundt pan and have to reduce the baking temperature to 300 and bake for 70 minutes. Occasionally, I bake the cake at 285 for 75-80 minutes and it is wonderful--no burning or dry chocolate taste. I usally glaze the cake with one of the satiny chocolate glazes on this site or dust with powdered sugar. It is fun to fill the center of the cake with either whole raspberries or strawberries and serve. I agree with other reviewers that this cake is better the next day or even after refrigerating (wrap really well-the cake will pick up refrigerator odors). It freezes beautifully. Great recipe.
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274 users found this review helpful

Chewy Sugar Cookies

Reviewed: Dec. 17, 2002
I have a small dessert business & frequently make sugar cookies (plain, frosted, etc.). This recipe is always a hit with clients who want a true chewy sugar cookie. I always use soften butter to make the cookies-the taste is incredible. When I double the recipe, I usually add 1-2 extra tbsp of flour (depending on the humidity). Also, I have found that chilling the dough for 1-2 hours, or even overnight, prevents the cookies from flattening out. Clients really like when the cookies are rolled in a sugar/cinnamon combo--very yummmy.
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333 users found this review helpful

Blue Ribbon Sugar Cookies

Reviewed: Dec. 17, 2002
I have a small dessert business & have made these cookies 6-7 times over the past few days for clients who wanted cookies for parties or to decorate with family. After several batches, I made a few changes. I increased the vanilla to 2 - 2 1/2 tsp & only used 1/4 to 1/2 tsp lemon extract. I also reduce the salt to 1/2 tsp. Also, don't overmix the dough after adding the dry ingredients. After making a batch, I usually refrigerate for 1-2 hours. I also rolled the dough balls in sugar before flattening the cookies. I baked the cookies for 8-9 minutes depending on the cookie sheet. Clients went crazy over the cookies, especially those who like a crisper sugar cookie. Also, clients liked the reduced lemon & increased vanilla changes. I use the Chewy Sugar Cookie recipe for clients who like a chewy cookie. These cookies are great for decorating with frosting, cinnamon/sugar or colored sugars.
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163 users found this review helpful

Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie

Reviewed: Nov. 29, 2002
I made this pie for Thanksgiving and pumpkin lovers liked it. The piecrust is great---different and tasty. I added 3 extra tbsp of cream cheese because I love the taste and ended up baking the pie for 45 minutes. A nice alternative to the traditional pumpkin pie.
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2 users found this review helpful

Blueberry Buttermilk Coffeecake

Reviewed: Nov. 24, 2002
I catered a PTA Board breakfast meeting last week and made this coffeecake, plus other coffeecakes, muffins, casseroles, etc. The Blueberry Buttermilk Coffeecake was a HUGE hit! There were no leftovers and 2 board members used their fingers to get the last crumbs from the pan. I only made 1 change to the recipe: I added 1 tsp cinnamon to the topping. I can't wait to try this coffeecake again with other fruit!
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24 users found this review helpful

Amaretto Cheesecake I

Reviewed: Nov. 24, 2002
I love Amaretto & wanted to make a nice cheesecake for a catered event. I made a practice cheesecake & was disappointed--the cheesecake was too dense, not enough almond flavor, and the crust was a little skimpy. When I made the 2nd cheesecake, I made a few changes when also enabled me to used a 10" springform pan, instead of a 9" pan: (1)For the crust,I used 18 crushed graham crackers, 1/4 cup sugar, 6 tbsp butter & 1/2 tsp almond extract (I'll use gingersnaps next time); (2) I used 3 8oz pkg of softened cream cheese instead of 2 pkgs;(3)reduced cornstarch to 1.5 tablespoons; (4) added 1/2 tsp almond extract to the cheescake batter; and (5)added 1/3 cup toasted slice almonds as a garnish to the finished cheesecake. Everyone loved the appearance, flavor and texture of the cheesecake. Also, baking the cheesecake in a water bath is must---no cracks!
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80 users found this review helpful

Irish Cream Bundt Cake

Reviewed: Nov. 11, 2002
I made this cake last week based on reviews and took it to my hair salon. Understand that I don't like Irish Cream (such as the Bailey's that I used), but I thought it sounded interesting. About 30 minutes into getting my hair returned to its "natural" color, all of the hair stylists, the salon owner and 4 customers had tried the cake. You would have thought that I had baked the BEST cake ever in the history of the universe. Everyone raved and raved and raved. I have a home dessert business and I received 3 orders that day for this cake for Thanksgiving. Weird, because I still don't know how it tastes!! Everyone loved the glaze and the suggestion from another reviewer about putting the glaze in the pan and replacing the cake really gave the cake a nice chewy/cruncy crust. Thanks Sue!!
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102 users found this review helpful

Award Winning Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Reviewed: Nov. 7, 2002
I'm sure that I have made these cookies over 100 times for catered events, parties, gifts, kids' stuff, etc. Everyone loves the buttery taste and how soft/moist the cookies are (edges are crispy and centers are moist). I usually omit the nuts, but when I do add nuts I use pecans (I'm very Southern). Sometimes I use milk chocolate chips or a mixture of milk chocolate and semisweet chips. Occasionally I will rough chop chocolate and add chocolate chunks. Sometimes I reduce the chocolate chips by half and add 1 cup mini M&M's. These cookies travel and ship well. For kids events, I put 3 cookies in colorful cellophane bags you get at Michael's or JoAnn's---the bags disappear fast. These cookies are always a hit!
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5 users found this review helpful

Chocolate Cavity Maker Cake

Reviewed: Nov. 5, 2002
I've baked this cake 3 times in the past 2 weeks with the same result. The only thing I changed in the recipe was using 1 1/2 cups mini choco. chips. I use a 10", 12 cup Bundt pan sprayed with Baker's Joy (no problems inverting cake, flour doesn't show). The cakes rises beautifully (to the top of the Bundt pan), but falls to half that size when cooling. Is that normal? I added a warm chocolate glaze to the finished cake and everyone has LOVED it!! It just looks a little funny--dense and short. I will make again.
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4 users found this review helpful

Special Buttercream Frosting

Reviewed: Oct. 27, 2002
I made a huge birthday cake for 50 people yesterday and wanted to try a different buttercream recipe. I made 2 changes based on other reviews. (1) I used 1 1/2 cups shortening and 1/2 cup butter. I didn't use more butter because of potential problems with softening/melting. (2) I added 1 tsp Wilton's butter flavoring. I left everything else the same. What a great icing! It was very spreadable and great when piping shell borders, rosettes and lettering. It also tinted beautifully. I did have to refrigerate the pastry bags after a minutes of use because the heat from my hands was too much and the icing became very soft. At the birthday party, I had 4 guests who bake tell me that this was the best icing ever--that it was so buttery and not too sweet. I will definitely use again.
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445 users found this review helpful

Honey Bun Cake I

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2002
I think I am going to have to try making this cake again. My first effort today was disappointing. The smell of the baking cake was awesome, but the end result was not what I expected. I again with other reviewers that the brown sugar should be reduced by half. This is definitely a coffee cake or a large cinnamon bun. I topped the warm cake with the Cinnabon Frosting which was nice. I will try again and hope to have better results.
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2 users found this review helpful

Adam's Dirt Cookies

Reviewed: Oct. 20, 2002
I love to bake cookies and was interested in the cookies but I am an Oreo freak. I have made the cookies twice & was disappointed both times. The cookies were soft & chewy, but spread way too much during baking (you really don't need to grease the baking sheets because the cookie contains so much butter). Thinking the dough hadn't been refrigerated long enough, I refrigerated the 2nd batch for 4 hours & still had the same problem. The cookies taste OK (sugar cookies) & I do like the "dirty" appearance.
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22 users found this review helpful

Fantastic Mexican Dip

Reviewed: Oct. 20, 2002
I have made this dip many times for parties and catered events. Recently, I doubled the recipe for a "ladies" function and everyone said that it was way too much (the "we eat like birds" syndrome). I came back an hour later and the dip was GONE! Those ladies ate like vultures!! Everyone loved it. Like others, I add a layer of refried beans as the bottom layer. I can play around with the level of "heat" by mixing hot or medium taco sauce or by adding green chiles. I also use the chopped lettuce as a border so that dipping is easier. Great dip!
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80 users found this review helpful

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