Oh, my friends. I realize that most of you do not know me in real life. I like to think that I present the best image of myself on this blog, and that you all think of me as a lovely, happy-go-lucky, cheerful person. My friends, this is a lie.
The truth is that I am a nitpicky perfectionist with an ego problem. I hate to admit that I don't know things, that I can't do things, or that anything I do does not turn out perfect on my first, charmed try. This week's TWD recipe for "kugelhopf" (IF that's its real name) hit me where it hurt.
Behold, the result of my epic struggle to remove the kugelhopf from the sorry oversized bundt pan I used instead of the specialty kugelhopf pan: And this is how the whole kugelhopf baking process made me feel: However, here is something else about me you don't know: I am a devoted Arrested Development fan. Instead of focusing on the negative, I am going to make like Gob and use illuuuuuuusions to make my kugelhopf seem super awesome. Now isn't this just the tastiest kugelhopf you've ever seen? And such lovely foliage! Really, though, this cake-bread Frankenstein had problems, beginning (I thought) with the recipe. At almost every stage I found myself wondering if I'd made a mistake, because her descriptions didn't match my product. The "shaggy" dough? Mine was completely dry. And how about the part where the dough climbed the bread hook? Yeah, mine was chillaxing in the bottom of the bowl, looking like a thick cake batter. And on and on. My biggest dilemma was after the cake was baked. Should I wait a few minutes to unmold it? Do it while it's piping hot? Who knows? Better cross your fingers and hope for the best! (For the results of this brilliant baking strategy, see above.) But the real problem in this recipe was the flavor, or lack thereof. Dorie, of course, calls for...wait for it...raisins, but of course that didn't fly with me. I recently got these awesome raspberry-flavored dried cherries, so I subbed those and added the zest of a whole lemon. Sadly, these two elements were the only flavor I got from the cake. The taste and texture was that of a mediocre sweet roll. I did enjoy the butter and sugar soaked crust, but that alone wasn't enough to save this recipe for me. I have much better sweet roll recipes that don't take six hours of my time and plunge me into existential baking despair. So, obviously, this was not my favorite. Maybe it's just my unrefined American taste buds, but I prefer my cakes to be moist, sweet, and flavorful. You can keep your subtle, refined European tea cakes! Bring on the layers of buttercream. Next!