Baking the Season Bright

With Delectable Recipes from King Arthur Flour


December 2019 Issue
by Lindsay Gifford
Information, Photography and Recipes provided by King Arthur Flour

When the holiday season rolls around it’s time to whip out the aprons! Each year, the ladies in my family gather to bake dozens of cakes...flour and sugar is scattered on every surface, and we are all wearing big smiles full of holiday cheer. Each batch is carefully measured and stirred with love—just like the heart behind centuries of baking brilliance with King Arthur Flour.

Baking with joy since 1790, King Arthur Flour has created a proven recipe for high quality, consistent bakeability. An employee-owned and operated company, each one is a baker at heart. “Shaped by hand, powered by heart,” they’ve been creating the ultimate resource and inspiration for the pickiest of bakers throughout generations.

King Arthur Flour’s history stretches back to Martha Washington’s first apple pie and wooden barrels filled with flour. In fact, the first flour company in the US—Henry Wood & Company—was an ancestor of King Arthur Flour. Its history is sprinkled with the birth of many of our favorite American baked foods from pizza to chocolate chip cookies, and one thing remains at the forefront: Quality and consistency are of highest importance.

King Arthur Flour verifies and test bakes their flour with a third-party to ensure it is up to strict milling standards so every baker, both amateur and professional, can count on the highest quality, consistent baked goods. Their flour is 100 percent US grown and milled, and they believe in working with American farmers who produce the best wheat in the world. Plus, King Arthur Flour contains no bleach, no bromate, and no artificial preservatives of any kind. And, as a founding member in the B-Corp community, they’re committed to creating a healthier environment, reducing inequality and the creation of high-quality jobs.

They offer everything a baker needs from decorations, bakeware and their namesake flour to more than 1,500 recipes on their website: Don’t worry, we’ve measured out a few fantastic recipes to get you started. Once the amazing aromas waft through the house, it’s sure to be a season full of holiday cheer!

Old Fashioned Pecan Pie

Prep Time: 30 mins  |  Total Time: 1 hr 45 mins
Yields: one 9” pieKAF1219 pecanpie

Your favorite 9” single pie crust, prepared
1/2 cup (8 Tbsps) Unsalted butter
1/4 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
21/8 cups Light brown sugar
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Vanilla-butternut flavor, optional
6 Tbsps Milk
3 large Eggs
2 tsps Vinegar
2 tsps Vanilla extract
11/2 cups Pecans, diced and whole

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Roll out the pastry and place it in a greased 9” pie plate. Flute the edges decoratively.
Melt the butter and set it aside to cool.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt.
Add the milk and eggs and beat well.
Stir in the vinegar, vanilla, and flavoring, if using, then the butter and nuts.
Pour the mixture into the crust and bake for 47 to 50 minutes. When done, the top will be puffed up and set, and the center should just barely wobble when you jiggle the pan.
Remove from the oven (the pie will finish setting up as it sits) and cool completely before slicing.


Brown Sugar Sour Cream Pound Cake

Prep Time: 10 mins  |  Total Time: 1 hr 10 mins
Yields: one Bundt cake  |  Pictured on page 41
KAF1219 cake
1/2 cup Granulated sugar        
1 cup Light brown sugar, packed
1 tsp Baking powder              
2 large Eggs, at room temp
1 tsp Salt                             
1/4 tsp Baking soda
11/2 tsps Vanilla extract        
1 cup Sour cream, at room temp
1 cup Unsalted butter, at room temperature, at least 65°F
2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9- or 10-cup Bundt pan.
In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugars at medium speed for about 2 minutes. The mixture will be light and airy, and will have lightened in color. For a visual, see our video, how to cream butter and sugar.
Add the eggs one at a time, beating for a minute or two between additions. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, and beat briefly to recombine any residue.
Add the baking powder, salt, and baking soda, then gently beat in half the flour.
Gently mix in the sour cream and vanilla, then add the remaining flour, mixing just until blended.
Scoop the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 55 to 60 minutes, until a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove the cake from the oven. Cool it in the pan for 15 minutes before turning it out of the pan onto a rack to finish cooling. Cool completely before slicing.

Baked Brie with Apricot Jam
Servings: 8

Prep Time: 25 mins  |  Total Time: 50 mins  |  Yields: 16 servings

1 (8 oz) wheel Brie             KAF1219 bakedbrie
1 recipe Fast and Easy Puff Pastry (see below)
1 large egg, beaten with 1 Tbsp water    
1/2 cup Apricot or raspberry preserves

Preheat the oven to 450°F. 
Cut 1/4 of the pastry from the finished recipe, then wrap and reserve for another use.
Divide the remaining pastry in half and roll one half out to 1/4˝ thick. Take a 7˝ plate, invert it over the pastry, and cut out a circle of dough with a sharp paring knife. Repeat with the other half of the dough. Set aside with any scraps of dough to cut out decorative shapes for the top.
Fold the pastry up and around the cheese, making pleats in the dough as necessary. Use a little water to seal the pleats together. Spread the preserves on top of the cheese.
Brush the outside inch of the second circle of dough with water and place it, wet side down, over the cheese. Smooth the edge of the top dough around the pleats, patting them to seal.
Cut out any decorations you like from the scrap dough and place on the top of the Brie, using water to adhere them to the surface.
Place the cheese on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush all over with the egg wash. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes, until the pastry is a deep golden brown all over. Remove from the oven and let sit for at least 15 minutes before transferring to a serving plate and serving warm.
 Refrigerate any leftovers wrapped well.

Fast and Easy Puff Pastry

Prep Time: 30 mins | Total Time: 1 hr | Yields: 1 generous lb. puff pastry (12” x 24” rectangle)

1/2 tsp Salt*           
2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/2 tsp Baking powder        
1 cup (16 Tbsps) cold Unsalted butter,* cut in parts
1/2 cup Sour cream
Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Add the butter, working it in to make a coarse/crumbly mixture. Leave most of the butter in large, pea-sized pieces. Stir in the sour cream; the dough won’t be cohesive. Turn it out onto a floured work surface, and bring it together with a few quick kneads. Pat the dough into a rough log, and roll it into an 8” x 10” rectangle. Dust both sides of the dough with flour, and starting with a shorter end, fold it in three like a business letter. Flip the dough over, give it a 90° turn on your work surface, and roll it into an 8” x 10” rectangle. Fold it in three again. Chill the dough for at least 30 minutes before using. To make pastry, roll into desired size. Freeze dough for prolonged storage, up to 2 months. To use, thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
*If you use salted butter, reduce the amount of salt to 1/4 tsp.

Gingerbread Waffles

Prep Time: 10 mins  |  Total Time: 15 mins  |  Yields: 4-5 Belgian-style waffles

2 tsps Baking powder        KAF1219 waffles
1/2 tsp Baking soda       
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsps Ground ginger       
3 Tbsps Molasses         
4 large Eggs
1/4 tsp Grated nutmeg       
1/4 tsp Ground cloves        
1 cup Milk
1/2 cup Sour cream       
1 cup King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
6 Tbsps Unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

Preheat your waffle maker while you prepare the waffle batter.
Whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, melted butter, milk, sour cream, and molasses.
Mix together the wet and dry ingredients until they’re just combined. The batter will be slightly lumpy; that’s OK.
Pour the batter into your greased, preheated waffle maker and bake according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Tips: You make the waffles ahead and store in the freezer. Then just pop them the toaster when it’s time to eat.

KAF1219 croissants

Baker's Croissants

Prep Time: 45 mins  |  Total Time: 4 hrs 30 mins   |  Yields: 4 lbs dough, enough for 24 croissants

1/4 cup Sugar, divided         
2 large eggs + enough warm water to make 2 cups of liquid
2 1/4 tsps Instant yeast       
5 1/2 to 6 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 Tbsps Butter, melted        
1/2 cup Baker’s Special Dry Milk or nonfat dry milk, optional
1 scant Tbsp Salt        
1 tsp Vanilla extract (optional; for sweet pastry)

17/8 cups Unsalted butter, cool to the touch
3/4 tsp Salt
1/2 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

For the dough: Put the eggs and water in a large mixing bowl. Add 1 Tbsp of the sugar, 3 cups (362g) of the flour, and the yeast. Mix until well blended; set aside to let the sponge work.

For the butter: Cut the butter into 1˝ chunks and combine with the salt and flour at low speed in a stand mixer just until smooth, with no lumps. Be careful not to beat too much; you don’t want to incorporate any air.
Spread the butter on a piece of plastic wrap and shape into an 8˝ square. Wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Finish the dough: Add the melted butter to the sponge. Whisk together the remaining sugar, 2 1/2 cups (298g) of the flour, the dry milk, and salt and add to the sponge. Mix until the dough forms. Knead for 5 minutes; touch the dough lightly with your finger. If it’s still sticky, add the remaining flour 2 Tbsps at a time until the dough is the desired consistency. Once the dough is smooth and elastic, pat it into a 9˝ square, then wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

To laminate the dough: Remove the chilled dough from the refrigerator and gently roll it to a 12” square.
Unwrap the butter square and place it in the center of the dough at a 45° angle, so it looks like a diamond in a square. Pull the corners of the dough into the center of the butter diamond. Moisten the edges with a little water and pinch the seams together well to enclose the butter. Dust the top with flour and turn the packet over.
Tap the dough all over with a rolling pin, encouraging it into a rectangular shape. Once it’s pliable, roll it to a 20˝ x 10˝ rectangle, picking it up and dusting lightly with flour as needed.

When you’ve reached the proper size, use a dry brush to sweep off any excess flour and fold the dough in thirds, like a business letter. Take care to keep the edges straight and line them up directly over each other. If the dough slides around, use a little water at the corners to tack them in place. This is your first turn.
 Rotate the dough out so it looks like a book about to be opened. Roll the dough out once more to 20˝ x 10˝ and fold it as before. This is the second turn. Wrap the dough and refrigerate it for 30 minutes to allow the gluten in the dough to relax.
Give the dough two more turns after its rest, then wrap the dough well and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight before using. You can also freeze the dough at this point.

To shape the croissants: Cut the packet of dough in half. Wrap and refrigerate or freeze one half. Roll the other half to a 13˝ x 18˝ rectangle. Trim the edges about 1/4˝ all the way around with a ruler and pizza cutter. This removes the folded edges that would inhibit the dough’s rise.
Cut the dough in thirds lengthwise and in half down the center. This will give you six 4˝ x 9˝ pieces. Cut these pieces in half diagonally and arrange them so the points are facing away from you. Stretch them gently to make them a little longer, then cut a 1˝ notch in the center of the base of each triangle.
Take the two inside corners of the notch and roll them up toward you, building a curved shape as you roll the base of the dough toward the tip. Make sure the tip ends up under the bottom of the croissant. Place the shaped pastry on a parchment-lined baking sheet, curving the ends toward each other. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Take the croissants out of the refrigerator, and let them warm and rise for 60 to 90 minutes at room temperature. They should expand noticeably, and when you gently press one with your finger, the indentation should remain.
Towards the end of the rise time, preheat the oven to 425°F. Brush each croissant with an egg beaten with 1 Tbsp water. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven’s temperature to 350°F and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more, until deep golden brown and no raw dough is visible where the layers overlap. Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan on a rack for 20 minutes before serving.

 KAF1219 buttermilkcake

Farmhouse Buttermilk Cake

Prep Time: 12 mins  |   Total Time: 57 mins  |  Yields: one cake

2 cups Light brown sugar    
2 tsps Vanilla extract
2 tsps Baking soda        
1 tsp Salt
1/2 cup Unsalted butter, at room temperature (at least 65°F)
2 large Eggs, at room temperature
2 cups Buttermilk, at room temperature
3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

1 cup Light brown sugar        1/4 cup Milk
6 Tbsps Butter, melted        1/8 tsp Salt
2/3 to 1 cup Pecans, diced

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9” x 13” cake pan.
Beat the butter and brown sugar together till smooth.
Add the eggs, beating till smooth.
Stir in the buttermilk and vanilla extract.
Add the baking soda, salt, and flour to the wet ingredients, beating till thoroughly combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
 Bake the cake for 35 minutes. Towards the end of the baking time, prepare the topping.
 Stir the butter and the sugar together. Add the milk, pecans, and salt. The glaze will be thick but pourable.
 Top the baked cake with the topping, and return to the oven for another 10 minutes.
 Remove the cake from the oven. The topping will look very runny. You can eat the cake hot, with the glaze still gooey; or let the cake sit at room temperature for a few hours, by which time the glaze will have set.

Light Spice Holiday Cookies

Prep Time: 20 mins  |  Total Time: 1 hr 30 mins  |  Yields: 3-4 dozen cookies  |  Pictured on page 39

1/2 cup (8 Tbsps) Butter                KAF1219 cookies
1/2 cup Vegetable shortening        
1 1/2 tsps Cinnamon
3/4 cup Light brown sugar, packed           
1/2 cup Granulated sugar        
3/4 tsp Salt
11/2 tsps Baking powder               
1 1/2 tsps Ground ginger            
1 large Egg
1/2 tsp Ground allspice or ground cloves       
2 Tbsps Molasses            
3 Tbsps  Cornstarch
3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

In a medium-sized bowl, beat together the butter, shortening, sugars, baking powder, spices, and salt until light and fluffy. Add the egg and molasses, and beat well. Mix about half of the flour into the butter mixture. When well combined, add the cornstarch and the remaining flour. Divide the dough in half, flattening each half slightly to make a disk. Smooth the edges by rolling the disk along a lightly floured work surface. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour (or longer), for easiest rolling. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Take one piece of dough out of the refrigerator, and flour a clean work surface, and the dough. Roll it out as thin or thick as you like. For slightly less crisp cookies, roll it out more thickly. We like to roll these cookies 1/8” to 1/4”inch thick. Use flour under and on top of the dough to keep it from sticking to the table or rolling pin. Alternatively, place the dough on parchment, and put a sheet of plastic wrap or another piece of parchment over it as you roll, pulling the plastic or parchment to eliminate wrinkles as necessary when rolling; this will keep dough from sticking without the need for additional flour. Transfer the cookies to ungreased or parchment-lined baking sheets.

Bake them just until they’re slightly brown around the edges, or until they feel firm, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven, and let them cool on the baking sheet for several minutes, or until they’re set. Transfer them to a rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Tips: To decorate with sparkling sugar: Brush baked cookies lightly with corn syrup, honey, or maple syrup thinned with a bit of water; and sprinkle with sugar.

Chocolate Cheesecake Brownies

Prep Time: 20 mins  |  Total Time: 1 hr 5 mins
Yields: about 2 dozen 2” square brownies.

Chocolate Batter:KAF1219 brownies
1 cup Unsalted butter        
2 1/4 cups Sugar
1 1/4 cups Triple Cocoa Blend    
1 tsp Salt
4 large Eggs            
1 Tbsp Vanilla extract
1 tsp Espresso powder, optional
1 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 cups (12 oz) Bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips

Cream Cheese Batter:
3/4 cup Sugar            
2 tsps Vanilla extract
1/4 cup Heavy cream        
2 large Eggs
16 oz. Cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9” x 13” pan.
To make the brownie batter: In a large saucepan, melt the butter, then stir in the sugar, cooking until the mixture is smooth and shiny.
Remove from the heat and stir in the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla. Allow to cool slightly, around 5 minutes.
Whisk in the eggs, then the flour, stirring until smooth. To make the cream cheese batter: Beat the cream cheese until no lumps remain. Mix in the sugar and flour, then the vanilla, cream, and eggs.
 Fold the chocolate chips into the brownie batter. 
Spoon half the brownie batter into the prepared pan, then top with the cream cheese batter.
 Dollop the remaining brownie batter onto the cream cheese, swirling the two together.
Bake the brownies for 40 to 45 minutes, until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, and the edges are set.
Remove them from the oven, and loosen the edges with a table knife. Cool completely (preferably overnight) before cutting.

Maple Doughnuts

Prep Time: 23 mins  |  Total Time: 35 mins  |  Yields: 6 doughnuts
KAF1219 doughnuts
1/2 cup Maple sugar   
2 Tbsps Potato flour
3/4 tsp Baking powder    
1/4 tsp Salt
1 large Egg        
6 Tbsps Water
3 Tbsps Vegetable oil    
1/4 tsp Maple flavor
3/4 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

2 Tbsps Maple sugar
2 Tbsps Confectioners’ sugar
2 Tbsps Heavy cream
1/8 tsp Maple flavor, optional
Crushed walnuts for topping, optional

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a standard-sized doughnut pan.
Whisk together the flour, maple sugar, potato flour, baking powder, and salt.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg, water, oil, and maple flavor until frothy.
 Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture, stirring until well combined.
Fill each doughnut form about half full; a piping bag works well here.
Bake the doughnuts for 12 to 14 minutes, until they spring back when lightly touched and are golden brown on the edges.
Remove the doughnuts from the oven and allow them to cool for a few minutes in the pan before transferring them to a rack to cool completely.
 While the doughnuts cool, make the glaze. Whisk together the maple sugar, confectioners’ sugar, heavy cream, and optional maple flavor.
 Microwave the glaze on high for 15 seconds, until the maple sugar dissolves fully.
Dip the tops of the still warm doughnuts in the glaze. Allow to cool completely before storing.
Sprinkle crushed walnuts over the freshly glazed doughnuts, if desired.

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