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Thread: King Arthur Whole Grain Baking Cookbook--Recipe Reviews

  1. #1

    Arrow King Arthur Whole Grain Baking Cookbook--Recipe Reviews

    OK, I wasn't sure if I should start another thread about this cookbook , but I thought it might be nice to have a thread dedicated to recipe reviews. Anyway, I made my 3rd recipe from the book this morning--Baked Oatmeal. It was delicious! I know, I know...another baked oatmeal and it is very similar to the others I've made but this one has the addition of steel-cut oats. I ate it with a little milk poured over the top. Yum! The recipe I typed up is my adapted version so see my notes below.

    The other recipes I've made were the Nutty for Oats Cookies (using M&Ms in place of choc. chips) which I loved and have made twice and the Triple Cinnamon-Pecan Biscotti. I thought the biscotti were just OK. Don't get me wrong, they tasted good but they are very crumbly and very whole-wheaty . I even reduced the baking time. The recipe calls for all whole-wheat flour and some oats and no white flour. If I ever made them again, I'd use half white flour and maybe 1/2 white/whole wheat flour. But you might want to take my opinion with a grain of salt though, because I've never understood why people think biscotti are so great.

    * Exported from MasterCook *

    Baked Cranberry-Apple Oatmeal

    Recipe By :adapted from King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking, pg. 550
    Serving Size : 0 Preparation Time :0:00
    Categories : Breakfast

    Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
    -------- ------------ --------------------------------
    1/2 cup steel-cut oats (scant 3 oz.) -- FYI: 1 cup weighs 5 3/4 oz.
    1 1/2 Tbs. unsalted butter
    1 cup water
    1 cup apple juice or cider
    1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats (5 1/4 oz.)
    1/4 cup plus 2 T. packed brown sugar (about 2 3/4 oz.)
    1 apple -- peeled and diced (probably 3/4 to 1 cup--I used a granny smith)
    1/3 cup craisins
    2 T. diced crystallized ginger (optional)
    1/4 tsp. salt
    1 pinch baking powder (optional)
    1 tsp. or so cinnamon
    1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
    1 large egg
    1/4 cup milk
    1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

    Place the steep cut oats and butter n a large bowl. Bring water and juice to a boil and pour over oats/butter. Cover and let stand for 20 minutes.

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8 inch square pan.

    After the 20 minutes is up, add all the dry ingredients.

    In a small bowl, whisk the wet ingredients. Stir into oat mixture and pour into prepared pan.

    Bake until center is set, about 30-35 minutes. Serve warm with milk poured over it, if desired. Store leftovers in the fridge.

    Yield: 8 servings

    NOTES : Original recipe was basically double the amount of everything with these exceptions: I reduced the butter slightly; upped the craisins, apple, nutmeg, and vanilla a bit; added the baking powder. And the full recipe is supposed to baked in a 9 inch pan. I also increased the brown sugar by 2 T. but that wasn't necessary and won't do that next time.

    Other versions:

    Apricot: use all water and no juice; sub. diced dried apricots for the craisins.

    Blueberry: use all water and no juice; omit craisins and add 2 cups blueberries in place of the apple.

    Banana-Walnut: use all water and no juice; substitute 1 1/2 cups diced banana for the apple and 1/4 cup walnuts for the craisins.

    Banana Split: make the Banana-Walnut version and add 1/2 cup chocolate chips before baking.

    **********************************

    Other threads discussing this cookbook...
    http://community.cookinglight.com/sh...g+arthur+grain

    http://community.cookinglight.com/sh...g+arthur+grain

    http://community.cookinglight.com/sh...g+arthur+grain

    Anyone else want to add some reviews?
    Last edited by Linda in MO; 01-05-2007 at 02:56 PM. Reason: changed baking time

  2. #2
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    DH made the Apple-Raspberry Oat Crumble for NYD, and we all really liked it. The apples and raspberries are a nice flavor combination. He did leave out the almonds, since they're not popular in our house. Leftovers made an excellent breakfast, too !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Linda in MO View Post
    The other recipes I've made were the Nutty for Oats Cookies (using M&Ms in place of choc. chips) which I loved and have made twice and the Triple Cinnamon-Pecan Biscotti. I thought the biscotti were just OK. Don't get me wrong, they tasted good but they are very crumbly and very whole-wheaty . I even reduced the baking time. The recipe calls for all whole-wheat flour and some oats and no white flour. If I ever made them again, I'd use half white flour and maybe 1/2 white/whole wheat flour. But you might want to take my opinion with a grain of salt though, because I've never understood why people think biscotti are so great.
    ?
    That biscotti recipe is one of the two recipes that I have made from this cookbook so far and I have to agree 100% with your review of them. They aren't bad...they just aren't great. They are definitely very crumbly and you can taste the whole wheat in them which is not appealing to me in biscotti. My DH - who normally loves biscotti - wouldn't eat them.

    The other recipe that I just made was the Peanut Butter Muffin. Although the flavor is good, I wasn't wowed with these either because they are a little on the dry side (although that could have been a mistake on my part). I didn't use the topping but did add in about a cup of mini chocolate chips.

    I would love to see some more reviews so that I can choose a better recipe to try next!
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    Yesterday, I tried my first recipe from this cookbook. I made the Sour Cream muffins with blueberries. They were great...but I felt like I was being a wimp because I didn't try one of the bread recipes yet....maybe tomorrow. I'd like to thank everyone for their recipe reviews and the added resource of their experience to baking with whole grains. It really helps me to read the reviews from the experts on this board. Thanks for sharing.

  5. #5
    My favorite recipe so far has been the Morning Glory Muffins. Definately great, imo.

    I've also made both of the CC cookie recipes. I like the crunchy the best. I also made the peanut butter cookies. I didn't care for them. Well, the flavor was very good, but they feel apart.

    One thing the books says is that when baking with whole grains things are often better after sitting over night. I have found this to be true with everything I've made.

  6. #6
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    I just made my 2nd loaf of the cinnamon swirl variation of the honey oatmeal bread. It is sooooo good. when I made it this past sunday i forgot to proof the yeast (i've been unwell and on painkillers, and it was also my 1st time making a yeast bread...thats my excuse and i'm sticking to it ) and it didn't rise all that much, it did rise a little, but only so that it was even with the top of the loaf pan and not the 1-2 inches above it. The bread was still excellent though, i've enjoyed it for breakfast all week. I did remember to proof the yeast today, and I have to say I am very impressed with myself, it looks beautiful. I can't wait to eat it tomorrow morning!

    I've posted the recipe in multiple threads recently. One of them being the SGOTW #35

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    Thanks for the review of the oatmeal, Linda! I've had it in my freezer for over a month now, but haven't gotten around to thawing some to try yet. At least now I know it will be tasty when I do finally eat some!

    Kari

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    Quote Originally Posted by Linda in MO View Post
    The other recipes I've made were the Nutty for Oats Cookies (using M&Ms in place of choc. chips) which I loved and have made twice and the Triple Cinnamon-Pecan Biscotti. I thought the biscotti were just OK. Don't get me wrong, they tasted good but they are very crumbly and very whole-wheaty . I even reduced the baking time. The recipe calls for all whole-wheat flour and some oats and no white flour. If I ever made them again, I'd use half white flour and maybe 1/2 white/whole wheat flour. But you might want to take my opinion with a grain of salt though, because I've never understood why people think biscotti are so great.
    Were the nutty for oats cookies chewy or crunchy? And how long did they taste good (i.e., do they travel ok)? I am thinking of making for my supper club....
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ljt2r View Post
    Were the nutty for oats cookies chewy or crunchy? And how long did they taste good (i.e., do they travel ok)? I am thinking of making for my supper club....
    Mine were thick, soft, and chewy, but not cakey at all. They had a very hearty texture, and would be sturdy enough for travel, or even wrapped and shipped. I'd say they'd be good for probably 3 days at room temp. They freeze well, though, so you could always make them in advance, freeze them, and then pull them out the day you needed them.

    Kari

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    Quote Originally Posted by pilgrim719 View Post
    Mine were thick, soft, and chewy, but not cakey at all. They had a very hearty texture, and would be sturdy enough for travel, or even wrapped and shipped. I'd say they'd be good for probably 3 days at room temp. They freeze well, though, so you could always make them in advance, freeze them, and then pull them out the day you needed them.

    Kari
    They sound perfect. Now I just need to convince my supper club members that they qualify for our theme of "healthy." After all, even healthy meals need dessert!
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
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    Rev: Deep and Dark Cinnamon Buns - KAF Whole Grain Baking

    I made the Deep and Dark Cinnamon Buns yesterday. Two changes: First, I subbed all white whole wheat flour for the traditional whole wheat. Second, I had a cook's error and missed the first line which said 3/4 c water plus 2 tablespoons water and ommitted the extra 2 tablespoons. Needless to say, my dough ball was a little firm.

    The only trouble I had with the recipe was the filling -- it called for brown sugar, cinnamon, and an egg white. I had a heck of a time getting the filling to spread out over the dough. I finally ended up with a table knife, cursing and trying to spread it out, which eventually worked (in combination possibly with the egg white starting to dry out b/c it was taking so long). I don't know what would make the filling easier to work with.

    I thought they were pretty good, especially being ww. I ended up liking the filling so it redeemed itself. DH told me he thought I used the wrong flour because they were not "light and fluffy." Hmmm, I don't know if that was the cook's error part or if that's the ww part. He also saw the rolled oats and asked me not to put oats if I make these again. So I guess, this recipe has potential for our HH, maybe subbing 1 cup bread flour for 1 cup whole wheat and quick oats for rolled oats (in my experience quick oats kind of disappear in the final product).

    If anyone has done the egg white filling easily, feel free to leave suggestions!
    Once, during prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water. W. C. Fields

  12. #12
    Clara, I love to eat fruit crisps/crumbles/cobblers for breakfast. Sometimes I make Apple Cranberry Crisp just to have for my breakfast for several days. I'll have to try the Apple Raspberry one.

    zackaboo, thanks for your review on the biscotti. Now I know it wasn't "just me". I think I'll still try the Peanut Butter Muffins eventually.

    Sally, glad to hear the Sour Cream Muffins were good. I will have to look that one up.

    Capucine, those Morning Glory Muffins sound good. I will have to try those soon since I love muffins!

    Kristen, I've been wanting to try that cinnamon swirl bread. I made the Honey Oatmeal Sandwich Bread (w/o the cinnamon filling) last week and we really liked it. I kneaded it in my KA mixer and had to add a little extra flour (1/4 cup?). Did your dough look almost like a thick batter when you were kneading it? Mine did.

    Kari, you crack me up that you put food in your freezer that you haven't even sampled yet! Which version did you make?

    ljt2r, I'm glad Kari answered your question, because I'm not sure how I would have described them. And I said I used M&Ms but I also added chopped Hershey bars. My full review is in one of those links I posted above. Anyway, since I used M&Ms and milk chocolate chunks they reminded me of Monster Cookies, if you've ever had those.

    jadenegro, thanks for your review. I will refer back to your notes when I make these. I wonder why it calls for reg. ww flour? I can't figure out why this cookbook calls for reg. ww flour in some recipes that I think would be better with ww pastry flour or white ww flour. Anyone know why they do that?? And can I just sub. what type of flour I want. For example, I'd rather use ww pastry flour in cakes, some muffins, etc. Or white ww flour in things that I don't want to taste "whole wheaty".

    Keep the reviews coming!

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    I also really liked the sour cream muffins. The big hit however has been the oat scones--I made them with cinnamon and cinnamon chips and we have had them every morning fresh (I froze mine--I think scones MUST be eaten fresh out of the oven) for breakfast. Tonight (we ran out today) I am going to make lemon with dried blueberries and see how they come out. DH isn't a big scone person, but my daughter and I think they are just fine for breakfast. I used WWW flour--I am not a big fan of the WW taste so I didn't even bother trying.

    I still haven't made the nutty for oats cookies--I might try this week....
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
    --Seth, "Kitchen Confidential" (the show, not the book)

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    I'd like to see the oat scones recipe, please.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Terrytx View Post
    I'd like to see the oat scones recipe, please.
    OK, I don't have much time, but here it is, in "Laura's Shorthand."

    Oat and Currant Scones

    3/4 cup WW/WWW flour
    3/4 cup unbleached AP flour
    1/2 cup oat flour
    1/4 cup sugar
    1/2 tsp baking soda
    1/4 tsp baking powder
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/2 cup cold unsalted butter
    1/3 cup currants/raisins
    1/3 cup old fashioned rolled oats (I actually used quick cooking and was fine)
    1 large egg
    1/2 cup buttermilk
    1 tsp vanilla extract
    milk/cream for brushing tops and sugar for sprinkling

    Whisk the dry ingredients, inc sugar but not oats. Using fork, fingers or pastry blender, cut butter into dry ingredients until mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add currants and oats, tossing lightly to combine--do not crush. Whisk together wet ingredients and then add all at once to the butter/flour mix. Stir lightly and quickly with fork until combined (i.e., evenly moistened)--do not overstir. Turn dough onto floured work surface and knead 2-3 times. Divide dough in half and pat each half into circle about 1/2 inch thick and 6 inches in diameter. Use a baker's bench knife to divide each half into 6 wedges.

    At this point either bake or freeze.

    To bake: brush tops with cream or milk and sprinkle sugar (preferably coarse) on top. Place on lightly greased or parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake at pre-heated 375 degrees for 22-25 mins. Serve warm.

    To freeze: Place on parchment lined cookie sheet and put in freezer until firm. Then remove and place in freezer bags with air sucked out. Will keep at least one week (mine went 10 days). When ready, follow instructions above, maybe add as minute or two, and do not defrost.

    KA lists some variations--they are mostly common sense. I took out currants and left in vanilla, added cinnamon (eyeballed) and cinnamon chips--I added 1/3 cup chips on their advice. Next I will add lemon oil/zest and add 1/3 cup either dried blueberries or cranberries--not sure yet.

    If I forgot anything or had any typos, just let me know. Babies have not been cooperative today, was in a rush.

    -Laura
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Linda in MO View Post
    Kari, you crack me up that you put food in your freezer that you haven't even sampled yet! Which version did you make?
    I'm here to entertain, Linda! I usually bake when I have time to bake, not necessarily when I want to eat the stuff. A lot of times I'm just trying to use up some ingredients, so into the freezer most things go, to be eaten at a later date. I made the apple version, since I was trying to use up some apples.

    Kari

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    Has anyone made the Chocolate Crinkle Cookies?

    Jenny

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    Quote Originally Posted by ljt2r View Post
    OK, I don't have much time, but here it is, in "Laura's Shorthand."

    Oat and Currant Scones
    thanks for taking the time, I will try it soon.

  19. #19

    Gingered Oatmeal Muffins

    I tried these, but didn't have the ginger I thought I had! So, I subbed 1/2 tsp. pwd. ginger in the batter and added in a handful of currants.

    My kids have dubbed these Snickerdoodles Muffins, and they like them. I do, too, and think they're a winner for being all whole grains.

    My yield was 18 smallish muffins, though - not sure why the big difference from the recipe's 12. I filled the cups 2/3 full.
    Laurie

  20. #20
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    I made the sour cream muffins last weekend (with blueberries) and they were wonderful. I did let the batter rest and I concur with others who have said that it helps keep the muffins from being too "wheat-y".

    Tonight I made the peanut butter muffins (with chocolate chips) without letting the dough rest, and the difference was noticeable - even though I used WW pastry flour, the muffins seemed much grainier and drier. They are still very good, but I might tweak them if I make them again, by letting the batter rest before baking, and baking a little less.
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  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by ClaraB View Post
    I made the sour cream muffins last weekend (with blueberries) and they were wonderful. I did let the batter rest and I concur with others who have said that it helps keep the muffins from being too "wheat-y".

    Tonight I made the peanut butter muffins (with chocolate chips) without letting the dough rest, and the difference was noticeable - even though I used WW pastry flour, the muffins seemed much grainier and drier. They are still very good, but I might tweak them if I make them again, by letting the batter rest before baking, and baking a little less.
    Clara, how are the muffins this morning? I found everything I've made from this book to be better the next day. I think the book even says that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ljt2r View Post
    KA lists some variations--they are mostly common sense. I took out currants and left in vanilla, added cinnamon (eyeballed) and cinnamon chips--I added 1/3 cup chips on their advice. Next I will add lemon oil/zest and add 1/3 cup either dried blueberries or cranberries--not sure yet.-Laura
    Well I made the variation last night (the lemon/blueberry), baked them this morning, and although they are quite good, they are less sweet. I suspect that the cinnamon chips contributed quite a lot of sweetness. I can't decide if I want them a tad sweeter (in which case not sure what to add--I don't know if scones are as flexible as, say, quickbreads, for adding extra sugar) or if I like them as is--part of it is just realizing that they are LESS sweet, you know? I used the zest of 2 lemons, 1/4 tsp lemon oil, 3/4 tsp vanilla and maybe 1/8-1/16 of a cup of lemon juice in place of equivalent of buttermilk.

    You know, I just finished mine as I was typing this, and I have to say it is pretty darn good as is.
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
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  23. #23
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    Sour Cream Muffins

    I made the muffins this morning and they were great. Even though I just read this thread yesterday, I forgot about the one hour resting period as I started to mix up the batter at 10:30pm last night. I decided to let them rest in the fridge overnight and bake them this morning. Worked out very well!

    I think next time I'll make them with cherries and almond extract. Maybe some slivered almonds on top!

  24. #24
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    Question...a lot of the recipes use spelt flour. Does it specify if it's white spelt flour or whole spelt flour? Since it's a whole grain baking book, I would think it's whole, but I all I saw at the store was white. I guess I have to order it from them?

    Angela

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelina View Post
    Question...a lot of the recipes use spelt flour. Does it specify if it's white spelt flour or whole spelt flour?

    Angela
    The ones I have seen specify for whole spelt flour.
    Joe

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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by HealthyinMN View Post
    The ones I have seen specify for whole spelt flour.

    All righty!! I guess a shopping spree at KA is in order!

    Angela

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelina View Post
    All righty!! I guess a shopping spree at KA is in order!

    Angela
    My organic section at my regular grocery store has whole grain spelt--check there too. (Wegman's is my grocery store).
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by ljt2r View Post
    My organic section at my regular grocery store has whole grain spelt--check there too. (Wegman's is my grocery store).
    The day when my local grocery store adds an organic section you will see pigs fly. Even though Waldbaum's is not TOO bad, they are far from having anything resembling an organic section. Not to mention CTown, which is really the closest to me and it's just pitiful...

    Anyway, I checked in Whole Foods last night and they only had the white spelt flour.

    Angela

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelina View Post
    The day when my local grocery store adds an organic section you will see pigs fly. Even though Waldbaum's is not TOO bad, they are far from having anything resembling an organic section. Not to mention CTown, which is really the closest to me and it's just pitiful...

    Anyway, I checked in Whole Foods last night and they only had the white spelt flour.

    Angela
    I am shocked (about Whole Foods). Who've thunk my regular grocery store had it but not Whole Foods? I don't exactly live in the booming metropolis, although it is a college town. Anyway, I meant to add a P.S. earlier saying far be it for me to give you any reason not to give in to a Baker's Catalogue splurge.
    -Laura

    Muffins are for people who don't have the 'nads to order cake for breakfast.
    --Seth, "Kitchen Confidential" (the show, not the book)

    www.thespicedlife.com/

  30. #30
    The Whole Foods I go to here (ATL) didn't have some of the flours in some of these recipes either. I found some in a local organic market (Return To Eden). They actually had the wheat berries. This book suggests buying the berries and grinding your own flour. I was just wondering, what kind of grinder would you use for that? I don't recall seeing anything for grinding flour before.

    I don't find Whole Foods to always be reliable. Well, reliably expensive. But with products, not always. I just consider it one more alternative when looking for something.

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