New School of Cooking - Pro Baking 1 - Class 1: Quick Breads (Apple Streusel Muffins and Currant Scones)

Monday, November 30, 2009

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
Currant Scones

I'm taking the Pro Baking 1 series at the New School of Cooking in Culver City (Los Angeles) this fall/winter. Last Sunday was the first class. I'm such a nerd that I went to Staples to buy "new school supplies"...a bright green folder to house my recipes. Yes, I have a big "L" on my forehead and I'm not ashamed ;)

Here's a little wrap up of Class 1: Quick Breads: Muffins, Scones and Quick Breads

A few people in the class are thinking of a career change, while others are doing it for fun like me. Instructor Carol Cotner Thompson starts class with a lecture about today's topic; this week, we learned about them awesome chemical leavening agents The baking soda and The baking powder. She demonstrated making a carrot cake (that we sampled later with a cream cheese frosting), apple muffins and currant scones.

Then, it was action time! In Pro Baking, each student bakes their own item, from start to finish. Half the class started on the muffins and the other on the scones. With my new Chef's Coat on, as I went about getting my bowls and ingredients... for a small moment there, I felt like I was starting a Quick Fire on Top Chef! :)

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
First up, Apple Streusel Muffins. (I didn't ask permission to print the recipes, so there aren't listed. If I get the OK, I'll try to post them). This recipe uses a grated apple, with skin on for extra flavor. As with all quick breads, Carol stressed DON'T OVERMIX. Seriously, don't overmix. And mixing SLOWLY? Well, that doesn't help...just mix it up quickly, but don't overmix it. The instructor mixed the batter in seconds.

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
The smartest tip ever. Use really big muffin cups so the streusel topping has a place to go. Simple and yet brilliant.

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
The muffins baked up nicely. I enjoyed them a lot. The streusel provided a nice crunch.

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
The cross-section of the Apple Muffin. By the way, I took the "making" of photos in class, and took these at home. We bring cardboard boxes (so the often hot food will cool properly) and tote all our stuff home!

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
Next up, Currant Scones.
This is the time when you hold up your flour/butter mixture and ask, "Are these pieces small enough?" These were traditional scones, not the ones served in coffee houses.

The instructor, Carol, has been teaching and cooking for many years. She said that our scones at home should be way better than a bakery! Because we are making small batches by hand with the best ingredients, our scones should be better. I have a lot work to do to get there...but it sounds good to me! ;)

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
Fresh from the oven at school!

New School of Cooking - Pro Baking Class 1
The instructor wants us to practice making that week's topic so I made some blueberry muffins and will post them later. I hope to make some scones and practice what I learned!

Next up: New School of Cooking, Pro Baking 1 Class: Custards, Bread Pudding and Ice Cream (Class 2)
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Patricia @ ButterYum said... [Reply to comment]

Great muffin cup tip. Where in the world can we, the public, find those muffin cups?


vanillasugarblog said... [Reply to comment]

Currant scones! My fav! Cooking school sounds like so much fun. Lucky you!

Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets said... [Reply to comment]

These look awesome! I'm about to make some scones myself. =)

Federica Simoni said... [Reply to comment]

mmm..davvero deliziosi! complimenti!

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

The muffins looks great!!!! I hope youre enjoying your classes. Can't wait for your recipe posts.

Amanda said... [Reply to comment]

Oh I want to make those! Yum!! I just did a post on cheese scones, these might be even better!!

Cindy said... [Reply to comment]

What a riot! I would love to go to cooking school! Enjoy--I think it is a great way to spend $1400.

Esi said... [Reply to comment]

Happy almost birthday!! This is a great present to yourself. Sounds like a great class..I wish I could afford! Can't wait to see the rest of what you're learning.

Mary said... [Reply to comment]

I love that you have school supplies...I bought them too for King Arthur this summer :). I am so jealous of your chef's jacket!

Mr. P said... [Reply to comment]

Mary - I hope the L is red and stands for LEARNER!

They look great. Scones are different here though. Maybe I'll cook some and try my best to make them look pretty so you can see what I mean.

Nancy/n.o.e said... [Reply to comment]

The muffins are beautiful, but those scones are SHOUTING out my name, and I don't usually give scones a second glance. Love your gift/therapy choice, and can't wait to see all that you bake!

DPLK said... [Reply to comment]

Blueberry muffins! without a mention of Mr. Trashcan?! The curse is over! =D I'm so excited for you, this class sounds like so much fun and life-enriching. Have fun!!

tamsin said... [Reply to comment]

Would this be the same place/recipe?

The Food Librarian said... [Reply to comment]

tamsin, yes! that looks like the recipe. since baking bites lives in the los angeles area too...i'm sure it is the same class! - mary

Coco Cake Land said... [Reply to comment]

mary!! it's been so long since i've visited because i've been so busy. but that is SO AWESOME you're taking classes... so fun! i see ice cream is coming up... can wait!

Jaime said... [Reply to comment]

those apple streusel muffins are calling my name - i love anything w/streusel!

The Food Librarian said... [Reply to comment]

ButterYum, I saw Jumbo muffin cups at Michael's the other day! Just make sure the bottom size matches a regular size cup. - mary

so Spiffy said... [Reply to comment]

Can I borrow that scone recipe.. please???

eatme_delicious said... [Reply to comment]

Wow that sounds like an awesome and incredibly fun course!! Love that your homework is baking. ;) The jumbo muffin cups are a great idea for streusel!

Eliana said... [Reply to comment]

You so don't have a bug L on your forehead. This looks like so much fun. I'm jealous!

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