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Friday, August 24, 2012

“Classic Quickbreads and Muffins, Part LI: Delicious Spice Muffins are a Blast from America’s Old-Time Past” by Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein



Today’s James Gang album is their fifteenth release, “James Gang’s Greatest Hits,” which came out in 2000 and was still another attempt by their record company to keep their memory alive. This is one of the great bands of the greatest era of ROCK-and-ROLL so please go to Amazon.com right now and BUY it by using the convenient link! Note: when the James Gang albums are finished, we begin offering albums by: SANTANA!



COUNTDOWN TO THE END OF THE MAYAN CALENDAR

Here is the countdown to December 21, 2012: from today, we have 121 days to go until the End of Days, the End of Time, Armageddon, and the End of the Mayan Calendar!  Everybody, beware!



STINKBUG 2012







Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein

END Commentary 08-25-2012

Copyright © 2012 by MHB Productions

Word Count: 1,689.



AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF CULINARY POLITICS



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Elemental News of the Day Commentary-Opinion-Sports-Foodservice for Saturday, August 25, 2012 by Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein



CLASSIC QUICKBREADS AND MUFFINS, PT LI

Classic Quickbreads and Muffins, Part LI: Delicious Spice Muffins are a Blast from America’s Old-Time Past” by Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein

Bakersfield, CA, 08-25-2012 S: Here we are at Saturday with one day to go and what a sweet day it is, my friends!  Tomorrow is my sixty-second birthday and still I labor on in the professional kitchen because the time has not come (at least not yet) when older employees are denied work.  I believe those times are indeed coming, however, because around me in various larger cities, my friends are finding that things are not so rosy once they are in their sixties.  Never in my life did I ever suspect that ageism would be a problem but it appears that my assumption was in error.  It would not be so bad if fellow Americans replaced the older workers but when illegals do it, something is wrong. If we don’t fix it in November, you can kiss your country goodbye!

How did we get here, I hear people ask?  Well, my belief is that more than fifty years of high-power liberalism have done the job by instilling in the children liberal values that make them hate their country at worst and apathetic at best.  To me, this is not right and my wife and I have worked hard over the years to teach our children that not everything they learned in school was necessarily true.  Unlike some of my compatriots, I could not afford putting my kids in private schools but she and I did our best instilling American values into our kids.  I just hope we did enough.  I urge all of you to speak truthfully to your children and tell them that the United States is the greatest country the world has ever known where people are free, their rights granted to them by God, and where they have every opportunity to be successful based on the sweat of their hard work.  Ah, well, we are not a political blog, I am sorry for my feelings, I am sure that Chef Pedro will say something different from me next week when he comes into the building.  Let’s make our muffin recipe:

Spice muffins are an offshoot from spice cake or cupcakes, not quite as sweet but close, especially if you glaze them with the pineapple glaze included at the end of the recipe.  Once you taste them, your taste buds will jump out of your mouths so my suggestion is let us get into the kitchen and bang them out!

(#044) SPICE MUFFINS



Spice Muffins are one of the best muffins contained in my repertoire, almost as good as spice cake but not as overpoweringly sweet.  They are easy to make, bake well, smell great, and extremely delicious.  I guarantee everyone will fall madly in love with these spectacular muffins!

Yield:  about ONE dozen medium muffins / Mis-en-place: 10 minutes / Baking time: 18-24 minutes 




Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
2
Cups
All-purpose flour

1
Cup
Cake flour

.75
Teaspoon
Salt

2
Tablespoons
Baking powder

.5
Teaspoon
Baking soda

4.5
Teaspoons
Ground cinnamon

2.25
Teaspoons
Ground nutmeg

2.25
Teaspoons
Ground cardamom

1.5
Teaspoons
Ground ginger

1
Teaspoon
Ground mace

.75
Teaspoon
Ground cloves

2
Large
AA eggs

1.5
Cups
Granulated sugar

.75
Cup
Vegetable oil

.5
Teaspoon
Vanilla extract

.5
Teaspoon
Orange extract

.5
Cup
Whole milk

.5
Cup
Sour cream

.5
Cup
Powdered sugar

.25
Cup
Pineapple juice

1
Teaspoon
Vanilla extract


Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! First prepare the muffin pan using reflective stainless steel or aluminum pans rather than the cheaper dark bakeware as it reflects heat away from the muffins rather than draws it in, overbrowning them.  This is important for the finished product as you want the sides of the muffins as light as possible and tender, too, rather than crusty, chewy, and plain unappetizing in appearance.  Spray the pan heavily with PAM or with some such other food release spray, then line it with paper or aluminum liners, and spray those and the tops of the pan with food release spray, too; set aside.

2.      Preheat standard oven to 375°F or a convection oven—fan “on”—to 325°F. 

3.      Next, double-sift the first ELEVEN ingredients into a bowl and set aside for the moment.

4.      With the aid of an electric mixer equipped with a paddle attachment, beat the eggs, sugar, and oil until the mixture is “creamed.” To that, blend in the milk, sour cream, and first measure of vanilla extract. 

5.      Now, fold the DRY mixture into the WET using the least amount of medium-low speed mixer rotations.  Count down from “20” and then stop—never worry about lumps as they disappear during the baking process.  The purpose of NOT overmixing is to prevent the gluten contained in the all-purpose flour from overdeveloping, which causes the baked muffins to be chewy, tough, and not fluffy-light.  We cannot use cake flour as the main ingredient as it lacks sufficient gluten to rise and to stand on its own, its purpose in the batter is to lighten it and give it a cake-like texture.

6.      Allow the batter to rest for 10 minutes; then, with the help of an ice cream scoop (occasionally dipped in cold water), scoop the batter into the prepared muffin cups up to the rims but no higher.  Gently tap the pan so the batter settles, then if desired, sprinkle the tops of each muffin with additional granulated sugar and place on the middle oven rack.

7.      Bake for 18 minutes then check the muffins’ progress by inserting a sharp paring knife into the center of a pair in the middle row.  If it withdraws “clean,” they are done and if not, rotate the pan in the oven—carefully!—and continue baking another 3-4 minutes or until they prove to be “done.” 

8.      At that point, pull them out, place them atop a cooling rack, and cool in the pan for 2-3 minutes; then, lightly rap the pan on the edge of the kitchen counter and de-pan them, leaving them atilt in the muffin cups.  Note: it is okay to remove them from the oven slightly underdone, as the residual heat contained in the metal pans will finish the process. 

9.      While they cool, combine the measure of powdered sugar, pineapple juice, and vanilla extract forming a glaze and set it aside.  When the muffins are completely cool, remove totally from the pan, and place atop the wire rack with a drip pan beneath it.  Swirl the glaze over the tops of the muffins with the aid of a wire whisk and allow them to rest; then, place them atop a doily-lined serving tray and take to the table accompanied by whipped butter and preserves.

10. Always plastic-wrap leftovers and then seal them into Zip-Loc freezer bags.  Label, date, and freeze take care to use them within 5-7 days for best usage.  After that, you can transform them into bread pudding or into bakery crumbs but try to use them before they lose their appeal.  Never store in the refrigerator unless using them within the day as it dries out baked goods.

Spice muffins are fantastic, they are delicious, tasty, and when glazed, amazing.

--------------------------------------------

As always, we have a great time around here and that is why we want all of you to become a part of the organization by submitting articles to us for inspection and full-credit.  It is a great thing if you would do this, as it is a symbiotic relationship: we give you the space to share your recipes and in return, you send us more and more people who will become dedicated followers of the END.  Currently of multi-diversity across the Internet, it is important that we hear the voices of more and more people from all walks of the foodservice profession —join us. We urge our readership to write to us, leave comments, and if there are any of you, who would care to write an article for us, please get in touch via Magnolia Hilltop Brewers, P.O. Box 20669, Bakersfield, CA 93390-0669.  We obviously do not pay anything but give YOU full byline and that, my friends, is worth its weight in gold.  We want as many people who want to write to be able to do so and we believe that by presenting a forum for our fellow chefs, we are doing something for our beloved industry.  We love diversity and hope to add new and different authors to our pantheon of chefs, food and beverage directors, and culinary professionals.  Come on and join us, it will be fun! Expect that when all of us have run through our cycle, we will be introducing some brand-new talent or so Stinky says.

Please remember to avoid doing business with AARC Technology in Bakersfield, CA.  These people do not care about the small customer anymore but instead put all of their attentions onto their corporate customers. It is sad to not remember why one has the success they do or from where it came.

            Sorry for the discussion at the commencement of today’s blog post but with the intensity of the building election season and all of the hateful rhetoric, vitriol, and bull crap going back and forth, one cannot but help react to it at times and yes, overreact at others.  Anyhow, I look forward to tomorrow’s birthday party; the family is going to Morro Bay, California where we have taken over part of a hotel for the week.  It is time for a family vacation with the wife, kids, grandkids, and even a few friends.  Life is good is all I can say right now but remember: what you do in November decides whether Americans retain their freedom or lose it—do the right thing!                        

Anyhow, let us close with this impassioned plea—please leave some comments and/or become a follower and why not spend some money and purchase an album by the James Gang and/or buy a cookbook from Amazon.com—we want to make some money here so help us out by buying something!  Allied with them, we are pleased to market their merchandise! See you next time around! Bye!  

Thank you!

Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein

The Chuckster
Restaurant Manager, Mixologist, Foodserver, and Cook

This is a photo of me back in 1973 while being the Food and Beverage Director at one of the hotels in Bakersfield, CA, located on Union Avenue. I was in my late 30's at the time. I am still working at one of the local hotels in the nearby town of Delano, CA, a place that has been my home for the past 10 years. Our city has experienced marvelous growth and is fast becoming a player in county politics.

Chef Smithenstein writes from Delano, CA.

---30---

The END Commentary for Saturday, August 25, 2012 by Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein



Please note that everyone who writes for the Elemental News of the Day is their own person entitled to their own opinions, attitudes, and insanity so does not necessarily speak for all of us.  Thanks, Stinkbug.

REFERENCES:

The one-and-only Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein wrote this original essay.



Recipe created by Chef Charles “the Chuckster” Smithenstein on June 12, 1988 in Bakersfield, CA.

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This is #1317 an 11” x 14" original oil painting by Beverly Carrick entitled, “Poppy Sunset." It is among her more beautiful works and is available for sale. You can see much more of her work at her Website, located at http://www.beverlycarrick.com or at Brian Carrick's Facebook page. At her Website, you will see not only more original oil paintings but also lithographs, giclees, prints, miniatures, photographs, and even her award-winning instructional video entitled, "Painting the Southwest with Beverly Carrick." Beverly has been painting for more than 60 years and known around the world for both the beauty and timelessness of her artworks. Hanging in private and public galleries and followed by many fans encircling the globe—her works instill awe because of her artistic brilliance and personal beauty. We urge you to go to her Website NOW and view her work. It is possible that you will find something you like and will want to buy it for yourself, a friend, a loved one, or a neighbor! You will not be disappointed so please: do yourself a favor and go there IMMEDIATELY! Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day!





Beverly Carrick: the World’s Greatest Artist!
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The Chef’s Culinary Nightmare: the end is indeed coming soon so beware of BOTH November 06 AND December 21, 2012!






President Barack Obama

OR
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IT’S YOUR CALL IN NOVEMBER!












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