Anna Olson’s Baking Wisdom is on sale on March 14, 2023 and we can’t wait to learn from the baking master. The baking authority is providing the answers to all of questions you may have, and sharing over 150 savoury and sweet recipes. Whether you are a baking whiz or a novice, you will learn so much from Anna Olson’s Baking Wisdom.
We are sharing three delicious recipes from Anna Olson‘s Baking Wisdom to give you a taste of what is inside of her latest cookbook.
Salmon & Spinach Wellingtons
Classic beef Wellington is a dish made by wrapping a portion of beef tenderloin in puff pastry with a mushroom filling in between. With this salmon and spinach version, the assembly process is simplified and each diner will have their own individual pastry.
MAKES: 4 pastries
PREP TIME: 20 minutes, plus chilling
COOK TIME: 20 minutes
BITES OF WISDOM:
How to roll pastry doughs (p. 44)
1 Tbsp (15 g) butter
1½ lb (675 g) fresh whole spinach leaves or 1 lb (450 g) frozen and thawed chopped spinach
2 cloves garlic, minced Salt and pepper
20 oz (600 g) Puff Pastry Dough (p. 162 or 164) or 4 sheets (900 g) store- bought all-butter puff pastry
4 (5 oz/150 g) skinless salmon fillets Medium egg wash (see p. 33)
- Prepare the spinach. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the Sauté until wilted (if using fresh) and any excess liquid has evaporated. Add the garlic and season to taste with salt and pepper. Let the spinach cool completely, then chill before assembling the Wellingtons.
If you use fresh spinach, choose a large-leaf variety, which has a little more structure and flavour, instead of baby spinach.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) and line a baking tray with parchment
- Assemble the Wellingtons. If using homemade puff pastry, divide the dough into four portions and roll out each one into an 8-inch (20 cm) If using store-bought sheets of prerolled pastry, trim each piece to an 8-inch (20 cm) square. Divide half of the spinach among the pastry squares, mounding it in the middle (1). Lightly season the fish and place a fillet on top of the spinach. Spoon the remaining spinach on top of the fish. Bring the corners of the pastry together, pinch the seams to seal the parcels and place, seam side down, on the baking tray (2). You can assemble the Wellingtons up to 6 hours ahead and chill before baking.
- Finish the Wellingtons. Brush each Wellington with the egg wash. Use the back of a paring knife to mark a pattern on top of each parcel, but do not cut through the pastry (3).
- Bake for 20 minutes, until the pastry is a rich golden Serve immediately.
The Wellingtons are best hot from the oven right after baking. Leftovers can be reheated for 15 minutes in a 325°F (160°C) oven.
Matcha Swiss Roll with Raspberry Cream
This recipe is now my sister-in-law’s official birthday cake forever. I gave Michino a taste when I was testing the recipe, and she has decided to have it every year. Swiss rolls and jelly rolls are sponge cakes that are shaped warm, while they are flexible. This makes them easy to unroll, fill with cream (Swiss roll) or jam or jelly (jelly roll) and then roll back up again without the cake cracking.
MAKES: one 10-inch (25 cm) dessert
PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOK TIME: 20 minutes
MORE INVOLVED BITES OF WISDOM:
How to whip egg whites (p. 34)
¼ cup (60 mL) 2% milk
1 Tbsp (15 mL) matcha green tea powder
3 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar, divided
¹/³ cup (50 g) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (30 g) cornstarch
Green food colouring gel, powder or paste (optional)
Icing sugar, for dusting
1¼ cups (310 mL) whipping cream, divided
2 tsp cornstarch
¼ cup (32 g) icing sugar
4 tsp freeze-dried raspberry powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and line the bottom of an ungreased 10 × 15-inch (25 × 38 cm) baking tray ( jelly roll pan) with parchment paper.
- Heat the milk and matcha tea in a small saucepan over low heat for 5 min- utes, then set aside (it can be warm when used).
- Whip the egg whites using electric beaters on high speed until Slowly pour in ¼ cup (50 g) sugar and continue to whip until the whites hold a stiff peak when the beaters are lifted. Set aside.
- Whip the egg yolks with the remaining ¼ cup (50 g) sugar on high speed until they turn buttery yellow, thicken and hold a ribbon when the beaters are lifted. Whisk in the warm milk by Sift the flour and cornstarch over the eggs and whisk in by hand.
- Fold in a third of the whipped whites until almost incorporated and then add the remaining whites, folding gently but quickly until no streaks of the whites are visible. Add food colouring, if Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread the batter to make it as level as possible (1).
Matcha green tea gives the batter a pea-green colour. If you prefer a brighter green, add a drop or two of food colouring liquid or a little sprinkle of colour powder to the batter.
Levelling the cake batter in the pan is important because this thin cake shows every detail and unevenness of the cake once rolled and sliced. When first spreading the batter in the pan, push the batter into the corners to get it to fasten to the edges, then use your palette knife to spread it evenly over the entire surface. Try not to lift your palette knife until you reach the edge of the pan, to keep the batter smooth and level.
- Bake the cake for 12 to 14 minutes, until the cake springs back when gently Cool the cake on a rack for 5 minutes.
The 5 minutes of rest allows the cake to cool a little, but not too much. If you rush to roll the cake directly from the oven, it might “sweat” when rolled in the tea towel, causing the surface of the cake to get sticky.
- Shape the cake while warm. Run a palette knife around the inside edge of the pan to loosen the Dust the surface of the cake with icing sugar and place a clean tea towel overtop. Place a cutting board or second baking tray on top of the towel and invert everything together. Remove the jelly roll pan (now on top) and peel away the parchment paper (2). Dust the cake with icing sugar and, using the tea towel to help, roll up the cake from a short side, rolling the towel in with it. Set the cake back on the rack to cool completely before filling.
Add only a light sprinkling of icing sugar to the cake before covering with the tea towel and rolling. The icing sugar helps create a little barrier between the cake and the towel, but too much will just melt and stick.
When starting to roll the cake to shape it, lift the cake up a little as you coax it forward and over itself. That first roll is the most prone to cracking since it is the smallest part of the spiral and uses the outer edge of the cake, which might be drier than the centre.
- Whip the cream with the In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk ¼ cup (60 mL) whipping cream with the cornstarch, whisking con- stantly until it thickens and just starts to bubble, under 2 minutes. Transfer the thickened cream to a dish to cool for 5 minutes (it can be warm).
Thickening some cream with cornstarch and then adding it to a larger batch of whipping cream is a bakery technique that gives the cream more strength and structure than the skim milk powder technique (p. 95). In this recipe, the added step is worth it—your matcha roll will slice cleanly and the whipped cream will maintain its full volume.
- Make the raspberry Whip the remaining 1 cup (250 mL) cream on high speed, and when it begins to thicken, add the thickened cream while whipping. Continue to whip until the cream holds a soft peak. Whip in the icing sugar, raspberry powder and vanilla.
You can buy freeze-dried raspberry powder online or at specialty baking supply shops. It rehydrates when added to liquids like whipped cream and imparts its vibrant colour and concentrated flavour. If you don’t have any of this powder, prepare the cream without.
- Assemble the Carefully unroll the cooled cake (it will naturally curl up at the end that was in the centre of the spiral). Spread the cream over the cake, leaving about an inch (2.5 cm) uncovered at the flatter short side (3). Starting at the more curled short side, reroll the cake (4) and set the Swiss roll seam side down on a plate or platter. Wrap the Swiss roll well and chill until ready to serve. Dust the top with icing sugar and trim the ends before serving.
If you prepared the cream without raspberry powder, spread it onto the cake and arrange fresh raspberries on top. Once the cake is rolled and sliced, you’ll see lovely circles of fresh berries dotted within the cream.
The cake will keep, well wrapped in plastic, in the fridge for up to 3 days.
White Velvet Layer Cake
Sprinkles! It’s a word that always brings a smile to people’s faces—kids and grown–ups alike—and this beautiful white cake is decorated with lots of them. A white velvet cake is a vanilla cake made with unwhipped egg whites instead of whole eggs, so the cake has a pale colour. The boiled milk frosting, also known as ermine frosting, is silky and smooth with enough
structure to hold piping detail. It sets well in the fridge but melts on the tip of the tongue faster than other styles of buttercream.
MAKES: one 3-layer, 8-inch (20 cm) cake
SERVES: 12 to 16
PREP TIME: 50 minutes, plus chilling
COOK TIME: 47 minutes
MORE INVOLVED BITES OF WISDOM:
Substitutions—In a pinch (buttermilk) (p. 17), How to assemble a layer cake (p. 50), How to use piping bags & tips (p. 52)
2²/³ cups (350 g) cake & pastry flour
1¾ cups (350 g) granulated sugar
1 Tbsp (9 g) baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp fine salt
¾ cup (175 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into pieces
1¼ cups (310 mL) buttermilk, at room temperature, divided
½ cup (125 mL) vegetable oil
5 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 Tbsp (15 mL) vanilla extract
Boiled milk frosting & assembly:
2 cups (500 mL) 2% milk
²/³ cup (100 g) all-purpose flour
2 cups (400 g) granulated sugar
½ tsp fine salt
2 cups (450 g) unsalted butter, at just below room temperature (65°F/18°C)
2 tsp vanilla extract
Food colouring gel, powder or paste Sprinkles, for décor
Macarons (p. 390), for décor (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly grease three 8-inch (20 cm) round cake Line the bottom of each pan with parchment paper and dust the sides with flour, tapping out any excess.
- Sift the dry ingredients and work in the Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together into a large mixing bowl or into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter, working it in using electric beaters or the mixer on medium-low speed until no pieces of butter are visible, about 2 minutes.
- Add the Whisk ¾ cup (175 mL) buttermilk and the oil together and add to the flour, mixing on low speed until combined. Whisk the remaining
½ cup (125 mL) buttermilk with the egg whites and vanilla, add at once to the batter and mix again on low speed until combined. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat well for about 3 minutes, until the batter is fluffy and thick. Divide the batter evenly between the pans and spread to level them, tapping the pans to knock out any air bubbles.
Taking the extra moment to really whisk the egg whites and remaining butter- milk together will make for easier and more even blending once the mixture is added to the batter.
- Bake the cakes for about 40 minutes, until a tester inserted in the centre of a cake comes out clean. Cool the cakes in their pans on a rack for about
20 minutes before turning them out onto the rack to cool completely. Chill the cakes for at least 2 hours before assembling.
- Make the frosting. Whisk the milk and flour together in a medium saucepan over medium heat until it thickens and just begins to bubble, about 4 minutes. Whisk in the sugar and salt and continue whisking over medium heat until the mixture begins to bubble again, about 3 more Pour the paste (it will look like a very pale pudding) into a dish and let cool, uncovered, until it reaches room temperature, 68°F to 70°F (20°C to 21°C).
- Mix the butter into the Check that your butter is just below room temperature (65°F/18°C). Using electric beaters or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium-high speed until fluffy. Add the cooled milk paste in three additions, mixing well after each addition. Add the vanilla. Add food colouring to your liking. You will need to use the frosting immediately.
If the frosting doesn’t appear smooth once you’ve added the butter, increase the speed to high and continue whipping. Often the warmth generated by the friction of the beaters warms the frosting enough to blend smoothly.
- Assemble the cake. Place one cake layer on a cake wheel or platter and top with a generous amount of frosting, spreading to level (1). Top with the second cake layer and spread with another generous amount of frosting, then top with the final cake layer (2). Spread a generous amount of frosting on the top of the cake, coaxing it to hang over the top Spread more frosting to cover the sides of the cake, and use an offset spatula to smooth out the frosting, joining it to the frosting hanging over the top edge (3, 4).
The outside of the cake will brown as it bakes. If you prefer to showcase the white of the cake against the coloured frosting and sprinkles, trim away the browned outside layer. Chill the cakes for at least 2 hours first and then use a serrated knife to shave away the brown layer from the top and sides as thinly as possible. Use a coarse rasp grater to shave away the brown around the top outside edge without compromising the round shape of the cake.
- Decorate the Place the sprinkles in a pie plate or shallow dish and set it on the counter where you plan to work. Holding the cake by its base (or turning the cake wheel) with one hand, press sprinkles onto the bottom third of the cake, letting any extras fall back into the pie plate. Spoon any leftover frosting into a piping bag fitted with a decorative tip and pipe décor on the top of the cake. Chill the cake for at least 2 hours, then arrange evenly spaced macarons, if using, on top of the piping.
For a rainbow twist of piping, first divide the frosting into bowls, colour each of them and spoon one colour into one side of the piping bag and the second colour into the opposite side. When you start piping, the two colours will twist together as you pipe a ring around the top edge of the cake.
The cake will keep, with the cut portion covered, in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Excerpted from Anna Olson’s Baking Wisdom: The Complete Guide: Everything You Need to Know to Make You a Better Baker (with 150+ Recipes) by Anna Olson. Copyright © 2023 Olson Food Concepts Inc. Photography by Janis Nicolay. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.