Things DH has baked during the quarantine

I know this seems like an inappropriate post during these times, and I do have more appropriate posts… in drafts.  But if those posts don’t get finished until the news media has moved on, that’s not such a bad thing either since this will most likely continue to be a marathon movement punctuated by too-brief sprints rather than one and done.  We will need to keep fighting even after people change their twitter names to something else.  In the meantime, have a self-indulgent post that explains why I currently only fit into one pair of my non-sleeping shorts.

To start:  I apologize for the number of pictures in this post.  It was a manageable amount when I started the post, but then I put off uploading pictures and suddenly I had to upload well over 30 which is overwhelming.

So…. we recently bought 50lb of flour off We had been completely unable to get whole wheat flour at the grocery store, and we’d ordered a pasta roller. So because they were sold out of smaller packages of flour, we got a 25lb case of Whole Wheat and a 25lb case of Durum flour. At the rate DH has been stress-baking (even with him trying to cut down on stress-eating) we think we’ll be able to use it up before it goes bad, and I’ll be able to stop trying to play a losing battle of grocery store roulette with the WW flour.

fruit tart

This fruit tart from the Barefoot Countess was my birthday cake this year!

Sourdough boules

You will see a LOT of these. Eventually DC1 and I were like, could we have something that’s not sourdough? This was the first attempt from Flour, Salt, Yeast, Water and includes a dried yeast boost.


Technically not baking, but DH made these Russian dumplings from scratch.

Jamaican meat pies

Jamaican meat pies from Cook’s Country. These were extremely popular.

misshapen boule

This one had an accident…

poundcake in a ring

Olive Oil and Sherry Poundcake from Pure Dessert. This was really sophisticated and a little boozy (less so the second day). A++. Would eat again.

big pie thing with strawberries and almonds on top

Baked yogurt tart from Baking with Julia

Sesame seed cake

Sesame seed cake from Pure Dessert

Walnut sponge cake

Walnut sponge cake from Pure Dessert. This is one of the most wonderful things I have ever eaten in my entire life. It’s light yet dense with a wonderful chewy nutty flavor. The top is whipped cream. It’s like eating a dream.

sugary half sphere

Breton Butter cake– this is a rustic version of a kouignaman but huge. From Home Baking by Alford and Duguid.

sliced open sourdough

More sourdough

Rustic fruit tart

Rock cakes

more sourdough

Will it ever stop?

Simplest apple pie from Home Baking. We didn’t get the topping right– it’s supposed to be more of a crumb topping than a dumpling, but I still loved it. DH prefers less apple presence, but I loved the way this was so apple forward using shredded apple and not much sugar and a splash of lemon.


DH’s grandma’s rolls (half whole wheat variation). Note that several got eaten before I could take a picture. Such is the way of DH’s grandma’s rolls.


Simple french bread that we made so DC1 could make garlic bread. From Bread by Treuille and Ferrigno.


We think this is a kind of herb bread. We can’t remember.

Cranberry muffins. (We were supposed to use frozen cranberries to free up some freezer space, but DH used dry cranberries instead so we had to make another batch.) Using the Old Fashioned cookbook.

Chocolate chip cookies

Chestnut pound cake from Pure Dessert cookbook (We special ordered chestnut flour from for it because why not?)


Caramelized crepes filled with fresh cheese from Pure Dessert. These were a lot more work than regular crepes (with a LOT of waiting time) but only marginally better than just making crepes and filling them with cheese.

red bean buns

Red bean buns– we use the love feast bun recipe from The Old Fashioned Cookbook and fill them with red bean paste. Very popular.

Banana nut muffins because I don’t eat bananas 5 days a week when I’m not going into work. (Not shown: other banana breads I didn’t take pictures of.)

Blueberry muffins (made when we realized we didn’t have any more frozen cranberries left) using a cake-like cranberry nut recipe from Bread by Treuille and Ferrigno.  There were more but I wasn’t fast enough with the camera.

braided bread

Challah from Bread

Chocolate Prune Bread from Bread

German Apple Pancake from the internets

Spinach Pie from Barefoot Contessa (TWO POUNDS of spinach)


Danishes from Baking with Julia

Fillings include: pastry cream, prune, and almond paste

DH’s grandma’s cinnamon rolls but without frosting and with cherries in the center instead of crushed pineapple

DC2 demanded apple dumplings, so these are from the Old Fashioned Cookbook, except DH didn’t do the thing where you bring the four corners of the square to a point at the top (or brush with cream and big sugar crystals)

I made this pineapple upside down cake for DH’s birthday

These hot cross buns have coffee flour in them because we were running low on regular flour and we never had used that impulse buy from TJ’s however many months ago. It worked out pretty well.


He also has made several of these trenchers when attempting to make sourdough bread, we think from the dough being too wet, but it could also be that the ratio of sour flavor bacteria to yeast bacteria is out of whack and the yeast needs more boost.

More information on trenchers here.

There’s also some things he made that I didn’t take pictures of– there’s more baguettes and there’s a Daktyla and several fry breads that didn’t make an appearance in my phone.  He also made Fan Tans right before quarantine started but I figured that didn’t really count.

Have you or yours baked anything fun?

38 Responses to “Things DH has baked during the quarantine”

  1. Foscavista Says:

    Soft pretzels (via Martha Stewart) here, but DH does the baking. I hate making dough. If the recipe calls every time for a specific amount of flour (e.g., one cup), I’m fine. If the recipe calls for 4-6 cups (or more), it frustrates me if the dough in the mixer becomes a ball and then a second later goes back to its non-ball formation.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      Soft pretzels are so good. I could totally go for a soft pretzel now with salt and butter and maybe a little Italian blend seasoning or something. Yum.

      DH tends to make baking soda pretzels which are harder and fancier but tend to start hurting my mouth after a while. Which, maybe I shouldn’t be eating so many anyway? I like them best with queso.

  2. Miser Mom Says:

    I want to come eat at your house.

    Our home: break-maker wheat bread, and waffles. Bland in in comparison to your spread, but we like it!

  3. CG Says:

    Holy cow. That is an impressive amount of baking. Lots of sourdough around here, although we’ve dialed that down by keeping a smaller starter and keeping it in the fridge. Lots of discard-related recipes, especially the delicious KAF sourdough pancakes. We made the NYTimes vegan chocolate cake, which was a big hit. I made hot cross buns for Easter. Lots of banana bread, just to make sure we are on trend. I made a rhubarb upside-down cake for my FIL’s birthday and rhubarb muffins, all from what we grow in our yard. We also made mint ice cream from our own mint. I’ve been experimenting with cooking new things, too, largely from NYT and the WSJ slow food fast column. It’s getting hot here so I’m less interest in using the oven, which is just as well since I’ve gained a few pounds over the past few months!

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      OMG I love rhubarb so much. It’s really hard to get here.

      DH has actually done a bunch more baking since I put this post together, but I figure that can be a future obnoxious post. (Right now I’m feeling sorry for myself because I got a crown yesterday and my mouth hurts too much to eat what DH is baking right now… and it’s a temporary crown and they told me to avoid bread, or if I do eat it eat it only on the left side of my face)

      Re: sourdough discard– my favorite so far has been fry bread sprinkled with Za’atar.

      We have a lot of mint… so far this year DH has just been making juleps with it.

      I have definitely not been doing a great job listening to my hunger while at home. All paths lead to the kitchen!

      • CG Says:

        Could you grow rhubarb? It seems very happy in our yard without any involvement from me and also it doesn’t spread all over the place. Those are the kinds of veggies I like! Sorry about the crown!

      • nicoleandmaggie Says:

        We can’t, that’s why it so hard to get around here. (It doesn’t get cold enough.)

        We had a patch growing up in the Midwest and I miss it.

  4. K Says:

    Wow nice treats! Makes me want to try making red bean buns.

  5. FF Says:

    I’ve baked chocolate-chip shortbread cookies several times (my variation of Brown Sugar Shortbread from Classic Home Desserts), popovers twice and a cranberry-apricot-walnut quick bread minus the orange oil/zest due to allergy (King Arthur Flour website), Franny’s Big Bottom Pies (Death By Chocolate Cookies), and Best Brownies (Hershey’s Best Loved Recipes). I would love to bake more but between the scavenger hunt for ingredients and having to eat it all by myself, I’m trying to being somewhat restrained.

  6. Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life Says:

    I’ve only made a couple loaves of GF no sugar keto walnut bread. PiC made me GF cinnamon rolls but I didn’t react very well to them so I need to look for a low carb version for him to make. He also makes me GF low carb no sugar bagels but these are all boring basics, nothing like the awesome bounty you’ve got here. I appreciate seeing all of them even if I am a bit green with envy 😊

    I am hoping to feel some kind of motivation to make some more yummy foods soon.

  7. C Says:

    So…. would you recommend Pure Dessert as a cookbook? Asking on behalf of a non-baker (me) who needs simple recipes.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      Pure Dessert doesn’t have particularly simple recipes, and they often call for exotic ingredients. It is a fantastic cookbook, but probably not a beginner’s book. Bread by Treuille and Ferrigno is a good book for people who want to start baking, but it doesn’t have a lot of desserts in it. Baking with Julia is kind of interesting because they have a few master recipes that they expect you to master and use over and over, but I don’t find it particularly simple. Of the books mentioned on this page, I’d say the Barefoot Countess is the simplest, though she definitely leans New American (still, her brownies recipe is to die for). I taught myself baking from the Old Fashioned cookbook by Jan McBride Carlton and all of her cake and dessert recipes are really good, but that book has been out of print for decades (and is traditional American).

      Some of the stuff in pure dessert is simpler than others. There are a number of pound cakes that are pretty simple and that sesame seed cake wasn’t so bad to make. If you have access to things like tahini or almond flour etc. you can probably make more of the simpler recipes. But it’s definitely not a “quick and easy” style cookbook at heart. BTW, before that walnut torte, the most amazing dessert I’d ever eaten in my entire life was also from this book– a chocolate hazelnut roll that was similarly light and airy but had this dusting of chocolate that combined just made me want to cry it was so good.

      • FF Says:

        I recommend Classic Home Desserts by Richard Sax. I’ve liked every recipe I’ve tried and they are all the kind of things that a typical home cook would whip up.

      • C Says:

        I actually have tahini and almond flour in my fridge right now. But that doesn’t mean I know how to use them! Complex and fluffy is probably beyond me and it sounds like I should up my baking game before putting another book on my bookshelf. But I’ll check out the Classic Home Desserts in the meantime…

      • nicoleandmaggie Says:

        Pound cakes are usually super simple–just measure stuff out and mix it together, so you could make those without experience. So that super sophisticated tasting olive oil poundcake is really easy to make. The seed cake and chestnut pound cake are similarly easy.

        The walnut cake, otoh, had folded in whipped egg whites which I’ve never been able to master (but DH can do without deflating). Same with the chocolate hazelnut roll (not pictured, but if I’m lucky I dream about it sometimes), which also has multiple layers. And those crepes were so not worth the effort– lots of refrigeration and then caramelizing and only marginally better than a regular crepe would have been.

  8. nicoleandmaggie Says:

    Called my senator’s office about something awful he said.

  9. Jenny F. Scientist Says:

    I bake most of our bread (although I can’t eat it!). I just made an enormous rhubarb custard, which was delicious. (It’s probably too warm here for red rhubarb; I’ve killed three. The green kind is okay though thankfully.) We had a nice carrot breakfast sheet cake for Pesach too! Lots of carrot, not a lot of sugar.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      The few times we’ve been able to get fresh rhubarb it’s always been the green kind that I didn’t even know existed prior to moving here. Man now I want rhubarb. Yum carrot quickbread/cake.

  10. Omdg Says:

    Love the pictures of your creations! I also want to eat them, especially the Jamaican meat pies. Now I am hungry.

  11. accm Says:

    Entirely too much baking here; let’s see if I can remember 12 weeks’ worth. Cinnamon buns, chocolate cake (birthday), upside-down pear caramel cake, chocolate-chip cookies, lemon-raspberry loaf, rhubarb pie, rhubarb-white-chocolate-chip cookies, rhubarb custard cake, Danish pastry (family recipe for kringle), sourdough bread, many sourdough-discard recipes including brownies (really good), dinner rolls, bran muffins and waffles. Many, many rounds of various types of scones, pancakes and waffles. I’m probably forgetting a few things. I love to bake under normal circumstances, and things are a just a little out of control right now.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      I am so jealous of all the rhubarb! When we visited the midwest last christmas, I bought some amish rhubarb preserves, but they turned out to be mostly sugar. :(

      That is awesome that your family has a recipe for Kringle. I was so happy when TJ’s started carrying it from Racine.

      Where did you find a sourdough discard recipe for brownies?

    • First Gen American Says:

      What an impressive array of baked goods and creative too. We’ve been doing mostly old standbys like cookies and cakes we all love. My 11 year old bakes something about once a week. We have tons of rhubarb in my yard and I’ve only made one thing with it so far. Shame on me for not taking more advantage of it.

  12. Michael Nitabach Says:


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