Friday, 31 May 2013

Choc Chip Peanut Butter Cookie

50g Light brown soft sugar
50g Caster sugar
50g Unsalted butter
1 Large egg
1tsp Vanilla
50g Chocolate Chips
200g Crunchy peanut butter
1tsp Bicarbonate of soda
Pre heat the oven to 170oC and line a flat tray with grease proof paper.
Cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy then add the egg, peanut butter and vanilla mixing until smoothly combined. Stir in the flour and bicarb of soda. Now add the chocolate chips. It is a thick mixture and will require some elbow grease.
Get your hands in and roll some mixture into a ball about a tablespoon size then flatten on the baking tray you should get about 12. Leave space between them they will grow slightly. You may need to cook them in batches.  Bake for 10-12 minutes then remove and let cool. Seem soft? don't worry they firm up more as they cool.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Peanut Butter Brownies

225g Crunchy Peanut Butter
200g Dark Chocolate
280g Soft Light Brown Sugar
3 Eggs
100g Self Raising Flour

Heat the oven to 180oC and Grease a square cake tin. take 175g of the peanut butter and 150g of the chocolate and put them in a pan with the sugar, stir occasionally until the sugar has just about melted and everything is evenly mixed.
Turn of the heat and then beat in an egg at a time then sift in the flour, mix it all together and then put in the tin. Melt the other 50g of peanut butter until runny then drizzle over the top of the brownie. Bake for 30 minutes.
Once cooled melt the remaining 50g of chocolate and drizzle this over the top, allow to set and then cut into squares.


Easy Summer Fruits Pavlova

3 Large Egg Whites
175g Caster Sugar
For the Topping
200ml Whipping or Double Cream (whipped)
300g Mixed Summer Fruits. ( I went for Strawberries, Raspberries and a pomegranate)
This recipe requires a little time it is best to make the pavlova the night before and let it cool in the oven.
Heat the oven to 140oC. Lay some grease proof paper on a flat oven tray.
Measure out the sugar and in a separate clean bowl begin to whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. When you can turn the bowl upside down and the egg whites don't fall out your done! Do not over whisk or the pavlova will collapse.
Now whisk in a table spoon of sugar at a time gently until it is all mixed in.
Take a metal spoon and put some of the meringue onto the baking sheet form a circle with it being, then blob the rest around the edges to for a bowl look.
Bake for 50 mins -1hour, if it begins to colour to much too soon reduce the heat to 120oC. Leave to cool overnight in the oven.  This should prevent it from cracking.
Once cooled. Whip up your cream and prepare your fruit then dollop the cream followed by the fruit on top of your meringue et voila! a completed Pavlova. 

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Banana Muffin

200g Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Bicarb of Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
3 Large Bananas
150g Caster Sugar
1 Egg
75g Butter
Preheat the oven to 180oC.
Now sift the flour, baking powder, bicarb of soda and salt together. In a pan melt the butter then add this to the mashed up banana, sugar and egg. Mix until smooth then fold in the flour mixture.
Spoon evenly into muffin cases and bake for 25-30 minutes until springy to touch and golden brown.
Try serving with some golden syrup warm out of the oven. 

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Red Velvet Cupcakes

60g Butter
150g Caster Sugar
1 Egg
20g Cocoa Powder
2tsp Red Food Colouring
2tsp Vanilla Extract
130ml Buttermilk
150g Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Bicarb of Soda
1 1/2 tsp White Wine Vinegar
300g Icing Sugar
50g Butter
125g Full Fat Cream Cheese
Pre heat the oven to 170oC. Whisk the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then whisk in the egg. Add the cocoa, colouring and vanilla and mix well. Sift in the flour a little at a time alternating with the buttermilk until all combined. Now add the bicarb of soda and the vinegar so they start to fizz and mix again. Spoon into cases and bake for 18-20 minutes until springy to touch.
Once cooked remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Mix the butter, cream cheese and icing sugar together and top the cakes. Feel free to add whatever decorative touches you feel like. 


Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Lemon Meringue Ice Cream

This is a Delia Smith Recipe

For the Syrup
200ml Fresh Lemon Juice (4-5 Lemons)
Zest of 2 Lemons
2 tsp Cornflour
150g Caster Sugar
For the Custard
425ml Whipping Cream
4 Large Egg Yolks
1 tsp Cornflour
175g Caster Sugar
200ml Greek Yoghurt
4 Meringue Nests, Broken up
Begin by making the syrup.  In a bowl mix the cornflour with 2tbsp of lemon juice. In a pan mix the rest of the lemon juice with the sugar and leave on a low heat for 5 minutes to let the sugar dissolve. Add the lemon zest then simmer for a further 5 minutes. Pour this mixture over the cornflour mixture and stir. Put it back in the pan and on a low heat keep stirring for 2 more minutes until thickened. Once thickened set aside to cool.
Next make the custard, this is the base of the ice cream. Place the cream in a saucepan and heat slowly. In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks, cornflour and sugar together. When the cream reaches simmering point add it  gradualy to the other ingredients and keep whisking.  Put it all back in the pan and bring back to a simmer, keep stirring. Once the custard has thickened put it aside to cool with cling film over the surface. (it will prevent a skin)
When the custard has cooled mix it with the Greek yoghurt and place in a 1.5-2 litre freezer box, cover and freeze for 2 hours.
After 2 hours remove from the freezer and use an electric whisk to stir up the mixture making sure you get all the edges. Place back in the freezer for another 2 hours.
Again remove from the freezer and whisk the mixture, this time add the lemon syrup and mix thoroughly. Once mixed fold in the meringue pieces and then freeze for another 6-8 hours or overnight.  


Thursday, 21 February 2013

Banoffee Pots

180g Digestive Biscuits
80g Butter
300ml Whipping Cream
2 tbsp Icing Sugar
397g Tin of Caramel
1 1/2 Banana's
A little chocolate to decorate (Optional)

Bash the digestive biscuits into crumbs. In a pan melt the butter then add this to the bashed biscuits, mix it all together then spoon into serving dishes (will make 8 portions). Set aside in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Now top the biscuit with caramel then add slices of banana. Whisk the cream and icing sugar together until thick and add on top  of the banana. Sprinkle with grated chocolate to finish (Optional).

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Marmalade Cake

4tbsp  Orange Juice With Bits
3oZ Marmalade
3 Eggs
6oZ Self Raising Flour
6oZ Demerara Sugar
6oZ Margarine
Icing sugar to dust

Pre Heat the oven to 180oC. Grease 2 small tins or 1 large tin.
Whisk the sugar and margarine together then whisk in one egg at a time. Add the marmalade and orange juice and give it a good mix. Sift in the flour and combine all together.
Pour the mixture into your cake tin and bake for 15-20 minutes (Small tins or 40-50 minutes in large tin).
Take the cake out of the oven once cooked and allow to chill. Dust with Icing sugar.


Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Valentines Chocolates

75g Blanched Hazelnuts
100g Dark Chocolate (72% Cocoa)
100ml Condensed Milk
1-2tbsp Hazelnut Oil
250g Milk Chocolate (to decorate)
Red Candy Melts (Optional)
I bought some heart shaped chocolate moulds from cakes, cookies and crafts shop . For the large moulds melt 1/3 of the milk chocolate and line the mould using a thin layer of chocolate. Let this set then added another layer.
When the second layer has set put the hazelnuts into a food processor and then add the condensed milk and hazelnut oil. Melt the dark chocolate and add this to the mix giving it a good mix in the processor.

Spoon this into the chocolate lined mould then melt some more milk chocolate to cover the back and smooth over. Then repeat the process until you have used all the filling

Alternatively role the hazelnut mixture into balls and dip in melted milk chocolate. Feel free to decorate with any sprinkles or sparkles you like.

I was also playing around with chocolate transfer sheets also form cakes, cookies and crafts shop which look great on dark chocolate.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Cocoa Black

One of my Christmas presents I got was an afternoon class learning how to make chocolates at Cocoa Black. I spent yesterday afternoon making dark chocolate and orange ganache, milk chocolate and coffee truffles and praline squares. These are delicious!

In Progress

The class is very informative and dipping chocolate is (with the right tools) very therapeutic and relaxing. Needless to say I will be off to find the right tools so that I can dip my chocolates more effectively at home.

The finished products

For those of you who would like to make chocolates at home I highly recommend the Cocoa Black make your own truffles, praline in ganache class. I am now very tempted by some of their other classes :-)

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Chocolate Tiramisu Cake

135g Butter
200g Good Dark Chocolate (75% or above)
8 Large Eggs, separated.
150g Plain Flour
2tbsp Brandy
110g Caster Sugar
Cocoa powder for dusting
For the topping
2tbsp Brandy
1-2 tsp Coffee Powder (I prefer Decaf)
250g Mascarpone
75g Icing Sugar

Pre heat the oven to 170oC. Grease a tin then dust with cocoa powder and set aside.
Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl over a pan of hot water, making sure no water gets in with the chocolate. When melted set aside to cool for 5 minutes, then stir in the egg yolks, flour and brandy until all combined.
In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Add the sugar a tbsp at a time to the egg whites folding in gently. Fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture then place in your baking tin.
Bake for 45-50 minutes until firm to the touch and a skewer can be inserted and removed clean.
To make the topping mix the brandy and coffee together until the coffee dissolves then add to the mascarpone and icing sugar. Mix it all together and chill until ready to serve.
When ready to serve dust a slice of cake with icing sugar and a dollop of the mascarpone mix.