Chocolate Ganache

June 29, 2015

Before I start let me just say, YUMMY! The ganache almost didn’t land up on the cake, I almost ate the whole thing straight out the pot!

So… I made a chocolate cake and didnt have any icing sugar. What I did have was cream and chocolate so I made a ganache.

All the recipes I found were pretty easy, a basic ganach recipe calls for a 1:1 ratio of chocolate and cream. For a more liquid ganache add more cream, for a thicker ganache add more chocolate.

Ingredients

  • 200g heavy cream (I used a 250ml box of 32% cream)
  • 200g dark chocolate (you can use pretty much any chocolate, I think white chocolate would be amazing)

Method

  • Heat the cream until it is steaming but not boiling.
  • While the cream is heating, chop the chocolate into small pieces, the smaller the easier and quicker it is to melt.
  • Remove the cream from the heat and add the chocolate.
  • Stir with a wooden spoon until the cream and chocolate are combined.
  • Allow to cool and thicken and then pour over your cake.
  • Start at the centre of the cake and allow the ganache to run over the sides.
  • I placed my cake in the fridge so the ganache set a bit.

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Apparently, if you have patience, you can let the ganache cool and then you can whip it and then spread it on the cake.

Also, if you want to make chocolate truffles, increase the amount of chocolate to cream ratio, allow the mixture to cool and thicken and then roll into balls and coat in cocoa.

I have to say thank you to The Cupcake Lady, Angel for answering all my questions on Twitter when I was so impatient to ice and eat the cake ūüėČ

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I asked a foodie group on FB to suggest a dessert that would travel easily as we were going to my brother in Tel Aviv via the train.

One of the suggestions was Nigella Lawson brownies.

I googled and found this recipe.

Now, I have to admit, I have never made regular* ‘from scratch’ brownies. I’ve always used a box mix. Never again! I am never ever buying box mix brownies again. These were so easy and so amazingly yummy! Will definitely be making them again and again. And again!

I used slightly different quantities, mainly because they are the amounts I had available. And it turned out ok, so I am giving you what I used. If you prefer, click on the link above for the original recipe.

Ingredients

  • 250g softened margerine (I used marge since I wanted my dessert to be dairy free)
  • 300g dark, milk free chocolate
  • 6 large eggs
  • splash of vanilla extract
  • 500g caster sugar (I used brown sugar that I whizzed in the blender to make it fine like caster sugar)
  • 225g flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 300g chopped walnuts

Method

  • In a large pan, over a low heat or in a double boiler, melt the margarine and chocolate (break the chocolate into squares so it melts evenly).
  • While that is melting mix your eggs, sugar and vanilla in a separate bowl.
  • Check on your butter and chocolate and give it a stir to make sure that it is melting properly.
  • Measure out your flour and add the pinch of salt.
  • Once your marge and chocolate are melted remove from the heat and let cool for a few minutes.
  • While it is cooling, throw the walnuts into the blender and whiz until they are mostly chopped finely, leaving a few larger chunks if you like.
  • Now, add the egg mixture to the chocolate mixture while beating with a hand held beater or in your mixer, the reason you are beating while pouring is so that the eggs don’t scramble in the hot chocolate.
  • Once that is mixed together well, add the flour a bit at a time until it is completely mixed in.
  • Lastly mix or fold in the walnuts.
  • In a deep pan lined with baking paper, pour in your mixture.
  • There will be mixture that doesn’t fit in the pan (regardless of how big the pan is, there WILL be left over mixture), make sure your kids are not around and using a spoon or spatula, scoop all that left over mixture into your mouth, thank me later!

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  • Bake the brownies at 180¬įC for about 25 minutes. The top of the brownies will look pale and slightly bubbly.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for an hour or so.
  • Slice the brownies straight in the pan, you should get about 32 pieces.
  • Serve with whipped dairy free cream and enjoy.

Oh! These are even better the next day, if any of them survive that long!

*I have made ‘from scratch’ Pesach brownies but thats not really the same…

The Melktert Saga

May 23, 2015

If you follow me on Facebook you would have seen that for Shavuot I was going to make a melktert (this one from FB). Well I did, except it did not set. The custard part is supposed to set enough that you can cut the tart into slices. Mine was still liquid enough that you had to eat it with a spoon in a bowl.

So I was chatting to some friends about it and they suggested that I freeze it and make ice cream, so I popped it into the churner and a yummy melktert ice cream was born.

Below is the recipe I used, I’m not sure if it was the recipe itself, the fact that I did it on the stove top and not the microwave or if it was the ingredients (Israeli not South African) I used that caused it not to set, so if you want to try it out as a traditional melktert give it a go, if it does not set then carry on with the freezing/churning part and make it into an ice cream like I did.

Ingredients

Base

  • 125g
  • 85g melted butter

Filling

  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 1 can milk
  • 2 cans hot water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 6 tablespoons corn starch
  • pinch of salt
  • cinnamon

Method

Base

  • Crush the biscuits either by placing in a zip lock bag and smashing with a rolling pin or by pulsing in a blender until the biscuits are crumbs.
  • Mix the melted butter into the biscuits.
  • Press the mixture into a greased dish and either bake for 8 min on 180¬įC or chill in the fridge for an hour.

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Filling

  • Combine all the ingredients in a microwave proof bowl.
  • Place in microwave on high for 7 minutes, remove and beat.
  • Microwave for 5 minutes, remove and beat.
  • Microwave for 3 minutes, remove and beat.
  • This could be¬†where I went wrong, I didn’t have a microwaveable bowl so I heated the custard on the stove, stirring continuously for about 25 minutes. ¬†It did thicken quite a bit.
  • Let the custard cool down, stirring ¬†occasionally so it doesn’t form a skin, alternatively cover the custard with cling wrap on the surface so the skin cant form.
  • Once cool, pour into the dish over the back of a spoon so you don’t break the biscuit base.
  • Sprinkle cinnamon over the top.
  • Refrigerate for at least 3 hours so the custard sets.

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Ice Cream

If your custard didn’t set this is the point where you turn it into ice cream.

  • Pour the unset custard into your churner and churn as per instructions.
  • Transfer the ice cream to a freezer proof bowl,cover and freeze until hard.
  • If you don’t have a churner you can place the custard into a freezer proof bowl, cover and freeze for at least three hours, remove every hour or so and mix well so ice crystals don’t form.
  • I scraped the biscuit base into the churner at the very beginning, you can leave out the base and crumble it on top after the ice cream is made or you can add half to the churner and half over the top later, totally up to you.

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**I am going to attempt a new recipe for the melktert so watch this space!

Pure decadence! This cake comes out with a soft gooey centre and a thin crispy top.  It is very very rich and very very delicious.

Ingredients

  • 250g dark parve chocolate
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 cup potato flour

Method

  • Break the chocolate into pieces and slowly melt it over a low heat.

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  • Once the chocolate is almost completely melted, take it off the heat.
  • While continuously, briskly, stirring the chocolate, add the ¬†beaten egg. ¬†Make sure to stir fast so that the egg doesn’t cook!
  • Add the potato flour and combine.
  • Transfer the ‘dough’ into a small, low sided pan.

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  • Bake for 12- 15 minutes at 180¬įC.

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  • Serve with cold custard or vanilla ice cream.

I got a hankering to bake dessert for tonight and to make something I had never done before.

I found a tin of diabetic friendly pineapple pieces and voila! Pineapple upside down cake was googled.

I found a really really easy recipe on Nigella Lawson‘s site. ¬†You can see the original recipe over here.

I adjusted the recipe a little since I wanted it to be totally diabetic friendly (and also milk free).

Ingredients

  • Butter (for greasing) – I used spray and cook
  • 2 tablespoons sugar – I used Simply Delish Suki Sweetener that I bought at Dischem
  • 6 slices canned pineapple in juice (plus 3 tablespoons of the juice) – I had the tin of diabetic friendly pieces.
  • 11 glace cherries – I just used enough to make it look nice
  • 100g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¬ľ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 100g soft butter – I used dairy free margerine
  • 100g caster sugar – again, I used the Suki sweetener
  • 2 large eggs

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Method

  • Heat the oven to 200¬įC and coat a 23cm cake tin with the butter or Spray & Cook. ¬†Nigella says not to use a springform or loose base tin. ¬†I only had a larger silicone ‘tin’. ¬†Next time I will use a smaller tin.
  • Sprinkle the 2 tablespoons of sugar or Suki on the greased base, I sprinkled it around then swooshed the tin around so it was spread evenly.

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  • Arrange your pineapple slices on top of the sugar and place a cherry inside each piece and in between slices. ¬†I mosaic-ed the pieces of pineapple and dropped cherries randomly between them.
  • Place flour, baking powder, bicarb, butter, remaining sugar/Suki and eggs into a bowl and beat until smooth.
  • Add the 3 tablespoons of pineapple juice to the batter and mix well.
  • Gently pour the batter over the pineapples and cherries, it really will only juuuuust cover them so be gently when you spread it around.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and immediately ease a knife or spatula around the edge of the cake, place a plate or cake stand on top and quickly turn it upside down.

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Enjoy!

Yesterday I met up with some twitter ladies at the Irene Dairy Farm.

What a lovely place.  The kids had a blast!

I didnt take any photos because we were all having so much fun I didnt even think about taking my phone out…

What I did do is buy some of their famous fresh cream.

OMG! How delish… ¬†Think and yummy, I just had to make some fresh scones this morning to go with it.

I found the scone recipe over here, I love this site, they deliver exactly what they promise: A South African guide to simple, tasty recipes!

Recipe

  • 2 x cups sifted flour
  • ¬Ĺ x teaspoon salt
  • 4 x teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 x tablespoons marge
  • ¬ĺ x cup milk

Method

  • Mix dry ingredients.
  • Add wet ingredients.
  • Mix together until they form a loose dough.
  • Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and kneed for a few minutes.
  • Flatten the dough out and cut rounds using a glass.
  • Bake at 240¬ļC for about 7 minutes – I didnt read that properly and baked for about 10 minutes at 180¬įC.

scones

 

Enjoy with fresh cream and a dollop of strawberry jam ūüôā

Butter custard biscuits

August 14, 2012

Straight to my childhood.  I used to make custard biscuits all the time as a kid.  Yummy!

acidicice posted about her first try with custard biscuits, she received the recipe from shirras1.

I just had to give it a try.

Now the recipe is huge! ¬†You could easily make 50 to 100 biscuits depending how small you make them. ¬†I just didnt have it in me to make such a huge batch so I did a bit of a calculation (probably not such a smart idea after my last post!) and cut the recipe to about a 3rd of the original. ¬†I figure the biggest thing here is to keep the ratio of ingredients the same…

Original recipe:

  • 675g butter
  • 675g flour
  • 225g icing sugar
  • 225g custard powder

My recipe:

  • 250g butter (about 1 and¬†¬ĺ cups)
  • 1 and¬†¬ĺ cups flour
  • ¬Ĺ cup icing sugar
  • ¬Ĺ cup custard powder
  • I also added a splash of vanilla extract

Method:

Preheat oven to 180¬įC and spray baking sheets.

Cream butter, sugar and vanilla extract.

Add flour and custard powder.

Mix until combined.

Roll into small balls and place on baking sheet (the biscuits do spread in the oven so leave a bit of space between them).

Dip a fork into custard powder or flour and press down on each ball, the flour helps the fork to not stick to the dough.

before they go into the oven

Bake for 8-10 min or until golden brown.

Yummy

Banana Bread

July 26, 2012

Paul bought a bunch of bananas from Pick n Pay yesterday.  Problem was, half of them were over ripe and bruised.

So what else is one supposed to but make banana bread…

Ingredients

  • 3 or 4 ripe/over ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (This was the last time I will use store bought vanilla, from now on I will be using my home made vanilla extract)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 1¬†¬Ĺ cups flour

Method

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180¬įC
  • Using a wooden spoon, mix together the mashed banana and melted butter.
  • Mix in the sugar, egg and vanilla.
  • Add the dry ingredients and fold into the wet ingredients.
  • Spray a loaf tin with Spray and Cook and spoon mixture into the tin.
  • Bake for about 1 hour.

 

I found a recipe on Pinterest and decided to try it out tonight.

OMG! That is all!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips (I used a Pick n Pay Finest ganache which was really really yummy and decadent but I would like to try with the choc chips to see what its like)
  • Enough salty cracker (I used Tuk biscuits but next time I will definitely use a ‘stronger’ cracker) to cover the bottom of a baking tray or jelly roll pan

 

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180¬įC.
  • Line the baking tray with foil and spray/grease the foil.
  • Place crackers over the foil in a single layer.

  • Melt butter and sugar and bring to a boil.

 

  • Turn down the heat and allow the¬†mixture¬†to simmer and thicken. ¬†Keep stirring the whole time so it doesnt burn.

 

  • Pour the mixture over the crackers and bake for 10 min.

 

  • Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes.

 

  • Sprinkle chocolate chips over the toffee and allow to melt, spread in an even layer. (or pour the ganache and spread it around to cover the toffee layer)

 

  • Refrigerate¬†until¬†set.
  • Peal the foil of and break into pieces.

P.s. Try not to go into a sugar coma!

On Fridays at Aarons play school the kids bake or cook treats to eat at snack time.  This Friday they made cinnamon toast and I thought I would give it a bash today to eat with our afternoon tea.

Ingredients

  • Slices of bread, I found almost stale bread works best
  • Margarine¬†or butter
  • Sugar
  • Cinnamon

What to do

  • Turn your oven on to 180¬įC
  • Spray&Cook a baking sheet.
  • Butter each slice of bread quite thickly.

  • Place slices of bread on the baking sheet.
  • Mix the sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle all over the bread and butter.

  • Place baking sheet into the oven and leave fr about 10 minutes.
  • Remove from oven once sugar has melted.

  • Enjoy with a cup of tea.