Tag Archives: Recipe

Choc chip, Coconut & Salted Caramel Cookies

It’s been a minute since my last post, but I’m sure you’ve been feeling it too, this manic time of year, as we try to wrap everything up before year-end, really squeeze in as much as possible so we can have some sort of stress-free holiday 🙂

Nonetheless, I’ve still been baking, more cookies than anything else, because as you may know, my passion project has kicked off and I now finally bake to sell, with a strong focus on my popular American-style cookies.

With that said, I’ve been experimenting in the land of cookies and this was just…mind blowing! OK, close your eyes and imagine this…biting into a chewy cookie and with every bite, there are chunks of chocolate and coconut and a salty-sweet surprise – salted caramel! Yum, I know! Give it a go, I promise you’ll just LOVE it!

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Pastéis de Nata

Can you resist a warm pastry? Neither can I… What about if it was filled with a smooth, vanilla-infused custard…I know! Impossible to resist. Well, his is the decadence that is the Portuguese Custard Pastry, the incredibly dreamy Pastéis de Nata!

I thought it would be intimidatingly difficult to create but nope, not when you have ready-made puff pastry and this is so easily available these days, introducing Woolworths and our wonderful smaller businesses like Farmstyle Pastry.

To create the custard, there are a few steps but they are easy enough to create, just prepare to create a few dishes. Trust me, for this delicious pastry, it’s totally worth it!

Try it out and let me know what you think! Enjoy 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons icing sugar 
  • 375g all butter puff pastry (I used the ready made puff pastry from Woolworths)
  • 250g golden caster sugar (I use the Natura Sugars brand)
  • 200ml water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 50g cornflour (Maizena)
  • 500ml milk 
  • Seeds from 1 vanilla pod (try the vanilla seed tub from Cab Foods)

Method:

  1. Mix the flour and icing sugar, and use this to dust the work surface. Roll the puff pastry out to make a 45 x 30cm rectangle. Roll up lengthways to create a long sausage shape.
  2. Cut the pastry into 24 wheels, approximately 1-2cm thick. Roll each wheel with a rolling pin to fit 2 x 12-hole cupcake tins. Lightly grease the cupcake pans and press the pastry circles into the tins, moulding it into the tins to make thin pastry cases. Pop into the fridge to chill until needed.
  3. Preheat the oven to 220C.
  4. Make a sugar syrup by bringing the sugar, water and cinnamon stick to the boil. Reduce until syrupy, then allow to cool. Once cooled, remove the cinnamon stick. Whisk the eggs, egg yolks, and cornflour until smooth in another saucepan.
  5. Heat the milk and vanilla pod seeds in a separate saucepan until just before it begins to boil. Gradually pour the hot milk over the eggs and cornflour, then cook on a low heat, continually whisking.
  6. Add the cooled sugar syrup to the eggs and milk mixture and whisk until slightly thickened.
  7. Pour the custard through a sieve to achieve a smooth texture. Pour into the pastry cases and bake for 15 minutes until the pastry is a lovely golden colour and the custard has darkened.
  8. Cool completely in the tins then remove and serve. You could serve with a sprinkle of icing sugar and cinnamon.
  9. Best to eat when it has been heated! Yum!

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Gingerbread Men

As a parent, you always try to find kid-friendly, enjoyable-for-all recipes. As a baker and a mother, I always try to find a recipe which is fuss-free and easy enough to rope the kids into – without creating too much mess and which wouldn’t flop due to the overhandling that is sure to happen due to kids excitement. Alas, I have found another recipe, perfect for kids to sharpen their baking skills with. It also has so many fun steps for them – creating the dough, pressing out the gingerbread men and later on, decorating them!

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Chocolate Sablé Cookies

I know, I know…another cookie recipe??! It’s quite evident that my cookie jar has been overflowing this past two weeks with all the cookies I’ve been making, which includes a New York style choc chip cookie which I’ll share soon.

Sablé cookies are basically French shortbread cookies and sablé in English means sand, which you’ll completely understand when you make these cookies as the texture of the dough is sand and soil-like. Sounds strange but I promise you these cookies are one of the best you’ll ever have and are chocolate dreams with a magical texture! Have patience with these cookies as well, especially because the texture is so different, you don’t want to over-mix them as they’ll be tough, just enjoy the process and trust me it’ll all be worth while. On that note, I’m going to dig into yet another and leave you with the recipe…

Ingredients:

  • 275g plain flour
  • 40g cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 200g unsalted butter, diced (room temperature)
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 200g light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract OR 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 175g good quality chocolate (to your preference – i.e. dark or milk), finely chopped

Method: 

  1. Sift the flour, cocoa powder and bicarb into a bowl and add the sea salt, then stir together and set aside.

  2. Using an electric mixer, put the butter in the mixing bowl and beat until fluffy and light. Add the sugars and vanilla and beat together for approximately 2 minutes until smooth.

  3. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix until you have a mixture that looks sandy then add the chocolate and mix to combine. The dough should then look like soil; it should not have formed into one large ball of dough. This is the key to getting the correct sable cookie texture. NB: if you mix for too long the biscuits will be tough.

  4. Tip out the mixture onto a work surface and gently press together to form a uniform dough. Divide the dough into two halves and roll into two logs, 4cm thick.

  5. Wrap the dough in cling-wrap and place them in the fridge, allowing to chill for 3 hours.

  6. Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan oven) and line baking trays with baking paper or a silpat. Remove the dough from the fridge and using a thin, sharp knife, cut into rounds about 1cm thick. Place the cookies onto the baking trays and bake for 10–12 minutes until set around the outside but still soft in the center. If you dare, because they’ll be quite hot straight out the oven of course but I definitely recommend snatching one straight out the oven – it is a melt-in-your-mouth chocolate dream.

  7. Leave the cookies to cool on the trays for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  8. Once cool, leave as is or decorate according to your preference. The cookies will keep for up to one week stored in an airtight container.

  9. Enjoy!!!

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Best Vanilla Cupcake

An all time favourite for kiddies parties are cupcakes, simply because the decorative options are endless and can be adapted to any theme.

I’ve made A LOT of cupcakes in my lifetime and this has by far been the best recipe! Quick and easy to make and just the perfect crumb texture and moistness – nothing worse than a dense and heavy cupcake!

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Roasted Banana Muffins

I’m sure many of you are just as shocked at how quickly this year is flying by, I mean good heavens, it’s February already?!

With my daughters growing up, equally as fast, I’ve been including them in most of my baking sessions, which has been fun, adorable, messy and oh my does it test my patience 🙂

One evening as a fun activity to do with my eldest, I decided to make these Roasted Banana Muffins. They are serious banana muffins, which purely derives from the delicious roasting process – you will love the smell that will be wafting through your house…absolutely divine! Continue reading

Chocolate-Overload Chocolate Squares

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Festive season is here with a bang, well at least for the kids it is, my holiday kicks off in a few days time. As last week was filled with school parties and kiddie movie days, I decided to make this chocolate cake inspired by @saadzb Rocky Road Chocolate Cake.

My daughter had lots of fun decorating the cake with all sorts of chocolate goodies such as Astros, Kit-Kat and ofcourse every kids happy place – the land of colourful sprinkles.

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Double Choc & Macadamia Cookies

Happy 2017!!!

Most who I’ve spoken have said that 2016 was a brutal year. With all that is and has happened – the heartbreaking tragedy that is Aleppo, the disgust that is Trump, etc. We are living in quite an…interesting time… Anyway let me not get into politics, 2016 wasn’t all that bad for me, I was blessed with another daughter who is the sweetest, most chilled and content baby ever! Becoming a family of four has also been quite….interesting (chaotic, completely insane and absolutely beautiful all at the same time).

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