Random Post#10: Almond and Strawberry Roulade!

71oqQcAQ13c213238373431323FEvfehL8_1309422111

During our trials the other day, I tested out a recipe for a cake that the Bride & Groom had requested. I’m not going to lie… it was completely disastrous, & nothing like what they had specified. What they had told us they wanted was something that wasn’t actually a cake. At least not in the traditional sense. They didn’t want chocolate. In fact, they wanted it light, fruity with strawberry, not too sweet, and a layer of almond nougat somewhere in the middle. What i ended up was this very dense layer of vanilla-caramel custard which was quite sweet, a layer of almond meringue which didn’t really stand up against the other flavors, and a very sticky layer of strawberry. It was miles off. I assure you, i was not discouraged. i decided to divide & conquer! i undertook the task of pulling apart & reassembling the recipe to achieve exactly what they asked for. I on the other hand decided that maybe they didn’t actually know what they wanted (sometimes we have an idea, but don’t know how to visualize it). With that in mind, I decided to take the specifications & flavors that they   had outlined for us & give them a new edge. In my mind, the roulade was the perfect way to go. Technically it’s a cake, but the majority of it is whipped egg whites & yolks which gives it this wonderfully spongy & light texture. I also did half the dry ingredients with almond flour & added a touch of bitter almond to really bring out the flavor. Not overly sweet, not too cakey, kind of perfect. Then there’s thechantilly cream filling, light, fluffy, very little sugar, perfect to add a hint of vanilla too. & lets not forget the light layer of strawberry to add some intensity to those more subtly flavors & textures. It took me three attempts to get it exactly the way I wanted it, but overall I think I hit the nail on the head. Eirini & I will be presenting both options to them on Wednesday at the tasting along with the rest of the menu. Wish me luck! This was the final result!

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons plain flour, sifted
  • 250g strawberries, hulled, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pure icing sugar, sifted
  • 250g mascarpone cheese
  • 2 tablespoons flaked almonds, toasted
  • Pure icing sugar, to serve

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease a 25cm x 30cm Swiss roll pan. Line with baking paper. Dust lightly with flour.
  • Using an electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar together for 5 minutes or until thick and creamy. Using a large metal spoon, fold flour into egg mixture until just combined. Spread mixture over prepared pan. Smooth surface. Bake for 5 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  • Turn sponge onto a sheet of baking paper. Carefully peel away baking paper lining. Allow to cool. Mash strawberries roughly with a fork. Add icing sugar and stir to combine. Fold strawberry mixture into mascarpone. Spread mixture over sponge, leaving a 1cm border. Using baking paper as a guide, roll up sponge from short end to enclose filling.
  • Place sponge, seam side down, on a plate. Top with almonds. Dust with icing sugar. Serve.

Random post#7: Peanut Butter Chocolate Eclair Cake!

IMG_70521

Now this takes it up a notch., this recipe has barely any ingredients! If you are a fan of an eclair or profiterole, this is definite a crowd pleaser.

Ingredients:

  • 1 box of chocolate graham crackers
  • 3-1/4 ounces of vanilla instant pudding
  • 1 cup of peanut butter
  • 3-1/2 cup of milk
  • 8 oz of container of cool-whip
  • 1 can of chocolate frosting

Preparation:

  •  Spray the bottom of a 9×13 pan with cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pan with whole graham crackers. In bowl of an electric mixer, mix pudding with milk and peanut butter; beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Fold in whipped topping. Pour half the pudding mixture over graham crackers. Place another layer of whole graham crackers on top of pudding layer. Pour over remaining half of pudding mixture and cover with another layer of graham crackers.
  • Heat the container of prepared frosting, uncovered in the microwave for 1 minute. Pour over the top of the cake.
  • Refrigerate for at least 12 hours before serving.
  • Enjoy! and please show some love by liking or commenting!

			

BlueBerry Cake- An australian great!

blueberry-cake-ck-1734304-l

This is a nice tender cake – one of my Mom’s specialties from years ago. It is a great cake to take along to a picnic. This cake is perfect for afternoon tea. Use your favorite berries, fresh or frozen, to try different variations.

Makes 12 squares
Preparation time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 25 mins

Ingredients:

Cake

  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) skim milk
  • 1/2 cup low fat natural yoghurt
  • 2 tbs canola oil*
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup wholemeal flour
  • 1/2 cup raw sugar
  • 1 tbs baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries

Topping:

  • 2 tbs caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbs finely chopped (not ground) walnuts
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 200°C (180°C fan forced). Spray a 20cm square cake tin with olive or canola oil cooking spray.

 

  •  To make the cake, combine egg, milk, yoghurt and oil in a bowl and whisk until smooth. Sift flours, sugar and baking powder into a bowl. Stir dry and liquid ingredients together until just blended. Do not over beat.

 

  • Fold in the blueberries and transfer batter to the prepared cake tin.

 

  •  To make the topping, combine sugar, walnuts and cinnamon in a small bowl and sprinkle over the cake batter.

 

  •  Bake 20-25 minutes, or until the top is golden and a tester comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes. Cut into 12 squares and serve warm.

 

 

 

 

Random recipe#5: Mint Chocolate Cheesecake!

Mint-Chocolate-Cheesecake

I love to make cheesecakes and frequently give them as gifts or donate them to fund-raisers! the mint version is so addictive, its flavour is so unique, the texture is unbeatable!

Ingredients:

  • 185g unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup (25g) good-quality cocoa, sifted
  • 1 cup (220g) caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup (150g) plain flour, sifted
  • 50g dark chocolate, melted, cooled

Mint topping:

  • 1/3 cup (75g) caster sugar
  • 1 bunch mint, leaves picked
  • 250g cream cheese
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 100ml thickened cream
  • 2-3 drops green food colouring

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 160°C and grease and line a 20cm square loose-bottomed cake pan with baking paper.
  • Place butter, cocoa, sugar, eggs and flour in a bowl and mix well to combine. Press firmly into the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes or until set. Allow to cool completely.
  • Meanwhile, for the mint topping, place sugar, mint and 1/2 cup (125ml) water in a saucepan over low heat and stir until the sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium and simmer for 3 minutes, then set aside to cool completely. Strain the sugar syrup into a jug, discarding the solids. Place the cream cheese in a food processor and whiz for a few seconds to soften. Add cooled sugar syrup, eggs, peppermint extract, cream and food colouring and process until smooth.
  • Pour the cheesecake mixture into cake pan then tightly wrap the base of the pan with foil to make it watertight. Place the cheesecake in a deep baking dish and fill with enough boiling water to come halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Bake for 25 minutes or until topping is just set – the cake may have a slight wobble but it will firm on cooling. Remove from the oven and cool completely, then chill for 2 hours or until firm.
  • Cut cheesecake into slices, drizzle over the cooled melted chocolate and serve.

Don’t forget to check out my new blog http://spoonfulofflavours.wordpress.com/

Lamingtons

3352_l

This is a must taste australian favorite. 

Ingredients:

  • melted butter, to grease
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour
  • 1/2 plain flour
  • 1/2 cup of cornflour
  • 6 eggs  (approx 59 grams)
  • 1 cup of caster sugar
  • 1 tbs of boiling water
  • 2 cups of desiccated coconut

Chocolate Icing:

  • 2 cups of icing sugar mixture
  • 1/3 cup of cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup of milk
  • 1/4 cup of boiling water

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 160°C. Brush a 19 x 29cm (base measurement) lamington pan with melted butter to lightly grease. Line the base and sides with non-stick baking paper, allowing it to overhang slightly.
  • Sift the combined flours together into a large bowl. Repeat twice.
  • Use an electric beater to whisk the eggs in a large clean, dry bowl until thick and pale. Gradually add the sugar, 1 tbs at a time, whisking well after each addition until mixture is thick and sugar dissolves.
  • Sift the combined flours over the egg mixture. Pour the boiling water down the side of the bowl. Use a large metal spoon to gently fold until just combined. Pour mixture into the prepared pan and use the back of a spoon to smooth the surface. Bake in oven for 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Turn cake onto a wire rack, cover with a clean tea towel and set aside overnight to cool
  • Trim the edges of the cake and cut into 15 squares. Spread the coconut over a plate.
  • To make the chocolate icing, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder into a medium bowl. Add the milk and water and stir until smooth.
  • Use 2 forks to dip 1 cake square into the warm icing to evenly coat. Allow any excess icing to drip off. Use your fingers to roll the cake in the coconut to evenly coat, then place on a wire rack. Repeat with the remaining cake squares, icing and coconut. Set aside for 1 hour or until icing sets.