Friday Food: Twix Biscuits

A twix biscuitThis morning while I was browsing the blogs I follow I saw The Decorated Cookie had made Twix Cookies on a Stick. Oh my word, I knew exactly what I wanted to bake today: Twix Biscuits!! A Twix is a finger bar of biscuit, topped with caramel and then dipped in milk chocolate: yum. I took a chance and did not chill the dough and it worked perfectly well, so you can go ahead and not chill the dough. I am living on the biscuit edge!!

I made half the recipe, so I measured out half an egg, by whisking the egg and then halving the millilitre measurement. My biscuit cutter measures  about 5cm and I made 20 biscuits, which means the full recipe for the dough would make about 40 biscuits.

I used Jersey caramels and pouring cream to make the caramels and milk chocolate melts for the topping. I loved making these biscuits and I think if I had a teeny tiny circle cutter I would make teeny tiny Twix biscuits, they are so cute!!

I am giving the quantities in cups because that seemed to be the easiest thing to do for em today. It also circumvents the whole making things metric. Still, I am converting the caramel and chocolate because they aren't in cups.

 

Twix Biscuits     makes about 40

 

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup pure icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tspn vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 cups plain flour
  • salt as desired
  • 330g of caramels, approx
  • 20ml pouring cream
  • 360g milk chocolate, melted

 

Preheat the oven to 190*C and line two baking trays with baking paper.

Cream and add egg

Cream the butter and sugar. When it is pale and creamy add the egg and vanilla.

And flour

Once the mixture is combined, slowly add the flour and salt, and mix on a low speed until the dough comes together. I used my hands to bring it together to form a ball. I love the special mixer attachment which scrapes down the side of the bowl, it really does work.

Rolling rolling rooling

I roll out dough between two sheets of baking paper, so as not to need extra flour and generally avoid sticky dough.  I use half the dough, cut out biscuits and then add in some more dough, about 1/4, etc. Cut out the biscuits and arrange on the baking trays. I left about 2cm between the biscuits and they did not spread very much.

And bake

Bake for 15 minutes, turning the trays and swapping them half way through. Cool on the tray for 5 minutes then move to a rack.

Melt

Melt the caramels and cream in the microwave for 90 seconds, mix to combine and then top each biscuit with as much as you choose.

Caramel and choc

Wait for 10-15 minutes until the caramel is set, then spoon or pipe on the melted milk chocolate. And you are done!! Keep the biscuits in an airtight container, I don't think they need to go into the fridge, and enjoy your Twix fix!!

Twix biscuits


Friday Food: Coconut Ice Cupcakes

Coconut ice cupcakeI have already baked these cupcakes once, for MrsDrWho, so I knew they were good. I baked a batch today to say thank you to the Doctors and Nurses at The Vet. When we haven't been to The Vet for a while I like to take them something baked. The recipe is from the May 2018 Taste Magazine. In the magazine they pipe a buttercream swirl as high as an elephant's eye on top of the cupcake. I did not. I am not a fan of huge amounts of buttercream, I prefer the cake to be the star and the icing to be, well, the icing on the cake.

I used the reverse creaming method, from The Scran Line, but you can absolutely cream the butter and sugar, add the eggs and then fold in the other ingredients.

I would not bother colouring the cake batter next time. The coconut cream does not play well with pink colouring once it is baked. I used red and yellow to make the pink and orange buttercream colour. I also think a pink and white swirl would look delightful.

I did colour the buttercream, and I love the way the icing looks. The recipe calls for white chocolate hearts and mini pearl sprinkles, but I eschewed those.

On the whole, an easy bake, and very coconutty!!

 

 

Coconut Ice Cupcakes    makes 12

 

  • 125g butter, softened
  • 155g caster sugar
  • 1 tspn vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 190g self raising flour
  • 45g moist coconut flakes
  • 270ml can of coconut cream

 

For the buttercream:

  • 375g butter, chopped, at room temperature
  • 380g icing sugar mixture, sifted
  • 60ml milk
  • 1-2 tspn vanilla extract
  • pink and orange food colouring

 

Preheat the oven to 150*C  fan-forced and line a muffin tin with paper cases.

Dry

Put the flour and sugar into the bowl and beat until combined.

Add butter coconut

Add the softened butter and continue to beat on a low-medium speed until it forms a sand-like texture. Add the coconut.

Wet

Mix the eggs, coconut cream and vanilla extract and add to the dry ingredients with the mixer on a low speed. Once it comes together, scrape down the bowl and then fold together with a spoon, just to check there are no ingredients hiding on the bottom of the bowl.

Cupcake

Here is where I coloured half the batter pink, I really wouldn't bother marbling the cupcakes. The mixture is perfect for 12 x 60ml cupcakes. I used an Australian tablespoon which is 20ml, and spooned 3 level tablespoons into each paper case.

Bake for 25 minutes, turning the tray halfway through. I left my cakes a tad too long and I feel they were just a little too golden. I have no photo, not because I am hiding them, but because I thought I had taken one. You can see the golden colour in the photo at the top of the post.

Cool in the tin for a few minutes and then carefully lift out and cool completely on a rack.

Butter

While the cupcakes are cooling, or anytime really, make the buttercream. Use a mixer to beat the butter until it is very pale and creamy.

Buttercream

I mixed the vanilla and the milk together. Gradually add the icing sugar and the milk mixture to the butter, alternating, beating on a low speed at first and then higher, until combined.

Colour

Divide the buttercream between two bowls and colour as desired. Prepare a piping bag with a 1cm fluted or star tip. Spoon the pink buttercream down one side of the bag and the orange down the other. I piped a few test swirls until both colours appeared. Pipe swirls, as desired, on top of the cooled cupcakes and then eat!!

Pipe

I find coconut cakes do not keep for a long time. If the climate is warm they need to be kept in the fridge in an airtight container, but I think 2-3 days for these cakes at most.

Cocnut ice cup cake


Friday Food: No, just no.

Due to circumstances beyond my control there is no Friday Food this week. I baked cakes, I took photos, MrsDrWho took these photos, I made people eat the cakes: then we had huge storms and the power went out and then my iPad (containing said photos) decided to break down.

Mermaid cakes

Ironic, isn't it, that the very week I was actually organised, well and ready, The Universe conspired against me. The storms, floods and wind were the worst since 1954 and the rainfall in Hobart, 250mm or 10 inches, was the fourth highest for one day since records began.

Mermaid cake1

I made Mermaid Magic flavoured cupcakes. The Mermaid Magic is a special flavouring from Queen Fine Foods and it tastes like melon and grape. I was inspired by Nic from TheScranLine and his Sea Kween Mermaid Cake and his Sea Kween cupcakes. I used the method for the cupcakes and the Mermaid Magic flavour. The cupcakes were magic: I coloured the batter and piped it into the cupcake papers. I also coloured the buttercream icing and piped that on top with all the colours in the one piping bag.

Mermaid cake cross section

The people tasting the cakes fell into three categories:

  1. Yum, these are delicious, quite sweet, but that suits me
  2. OK, quite nice, I will eat them, but I probably wouldn't choose them again
  3. Blerch

Mermaid cake2

And that's pretty much it!! I loved the process of making and colouring the cake and the icing and Onyi said the texture of the cakes was great

Mermaid cake3

I say so long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, good bye to my iPad and the 4500 photos. I have never used The iCloud because I am afraid of it.  Maybe I should conquer my fear?? Luckily I am very organised photo-wise and I have all the photos from my blog and others I just like, saved on my computer and DVDs. This gives me great impetus to use the photos and make a second photo book.

What else will happen?? Who knows!!!


Friday Food: Salted Butter and Chocolate Chunk Shortbread

Salted butter choc shortbreadI saw this recipe in the May Delicious magazine. Chocolate is a favourite ingredient because I can’t have it: I like to live vicariously though my friends’ enjoyment of the chocolate treats I bake for them. I also liked this recipe because I had all the ingredients except for raw sugar. It is always a good recipe if I have the ingredients. And I did stick to the letter of the recipe in every respect. Pigs do fly. I used an ordinary dark chocolate, not a 70% one. The recipe lets you decide. 

The only comment I have about the recipe, is that it was difficult to slice the chilled biscuit roll. I used a serrated knife at first and there was chocolate biscuit carnage. I switched to a non-serrated knife and it was much better, but the dough is not terribly sticky and I only ended up with 6 biscuits instead of 12, when using half the dough. This did not stop me from baking the flotsam and jetsam. I tasted a tiny piece when they were baked and it was to die for: buttery, brown sugary and salty. Absolutely delicious and it melted in my mouth.

As a bonus I still have a chilled roll of dough in the fridge for any biscuit emergencies!!

 

Salted Butter and Choc Chunk Shortbread         Makes 24

  • 225g salted butter, cut into 1cm chunks
  • 110g raw sugar
  • 60g light brown sugar
  • 1 tspn vanilla extract
  • 375g plain flour
  • 170g dark or bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks, big and small
  •  1 egg
  • Demerera sugar for rolling
  • salt flakes

 

Prepare two baking trays. My new trays are non stick, but I would normally use baking paper.

Cream butter and sugars

Cream the butter, raw and brown sugars and vanilla extract for 3-5 minutes until light and fluffy.

Add flour

Scrape down the sides and then, with the beater on a low speed, add the flour. Beat until just combined.

Add choc chunks

Stir in the chocolate chunks so they are evenly distributed.

Biscuit roll and chill

Spread out some plastic wrap and tip the biscuit dough onto it. The dough does not form a ball or come together at all really. Roll the wrap around the dough and then squash the dough until it forms a log. I wrapped it again in more plastic wrap, and twisted the ends. Refrigerate for 2 hours, or until totally firm.

Before you unwrap the dough, preheat the oven to 175*C.

Coat and slice

Whisk the egg in a small bowl. I poured some Demerara sugar into a tray so I could more easily coat the dough. Brush the outside of the biscuit log with the egg and then roll in the Demerara sugar so that it is well coated. Use a non-serrated knife to slice 1 1/2 cm thick slices of dough to make biscuits. This is the half of the dough I tried to cut with the serrated knife.

Slice and bake

Put the nicely sliced biscuits on the tray, they do not really spread at all, so you can place them just 2cm apart. Sprinkle with as much, or as little, salt as you like and bake for 12-15 minutes or until the edges begin to brown. I baked mine for 18 minutes. Cool on a rack and then enjoy!

Salted butter choc chunk shortbread

 


Friday Food: Chocolate Malteser Fudge

Malteser fudgePerhaps the one recipe I can point to as inspiration is Nigella's Freezer Fudge , but there were lots of three ingredient fudge recipes floating around at Easter. It is just melting and mixing and you can add any kind of extra chocolate, nuts, fruit or any combination. I used ordinary dark chocolate, but you can use a combination of dark and milk, even white. You can add some vanilla extract, or even some alcohol to complement the chocolate bar used. To speed gift, you put the fudge in the freezer for two hours, which is what I did this morning. And then it needs to be stored in the fridge or freezer. It will keep for quite a long time in the freezer. 

I layered the fudge and Maltesers and when you cut the fudge it is a feast for the eyes.

 

 

Chocolate Malteser Fudge           makes 36 pieces?

  • 440g good chocolate, milk/dark
  • 1 395g tin of sweetened condensed milk
  • 140g packet Maltesers or chocolate of your choice
  • 1 tspn vanilla extract, or other flavouring

 

Line a square or rectangular container with baking paper. I used an empty Twinings tea box, which is about 15 x 15cm or 6 inches square.

Combine

Break the chocolate into smaller pieces and combine in a microwave safe bowl.

Melt

Melt in short bursts, 1 minute is good, and stop melting before you think you should: it is good to stir the last few chocolate lumps until the fudge is smooth. The microwave I used is 800W and I melted for a total of 4 minutes on High.

Layer

Once the fudge is smooth, add any flavours and then pour half the chocolate into the lined container. Make a layer of Matlesers, and I used some Baci too, and then cover with the remaining fudge and top with any remaining Maltesers.

Cover and refrigerate for about 4 hours, or freeze for 2.

Ready to slice

Cut into pieces and then enjoy!!

Malteser chocolate fudge


The Fogs Of War

We have been very busy because it is The School Holidays and perhaps that is why I had a migraine last night. I have to be truly bedridden before we miss a walk and Gilly and Hedy had a lovely walk with Rafa this morning. The mornings are quite foggy, and the fog is so thick you need to use your windscreen wipers.D3458A22-9739-4299-A47E-675424DC3875

Hedy Lamarr and Rafa conduct a series of games. There is a lot of facing off, running and then engaging.

440BAABE-9407-4AA2-BBAC-5A92BF2009A5

Gilly and Hedy love the cooler weather. Gilly is especially happy and wags her tail and even “plays” with Rafa for micro-bursts. Gilly is so good, but she waits until she sees the prize before she asks with her paw. Hedy is already asking non-stop because she believes I have a treat!!

MrsDrWho took me on a short road trip to visit Auntie and Uncle Dutch and Lo, The Young Dutches and Kinder Zoe came for lunch. There are no photos of them, because, privacy, but here are Poppy, Auntie and Uncle’s dog, and new puppy for Zoe: Daisy-Belle. Daisy-Belle slept in MrsDrWho’s arms. She is such a cute puppy. 

1A9A61F6-B866-42F3-B6C8-B5A2B132289D

I sewed two more tiny Hold It bins by Made by Dana. The yellow for Kinder Zoe and the Bunny outer fabric for The Dutches. 

8D184CB4-6E3D-4941-8DE1-D5A5AA8C34F6

 

I also made some Honeycomb Malteser Fudge. Auntie Dutch loves honeycomb but I thought it would just dissolve into the fudge, but the chocolate covered Maltesers might just be OK. And they were. It is such an easy recipe: melt together one tin of sweetened condensed milk and 440g of whatever chocolate you like (I chose half milk and half dark) and stir until smooth. I let it cool a little and then made layers of fudge, Maltesers, fudge and then pressed the remaining lollies into the top. I chilled it in the freezer and we were good to go. This fudge needs to be kept in the fridge, and in theory if you use a 20cm (8 inch) tin, you can cut 64 pieces.

155B9A0B-2D44-4BF8-A3DD-01A8AEFD9EF9

I fixed my Star Wars dress, after Hedy’s paw ripped the neck. I unpicked the lining at the waistband and then laid the dress so that the lining matched the lining and the Star Wars the Star Wars, and then sewed a fish eye dart really. The seam is there if you know to look for it, but because the fabric is so busy, I think it works.

BEBCAED9-E368-4C8A-9EB3-AEA53B4AD8FE

I finally knitted Mr HouseOf’s birthday hat. I was seduced by a Caron Cupcake, but the pattern on the label was for a child’s hat, so I worried if there would be enough meterage for an adult hat. I used some lovely black Merino Magic for a double width band, and in the end there was plenty left. I shall use it to make a striped hat. Hedy may have stolen the pom-pom from the bedside table. I am not sure if Mr HouseOf wants it, or not?

D5E41C8C-5A61-4A9D-93D3-4B73569D4154

When I talk to The Nextdoor Neighbors at the fence, Hedy Lamarr likes to dig the hole she is working on. It is fine, that is the dedicated hole digging area. However, if you are in range, she will shower you with dirt. Poor Lorelai Gilmore was standing there very innocently, when she came within range:

384B71AD-3ECF-4FBE-BF1E-17C966592329

Hedy could not care, and poor Gilly needs to have her head wipes and be cuddled. She is very patient with Hedy.

915C0483-6B7A-42B1-907E-FFEDCE9002D5

I feel so much better now the weather is cooler, even though I had a migraine. I am lucky that mine only last two days and I am allowed to tailor my hospital-at-home drugs to suit the pain level. I am even happier that I have worked out how to blog using The TypePad mobile platform. I emailed myself a video from my phone to the iPad, then I saved the video and used the YouTube app to upload it and then copied the URL. I feel very technologically competent.

Tomorrow is ANZAC Day and I plan to bake some kind of ANZAC caramel slice. I never feel very included with all the emphasis on mateship and men. I do remember those who have served in any capacity, at home or abroad, in the Forces or not. I am very cross right now that Brendan Nelson wants to spend Half A Billion Dollars on an underground hall for the War Memorial. If that much money is there to be spent, we should be spending it on people, the people who have been negatively affected by their service. If you’re willing to put your life on the line, I think we should be willing to give you all the money you need to help you transition back to civilian life. Another display won’t help anyone. They could just squoosh everything together a bit more.

I need to get my act together and sew a dress before the month ends. I have six days.......

PS When I preview this post it looks weird, so please excuse any weirdness. I don’t know how to fix it.


Friday Food: Maple, Apple and Pecan Cake

Apple pecan and maple syrup cakeQuelle surprise!! Friday Food returns. I found this cake in the April BBC GoodFood magazine. Onyi actually helped me choose what to bake a few weeks ago and I took the cake to MrsDrWho’s for tea.  I stopped at Onyi’s house on the way home so she could taste the fruits of her labour. The cake was declared a success! You create a home made apple purée, though you could use one from the supermarket, and add pecans and maple syrup- the real thing, not the flavoured syrup.

The cake is filled and topped with a simple maple buttercream and embellished with a pecan sprinkle. If you prefer not to use the buttercream, the cake is still moist, tender and very tasty.

I didn’t have a 20cm springform tin and so I used an ordinary 20cm tin, and made sure the baking paper went well above the sides of the tin. I had no trouble removing the cake. I could not buy the golden icing sugar the recipe called for, so I used ordinary pure icing sugar.

All in all, this is a delicious cake which is just a little bit fancy. I think it would need to be kept in the fridge, but served at room temperature, and because of the apple purée it will keep for just a few days.

There was a smudge on the camera lens, so consequently there is a smudge on some photos. This will not be a surprise either.

 

Apple, Pecan and Maple Cake       Serves 10

 

For the apple purée:

  • 250g peeled and chopped cooking apples, I used Granny Smiths

 

For the cake

  • 115g butter, softened
  • 75g light brown sugar
  • 75ml maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 225g plain flour
  • 1 1/2 tspn bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tspn baking powder
  • 100g pecans, chopped

 

For the buttercream:

  • 125g softened butter
  • 225g pure icing sugar
  • 60ml maple syrup

 

For the pecan sprinkle:

  • 30g pecans
  • 1 tbspn light brown sugar (20ml)

 

 

Apple puree

To make the apple purée, I chose to microwave the apples in a covered container for 8 minutes and then I just used a spoon to stir and it was miraculously a purée. The recipe says to cook the apples in a pan, with a splash of water, for about 10 minutes and then purée with a hand held blender. You need 225g of purée. Once it is made, allow to cool to room temperature.

 Grease and then line the tin with baking paper and preheat the oven to 180C or 160*C fan-forced.

Cream butter and sugar

Begin the cake by creaming the butter and sugar until it is creamy and lighter in colour. Mix the egg and maple syrup together and gradually incorporate them.

Egg and maple syrup

Sift the flour, bicarb and baking powder together and stir in the pecans. 

Pecans and apple

Add these to the cake batter, alternating with the apple purée, and stir gently until well combined.

Batter and tin prepared

Spoon into the tin, smooth the top, and then bake for 40 minutes. Cool in the tin and then remove to a rack.

And bake

While the cake cools, make the buttercream.

Buttercream

Beat the butter until it is soft and then add the icing sugar and beat until smooth. Gradually add the maple syrup and you are done.

Pecan sprinkle

Make the pecan sprinkle by either finely chopping the nuts and stirring in the brown sugar, or using a food processor.

Two layers

I used my cake leveller to cut the cake in half and then I carefully placed them side by side, with the top layer upside down, so I could more easily and accurately put the layers back together.

Fill

Spread half of the buttercream on the bottom layer, I used a warm knife, and then put the top layer back. Spread the other half of the buttercream on top, and then the pecan sprinkle is used the edge the cake, although you can decorate as you wish.

  Top and sprinkle

I think the cake improved a little and was more delicious the next day, but you can eat it as soon as it is ready!!

  Apple pecan maple cake


Come back to the Five And Dime, BillyBall, BillyBall.

This blog post has been siting in my Drafts since the 2nd of April. Tonight Australian Story on The ABC was about Emma Betts, a young woman who died from melanoma. She had a blog called Dear Melanoma, and sometimes I need something to remind me to practise gratitude. It is not that I am not grateful, but complacency is such an easy thing to slowly slip into. I haven’t used the very long time I have been ill to do anything really worthy, but life has been worth living. We are lying in bed (again) and I decided I would not wait for the right time to post to my blog, I would find some photos and do it now. No one expects The Spanish Inquisition: or decent photos on my blog!


Lorelai Gilmore and I are in bed and Miss Hedy Lamarr is off somewhere creating chaos, or in her Little Box. We are watching Caught Out about the Cricket cheating in the Test against South Africa. One of the people said that we are all sullied by the behaviour of Smith, Warner and Bancroft: that as a nation we have to live with the consequences. I do not feel sullied. Cricket is not what it used to be. It used to be on The ABC and no one wore coloured clothes. I do hope that the men are being well cared for, I am worried about their mental state. 

But I don’t feel represented by men playing cricket, or mateship or ‘if you’re not with us you’re against us’. Sadly, I do feel represented by our inhuman treatment of refugees, by the way we have decreased our foreign aid, eg.

We should be more outraged by the lies and obfuscation of our politicians. That’s my two cents’ worth on that topic.

41607823-490D-4979-88C6-6A94CA32E0C1

In good news, I have sewn a new dress: the Beetle Dress. I bought four or five panels of fabric on super special at The Spotlight. Each panel had some tropical leaves, two kinds of lattice and two Christmas beetles. I managed to cut out the pieces to my satisfaction and I love the surprise beetles in the back of the skirt. I tweaked my Upton Dress pattern by moving the shoulder seam forward 2.5cm, moving the side bust darts back 5cm and lowering the under bust darts by a half. Luckily I have short legs and so I was able to eke out the skirt lengthwise. 

I wanted to wear my new dress to WeeJock and Besse’s Dad’s birthday party. WeeJock and Bessie’s Mum was very worried I would be unwell, or unable to walk the steep paths to the venue. In the end I rested and was relatively well and able to go. Jolly good thing I did, because it was a surprise wedding!!! Oh we were all Very Surprised and I had enough tissues to share with my friends when we all cried joyfully. It was such a wonderful evening and two wonderful people shared their special day with us all. Now my dress has been renamed as “My Wedding Dress”, which confuses come people and amuses me no end.

Hedy has had FlippyFloppy Ear and we bought the very expensive new $130 tablets that aren’t steroids for her. She was vaccinated too. Dr Rob says that,when she is not being excited, her heartbeat is nice and slow and she is incredibly fit. Gilly came too, of course, and they are both nice and slim. I always feel happy about that. 

77995422-CD7B-49D7-ABC0-7DA41D50F217

This year I have been unwell, really unwell almost all the time. My immune system is compromised and that is why I am poorly. I have missed out on an Easter Day trip and other outings, I’ve not sewed or knitted very much at all, there has been an awful lot of sleeping and the one thing that is sancrosanct is The Labradors’ Walk. Five times a week we go for a walk, we love going, and I save some, or all, of my energy for that. I hope the cooler Autumn weather brings me some better health.

CA606040-92F9-4AC7-A9E3-73BD15BD2F15

I have at last finished a pair of socks for my next door neighbour. The Blueberry Choc Shake Socks 2018 are knitted in Opal Fresh and Juicy. Opal sock wool is the work horse of sock wools, and though not the softest, it is comfortable to wear and lasts seemingly forever. 

Someone stole Hedy Lamarr’s red BillyBall when we were at the dam. She has a new blue BillyBall and she loves it. Thank goodness.

CEAFCA83-22BA-4B19-B8D8-056D66F41D89

However, her love is ephemeral. On Friday we met Sandy’s mum and her grandsons. They had a foam soccer ball. Hedy wanted that ball so badly, that she stole it. Luckily the boys played with the BillyBall: all’s well that ends well. She worked very hard to fit the ball in her mouth.

C8AA959E-CF91-450A-8F75-AE2DD1C7B58B

I sewed two Hold It bins from Made by Dana. I can’t work out how to make clicky links on the iPad tonight, sorry. I am very happy with them, and I plan to sew some more.

A41D3023-5352-47E8-A01B-489E6C844F65

I am knitting a cardigan for Kinder Zoe. Her favourite colour is yellow, and I love this buttery colour. I am making Pixie Dust by Lioness Arts. It is a top down raglan with a lovely lace pattern in the increases, repeated across the whole body.

FDE22EDD-0249-4E53-B9EB-66B128C66C22

I baked a layered chocolate cake with whipped butterscotch schnapps ganache for MrsDrWho’s morning tea at school. I used my cake levelling tool, so that made me happy. The day was very warm and the ganache would not set, so I had to put the cake in the freezer and it went slightly wonky. I think the women at school used the roses to make it look beautiful.

89BDCFED-F584-4161-BE8A-7DA790770D1B

There, I feel I have achieved something positive. I only skimmed before I posted, so please excuse any errors.


Friday Food: Raspberry Almond Crumble Galettes

Rasp almond crumble galetteIt has been some time. I have been quite poorly this year and right now I am still trying to stave off another cold. And hoping it won't turn into a sinus infection, though I have a prescription for antibiotics in my bag.

I baked these raspberry almond crumble galettes with raspberry fool on the 3rd of March, and I cannot tell a lie, I accidentally deleted a folder from my camera so I had to do the pastry and crumble again this afternoon.

The recipe is from the Australian Gourmet Traveller magazine, and I can highly recommend it. It looks posh and luxe and complicated, but it's actually really easy to make. You can make the pastry part up to a week early and then just crisp the pastry in the oven before serving if it is a little limp.

I had no proper basil or mint, so I cheated twice: I used the tiny tiny basil leaves at the top of one sad stalk, and I cut little leaves from parsley, just for the photos!! I used half cream, half creme fraiche and whipped them together for the raspberry fool. You could also use mascarpone, or just all cream. There were no pink peppercorns to be found in all of the city and so I just ignored that part of the recipe. You could use any berry in the fool, whatever is in season.

For the first galettes I used Careme butter puff pastry, and for the second Pampas butter puff. MrsDrWho said she really couldn't discern any difference in taste. I could see that the Careme pastry had a much higher puff, and more layers. It is twice as expensive, but for a special occasion, I would use the Careme.

 

Raspberry Almond Crumble Galette    serves 6

  • 375g butter puff pastry
  • 1/2 egg lightly beaten
  • 40g plain flour
  • 40g caster sugar
  • 30g butter
  • pinch of salt
  • 40g flaked almonds

 

To embellish

  • icing sugar for dusting
  • basil leaves
  • extra whole raspberries

 

For the peppercorn topping

  • 1/2 tspn crushed pink peppercorns
  • 20g caster sugar
  • pinch of salt

 

For the raspberry fool:

  • 125g raspberries
  • juice 1/2 lemon
  • 40g pure icing sugar: 2 lots of 20g
  • 400g creme fraiche
  • seeds from 1 vanilla pod, or 1 tspn vanilla extract

 

Preheat the oven to 200*C and line a baking tray with baking paper.

Prepare pastry

Cut six 10cm rounds from pastry and place on the tray, dock with a fork and brush with egg. I am using the Pampas pastry in this photo, the Careme is rectangular.

Crumble

To make the crumble, put the flour, caster sugar and salt into a small bowl and rub in the butter to form coarse crumbs. Stir in the almonds and divide equally between the pastry rounds.

Crumble and bake

Bake for 15-18 minutes, turning the tray half way through, until golden brown and risen. Cool on a wire rack and dust with the extra icing sugar.

Crush raspberries

Begin the fool by crushing the raspberries in a bowl with the lemon juice and HALF the icing sugar. Set aside.

Raspberry fool

Whisk the creme fraiche, vanilla and remaining icing sugar to soft peaks and then ripple in the raspberry mixture.

Mix the peppercorns, salt and caster sugar in a bowl.

To serve, top a galette with raspberry fool, scatter with extra raspberries and pink peppercorn mixture and add a basil leaf or two.

Galette two pastries  two ways

(The Careme pastry, on the left, has risen higher then the Pampas pastry, on the right)


Take This Job and Bucket.

Thank you for all the lovely birthday wishes for Hedy Lamarr. Hedy has been a rascal while we were out. She has been somewhere grubby, I don't know where.

What chewed the buckets

And she has chewed the new buckets. They only cost a dollar each, but these are buckets three and four. One and two went into the bin last week.  The buckets fill up with rain water, and those marks in the aqua bucket are where Hedy likes to pop a front paw in, and try to empty the bucket.

Buckets

Lorelai Gilmore would never chew a bucket, look at how good she is, and how lovely!!! Autumn is four days old and already the mornings are crisper and the nights are closing in. Gilly runs to greet Rafa and then runs back to tell me she has greeted him. So much running for an older dog.

Gilly loves the cool walk weather

Oh and back to Hedy's birthday, we assigned comments ordinal numbers as per the post and then employed a random number chooser, and the bag and chocolate treat goes to: Deb!! I know Deb in real life and so this will perhaps give us a much needed excuse to catch up for coffee, tea and cake!!

Random number chooser

We had two medical emergencies this week. On Wednesday Gilly was bitten on the leg by a wasp floating in the paddle pool. We rang the vet and they saw us within twenty minutes. Here are The Labradors waiting for Dr Michelle to bring back Gilly's antihistamine injection. Because she takes Imuran to suppress her immune system we have to be very careful of her treatment.

Where is Dr Michelle

Is Dr Michelle coming back?? Gilly and Hedy think they hear her......

Is dr michelle coming

Yes, she's here and she has liver treats!!!

Dr michelle and she has a treat

There were quite a few wasps, not a nest, but enough to be a worry. My neighbour helped me to hang some wasp traps. Hang them Very High. But not high enough. Somehow Hedy jumped up and ate the wasp trap contents. It was a hard decision to make: should Gilly run the risk of being bitten again, or should we use a wasp trap? There was less than 1/2 a teaspoon of the wasp powder in the trap. We rang the vet and they rang poison hotlines and thankfully, a dog Hedy's size would not be affected. But they both had to skip dinner, as the vet said not to induce vomiting. The lovely chemist at the corner says she knows of a very stinky, but safe, wasp trap filler, and so I shall be able to use that. I feel terrible, but I truly had no idea Hedy could jump higher than I could reach. I baked the vet a very large Banoffee sheet cake as a thank you, for they didn't charge me at all for their advice.

Kimmy and hack

I know it is difficult to believe, but I am about to sew a dress. The Kimmy Dress was one of this month's Seamwork patterns. I really like it, and I am going to make the hack with a flared skirt, a longer flared skirt. MrsDrWho's mum brought this material back from Singapore. It is less than a metre wide, so I have bought some plain green to be a border at the hem. The fabric itself has borders, and I want to try use them as well. I'll also have to add a dart, as I need an FBA. And I know I am behind the times, but I finally realised The Officeworks is able to print out patterns in PDF in A0. Thanks to Beth who talked me through the email process. No more taping 32 pages together, I am happy to pay $8-50 for two sheets.

Kimmy fabric and A0 pattern

Lorelai Gilmore and Hedy Lamarr are very accommodating and stopped half way down the steps so I could take a photo for The Blog. On the right is a tortoise... I want to say bird bath, but it is really a kind of teeny tiny pond that Hedy likes to drink from. The gardener comes tomorrow, so there will be some at long last weeding and trimming. The grape vine is taking over the entrance.

Waiting while I take a photo for the blog

I have three new balls of sock wool, so I am eager to finish the socks I am working on. I just have the foot and then the toe.

New wool

I also have a new-to-me phone, an iPhone 4. WeeJock and Bessie's family had a passing down of phones and I was lucky enough to be on the end of the line.

New phone

My older phone costs just $9 and really just did texting. My new phone might be eight years old, but it is so exciting to be able to text my mum and not say: "I am knitting rocks today", or "Fear Mum". I can iMessage and I can add photos to The Instagram. I am so very grateful!!

MrsDrWho and I watched the last episode of Star Trek Discovery this afternoon. I loved the entire series. There were parts that shocked us with their unexpectedness, and the plot was riveting. The characters were both familiar and new and I especially liked that it was a darker version, more like DS9 than TNG. The cliffhanger ending has us eagerly awaiting the next season. And the theme music, very good music and the music over the last credits was perfect.

The weather has been cooler and I have been feeling much better, though I see it will be 28*C at the end of the week. Bah humbug.