Tag Archives: Cake

Heavenly Nougat


Welcome back to my Kitchen Corner…

Today we are trying out a twist on the original Jamie Oliver Chocolate celebration cake…and this one it’s not just a cake, it’s the heaven of nougat!

You can find the original recipe here!

I have never made nougat before, but I must say that if you ever try it, you will never go back to buy it again 🙂 …well, at least that’s how I feel.

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The original Jamie Oliver recipe is quite different from what I have made, but then again that is the beauty of baking…no limitations on experimenting and discovering new combinations 🙂

Before you start, I have one advice…be ready to eat it all, because you will not be able to stop 🙂

Continue reading Heavenly Nougat

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‘A bite of pure indulgence’


Welcome back to my beautiful and tasty Kitchen Corner 🙂

Lamingtons
Lamingtons

Today I will share with you one of my favourite recipes for an easy, quick and delicious dessert!

Ingredients:

 Cake
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
Chocolate Icing
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1 cup milk
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3 cups powdered sugar
You will need about 2 cups of shredded coconut to cover the squares.
Lamington with cranberries

Method:

Preheat oven to 180 C.
Grease and line the bottom of a square pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix everything really well.
Using a bowl of an electric mixer or a hand mixer, combine well the sugar and eggs. Gradually add oil and vanilla and mix until just smooth.
Slowly add half the flour mixture while the mixer is on; mix until just blended, then add the buttermilk. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, until everything is blended.
I’ve used one square baking pan, but if you have two small ones, just divide the batter between the two.
 Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Once done, let the cake cool completely. Cut the cake in small squares.
To prepare the chocolate icing, melt the butter and mix it with milk. Whisk in cocoa powder until completely dissolved. Add the powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, and whisk slowly until thickened. Let it cool for about 5 minutes.
To assemble, put the coconut in a bowl and set aside. 
Use forks to dip and turn a cake square into the chocolate icing to coat all sides. Allow excess icing to drip off. Then place the square in coconut. Sprinkle coconut on the top, then start turning in coconut to coat other sides. Place the square on a wire rack and allow to sit for at least 15 minutes to set.
Repeat the same process with all of the remaining squares.

As I’ve baked the lamingtons, I was thinking that next time I could add some dried cranberries into the batter and make it a bit more interesting:)

It was a sunny weekend so we’ve decided to make a delicious orange and mango smoothie next to the beautiful lamingtons!

If you never made lamingtons before, this is your time…or maybe you would like to give it a twist…a sweet cranberry twist 🙂

Enjoy!

Lamington with smoothie

Bon appetit!

Your Girl with an Apron,

Julia

xxx

My Red Page © 2015 All rights reserved

‘Cool Summer Dessert’


Have I got a treat for You:)

Pavlova with strawberry sauce
Pavlova with strawberry sauce

I don’t make Pavlova very often…and I don’t know why, because it’s one of the easiest recipes out there and one of the best desserts you can have on a summer afternoon:)

Ingredients: 4 egg whites, 200 g caster sugar, pinch of salt, 400 g fresh strawberries, 2 nectarines, 1 banana, 100 ml cream, 3 tbp icing sugar or ready sweet whipped cream.

Method: Use a hand mixer to beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks, add the salt, then add the sugar slowly while the mixer is at full power for about 8 minutes until the meringue looks glossy.

Spread it in form of a circle creating a crater on the baking tray. I’ve used a baking tray with a silicon sheet. Bake in the oven for about 1 hour.

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Once out of the oven, let it cool and make the cream by whipping up the double cream with the icing sugar. Spread the cream over the meringue, cut the fruits in small chunks and spread over the top.

To make the strawberry sauce, I’ve used 250 g of the strawberry and blitzed it until I’ve got a smooth fresh sauce, which I’ve served with every piece of Pavlova.

The best way to serve Pavlova is very cold…it’s absolutely deliciously refreshing:)

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Enjoy a beautiful cool summer delight:)

Bon appetit, dessert lovers!

Your Girl with an Apron,

Julia

xxx

My Red Page © 2015 All rights reserved

‘All you need is Love…and Chocolate’ Day #4


A great start to the week for my Photo 101 assignment – Treasure & Close-up

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It’s hard to find only one thing you treasure…

But it’s easy to choose, when it has chocolate:)

Enjoy my journey through the Secret Cupboard filled with Temptations!


I am also posting for Day 4 in my ‘5 Day 5 Photo’ challenge, initiated by kyrosmagica!

Thank you for the nomination:)

It’s my turn to nominate…so, Amanda from Surprising lives, if you wish to take the challenge…ready, steady…snapshot:)

Your Chocolate Lover,

Julia

xxx

My Red Page ® 2015 All rights reserved

‘The Pastry Lesson’


Welcome to The Sweet Corner:)

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Today’s post is somehow a more detailed addition to one of my previous posts about chocolate tart!

The recipe had such a good response…obviously because it’s absolutely delicious:)…and some of you asked for more details about making your own pastry, so here we go…your pastry lesson!

For the full recipe just click Chocolate tart🙂

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I’ve always believed pastry is something that only experienced chefs make…I was so wrong:)

The first time I had a go, to be honest…it turned out great…but the second and third, it was awful! I wanted to give up and never make pastry again:))) I’ve researched some of the best recipes out there and came to the conclusion that I will have to find a recipe that works by combining some ideas.

Pastry recipe:  225g plain flour, pinch salt, 2 tablespoons icing sugar, 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 140g unsalted cold butter, chopped, 2 tablespoons iced water.

Method: For the  pastry, place flour, salt, sugar and cocoa in a food processor and process for 15 seconds until combined. Add butter and process until butter is finely chopped. Add iced water slowly until it forms a dough that just comes together when pressed. Wrap in cling wrap and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

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The secret here is to work really fast…do not handle the dough too much with your hands; make sure you roll it out until it’s still cool! From my experience as it gets warmer, it will be more difficult to roll it and place it into the tart tin.

What I found really useful…if you cannot roll it and it’s sticky and breakable just place it back into the fridge for another 5 minutes:)

Roll pastry out between two sheets of baking paper to 3mm thick. This is probably the most important lesson I’ve learned when making pastry:) Rolling it out between two baking sheets will prevent it from breaking and stick on the rolling-pin.

Remove one sheet of baking paper and lay pastry over a 23cm round  tart tin with a removable base or 6 small ones.

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Press into tin especially into sides. Remove baking paper and trim pastry. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. Use baking beads to prevent it from rising. Blind bake for 10-15 minutes until sides are crisp. Remove baking paper and baking beads and bake for a further 5 minutes if your filling does not need more baking; if it does once you’ve removed the baking beads, pour the filling and bake until ready! 

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I usually make a filling that needs more baking, so once I’ve removed the baking beads I will leave the tart to cool for about 3-5 minutes, then pour in the chocolate mixture and bake until ready, which in this case it’s about 10 minutes.

Your tart, once removed from the oven, should look like this:)

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Don’t worry about the edge where it’s a bit split, it will look smooth and even once it’s completely cool:)

In a nutshell, here are some basic tips:

  • Do not handle the dough too much once it’s out of the fridge
  • Roll it out between two baking sheets
  • Don’t worry if it breaks, you can always re-touch it while it’s in the tart tin
  • If you’re using a filling that does not need more baking, once you’ve removed the baking beads your tart will need another 5 minutes in the oven
  • Before decorating leave the tart to cool completely
  • If you want just a simple tart, remove the cocoa from the ingredients but make up the quantity with more flour

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This weekend I’ve made a caramelised pistachio and chocolate ganache top for my chocolate tart and it turned out to be a very delicious combination…

On hot summer days I would definitely make a light berry curd and some fresh berries next to it!

…on how to make a tasty berry curd, more next time:)

Enjoy your weekend and the sunshine!

Your Pastry Lover,

Julia

xxx

© All rights reserved

‘Golden dessert’


I always wanted to try out polenta cake…for a while I was hunting down the right recipe, normally what I end up baking is a combination of many recipes with a final twist of my own:)))

Now “Polenta Cake is a simple one”…you may say…yes it is, but it needs that something something to make it unforgettable!

So after looking and trying and tasting…here is the result of many recipes tried with a twist:)…armagnac!

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Ingredients: 200 g unsalted butter,  200 g caster sugar,  3 medium eggs, 200 g ground almond powder, vanilla essence, 100 g polenta,  zest of 2 oranges or lemon, 1 tsp baking powder.   For the syrup:  150 ml squeezed orange juice or lemon juice, 75 g caster sugar, 2 tbs armagnac.

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Method: Mix the sugar, vanilla essence and the eggs until fluffy, make sure you take out the butter from the fridge at least 15 minutes before you use it, cut it in small pieces and add it one by one to the mixture and beat until creamy.

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In a bowl combine the polenta, ground almond and the orange/lemon zest ( I’ve used orange ), then add them slowly to the cake mix.

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Grease the tin with butter and pour in the mixture.

Place it into the oven, which was preheated to 160 C and bake for about 40 minutes until it becomes light brown and it starts to come away from the sides of the tin.

Take out the cake from the oven, handle with care as this cake it’s very fragile, I’ve almost broke it in about five pieces:))))))

While the cake is baking you can make the orange syrup.

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Put the orange or lemon juice with the sugar and the armagnac under low heat, simmer for about 10 minutes until it thickens. Place aside to cool.

After about 10 minutes out from the oven, the cake it’s ready to be brushed with the syrup, leave a little bit to use when serving, it’s just delicious!!!

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I’ve read about so many ways of serving polenta cake ( whipped cream, mascarpone cream ), but the one I’ve found the tastier was greek yogurt and a few drops of syrup.

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Hope you enjoy baking this and even more sharing it with your loved ones:)

Happy baking!