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Found 1,432 results

  1. The Fruitcake Topic

    Aunt Susan and Aunt Betty used to bake over 50 pounds of fruitcake (my mother was a co-conspirator and I an active helper) for Christmas to be distributed amongst family and friends. Beautifully wrapped parcels would be sent with the driver to homes of relatives and friends as a Christmas and New Year gift. Mind you, Aunt Susan (Christian from Kerala) is married to Uncle Raj a Hindu. Aunt Betty is really Dr. Prabha Manchanda (Sikh by birth, secular by practice). This is a tradition we all follow not for religious reasons, but to continue what was brought to India with the foreign rulers. It makes for great festive mood. And all us kids loved this cake. The fruits were soaked in Gigantic Jars for 21 days in rum. Rum was more affordable than Cognac for certain and also easily available. I use Susan Auntie’s recipe each year. It is a big hit at the annual Holiday Bash that I have become famous for amongst friends and theirs. The cake is 9x12 and is made using 2 bottles of Cognac. I make at least 6 batches for the season. One with Armagnac and this is the one I serve for New Year. The reason I wanted to start this thread is that as I was putting stuff into the refrigerator, I realized that I had a 9/12 inch Fruit Cake from last year. I save each year at least one cake for the next year. This is a custom in the family and I am told it is also practiced in the UK. Is that true? We save the cake in a tin but the cake is wrapped in several layers of fine muslin that has been soaked in rum (Armagnac in my case) and every month you add more rum (Armagnac) into the cake. I drizzle lots of it all over the cake and then wrap the cake again and drizzle more over the already soaking muslin cloth. I then sprinkle confectioners sugar and wrap the muslin in Saran wrap and then place in the box, use another layer of Saran wrap and seal the box securely. The cake is always moist and by the next year, it is sublime. I had a nice piece of it just a few minutes ago. I have a buzz. There is LOTS of alcohol in this. Do others have their own Fruit Cake stories? What recipes do you use? Where do you get them? Do you even like Fruit Cake? Who eats them anymore? What makes a good fruit cake? What fruit do you use?
  2. Chocolate cake with plums

    Chocolate cake with plums The first cake I ever dared to bake by myself was a chocolate cake. I have since baked it many times, always using the same recipe, and many times I have spoiled it at the beginning of preparation. It is necessary to cool down the chocolate mixture before adding the rest of the ingredients. On a hot summer day this process is very long, so I accelerated it by putting the pot with the mixture into some cold water in the kitchen sink. Many times, by mistake, I turned on the tap and poured water onto the cooling mixture. In hindsight these situations were amusing, but at the time it wasn't funny. This chocolate cake is excellent without any additives. You can enrich it with your favourite nuts or butter icing. Today I added some plums to the top of the cake. It was great and its sweet chocolate-plum aroma lingered long in my home. Ingredients (25cm cake tin): 200g of flour 150g of butter 3 tablespoons of cocoa 120g of brown sugar 15ml of almond milk 100g of dark chocolate 1 egg 1 teaspoon of baking powder plums Heat the oven up to 180C. Smooth the cake tin with the butter and sprinkle with dark cocoa. Put the butter, milk, sugar, cocoa and chocolate into the pan. Heat it until the chocolate is melted and all the ingredients have blended together well. Leave the mixture to cool down. Add the egg, flour and baking soda and mix them in. Put the dough into the cake tin. Wash the plums, cut them in half and remove the stones. Arrange the plum halves skin side down on top of the cake. Bake for 50 minutes. Sprinkle with caster sugar before serving. Enjoy your meal!
  3. Moon Cakes

    Mid-Autumn festival is still a month away but mooncakes are starting to rear their ugly heads in SF Chinatown. I know people who actually like them, but I suspect most people view them as China's version of the fruitcake. They're for giving, not for eating, and you sort of know that whomever you give them to will give them to someone else. (At least that's my view.) Do you like mooncakes? If so, what style do you prefer, the Cantonese varieties that have everything but the kitchen sink in them, or the more spartan northern style? Meat-filled Jiangsu-style? Ice Cream mooncakes (I kid you not)? Any mooncake memories?
  4. THE DIPLOMAT CAKE The Diplomat Cake is a tempting concoction made up of three layers of puff pastry and two layers of sponge cake soaked in rum then layered with a rum buttercream icing. EDIT: My friend brought me back a slice of this delicious cake from his trip to Canada. I enjoyed it so much I wanted to create my own version of it, which I have done, below. This is a very sweet cake so cut the slices small! Because of the puff pastry layers, use a sawing motion when cutting the slices. I am posting this recipe for your review & comment. PROCEDURE: 1. Prepare 3 rounds of docked puff pastry. 2. Make standard genoise. 3. Make rum simple syrup. 4. Make rum buttercream. 5. Cut 2 layers out of genoise. 6. Assemble cake. PUFF PASTRY: 1 pk. Puff Pastry dough, thawed if frozen (Pepperidge Farm is fine) 1. Preheat oven to 400. 2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the thawed puff pastry dough to a thin sheet (no more than 1/8 inch thick). 3. Cut three 9-inch rounds out of the puff pastry. 4. Dock the puff pastry rounds with a fork to prevent blistering. 5. Place the puff pastry on a baking sheet. 6. Put the puff pastry into the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Chilling it helps to prevent shrinkage during baking. 7. Bake at 400 until brown and crisp, about 10-12 minutes. 8. Cool completely on a wire rack. GENOISE: 1 lb. 2 oz. Eggs 12 oz. Sugar 0.25 oz. Vanilla Extract 12 oz. Cake Flour 4 oz. (optional) Unsalted Butter, melted NOTE: This makes two 9-inch cakes. Freeze one cake for another use. 1. Preheat oven to 375. 2. Grease the bottom (but not the sides) of a 9-inch round baking pan. 3. Combine the eggs and sugar and warm to about 110 degrees by stirring over a hot water bath. A warmed foam gains greater volume. 4. With the whip attachment of a mixer, beat the warmed eggs at high speed until they are very light and thick. This may take as long as 10 to 15 minutes if the quantity is large. 5. Fold in the sifted flour in three or four stages, being careful not to deflate the foam. Many bakers do this by hand, even for large batches. Fold gently until all the flour is blended in. 6. Immediately pan and bake the batter. Delays will cause loss of volume. Bake until done, about 20 minutes. Do not open the oven or disturb the cakes until they have finished rising and are partially browned. 7. Cool in pan for 15 minutes. While the cake is still slightly warm, turn out onto rack to cool completely. RUM SIMPLE SYRUP: 1 cup rum (light or dark) 1 cup granulated sugar NOTE: You will not use all of this mixture in the preparation of the Diplomat Cake. This makes enough for two complete Diplomat Cakes, at least. 1. Combine rum and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook until the sugar is dissolved. Let cool. RUM BUTTERCREAM FROSTING: 1 lb. Unsalted Butter, softened 1/2 lb. Emulsified Shortening (Crisco) (or 2 parts butter to 1 part high-ratio shortening) 2 lb. Confectioners' Sugar, sifted 2 oz. Egg whites 2 TB. Rum (light or dark) (more to taste) 1 oz. (optional) Water 1. Using the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, shortening, and sugar until well blended and soft. 2. Add the egg whites, lemon juice, and rum. Blend at medium speed until well blended. 3. Mix at high speed until light and fluffy. 4. For a softer buttercream, blend in the water (optional). ASSEMBLY ORDER: Top to bottom: Rum Buttercream -- decorative icing Puff Pastry Rum Buttercream Genoise Rum Buttercream Puff Pastry Rum Buttercream Genoise Rum Buttercream Puff Pastry ASSEMBLY: 1. Add bottom round of prepared puff pastry. 2. Frost with thin layer of rum buttercream. 3. Add bottom layer of genoise. 4. Brush rum simple syrup over genoise to moisten. 5. Add thin layer of orange marmalade, if using. 6. Frost with thin layer of rum buttercream. 7. Add middle round of prepared puff pastry. 8. Frost with thin layer of rum buttercream. 9. Add middle layer of genoise. 10. Brush rum simple syrup over genoise to moisten. 11. Frost with thin layer of rum buttercream. 12. Add top round of prepared puff pastry. 13. Frost entire cake with rum buttercream. 14. Decorate and serve.
  5. GF flours - why so gritty?

    I was cooking for a party last night at which a gluten free cake was served for dessert. I had a few bites and aside from the cake being dry and the frosting very sweet, there was that tell-tale grittiness that GF baked goods seem to have. This particular bakery uses a blend of millet, sorghum, tapioca and potato flours. I used some Bob's Red Mill GF flour to satisfy a customer request for GF shortbread and found the same grittiness - they use garbanzo bean flour, potato starch, whole grain white sorghum flour, tapioca flour and fava bean flour. Obviously some sacrifices of flavor and texture are made when trying to replicate the magic of gluten, but why can't these flour blends be softer? Can't they be milled more finely? Or is it just the way the particular starches or proteins in those other flours are felt on the tongue? It's like that chalky cold cooked rice texture, do you know what I mean? Why can't it be better? Almost every time I eat something made with substitute flours, it makes me sad and want to fix it.
  6. Plum tart with almonds

    Plum tart with almonds Starting from the first half of August, in the shops and on stands appear the first domestic plums. In September there are so many of them that I have a problem deciding which kind I should choose. Small and big, round and more ovate, violet, red and yellow. You can eat them fresh or make a lot of preserves (jams, plum stew, stewed fruits, pickles, liqueurs, plum brandy). Our favorite are big and round greengage plums, or slightly firm violet plums. Plums have a lot of valuable attributes. They regulate digestion and protect us from free radicals. Dried plums are more valuable regarding vitamin and fiber content, but they have five times more calories than fresh fruits. Plums have quite a lot B vitamins, so for a long time they have been well regarded for having a soothing effect on the nervous system and improving our frame of mind. That's why you simply have to make a plum cake. Either now or when the dreary autumn days arrive. Their benign impact on the nerves could be a good excuse for putting another piece of cake on your plate. I don't like complicated cookery. In this recipe you will find a lot of ingredients, but even so, preparing this delicious cake is very simple. Ingredients: Dough: 250g of flour half a teaspoon of baking powder 8g of vanilla sugar 3 tablespoons of sugar 150ml of 18% cream 150g of butter Filling: 600g of plums 1 egg white 3 tablespoons of minced almonds 2 tablespoons of brown sugar 200g of plum stew 1 teaspoon of cinnamon Crumble topping: 50g of butter 3-4 tablespoons of flour 3 tablespoons of brown sugar 8g of vanilla sugar 1 egg yolk Mix together the dry ingredients for the dough: flour, baking powder, sugar and vanilla sugar. Add cream. Mince the butter and add it to the dry ingredients. Quickly knead into smooth dough. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in the fridge for half an hour. Heat the oven up to 200C. Cover a baking pan (e.g. for a tart) with the dough, leaving the edges slightly raised around the sides. Whisk the egg white and cover the dough with it. Sprinkle with the almonds and brown sugar. Bake for 14 minutes. Take it out of the oven. Don't turn off the oven. Make the crumble topping when the dough is in the oven. Melt the butter, cool it a bit then add the flour, sugar, vanilla sugar and egg yolk. Mix it with a fork until you have lumps. Clean the plums, cut them into halves and remove the stones. Cover the baked base with plum stew, add the plums and sprinkle with cinnamon and the crumble topping. Bake for 20 minutes.
  7. Pineapple and coconut – the ideal couple Today, inspired by the recipes from the book "Zielone koktajle. 365 przepisów" ("Green cocktails. 365 recipes") I prepared a light coconut-pineapple dessert. You may make it without sugar if you have enough sweet fruit. If your pineapple isn't very ripe, add a bit of honey to your dessert. Ingredients (for 4 people)fruit mousse 1 pineapple 300ml of coconut milk 1 banana 150ml of orange juice 2 tablespoons of desiccated coconutdecoration 50g of butter 1 tablespoon of caster sugar 4 tablespoons of desiccated coconut 4 slices of orange fruit Blend all the ingredients of the fruit mousse. Put it into some glasses and leave in the fridge. Put the desiccated coconut, sugar and butter into a pan. Fry constantly, stirring on a low heat until the butter is melted. Leave to cool down a bit. Put 2-3 tablespoons of it on top of the desserts. Decorate with a slice of orange, fruit and some peppermint leaves before serving. Enjoy your meal!
  8. Smile of the summer – apricot-peach shortcake Fortunately, the summer is not only about the weather. There is also fresh, sweet-smelling fruit. Today I would like to share with you the recipe for an easy to make weekend cake. It is excellent for afternoon tea or coffee. A little work and a little baking and after that you may serve and eat, and serve and eat again and again ... I remind you that it should be a weekend cake, so if you eat everything at once, you will need to bake another one Ingredients:dough 200g of flour 150g of butter 75g of sugar 1 egg 1 egg yolk 1 teaspoon of baking powder fruit: 1kg of apricot 4 peaches 2 packets of powdered vanilla blancmange 4 tablespoons of brown sugar Put the flour, sugar, baking powder and butter onto a baking board. Chop it all up with a knife. When you have the consistency of crumble topping, add the egg and egg yolk and then knead the dough quickly. Divide the dough into two parts – 2/3 and 1/3. Cover the pieces of dough with plastic wrap and put them into the freezer. Wash the apricots, remove the stones and cube them. Put them into a saucepan, add a bit of water and boil until they are soft. Stir the blancmange powder in 150ml of cold water and add it to the apricots. Boil for 2 minutes stirring constantly. Turn off the heat. Wash the peaches, remove the stones and cube them. Add them to the apricots and mix them in. Heat the oven up to 180C. Smooth a 23-cm cake tin with some butter and sprinkle with breadcrumbs. Grate the bigger part of the dough onto the cake tin, even it out and bake for 15-17 minutes. Take out the cake, but don't turn off the oven. Put the fruit mixture onto it and grate the rest of the dough onto the top. Bake for 50 minutes. Sprinkle with caster sugar before serving. Enjoy your meal!
  9. The Sweet Makers on BBC

    I'm watching The Sweet Makers on BBC - four British pastry chefs & confectioners recreate Tudor, Georgian, and Victorian sweets with petiod ingredients and equipment. A little British Baking Show, a little Downtown Abbey. Check it it out for a slice of pastry history. BBC viewer only available to the U.K., but on this side of the pond where there's a will, there's a way.
  10. White chocolate whip with aquafaba with crumble topping and fruit. Today I would like to share with you a dessert fit for a king. It needs a bit of work, but it is easy, and so tasty that you won't regret the time you spent on it. I have already made chocolate whip with aquafaba. Today I added a bit of whisked sweet cream, due to which it is more creamy but it isn't suitable for vegetarians. You may use any fruit. In my opinion, bilberries, blueberries or raspberries are best. Cherries would also be excellent, but you may use your favourite fruit. Ingredients:crumble topping: 50g of butter 50g of flour 50g of sugar 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds whip: 200ml of aquafaba (from one tin of chickpeas) 150g of white chocolate 150ml of 30% sweet cream 30g of caster sugarother ingredients fruit caster sugar Heat the oven up to 180C. Cover a baking sheet with baking paper. Make the crumble topping. Make a smooth dough with the ingredients. Make a ball with it, roll it out flat and put it on the baking paper. Bake for 10-15 minutes until it is golden. Cool it down and crumble it. Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie and leave it to cool down a little. Whip the aquafaba and sweet cream with caster sugar in a separate bowl. Mix them together. Add the white chocolate and stir thoroughly but gently. Put the chocolate whip into some small bowls and leave in the fridge for 2 hours. Put the crumble topping onto the chocolate whip. Decorate with the fruit and peppermint leaves. Enjoy your meal!
  11. Granary pancakes with bilberry mousse Today I would like to share with you the recipe for "slimmed down" pancakes. Luckily, I don't have any problems with fruit in my children's diet; they like all kinds of fruit. But I know that for other parents pancakes could be the best way to sneak some vitamins into their food. I found the recipe for the pancakes at Polish "wegepedia.pl", and it appealed to me instantly because of the easy and basic preparation and the yummy look of the pancakes. Ingredients: 200g of granary flour one teaspoon and a half of baking powder 4 tablespoons of brown sugar 1 flat teaspoon of cinnamon 300ml of vegetable milkOther ingredients 100g of bilberries 30ml of water 3 dates Mix the sugar, flour, baking powder and cinnamon in a bowl. Pour the milk in and stir until you make a smooth dough. Put small portions of the dough into a pan (with a non-stick surface) and fry on both sides until the pancakes are golden. If you have another pan, use a bit of oil for frying. Use a handful of bilberries for decoration. Blend the rest of the clean fruit with the dates and water. Leave in the fridge for a while. Decorate the hot pancakes with the fruit mousse and bilberries. Serve at once.
  12. I was catching up on my blog reading, and hit a post about icebox cakes. I've only ever made one icebox cake in my life, and it was delicious, using the classic chocolate wafers and whipped cream but flavored with Red Bird peppermint puffs. (I got the recipe from an article about the company that makes the candy.) Anyway, while the blog post itself was interesting, the first comment (at least as I currently see it) caught my attention, because it described a Mexican icebox cake that looked very different to me because it didn't use whipped cream. The commenter called this icebox cake a carlota de limón, and described it as being made from maria cookies, lime juice, and sweetened condensed milk. I adore limes! So...I can find recipes on line, but has anyone made this cake before? Do you have a tried-and-true recipe that you'd be willing to share? Please? Thanks!
  13. I am a Baker and Cake Decorator in India. India has a huge Vegetarian Population that does not even eat eggs/gelatin. So I am constantly looking at finding vegetarian options. Issue at Hand: Regular Butter Cream - American Butter Cream ( Icing Sugar 10X + Butter + Milk/Lemon Juice / Cream) is an option ..and a lot of decorators use this as it sets hard, and they also add shortening into it ..and I am like , Nope I can't eat that , much less serve it. Its too Sweet /Gritty and Crusts and just tasteless. It has also made sure that people in my country to completely throw out any butter cream cake . You say Butter Cream and they say - too Sweet/gritty. I have been successful in the last two years to break that impression by making European Meringue based butter cream - I love Swiss Meringue Butter Cream . It is smooth, just sweet enough , takes colour well, pipes well , and is mostly temperature stable. But I can't serve it to people who don't eat eggs. I have so far been making a substitute - Ermine/Rue/Cooked Butter Cream - a Flour + Milk+ Sugar custard (AKA Pastry Cream minus the eggs) and whipping butter into it. It tastes good - people like it ..nut its a misery to work with - will not hold shape , will not colour well , and most of all weeps and weeps some more when we chill the cakes. So I am looking for suggestions on finding a starch that will not weep when frozen in a custard? And my second approach is to move to Aqua Faba to build the meringue and make SMBC. The starch custard option is easy and economical and does not leave me with mountains of Chickpeas . would love to hear thoughts . Thanks
  14. Millet groats cookies with tahini and chocolate. This time I prepared millet groats cookies with tahini and chocolate. They are not so sweet, have lots of sesame seeds and are crunchy with a beautiful, homely smell. Ingredients (30 cookies) 3 tablespoons of tahini 120g of brown sugar 100g of butter 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence a pinch of salt 1 egg 130g of millet groats flakes 75g of flour ½ teaspoon of baking powder ½ of baking soda 100g of dark chocolate Heat the oven up to 180C. Cover a baking sheet with some baking paper. Pulp the butter with the brown sugar, vanilla sugar and salt to make a fluffy mass. Pulping constantly, add the tahini and then the egg. Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder and millet groats flakes. Break up the chocolate and add it to the dough. Mix it in. Make little balls from the mixture, around the size of walnuts. Put them on the baking sheet. Keep the cookies separate. Bake for 15-17 minutes. Leave to cool down. Enjoy your meal!
  15. I need a dessert for a 40th birthday party for 40-50 people, something easy to plate, doesn't require a walk-in, and seems special and delicious. I'm looking at the recipe in Butter Sugar Flour Eggs for German Chocolate Cake with Toasted Almond Coconut Goo. It looks not too hard to pull off, as a non-pastry chef, and as if two people in the kitchen could plate it up with one person to ferry it to the buffet table. Any experience with this recipe, or other suggestions, will be much appreciated.
  16. Feather-light chocolate whip with aquafaba There wouldn't be anything special in this dessert if it wasn't for its main ingredient. It was aquafaba - i.e. the liquid which is left after straining chickpeas from a tin. Up to now I have poured it away. From today I will never make this mistake. Joël Roessel, a French chef, was the discoverer of aquafaba. He wanted an alternative to eggs when preparing meringues. Protein and starch are the only ingredients of aquafaba. It doesn't have any other additives. Cold aquafaba can be whisked like an egg white. Next time I will try to prepare some meringues with aquafaba, but now I would like to share with you the recipe for an extremely simple chocolate whip. I served it with the sub acid from an apricot mousse. My children were delighted, and so were we. Ingredients (for 4 people) 200ml of aquafaba (from one tin of chickpeas) 2 teaspoons of caster sugar 150g of dark chocolate 6 apricots 2 tablespoons of lemon juice 2 tablespoons of brown sugar Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie and leave it to cool down a little. Whip the aquafaba in a very clean glass bowl. Add the sugar spoon by spoon and whip constantly until the foam is stiff and glossy. Add the chocolate and stir thoroughly but gently. Put the chocolate whip into some small bowls and leave in the fridge for 3-4 hours. Wash the apricots and remove the stones. Put them into a pan with the lemon juice and sugar. Boil until the apricots are soft and the juice has evaporated a bit. Blend the fruit. Leave to cool down. Put the apricots onto the chocolate whip and decorate with some peppermint leaves.
  17. Afternoon tea with finger biscuits. With my children in mind I prepared an extremely simple dessert using natural yoghurt and biscuits as basic ingredients. It was supposed to be for children. By default, though, I prepared a bit more and we were all able to relish it. Ingredients (for 4 people) 400g of natural yoghurt 200g of finger biscuit 200g of raspberries 2 teaspoons of caster sugar Put aside a few nice raspberries and four finger biscuits. Crush the rest of the raspberries with a fork and mix them with the caster sugar. Crush the finger biscuits and blend them with the natural yoghurt. Put the raspberry mousse and then the biscuit mixture into a cup. Decorate the top of the dessert with the raspberries and peppermint leaves.
  18. Small stracciatella cheesecake with fruit. Today I would like to share with you the recipe for a dessert which I prepared for the beginning of the holiday. The last school tests are behind us, the school reports received, the suitcases almost packed, so now it is time for a reward. My little stracciatella cheesecake isn't that healthy, but sometimes we can overlook one small culinary peccadillo. After all, it is supposed to be a reward. For sure it was light as air, fluffy and melted in the mouth. And the pieces of the dark chocolate were so nice and crunchy. Try it yourself and like me you will fall in love with this dessert. Ingredients (17cm cake tin) 100g of oatcakes 50g of butter 250g of mascarpone cheese 200g of 30% sweet cream 100g of white chocolate 100g of dark chocolate fruit for decoration Put the cookies in a plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin, and then put them into a small bowl and mix them with the melted butter. Cover a cake tin with the dough. Leave it in the fridge for an hour. Melt the white chocolate in a bain-marie and leave to cool down. Break the dark chocolate into small pieces. Whisk the cream and then add the mascarpone cheese. Add the white and dark chocolate and stir it gingerly and thoroughly. Put the mixture on the bottom with the oatcakes and leave in the fridge overnight. Decorate with your favourite fruit. Enjoy your meal!
  19. Cheesecake muffins

    Cheesecake muffins Ingredients (6 muffins) 1 lemon jelly 10 big strawberries 200g of vanilla fromage frais grated skin from half a lemon Dissolve the jelly in 250ml of hot water. Leave to cool down (not to set). Wash the strawberries, remove the shanks and blend them. Mix half of the jelly with the strawberries. Put it into the silicon pastry cases. Leave it to set in the fridge. Mix the rest of the jelly with the vanilla fromage frais. Put it on the strawberry jelly. Leave it to set in the fridge. Immerse the silicon pastry case in hot water for a while to get the dessert out of the dish. Enjoy your meal!
  20. As usual during the weekend I prepared a cake. This time it was a strawberry shortbread cake with blancmange and crumble topping. Everything fit together nicely. I think that this cake could be excellent with more sour fruit. Cherries, redcurrants or plums come to mind. I have to realize this idea. The idea for this cake comes from www.moniamieszaigotuje.blogspot.com. Ingredients: dough 0.5 kg of flour 1 teaspoon of baking powder 200g of sugar 200g of butter 1 egg 1 egg yolk 3 tablespoons of cream blancmange 2 packets of powdered blancmange 0.75 ml of milk 3 tablespoons of sugar additional ingredients strawberries Heat the oven up to 180 degrees C. Put the flour on a baking board, make a large dimple in the flour and put the other ingredients of the dough inside it. Chop it all up with a knife. When you have the consistency of crumble topping, you have to knead the dough quickly. Divide the dough into two parts – 2/3 and 1/3. Cover the pieces of the dough with plastic wrap and put them into the freezer. Prepare the thick blancmange. Stir the blancmange powder in 250ml of milk and the sugar. Cook the rest of the milk. Take the milk off the heat and pour the blancmange mixture into it. Boil for a while, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat. Clean the strawberries and remove the shanks. Cut the bigger strawberries in half. Grate the bigger part of the dough onto a baking sheet. Put the hot blancmange onto it. Arrange the strawberries on the blancmange and grate the rest of the dough onto the top. Bake for 50 minutes. Enjoy your meal!
  21. I prepared two versions: the first one with desiccated coconut and blueberries and the second with dark chocolate and strawberries. Choose your favorite dessert or go crazy and make your own version. Bright dessert Ingredients (for 2 people) 200g of white chocolate 100g of blueberries 200ml of 30% sweet cream 200ml of mascarpone cheese 2 tablespoons of desiccated coconut Melt 150g of the white chocolate in a bain-marie. Draw six 8 cm circles on a sheet of baking paper. Put 2-3 tablespoons of chocolate on each of them and smear it around to cover the whole circle. Leave them at room temperature to congeal and then put them in the fridge for 2 hours. Melt the rest of the white chocolate in a bain-marie. Whisk the cream. Add the mascarpone cheese after whisking. Add the white chocolate and the desiccated coconut and stir thoroughly. Wash the blueberries and drain them. Put the first chocolate circles onto a plate, then a layer of the cream and a couple of blueberries and once again chocolate, cream and blueberries. Put the last chocolate circle on the top. Decorate with the rest of the cream, fruit and peppermint leaves. Serve chilled. Dark dessert Ingredients (for 2 people) 200g of dark chocolate 1 tablespoon of cocoa a couple of strawberries 200ml of 30% sweet cream 200ml of mascarpone cheese Melt 150g of the dark chocolate in a bain-marie. Draw six 8cm circles on a sheet of baking paper. Put 2-3 tablespoons of chocolate on each of them and smear it around to cover the whole circle. Leave them at room temperature to congeal and then put them in the fridge for 2 hours. Melt the rest of the dark chocolate in a bain-marie. Whisk the cream. Add the mascarpone cheese after whisking. Add the dark chocolate and the cocoa and stir thoroughly. Wash the strawberries and remove the shanks. Leave 3-4 nice bits of fruit for decoration, and cut the rest into small pieces. Put the first chocolate circles on a plate, then a layer of the cream and a couple of strawberry pieces and then once again chocolate, cream and strawberries. Put the last chocolate circle on the top. Decorate with the rest of the cream, fruit and peppermint leaves. Serve chilled.
  22. What should a Sunday dessert be like if it is to disappear as soon as it has been served? In my home we need two things: chocolate and fruit. These ingredients usually ensure my culinary success. Recently I used them to prepare muffins with blueberries and white chocolate. They were yummy, fluffy inside and crunchy outside, and it was possible to smell the sweet, chocolate fragrance in the corridor outside our flat. As usual, some of them were packed in boxes for my children's packed lunch. Ingredients (12 muffins) 300g of flour 3 tablespoons of cocoa 150g of butter 170ml of milk 160g of brown sugar 2 eggs 2 flat teaspoons of baking powder ½ teaspoon of baking soda 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence 12 bars of white chocolate blueberries Heat the oven up to 190C. Put some paper muffin moulds into the "dimples" of a baking pan for muffins. Melt the butter in a pan. Leave to cool down. Mix together the dry ingredients of the muffins: flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa. Mix together the milk, vanilla essence and eggs in a separate bowl. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix them in. Add the melted butter and mix it in again. Put the dough into some paper muffin moulds up to 1/2 of their height, and put 3-4 blueberries and one piece of white chocolate on top. Add some dough on top. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
  23. Ingredients (for 4 people): 3 long sticks of rhubarb 250g of strawberries 4 tablespoons of xylitol 4 tablespoons of butter 150g of desiccated coconut Heat the oven up to 180C. Wash the rhubarb, peel it and cut it into 1 cm pieces. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of xylitol, mix it in and leave for half an hour. Wash the strawberries, remove the shanks and cut them into small pieces. Drain the rhubarb from the juice and mix it in with the strawberries. Melt the butter. Mix the desiccated coconut with the rest of the xylitol and butter. Smooth some small casserole dishes with a bit of butter. Put the rhubarb and strawberries into them. Sprinkle with the desiccated coconut crumble topping. Bake for 15-17 minutes. Serve with strawberry or vanilla ice cream.
  24. Strawberry dessert with chia seeds Ingredients (for 4 people) 300g of strawberries 300ml of milk (it may be coconut milk or whatever you prefer) honey or maple syrup 4 tablespoons of chia seeds fruit and peppermint leaves for decoration Clean the strawberries and remove the shanks. Add the milk and one tablespoon of honey or maple syrup. Blend it thoroughly. Try it and if necessary add a bit more honey. Add the chia seeds, mix them in and leave in the fridge for 4-5 hours. Stir once again. Put the dessert into a small bowl and decorate with the fruit and peppermint leaves. The inspiration for this dessert comes from "Smaki życia" ("Flavour of Life") by Agnieszka Maciąg
  25. Hi everyone! I hope I'm not posting in the wrong section. I am looking for recommendations on where to find a used/economically priced climate controlled (low humidity and refrigerated, but not too cold) chocolate display case as well as a regular refrigerated display case (bakery style). Something like this, but it doesn't need to be too fancy looking. I am living in Canada on the West Coast, so the closer to local, the better. I'm finding it very challenging to find something. I found and excellent deal on a couple of used ones in the USA, but the seller doesn't want to deal with the hassle of having it crated and shipped. I'm trying to keep up to date searching on the Ecole Chocolat graduate forum as well as The Chocolate Life classifieds. Also, does anyone know if a smaller table-top type climates controlled chocolate display case exists? Or are the only options out there for larger models? Warm Regards, Christy
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