Category Archives: Biscuits

Candied orange Shortbread

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I definitely cannot claim this recipe as my own, in fact I rarely can, I am the recipe “High-jacker”……….Now I do like to take a recipe and tweak it to make it my own… But this recipe needed no tweaking it is perfect just as it is, and why mess with perfect?

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These delicious orange shortbreads are straight out of the latest issue of Gourmet Traveller Magazine, in fact they are on the front cover, and they enticed me as soon as I picked up the magazine. Sweet crumbly shortbread gently flavoured with orange and for a little texture some roasted pistachios YUM YUM YUM oh and lets not forget a little splash of Grand Marnier just to make these shortbread really special.

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RECIPE:

  • 40g pistachios
  • 220g butter, softened
  • 375g pure icing sugar, sieved
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) orange juice appox 2 oranges
  • 30ml Grand Marnier
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 330g plain flour
  • 40g candied orange, diced

METHOD:

  1. preheat oven to 180ºC
  2. spread pistachios onto a baking tray and roast until just golden, set aside to cool, then coarsely chop
  3. beat butter, 75g icing sugar and half the zest in an electric mixer until pale and fluffy
  4. combine orange juice and Grand Marnier set aside
  5. add egg yolk to butter mixture and beat until combined, then mix in half the orange juice mixture
  6. add flour, candied orange, pistachios and a pinch of salt, beat until mixture just comes together, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and form into a flat disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate to rest (1 hour)
  7. roll out shortbread on a lightly floured surface to 1cm thick and cut out 6.5cm- diameter rounds
  8. place onto lined baking trays and bake until pale golden on the edges 15-20 minutes (swapping trays halfway through cooking)
  9. cool on trays for 5 minutes then sprinkle with remaining orange juice mixture
  10. combine remaining icing sugar and orange zest, then shake through a course sieve over shortbread, dust heavily

Hamburger cake and biscuit fries

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Well another week has been gone by, time goes so quickly……

This week it was my youngest son Alex’s 9th birthday, I can’t believe my baby has turned 9. So exciting to watch them grow, but I wish I could slow it down just a little!!!!!! I remember when I had my first son Aden and so many people said to me, enjoy every second because it will be gone before you know it, man they weren’t kidding……………..

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So of course birthday means, birthday cake. I love making the kids birthday cakes some years they pick what they want and other years I surprise them. This year it was a surprise for Alex, one of Alex’s favourite foods is hamburgers, and I have seen some great hamburger cakes on the internet, So it was a hamburger cake and biscuit fries for Alex this year.

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The look on his face when he saw his cake was priceless, that look alone was enough for all the hours I spent baking and decorating. Big eyes, a big smile and a big hug what else could a mum possibly ask for.

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I didn’t really follow a recipe to create this cake, I basically made two butter cakes and one chocolate cake, the chocolate cake being for the meat patty. I used plastic icing, red for the tomatoes cut into circles and yellow for the cheese, cut into squares. For the lettuce I used butter cream coloured green, which I piped on. I then covered the butter cake in a light brown icing to make the burger roll I had two shades of the brown butter cream to add some depth. once iced I sprinkled with sesame seeds.

To make the biscuit fries, I made a simple short bread which I rolled out into squares and then scored in some straight lines the width I wanted my fries to be. I brushed with egg white and sprinkled with raw sugar, then baked. Once cooled I cut along the score lines to create my fries.

Double chocolate chunk cookies

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CHOCOLATE, CHOCOLATE and more CHOCOLATE these cookies are chocolate heaven.

They really are to die for especially if your a chocolate lover , firm on the outside and just a little bit soft in the middle with big chunks of dark and white chocolate to bite into Mmmmmmmm…..

Perfect with a cup of coffee, tea or glass of milk. Or why not to make it a real treat and  sandwich two around some vanilla bean ice-cream for a yummy dessert.

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RECIPE:

  • 110g butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup (130g) caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extact
  • 1 cup (150g) plain flour, sifted
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted (I used dutch cocoa)
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate soda
  • 125g dark chocolate melted
  • 140g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 140g white chocolate, roughly chopped

METHOD;

  1. pre heat oven to 160ºC
  2. place butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until light and creamy
  3. add egg and vanilla and beat for a further 3-4 minutes
  4. stir through sifted flour, cocoa, bicarbonate soda and melted chocolate
  5. add chopped dark and white chocolate and stir to combine
  6. roll tablespoons of mixture into rounds, place on baking trays lined with non stick paper , allowing room to spread, flatten slightly
  7. bake for 12 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned,cool on trays

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This recipe is adapted from the cookbook ‘Donna Hay simple chocolate essentials’

White Chocolate and Macadamia nut Brownies

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I don’t make brownies very often, and when I do, I wonder why don’t I???? If you are in the need for a chocolate fix, (which I regularly am) then I find a chocolate brownie hits the spot and relieves that chocolate itch!!!!.

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I particularly like these brownies with the addition of the macadamia nuts ( but really you could use any nuts you like), I like the crunch it adds to the soft texture of the brownie, and well as for the white chocolate, the more chocolate the better I think 🙂 plus white chocolate and macadamia nuts are a perfect match.

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RECIPE:

  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 2 Tsp water
  • 100g butter
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup plain flour
  • 150g white chocolate, chopped into large chunks plus extra to decorate
  • 2/3 cup chopped macadamia nuts plus extra to decorate

METHOD:

  1. preheat oven to 180ºC
  2. combine chocolate, water and butter into a medium pan, stir over low heat until chocolate and butter has melted and is smooth
  3. stir in sugar, then remove from heat
  4. stir in vanilla, eggs and flour mix until well combined
  5. add in chocolate and nuts, stop storing as soon as chocolate begins to melt
  6. spoon into prepared tin and bake for 35 minutes or until top is firm to touch
  7. cool in tin, then cut into squares
  8. melt extra white chocolate, stir until smooth then add vegetable oil to a make a smooth glossy mix
  9. place into a piping bag with a small nozzle attached, pipe a little bit of chocolate on centre of square then a piece of macadamia nut, then pipe lines across the top to decorate

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recipe adapted from; Crazy for chocolate ( family circle cookbook)

Choc-orange macarons

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I had quite a few left over egg whites after making some egg-custard. So I decided to make some macarons, a perfect use for egg whites, and a perfect excuse to make some delicate french treats (not that I really need an excuse :-)).

These chocolate orange macarons are delicious, and with my  first bite I instantly thought of Jaffa’s, those yummy choc-orange balls covered in a red candy, yum yum yum!.

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I used Adriano Zumbos macaron recipe which is here in my “The Macaron Challenge” post, I added  some powdered orange food colouring to the sugar syrup mixture and sprinkled some dutch cocoa onto the piped out macarons before putting them in the oven. I have tried and tested this recipe many times now and it has never failed me: he is the Zumbaron King ;-).

CHOCOLATE ORANGE GANACHE:

  • 150g cream
  • finely grated zest of 2 oranges
  • 200g dark chocolate ( Zumbo used milk chocolate but I just love dark chocolate)
  • 60g unsalted butter, chopped and softened
  1. place cream and orange zest in a small saucepan over medium heat, bring to the boil
  2. put chocolate in a bowl
  3. pour over hot cream, stir until chocolate has melted and is smooth
  4. set aside until temperature is 50ºC, then using a stick blender blitz in butter until smooth
  5. allow ganache to cool and become firm enough to pipe
  6. fill a piping bag with a 7mm nozzle and pipe onto flat side of macaron then top with another shell
  7. put assembled macarons in the fridge to set
  8. bring to room temperature to serve

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More Macarons, Pandan & Coconut

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I was drawn to this particular recipe because I found  the flavours interesting, and I love playing around with different ideas and flavours where food is involved. I know there is nothing unusual about combing coconut and pandan , its just I’ve never seen it used with a french macaron before.

This is another recipe from Adriano Zumbo and uses the basic macaron reciepe from my last macaron blog salted butter and popcorn macaron (https://inprosciuttoofperfection.wordpress.com/2013/04/12/the-macaron-challenge).

I absolutely love the look of of these macaroons, the colour of the pandan and coconut ganache is just so striking ( although  Zumbo used an uncoloured pandan essence in his recipe, I chose to use a coloured one because I really wanted a strong bold contrast of colours) , as is the flavours of this exotic Thai influenced macaron.  I love these delicate meringue like cookies, a sweet little treat be enjoyed  anytime , (but maybe not too often the waist-line might not agree).

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PANDAN & COCONUT GANACHE:

  • 150g UHT coconut cream
  • 5g Pandan extract
  • 2 Pandan leaves
  • 1 Makrut (kaffir lime leaf ), chopped
  • 250g white coverture chocolate, chopped or buttons
  • 80g unsalted butter, chopped and softened
  • 15g desiccated coconut

1 quantity of macaron shells (https://inprosciuttoofperfection.wordpress.com/2013/04/12/the-macaron-challenge).

  1. Place coconut cream, pandan extract ,pandan leaves and makrut leaf in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to boil
  2. turn off heat and set aside to infuse for 20 minutes
  3. return coconut cream to the boil
  4. put chocolate in a bowl
  5. strain hot coconut milk over chocolate
  6. stir until mixture is smooth  then cool to 50ºC
  7. when chocolate is right temperature blitz in butter with a stick mixer until smooth
  8. fold in desiccated coconut, then allow the ganache to cool and become firm enough to pipe
  9. fill piping bag fitted with a 9mm plain nozzle
  10. pipe ganache on flat side of macaron then top with remaining shells
  11. top with green coconut  ( to colour coconut , put in a plastic bag with a few drops of green food colouring , seal and shake well).

Place in fridge to set and store.

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ANZAC DAY: and the tradition of the ANZAC biscuit; Lest we Forget

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Anzac Day, the 25th of April is one of Australia‘s most Important occasions. It marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during World War I. Australian and New Zealand forces landed in Gallipoli on the 25th April 1915, where they battled Turkey for eight long months. Both sides suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. Over 8000 Australian soldiers were killed during this time. Anzac day has become a day where we as Australians and New Zealanders remember the sacrifices of those brave men who fought and died for our country in war; LEST WE FORGET.

ANZAC biscuits today are a derivative of the biscuits that Women on the home-front sent to our men in care packages during the war. ANZAC biscuits have become and iconic tradition and a reminder of the ANZAC legacy and a recipe passed down through the generations, a symbol and a reminder of our great brave men who fought for our country; WE WILL REMEMBER THEM.

Today is a very important day, a day of remembrance and thanks a day to pass down to younger generations, what our great men and women scarficed for our country and our freedom.

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RECIPE:

  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup golden syrup
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda
  • 1 Tsp boiling water

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 180º
  2. Line 2 biscuits trays with baking paper
  3. Sift flour and sugar into a bowl, add oats and coconut
  4. Combine butter and golden syrup in a small pan, sir over low heat until butter has melted and mixture is smooth remove from heat
  5. Dissolve bicarbonate soda in boiling water; add immediately to butter mixture
  6. Add butter mixture to dry ingredients, using a wooden spoon stir until well combined
  7. roll heaped tablespoons of mixture into balls, place on baking tray and flatten gently, allowing room for spreading
  8. Bake for 20 minutes  or until golden
  9. remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool