Friday, April 27, 2012

Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Finally I found the BEST chocolate chip cookie recipe! These are unbelievably thick and chewy. What I like most is the addition of oats and the browned butter. I made some changes in the recipe for example I used quick oats instead of rolled oats. Anyway, these were very delicious and I'm sure I'll keep using this recipe again and again. However, If you prefer more crispy and thinner cookies, try these - they are delicious too! 

Recipe found here.

makes about 15-18 cookies (I got more!!)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cups rolled oats (I used quick oats)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon (I added 1/2 tsp)
1 cup chocolate chunks
optional: 1- 2 tablespoons milk, if dough is crumbly

Heat a small saucepan over medium-low heat and add butter. Whisking constantly, cook butter until bubbly and until small brown bits appear on the bottom of the pan – about 5-6 minutes. Immediately remove the butter from the heat, whisking for an additional 30 seconds. Set aside and let cool.
In a bowl, combine flour, salt, baking powder, oats and cinnamon, mixing, then set aside.
Once butter has cooled, add to a large bowl. Whisk in sugars, stirring until smooth. Add in egg and vanilla, whisking until smooth once again. Slowly begin to stir in dry ingredients, using your hands if necessary to bring dough together. If you find that the dough still won’t come together, add in milk 1 tablespoon at a time. Fold in chocolate chips. Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 190 degrees C. Using an ice cream scoop or your hands, form dough into 4cm balls. Place about 5cm apart on a nonstick baking sheet, then bake for 10-12 minutes, or until bottoms and edges are golden. Let cool before serving.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cinnamon Coffee Cake

I can't help myself but I love eating cake for breakfast. A slice of soft, moist and cinnamony coffee cake with a cup of strong coffee - that's all I need. This makes my mornings perfect. This coffee cake came out really delicious - just as I expected. Sour cream makes it amazingly moist. And those swirls of cinnamon! Perfection.

Recipe adapted from here.

115g (1 stick) butter, room temperature
225g (1 cup) sugar
2 eggs
250g (2 cups) flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
340g (12 oz) sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1) Cream together butter and sugar.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

2) In another bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

3) Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture alternately with the sour cream and vanilla.  Mix until combined.

4) Pour half of the batter into a greased 9″x13″ baking pan, and sprinkle with half of the topping.  Add the remainder of the batter on top, and sprinkle with the remaining topping. 

5) Bake at 180C (350F) for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Rice and Roasted Vegetable Salad

I had the idea of making rice salad for a long time. Many years ago, I have tasted something like this and since then I was planning to make it myself. This dish is really delicious and can be eaten as a main or side. If you are not into vegetarian dishes, feel free to add some meat. I think next time I'll add some chicken but honestly I prefer it meatless. It was easy to create this recipe because whatever you add into it - it's okay. That's why I like it. To make the salad more fragrant and delicious, I decided to roast vegetables. It takes more time but I believe it's worth it. Of course, I'm sure you can skip this. If you do so, just toss everything together.

P.S. It's a perfect dish for spring!

100g rice + 1 tsp salt
1 carrot + salt, dried basil, pepper
5 medium mushrooms
1 1/4 cup chopped pumpkin + pinch salt; 1/2 tsp dried basil; 1/4 tsp ground pepper
1 red pepper
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 onion
3/4 cup canned green peas
285g canned corn
 For the sauce:
1/2 tsp honey
1/2 tsp dijon mustard
1 1/2 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
coriander seeds & green onion

1. Cook rice until done with some salt. Drain them well and set aside.
2. Chop carrot and season with some salt, dried basil and pepper. Pour a little of olive oil into your frying pan and saute carrots until softer. Then increase heat and roast until lightly browned.
3. Chop mushrooms and roast in your pan with some olive oil until golden brown. Repeat the same with pumpkin and red pepper.
4. In a frying pan, roast chopped onion.
5. Mix together the onion, carrot, red pepper, mushrooms, pumpkin, garlic.
6. Add peas and corn. Add rice. Mi everything well.
7. In a separate bowl, mix together honey, dijon mustard, olive oil, vinegar. Add some salt and pepper. Pour the sauce onto rice mixture and mix well. Sprinkle some coriander seeds and green onion on top.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookies

 These are very delicious cookies! They are soft and chewy inside and crispy outside. I love them when they are still warm and the chocolate is melted but they are also delicious cold.

Recipe adapted from here.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes 20-22 cookies

1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
½ plus 1/8 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
10 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 tsp corn syrup
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
7 oz/200 g dark chocolate chips

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together butter and both sugars using a wide rubber spatula until somewhat light and smooth. This will take you 1 or 2 minutes. Cream corn syrup into the butter/sugar mixture until evenly blended. Stir in egg until well incorporated. Stir in vanilla extract until well combined.

Add flour mixture to the butter mixture all at once and stir until most of the flour is absorbed. Add chocolate chips and mix until evenly incorporated. Do not over-mix. You should end up with a soft, moderately moist dough. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly over the surface of the dough in the bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll 1.5-oz mounds of dough into balls and place them onto prepared baking sheets, spacing them 2 inches apart. (You can also use a 1.5-oz trigger or quick-release ice cream scoop to portion the cookie dough). Cover the dough balls loosely with a piece of plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 15-20 minutes longer.

Preheat your oven to 350°F in the meantime.

Place the chilled baking tray on the center rack of your oven and bake until golden brown, 10-11 minutes. Let cookies cool on baking sheet for about 1 minute before carefully transferring to a wire rack to cool.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Apple Cinnamon Muffins

Apple and cinnamon is a perfect combination. I never get bored of baking something with apples. These muffins came out wonderfully and when I tasted them I had no doubts that this recipe has to be written down. 

makes about 16.

290g flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
250g sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
70 ml oil
100 ml milk
6 small (~3 cups) apples, chopped
3 tsp cinnamon + 5 tsp sugar
More sugar and cinnamon to sprinkle

1) Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar and vanilla.

2) In another bowl, beat the eggs. Pour in the oil and milk. Mix well.

3) Chop the apples and mix together the cinnamon and sugar. Coat apples with cinnamon-sugar mixture.

4) Start adding dry ingredients to the wet. Add in the apples (leave some for topping).

5)  Line your muffin tins with cupcake liners and sprinkle bottoms with cinnamon and sugar. Add 1-2 tablespoons of mixture (or more if you like super large muffins as I do) and put some chopped apples on top and sprinkle with more cinnamon-sugar.

6) Bake in a preheated (180C) oven for... hmm (I dont actually remember the time :D) However, I baked them a little bit longer than usual cupcakes, I think that was about 25-35 minutes. The best way to check if they are already baked and what I always do is to insert a skewer and if it comes out clean - they are done.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Potato Pancakes

4 medium potatoes
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tbsp flour
1 clove minced garlic
1/2 onion, finely chopped
salt & pepper to taste (you may add any other seasoning like dried basil or oregano)

Grate the potatoes and mix with garlic and onion. Add in the egg.  Add flour, salt and other seasoning.
Preheat oil in a frying pan. Put a tablespoon of a pancake mixture and fry until golden and crisp on each side over medium-low heat (about 10-15 minutes). Serve with some sour cream.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Tarte au Citron

This lemon tart is one of my favourites. The lemon curd is a little bit tart and a generous layer of confectioner's sugar makes it perfect. Of course, you can always add more sugar into the curd to make it sweeter. But my favourite part of this tart is the crust. It's so flaky and buttery! I will definitely use this in other recipes. There's no sugar added into the crust and maybe that makes it so delicious.

  For a flaky pastry crust:
  • 1¼ cups (200 grams / 7 oz) of plain all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 125 grams (4¼ oz) of cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • 125 ml (4¼ fl oz) of cold milk
  • 1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar 

For the lemon filling
  • The finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ cup (125 ml / 4¼ fl oz) of fresh lemon juice, approximately 3 lemons
  • ½ cup (100 grams / 3½ oz) of caster sugar
  • 80 grams (2¾ oz) of butter, cut into cubes
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 2 large free range egg yolks
  Preheat the oven to 180°C, 350°F or  4.
  For the pastry:
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl or food processor.
Cut the butter into small cubes and rub into the flour either with your hands or using the food processor, until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
Combine the milk and vinegar together.
Add the milk to the flour mixture to make a soft moist dough dotted with butter.
On a lightly floured bench or board bring the mixture just until it forms a ball.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Roll out the pastry until it’s approximately 5 mm (1/8 inch) thick.
Place a 23cm (9 inch) loose bottom tart tin on a baking sheet/ try and line with the pastry, docking the bottom several time with a fork and trimming away the excess pastry.
Line the pastry with parchment paper and blind baking beans and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the tart is lightly golden.
Remove the beans and paper ready for the filling.

For the Lemon curd filling:
In a medium sized non-reactive saucepan, gently heat the lemon juice, grated zest, sugar and butter until it has melted and the sugar dissolved.
In a small bowl whisk together the eggs and the yolks to combine.
Pour a little of the warm lemon mixture into the eggs, stirring constantly, to warm them gently - this way they don’t get to big of a shock and are less likely to scramble.
Pour and scrape out the warmed eggs back into the saucepan with the remaining lemon mixture and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and almost begins to gently bubble around the edges.
Strain the lemon curd filling though a mesh sieve directly into the pre-baked tart shell, removing the zest.
Press through with a rubber spatula to be sure to get all the flavour.
Smooth the curd filling and pop it into the oven for five minutes, you simply want to set the curd.
Remove from the oven and let cool.
Just before serving sprinkle a good layer of icing sugar over the top of the curd filling.
Oh, and this week I baked this cake for my friend's birthday. I'm so happy because everybody enjoyed it!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Flan Patissier

This gorgeous dessert reminds me of France so much. Unfortunately, I didn't have a chance to taste a real French Flan but that didn't stop me from making this at home. Actually I am such a lover of French desserts. Macarons, eclairs, flans, tartelettes are absolutely my favorite. I haven't tried to bake eclairs yet but they are first on my to bake list. Somehow I can't find time to bake them. But I already know they will be coffee flavored. That's because I've tasted a coffee eclair in France and it was divine.

However, let's talk about flan. This was perfect. I mean it. I have tried baking it so many times in the past but they used to scramble or taste eggy. This flan has no egg flavor, the texture is smooth and creamy and it tastes like.. like a real flan. I guess. Well, I haven't tasted a real French flan as I've already mentioned, but I can't imagine it more delicious than this.. The recipe isn't original because I altered it a little bit. Anyway, trust me, this is really good.

75g butter, softened
50g sugar
½ egg
145g flour
¼ tsp salt

960ml milk
4 large eggs
140g sugar
90g cornstarch
1 vanilla pod or 1 tbsp of vanilla essence* (see note)

1) Mix together the softened butter, the sugar and salt until light and fluffy. Fold in the egg. Add in the flour and mix until just incorporated. Wrap into plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2) Roll the dough into a thin circle. Press it into the pan leaving plenty of pastry coming up the sides. Put in refrigerator for  30 minutes.

3) In a large pot over medium-low heat, boil the milk with vanilla.

4) In another bowl, mix the lightly beaten eggs with cornstarch and sugar.

5) When the milk mixture boils, reduce the heat to low and start pouring the egg mixture into the milk. Keep whisking constantly. Cook until the mixture thickens (for about 10 minutes). Remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes before pouring onto the crust.

6) Preheat oven to 180C. Pour the milk mixture onto the crust and smooth the top. Bake for 1 hour. Remove from the oven, let cool completely and then refrigerate overnight.

 Note: I didn't have any vanilla pod so I used vanilla essence. However, I recommend you to use a vanilla pod because I believe this gives a more intense flavour.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...