February 4, 2016

Pav Bread (Indian Bread Rolls)

These bread rolls are beautifully fluffy and would be great accompanying curry - and they're lovely on their own too!

Recipe adapted from: Mellow n spicy
Ingredients (9 rolls, 20cm square baking tin)
187mL (3/4 cup) milk
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (one sachet)
2 tbsp white sugar
310g flour
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp milk powder
4 tbsp butter (softened)

1. Microwave the milk until lukewarm.

2. Mix the yeast and sugar with the milk and let it sit until the mixture becomes frothy.

3. Add the flour, salt and milk powder to the yeast mixture and mix until a sticky dough forms.

4. Add the butter to the dough and knead until a smooth dough is formed.  I used my stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, but you could always use your hands.

5. Lightly grease a bowl with oil or butter and place the dough inside, cover it with a clean tea towel or cling wrap.  Let it rise for about an hour, or until roughly doubled in size

6. Line a 20cm (9 inch) baking tin with baking paper, and punch the dough down - knead it for a few minutes.

7. Divide the dough into nine portions and roll each into a ball.

8. Place the rolls evenly into the baking tin.  Cover with cling wrap or a tea towel and let rise for about 30 minutes, until roughly doubled in size.

9. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 175C (350F).

10. Bake the rolls for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown on top.

11. Let the rolls rest for a few minutes then you can either cool them completely or enjoy them warm!

January 19, 2016

Browned Butter Praline Blondies

Browned butter is a glorious thing and hazelnut praline paste is another glorious thing.  Combined...well, here you go! 

Recipe adapted from: F&B Department
Ingredients - 22cm square baking tin
170g butter
270g brown sugar
3 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
223g flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup hazelnut praline paste (or Nutella)

1. Brown your butter - place the butter in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until it foams, smells delicious and brown flecks form at the bottom of the pot.  Be careful that it doesn't burn.

2. Strain the butter into another bowl and set it aside to cool.

3. Once the butter's cooled a bit, preheat the oven to 175C (350F).  Line a 22cm square baking tin with baking paper.

4. Beat the cooled browned butter with the brown sugar until combined (the mixture will be pretty liquid).

5. Beat the eggs in one at a time, then add the vanilla and beat until well combined.

6. Gently fold the flour, baking powder and salt into the batter.

7. Spread the blondie batter into the baking tin and drop blobs of the hazelnut praline paste (or Nutella) on top.

Swirl the praline through the blondie batter with a knife.  Don't overswirl because then you'll just mix it together.

8. Bake the blondie for about 30 minutes, until lightly brown on the top.

9. Let it cool before slicing and enjoying!

December 31, 2015

Lemon Raspberry Loaf Cake

Hi there!  I hope that you are all having a great holiday season, and best wishes for a prosperous and happy 2016!

Please enjoy this delicious raspberry loaf cake with lemon glaze - it's moist, easy and tastes amazing!

Recipe adapted from: Liv for Cake
Ingredients - 22 x 12 cm base loaf (approx 8.7 x 4.7 inch)
85g butter
210g white sugar
2 eggs
30g almond meal
105g flour
1/4 tsp bicarb soda
1/4 tsp salt
65g sour cream
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
Zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp lemon juice
2/3 cups fresh or frozen raspberries (I used frozen)

Ingredients - glaze
250g icing sugar
4 tbsp lemon juice (or more if you want a more runny glaze) 

Method - cake
1. Preheat the oven to 175C (350F).

2. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

3. One at a time, beat the eggs into the butter mixture.

4. Mix the almond meal, flour, bicarb soda and salt together.

5. Mix half the flour into the batter, then all of the sour cream, then the rest of the flour.

6. Add the vanilla essence, lemon zest and lemon juice to the batter and mix until combined.

7. Finally, gently fold the raspberries into the batter.

8. Line a loaf tin with baking paper and pour the batter in, spreading it evenly with a spatula.

9. Bake in the preheated oven for about 40-45 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs.

10. Cool the cake in the tin for a few minutes, then take it out and cool completely on a wire rack.

Method - glaze
1. Mix the icing sugar and lemon juice together until smooth and of a pourable consistency.

2. When the cake is cool, drizzle the glaze over the top.


December 7, 2015

Nutella Vanilla Swirl Loaf

Who loves Nutella?  I do, and I hope you all do too!

This Nutella/vanilla swirl loaf is super easy to make - and it's moist, delicious and of course full of (and covered in) Nutella.  I baked this for a family dinner and it was very well received.

It's quick and simple so this is one to keep in your repertoire and whip up when you're in a bind!

Recipe adapted from: Taming Twins
Ingredients 22 x 12 cm loaf (approx 8.7 x 4.7 inch)
225g butter
225g caster sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
225g flour
2 tsp baking powder
200g Nutella

Ingredients - topping
100g Nutella
75g hazelnuts

1. Preheat your oven to 160C (320F).

2. Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating in between additions.  Mix in the vanilla essence.

4. Fold the flour and baking powder into the mixture gently.

5. Take one third of the batter out of the bowl and set aside.  With the remaining two thirds, add the 200g Nutella and mix until smooth and combined.

6. Line a 22 x 12cm loaf tin with baking paper.

7. Pour the vanilla batter into your lined loaf tin, try and keep it on one side of the tin.  Then pour the Nutella batter onto the other side and swirl them around with a knife.  Don't swirl too much because you don't want the colours to get too muddy and messy.

8. Bake the cake for about 50-60 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs.  While the cake is baking, you can toast your hazelnuts in a frying pan to give them more flavour and crunch!

9. When your cake's done, let it cool in the tin.

10. When cool, place your cake on a serving plate and spread the 100g Nutella over the top.  If your Nutella's a bit stiff, microwave it for a few seconds in a microwave safe bowl to make it a bit more runny.

11. Roughly chop the hazelnuts and sprinkle them over the top.


November 27, 2015

Soft Garlic Knots

Oh my gosh, these garlic knots are absolutely delicious, and pretty easy to make!  Prepare yourself for extreme garlic action - the bread is soft, very garlicky and beautiful too.

If you don't want garlic, you could always put cinnamon and sugar on them and they'd be just as nice!

Recipe adapted from: King Arthur Flour
Ingredients - bread
270g plain flour
230g bread flour
1 tbsp white sugar
2 tbsp dry instant yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
225g water

Ingredients - garlic glaze
45g butter
4 cloves garlic

1. Mix the dry ingredients (everything except the olive oil and water) in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment.

2. Microwave the water until it's lukewarm.

3. Add the olive oil and lukewarm water to the dry ingredients, mix with the dough hook until smooth and combined.  If the dough is too dry, add a touch more water - if it's too wet, add a bit more flour.  Knead the dough in the mixer (or by hand) for a few minutes, until nice and elastic.

4. Lightly grease the bowl with olive oil then place the dough in to rise for about an hour, covered with cling wrap.  The dough should about double in size.

5. Once the dough has risen, punch it down and roll it out on a floured surface into a large rectangle.

6. Cut the rectangle into about 16 strips (along the long side, so you have 16 short strips).

7. Roll each strip into a round rope and then fold it into a knot.  See this link for some helpful pictures!  It's actually pretty simple to achieve.

8. Place the knots on baking trays lined with baking paper or silicone mats with a fair amount of space in between.

9. Cover the knots with cling wrap or a tea towel and let them rise for another hour.  While they're rising, preheat the oven to 175C (350F).

10. Bake the knots for 15-18 minutes.  They should be golden brown but still soft!  While they're baking, make your garlic glaze.

11. Melt the butter for the glaze, then chop the garlic finely and mix it into the butter.

12. When the knots come out of the oven, brush them generously with the garlic glaze.  The reason you don't bake them with the garlic on is because the garlic would burn!

14. These knots are best eaten warm, so enjoy them ASAP!  You can also reheat them in the microwave to soften them if you have any left the next day.


November 18, 2015

Choc Chip Cookies (Not Without Salt recipe)

Ladies and gentlemen, I've found a new favourite choc chip cookie recipe!  It's very versatile - I like to make the dough into a large log then chop it up pretty thinly.  When baked, this gives the edges a nice crunch and chewiness while the middle stays softer.

In addition to dark chocolate chips, sometimes I add white chocolate chips, pecans or hazelnuts to spice things up a bit.

Recipe adapted from: Not Without Salt
225g butter
55g white sugar
55g raw sugar (or Turbinado)
340g brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla essence
455g flour
1 1/2 tsp bicarb soda
2 tsp salt plus extra for sprinkling
450g dark chocolate chips or chocolate chunks

1. Preheat the oven to 180C (360F).  Cream the butter and all sugars until light and fluffy.

2. Beat eggs into the mixture one at a time until incorporated, make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

3. Beat in the vanilla essence.

4. Add the flour, bicarb soda and salt to the bowl, mix gently until fully combined - don't overmix.

5. Finally, add the chocolate chips!  If you're adding nuts, or anything else, fold these in as well.

6. Place tablespoons of dough on baking trays covered with baking paper or silicone mats.  Alternatively, roll portions of dough into logs and let them chill in the freezer until hardened, then chop into slices.

7. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.  You want the middle to still be soft so don't over bake them!

8. Allow the cookies to cool a bit and then enjoy!  They're amazing when they're warm.