Shortbread Twirls

Biscuits at any time of the day are welcome!

Ingredients

White shortbread

120g                plain flour
80g                  unsalted butter
1                      egg yolk
1 pinch           salt
50g                  icing sugar

Chocolate shortbread

80g                  plain flour
40g                  cocoa powder
80g                  unsalted butter
1                      egg yolk
1                      pinch salt
50g                  icing sugar

Method

  • Prepare the white and chocolate shortbread dough’s separately
  • In a large bowl, mix together the icing sugar, egg yolk, creamed butter and a pinch of salt
  • Add the flour (or flour and cocoa powder for the chocolate shortbread dough) to the butter mixture and rub together using your fingertips until it becomes sandy in texture
  • Then mix and press together. Lightly flour your work surface and place the dough on it.
  • Knead with the palms of your hands until it is well blended, more vigorously for the last few seconds.
  • Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.

Making the swirl

  • Roll out each piece of dough separately into a 3mm thick sheet

NB: It is important the pastry is rolled out evenly.

  • Place the chocolate dough on top of the white short bread dough that has been egg washed, so the dough stick together
  • Roll up the dough tightly
  • Wrap in cling wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour
  • Trim the ends off and then slice discs from the roll
  • Place the slices on a non-stick tray and bake in a pre-heated oven at180°C for about 10 minutes (light brown in colour)

Churros & Chocolate Sauce

I have no idea what else could beat this recipe…for now! 

Ingredients

Chocolate sauce
200 g 55% chocolate, broken into pieces
100 ml cream
100 ml milk
3 tbsp golden syrup
½ tsp vanilla extract

Churros

1 cup water
2 ½ tbsp white sugar
½ tsp salt
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup flour

Vegetable oil for frying

½ cup caster sugar

1 tsp               ground cinnamon

Method

Chocolate sauce

  • Put all the sauce ingredients into a saucepan over medium heat
  • Gently melt everything together, stirring occasionally until you have a smooth shiny sauce
  • Keep warm on a low heat.

Churros

  • In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the water, sugar, salt and the measured vegetable oil
  • Bring to a boil and remove off heat
  • Stir in flour until mixture forms a ball
  • Heat the oil for frying in deep-fryer or a deep saucepan to 190°C
  • Place the dough mixture into a piping bag
  • Pipe strips of dough into hot oil
  • Fry until golden, then drain on paper towel
  • Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a mixing bow
  • Roll the drained churros in cinnamon and sugar mixture

Chocolate & Almond Biscotti

What a great combination, Almond, chocolate & orange.

Ingredients 

230g                plain flour
60 g                 cocoa powder
½ tsp              baking powder
260 g               caster sugar
4                      large eggs, beaten
240 g               almond nuts, chopped
100 g              cranberries, chopped
1                      orange, finely zested

Method 

  • Pre-heat your oven to 140°C
  • Line a baking tray with baking paper
  • Place the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and sugar together in a mixing bowl
  • Stir in the beaten eggs, a little at a time, making sure each addition is incorporated before adding the next
  • Continue until you have a firm dough; it may not be necessary to add all of the egg.

NB: The dough shouldn’t be at all sticky.

  • Add the almonds and the cranberries to the biscotti dough with the orange zest and combine using your hands
  • Turn the biscotti dough out onto a floured surface and knead gently, then divide in half
  • Roll each piece of dough into a long log, about 4cm in diameter
  • Place both logs on your lined baking tray, spacing them at least 5cm apart as the mixture will spread a bit
  • Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes.
  • Leave the logs to cool on the tray for 10 minutes to allow the dough to firm up slightly, then transfer to a board
  • Cut the logs, on the diagonal, into 2-3cm thick slices
  • Place the slices, cut side up, on the baking tray
  • Return to the oven for 20-30 minutes, or until the biscotti are dry through to the centre, turning them over halfway through
  • Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely

Chocolate & Beetroot Cake

One way to eat your vegetables! ha ha

Ingredients

For the cake:
2 cups plain flour
1 ¾ cups sugar
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
¾ cup unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into pieces
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large cooked beetroots, finely grated
1 ¼ cups hot water

For the frosting:
½ cup + 2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
¾ cup cocoa powder, sifted
¾ cup whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp salt

Method

To make the cake

  • For the cake, preheat the oven to 180°C.
  • Grease two 8-inch round cake pans.
  • Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper and dust the sides with flour, tapping out any excess.
  • Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt into a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
  • Add the butter and mix on low speed until the butter has been worked into the flour (it will seem dry and crumbly).
  • Add the eggs and vanilla and mix in slightly, then mix in the beets.
  • Add the hot water while mixing on low speed, then increase the speed to medium high and continue to mix for 2 to 3 minutes, until the batter is thick and fluffy.
  • Scrape the batter into the prepared pans, spread to level the batter and tap the pans on the counter to knock out any large air pockets.
  • Bake the cakes for about 35 minutes, until a tester inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean.
  • Cool the cakes in their pans for 30 minutes then turn them out onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting

  • For the frosting, melt the butter in a medium saucepan, then whisk in the sugar and cocoa powder.
  • Continue to whisk this over medium heat until the mixture begins to bubble, then whisk in the cream.
  • Continue to whisk until the mixture returns to a simmer (gentle bubbles) and whisk  for an additional minute.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt.
  • Cool the mixture (it will look like a thick fudge sauce) to room temperature, then chill for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally while chilling.
  • This will set the frosting to a spreadable consistency.
  • To assemble, peel the parchment from a cake layer and place it on a plate or platter.
  • Spread an even layer of frosting over the top of the cake and place the second cake layer on top.
  • Frost the top and sides of the cake, spreading until desired effect
  • Chill the cake to set, but pull the cake from the fridge an hour before slicing and serving.

 

Milk Tart Fruits Tarts

Make a large one of several small one if you wish!

Sweet pastry

Ingredients

60g                 unsalted butter – softened
40g                 icing sugar – sieved
1                      egg yolk
125g                plain flour
1 tbsp             water

Method

  • In a large bowl, mix together the icing sugar and egg yolk and then add the creamed butter to give a smooth appearance.
  • Add the flour to the butter mixture and rub together using your fingertips until it becomes sandy in texture.
  • Add the water, then mix and press together.
  • Lightly flour your work surface and place the dough on it.       Knead with the palms of your hands until it is well blended, more vigorously for the last few seconds.
  • Wrap in cling film and refrigerate.

Milk tart filling

Ingredients

950ml            milk
2 tbsp             corn-flour
225g               sugar
3                      eggs
2 tbsp             flour
1                      vanilla pod, cut length ways and deseeded
1 tbsp             butter
1 tsp               cinnamon

Method 

  • In a saucepan, bring the milk to a boil and infuse with the vanilla pod.
  • Beat the eggs and add the sugar, flour and corn-flour.
  • Combine well.
  • Pour the boiling milk into the egg mixture and whisk constantly.
  • Return to stove and whisk constantly until the mixture thickens.
  • Add the butter.
  • Remove the vanilla pod and pour into the cooked shell.
  • Decorate with a sprinkle of cinnamon & fresh fruit.

 

Chocolate Brownies

A childhood favourite that still never escapes you! 

Ingredients
375 g              Butter
375 g              Dark Chocolate
6                      large eggs
1 tbsp             Vanilla extract
500 g              Castor Sugar
225 g              Flour
300 g              almonds, roughly chopped

Method

  • Melt butter and chocolate over a double boiler until smooth
  • In a separate bowl mix together eggs, vanilla and sugar
  • Mix together chocolate mix with egg mixture and then add in flour and pecan nuts
  • Bake at 160C for +-35min

Vanilla Shortbread Biscuits

Quick, simple and great for a quick sugar fix! 

Makes 30 biscuits

Ingredients

500 g              butter, softened
1/2 cup          Caster Sugar
2/3 cup          corn flour
1 tsp               baking powder
440 g              cake flour
1 tsp               almond extract

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 180˚C.
  • Grease and line two baking sheets.
  • Cream the butter in a stand mixer with the sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add the corn flour, baking powder, cake flour and almond extract to form a soft dough – add a little more flour if necessary.
  • Cover and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
  • Roll out to ½ cm thick and cut out 5cm circles using a cookie cutter.
  • Using a plain tip icing nozzle or wooden skewer, make two holes in the ‘buttons’ then place on the prepared baking sheets. Refrigerate for another 30 minutes before baking in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes until golden.
  • Allow to cool thoroughly.

#SABakeOff S2 EP10

The tenth episode and the Masterclass from Season 2 aired on Tuesday 20th December 2016.

#SABakeOff S2 EP9

The ninth EPISODE and GRAND FINALE Season 2 aired on Tuesday 13th December 2016.