All posts filed under: In the kitchen

Chocolate Rum Balls

Sugar and spice make these Chocolate Rum Balls a decadent ultimate Christmas treat. Aromatic spices of cinnamon and mixed spice, rolled in chocolate sprinkles and coconut.  One bite size of pure bliss. During Module 1 of The Art and Business of Surface Design course, we created moodboards and colourboards that we shared with all the other participants. It was four weeks of creative works and wonderful new friendships and energy, and I look forward to modules 2 and 3 in 2012. One of my boards I created was chocolate brown and red, and it’s somehow has influenced also this post. Just a little romantic touch also in my moodboard! Read on for this delicious recipe for Chocolate Rum Balls and a little more festive red and chocolate brown.

Christmas Sugar Cheer

What better way to start the countdown to Christmas than sharing some festive Christmas sugar cheer. Our sugar project; prepare some Christmas treats to see around thirty smiling faces. With so many ‘little’ treats to choose from we short listed some of our favourites, and created a couple of our own. The main feature, a ‘Pandoro’ Christmas Tree. Pandoro (pan d’oro) is a traditional Italian sweet yeast bread most popular around Christmas and New Year . Typically a Veronese (someone or something from Verona, Italy) product, pandoro is traditionally shaped like a frustum with an 8 pointed-star section. Cut crossways it’s shaped like a star, and then layered usually with Chantilly cream, custard or even ice-cream. It is often served dusted with vanilla scented icing sugar made to resemble the snowy peaks of the Italian Alps during Christmas. Ours was filled with fresh whipped cream, cherry syrup jam and cherries (tinned). Decorated on top with fresh cherries and puff pastry reindeers and snowflakes sprinkled with icing sugar. These pastries are based on cream horns, see details here. …

Festive Favourites

The list is long, of all the special sweet treats that you might write on your wish list of baking for this festive season. My niece wanted to bake something and one of her all time favourites is fudge…you bet chocolate, cocoa, coconut fudge brownies. So her eyes went bounding through many of our cookbooks, which were scattered over the kitchen table and she found this easy delicious recipe.   Looking almost in every kitchen shop, I finally found some snowflake cookie cutters, so I decided to cut snowflake shapes of this choc fudge. I think they look great, it does take a little extra time however, but you know me anything for a little more loving detail. Recipe: Peppermint Candy Cane Slice 125 grams butter, melted 1 cup (220grams) brown sugar ( we didn’t have quite a cup full so I added fine caster sugar) 1 egg 1/2 teaspoon peppermint essence 1/2 cup desiccated coconut 1 cup (150grams) self raising flour, sifted 2 tablespoons cocoa 3 or 4 candy canes, roughly chopped/crushed 375 gram …

Red Rhubarb Pies

It was mid November when I last posted something about my baking..I made these rhubarb pies a couple of weeks ago and  on my first baking adventure the pies vanished before I got my photo’s in. So today I baked and photographed all in one. Didn’t want to miss out this time sharing with you this simple recipe…but more importantly showing you this wonderful pie mold I found. Believe me, your pies look perfect! Recipe: Red Rhubarb Pies 1 bunch of fresh rhubarb 1 granny smith apple 2 tablespoons of brown sugar 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon icing sugar 4 frozen pie crust sheets 1 egg white, lightly beaten Isn’t it a beauty, take a look at what I found…It’s called a Petite Pie Mold. You can see details here. Preheat oven to 190° degrees. Take the frozen pastry sheet from freezer and leave at room temp. Cut roughly the rhubarb and granny smith apple, add a couple of drops of water, add the brown sugar and place on a medium heat until rhubarb has softened. …

Italian Almond Cupcakes

On visiting Tandy’s blog, Lavender and Lime her challenge for this week was to bake something sweet using almonds. Looking through some new acquired cookbook magazines, my Mum asked if I had tried a  recipe  – Italian Almond Cupcakes….on the same day visiting Tandy’s blog. Coincidence –  I decided to try the recipe and link back to join Tandy and her baking challenge. On further research of the recipe…the advertisement in the magazine was saying Italian Almond Cupcakes and the main ingredient  –  Dilmah’s Exceptional Tea. An adventure begins…

Baking Vanilla Apple Cake

My goodness, its been a while since I’ve baked something, so I’m happy to share this moment with you. The sun was shining through the windows and the kitchen had a warming magnetism, and in my head I could hear a voice saying come on Yvette, get creative and make something delicious for morning tea.   So not resisting, I made something that I know the children love as well. The fruit bowl had an overload of apples, so the choice was easy Vanilla Apple Cake. This my friends is a little something, petite isn’t it. It’s a Royal Albert petite china Christmas decoration. Design ‘Old Country Roses’. The little cup is actually joined to the saucer and has a beautiful ribbon with embossed gold calligraphy. Can you imagine your Christmas tree decorated with these and full of fairy lights. I know you won’t be able to resist this apple cake, so read on for the recipe…

Chocolate custard cream horns

Life in the kitchen has been missed. However, this week we had an opportunity to make something to satisfy our sweet tooth desires. Chocolate custard and cream filled pastry horns. What a mouth full, I can assure you the title is long but the recipe is simple.   I recommend this treat to anyone who doesn’t have much time to spare, if your planning a dinner time treat. Simplicity as it’s highest! Read on for the recipe.

Stuck on the roof of your mouth!

You’re  in control!!. Stuck on the roof of your mouth. Chocolate chip flavour. Cocoa boosted.A crunchy baked outside coating but wait…. …an irresistible melting soft fudgy centre.It’s a tongue twisting, deliciously breathtaking experience, of pure indulgence, all combined to make this mouthwatering chocolate chip cookie one of the best I have ever tried. I’m having some quality time with my sister and her family. I’m experiencing a world  I have never ventured into. The world of motherhood. Can it really be this exhausting! I’m loving every minute of it. Every day is a new adventure into the world of 6 and 8 year olds.Can there be this much competition at a young age! A wonderland of play, a kaleidoscope of colours… Making and baking things have strung a new string in my creative mind.  What to make for the first day of school, lunch box treats? The shiny new lunch box is filled with fruit,crackers,cheese,sandwiches(healthy) and of course that energy boosting sugar plus delight. Here’s the favourite of my niece and nephews taste buds…. Chocolate …

Grilled Ratatouille

What a whirlwind of a week. I haven’t had much time on here and with my last post well over a week ago, I have some serious catching up to do. I haven’t had extra time to make the finer things, like planned desserts, but this grilled ratatouille was superb with grilled steak.   Fennel,zucchini,red and yellow peppers,and eggplant make up this delicious combination. Cut vegetables into large pieces and place on grill. Nothing hard about that, this dish is all in the presentation…after you’ve grilled the vegetables slice into thin strips, leaving the fennel in slices … Arrange in orderly fashion, first the fennel then zucchini and eggplant and finally the colourful red and yellow peppers.   And here’s my homemade delicious dressing: 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 3 tablespoons olive oil zest and juice of 1 lemon freshly ground pepper 6 capers 2 anchovies sliced black olives sprinkle of pine nuts Finely chop the anchovies and capers and place in mixing jar. Add balsamic vinegar,olive oil, zest and lemon juice,black pepper and mix well.Pour …

Pear and Prune Tarte Tatin

This month’s fruit in full season are pears. Delicious, good for you and a whole lot of nutrition in a sweet juicy package.A good source of vitamin C, fiber and only 100 calories (raw) per serving. Sodium free, fat free, and cholesterol free. This particular variety I used for this recipe was the Concorde pear,they’re a golden yellow, green colour and great for any type of cooking and baking. They’re firm in texture with a delicate vanilla taste. When cut they don’t turn brown so are great added to  fresh salads and when cooked at high temperatures don’t disintegrate into a sugary mass.   I really should have made this recipe long before now, I can’t remember an easier dessert with a fantastic visual impact, and I assure you one to try. A delicious mouthful of syrupy sweet pear and prunes on a delicate crust of puff pastry, light and flaky… Read on for the recipe…