Chunky Chocolate Orange Muffins

Orange and chocolate heaven! Hope you give them a try. 🙂

You will need:

  • 1 cup softened butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp freshly grated orange zest
  • 1/2 orange/peach juice
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • extra chocolate and butter for the chocolate glaze
  • sprinkles of choice
  1. Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F).
  2. In a bowl, combine butter and sugar; cream until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Add orange zest and orange juice; mix well.
  3. In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add to creamed mixture; stir gently just until blended. Fold in chocolate.
  4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, filling three-quarters full. Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 22 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched. Set aside to cool.
  5. For the chocolate glaze, just melt some chocolate and a little butter in a saucepan, pop the tops of your muffins into the chocolate and decorate with sprinkles. Enjoy!

Please note: This recipe is an adaptation of the recipe for Wholesome Banana Granola Drops from Esther Brody’s 500 Best Muffin Recipes (Robert Rose Inc: 2003. pg. 38).

Please note: Sadly there was not enough time to take a decent photo; this photo is from: https://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=3740.

Vanilla Pots de Crème with Strawberries

Have you guessed yet that my father really loves strawberries? I made him two small portions of both this recipe and the Strawberry Soufflé recipe for his name’s day this year. So tasty!

Yield: 6 servings

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups light cream
  • 1 (3-inch) piece vanilla bean, or 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • strawberries, to garnish
  • vanilla sugar
  • lime juice
  • a few tbsp Kirsch or similar liqueur

PREPARATION:

  1. Heat 1 3/4 cups of the cream with the vanilla bean (if using), cool. Beat egg yolks until light and lemon-colored. Gradually beat in sugar and salt, the remaining 1/4 cup cream and the vanilla extract (if vanilla bean was not used). Gradually beat in the warm cream. Strain mixture into ramekins.
  2. Place pots in a baking pan. Pour in hot water to depth of 1 inch. Cover the pots with aluminium foil. Bake in a preheated oven (160°C/325°F) for 40-50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool and chill before serving.
  3. Slice strawberries, add a little vanilla-scented sugar and lime juice, toss to blend.
  4. If desired (and if you still have room in your ramekins), you can upgrade your dessert by making a simple English cream, mixed with simple, crushed cookies. And a few shavings of chocolate on top. 🙂

Please note: This recipe is an adaptation of the following recipe: Vanilla Pots de Crème from Henri-Paul Pellaprat’s work of art, Art culinaire moderne in the English version: The great book of French cuisine / Henri-Paul Pellaprat, edited and introduced by Jerimiah Tower – Rev. ed.

PS: Again, I didn’t have a chance to take a photo (I have three super hungry brothers who can’t bear to wait to eat their dessert haha). The photo is taken from: http://www.two-tarts.com/2013/08/pots-de-creme-with-strawberries.html

Strawberry Soufflé with Sliced Strawberries

SERIOUSLY AMAZING. But don’t forget the sliced strawberries on top!

Hey! On the occasion of my father’s name’s day, I made the family a real treat. Hope you try it out.

Yield: Makes 4-6 servings

INGREDIENTS:

  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 12-ounce basket of strawberries
  • 5 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 large egg whites

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F). Spray 4-6 ramekins (4 “big” or 6 “small”) with vegetable oil spray.
  2. Coarsely puree 3/4 of the strawberries, 2 tbsp sugar and cornstarch in food processor. Transfer to small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until mixture boils and thickens, about 3 minutes. Cool completely.
  3. Slice remaining strawberries. Transfer to medium bowl, add vanilla-scented sugar if needed and some lime juice. Toss to blend.
  4. Beat egg whites in a large bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add 3 tablespoons sugar; beat until stiff but not dry.
  5. Fold puree into whites in three additions.
  6. Transfer to ramekins. Bake until the soufflés are puffed and golden, about 13-15 minutes. Serve immediately with sliced strawberries.

Please note: This is an adaptation of the following recipe: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/strawberry-souffle-with-sliced-strawberries-5247.

PS: It was so yummy I didn’t have a chance to pull out a camera before it was all gone. So I took the liberty of using this picture, not far from the original: http://alldayidreamaboutfood.com/2012/05/strawberry-souffles-with-fresh-berries-guest-post-with-that-skinny-chick-can-bake.html. 🙂

Mini Cherry Tiramisu

When I tasted this little tiramisu in a cup, I couldn’t believe it. Not kidding, my taste buds went insane. I’m very sensitive to how sweet something is, so I was all the more surprised when I tasted pure perfection in my mouth. The subtleness of the sherry, the sweetness of the cherries, and the crunchiness of the cookie base. I can die now.

češnjev tiramisu2.jpg

You will need (for 6 portions):

  • 6 ramekins (or similar)
  • 600 g of fresh cherries, pitted
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 100 g of cookies of choice, crushed (the better the cookies, the better the dessert!)
  • 60 g butter
  • 100 g of caster sugar
  • 250 g of ricotta cheese
  • 3 medium eggs, separated
  • 1 tbsp of good quality sherry
  1. Heat cherries over medium heat with vanilla and 50 g of sugar. Simmer for 15 minutes until tender. Set aside to cool completely.
  2. Beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff. Set aside.
  3. Beat yolks with the remaining sugar until light and creamy. Add the ricotta cheese and sherry; mix just until incorporated. Gently fold in half of the egg whites (to loosen up the mixture), then repeat with the remaining whites.
  4. Melt butter and pour over the crushed cookies, mix until combined.
  5. Distribute cookie mixture among the ramekins, gently press down. Add cherries, then top with ricotta mixture. Place in the freezer (not refrigerator) for 2 hours, or until ricotta has set nicely. Place in refrigerator until serving.
  6. Top with a little more cookie crumbs, maybe even some mint leaves for decoration, and enjoy! 🙂

Please note: This recipe is an adaptation of the following recipe: “Tiramisu glacé aux cerises et spéculoos”. Link: http://www.tf1.fr/tf1/petits-plats-en-equilibre/news/tiramisu-glace-aux-cerises-speculoos-9819887.html

Cherry Chocolate Chip Buttercream Cups

Cherry season has hit Slovenia and, inevitably, so have any cherry-related recipes! These simple and elegant, but VERY tasty cherry cups simply scream summer! Shortcrust pastry, a chocolate chip buttercream center and a gorgeous layer of fresh cherries on top!

češnjeva pitica2.jpg

RECIPE

  • ramekins
  • 3 cups of cherries, preferably pitted
  • cherry liqueur (or similar red fruit liqueur)
  • vanilla sugar (optional)
  • shortcrust pastry
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup of butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup of butter, firm (but not hard)
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 90-100 g chocolate chips of your choice
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Cut shortcrust pastry into equal parts, gently place them along the bottom and “walls” of greased ramekins. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
  3. Place cherries in a bowl, add 1-2 tbsp of cherry liqueur and sprinkle with vanilla sugar (optional).
  4. In another bowl, whisk egg yolks. Add sugar and beat until thoroughly combined. Gradually add softened butter, piece by piece. Then, repeat with the firm butter. Stir in chocolate chips and 2 tbsp of cherry liqueur. Place mixture into the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  5. Spread an even layer of buttercream on the bottom of each cup (I suggest not more than 1 cm thick). Distribute cherries on top. Set in refrigerator until serving. Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Herb Drop Cookies

Hello there!

We had some friends come over today, so yesterday was one heck of a baking day! I made two batches of these mouth-watering cookies and another batch of some cinnamon mocha cappuccino cookies. (let me know if you want that recipe, too!)

Recipe

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup shortening, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1/3 cup strong, hot coffee
  • 2 tbsp anise seeds (optional)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (semi-sweet)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until smooth and creamy. Beat in egg until incorporated, then blend in molasses. Add flour mixture to ice creamed mixture, alternately with coffee, mixing well after each addition. Stir in chocolate chips and anise if using.
  4. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls (5 mL), about 2 inches (5 cm) apart, onto prepared cookie sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on sheet for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 3 1/2 dozen.

Please note: This recipe is an adaptation of the recipe for Herb Drop Cookies from Esther Brody’s 500 Best Cookies, Bars & Squares (Robert Rose Inc: 2004. pg. 45).

Banana Nutella and Coconut Muffins

Once more, I forgot to take a picture. I promise I’ll remember next time!!

I can’t even describe these muffins, other than saying they’re HEAVEN. The amount of the “banana taste” is perfect (I’m not much of a plain banana bread fan) and the Nutella center is just, divine.

 

RECIPE

Ingredients

  • 150 g all-purpose flour
  • 110 g butter
  • 70 g sugar
  • 2 mashed bananas
  • Nutella or milk chocolate with hazelnut filling
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 of a pack of baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • 50 g shredded coconut (optional)
  • 3 pinches of salt

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until smooth and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until well incorporated. Add salt and vanilla.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and cinnamon if using. Add to wet ingredients.
  4. Add mashed bananas to the mixture.
  5. Fill each muffin cup about a third of the way with batter, then drop a teaspoon or two of Nutella (or a piece of chocolate) into the center of each muffin. Portion the remaining batter evenly among the muffin liners. Sprinkle shredded coconut on top of each muffin liner/batter.
  6. Bake on the center rack for 19-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

 

 

 

Photo source: http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2015/11/05/nutella-muffins/

Please note: This is an adaptation of the following recipe: Muffin Banane Coeur Nutella et Coco Rapée. (http://audrey-sugar-spice.wix.com/recettes#!muffin-banane-coeur-nutella-coco-rape/cru9)