Archive for the ‘chocolate’ Category

Two tier chocolate cake

March 27, 2014

 

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I’m making a tiered cake tomorrow for my aunt (more explanations, and pictures, will follow soon!) I’ve never actually made a tiered cake before, actually. Not really, with the different size cakes stacked on top of each other, and such. So I thought I’d test it out first, make a test cake, if you will. I needed to check to see if this particular chocolate cake recipe would be solid enough to take another tier (it was). This cake worked out beautifully, and I could finally try my hand at the rose-icing technique I’ve been wanting to try forever.

As luck would have it, my friend came by that evening so I gave her the cake and told her to take it to work with her. The text she sent me the next day saying “my coworkers are big fans!” made me smile all day.

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One dough – three cookies

March 19, 2014

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I have such a weak spot for big, gooey cookies. This probably doesn’t come as a surprise, seeing as my cookie tag contains 23 posts – a really big share of them being gooey chocolate chip cookies. There’s just something so comforting about biting into a big, soft chocolatey cookie. Now I’ve made M&M cookies before – an adaptation from my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe that uses brown butter, yum! – but when I saw this post down at the Pinch Of Yum blog I knew I had to try that recipe as well.

While I was making these cookies it soon became clear that I didn’t have enough M&Ms to make sure the dough had enough pieces of yumminess in it. I decided to go through my cupboards and see what else I could put in these cookies. It was all quite adventurous! I ended up going for, aside from one batch with M&Ms, a batch with Reese’s mini peanut butter cups (white and milk chocolate) and a batch with chopped up Geisha chocolate. These cookies suddenly got very international. I’d bought the M&Ms in Sweden, because the package was so cute, and I really like their logo and M&M mascots. The Geisha chocolate was a gift from a friend that she got in Finland. The Reese’s peanut butter cups I’d bought in the UK a while back.

All three kinds were extremely good, and I packed up a lot of them to take with me on my weekend trip to go see a friend who had her birthday the previous day. It was the perfect travel snack during my train ride, where I saw the landscape woosh by while I snacked on chocolate.

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Chocolate layer cake

March 5, 2014

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One of my brother’s friends is having a birthday party tonight. Every guest is supposed to make  something sweet; of course my brother took the easy route by asking me to bake something. He said I could make whatever I wanted. It can get a bit overwhelming, when you get complete free range like that, can’t it? There are so many things I want to bake, and sometimes it’s hard to decide. Especially when you’re not the one who will be doing the eating. What if my brother’s friends – and the birthday boy! – don’t like what I chose? In the end I decided to go with chocolate. Because, honestly, who doesn’t like chocolate? I’m very pleased with the end result and, to be honest, slightly bitter that I have to give this whole cake away without being able to have a taste!

I took this Devil’s Food cake recipe from this post; I decided to go with a vanilla butter cream instead of the meringue frosting they used. I got some inspiration for the decoration from this lovely post but ended up using (store bought) meringue to top off the cake instead of piping even more butter cream on top of the ganache. I was afraid it’d be a bit of a butter cream overkill!

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Moelleux au chocolat (lava cake)

February 13, 2014

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If you’re still looking for a Valentine’s Day recipe to please your girl/boy/person, a friend, the members of your family – or yourself: look no further! This chocolate cake with a gooey center is the perfect thing. It’s very easy to make and it’s chocolate. Pretty much a guaranteed success!

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Brownie and choc-chip roll out cookies

February 7, 2014

 

 

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What’s that age that children start being able to recognizing and see the difference between animals? Whatever it is – I bet it’s before you’ve reached 24. ‘Cause you see, this was supposed to be a post about two different kinds of kitty-shaped cookies. That’s what it was supposed to be. Up until the moment I sent my friend Jess a text with a picture of my two brand new cookie cutters and I get a reply saying. “Oh! A kitty and an owl!” I was just holding the cookie cutter in question, ready to start punching out my first cookie, when – huh, she’s right. That’s an owl. In my defense, Jess agrees that the owl does have a very cat-like head.

But I digress. This isn’t a post about my inability to tell the difference between an owl and a cat (a bird and a freaking feline, for crying out loud) this is a post celebrating the awesomeness that is Amy! Amy is a friend I met online at the beginning of last year, through a mutual friend. We soon bonded over a mutual interest in hockey (go, Blackhawks!) and then later through a whole series of unfortunate (unpleasantly soul-sucking) fandoms. The cookie cutters were part of a Christmas (slash birthday) present Amy sent all the way from the USA. (So, further in my defence, maybe the excitement of package! Christmas! Birthday! Presents! Amy! is also part of the reason why I immediately decided cookie cutter #2 was a cat just like #1)

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Earl Grey Chocolate Chip Cookies

February 2, 2014

 

 

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I love tea. I think there’s not a single other hot drink that can come even close to giving the joy and comfort that a good cup of tea can offer. Not coffee, not hot chocolate – they don’t come close. Or for me, at least – weirdly enough I have a lot of friends that don’t feel the same way. Huh. My tea collection is ridiculously extensive, up to a point where I’m a bit worried that I’m never going to be able to make it through to the other end of it, at least not for another couple of years. Even though I love trying new brands and flavors, there’s a couple of teas – classics – that’ll always be on the top of my list. A good, simple Darjeeling with lemon is my personal favorite. I’m also very partial to Lipton’s Vanilla Green tea – there’s just something about that one. And then there’s Earl Grey. You just can’t go wrong with Earl Grey. When I saw the recipe for these Earl Grey Chocolate Chip Cookies on the Hummingbird High blog, I knew I had to try them.

I made them for a friend’s birthday and they were a pretty big success – I personally loved them to pieces, at least. Which I count as a big success!

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Chocolates!

January 30, 2014

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It’s been way too long since I last updated! It’s been gnawing at me these last couple of days – not only the guilt over neglecting my little baking blog, but also the urge to get in the kitchen and make something – bake something. I thought it would be best to start by getting rid of that first feeling, the guilt, by finally posting these pictures that I took at the end of December (yikes, talk about procrastination!) These chocolates are made using Nigella Lawson’s recipe found in her book Nigella Express. I’d opened a can of evaporated milk and I didn’t want to let the rest go to waste, so I made these tried and tested favorites of my friends and family. They’re made with a very bitter chocolate and peanuts.

Since this is my first post of 2014 I would like to wish everybody a very belated happy new year. I hope everyone had a great end of the year, and amazing New Year’s Eve and Day. May 2014 be beautiful for you :) Next up on this blog: chocolate chip cookies. Again. (They tasted lovely though, so I hope you’re excited!)

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Merry Christmas

December 23, 2013

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Hello everyone! I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who liked my posts this past year, and a heartfelt you’re awesome, thanks so much to everyone who decided to follow my blog. I’m very excited to see that people like what I have to post – and I hope I can post lots more in 2014 :) I hope that you’re all spending Christmas with people you love, doing things that you love. I’d also like to wish you all that your heart desires for 2014! Make it a really great year.

I baked these cupcakes for my brother. He’s spending the evening with his friends, having a Christmas dinner party. I like how they turned out – so very festive! I also made them tiramisu, which ended up being so very very yummy. I drenched the finger biscuits in a coffee amaretto syrup, and the mascarpone cream was made with an Italian meringue and a pâte-à-bombe. So good :) but not the point of this post! This a post about cupcakes!

My cupcake recipe can be found here; and I found the buttercream recipe in my copy of The Great British Book of Baking! (Bring 85 grams of sugar and 4 table spoons to 110°C – poor in a thin stream onto 2 lightly whisked egg yolks while mixing with a hand mix. Keep mixing until the mixture is cold. (It’ll be thick and light.) Continue mixing and gradually add 150 grams of very soft butter. Add flavoring if you’d like – I added sweetened cocoa powder for hot cocoa (yum) to make the chocolate buttercream.)

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Chocolate (and pecan) pie

October 15, 2013

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I have one rule when it comes to baking: my family and friends don’t get to dig in until after I’ve taken pictures.

As you can see from that beautiful, chocolatey pie above – that didn’t quite work out this time around. My mom and brother’s best friend gave me the puppy eyes on Saturday and wanted me to make them a pie. A pecan pie. A pecan pie with chocolate. (Later it turned out there was a lot more chocolate than pecan to this pie.) The puppy eyes were accompanied by some whining, and eventually I gave in and made it. It was too late to take pictures, by then though, because all the day light had given way to night time. And isn’t it weird how fast the days seem to shorten once September 21st has rolled by? So I told my mom “You can have some, but make sure I have some left for pictures.” This is what I had left the next day. Quite the feat, if you know that this one of the richest pies I have ever made – basically it consists out of chocolate on top of chocolate. Oh, and there’s some nuts on there as well.

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Cookies and brownies

October 6, 2013

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Last weekend we had the international Customer’s Day in Belgium. On this Saturday in September customers get treated with a little gift from (small) business owners. I baked brown-butter and vanilla, triple chocolate chip cookies (pffew, quite the mouthful) and brownies for the people who came into my parents’ restaurant on that Friday.

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