Saturday, July 31, 2010

coconut caramel banana pancakes

Well folks, it's the last day of July and what better way to send off the first 'ingredient of the month' than smothered in a golden caramel sauce? These luscious little pancakes are light in texture and flavour and absolutely delicious when draped in caramel and sliced bananas.

Makes 15 - 20

1 cup self raising flour
1 tbs brown sugar
1 cup coconut cream
1 cup milk
1 egg
oil or butter for frying

50g butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cream
1 - 2 bananas, sliced

1. Combine flour and brown sugar in a medium bowl.
2. Beat coconut cream, milk and egg in a small jug and whisk into flour mixture.
3. Heat oil or butter in a large frypan over low to medium heat.
4. Dollop a heaped tablespoonful of batter into the frypan to create each pancake. Repeat with more batter making sure you leave enough room for them to spread.
5. When lots of small bubble holes appear on the surface of the pancakes, flip them over gently using a spatula.
6. Cook for a further minute then transfer onto a plate and keep warm in a low oven while cooking remaining batter.

While the pancakes are cooking...

Combine butter and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat and stir until sugar dissolves. Add cream and sliced bananas and cook for around five minutes or until sauce is thick and golden and bananas are soft.

7. Serve pancakes with caramel bananas and vanilla ice cream.

*This recipe makes a thicker batter than crepes or your usual pancakes but you can thin it out by adding more milk if you prefer.
*Although pancakes are best eaten fresh, leftovers are great dipped straight into the caramel sauce and eaten over the stove...or so I've heard ;)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

chocolate, chocolate, chocolate!

Just a quick note - I have signed up for a full day chocolate making course in August and hope that by the end of the day I will be a chocolatier extraordinnaire and have made lots of yummy chocolate to pic and post! Well, at least the latter!

coconut and passionfruit pudding

It's nearly the end of the month so before I move onto a new 'ingredient of the month', here's one last coconut cream recipe and it is my favourtie way to end a winter meal...

Serves 6
Keeps 2 days covered in fridge

80g butter, melted
1 cup coconut cream
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup self raising flour
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup dessicated coconut
170g tinned passionfruit
3/4 cup caster sugarm extra
1 cup boiling water

1. Mix butter, cocontu cream and egg in a small just until combined.
2. Combine flour, sugar and coconut in a medium bowl then add wet mixture and stir gently until combined.
3. Pour passionfruit into teh bottom of a four litre casserole dish then gently dollop pudding mixture over the top and smooth.
4. Sprinkle pudding with extra caster sugar then gently pour over boiling water.
5. Bake at 180 degrees celsius for 35 -45 minutes or until a skewer inserted halfway into the pudding comes out clean.
6. Serve immediately with vanilla ice cream.

*The reason for pouring the passionfruit into the bottom of teh casserole dish is so that the seeds are in teh sauce rather than the liquid seeping through and the black seeds ramining on teh top of the pudding.
*Remainin gpudding can be heated in teh microwave before serving.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

beef stroganoff

Time for a little comfort food...This is our family recipe for beef stroganoff - it's a little different to the traditional and totally delicious!

Serves 4

500g scotch fillet, cut into thin strips
1 large brown onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, chopped finely
1 tsp dijon mustard
2 tsp sweet paprika
2 tbs tomato paste
1/2 cup red wine
2 cups beef stock
1/2 cup chopped parsley
2 heaped tbls sour cream

1. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat and brown the beef in two batches.
2. Add onion and cook for a couple of minutes until it has softened.
3. Add garlic, paprika, mustard and tomato paste and cook for 1 minute then pour in red wine. Simmer for a couple of minutes.
4. Add half the stock, cover with a lid and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
5. Add remaining stock, cover and cook for around 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.
6. Remove from heat, stir through sour cream and parsley and serve with cooked pasta.

* Cooking the beef in two batches allows it to caramelise on the outside without stewing in the excessive juices which you would get from cooking it in one batch.
* If the sauce is drying up too quickly, add 1/4 cup of water and continue to simmer. You can add red wine or stock in its place but this will impact the flavour.
*Hot paprika can be subtituted for the sweet version if you like the added spice.

coconut cake with lemon curd frosting

On a wild and woolly day such as this, I am happy to be taking my in-laws out to lunch for their birthdays and inviting them back to our place for cake and coffee - it's also a great opportunity to sample this new recipe!

Serves 10
Keeps 4 days covered in the fridge

200g butter, softened
1 1/2 cups caster sugar
1tsp coconut essence
3 eggs
2 cups self raising flour
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
400ml coconut cream

125g cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups icing sugar
2 tbs lemon curd

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius. Grease and line a deep round cake tin.
2. Cream butter, sugar and essence for around 3 minutes or until pale.
3. Add eggs and beat until combined.
4. Add half the flour and half the coconut cream and mix until combined then add remaining flour, coconut cream and coconut.
5. Pour into prepared tin and bake for approximately 1 hour or until cooked through.
6. Cool in pan for 20 minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely. When cooled, spread with frosting.

To make frosting
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and beat until smooth and creamy.

*The tangy lemon flavour contrasts the creaminess of the coconut cake perfectly however if you don't have lemon curd, use the juice of half a lemon a couple of teaspoons of grated lemon rind instead.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

coconut and raspberry pudding

When I initially came up with this recipe, the idea of mixing creamy coconut with tangy raspberries seemed like a surefire hit, however half way into it I discovered that we only had mixed berries in the freezer - I should have remembered to check all ingredients before starting! It was too late to turn back so I used the mixed berries in place of raspberries and soldiered on. The result was quite tasty but it looked horrible! The blueberries turned the sauce an insipid mauve and had also stained the bottom of the pudding leaving a layer of purple mush. So here is the recipe using only raspberries which will give the pudding that sweet tang and the lovely raspberry red colour.

Serves 8
Keeps 2 days in the fridge

1 1/2 cups self raising flour
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
80g butter, melted
250ml coconut cream
1 egg
1 cup raspberries
3/4 cup caster sugar, extra
1 1/2 cups boiling water

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees and grease a 3 litre capacity baking dish.
2. Mix flour, sugar and coconut in a medium sized bowl.
3. Combine melted butter, coconut cream and egg in a small jug the stir into dry mixture until just combined.
4. Spread raspberries evenly over the base of the baking dish then dollop pudding batter over the top and smooth with the back of a spoon.
5. Sprinkle with extra caster sugar then pour over boiling water.
6. Bake for approx 40 minutes or until cooked through and serve with vanilla ice cream.

* The sugar and water will sink to the bottom during cooking to mix with the raspberries and create a sauce.
* When using frozen raspberries, make sure they don't thaw before you use them or they may turn the pudding green.
* This pudding can be divided into ramekins for individual servings.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

white passion cupcakes

Mixing 'wet into dry' is probably the simplest of home baking methods - there is no whipping or creaming involved and barely enough stirring to work up a sweat. As the name suggests, it is simply a matter of combining wet ingredients in one bowl and dry ingredients in another then gently stirring them together. It is using this most homely of methods (and of course, the ingredient of the month!) that I created these delicious little cupcakes today.

Makes 24
Keep for 3 days in an airtight container in the fridge.

You'll need:
100g butter, melted
300ml coconut cream
2 eggs
1/2 tsp coconut essence
2 cups self raising flour
1 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup dessicated coconut

200g white chocolate
1 cup cream
3 tbs passionfruit pulp

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius and line two 12 hole muffin tins with paper cases.
2. Combine flour, sugar and coconut in a large bowl.
3. Mix butter, coconut cream, eggs and coconut essence in a jug until thoroughly combined then pour into dry ingredients and fold mixture gently until just combined.
4. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until cooked through.

To make ganache
Combine chocolate and cream in a heat proof bowl and microwave for 1 minute then stir until chocolate is completely melted and combined with the cream. Refrigerate for two hours or until a think, spreadable consistency. Remove from fridge, stir through passionfruit pulp and spread over cupcakes.

*When using the wet into dry method, be sure not to over work the batter as this will lead to a tough texture.
*Bring the cupcakes to room temperature before serving.
*Leftover ganache is delicious served warm over vanilla ice cream!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

ingredient of the month, july 2010 - coconut cream

Ingredient of the Month for July 2010 is coconut cream. Not only is it a great addition to Thai cuisine and curries, it adds a delicious creaminess to cakes and puddings. Use it as a subtitue for milk, cream and even water in baking recipes to add a creamy coconutty deliciousness! For the rest of July I will test recipes using coconut cream and will post the results, hopefully with pics :)

cherry ripe cake

Now, one would probably assume that the most fitting recipe for my first post should be the recipe for Princess Pie however as I am yet to decide exactly what constitutes Princess Pie, it will have to wait! As a divine substitute, here is the recipe for my most recent creation - Cherry Ripe Cake. I made this cake yesterday and it turned out surprisingly delicious, thanks largely to my special ingredient - coconut cream. For those unfamiliar with baking with coconut cream, it gives the most luscious, creamy, dense and moist texture to cakes and puddings - it is my first 'Ingredient of the Month!' This is the first time I have made this cake so it is prone to change and improvement - stay tuned :)

Serves 20
Keeps 4 days, covered in the fridge

You'll need:
200g butter, softened
1 3/4 cups caster sugar
1tsp vanilla essence
4 eggs
2 cups self raising flour
1/2 cup cocoa
400ml coconut cream
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
1 cup chopped Cherry Ripe bars

200g milk chocolate
100ml cream

1. Preheat oven to 170 degress celsius. Grease a deep square cake tin and line with baking paper.
2. Beat the butter and sugar until it is pale and creamy - this could take up to 5 minutes then add vanilla and beat.
3. Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
4. Add half of the flour, all the cocoa and half the coconut cream and mix slowly until combined.
5. Add remaining flour, coconut cream and the dessicated coconut and mix until comined then gently stir through the Cherry Ripe.
6. Pour into prepared cake tin and bake for 1 - 1 1/2 hours or until cooked through.
7. Allow to cool completely in cake tin before turning onto a plate and spreading with ganache.
To make ganache - combine chocolate and cream in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high for 60 secs. Remove from microwave and stir until all chocolate is melted and combined with the cream. Allow to stand a few mintues to cool down before pouring over cake.

Decorating notes: For some added YUM, chop glace cherries and mix with dessicated coconut then sprinkle over the ganache.

*Milk chocolate ganache is a must for this cake. The flavour is somewhat creamier and less intense than using dark chocolate but of course if dark chocolate is your thing, by all means, substitute!