June 30, 2008

Berry Custard Slice

I haven't actually made this one in a while, so I don't have a picture to post, but this is a favourite recipe of mine, so thought I would share.

This is a fantastic slice. I have made it several times for special occasions and it has been a hit every time. Some people like to serve it warm, but I prefer it chilled. It's not the "picture perfect" slice, but it is really tasty. If you're taking it to a get-together, I would suggest you transport the slice either in the pan, and cut it at the venue, or lay the cut slices in a single layer on a plate or in a container because it really doesn't stack well.
Ingredients (serves 12)
  • 200g butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • Berry topping

  • 450g mixed fresh berries (I usually just use strawberries, but I think the extra moisture of them is what contributes to the slice not looking perfect).
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup caster sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups thickened cream
  • 3/4 cup milk

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 3cm deep, 24cm x 29.5cm slab pan. Line with baking paper, leaving a 2cm-ish overhang at both long ends.
  2. Using electric beaters, cream butter and sugar until well combined. Stir in flour and coconut. Mix well.
  3. Press pastry evenly over base of prepared pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until light golden. Remove from oven. Set aside for 10 minutes to cool.
  4. Make berry topping: Spoon berries over pastry base. Whisk eggs, egg yolks and caster sugar in a large jug. Add cream and milk. Whisk to combine. Strain custard through a sieve over the berries.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes or until centre is set. Cool for 1 hour in pan. Lift slice out of pan using the baking paper overhang. Cut into pieces and serve warm or cold.

June 15, 2008

Nutella and Mars Bar Cookies

Ok, here is a yummy cookie recipe for chocolate lovers. These are nice and chewy. Shared these delicious cookies with Sumara the other night while we watched Sweeney Todd (first time I had seen it, quite gross, but really really well done! ...Though I might never eat another meat pie again! lol).


Makes 24 cookies

Ingredients:
125g butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla essence
1/4 cup Nutella (choc hazelnut spread)
1 and 1/3 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup chopped Mars Bars

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180 C. Line a couple of baking trays with baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugars until smooth
  3. Beat in egg then stir in vanilla
  4. Mix in Nutella
  5. Combine flour, baking powder and baking soda in a separate bowl, and then stir into butter/sugar mixture until just blended.
  6. Fold in Mars Bar bits.
  7. Drop dough by spoonfuls onto baking trays, leave lots of room between cookies as they spread.
  8. Bake for 8-10 min, remove from oven and cool on tray.

June 4, 2008

Tooth drama

So, I'm eating my lunch today at a farewell/retirement lunch for one of my colleagues, and all of a sudden I feel this hard thing in my mouth. I thought it was part of the lunch I was eating, but no, it turns out to be part of one of my teeth. A huge chunk of tooth actually... well, it's about a quarter of the very last tooth at the back on one side of my lower jaw. Ouch, right? Actually, no. It doesn't hurt really. It's feeling a bit ache-y, and it certainly feels weird in my mouth, but there's no excruciating pain, which I'm glad about, and I guess means that I haven't uncovered a nerve... It's really weird because I'm really good with dental hygiene and I've never had a history of bad teeth, never even had a filling. Admittedly, I haven't been to the dentist since I had to get my wisdom teeth out about 9 years ago... man that's gone fast!

Anyway, I'm off to the dentist tomorrow morning to get it looked at. I hope they don't have to pull it out. I'm not a fan of injections in the mouth.

Also going to QLD for the weekend (really bad timing for a broken tooth!), so no chance for baking this weekend. Back to that next week!

June 3, 2008

Exercise and weight loss

I've started to go to the gym during my lunch break every day with a friend. I've only been doing it for two weeks now so I know I shouldn't really expect to see noticeable results yet, but I can't help it!! I stepped on the scales for the first time since I started this routine this morning, and was disappointed that nothing seems to have changed yet. I even have scales that show what percentage of your body is fat, and that seems to have gone up even though I haven't eaten heaps of baked goods and my energy expenditure has gone up. Very disappointing! I guess I just have to keep at it and not weigh myself until after a few more weeks have gone by....

June 2, 2008

Lemon Cheesecake Crumbles

This is the first time I've attempted this recipe and the first time I've made any sort of crumble, and I have to say it turned out pretty well. This batch went to hubby's work for his birthday the other day, and it's lucky they did, because I could eat way too many of these!


Ingredients (makes 12)
500g cream cheese, softened
2 tbs finely grated lemon rind
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
3/4 cup thickened cream
1/2 a lemon's worth of juice

Crumble topping
50g butter, chilled, chopped
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup plain flour
1 cup rolled oats

Method
  1. Preheat oven to 150 degrees C (or 130 degrees C for a fan-forced oven. Line a 12-hole 1/3-cup capacity muffin tray with paper cases.
  2. Use an electric beater to cream cheese, lemon rind, lemon juice and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined.
  4. Add cream, beat until combined.
  5. Spoon into paper cases.
  6. Make crumble topping - Rub all ingredients together with fingertips until mixture looks like course bread crumbs.
  7. Sprinkle topping over cheesecake mixture.
  8. Bake for 30 min until cheesecakes are puffed up and crumble topping is golden.
  9. Cool on bench-top until sufficiently cool enough to refrigerate.
  10. Refrigerate for several hours or until cold.