January 25, 2010

Ginger Crunch Slice

This slice is just delicious. For me, it's all about the icing. The base makes it all the more easy to eat the icing without the sweet-ness overkill of eating icing on it's own. I could eat this all day, it is incredibly more-ish. I made this for one of our Christmas gatherings, and I really just wanted to leave it at home in the fridge so that I could keep it all to myself (however bad that might have been for my weight!). I got lots of comments about how yummy it was. Thank you Laura for opening my eyes to the wonderment that is Ginger Crunch Slice!

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Ginger Crunch Slice adapted from Hungry and Frozen

Ingredients

Base:
250g soft butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons ginger (or more if you really like the taste of ginger)
1/2 cup rolled oats
2 cups plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder

Icing:
100g butter
3 heaped tablespoons golden syrup
2-3 teaspoons ground ginger
2 1/2 cups icing sugar

Method
Making the base:
  1. Set the oven to 180 C. Grease a slice tin (rectangle 16cm x 26cm) and line with baking paper. You can pre-toast the oats if you so desire (it's personal preference, I toasted them the first time I made this, but forgot to do it for the second time - if pre-toasting, just put the oats in the slice tin in the oven for a few minutes while the oven is heating up).
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. (If you pre-toasted the oats, take them out now) Add oats, ginger, flour and baking powder to the butter/sugar mixture.
  4. Stir together until combined but still clumpy. Tip this mixture into the brownie tray, pressing down evenly.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes till nicely golden on top.
Making the icing:
  1. While base is in the oven baking heat butter, golden syrup and ginger in a small pan over a low heat.
  2. When it has all combined nicely, remove from heat and stir in the icing sugar.
  3. When the base is cooked, pour icing over it, and smooth out if need be.
  4. Refrigerate until set before slicing into squares.
I store mine in the fridge, but I think it would be fine to leave it in an air-tight container at room temperature.

January 11, 2010

Home-made Chai flavoured ice-cream

Until recently, I had only made home-made ice-cream a few times; once or twice when we used to own an ice-cream maker, and once when I made the margarita ice-cream from Nigella Express. (If margarita ice-cream sounds good to you, you can see the recipe on Cookie-Baker Lynn's blog). I also recently made the Ginger ice-cream from Laura's blog: Hungry and Frozen, as well as her Chocolate Coconut ice-cream (except I used white chocolate instead). Both were great successes, although I wasn't as impressed with my Chocolate Coconut ice-cream attempt until a few days later, I think it got better with age, if that's possible for ice-cream!

I have always thought I would rather buy ice-cream than make it, but from what I've tried recently, it's not too difficult and you get to add all these wonderful flavours that you would never be able to buy at the shops. This recipe for Chai-flavoured ice-cream is just one example of something that is not available to buy pre-made (at least not here in Australia). I think it turned out rather well.


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Ingredients
600 Ml milk
1 cinnamon stick
6 cardamom pods, lightly bruised
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup caster sugar
300ml can condensed milk

Method
  1. Place the milk, cinnamon stick and cardamom pods in a saucepan over medium-high heat, and bring to just below boiling point. Remove from heat and allow to infuse for 20 min.
  2. Strain the milk into a jug, then set aside.
  3. Beat eggs and sugar in a bowl until thick and pale.
  4. Gradually add the strained milk, whisking continuously until combined.
  5. Return the mixture to a clean saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring, for 2-3 min until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  6. Stir in the condensed milk.
  7. Pout the mixture into a shallow container and freeze for about 2 hrs or until frozen at the edges. Remove from the freezer and beat the mixture. Pour back into the container and refreeze. Repeat 2 or 3 times.

January 5, 2010

Muesli Slice

Ok, on with the backlog of recipes to post! I hope you've all had a lovely Christmas and enjoyed your new years celebrations.

I know I'm really not very good at blogging regularly, nor do I think my little introductions are particularly interesting, however, it's always very nice to receive comments from my readers (all two of you that I know about - Hi Laura and Sumara!), and it is certainly handy to keep this blog so that I can find recipes for things I've made previously. I have that many cook-books and recipe magazines, they almost take up a whole bookshelf (which is about 1.5m x 1.5m in size).

Anyway, on to the recipe! This was a huge hit in my husband's office. I think it's because this slice masquerades itself as something healthy with all that muesli and breakfast-y type natural stuff (honey, sunflower seeds, pepitas etc). My husband said this may possibly be the best slice I've ever made. I hope you like it.

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Ingredients
3 cups toasted fruit muesli
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup pepitas
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup shredded coconut
125g butter, chopped
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

Method
  1. Grease a slice tin (16cm x 26cm base) and line with baking paper allowing a 2cm overhang on long sides (this helps you to get the slice out of the pan when it comes time to cut it).
  2. Combine muesli, apricots, slivered almonds, pepitas, sunflower seeds and coconut in a large bowl.
  3. Place butter, honey, peanut butter and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 4 to 5 min or until mixture has thickened.
  4. Add butter mixture to muesli mixture and stir to combine.
  5. Press mixture into prepared pan. Smooth top. Cove and refrigerate overnight or until set.
  6. Remove slice from slice tin, and cut into squares.