Banana Jelly

Saturday evening, we had kfc and pommes frites for dinner and I made som simple powder jelly; banana flavored.
Now, this powdered jelly thing must be the simplest dessert in world to make, yet being good at the same time.
I made 8 portion sizes, (it is better to do it like that instead of making a big bowl) and dropped some halfed grapes in the jelly before it fastened and garnished with some banana slices on top and whipping cream. It was served with vanilla sauce. It was made very roughly and I could have garnished better ofcourse, but did not have a lot of time as there was other important things to do. In my next posts, I will show some marzipan cakes, tutorial on how to make perfect marzipan roses and give some filling ideas.

banana jelly

Published in: on August 22, 2009 at 9:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Cookies, cookies and cookies..

ice cream and cookies sandwich

I am trying to cut down on my baking as university is starting and stuff. Today I made chewy chocolate cookies once again. I was craving for something chocolaty and fudgy and I had flour, salt and baking powder combined in a plastic bag from a week ago when I wanted to make these cookies, but then found out that we ran out of cocoa powder. Today I made another mistake which changed the taste of the cookies a bit. Usually I always use the finest baking cocoa powder, but mom had bought another packet that other day; Ecologic cocoa powder. Now, without thinking enough I putted this ecologic cocoa powder into the flour mixture. First thing I noted when I opened the packing was the extremely strong smell of cocoa, something I once experienced with cocoa powder of a cheaper brand that I did put in chocolate cake. But I guess these kind of strong cocoa powders are meant for making hot chocolate only and not for baking. Anyways, the cookies turned out perfectly chewy apart from the strong cocoa taste that ruined them a bit. It is very important to use the finest cocoa powder that is meant for baking when making cakes and cookies or the taste will be ruined.
Half of them I made plain and putted peanuts in the rest of the dough. I had some peanuts and caramel ice cream laying in the freezer, which I used to make a ice cream and cookies sandwich. I love the combination of cookies and ice cream. A nice way to do it is to press ice cream down in a round thing like a 1 deciliter measuring cup and then scrape it out with a knife on the cookies.
Anyways, I made a picture tutorial on the cookies, and converted the recipe to grams and deciliter as it is easier for me. I am posting it here, but for instructions follow the recipe at Annie’s Eat blog.

chewy chocolate cookies

Remember to scrape down the bowl frequently. My mom told me a nice trick to get all the cookies in even size which I wanted to share.
We don’t have these cookies spoons here in Norway, like those ice cream-spoon looking type of spoon that shapes the cookies dough perfectly (I don’t know what they are called?)
Well, the trick is to take small amounts of dough and roll them to balls in even size (works best when the dough is cold). Then put the balls on the tray and they will form into flat even cookies when baked.

Another thing I noticed with this recipe is that it requires for way too much cocoa powder. I mean 150 g / 1,5 dl is like more than half of the whole packet. I cut it down to 50 g cocoa powder, and even that amount gives such a strong cocoa flavor. Anyways, it is upto every individual how strong chocolate taste they want. But if you think it is too much, there is no problem cutting the amount. It does not affect the cookies.
Also, remember to carefully loosen the cookies from the baking sheet with a spatula a few minutes after they have been baked or else they will stick to the paper and it will be difficult to loosen them when they are cooled.
Here is the recipe for those who have problems with american measuring system (cups).

    recipe

Follow the instructions here.

chewy chocolate cookies

Published in: on August 21, 2009 at 11:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Self-rising flour ~ how to convert

Self-rising flour is so popular specially in the UK and US because the correct amount of rising (leavening) agent has already been added to the flour.  Recipes that calls for self-rising flour, usually does not call for baking powder.
Unfortunately self-rising flour can not be found everywhere and we don’t have it here in Norway either.
But converting all-purpose flour to self-rising flour is easy:

* The rule is to add 2 1/2 tsp (2,5) baking powder to each 225 g / 8 oz / 2 cups of plain flour
(1 1/4 tsp baking powder to each 112 g / 4 oz / 1 cup of flour)

You can either measure up while baking or you may want to make it in larger quantity for later use

Published in: on August 21, 2009 at 12:01 am  Comments (1)  
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Basic Sponge Cake Recipe


Having tried a lot of different sponge cake recipes throughout the years, I finally found one that I succeed with for the very first time in my life. The main problem was not the texture of the cake, but that it would always, and then I mean always, subside a few minutes after taking it out from the oven. The cake texture would be nice and soft and the cake would also look wonderful while taking it out. But the problem occured when I let it cool and it would subside. This way it made it difficult to divide the cake in even bottoms. Then for some weeks ago I came across this recipe on a norwegian website and decided to give it a try. And believe me I was so happy to see my cake exactly the same as I took it out from the oven even after hours. It did not subside at all. You may watch the video to get the idea of how she is making it, but I am sorry for those who does not understand norwegian. I have translated the recipe, and hopefully you may understand watching the video how it is done.  

Sponge cake is the basic cake for a lot of recipes. Specially here in Norway where we makes a lot of cream cakes and
marzipan cakes, sponge cake is a must. You can fill whatever you like and you can garnish it just the way you want. It is only your imaginations that set the limits.
basic sponge cake

 


I n g r e d i e n t s :

5                         eggs
200 g               sugar
200 g               all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp         baking powder

Set the oven at 200C
– Lay a piece of baking sheet on the spring form cake tin, (about 24-26 cm) before you fix it on the sides
– Grease the sides of the cake tin and sift flour inside

1) Whisk the eggs and sugar together until really thick and creamy and the whisk leaves a trail when lifted (about 5 mins)
2) Mix together flour and baking powder in a new bowl
3) Sift it in the egg and sugar mixture
4) Using a spatula, carefully fold in the flour with sharp and clean movements, cutting through the mixture to preserve the air
5) Pour the batter in the cake tin and make an even surface with the spatula

* Put the cake tin on a wire rack and bake at the lowest slot. At the same time turn the temperature down to 170C, bake for about 30 mins (after 30 mins, use a cake pin to check if the cake is done)

Put a piece of baking sheet on the wire rack and turn the cake over (with the tin) and let it cool

Tips

– When folding-in, always fold a lighter micture into a heavier one, e.g. sifted flour into creamed or whisked mixture, so the air is not pressed out

– Fill the sponge cake with desired filling, like whipped cream, vanilla cream, jams, fruits, berries etc.

(I will give some basic filling ideas in another post)

 

 

Published in: on August 20, 2009 at 5:14 pm  Comments (2)  
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Chocolate Cake

This is the classic chocolate cake recipe that we have been using at home for years. It was my mom who used to make this chocolate cake years ago and then I have been following the same recipe. It turns out to be succesful every time. The recipe is actually from an old english baking book we got at home, from 1979 to be specific. But as they say ‘old is gold’! Being a norwegian, I am not fond of the norwegian way of making chocolate cake. All of the recipes contains milk and that makes the cake muddy without a soft texture. I know alot of people love it, but for me chocolate cake has to be moist, fluffy and soft. And I give this recipe 5 stars for being just as perfect as it requires to make a perfect chocolate cake. The recipe contains orange rind and orange juice, but you may omit it if you don’t want to put it. I use water mixed with some vanilla sugar or vanilla essence instead when I don’t want the orange flavor.

chocolate cake

I n g r e d i e n t s :

2 tbsp                  cocoa powder
2 tbsp                  hot water
100 g                   butter or margarine
125 g                    caster sugar
2                            large eggs, beaten
100 g                   self-raising flour
1 tbsp                  orange juice (you may omit and use water mixed with vanilla essence/vanilla sugar)
1                            grated rind of orange (you may omit it)

 Grease an 18 cm / 7 inch round deep cake tin and line the bottom and sides with greased greaseproof (waxed)
paper

1) Dissolve the cocoa in the water and leave to cool
2) Cream the butter or margarine and sugar together until light and fluffy and pale in color
3) Beat in eggs one at a time, followed by the cocoa mixture
4) Sift in the flour and fold in, followed by the orange rind and juice (or vanilla mixture)
5) Turn into the prepared tin

* Bake in a moderately hot oven (180C/350F/GM4)  at the lowest slot for 40 to 45 minutes or until firm to the touch
Turn onto a wire rack to cool

Chocolate icing

50 g                   plain chocolate
25 g                   butter
25 g                   icing sugar, sifted

1) Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over hot water
2) Stir in the butter until melted and well mixed
3) Beat in the icing sugar until smooth and remove from the heat
4) Quickly spread over the top of the cake (you may make a swirling design if desired or garnish with shredded coconuts or whatever you may like) and leave to set

Tips

– If you want to make a larger quantity, you may double the recipe and use an rectangular pan about 30 cm x 20 cm
– You do not have to use greased or waxed paper, you may grease the tin/pan with butter (and sift with flour)

chocolate cake

Published in: on August 20, 2009 at 2:17 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Chewy Chocolate Cookies


I love chocolate and I love everything chocolaty, specially chewy and fudgy kind of bakings. Brownies with alot of nuts are mmmmmm and chewy chocolate cookies are almost just as delicious!
So I was searching for some good recipe on chewy cookies and came across this blog
Annie’s Eats and decided to try
out these cookies (you can get the recipe on her blog) which she recommended and was satisfied with.
I replaced the white chocolate chunks with nuts and they turned out yummylicious! These cookies are so addicting and before I could count to ten, 90% of the cookies were gone. I am for sure going to give these several tries as they came out to be a hit among everyone.

chewy chocolate cookies

Published in: on August 19, 2009 at 8:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Apricot Layer Cake


Going to my sisters house, I always bring something baked by me. All of the family was invited and I decided to give
this delicious looking layer cake with cream filling and apricot garnish a try, which I found in the baking book “Gyldendals store bakebok”. This cake takes a little time and you have to be patient while making it. The cake is filled with buttercream and garnished with caramelized almonds at the sides. The result came out to be quite succesful as I got good feedback.

Apricot Layer Cake

I n g r e d i e n t s :

50 g                butter or margarine
1 dl                  icing sugar
1                      egg
1 tsp               grated rind of lemon
1 tsp               lemon juice
1 dl                 all-purpose flour
1 tbsp            potato flour
1/4 tsp         baking powder

Filling:

1 dl                 sugar
1/2 dl            chopped almonds
2 tbsp           all-purpose flour
3/4 dl           water
1                     egg yolk
75 g              butter or margarine
1/2 dl           icing sugar
1 1/2 tsp     vanilla sugar

Garnishing:

1 tin (800g)   hermetic apricots (or you may use peaches)

1) Grease and sift a small, ring mould, ca. 1 liter.
2) Beat butter/margarine and sugar till pale in color
3) Add egg, grated rind of lemon and lemon juice
4) Sift together flour, potato flour and baking powder and mix in
5) Fill the batter in the form

* Bake in a moderately hot oven at 175C for about 20-25 min at the lowest slot.

Let the cake in the form for some minutes.  it on a wire rack and let it cool under the form.


Caramelized Almonds

1) Cut the cake in three bottoms
2) Melt the sugar for the filling in a small pan. Let it come to to a slightl brown color
3) Mix in the chopped almonds
4) Pour the caramelized almonds on aluminiumsfoil, bakingsheets or a greased tray and let it cool
5) Crush the caramelized almonds roughly in a plastic bag with a mortar or hammer
6) Crush half of it more finely

Filling Cream

1) Make an even batter of flour and water in a sauce pan
2) Heat the sauce pan and stir till it cooks and have cooked for some minutes
3) Take off the sauce pan, add the egg yolk and cool the mixture

4) Beat butter/margarine smoothly with icing sugar
5) Stir in the cooked cream in butter-icing sugar-mixture, in small amounts at a time
6) Beat greatly so that the filling becomes light and fluffy
7) Taste with vanilla sugar and the finely chopped caramelized almonds

The Making

1) Sieve out the syrup from apricots / peaches
2) Cut half of them into fine pieces
3) Mix rest of them till pulp using an electric mixer
4) Put the pulp in between two of the cake bottoms
5) Put then on a layer of the buttercream and cover with the last bottom
6) Spread rest of the buttercream on the top and all around the cake
7) Garnish with apricots / peaches cut in slices and roughly chopped caramelized almonds on the sides

Published in: on August 19, 2009 at 5:34 pm  Leave a Comment  
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