Category Archives: Baked Goods

Die lekkerste sjokoladetert #chocolatetart

Die lekkerste sjokoladetert #chocolatetart

Chocolate Tart Low Carb
Sondae is vir my die lekkerste dag van die week. Dan lê ek laat, met ‘n koppie koffie in die bed en lees Rapport. Maar die lekkerste van Sondae is dat dit dan tyd is vir familie en vriende. Daardie heerlike lang stadige kuiers om ‘n tafel, met bakke tuisgemaakte kos en ‘n paar glase wyn. Ons klets dan oor ons land se politiek, lag, skinder ‘n bietjie, deel ons hartseer of raak saam opgewonde oor nuwe avonture en projekte in ons lewens.

Irriterende low carb mense
Ek is gewoonlik nie vol nonsens as dit by kos kom nie, maar deesdae is ek óók een van daardie irriterende low carb mense. “Nella, wat kan ek Sondag vir poeding bring? Ek is lus om ‘n apple crumble te maak,” wou my vriend Reyno anderdag weet. In plaas van om soos gewoonlik te sê “Enigiets sal lekker wees” laat weet ek toe skaamteloos en voorskriftelik met ‘n whatsapp-boodskap: “Ons low carb mos nou. So maak eerder iets soos sjokolademousse. As jy wil apple crumble maak moet jy asseblief ‘n low carb tertkors en versoeters gebruik.” As ek Reyno was sou ek Nella in haar peetjie gestuur het en daarom wil ek nou sê: “Jammer, Reyno!”

Reyno se low carb sjokoladetert
Maar soos Reyno is, het my versoek hom nie omver gegooi nie, maar eerder geïnspireer. Hy kom toe Sondag met die lekkerste, rykste, luuksste, fluweelglad low carb sjokoladetert by my huis aan. “Nee jong jy het my nou sommer lekker laat dink en ek het die kors van klappermeel gemaak en toe sommer sout bygegooi. Die vulsel is Raymond Blanc se resep.” Mense en is dit lekker! Ek is nie baie lief vir soetgoed nie, maar die soutige kors het die soet gebalanseer en ek het sommer twee groot stukke sonder skroom of skaamte geëet. Hy het ‘n klein bietjie mielieblom gebruik, maar meer low carb glo ek nie ‘n sjokoladetertjie kan nie.

Sjokolade is gesond
Navorsing het boonop bewys dat donkersjokolade goed is vir jou hart. Een studie wat in 2012 gedoen is, het bevind dat matige daaglikse inname van donkersjokolade van ten minste 60%–70% kakao die risiko vir ’n nie-noodlottige hartaanval en beroerte kan verminder. (Bron: Volksblad)

Geniet jou dag en moet nie sleg voel as jy na ‘n stukkie sjokolade gryp nie 😉

Reyno se low carb sjokoladetert met soutige klapperkors
Kors
125 ml botter, gesmelt
2 eiers
10 ml growwe seesout
180 ml klappermeel
Vulsel
500 ml dubbeldik room
200 g sjokolade (70% kakao), in stukkies gebreek
45 ml kakaopoeier, gesif
10 ml sterk koffiepoeier
45 ml versoeter (Reyno het suiker gebruik, ek het dit vervang met versoeter)
10 ml ekstra suiwer olyfolie
30 ml mielieblom
60 ml volvet-melk

Kors: Voorverhit oond tot 200 °C. Klits botter en eiers met ‘n vurk. Voeg klappermeel en sout by, roer tot deeg bymekaar kom en ‘n bal vorm. Rol uit en druk in gesmeerde tertpan. Prik die deeg met ‘n vurk. Bak vir 5 minute teen 200 °C grade. Draai af tot 160 °C en bak vir nog 5 minute of tot ligbruin. Laat afkoel in pan.
Vulsel: Gooi die room in ‘n kastrol en voeg die sjokolade, kakao, koffiepoeier, versoeter en olyfolie by. Oor medium tot lae hitte, roer totdat sjokolade gesmelt het en die mengsel glad is – sonder dat die room gekook het. Meng die mielieblom en melk saam tot glad. Haal sjokolademengsel van die stoof en roer die mielieblommengsel by. Plaas terug op stoof teen lae hitte. Roer tot die mengsel verdik (so 10 minute) het sonder dat dit kook. Dit is reg wanneer dit die agterkant van ‘n houtlepel bedek en as jy jou vinger oor die lepel trek dit die lyn behou. Giet die sjokolademengsel in ‘n bakkie en bedek dit met ‘n klam stukkie bakpapier (maak ‘n stukkie bakpapier nat en druk die ergste water uit). Plaas vir 15 minute in die yskas. Verwyder die sjokolademengsel uit die yskas en roer liggies voordat die mengsel in die koue gebakte kors in die tertpan gegooi word. Hou die tert in die tertpan oornag in die yskas. Dit moet nie langer as 24 uur afkoel nie, aangesien die kors gaan sag word. Haal uit yskas 10 minute voor bediening en sif nog ‘n bietjie kakaopoeier oor.

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Vanilla vintage-koek vir ma

Vanilla vintage-koek vir ma

Vanilla vintage cake

Terwyl ek hier sit en skryf sit my ma voor die gasverhitter in die sonnetjie in my sitkamer en luister na RSG se oggendstorie met die nuwe Sarie Kos op haar skoot. Haar ogies val-val toe. Babs gee kort-kort ‘n kuggie, want die bors sukkel ook maar deesdae. Ek weet nie altyd of sy slaap en of sy net rus nie. Sy is nou 87 en die jare stap aan. Wat ‘n voorreg dat sy my nog kan kom geselskap hou terwyl my Ier vir besigheid in Johannesburg is.

Babs stap deesdae stadiger, haar skouertjies raak effens krommer en sy word al hoe meer vergeetagtig, iets wat vir ons almal voorlê. Soos sy altyd sê: “Oudword is nie vir sussies nie, my kind.” Haar sagte broosheid maak my hart baie seer en ek wil haar net druk, soen en koester. Ek onthou Babs wat hokkie gespeel het, Babs wat my drie stoute broers met ‘n stywe hand beheer het, Babs wat tot laat aande skoolwerk nagesien het, elke dag gesorg het vir kos op die tafel, my rokkies gemaak het, my truie gebrei het – ek is so dankbaar ek het haar as my ma gehad. Sy was (is!) pragtig, energiek en ‘n liefdevolle mens. Sy is vandag nog net so pragtig-grys, maar die energie is nie meer daar soos wat dit was nie. Ek besef ek is baie bevoorreg om Moedersdag met haar te kan deel.

Moedersdagkoek
Koekbak en koekversier is nie heeltemal my forte nie; ek hou van kook en sukkel om ‘n koekresep soos ‘n wetenskaplike aan te pak. Ek wil altyd iets verander en julle weet dit werk nie met bak nie. Bestanddele moet mos presies afgemeet en geweeg word en niks kan met die oog geskat word nie. Vandag het ek Herman Lensing se sponskoekresep gebruik en ma se gunsteling, ‘n vanieljesponskoek gebak. Ek het op die koop toe sommer ‘n koekversierkursus bygewoon. Wat ‘n kreatiewe belewenis! Ek het my meesterstuk (ja, ek spog lekker) met een van ma se 51-jaar oue teekoppies en ‘n klein koolkoppie uit my tuin, wat die droogte oorleef het, afgerond. Ek is gek daaroor!

Gelukkige Moedersdag, Ma. Dankie vir alles wat ma vir my oor die jare gedoen en beteken het. Ek het jou lief met my hele hart. En gelukkige Moedersdag aan al die ander ma’s wat net so goed vir hul kinders is. Wat sou ons sonder julle gedoen het?

Vanieljesponskoek
200 g koekmeel
20 ml bakpoeier
10 eiers
210 g strooisuiker
10 ml vanieljegeursel
120 g botter, gesmelt
vanielje botterversiersel
teekoppie en piering
baba-kool

Verhit oond tot 180 ˚C. Sif meel en bakpoeier saam. Herhaal die proses drie keer – dis belangrik om te verseker daar is baie lug tussen die meelkorrels vasgevang. Breek eiers in skoon mengbak en voeg suiker en vanilla by. Klits teen hoë spoed vir 8 – 10 minute of tot dik en skuimerig. Vou gesifte meel en bakpoeier versigtig by eiermengsel in. Gebruik ‘n groot metaallepel en vou in die vorm. Voeg gesmelte botter by en vou weer versigtig in. Voer 2 x 25 cm-koekpanne met bakpapier uit en spuit goed met kleefwerende kossproei. Verdeel mengsel tussen die twee panne. Bak vir 20 – 25 minute of tot goudbruin en gaar. Keer uit en laat afkoel. Versier met vanieljebotterversiersel, ‘n teekoppie en iets uit jou tuin wat die droogte oorleef het.

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green + gold cake for our #proteas – #NZvSA #ProteaFire

green + gold cake for our #proteas – #NZvSA #ProteaFire
My tribute to our Proteas

My tribute to our Proteas

Are we not all proud of South Africa’s #cricket team the Proteas? According to my husband it is taboo to talk about rugby, unless of course you are talking about the Rugby 7’s. It is ok to talk about the cricket though.

The other day, a client asked me for a Protea cake – something he could show off to his Kiwi visitors after the game against the Black Caps. He was confident our boys in Green and Gold were going to take the cake with some ease and overs to spare. He was so right!

Creating the cake
I have to admit, it was a challenge for me to create something that would make our boys proud, but with a light green icing, some edible gold leaf (you can find this at art shops) and some proteas, I think I managed. Do not ask me the measurements for the green icing colour – I added drop for drop until I was happy with the colour.

I used Donna Hay’s chocolate buttermilk layer cake recipe and her frosting for between the layers. I had to double the recipe in order to attain the right height for the cake. It’s really delicious, moist and dense.


Donna Hay’s chocolate buttermilk layer cake

1 cup (250 ml) water 125 g butter, cubed
1/3 cup (35 g) cocoa powder, sifted
2 cups (300 g) flour, sifted
1 t (5 ml) baking soda, sifted (bicarbonate of soda)
2 cups (440 g) caster sugar
2 eggs ½ cup (125 ml) buttermilk
1 t (5 ml) vanilla essence/extract
Chocolate cream cheese frosting
100 g unsalted butter, softened
500 g cream cheese
2 cups (320g) icing sugar, sifted
½ cup (50g) cocoa, sifted

Pre-heat oven to 160 °C. Place water, butter and cocoa in a saucepan over medium heat and stir until the butter has melted. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Place flour, baking soda and sugar in a bowl, add the cocoa mixture and whisk to combine. Add the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla and whisk again. Divide mixture between 2 greased and lined 20cm round cake tins, then bake for 40-45 min or until baked through when tested with a skewer. Allow to cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then turn out the cakes onto wire racks and allow to cool completely. For the frosting: place the butter and cream cheese in the bowl. Using an electric mixer beat for 6-8 minutes until pale and creamy. Add the icing sugar and cocoa and beat for a further 6-8 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy.
To assemble, slice off the round tops of each cake layer to produce 2 smooth, flat layers (I use a sharp long bladed knife). Place one layer on a plate, spread with frosting, then put remaining half on top and cover with frosting.

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#soetkoekies with festive butterscotch windows

#soetkoekies with festive butterscotch windows

Outydse soetkoekies with butterscotch windows

How festive and lovely are these old fashioned soetkoekies? To make these I used my old soetkoekie recipe and added these fun Christmas butterscotch windows. The little windows aren’t just pretty but it gives the overall cookie an extra crunchy texture and delicious caramel flavour. The comforting aromas of cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg brings back such happy memories of my grandmother’s farmhouse kitchen. Happy baking!

They also make a perfect Christmas gift

They also make a perfect Christmas gift

Soetkoekies with festive caramel windows
Recipe makes 45 cookies
4 x (250ml) cake flour
1 ½ cup (375ml) castor sugar
1 tsp (5ml) ground cinnamon
1tsp (5ml) ground ginger
1tsp (5ml) ground cloves
½ tsp (2.5ml) nutmeg
½ tsp (2.5ml) salt
1 cup (250ml) butter, room temperature
¼ cup (60ml) cooking butter, melted
1 tsp (5ml) bicarbonate soda
5 Tbsp (75 ml) luke warm water
1 egg, beaten
15 butterscotch sweets

Sift the flour, salt and spices together. Add the sugar. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Dissolve the bicarbonate soda in the water and add to the beaten egg. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture to make a dough. Knead until thoroughly mixed. Divide dough into two, then wrap in cling wrap and chill for at least two hours or overnight. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Roll out the dough (take out of fridge 5 minutes prior rolling out) on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of 5 mm and cut out circles. Use small Christmas motif cutters to cut shapes out of the centre of the circle cookies. (You can re-roll any extra dough to make more cookies). Put the dough circles on a lined baking tray. Using a pestle and mortar, crush the butterscotch sweets into a course powder, then fill the holes with the crushed sweets. Bake the cookies for 15-20 minutes until the edges have just browned. If you see there is little holes in the window just add a bit more butterscotch and pop back in the oven for another minute or two. Leave to cool on the tray for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool down completely.

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#sagopoeding

#sagopoeding

Wie van julle onthou paddaeiers of padda-ogies? Daardie heerlik soet vla met deurskynende vanilla sago-pêreltjies wat lyk soos klein paddaeiertjies of soos ‘n stringetjie pêrels wat in die melk gebreek het. Wanneer jy die klewerige balletjies proe en die suur streepseltjie appelkooskonfyt jou tong kielie kan die wêreld mos maar vergaan. Of wat sê ek nou? Dit maak jou hart en maag warm, en as ma my nou nog vra wat ek vir ‘n soet dingetjie wil hê, sê ek sommer baie vinnig: “Sagopoeding, Ma.”

sagopoeding

Ma Babs maak al jare my Tannie Miena van Harrismith se sagopoeding. Ta Miena het ‘n romerige mengsel van sago, melk, suiker, eier en vanilla gemaak; die eierwitte styf geklop en dit dan met groot slae ingevou om ‘n wolk-lig sagopoeding te vorm. Sy het dit dan ‘n groot emalje skottel gegooi en met oranje poeletjies appelkooskonfyt afgerond. Ai ja jai, dit is mos nou koningskos.

Sagopoeding van 1909
Sagopoeding kom van ver af en in 1909 is die volgende resep in Oranje, Kook-, Koek- en Recepten-Boek voor Zuid Afrika neergepen: “ ½ bottel melk, 3 eetlepels suiker, 3 eetlepels sago, de schil van ½ lemoen, 4 eiers, 1 ½ lepel boter, weinig noot; zet de melk en lemoenschil op de vuur tot de melk naar de schil smaakt. Haal die schil uit, doe de sago en suiker in en kook 15 minuten stadig, laat afkoelen en doe de eiers en boter bij, roer goed. Bak ½ uur.” As jy 1909 se sagopoeding wil maak: ‘n bottel is 750ml, weinig noot beteken ‘n knippie neutmuskaat en doe beteken voeg by.

sagopoeding
Sagopoeding van die Ooste

In Gua Musang in Maleisië het ek die rare soet oosterse parfuum van Pandanblare ontdek toe ek my eerste happie Sago Gula Melaka proe. Die sago was in water sag gekook en bedien met ‘n stropie van palmsuiker en kokosneutmelk wat met Pandanblare gegeur is. Vreemd, heerlik en Oosters. Pandanblare het ‘n unieke smaak en word volop in die Maleisiese kookkuns gebruik, maar is ongelukkig nie in Suid-Afrika beskikbaar nie. Google het my toe heeltemal van die wal in die sloot gehelp (hoekom leer ek nooit nie!), want toe ek die Pandanblare met lourierblare en toe weer ‘n volgende keer met tarragon vervang was die poedings totaal en alle mislukkings.

Sago met kokosneutmelk en koejawels

Ek het tog bly speel met die kokosneutmelk en het toe uiteindelik ‘n wenresep ontwikkel. Ek het sago in kokosneutmelk en vanilla saadjies sag gekook en met verlydelike soet koejawels bedien. Die keer moet ek erken was dit ‘n reuse sukses. Tot my Ier sê dit is een van lekkerste kombinasies wat hy nog geproe het. En, as die Ier so sê dan is dit so.

Tannie Miena se sagopoeding
My gunsteling sagopoeding bly maar my Ta Miena se sagopoeding. Dit kom met pragtige herinneringe, maar haar reseppie kry ‘n ongesonde hoeveelheid suiker in – een koppie suiker op drie koppies melk. Nee genade mense, dit was darem te erg! Ek het die suiker toe met die helfte verminder en het ook vars vanilla saadjies bygevoeg. Die appelkooskonfyt het ek in die mikrogolf gesmelt om ‘n heerlike stropie te vorm.
Ek is lief vir enige sagopoeding, of die eierwitte ingevou of as ‘n meringue bo-op gebak word, of dit uit die Ooste in die vorm van Sago Gula Melaka of uit my Ta Miena se plaaskombuis kom – vir my bly dit nog steeds die mooiste en lekkerste stringetjie pêrels wat in ‘n melkweg los gebreek het.

Wat is Sago?
Sago is ‘n stysel wat uit die middel van sagopalm se stam gehaal word. Dit word dan verwerk in klein ronde korrels wat ons as sago ken. Jy kan tapioka as plaasvervanger vir sago gebruik.

Geurmiddels vir sagopoeding
Amandelgeurmiddel, kaneelstokkies, lemoenskil, neutmuskaat, suurlemoenskil, vanilla saadjies of geurmiddel

Wenke om sagopoeding te maak
-Gebruik ‘n swaarboompot. Dit help dat die sago nie vasbrand nie.
-Bring die sago stadig tot by kookpunt. Moet nie haastig wees nie, dit sal brand.
-Roer aanhoudend.
-Maak ‘n dubbele hoeveelheid. Daar is nooit genoeg sagopoeding op die tafel nie.

Sagopoeding met appelkooskonfytstroop
Bedien 4-6
750 ml volroom melk
½ teelepel sout
9 eetlepels sago, vir 15 minute in water geweek en gedreineer
½ koppie wit suiker
saadjies van ½ vanilla-peul
3 eiers, geskei
½ teelepel vanilla-geursel
3 eetlepels appelkooskonfyt, vir 20 sekondes in mikrogolf gesmelt

Kook geweekte sago vir 15 minute in melk tot sag. Roer aanhoudend. Voeg suiker, sout en vanilla-saadjies by en bring weer tot kookpunt. Klits die eiergele en voeg vier eetlepels van die warm sago-melkmengsel by die eiergele en roer goed. Gooi nou die eiermengsel stadig by die orige sago-melkmengsel terwyl jy vinnig roer. Kook vir 3 minute. Voeg die vanilla essens by. Klits die eierwitte styf en vou by die sagomengsel in. Bedien met appelkooskonfytstroop.

Kokosneutsago met vanilla-koejawels
Bedien 4
400 ml kokosneutmelk
5 eetlepels sago, vir 15 minute in water geweek en gedreineer
3 eetlepels wit suiker
saadjies van ½ vanilla-peul
¼ teelepel sout
blik ingelegde koejawels (420 gram)
3 eetlepels demerara suiker – sagte donkerbruin suiker
¼ teelepel vanilla-geursel

Kook geweekte sago vir 15 minute in kokosneutmelk tot sag. Roer aanhoudend. Voeg suiker, sout en vanilla saadjies by en bring weer tot kookpunt. Kook vir 2 minute en haal van stoof af. Gooi die sous van die koejawels in ‘n potjie, voeg die suiker en vanilla essens by. Kook oop vir 5-8 minute tot ‘n stroop. Sit die koejawels by die stroop en verwarm deur. Gooi sago in bakkies en bedien met ‘n lekseltjie stroop en warm koejawels.

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three ingredient #banana crumpets with #rum ganache

three ingredient #banana crumpets with #rum ganache

three ingredient banana crumpets

I came across this three ingredient banana crumpet recipe the other day and just had to try it. It so easy – you take two ripe bananas, mash them using the back of the fork, then you add two eggs and 2.5ml of baking powder. The recipe has no flour in it so you have to fry them over low-medium heat in a non-stick pan and turn them very carefully. They also do not have the height of a normal crumpet but let me tell you there is nothing wrong with the taste! It is delicious. And what goes better with bananas than chocolate and rum? Well I decided to quickly make a chocolate & rum ganache and voila! The easiest and most delicious sweet dish I have made this year!

If you like, you can add some cinnamon for extra flavour.

three ingredient banana crumpets

Three ingredient banana crumpets with rum ganache
Makes 15 mini crumpets
2 large ripe bananas, 200g
2 large eggs
2.5 ml baking powder
Mash the banana in a bowl using a fork; add eggs, baking powder and mix the batter. Heat butter in a non-stick pan over low to medium heat. Spoon the batter into the hot butter and cook until bubbles form and the edges are dry, about 2 minutes. Turn very carefully and cook until browned on the other side, 2 minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter.

Rum ganache
75 ml cream
100 g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
15 ml rum
Place chocolate in a medium bowl; set aside. Place cream in a small pot over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Pour the chocolate into the bowl and let stand until chocolate has softened, about 3 minutes. Stir until the ganache has a smooth and silky texture. Lastly, add the rum.

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blue cheese cheesecake with blueberry + port compote

blue cheese cheesecake with blueberry + port compote

If blue cheese is your thing then this stunning cheesecake is definitely something for you! The phyllo pastry is buttery, light, golden and crispy and it is filled with chunks of Président’s creamy blue cheese and their spring onion and chives medium fat cream cheese. When I mention the word Président, I am not referring to JZ…but to the well-known cheese producer, Simonsberg that has been rebranded to Président. The cheeses will still be made locally in the Cape and the taste, quality and price of the products will remain exactly the same.

blue cheese cheesecake

The filling
The base of this delicious treat is made from ricotta and eggs. To season this bake, I added basil (an Ottolenghi inspiration) and some extra freshly sliced spring onion. Do not try to replace the ricotta mix with a cream and eggs – I have tried this and to my frustration it was a complete flop. If you bake it in a quiche tin, then the cream and egg mixture would be fine but I wanted the cheesecake to keep the beautiful shape of the Bundt pan. I also opted to use big chunks of the blue cheese to allow the yummy earthy flavour to come through.

blue cheese cheesecake

_creamy-blue-800

Serve with …
Serve it for brunch, a light supper or as a first course at a dinner party … and of course with a glass of your favourite glass of cold wine. We had it for lunch with a crisp, fresh salad, blue berry compote and fresh blueberries.

Blue berries and blue cheese?
Blue berries have a sharpness that makes them especially good when pairing with blue cheese. A chef in West Vancouver, Canada, Warren Gerghty serves a blue cheese cheesecake on top of brioche and with blue berries simmered in brown sugar and vanilla. My heart! My taste buds said no to the vanilla but a big yes to a dash of our sweet South African port. If you don’t have port you can substitute it with medium dry sherry.

Convenience
You can assemble this dish up to 24 hours ahead and store it in the refrigerator until you are ready to bake. You may need to add a few minutes onto the baking time, so watch it closely toward the end. Serve the same day.

blue cheese cheesecake

Tip
Don’t think about baking the dish the day before and then to warm it up for your friends the next day. Please! No, no, no. All the crispness is gone the next day and it also tastes drier. So rather assemble it the previous day and Bake it about two hours before your friends arrive. It needs to cool for a full two hours in the Bundt pan.

blue cheese cheesecake

blue cheese cheese cake

Blue cheese cheesecake with blueberry and port compote
6 phyllo pastry sheets
8 cup Bundt pan
butter, for greasing the pan
300 g Président creamy blue cheese, torn into chunks
100 g Président spring onion and chives medium fat cream cheese
650 g ricotta cheese
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 garlic cloves, grated
1 spring onion, finely sliced
10 g basil (one big handful), chopped
2.5 ml salt
2.5 ml black pepper
75 g butter, melted

Heat the oven to 190 °C. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients except the melted butter. Grease an eight-cup Bundt pan generously with some butter. Drape two sheets of phyllo on top of Bundt pan, poke a hole into the phyllo where centre tube is and push phyllo into pan to line it. Do this with two more sheets placed perpendicular to the first two sheets. Add the last phyllo sheets in this crisscross manner. Edges of phyllo should hang over the edges of the pan. Mix all the other ingredients together except the melted butter. Spoon the ricotta cheese mixture into the pan. Fold edges of the phyllo pastry over the filling. Using a sharp knife, poke about 10 holes in the dough so that it reaches all the way to bottom of pan. Slowly pour the melted butter over the cheesecake; some butter will seep through holes and some will remain on top of dough. Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes, or until cheesecake is puffy and golden brown. Allow to cool in the pan for 2 hours before inverting onto a wire rack and slicing. Serve warm with a spring salad and fresh blueberries or with blueberry compote.

Blueberry compote
150 g blueberries
10 g sugar
50 ml port

Simmer all ingredients over low heat for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.

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my coconut #cake on a retro light fitting

my coconut #cake on a retro light fitting

White Coconut Cake
I recently received a brief from a client to make a white cake for a birthday celebration. She wanted a vanilla sponge; the cake had to be white; on a different cake stand (so not a normal cake stand) and she wanted one white candle in the cake. We trawled through Pinterest together and we found a white coconut decorated cake. This was the easy part.
Coconut Cake
All you need is two layers (cut each in two so you have four layers) of vanilla sponge cake and a big batch of vanilla icing. For the outside you only need coconut flakes. So first ice the cake and then with you hands … just gently push the coconut onto the cake. That’s it.

The cake stand proved to be the biggest problem. What did my client mean by ‘something different’? Well, I went to a few second-hand shops and eventually I found this retro thick glass light fitting. Yes, a light fitting off all things! It worked perfect with the cake… so dreamy and beautiful. I loved it and so did she.

Coconut Cake

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citrus #doughnuts with #cinnamon sugar

citrus #doughnuts with #cinnamon sugar

I just LOVE warm, fluffy and crisp doughnuts. Smothered in chocolate or caramel sauce or simply sprinkled with some cinnamon sugar. I never thought I would make doughnuts because they are a bit of a project, but they are much less work than you might think. We made these tasty citrus delights this morning on Expresso and used Sara Wineberg’s recipe. Once you have mastered this basic recipe you can do pretty much anything you like in terms of glazes, toppings and fillings.citrus doughnuts

Citrus doughnuts with cinnamon sugar
(Recipe by Sara Wineberg)

2 sachets (20g) dry yeast
2 tsp sugar
1/4 cup warm water
1 egg
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup orange juice
Pinch salt
3 Tbs margarine
1Tbs oil
4 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
Oil for frying
To serve
Castor sugar
Cinnamon

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 2 tsp sugar in ¼ cup warm water. Allow to stand for several minutes until bubbly. Add egg, remaining water, orange juice, salt, margarine, oil, flour and remaining sugar and knead until smooth. Cover dough and allow to double in size (about 1 hour). Roll out dough on a floured surface. Shape into balls. Leave on a greased wax paper to rise again for about 1/2 hour. Heat oil to 350 degrees deep fry with lid on and turn when golden brown. Remove with slotted spoon, drain and cool on paper towels. Make some cinnamon sugar and sprinkle over doughnuts

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chef tjaart’s apple + cranberry pie

chef tjaart’s apple + cranberry pie

Apple and Cranberry Pie

The other day I spent a wonderful morning with the uber talented Chef Tjaart Walraven, judge of the Great South African Bake-Off. We made this easy and delicious apple and cranberry pie. The simple flavours along with the “al dente” apples is a real treat and snuggled under a buttery shortcrust pastry makes for a rather delightful surprise. The lemon juice elevates the tart to something rather special and is perfect with Tjaart’s home-made custard.

Sjef Tjaart
For more information about Tjaart go to: cheftjaart.com

Apple and Cranberry Pie
(Recipe: Tjaart Walraven)
Shortcrust pastry
200 g flour
1 pinch salt
40 g icing sugar
100 g butter, cubed
1 egg
2 tbsp water
Custard
5 egg yolks
125 g caster sugar
2 tbsp flour
500 ml milk
1 vanilla pod, split length ways
Pie filling
500 g Granny-Smith apples
100 g caster sugar
½ lemon zested and juiced
100 g cranberries
25 g butter
1 egg

Making the pastry
Place the flour, salt and icing sugar in a mixing bowl. Add half the butter and rub in with your fingers until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add in the rest of the butter and combine. Make a well in the centre and add the egg and water. Bring the dough together and knead until smooth. Shape into a patty and wrap in cling wrap, refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Making the custard
Place the milk and vanilla pod in a saucepan and bring to just before boiling point, then remove off the heat. Combine thoroughly, the egg yolks, sugar and flour in a mixing bowl. Carefully pour half the milk into the egg mixture whisking constantly. Then add the remaining milk before pouring back into the saucepan. Place back on the heat, whisking constantly until the custard thickens. Remove off the heat and keep warm or transfer to a bowl or jug. Cover the surface with cling wrap to prevent a skin forming
Making the pie
Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees. Grease your dariole moulds or ramekins. Roll out two thirds of the pastry between two sheets of cling film, releasing the top piece after a few rolls to prevent the plastic tearing. Cut out circles slightly larger than the moulds. Then line each of the greased moulds, refrigerate. Peel, quarter and core the apples, then slice them thickly. Place in a bowl with the sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest. Heat a saucepan over a medium heat, add the apples and butter. Cook for a few minutes, then add the cranberries. Cook for a further 2 minutes, then remove off the heat and leave to cool. When cool, fill the pastry lined moulds. Roll out the remaining pastry, cutting discs slightly larger than the mould. Place over the top covering the filling and seal the edges. Make a small hole in the top to allow the steam to escape. Brush the tops with beaten egg, then dust with caster sugar. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until the fruit is tender and top is golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 2 minutes before inverting. Place the pies on a baking tray and back into the oven to dry off the casing for another 5 minutes. Serve hot with lashings of hot custard.

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vanilla naked cake

vanilla naked cake

naked cake

I have been quiet but it has been a hard few months. A knee-op and my 84 year old mom very ill. But the sun is shining again so I decided to bake. I know naked cakes are old news but as a non-baker I have to start with something real simple … and this was the end result. I am so chuffed. The cake recipe is really easy and belongs to my friend, Theresa de Vries.

By the way, the decorating could not have been easier. I finished it with the flowers from the bougainvillea in my garden.

Every now and then we should all bake. It is good for both mind and soul.

Naked Cake

Vanilla Naked Cake
4 eggs, separated
375 ml castor sugar
125 ml sunflower oil
250 ml milk (or water)
5 ml vanilla essence
250 g cake flour
125 ml cornflour
15 ml baking powder
2.5 ml salt
Frosting
150 g butter, room temperature
300 g icing sugar
few drops of vanilla essence

Heat the oven to 180 °. Butter two 22 cm round cake tins and line the bottoms with baking paper. Butter the paper and the sides of the tin and dust with flour, tapping out excess; set aside. Use an electric hand mixer and beat the eggs and the sugar together until pale. Add the oil, milk and vanilla essence and mix well. Sift over the flour, cornflower, baking powder and salt and mix through. Beat the egg whites until soft peaks and fold into the batter. Divide the mixture between the cake tins (about 550 g per tin) and gently spread out with a spatula. Bake for 25-30 minutes until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Allow to stand for 5 minutes before turning on to a wire rack to cool.
Cream the butter and add the icing sugar. Mix well. Add the vanilla essence. Add a bit of milk of you think it is too thick.
Put one layer of cake down on your cake stand. Spread the frosting generously over the cake – specially the sides. Put your second cake on top – make sure the bottom of the cake is on top. You want to end your cake with a very flat top. Fill any gaps you see with extra frosting. Instead of covering it with frosting leave the layers exposed. Take a spatula and even the frosting on the sides. There you have it … a beautiful and delicious naked cake!

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far breton – baked custard with rum and prunes

far breton – baked custard with rum and prunes

Far Breton

Baked egg custard has been baked for centuries across the world. The Portuguese make their irresistible pasteis de nata while the French seem to have endless window fronts packed with egg custard pâtisserie.

Today I want you to introduce you to Far Breton, perhaps the most delicious baked custard I have had in a very long time. It hails from Brittany in France and was originally eaten by farm workers for lunch. What gives this treat such a unique taste is the combination of the rum and plums in the tart. I got the recipe from The Art of French Baking and the technique used, is most interesting. You first mix the flour and egg together and then add the sugar, milk and rum. Try it … its easy and scrumptious.

Far Breton
(Recipe from The Art of French Baking)
250 g pitted prunes, soaked overnight in water
butter to grease the tart pan
125 g plain flour
large pinch of salt
4 eggs, large
100 g caster sugar
1 litre milk
200 ml rum

Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Grease an ovenproof dish with butter. In a large bowl, mix the flour and salt. Add the eggs one by one, mixing thoroughly to create a smooth batter. Whisk the batter to introduce air into it. Add the sugar, then the milk. Stir in the rum. Drain the prunes, add them to the mixture and pour into the dish. Bake for 40 minutes or until brown. Serve either hot or cold.

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pandoro #christmas tree #trifle

pandoro #christmas tree #trifle

This year my Pandoro Christmas Tree Trifle will stand proud just like the Statue of Liberty right in the centre of my festive table – between the gammon, chicken and potato salad.

Pandoro Christmas Tree Trifle

I recently visited Miki Ciman at her La Botegga Deli at the Italian Club in Cape Town and she shared this very traditional Italian Christmas treat with me. Now, Pandoro is baked in a special star-shaped mould. When sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar, it has the appearance of fallen snow on a mountain.

The two of us took the Pandoro out of its box before decorating it with Miki’s crème pâtissière, a glass of sherry and fresh berries. The transformation was this most magnificent Christmas tree trifle!

Bellisimo, lovely and easy to make.

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Visit Miki at the Italian Club
If you have not yet paid a visit to her deli at the Italian Club – put it on your to do list asap.   Miki is “old school” and she still makes all her pasta, cookies and other specialities by hand. She sits diligently each day preparing fresh gnocchi by hand in her deli. She also sells the best Italian fare from handmade mozzarella to charcuterie and a range of other products from her homeland.

Want to learn how to make cheese, pasta, gnocchi or salami?
Contact Miki at : 021 511 5956 (ask for La Botegga Deli) or 083 391 5792

Lovely Miki!

Lovely Miki!

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Pandoro Christmas Tree Trifle

1 large Pandoro
175 ml sweet sherry (or liqueur of your choice )
500 ml lemon crème pâtissière
fresh berries
icing sugar, for serving

Carefully cut Pandoro horizontally into 6 slices. Place the largest slice on a serving platter. Sprinkle over the sherry and spread a thick layer of crème pâtissière over. Top with the next largest slice, angling it so that the points of the star do not align. Repeat with sherry and crème pâtissière with the remaining layers. You can now place in your refrigerator until later. Just before serving put a lot of berries on top of the trifle, push some berries in on the sides of the cake. Sift icing sugar over the top and enjoy!

Miki’s lemon crème pâtissière
Makes 500 ml

40 g plain flour
100 g caster sugar
large pinch of salt
300 ml milk
4 egg yolks
zest of one lemon, thinly slice strips (not the white bits)
20 g butter

Sift the flour, sugar and salt and set aside. Beat 60 ml of milk and egg yolks. Scoop the flour mixture in and beat until smooth. Heat the remaining milk and lemon over low heat until it just starts to boil. Remove lemon peel and discard. Pour a third of the hot milk into the egg mixture and mix well. Throw everything in the heated milk and stir well. Stir constantly until the mixture thickens. Cook for one minute. Stir in the butter and mix well. Remove and let cool completely before using.

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white chocolate chip gingerbread cookies

white chocolate chip gingerbread cookies

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Christmas just is’nt Christmas without gingerbread cookies! This no-fuss recipe is all thanks to that wonderful Australian foodie, Donna Hay. All that you need to do with this dough is roll it into little balls, pop them onto a baking tray, flatten them slightly with your fingers and zip them into the oven! Simple and easy.

I added some delicious white chocolate chips and this make these treats so irresistible that you will find it difficult not to eat them all up yourself. The reason for this is that the white chocolate turns into a kind of silky caramel. But be warned, the cookies are rather hard when you bite into them…so have it with a glass of milk or a refreshing cuppa tea.

Donna’s styling was so gorgeous … so I did about the same. I love it!

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white chocolate chip gingerbread cookies
 
Author:
Serves: 30
Ingredients
  • Makes 24
  • 125g unsalted butter, soften
  • 90g brown sugar
  • 230g golden syrup
  • 375g plain flour
  • 5 ml bicarbonate of soda
  • 10 ml ground ginger
  • 100g white chocolate, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 170°C. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 6–8 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until the ingredients are pale and creamy. Add the golden syrup, flour, bicarbonate of soda and ginger and beat until the mixture comes together to form a smooth dough. Fold the chocolate through the mixture. Roll tablespoons of the mixture into balls and place on large, lightly-greased baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Flatten slightly and bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden. Allow to cool slightly before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

 

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Christmas cake on the #braai – the #ExpressoShow way

Christmas cake on the #braai – the #ExpressoShow way
How insane and fabulous is this? A delicious Christmas cake on the #braai. PS: All images taken with my mobile phone

How insane and fabulous is this? A delicious Christmas cake on the #braai. PS: All images taken with my mobile phone

I love cooking on Expresso Morning Show (live TV is my thing) and I LOVE the whole team from Paul (the talented producer & director) to Zola (innovative chef and stylist), Stephanie (the super stylist) and then the lovely down to earth but so energetic presenters Elana, Ewan, Graeme, Katlego, Leigh-Anne and Zoë. Not forgetting Ruan that gives me my coffee fix every morning, the dedicated cameramen, Lucian the vivacious floor manager / director and those brilliant make-up artists! They are like family to me, they make me really happy and I hope that I bring a ray of sunshine into their lives.

The recipe calls for beautiful seasonal fruit

The recipe calls for beautiful seasonal fruit

Anyway, the other day Zola gave me her recipe to make. She said: “Anél, I want you to bake a cake… on the fire.” My first reaction was that of odd disbelief (really?)… I nearly choked on my morning coffee but then I kinda fell in love with the idea. And now … I think it is genius! Zola’s recipe is perfect for a Christmas cake on the fire. It is made with seasonal cherries and apricots and with a dash of cream and it is a real festive treat.

Zola Nene the goddess of the Expresso kitchen. This #braai cake is her invention.

Zola Nene the goddess of the Expresso kitchen. This #braai cake is her invention.

Cooking with one of the hottest guys in South Africa is one of the perks ... just saying. But ladies he is a very nice guy too!

Cooking with one of the hottest guys in South Africa is one of the perks … just saying. But ladies he is a very nice guy too!

The way the two of us can carry on! Love you Elana, mother of Esther Beth.

The way the two of us can carry on! Love you Elana, mother of Esther Beth.

Beautiful inside and out here she is ... the HOT Leigh-Anne Williams. Today as gorgeous as a fresh apricot.

Beautiful inside and out here she is … the HOT Leigh-Anne Williams. Today as gorgeous as a fresh apricot.

Kat I had to steal this pic from your facebook. Why dont I have a pic with you? I don't know, but this man is one of the most talented MC's, TV presenters, singers and what he touch turns into gold. Watch the space. Here he is getting up to no good with Elana.

Kat I had to steal this pic from your facebook. Why dont I have a pic with you? I don’t know, but this man is one of the most talented MC’s, TV presenters, singers and what he touch turns into gold. Watch the space. Here he is getting up to no good with Elana.

Graeme is another hottie on the show. He has an infectious laugh and we have loads of fun when we braai together!

Graeme is another hottie on the show. He has an infectious laugh and we have loads of fun when we braai together!

Zoe is the latest addition to Expresso. What a beautiful, warm and lovely woman. You rock!

Zoe is the latest addition to Expresso. What a beautiful, warm and lovely woman. You rock!

Me braaiing outside the Expresso studio .... and having lots of fun

Me braaiing outside the Expresso studio …. and having lots of fun

We can do absolutely nothing without Lucian. He organises the cameras, the lights, counts us down. All in all one of the nicest and friendliest guys I know.

We can do absolutely nothing without Lucian. He organises the cameras, the lights, counts us down. All in all one of the nicest and friendliest guys I know.

Ruan is the first person you see in the "green room". He manages the people before they go on set. The sweetest guy, more of a model I say (you will recognise his face on some TV ads) - and he makes a mean coffee!

Ruan is the first person you see in the “green room”. He manages the people before they go on set. The sweetest guy, more of a model I say (you will recognise his face on some TV ads) – and he makes a mean coffee!

TIPS FOR BRAAIING CAKE ON THE FIRE: Do remember that your braai coals must be of medium heat – otherwise this cake is going to end up something of a charred creation. All you need do is make a gap for your pot to nestle the pot in-between the coals. Do not put the pot directly on the coals. Then once on the fire place around 5 to 6 coals on top of the pot lid.

Christmas cake on the #braai - the #ExpressoShow way
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 60 ml Demerara sugar
  • 60 ml maple syrup
  • 60 ml butter
  • 8 ripe apricots, halved and pitted
  • 200 g pitted fresh cherries
  • For the sponge
  • 120 g butter, softened
  • 120 g Demerara sugar
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 2 eggs
  • 175 ml plain yoghurt
  • 160 g cake flour
  • 5 ml baking powder
  • 5 ml bicarbonate of soda
Instructions
  1. Heat braai coals to medium heat. Grease a medium-sized cast iron pot very well with Spray and Cook. Grease the 60 ml butter onto the bottom of the pot then sprinkle 60 ml Demerara sugar over this and drizzle with 60 ml maple syrup. Arrange the apricots (cut-side down) on top of the syrup then place the cherries in the gaps in and around the apricots. Make the sponge by creaming together the butter, sugar and lemon zest. Whisk the egg together with yoghurt. Sift together flour, baking powder and bicarbonate soda. Fold dry and wet ingredients alternately into the creamed butter and sugar. Spoon the batter carefully onto the fruit then cover the pot with the lid. Make a gap amidst the coals and nestle the pot into the gap. Place some coals on top of the lid then leave to cook for 45 minutes. To check to see whether your cake is cooked insert a skewer – if it comes out dry, your cake is baked. Remove from the coals and allow it to cool for 10 mins in the pot before turning it out upside down. Serve with a dollop of plain cream mixed with vanilla.

 

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