Category

Baking

Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake “I’ll be back before you can say Blueberry pie.”
Bruce Willis {Pulp Fiction}

Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake, a tray that happened just because the galette failed. A friend recently got me some blueberries and they were a source  of constant inspiration. The pretty little deep blue berries had me fascinated. All day long I thought of how best to use them. Muffins, galettes, cheesecake, trifle, ice cream and so much more. Finally settled for a wholewheat galette!

Blueberries, food styling, rawWhat I ended up with was obviously far from it. While I was really pleased with the galette when it went into the oven, ten minutes later, I stared at a virtual meltdown. Disaster had struck. Like the rivers of Babylon, how the dough spread. The pastry spread to make a base, while everything else merrily leveled above it. Heartbroken, I left the disaster to bake, slamming the oven door shut in horror.Blueberries 3 1000I let it be for quite a bit, sitting to cool in the oven because I was heartbroken. Nothing much I could do I figured, and set out to make a trifle. Upcycle as Ruchira had cleverly suggested at my overbaked batch of Wholegrain Butterscotch Blondies. It made the most fab UpcycledButterscotch Blondie Pudding not so long ago. Clearly the more often I bake, the higher the chances of upcycling! Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake Yet one look at the now settled tray seemed to suggest that all wasn’t lost. I stamped out shapes to salvage a few decent round cut outs while happy hungry mouths nibbled the left over edges away. No chance for trifles!! Turned out pretty delicious, and hence the Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake was born. I’ve scaled the ingredients to match the tray bake, just the base has been reduced, while the rest remains pretty much the same. I did a test run with strawberries yesterday and that came out just as good too!

Recipe: Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake your picture

Summary: Moist, full of wholesome almond and fruit flavour, here’s a tray bake that you might enjoy. The Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake is a quick and fuss free bake for times when berries are in plenty. Makes one 8″ X 8″ tray.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Ingredients:

  • Wholewheat biscuit base
  • 110g wholewheat flour
  • 60g unsalted butter, chilled, chopped
  • 15g brown sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 10ml apple cider vinegar
  • 40-50ml water
  • Frangipane
  • 75g butter
  • 75g brown sugar
  • 75g almond meal
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 vanilla bean scraped
  • 150g Blueberries {or strawberries, cherries, peaches etc}
  • Almond flakes for garnishing

Method:

  1. Wholewheat biscuit base
  2. Place wholewheat flour, butter, brown sugar and salt in bowl of food processor and process briefly until you have a coarse mix. The butter should be pea sized.
  3. Add the vinegar and process briefly, then gently pour in enough water until it just about begins to come together when you pinch it between your fingertips. Don’t over work, else the pastry will become tough.
  4. Line the base of an 8″ X 8″ baking tin {or 7″ X 11″} with parchment paper. Lightly grease sides.
  5. Press the biscuit it evenly to line the bottom.
  6. Chill for 20 minutes while you preheat the oven, and make the frangipane.
  7. Frangipane
  8. Place butter, almond meal and brown sugar in same bowl of food processor and blend to mix.
  9. Add remaining ingredients and briefly process to mix. { Can be stirred together in a big bowl too.}
  10. Assemble
  11. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  12. Spread the frangipane over the chilled biscuit base, and scatter the blueberries over.
  13. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the frangipane feels set.
  14. Allow to cool for 30 minutes, then cut into squares or bars.
  15. Serve with unsweetened cream and extra berries if desired.

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Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti“So much chocolate, so little time.”

Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti … chocolate yet again because it was a hurried baking batch. Same story, different biscotti. With the better half set to travel and a last minute change in plans, I had little to almost no time to bake. I hurriedly threw these together this morning adapted from a recipe from Smitten Kitchen. One stop over at Deb’s blog, or leafing through her cookbook, leaves you inspired to hit baking mode.

Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond BiscottiFor me chocolate is one of the easiest and most forgiving mediums to bake with. With my hashtag #makehalfyourgrainswhole, I can blindly experiment, knowing in the end we’ll have something edible, if not delicious. Going the whole food way has been possibly one of the most satisfying journeys of my life, if not the most exciting. Makes me want to constantly experiment, try new things. That makes life a lot less mundane too. This biscotti did just that giving me room to change things around.Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond BiscottiHazelnuts out. Almonds in. I added butter since I often find biscotti a little ‘skinny’ or dry. Personal choice definitely but a delicious end nevertheless. I also added dark couverture chocolate just because I like cookies that have deep, chocolaty flavour. Cocoa powder often is not enough to get you the indulgent edge. Since I threw these together with limited time on hand, I cut the slices quite thick. Taking advice from Ruchira, next time I will freeze them a bit to try and get thinner biscotti. That is my dream and hopefully I get there one day. Biscotti with plain flour behaves a lot easier for thin slices, is also easier to handle. Thick chunky biscotti is a healthy trade off I guess!!

Recipe: Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti your picture

Summary: Comfort cookies with deep chocolaty flavour, and toasted almonds just hitting the right notes. Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti might just be the answer for comfort food; never mind what the question is!!

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Ingredients:

  • 75g almonds, toasted, roughly chopped
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 75g dark chocolate
  • 1 tbsp espresso powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 150g wholewheat flour
  • 60g all purpose flour
  • 40g almond meal
  • 30g good quality cocoa powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 200g brown sugar

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line a heavy baking tray with parchment.
  2. Melt the butter and chocolate in the microwave, 1 min. Stir until smooth, then stir in espresso powder.
  3. In a large bowl stir together wholewheat flour, plain flour, almond meal, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and chopped almonds.
  4. Place the egg and vanilla extract in bowl of stand mixer. Whisk on high speed for 15 seconds, then add melted chocolate mix and stir on low speed for 15 seconds to combine.
  5. Add the dry mix and run mixer for 20-30 seconds on slow speed to combine. Don’t over work.
  6. Turn out onto work surface and divide into 2. Form into 2 long flat logs about 8-10″ long {or as desired}
  7. Transfer to prepared baking sheet, brush gently with water, and sprinkle over with brown sugar.
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until firm to touch.
  9. Remove tray from oven, allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, then slice at an angle as thin as you like with a good sharp serrated knife.
  10. Reduce oven temperature to 150C. Return the sliced cookies back to the tray, cut side down {and up of course!} and bake for a further 20-25 minutes until crisp and dry.
  11. Cool completely on racks before storing.

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White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic strawberry topping“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.”
Charles M. Schulz

White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic  strawberry topping, music to this bakers ears. I’m not one for cheesy baking on V Day; possibly the last one who’ll bake for the day. Yet, I am a sucker for good recipes that catch my eye, and this one certainly did. A white chocolate cheesecake with ingredients as many as the fingers on my hand would tempt any baker or cheesecake lover. It certainly tempted me!

White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic strawberry toppingThe minute I saw BetterButters fun video, part of their V Day series, to get men into the kitchen to bake something simple for their loved ones, they had me in the loop. If the first frame lists 5 simple ingredients, 4 of which are already there, then what’s to stop this rabid baker? Not much!! All it took was a trip to the local grocery store, grab some cream cheese, also some thyme that happened to be there, and I was set. I always have strawberries at home since they are so much in season these days.

Thyme, food styling, food photographyIt’s a simple recipe, S I M P L E. Make sure you see the video twice. First to enjoy the ease, and next, if you are like me, to jot down the steps. Else grab someone a willing soul, asking them to play the video as you go along. One thing I always do is follow the main recipe as is the first time. This was super fun, and I am going to bake this again soon. You know the other thing what I loved about the recipe? The natural quintessential cheesecake sink in the centre that holds the delicious filling.

White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic strawberry topping A few things I might change. Maybe make the white chocolate cheesecake with quark the next time around. I am not a huge fan of Britannia Cream Cheese as the slight saltiness creeps through and takes away somewhat the joy and beauty of white chocolate. Talking about white chocolate, make sure you use good quality white chocolate. With as little as 5 ingredients in the cheesecake, each one counts in the end.

White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic strawberry topping This is a great great recipe for beginners, for bakers, for cheesecake lovers and especially for people like me who need a springboard for creativity. I have already begun dreaming of what else I can do with this. For now, enjoy it as it is, a beautiful White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic  strawberry topping. You could even do a light jelly topping that BetterButter did, but try this recipe you must! You can download the BetterButter app here – https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=in.betterbutter.android

Recipe: White Chocolate Cheesecake your picture

Summary: White Chocolate Cheesecake with balsamic strawberry topping  is a great  recipe for beginners, for bakers, for cheesecake lovers and especially for people like me who need a springboard for creativity. You could even do a light jelly topping that Better Butter did, but try this recipe you must! Makes a 7″ cheesecake

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Ingredients:

  • White Chocolate Cheesecake
  • 200g white chocolate, melted {I used white baking chocolate}
  • 200g Cream Cheese {Britannia}
  • 4 egg, separated
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 vanilla bean, scraped
  • 1/2 tsp strawberry extract
  • Topping
  • 150g strawberries, quartered
  • 40g brown sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 vanilla bean shell
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • Garnish
  • Fresh strawberries, thyme

Method:

  1. White Chocolate Cheesecake
  2. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a 7″ dessert ring or a loose bottomed baking tin.
  3. Place egg whites with a pinch of salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk until stiff peaks form
  4. In the meantime, place the melted white chocolate, egg yolks and cream cheese in a large bowl and whisk until smooth. Add vanilla and strawberry extract and whisk again.
  5. Add 1-2 tbsp of the beaten whites to loosen the mixture, then gently fold the rest in. I turned the chocolate mix into the bowl of the KitchenAid stand mixer as it is a large very convenient bowl to mix in.
  6. Transfer batter to prepared tin and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 150C and bake for a further15 minutes. Fina;y reduce the temperature to 120C and bake for another 15-20 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool completely in tin, then chill for a few hours or overnight. Gently demold and place on serving platter.
  8. Top with strawberry topping, and scatter fresh thyme over.
  9. Topping
  10. Place all ingredients in a heavy bottom non-reactive saucepan. Simmer gently until thick and jam like. Taste and adjust sweetness if required. Cool. {Can be made a day or so in advance}

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