I get excited when there’s a reason to bake, apart from just wanting to eat!
Last Sunday we were invited to Kiwi Wolf‘s hubby’s surprise birthday get together. Myhubby volunteered me to make the cupcakes – lucky for him I like making cupcakes and he knew it anyway.
I decided to make two flavours – lemon lime (based on the Coconut Lime Cupcake recipe but minus the coconut essence) with a zesty lemon butter cream, and a Black Forest cupcake with fresh cream flavoured with cherry liquer. They were both delicious and I was sad that I could only fit in one of each :[
The hubby decided to make chocolate chip cookies. He managed to find the other recipe that we love. This one has coffee in it, and is a light cookie with a salty sweet scrumptiousness. I prefer it over the last chocolate chip recipe I posted. Unfortunately I didn’t get around to taking any photos before they were all eaten.
Chocolate Chip Cookies II
I’m not sure exactly where we got this recipe from or what we had altered, but it’s gooood.
- 1/2 C (125g) butter
- 1 C brown sugar
- 3 Tbs castor sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 Tbs vanilla essence
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 3/4 C flour
- 1 1/2 tsp coffee powder
- 225 g chopped chocolate (we use dark chocolate, and you could also use chips if you really have to)
- Preheat the oven to 190 C.
- Cream together butter and sugars (use a wooden spoong or your electric mixer).
- Beat in the egg.
- Add in all other ingredients, sifting in the baking soda, powder and flour to get rid of lumps, and combine. You may need to use your hands to mix things together.
- Divide into 20-24 cookies (depending on how large you want them) and bake on two trays for 8-10 minutes until lightly golden.
The cookies will still feel soft and spongy when done, but they will crisp up soon after.
Make lemon spritz cookies
We did a bit of surfing and decided to try a recipe that seemed to be popular on many websites. I can’t remember which one we tried but I remember it called for a stick of butter and one egg as the only liquid fat. It was way too dry and we had to hunt down a fix for it. The cookies didn’t turn out so bad in the end, but I’ll use a different recipe next time.
Make a lemon meringue pie
MMmm! I used the Edmonds recipe. I won’t publish their recipe in case of copyright issues, but a quick Google will help you out :) Serve with ice cream and fruit.
Make preserved lemons
Preserved lemons are great. They have a unique flavour that many Middle Eastern recipes ask for. They’re pretty easy to do too.
I make mine by washing the lemons, chopping off the green stem, making a deep criss-cross in each, packing them with uniodised salt, and covering with boiling water. I’d recommend adding about an extra half cup of salt into the jar before filling.
Leave them for several weeks, turning the jar a few times over the first few days.
What to do with preserved lemons?
I love making chicken targine with preserved lemons. I’ll post my own easy recipe soon.
They’re also great in couscous. You can also make a yummy couscous to accompany a main fish or lamb dish. Prepare instant couscous with chopped preserved lemon rind and taco seasoning mix, and stir in chopped parsley at the end. I usually make a caper butter for my salmon. After taking the fish out of the pan, add about a tablespoon of butter and a couple splashes of balsamic vinegar and let it bubble down a little. Add chopped capers and pour onto your fish.
Couscous can be a great vegetarian main. Try a spiced roast vegetable couscous by adding prepared instant couscous to roast vegies (such as asparagus, pumpkin, carrot, kumara, garlic, swede, yam, parsnip) and flavour with some ground cumin, coriander, chopped parsley and preserved lemon. Season to taste. Also, if you don’t have preserved lemon, just chuck in some lemon wedges while roasting the vegetables so you get some lemon infusion happening.
This is a no brainer! Cocktails always taste better with fresh lemons rather than bottled juice. And they look prettier when there are lemon wedges muddled in the glass. See my list of cocktails for ideas. I’m going to have to wait until after the baby to have proper cocktails again – can’t wait!
I haven’t posted a food entry for a while. This is probably due to the fact that most of my food entries have been cocktail recipes, and being winter and pregnant I haven’t thought about any of these lately. (Actually, I think about cocktails a lot! Will have to invent some nonalcoholic ones at some stage.)
But what is good for a pregnant woman in winter is some warm chocolate chip cookies.
I dug out this recipe that is based on one I found on the Interwebs a while ago, and tweaked it to my liking.
- 200g softened butter
- 1 1/2 Cups sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 Cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 100g (or as much as you can handle) chocolate chips/buttons/chopped
chocolate bars etc. I like to use dark chocolate chopped into chunks.
Preheat oven to 180° Celcius.
In a large bowl cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy then stir in the egg.
Sift in the flour and baking powder and mix with a wooden spoon.
When it comes together as a dry dough mixture, add the chocolate.
Use your hands to knead the mixture so it forms a ball of cookie dough.
Drop slightly-flattened balls of the cookie dough onto a tray. I do two batches one after the other for even cooking.
Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown on the edges.
Cool a little and voila! Teeth-rotting tummy-fattening wickedness.
My week in photos as part of Project 365:
Thursday 22 January 2009
After some drinks at the Southern Cross, we go get some dinner. This cute little pooch was waiting for his owner who was getting takeaways at the time. It reminds of me of Harold, the dog in Taupo.
Friday 23 January 2009
We head off to the Macs Brewery for some Friday drinks. It’s quite gusty today and this picture seems fitting.
A package arrives at the door – it’s a box of cookies from Mrs Higgins! I had sent them a comment about the silly 10 cents that the man wanted to charge us last week for an extra paper bag. The director was nice enough to send out cookies as an apology – yay-ah!
Sunday 25 January 2009
I’m not feeling too great today and completely forget to take a picture. Fail.
Looks like I’ll have three more weeks of Project 365 than I anticipated as I will have to start again…
Monday 26 January 2009
Happy Chinese New Year! If I was still living with my parents my mum would be giving me New Year money today.
Tuesday 27 January 2009
It feels like winter today – cold and miserable.
Wednesday 28 January 2009
Kirks is having a sale so Ms Constantine and I go for a nosey. Maybe the Bassetts-like packaging is the reason I decide to get the hubby this product. Voodoo White Rocky Road looks better than it tastes unfortunately.
My week in photos as part of Project 365:
Thursday 8 January 2009
The coat stand is moved nearer to my desk and I notice the “hula-hanger” that we played with on the last day of work in 2008. I managed to get my body right through that hanger! Then I put it back on the stand and forgot about it until today.
Friday 9 January 2009
The hubby is making a batch of home brew. It is making blippy noises right now as the yeast is releasing carbon dioxide and producing alcohol :)
Saturday 10 January 2009
Ms Constantine and I go op-shopping at Savemart.
Sunday 11 January 2009
There is a bit of left-over roast chicken, cucumber and capsicum in the fridge. We also have rice vermicelli and lots of mint in the garden. Vietnamese rice rolls for dinner it is!
Monday 12 January 2009
I admit I forgot all about taking a photo for today until later in the night.
Tuesday 13 January 2009
We go to Mrs Higgins to get some cookies with the Entertainment Book voucher I have. Usually we get four each, and get four free, in separate bags. The man today is blunt about having to pay for another bag if we are using the voucher. They apparently cost him 10 cents each – and apparently the huge markup per cookie doesn’t cover that.
Wednesday 14 January 2009
We go for cocktails at Chow for the first time this year. Dinner is at the Thai Chef Restaurant, and the hubby and I walk home to justify all the gluttony.
This little piece of graffiti is on one of the side streets in Mt Victoria that we always walk down. The creature is awesome with his pot-belly and gaping mouth.