Black Bean Brownies

Black bean in brownies?…why not hey?!. I’m all for adding vegetables into cakes to add extra moistness or a different texture. Everyone accepts carrots in carrot cake so why not black beans hey?. I have always wanted to try this recipe out since I seen it and finally had my chance :). I was dubious about how these would turn out, only as I wasn’t sure how much the texture or the taste would affect the usual ‘normal’ brownies. 

I’m usually a fan of dense, chunky brownies with that crispy top, I don’t usually go for the fudgy type as these I think are more like cake than what I class as brownies. 

These brownies are super quick and easy to make especially but you do need a blender. I looked for a number of recipes and some only used cocoa powder but I wanted to add chocolate, as that’s what brownies are made from. You need that chocolate fix after all especially when you make brownies.

The other thing I liked about them are they are super protein filled if you can imagine almost a tin of black beans went into these, so could these be classed as ‘healthy’ ;). My initial thoughts of them were that the texture was not like the ‘normal’ brownie, they were more fudge and cake like which I wasn’t expecting, although I shouldn’t have been surprised right? You definitely can’t taste the beans, I gave them to a number of people of which, none could taste the beans at all. Overall, I did think these brownies were a different alternative but I wouldn’t say they compare to a dense brownie. They are more fudge like and if you like that sort of thing then these will be up your street. I would make them again but I think it needed little more chocolate chips and maybe some nuts for that different texture.

Black Bean Brownies
Yields 9
A fudge black bean brownie
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
25 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup - black beans (approx 1 tin)
  2. 1/2 cup - applesauce
  3. 2 - eggs
  4. 1 tsp - vanilla
  5. 1/4 cup - cocoa powder
  6. 2/3 cup - sugar
  7. 100g - dark chocolate chopped into chunks
  8. 1/3 cup - plain flour
  9. 1/2 tsp - baking powder
  10. 1/4 tsp - salt
Instructions
  1. 1. Preheat the oven to 175°C and line a square tin with baking paper.
  2. 2. In a microwave safe small bowl, add 50g of chocolate and melt in the microwave in 30 second bursts and stir in between until fully melted, leave to cool. Meanwhile carry on with the other the rest of the steps.
  3. 3. In a blender, add the beans and applesauce with the optional dash of water, puree until smooth.
  4. 4. Add the eggs, vanilla, sugar, and cocoa powder. Blend until combined.
  5. 5. Add the melted chocolate to the blender and blend 2 seconds until combined.
  6. 6. Finally add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Blend until combined but don't over blend. The batter will be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  7. 7. Pour into a tin then sprinkle over more chocolate chips, if desired. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
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Tootmanik s Gotovo Testo

It’s been a while since I made bread, a very long time but today was the day. It’s been a very rainy Bank Holiday Monday, literally all day, like come on, not just a couple of hours THE WHOLE DAY!!! but I shouldn’t really complain as the Saturday and Sunday have been really sunny and I have enjoyed it.

As I’ve had such a busy weekend I thought I would spend the Monday baking something a bit different and savoury, which is unlike me. Bread is the best thing to make when you have a lot of time on your hands. A while ago I bought a book called ‘the book of buns’, it’s an incredible book all relating to bread around the world. It has so many amazing recipes I want to try but it will probably happen on yet another rainy day!

The Tootmanik (I’ve shortened it sorry if I’m not supposed to be, really it a mouthful!) This was the first recipe I tried from the book, this recipe really intrigued and fascinated me. I really liked the abundance of feta cheese being used as I love feta and it was something I definitely wanted to try. Also this isn’t like your usual bread recipe, it’s more like flat bread, stuffed, layered kidnaof thing so completely different to the norm! which made me what to try it, even more, to find out the outcome.

The lathering of the butter on each layer and the top made the bread really soft, but it also is really chewy, and with the addition of the feta cheese and herbs it makes it so tasty. Something I would really enjoy eating on a beautiful day at a picnic.

Tootmanik s Gotovo Testo
Yields 24
A salty, buttery, layered feta cheese pastry
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Prep Time
3 hr 20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
3 hr 20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 200g - Plain Flour
  2. 250g - Wholemeal Flour
  3. 2g - instant yeast
  4. 250g - milk, boiled then cooled to room temp
  5. 21/4 - salt
  6. Freshly ground pepper to taste
  7. 100g - butter melted
Feta filling
  1. 200g - Feta Cheese
  2. Good amount of pepper
  3. 2 - cloves of garlic, finely minced
  4. 1 - egg
  5. 50g - butter melted and cooled
  6. Fresh handful of herbs - I used parsley
  7. 1 tsp - Paprika
  8. 50g
Instructions
  1. 1. In the saucepan add the milk and heat until it's nearly boiled, leave to cool until it's at room temperature. Once it's cooled you can start making the dough.
  2. 2. In a stand mixer using the dough hook, add the flour, salt, pepper, yeast and melted butter, slowly blend and pour in the warm temperature milk.
  3. 3. Knead the dough for at least 10 minutes, starting with a slow speed then change to the faster speed, making sure the dough all comes together.
  4. 4. Pull the dough together into a ball and place in a clean bowl, cover for at least 2 hours.
  5. 5. In a medium bowl add the egg and whisk, then add the crumbled feta, cooled butter, pepper, garlic, paprika and mix until combined, don't overmix.
  6. 6. Once the dough has had enough time to prove, shape the dough into a sausage and cut into 9 equal parts. On a floured surface, take three of the balls and roll them into 4x4" rectangle. Brush the top of two of them with the melted butter. Then place one on top of each other. Roll them out together until it reaches 12" (approx 30cm). Place this onto a baking try lined with baking paper. Add half the feta cheese mixture and spread it evenly over the layer, repeat with the other layer.
  7. 10. On the last layer make sure you roll the dough out so it's bigger then the other layer. This needs to be tucked under and rest of the layers. This needs to be secure as you don't want the filling to fall out.
  8. 11. Cover with a tea towel and let it rest for 1 hour.
  9. 12. Preheat the oven to 200°C, brush the pastry with butter and sprinkle with paprika bake for 30mins.
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Carrot Cake part 3

If you don’t know, the cake I’m most known for is Carrot Cake, it’s famous not just with family and friend but also work colleagues. It’s also my go-to cake and never fails me, I’ve been using the same recipe for such a long time but I did switch it up and have a go with another carrot cake recipe from the GBBO, only as Paul and Mary couldn’t contain their excitement over it, like seriously I’ve never seen them excited over a carrot cake before and I remember Paul saying it was the best carrot cake he has ever eaten (like jaw dropping reaction!). I was like WOW, if they must like it, then I have to try it….and….NO it didn’t meet my expectations, it was just your average carrot cake but with extra orange and spice flavour. :s
 
I carried on using the ’signature’ recipe until I came across this other carrot cake recipe. I was very very wowed with the photos and how they described it as being a very moist cake. I was actually telling my boss about this latest discovery of this amazing carrot cake, but she did say that why try something new when you have cracked it with yours, but the ever old silly me, just had to try it as I love trying new bakes and you never know, what if it did work out even better than the original?. But, yet again I wasn’t actually that impressed, I still felt my original recipe still had it. I made this cake to take to a family dinner and was super excited to try it, as I was expecting some miracle cake, but….yes, I was still left disappointed :(. Neither of my family members or I liked it boo :(, they all said the original is much better and why did I try something new. 
 
I cake itself did look nice and hold it’s shape and also it was easy to make but the texture was hard to explain it was more dense/rubbery not light like the one I make, the flavours were nice but I think I may have learnt my lesson now, just STICK to the original. :p I just need a reason to make the carrot cake again and stuff my face with it.

Carrot Cake Part 3
Carrot cake with added applesauce
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Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 - large eggs, at room temperature
  2. 1 cup - granulated sugar
  3. 1/2 cup - light brown sugar, packed
  4. 3/4 cup - oil
  5. Just over 1/2 cup - applesauce
  6. 6 tbsp - sour cream
  7. 1/2 tbsp - vanilla extract
  8. 13/4 tsp - ground cinnamon
  9. 1/2 tsp - ground cloves
  10. 1/2 tsp - ground ginger
  11. 1/2 tsp - ground nutmeg
  12. Almost 2 cups - plain flour
  13. 11/4 tsp - baking powder
  14. 11/2 tsp - baking soda
  15. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  16. 21/2 cups - grated carrots
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. 8 ounces - full-fat cream cheese, VERY soft
  2. 4 ounces - unsalted butter, VERY soft
  3. 1/2 tbsp - vanilla pure extract
  4. 3 cups - icing sugar, sifted, more only if needed
  5. Walnuts for decoration, optional
Instructions
  1. 1. Preheat oven to 175°C. Grease and line x3 7" cake tins.
  2. 2. In a stand mixer add the eggs, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, oil, applesauce, sour cream, vanilla, and spices; beat well to combine. Next add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to the wet mixture; stir until just combined. Batter will be on the thicker side but resist the urge to over mix! Add in the carrots and using a rubber spatula gently fold together until incorporated.
  3. 3. Divide the mixture evenly among the three pans, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake cakes for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and set, and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool for 20 minutes in the pan, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the frosting
  1. 1. In the stand mixer beat the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla on medium-high speed until completely smooth; about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the sifted confectioners' sugar. Once all of the sugar has been added beat on high-speed for 1-2 minutes.
  2. 2. When the cakes have completely cooled, place one round on a cake stand or large plate; spread the top and sides evenly with frosting. Gently place the second cake layer on top of the frosted one and press down very lightly to seal them together. Repeat with the final cake layer, then continue frosting the cake, using a thin spatula, offset spatula, or whatever you have that works best, until the top and sides of the cake are evenly frosted. Decorate with additional nuts, if desired, then slice and serve! Store this cake in the fridge, covered, for up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Notes
  1. I halved this recipe the full recipe is on the link above.
Love. Eat. Sleep. Food http://loveeatsleepfood.com/
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Mushroom, Vegetable and Black bean burgers

I really fancied having a tasty Vegi burger, I keep hearing and seeing all new burger joints being opened up across the UK. I think it’s definitely the on-trend food at the moment and it got my taste buds going to making my own. These burgers aren’t your normal burgers, I love the fact they are made from mushrooms, not one of those whole mushrooms stacks that you see in my burger joints and seriously how do you bite into one of those? Actually lets not get started on how I’m such a messy eater and do struggle eating burgers, it’s definitely not something I have grasped how to work out, usually it ends up in a complete utter mess, food all over my plate, hands dirty and you can’t imagine how many napkins I go through, probably end up killing a tree!. 
 
Anyway forget talking about my messy eating habits, back on the burger. I love the vibrant outburst of green, yellow and red in these burgers, quite bright and rainbow like, it made them look more appealing as you know burgers patties are just not that appealing especially Vegi ones. I like the fact these burgers kept it’s shape and it had different textures so gave it a bit of a bit of a bite. I added extra flavourings and a bit of spice to make sure it’s full of flavour.
 
 
Mushroom and Black Bean Burgers
A mix vegetable burger with mushrooms and black beans
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Prep Time
15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups - portabella mushrooms, cubed (smaller pieces); gills removed
  2. 2 cups - cooked black beans, rinsed and divided
  3. 1 cup - minced broccoli, fresh only
  4. 1 - yellow pepper, finally chopped
  5. 1/2 cup - red onion, minced
  6. 3 XL - eggs, beaten
  7. 1/2 cup - plus 2 Tbl Panko or Gluten Free Panko
  8. 1 tbsp - Worcestershire *for full vegetarian style use one that does not contain anchovies
  9. 2 - garlic, minced
  10. 1 tsp - smoked paprika
  11. 1/2 tsp - chilli flakes
  12. 1/2 tsp - ground coriander
  13. Good amount of freshly pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. 1. In a large bowl add 1 cup of black beans and mash with a masher (chunks are OK).
  2. Next, add in the mushrooms, the rest of the beans, broccoli, pepper, garlic, smoked paprika, chilli flakes, ground coriander, pepper, onion and worcestershire.
  3. 2. Then add in the eggs and bread crumbs and mix gently with a large spoon until the mixture is combined. Shape the mixture into burger patties and place on a plate and leave in the fridge to set for at least 1 hour.
  4. 3. Heat a frying pan with oil and cook the burgers for 3-5 minutes each side until slightly brown.
Love. Eat. Sleep. Food http://loveeatsleepfood.com/
 
 
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Brookyln Blackout Cake

Getting older isn’t any cause for celebration, for me anyway :(, I swear I just feel too old, the only good thing is I don’t look my age (which can be a good, however when your still getting ID’d for alcohol, I’m like REALLY?!!!!) but as birthdays go, it’s about treating yourself and for me it’s having good tasty food and to pair it with nice drinks ;). 
 
With family coming over, to celebrate I wanted to treat myself and them. As it was for my birthday, it had to be something chocolatey of course! the only problem is half my lot don’t like chocolate as much, so it was going to be interesting to see how much would be leftover :0, which I was dreading but thought I will deal with that later! As I’m not such a meanie, I also made a non-chocolate dessert and just as indulgent Lotus Biscoff Cheesecake. Anyway back to the Brooklyn Blackout Cake, I’ve had a copy of the hummingbird cook book for some many years now and whilst looking through all them years ago I spotted the cake. It’s a moment when you stop and stare at something and admire it’s beauty and think WOW! this cake was just that moment, it’s amazing, like seriously amazinggggggggg. Obviously, I couldn’t replicate it to it’s full beauty but it’s worth giving it a go. 
 
Reading the description of the cake made it just more tempting…this is a must for chocolate lovers, the filling and frosting are made from an eggless chocolate custard….hold up! they had me at chocolate custard, oh man!!!! but I also love the effect of the crumbled cake crumbles that are liberally scattered over the cake, it finishes it off and gives it a very dark but elegant look.
 
The cake has a history behind which I didn’t realise: 
Ebinger Baking Company , with a chain of stores across the Brooklyn borough, was founded in 1898 by George and Catherine Ebinger. Famous for their cakes and pies, and especially their Blackout Cake, they closed in bankruptcy on August 26, 1972. The cake is named for the wartime blackouts.
 
I wasn’t so bothered about making the chocolate cake, which should be a simple affair but after researching over the web I found that the custard is very tricky and it can make or break the whole cake!!!….ekkkkkkkkkkkk!!!! It can be hard to get it smooth and without out lumps, but there are ways to rectify it if it does go wrong, so don’t worry. Before I started to make it I was having soooo much anxiety over making this bloody custard (yes I know, who has anxiety over that?) I really was worried it wouldn’t turn out, BUTTTTTTTTTT it worked out and I was ever so grateful :) :) :) if in doubt I would make the custard the day before. The funny thing is the recipe for their cake didn’t work out hahaha which was funny but not funny!. I didn’t like it, it was dry and slightly crispy around the edges and there’s me thinking that making the cake would be a breeze, how wrong was I?. Luckily I had my tried and tested and overly used chocolate cake recipe I made which was worked out fine. I should have made this from the beginning but I thought the custard wouldn’t hold the cake very well, as the chocolate cake recipe I use is very very moist.
 
**IMPORTANT: I made the cake in two tins and cut them in half therefore one of the quarters could be processed in the food processor, I would say that if you want to resemble those very fine crumbs there isn’t any other way then using the food processor I’m afraid, if you don’t have a food processor then it will be difficult to get those crumb your after and I’m not sure if theres another way around it.**
 
As for the family, luckily everyone seemed to enjoy the cake, I think it was the introduction of the chocolate custard which made it unusual and got everyone interested. Surprisingly there wasn’t as much as I thought left over, happy me. Saying that I had a lot of the chocolate custard left over and I would recommend making half the amount. 
 
This cake is very moist, rich, gooey, dark, custardy and I loved it :). It would be better to have some cream on the side and you only need a small slither. 
 
 
Brookyln Blackout Cake
Serves 12
A rich, deep, dark, custardy, chocolately cake.
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Prep Time
50 min
Prep Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. For the Cake:*
  2. 100g - Unsalted butter, softened
  3. 260g - Caster sugar
  4. 2 - Eggs
  5. 1/4 - Vanilla extract
  6. 45g - Cocoa powder
  7. 3/4 tsp - baking powder
  8. 3/4 tsp - baking soda
  9. pinch of salt
  10. 170g - plain flour
  11. 160ml - milk
  12. Chocolate custard:**
  13. 500g - Caster sugar
  14. 1 tbsp - Golden syrup
  15. 125g - Cocoa powder
  16. 200g - Cornflour
  17. 85g - unsalted butter, cubed
  18. 1/2 tsp - vanilla extract
For the custard
  1. 1. In a large (whiskable) saucepan. Add the sugar, golden syrup, cocoa powder and 600ml of water and bring to boil over a medium heat, whisking occasionally.
  2. 2. In a small bowl mix the cornflour with 120-200ml of water, whisking as you add the water. The consistency should be like glue and if it's too thick as a little more water but not exceeding 250ml.
  3. 3. Add the cornflour mix to the cocoa mix, whisking until constantly, bring to the boil and keep whisking until it becomes quite thick. (this took a while so be patient).
  4. 4. Once it has thickened remove from heat, add the butter and vanilla then pour into a bowl and cover with cling film and chill until very firm.
For the cake
  1. 1. In a stand mixer or using a hand mixer. Place the butter and sugar and cream until light and fluffy.
  2. 2. Add the eggs one at a time, and making sure you scrape the sides of the mixing bowl.
  3. 3. Turn down the mixer and add the cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and vanilla extract until mixed well.
  4. 4. Add half the flour, then all the milk then the remaining flour, mix until well combined.
  5. 5. Divide between the two tins and bake for 25-30 minutes, check with a cake tester to make sure it's cooked.
  6. 6. Leave to cool completely.
  7. Assembly the cake.
  8. 1. Using a segrated knife, cut each cake into half. To make the cake crumbs using one of the quarters place roughly over half the cake into a food processor (I didn't use the whole quarter but you may) and blend until you achieve fine crumbs.
  9. 2. This cake needs to be refrigerated to set, as it's tall I suggest you put it on a cake board or if you enough space in your fridge (lucky you) and you can place it on a cake plate! Start by placing one of the quarters on the cake stand/plate and spread 1/4 of the custard over one of the layers of cake. Repeating for the other two layers. Then top off with custard and around the sides.
  10. 3. Finally pat the crumbs all around the cake with your hands straight away. Leave to set for 2 hours. Before serving the cake take it out the fridge to come to room temperature at least 2 hours before.
Notes
  1. * I have put the original cake recipe on here but I wasn't a huge fan and made my standard chocolate cake. Recipe for the cake in is a link above.
  2. ** I would suggest you half this recipe as I had huggggeeeee amount left over.
Adapted from Humming Bird Cookbook
Adapted from Humming Bird Cookbook
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No Bake Mini Lotus Biscoff Cheecake

These mini beauties were another part of my birthday celebrations as well Brooklyn Blackout Cake.
 
I adore these biscuits and their lovely caramel taste. I usually call them hairdresser biscuits, as you generally get them from there when you’re getting your hair did! Also I know it’s one of my aunts favs who wouldn’t be eating the chocolate cake so an extra bonus!
 
I really fancied having cheesecake, I think I had it the week or two before and it made me realise how much I’ve missed it. Note to cheesecake: I won’t leave it too long to make you again :). I love cheesecakes they are such an amazing dessert and can be made in so many different ways.
 
BUT hello, can you imagine when I found this recipe…cheesecake + lotus biscuits, this combo is just too much! couldn’t handle how incredible it will be. I can’t tell you how excited I was to try and obviously tasting the damn thing. It didn’t disappoint either, I really liked the taste, it was creamy, rich, smooth with slightly crunchy bits and the caramel taste came through really well. 
 
The cheesecake is simple to make it has cream cheese obvs, and the other usuals but the one distinctive ingredient is lotus biscoff spread, if you haven’t tried this bad boy then you’re missing out but it’s so darn calorific, can you imagine crushed biscuits in a jar!!! lol calories on top of calories…it’s very much a treat and when you think Nutella is pretty bad this just tops it!
 
I would definitely make it again as everyone loved it, so if you want to make a dessert that’s simple and is absolutely yummy this is the one!
 

No Bake Mini Lotus Biscoff Cheecake
Yields 18
A totally creamy, caramel, no bake cheesecake which is absolutely yummy.
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Base
  1. 150g - Digestives
  2. 150g - Lotus/Biscoff Biscuits
  3. 150g - Butter, Melted
Cheesecake
  1. 560g - Philadelphia Cream Cheese at room temp
  2. 1 tsp - vanilla bean extract
  3. 100g - sifted icing sugar
  4. 300ml - Double Cream* (I would buy a larger tub if your going use it for decoration)
  5. 250g - Lotus Biscoff Cookie Butter (crunchy or smooth)
Optional
  1. Whipped Cream
  2. Lotus Biscuits!
Instructions
  1. 1. In a food processor (or bashing them in a zip lock bag) blitz both of the biscuits for the base in until they resemble fine crumbs. Mix with the melted butter and press down firmly into either a 8″ deep springform tin or the mini lose base tin.
  2. 2. In a stand mixer or hand mixer whip the double cream until it reaches stiff peaks and empty into a bowl.
  3. 3. Using the same mixing bowl (no need to wash) whip the cream cheese, vanilla, icing sugar and cookie butter until smooth, then fold in the double cream, until its thick and holds itself completely.
  4. 4. Divide the mixture evenly over each biscuit base/or entire 8" tin and chill in the fridge for at least 5-6 hours, but I personally prefer overnight.
  5. 5. Once chilled, remove from tin carefully. Then to decorate whip the cream until stiff peaks and using a 1M wilton pipe the a swirl on each cheesecake. Add a half broken biscuit, biscuit crumbs and drizzle some melted lotus cookie butter over.
  6. 6. Keep refrigerated when not eating, and should last 4 days in the fridge covered, depending on the date on the cream/cream cheese.
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Gluten Free Lemon Polenta Cake

I’ve always been interested in this cake after watching an episode on Celebrity Come Dine With Me. The guest on the show really enjoyed it and said it was the best dessert of the week! since then I’ve always been intrigued and wondered how it would taste and would it be on the as nice as they made out on the show. For me, Polenta isn’t something I think would make a very moist cake? I liked the idea of the lemon and the recipe I found used lemon zest as well juice, and not just the zest as some of them do. I was hoping the lemon would make the cake really moist. 

The great thing about this cake is it’s gluten free, so good for those who can’t get gluten. The other super thing is that it’s quite easy to make, but just remember that the butter needs to be super soft from the start.

As for the cake, I wouldn’t say I was totally wowed by it. It’s got a very different texture, not light and fluffy but more of a dense yet crumbly texture. The lemon didn’t come through as much as I thought it would, I could have done with more lemon, especially as it had 2 lemons. I think the influence from my mum is rubbing off on to me, her and her love for lemon!!!! also my biggest lemon critic wasn’t so keen, I’m glad I finally tried the cake, but it won’t be something I would make again.

Lemon Polenta Cake
A lemony, crumbly, dense cake
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
35 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 180g - unsalted butter, softened and diced
  2. 200g - caster sugar
  3. 3 - large eggs
  4. 2 lemons - finely grated zest and juice of
  5. 130g - ground almonds
  6. 2 tsp - baking powder, sifted
  7. 100g - fine polenta
  8. icing sugar for dusting
  9. Optional: Extra lemon for decoration
Instructions
  1. 1. Line and grease a deep 8" (5cm) cake tin and preheat the oven to 190°C/160°C fan/gas mark 5.
  2. 2. Put the butter and sugar in a stand mixer or using a hand mixer, cream together until soft and fluffy.
  3. 3. Place the rest of the ingredients in the bowl and blend until combined. The mixture should be
  4. smooth and creamy but slightly grainy.
  5. 4. Transfer to the tin, smoothing the surface with a spoon.
  6. 5. Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes until golden, risen and firm and coming away from the sides. A skewer inserted into the centre should come out clean.
Love. Eat. Sleep. Food http://loveeatsleepfood.com/
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Vegan Orange, Hazelnut, Chocolate and Cardamon Biscotti

I can’t believe these biscotti are vegan they’re amazing! The biscotti worked really well without the eggs and the flavours were incredible, I love all these flavours anyway but by putting them together worked even better!

I made these as my second giveaways for Diwali food.

Like with all biscotti they take time to make, but it’s quite simple to make, I enjoy making them as they are an unusual process.

Eggless Orange, Hazelnut, Chocolate and Cardamon
Yields 20
A crunchy, orange and hazelnut biscotti with a hint of cardamon
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Prep Time
1 hr 40 min
Prep Time
1 hr 40 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups - plain flour
  2. 1 tsp - baking powder
  3. 1/2 tsp - baking soda
  4. 1/4 tsp - salt
  5. 113g - non-dairy butter
  6. 1 cup - sugar
  7. 1 tbsp - orange zest
  8. 1 tsp - vanilla extract
  9. 1 tsp - orange extract
  10. 2 tbsp - chickpea flour
  11. 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp - water
  12. 1 cup - hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
  13. 1/4 cup - chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. 1. In a small bowl sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  2. 2. In a mixer with the paddle attachment beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add orange zest and extracts, beat to combine.
  3. 3. Stir together the chickpea flour and water until creamy and thick - for best results you can use a small blender or coffee grinder. Slowly add the chickpea mixture to butter/sugar mixture and beat to combine, scraping down the sides as necessary.
  4. 4. Add flour mixture and beat to combine. Fold in the cacao nibs and hazelnuts.
  5. 5. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour.
  6. 6. Preheat the oven to 175°C. Divide dough in half and roll into logs on a floured surface about 1½ inch diameter. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and flatten to about 1 inch thick. Bake for 30 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
  7. 7. Remove from oven and let cool for 15 minutes before slicing each log into 10 cookies. Lay flat on baking sheet and return to the oven for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.
  8. 8. Let cool for 15 minutes. Store in an airtight container
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Oat and Coconut Gooey Caramel Bars

These gooey bad boys are definitely not good for the waist line, they have a huge amount of butter and sugar and use two tins of condensed milk, yes you heard it right > TWO TINS<, heart attack waiting to happen!

I made these little treats for Diwali giveaways, as you know, me making these weren’t helping with the rest of the fatty, sugary food we have lol, oh well. It only happens once a year right?

I really loved the oat and coconut base in these bars, I haven’t used a coconut with oats in a base before, or not that I can remember. It gave a nice texture and taste and I will consider using it again.

I did have an issue with these are the caramel layer just didn’t set properly leaving it very gooey and unset :(. It had to be kept in the fridge otherwise it was a complete mess! The other thing I really, really loved about these bars was obvs the chocolate topping, as it was chunky it just made it even better, who doesn’t like chunky thick chocolate, yummy!

 

Oat and Coconut Gooey Caramel Bars
Yields 20
A gooey and sticky caramel bar with oat and coconut base
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Prep Time
50 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
50 min
Cook Time
20 min
Oat and coconut base
  1. 150g - butter
  2. 3/4 cup - brown sugar (I used light but any will do)
  3. 2 tbsp - golden syrup
  4. 2/3 cup - coconut threads (I used desiccated)
  5. 11/4 cup - rolled oats
  6. 3/4 cup - plain flour
  7. 1 tsp - baking powder
Caramel Layer
  1. 2 x 395g cans - of sweetened condensed milk
  2. 140g - unsalted butter, cubed
  3. 2 tbsp - golden syrup
  4. 1/4 cup - brown sugar (any will do)
  5. Pinch of salt
  6. 200g - dark chocolate, roughly chopped*
  7. Sea salt
Instructions
  1. 1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a 8" square tin.
  2. 2. In a saucepan, melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup. Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. 3. In a seperate bowl combine the coconut, rolled oats, flour and baking powder. Add the butter mixture and mix well. Press into lined tin and bake for 15 minutes or when just turning golden, then leave to cool.
  4. 4. Whilst in the oven you can make the caramel layer. In a saucepan, combine all ingredients. Once all ingredients have melted remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes.
  5. 5. Pour caramel over oaty coconut base and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden and bubbling at the edges but still slightly runny in the centre. Remove from heat and set aside for 10 minutes.
  6. 6. Once slightly cool scatter the chopped chocolate and then refrigerate until the caramel has set.
  7. Sprinkle over a little sea salt before serving (optional)
Notes
  1. *You may not need to use the whole 200g depending on how chuncky you cut it
Love. Eat. Sleep. Food http://loveeatsleepfood.com/
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Mary Berry Viennese whirls

I have been meaning to make these bad boys for a while now since they made their appearance on GBBO as one of the technical tasks. I didn’t bother making my own jam, can’t be bothered with that and I have too many jams to use up at home.

Whilst making the biscuit dough was pretty straight forward (please bear in mind to avoid loss of arms by using an electric mixer!). I did find pipping these little monsters was so so difficult. I mean really difficult, I remember everyone struggled on the program but I didn’t realise it was that hard. I managed to some how pull through and pipe all the biscuits, in the end I wouldn’t say my whirls would get a very good score, being the very big critic of my own food I would say  in Paul and Mary’s words…’although the biscuits taste nice, I notice there isn’t much definition in your whirls’. So yeh they do taste nice and are ‘short’ but definition is so not there! 

I’m in two minds if I would make these again, my parents loved them but it’s just the piping but I just don’t want to feel like I’ve been defeated over some whirls…maybe I should make them again (just for my parents).

Mary Berry Viennese whirls
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For the biscuits
  1. 250g - very soft unsalted butter
  2. 50g - icing sugar
  3. 225g/ - plain flour
  4. 25g - cornflour
For the filling
  1. 100g - unsalted butter, softened
  2. 200g - icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
  3. 1/2 tsp - vanilla extract
For the biscuits
  1. 1. Line 3 baking sheets with non-stick baking parchment. Using a 5cm/2in round cutter as a guide, draw 8 circles on each sheet of paper, spaced well apart. Turn the paper over so the pencil marks are underneath.
  2. 2. In a stand mixer add the butter and icing sugar into a bowl and beat until pale and fluffy. Sift in the flour and cornflour and beat well, until thoroughly mixed.
  3. 3. Place the mixture in a piping bag fitted with a medium star nozzle. Pipe 24 swirled rounds (not rosettes), inside the circles on the baking sheets.
  4. 4. Leave the trays in the fridge for 30mins-1hr*
  5. 5. Preheat the oven to 190°C and bake in the centre of the oven for 13—15 minutes, until a pale golden-brown. Cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes then carefully transfer to a wire rack to cool completely and harden.
Buttercream
  1. 1. add the butter into a bowl and sift the icing sugar on top. Add the vanilla extract and beat with until very light and smooth. Spoon into a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle.
  2. 2. Spoon a little jam onto the flat side of 12 of the biscuits and place jam-side up on a cooling rack. Pipe the buttercream over the jam and sandwich with the remaining biscuits. Dust with icing sugar to finish.
Notes
  1. *I did this but it's not in the recipe.
Love. Eat. Sleep. Food http://loveeatsleepfood.com/
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