Monday, February 20, 2017

Victoria Sponge

This month, at The Cake Slice Bakers, the four recipes selected from the book World Class Cakes by Roger Pizey, which we are currently baking from are ;

Victoria Sponge
Red Velvet Cake
Almond Tart with Honey
Chocolate Cheesecake

Members can choose any of those cakes to bake, and my choice is Victoria Sponge Cake. A very easy and simple cake to make, baked in two pans, then sandwiched together with jam and cream. I've made half a recipe and used two 5" round cake pans to bake the cakes. Batter is easy and quick to prepare, uses self-raising flour and baking powder. I have reduced the sugar slightly to scant 1/3 cup for half a recipe, and the sweetness works out great. For the jam, I've used my own homemade strawberry jam.

The Creme Chantilly is made by whipping heavy cream, confectioner's sugar and vanilla extract. To make the Creme Chantilly, I've used about half a cup of heavy cream with one tablespoon confectioners' sugar with a small amount of vanilla extract. And I've used only half of  the Creme Chantilly to assemble the cake.

Assemble the cake by using one of the two cakes as the base (trim off the top of the cake to level it), spread some strawberry jam and then the Creme Chantilly. Top with the remaining cake and dust generously with confectioners' sugar. 

Cake is deliciously soft, buttery and spongy. I'm glad I've reduced the sugar slightly. The cake is not too sweet, with my not-too-sweet homemade strawberry jam, and the Creme Chantilly, this makes a lovely dessert.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Baked Eggs

This week at I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), it is about Food We Love. We are to select a recipe from Heidi Swanson to showcase our favourite ingredients. I've chosen to make Baked Eggs, which has all of our favourite ingredients ; eggs, cherry tomatoes, onions, garlic and spices. 

Heidi's recipe uses pita bread which is cut into quarters and use to line muffin cups. I have some leftover tortilla wrap so that was what I've used instead. For the filling, Heidi has used spring onions, but she has given the option of using regular onions, so I've used red onions. To cook the filling, heat a little oil, saute chopped onions, chopped garlic, ground cumin, smoked paprika, chilli flakes, and season with some salt. Go easy with the salt, I used one pinch of salt and it was enough (Heidi says to use two big pinches, and I've noticed that Heidi uses a lot of salt in most of her dishes). I cooked the onions about 4 to 5 minutes, and add the cherry tomatoes. Cook for a further 3 to 4 minutes until the tomatoes have softened. 

The tomato filling is delicious. I like the blend of the spices. It would be lovely made into mini tarts, topped with some cheese before baking. For meat lovers, some bacon or ham mixed into the filling would be delicious! This would be great on some toasted baguettes too! 

To make the Baked Eggs, line the muffin pan with torn pita bread, or with tortilla wrap, which I have used, then fill with some of the tomato filling. Crack an egg in the centre. You may find some of the whites could not fit into the cup if the egg used is large. I find it easier to crack an egg in a small bowl, scoop out the yolk with a spoon and place on the filling, then pour the egg whites over until it comes to the level of the muffin cup. The eggs I've used are large, so there are some egg whites leftover. Bake until the whites are set, about 15 minutes. Serve immediately while still hot, sprinkled with some chopped coriander and more chili flakes if desired. 

Baked Eggs
(adapted from : 101cookbooks, Heidi Swanson)
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 big pinches ground cumin
2 big pinches chili flakes
2 big pinches smoked paprika
2 big pinches fine sea salt
1 cup spring (or regular) onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
2 pieces of pita breads, cut into quarters (I use wholemeal tortilla wrap)
6 large organic eggs
Garnish : finely chopped tomatoes, chili flakes, cilantro (optional)
Special equipment : standard 12 muffin tin

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Add the olive oil to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in the cumin, chili flakes, paprika, salt, onion and garlic. Cook until onions soften, just a minute or two. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes soften up a bit, another two to three minutes. Set aside.

Take six pieces (quarters) of the pita bread, gently open each of them and tuck them into the muffin tin - every other slot. If the the pita splits, no worries, just criss-cross the bread into a nest or tart shell of sorts so there is coverage across the bottom so the egg and filling won't run out.

Spoon a bit of the tomato filling into each pita cup, dividing it amongst the six cups. Now crack a single egg into each pita cup. You don't want the cups to overflow, hold back a bit of the egg white if you need to. Also, you don't want the egg yolk to jet up toward the sky, try to ensure it is level with the whites or the yolks can dry out while baking.

Carefully place in the oven (racks in the centre) and bake for another 15 minutes, until the whiles have set and become opaque. Serve hot garnished with a sprinkling of chopped tomatoes, chili flakes and/or a bit cilantro.

Makes six egg cups.

I'm linking this post with I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), theme for this week
Food We Love

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sunday In Paris Chocolate Cake

Happy Valentine's Day!

The selected recipes from Baking Chez Moi at Tuesdays With Dorie (TWD) for this week are, Sunday In Paris Chocolate Cake and Nun's Beignets. Since it is Valentine's Day, I've made Sunday In Paris Chocolate Cake. I like the name of this cake! I've baked the cake in two small heart-shaped pans. Time to put those pans to work, which I have never used before ever since I bought them years ago!

The batter is very easy and simple to prepare, does not take much time at all. There's a small amount of creamy peanut butter used. To prepare the melted chocolate to be used in the batter, I use the microwave oven to soften the chocolate and another bowl to boil the heavy cream, instead of using the stove. Once the batter is done and divided between the two pans, they are baked for 35 minutes. Leave to cool a little, unmould and leave until completely cool before pouring over the ganache.

I've reduced the sugar to 1/4 cup for the batter, and did not use the optional chopped peanuts for both the batter and topping, as some of us are not fond of peanuts.

The ganache sets almost instantly without any need to refrigerate. Since I did not use any chopped peanuts or chopped chocolate for the topping, I've made some wavy lines on top and decorate with rose wafers which I found in my baking pantry last week! No idea when I bought those!

Cake is not very moist, but it is not dry either, it is very nice. I like the soft crumb texture and thought that the creamy peanut butter adds a delicious taste to the chocolaty cake. A lovely cake, perfect for Valentine's Day, or any other day!

Stop by Tuesdays With Dorie to see what the other bakers thought of this cake.

I'm sharing this post with Cookbook Countdown #14 hosted by Kitchen Flavours and Emily's Cooking (Makan2) Foray


Related Posts with Thumbnails