Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Victoria Sponge Cake

shortening for greasing 
1 c. self-rising flour
1 tsp. baking powder
14 Tbsp. butter, softened
1 c. caster sugar
4 eggs
2 Tbsp. milk

1/2 c. + 2 Tbsp. heavy cream
1/4 c. caster sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. raspberry or strawberry preserves
icing sugar

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Grease and line two 20 cm round cake tins with parchment paper. Grease the paper too.

To make the cake: In a large bowl, combine the flour and baking powder. Whisk in all other ingredients, adding in the eggs one at a time.

Divide the batter between the tins.

Bake 20-25 minutes until the center is cooked through.

Cool 5-10 minutes in the tins before removing to a cooling rack. The cake needs to cool completely.

To make the filling: Whip the cream, sugar, and vanilla together in a medium sized bowl until firm peaks form.

Spread the jam on one side of one of the cakes. Spread the cream on top of the jam. Sandwich the other cake on top of the jam and cream.

Dust with icing sugar.

Here's a link to the recipe I used:

Friday, October 30, 2015

Homemade Mac & Cheese

1 lb. dried macaroni
1 egg
4 Tbsp. butter
1/4 c. flour
2 1/2 c. whole milk
2 tsp. dry mustard
1 lb. cheddar, grated, plus more for topping
Red Robin salt
black pepper
cayenne powder
garlic powder

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Cook the macaroni until still slightly firm. Drain and set aside. 
Grease a baking dish. Set aside.

In a small bowl, beat the egg. 
In a large pot, melt the butter then sprinkle in the flour. Whisk together over medium-low heat. Cook for a couple of minutes, whisking constantly. Pour in the milk, add the mustard, and whisk until smooth. Cook until very thick. Reduce the heat to low.

Take 1/4 cup of the sauce and slowly pour it into the beaten egg, whisking constantly to avoid cooking the egg. Whisk together until smooth. Pour the egg into the sauce, whisking constantly. Stir until smooth. Add in the cheese and stir to melt. 
Add all the seasonings to taste. Make sure to stir it in and taste it to make sure it is how you like it.

Pour in the drained, cooked macaroni and stir to combine. Pour into prepared baking dish, top with extra cheese, and bake until bubbly and golden on top, 20 to 25 minutes.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

Super easy recipe. And tasty.

3/4 c. salted butter, melted
1 c. brown sugar, lightly packed
1/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 c. mashed ripe bananas
2 3/4 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 1/2 c. semi sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Line a baking sheet (or two) with parchment paper. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together butter, brown sugar, sugar, vanilla, and bananas until well combined.
Add the flour and cornstarch. Mix.
Stir in chocolate chips. Dough will be thick and sticky.
Scoop 2 tbsp per cookie onto the prepared baking sheet. Pat scoops down a bit to flatten them out a little. They'll spread a little when baking, but not much.
Bake for 12-14 minutes, until edges are lightly golden. The center will still look a little undercooked, but will continue cooking and firm up as it cools.
Remove cookies from oven and allow to cool for about a minute on cookie sheet.
Move cookies to a cooling rack to finish cooling.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Digestive Biscuits

1/2 c. old fashioned rolled oats
1 1/2 c. spelt flour
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. baking powder
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 c. shortening, cold
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cold, cut into small cubes
1/3 c. heavy cream
flour for rolling out dough

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Add the rolled oats, spelt flour, salt, powder, and brown sugar to a food processor. Pulse several times until the oats are just small bits.

Add in the shortening. Pulse a few times.

Add the butter and pulse again.

Move mixture to a large bowl. Slowly add in the cream, stirring the mixture with a spoon until the dough comes together. Knead it in the bowl a few times.

Lightly flour a clean surface and roll the dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Use a small cookie cutter and cut out the biscuits, placing them on the prepared baking sheet. Re-roll the dough until all of the biscuits are cut.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, until lightly golden with faintly browning edges. Allow to cool completely.

Serve the biscuits with black tea for dipping.

Here is a link to the recipe I used:

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Peanut Butter Marshmallow Fudge

2 1/2 c. mini marshmallows, divided
11 1/2 oz. semi-sweet choc chips
11 1/2 oz. milk choc chips
1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
15 miniature Reese's peanut butter cups, roughly chopped

Line an 8 inch baking dish with parchment paper.

Spread 1 cup mini marshmallows onto the bottom of the prepared baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine the chocolate chips and peanut butter. Make sure the bowl is microwave safe. Microwave for 30 seconds, stir with a spatula. Continue cooking the fudge in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until the mixture is smooth.

Stir in the remaining marshmallows and peanut butter cups.

Pour the chocolate mixture into the prepared baking dish. Use a spatula to spread it out evenly.

Chill in the refrigerator until firm; at least 2 hours. Cut into squares.

Here's a link to the recipe I used:

Monday, September 28, 2015

Enchilada Lasagne

Sorry for some of the imprecise measurements; I just went by what looked good.

Olive oil
1/2 of a zucchini, diced
1/2 of a green pepper, diced
1-2 c. baby spinach, chopped
cilantro, chopped
cumin, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 of a rotisserie chicken, chopped
1 can black beans, drained
1 small can mild green chilis
Cooking spray
green enchilada sauce
7 corn tortillas, sliced
cheddar, shredded
pepperjack, shredded

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Saute the zucchini and green pepper in the oil for about 5 minutes, or until soft. Stir in the spinach, cilantro, cumin, salt, and pepper. Cook until the spinach is wilted. Remove from heat.

Stir the chicken, beans, and chilis into the vegetable mixture. Set aside.

Grease a baking dish with the cooking spray. Spread some enchilada sauce on the bottom of the dish. Using half of the tortilla slices, layer the slices on top of the enchilada sauce. Sprinkle a layer of cheddar over the tortillas.

Spread half of the chicken and spinach filling over the cheddar. Add another layer of enchilada sauce and the rest of the tortilla strips. Sprinkle a layer of pepperjack over the tortillas. Spread the rest of the chicken and spinach filling over the pepperjack. Then sprinkle a layer of cheddar on top.

Cover and bake 30-40 minutes. Allow to cool several minutes before serving.

Here's a link to the recipe I adapted:

Andes Mint Cookie Dough Bars

Cooking oil for greasing
1/2 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. milk
1 c. flour
1/2 c. cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 3/4 c. Andes Mints, divided
1 1/2 tsp. shortening
 Using the cooking spray, grease an 8x8 baking dish. Set aside.

Cream the butter, sugars, vanilla, and milk. 
In a separate bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, and salt together. Slowly add to the creamed mixture.
Stir in 3/4 cup Andes Mints. Press the mixture into prepared baking dish.
Place the remaining 1 cup Andes Mints and shortening in a microwave safe bowl. Heat for 30 seconds and stir. Repeat. When the mints are melted and creamy, pour over the top of the cookie dough in the pan. Let set. 
Cut into squares. Store in a covered container in the fridge.
These taste better if you let them set up all night.

I guess I'll have to make them again, so I remember to take pictures.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Root Beer Float Cookies

1 c. butter, softened
2 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. Root Beer concentrate
3 1/4 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 Tbsp. shortening
2 c. confectioners sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1-2 Tbsp. cream

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

To make the cookies: Cream together the butter and brown sugar in a large bowl with a mixer until fluffy.

Add in eggs one at a time, and then the root beer. Remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Slowly add the flour mixture to the batter until combined.

Using a cookie scoop or spoon, drop by spoonfuls on prepared baking sheets.

Bake for 8-9 minutes. Allow to cool 5 minutes on the baking sheet before removing to a cooling rack.

To make the filling: Cream together butter and shortening until smooth.

Add in the vanilla.

Slowly add in confectioners sugar. Then add in cream until desired spreading consistency is reached.

Spread the filling on the bottom of one cooled cookie, then place another cookie on top to create a sandwich.

Makes about 25-30 sandwiches.

Here's a link to the original recipe:

Sweet Potato Casserole

Cooking spray
2 1/2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/4 c. milk
1/4 tsp. lemon juice
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. butter, melted

1 1/2 c. pecans, chopped
1/2 c. flour
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. butter, melted

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Grease a 9x13 inch casserole dish with the cooking spray. Set aside.

Add the diced sweet potatoes to a pot of water. Boil until the potatoes are very tender. Drain then mash in a large bowl.

In a small bowl combine the milk and lemon juice. Let stand for 5 minutes. This will make a homemade version of buttermilk.

When the milk is ready, add to the potatoes. Also add in the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and butter. Stir to combine.

Scoop the potato mixture into the prepared casserole dish.

Bake for 25-30 minutes.

While it's baking, make the topping.

To make the topping: Combine all the topping ingredients in a bowl. Stir.

When the sweet potato casserole is done baking, sprinkle the topping over the top. Bake for an additional 15 minutes.

Let cool about 20 minutes before serving.

Here is a link to the recipe I adapted: 

Thank you, Heather Smith, for finding this gem!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Broccoli Bites

3 1/2 c. broccoli florets, chopped
Before baking
1 c. cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 c. breadcrumbs
2 eggs, lightly beaten
salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Steam the broccoli with a small amount of water in a covered pot over high heat for 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Drain whatever is left of the water. Allow the broccoli to cool a bit.
After baking

Chop up the broccoli finely. Add to a medium sized bowl.

Add all the other ingredients. Stir.

Ready to eat
Spoon the broccoli mix into each cup of a mini muffin tin, filling it to the top and then pushing down a bit to make it compact.

Bake 16-20 minutes or until the top starts to turn golden. Allow to cool 2-3 minutes before popping them out of the tin.

Here's a link to the original recipe I adapted: