Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Nothing salted caramel can't fix ^^

This should be one of my last post for the year. 

It's been a slow year in terms of blogging and baking for me. I've seem to lost my mojo for a bit. And when I do bake, it's always the same old things. 

Though lately, I've been exploring (made it thrice!) a "cooked-dough" chocolate sponge cake recipe shared by jeannietay, This recipe is perfect for those who are "heavy-handed" and can never get sponge cakes right. Interestingly, I noticed the recipe is pretty much like that of an ogura cake..  

Anyway, my cakes turned out absolutely gorgeous, moist and cottony soft every time! It's the perfect foil for my salted caramel. banana and peanut buttercream combo. However, I felt there was a slight aftertaste (which no one noticed! ^^||).. possibly due to my use of greek yogurt in replacement of milk.. or my burning the oil! So I'm still working on getting it right. ^^

Well, for a change, I decided to switch up the recipe and made a plain sponge cake with some lemon zest and juice today. Not the best idea I'm afraid.. I forgot to save up the lemon juice to make lemon glaze! So the cake was rather plain, and I could taste a slight aftertaste (greek yogurt, perhaps??? sorry, I'm going through a greek yogurt phase! ^^||). Of course, I couldn't just leave it at that! And just to put it on record, there's really few things that salted caramel cannot make right ^^ I drizzled loads! And voila, a yummy cake is reborn! ^^ 

soft, fluffy plain  jane
Chubby pig who was visiting, pronounced the cake as "not bad", happily took a loaf home. Now what did I tell 'ya, there's nothing that salted caramel can't fix! ^^ ^^ ^^

Merry christmas and happy holidays! ^^

Friday, November 27, 2015

Caramel frankenstein cake ^^

I made this messy, frankenstein-ish cake for Baby pig who turned 14 yesterday ^^

His eyes were exceptionally bright and sparkling when he saw the caramel overload, haha! And when I heard his tell-tale soft humming after he had a slice of cake, I knew he was extremely happy! la-da-da-da... ^^ ^^ ^^

In case you fail to recognise the cake due to the mess, it's actually a decadently indulgent treat made up of tish boyle's deep chocolate sour cream pound cake, smothered with peanut butter buttercream frosting, layered with sliced bananas and drowned in oodles of salted caramel sauce ^^ oooooohhh, so so yums!!!

Tish Boyle's Deep chocolate sour cream pound cake (recipe from rima@bisouatoi)
90g all purpose flour
29g cake flour
21g dutch processed cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
170g unsalted butter
200-210g granulated sugar
2 large eggs (I used the egg separation method, for a bouncier cake) 
1 tsp vanilla extract
120g sour cream

This is 1/2 the original recipe, which I baked in a 7" round cake tin at 170C for 60-65 minutes. For the step by step to making this cake, please head on to bisouatoi.. hehe, am too lazy to write it out, 'cos it's the usual way of cake making ie. butter cakes ^^
* I sliced the cake into 2 layers, and piled on the frosting, bananas and caramel sauce to make this birthday treat!
* I also tried the DIY wet cloth/towel wrapped around the cake tin method for even baking and to prevent a cracked domed top.. and it WORKS!!! No cracks at all, and the top was nicely flat and evenly baked ^^
* note to self: cake was soft and had a nice texture on day it was baked, but turned a touch dense after being refrigerated.. maybe a chocolate sponge cake would've been better as a cake base? 
* question to self: wonder if using a dutch-processed cocoa powder makes a difference? Answer: Yes, there's a difference.. stick to dutch processed cocoa if the recipe says so!!!

Peanut butter buttercream 
100g creamy peanut butter
30g unsalted butter, softened
80-100g icing sugar, sifted
30g-60g heavy or whipping cream, add to own desired consistency
* make more if planning to ice the whole cake

Beat peanut butter and butter together till soft and fluffy. Add sifted icing sugar and beat till well combined. Slowly mix in the whipping cream to your desired consistency. Do not make frosting overly runny/soft like I did (I even did it on purpose because I wanted a soft, runny frosting.. bad idea! this is what happens to amateurs who don't know much about frosting, haha!), or you'll end up with a frankenstein-y mess! ^^||

Bananas, sliced

Salted caramel sauce (recipe from sallysbakingaddiction or check here)
200g granulated sugar
6 tbsp butter (salted or unsalted is fine)
1/2 cup / 120ml heavy or whipping cream
1 tsp sea salt, or add to taste
* keep leftovers in the fridge, drizzle over ice cream etc.. yums yums! ^^
For best step by step to making caramel, see my favorite guy, david lebovitz's post. That's where I learned how to make caramel.. no thermometer needed!

An epic, frankenstein-caramelly-good birthday cake for an epic, caramel-toothed boy! Love you caramel-loads, Baby pig ^^

taken with phone under slightly better lighting ^^

** p.s I've actually played around with this combo of flavors before.. it was last year (see here), and it was for the same caramel-toothed person. But I didn't manage to make it then. 'Cos last year, we made an amateur Dr Who Bow Ties Are Cool cake, which almost ended up on Cake Wrecks, haha!   

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Happiness is..

Chubby pig was here for a sleepover recently. And spent the ENTIRE time playing BFME and goodness-knows-what-other comp games with Baby pig!

Now what has that to do with me? Well, it just means I got to bake.. LOTS ^^. And finally the chance to use my new enamel pie plate, a gift from one of my favorite people.. you know who you are! ^^

My babies were well fed. I'm happy ^^ ^^ ^^

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Almond-crisped peaches

Big's leaving tonight. He's off to spend a semester in Athens, Greece. And then back to college in the states. I will miss him oh-so much.

This time it'll be a long time before he comes back home. He's thinking of interning during the next summer break. So we are not sure when his next trip home will be. Perhaps I should brave the long flight and visit him in the states.. well, only if the exchange rate is favorable. ^^

Almond-crisped peaches (recipe adapted/from smittenkitchen)
10 peach halves (I used canned peaches)
100g almond meal
scant 1/2 tsp baking powder
60g sugar
6 tbsps rolled oats
90g cold butter, diced

1. Wash the syrup off the canned peaches, and dab dry with paper towels.

2. In a clean bowl, mix almond meal, baking powder, sugar and rolled oats together till well blended.

3. Whizz or cut the butter through the dry ingredients till it resembles breadcrumbs.

4. Place peach halves into a greased baking tray, and top with crumble mix.

5. Bake in a preheated oven of 200C for 30 minutes, or till tops turn golden brown. 

I just had to bake a peach-something for Big before he leaves. He loves peach desserts and I didn't manage to bake him any throughout the 3.5 months he was home. So on the excuse of his grandparents visit, I made a quick dessert just before I left for the all-important yellow rally.

And speaking of yesterday, I'm really happy to report it was a most peaceful rally of yellow. I'm seriously an unfit person. But I managed to brave and survived a crazy long walk under the hot sun and scorching heat (we parked crazy far away thinking the lrts were not going to work!). And what do I get? A whole night of migraine, dead legs, a knee in bandage.. and a clear heart.. and dare I say, perhaps hope for the future? ^^ I'll be honest, I'm sceptical that rallies will bring about changes overnight, if at all any. But yet I was there because I'm hopeful. This is home.

Anyways, back to this recipe, whether you call this a crisp or a crumble, they pretty much spell the same thing.. delicious! I know 'cos I left them at noon and came back to none ^^

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Super moist carrot cake with bailey's cream cheese frosting

My piggies especially Big, loves carrot cake. And Baby, he just can't get enough of bailey's cream cheese frosting!

So I decided to combine both. ^^

Super moist carrot cake (recipe from sallysbakingaddiction with modifications)
~ makes a 9x9 inch square cake
100g brown sugar
3/4 cup / 180ml neutral tasting oil
1/4 cup / 60g sour cream (original recipe calls for yogurt)
4 egg yolks
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups / 250-280g cake flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg powder (a pinch is good enough for me)
1/2 tsp salt
3-4 carrots /300g finely grated carrots
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
3/4 cup raisins
4 egg whites
65 - 80g brown sugar

1. In a bowl, whisk 100g brown sugar and oil together. Mix in sour cream. Add egg yolks one at a time to the batter till well combined. Fold in vanilla extract.

2. In another bowl, sift cake flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together.

3. Place the dry ingredients, grated carrots, walnuts and raisins into the wet batter, and fold till just combined. Do not overmix.

4. In a clean bowl, beat egg whites till frothy, and slowly add in the 65-80g brown sugar. Beat till medium stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes.

5. Take 1/3 meringue and mix into the wet batter. Gently fold in the rest of the meringue till just combined. Do not overmix.

6. Bake in a preheated oven of 175-180C for about 35-38 minutes till cake is golden brown, or till skewer comes out clean.

Bailey's cream cheese frosting
125g cream cheese
2 tbsps / 30g butter
3/4 cup / 150g icing sugar, sifted
2 tbsps bailey's irish cream

Beat cream cheese, butter and icing sugar till light and fluffy. Fold in bailey's irish cream till well combined.

You know, I've always been wary of using vegetable oil in my bakes. I'm butter-girl! But I've to admit, this is one AWESOME cake! And I think I've figured it out ~ it's SOUR CREAM!!! ^^

If I didn't make this myself, I wouldn't even know this cake is made with vegetable oil! I'd think it was made with butter, using creaming and egg separation method. The texture and bite is exactly my kind of perfect cake! It's oh-so moist and springy plump "boing-boing". Gosh, you must think me mad for saying this.. well, it's almost succulent (as you would describe good ribs!), in a way. None of the flat, wet, sticky after taste texture you get from some veggie oil based cakes. PERFECT.

I've come to realize my post intros are getting shorter and shorter.. and there will probably come a time when I'll probably zip right to the recipe. After all, this blog is mainly to document recipes I've tried and liked.. and not ^^ But the post mortem and (over-)analyzing of my bakes is here to stay. Helps me to remember how I liked it and all ^^.

So for the record, I LOVE LOVE LOVE this carrot cake. A perfect carrot cake ~ just the way I like it. For once, it doesn't matter what piggies think (I didn't bother checking), "I" just think this is the best carrot cake I've made and had.. yet. ^^ A keeper!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Millionaire's shortbread

What could possibly go wrong when there's chocolate, caramel and sweet crust? ^^

You never know......

Millionaire's shortbread (recipe from deliciousmagazine)
~ use a 20x30cm / 9x13inch baking tray
175 g unsalted butter
75g caster sugar (50g is good enough for me)
250g plain flour

100g unsalted butter
50g muscovado sugar (used raw sugar instead)
50g golden syrup
2x397g condensed milk

200g bittersweet chocolate
50-80ml heavy/whipping cream, own preference 

* Get the instructions at deliciousmagazine.

So, what went wrong...

1. I did not check out other recipes, and just followed this recipe on blind faith because it looks so easy and doable. Mistake.

2. I had decided to just make half the caramel recipe. Wise decision. 'Cos I later messed up the caramel.. twice! Note: KEEP STIRRING THE CARAMEL AT ALL TIMES!!! This is not mentioned in the original instructions. Lucky for me, I had some leftover caramel from a previous bake, so I used that. I recommend using your own favorite caramel recipe, lest you waste 2 good cans of condensed milk like I did ^^||

3. Melting the chocolate.. The minute I put the chocolate over the pot of simmering water. I realize it was not going to work. How do you spread such a thick paste? So I recommend adding some heavy/whipping cream for a more spreadable ganache. It's also a whole lot yummier when the chocolate is a bit ooey-gooey (even after it's set from chilling).

4. BTW, don't be a duh like me. "Leave to set" means chilling in the fridge, unless you live in the artic.

Ok, the shortbread did make it to the Sultan, in time for supper last night. And it's delicious, even with all the modifications! Phew! ^^

Ya, ya, how could one not love chocolate, caramel and sweet crust? Well, when you mess up big time, there is that moment when you don't!

p.s. Here's a shout out to you, mel (@melspantrykitchen)! Thank you! Spot one of your "thoughtfulness" in this post ^^

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

An end just means new beginnings

This has been one of the longest, yet also the shortest month ever. Finally, a long series of heartbreaking events has come to an end. Even though the damage's done, I'm still grateful. For better or worse, I'm looking forward to new beginnings for all the people I care deeply about.. and for myself too. Time is a great healer, and we grow wiser from mistakes. And having the chance to make things right is the best thing one could ever have.

My dearest titi pig, I hope you'll forever remember this past year and more. In time, I hope you'll prove yourself worthy again of the trust we place in you. We may be skeptical right now, but we haven't given up on you, so you too don't ever give up on us. We are all worth your every effort and time to win over again. There's nothing more important than family in this world. And the best thing is, you have the opportunity to make things right. So do right.

To my ah chek, I will always remember you for being the uncle who took us to all the fast food restaurants that ever opened on our shore! Thanks for being the most encouraging uncle to us kids. I have and will always remember and treasure the good memories. And know, I loved you too.. even though it's minute compared to the love you have for us when we were kids. I hope you are at peace. Praying you are in a better place and is well loved wherever you are.

Yesterday, while going through uncle's things, I found some old pictures of great grandma's funeral. And I found some pictures of me at probably 3 or 4 years of age, and I'm suddenly reminded of how I was once a precious daughter too. I guess I have kinda forgotten I was ever this small. But it sure felt great to be reminded.. hey, I am/was somebody(-ies)'s "precious" too! ^^ Mum even called me her diamond! Haha!

uncle, dad and precious

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Nutella swirl cheesecake with oreo crust

Happy birthday, Chubby! My Chubby pig turned 13 today! ^^

I had planned on a chocolate cake with bailey's cream cheese frosting, but over the weekend, Chubby declared he wanted a cheesecake.

So here goes...

Nutella swirl cheesecake with oreo crust (recipe adapted from donal skehananncoo journal, bakericious and here)
~ fits a 9-inch square tin
160g oreos, crushed
80g unsalted butter, melted

500g cream cheese
60g sugar
3 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
200ml sour cream
3 egg whites
60g sugar
25g corn flour, sifted
6-7 tbsps nutella, add to taste (+ 1 tbsp cream, optional)

Nutella fudge sauce, optional
3-4 tbsps nutella, add to taste
3-4 tbsps milk or cream

1. Mix crushed oreos and melted butter together. Press crushed cookies evenly into a lined baking tin, till nice and firm. Bake in a preheated oven of 160C for 10-15 minutes. Remove and leave to cool. If lazy, omit the baking part and just stuff the crust into the fridge and chill for a bit..

2. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese till light and fluffy. Then add sugar till well blended.

3. Gently mix in the egg yolks one at a time till well mixed. Next add the vanilla extract.

4. Fold in the sour cream into the cheese batter.

5. In a clean bowl, beat egg whites till foamy, and add the sugar bit by bit. Beat till soft peaks form (no need to beat till stiff unlike for chiffon cake). Gently fold in sifted corn flour.

6. Mix 1/3 egg whites mixture into cheese batter till well combined. Fold the rest in gently.

7. Remove 1/3 cake batter and mix with nutella (+ a tbsp milk/cream) till well blended.

8. To prepare cake, place some plain batter into the baking tin, followed by placing dollops of nutella batter all over. Next dollop on some plain batter, followed by the rest of the nutella batter. Top/end with dollops of plain batter.

9. Using a chopstick/skewer, make zig-zag motions across the batter. Turn the baking tin 90degrees, and do the same again.

10. Bake in a preheated oven of 160C (or 150C if oven is too hot) for 50-55 minutes (the center should still be a wee bit jiggly ^^). Leave to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar for about 1 hour. Chill in the fridge overnight before serving.

11. If planning to serve with nutella fudge sauce, place nutella and cream/milk in a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water. Whisk nutella gently till melted, and drizzle over cake before serving.

As piggies always want "more! more! more!", I had "very generously" drizzled nutella fudge sauce all over, making it look quite a sight! Chubby actually said it looks awful, haha.. but he also said it'll most certainly taste good ! ^^ I think it's such a waste to hide the pretty swirls.. but with kids, you know you have to have sauce to make the cake sublime! ^^ ^^ ^^

As this is a big recipe, I sliced off a 6x6-inch cake for Chubby (that's Chubby's cake in the pic above, prior to it being smothered in sauce! ^^), and shared the rest.. And that's how I can tell you, this cheesecake's heavenly! ^^

Monday, May 25, 2015

Sun-dried tomatoes and sausage quiche

Big's back!!! ^^ ^^ ^^

Sun-dried tomatoes and sausage quiche
Pastry (recipe from Dean Brettschneider's Sausage, Sun-dried Tomato & Potato Tart)
160g flour
120g butter, diced
a pinch of salt
2-3 tbsp fresh milk

5 sausages, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced thinly
6 sun-dried tomatoes, sliced thinly
250g (or more, or lots!) of grated tasty cheese! ^^
3 eggs
1 1/2 cup fresh milk I used skinny
some japanese mayo ^^ I added for fun ^^, optional
salt and pepper, to season

1. Prepare pastry. Blitz flour, butter and salt together with an electric mixer or processor, till they resemble breadcrumbs. Add fresh milk and mix till a dough is formed. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 mins or overnight. Or shortcut by rolling out pastry immediately and place on greased 22-cm round or rectangular tart tin, prick the base and then cover and refrigerate ^^.

2. Bake-blind pastry shell at 200C for 15-20 minutes. Remove foil and weights and bake for another 5 mins. Or just use as it is, straight from the refrigerator, no baking required.. that's how I do it! ^^

3. In a non-stick pan, saute onions till slightly soft and fragrant. Add sausages and cook for a bit. Remove from pan and leave to cool.

4. In a bowl, mix eggs, fresh milk, japanese mayo, salt and pepper till well blended.

5. To assemble, place onions, sausages and sun-dried tomatoes evenly on the pastry shell. Then generously place grated cheese all over.

6. Gently pour the egg mixture over. And top generously with more grated cheese.

7. Bake in a preheated oven of 200C for 40 minutes, or 220C for 30 minutes, till golden.

Big pig says it's been a while since he had good quiche! Aaaaawwwwww... Isn't he the sweetest?! And this quiche didn't even have bacon in it!!! ^^

Big's back! Big's back! La-la-la-la.... ^^ ^^ ^^

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Coffee walnut.. and raisin cake

I totally planned this.

Yeah, right?! Who am I kidding! Most of my bakes are the result of leftovers or failed ideas! Haha!

Well, this is a combination of both.. a failed attempt at making crystallized sugar coated toasted walnuts and leftover raisins drowning in rum!

Coffee walnut raisin cake (recipe inspired/adapted from espresso almond butter cake)
~ makes an 8-inch square cake
250g salted butter
180g sugar (good enough for me, as my walnut meal is laced with caramel)
4 eggs
120g toasted walnut meal
240g flour, sifted (use cake flour, preferably)
1 tsp baking powder, sifted
80-100 g raisins, mix with a bit of flour
2 tbsp coffee powder + 120ml milk (+ a dash of bailey's irish cream ^^, optional)
toasted chopped walnuts for topping, optional

1. Beat butter and sugar till light and fluffy.

2. Add eggs one at a time, and mix till well combined. Or use the egg separation method the way I prefer ^^.

3. Fold in 1/3 sifted flours and walnut meal into the batter. Alternate with coffee milk. (F-C-F-C-F)

4. Pour batter into a greased 8-inch baking tin, and top with toasted walnuts if you like. Bake in a preheated oven of 170C, for 45-50 minutes or till skewer comes out clean.

Coffee walnut cake (with buttercream frosting) is a pretty popular cake. With raisins.. hmmm, less so, haha. Even I was sceptical of how it would taste like.. but I have raisins to clear ^^! Well, you now have my word it works beautifully! Delish! And it's not just me, fatty hubby and friends enjoyed it too ^^

Ah,,,,,,,, a simple treat, perfect with a spot of tea.. or coffee. Just the thing for me ^^

Friday, April 24, 2015

Fabu-luscious mango float ^^

What dessert do you want, Baby pig?

Mango float.

Mango what????!!!

Go google, Kuku..

Mango Float (recipe adapted from justapinch)
~ fits an 8x13" container
200g graham crackers, crushed
300ml heavy cream
1 small can of condensed milk (add to own preferred sweetness)
1 tbsp rum, optional
some mango puree, optional
4 ripe mangoes, sliced thinly

1. Mix cream, condensed milk, rum and mango puree together.

2. Start 1st layer/base with crushed graham crackers, followed by a layer of cream mixture. Place sliced mangoes over cream mixture.

3. Repeat the steps above again. Makes 2-3 layers or more. End with a sprinkling of biscuits.

4. Chill thoroughly. Or place in the freezer, then leave to thaw in the chiller or fridge before serving.

Well, I know now, mango float or mango refrigerator cake is a popular filipino dessert. Not only is it delicious, it's super duper easy to make too! No wonder it's so popular! ^^

There's really no right or wrong ingredient measurements for this recipe, just use, add or reduce to taste. I had lots of crushed graham crackers left over as I wasn't sure how much to put per layer. but I certainly loaded on the mangoes! So so yums!

And in case you're living in a "no-graham crackers" country, use digestive biscuits. That was my plan. But while shopping yesterday at Jaya Grocer (my fav grocery shop! ^^), I found the filipino brand, M.Y San honey graham crackers (200g) at RM10.49.. sooooooo pricey, right! ^^|| Yet, I kiasu-ly bought 2 packs, sigh. Think I'll just stick to digestive biscuits next time.

Ok, in case you're wondering how it tastes like.. just think fabu-luscious, creamy, dreamy, soft mango ice cream! mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm......................  ^^ ^^ ^^  

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Caramel date cake

Hello, it's been awhile.

I didn't mean to go AWOL, but it's just that I haven't been baking much lately, and when I do, it's always the same ol', same ol'. ^^

Well, this is just another variation of my favorite butter cake.. made with leftovers.. caramel and dates.. see, another same ol', haha.

Caramel date cake (see my favorite butter cake recipe)
250g SALTED butter 
100g caster sugar
4 egg yolks 
1 tsp vanilla extract (I used 2 tbsps rum ^^)
230g self-raising flour, SIFTED (250g will not hurt too, don't worry)
6-8 tbsps fresh milk
200g chopped dates, mix with a tbsp of flour 
4 egg whites
90g caster sugar
caramel sauce (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 170 C.

2. Beat butter and 100g sugar till light and fluffy. Don't over beat, maybe around 3-4 minutes on high with my electric mixer.

3. Add egg yolks one at time and mix till well blended. Add vanilla extract.

4. Fold in self raising flour in 2 batches.

5. Add in milk and combine gently. Mix in the chopped dates.

6. In a clean bowl, beat egg WHITES till frothy and then add in the 90g sugar in batches/bit by bit. Beat till stiff and shiny. 

7. Add egg whites mixture to cake batter in 2 batches. Fold in quickly but GENTLY. 

8. Pour batter into a greased 8-inch round or square tin. Drop caramel sauce evenly on top of  the cake batter. 

9. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or till skewer comes out clean.

I like how the cake turned out with a marbled effect on the top. And it's not a sweet cake despite the addition of caramel. I didn't put a lot since there wasn't a lot of leftovers to begin with. So there were just spots here and there that's slightly sweeter as one hits the caramel bits. The chopped dates gave it a nice texture too. ^^

Well, I really love old fashioned butter cakes. No matter what twist you give it, it always turns out yums! ^^

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Irish cream chocolate cake with irish cream cheese frosting

We're going through an irish cream phase.

I had baked an irish cream butter cake over the weekend, but the mini cake didn't make it to print, 'cos they were already demolished off before I could get hold of my camera! Yup, they were that good. ^^

So good that Baby pig suggested we make a fancier cake next.. with frosting, and more bailey's irish cream!

Irish cream chocolate cake with irish cream frosting
~ makes 2 mini loaves or 1 6-inch cake
115g unsalted butter
85g sugar
2 eggs
85g self-raising flour
2 tbsps (15g) cocoa powder (*may add extra 1 tbsp for a more chocolatey flavor)
a pinch of salt
4 tbsps (60ml) bailey's irish cream + 4 tbsps (60ml) milk

1. Beat butter and sugar together till light and fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time and mix till well combined.

2. Sift self-raising flour and cocoa powder together. Fold in 1/2 the flour, cocoa powder and salt into the cake batter. Add irish cream + milk, and mix till well blended. Fold in the rest of the dry ingredients.

3. Pour mixture into greased cake tin/s. Bake in a preheated oven of 170C for 30-35minutes, or till skewer comes out clean.

Irish cream cheese frosting
125g cream cheese
2 tbsps / 30g butter
3/4 cup / 150g icing sugar, sifted
2 tbsps bailey's irish cream
Beat cream cheese, butter and icing sugar till light and fluffy. Fold in bailey's irish cream till well combined.

I'm glad to report this cake experiment's a success! It's absolutely super duper yummy! I gave a whole mini loaf to Baby pig, and he asked why am I giving him so little??!!! ^^ ^^ ^^ He devoured half the cake before I could say, "What??!!!!". Yup, it's that GOOD!

I think what makes this cake awesome was the addition of irish cream in the cream cheese frosting. And the chocolate cake was the perfect foil for the frosting. The cake itself was nicely fragrant but the frosting made it outstanding. ^^

For the record, Fatty hubby really enjoyed this cake. And between us, we finished our mini loaf in record time! Hey, it's that GOOD!

This would make a wonderful celebration cake with layers of frosting, or as frosted cupcakes ^^. I'm so making these again this week for Chubby pig.. I think he'll love it. And for Big too, when he comes back in 4 months time! ^^ ^^ ^^

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Hello 2015

My first cake of the year.. a highly recommended treat by both victoria@victoria bakes and mel@melspantrykitchen.

Espresso almond butter cake (recipe from kitchen snippets)
~ makes an 8-inch square cake
227g unsalted butter
3 tbsp sour cream (nada.. so omitted)
180g sugar (perfect sweetness as recommended by victoria)
4 eggs
120g almond meal
240g flour, sifted
1 tsp baking powder, sifted
a pinch of salt
2 tbsp coffee powder + 120ml milk (+ 2 tbsp rum, optional)
toasted almond flakes for topping, optional

1. Beat butter, sour cream (if using) and sugar till light and fluffy.

2. Add eggs one at a time, and mix till well combined.

3. Fold in 1/3 sifted flours and almond meal into the batter. Alternate with coffee milk. (F-C-F-C-F)

4. Pour batter into a greased 8-inch baking tin, and top with toasted almond flakes if you like. Bake in a preheated oven of 170C, for 45-50 minutes or till skewer comes out clean.

Nothing like coffee to start the day.. and cake for the new year.. especially a yummy-licious one like this! ^^