Monthly Archives: June 2014

Chocolate-chocolate Muffin

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When you are an avid baker and only puts in real, natural ingredients into your bakes, you are going to find it hard buying most generic mass produced bakes off the shelf. By the time I get through reading the ingredients list, I usually return the nicely packed item back to the shelf.

If I do buy something from a local bakery, I tend to want to try and identify each ingredient they have added with each bite that I take. It’s not only about the taste but what goes in it that matters most to me.

I have been eyeing this recipe from The Brown Eyed Baker the past week. Finally I got my chance to test it out this afternoon. The pics on her website looked so promising and the comments were most flattering. So I set out with much expectation. It did not disappoint.

I did tweak the recipe though. I don’t like my stuff too sweet so I reduced the sugar, upped the butter and chocolate slightly. This is the ingredients list in metric measurements with the quantity being tweaked to my liking. If you want the original recipe, do follow the link above. Apart from tweaking the ingredients, all the steps from the original recipe were followed to a tee.

Ingredients
250g plain flour
50g fine caster sugar
60g unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 large egg
11/4 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
60g chopped dark couverture chocolate
85g unsalted butter
70g mini bittersweet choc chips or bittersweet/dark choc chunks (or as much as you desire but no more than 100g)

I didn’t have buttermilk at home so I made my own – I added 1 tablespoon of vinegar to fresh milk. You can add lemon juice instead of vinegar too.

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius. Butter or spray the 12 moulds in a regular-size muffin pan or fit with paper muffin cups. Place the muffin pan on a baking sheet.

2. Melt the butter and the chopped couverture chocolate together in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove from the heat. (If you don’t want couverture chocs, any other dark chocolate with at least 55% cacao will do)

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large glass measuring cup or another bowl, whisk the buttermilk, egg and vanilla extract together until well combined. Pour the liquid ingredients and the melted butter and chocolate over the dry ingredients and, with the whisk or a rubber spatula, gently but quickly stir to blend. Do not overmix the batter. (It should be a fairly thick batter, not too smooth but no visible flour either. Don’t bother to smooth out the lumps in the batter) Stir in the remaining chopped chocolate. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups. (I filled my muffin cups right up as I like it to dome. Do not attempt to smoothen out the batter as it will cause it to flatten out instead of dome)

4. Place baking tray on the top shelf. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until a thin knife inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes before carefully removing each muffin from its mould.

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Another Earl Grey Cake

Tropical heat and buttercream aren’t very good friends. Tropical heat and cream cheese frosting……suicidal.

Many tell me the only way to keep it stiff is to either use shortening or up the icing sugar. I don’t like both. Other alternative is to work in an air-conditioned room. Unfortunately, I don’t have that luxury……yet.

I took up the challenge. With many breaks in between frosting to allow the frosting to set in the fridge/freezer, this is the final outcome……pretty good I might say. I wanted to pipe roses but it could hardly withstand the heat, so I had to make do with rosettes.

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Earl grey cake with maple cream cheese frosting and almond pralines. You can find the earl grey cake recipe from an earlier post recipe

Orange Scones with Orange Drizzle

My eldest asked to make scones today. So I took out my trusted book of scones and asked her to pick one. She chose this. 20140610-211329-76409003.jpg

My recipe is from The Little Book of Scones. the original recipe calls for cardamom to be added but I omitted that as (i) I don’t really like cardamon and (ii) I didn’t have any at home.

Love love love the bite of this. Biscuity on the outside, light and fluffy on the inside. And the orange drizzle adds a little sweetness to the scone. Perfect pairing. I couldn’t resist eating it by itself. I can imagine that this will go well with an afternoon cuppa in the summer (or spring or autumn or heck, just bring it on in any weather!)

Captain America Cupcakes

It was a last minute request by a dear friend to make something with Captain America as the theme for her godson. Seems like the retail cake shops here don’t do CA cuppies or require certain quantities(and they ain’t cheap).

When the kids were in bed, the mice (aka mum) came out to play. As I googled for inspiration, I thought the shields should be easy to make and I could do so in a jiffy. But boy oh boy was I wrong. Getting the right size for each colour, making sure the star fits just nice into the bulls eye, letting it dry. And all these time my fingers and toes were kept crossed that the cupcake turns out well and the end presentation will make it a sweet birthday for a sweet little boy.

I tried out a new cupcake recipe for this one. I got the vanilla cupcake recipe fromThe Brown Eyed Baker. The only change I did to the recipe was to reduce the sugar in the cupcake recipe by 60g. See below for the ingredients in metric measurements.

Vanilla Cupcake Ingredients
180g all purpose flour
140-150g fine caster sugar
11/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
110g unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream (I used home made buttermilk)
1 large egg @ room temperature
2 large yolks @ room temperature
11/2 tsp vanilla (I was very liberal with my vanilla. I think I poured in about 1.5 tbsp! After all, who can have enough of a good vanilla)20140603-214030-78030388.jpg

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