Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Work catering #21: BakingTray recognised :)

I wasn't able to make the lunchtime seminar last week but I still catered :) And I was very touched to here that the speaker's supervisor actually said thank you for the catering ^____^v really happy to hear people appreciate my baking =) =)

Then I met a friend to give her some baked goodies and she said she bumped into a work colleague who attended the seminar and said my baking was yummy ^_^" awww.. so nice to hear that =D Is this the beginning of BakingTray catering business? HAHA! who knows~

So this time I made cheesecake and cookies. The cheesecake was a bit softer than normal, maybe I didn't add enough gelatine.... I actually froze a piece for a couple of days and I have to say, tastes delicious frozen!!! Oh and if you love Cherry Ripe then I'm pretty sure you'll love this slice!

Cherry Choc Cheesecake Slice
Recipe adapted from Baker's Corner
200g Nice biscuits, crushed
1/3 cup (25g) desiccated coconut
125g butter, melted
250g cream cheese, softened at room temp
1/4 cup (60ml) lemon juice
1 can (395g) condensed milk
3 tsp gelatine
1/4 cup (60ml) boiling water
300ml thickened cream
3 x 55g cherry ripe bars, finely chopped

1. Grease and line 20x30cm baking pan with foil. 
2. Combine biscuits, coconut and butter in bowl. Press mixture firmly into base of pan and refrigerate for around 30 minutes.
3. Beat cream cheese, lemon juice and condensed milk with electric mixer until smooth. Dissolve gelatine in boiling water. Fold into cream cheese mixture. 
4. In separate bowl, whisk cream until soft peaks form. Fold into cream cheese mixture.
5. Fold in chopped cherry ripe bars. Pour mixture over base. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until set. Cut into squares and serve~
Stretched out! haha they weren't that wide
Close up of cherry choc cheesecake slice - the bits of Cherry ripe oozing out
Chocolate Caramel Fudge cookies
Recipe adapted from Baker's corner
65g butter
1/2 cup (75g) dark chocolate chips
2 eggs
120g caster sugar
150g brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 cups (300g) plain flour
1/3 (35g) cocoa powder
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup (140g) caramel choc chips

1. Preheat oven to 180oC/160oC fan forced. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
2. In a small saucepan over low heat, add butter and dark chocolate chips. Stir occasionally until melted. Remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes.
3. Stir in eggs, caster sugar, brown sugar and vanilla essence.
4. In a separate bowl, sift flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Stir in chocolate mixture and caramel choc chips. Mix until combined. Roll teaspoon dough into balls and place on prepared trays. Bake for 10 minutes. Stand cookies on trays for 5 minutes before  transferring to wire rack to cool.
MMmm big pile of delicious cookies!
Close up of cookies! YUMMYYYY!

The cookies were indeed FUDGEY! :D Mmm.. could dig into some right now~~
Oh and OOPS on the labelling xD

Friday, May 17, 2013

Work catering #20: Bad baking days....

Just like when you have a bad hair day or a bad day at work, you can also have a Bad Baking Day! I'm sure many of you bakers have experienced this. When you just run out of ingredients, when you accidentally forget about a cake in the oven or when you misread a recipe and add too much sugar or don't add it at all! You get what I mean... >.<

Anyways so this week I had a bad baking day.
#1: Ran out of baking paper/forgot to buy some - had to use foil
#2: Although the recipe said I could use foil to line the baking tin, it managed to get stuck to the sides and bottom of the tin so I couldn't get the lemon slice out.
#3: As i tried to get the lemon bars out of the tin, the top dislodged from the biscuit base. Had to stick it together...
#4: Wanted to make Orange and Poppy seed cake but ran out of poppy seeds/couldn't find them

DESPITE all the mishaps, I managed to make something for this week's catering =) I found it quite funny/ironic that the recipe was called "Perfect Lemon Bars"! haha especially when I was having so much trouble with it!

Recipe adapted from Princess in the Kitchen
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/3 cup icing sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbs lemon zest
1/2 cup (113g) butter, softened at room temperature

4 eggs
1 1/3 cups caster sugar
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
zest of 2 lemons
3 tbsp plain flour

1. Preheat oven to 180oC and line a 20x20cm baking pan with baking paper (NOT FOIL XD)
2. Make crust by whisking flour, icing sugar, salt and lemon zest in large bowl. 
3. Cut butter into chunks and add to flour mixture. Blend with electric mixer on low speed until mixture resembles crumbs (or you can just use your fingertips to rub the butter into flour mix). Press mixture into prepared pan with back of spoon. Bake for 16-19 minutes until lightly brown around the edges.
4. Make filling by whisking all filling ingredients together in large bowl. When crust comes out and still hot, pour in filling mixture. Bake for 20-25 minutes until filling is set (and does not jiggle when pan is gently shaken). 
5. Cool completely before slicing. Sift icing sugar on top and serve =)
Lemon bars.. or squares
Close up of lemon bars - melted icing sugar....
So it just so happened I got the ALDI catalogue in my mail and came across this easy no bake slice recipe =D I had all the ingredients at home as well ^^

Marshmallow Slice
Recipe adapted from ALDI
250g sweet biscuits, crushed (I used Marie biscuits)
3/4 cup (35g) mini marshmallows (or bigger ones cup up)
3/4 cup (60g) desiccated coconut
3/4 cup (135g) choc chips
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 can (395g) condensed milk
100g butter, chopped
1 tsp vanilla essence
200g milk chocolate, melted

1. Grease and line 20x30cm baking pan.
2. In large bowl combine biscuits, marshmallows, coconut, choc chips and cocoa powder.
3. In medium saucepan combine condensed milk, butter and vanilla essence. Stir over low heat until butter is melted. Pour over biscuit mixture and mix well. 
4. Firmly press into prepared pan. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until set. Spread melted chocolate on top of slice. Refrigerate until set and cut into squares.
Stretched out... whoa..
Close up of marshmallowy goodness
It tasted like a cross between a rumball and rocky road!
Anyways... Here's to having better baking days in the future :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Death by Salted Caramel!!!

As soon as I saw this cake recipe, I knew I HAD to bake it! Just had to find some time because it would take a little while. So when ANZAC day came around.. it was time to bake!!! =D =D

This was my first time making salted caramel - it's always been on my to do list but I had a fear of burning it >_< Surprisingly, this recipe was simple and straightforward so I didn't end up having burnt caramel ^^"
There were about 2 tablespoons of the salted caramel leftover so I thought to myself, 'I'll just finish it off with some icecream'... BAD IDEA! It was SICKENLY SWEET!!!! >_______<" but I finished it off, to my regret! Never doing that again!
So lesson learnt - Just take one piece of cake! It will be enough :)

Chocolate Salted Caramel Layer Cake

Recipe adaped from Baker's Corner 


1½ cups (225g) plain flour, sifted
1½ cups (330g) caster sugar
1 ½ cups (180g) Cocoa powder, sifted
2 tsp bicarb soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
¾ cup (190mL) buttermilk or milk
¾ cup (190mL) warm water
¼ cup (60mL) vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla essence

Salted Caramel
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
1 tbsp glucose
½ cup (125mL) thickened cream
2 tsp salt
70g cold butter, chopped

Chocolate Ganache
100g dark chocolate melts
80ml thickened cream

1. Preheat oven to 180°C/ 160°C fan forced. Grease and line two 20cm round cake tins with baking paper.
2. Combine flour, sugar, cocoa powder, bicarb soda and baking powder in large bowl. Add eggs, buttermilk, warm water, oil and vanilla essence. Beat on low speed with electric mixer until well combined.
3. Divide batter between pans. Bake for 45 minutes or until skewer inserted into middle comes out clean. Allow cake to cool (~20 mintues) before turning out onto wire rack.
4. For caramel, combine sugar, glucose and 1/2 cup (125ml) water in medium saucepan over high heat. Cook, without stirring, for 15 minutes or until sugar is golden.
5. Remove from heat and carefully pour in cream, whisk until smooth. Return to heat and cook for further 2 minutes.
6. Pour caramel in medium bowl, whisk in salt, cool for 15 minutes. Slowly whisk in butter and cool completely.
Salted caramel!!!! =D
7. Make ganache by placing chocolate and cream in heat proof bowl over pot of simmering water. Stir until smooth and allow to cool.
8. To assemble, cut each cake in half horizontally to form 2 layers. Transfer 1 layer to serving platter, spread 1/3 of caramel on top. Top with another cake layer and repeat with remaining cake layers, leaving top uncovered. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until set. Frost tops and side of cake with chocolate ganache.

2 layers of chocolate cake~
Assembling the cake! The caramel drips into all the small crevices for a deliciously moist cake
Completed cake!!!
DIG IN!!!!!! =D =D
I also made a mini version for my supervisor who was going away on maternity leave ^^

Mini chocolate and salted carmel layer cake

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Work catering #19: Cookie Fix

The theme for this week's catering was COOKIES! I made Cookies and Cream slice and White Chocolate and Cranberry Cookies. 

Delicious white choc and cranberry cookies ^^
I used the same dough recipe as the Green Tea and White chocolate cookies but left out the green tea and added 1/2 cup cranberries. You can find the recipe here. I love the flavour and texture of these cookies because they taste a bit like short bread. The dough is really simple to make and the great thing is you leave it overnight in the fridge and the next day all you have to do is SLICE and BAKE! One thing I learnt from my previous batch is to roll the dough out into a thinner tube so you can slice more cookies :) This time I made around 40-50 as compared to 30 something last time.
Tray of cookies!
The chunks of white choc and cranberries! YUM!
You can also customise the flavour! Any flavour combination suggestions? :D

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Work catering #18: 2nd attempt at Caramel Slice

Close up of caramel slice
When you fail at a recipe, the easiest thing you can do is just ignore it and find something else you are good at baking XD!! But I really wanted to try out making Caramel Slice again. Previously, I used the wrong type of coconut for the base so I wasn't too happy with it. That was my colleague's secret recipe that I was unable to share, however I found this recipe for "The Best Ever Caramel Slice" on Baker's corner. Not too sure about the "best ever" part but it was pretty yummy ^^
Previously caramel slice, not looking too great
New Caramel slice looking much better ^^ even layers of base and caramel!
The Best Ever Caramel Slice
Recipe adapted from Baker's corner

1 cup (150g) plain flour
1/2 cup (110g) brown sugar
1/2 cup (40g) dessicated coconut
125g butter, melted
100g butter, extra
2 x 395g cans condensed milk
1/3 cup (80ml) golden syrup
200g dark chocolate, melted
1 tbsp vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 180oC/160oC fan forced. Grease and line slice tin (20x30cm) with baking paper.
2. Combine flour, sugar and coconut in bowl. Add melted butter and mix well. Press mixture firmly into prepared tin. Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned. 
3. Meanwhile, place extra butter, condensed milk and syrup in medium saucepan. Stir over low heat until smooth. Pour over base and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden. 
4. Combine dark chocolate and oil in bowl and stir until smooth. Pour evenly over slice. Allow to set before slicing and serving.
All gone in a flash~~
Also on my to-bake-list has been these jam drop cookies. Basically a cookie with a little drop of jam in the middle. I used strawberry and apricot jam but the list is endless :) Really simple to make, just make sure those hole you indent is a bit deeper so the jam doesn't run out.

Jam drop cookies
Recipe adapted from taste.com.au

125g butter, softened
1/2 cup (100g) caster sugar
1 egg
1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
1/4 cup (35g) custard powder
1/4 cup (90g) raspberry or apricot jam

1. Preheat oven to 180oC. Line two baking trays with baking paper. 
2. Beat butter and sugar in bowl with electric mixture until pale and creamy. Add egg and beat until just combined. Add flour and custard powder and stir with wooden spoon until just combined.
3. Using lightly floured hands, roll 1 1/2 teaspoons of mixture into small balls. Place on baking trays allowing room for spreading. 
4. Use lightly floured finger or end of wooden spoon to make an indentation in centre of each ball. Spoon 1/2 tsp of jam into the centre of each biscuit. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly golden. Allow to cool on trays before serving.
Cookies were a little bit too brown! haha
Close up of cookies.