Mini lemon balm rhubarb bundt cakes are amazing. No other words to describe them. They are delicious melt-in-your-mouth mini treats.
Folks, it’s officially summer! We’ve been having unbelievably sunny and hot weather for weeks so it feels like it’s already mid-summer. I’m keeping myself cool with loads of strawberry drinks like roasted peach and strawberry fizz and strawberry vanilla iced tea. Thank god for our garden, producing all those delicious fruits. And thank god for the mini rhubarb bundt cakes. They make these hot June days so much easier!
I’m spending so much time outside in the shade with my little baby. I love dressing him in the cute summer clothes and seing his bare feet. I could eat them up! He’s growing so fast, I can hardly keep up. He’s becoming more aware of the world and things around him, giving us the most precios smiles and giggles. I could watch those all day long.
Okay, back to the recipe.
I swear guys, these mini bundt cakes are incredibly tender and light. Rhubarb gives them such a nice sour note and the lemon balm makes them deliciously citrusy. I added a lemon drizzle to make those flavors stand out even more and make it super light and refreshing. They are my new summer crush. Sorry hubby, you’ll just have to deal 😛
The recipe is not a dense sponge recipe like for a regular bundt cake. It is more of a cupcake type of sponge. I should maybe call them cupcakes, but I love my new mini bundt cake molds which my mum gave me, that I just had to use those for the shoot. Call them cupcakes if you want 🙂
I feel like I’m being real brief these past few posts. I’m still ajusting to the fact that my free time is pretty scarce these days.
This strawberry chocolate cake with honey macerated strawberries and chocolate rhubarb truffles is perfect for any celebration and is super easy to make and so yummy.
So, guys, it’s my birthday!
I only have one more year before I enter a new decade.
My wishes for me:
Cook more delicious foods and try lots of new combination.
Be the best mum to my precious baby, that’s still hiding in my belly.
Love every moment with my husband and our little one.
Take time for my friends and also for myself.
Continue being happy and positive.
Enough about me, let’s talk CAKE!!!
I couldn’t resist but making something chocolaty with strawberries and cream. Anyone else anxiously waiting for fresh straberries from the garden? We have a few strawberry plants and I can’t wait for them to grow fresh little fruits.
I’m not a big fan of heavy cakes, with heavy buttery fillings. That’s why I love using whipping cream in cakes. Remember the chocolate hazelnut pavlova? I think it makes cakes light and fresh, especially if you add some fresh fruits. I used plain whipping cream without sugar or anything, but you can add a little icing sugar or some vanilla.
This sponge is rich and decadent on its own and doesn’t need a heavy filling anyway!
The sponge I used in this strawberry chocolate cake is one of the best if not the best chocolate sponge I’ve ever tried. The amazing recipe is by Add A Pinch. I changed it just a little, so I’m posting my version of her delicious recipe. The recipe contains a little less sugar and the layers are thinner so they can hold the light whipped cream filling. Seriously you need to try either my or her version, both are yummy!!
Now, about strawberries. Have you tried macerated strawberries, yet? They are simply the most delicious thing. Adding a little honey makes them obviously a little sweeter, but brings the juices and creates a lovely sauce. Imagine that over icecream.
I was feeling a little playful with this cake, so I made some chocolate rhubarb truffles. Super simple, but so good! They are made of sponge and rhubarb jam only 😀 Last year we had loads of rhubarb so I tried making my own rhubarb jam and I’m telling you I’m making it again this year.
I made this cake a day ahead, but it’s already half gone and it’s not even noon on my birthday 😛 Luckily I have my mum making me more sweets today!
Sponge recipe adapted from The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe Ever recipe by Add A Pinch. Link in the text!
1 1/2tspbaking powder
2tspvanilla seeds or vanilla extract
Honey Macerated Strawberries
Chocolate Rhubarb Truffles
chocolate sponge from one of the 7 inch tins
rhubarb jam (or strawberry jam)(40g jam per 100g sponge)
300mlcold whipping cream
Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Butter four 7 inch baking tins.
Add flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt to a stand mixer bowl and whisk through to combine.
Add milk, eggs, vegetable oil and vanilla seeds and mix on medium speed until well combined.
Change mixer speed to low and slowly add boiling water to the mixture. It will get quite liquid, but that's what makes it moist and rich in the end.
Pour the mixture into four baking tins and bake for about 25 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean.
Leave to cool in the baking tin for 10 minutes then remove form the tin and leave in a cool place to cool completely. Once it is room temperature, you can place it in the fridge to continue cooling.
Honey Macerated Strawberries
Thinly cut strawberries and place them in a bowl. Add honey and mix well, so the honey coats all strawberries.
Leave to macerate in the fridge until you are ready to assemble the cake, but at least an hour.
Chocolate Rhubarb Truffles
Take one cooled chocolate sponge and use your fingers to turn it into crumbs. Add 40g rhubarb jam per 100g of sponge and incorporate it in the crumbs. Shape 1 cm balls using the palms of your hands. The mixture shouldn't be too sticky, but moist enough to hold the shape of a ball.
Place in the fridge until you are ready to assemble the cake.
Assembling The Strawberry Chocolate Cake
Whip whipping cream until it forms stiff peaks. Place it in a piping bag with a round or a star nozzle.
Place one sponge on a serving tray and pipe one layer of whipped cream in the middle, leaving one centimeter of uncovered sponge at the edge. Pipe small balls of cream one centimeters away from each other on the edge. Place chocolate rhubarb truffles between the cream balls.
Top with one third of honey macerated strawberries.
Continue in the same way for the remaining two layers.
This creamy mocha frozen yogurt with mocha puffs and date caramel combines a perfect cup of coffee with some cocoa and dates in a form of frozen dessert. Breakfast or dessert, it’s up to you! A little extra thing is the recipe for mocha cocoa puffs, which you can add to your morning cereal bowl.
Welcome to breakfast heaven!
If you thought a cup of coffee was necessary in the morning, wait until you try this. It’s freakin’ mocha frozen yogurt with some extra mocha puffs and date caramel on top.
It’s so decadent and indulgent, but not unhealthy, which is what I love in a good breakfast. Don’t we all?
So, the whole thing started because I needed a refreshing cereal breakfast, that wasn’t the boring milk and cereals. I though icecream. That’s indulgent, but using yogurt is probably a smart decision. I thought mocha flavor would be an awesome addition to frozen yogurt, so I made these lovely coffee bean shaped mocha puffs. Yay, you can eat them with good old milk too, isn’t that a nice touch? Keep them in a dry place in your pantry and have them at hand for whenever you feel a coffee rush.
It totally became my personal morning coffee. You probably already know I don’t drink coffee and when I do it’s decaffeinated. So are these mocha puffs, but you can make them with caffeine, no problem!
I love serving the mocha frozen yogurt in these crazy cool mugs by Polonapolona. They are the cutest and they love their morning coffee served with a a bang 😀
Oh, did you notice the caramel drippings? This is the date caramel, the easiest thing to make in the entire world and so so delicious.
Like like lick-the-sides-of-the-cup awesome 😀
And absolutely necessary on a heaped cup of this goodness.
So, baby update.
I’ve been doing some last shopping for the baby, which is very tiring, since I’m not much of a shopper. What I do is, write a paper with all the stores and what to buy where and then head out. I compare prices online to save time spent in the actual shop. Don’t get me wrong, I love market shopping, but fluorescent lit stores are horrible. If it’s a special foods, fabric or furniture store, then it’s fine, I get distracted. Everthying else is just a big pain in the you know what!
Okay, enough complaining. The good thing is, I think I’m actually well prepared for the arrival of the little one. Some minor thing are missing (like the crib – not minor :P), otherwise we’re good if the baby accidentally surprises us.
Okay, back to food…
What would I do to eat this every single day for the rest of my life. Um… I should totally do that!
Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
In a food processor mix all dry ingredients: almond flour, al-purpose flour, cocoa powder, instant coffee, baking soda and salt. Add honey and butter and pulse until a ball forms.
Make little balls with palms of your hands using three quarters of the dough. The remaining quarter of the dough and flatten it on the baking paper to about 5mm thick. Add the balls to the baking paper and use a spoon handle to make little dents in the middle of the balls and make them look like a coffee bean. You can leave them round as well.
Bake for 6-7 minutes, keeping a close eye to what’s happening in the oven. The puffs burn very easily. Take them out when they are still a little soft but firm. They will harden as they cool down.
Break apart the flattened baked dough when it has cooled down. You can leave some chunks. You’ll use that to mix in the frozen yogurt.
Keep the coffee shaped puffs in an airtight container.
Mix yogurt and honey in a blender and transfer the mixture to an airtight container. Freeze for about 3-4 hours, mixing the yogurt with a fork every 30-45 minutes.
Add it back to the blender and mix well to get a smooth texture. At this point the mixture will get a bit runny again, but that is fine. At this point add the broken coffee puffs and fold in the frozen yogurt.
Transfer it back to the container and freeze until you like the consistancy, probably about 2 hours.
Soak dates in water for 10 minutes, then add a pinch of salt and mix them in a food processor. If you like your caramel more runny, add a little more water.
The caramel keeps in the fridge for at least 2 weeks.
Take frozen yogurt out of the freezer when it’s the right consistency or 30 minutes before serving if it’s fully frozen. Scoop up in serving bowls and top with mocha puffs and date caramel.
[This post was kindly supported by Polonapolona. I was provided some mugs for this post. No other compensation was received.]
https://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/mocha-frozen-yogurt-date-caramel-3.jpg1050700Anja Burgarhttps://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/logo_NEWW.pngAnja Burgar2017-02-23 06:46:252020-08-25 10:46:12Crunchy Mocha Frozen Yogurt with Date Caramel
One of the best flavor pairings – dried figs and orange in a perfect Valentine’s day dessert – a decadent dried fig and blood orange tart. Simple chocolate tart crust is holding a dried fig jam and a zesty blood orange curd, which is decorated with tiny orange hearts. What a treat!
It’s almost Valentine’s day.
Me and my husband don’t really celebrate it, but this year we made plans to have dinner with two our friends, so we’re having a double date. They are cooking the main dish, we are making dessert. And I think this pie is perfect for the occasion. Only change I’ll have to make is the crust, because my friend is gluten free. I’ve never made a gluten free chocolate tart crust before, so any suggestions are welcome 🙂 If I manage to do a nice one, maybe I’ll even add the recipe here.
First of all, I’m in love with the dried fig and orange combo. Blood orange or regular orange, both is super delish! I tried it for the first time in a smoothie. I was combinig these two just because I had nothing else to put in and it sounded like a great combination. Yes, yes, you’re missing a lot if you’re never tried those two together. I mean it! Go ahead, make this blood orange tart or simply take an orange and eat it next to a fig. How is it? Are you loving me right now? 😉
Okay, so I was thinking about what to make for Valentine’s day. I’ve shared a brownie recipe last year, this year I wanted something more fruity. Yesterday we celebrated the death of our greatest poet, which is also the biggest cultural holiday in Slovenia. We had a big celebration in the town where he lived, just a couple of kilometres from my village. Wow, way too many people, I had to hug my belly to protect it from the accidental bumps.
This poet liked to give out dried figs to the children. One of his nicknames was also Dr. Fig, for that reason. So I used figs as an insiration and added the oranges, because AGAIN they are perfect for each other 🙂 Of course I couldn’t go without just a tinsy bit of chocolate, so I not-so-secretly added some cocoa powder to the crust.
I’m absolutely in love with the color of the curd. I know, you’d expect a red color, especially if you look at the red juice from the orange, but the eggs and butter make it a more pale yellow to orange color. So it might look like an orange, not blood orange tart. The oranges I got were not red all the way through, if you try with oranges that have a completely red flesh you might get a slightly different result. But the eggs and butter will still make it pale. I think it’s such a romantic color, but I’m probably under pregnancy hormones influence 😛
Now let’s make a blood orange tart with dried fig jam and have the best Valentine’s day ever!
blackberry pie, blood orange tart, fig tart, puff pastry tart
1⅓cupall-purpose or wholegrain wheat flour(190g)
Dried Fig Jam
⅔cupdried figshard stem removed and quartered
1cup100% apple juice
Blood Ornage Curd
¾cupblood orange juicefreshly squeezed
zest of one big orange
150groom temperature buttercubed
Preheat the oven to 190°C
In a food processor, mix toghether dry ingredients. Add butter and pulse about 10-15 times to get dry crumbs. Add the egg and pulse just unil the dough starts to come together, but does not form a ball. Gently form a ball with your hands, no kneading is needed. Wrap into plastic foil and leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes roll the dough into a circle of the diameter of your tart tin + two times the height of the sides. (My tin is 25 cm + 2,5 cm height, so I rolled it out to 30 cm). For easier rolling place a slightly wet teatowel on the counter, then baking paper over it, then the dough and another piece of baking paper. This way the dough doesn't stick to the rolling pin and the teatowel prevents the baking paper to slip. If you notice the dough is starting to stick to the baking paper, flour it lightly.
Transfer the crust to a buttered tart tin, cut away the excess dough. Make a few holes in the bottom with a fork, cover with tin foil and place baking weights (I use old coins) over the foil.
Bake for 20 minutes, then uncover and bake for 10 more minutes.
Leave to cool in the tin, before taking out or you might break the crust.
Dried Fig Jam
In a small sauce pan, soak dried figgs in apple juice for 15 minutes: After that bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a food processor or a blender and mix. I prefer the jam to still have small pieces of figs, but you can mix it all the way to a smooth jam. At first, the jam will look a little too runny, but will thicken while it cools.
Blood Orange Curd
Place eggs, egg yolks, orange juice, orange zest and granulated sugar in a heat proof bowl. Boil water in a sauce pan and place the bowl over it. Leave water so simmer on medium while whisking the egg mixture for 15-20 minutes or until it starts to thicken and it reaches 75°C (170°F).
Remove the bowl from the sauce pan and whisk in butter, a few cubes at a time.
Cover the bowl and leave to cool.
Spread fig jam over the cooled crust and pour over cooled blood orange curd.
Leave to set in the fridge for at least 6 hours or better overnight.
The fig jam recipe is sightly adjusted from the Fig Butter recipe by Stephanie Cooks.
https://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/dried-fig-blood-orange-tart-14.jpg1050700Anja Burgarhttps://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/logo_NEWW.pngAnja Burgar2017-02-09 06:55:492020-08-26 07:05:33Dried Fig Blood Orange Tart
This apple and poppy seed strudel has four delicious mouth-watering layers – poppy seed, curd, walnut, and apple layer with sultanas. In many ways, it is reminiscent of one of the best Slovenian dessert Prekmurska gibanica.
It’s about time to make another kindda Slovenian recipe – another dessert inspired by our traditional Prekmurska gibanica. Remember the Spring Strawberry Layer Cake in a Glass, that is a very light and healthy version of the original recipe. Well, this time it’s also a little lighter, but just a little bit.
The original Prekmurska gibanica is very heavy on the fat, not that this apple and poppy seed strudel recipe is not, but much much less 😀
Okay, I’m making it sound like a dissaster of a dessert. It’s actually not and it really is one of my favorite Slovenian desserts. With four different delicious layers you can’t go wrong, right?
I left the layers as are, but added honey in two of them (the poppy seed and the walnut layer), because you know I’m addicted to honey 😉 My breakfast today… honey on bread and butter. You see! ADDICTED!
I hope you don’t get scared by the four layers, because these fillings are literally the easiest you-can’t-do-it-wrong fillings. And if you don’t like an ingredient, change it. For example, you could use different fruit, or change walnuts for some other nuts. So many choices.
This was actually one of those recipes, that I didn’t even plan to make. I was left with some phyllo dough that was about to go bad and was firstly thinking of making a simple, but yet delicious, apple strudel. But since that’s probably the most common type of strudel I make, I thought, I should do it differently this time and see if I can make a layered strudel like Prekmurska gibanica.
Guess what, yes! And it’s pretty freakin’ delish. At first I added too much poppy seeds and not enough apples, which made it a little dry, so I changed the recipe. Now it’s moist and sooo yummy.
6medium-size applesaround 1kg, peeled and coarsely grated
500gphyllo pastry10 sheets of 35 x 45 cm
Icing sugar for sprinkling
Poppy seed layer
Pour boiling milk over ground poppy seeds and mix well with a spoon. Once the mixture has cooled a little, add honey and mix again.
Split the eggs into egg whites and yolks. Mix curd, icing sugar, lemon zest and yolks with a spoon. In a separate bowl beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks and fold it gently into the curd mixture.
Pour boiling milk over ground walnuts and mix well with a spoon. Once the mixture has cooled a little, add honey and mix again. If there's excess liquid on bottom, drain the mixture through a fine sieve.
Put sultanas in a bowl and cover the with warm water. Leave them to soak for 15-20 minutes, then drain. Mix together grated apples, cinammon and sultanas.
Assembly and baking: Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Coat a big baking tray with melted butter. The trey should be big enough to hold five 35cm long rolls.
Spread a generous amount of butter over one sheet of phyllo pastry with a brush, cover it with another sheet and spread butter over this one too.
Visually divide the sheet into 5 parts (lenghtwise). Spread poppy seed mixture over the first, curd layer over the second, walnut layer over the third and apples over the fourth. The first will be a little thinner, the fourth a little thicker and the fifth will be empty. Start rolling from the poppy seed layer. Roll as wide or narrow as your baking tray allows. You are going to have 5 of these rolls.
Place the rolls into baking tray and cover the tops with some more butter.
Bake for about 40 minutes, until the crust looks golden.
When you take it out the crust might look soggy, but it will get crisp once it cools.
Sprinkle with some icing sugar before serving.
https://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/apple-poppy-seed-strudel-7.jpg1050700Anja Burgarhttps://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/logo_NEWW.pngAnja Burgar2017-02-02 09:38:422020-08-26 07:05:16Nutty Apple & Poppy Seed Strudel
This honey sweetened kiwi yogurt served with homemade mini simit grissini is probably the most delicious breakfast of this winter and it is inspired by some of the most popular foods in Turkey and some homegrown seasonal fruit!
It’s official, you guys!
My favorite flavor combo of this winter is kiwi, yoghurt and honey. As simple as that.
Seems like these three foods have been on my breakfast menu almost every day for weeks now. We’ve still got some lovely homegrown kiwi, because they keep so well during winter and they get better with time, sweeter and richer in flavor. I don’t wanna loose words on yogurt and honey, ‘cuz we all know they’re awesome!
I like my breakfasts simple and fresh. Okay, I don’t always make the effort to prepare a super healthy breakfast, but I try 🙂 This recipe for sweet kiwi yogurt is definitely one of them.
What makes it so great are the little cute simit grissini that I’m serving with the sweet kiwi yogurt. They were inspired by my all time favorite Turkish street food – the simit bagels. You can get them on literally every corner of Turkey. I ate tons of them during my stay in Turkey and I never got bored of them.
They look very similar to bagels, but are prepared like regular bread, with lots of sesame on top. And who doesn’t like sesame?!
So why not make a tiny version of them that can keep for weeks, so we can have it on hand whenever we feel like a snack 😀
Turkish people just like me are crazy about yogurt. The style of yogurt they eat is very similar to Greek style yogurt with a nice crust on top. Yep, that’s how I’d describe it. It sort of looks like mold, but it’s actually the most delicious part of yogurt. I had four other girls living in the appartment, so we had to carefully divide the crust in five. That’s how important it was to get the crust.
Oh yeah, you’re probably wondering why five girls shared one yogurt. It’s because they are so crazy about it, that the normal packaging is way bigger than I’ve ever seen in any other place 🙂 Like, waaaay bigger!
The recipe calls for Greek style yogurt, but if you can get hold of turkish style yogurt, even better! I can’t get it in Slovenia, therefore I’m using Greek style, which is also delicious 🙂
You know what, the best part of this breakfast/dessert is licking the decorated rim of the glass. I decorated it with honey and sesame, but then realised that it’s such a nice finish to lick that at the end. Not when you’re in company, obviously 😀
Finally, if you wanna check another recipe inspired by my stay in Turkey, check the Turkish Chicken Feast.
Sift flour in a bowl and make a well in the middle. Add warm water and yeast to the well and mix together with a spoon along with a small amount of flour taken from the sides. Leave to rest for a couple of minutes, then add olive oil, ground coriander seeds, ground carraway seeds and salt.
Using a spoon start mixing everthing together from the center, adding flour little by little. Once it gets hard to use a spoon, start incorporating the rest of the flour with your hands, then knead for a few more minutes to get a smooth, soft, but non-sticky dough.
Lightly oil an airtight container (or a regular bowl, that you are going to cover with plastic foil), place the dough in and make sure all the sides of the dough are lightly oiled as well. Cover and leave in a warm place to rest for an hour.
Preheat the oven to 200°C.
After the dough has rested, gently knead it a couple of times, then roll it out to about 7mm thick. Cut 7mm wide and 8 cm long strips then fold the ends together to form a ring, pinching hard so it doesn’t open while baking.
In a small cup whisk together an egg and 1 TBSP of water and use the mixture to lightly cover the tops of the rings.
Sprinkle with sesame seeds and bake for about 12 minutes or until they get golden at the top and the crust is hard.
Place on a wire rack to cool.
Purée the kiwis in a blender. In another bowl whisk together Greek style yogurt and honey for a minute, until the honey is evenly spread and the mixture is light and fluffy.
For decorating the rim of the glass you are going to need a little extra honey and some sesame seeds. First dip the rim into honey then into sesame so it sticks to honey.
Place kiwi purée on bottom of the serving glasses, add the yogurt mixture on top and serve with cooled mini simit grissini.
For decorating the rim of the glass you are going to need a little extra honey and some sesame seeds. First dip the rim into honey then into sesame.
https://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/kiwi-yoghurt-simit-grissini-4.jpg1050700Anja Burgarhttps://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/logo_NEWW.pngAnja Burgar2017-01-12 09:19:312020-08-26 07:23:45Kiwi Yogurt with Mini Simit Grissini
Fruit and veggie purées make cupcakes so soft and moist and in my experience they last longer before going dry. So perfect for baking them in advance 🙂
I know they don’t look very Christmasy, but hey… chocolate… who doesn’t love anything with chocolate on Christmas 🙂 or at any other time for that matter 😛
This Christmas I’m off cooking duty. We’re invited to my mum and dad’s on Christmas Eve and to my husband’s relatives on Christmas Day. Although I obviously love cooking it feels nice not having to prepare tons of food. We’ll only be making the traditional nut roll, everything else is done already. And then I can rest and enjoy the holidays!
I’ve been feeling very well these last couple of months, but pregnancy does a take some toll on my energy. Working hard these days before Christmas I think me and the little one deserve a little time off 😀 Thank god for mums!
Okay, back to the cupcakes!
You can actually make any other frosting if you prefer something else, but I’m a big fan of cream cheese frosting and honey. So I joined those two and I love how great the this sweet and sour frosting pairs with the earthy chocolaty taste of the beet chocolate cupcakes.
Beautiful layers of crispy and chewy meringue, decadent chocolate ganache and fluffy whipped hazelnut cream are what make this delicious chocolate hazelnut pavlova cake worth celebrating this blog’s first birthday.
I can’t believe it’s been a year already 😀
You heard me… this blog is still a baby, but deserves a special cake with something sparkling on top! Nothing healthy at all in this recipe, only pure indulgence. Okay, I might be exagerating, this cake is actually not nearly as sweet as cakes can be, it’s just fluffly and crunchy and chocolatty and nutty all at the same time. What can be better?
Before showing you the recipe, there are some words I need to say about my first year of blogging. It’s been fantastic. It started as my own personal cookbook, but it soon turned out, I love doing it, bringing you new delicious recipes every week. Well, almost every week, I’ve had some ups and downs 🙂 Meeting lots of new friends who share the passion for food and photography was absolute fun and hopefully more are coming my way 🙂
Thanks to everyone supporting me, trying my recipes, sharing love and being the most incredible community. I love y’all 🙂
The second aspect of this blog in my oppinion is the photography. It’s my way of relaxing and connecting with the food I prepare. Can be stressful from time to time, but the results are what makes it all worth it.
If you check my earlier recipes the photos are not that great. But as soon as I started blogging I realised good photos are a must, not just for all of you, but also for my own good feeling. So I made sure to improve and I still am. I’ve always been a very visual person and tried my work to look the best it can at agiven time. I believe practicing and taking some lessons and sometimes being hard on myself have really helped my food photography.
Well, I know you’re waiting for me to tell you something about this charming chocolate hazelnut pavlova and stop babbling about the sentimental crap 😛
I think the first birthday celebration needs a special cake, something I don’t make on a regular basis. In fact I’ve never made pavlova before, but always wanted to try. So there it was, the perfect opportunity. I’ve had some extra eggwhites in the fridge from making a traditional Slovenian dish called ‘mlinci’ and a full pantry of hazelnuts and crispy chocolade balls.
First attempt in making the meringue was a total disaster. It looked great when I turned off the oven, but I forgot to carefully read the recipe, which happens to me way too often. You’re supposed to leave the meringue in the oven to cool down, not take it out like a sponge cake. Ups, what a failure, the meringue totally collased and despite being delicious it wasn’t very flattering. So I did it again and succeded 🙂
Don’t be affraid of making meringue, like I was for a long time. It is very easy to make. However, if you’re awful at following direction I suggest you keep it together this one time, because every little small detail matters. There are some recomendations and warning in the notes below the recipe. Please, read it before baking, you don’t want a collapsed soggy pavlova 😉
3TBSPhazelnut pastecan easily be made at home by mixing hazelnuts in a food processor until you get a smooth paste
crispy chocolate balls or any other decoration
Preheat the oven to 150°C. Draw two 18cm circles on a baking paper and place it on a baking tray.
Beat egg whites and a pinch of salt until stiff but not dry. Then add the icing sugar a tablespoon at a time. At the end add the lemon juice or vinegar and cornstarch. Beat gently until thick and glossy.
Add cocoa powder and fold it in gently, keeping some streaks of dark brown.
Spread the meringue evenly into the two circles.
Move into the oven and reduce the temperature to 120°C. Bake for about 90 minutes. It should look crisp on top and feel dry, but when you press it you should feel soft in the center.
Turn the oven off, open the door slightly, and leave in the oven to cool overnight.
Heat the whipping cream over medium heat until it starts forming small bubbles on the side, but doesn't boil. Remove from heat and add chocolate and a pinch of salt. Whisk until you get a smooth cream. Let cool at room temperature, then keep in the fridge before assembling the cake.
Whipped Hazelnut Cream
Whip the cream until it's almost stiff, but not buttery, then add the hazelnut paste and gently whip just a little more.
Place one meringue on a cake stand, gently add half of the ganache on top, add half of the whipped hazelnut cream, and half of the chopped hazelnuts.
Continue with another layer of meringue, ganache (save a couple of tablespoons for decoration), whipped cream, and chopped hazelnuts.
Place whole hazelnuts, crispy chocolate balls and drizzle with the rest of the ganache.
Refrigerate before serving.
Some instructions for the perfect meringue:
Make sure your equipment is dry before making the meringue. Moisture stops eggwhite from aerating.
Make pavlova on a dry day. Moisture makes pavlova sticky.
Adding lemon juice and cornstarch will help pavlova keep its form.
Add sugar gradually to the eggwhites and be sure to beat the egg whites to the stiff point, but don’t overbeat them, just until the sugar has dissolved. Test if the sugar has dissolved by rubbing a little of the mixture between your fingers. You shouldn’t feel any grains. When you transfer it to the baking paper the mixture should hold its shape.
After baking keep in in the oven with dors ajar until it completely cools down to room temperature.
It’s better to overdry than under dry your meringue. If you are not sure if it is done, better dry it a little more. Soggy meringue is unusable, but a little bit too dry is not such a problem. Assemble the cake and after a day in the fridge, it will become crunchy.
No icecream machine, no problem! This super easy two ingredient melon sorbet needs no icecream machine, but is creamy and delicious anyway.
Super creamy and rich melon sorbet spiced with just a hint of basil.
I can’t believe something so good can come out of freezing a simple fruit like melon. Yup, that’s right, I just described the entire recipe.
But, really it is that simple.
I was never a big fruit person. I mean, I loved the taste, but somehow I wasn’t very fond of biting into them.
Still am a little picky when it comes to that. Much less, but still…
Blending fruit into awesome new foods was a great alternative. One of the first memories of blended fruit dessert is a strawberry and cream blended drink. Which was super delicious and creamy. You should totally try that sometimes, if you haven’t already 🙂
Freezing a blended fruit is the next stage of deliciousness 🙂
And most of all, you don’t really need all that much. Mostly just fruit, some water, if the fruit doesn’t have high water content, maybe some sweetener and that’s it.
Why I love this melon sorbet?
Because it’s made only with melon and basil. Melon is made mostly of water and you don’t need to add extra. If the melon is ripe enough it is so sweet, that it doesn’t require any extra sweetening.
And since I’m greatly obsessed with herbs, I just had to add some. Basil is the right way to go. Works so well and adds more summery flavors! 🙂
Oh, how cool does it look when you serve it in a melon shell. Awesome for a garden party 🙂 You can freeze it in a shell directly if you are serving it immediately or transfer in to the shell right before showing it to your guests.
What better way to enjoy summer but with this melt in your mouth no-bake blueberry cheesecake!
First let me brag a little. My broken leg is getting much better. I’ve been cycling, swimming, dancing… It feels very liberating to be able to move normally.
And to be able to hold stuff in my hands. What?
Yeah, when you’re using crutches it’s hard to even bring your meal to the table, go figure. Don’t get me wrong, I had my highly developed methods to do this, but I’m glad to be rid of them. 🙂 🙂
Now to the no-bake blueberry cheesecake…
Let’s admit it. Noone want’s to bake a cake in the crazy summer heat. But we still want cake, right?
A light fluffy refreshing cheesecake that melts in your mouth.
All you need is your favorite cookies. If you like chocolate chip, go for it! You could even use Graham crackers (don’t forget to add a little sugar or honey if you use those). I’m using butter cookies, yum!
I’m ashamed to admit, but the first time I’ve tried cream cheese frosting was three years ago in Norway, when I had their famous carrot cake. It was enough to become obsessed with it. This cream cheese filling is made similarly to that frosting.
Only it contains a secret ingredient. One that I shouldn’t really be eating, because my body doesn’t process it well. But once in a while it’s fine to sin. It’s not sin if it’s good, is it?
I added it, because it gives the cheesecake a little freshness and sourness to the filling.
Oh yeah and did I mention the filling is freaking creamy and not overly sweet. The sweetnes actually depends more on the cookies and the fruit you use.
As for the fruit, you could use any kind that you like. We are blueberry freaks over here, so we can’t resist them and their little blue faces.
Or the cheesecake filling for that matter. Or the no-baking part.
30g butteror more, depends on the type of cookies (2 TBSP)
50gbutter(3 1/2 TBSP )
50gGreek-style yogurtregular yogurt is also fine
zest of 1/4 lemon
100g/ 1 cup fresh blueberries
Use a food processor to grind up the cookies or crush them in a zip bag with a rolling pin.
Melt the butter for the crust and mix it with cookie crumbs. The mixture should be sandy but feel a little grease when you pinch it. Add more melted butter if necessary.
Press the mixture onto the bottom of the 18-20 cm (7-8 inch) pie or cake pan and let it cool in the fridge. If you are using a cake pan, you can carefully remove the sides of the pan before cooling the crust.
With an electric whisk beat butter to create a light and fluffy texture.
Add cream cheese and honey and whisk until well combined.
Add yogurt, vanilla seeds, and lemon zest and whisk a little more.
Fill the crust with the filling and top with fresh blueberries.
Store in the fridge. Serve at room temperature.
You can easily replace blueberries with any other fruit.
These cute elderflower cookie bites are what elderflower season is all about. Flowers and girliness!
It’s finally here!
I probably can’t express how anxiously I’m waiting for it every year. Elderflower is my definite favorite spring thing, apart from the sun 🙂 Why? Firstly, it smells heavenly. Second, the possiblities to use it are endless. Thirdly, it’s so girly.
First of all, I need to tell you a crazy story…
The last time I posted here, was the day of my brother’s birthday picnic party. Before it even began, me and my husband went to the picnic place and started throwing frisbee. After the second throw I tripped and fractured a bone in my foot. How lame! And to make matters worse, our dance show premiered the next day. So instead of partying, I spend three hours at the emergency and instead of doing the whole show the next day, I danced with cruches in only a few parts.
Lesson learned. I’m never playing any sport the day before the show ever again! I promise!
Anyway, a fractured bone can’t stop me to go picking elderflower.
These cute elderflower cookie bites are made of three layers:
buttery cookie with elderflowers
white chocolate cream with rose water
The recipe is insanely easy. The cookies are done in 25 minutes from start to finish. All it takes is to decorate them and they are ready to be served 🙂 And even if you don’t feel like putting anyhing on, they are delicious also without the cream and raspberries.
If you do decorate them, make sure to make a deep enough hole before baking, because they will expand in the oven and the hole will be shallower after they are baked.
8eldeflower headsthick stalks removed (use 8 TBSP dried elderflower if not in season)
160gall purpose flour
50gunrefined cane sugar
Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
Chop elderflower heads and add them to a food processor. Add flour, sugar, vanilla seeds, and baking soda. Pulse a couple of times to get an even mixture.
Add butter and pulse until you get a dry cookie mixture.
Add milk and mix well, until a ball of dough starts to form. Scrape the sides if necessary.
Divide the dough in half, half it again, and so on, until you get 32 identical pieces. Form balls with your palms and make a deep hole in the center with your finger.
Place on a baking paper-lined baking tray and bake for 15 minutes or until light golden color. Move them to a wire rack and leave to cool down for at least 10 minutes.
While the cookies are baking put whipping cream and white chocolate in a small bowl and place it over a small saucepan of simmering water. Stir occasionally, until the cream and the chocolate form a smooth cream.
Remove from heat and add rose water. Mix well and place in the fridge to cool for 10 minutes, then bring to room temperature.
Using a teaspoon or a piping bag, place about 1/2 tsp of cream into the hole in each cookie and top with freeze-dried raspberries.
Make sure you make deep holes in the cookies before baking, because the cookies will expand and the holes will get shallower.
Refreshing fruity peach and celery ice lollies on sticks are always welcome at our house!
I bring you summer… on a stick. It’s not a joke!
I hope, wherever you’re from, you’re having a hot summer weather. It was crazy here over the last ten days. We’ve had all weather imaginable. Snow, sleet, fog, rain, sun, wind… We planned to escape to Sarajevo during the holidays, but it was covered with snow, so we’re saving the trip for warmer times.
It took me about two days to get comfortable with doing nothing and switching to my off mode. But then it was actually kinda nice to lay back, watch some TV and not feel guilty, go walking in the snow and then biking to a nearby mountain the next day, watching the 1st of May bonfire, and squeeze in a little dance practice. It was all good 🙂
Now, to the recipe already!
I remember having ice lollies in a long plastic wraps, when we were little. For the first few moments it tasted delicious and sweet, but then after we sucked all the juice out, we were left with a block of flavourless ice. How dissapointing! That’s not the case with this lolly – all flavour, no tasteless icy leftovers.
These peach and celery ice lollies are so easy to make and it’s a nice way to get yourself or the kids to eats more fruit. Cuz, who doesn’t like an icy treat, am I right?
The idea for this recipe actually came from my husband. He said, why not pair a fruit with some unexpected greens, like celery. So we did, and boy was he right. It tastes amazing! I’m not exaggerating. This combo works so well.
Give it a try!
All that’s required is to blend all the ingredients and pass the mixture thorugh a sieve, to give it the silky texture. Wait a few hours until the lollies set and you got yourself a fruity refreshment 🙂
St Patrick’s day is coming closer and we’re making yummy gooey Guinness caramels with salted peanuts. If you don’t know what to snack on while drinking beer – sweet or salty – you can have have both!
With St Patrick’s Day just a couple of days away I thought I’d share these gooey Guinness caramels with you. Before I decided I want to do something sweet with Guiness I’ve never made caramels before. Experimenting and lots of tasting has brought me to this amazing recipe.
Beer… A few years ago Slovenia has known mostly lagers. You could get Guinness and a couple of other non-lager beers, but that was it. Now it’s like spring here with new beers blooming all over the place. Which is kind of nice, because I was getting tired of the same old same old. Now there’s so much to choose from, but for these caramels Guinness is the right choice.
With the rich caramel flavour it enhances the sweetness of the caramels and adds just a little bitterness. Peanuts and salt add another layer and the saltiness bring out even more sweetness. I know it sounds strange, but caramels without salt don’t do it for me.
Before trying for the first time I was a bit scared. I was sure I was going to fail. But making caramels is actually unbelievably easy. There’s not even any doing, there’s mostly waiting 🙂 So don’t be scared like me and go for it!
If you don’t have a clip-on candy thermometer I suggest investing in one, it’s not that expensive and candy-making will be so much easier and precise.
But if you don’t have one and still wanna make some delicious Guinness caramels you can do it without the thermometer and test if the caramels have reached the hard ball stage with the water test.
Butter the sides and the bottom of a 25×18 cm (10×7 inch) pan and line it with baking paper.
In a saucepan (2 l or more) reduce Guinness over medium-low heat to 1/2 cup. This will take about 30 minutes.
Add butter and melt completely. Add whipping cream and sugar. Stir until well combined.
Place in a sugar thermometer. Don’t stir from this point on.
Over medium-low heat cook until the temperature reaches somewhere between 118 °C and 121 °C (245 °F – 250 °F). This will take about 25 minutes or more, but keep an eye on the caramel all the time, because at the end the temperature will rise quickly.
Remove from heat immediately.
Stir in salt and peanuts and pour into the baking tray.
Refrigerate for an hour.
With a sharp knife cut into desired size pieces.
Store at room temperature.
Keep in mind that when the sugar starts heating it will expand to two or three times the volume, so adjust the saucepan size. But don’t use a saucepan that’s too large, as your thermometer will not be submerged and won’t show accurate temperature. If you double the recipe, adjust the pan!
I cut my caramels into 3 cm squares and wrapped them into 10x12cm baking paper pieces.
https://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/guinesscaramels4-Custom.jpg15001000Anja Burgarhttps://www.useyournoodles.eu/wp-content/uploads/logo_NEWW.pngAnja Burgar2016-03-15 08:57:332020-08-26 11:11:34Guinness Caramels With Salted Peanuts
Rich, melt-in-your-mouth triple chocolate sour cherry brownies. An easy recipe for decadent homemade chocolate brownie explosion.
What’s better than chocolate? Triple chocolate. And even better are these triple chocolate sour cherry brownies with bittersweet, semi-sweet and white chocolate.
Since it is Valentine’s day on Sunday, I think it’s appropriate to do something chocolaty. One of my Instagram followers suggested I did a brownie recipe, so I’m making it! How exciting is this?
I’m by no means a brownie expert. This recipe came out by pure luck. It was one of those moments when you say, I’m just going to make something. So I did, I checked out a few recipes, written down some thoughts and ratios and started cooking. After the brownies came out of the oven the first time I was smitten by them. They were the perfect ratio between a cakey and fudgy brownie, in favour of cakey, which is what I like. Later I added more sour cherries and some white chocolate chips on top, just because I can 🙂
If you’ve ever made brownies, you know they can be fudgy and dense, or they can be more cake-like. These brownies are more on the cakey side. There is some baking soda in them and an extra egg, so they have a cakey texture on top and the bottom, but they are thick on the inside, because the ratio between butter and chocolate to dry ingredients is high. There are bittersweet chocolate chips in there, which gives them extra gooeyness. White chocolate chips and sour cherries on the top are for some sweet and sour, moist kick. Believe me, they re even better than they sound.
If you are wondering how to make a perfect brownie, Samina from The Cupcake Conffesion has written a nice post about Top 5 mistakes to avoid when making brownies. They might seem obvious, but from my own experience I say, the obvious mistakes are the ones we make most often.
As for the cooling down goes, I’m the one that’s always impatient. I want to dig in immediately. But, if you are planing on serving your brownies to someone, please don’t do that! There’s almost no possibility you’re going to be able to cut them into beautiful piceces, or even taking them out of the pan, without messing them up. The best is if you cool it down completely. If there’s no one waiting for these little goodies, dig in with a spoon, while they are hot. But watch out that no one is looking 🙂
Looking forward to spring but also looking back to autumn with these moist pumpkin cupcakes topped with cream cheese frosting made of cashews.
… And crumbs!
I’m doing a second pumpkin recipe in a row. That’s because I had a big pumpkin waiting for me in the basement. My relatives from Croatia gave it to me to try it out. It is a big pumpkin with a blue-ish skin and a deep yellow-orange sweet meat. They call it Turkinja in Croatia. I’m a sucker for pumpkins with very sweet meat, so this one is going to the top of my list, right next to hokkaido pumpkin.
We’re having pretty depressing days here. Like, really depressing. And these pretty pumpkin cupcakes are all gone. So I’ll be testing some new dessert recipes today, to cheer myself up. If you’re feeling down I suggest you start baking immediately!
You’ll notice that I’m separating eggs, whipping eggwhites and adding them at the end. I’ve been using this technique for a long time now. The basic cupcake recipe has been handed down to me by my mother in law. An it has never failed me.
I’m a mess sometimes. I forget key ingredients so often. Unsalted bread is a constant at our house. Not to mention the cupcakes! I’ve made them without oil and even without baking soda. But since I’m whisking the eggwhites separately, this doesn’t really seem to be such a big a problem. They rise a bit more with the baking soda, but it’s not a drastic change.
If you prefer the easier version (wet ingredients together, dry ingredients together, no eggwhite whisking), do it! I haven’t done it, but I’m pretty sure it will turn out just fine. Let me know if you try that.
Hi, it’s your food photography sidekick Anja!
I am so happy you popped into my world of food photography, where I share my top tips to learn food photography, styling, and business for aspiring and established photographers, bloggers and creatives who are primarily focused on photographing food and drinks.