Friday, 12 February 2010

Valentine's Delight Numero 2

So Valentine's Cake number two was a bit of an experiment. And one which turned out very very well.

I love, no wait, adore white chocolate. MUCH better than the other stuff in my opinion. So when I saw recipes online for white chocolate mud cake, I decided a cupcake version was required.

However I usually find mud cakes a little hard going so I decided that a filling was needed to lighten things up a bit. I tried a few with whole strawberries in the middle, but the eventual winner was strawberry jam. YUM.

Sorry about the crap picture - all I had to hand was my iPhone!

These turned out EXACTLY how I hoped - dense and fluffy at the same time, with that lovely pocket of starwberry gooyness! The white chocolate is subtle in the sponge, so I decided I may as well overdose on the stuff and made a white chocolate ganache to put on top.

I'll confess - I had planned to chill and whip the ganache and pipe pretty patterns on top. But warm, meltey, chocolatey ganache was far too good to resist, so I poured the stuff straight on, mainly so I could lick the bowl. Ashamed? Not a bit!!!

When cooled, the ganache was just the right softness to be slightly gooey and sticky, but lovely and velvety too. Each cake was topped with a caramel filled, chocolate heart. (They didn't last long either...)

I don't usually eat too much of my own baking because if I did, I'd be the size of a hippo. But with these, I couldn't resist. They kept calling my name...

"Colene, eat me...EAT ME!!!"

So, all in all, the White Chocolate and Strawberry mudcakes were a success. I'm making more tonight actually, but with a Nutella centre for my friend who doesn't like berries (weeeeiiiirrrdddd), and I'm going to try to wait a little longer on the ganache front.
Oh and I'll try not to eat them all...


Saturday, 6 February 2010

Blondie making Brownies

So it's only a week till Valentine's day. Love it or loath it, it's a great chance to indulge yourself.

I've got a few things up my sleeve for this year's day of romance. Personally, the Kiwi and I don't dwell too much on Valentine's day - a card and tea usually does the trick. Our birthdays are both soon after, and well, we're just not soppy enough!!!

But here is my first Valentine's offering - brownies.

Yum yum yum. I love brownies, with all of their stodgy, chocolatey gooeyness.

I've got a few recipes for brownies floating about, but this one came from...wait for it... the Asda magazine. And I have to say, I'm quite impressed. They're everything they're meant to be - flakey on top, gooey in the middle and pretty much delicious.

Of course I couldn't just let the recipe be, so I added chocolate and fudge chips. Can never have too much.

Don't they look yum?

Strawberries, chocolate and cakeyness - it doesn't get much better, does it?

I put the cookie stencils I got for Christmas to work and they came out better than I expected, considering the rough surface.

We thought they were pretty delicious, but the pyusses didn't seem too fussed. Fine, Iwon't offer again.

Mind you, seeing as the Six Nations rugby is now on, it might take something special to drag the Kiwi away from the telly too.

The Kiwi and I also dug out our cocktail book this weekend. The Kiwi used to be a cocktail chef and still likes to dabble every now and again. I'm a sucker for a whiskey and gingerbeer, but decided to swap for some vodka tipples, and I've got no complaints.

Keep tuned for Valentine's treat no.2...

p.s Whether you're in a relationship or not, you should take part in Gala Darling's Radical Self-Love project - it's looking like a corker...