Friday, May 28, 2010


This is an extremely chocolatey month for me. I used up almost 1kg of chocolate (including the failed batch of custard cream) this month. I think I'm experiencing a severe case of chocolate overload.

I chanced upon York Peppermint Patties when I was at Carrefour the other day and the first thing that came to mind was to make these Brrrrownies. I've always adored the peppermint-chocolate combination and used to make them ever so often...but somehow I've stopped somewhere along the way.

These babies were delish. Rich, fudgy, sweet with hints of peppermint. Definitely my favourite brownie to date. Perhaps I'm biased, but boy, these are really good. Needless to say, they were wiped out in a flash. Sweet :).

adapted from Baking from my home to yours

70g unsalted butter
85g bittersweet chocolate
85g unsweetened chocolate
130g sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
40g plain flour
170g York Peppermint Patties, chooped into bits

1. Centre a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius. Line an 8-inch baking pan with aluminium foil and grease generously.

2. Melt the butter and chocolate together over a double boiler and stir until the ingredients are just melted. Remove the bowl from heat, stir in the sugar, followed  by whisking the eggs in one by one. Add the vanilla and whisk vigorously until the batter comes together in a shiny mass before adding the salt and flour. Stir until just incorporated. Use a spatula and stir in the York Peppermint pieces.

3. Scrape the batter into the pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is dull and a knife inserted comes out almost clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and leave to cool to room temperature. Slice and serve.

Yields an 8-inch square brownie, cut into 16 small pieces.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Chocolate Banana Cream Tart

All Sunday I've been craving for something chocolatey with bananas. While sitting in service, I suddenly had a idea - a chocolate banana tart. On my way home, I gathered all the ingredients and went straight back to start on this only to fail my first attempt at making the custard cream. Sigh, it seemed like I was destined to leave my desire unfulfilled. I stood there for awhile, pensive, thinking about what I should do next. There was enough eggs, milk and chocolate for a second try....what am I waiting for? I put all these together, rectified my mistake and created my chocolate banana cream pie. Ahh...finally, the Sunday ain't so bad after all :)

When it comes to taking pictures, it's another failed attempt yet again. Lazy me can't wake up before heading to work to catch the warm day light for nice photos. Oh well, gotta make do with least the pie was really delicious :). I used Dorie's recipe for the Chocolate Cream Tart in Baking from my home to yours, used semisweet chocolate and added bananas. The resulting flavour was lovely, with the semisweet chocolate not too overpowering for the banana flavour to shine through.

I'm easily satisfied, all it takes is a good Chocolate Banana Cream Tart :).

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Chocolate Torte Souffle - Going Flourless

Finally, April is over and the month of May is here. It seemed like only yesterday when we just started the year and was looking forward to a good 2010. Before I knew it, we're already into the second third of the year. April was yet another busy month...this time round with work more than anything else. Looking forward, May is going to be an eventful month for me and I'm really excited about all the things that will be happening this month and in the months ahead :).

I was going through my baking stash and found soooo many unused things! One of them of a 9-inch springform pan bought sometime last time yet was still wrapped in plastic. Another was a letterpress that I've been meaning to use but still hasn't been opened. There were MANY unused cookie cutters and a few mini tart pans. Gosh, I really have a habit of buying things thinking I will use them but end up buying more instead.

For a start, I decided to use my 9-inch round springform pan first. I used this droolworthy recipe from Eat and Be Happy which I had bookmarked for some time already. Since the ingredients required were simple and didn't need me to buy anything extra, I jumped at the opportunity to make this. It was easy to put together, but the baking time was rather tricky for me. Hers looked so moist and delicious while mine ended up drier and more fudgy. Perhaps I'll reduce my baking time by a couple of minutes the next time round. Taste-wise, this was intensely chocolatey without being heavy. The texture's light and airy with a nice crust to it.

I'm still a little peeved cos I didn't quite get the moist, melty chocolate texture I desired. Hope I get it right the next time!

Chocolate Torte Souffle
adapted and modified from Eat and be Happy

250g Valrhona 68% dark chocolate, chopped
150g unsalted butter, cubed
150g castor sugar
7 eggs, separated
3 tbsps Baileys
Pinch of salt

1. Preheat the oven to 150C. Line the base of a 9-inch springform pan with aluminium foil, grease the pan and set aside.

2. Melt the chocolate and butter over a double boiler and stir till a smooth mixture forms. Leave to cool.

3. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks together, add 100g of sugar and mix well till the mixture turns thick and pale yellow. Add the Baileys and the cooled chocolate mixture and whisk till well-combined.

4. Using an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites together with a pinch of salt till soft peaks form. Gradually add the rest of the sugar and beat the egg whites till they hold their shape but not dry.

5. Fold the egg whites gently into the egg yolk mixture in three separate additions and mix until just combined. Pour the prepared mixture into the pan.

6. Bake for an hour before lowering the oven temperature to 120C and bake for another 30 minutes. When the cake is done, turn the oven off and leave the cake to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar. Serve when cake has cooled to room temperature.


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