Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Edible gifts

The festive season is upon us and for me that’s just another excuse to get baking!
I love to see the joy on someone’s face when they’re given a gift, and that’s extra special if it’s something homemade.
This recipe is my favourite for shortbread, based on one from my Country Women’s Association (CWA) cookbook, they are light and buttery – but firm enough to handle some adornment.
I recently discovered how easy honeycomb is to make, so I’ve been busting to share it with you and this seems like the perfect opportunity.
This honeycomb recipe comes from Annabel Crabb’s cookbook, Special Delivery, which is a fantastic read with beautiful recipes.
If you don’t like honeycomb, I suggest substituting with something equally as colourful for full impact - like crushed pistachios.
Anyway, I doubled this shortbread recipe so I had plenty of plain biscuits for my lads, as well as packaging up the adorned versions for gorgeous gifts.

¾ cup icing sugar
250g softened butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 ½ cups plain flour
Dark and white chocolate, for decorating

165g raw sugar
1 ½ tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Pre-heat oven to 160C and line a tray or two with baking paper.
Cream the icing sugar and butter together until pale, then add the vanilla and mix again.
Sift in the flour and either knead or use your paddle attachment until the mixture comes together.
Roll out dough and cut into whatever shapes you desire, before placing them onto the tray.
Bake for around 10-15 minutes until they start to colour, but do not brown.
Allow to cool.
For the honeycomb, line a tray with baking paper and set aside before combining the sugar and honey in a deep, heavy-based saucepan with a tablespoon of water and heat until the mixture reaches 154C (use a baking thermometer).
Add the bicarb and stir with a wooden spoon until combined, then quickly pour out onto your tray and spread until relatively thin and even.
Place in the fridge to set.
To decorate your shortbread, melt the chocolate and drizzle over the biscuits as if you were in a hurry and a one-year-old was crying at your feet.
Break off some honeycomb and crumble over the chocolate while it’s still soft, so it sets into the chocolate.
When set, package up and gift to your nearest and dearest.


Saturday, 28 November 2015

Lunchbox filler

It's getting toward the end of the year and lunchbox-filling inspiration may be drying up slightly, particularly if harvest has added another lunchbox into the rotation.
This slice is the perfect lunchbox filler, unless you have a nut allergy of course, in which case – steer clear or call in a substitute ingredient. 
If it’s too soon for Christmas baking in your house as it is in mine (although I do currently have fruit soaking for my Christmas cake) then this simple but tasty slice may be a good option for a cuppa companion.
You can’t go wrong with the combination of dates and pecans, but walnuts will also do nicely if they’re easier to come by.  
Sprinkle some coconut or melt some white chocolate on the top if you want to get really fancy – but then, let’s not get too festive just yet.

Date and Pecan Slice
2 cups dates, pitted and chopped
1 cup pecans, roughly chopped
100g brown sugar
125g butter, melted
2 tablespoons golden syrup
1 cup self raising flour
1 egg

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line a slice tin with baking paper.
Melt butter and sugar together in a saucepan over low heat, add golden syrup and mix until smooth.
In a bowl, mix all your other ingredients before adding the butter mixture and stir until combined.
Pour into slice tin and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden.
Cool and slice into squares.


Thursday, 12 November 2015

Spring on salad

Spring brings an injection of colour into our lives, both in the garden and on the plate.

So much beautiful produce is coming into abundance, plump and juicy strawberries are everywhere – which is great for us because we average almost one kilogram of them each week.

The other thing I love about this time of year is salads and the fact is, they get a lot more interesting if you’ve got access to more ingredients.

The best salad maker I know would have to be my Mum, she always manages to whip up something delicious out of just a few key items.

In fact, she’s a darn good cook all round really.

This recipe is one of hers and it’s a beauty; the winning combination of earthy beetroot with rich fetta and the crunch of roasted walnuts.

I recommend two things: whatever you do, do not leave out the roasted walnuts (they are too good) and chuck on a pair of rubber gloves to peel your roasted beetroot.

Beetroot may be a gorgeous colour, but not when it’s stained on your hands for a week. 

Beetroot Salad
450g beetroot, roasted and diced
100g feta cheese, crumbled or diced
2 cups (or so) of rocket and baby spinach
½ cup parsley, chopped
½ red onion, diced.
75g walnuts, roasted and chopped roughly
2 tablespoons lemon juice
80ml olive oil

To roast beetroot, just wrap in foil with a drizzle of olive oil and salt and bake in a moderate oven for about two hours.
Allow to cool and peel and dice.
Assemble all your ingredients in a salad bowl.
To make the dressing, combine lemon juice and olive oil in a jar and give it a good shake.
Pour over the salad and serve.

Thursday, 22 October 2015

What's for dinner?

This recipe is so tasty and actually quite simple to make. 
I found it on Taste and trust me, give it a try - it's a winner.

Turkish lamb pies

1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
500g lamb mince 
1/4 cup tomato paste
handful of fresh coriander, chopped

1 3/4 cups plain flour
1 tablespoon cornflour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup Greek yoghurt

Heat some olive oil in a frying pan and cook onion and garlic until softened. 
Stir in spices and allow to cook until fragrant before cranking the heat up and adding the mince to brown. 
Stir in tomato paste.
Allow to cool to room temperature and stir in fresh coriander.

To make the dough, whisk the flours and baking powder in a bowl. 
Make a well in the centre and add oil and yoghurt.
Stir until dough comes together and knead until smooth.
Cut into two pieces and shape into discs before setting aside for 20 minutes. 

To assemble, roll out one piece of dough on a floured surface to about 20cm (round). Put half the filling in the middle and fold, pressing the edges to seal.
Repeat with the second dough.

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. 
Clean out your frying pan and add some oil, heating on high before adding one of your pies. 
Cook until golden on both sides and repeat with the second pie.
Place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper and pop them in the oven for 20 minutes.

Serve with a simple salad of rocket, drizzled with olive oil and a dob of Greek yoghurt.


Sunday, 11 October 2015

Salad season

Salad season is here!
Let's not kid ourselves here, my children don't celebrate salad with quite the same level of enthusiasm as I do - unless the salad consists of strawberries and, well, maybe some cucumber if I'm lucky.

So this recipe is mainly for the big people of the house, although I still make the little lads try it before the turn their noses up and declare their hatred (I hear myself saying "this is not a restaurant, if you don't eat that, there is nothing else!" quite a lot at the moment). 

Gorgeous local spring produce is readily available, so we've been making the most of it! 

I'll be sharing some of my favourite salad recipes over the next few posts, starting with this one, which is relatively new to me but has become a fast fav.

Brown Rice Salad

1 cup brown rice
1/2 cup sultanas
3 spring onions, chopped
1 red capsicum, chopped  
1 bunch broccolini, chopped
2 sticks of celery, chopped
handful of sunflower seeds
handful of walnuts, roasted and roughly chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed

Cook your brown rice, drain and allow to cool.
Chop all ingredients and throw into a salad bowl, adding your rice and tossing to mix through.
Combine your dressing ingredients (lemon juice, soy sauce, olive oil and garlic) in a jar and shake thoroughly, pour over your salad. 


Sunday, 27 September 2015

Not so raw brownies

THIS recipe is based on one I stumbled across which only had four ingredients.
After a quick check of the pantry for those ingredients I started making it, without reading the entire recipe first – actually I do that quite often, launch into a baking frenzy only to realise what I’ve chosen to cook takes three hours to prepare.
This one didn’t take that long, but it was a raw recipe and required a decent amount of fridge time to set.
I don’t know why ‘raw’ recipes annoy me, I certainly don’t mind eating things that haven’t been cooked, but sometimes I just feel someone has just done it because it’s hip to be raw. 
Well, not in this household. What wins you big here is having something ready to eat at afternoon teatime, as unfortunately children don’t seem to understand that the delicious thing they watched you make now has to sit in the fridge for two hours.
So I added my own spin and I would encourage you to do the same, as honestly this recipe could probably do with a little more tweaking. But it tasted really good like this so I just had to share it.

Not So Raw Brownies
1 cup pecans
½ cup almonds
1 cup dates
2 eggs
½ cup cocoa
¾ cup wholemeal plain flour
½ cup dark chocolate chips

Combine the pecans, almonds and dates in a bowl and cover with water to soften (ideally about two hours, but you can use warm water to hasten the process).
Pre-heat oven to 180C and line a 20cm square cake tin or similar with baking paper.
Drain the water and blitz the nuts and dates in a food processor until you reach a desired consistency.
Add the eggs, cocoa, plain flour and pulse a few times to combine before adding the chocolate chips.
Spoon into cake tin and smooth the top.
Bake for 20-25 minutes.
Cut into squares when somewhat cool and tuck in.


Tuesday, 8 September 2015


Having three lads under five, sleep is something we value very highly in the Everyday Baker household.

What's my secret? The bags under my eyes will soon tell you that I hold no such secrets, especially when it comes to the littlest of our lads .

But I will openly admit to bribing the other two lads at least once a week. I tuck them in tightly, tell them a story, sing them a song... then tell them that if they sleep all night and stay in their own beds, I will gladly make them pancakes in the morning.

It works. Although I'm mindful of not overusing the incentive, I don't want the magic to wear off and who can be bothered making pancakes every day? (though if all three slept all night, I would happily make them pancakes with chocolate and unicorn dust and whatever else their little hearts desired!)

So I've been refining my pancake recipe over the years and will share with you my favourite, it has oats in it, which I find keeps tummies filled for longer. Also very adult-friendly!

Oat Pancakes

3/4 cup oats
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (which I rarely have in the fridge, feel free to use a blend of yoghurt and milk)
3/4 cup wholemeal plain flur
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon bi-carb
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten

Mix the oats and buttermilk in a bowl and rest for as long as possible.
In another bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, bi-carb, nutmeg and salt. 
Add the egg and mix with the oat mixture.
Melt some butter in a frying pan and put in a dollop of mixture, frying until bubbles start to form on top and then flip. Repeat until the mixture is all gone.
Adorn with fresh fruit, yoghurt and maple syrup.


Wednesday, 26 August 2015

What's for dinner?

There is a distinct smell wafting from garages and sheds around the place and I’m not going to lie to you – it’s not always a pleasant aroma.
Being confronted with seemingly endless rows of sausages strung from the roof can be quite an assault on the senses if you’re unprepared, but sausage making is a steadfast tradition worthy of celebration.
If you’re lucky enough to partake in an annual sausage-making festivity then you will be well aware of the recipe rivalry that goes with it.
Some stick true to their traditional recipes and straying from them is considered sacrilege, but others (like us), are still refining the perfect flavour balance and will change the recipe accordingly.
This year, we went with more of a chorizo-based sausage and I’m pretty chuffed with the result.
I’m not sharing that recipe with you though, sorry folks, but if you’re looking for some other ways to use the annual hoard of dried sausages – then this recipe is a winner, regardless of your flavour preferences.

Throw in some olives at the end for an extra kick of flavour. 

Mediterranean Chicken
1 onion, chopped
1 sprig of rosemary
2 cloves garlic
2 red capsicums, chopped
1 dried sausage (Italian or chorizo), thinly sliced
Sundried tomatoes, to taste
400g can of diced tomatoes
500g chicken thighs (or similar), chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
Parsley, chopped
Couscous, to serve

In a deep frying pan, heat olive oil on low heat and throw in the onion, garlic and rosemary. Cook slowly until the onion goes nice and golden.
Add the sausage and capsicum and fry until the sausage gets some good colour.
Add your tomatoes (both sundried and canned) and bring to a simmer before adding the chicken.
Simmer until chicken is cooked through and then add the lemon zest and parsley.
Serve on a bed of fluffy couscous.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Banana and Macadamia Loaf

For those bananas that went black in what felt like a minute after being put in the fruit bowl...

Banana & Macadamia Loaf

1 1/2 cups wholemeal plain flour (or white)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarb
1 cup mashed banana
3/4 cup desicated coconut
3/4 cup roughly chopped macadamias
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
1 egg
pinch of nutmeg or cinnamon or both (whatever takes your fancy)
1/4 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla paste

Pre-heat oven to 160 degrees Celsius and line a loaf tin with baking paper.

Mix all your dry ingredients together, whisking to get any lumps out. Mix all your wet ingredients together and combine with the dry, being mindful not to over-mix.
Spoon into tin and bake for around 60 minutes, or until golden and gorgeous.


P.S. When this cake is a few days old - if you're feeling particularly naughty, I recommend cutting a slice, toasting it in a sandwich press and smothering with butter.

Monday, 3 August 2015

Toothpaste slice...

“This tastes like toothpaste, Mum” were the words from my biggest lad after tasting this slice.
But before you runaway wondering why I would bother sharing such dentally-inspired baked goods, apparently tasting like toothpaste isn’t necessarily a bad thing for small child.
I know, I don’t really get it either but his follow-up exclamation of “it’s delicious, I love it!” were far more complimentary.
In my humble palate’s opinion, which is not nearly as refined as a four-year-old’s, this slice is like eating a beautifully decadent after-dinner mint.
The combination of dark chocolate and mint is classic for a reason and the addition of pistachios adds a wonderful texture and crunch, but if you’re not into dark chocolate, I’m sure milk chocolate infused with mint will be just as tasty.
While I can’t promise you that nine out of 10 dentists endorse this slice as a great toothpaste-alternative, I can promise you that it goes down a treat with a cuppa.

Choc-mint Slice

75g plain flour
75g self-raising flour
80 desiccated cocounut
200g brown sugar
30g cocoa
130g butter, melted

85g pistachios, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 can condensed milk
30g butter

200g block of mint dark chocolate, melted (I used Lindt Mint Intense)

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

For the base, combine all dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine. Add melted butter and press into a slice tin lined with baking paper.
Place in the oven for 15 minutes.

For the filling, combine all ingredients except pistachios in a saucepan and stir until smooth and combined, with a tinge of colour change (looking more like caramel). Throw in your pistachios and mix well.
Pour on top of your base and pop back into the oven for 10-15 minutes or until nice and golden and bubbly.
Allow to cool before pouring melted chocolate on top and setting in the fridge.


Thursday, 25 June 2015

Retro Butterscotch Dumplings

It's no secret that I love the classics.
There’s nothing quite like flicking through the pages of a retro Women’s Weekly cookbook or CWA recipe book; I mean who doesn’t want a few tips on maintaining a tidy household alongside a recipe for chutney?!
All jokes aside, and for me at the moment trying to maintain a tidy household is a joke, I love taking those recipes and giving them a little revamp where I deem necessary.
Don’t get me wrong, messing with a recipe isn’t always the best idea. It’s usually when I have to substitute ingredients according to my pantry stock that things get altered, or because I think it needs a bit of preening.
Which brings me to butterscotch dumplings, a favourite from many a childhood no-doubt and perfect comfort food on a chilly winter’s evening.
While it’s a recipe great in its retro form, my version just adds a touch more texture, a little less sugar and I’d like to think, an even more delicious flavour.
I would like to say that my lads loved it, but between Mr Everyday Baker and I, they just didn’t get a look in: dumplings demolished before they even knew they existed.

Maple Syrup Dumplings
¾ cup self-raising flour
½ cup almond meal
½ teaspoon baking powder
30g butter, chopped
1/3 cup buttermilk
¼ cup maple syrup
30g butter
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup maple syrup
1 ½ cups water
Place the flour, almond meal and baking powder in a bowl and rub the butter through using your fingertips until you reach breadcrumb consistency (use a food processor if you’re short on time or patience).
Add the milk and maple syrup, cutting with a butter knife until the mixture comes together.
Make your sauce by combining all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved and butter is melted.
Roll your dumpling mixture into balls and drop into the sauce, simmering for 25 minutes or until the dumplings are puffy and golden.
Serve with cream, ice cream or natural yoghurt.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Weetbix Slice

Well, it's easy and yummy and I'm all about keeping it simple at the moment. 
Having something on hand for the big lad's kindy lunchbox isn't always that easy when I realise the night before that they have already eaten all of whatever it was I made the previous day... and although I'm all about easy, I'm still stubborn about making things myself and not resorting to evil packaged stuff full of numbers.
So this slice was better than packing off a kindy kid with a couple of dry Weetbix, right? He was happy, got to help me make it and even bragged about it to his friends. Which basically makes me a superhero!
This recipe is an oldie, but a goodie and I have no doubt it's going to save me on many more occasions.

Weetbix Slice 

5 Weetbix bars/blocks/or a few handfulls of the broken bits at the bottom that no-one will eat
1 1/4 cups plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons cocoa
3/4 cup coconut
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon maple syrup
200g butter
1 teaspoon vanilla 

Chocolate Icing
1 cup icing sugar
40g butter
2 tablespoons cocoa, or half a cup of melted dark chocolate
splash of milk

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. 
Crush Weetbix and mix in a bowl with flour, baking powder, cocoa and coconut.
Melt sugar, maple syrup and butter in a saucepan until sugar is dissolved, add vanilla.
Combine the wet mix to the dry and mix well.
Push into a slice tin, about 20cm x 30cm lined with baking paper.
Bake for 15 minutes.
To make icing, mix softened butter with icing sugar and add cocoa or melted chocolate. Whisk well and add milk, whisking until smooth.
Ice slice while still warm and allow to set.


Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Easy (but ugly) nut biscuits

These don't quite have the appeal of the biscuits from the last post, but they are super easy and ridiculously tasty.
The added bonus is that they are pretty healthy too (unless you eat five in one sitting... guilty).
While the recipe may seem like it's sponsored by Mayvers, it's honestly not - I wish it was but seriously, let's face it, I'm nowhere near that famous.
I do love the brand though, they're an Aussie family company and they produce fantastic, honest foods with no nasties. Their peanut butter is made from just peanuts, nothing else and their super spread tastes naughty, but it's not! Add some melted dark chocolate to that bad boy and you've got yourself a taste that's rather close to another famous hazelnut spread... 
Anywho, I digress - make these biscuits and you will see what I mean. My big lads love them and they are the perfect afternoon snack.

Easy Nut Biscuits

1/2 cup Mayvers Crunchy Peanut Butter
1/2 cup Mayvers Super Spread
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla 
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
Combine all ingredients and mix well. Place spoonfuls (not too big) on a tray lined with baking paper and bake for 10-14 minutes, until nice and brown on top.


Monday, 11 May 2015

Double-choc cookies

I had you at double-choc, didn't I?
Inspired by a recipe from sweet-tooth royalty Donna Hay, these biscuits are decadent and so, so tasty.
Also, they take a great photo but just be quick as they will go fast.
If you've got any left over (hah!) Easter eggs that you can't bare to look at any longer, I suggest melting them down and using them to make these!
Perfect for a lunchbox treat - that's probably not the ideal thing to say as these are full of chocolate and sugar...but anything homemade is still far better than the cr*p you get in a packet. 
*Ohh and how pretty are my Mothers Day flowers? Thanks lads, being your Mum is pretty darn amazing*

Double-choc Cookies

120g dark chocolate, choppe
110g butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup plain flour
¼ cup cocoa
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
½ teaspoon sea salt flaked
1 cup dark and white choc bits

Pre-heat oven to 160 degrees Celsius.
Melt dark chocolate in microwave, blitzing for 30 seconds at a time to make sure you don't overdo it. 
Put that aside and cream butter and sugar in your mixer until light and, well, creamy. Add egg and vanilla and keep mixing. 
Stir through your flour, cocoa, bicarb, salt and melted chocolate. Add the choc chips and stir until well combined.
On trays lined with baking paper, place balls of the mixture (about a tablespoon) and allow room for them to spread out.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the tops are lovely and resemble cracked dry mud. They'll still be soft, but they will harden when cooled.

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Meat-free Monday

We're big meat-eaters in the Everyday Baker household, but every so often I like to take a break from my carnivorous ways.
So we often have at least one night a week where dinner will be meat-free, which always kicks me into gear to be a little more creative.
Don’t get me wrong, of course meat dishes call for creativity but when dinner time often resembles feeding time at the zoo, it’s easy to get swept up in a routine of spag bol and fish fingers.
Which leads me to mushrooms, the vegetarians “meat” - I love them and they make a weekly appearance in the shopping.
White buttons: Boring but easily accessible.
Swiss Brown: These puppies are delicious and packed full of flavour, but aren’t always easily found.
Portabello: Get in the trolley; you’re coming home with me.
There are many other varieties, but let’s stick with Portabello or field mushrooms for this recipe, which requires minimal effort – basically create your own mixture, stuff, roast and enjoy.
I served ours with a roasted vegetable and couscous salad, but if you can’t live without meat for one night, these would go perfectly with a nice piece of steak!

Stuffed Roasted Mushrooms

4 Portabello Mushrooms
150g cream cheese
1 spring onion, chopped finely
3-4 strips marinated capsicum, chopped (from a jar or just use fresh)
Shredded fresh basil
Handful of walnuts, chopped
Salt and pepper

Pre-heat oven to 190C.
Take the stems from the mushrooms and chop them finely, adding them to a bowl.
In the same bowl, add the cream cheese (best if softened), spring onion, capsicum, basil, walnuts and salt and pepper. Mix well.
Arrange your mushrooms on a baking tray lined with paper and put spoonfuls of the stuffing in each, loading them up until your stuffing is all gone.
Place in the oven for around 30 minutes or until golden and juicy and your house smells delicious.
Serve and enjoy!

Sunday, 29 March 2015

Fig dessert for the win

I have previously written about my enjoyment of figs, so I got a little excited when I found some at the farmers market recently - so excited that I ended up with more than I really needed.
Of course, in all my wisdom I didn’t realise that until what was left of those beautiful, plump figs were teetering on the edge of no return.
I had to use them immediately, or face the unbearable task of ditching them.
“We’ll have to have dessert tonight, I need to use these figs,” I said to Mr Everyday Baker.
Needless to say, he wasn’t exactly devastated by that prospect.
I then faced the next first world dilemma, as I relish in a good, saucy pudding but Mr Everyday Baker isn’t such a big fan and is more of a cake or crumble kind of guy (it’s okay, I’m sure we’ll work through it). 
The result of some brainstorming and recipe combining had us both on the same dessert team.
I suggest you also join the team, it’s a real winner.

Almond Fig Dessert Cake
1 cup almond meal
¼ cup raw caster sugar
¼ cup wholemeal plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup butter, melted and cooled
6-8 fresh figs, cut into halves and stems removed

Pre-heat oven to 190 degrees Celsius and lightly grease a 22cm fluted tin.
Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. In another bowl, whisk eggs, butter and vanilla, before adding the dry ingredients and stirring until just combined.
Pour into prepared tin and smooth top, before arranging figs on top. Sprinkle with extra sugar if desired.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Serve warm or cool, with a good dollop of cream or natural yoghurt.


Sunday, 1 March 2015

Salted Caramel Brownies

Sometimes I bake things and when they're ready I immediately regret baking them. Today was one of those days... mainly because these brownies tasted so good I had trouble stopping myself from eating them!
Big thanks (or maybe not!) to The Hungry Mum for sharing this recipe, these salted caramel brownies are Donna Hay's brainchild and are seriously simple. I'm only making them again when I intend on taking them somewhere to share, they will impress and I will eat less of them when people can actually see me stuffing my mouth.

So now I share them with you. So I say both I'm sorry and you're welcome.

Salted Caramel Brownies

3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup caramel filling (Top n Fill)
2 teaspoons vanilla
150g butter, melted
150g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon good quality sea salt

Preheat oven to 160C and line a 20cm cake tin with baking paper.
In a large bowl, whisk flour, baking powder and sugar. Add eggs, caramel, vanilla and butter and whisk until smooth. 
Stir through chocolate. Scrape into tin and sprinkle sea salt on top.
Bake for about 30 minutes.

Cut into squares when cool (who can wait for that?!).


Sunday, 1 February 2015

Florentine Slice

Greetings all! Apologies for the long pause since my last post, I had been baking something particularly special and he has now arrived - adding another lad to the Everyday Baker household. 
He is, of course, beautiful and we are all quite smitten.
I've still somehow managed to fit in time to bake so the big lads don't miss out on their beloved morning and afternoon teas. 
This recipe is a take on those yummy Florentine Biscuits you often get in coffee shops and it's great because you can use whatever you have on hand! And it has chocolate... so that automatically makes it a winner in my book.

Florentine Slice
500g (or so) of dried fruit (I used sultanas, apricots and dates)
125g slivered almonds
1/4 cup plain flour
150g butter
1/2 cup honey
1 egg
200g dark chocolate

Pre-heat oven to 170 degrees Celsius and line a slice pan with baking paper (about 20x30cm)
Mix together the fruit, almonds and flour. 
In a small saucepan over low heat, melt butter and honey together. Add to the fruit mixture with the egg and mix well.
Press into slice pan and smooth top. Break chocolate on top and place in oven for around 30 minutes.
When cooked, spread the chocolate to create an even layer.
Allow to cool/set, slice and enjoy!