Thursday, March 28, 2013



Ruth from Makey-Cakey was our March 2013 Daring Bakers’ challenge host. She encouraged us all to get experimental in the kitchen and sneak some hidden veggies into our baking, with surprising and delicious results!

I quite like these kind of challenges every now and then - where you don't have to stick rigidly to a  specific recipe but can put up some of your own favourites or research and try out something new.

First up I bought some sweet potatoes (kumara in New Zealand), cooked and mashed them  and baked them into some cookies (biscuits).

I have made sweet potato muffins many times so thought I'd try out cookies for the challenge.

 They turned out well but are not at all crunchy - more cake textured - but still taste good.They have raisins and peanuts added.

Second up I wanted to make something with green peas, so a look around the internet and I found these Sweet Pea and Ricotta cupcakes over at Cupcake Project - I left out the basil and made The Hummingbird Bakery's cream cheese frosting. You  do need to process the peas really well - better than I did - so they are not so visible.

This was a fun challenge - thanks Ruth - check out everyone else's efforts over at The Daring Kitchen

Saturday, March 2, 2013

What To Do With Leftover Muesli ?

Muesli Chocolate Chip Biscuits - Cookies

Had some muesli just sitting there, it had lost favour with the consumers of the household, the waste-not-want-not streak in me couldn't throw it away - so muesli cookies it was!

This is a simple recipe that makes about 28 cookies - kind of balanced as they contain muesli and wholemeal flour to offset the chocolate chips and sugar ! Kids will love them and can easily burn off the energy.
2 cups muesli
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
115g (1/2 cup) butter, melted
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg

Preheat oven to 180°C (375°F)

In a bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt. 

In a separate bowl, mix together butter, light brown sugar, and vanilla. Then mix in the egg.

Add flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix well to combine. Stir in chocolate chips and muesli.

Shape into balls and place on a lightly greased baking tray or tray lined with baking paper. Bake for 10-12 minutes. 

Allow to cool on tray for a few minutes and then transfer to cooling rack.
Enjoy !

Monday, January 28, 2013



Francijn of Koken in de Brouwerij was our January 2013 Daring Bakers’ Hostess and she challenged us to make the traditional Dutch pastry, Gevulde Speculaas from scratch! That includes making our own spice mix, almond paste and dough! Delicious!

Francijn gave us a really good history overview about the significance of the spice trade in relation to the Netherlands economy, the Baker's Guild and the creation of spice mixes and in particular Speculaas Spices.

Francijn told us the recipe was neither difficult nor time consuming but was delicious - and she was correct. Personally this was a great challenge being  at the hot time of our year - mid summer - not wanting to spend too long in the kitchen with the oven going.

This is a great recipe to have in my repertoire - easy but delicious - so easy to make our own almond paste.
 My Dutch friend visited while there was still some left and gave it the seal of approval - her Mum used to make speculaas and she said it was "just right" !

Thanks Francijn for a great recipe to keep,all your work on the challenge , individual feedback and helpful solutions to the bakers' questions.
Enjoyed by all !

You can find the recipe here at the Daring Bakers page.