Sunday 26 March 2017

Banana Walnuts Chocolate Chips Muffins

Of course muffins can be served as any time snacks.  But we love to have them for our brekkie. Quick and easy banana walnut muffins with some chocolate chips added.  Ain't get enough of these nutty aromatic sweet banana muffins to kick start the day.

Recipe adapted from : simply recipes
Below my slight modifications made.
Banana Walnuts Chocolate Chips Muffins
Ingredients yields 12 muffins
75g unsalted butter, melted and cooled.
200g, about 3 ripe bananas, thoroughly mashed
90g castor sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon strong brewed coffee (optional)

Dry ingredients A
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
168g self raising flour

Dry ingredients B
80g chopped walnuts (toasted or raw)
35g mini chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Position the rack in the middle. The temperature of the oven may vary, do adjust the temperature and timing to suit your oven.

Line a 12 muffin pan with paper liners or use individual muffin cups.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter and set aside to cool.

In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients A.

Mash the bananas in a bowl. Add the mashed bananas into the melted butter, followed by castor sugar, egg, coffee and vanilla extract and whisk to combine with a manual whisk,

With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, lightly fold the wet banana mixture into the dry ingredients A just until combined. (The important thing is not to over mix the batter. You do not want it smooth. Over mixing the batter will yield tough muffins).  Quickly fold in the dry ingredients B.

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Bake at 180°C  for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool on a rack or serve warm.

Enjoy !

Tuesday 14 March 2017

Madeira Cake (II)

What is Madeira Cake ?
According to wikipedia, extracted few paragraphs:
“Madeira cake is a sponge cake in traditional English cookery.
It is sometimes mistakenly thought to originate from the Madeira Islands; however, that is not the case as it was instead named after Madeira wine, a Portuguese wine from the islands, which was popular in England at the time and was often served with the cake.”

How does a Madeira cake taste like ?
 “A pound cake with tender crumbs, golden and comes with a crispy top which gives the cake a bit of 'character'.” Lena Frozen Wings

“The crumbs are soft and lemony with the light fragrance of the rum which I've added.” Joyce Kitchen Flavours

“My first bite is like yum... because of its sugary crusty topping. It follows by a robust buttery taste but with a hint of lightness from the lemon.” Zoe Bake for Happy Kids

Above were some comments by some blogger pals when we had a “Bake-Along #79” event about two years ago on theme Madeira Cake (Nigella Lawson). I too joined the fun “Bake-Along” and baked mini cakes here instead of a loaf or whole cake.  I missed those bake-along events ....
My big kids loved those crispy sugary crusty top mini butter cakes. 

A cake that's easy to bake with a unique crispy sugary crust.  Decided to bake one 6-inch size cake for the family. 

Recipe adapted from :
Below my slight adjustment made for a 6-inch pan size.

Madeira Cake
Ingredients :
120 grams unsalted butter (softened)
80 grams caster sugar
3 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
2 eggs (the size of my egg is 55 grams each with shell)
150 grams self-raising flour, sifted (I used all self-raising flour instead of a combination of plain and self-raising flour)
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier (optional)
2 teaspoons caster sugar for sprinkling the top

Method :
1) Preheat the oven to 170ºC. Position the rack in the middle. The temperature of the oven may vary, do adjust the temperature and timing to suit your oven.

2) Lightly grease the sides of the 6-inch pan with removable base with butter.  Line the base of the pan with lightly greased parchment paper. Set aside.

3) In a mixing bowl, cream butter, lemon zest and caster sugar with electric mixer on high speed until light and fluffy. Scrapping down the sides occasionally.

4) Add the eggs, one at a time with a tablespoon of the flour for each. Beat on low speed until incorporated.  Then gently mix in the rest of the flour and, finally, the lemon juice and Grand Marnier.  

5) The batter is very thick. Scoop batter into the prepared pan, spread and level the top with a spatula.  Sprinkle with the caster sugar and bake in preheated oven at 170ºC for about 40 minutes, or until the top is golden-brown. Check for doneness with a skewer inserted into the center of the cake if it comes out clean.

ha ha ! I'm amazed ... even the crack seemed to have "character"!
6) Let cool on a wire rack completely before serving. 

a ray of sunlight reflected on the cake :)
Glad that this light butter cake turned out well ... browned crispy sugary crust, lemony taste with tender crumbs.  

Enjoy with a cuppa of tea ... Happy baking ! 

Sunday 12 March 2017

Mango Apple and Stem Ginger Crumble

Occasionally we love to have some piping hot fruity oatmeal crumble for our brekkie on some cold mornings.

Chanced upon a crumble recipe with added stem ginger.  “Stem ginger refers to chunks of ginger candied and stored in simple syrup.” If you are unable to find ready stem ginger in the supermarket, it is not difficult to make one.  I made a small jar of stem ginger in advance and keep it in the fridge. Glad that I could use the ginger or syrup for other bakes or desserts.

Recipe reference
Stem ginger
For the ginger - Peeled and cut into half inch cubes about 12 pieces
65g sugar (add more if you prefer sweeter)
120ml water

Method :
Boil a small pot of boiling water, blanch ginger for about 10 seconds.
Drain and repeat 2 more times.
In a small saucepan, add blanched ginger, water and sugar.  Bring to the boil then reduce the flame and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the water and sugar forms a slightly thick syrup similar in texture.
Pour into a container, let cool and keep in the fridge until ready to use.

Recipe source for the crumble :bbcgoodfood
Below my slight modifications made.

Mango Apple and Stem Ginger Crumble 
1 small red apple, peeled, cored and diced in cubes
1 teaspoon light Muscovado sugar or brown sugar
About 2 tablespoon of water

1 small mango, peeled, stoned and roughly chopped into small cubes
2 small pieces of stem ginger, chopped finely

Crumble topping:
40g plain flour
40g rolled oat
40g unsalted cold butter, diced
3 tablespoon light Muscovado sugar or brown sugar
40g walnuts very roughly chopped

Some soft butter to grease the ramekins

Position the rack in the center and preheat oven to 180°C.  (Note: The temperature of the oven may vary, do adjust accordingly).
Lightly grease 3 ramekins with butter and set aside.

In a small saucepan combine all the Ingredients A and cook with low flame for about 5 mins. Stirring occasionally. Cook till apples are just tender.

Off the flame and stir in the mangoes and stem ginger.
Spoon the fruit mixture into ramekins.

Combine the flour, light muscovado sugar, rolled oats in a big bowl. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the mixture until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the walnuts. Spoon the crumble mixture over the fruit mixture.

Bake at preheated oven 180°C for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Need to be careful while having this piping hot brekkie that's served straight out from the oven.  Very satisfying ... fruity, nutty warm crumble with a hint of woody spice flavour.  Enjoy !

My note: Will add more stem ginger for more gingerly taste in my next crumble bake.

Happy baking !