Archive of ‘Chocolate’ category

Salted Chocolate Rice Krispie Treats

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Rice Krispie Squares are probably my favourite sweetie (snack?) ever. I love them.  They are my go-to sustenance (it’s true that they are probably providing me with very little actual sustenance) when I drive from Inverness to Glasgow and make my inevitable toilet and tea stop in Perth.  I kid myself into thinking they are good for me because they are probably 70% air however I don’t think this means very much when the other 30% of them is pure sugar!  I don’t care though, they are SO good!

This is not my first attempt at making my own.  The last two attempts were not so much of a success, which is weird because there isn’t at all much to the recipe.  The problem was that I was trying to make peanut butter krispie squares and by melting the butter, marshmallows and PB all at the same time, the marshmallows were getting over cooked which resulted in rock hard squares.  Edible, but not a winner.

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Following my oh-so-brief stint in a professional kitchen I picked up a few tips.  It just goes to show that everything in life is a learning opportunity, even if it doesn’t work out the way you hope. PMA!  Anyways, after my motivational message of the day, the tip was to melt everything in the microwave, but to do it in stages.  Start with the butter, as that takes longest and add the marshmallows once the butter is almost fully melted.  

I like to think that these are the sophisticated cousin of the turquoise wrappered Kellogs version.  In these salted chocolate rice krispie treats, the cereal portion is much less sugary than the shop bough variety but the dulce de leche adds a subtle deep sweetness.  The real treat here is the chocolate topping, the contrasting bitter dark chocolate with the sea salt sprinkles takes these squares in to decadent territory.  Adding the syrup to the chocolate takes a bit of the edge off the strong cocoa flavour but also, along with the butter, stops the chocolate setting rock hard so that when you bite in to one of these the chocolate and marshmallow squares yeild at the same time.  It’s a minor detail but makes the eating experience much more pleasant! (more…)

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Coconut Choc-Chip Baked Oatmeal

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It may not look like it but I’m trying to eat healthier.  Now you may be wondering where chocolate chips factor in that endeavor.  I understand, chocolate rarely features on how to eat right articles, and I can’t say that this is the healthiest breakfast option out there, but it is surely tasty and for the most part pretty wholesome.

The intention was to make coconut and raspberry baked oatmeal, which I still think would be lovely, but I spotted a half empty bag of chocolate chips in the cupboard just begging to be used, so I thought why not!?  It was a welcome addition, and there is such a small amount of chocolate per serving that I think we get away with it.

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The idea for this breakfast was born when I picked up a carton of Alpro coconut milk, which is actually a mix of coconut milk and rice milk making it much lighter than the stuff that comes in a tin.  Normally I like to use almond milk in my porridge, I don’t have anything against dairy (I’m sure you’re shocked to hear that) but I I discovered it when I was trying to cut down on dairy for a bit and love the taste of it in porridge.  When I went to pick some up last week I noticed the coconut variety was on offer so I though I’d give it a try, imagining it would make great smoothies (it does). (more…)

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Wholemeal Chocolate & Peanut Butter Biscuits

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Is everyone excited to have a long weekend?  It’s a lovely sunny day here in Inverness so fingers crossed that it lasts right through until Monday.  As I am currently unemployed/building my empire a Monday holiday doesn’t quite have the significance it used to but still, when there are other people off it means I’ve got people to hang out with, go me!

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So when I’m all alone and everyone else is being normal at work, I bake…and design my bakery website and advertising, photograph things, blog…I’m quite busy, honestly!  It’s true that I have to remind myself to be busy at all times though.  As a person who lives for a routine, living without one is tough.  So I try and set myself some rules about when to get up, what to achieve per day, always remember to leave the house at least once!  Lists.  They are the way forward when you’re trying to keep a routine going.

But back to the baking.  I was recently asked by Baking Mad to try out one of their recipes, and if I liked it, share it with my readers.  I wasn’t aware of the Baking Mad website prior to the email but it’s really a great new resource for recipes.  It’s especially good for the beginner as everything is explained clearly and simply.  My favourite feature is the ‘Bake Mode’ option, which takes the recipe full screen with one step per page, with a note of the ingredients required for that  step.  Very handy. (more…)

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Homemade Nutella

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If forced to chose only one food to eat for the rest of time, I’d have to choose Nutella…probably.  I mean, it’s just the most delicious thing ever invented.  It is equally enjoyable on plain white bread as it is baked in to muffins, or even straight from the jar (you know you’ve done it too).  Sometimes when you get home from work you need a little pick me up before you start dinner.  Spoon.  Jar of Nutella.  Heaven.

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Usually homemade versions of things are superior to the shop bought variety.   Now, I’d love to own that accolade and say this Nutella tastes even better than the real thing, but that’s simply not possible.  The homemade version is something different.  Also supremely tasty, with a strong hazelnut and deep chocolate flavours with a hint of sweetness from honey.  Maybe it’s the more grown up verson…either way it tastes amazing, it’s just not going to replace your trusty jar in the cupboard.  Think of it as an alternative. Two types of chocolate hazelnut spread certainly can’t be a bad thing! (more…)

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Easter Egg Macarons

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Happy Sunday!  I hope everyone has had a lovely relaxing weekend so far.  My Saturday was unexpectedly full of my favourite things – family, friends and baking.  After an abrupt end to my working day I found myself at home with a free afternoon which was quickly filled with a family gathering, baking for the gathering and then dinner with friends.  So what started off a very bad day turned out to be pretty good.

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I’d been desperate to try out the speckled egg technique for ages, so when I found myself at a bit of a loose end yesterday it was the perfect opportunity, and now I can’t wait to speckle everything! (Some pastel coloured Easter cookies will be make this week, I think.)  Also I feel like I’m on a bit of a roll with macarons after last weeks success, and luckily my new found recipe didn’t let me down. (more…)

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