Biscoff Rocky Road

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l 16/07/2017

If your will power lasts more than 10 minutes then these tasty morsels will keep for a week in the fridge. As with most of my posts, you can adapt this to include other fillings and textures but I think this combination showcases the biscuit spread flavour.

Very easy to put together, you don’t even need to turn the oven on for this one.

This recipe makes 16 pieces of Biscoff Rocky Road!

Ingredients:

  • 400g White Chocolate, chopped
  • 125g Biscoff Spread
  • 50g Unsalted Butter
  • 150g Mini Marshmallows
  • 250g Lotus Biscuits, chopped
  • Spare Biscoff Spread for Drizzle

Method:

  1. Line a 8/9″ square tin with greaseproof paper and leave to the side.
  2. In a large bowl, add in the chocolate and butter – melt on a low heat in a large glass bowl, over a pan of simmering water (making sure the water doesn’t touch the bowl) until fully melted – stir until smooth!
  3. In a separate bowl, melt the biscoff spread in the microwave for 30 seconds or so or until runny, beat into the melted white chocolate mix.
  4. Once it has melted and combined, add in the marshmallows and chopped biscuits and fold together – pour into the tin and spread until it is even. Refrigerate until set!
  5. If you want the extra biscoff kick, melt some extra biscoff spread and drizzle over the top of the Rocky Road, again, refrigerate until set!
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Coconut Toffee Chew Bars

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IMG_20150703_155754[1] 03/07/2015

With a crisp buttery base and a squidgy, sweet coconut topping, these chewy bars are so easy to make but taste heavenly.

Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain flour

Topping:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups desiccated coconut

Instructions:

  1. Beat the butter, sugar and salt for the crust together. Add the flour and mix to combine.
    Sprinkle the dough into the bottom of a foil lined and greased 9×13″ tin and press down evenly. Bake at 170C for 15 minutes.
  2. Whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla together. Add the flour, baking powder and salt, whisk to combine. Stir in the coconut. Spread the mixture evenly over the crust. Bake until lightly browned around the edges, about 20 minutes.
  3. Let cool completely in the tin before cutting into bars. Store in an airtight container.

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Lemon Bars

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IMG_20150318_145315[1] 18/03/2015

Zesty lemon bars with a fresh and creamy topping and crisp, buttery base. These are so simple to whip up and taste insane. Serve with cream and summer fruits as a dessert or eat on their own with a cuppa. The beautiful zingy lemon cuts through the sweetness of the sugar and the egg and milk create a luxuriously creamy texture against the short, crumbly base.

Makes 16 squares

Ingredients:

Base:

  • 125g unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ⅓ cups plain flour, sifted

Top:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • ½ cup milk
  • Finely grated rind and juice of 2 lemons
  • Icing sugar, for dusting 

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease and line a 9×9 inch tin. Beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla until creamy. Sift in the flour and stir until combined. It will look like crumbs. Press the mix into the base of the tin and bake for 10-15 minutes or until just starting to brown around the edges. Let cool.
  2. Put eggs, sugar, flour, milk, lemon juice and rind into a bowl and whisk well. Pour over the base. Carefully transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until just set. When cold, cut into squares and dust with icing sugar. Serve with fresh summer berries such as strawberries or raspberries.

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Flapjacks

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IMG_20150217_205229[1] 27/02/2015

Here is a recipe for the simple, honest flapjack. There are tons of variations out there for healthy, this free, that free blah blah blah but these are good old fashioned sweet and sticky flapjacks. My only advice would be to double up the batch and bake in a 9×13 tin as they will not hang around.

Ingredients:

  • 3oz margarine
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 3oz muscovado sugar
  • A pinch of salt (optional)
  • 5oz porridge oats

Method:

  1. Lightly foil and grease a 7inch square tin.
  2. Put margarine and syrup in a saucepan. Heat gently until margarine has melted. Remove from heat.
  3. Stir in sugar and salt if using to dissolve and add rolled oats. Mix well.
  4. Spread mixture evenly into the prepared tin.
  5. Bake in the centre of an oven preheated to 180C for 20 minutes.
  6. Remove from the oven. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes.
  7. Cut into 4×4 strips. Leave in the tin until cold then break into bars.

Flapjacks improve with keeping. Store in an airtight tin for up to 4 weeks.

Variations:

  1. Add 2 rounded teaspoons grated orange zest and 2oz sultanas to the mixture at the end of stage 3. (I made this variation in the flapjacks pictured)
  2. Top flapjack mixture with 4oz halved glace cherries before baking.
  3. Replace 1oz of the rolled oats with 1 oz desiccated coconut.

Bakewell Bars

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IMG_20141126_203734[1] 26/11/2014

A classic combination of light almond sponge and buttery shortbread sandwiched together with a layer of raspberry jam.

You could try any jam you like or even different curds. I’ve had good results with chunky homemade blackberry & apple jam and lemon curd is really tasty too.

Ingredients:

For the base:

  • 3oz butter, softened
  • 1oz caster sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 6oz plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 7oz raspberry jam

For the topping:

  • 3 ½oz butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon almond essence
  • 4oz ground almonds
  • 3oz semolina
  • 3 ½oz caster sugar
  • Flaked almonds, for sprinkling

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line an 8×8 inch cake tin with greaseproof paper and grease with butter.
  2. First, make the biscuit base. Cream the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add the sugar and beat until the mix is light and fluffy. Add the egg yolk, mix well then sift in the flour and mix to form a dough.
  3. Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured work surface to the same size as the base of the tin then press it into prepared tin. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes then remove and allow to cool.
  4. Spread the jam on the cooled base and place in the fridge while you make the topping.
  5. Place the melted butter in a bowl, add the beaten eggs and almond essence and mix well. Stir in the ground almonds, semolina and caster sugar.
  6. Take the tin from the fridge and spread the almond dough over the jam being careful not to mess up the jam. Place the almond dough in blobs then join them up with the back of a metal spoon to make this easier.
  7. Sprinkle the top with flaked almonds and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden and set in the centre. Allow to cool in the tin then cut into bars.

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Sprinkle with icing sugar or brush with apricot jam to glaze for nice presentation or apply to face for a nice taste. Your choice.

Millionaire’s Shortbread

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IMG_20141104_194715[1] 04/11/2014

Crisp, buttery shortbread! Smooth, velvet caramel! Dark, luxurious chocolate! Rock salt that accentuates all of the above!

Ingredients:

For the Crust

  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1/8 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/8 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornflour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4oz cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon ice water
  • 1 large egg yolk

For the Caramel Layer

  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 3oz unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Generous pinch of salt

For the Chocolate Layer

  • 6oz dark chocolate, finely chopped, 70% cocoa solids minimum
  • 3 tablespoons double cream
  • Rock salt (optional)

Instructions:

For the Crust:

Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a 9-inch square pan with aluminium foil, pushing the foil neatly into the corners and up the sides of the pan ensuring that the foil overlaps all edges to help removal from the pan later. Grease the foiled pan with butter.

Combine the flour, brown sugars, cornflour and salt and mix with a wooden spoon until well combined and no lumps of brown sugar remain. Add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until a coarse mix forms. Add the ice water and egg yolk and mix until moist clumps form. Dump the dough into the prepared pan and press with your fingers into an even layer (dust your fingers with flour if the dough is too sticky). Pierce the dough all over with a fork and bake until golden, about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.

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For Caramel Layer:

Whisk the sweetened condensed milk, brown sugars, butter, golden syrup, vanilla and salt together in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, the butter melts and the mixture comes to a boil. Attach a sugar thermometer to the side of the pan and boil gently, whisking constantly, until the caramel is thick and the temperature registers 225F, about 6 minutes. Pour the caramel over the crust and cool for about 15 minutes or until the caramel is set.

Note that the caramel will not set completely. It will still be slightly soft in the finished product but this is definitely a good thing.

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For Chocolate Layer:

Place the chocolate and cream in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Heat gently until the chocolate and cream have melted. Spread the chocolate over the caramel layer. Lightly sprinkle some rock salt over the chocolate for extra flavour. Refrigerate the bars until the chocolate is set, at least 1 hour. Using the foil overhang, lift the bars out of the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into small squares and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

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These bars will keep well in the fridge stored in an airtight container if not gobbled up before that.

Date Bars

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IMG_20141031_154359[1] 31/10/2014

These are great for a little afternoon pick-me-up, or for breakfast, or any time of the day really. They keep very well in an airtight box for up to a week and can also be frozen.

Ingredients:

  • 250ml water
  • 200g stoned dates, chopped
  • 175g plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 175g soft light brown sugar
  • 100g porridge oats
  • A good pinch of salt
  • 175g unsalted butter or margarine

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease and line an 8×8″ square cake tin with grease proof paper and margarine.
  2. Place the water and chopped dates in a medium saucepan and bring up to a simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes, uncovered, on a medium-low heat until the date mixture is very soft and thick, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
  3. In a large bowl, add the flour, salt, bicarbonate of soda, sugar and oats and mix well. Add the butter or margarine and, using your fingertips, rub it in until moist clumps form.
  4. Press half of the oat mixture evenly over the base of the prepared tin. Spread the cooked date mixture over this then sprinkle with the remaining oat mixture. Press gently with the palm of your hand to flatten it on top.
  5. Bake in the oven for approximately 40 minutes or until golden brown and set in the centre.
  6. Allow to cool completely in the tin then cut into 16 bars and serve.

Buttery, crunchy oat layers encasing a sweet and sticky date filling, these bars are so simple to knock together but deliver amazing results. I don’t want to hear that you don’t like dates. These are awesome. Try them now!