Rose Liqueur Gumdrops

I love the playful nature of gumdrops.  These little balls of jelly bring innocent smiles and giggles to mind.  Taking me back to when we were kids and how much pleasure we would derive from jelly coated in sugar.

Back to a time when boys teased and chased girls around the playground, pulling on braids while girls made kissy kissy noises.  Back to a time when competitions included egg & spoon races and wheelbarrow races and laughter uncontrollably exploded from little bellies.

One of my most treasured childhood memories was the first boy who crushed on me.  I use to tease him, calling him Travis Too-naughty.  On a daily occurrence, he would run to my mom after playschool let out, affectionately using my childhood nickname, beg my mom ‘”to make Lika marry me”.

Rose Liqueur Gumdrops

Rose Liqueur Gumdrops

250ml cold water
20g gelatine powder
180ml water
2 cups white sugar
180ml rose liqueur
sugar for coating

Mix the gelatine and 250ml cold water together.  Set aside.

Over a medium head, add the 2 cups of sugar and 180ml water, stir until all the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and all the liqueur, followed by the gelatine mix.

Pour into molds, I used ice-cube trays, place in fridge overnight to set.  You need to leave them to set for at least 24 hours.

Using a pallet knife, remove the jelly and coat in sugar.

This months I Made It Challenge was set my Tami over at Rumtumtiggs

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Croissants & Pain au Chocolat – I MADE IT Challenge – May

The I MADE IT challenge for May was set by Blue Jellybean, and what a challenge it was.  In my career, this has been a challenge that has been with me for a while.

After I made these, I sat back and analyzed what I could improve on, see the CHEF NOTES below.

Croissants & Pain au Chocolat

croissant and pain au chocolat

250g salted butter
280g full cream milk (NOTE: must be grams, not millilitres)
1 tsp dry yeast
450g flour
70g white sugar
pinch of salt

Heat the milk until tepid (lukewarm) – see chef’s notes at the bottom.  In the tepid milk, add the yeast, 1 tsp flour and 1 tsp sugar.  Whisk together at set aside in a warm place for the yeast to activate.  This will take about 10 – 15 minutes, you will know it has activated once the yeast creates a large section of foam on top of the milk.

Cut your butter into slices, about ½ cm thick, place between cling wrap and roll out until the butter is really thin.
Place in a tray, cover with cling wrap and place into the fridge.
NOTE:  The butter must be very cold before you can work with it.

Mix the rest of the flour, sugar, and the salt into a mixing bowl.
Whisk the yeast mixture and pour into the flour.
Using your fingers, mix until combined.
Place on a work surface and knead for about 10 minutes.  (This stage can be done in a mixer using a dough hook).
Wrap in cling wrap and place in the fridge for 2 hours.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a long rectangle shape, using a rolling pin.

Place butter slices on the dough, slightly overlapping the edges of the sliced butter.
Tightly, but gently, fold one edge of the dough to the middle, and repeat with the other edge, forming a 3 fold.
Fold in half.
Wrap in cling wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Again, on a lightly floured surface roll out dough again into a rectangular shape.  Do this gently at first as you do not want the dough to split and the butter to break through. Rub a little flour on the surface if you feel your butter is breaking through.
Fold again into a 3 fold, and then into half.
Cover and place into fridge for 1 hour to rest.

Repeat the rolling out step 3 times, remembering to rest for 1 hour between each roll.

After the last rest, cut the dough in half and roll out on a lightly floured surface, the dough should be about 1 cm thick.

For the Croissants

With a sharp knife, trim the edges to make them even, cut even sized triangles out.

i made it
Cut a small slit in the middle of the top edge of the triangle.

i made it 2
Gently stretch the dough.
Not to tightly, roll the dough into a cylinder, creating a crescent shape.

Set aside to rise for minutes and bring the dough to room temperature.
Brush with an egg wash
Bake in a preheated oven at 200°C for 30 minutes

For the Pain au Chocolate

With the left over dough, trim the edges to make them even.
Cut rectangles out of the dough.

i made it 1
Sprinkle icing sugar over the dough, break bits of chocolate and place on the surface of the dough.

i made it 3
Roll the dough into cylinders.
With the palm of your hand, gently press down on the dough to flatten slightly.
Bake in a preheated oven at 200°C for 30 minutes

i made it 4

Chefs Notes

Replace 1 cup of flour with 1 cup of corn starch for lighter, flakier dough

Don’t heat the milk up to much as this will kill the yeast, however if the milk is too cold it will not activate.  You want the milk at a temperature that if you put your finger in, you feel the heat on your cuticle.

When working with the dough, ensure that your work surface is cold, keep your hands cool as the dough must stay cool to ensure the butter does break through.

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I MADE IT April Challenge Round-up

I was fortunate enough to host the April I MADE IT challenge   I decided to challenge my fellow bloggers to make Monkey Bread, and wow wee, let me tell you, there were some great recipes submitted.

Thank you to everyone who took part in this challenge, here is a roundup of the recipes for April I MADE IT Challenge, Monkey Bread.

You can find my recipe here

Lynn at Turnips 2 Tangerine

Tandy at Lavender and Lime

Tami at Rumtumtiggs

Giovanna at Blue Jellybeans

If I left anyone out, please let me know!

The May I MADE IT Challenge is being hosted by Giovanna from Blue Jellybeans.  Pop on over there and find out what the challenge is, I am on my way there now!

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Monkey Bread – April I MADE IT Challenge

I was fortunate enough to host this months ‘I Made It Challenge”’, I settled for Monkey Bread.  I know a few people wonder…how do you get to that, how do you choose something as random as Monkey Bread? It was easy to be honest.  Firstly, I love Monkey Bread, I learnt about it while in the USA, secondly, I found a new product I desperately wanted to try which would fit in with this challenge, and thirdly, I wanted my fellow bloggers to think outside the box.

So I experimented with two different versions of monkey bread, one use a plain bread dough, the other using a sweet biscuit dough, which was store bought.

When you watch American sitcoms, you often see sad, depressed women eating cookie dough, straight from the can, I found a very similar product in my local Spar, which I just HAD to try.  To see if it was the same and all that…

Today’s Biscuit dough comes in 3 different flavours, Vanilla, Chocolate and Ginger, of course I wanted to add a little more depth to my Monkey Bread, so I used the Ginger flavour. This is so easy, that I can’t call it a real recipe!

todays biscuit dough

Ginger, Cinnamon and Nut Monkey Bread

1 packet of Today’s Ginger Biscuit Dough
1 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp ground cinnamon
Roughly chopped ground mixed nuts

Preheat the oven to 180°C

Line a muffin tray with cupcake holders (I got 6 out of this)
Throw away the empty packet of biscuit dough; the instructions on there will not work for this.
Defrost the biscuit dough, cut into small pieces and roll into balls.  You do not want it to big, but you also do not want it to small either.

Roll the balls in the cinnamon sugar mixture, and stack into the muffin cups.

In between the dough balls, sprinkle a few mixed nuts; I love the texture of the nuts between the layers of soft gooeyness.
Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, just until it is nice and golden brown.

Remove from oven, and now the fun starts.   You can glaze it with just icing sugar and butter mixture, or softened cream cheese.

monkey bread muffins

Those who know me, know that sweet treats are not my deal, so I had to make something savoury out of this challenge too!

Pizza Monkey Bread

Basic Pizza dough –  I use the Jamie Oliver Pizza Dough recipe, which is always a winner.
Homemade tomato sauce, which you can find the recipe here
Grated cheese – I used mozzarella and cheddar mixture
Bundt cake pan, greased with butter & flour (or cook n spray if you wish)

Now this is your creative side comes in.
Use your favourite pizza toppings; I had little bowls of already chopped toppings:
Ham, Salami, Mushrooms, Green Peppers, Peppadews, Danish Feta, Basil Pesto, Garlic, Camembert, Green Fig, Blue Cheese etc.

Preheat your oven to 200°C

Pull small balls off the pizza dough, mine weighed anywhere between 30g – 40g, roll them out and fill with your toppings of choice. Roll up the ball again and stack into the pan.

Between each layer, brush on some tomato sauce and sprinkle grated cheddar, the top later I made smaller balls, just to fit the bundt pan.

Once you have layered the bundt cake pan full, bake for 35 – 50 minutes, depending on your oven. Work on as if you were baking a bread from scratch. The time would be more or less the same.

I didn’t manage to get a photo of this one, but it was absolutely delicious, it was small stuffed balls of pizza happiness.

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I will do a round up of all the bloggers that have taken part in the challenge the first of the new month.  There are some great recipes!  There is still time to submit your Monkey Bread recipe!

I Made It Challenge – Monkey Bread

Tandy over at Lavender and Lime is running a monthly challenge – I Made It.  You can see my entry here for the March recipe, Zabaione.  Each month a different blogger gets to host an I Made It challenge, April is my month.  I was thinking really hard about what I should challenge other bloggers to do, I didn’t want to do something “everyday”, I didn’t want to stick to a specific ingredient, I did however  want to challenge fellow bloggers to think outside the box…and then after a few days of reasoning with myself…it hit me…Monkey Bread.

I remember Pinks had this as one of her questions on the Friday Quiz a while ago, and to answer the question…Wikipedia gives us the following…

A sweet, sticky, gooey pastry served in the United States for breakfast. It consists of pieces of soft bread with cinnamon sprinkled on it. It is served at fairs and other parks as a treat

I know Monkey Bread as both a sweet or savoury dish, which can be served for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  So let your creative juices start flowing and let’s see how many different versions of Monkey Bread we can come up with.

Please don’t forget to link back to this page, as well as leave a comment so I know you have taken part in this I Made It challenge, I will link back to Lavender and Lime, not forgetting to add this widget to your post!

You have until midnight at the end of the month to post your recipe

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Coffee Sabayon, served with Cinnamon & Nut Biscotti

My friend over at Lavender & Lime always has something exciting for bloggers to partake in, which I absolutely love.  For me, I am a seasonal blogger, I do not do it everyday, unfortunately time just doesn’t allow for it, I also go through these food slumps, to make something new and exciting EVERYDAY is exhausting.  I am trying to get better at blogging…it is my goal for this year.

The new Challenge – I Made It Challenge – Sabayon | Zabaione got me thinking.  I have made Sabayon a few times, for both sweet and savory dishes, served hot, cold and frozen, so I didn’t follow any recipe as such, I just went ahead and did my thing.  I was going to do two different types, however, those time fairies and all that…

The best part of this dessert is how you can adjust it to suit you.  If you like it a little sweeter, add more sugar, if you want to substitute different sugars, go ahead, and use whatever flavour alcohol you want, it’s all up to you!

Coffee Sabayon, served with Cinnamon & Nut Biscotti

6 egg yolks
80g sugar
1 cup Grundheim Coffee Liqueur (They also have a Rose Liqueur which will work just as well over fresh fruit)
1 tbsp lemon juice
½ box Biscotti, roughly crumbled

You will need a clear or stainless steel bowl which fit over a pot to create a double boiler.

Place all the ingredients into a clear bowl, whisk the ingredients until well combined, place bowl over simmering water and whisk continuously until your custard is at ribbon stage.

This process will take about 45 minutes to an hour.  You must cook it out properly otherwise you will have this egg like taste.

Roughly crush the Biscotti and layer between the Zabaione, place in fridge.

Zabaione

 

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