Posts Tagged ‘slice’

Shortbread slice – three ways (chocolate icing, passionfruit icing, jaffa style)

Traditional scottish shortbread slice

This buttery, crumbly, melt-in-your mouth slice is a favourite in my family. This like the traditional scottish shortbread sold in pretty tins at Christmas time. In fact, I often make this as a Christmas gift.

The custard powder in the ingredients is the real secret. Sure, it’s not “traditional”. But traditional shortbread in the 16th century only had three ingredients (sugar, butter and oatmeal), and back in the 16th century they also believed that bread would not rise if there was a corpse (as in dead body) in the vicinity. And I mean, how did they even judge that? So, it’s time we all modernised a bit.

Shortbread slice with optional chocolate icing

 

Adaptions:

  1. Chocolate shortbread slice: I highly recommend making it with chocolate topping (use the chocolate icing recipe for hedgehog slice).
  2. Jaffa shortbread slice: (This is kinda exciting.) Add the rind from one orange into the dough and substitute the water for orange juice, then top with chocolate icing as above.
  3. Traditional shortbread: Lovely as a gift, key difference is you slice the shortbread BEFORE cooking it, and prick the top of each slice with the tines of a fork. You can also sprinkle sugar on top before cooking too for a professional finish! I’ve added in these instructions below.

Good times.

Ingredients

250 grams butter
½ cup icing sugar
½ cup caster sugar
½ cup custard powder
2 cups plain flour
2 teaspoons of vanilla essence
1 ½ tablespoons of water

Passionfruit icing

2 passionfruit
1 tablespoon of butter
Approx 2 cups of icing sugar – have more on hand.

Optional – chocolate icing

Follow the ingredients and method used in the hedgehog slice recipe, sans the white chocolate on top.

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Line a rectangular 20x30cm (ish) baking tin with baking paper.
  2. Beat the butter and sugars together (Kitchen Aid or beaters).
  3. Add custard powder, flour, vanilla essence and water, mix well. The dough will be hold-it’s-own-shape thick.
  4. Squish your dough into your prepared tray, I use a spatula or my hands to get it even, it won’t move much in the oven so what you make is what you’ll get. OR, if you’re leaving as a slice, squish into tin as above, then cut it into pieces and prick the top of each with a fork.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until shortbread is lightly browned all over..
  6. Cool in tin and ice once completely cool. OR, if leaving as a slice, recut into slices while still in tin, then once completely cool, place in airtight container.
  7. To make icing: scoop passionfruit insides into a bowl, add a tablespoon of margarine. Add enough icing sugar so it’s as thick as honey.
  8. To ice, use a spatula and place big dollops on the slice, then spread out until even. I then use boiling water and this handy metal cake icing tool to smooth the top (see below)

Passionfruit icing on shortbread

Note: I did end up with a bit of left over icing, which suits me fine as it freezes well. It’s hard to get the quantities just right.

Quantity: Makes 32 squares.

Healthy? 150 calories per melty goodness slice.

Storage: No eggs, so they will last. Store in airtight container.

Rocky road (perfect for Christmas)

Rocky road

In part two of the uh-oh-it’s-Christmas-how-the-feck-did-that-happen posts, here’s some Rocky Road.

Marshmallows, coconut, Turkish delight, nuts cherries, chocolate… all these things are easy to find in the supermarket. And it’s a forgiving recipe, just swap out what you can’t eat or don’t want. (more…)

Plum tray bake

Plum slice cut up

Australia is just reaching the end of summer and the stone fruit season, so now is the time to make the most of baking with the last of the plums. And plum slice is just the ticket. Actually, I lie. Not about the slice… it’s not the end of summer – it’s well and truly autumn (or fall, whatever you wish to call it). But there is still some nice stone fruit, and still some nice weather.

(more…)

Cherry ripe slice

Like all good stories, we should start at the beginning:

1. Cherry ripe bars (not the slice below, I’m talking about an actual chocolate bar here) are Australia’s oldest chocolate bar. It’s not hard to be the oldest thing of anything in Australia, but when something is, we respect that.

Word.

2. Cadbury, the makers of the bar, describe it as “… ripe juicy cherries and moist coconut smothered in rich Old Gold dark chocolate …”

3. What the marketing team doesn’t mention is you can’t get them in London. This is a problem for me.

This recipe was printed in the The Guardian Weekend newspaper. so armed with three packets of glace cherries, I gave it a shot. It’s delicious. So good. I took it to a BBQ and another couple of Australians there said the taste was just the same as the chocolate bars.

Next time I make it though, I’m going to half the base. I’m more about the chocolate and the cherries. But other taste testers at the above BBQ liked the base as is. I’ll post an update once I try it.

Before I launch in to the recipe I would like to issue a challenge:

You can either chop up the cherries needed for this recipe by hand or use a food processor. If you have a child under 10 (who you trust with a knife) I think you should let them chop the cherries. Then email me at  a picture of the resulting cherries/child combo at clevermuffin@gmail.com. I promise to post it. *hehe*

Ingredients: Base
1 1/3 cups plain flour
2 tablespoons cocoa
½ cup caster sugar
½ teaspoon baking powder
100 grams butter, softened
¼ cup cold milk

Ingredients: Cherry filling
600 grams glace cherries
125 grams sweetened condensed milk
1 ¾ cups desiccated coconut
2 teaspoons vanilla essence

Ingredients: Chocolate topping
250 grams dark chocolate
4 teaspoons olive oil

Method: Base
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (160C fan-assisted, 350F, gas mark 4).
2. Take a 18cm square cake tin, preferably one with a removable base, and line bottom with baking paper. Spray with cooking oil for good measure.
3. Put the flour, cocoa, sugar and baking powder in a bowl and rub in the butter until it’s worked through and all the lumps have gone.
4. Add the milk and mix to a soft, even dough.
5. Press firmly and evenly into the base of your prepared tin.
6. Set to bake for 15-20 minutes, or until set and dry on top. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.

Method: Cherry filling
1. Put 400 grams of glace cherries in a food processor to mince very finely. I did start this process by hand (see above) which is possible with a bit of patience. But very sticky. I then borrowed a food processor from my neighbour. Much quicker.
2. Mix in the sweetened condensed milk, coconut and vanilla until you have a smooth, pink paste.
3. Cut the remaining cherries in half, stir through, then spread evenly over your cooling base (doesn’t matter if it’s not completely cool).
Warning: even through the base has been cooling and the sides are cool, the bottom is still piping hot, don’t try and pick it up with your bare hands to put it back in the oven (guess how I learnt that lesson).
4. Bake at the same temperature for a further 25 minutes or until it starts to go golden on top.
5. Refrigerate until the slice is cold – about two to three hours.

Method: Chocolate topping
1. Place the chocolate and oil in a saucepan over low heat and stir until melted.
2. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
3. Spread over the slice.
4. Refrigerate until firm.
5. Cut with a heated knife. This will take a bit of muscle. I had two tall cups full of boiling water to assist with the process.

But it’s worth it. Oh, it’s so worth it.

Cut in to 2cm squares, this makes 30.

Healthy? It’s no fruit salad love. 200 calories per slice.

Gluten free? The base is not. The GF recipes I have seen just substitute the flour with GF flour, but I haven’t tried it. With all the butter and sugar, I think it would be fine and bind well enough. Or, you could do something like:

Gluten free alternate for base
Ingredients
170 grams digestive type GF biscuits from the supermarket, crushed
60 grams butter, melted
2 tablespoons cocoa

Method
Combine the digestive biscuits, butter and cocoa together. Press firmly into the base of the tin. No need to cook it for this method. Then just add the cheery mixture on top and keep going as above.

Storage: In an airtight container.

Source: Modified from The Guardian Weekend “How to bake: cherry ripe bars” by Dan Lepard p. 63. 18 July 2011.