We begin again… again!

Hello!

So, starting this week I will be picking up on the blog series that I started last year. 2016 was and still is a year that has kept me extremely busy, hence the lack of activity on the blog side of things.

I will be kicking it all off with the 3rd installment of the Macaron Files, on Wednesday. If you missed the first 2, you can do a bit of catching up here…

The Macaron Files: Tip #1 and The Macaron Files: Tip #2

I also have a delicious recipe from Faeema, better known as Fay in The Maze that I’ve been keeping to myself for a while now for my Blogger Recipe Series.

There is so much left to share and I am happy to have you here with me!

 

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Blogger Recipe Series: {G.I Jane) Jane Kilian Shaw’s No- Bake Chocolate Chip Cream Bars

Jane is one of the most bad-ass chicks that I know, and there is no doubt as to why she is called GI Jane. With her Honours in Exercise Science she is no average trainer and is dedicated to helping women live a healthier and fitter life. Jane is however not just a fitness diva, she is also the creator of It’s A Bling Thing and Mielie Meisie, where women, and the men who love them, can buy jewellery, shoes and so much more, including Jane’s gorgeous, locally made clutches.

Jane shares all her fitness and health tips on her blog  GIJane.co.za but today she isn’t here prescribing burpees, shes’s sharing her favourite paleo recipe for No-Bake Chocolate Chip Cream Bars with us. I saw coconut, cinnamon and mini chocolate chips, so consider me sold!

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I have a very very sweet tooth but being in the industry that I am, and not wanting to gain weight, I’ve had to find healthier alternatives to some old faithfuls. I try to make paleo treats because they have less sugar and processed nasties in them so my go to girl is PaleOMG.

Here is a delish treat that is quick and easy to make.

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No-Bake Chocolate Chip Cream Bars Yields: 8-10 square bars

Prep Time: 8-10 hours (includes the refrigeration of coconut milk)

Chill Time: 1 hour

For the crust:
  • 5 dried dates, pitted
  • 1 cup almond butter
  • ¾ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • ½ cup of Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Chips
For the toppings:
  • 1 (14 ounce) can of Thai Kitchen Full Fat Coconut Milk, refrigerated overnight
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Directions:
  • Place pitted dates in a food process and pulse until completely broken down.
  • Add almond butter and pulse until combined.
  • Then add shredded coconut, honey, vanilla extract and a pinch of salt and puree until well combined.
  • Place in a bowl and fold in chocolate chips
  • Push crust down into a loaf pan (9×5) and press down firmly as possible to keep the crust from falling apart.
  • Remove the cream from the can of coconut milk. That will be the hard coconut that remains at the top of the can, milk/water will be in the bottom and you can reuse that later for smoothies or milk in your coffee.
  • Place cream in a bowl, add honey and cinnamon and whip together with a fork until smooth
  • Add whipped topping on top of crust and smooth out throughout the pan
  • Place in freezer for 1+ hours until topping has slightly harden
  • Cut into 8-10 bars, depending on the size you would like and serve immediately.
  • Store in refrigerator.

*To make it easier to remove the bars, line a bread pan with parchment paper and pull the parchment paper out with the bars before cutting.

You can follow Jane on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

If you loved this recipe or have anything to add, please leave a comment. I would love to hear what you have to say.

xxx Viveshni

Photo credit: paleomg.com

Blogger Recipe Series: {Happiness Is} Fathima Kathrada’s Snickerdoodle Biscuits

Fathima is the creative brain behind HAPPINESS IS, which is not only her illustration and design business but also her blog where she shares her love of cats, coffee shops ,and her beautifully created illustrations.

I first met Fathima over coffee when she was awesome enough to review our MACARON OF THE MONTH BOX. Our next meeting was at the NATIONAL COOKIE SWAP where I tasted her SNICKERDOODLE BISCUITS and have been lusting after them ever since. Now you have to understand that to me any baked goods covered in cinnamon are basically heaven sent, and these beauties were no exception. So when she told me that she would be sharing her Snickerdoodle recipe I did about 100 backflips (on the inside of course) and very politely thanked her.

I personally cannot wait to try this recipe out myself and I see it possibly becoming a weekly treat in my home.

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These are probably my absolute favourite homemade biscuits. This recipe reminds me of when I was little, my mom used to make them a lot and I’ve always loved their cinnamony flavour. They’ve got a lovely warm, comforting kind of taste and are pretty quick and simple to make, so no hassle! Great to have with tea while snuggled up on a cool winter day

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Snickerdoodle Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 250g margarine
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 3ml cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp bicarb
  • pinch of salt

Sugar & Spice Mixture Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg

Method:

  • Sift together the dry ingredients.
  • Cream the margarine and sugar together. Add in the egg and beat well.
  • Add in the vanilla essence and the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.
  • Roll dough into small balls the size of a walnut and then roll in the sugar & spice mixture.
  • Place on a greased baking sheet and bake at 180ºC for 8 – 10 minutes. Allow to cool, and enjoy!

Thank you to Fathima for sharing! You can find out more about her and Happiness Is on her blog or follow her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Do you love this recipe as much as I do? Let me know if you try it and for an extra bit of yum, why not add a rolo to the centre of your dough before you bake it! ( You are welcome! )

xxx Viveshni

photo credit: northerncook.wordpress.com / tastykichen.com

Blogger Recipe Series: {My Go 2 Girl} Parushinee Naidoo’s Chocolate Brownies

Parushinee has every girl’s dream job. She is a professional personal shopper,fashion stylist,gifting guru and event planner. Running her lifestyle concierge business, My Go 2 Girl, she has her finger on the pulse of current trends. I first met Parush a year ago when she was working on a marketing campaign that involved macarons. We quickly realized that we were similar in that we were both trying to get our businesses off the ground while still maintaining our roles as full time wives and mothers.

Parushinee has a great sense of style and class and it’s reflected in the work that she does and the unique and creative concepts that she comes up with. This week she is sharing with us her decadent but simple recipe for Chocolate Brownies. What more could you ask for!

INGREDIENTS Sugar, chocolate, vanilla and eggs….these are a few of my favourite things. I was a late bloomer when it came to baking. Confronted with my daughter Shyla’s first birthday, I decided to try and bake my first cake, ever. I’m sure my husband still has nightmares about that day, but 7 hours later, I had a fairly pretty, though somewhat lopsided butterfly cake. I have come a long way since then and now the creaming sugar and butter is second nature. I love the science of baking, the anticipation, the smell that fills my kitchen and the challenge of presenting something that tastes and looks amazing.

I must say though, I love simple recipes that turn out to be fabulous masterpieces. That’s why I love my chocolate brownie recipe so much. It’s a one bowl recipe, which I so do love because it means minimal clean up. The real beauty is in the brownie itself….the gooey chocolate centre! I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I enjoy making it and eating it.

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Chocolate Brownies

INGREDIENTS

  1. 250g melted butter
  2. 2 1/3 cups of castor sugar
  3. 90g good quality cocoa powder
  4. 1 cup of plain cake flour, sifted
  5. ½ teaspoon of baking powder, sifted
  6. 5 eggs
  7. 1 cup chopped dark chocolate
  8. 1 cup chopped roasted, salted peanuts

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 165 0 Line 2 x 20cm square baking tins or one large slice tin with baking paper
  2. Cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed.
  3. Sprinkle in cocoa powder and mix until combined and has a gooey consistency.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, allowing each egg to mix through before adding the next
  5. Rain in flour and baking powder with electric mixer on low speed , beating until well combined
  6. Stir through peanuts and chocolate until combined
  7. Pour equal amounts into tins and smooth over the surface with a palette knife
  8. Bake for 40min until firm edges but still a little soft in the centre
  9. Leave to cool for at least 30min before slicing. Alternatively you can make this ahead of time and store in the fridge.

Be sure to let me know if you’ve tried the recipe and how it turned out.

Enjoy!

xxx Viveshni

Blogger Recipe Series: { Run On Coffee } Nicola Meyer’s Lemon Meringue Pie

This week’s yummy recipe comes from Kloof mom Nicola Meyer. I first encountered this wonderful woman on Twitter and finally made contact when I offered up some treats for the Durban Blogger meet that was held last year. Even though I did liaise with Nicola, it was only this year that I really got a chance to get to know her better. Nicola’s blog, Run On Coffee, is a lifestyle blog where this mom of 2 shares all aspects of her life, from food to crafting and holidays. Nicola was generous enough to share both her Lemon Meringue and Milk Tart recipes (yum and double yum)

Only because it is one of my favourites, we’re going to be starting with the Lemon Meringue

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Both recipes come from a homemade recipe book that my mom-in-law made for my hubby Neil. I have no idea where she got them from (must ask her when I see her next time). I have been making these recipes since the early days of our marriage (21 years this year). I am very pleased to say that Neil prefers the way that I make them to the way his Mom does (ssshhhhhh).

They are fabulous and fast to make.

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Lemon Meringue Pie

Pastry base

Ingredients

  1. 113g margarine
  2. 2 Tablespoons suga
  3. 2 Tablespoons oil
  4. 1 egg
  5. 2 cups flour
  6. 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

Method

  1. Cream the margarine and sugar then add oil.
  2. Add beaten egg, flour and baking powder.
  3. Press into 3 tin pie plates.
  4. Prick the base and bake at 180C for 10 – 12 minutes.
  5. Can be kept in the fridge or freezer until required.

Notes :

  • This pastry recipe makes enough for 3 of those tin disposable pie plates.
  • I always make the pastry base in glass pie plates which are bigger than the tin ones. So I divide the pastry in 2.
  • I bake them both and use the one base for the lemon meringue and then cover the other in cling wrap and put it into the freezer.

Lemon Meringue Filling 

  1. 1 tin condensed milk
  2. ½ cup of lemon juice
  3. 2 egg yolks
  4. 2 egg whites
  5. 2 Tablespoons of sugar

Method

  1. Mix condensed milk, lemon juice and beaten egg yolks.
  2. Add grated lemon rind if desired. Pour into the pie crust.
  3. Cover with the meringue made by beating the 2 egg whites, adding sugar and beating again.
  4. Bake at 150C for approximately 15 minutes.

Notes :

  • I beat the egg whites in a clean glass bowl.
  • Using my electric beater I make the meringue first and then use the same beater to mix up the condensed milk etc.
  • I mix the condensed milk and egg yolks together first before adding the lemon juice as I found that the lemon juice tended to affect the egg yolks.

Thanks for sharing this delectable recipe Nicola. I cant wait to make it so I can try out my kitchen Craft blowtorch!

xxx Viveshni

Blogger Recipe Series : { Snap, Sizzle and Cook } Inge Loker’s Grandilla Fridge Tart

This week’s blogger recipe comes from Inge Loker (Snap, Sizzle and Cook). This lovely lady is originally from Cape Town but has planted her roots firmly in KZN with her family. I met her briefly at the Cuppa For Cansa that I hosted last year but only really got a chance to sit down and chat with her at the lunch a few weekends back hosted by Megan Deane. It was then that I realized when an absolutely delightful and grounded person she is ( and I’m not just saying that because she liked my breyani lol ). Inge is sharing her favourite recipe for her Granadilla Fridge Tart and it looks as good as it sounds.

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If there is one fruit that reminds me of summer its passion fruit. Granadilla as it is commonly known. For as long as I can remember, no matter which beach a person went to in Cape Town, there would undoubtedly be an ice-cream vendor from Gatti’s Ice Cream (click here (http://www.gattiicecream.co.za/) to Gatti’s website) selling delicious frozen lollies of all sorts. I admired these vendors since they spent hours in the hot sun walking on blistering sand carrying heavily laden cooler boxes filled with an array of ice lollies. Periodically one would spot them sitting on their boxes taking a few minutes to regain their strength. Not long after that a bellowing voice would cry out again, “an ice lollie make you jolly” in true “Kaapse Klopse” fashion. Of all the different ice lollies and ice-creams like wafers, caramel krunch, mint krunch, jelly jolly and crazy pine, my favourite was fruit sherbet granadilla. The plump blob of granadilla flavoured ice was the ultimate beach indulgence leaving ones lips numb and purple from the iciness. I still love granadilla with the result I have concocted an easy fridge tart, not quite the same as an ice lollie, but the granadilla pulp certainly bring back great beach memories for me.

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Ingredients

  • 1 packet of tennis biscuits
  • 1 – 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 packet of lemon jelly
  • 1.5 cups boiled water
  • 1 tin of condensed milk
  • 3 small tins of granadilla pulp or 6 fresh granadillas pulped

Method:

  •  Place the entire packet of tennis biscuits in a food processor and blitz till it resembles fine bread crumbs.
  • Work the butter into the crumbs with fingers and once well combined, press into a greased loose based 23cm round cake tin.
  • Place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  • Mix the jelly powder with 1.5 cups of boiling water.
  • Allow to cool completely.
  • Once cooled, add the tin of condensed milk and granadilla pulp and mix well.
  • Pour over tennis biscuit base and refrigerate until set. Serve as is or with ice-cream.

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Thanks for sharing this Inge, I also have very fond memories of the ice cream that inspired this recipe, so it’s definitely one to try.

You can read up on more of Inge’s culinary escapades on her blog Snap, Sizzle and Cook or follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

xxx Viveshni

Blogger Recipe Series :{ Stuffed Feeling } Megan Deane’s Rocky Road Chocolate Mousse Tart

I have been meaning to officially kick off this recipe series that features some amazing bloggers, and have been hoarding all their delicious secrets in the mean time. The day has finally come and I am honoured to have the first recipe up from Megan Deane, the delightful face behind the Stuffed Feeling blog, the 2014 SA BLOG AWARDS Runner Up in the Food & Wine Blog Category. ( Yes, she’s that awesome!)

After months of social media stalking I finally got the chance to meet Megan last year at the Spice Goddess event and had the pleasure of being hosted at her home this past weekend for her Mother’s Day Lunch With A Twist . Megan’s blog is an index for all things delicious to cook and she has shared with us her recipe for Rocky Road Chocolate Mousse Tart. Hold on to your spoons, because things are about to get delectable!

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Life’s too short, so make sure you eat dessert first!

There is no doubt that life can be challenging; whether it be bad traffic, a bad day in the office, an argument, financial woes or health complications. Despite all of these things there are elements of our lives that help us get through those moments, and in my mind no matter how small they are, they are greater than any problem and help make tough times sweeter.

This Rocky Road Chocolate Mousse Tart is a little reminder from me, to look at the blessings in your life and indulge in whatever makes your soul happy.

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Rocky Road Chocolate Mousse Tart

Ingredients:

Biscuit Base

  • 400g (2 packets) Chocolate Romany Creams
  • ½ Cup Butter, melted

Filling:

  • 3 eggs
  • ¼ Cup Castor sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • 300g Dark chocolate, melted
  • 300ml Cream

Topping:

  • 3 – 4 Marshmallows
  • ¼ Cup Almond flakes
  • ¼ Cup Chocolate chips
  • ¼ Cup Chocolate sprinkles
  • ¼ Cup cranberries

Instruction:

Biscuit Base

  1. Crush the Romany Cream biscuits.
  2. Melt the butter and mix in a little at a time with the crushed biscuits. Note: You want the mixture to be sticky but not too oily.
  3. Press biscuit mixture in tart dish.
  4. Bake in a preheated oven 180® for 5 minutes.
  5. Leave out to cool down; once the tart dish has cooled down place in the fridge.

Chocolate mousse filling (recipe developed from www.taste.com.au ):

  1. In a bowl, whip the cream until at stiff peak stage. Set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and then add the castor sugar. Beat until light, fluffy and doubled.
  3. Add cocoa powder, continue to beat.
  4. Gradually pour in the cooled down melted chocolate into the egg mixture while continuously beating.
  5. Once the melted chocolate has been added to the egg mixture, take the whipped cream and fold into egg mixture.
  6. Once the whipped cream and egg mixture have been mixed and folded in, pour over the biscuit base into the tart dish.
  7. Leave in the fridge for at least 1 hour.

Once the tart is set, decorate it with the rocky road topping ingredients.

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Thank you to Megan for this awesome recipe! This may just end up being a firm favourite.

Check out her blog www.stuffedfeeling.co.za and you can find her on Facebook and Twitter

Next week we have a Granadilla Fridge Tart from Inge Loker of www.snapsizzleandcook.wordpress.com

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Delicioso Banoffee Pie

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Google the word Banoffee and you will see words like irresistible and delicious or phrases like ‘best dessert in the world’. Banoffee, like the name, is an amalgamation of bananas and toffee into one heck of a dessert ,and unless you hate either bananas or toffee or are just plain insane, I dare you not to love this.

I am a lover of anything banana and I’ve passed that on to my kids as well. Milkshakes, sweets, macarons … The list goes on.
So when researching Banoffee Pie recipes I knew that I had to try it out. Even though I can’t indulge at the moment (read here in case you’re wondering why) I knew 2 little girls that would love the socks off it.

It’s so simple and from what I’ve heard from my tasting panel it taste delicioso ( too much Dora the Explorer!) You will need a little bit of patience with the prep but believe me its worth it

Here’s the recipe for The Delicioso Banoffee Pie.

Ingredients

  • 2x 330ml cans of condensed milk
  • 6 Tbsp of melted butter plus extra for greasing
  • 150g  crushed digestive biscuits
  • 50g toasted, ground almonds
  • 50g toasted, ground hazelnuts
  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1tsp vanilla essence
  • 75g grated chocolate
  • 450ml whipped, thick double cream

Method

  • Dulce De Leche – Place the cans of condensed milk into a large saucepan of water and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then reducethe heat and allow it to simer for 2 hours.( This is where the patience comes in.) be sure to top up the water regularly so that the cans are always covered or you run the risk of the cans exploding. After 2 hours, carefully remove the 2 cans and leave to cool completely before opening.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C
  • Grease a 23cm flan tin or similar using the extra butter
  • Mix together the crushed biscuit, nuts and butter in a bowl and then press the mixture evenly into the base and sides of the tin
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes, then leave to cool
  • Peel and slice the bananas
  • Place the bananas in a bowl and sprinkle the lemon juice and vanilla essence over
  • Mix it together gently, you don’t want to smush the bananas
  • Spread the bananas over the biscuit crust
  • Open the cans of condensed milk ( now dulce de leche ) and spoon over the bananas
  • Sprinkle 50g of the chocolate over
  • Finally spoon the whipped cream over and sprinkle the remaining chocolate
  • Serve and enjoy!!
Crush the biscuits - You can use a food processor as well

Crush the biscuits – You can use a food processor as well

Dulce de Leche

Dulce de Leche

The lemon juice will keep the bananas from turning brown

The lemon juice will keep the bananas from turning brown

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Blogger Recipe Series : #SpiceGoddess

I am starting a series of posts featuring some of my favourite bloggers and friends, who will be sharing their favourite recipes with us. I’ll be doing these posts on a Friday so that we all have the weekends to try them out.

First up we have the lovely Verushka Ramasami, the ever inspiring Spice Goddess.

As a child my fondest memories are those spent in the kitchen with my now 80year old
grandmother.It was here my thoughts of been a Domestic Goddess were cultivated.My
gran has always inspired me to cook and become involved in the process of buying,
making , experimenting and serving.

My gran is a very accomplished Domestic Goddess even up to this day.Just the other
day she reminded me to buy Fruit mix so she could start making her famous moorish
Christmas Cakes.I recall as a lil’ kid gran making a Christmas cake for each of her
brothers and sisters , but now she just spoils us at home.Also the cost factors are
rather high .So when my lovely friend Madame Macaron asked me if I would be
interested in a guest post and share a recipe, I knew this recipe had to be
shared.This recipe is an eggless recipe which is very handy for all.It keeps for
ages is super moist and rather easy to make even for a non baker like me.

Gran Christmas Cake :

Ingredients
4 1/2 cups self raising flour
1kg mixed fruit (cake mix)
100g red glace cherries halved
1/2 cup golden syrup
50ml black coffee
2 tspn vanilla essence
2 tspn cinnamon powder
2 tspn mixed spice
5ml salt
2 cups orange juice
500g margarine (Rama)
2 cups pecan nuts or almonds
1 x 300g tin of cream
1 tsp bicarb
2 cups of white sugar

Method :
1)Preheat oven to 180 degrees – middle shelf.
2)Line and grease oven tray
3)Add to a pot all the moist ingredients to melt except the flour ,spices, vanilla
essence, fruit, nuts and bicarb.
4)Once melted allow to cool before adding the remainder of ingredients in.
5)Mix well before pouring into lined , greased oven tray.
6)Turn the temperature down to 160degrees and bake for 1hr 30 min .

Serving suggestion
1)Eat on its own
2)Serve with ice cream
3)Serve instead of Christmas pudding with custard.

Mum , Gran and I celebrating her 80th birthday earlier this year

XXX Verushka Ramasami

 

Follow Verushka on Twitter @Verushka143 and have a look at her amazing blog here.