Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Birthday, Meryl !!!

I wanted to specially bake a birthday cake for my younger daughter on her actual day, (coincidentally, it fell on Good Friday this year) and brought her to the places she had been wanting to since the last celebration was a rush.   However, she said her friends would be dragging her out for celebration.  Sigh! With my elder daughter not coming back this week and my younger would be out with friends, it seemed  that I and my hubby would be left alone again :(

I insisted of baking her a proper birthday cake despite my busy schedule.   I picked up a  Nutella Choc Mousse Cake recipe from Jess of Bakericious but made some modification to it.   Given that my nights were filled with numerous conference calls, I had no choice to juggle the cake baking between the calls but for the icing part, I could only start after all calls ended.   I was too tired after the icing and could not continue as it was almost midnight at that time.  I had therefore left the final frosting and decoration to the next morning.

Phew! With all the touch up and decoration in the next morning, the cake finally looked presentable :) 

My daughter's friends only arrived after lunch.  It was a small get-together, only 6-7 of them were invited.  Their original plan was to get-together here for birthday cake cutting ceremony  and then proceed to elsewhere for their 2nd part of their program ...

The house was full of laughter and chit-chat, I could see they were having a lot of fun and enjoying the time together.  I guessed they might have forgotten keeping track of their time and by then I reminded them, it had passed 5pm.   It's time for cake cutting celebration!  The kids gathered all around the birthday girl and sang a birthday song for her.  My daughter was so overjoyed and I believed that she felt so special that day. It was such a bliss that the kids enjoyed the cake so much so that they finished the whole cake...

After the cake cutting ceremony, the kids changed their mind and decided to study together  rather than hanging out since school exam is approaching.  I was glad that this bunch of friends were so sensible and hardworking.   Thumbs-up!

My hubby and I decided to bring the kids for dinner as it was late, past 7pm.  We brought them to Pizza Hut since most kids love pizza and western foods and it's a great place for birthday celebration.  Some of the them ordered pizza, others order spaghetti and other stuffs, my hubby and I tried the Pizza Hut's new launched set meals. 

I was glad that Pizza Hut has improved their food quality and menu variety over time and most impressed me was their customer services!  The restaurant officer gave my daughter a surprise of a birthday cake and some balloons.  It was a great time together with the kids and  I could see my daughter was so excited and happy ... 

The dinner ended with a group photo and let's cheer for happiness !   I thought my day would full with loneliness but turned out, it was so fulfilling and blessing as firstly,  the birthday cake was awesome,  most importantly was the joy we brought to the birthday girl.  Although it's a simple celebration, a gathering of friends together; I believe my daughter was filled with great happiness and joyous that day. 

If you are looking for birthday cake recipe, I would like to recommend this to you  as it's worth the effort.    Cheers!!

Choc Nutella Layer Cake Recipe
Preparation:
- Prepare one 7” round chocolate sponge cake cut into 3 layers.  Click here for recipe but cut amount to 70%.

Ingredients for Choc Nutella Filling: adopted from Jess from Bakericious.

- 50g dark chocolate (54% couverture chocolate)
- 100g nutella
- 40g butter
-  1 egg yolk
- 15g sugar (can cut down to 10g)
- 1 tsp gelatin powder + 1 tbsp water (can increase to 1 1/4 gelatine)
- 200ml whipped cream
- 30-50g Valrhona Crunchy Dark Chocolate Pearl

Filling Method :
1.  Melt chcolate and nutella over double boiler, stir till melt.   Add in butter and mix till smooth and well combined.   Put aside to cool. 
2.  Whisk egg yolk and sugar over double boiler till pale and thicken.  Put aside to cool.
3.  Pour egg yolk mixture (from step 2) into chocolate nutella mixture (from step 1).  Mix well.  If the mixture becomes thicken, whisk with a electronic mixer for a while till smooth.
4.  Mix gelatine and water together, double boil till gelatine dissolved.  Put aside.
5.  Whisk whipping cream over ice water till soft stiff (about 1.5-2 mins).  Add in chocolate nutella mixture (from step 3) and mix well gently at low speed. 
6.  Pour in gelatine solution and gently stir till well combined.   Freeze in fridge for 10-15 mins to let it thicken.

To Assemble:
6. Place 1 layer of sponge cake onto a 7" loose form tin. Divide chocolate nutella mixture into 3.5 portion, spread one portion onto the 1st layer and distributed evenly.  Sprinkle with crunchy dark chocolate pearl.
7. Cover with the 2nd layer of sponge cake and spread another portion of chocolate nutella mixture and sprinkle some more crunchy dark chocolate pearl. Repeat the same for the top layer with chocolate nutella mixture only and cover the remaining at all sides. Chill in the fridge overnight or at least 3 hours before final frosting and touch up.

To prepare chocolate ganache: 
8.  Bring 60g of milk to boil, add in 60g of dark chocolate and stir till melted.  Add in 15g of butter and mix till well combined.  Cool its temperature over ice-water and let it thicken. 

Final touch up and decor:  
9.  Frost the cake with chocolate ganache and freeze for another 30 mins. 
10. Remove from fridge and decorate as desired.  Chill the cake for 1 hour before serving. 

Friday, April 22, 2011

Light Marble Cheesecake

I wasn't sure how to settle the left over creamcheese from the last bake, with only half of the block remaining, it seems the only right fit was the Japanese cheesecake.

I had baked a couple of Japanese cheesecakes before but the only one that satisfied me most was the green tea version as its texture was just right, not too soft.   However, most kids don't really appreciate green tea,  I could only bake something that was "all-time favorite".

I picked up a Light Cheesecake recipe from one of my cookbooks but made a slight modification as I wanted a marble effect.   I wasn't sure whether I had overbaked the cake this round or it's with the fault of the recipe, the texture of it seemed too dry, rough and not very tasty.  It's not something I was looking for.  To enhance it, I decided to frost a layer of  chocolate ganache.  

Although the chocolate ganache did help to enhance the overall taste, it was still not meeting the mark. Sigh!

Light Marble Cheesecake Recipe
Ingredients
 -    120g cream cheese
-    45g milk    
-    25g butter  
-    3 egg yolks 
-    3/4 tsp vanilla essence                  
-    25g corn flour                     } sifted
-    20g top flour                      } together
-    3 egg whites
-    65g caster sugar
-    1/2 tbsp cocoa powder

Preparation
-    Preheat oven  at 150*C. .  Baking Time: 1  hr (+/-20mins).
-    Baking pan:  One 6" and One 4" loose tins, outer wrapped with foil and base lined with baking paper.  Bake on the lowest rack in a water bath.  (Don’t grease the side)

Method
1.    Double boil milk, creamcheese and butter till melted.  Stir till smooth.  Remove from fire and leave to cool for a while. 
2.    Add in egg yolks, one at a time, mix well after each addition and then add in vanilla essence.
3.   Add in flours and mix well.  Put aside.
4.    Preheat Oven with boiling water for water bath.
5.    Whisk egg whites at medium speed until bubbly formed, add in sugar gradually and whisk till 75% stiff (about 2.5-3 mins).
6.    Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the cheese batter (step 3), gentlely mix well.  Repeat the same for remaining the egg whites.
7.   Take 80g of batter and mix well with cocoa powder. Pour 1/2 of the cheese batter on to the baking tin, spoon the cocoa batter over, cover with remaining of cheese batter.  Use a knife or spoon to draw marble pattern.
8.    Pour into the prepared pan and bake in water bath in a preheated oven at 150* for 1 hr until the centre is set and golden brown.   ( I think I must have left it in the oven after bake for too long and that's why the texture became too dry)
9.    Leave the cake to cool.  Remove the cake from pan and chill in fridge for 4-5 hours before serving.   

To make Chocolate Ganache:
-  Bring 80g of milk to boil, add in 60g of chocolate and 15g of butter.  Stir till smooth.  Cool the ganache over ice water till thickens.  Pour the ganache over the cheesecake.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Oreo Layer Cheesecake

I didn't intend to celebrate my younger daughter's birthday last weekend since it was still early.  However, my elder couldn't come back this week despite the public holiday on Friday as she needs to put all her focus on her Uni exam.  In order to accommodate her and leave her to concentrate her study fullest, we had brought forward the birthday celebration to last Sunday, April 17. 

This change came in such a sudden, fortunately, I still had a 4" sponge cake sitting in the fridge with no plan.  Since we didn't intent to extend the birthday celebration to extended family and friends, the 4" cake was just perfect to fit in. With my younger's request of  an Oreo cheesecake for her birthday, I decided to make a simple Oreo Layer Cheesecake which only to fill the sponge cake with a layer of crushed Oreo cheese mixture.   With no interesting recipe I could find online, I adopted my previous Creamcheese Layered Cake recipe with some modification. 

It only took me an hour to prepare the filling and frost the cake.  Quick job! I was amazed by my efficient work!  I was quite satisfied this round  as I could see the cake was pretty well decorated and piped.. Although it wasn't perfect, at least, it has proven some improvement made..
 
My younger was given the honor to choose the food she wanted for her birthday celebration.  As we know,  Chilli Crab is her favorite dish, therefore, we brought her to Jumpo Seafood.  After the delicious dinner, we presented this little birthday cake to her and sang her a birthday song.   Although nothing fanciful, we really hope she enjoyed everything we prepared for her!

Was the cake nice?  Overall, it was quite well received by my family and my maid, however,  not to my expectation.  I think something is lacking but couldn't described exactly what's missing.  Hope I can further improvise this recipe in next attempt.

Oreo Layer Cheesecake Recipe
Preparation:
- Prepare one 4” round cake cut into 3 layers. 

Ingredients for Filling:
- 125g Creamcheese
- 35g butter
- 1/2 tsp lemon juice
-  2-3 tsp condensed milk
-  80g Oreo cookies (finely crushed)

Method:
1. Beat cream cheese and butter till smooth (about 2 mins). 
2. Add in lemon juice and condensed milk.  Mix well.
3. Add in finely crushed Oreo and mix well.  Put aside.
4. Divide Oreo cheese mixture from step 3 into 3.5 portion,  and spread one portion of Oreo cheese mixture onto the bottom layer and evenly distributed. 
5. Cover with 2nd layer of sponge cake and spread another portion of Oreo cheese mixture. Repeat the same for 3rd layer and spread remaining Oreo cheesecake for whole cake.  Freeze for 30 mins to a hour before decor.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Yam Layer Cheesecake

 Are you craving for certain types of cake that are not easily available in the cake shops?  If yes, pick up some simple baking skill and that will help you to fulfill some of your desire.    

Layer cake is not difficult to make, it's only cumbersome because of many steps.  This is the reason that put me off many times.  And if I intend to make, I normally will split the process into two days, one day for sponge cake baking, another day for fronting/ icing. 


My daughter had been telling me how delicious the yam cheesecake she tasted.  Yam and cream with coconut milk are perfect combination as it tastes like Orh Nee,  however, I couldn't image how yam and creamcheese could blend well, the taste should be quite odd, right?  Since my daughter likes it, I decided to give it a try.

As I couldn't find a good recipe online, I modified a recipe from Chef Alan Kok of his  "The ultimate Indulgence Cheesecake" cookbook, surprisingly, it did turn out pretty good!  Both my hubby and my elder daughter loved it so much but personally, I still prefer the Yam with cream and coconut milk version. 

I will be submitting this to Aspiring Bakers #6: Say Cheese! (April 2011) hosted by Jean from Noms I Must

Recipe here for sharing!  Enjoy!

Yam Layer Cheesecake  Recipe
Preparation:
- Prepare one 7” square sponge Cake cut into 3 layers.  Click here for recipe.

Ingredients for Filling:

- 250g Creamcheese
- 80g Caster sugar

- 40g fresh milk
-  350g Yam puree (steam and mashed into puree)
-  1 tsp yam paste
-  1 tbsp gelatine + 3 tbsp water  
- 200g whipping cream + 15g caster sugar
-  100g top whipping cream (whipped)


Method:

1. Beat cream cheese and sugar till smooth (about 3 mins). 

2. Add in yam puree and fresh milk, mix well at low speed.  Put aside.
3. Mix gelatine with water and double boil till dissolved.  Put aside.
4. In another mixing bowl, whisk whipping cream with sugar till slightly stiff (about 1.5 to 2 mins), add into yam cheese mixture (in step 2) and mix well. 
5.  Pour gelatine solution (in step 3) into and stir till combine (don't over mix).  
6. Place 1 layer of sponge cake onto a loose form tin. Divide yam cheese mixture into 4 portion and spread one portion to 1st layer and evenly distributed. 
7. Cover with the 2nd layer of sponge cake and spread another portion of yam mixture. Repeat the same for the top layer and cover the remaining at all sides. Freeze for 30 mins to a hour before piping.
 

8. In a  mixing bowl, whip top whipping cream till stiff and pipe pattern and decor as desired. 9. Chill in fridge for min. 3 hours before serving.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Chocolate Banana Cupcakes

TGIF.. Thank God it's Friday!!!  It has been a long wait since Monday ... and Hooray!!  Finally ... I can't wait to this week end!  In fact, there is no special event or occasion, I just need a mental break!!

I wanted to bake another batch of Chocolate-Bottom Banana Square for my elder daughter since she hadn't had a chance to try it.  Instead of baking into a cake form, I decided into cupcakes since it's more convenience for the kids to handle if they want to bring to share with their friends and/or classmates.    I regretted the decision made as  I realized that it's much nicer to eat as square form than cupcake.  Another mistake I made was over swirled the plain and chocolate batters together.  With the distinct layer of the chocolate and plain, it is richer and tastier.  Somehow, when two flavors mixed together, it doesn't stand out.

Despite my disappointment, both my daughters and their classmates enjoyed it :)  Phew!

Interested to try out?  Click here

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Ginkgo Barley with Beancurd Sheet Dessert 白果腐竹薏米汤

I love to eat my mum's Chinese desserts, she is a good cook.  However, with her age catching up,  she has some physical movements problem and these days, she can only cook something light and dessert will no longer be her priority.

 
I had been craving for this Ginkgo Barley dessert for a while and last week I happened to come across a recipe from Sonia of Nasi Lemak Lover.  I was immediately "hooked" and determined to go for it.     However, instead of me cooking, I asked my maid to follow the recipe strictly. 

Although it doesn't taste as nice as my mum's dish, this is considered pretty good.  I must ask my mum for her secrete recipe as hers is really yummy!

Below is the recipe from Sonia of Nasi Lemak Lover for your reference.

Ginko Barley with beancurd Sheet Dessert
Ingredients:
  • 100g Barley, washed and cleaned
  • 100g Ginkgo nuts, remove shell and skin  ( I used canned type for this batch)
  • 1pc Beancurd sheet (a special type that suitable for this dessert, easy to turn soft) , wash and soak for 5mins, cut into small pieces
  • 130g rock sugar or to taste ( I will cut down to 110g as it's slightly sweet)
  • 3pcs pandan leaves (screwpine leaves)
  • 2000 ml water

Method

1. Add barley, screwpine leaves and water into a large pot and bring to boil. Once water is boiled, cover and change to low flame and continue to boil for 30mins.
2. Put in Ginkgo nuts, continue to boil for another 30mins.
3. Add rock sugar and adjust according to your taste.
4. Add in beancurd sheet at the end ( 5mins before this dessert is done) or beancurd is broken. If you are using the normal type of beancurd sheet, add in 30mins before this dessert is done.
5. Can be served hot or cold.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Black Forest Cake

Some of my colleagues indicated I should seriously consider going into the cakes and pastry business as they like the baking photos that I posted on FB.  Those who tasted my creation, they enjoyed it as well.   I felt so flattered as I think those photos sometimes can be misleading, it may be appeared very tempting and delicious but to be able to stand out from the popular bakery brands in the market, it's still far-fetched.

I believe I am a determined person, if I want to do it, I will put in a lot of effort and focus on it.  Therefore, if I really want to change line, first thing in my mind is to pursue a qualified certification/paper.  If possible, I will like to take up some courses oversea.  Investment in certification is inevitable, this way will help to accelerate the desired skill and knowledge within shorter window  but certainly,  a need to weigh the cost factor is required as it should be within your financial ability.  Life is full of uncertainty and thing can change dynamically, may be one day, if I am very upset with my current career or I can no longer able to take anymore work stress, that may push me for a  career change and therefore pick up baking .. who knows! 

I think I've enough of baking career thoughts.  Let's get back to my bake.   I have finally baked a black forest cake this time, this is one of my to-bake items since I started baking.  Black forest cake supposed to be the all-time favourite and was one of the old fasion and popular cake during my childhood time.  However,  these days, there are too many varieties/ choices and flavors of the cakes available in the market for consumers, black forest has either become something very ordinary or  been modified to become so sophisticated that is totaly lacking of its authenticity.

I don't think this recipe is very authentic as the layers in between is chocolate cream plus no sprinkle of cherry syrup.  I choose this because my daughter doesn't like the sourness of the cherry syrup and it's more to kid's liking.  One thing for sure, I need to beef up my icing skill as somehow, I wasn't able to pipe a rosette properly.  I definitely need to take a course but it's sad that it's hard for me to find any time that could fit into my schedule these days.  Guess I will have to learn thru' elearning from the  demo clip posted in Youtube and practise more often.

Verdict? I was very pleased with this recipe, the sponge cake was soft and fluffy, with the smooth chocolate cream, the mildly sour of cherry and a hint of rum, it makes this a wonderful dessert. Although it spent me a few hours last Sunday to ice and assemble the cake together, I think the time and hassle are worthwhile as my family like it so much!

Here you go.. Black Forest Cake recipe!
 
Ingredients:
-  One 8" round chocolate sponge cake or Two 6" round, cut into 3 layers.
-  400-450g fresh cream
- 250g  dark sweet pitted cherries (1 can)
- 150-200g chocolate shaving
- 2 1/2 tsp rum
 
Chocolate Cream
-  130g dark chocolate (56%)
-  70g milk

 Method:
  1. To make chocolate cream:  bring milk to boil and add in dark chocolate.  Stir till chocolate melt.  Remove from fire.  Set aside.
  2.  Whisk the fresh cream till stiff and add 220g of the whipped cream and 2 tsp rum to the chocolate cream.  Mix well.
  3. Spread a think layer of chocolate cream onto one cake layer, scatter the pitted cherries over it and cover with another layer of chocolate cream.  Continue layering the cake and repeating the same step until the 3rd layer of the cake is placed.  
  4. Add 1/2 tsp rum to the remaining fresh cream, mix well.
  5. Cover the the whole cake with fresh cream, line the slides of the cake with chocolate shaving and pipe some rosettes using a star nozzle.  Last decor with fresh cherries or pitted cherries as desired. 

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Chocolate Sponge Cake (Basic)

I had been using this sponge cake recipe for all of the chocolate layer cakes lately and since this is a basics sponge cake, I think I should create a separate post for easy reference.  This recipe is similar to the vanilla sponge cake I posted previously except  10g of flour is replaced by cocoa powder.  This sponge cake is feather light, although it's a bit more work than other easy sponge cake recipes, I believe you will agree with me that it's worth the effort.

Here you go.. Basic Chocolate Sponge Cake Recipe

Recipe:
Ingredients  (7” square or 8” round or Two 6" round)
- 4 egg Yolks         
- 35g caster sugar  
- 2 tbsp milk 
- ¼ cup Oil (or melted butter)
- ½ tsp Vanilla Essence
- 70g Cake/ Top Flour } sifted
- 10g cocoa powder    }
- ½ tsp Baking power }
- 4 egg whites 
- 90g castor sugar

Method
1. Whisk egg yolks and sugar  till lighter in colour, pale yellow.
2. Microwave milk and oil or melted butter for 20 sec and immediately stir into the egg yolk mixture (Step 1) with a hand whisk.
3. Add in vanilla essence and sifted flour and cocoa powder. Stir till smooth.
4. In another mixing bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks formed. Add in the sugar a portion at a time and beat until 70% stiff. Fold in 1/3 portion of the egg whites into egg yolk mixture (step 3) and mix well. Repeat the same step for the remaining egg whites till finish. Mix well.  Don't overmix.
5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake in preheated oven at 160*C for 40- 45 mins.

6. Once bake, let it cool down before slicing into layers.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Chocolate Layer Cheesecake

With the China having the Tomb-Sweeping public holiday on Monday and Tuesday this week,  I was glad that I had a lighter schedule during 1st half of the week as most of the calls had been pushed out or cancelled :)  However, after they return to work, again I'm back to busy schedule. :(

I've been long wanting to bake a black forest cake, however, given that it's not a simple cake and takes time,  that always put me off last minute and therefore, sad to say that till now, I have not made it.    Since I felt like making layer cake and there were still a few blocks of cream cheese soon to expire,  I picked up a simple Non-Bake Chocolate Cheesecake recipe from Ancoo's blog,  thinking that I already had the sponge cakes on hand, the cream whipping and assembling parts should not take up an hour but I was wrong, it actually took me a much longer time than expected.   :(     

In fact, I was juggling between calls and cake making  that night and not very patient for it.  The worst thing happened was I mistook one of the call schedule and almost missed it.  Luckily, I suddenly "wake up" last minute and managed to attend the call in time.  Poor cake!  I had to leave it at whatever stage till my call finished.  I mobilized my maid for help and to keep all the "work-in-progress" in the fridge first. I was keeping my fingers crossed,  praying hard that the cream would still be in "good condition" after my call.   Finally my call ended and thank god .. my day wasn't too bad, I was able to get this thru' smoothly that night ..

I didn't follow Ancoo's recipe strictly as my chocolate paste had expired and I had to throw it away.  May be because of the omission of this ingredient, the cake didn't really stand out, it's quite light in taste but luckily, the sponge cake was soft and fluffy.  I wasn't very satisfied with it as I expected a more chocolaty and cheesy flavor. However,  my hubby somehow liked it.  I was quite regretted of the decision made as the amount of time and effort spent, I could have make a black forest cake... haiz!

Anyway, here is the version of my recipe (adopted from Ancoo with slight modification)

- Prepared a piece of 8" round chocolate sponge cake or Two 6" round. Cut into 3 layers.

Cheese Ingredients:

  • 250g Cheese cream
  • 2tbsp Icing sugar
  • 3tbsp Condensed milk
  • 35g Cocoa powder with some water
  • 5 tsp Gelatine powder with 1 tbsp of water
  • 1tsp kahlua (coffee liqueur)
  • 400g Fresh cream-whipped to peak form with 1 tbsp of caster sugar

Method:

  • Premix water and gelatin powder, double boil till gelatine melted.  Keep warm.
  • Mix cocoa powder with some hot water.
  • Whip up fresh cream with 1 tbsp of caster sugar till peak form and put in fridge for later use.
  • Beat cheese cream, icing sugar and condensed milk together till thick. Add in kahlua and chocolate paste,mix well.
  • Continue to beat at low speed, follow by the cocoa powder and gelatine.
  • Lastly fold in the whipped cream with a hand whisk.
  • Place a slice of sponge cake at the bottom of a loose pan. Pour 1/3  of cheese cream mixtures on top and place the 2nd slice of sponge cake and pour another 1/3 of cheese cream over.  Repeat the same till finish.
  • Let the chocolate cheese cake to chill in fridge till set (at least 4 hours or overnight).
  • Remove cake ring and pour the chocolate ganache (refer to following for method) over the cake and decor as desired. 

Choclate Ganache:   
Method:  Bring whipping cream to boil and then stir in chocolate.  Stir till chocolate melted.  Let it set a bit before spreading/ pouring over the cheesecake.
  • 120 couverture chocolate 
  • 120 whipping cream

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Chocolate-Bottom Banana Square

Quarter end is something the Operations folks afraid off or hate most because during that period, the office will become a mad house. The influx of the orders and the constraint of time given to bill all the orders before the cut off can made these folks very stressful and crazy.  And without fail, they always have to work till past midnight to ensure whatever billable are closed. I used to be in the shoe as them and that's why I can understand their grievances and frustration better. 

Although I no longer need to provide that kind of support during the quarter end period, I still  stay up late most of the nights for the conference calls and as far as I see, less stressful and easy job is hard to find in Singapore.  Working 12 hours a day or longer seems like a norm for me and people around.   It's such an unhealthy life stye, we all know!  However, for the commitment and competitiveness sake .. we normally give in.  Sigh .. life is full of irony!

I found another interesting recipe from Hearty-Bakes's blog and decided to go for it since it's highly recommended.   I do agree this is a good recipe, the cake is incredibly moist, velvety and soft.  To my surprise, the banana and chocolate can blend so well.    Thumbs-Up    

Here you go.. Chocolate-Bottom Banana Square recipe
 
Preparation:
Preheat oven at 170*C for 15 mins.  Prepare a 8 or 9" (preferable) square tin, base greased and lined with baking paper.

Ingredients
- 115g butter  
-  150g caster sugar
-  1 egg (lightly beaten)
-  1 tsp vanilla
-  1 tsp rum
-   4 medium rip bananas (mashed)
-  160g cake flour            }
-  1 tsp baking powder     } sifted
-  3/4 tsp baking soda      }
-  1/4 tsp salt
-   3 tbsp (18g) cocoa powder

Topping:
 -  40-50g chocolate chips
-  3-40g walnut (chopped) - Optional

Method: 
  1. In mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar till light and fluffly ( 5mins).  
  2. Drizzle in the eggs, vanilla, rum and mashed bananas, beat till combined .
  3. Sift in the flour, baking soda, biking powder and salt to the cream mixture in step 2 and mix well.  
  4. Divide the batter into half.  Add the cocoa powder to one portion of the batter.  Mix till even.
  5. Pour the chocolate batter into the baking tin, spread evenly.   
  6. Spoon remaining batter on top, swirl gently if desired and sprinkle with chocolate chips and chopped walnuts.
  7. Bake at 170*C for 40-45 mins or test batter done with a skewer.  Cover a sheet of foil at last 15 mins of baking time to prevent the top over brown.
  8. Remove.  Leave it to cool and cut into desired no. of squares.

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