Macarons are turning in to one of my favourite things to bake. Once you get the technique down they are really quite easy and they always look so adorable and eye-catching! These Neapolitan (it’s ridiculous how often I misspell that word!) Macarons are the epitome of cute food. They would be great for a girlie get together or afternoon tea and the classic Italian flavour work great together.
I was curious about the whole Neapolitan thing so I turned to Google and Wikipedia (…where else?) for some information. Neapolitan mean ‘of or pertaining to Naples’, which makes sense, and it seems that it was brought to the USA by Italian immigrants in the mid 1800s. I must confess I’m not crazy about the traditional ice cream variety but last year I baked a strawberry, vanilla and chocolate layer cake for my second cousins Christening and it really did taste delicious. (more…)
Currently, my favourite thing to bake is French macarons. After lots and lots of practice I’ve finally mastered the technique so not I get to focus on flavours and making them all kinds of pretty colours. (check out my Facebook page to see my latest Valentines Day designs).
For macaron inspiration Pintrest is great. There are some bloggers who are killing the macaron game too, my personal favourite it Raspberri Cupcakes, she’s a macaron queen! This particular recipe was inspired by some Lindtt orange chocolate I was gifted a while back. It was tasty, but I felt like it could be put to better use than my passing sweet tooth cravings. Also, macaron making always leads to leftover egg yolks which usually leads to curd for a filling! Orange curd is a great twist on the lime and cranberry versions I’ve posted before. It doesn’t have the tartness of the other and is sweet and creamy. Perfect when paired with a dark chocolate ganache like we have here. (more…)
The cookies I made this year come from the Top with Cinnamon cookbook, but with a little spin on the recipe, of course. I adore malt flavoured things, especially biscuits – those really plain Malted Milk biscuits are one of my favourites – so I opted to add a little malt powder and I didn’t bother browning the butter because a) I’m a little lazy and b) I didn’t want to distract from the malt and the chocolate by over complicating things.
A little side note about the chocolate is that I picked up a bag of chocolate chips from a local Chocolatier, based here in Inverness town centre. The Chocolate Place is a lovely little shop at the end of Academy Street with some delicious looking chocolate gifts, perfect for stocking fillers! Take a look at their website as they have an online shop which delivers throughout the country. The chocolate chips were great, I always go for dark chocolate in baking and these had a deep flavour with that hint of bitterness that you need. (more…)
Originally I hadn’t planned to post about these. I found myself in a house without any biscuits, and I can only go so long drinking tea without a something sweet to crunch so baking was the answer to my problem. The thing is, they turned out so well that I really had to share the recipe, it would be cruel not too.
So, chocolate and almond cookies…firstly, they are baked up just the way cookies should be. Crispy at the edges, soft and chewy in the centre. Then to the tasty additions, rich dark chocolate and crunchy almonds. By roasting the almonds in the oven before adding them to the cookie dough they are super crunchy in the final biscuit. As I love the flavour of almond I thought I would kick it up a notch and add a few drops of almond extract (only a little as that stuff is hella powerful!). It was a great idea, the subtle almond flavour really adds an extra dimension to the flavour of these cookies. The obligatory sprinkle of sea salt atop these cookies just rounds the whole thing off perfectly.
I know, I know, they are just cookies but they really are delicious. (more…)
Food cravings. We all have them. For me it is always my sweet tooth crying out for something to satisfy it, usually chocolate! Sometimes in the summer a juicy nectarine or a handful of berries will do the job, then there are times when it simply has to be chocolate. The occasional savoury craving can also occur. Salty food is needed, crisps or nuts, or both! It’s tough when you just want to look all nice and bikini ready but all you wanna do is stuff your face with delicious food especially when you have no will power or indeed a summer holiday booked – I’m definitely just talking about myself now.
BUT I have an answer! These little snack bites are a little sweet and a little salty so your mid morning craving should be satiated and the protein from the PB should keep the hunger pangs at bay for another hour. They really do taste good, which is why I cut them up really small otherwise I could eat far too many and defeat the purpose of the energy ‘bite’!
You could use any kind of nut butter in the base, whichever flavours you prefer. Peanut and almond butters are my favourite so I went with them. Topping the bites with chopped almonds also adds a satisfying crunch and contrasts with the creamy nut layer. I’m not claiming that these are low in calories but all of the ingredients are natural and good for you in small doses and when combined should pack in more goodness and heartiness than a shop bough cereal bar. (more…)