“Throwback Thursday” – Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

Why is there always that one recipe that just happily sits in your “drafts” for months, waiting for you to post it? Well, we are bringing back these Double Chocolate Cookies in this weeks “Throwback Thursday” post!

Cookies are just perfect any time of the year. I just love them, and could eat them all day, every day! The best part about cookies, is that the dough is always the same, but you can add so many different ingredients to come up with a number of different flavours. I had already experimented last year with the Chocolate Stuffed Cookies, as well as these Peanut Butter and M&M Cookies. All equally delicious, and all follow the same recipe, but each comes with a few added tweaks here and there to come come up with something different every time!

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These Double Chocolate Cookies are super rich and packed with big chunks of white chocolate. Pop in the oven for approximately 10 minutes and out pop these ultra soft cookies, with a nice outer edge crunch. Mmm .. my favourite.! They are simple to make, and all you need are:

Ingredients:

  • 110g butter
  • 100g lightly packed brown sugar
  • 100g white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 egg
  • 200g self raising flour
  • 50g strong cocoa powder
  • chocolate chunks to taste, I went with a mixture of white and milk chocolate

Method:

  1. Beat together the sugars, butter and vanilla essence until well combined.
  2. Add the egg and beat again – it may curdle to start with, but not to worry, just beat a little linger and it will start to come back together.
  3. Add the flour and cocoa powder and mix together until a soft dough is made. Finish by adding the chocolate chunks and mix until evenly combined throughout the dough.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl and roll out into a long sausage shape onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the mixture into approximately 16 pieces, depending on the size of the cookie (remember they expand in the oven!).
  5. Bring each piece of dough together into a ball and pop onto a tray covered in greaseproof paper.
  6. Bake in the oven at 180C for around 10-12 minutes. They should start to crack on top when they are cooked, but if you prefer an extra crunch to your cookie, you may wish to bake for a further few minutes.

 

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Once you have removed from the oven, allow to firm up for a minute or two, before cooling on a wire rack. Now, storing these bad boys shouldn’t be a problem, a small tin will do! Although if your like me, they may not even last long enough to make it to a tin!

Are you like me and love cookies?

What are you favourite flavour combinations?

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Raspberry and White Chocolate Chunk Brownies

Last year I experimented with these Raspberry and Chocolate Brownies, and after all the Easter bakes and these Easter Chocolate Brownies, I had a real craving for another slice! Incorporating both recipes, I think I have finally found the right balance and with the added cooking time, these brownies are still perfectly moist, and extremely delicious!

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Ingredients:

  • 200g 70% Dark chocolate
  • 100g Milk chocolate
  • 250g Salted butter (if you only have unsalted, just add a pinch of salt)
  • 300g Soft light brown sugar
  • 4 Large eggs
  • 175g Plain flour
  • 100g white chocolate, chopped
  • 1 punnet of fresh raspberries

Method:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180C.
  • Line your tin with baking paper.
  • Melt the chocolates, butter and sugar together over a low heat.
  • Once they are melted, remove from the heat and leave to cool for 5 or 10 minutes.
  • Beat in each egg, one by one and once combined, stir in the flour.
  • Place half of the batter into the bottom of your tin. Spread half the punnet of raspberries over this batter evenly.
  • Pour the other half of the batter over the raspberries and smooth out with a spatula.
  • Decorate with the remaining raspberries and bake for about 30-40 minutes depending on the thickness of your brownies and the tin size that you have chosen to use. As a quick tip, the skewer should come out only just clean!

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This recipe really is so simple to make, and the brownies themselves are delicious. The added raspberries are a really nice touch, and add a different texture to the brownies. I just love the taste of the sweetness of the chocolate against the almost sour taste of the raspberries. And when you get a big chunk of white chocolate, what a treat! As chocolate brownies go, these now have to be one of my favourites!

These were demolished pretty quickly over the weekend, and enjoyed thoroughly in the sunshine after a few hours pottering around the garden! The nice thing about these brownies is that they really are so simple to make, and you can be eating them with a cup of coffee within the hour!

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How was your weekend?

Did you bake anything scrumptious?

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Banana Bread

When we went to Australia back in September, I found I ate so much Banana Bread – why? – I’m not entirely sure, it’s not something I have ever had the urge to eat a lot of in the UK! But after having serious Holiday Blues, I decided it was time to try making some for myself, and I certainly wasn’t disappointed! Not only is Banana Bread incredibly scrummy, fluffy, moist, and infused with sweet banana flavour, it’s a perfect mid morning snack to fill that little gap of hunger. My finance likes it so much, he’s even renamed it the “Golden Bread” – says it’s all really don’t you think?

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With it being such an easy recipe to make, you can’t help but make it early on a Saturday morning in preparation for the weekend ahead. The hardest part is waiting an hour for it to bake as the whole house fills with the sweet smell of baked bananas!

Ingredients:

  • 285g plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 110g butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 4 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 85ml buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  2. Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a large mixing bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. I find my KitchenAid does a marvellous job at whacking these together in minutes!
  4. Add the eggs, mashed bananas, buttermilk and vanilla extract to the butter and sugar mixture and mix well. Finish by folding in the flour mixture.
  5. Grease a 20cm x 12.5cm/8in x 5in loaf tin and pour the mixture into the tin.
  6. Transfer to the oven and bake for about an hour, or until well-risen and golden-brown.
  7. Remove from the oven and cool in the tin for a few minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before serving.

It may not look the neatest, or the prettiest, but sometimes these things don’t seem to matter – taste conquers all! The brown sugar and ripe bananas make this bread so incredibly moist. Remember with Banana Bread, you want your banana’s mostly brown and practically rotten. Trust me, the bin is not an option for these banana’s – the oven is!

I am in desperate need to make more, because let’s be honest, there is nothing better then a thick slice with a home brewed cup of coffee! Now this is what weekends are made for …

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What do you think of Banana Bread? Are you a fan?

It’s almost Friday, so happy weekend lovelies!

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Quick Quiche 

I do love a Quiche, I mean what is not to like? I guess perhaps if your not a massive lover of egg? But what about the light cheesy taste and salty fried bacon with sweet shallots? Yes, this quiche is perfect for the spring and is super easy to throw together, perhaps for an afternoon BBQ or even as a light tea with a side portion of salad? Even if your not an eggy kind of person, I would still recommend this recipe to try, you never know, you might just covert to the Quiche side!

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Ingredients:

For the Shortcrust Pastry:

  • 175g plain flour
  • 100g cold butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 egg yolk

For the Filling:

  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 180ml of milk
  • 1 chopped shallot/onion
  • 100g grated cheese
  • 1 packet of smoked bacon, chopped (you could also use ham instead)
  • salt and pepper

Method:

  • In a medium pan, fry the bacon until crispy and then add the chopped shallots/onions. Fry these with the bacon until they become soft. Set aside.
  • To make your shortcrust pastry: put the flour, butter, egg yolk and 4 tsp cold water into a food processor. Using the pulse button, process until the mix binds. Tip the pastry onto a lightly floured surface, gather into a smooth ball, then roll out as thinly as you can.
  • Carefully bring your pastry into your chosen dish. Trim the pastry edges with scissors or a sharp knife so it sits slightly above the tin (if it shrinks, it shouldn’t now go below the level of the tin).
  • Press the pastry into the bottom and the side edges of the dish and lightly prick the base with a fork, then chill for 10 mins.
  • Preheat the oven to 190C.
  • Once chilled, remove from the fridge and line your dish with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans. Pop in the oven for 15 mins.
  • Remove paper and beans and bake for a further 4-5 mins until the pastry golden. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
  • For the remainder of the filling, whisk together the eggs and milk, then season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  • Add the grated cheese and the fried bacon and onions from earlier. Still until well combined and the bacon bits float evenly throughout the egg mix.
  • Pour into the pastry casing and cook for a further 30-40 minutes until golden brown.

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I think through the summer I may become a bit obsessed with this Quick Quiche recipe. I mean they are so quick and easy, and you can also prep the casing in advance, which makes it even easier the following day. It’s not a neat recipe, it’s a “throw it all together” type dish, but tastes great! There are so many other flavourings to experiment with, no dish will have the be the same! They are also great for a light dinner, which we enjoyed Sunday evening after a few too many drinks the evening before! (Oops!)

Are you a fan of Quiche?

What is your preferred middle flavouring? Do you have a tried and tested recipe?

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The Best of March

I started typing this post over the long Easter weekend feeling rather full of all things chocolatey and delicious! After making this beautiful Easter Cake, I have definitely had a few slices too many and needed that Monday to detox!

I didn’t really stick to that though, as I love all thing’s chocolate! It has to be one of my favourite ingredients to bake with, and through posts of our new kitchen (which I am totally in love with!), chocolate has definitely featured across the blog this month!

We started March with a “ThrowBack Thursday” post of this Chocolate Anti-Gravity Cake. I had so much fun making this, and would happily make one again, and again! They are definitely any chocolate lovers dream, and look so impressive once they have been assembled! Although they can be fiddly, they are definitely worth it when you get to photograph the end result. And to hear about how happy you made a special birthday boy, well, that was enough for me!

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Next were the return of the Chocolate Brownies, this time inspired by all things Easter! Using a traditional brownie base, (and a little underdone too I may add) it was time to get all creative with a touch of Easter magic – here we have our Cadbury’s Mini Egg and Creme Egg chocolatey mess!

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Following the Easter theme, I decided it was about time to bring cookies back into my life, and of course, fill them with all sorts of chocolate. These have an added crush of yet more Cadbury’s Mini Eggs, as well as the sweet taste of Diam. The cookie recipe itself is super easy, and is the basis to all my cookie bakes. It’s nice to play around with the ingredients to make different flavours.  To make double chocolate, simply substitute some of the flour for Cocoa powder or for a thick chocolate chunk, add large chocolate squares instead of chocolate chips! The possibilities are endless!

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I also had a go at making Hot Cross Buns. This was definitely something new for me and very trial and error (me trialling it and making lots of errors!). To look at them, they seem very ‘Hot Cross Bun-ny’, but they just didn’t have that soft, fluffy middle texture I was hoping for. Not to worry though, it’s all part of the fun and I’m looking forward to trying these again soon (fingers crossed this time I get them right!).

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How was your Easter? Did you have a nice March?

What surprises does April have in store for you?

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P.S our kitchen is now almost complete! Last Friday we worked all day at putting the flooring in and our new fridge freezer arrived safely yesterday morning. It’s so exciting and I can’t wait to put the finishing touches together to make it complete! Watch this space for the finished results! :) x

 

Easter Cookies

If you still have plenty of Easter chocolate lying around, then these Easter cookies are for you! And what”s great about these soft chocolate cookies, is that they have an added crunch with these little Cadbury’s Mini Eggs, and boy are they moorish!

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Ingredients:

  • 110g butter
  • 100g lightly packed brown sugar
  • 100g white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 egg
  • 250g self raising flour
  • chocolate chips to taste, or for an Easter bake use 1 small bag of Mini Eggs, crushed

Method:

  1. Beat together the sugars, butter and vanilla essence until well combined.
  2. Add the egg and beat again – it may curdle to start with, but not to worry, just beat a little linger and it will start to come back together.
  3. Add the flour and chocolate and mix together until a soft dough is made.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl and roll out into a long sausage shape onto a floured work surface. Divide the mixture into approximately 16 pieces, depending on the size of the cookie (remember they expand in the oven!).
  5. Bring each piece of dough together into a ball and pop onto a tray covered in greaseproof paper.
  6. Bake in the oven at 180C for around 10-12 minutes. They should start to crack on top when they are cooked, but if you prefer an extra crunch to your cookie, you may wish to bake for a further few minutes.

I love this recipe, it’s so easy to make delicious cookie dough and is the basis for all my cookie bakes. To make double chocolate, simply substitute some of the flour for Cocoa powder or for a thick chocolate chunk, add large chocolate squares instead of chocolate chips! The possibilities are endless! You can even drizzle sweet caramel sauce all over them if you really want to!

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These cookies also have large chunks of Diam eggs scattered through. I love Diam and the flavour comes through as subtle hints. Although I do love when you bite into a large chunk .. Mmm..

Did you have a lovely Easter?

What were some of your favourite Easter bakes this year? Do you have any chocolate left over?

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Easter Chocolate Brownie

With so many Easter bakes floating around the blogging world, I just had to have a go at baking something for myself. With chocolate being one of my favourite ingredients, Easter is a great time of year for me and baking. With so much chocolately goodness around, it’s hard to know where to start. But when the craving comes in for a big gooey slice of chocolate brownie, the decision was made for me!

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These Easter inspired Chocolate Brownies are so easy to make and taste amazing. With the strong mix of chocolates, the flavour is incredibly rich, and with the added crunch of the Mini Eggs and soft centres of the Creme Eggs, this is any chocolate lovers dream Easter bake.

Ingredients:

  • 200g 70% Dark chocolate
  • 100g Milk chocolate
  • 250g Salted butter (if you only have unsalted, just add a pinch of salt)
  • 300g Soft light brown sugar
  • 4 Large eggs
  • 175g Plain flour
  • 300g Mixed Easter mini eggs

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C.
  2. Line your tin with baking paper.
  3. Melt the chocolates, butter and sugar together over a low heat.
  4. Once they are melted, remove from the heat and leave to cool for 5 or 10 minutes.
  5. Beat in each egg, one by one and once combined, stir in the flour.
  6. Place half of the batter into the bottom of your tin. Spread your mini eggs over this batter evenly, so you get an egg in each bite.
  7. Pour the other half of the batter over the eggs and smooth out with a spatula.
  8. Bake for about 30-40 minutes depending on the thickness of your brownies and the tin size that you have chosen to use. As a quick tip, the skewer should come out only just clean!

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I love my chocolate brownies seriously underdone – it’s all about the gooeyness for me! Especially when they have just come out of the oven, and have cooled off ever so slightly that the top begins to crack. I’m also a lover of a nice scoop of soft vanilla ice cream to accompany my piece. Who said ice cream was just for the summer?

I love the fact that this is such an easy recipe to mix up, one saucepan and the washing up is done! Just remember, if you are using soft centred eggs in your bake, I would definitely recommend popping them in the freezer for a couple of hours before unwrapping and using in the brownies. This will stop them from collapsing completely when baked. As you can see, there is still a soft middle in this creme egg. Mmm ..

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What are your favourite Easter bakes? Will these Chocolate Brownies be making your Easter baking list this year?

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