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Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Double Chocolate Cheesecake Croquembouche

The Great British Bake Off has been over for a while now but the Great Bloggers Bake Off currently has a showstopper challenge running. I didn't have a lot of time to make an extravagant bake so decided to make some profiteroles as I've made them lots of times before and they don't take very long, and aren't as complicated as they may look. I've called this a Croquembouche due to the shape of it, but I believe that a traditional Croquembouche is 'bound with threads of caramel'. As I didn't have much time I wasn't going to start making caramel so decided to cover them in milk chocolate ganache. If I was making them for a dinner party I would've gone with a dark chocolate ganache and sprinkled it all with flaked almonds, but as it was for the kids I used a sweeter creamy Belgian milk chocolate, and left off the nuts.

It's quite a fiddly business filling all the small choux buns, and in hindsight I should have made them a little larger, but it meant that they fitted into the cone well.

Not bad for a Monday night tea hey?

Double Chocolate Cheesecake Croquembouche

140g Butter
300ml Water
200g Plain Flour
4 Eggs
  • Preheat the oven to 200C
  • Place the butter and water into a saucepan and heat gently until the butter has melted, bring to the boil.
  • Remove from heat and stir the flour quickly in and beat well until the mixture leaves the sides of the saucepan and forms a ball
  • Leave to cool slightly then gradually beat in the eggs
  • Leave to cool fully
  • Spoon into a piping bad with a plain nozzle and pipe balls onto a greased baking sheet, spaced well apart
  • Bake for 20 minutes until crisp & golden
  • Make a slit in the side of each, and pop back in the oven for 2-3 minutes
  • Remove from oven & cool on a wire rack 
You will now need to make a mould to form the Croquembouche - I used a non stick silicone baking sheet, rolled it into a cone and placed it into a glass to hold it

 photo cone_zps3637e948.jpg


200g milk chocolate, melted
200g cream cheese

150g milk chocolate
150g double cream
  • Prepare the filling by beating the melted chocolate with the cream cheese
  • Fill a piping bag with a pointed nozzle
  • Squeeze some filling into each profiterole & set aside
  • Add 50g of the chocolate and 50g double cream to a bowl
  • Heat in short bursts in the microwave until warmed
  • Beat together until smooth
  • Dip the base of each profiterole into the ganache and then into the mould
  • repeat with the remaining profiteroles until the mould is full, you have run out of profiteroles or your tower is as large as you want it
  • Place in the fridge until completely set and then remove from the mould/silicone sheet
  • Make the rest of the ganache by warming the cream and chocolate in short bursts in the microwave 
  • Beat together until smooth & pour over the tower
Double Chocolate Cheesecake Croquembouche Double Chocolate Cheesecake Croquembouche Double Chocolate Cheesecake Croquembouche


Salmon Two Ways

This is the third post for Fish is the Dish, with the first being Smoked Mackerel Two Ways, and the second being Trout Two ways.  This week it's the turn of the salmon, which is one fish I will buy if I had to buy any (other than a tin of tuna or some pre battered cod).

My favourite way to cook a fillet of salmon is to bake it with a crust on. This can be made with nuts, breadcrumbs and cheese, but I went for a crunchy coconut crust, spiced up with some chilli. The second version was a simple fried salmon fillet, served in a ciabatta with salad and a yogurt dressing. Both dishes were really quick and simple to cook - fast food doesn't have to be unhealthy.

Salmon with chilli & lemon coconut crust

Salmon with chilli & lemon coconut crust - serves 2

2 salmon fillets
4 tbsp shredded coconut
4 tbsp Mayonnaise
1 tsp chilli flakes
zest of 1 lemon
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander

  • Lay the salmon fillets in a lightly oiled baking dish, skin side down
  • Mix the coconut, mayonnaise, chilli flakes, lemon zest and coriander together
  • Spread over the salmon fillets
  • Bake in a preheated 180C oven for 15 minutes
so simple but so tasty. I am converted and could eat this every day of the week!

Simple Salmon Ciabatta Burger

Simple Salmon Ciabatta Burger - serves 2

olive oil
2 salmon fillets
handful fresh parsley, chopped
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
4 tbsp Natural Greek Yogurt
salt & pepper
2 square Ciabattas
  • Heat a little olive oil in a pan
  • Lay the salmon in the pan, skin side down
  • Fry for 4-5 minutes 
  • Season the salmon with salt & pepper before turning it over & frying again for approx 4 minutes, until cooked through
  • Mix the the parsley with the onion & yogurt & season
  • Slice the ciabatta
  • Add some lettuce leaves to the bottom half of the ciabatta
  • Lay on the salmon and top with the yogurt & top half of ciabatta
Serve as it is for lunch, or with a side of fries for a main meal

this post has been commissioned by Fish is The Dish

Kitchen Style - Pretty, Modern or Cool?

Our kitchen is currently undergoing a facelift, although it's on hold a little at the moment whilst we wait for some electrics to be done, and I'm loving the transformation already. It's much brighter and gives the feeling of being larger too, despite having more wall cupboards, which I thought may make it feel smaller. More wall cupboards also means having more space for small appliances and kitchen gadgets, as well as nick nacks and cookware. I took a little trip out last night and picked up some new roasting dishes, a wire basket and a wooden box - totally random items which I don't need but I couldn't possibly live without!

One area of the kitchen that I don't particularly like is the area next to the fridge, where our boring bin resides. It's tall, slim and functional, but it's just a touch on the dull side. Kitchen bins don't have to be this way though, and they can form a stylish statement in your room, just look at some of these Brabantia bins.

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Pretty in pink

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Modern shiny

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cool white kitchen

featured post

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Salted Caramel Chocolate Tarts with Pretzel Crust

If you didn't know already, this week is Chocolate Week, which of course means that it's ok to eat chocolate all week, so why not celebrate with this rich chocolate tart, which has a sweet and salty pretzel base, topped with salted caramel and an indulgent chocolate topping.

Salted Caramel Chocolate Tarts with Pretzel Crust

I made these when family came up for the day (including our giggly grandson), to follow a meal of chicken Korma, rice, naan bread and chutney. It was a lovely sweet end to the spicy meal, and the tarts went down well with chocolate ice cream - can you ever have too much chocolate?

playing trains

Quite honestly I could've eaten a bowl of ice cream with the pretzel base all over it, as it was just so good. I love that sweet and salty combination and the roasted pretzel base didn't disappoint.

Salted Caramel Chocolate Tarts with Pretzel Crust Salted Caramel Chocolate Tarts with Pretzel Crust

They were a little crumbly and could probably have done with being left a little longer in the fridge, but we couldn't wait a moment longer! You can find this recipe, along with more, on the Great british Chefs website.

This recipe was commissioned by Great British Chefs


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