Sunday, August 25, 2013

Lemon Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

 Homemade Lemon Curd
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (usually requires 1-2 lemons)2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest1/3 cup sugar4 egg yolks3 Tablespoons butter (I use unsalted)Directions ~Combine all ingredients in the top of a double boiler (or in a metal bowl over a pot of simmering water).  Heat, while stirring constantly with a whisk,  until mixture thickens.  It is done when it's thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.  Remove from heat, cover and refrigerate until cool. 
 Put the sugar and egg whites in a mixer bowl or other large heatproof bowl, fit the bowl over a pan of simmering water and whisk constantly, keeping the mixture over the heat, until it feels hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. The sugar should be dissolved, and the mixture will look like shiny marshmallow cream. Remove the bowl from the heat. Beat the meringue on medium speed until it is cool, about 5 minutes.

2 large eggs separated
1 3/4 cups sifted cake flour
2 tsps baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup room temperature butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
1/8 tsp cream of tartar

Separate the eggs, placing the whites into one container and the yolks into another. Let come to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Butter and flour two 8in (I used 9in) pans.  
Put sifted flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and set aside.
Beat the butter until soft and creamy, about 1 minute.  Add 3/4 cup of sugar (reserving the rest) and beat for an additional 2 minutes.  Now add egg yolks, one at a time, until completely incorporated.  Add vanilla and almond extract until combined, about 30 seconds.
Now you are going to add your flour mixture and milk.  Starting with the flour, add 1/3 of the mixture and mix until incorporated.  Now add 1/2 milk mixture, mix until combined.  Add half the remaining flour, combine.  Now add the rest of your milk and combine.  Add remaining 1/3 of your flour mixture, and go ahead and mix until combined.  This whole process should take less then 2 minutes, as you do not want to over beat the batter.
In a separate clean bowl with clean whisk attachment, whip eggs whites until foamy then add the cream of tartar. (I did this on medium speed) Beat until soft peaks occur, and then gradually add in your remaining sugar.  You will want stiff peaks, which took me about 3 minutes.  Now, take your rubber spatula and fold your eggs whites into your cake batter.  Make sure they are fully incorporated, but do not over stir the batter, as you do not want to eggs to deflate.
Put batter into prepared pans and bake for 20-25 minutes.

1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
250g cream cheese, very soft
250g marscapone
1 vanilla bean pod seeds
Zest of one lemon
1 tsp lemon juice

Beat together remaining ingredients till smooth. Beat in Meringue a spoonful at a time until all incorporated.  Chill for 15 minutes and ice cake.

Alternate layers of cake with a thin layer of frosting spread over cake and topped with lemon curd. Frost entire cake with a thin layer of frosting and place in the freezer for 10 minutes, remove and cover with the remaining frosting.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Chunky Pot Pie

2 tablespoons olive oil
700g chuck steak, trimmed, cut into 3cm cubes
1 large brown onion, chopped
4 rashers middle bacon, trimmed, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
400g can diced tomatoes
1 cup beef stock

Heat half the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan over high heat. Cook steak, in batches, for 4 to 5 minutes or until browned. Transfer to a bowl.
Heat remaining oil in pan. Add onion, bacon and carrot. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until onion has softened. Add garlic and thyme. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add vinegar. Bring to the boil. Cook for 1 minute or until liquid has reduced slightly.
Return beef and juices to pan. Add tomato and stock. Cover. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer,  stirring occasionally,  for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Remove cover. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour or until steak is tender.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 220°C/200°C fan-forced. Layer pastry sheets on top of each other on a board. Place four, 1 cup-capacity ovenproof ramekins upside-down on pastry. Using rim of ramekins as a guide, cut 4 rounds from 1 pastry sheet 5mm larger than ramekin tops.
Remove and discard thyme from steak mixture. Season mixture with salt and pepper. Spoon into dishes. Place pastry rounds over dishes to cover filling. Brush with egg. Bake for 15 minutes or until pastry is golden.

Coconut Flapper Pie

Maggie Beer's gluten-free-cream-cheese shortcrust

125g cheese cut into chunks
75g unsalted butter chopped and kept cold
2 teaspoon sugar
1 cup gluten free flour
2g Xanthan gum
Preheat oven to 210C.

In food processor pulse the cream cheese and cold butter. When combined add the flour and Xanthan gum. Whiz just to combine, scraping down the side of the bowl

Turn out onto surface which has ¼ cup gluten free flour and bring together with your hands

Chill pastry then using a rolling pin roll the pastry between two pieces of baking paper greased on both sides. Roll to 1/2cm thick and place in pie tins. Cover with baking paper, weight and blind bake for 15 – 20 minutes.


1/2 cup white sugar
2-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups coconut milk
3 egg yolks, beaten
1 tablespoon butter
3 teaspoons  vanilla bean paste
3 egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks

Mix the sugar, cornstarch, flour and salt in a saucepan.
Stir in milk gradually.
Cook over medium heat, stirring until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens. Cook 1-2 more minutes.

Remove from the heat and Add a little of the hot mixture to the beaten egg yolks, then whip the yolks into the saucepan mixture. Stir in the butter and vanilla,  fold in egg whites and pour into the crust. Bake at 180c for 30minutes, allow to cool and then chill for an hour.

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