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"If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world." – J.R.R. Tolkien

Category Archives: Recipes

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

It might come as a surprise to you, but I do spend some of my time at home cooking and baking rather than simply enjoying dishes prepared by more those more qualified. If you were in Melbourne on Mother’s Day this year, you know how miserable the weather was; cold and rainy, I didn’t want to leave the house after returning home from the 8km Mother’s Day Classic run in the morning.

Desperately in need of something warm and comforting, I ended up whipping up a batch of Chocolate Chunk Cookies, because a simple chocolate chip recipe didn’t quite seem indulgent enough. I increased the total amount of chocolate in the recipe, using both a mixture of block chocolate and chocolate chips to get a nice balance in each cookie. I also increased the amount of vanilla and added a dash of cinnamon, mainly because I like the extra complexity in flavour.


Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Adapted from “Marie Claire: Cooking”. Makes 20.

Ingredients:

  • 100g butter, softened
  • 175g brown sugar
  • 1 tsp milk
  • 1 tsp cream
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 250g plain flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 250g chopped dark chocolate
  • 50g dark chocolate chips

Method:

  1. Beat the butter and sugar together until creamy.
  2. Add the milk, cream, vanilla and egg and mix until combined
  3. Add sifted flour, baking powder and cinnamon and mix until combined
  4. Mix in chocolate with a wooden spoon
  5. Roll out the cookie dough onto cling-wrap and place in the freezer for an hour.
  6. 15 minutes before you remove the cookie dough, preheat an oven to 180°C and lightly flour a baking tray.
  7. Remove dough from freezer, and roll out 2 tbsp of mixture at a time onto the baking tray.
  8. Bake for 14 minutes. Return unused dough to freezer while each batch bakes.
  9. Cool on trays and eat at least one while slightly warm.

Chocolate Chunk Cookies


My apartment smelt simply amazing while these were baking, and the extra warmth from the oven was definitely appreciated. Next time, I’ll remember to take more photos as I go along, but the final product is better than nothing. Let me know how they turn our for you if you decide to give these a whirl, or if you’ve found a way to improve the recipe.

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Wholemeal scones & kiwi jam

After my scone eating frenzy this past week, I decided that it was better for both my health and bank account to make them myself. Of course, there should always be jam available when eating scones, so I figured that the kiwis that were left-over from the fruit boxes at work should be used to make kiwi jam too! A little bit of browsing on the internet left me with two workable recipes. Brilliant.

Or so I thought. It wasn’t until I actually checked ingredients that I realised I was missing quite a few (self-raising flour, baking powder, lime juice, pineapple juice and pectin). So what follows are my adapted recipes based on memory and what I had at hand. I know I don’t usually post recipes up, but there’s a first time for everything. Enjoy, and let me know how they turn out for you.


Wholemeal Scones

Wholemeal Scones

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups wholemeal flour
  • 80 g butter (soft, cubed)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 cup milk

Method:

  1. Preheat an oven to 200°C and lightly flour a baking tray.
  2. Mix the flour and baking soda together in a large bowl, then rub in the butter using your fingers until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  3. Add in the yogurt and mix until just combined.
  4. Make a well in the center of the mixture, and pour in half the milk. Mix with a flat-bladed knife. Add more milk as required to make a slightly soft dough, but be careful not to overmix or else the scones will turn out hard.
  5. Roll out the dough into a 2cm thick sheet. Cut out 5 cm diameter circles and place them 2cm apart on the baking tray.
  6. Sprinkle a small amount of flour on top of each scone, and bake for 20-25 minutes until the scones have risen sufficiently.

Kiwi Jam

Ingredients:

  • 8 kiwi fruits (peeled, diced)
  • 1 green apple (peel intact, diced)
  • 1/4 cup lime cordial
  • 1/4 cup ginger wine
  • 1 tsp gelatin
  • 3/4 cup sugar

Method:

  1. Throw everything except the sugar into a medium sized pot and boil on a stove.
  2. When mixture starts boiling, add sugar and reduce to simmer. Leave for around 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. It’s a little hard to tell when the jam is ready to ‘set’ but you should be alright.
  3. A 500 mL jar is about the right sized container for these quantities, so sterilize the jar (and lid!) and transfer the jam from the pot into the jar. Screw the lid firmly back on the jar.
  4. Find a largish pot (a cylindrical one works better than a flat circular one) and boil water so that when the jar is placed in the pot, the water level is half-way up the jar.
  5. Add more water to the pot until the water level is about 1 cm above the top of the jar. Let boil for 10 minutes then carefully remove jar from water.

Ah, too easy. The jam was perhaps a little too sweet for my liking (note: try replacing lime cordial with lime juice, or reduce sugar) but it was tasty. I felt accomplished in having made something that you can’t readily buy off supermarket shelves. Not a bad effort for a sleep-deprived desk worker and gym junkie!

Serving suggestion: wholemeal scones, kiwi jam & cream

Listening to: Shadows – The Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble

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