The doux Flavor
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Blondies with Toffee Bits

I am in the middle of a “relocation”, sitting between clothes, books, household supplies etc.!
This is a recipe that is super easy and very delicious. Blondies! You can make them with whatever additional ingredient you want - not even the toffee bits are required. But its a tasty combination!

Have a wonderful day,
Annika

Blondies with Toffee Bits
(makes two loaf pans or one 8) - adapted from smittenkitchen.com

Ingredients

8 tbsp melted butter
250 g/ 1 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla sugar
Pinch salt
250 g/ 1 cup flour
125 g/ 1/2 cup toffee bits

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 180 degree Celsius/ 350 degree Fahrenheit.
2. Mix butter and brown sugar.
3. Beat until the mixture is well blended.
4. Add the egg and the vanilla.
5. Stir until fluffly.
6. Put in salt and flour.
7. Fold toffee bits into the mixture.
8. Pour the dough into the loaf pan.
9. Bake for 20 minutes.
10. Let cool before cutting and serving.

(Source: smittenkitchen.com)

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Banana Bread Muffins

Banana Bread is one of the american pastries that you don’t find in Europe. A fact that is not quite understandable to me since itstexture is simply amazing - and the chocolate and banana taste is not comparable to any other food. Delicious.
I tried banana bread at home to see if my friends and family like it. Instead of making an entire loaf of banana bread I decided to divide the batter into smaller portions and make medium sized muffins. Normally I am not much of a banana fan but banana bread tastes heavenly!

Have a wonderful day,
Annika

Banana Bread Muffins
(makes 15 medium sized muffins)

Ingredients

250 g/ 2 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
½ cup butter
125 g/ 1 cup sugar
2 eggs
250 g/ 2 cups mashed ripe bananas
1 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp rum
125 g/ 1 cup chocolate, coarsely chopped
Chocolate Coating for the muffin frosting, optional

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 180 degree Celsius/ 350 degree Fahrenheit.
2. Mix all dry ingredients: flour, baking powder and salt.
3. Beat butter and sugar until creamy and light.
4. Add the eggs.
5. Stir in the mashed rip bananas, lemon juice and rum until well incorporated.
6. Mix the dry ingredients in the banana-dough.
7. Fold in the coarsely chopped chocolate.
8. Pour the muffin dough into muffin molds.
9. Bake for 12 minutes.
10. Let muffins cool off.
11. Glaze muffins with chocolate coating.

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Cowboy Oatmeal Cookies

Sorry for my absence those past days - I was apartment hunting in Vienna, or more precisely taking a look at the apartment that was already promised to me via internet. Skype makes it possible.
I am really happy that I finally found something that seems nice. So much trouble with pets and nudists - both are not really my favorite flatmates.
Besides doing a short trip to Vienna I spent the time in the “Weinviertel” in the Wachau, Austria. A lovely region for everyone who likes good wine, good food and a picturesque landscape. I definitely consider myself as more of city person I sometimes love to get out in the nature and take a break from the everyday life. But more of this trip in the next post.

Before leaving I made cowboy oatmeal cookies. Great recipe for basic outmeal cookies. I just put in whatever I found in the kitchen that day. So one is very flexible with the ingredients.

Have a wonderful day,
Annika

Cowboy Oatmeal Cookies
(makes about 25 medium sized cookies)

Ingredients

125 g/ 1/2 cup butter
125 g/ 1/2 cup brown sugar
125 g/ 1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
vanilla
lemon zest
250 g/ 1 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 baking powder
pinch salt
125 g/ 1/2 cup oats
125 g/ 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
125 g/ 1/2 cup butterscotch chocolate chips
60 g/ 1/4 cup cranberries
60 g/ 1/4 cup brittle chips

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degree Celsius/ 350 degree Fahrenheit
2. Beat butter, brown sugar and white sugar until creamy.
3. Add egg, lemon zest and vanilla and stir until well blended.
4. Mix in all dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
5. Fold in the brittle chips, butterscotch chips, white chocolate chips and oats.
6. Place tablespoon sized balls of dough on the baking sheet.
7. Bake for 8 minutes until the edges are golden brown.

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Peach Pie

My mom used to make a delicious peach pie in all the summer holidays when I was a child. She made those pies from scratch and I had a really hard time remembering what ingredients she used for the pie. I had helped a few times with baking so I think I made a pie very similar to hers. 
I love how the peaches never lose their taste after baking but get an even more intense taste. It never ceases to amaze me! 
The pie is fruity and definitely sweet enough to enjoy on a sunny day in the backyard or on a rainy day inside reminding you of summer ;)

Have a lovely day,
Annika

Peach Pie

Ingredients

For the pie crust
310 g/ 1,25 cup flour
190 g/ 3/4 cup butter
60 g/ 1/4 cup sugar
A little bit of water

For the peach filling
3-4 peaches
1 package vanilla custard powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
100 g/ 1/3 cup cream
125 g/ 1/2 cup sugar
1 egg

For the crumbs
250 g/ 1 cup flour 
125 g/ 1/2 cup sugar
vanilla extract 
5 tbsp butter
cinnamon 

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degree Celsius/ 350 degree Fahrenheit.
2. Knead together the flour, butter, sugar and -if necessary to get a smooth dough- a little bit of water.
3. Roll the dough and place in a buttered cake-pan.
4. Cut the peaches into slices.
5. Fill the bottom of the cake-pan with a layer of peach slices until fully covered.
6. Mix the custard powder, vanilla extract, cream and sugar.
7. Beat in the egg.
8. Pour the mixture over the peach slices and the dough in the cake-pan.
9. Put in the oven for about 20 minutes.
10. Meanwhile, stir all ingredients for the crumbs: flour, sugar, vanilla extract, butter and cinnamon until they have crumbly texture.
11. Sprinkle the crumbs over the cake and put back in the oven for another 10 minutes until the crumbs are golden brown.
 

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Favorite-Granola-Cookies

A lot of people have a favorite kind of granola or cereals. My brother is one of them. He loves this certain kind of granola. I really like it too. But it sure isn’t healthy. Besides the cereals, there is plenty of chocolate and brittle chips in it. This is why I try hard to be abstinent from this granola. Sometimes I have to give in though - especially late at night!
So as I consider the granola more as a dessert than as a real dish I decided to incorporate in a real dessert: cookies.
Now it finally makes sense to eat it - any time after breakfast! 
I highly recommend you to grab your personal favorite granola and bake those cookies.

Have a wonderful day,
Annika

Favorite-Granola-Cookies
(makes 24 medium-sized cookies) 

Ingredients

125 g/ 1/2 cup butter
125 g/ 1/2 cup white sugar
125 g/ 1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
250 g/ 1 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
375 g/ 1,5 cup of your favorite granola
250 g/ 1 cup mini marshmallows

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 150 degree Celsius/ 325 degree Fahrenheit.
2. Beat butter, white sugar, brown sugar and the egg until creamy.
3. Add vanilla extract, flour, baking soda and salt.
4. Stir until well incorporated.
5. Fold in your favorite granola and mini marshmallows.
6. Place dough balls on a baking sheet. They should be the size of a tablespoon.
7. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

 

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Raspberry Truffles

As I mentioned in one of my last posts I bought a cookbook with truffle recipes. During the last week I tried a few  of them. And today I will present you my first try. I decided to go for raspberry truffles as they perfectly fit the season. For me the hardest part was to understand how to make the shell. In the book they somehow expect you to just have pre made shells so I had to figure out how to make them. I explain it in the recipe. 
Now I feel like a proud chocolatier in the making and I am eager to try more recipes. Since most of my family and friends are on vacation I need to step back a little bit. Otherwise I would eat them all by myself and this wouldn’t be the best option in bikini season ;)
I am off for some reading time in the garden. It is supposed to be the hottest day of the year in Germany with 38 degrees Celsius. Don’t forget to put on sunscreen!! Really important!!!!

Enjoy your sunny sunday, 
Annika
Raspberry Truffles
(makes 30 truffles)
 
Ingredients
For the filling
150 g white chocolate
90 g raspberries
20 g cream 

For the shells
250 g white chocolate coating

Directions

1. Coarsely chop the 250 g white chocolate coating for the truffle shells.
2. Melt 2/3 of the dark chocolate in a double boiler.
3. Remove pot from the cooktop.
4. Stir in the rest of the dark chocolate.
5. Fill the truffle molds completely with the liquid chocolate.
6. Remove the excess of chocolate with a scraper.
8. Tap the side of the truffle molds with the scraper so that the air bubbles rise.
9. Turn the truffles molds and tap on the back of the bottom side of the truffle molds so that most of the chocolate coating runs out of the molds (you will need this chocolate coating later on).
10. Again, remove the excess of chocolate with a scraper.
11. Put the truffle molds in the fridge.
12. Boil up the raspberries and the cream in a pan over medium heat for about 1 minute.
13. Coarsely chop the white chocolate.
14. Remove raspberry cream from cook pot.
15. Pour the liquid over the white chocolate.
16. Stir until the two ingredients are fully incorporated. 
17. Take the truffle molds out of the fridge.
18. Fill the truffle forms - still sitting in the molds - with the raspberry chocolate filling (you might want to use an icing bag). Make sure that you leave a 2-3 mm border. This will be the bottom of your truffle and it should be sufficiently thick. 
19. Place in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
20. Heat up the rest of the chocolate coating that you used for the truffle shells earlier.
21. Pour the melted chocolate over the truffle molds so that all truffles are equally covered with chocolate. 
22. Remove the excess of chocolate with a scraper.  
23. Tap against the side of the truffle forms so that the air bubbles rise.
24. Put the truffle forms in the fridge for one or two hours before removing them from the molds.
Not too easy - but the first step to become a true chocolatier :)