Snap, Sizzle & Cook

Sharing my love of food

Archive for the month “March, 2015”

Chocolate Layer Cheesecake

Wow your guests this Easter weekend with a decadent Chocolate Layer Cheesecake which is too simple to make. Chocolate Layered Cheesecake
I’ve made this recipe before (here) but in the form of a Granadilla Cheesecake. The only change I’ve made is to divide the mixture in half before pouring into the biscuit base. Add 80ml good quality cocoa powder to half the mixture. Blend till well combined. Pour the first layer of mixture over the biscuit base and then gently (spoon if you wish) add the cocoa mixture over the top of the classic cheesecake mixture. Bake as per instructions of original recipe.
Chocolate Layered Cheesecake
Chocolate Layered Cheesecake
Chocolate Layered Cheesecake
Garnish with grated dark chocolate.

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Strawberries Romanoff

Strawberry Romanoff is a very basic dessert made from….. you guessed it, strawberries, cream and liqueur. It is a light, airy dessert which is meant to be enjoyed after a heavy meal because of the fact that it is not made with cake or biscuit. Read more HERE.
Strawberry Romanoff
Here in Durban we are privileged to have warm weather all year round which makes eating fruity, summer desserts (if the fresh fruit is available) so awesome. Even though I am more of a winter person, I love summer fruits, especially fruit salads with ice-cream…….YUM!
DSC_0007 (627x418)
Using as little as 6 ingredients, this recipe is very easy and requires little effort. It is the perfect recipe to use and make in advance for a dinner party. Just pop into the fridge once you’ve made it and leave it there for a day or two until ready to eat.
You will need:
500g strawberries, washed, hulled and halved
2 Tbsp Cointreau or any other orange flavoured liqueur
2 Tbsp strawberry yoghurt
2 tsp icing sugar
2 tsp icing sugar (extra)
175ml cream, whipped
Method:
Combine strawberries, icing sugar and liqueur in a bowl, refrigerate for 30 minutes. Drain Strawberries and reserve the liquid. Divide half the strawberries among 4 dessert bowls.
Blend the remaining strawberries, extra icing sugar, reserved liquid and yoghurt until smooth. Beat the cream in a separate bowl with a hand held electric beater until soft peaks have formed. Fold in strawberry mixture and top the strawberries in the serving bowls with strawberry cream.
Strawberries Romanoff

Red Velvet Cake

I must be one of a few food bloggers who don’t have a recipe on their blog for a Red Velvet Cake. That is about to change. This delicious red coloured sponge cake actually has an origin which you can read about here.
Red Velvet Cake
A few years ago I volunteered to do a recipe review for Your Family magazine which involved me baking a Red Velvet Cake from a recipe which was emailed to me by the Food Editor and then giving my views on the cake, from the baking procedure to devouring it. The cake itself turned out to be soft, spongy and moist which is exactly how I like my cake. One of the comments I made was that you don’t have to be a “star” baker to bake this cake, or any cake for that matter. Baking is about science, what you put in (accurate measurements) is what you get out.
Red Velvet Cake
Even if you don’t really enjoy baking because you’ve had flop after flop, I urge you to try this cake, or the Hot Milk Sponge Cake (recipe HERE). The instructions are easy to follow and you’ll end up with a lovely cake that will not only impress you, but your family too.
You will need:
2 Eggs
1.5 cups canola oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp vanilla essence
60ml red food colouring
2.5 cups cake flour
1 Tbsp cocoa
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 cups sugar
Instructions:
Beat eggs and oil together till well combined. Add buttermilk, vinegar, vanilla essence and red food colouring to the oil mixture. Mix well to form a smooth consistency. Set aside. In a separate bowl, sift cake flour, cocoa, salt, bicarb, baking powder and sugar together and add the wet ingredients. Combine using an electric hand beater until a smooth, velvety red batter has formed. Divide mixture evenly into 2 x 20cm round cake baking tins (sprayed with Spray and Cook) and bake on the middle rack of your oven at 180 degrees Celsius (350 Fahrenheit) for 30 – 40 minutes or until a cake skewer comes out clean. Allow cake to cool completely before icing.
Icing:
I’ve used the same icing as I did for the Hot Milk Sponge Cake which is as follows:
100g butter
250g icing sugar (sifted)
10ml vanilla essence
30ml milk
Instructions:
Cream butter and icing sugar together. Add essence and just enough milk to mix to a smooth, spreadable consistency. Sandwich cake layers with half the icing. Use the remaining icing to ice top of cake.
Red Velvet Cake

Hot milk sponge cake

The fact that my son, on occasion, eats cake for breakfast has over time not only become quite a normal sight, but also a huge compliment to me. It means that the cakes I bake are good enough to surpass a healthy, wholesome and nutritious breakfast *tongue in cheek*.
Hot milk sponge cake
This specific cake “method” is relatively new to me. I’ve read about it, but never bothered trying it until I purchased the new Ultimate Snowflake  Collection recipe book. I am so NOT sorry that I bought the book. It has the most beautiful recipes and illustrations and I am excited to try my hand at some of them.
Hot milk sponge cake
The recipe is very simple and the end result is truly delicious and moist. Try it, you won’t be sorry.
Hot milk sponge cake
You will need:
4 extra large eggs
250g castor sugar
280g Snowflake cake flour
15ml baking powder
1ml salt
250ml milk
100g butter
5ml vanilla essence
Instructions:
Beat eggs and sugar till light and creamy. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together. Add to egg mixture and fold in lightly until well combined. Heat milk and butter in a small saucepan. Do not boil; stir until butter is melted. Remove from heat and add essence. Add milk mixture to cake mixture and mix well. Spoon mixture into two greased 20cm round cake pans. Bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 25-30 minutes. eave in pans for a few minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Sandwich cake layers with half the icing . Use remaining icing to ice top of cake.
Icing:
100g butter
250g icing sugar (sifted)
10ml vanilla essence
30ml milk
Instructions:
Cream butter and icing sugar together. Add essence and just enough milk to mix to a smooth, spreadable consistency. Sandwich cake layers with half the icing. Use the remaining icing to ice top of cake.

Spinach Cheesecake

Mention the word “spinach”, and most people wince and make a face which suggests disgust and repulsion.
Spinach Cheesecake
What is it about “green” vegetables that send most people over the edge? I do believe the majority of people’s negative response to these vegetables and others lies in their experience of tasting badly prepared, overcooked, unseasoned, watery vegetables. I would also gag while running a mile. Vegetables if prepared well and used in baked dishes correctly as well as paired suitably with other types of food can be a mind altering experience. To give you a small example, I’m using the infamous little gem which most people hate which is Brussel Sprouts. These delightful looking veggies which resemble miniature cabbage are very bland and honestly quite aweful on their own, however, sauté them in butter with garlic and crispy bacon pieces and the entire dynamics of boring Brussel Sprouts become absolutely delicious and full of flavour. You understand the point I’m trying to make? Similarly, spinach is exactly that, boring on its own, but pair it with garlic, butter and feta and you’ve got an amazing tasting vegetable dish.
Spinach Cheesecake
When I first saw this recipe, I was hesitant because of the word “cheesecake”. To me a cheesecake is a sweet dish and positively NOT for vegetables. However, after reading the entire recipe I got a clearer understanding that it was a savoury cheesecake and not a sweet cheesecake. How could I be so ignorant!
I am so glad I tried this recipe, which I got out of the 4th Edition of the YOU Let’s Cook. Please try it and let me know what you think. I personally will be making this dish regularly, not only because it’s easy, but it’s a great “light lunch” to serve over the weekend with salads.

For the crust you will need:
70ml butter, melted
1 packet of Bacon Kips (savoury biscuits) crushed

For the filling you will need:
2 bunches of spinach, cleaned, shredded and steamed (I bought already prepared shredded spinach from Woolworths)
1 medium onion, finely chopped
250g cream cheese
250g sour cream
4 large eggs
1 round of plain feta cheese, crumbled
Cooks tip: You can add crispy bacon pieces if you wish for extra flavour

Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Celsius and grease a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with spray and cook. Mix the butter and biscuit crumbs and press into the base and partway up the sides. Place in the fridge while you prepare the filling.
Drain the steamed spinach and squeeze out the excess liquid. Fry the bacon (optional), onion until soft and fragrant. Set aside. In another dish, beat the cream cheese, sour cream and eggs together. Add to the bacon and onion mixture, spinach and feta cheese and combine well. Turn the mixture into the prepared crust and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes until firm and golden brown.
Makes 1 large spinach cheesecake. Serve warm or cold.
Spinach Cheesecake

Piccalilli ( A relish of chopped pickled vegetables and spices)

For me personally condiments add that extra “oomph” to most meals, whether lunch or supper.  I regularly stock up on relishes such as vegetable atchar, which my husband loves and which I am planning on making in the near future. Click Here and Here for recipes of other condiments I’ve made in the past.
Piccalilli
What would a Pastrami open sandwich be without a generous dollop of Piccalilli? I say “boring”.  When I came across this recipe in the March 2014 issue of Fresh Living, I had to try it.  I’m not disappointed and have gone as far as adding it to my list of favourite recipes.
Piccalilli
I hope you enjoy the delicious curry flavours as much as I do.
You will need:
1 onion
1 small head of cauliflower broken up into small florets
7.5ml mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp tumeric
2 Tbsp hot English mustard
125ml castor sugar
2 cloves crushed garlic
375ml white wine vinegar
2 Tbsp cornflour
Instructions
Bring seeds, spices, mustard, sugar, garlic and vinegar to the boil.  Add onion and cauliflower and simmer for 5 minutes.  Add a dash of water to cornflour to make a smooth paste.  Add paste to cauliflower mixture and cook till thickened.  Allow to cool.  Spoon into a sterilised jar and seal.   Refrigerate.

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