Hey Yeah…My Oven’s Back!

Chocolate and Ricotta Cake

3 weeks without an oven! Not really much of a problem considering it’s been a very hot Summer here in Melbourne.

However, when I no longer have access to something, I find myself desperately wanting it even more. So, if my oven had been working I would not have even thought of baking in 35 degree heat but you guessed it, with the oven broken, all I wanted to do was bake…so I ‘baked’ cakes on the stove top, however this did not give me quite the same buzz.

The first thing I did when the nice little oven man left was bake a chocolate and ricotta cake. Not overly sweet as it had cocoa rather than melted chocolate in it and had the slightest ricotta tang to it. Moist and delicious and was our dessert after we devoured those mammoth steaks!

very nice with a chilled black espresso...

very nice with a chilled black espresso…

 

Chocolate Ricotta Cake
3 tbsp cocoa powder
2.5 tbsp boiling water
2 eggs
1 tsp vanila extract
145g plain flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
130g butter (must be room temp)
200g ricotta
140g caster sugar
Preheat oven to 180C/350F.  Mix together the cocoa powder and boiling water and leave to cool. While you wait, grease and dust the mould. When the mixture is cool, whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract and put to one side. Sift the flour and baking powder into another bowl. In a mixer, cream the butter, ricotta and sugar together at medium speed. Keep going till it is light and fluffy – about 3-4 minutes. Add 1/2 of the chocolate/egg mixture, beat to combine, then add a 1/4 of the flour. Add rest of the choc/egg mixture, then the rest of the flour. Mix until combined. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for about 30-40 minutes –  A skewer/toothpick should come out cleanly when it is ready. Leave to cool for 5 minutes before turning out. Dust with icing sugar when fully cooled and serve.
(Serves 8 generously)

 

 

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Christmas Treats

Stuff I Made for Christmas

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Well, it’s over! Christmas is done and it’s time to start planning food for New Year’s Eve.

This isn’t going to be a long post at all nor will it provide recipes (except for the rocky road) as I have provided the recipes for most of these before…but I will tell you that the Christmas Cake is a Nigella Lawson one and can be found in her “Nigella Christmas” book – it’s to die for (the cake – not the book although the book is pretty special too)…with cocoa and Tia Maria, it has to be the best fruit cake I have ever tasted.

The Christmas Tree ice cream cake was a hit with the kids – young and old –  home made vanilla ice cream with green food colouring – and the Greek Shortbread recipe has previously been posted (way back at Easter…my fist blog post, I think!)

The Rocky Road is something I have been making for years and am not really sure of quantities but it’s around 200g milk chocolate – 75g dark chocolate – 25g butter – 50g mini marshmallows (pink and white) – 100g macadamia nuts – 25g dried cranberries – 50g shortbread biscuits (cut into bite sized pieces)…Melt chocolate and butter – combine marshmallows, crushed macadamia nuts & shortbreads as well as cranberries and add to melted chocolate. Pour into pan and chill for at least 2 hours – awesome!!!

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Christmas Day was lovely and personally, I don’t think I over indulged (in food or alcohol) – a first for me!

Boxing Day was an altogether different story – lots of great left overs and the Vodka and Pomegranate was being poured by 11am – now that is me!!!

Hope it was a great one for everyone – Happy New Year to all 🙂

Awesome Rocky Road!

Awesome Rocky Road!

Home made ice cream cake - so much fun!

Home made ice cream cake – so much fun!

Christmas fruit Cake with Cocoa and Tia Maria

Christmas fruit Cake with Cocoa and Tia Maria

Walnut Shortbreads with Icing Sugar

Walnut Shortbreads with Icing Sugar