The most delicious coconut and raspberry friands baked into little muffins. This recipe is a definite favourite with the whole family!Read More
This delicious coconut and rhubarb slice has all the home comfort of your favourite crumble pudding. The crunchy coconut crumble topping hides a layer of chewy rhubarb on a base of delicious cookie. It's heaven in a slice!Read More
As summer beckons, it brings with it the desire to eat more healthily. But that doesn't mean we can't all enjoy a sweet treat from time to time! These mini chocolate chip cookies are gluten free and dairy free and perfect for the job :)Read More
Coconut Fortune Cookies are just perfect for Valentine's Day - fill each one with a sweet message for your loved one :)Read More
Every year, we celebrate today with a batch of Anzac cookies. Although living in the UK, we want our boys to remember their New Zealand heritage and every year Anzac Day honours the armies of New Zealand and Australia who fought at Gallipoli. Sweet Anzac cookies have become associated with the war because their ingredients don't spoil easily and so the wives of the army men could send these little biscuits to their loved ones and they wouldn't spoil on the long journey.
These cookies are simple to make and are full of ingredients that could easily be found in your kitchen at home. I wanted to shake them up a little so thought it would be fun to add a drizzle of salted caramel to make them even more delicious :)
We start by popping the oats, sugar and coconut into a bowl and sifting the flour in there too, whilst the golden syrup and butter are melted together over a low heat. When the butter and syrup are smooth and well mixed, we take the bicarb and mix it a tablespoon and a half of water, pop it in the saucepan with your sugary mixture and stir. Remove it from the heat and then pour this into the dry ingredients. The mixture needs to be combined well and then you're ready to shape your little cookies.
To make my cookies evenly sized, I always take a little time to weigh each cookie (these ones were around 30G each) but you can eyeball each scoop if you prefer. We roll the cookies into little balls and pop them onto a lined baking tray. When they're all ready, flatten each one a little and they're ready to go in the oven. Super easy.
They're quick to bake but it gives you just enough time to make the salted caramel sauce. We melt the golden syrup and sugar in a saucepan and then stir in the butter, cream and salt. Super yummy! Let it cool down to room temperature and when the cookies are baked and cooled, you can have lots of fun drizzling them with the sweet, sticky sauce :) I topped them with another sprinkling of sea salt. And they're done!
It's great to honour traditions and with something so simple to bake you can get the kids involved in the kitchen. Last year, my little boy made Anzac cookies for his house cookery competition and loved every minute!
But don't think that their simplicity means that they're not absolutely delicious and I think the salted caramel gives them an extra special twist.
They're just perfect for sharing with loved ones and friends 💕
Anzac Cookies with Salted Caramel Sauce
Makes around 20 cookies
- 200G PLAIN FLOUR
- 100G ROLLED OATS
- 110G CASTER SUGAR
- 65G DESICCATED COCONUT
- 45G GOLDEN SYRUP
- 150G UNSALTED BUTTER
- 1/2 TSP BICARBONATE OF SODA
Caramel Sauce Ingredients
- 100G LIGHT SOFT BROWN SUGAR
- 50G GOLDEN SYRUP
- 75G UNSALTED BUTTER
- 75ML DOUBLE CREAM
- 1 TSP SEA SALT
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees (fan)
- Line two baking trays
- Put the oats, sugar and coconut in a bowl and sift the flour over the top
- Stir to combine
- Melt the butter and golden syrup in a small saucepan over a medium heat until melted and smooth
- Mix the bicarb with with a 1.5 tablespoons of water
- Add this to the sugar mixture and remove from the heat
- Mix this with the dry ingredients until fully combined
- Form little balls of mixture (weigh them if you want identical cookies) and place them on the baking trays
- Flatten each ball slightly and then pop them in the oven for around 10-12 minutes or until they are golden in colour
- Whilst they're in the oven, make your salted caramel sauce
- To make this, place the sugar and golden syrup in a small saucepan with a tablespoon of water
- Bring it just to the boil and then simmer for 3 minutes
- Add the butter, cream and sea salt in one go and stir for another minute until everything is melted and fully incorporated
- Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool at room temperature
- When they cookies and the salted caramel are cooled, drizzle the cookies with the caramel
- Add a final flourish of sea salt to the cookies and enjoy :)
These delicious Chocolate Coconut Truffles are a fantastic homemade version of my very favourite Chocolate Bounty Bars. Small, bitesize truffles filled with white chocolate coconut ganache and covered with salted milk chocolate. And only 4 simple ingredients! Perfect for gifts, perfect to treat yourself :)Read More
We're back from our final fling of the summer in Tuscany and appear to have left the sunshine behind us! There are only two days left until the boys go back to school. Wow, where did nine weeks go? It's been a whirlwind of going away, entertaining the boys and having lots of visitors as well as a very important fifth birthday for my youngest. I've baked many of my favourite recipes time and again, recipes I've discovered through this blog. And when my gluten-free niece came visiting from New Zealand, I didn't bat an eyelid at baking some special cakes and puds for her when a year ago the idea of gluten free baking would have sent me into a spin!
I have a stack of recipes I'm looking forward to trying when a little more of the day is my own again but for today, the weather is grey and gloomy so we're having our last lazy day of the summer hols and the boys wanted to turn their hands to baking something yummy. It had to be something whose ingredients are store cupboard essentials as we haven't been near a supermarket since our return from sunnier climes.
We decided upon Monte Carlo Biscuits. These Australian classic biscuits are sweet and filled with jam and buttercream and have been made by Arnott's Biscuits since 1926. I must confess I have never had one before. I saw a version of the recipe on the Australian Good Food website and Frank Camorra's comment on there made me smile: "I remember the first time I saw a Monte Carlo, I couldn't believe how big it was". Having made them today, I can completely relate to that. They are enormous.
I love coconut so for me, this is my favorite part of the cookie but the addition of golden syrup (or you could use honey) also makes them lovely and chewy too. As I said before, they are enormous and I would definitely make something a little daintier next time - I mean, my youngest struggled to get it in his mouth for a bite! There are a lot of recipes available for these biscuits, very similar in ingredients and method. Not having tasted one of these before, I opted for Donna Hay's vanilla buttercream filling which is pretty sweet and has a higher butter content than most of the other recipes - and is exceptionally yummy :)
As the finished biscuits are 7cm in diameter, next time I would divide the dough in half again and make 20 sandwiched biscuits. But these biscuits are gorgeous. I can see why they're such a favourite down under.
Not sure they'll be hanging around for long in this house. Especially when my antipodean hubby spots them ;-)
Monte Carlo Biscuits Makes 10 biscuits sandwiched together (adapted from Donna Hay and Modern Australia | Good Food)
- 125G UNSALTED BUTTER, SOFTENED
- 160G LIGHT BROWN SUGAR
- 2 TBSP GOLDEN SYRUP (or you could use honey here as an alternative)
- 1 EGG
- 300G SELF-RAISING FLOUR
- 50G DESSICATED COCONUT
- 70G STRAWBERRY JAM (or you could use raspberry jam)
- 160G UNSALTED BUTTER, SOFTENED
- 200G ICING SUGAR
- 1 TSP VANILLA EXTRACT
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (fan)
- Line two baking trays with greaseproof paper
- Beat together the butter, sugar and golden syrup until light and creamy - this should take 2-3 minutes
- Add the egg and mix it until just combined
- Sift the flour over the dough and add the coconut, then mix together until they're combined
- Divide the mixture into 20 balls (around 35g per ball) and place them on the prepared trays ensuring enough space for them to spread
- Bake for 12 minutes until they're golden brown
- Leave them to cool on their trays for 5 mins and then transfer them to a cooling rack until they're cool
- Make the buttercream by placing the butter, icing sugar and vanilla extract in the mixing bowl and beating the buttercream for around 5 mins until smooth and creamy
- Either spread or pipe a dollop of buttercream on half of the cooled biscuits
- Add jam on top of the buttercream and then sandwich the biscuits together using one of the halves without cream or jam
- Enjoy :)
So (as any parent already a few weeks into the hols knows all too well) school's out for the summer! Nine weeks of fun and looking for things to keep the boys amused lie ahead. I baked these on the last day of school when entertaining my boys and decided to whip up a batch of these Banana & Coconut Muffins that I found onPinterest a while ago. I had some bananas to use up and hungry tummies to fill and these were really yummy, particularly warm from the oven.Read More
Back to the big smoke after our mini-break in the countryside and we swapped flowers, animals and rolling hills for Kensington in the sunshine as we headed to the Science Museum for Space exploration! Great fun, but thoroughly exhausting - and hubby and I were relieved to collapse on the sofa by late afternoon :) I needed a pick-me-up, moreish and yummy - and healthy would be an added bonus.
After searching for lavender throughout the local stores and garden centres over the last couple of weeks (having decided not to order it online as it would take too long and then had to wait even longer to find it naturally) I found some last week at my parents' house. Dried lavender from last year's lavender crop in their garden and I only needed three-quarters of a teaspoon. It's been safely sitting in my bag for when I had enough time to make the second recipe I wanted to try from Hemsley & Hemsley, their Lavender & Maple Coconut Macaroons. I LOVE all the ingredients of these little macaroons, even though most shop assistants I approached when searching for the lavender to use in cooking looked at me like I was nuts.
This recipe is gluten and dairy free and the only sugar comes from the maple syrup so this is a healthy alternative to cookies and cakes. The macaroon itself is made predominantly from shredded coconut so for me, is very reminscent of the macaroons I enjoyed when growing up, when macarons (the deliciously almondy French variety I love so much) were a thing of distant dreams. As with many of my other bakes, I used liquid egg whites but you can use the whites of 3 medium eggs instead if you prefer. There is just the merest hint of lavender in these macaroons and I think this could be upped, probably to at least 1 tsp next time I make them. They don't take long to make, so provided you have the ingredients in your store cupboard, you can whip them up in no time for a lunchbox or afternoon treat.
I love these little macarons. There's not much about coconut I don't like, but I really like the pairing with maple syrup and the hint of lavender for a slightly more unusual twist. This is the second recipe I've made from Hemsley & Hemsley (see the Pumpkin Puds recipe here) and am hard pushed to say which I prefer more, so I forsee I will be making these two recipes many times over - just while I make my mind up, of course!
Lavender & Maple Coconut Macaroons Makes 18 (from Hemsley & Hemsley)
- APPROX ¾ TSP LAVENDER FLOWERS
- 4 TBSP MAPLE SYRUP
- ½ TBSP VANILLA EXTRACT
- 150G UNSWEETENED DESSICATED COCONUT
- 180G LIQUID EGG WHITES (OR EGG WHITES OF 3 MEDIUM EGGS)
- 1/8 TSP SALT
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees and line two baking trays with parchment paper
- Finely chop the lavender and mix it with the maple syrup, vanilla extract and coconut in a large bowl
- In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites with the salt until stiff peaks form
- Gently fold the egg whites in with the coconut mixture using a metal spoon
- Using a tablespoon measure, scoop the mixture onto the baking parchment and then neaten the mounds with your hands
- Bake for 12 to 15 minutes until the macaroons are lightly browned
- Remove them from the baking tray and place on a wire rack to cook (I used a slice to remove them as they were a bit sticky underneath but they came away easily)
- They are quite soft when they first come out of the oven, but firm up as they cool down!
I thought I'd squeeze in a small end of the week blog post about these gorgeous little Sesame Pudding Spheres that I've been playing with this weekend. I found them a while ago on Dine X Design which is a beautiful website focusing on gorgeous recipes and design features, all photographed beautifully. Dine X Design feature a couple of variations on these with Green Matcha Tea Puddings and Frozen Pudding Treats too.
So of the three variations, I decided to make the Sesame Pudding Spheres which I then sprinkled with Matcha Tea and additional sesame seeds. The original recipe calls for black sesame paste and I couldn't get this locally, so used the greenish tahini paste from the local supermarket. I think the spheres look more striking in black against the green of the Matcha tea so it would be worth searching out the black sesame paste, especially if you're planning to make this for a dinner party. I really love the flavour of these spheres, mainly because they remind me of a lovely Coconut Sago pud we enjoyed last New Year's Eve at Mekong Baby in Auckland! This was a Thai fusion restaurant and I think these pudding spheres would work best at the end of this kind of meal. The coconut flavour really shines through and from the fridge, they're very light and refreshing, with the additional sesame seeds adding a touch more texture. And better still, they're completely dairy and gluten free so perfect if you're looking for a Free From dessert!
I'm inspired to take these flavours and work on recreating the Coconut Sago pudding we enjoyed and also have a go at the Dine X Design frozen spheres too. Super simple to make, these are definitely a fun little bite-sized pudding :)
Dairy-Free Green Tea Matcha Pudding (from Dine X Design)
- 3 TBSP BLACK SESAME PASTE (I couldn't find this locally so used regular tahini paste)
- 5 TSP CRUSHED BLACK SESAME SEEDS
- ½ CUP CASTER SUGAR
- 4 TSP AGAR AGAR
- 2½ CUPS ALMOND MILK
- 1 CUP COCONUT MILK
- Put the sugar, sesame paste, seeds and almond milk in a medium saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring until all the contents dissolve
- Once boiling, add the agar agar and stir again until it's dissolved
- Add the coconut milk, stir and remove from heat
- Let the mixture sit for 10-15 minutes until cool
- Pour into a mould (the recipe recommends spherical ice cube trays but I used my metal cake ball pan and set them as half spheres, putting them together when they're fully set)
- Serve with a dusting of matcha green tea powder and sesame seeds
- They do tend to melt once out of the fridge so it's worth keeping them refrigerated until you plan to eat them!