Rosemary chocolate chip cookies / biscuits

2 Sep

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I have written before about my wonderful rosemary bush, which thrives despite the neglect we show it. It is vibrant, green, and always happy to provide a sprig or two whenever we deign to visit it. Poor tree.

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These rosemary choc chip biscuits (as we call them) or cookies (for my American readers) are amazing: a bewitching combination of savoury and sweet. They marry perfectly with a cuppa or a glass of something stronger (don’t worry – I won’t tell anyone.)

Please don’t substitute dried rosemary as you will be disappointed with the end result.

 GATHER:

125 grams butter at room temperature, diced

¾ cup brown sugar

2 eggs

2 cups plain flour whisked with

1 teaspoon baking powder

¾ cup dark chocolate bits

2 teaspoons finely snipped fresh rosemary

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LET’S GET TO IT:

Line a tray with non-stick baking paper.

In bowl of electric beater mix together the butter and sugar until it is creamy and non-gritty. After a few minutes stop to scrape down the sides.

Add egg, one at a time, then scaped n sides again.

Pour in flour/ baking powder mix and beat until combined.

Sing a big metal spoon stir in chocolate and rosemary until combined.

Place in fridge for an hour or so.

Preheat oven to 180C.

Gather a walnut-sized lump of dough, roll into ball, place o tray then gently flatten with a fork.

If you have any sprigs left over you can add them now.

Complete until all dough is used. They made spread a little so leave space between each one.

Bake for 12-ish minutes / until golden [depending on your oven and the size of your cookies it may take a few extra minutes].

Allow to cool on baking racks.

Family outing: Sydney Fish Market

27 Aug

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The Hungry Family loves getting out & about in Sydney and exploring the countless wonderful sights. Despite being born & bred Sydneysiders we as a family could often be mistaken for tourists – every time we’re anywhere near the harbour we snap multiple photos, and often the girls are asked to be in the photos of random tourists.

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Recently we took Misses 6 & 8 to Sydney Fish Market. I hadn’t been there in a decade or so but I lurve seafood so decided to pay a visit.

So much choice. So much deliciousness. So much fresh seafood silently urging me to buy! Buy! Buy!

The gals will eat fish but that’s about it for their love of seafood. The Hungry Dad is happy to eat almost anything [the exception being smoked salmon, which means more for me. Huzzah!] and I love it all – except mussels. Don’t ask me why…

The gals loved sussing out all the creatures, including crabs, oysters and scampi. I think they were horrified by some of it :)

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So we bought fish, prawns, and squid to take home. And of course, fish and chips.

Things to know: in winter it is cold here! We were rugged up but the bitter wind meant there was no chance of us dining in the large al fresco area. We ended up eating the F&C in the car, which was not really great.

Also, the floors are slippery, despite the many slipmats. Flat shoes with good grip are a must, people.

Aside from the fish merchants there’s also bakery, a deli and fruit shop. And soooo much food to eat! Everyone sells amazing food – I felt 10kg heavier just looking at it all.

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We drove but you can get there via light rail from Central Station. An hour was plenty for us and parking is just $3 if you can be in and out within 59 minutes.

A swanky makeover is in the works for the markets and to be honest it is needed. The area, so full of potential, would really benefit from some TLC.

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Sydney Fish Market is also home to the Seafood School, where you can take hands-on cooking classes with a focus on seafood. I’d love to do a class here one day…

See sydneyfishmarket.com.au

Rum baked donuts / doughnuts with booze

20 Aug

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Yes – a donut with alcohol. How genuis is that? It combines lots of the good stuff that makes life worth living. Plus it is baked, so you don’t have to worry about scary boiling oil. Or is that just me? I will not boil oil under any circumstances. #scaredyCat

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I have a mini donut pan but am on the look-out for a normal size one. These are teeny tiny so it means you can eat more – score!

Don’t worry if you’re not a big drinker as the rum taste won’t knock you out [or over] – it just adds a zing that makes your heart sing. Or something.

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I found this recipe from diethood.com http://diethood.com/mojito-doughnuts/ and tweaked it

GATHER:

1 cup plain flour

1/3 cup sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 cup milk

3 tablespoons rum

1 egg

3 tablespoons butter, softened

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LET’S GET TO IT:

Preheat oven to 180C and in a large, heat-proof bowl whisk flour, sugar and baking powder together.

Place milk, butter, egg and rum in a medium saucepan over a medium heat, stirring all the while, until the butter melts.

Remove from heat and pour into the flour mixture and gently stir until combined.

Grease a doughnut pan with cooking spray. Fill a large ziplock bag with the mixture, snip off one corner and pipe into pan.

Depending on size of pan bake for between 9 & 13 minutes / until a skewer comes out clean.

Gently remove from pan and cool on rack. Eat warm [sooo good] or allow to cool completely before dusting with icing sugar.

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Donna Hay orange poppyseed syrup cake

14 Aug

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Going through my stats recently it occurred to me that you all love Donna Hay. This makes me incredibly happy because – as you may have guessed – I too love Donna. I have mentioned it many MANY times here before so it is wonderful to see that we are in simpatico :) Continue reading

How to bake lemon bars

8 Aug

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I was unaware of the tarty deliciousness of lemon bars until about a week ago. I had seen umpteen recipes on international blogs but it wasn’t until my mother-in-law presented me with a bucket filled to the brim with lemons from her tree that I decided to make them.

Hello, tastebuds. Continue reading

Chocolate raspberry bread & butter pudding

3 Aug

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Despite being Sydney born and bred I am a winter gal through and through. The cool air, the fabulous clothes and the amazing winter fare is my kind of lifestyle. Forget frolicking at the beach or being burnt to a crisp – give me the great indoors, a fire and some cookbooks and I’m in hog heaven.
Of all the winter foods my favourite to cook and eat must be puddings. Despite not having an overly sweet tooth I am always drawn to puddings: self-saucing, gooey, oozy numbers are what the cold weather is all about. Wand when it comes to a hearty dessert to make you happy to be alive it is hard to go past a bread and butter pud.

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Australian blogger and writer Kate Gibbs’ recipe for choc raspberry bread and butter pudding, from her book After Toast, had my name on it: I had a stale loaf of chunky white bread and due to shopping miscommunication about 8 litres of milk in the fridge.
I made a few tweaks including the amount of eggs and milk and omitting jam that was used on the bread slices.

GATHER:
8 thick slices of good quality white bread
Enough butter to generously butter bread with
150g fresh or frozen raspberries
1/3 cup dark choc bits / buttons/ roughly chopped chocolate
3 eggs
2 cups milk
Good splash best quality vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon sugar plus extra for sprinkling

LET’S GET TO IT:
Preheat oven to 180C .
Cut bread into small rectangles or triangles then butter each piece on one side.
Arrange in shallow ovenproof dish and scatter with half the raspberries and all of the chocolate. Cover with remaining bread.
In a large jug whisk eggs until frothy then beat in milk, vanilla and cinnamon.
Pour over bread and scatter over remaining berries.
Stand for 15 minutes.
Sprinkle over the extra sugar, cover with baking paper and bake for 20 minutes. Remove paper and bake for another 15.
Serve warm.

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Easy raspberry and almond squares recipe

25 Jul

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It is so cold in Sydney at the moment that I’m spending most of my time in the kitchen baking. Standing in front of a lovely warm oven is the best way to while a way a bit of time. The downside is I’m burning through flour, milk, eggs and butter at a rate of knots! Oh well…
Recently I flicked through some of my so-huge-it-needs-to-be-culled cookbook collection and landed on a recipe from The Australian Women’s Weekly book, The Baking Collection. This marvellous book is, as they say in certain circles, all thriller – no filler. Page after page of tempting bakes to make and I could think of no happier way to spend a day than creating some of these treats.
I chose the recipe for raspberry and walnut slice, though I used ground almonds instead of ground walnuts. I think any ground nut [or nut meal] would work here so feel free to experiment. The recipe called for ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon but I am such a lover of this scented spice that I just freehanded a massive amount.

 

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GATHER:
150g butter, diced and softened
2/3 cup icing sugar
1 ¾ cup plain flour
at least one teaspoon ground cinnamon [more if you prefer]
½ cup ground almonds
300g frozen raspberries

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LET’S GET TO IT:
Preheat oven to 180C and grease and line a 20cm x 30cm rectangular slice pan.
In bowl of electric mixer beat butter and icing sugar until pale [you may need to scrape down sides of bowl a few times]
Stir in sifted flour, cinnamon and nut meal until mixture is crumble [do not over-mix].
Set aside one cup of crumble mix, then place the rest of the crumble mix in the pan and use the base of a glass to firmly pat down. Sprinkle over raspberries, then sprinkle over remaining mix.
Bake for around 20 minutes or until golden.
Inhale – the smell is amazing.
Allow to cool in tin before slicing into squares.

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littlemiss yorkshire pudding

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