Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Nutella Cheesecake Bars

It is not low fat. 
It is not healthy.
It is however delicious.
And it will definitely require some exercise afterwards to prevent this sugar from going straight to your thighs.
But if you, like me, have a sweet tooth, then it's absolutely worth it.

Nutella Cheesecake Bars
  • 1.5 cups crushed tennis biscuits (about 1 pack)
  • 6 Tablespoons (90 grams) melted unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup (67 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 tubs cream cheese (460g), softened to room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup (100g) Nutella, slightly warmed*

Preheat oven to 180C degrees. Line a 8x8inch baking pan with aluminium foil with enough overhang on the sides. Set aside. My dish was 6x10inch which worked perfectly.

To make the crust: 
Using either a blender or a bag and rolling pin, pulverise the biscuits. 
Pour into a medium bowl and mix with melted butter and sugar. 
Press into the lined pan. Bake for 5 - 8 minutes. Allow to cool as you prepare the filling.

For the filling: 
Beat cream cheese, egg, sugar, and vanilla extract together with a hand or stand mixer until smooth and creamy, about 3 full minutes. 
Spoon filling onto the crust. Drop large spoonfuls of Nutella on top of filling and swirl gently with a knife.
(To make the Nutella easier to manage, heat it for a few seconds as it then becomes much easier to swirl.)

Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cheesecake has set up and the edges are lightly browned. The bars will be very puffy, but will sink slightly down as they cool. Allow to cool for 30 minutes at room temperature on a wire rack and then chill in the refrigerator for at least three hours. Lift the foil out of the pan and cut into squares.

Store bars in a covered container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. (That’s if you can manage to make them last that long. We gobbled mine up in 3 days)

Baking the crust

Dollop in the cream cheese mixture

Drop the Nutella on the top and swirl around

After refrigerating, cut up and enjoy!

Monday, 9 December 2013

It's beginning to look a lot like christmas...

Christmas is all around, so obviously my nails would follow suit and get dressed up for the season...

Friday, 6 December 2013

Tata Madiba

Tata Madiba, you saved and turned our country around using peace, love and respect!
You will always be our hero.
May your soul rest in peace, and your legacy live on through eternity.

Baby Cakes

It was one of my best friend's Baby shower this past weekend so, as we don't know whether she's having a little boy or girl,  I baked up a batch of gender neutral white pearly cupcakes...

loving her adorable preggy belly!

Thursday, 5 December 2013

American Flag Free Printable

Yesterday I posted the recipe and pics from my Americana themed cupcakes. For these cupcakes I made a bunch of little American Flag cupcake toppers and thought I'd share them.  Feel free to download them here.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

The (multicolour) American Dream

For a friends recent 40th, I was tasked with baking the American themed cupcakes.
As he wanted a variety of flavours I opted to do 24 red velvet cupcakes, 24 chocolate cupcakes, and 24 vanilla mulicoloured cupcakes.

Vanilla Multicolour Cupcakes Recipe

  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
  • In a bowl sift cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Stir together with whisk, and set aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, add eggs and beat 10-20 seconds.  Add sugar and continue to beat on medium speed about 30 seconds.  Add vanilla and oil and continue to beat.
  • Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture.  Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour and the rest of the milk.  Beat until just combined.  Scrap down the side of the bowl.
  • Share batter out into 3 measuring jugs (I use measuring jugs so that I can make sure I have the same amount of batter in each)
  • To one mixture add blue food colouring and to another red colouring. Add as much as needed to get the colour you require.
  • Slowly pour one colour ( I wanted blue at the bottom) into teh bases of all your cupcake liners. pour about 1/4 full.
  • Next, gently pour the next colour in (I used the uncoloured vanilla). Don't pour straight down the middle as it will drop below teh bottom colour. gently pour around the edges working in.
  • Do the same with the last layer of colour.
  • Bake cupcakes in pre-heated oven for 18 minutes.

To ice I just used my favourite cream cheese icing recipe.

Cream Cheese Icing
  • 1 tub (about 230g) Cream cheese (cold - directly from fridge)  
  • 1/3 cup butter ( room temperature) 
  • 1tsp Vanilla Essence  
  • 4 - 6 cups Icing sugar

  • Place butter in a large mixing bowl and beat until smooth. 
  • Add cream cheese and blend until fully combined, about 30 seconds. 
  • Add vanilla extract and powdered sugar (one cup at a time) while mixing.  Increase to medium speed and beat until it begins to get fluffy. Keep adding sugar until you get the desired consistency. I find on hotter days I need to add more sugar as the cream cheese is a lot more melty.
  • Frost cupcakes and decorate if desired