Tag Archives: flour

Best Oatmeal Cookies!

I’m that kind of person who gets inspiration from just anything. The other day as I was doing some shopping in the supermarket, I saw a packet of oats and there and then I knew I wanted to buy some.

The oats I used
The oats I used

 

Disclaimer: Prior to this, I had never had oatmeal cookies and the only oats I’d ever  tasted were part of my breakfast cereal.

Now to the recipe, since I was venturing into the unknown and we all know that Google is your friend, I researched on a recipe and settled on this one with some few tweaks.

Ingredients:

3 eggs well beated – I only had two

1 cup raisins

1/2 cup mixed peel – my own addition

1 tsp vanilla essence

1 cup margarine

1 cup sugar

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp baking soda

2 cups oatmeal

For the desired best results start by combining the eggs, raisins, mixed peel and vanilla essence and let it stand for one hour.

The eggs and raisins
The eggs and raisins

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One hour later…

Cream the margarine and sugar.

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Add the flour, salt, cinnamon and baking soda and mix well.

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after mixing well
after mixing well

Blend in the eggs raisin mixture and oatmeal and mix well.

the egg, raisin, mixed peel mixture
the egg, raisin, mixed peel mixture
the oats
the oats

The dough will be stiff. Don’t be alarmed. Roll them into balls and place on an ungreased baking sheet and flatten slightly.

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Bake at 350°F for 10 to 12 minutes or until slightly browned.

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I used only half the dough. The rest I wrapped in some cling film then put it in the freezer. For the frozen cookie dough, always remove it about an hour before using to allow it to thaw.

crunchy
crunchy

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Very delicious and crunchy, a favourite of hubby’s.

Variations: You can also add desiccated coconut or chocolate chips.

 

 

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Fluffy Banana Pancakes

Hey foodies, I’ve missed you. I know, I’ve been gone for long but great thing is I’m back and with new recipes to boot.

I have been meaning to share this recipe for a while now but I kept on postponing. I have made banana pancakes before but I used to blend the ingredients together to ensure the bananas were completely mashed. This one time, I was in a rush so I decided to just roughly mash the bananas and the result was genius. I had guests over and would you imagine they finished the pancakes even before the chocolate cake was over.

The cast of characters
The cast of characters

Ingredients:

3 very ripe bananas

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla essence

3 tbsp sugar

2 cups all purpose flour

1 tbsp baking powder

1/4 tsp nutmeg powder – optional but you don’t want to leave it out

3/4 cup milk/ water – I used water

Vegetable oil for frying

 

Start by mashing the bananas. In a bowl, using a fork mash the bananas.

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After a few minutes of mashing;

DSCN0354One by one, beat in the eggs.

DSCN0355Then stir in the vanilla essence.

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Add the sugar.

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In another bowl mix the flour, baking powder and the nutmeg.

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Add a third of the flour mixture into the banana and egg mixture then add half of the milk/ water and stir. Repeat this step then finish with the flour mixture.

in goes the flour.
in goes the flour.

Note: In case you find the batter a bit viscous, you can add more milk/water to achieve your desired consistency. Since, I was aiming for fluffy pancakes I didn’t add more water.

The batter is done
The batter is done

Now to the cooking, if you have a non stick pan use it, in case you don’t have one like me start by pre heating your pan. This will prevent the batter from sticking. Once the pan is heated add about a tablespoon of oil and let that heat. Then add the batter, as for the size it all depends of your ability to flip the pancakes over 🙂 .

Since the batter is thick, you can spoon it over to get drop scones or you can pour it out to get a pancake. I tried both methods.

Cook lightly on both sides, when bubbles appear on the top side the pancake is ready to be flipped. Keep a keen eye since pancakes tend to burn if not turned at the right time.

DSCN0377The flip side

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And we are done!

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Finally serve them up warm and drizzle over your favourite syrup. I just top them up with honey.

Verdict:

Extremely fluffy and the banana and nutmeg flavour, spot on. I dare you to try them.

Peanut Butter Snicker Cookies

One word: Amazing!!!

These cookies are delicious. All lovers of snickers chocolate bars out there you gotta try these cookies and they even have peanut butter. I didn’t make the cookie dough though, oh I’ve just rhymed cool 🙂 . Anyway, my foodie pen pal Cici of foodie in the desert sent me the frozen cookie dough. I just sliced the dough and baked them. I made the cookies for Labour Day breakfast.

Here is her recipe:

Ingredients:

1 cup all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup peanut butter (she used smooth)

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 * 56 g bars of snicker bars, chopped then frozen on a wide plate so they do not touch

Instructions:

1. Pre heat oven to 160°C

2. Sift flour, baking soda and salt in a bowl.

3. In a separate bowl, using a paddle attachment on an electric beater (you can used a wooden spoon also), cream peanut butter, butter and sugar on medium for about 3 minutes. Add in the egg and vanilla and slowly add the flour. Once the flour is well mixed and had reached dough consistency fold in the snickers using a wooden spoon.

4. Put the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to harden the snickers again so they do not melt. You can also freeze the dough at this point for up to 6 weeks.

5. Scoop the dough using a tablespoon or your hand and roll into a ball, place on a cookie sheet and flatten with a spoon.

6. Bake for 12-15 minutes (12 minutes gives a chewy cookie, 15 minutes gives a harder cookie)

Since I had the dough, this is what I did.

After letting the dough thaw for a short while, I sliced it into 1 cm rings.

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Line a baking tray with some parchment or grease proof paper. Lay out the rings.

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Pop them in the oven and voila.

These cookies were very delicious. Hubby loved them.

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Black Forest Cake

If you like my page on facebook or follow me on twitter you must have seen my previous complaints about my black forest cake backfiring. It got so bad that I decided not to try again. I resulted in getting my brother to bake the cake then I do the frosting.

This past weekend we were having a bridal for a good friend of mine and I offered to bring a black forest cake. At first I had requested my brother to do the baking but on second thought I decided to ask him for his recipe. I needed to face my fears. I normally hate it when cakes back fire, though my friends think otherwise since they enjoy eating my backfired cakes, ha!

This recipe is a bit different from others that I have tried. The great thing is that it worked.

Before I go on, be warned this will be a very long post full of many photos so if you are yet to have lunch I suggest you eat first :-). Oh and another thing, making a black forest is a bit tedious, not the baking part but the layering and frosting so patience is key.

Ingredients:

For the cake;

7 medium sized eggs

220 g all purpose flour – about 1 3/4 cups

23o g sugar – about 1 1/2 cups

160 g margarine – about 3/4 cup

5 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 teaspoon coffee

2.5 teaspoon of baking powder

2 teaspoon of vanilla essence

1 teaspoon of passion flavour essence – optional

For feeding the cake

2 tablespoons of icing sugar

4 tablespoons of water

Some juice – optional

For the frosting

Whipping cream

Strawberries, washed, hulled and quartered

Chocolate

Equipment

Electric mixer

wooden skewer or toothpick

Start with baking the cake.

Pre heat the oven at 180°C. Grease the baking tins and line them with grease proof paper. I used 2 9 inch round tins since I wanted the cake to have four layers.

the main culprits
the main culprits

Baking this cake is pretty easy since you just dump in all the ingredients then using an electric mixer you combine the ingredients and the cake batter is ready.

All the ingredients
All the ingredients

Using the handy mixer…

Cake batter
Cake batter

Divide the batter between the two tins. Ensure they are more or less the same.

ready to be baked
ready to be baked

Bake for twenty minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. I said a prayer as I put the cakes in.

Excitement!!! I was jumping up and down. The cakes had not backfired. Thank you God.

Fresh from the oven
Fresh from the oven

Let the cakes cool for about ten minutes then remove them from the tins to cool further.

chilled out
chilled out

It’s advisable to let the cakes cool completely, this will come in handy when layering the cake. The crumbs won’t be as many.

I wrapped my cakes in clear cling film them I put then in the fridge.

Same day evening…

Layering and frosting.

Take one cake, I put mine on top of an overturned baking tin. This is to aid in layering the cake.

Start by leveling the cake.

Leveled, I guess
Leveled, I guess

Then slice the cake in half to form two almost equal layers.

tada
tada

Repeat the above steps for the second cake.

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leaning tower of black forest

Now for the fun part.

the whipping cream
the whipping cream
strawberries and whipping cream
strawberries and whipping cream

To make the sugar water, combine the icing sugar, water and juice if using. I used some orange juice that I had in the fridge. For the extra kick I guess you can put a tablespoon of rum in the mixture instead of juice.

food for the cake
food for the cake

Place the bottom layer of the cake on a board, then using a wooden skewer or toothpick poke the surface of the cake.

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Then drizzle about a tablespoon of the sugar water over the cake. This will feed the cake to ensure it continues to be moist and spongy.

Put a dollop of whipping cream on the surface of the bottom layer.

bottom layer
bottom layer

Spread it evenly on the surface of the cake.

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Spread the strawberries. I had some leftover cherries so I threw them in.

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Repeat the steps for all the layers.

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After filling in all the layers, coat the entire cake with the whipping cream.

white cake...
white cake…

It doesn’t need to look perfect since you will pile on chocolate.

When it comes to putting the chocolate, you can be as creative as you want to be. You can choose to grate the chocolate and sprinkle it all over the cake. If you are in a hurry, like I was, you can cut the chocolate into chunks and stick around the cake. Don’t worry they won’t fall off, the whipping cream acts as the glue.

Decorate the top with smaller pieces of chocolate then make a border on the cake with whole strawberries that are slightly dipped in whipping cream.

talk of abstract art
talk of abstract art

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the cake
the cake

By the way I used homemade chocolate.

The cake looks so huge, I guess it’s a 1.5kg.

When it got to cake time, I was anxious to see how the layers would look. Then the bride to be sliced the cake.

Need I say more?
Need I say more?

This cake may take long to prepare but, trust me it’s worth the wait. So go on try it out, in case you don’t succeed on the first attempt don’t give up there’s always a second, third or fourth try.

Fish Fingers – Take 2

Goodness!!! This post has been on my drafts for so long, it’s about time I finalise it.

I cooked this a while back so I can’t quite remember the story behind it, sorry. All in all I know I was in the mood for some fish hence the reason I cooked this.

I tried a different recipe from my previous one here.

I decided to make a paste with different spices to coat the fish fingers.

1 tbsp fish masala, 1 tsp crushed garlic, 3 tbsp dried parsley, 1 tsp coriander powder and 1/4 tsp paprika

In a bowl, add about 3 tablespoons of all purpose flour, mix in the spices then beat in 2 eggs. Remember to add in some salt.

Making the paste

After beating in the second egg the paste will look like this.

The paste

Fish fingers.

finger food

Tip: Sprinkle some little salt over the fish fingers.

This method of making fish fingers is less tedious since you just dip them in the coating once.

Coat the fish with the paste. Let it stand for about 15 minutes before cooking.

In a pan, heat some oil for frying the fish. Ensure the oil gets hot before adding the fish to avoid it from sticking in case you aren’t using a non stick pan like me.

floating fingers

Let them cook for about 7 minutes or until browned on each side. Drain over a paper towel covered plate.

Others browned more than others. O-o

Voila, easy and quick fish fingers.

Served them with some spicy potato wedges and kachumbari.

kachumbari, fish fingers, spicy potato wedges and lemon slices.

Which recipe do you prefer?

Chocolate and Vanilla Muffins

I just felt like baking, plus I had some leftover yoghurt and I decided I’ll use it instead of milk.

Ingredients:

3/4 cup margarine

3/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

2 tablespoons vanilla essence

3/4 cup plain yoghurt

1/4 cup water

2 cups all purpose flour

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg powder (optional)

A handful of sultanas

Start by greasing your muffin tin and remember to pre heat your oven at 350 degrees F (about 175 degrees C).

Using a wooden spoon/ spatula cream your sugar and margarine.

The sugar and margarine mixture

Then add in the eggs one by one.

in goes the egg

Add the vanilla essence.

In another bowl combine the dry ingredients except the cocoa powder,cinnamon and sultanas.

flour,salt,baking powder

Add the flour mixture to the creamed sugar in three parts alternating with the yoghurt.

pour in a 1/3 of the flour

Take the sultanas and coat them with about a tablespoon of flour. This will ensure that they won’t sink to the bottom of the muffins while baking.

flour coated sultanas

Fold them into the cake batter. In case the batter is a bit think add about 1/4 cup of water.

Now for the chocolate part;

In another bowl, mix the cocoa powder,cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix with about 2 tablespoons of water to get a semi thick paste.

cocoa powder, cinnamon and nutmeg
semi-thick paste

Add half the batter into the paste and stir.

Pour out some of the vanilla better into the muffin tins, about a quarter in each tin.

the vanilla

Then add the chocolate batter. Sadly I don’t have pics since at that point my phone’s charge was out… 😦

Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Muffins!!!

Choc-vanilla muffins

Verdict:

Tasty and pretty moist, I guess it’s because of the yoghurt.

Perfect for an afternoon snack with some tea or hot chocolate.

Cinnamon Chapatis :-)

To say my husband loves chapatis would be an understatement. I think he can even eat them daily.

So sometime last week, actually Wednesday, as we were on our way to visit my mum, we passed by those vibandas (road side kiosks) that make and sell chapatis and this is the conversation that ensued between hubby and I.

Hubby: I think I’ll learn how to make chapos

Me: (all perplexed) Why?

Hubby: Because at this rate, I’ll never get to eat them.

(It had been like 3 weeks since I last cooked them)

Me: Oh… (I burst out in laughter) I promise I’ll make them tomorrow.

Hubby: I won’t keep my hope highs

Me: When did I ever promise you something and I defaulted?

Hubby:…………… (silent)

So after that interesting conversation and my promise, I had to cook chapatis, no matter what. Luckily that Thursday we arrived home early. Funny thing is that hubby had already forgotten that I had promised to make chapatis O-o.

Ingredients:

2 cups all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 salt

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/3 cup warm water

Equipment:

Wooden spoon

Rolling pin

Wide surfaced pan- preferably cast iron

Board/ Clean surface

First to make the chapati dough.

In a bowl, pour in all the dry ingredients.

flour,salt and cinnamon

Make a well in the flour then pour in the warm water.

Mix with a wooden spoon, till the flour gets combined.

Add in the 3 tbsps of oil.

Once the dough get a bit formed, start using your hands. If it’s too sticky add some little flour. Knead the dough, for about 5-10 minutes. Form it into a ball.

The mixing should be almost clean if not totally.

Lightly brush the dough with some oil, about a tablespoon then let it sit for a while. Mine rested for about 15 minutes. The oil on the surface with prevent it from drying/flaking while resting. I also go an extra mile and cover with a polythene bag.

The chapati batter

Form the dough into almost fist sized round balls. Place on a well floured surface to avoid sticking.

My dough made 13 chapos

Now we begin the real work Well if it were my mother preparing these, she’d just roll them out and cook, she’s a pro like that. I use the longer method, which she taught me. *Thanks mum*

First roll out the small ball of dough, apply about 1/2 teaspoon of oil. Then roll it up.

Step 1: Roll it out
Step 2: Apply the oil
Step 3: Roll it
After rolling it in
Step 4: Fold the rolled in dough.

Repeat this process for all the small balls. It may seem a little time consuming but I guarantee it’s worth every second. This step will ensure that the chapatis have the beautiful layers as you eat. Next time, I’ll show you a time saving trick 🙂 *watch this space*

15 minutes later…

Now, we are ready to cook. Heat your skillet/cast iron pan. Don’t grease it.

Now take one ball, roll it out again. This time try and stick to the circular shape, no one likes rectagular chapatis. Also remember to lightly dust your surface/board with some light flour to keep it form sticking, also dust the rolling pin.

Ready to be cooked

In the pan, place the raw chapati.

In it goes

Rotate it to ensure it cooks evenly. It will sort of rise in some place, press to remove the air. Once one side is lightly browned, turn it.

Almost cooked.

Now, using a spoon, pour about 1/2 tablespoon of oil under the chapati, then rotate it. Once that side is cooked, turn and finish off the other side. Using the same spoon lightly press down the chapati and rotate.

Lifting to oil

Do the same for all the round balls. There is also another trick, though in my opinion it takes more or less the same time as this. I’ll share next time.

Voila, cinnamon chapatis.

Soft layered chapatis, full of cinnamon goodness.

Verdict:

Super soft. The layers were just perfect. Delicious.

Let’s just say, hubby was extremely happy.

We had guests over, the lovely Murigis and they loved them.

PS: I apologise for the poor picture quality, my camera is currently spoiled so I’m using my phone.