Monday, August 29, 2011

Dulce de Leche

   I feel so happy about being able to write this.

   I made homemade Dulce de Leche!

   I began to read about this caramel sauce as I read and browsed through blogs. It seems that it's popular in South America (correct me if I'm wrong) and there are several ways of doing it. Most methods seem to require the use of condensed milk. The thing is, in Malaysia we usually have sweetened creamer (which is made from palm oil) rather than the dairy type, and people say the latter is better for making Dulce de Leche.

   However, I came across a recipe in Joy of Baking (one of my favourite baking sites) that provides a recipe using regular milk, with several other ingredients. It seemed simple enough, so I bookmarked the recipe waited for a time when we'd have enough extra milk to make it.

   This morning, I made some Dulce de Leche as we all rushed to prepare for leaving home. I had just over an hour and the sauce required around 40 to 60 minutes of cooking time. I was a little apprehensive at first, and was afraid that I'd burn the whole thing, but I had to use the milk or it's go bad while we weren't at home.

   And lo and behold I did it! It wasn't so hard. Thankfully, I'd seen the video provided by Stephanie in the Joy of Baking, which is really helpful. I watched it many times before, which helped. It wasn't as fussy a process as I though it would be- even though it required me to stay by the pot, watching and stirring the sauce constantly, I was still able to clear up the mess in the kitchen, wash the dishes etc. I just made sure to check the sauce every 30 seconds to 1 minutes. I managed to burn the bottom a little bit by the end of the cooking time because I forgot to turn down the heat, but it didn't do too much damage and I just strained the sauce before pouring it into a container. I can't wait to find some use for it when we get home!

   You can read the original recipe here. Watch the video- it's really interesting!

   These are the ingredients I used:

   1 litre/4 cups fresh milk
   3/4 cup (150g) caster sugar
   2 tablespoons golden syrup (in place of corn syrup)
   1/2 teaspoon baking soda
   1/8 teaspoon fine salt

   This is what I did:

   Stirred together all the ingredients on low heat, increasing the heat to medium and lowering it again when I found it necessary. It took around 1 hour to achieve the nice, caramel colour. Probably would have taken less time if I'd bring the mixture to boil more quickly. But it worked anyway.

10 minutes into cooking

30 minutes (I think) into cooking

Hah! You can see bits of the burnt caramel.
Hakuna matata. Just strain the sauce and you'll be fine.
   I didn't quite believe it when Stephanie said she could simply lick the dulce de leche of a spoon. Well... I ended up cleaning up the leftovers in the pot. Delicious!

   Another goal in baking/cooking achieved. What's next?

   I'm beginning to develop a philosophy in baking- you needn't be afraid of making something that you want to make! Don't be afraid. Go ahead and try that recipe that you've eyed for a long, long time. If it doesn't work out, well then try again. I should tell myself this many, many times. For this particular recipe, it worked.

   The dulce de leche can be kept in the refrigerator for up to a month.

I love the beautiful brownish-golden colour.
What should I do with this?
Any suggestions?

   I enjoyed entering the three blogging events for August, so I think I'll be brave and enter more events when I get the chance. I'm entering this for Jac's September Bookmarked Recipes, but I'll provide the links later. For now I need to sleep!

   p.s. We reached Kedah safely at around 7pm. Today was the last day of Ramadhan. Tomorrow is the day of Eidul Fitr. Selamat Hari Raya/Happy Eidul Fitr to all Muslims!

   p.s.2 Ooppss! I forgot to include the Bookmarked Recipes event logo. Here it is:

   The event is hosted monthly by Jac of Tinned Tomatoes, and was originally created by Ruth from Ruth's Kitchen Experiments. Do take a look at the September round-up, and don't forget to join the next round-up for October! 

Sunday, August 28, 2011

15 Hours of Baking... huh

   I'm rather tired. I started baking at 9am today, and turned off the oven at about 2am just now. Well, I did take some breaks in between, but most of my time today was spent in the kitchen. What an achievement!

   Let's see. I made some cookies:
   1. Vanilla Custard Kisses (still haven't made the filling)
   2. Afghan Biscuits
   3. Surprise Cookies (something my Dad named, and my favourite out of today's bakings)
   4. Chocolate Chip Whoopie Pies
   5. Hazelnut Cookies

   I'll post entries about them later. I also baked a few more goodies in the last few days:
   1. Bright-eyed Susans
   2. Tate's Chocolate Chip Cookies
   3. Mocha-Crescent Thingies

   I can't imagine how people who take orders for Eid manage! I love baking, but doing it non-stop can be a little tiring. Thankfully KakYong. Aiman, Ummi & adik helped. Dad and Abang helped by eating! Haha. 

   We're setting off for Kedah at around 9am. If we manage to leave by then. If I have time, I shall post some recipes before we do, but if I don't I'll do it when we get there- provided I have time to copy down the recipes! There's still so much to do, but we're all looking forward to meeting everyone for Eid. It'll be fun. And a little sad too, with Tok (my paternal grandmother) who no longer recognises anybody. 

   The kitchen is a mess. 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Looking forward to Raya Bakes!!!

   Abuya a.ka. is an absolute dear when it comes to fulfilling his children's wishes. He went and bought all these baking ingredients for me and I couldn't wait to start when I saw them! I've already made some cookies, and hopefully I'll be able to share them with here soon.

   I'd just though I'd showcase photos of some of the ingredients here. Though they may seem normal for most bakers, I'm still excited because baking ingredients are quite expensive and we rarely spend a lot on them. I love seeing how much I have on hand to experiment and have fun with!

Three different kinds of chocolate chips.
Butterscotch, chocolate and uhm... black and white?
I love choc chips.
The three different kinds remind me of a recipe I saw at Bakerella's... hmm...

Baking chocolate, but this isn't the bitter kind. There's a hint of sugar in it.
I prefer the last kind that I bought. That you could eat on its own.

Dessicated coconut- been sitting on the shelf for quite a long time. I should get to work and use them.
Cornflakes- though I'd prefer Kellogg's, using these for baking should be fine.

Ever since we moved to Kelantan, I buy most of my baking stuff at Barang Kita.
It's a bakery store and it has quite a lot of interesting and of course useful stuff.

Yes, halal gelatine!
Please visit their website for more information.

Brown sugar!
I love working with brown sugar.
Recipes that use them somehow tend to  produce better results! (I think)
And Ummi says they're a lot healthier than plain old granulated white sugar.

And an assortment of flavourings, colourings and whatnot.
Hehe... messy. I should get around to arranging them.

   In the future I plan to share some stories about the ingredients that I use and where I purchase them. I'd like to write about my search for Halal certified products too. I hope the information will be useful for Muslims who (happen to, if they ever do, stumble upon and) read this blog. I also hope it will help non-Muslims understand better about why eating halal food is important to Muslims. You may have some Muslim friends, and you want to make something for them to eat. Well, I hope I can help you in my own small ways.

Veggie/Fruit a Month: Peaches - Peach Pie

   I've always loved peaches. The wonderful smell, the bright, beautiful colours of both the skin and the flesh and the flavours... and it had always been one of my biggest dreams (I have a lot of those, by the way) to make a Peach Pie.

   And here it is, a Peach Pie, to celebrate the gathering of all 7 members of my family! We're all home, and it was lovely to have ifthar together. We joked, shared stories, poked fun at each other and just enjoyed being together as a family. 

   This the fourth time I've made pie using BC's Pie and Pastry Cookbook, and I'm afraid I'm still struggling with the pastry. I cheated several times (such as cutting the rolled-out pastry in half and placing the halves one after another before pinching them together in the pan... hehe) but it turned out okay. I was afraid they wouldn't brown, that the peaches would taste weird, blablabla... but it was okay. It turned out fine.

   So here it is, my most (I think, anyway) successful pie yet. My youngest brother says it's nice warm, but KakYong and Abang think it's be good cold. Abuya gave me the thumbs-up sign, so I guess it went well. I took over an hour preparing the pie with some help from KakYong, and went it finally went into the oven I felt relieved. Well, perhaps not truly  relieved because I was worried the pie wouldn't cook... blablabla again. I'm happy to say I'm no longer so afraid of making pastry!

   So enough said, let's go to our pie, shall we? I'm including measurements for three pie sizes (8-inch, 9-inch and 10-inch) but I made a 10-inch one. Once again I've not included the recipe for the crust because like I said, I'm still struggling with it, though I know it's a good recipe because it works better than any other so far!

   My final say: This peach pie is a peach!!!

Source: Betty Crocker's Pie and Pastry Cookbook

Pastry for 8-inch Two Crust Pie
4 cups sliced peaches (about 6 medium)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon butter or margarine


Pastry for 9-inch Two Crust Pie
5 cups sliced peaches (about 8 medium)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoon butter or margarine


Pastry for 10-inch Two Crust Pie
6 cups sliced peaches (about 10 medium)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoon butter or margarine

Heat oven to 425F/210C.

Prepare pastry.

Toss peaches and lemon juice. Stir together sugar, flour and cinnamon; mix lightly with peaches. Turn into pastry-lined pie pan; dot with butter. 

Cover with top crust (with slits, or you can a lattice top, which I did); seal and flute. Cover edge with 2- to 3-inch strip of aluminium foil to prevent excessive browning; remove foil last 15 minutes of baking. 

Bake 8- and 9-inch pies 35 to 45 minutes, 10-inch pie 40 to 50 minutes or until crust is nicely browned and juice begins to bubble through the slits in the crust. Serve with lemon sauce (recipe below).

Baker's Notes
1. If you can't get fresh peaches, you can use canned ones. I got two cans of peach halves for a good price at Mydin (around RM 5.00+ for each can) and only used one and a half cans (around 13 peach halves). Drain the peach halves or slices (keep the juice for another recipe) and decrease the sugar to half of the required quantity. 

2. We increased the quantity of cinnamon in our pie- I love cinnamon!

3. I baked my pie for 1 hour at 240C. It came out a nice, golden-brown colour and when the timer went off, some caramelised sugar/juice was beginning to seep out of the top crust.

Makes 1 1/3 cups.
*According to the book, this sauce is good for blueberry and mincemeat pies. It worked really well with the peach pie.

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup water
1 egg, well beaten
3/4 teaspoon grated lemon peel
3 tablespoons lemon juice

In saucepan combine all ingredients. Heat to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly. Serve warm or cool. Store sauce in covered container in refrigerator.

Baker's Notes
1. We had 3/4 of a lemon left, so we put all of that in instead of just 3 tablespoons.
2. I decreased the sugar to 1/3 cup.
3. The sauce firmed up a little too much while it was sitting in the fridge, so we just added a little hot water and it worked fine.

   I'm submitting this recipe for the Veggie/Fruit a Month, an event created by  Priya of Mharo Rajasthan's Recipes. The event is hosted monthly by a different person/blog with a different fruit or veggie, and this month the host is Susan from the Well-Seasoned Cook and the theme is Peaches! (I hope I've put all the links properly- still trying to get used to this!)

   I'm also submitting this to the August Bookmarked Recipes hosted by Jacqueline at Tinned Tomatoes. The event was originally created by Ruth from Ruth's Kitchen Experiments. (I meant to join last month but didn't quite have the nerve). I've bookmarked this recipe ever since I started reading the book, so I hope it counts! 

p.s. Uploading photos takes ages! Pheww!!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Batik Cake a.k.a. Hedgehog Slice

I know, I know, I need to work on the presentation. Next time, huh?

   I've made this cake twice. Once for ifthar at home. The second was when I went to KakYong's (two or three days ago). I'd promised to take some baked goodies for her, but I didn't have time to make any so hopefully this Batik Cake made up for it.

   I've known and eaten this cake ever since I was five and I've always loved it. We used to make the crunchy sort though- no eggs. The biscuit and chocolate always got stuck to your teeth and brushing them was a lot of work! I discovered that people have become more creative and instead of just dumping the whole lot of biscuit pieces into the chocolate mixture, you arrange them, layer by layer, and the cake turns out really pretty when cut. I forgot to take a picture of the second cake (which turned out nicer than the first one).

   The fun thing about this recipe is that you use everything up in one go (well, perhaps not the biscuits). The cake is sweet and really chocolaty. There are several versions of the recipe (some also include cocoa) but I just followed the one with the fewest ingredients.

   The following recipe is based on the second cake I made at KakYong's, but the photo is from the first one. I'm too lazy to go and check the recipe at Wendy's, so this is what I remember putting in and doing:

Sources: Wendy and Kak Hana

*Note: Wendy provided a really useful step-by-step tutorial. Thanks!

1 regular-sized can condensed milk
1 200g packet Milo (or your favourite malted chocolate drink)
4 eggs, lightly beaten
150g or 2/3 cup butter (cut in cubes)
1 packet Marie biscuits
1 tsp vanilla ( optional-I didn't put it in)

In a saucepan, stir together condensed milk and Milo until well combined.

Stir in eggs and mix until well combined.

Put saucepan on stove and put in butter cubes and turn on heat to medium low. Cook custard until thickened, then turn to low heat. Cook until mixture becomes think and grainy. Turn of heat.

Hah, this is where I get lazy. Go to Wendy's blog and look at her step-to-step tutorial. I should have told you to do that in the first place. Apologies... getting a little sleepy. Next time I'll try to include photos of my own step-by-step attempts, haha.

Thinking of making this when we go back to Kedah for Eid (there'll be a stove at the homestay so yay!)

Banana Bread Pudding

[This post was created ages ago, way, way before Ramadhan, about a week or two after my baking craze started]

   It's another episode of Let's Go Bananas.

Let's Go Bananas Episode 2

   I didn't plan this. It's the bananas. They made me do it! They screamed at my face, saying, "Why aren't you doing something to us! We're supposed to be eaten, not left on the counter to ripen!" 

   I stared back. I was the one who had asked Mum or Dad to get the bananas. I was in the mood for eaten fresh, ripe bananas. I put out a hand to pluck one banana off.

   "No!" They screamed. "If we're gonna be eaten, let us do it gracefully! Dress us up! Drown us in custard! Sprinkle cinnamon sugar on our flesh!" 

   Is it me or is it the bananas who have gone bananas?


   Joy the Baker is a lovely site, filled with great recipes and beautiful pictures. I'd stumble across her blog quite some time ago but only started subscribing a few weeks ago. My favourite entries from her recipes are the Bake sessions, I love seeing her and Jill Donenfield baking and having fun together.

   Ever since I saw the video and the recipe for this pudding, I'd wanted to make it. I love puddings, I love bread puddings, I love bananas and I love cinnamon! It looked easy enough (gulp)... so I suppose things can't go that wrong, huh?

   Since I didn't have a pan the size of that which Joy used, I just used the regular 8 x 8 inch pan that I've always used. I suppose it meant that I'f have to adjust the temperature or something, but I'm not good at that so I just followed what Joy had put.

   I didn't reduce the amount of sugar this time, but I did add more bananas because I didn't have banana extract. I also omitted the bourbon since we don't drink alcohol (it's prohibited for Muslims, actually, but I'll write about that in another entry). 

   Did it work?

THE Recipe

[Click HERE to view the original recipe]

10 slices of white bread
(toasted, buttered and sliced diagonally)
3 eggs
2 cups of milk
(I used bottled fresh milk)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large bananas, sliced
1 tablespoon icing sugar (for topping)
1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon (for topping)


1. Preheat oven to 180C (170C for my oven).

2. Butter 8 x 8 inch pan (or whatever size works for you) and set aside.

3. Heat milk and sugar in a saucepan just until all the sugar is dissolved.

4. Whip the eggs in a bowl and pour in the milk mixture while continuously whisking the eggs.

5. Arrange the bread triangles in the baking pan. 

6. Sieve the custard into the pan, over the bread. 

7. Slip the slices of bananas in between the bread and deep into the custard.

8. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the custard is set. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar on top.

9. Eat it. It's good hot! 
Just bear in mind that your tongue might fall off if it's TOO hot. Know your tongue.


TUMPAT, 18th July 2011: About fifteen slices of bananas voiced their dissatisfaction for topping the charts- or rather, topping the top part of a pan of bread pudding. Due to this, they were burnt until black and crisp, unlike their other hundred hundred or so friends who enjoyed themselves as they were cooked deep in the custard below.

   "This is truly unfair!" said one particular slice, which happened to be the end part of one banana. "Being rounder on one side makes it even more displeasing! My rounder part ended up being on top and the effect created became a joke among the clan!"

   The baker, while apologising profusely for her lack of judgement, looked grim. "It was that or ending up as plain bananas and not making it into the custard, which they didn't want! Really, these bananas- anyone would go bananas listening to them!"

   Readers are advised to make sure that the bananas are slipped deep into the custard, should they think of making banana bread pudding. If they have no such thoughts, beware if there are some beautiful, ripe bananas sitting on their counter. Anything can happen with bananas.
The Verdict

   I'm afraid I misjudged the time chosen to make this. Everybody's still busily going about with their business, so the pudding is sitting patiently in the oven, waiting. For a first timer, it was quite good (of course I tasted it, just a few minutes after it came out of the oven, in fact!), so I'll try to make this again next time I have enough ingredients. 

   However..... it was delicious! I love the crispy top. The bananas I used gave a slightly sourish taste, which I was nice and contrasted the sweetness of the custard.

Cook.Eat.Delicious- Desserts: Lemon Chiffon Pie

   I've edited this entry a little because I'm submitting this recipe for my first ever event! Which also means that this blog is going public! I feel nervous which is probably silly, haha. Anyway, I hope to get to know more food bloggers through this blog. Hope this is a good first-public-post!

   This event is hosted by Raven at Cook.Eat.Delicious and it's called Cook.Eat.Delicious-Desserts! The first theme is lemons, yum! 

   It's been a pie of a week!

   Well, I made three kinds in one week. Yeah, I went from brownie-blondie craze to pie craze. I also bought two tins of peach slices. They're waiting for KakYong and KakCik to come home, haha. 

   I think lemons are lovely! Though maybe because the ones I got were rather cheap, the colour wasn't a lovely yellow like I hoped it to be. They still smelled great anyway. I think lemons are the the stars in the citrus world!

   This recipe is another one taken from Betty Crocker's Pie and Pastry Cookbook. Here's a picture:

   It's a lovely book! I look forward to trying more recipes from it. We got it from a carboot sale when we lived in Scotland.

   And here is my one and only decent photo of the pie. We made sure to eat the other half first- because I burnt the crust, haha. I made a 9-inch crust pie, but I provided the recipe for 8-inch, 9-inch and 10-inch. I haven't included the recipe for the pie shell though because I'm still struggling with it, so just choose your favourite pie crust and make the filling!

Lemon Chiffon Pie

Source: Betty Crocker's Pie and Pastry Cookbook

8-inch Baked Pie Shell
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp unflavoured gelatine
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tsp grated lemon peel
3 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/3 cup sugar

9-inch Baked Pie Shell
4 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp unflavoured gelatine
2/3 cup water
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 tbsp grated lemon peel
4 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar

10-inch Baked Pie Shell
5 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2/3 cup sugar
4 tsp unflavoured gelatine
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup lemon juice
4 tsp grated lemon peel
5 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar

Bake pie shell.

In saucepan blend yolks, sugar (using quantity first stated), the gelatin water and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat. stirring constantly, just until mixture boils. Stir in lemon peel. Place pan in bowl of ice and water or chill in refrigerator, stirring occasionally, until mixture mounds when dropped from a spoon.

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until frothy. Beat in 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time; continue beating until stiff and glossy. Do not underbeat. Fold in lemon mixture; pile into pie shell.

Chill several hours until set.

Note: I substituted the powdered gelatine with jelly powder because we didn't have the former. Though I'm not sure what difference it made since I'd never made chiffon pie before. It turned out okay though, but the filling could have been firmer I guess. Delicious, all the same!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Chocolate Marvel Pie


   I already posted this recipe and accidentally deleted it! Both this and the post on the first Chocolate Pie I made! Allow me to scream again!

   Oh well. I'll just re-post the recipe for Chocolate Marvel Pie, but no lengthy descriptions about my blunders this time (fuming).

   Anyway, this was my first successful attempt at a good pie crust, and the filling was very good too! Dad has requested that I make it again! Kakyong and Iman will also definitely love this too, the filling has a mousse-like texture that's really delicious.

   No photos though; there was an incident but I'm too lazy to re-describe it. Huh.

Source: Betty Crocker's Pie and Pastry Cookbook

9-inch Baked Pie Shell
6 ounces semisweet chocolate pieces
2 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp milk
4 eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Bake pie shell.

In saucepan, heat chocolate pieces, sugar and milk over low heat, stirring until chocolate is all melted. Cool. Beat in egg yolks, one at a time. Stir in vanilla.

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until stiff. Fold in chocolate mixture. Pour into baked pie shell. 

Refrigerate several hours or overnight. (which I did for 8 hours)

If desired, garnish with whipped cream and sprinkle with diced almonds.

Serve and enjoy!

Note to Kakyong: Be sure to ask me about The Incident Involving a Slice of Pie and a Container of Rice. Hehe.

Vanilla Cream Pie

   Dad asked me to make the Chocolate Marvel Pie again sometime soon. He only had one slice- and with a pie like that, you have to have at least two. If possible, three. I'm serious- no kidding! When KakYong And Aiman come home, I'll have to make a 10-inch one.

   Today I made pie again for ifthar- only I made it too late and it'd only been in the fridge for 1 1/2 hours, so it wasn't quite set. I made vanilla cream pie. Adik liked it, but I think Abang prefers the chocolate pie. I personally think it tasted a little- and I mean a little bit like cough medicine, haha. I think it was because of the vanilla essence. I have to say, even though I use vanilla essence instead of vanilla extract due to several reasons (which I will explain in another post), I don't think I'll use it again for custards because it rather spoils the taste.

   On the other hand, Abang managed to snap a picture or two of the whole pie, but I've yet to take one of one piece. The thing is, the custard didn't 'set' actually- instead, it stayed soft and custardy. When you slice through the crust, the filling pours out like custard sauce. Since there was no picture of this particular pie from the book, I hoped this was the way it was to be. After all, the only thickener it used was cornstarch. Or maybe I need to cook it longer. Anyway, next time I'll substitute that with custard powder and see if it makes a difference.

   The book offers measurements for three pie sizes- 8-inch, 9-inch and 10-inch. I've included all versions so that you can find the best that suits you. I made a 9-inch pie, and once again the crust slid down the slippery slop of the bowl. Tomorrow I'm going to hunt for a nice pie pan. And buy one if I can afford it.

Source: Betty Crocker's Pie & Pastry Cookbook

*still too lazy to post the recipe yet, just use your favourite pie crust recipe

8-inch Baked Pie Shell
1/2 cup sugar
3 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 tbsp butter or margarine, softened
Sweetened whipped cream


9-inch Baked Pie Shell
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups milk
4 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 tbsp butter or margarine, softened
Sweetened whipped cream


10-inch Baked Pie Shell
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups milk
4 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 tbsp butter or margarine, softened
Sweetened whipped cream

Bake pie shell.

In saucepan, blend sugar, cornstarch and salt.

Stir milk into egg yolks. Stir egg mixture into dry ingredients. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium heat until mixture thickens and boils. Boil and stir one minute. Remove from heat; blend in butter and vanilla.

Immediately pour into baked pie shell; press plastic wrap onto filling. Chill pie thoroughly (2 hours or longer).

Just before serving, remove plastic wrap from filling and top it with sweetened whipped cream

Serve and enjoy!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Congo Bars

   [I typed this entry last week, but forgot to post it.]

   Dad remarked a few days ago that he thought I'd broken the record for the number of recipes attempted in one day.

   Of course that's not true, as I know there are thousands of other people who have done a lot more, but as far as my own record goes, I have to say I'd broken it too. After making Tate's Chocolate Chips, a second batch of Butterbeer blondies and that second batch of not-really-good-but-still-edible butterscotch blondies (all of which I'd fail in getting any photos), I gave myself a break and stopped baking for a bit (the truth was I'd run out of some ingredients, hehe).

   Anyway, today I went to get a pair of shoes in preparation for my driving lessons, and I took the chance to use what little money I had to stock up on chocolate & butterscotch chips and brown sugar. I also got a bottle of chocolate emulco and one bottle of coffee emulco. Oh, and one pack of high protein flour for bread making. I cannot wait.

   To get back into the mood, I made a batch of congo bars after seeing them on Kak Rima's blog. Kak Rima's blog is gorgeous, with lovely pictures of professional baked stuff which leaves anybody looking at them drooling without realising it, not to mention her super cute daughter Sonia. 

   Congo bars are actually blondies, I suppose, since the ingredients are more or less the same as what the blondie recipes that I've used called for. It seems that all I'm baking at the mo' are blondies and brownies... oh well, maybe I'll turn out an expert at them? Haha. I'm planning to make some egg tarts tomorrow  (I didn't get to take photos of the last batch I made, and anyway they weren't 100% successful although the tupperware container was empty by next morning) so hopefully that'll be a change. 

   Anyway, the Congo bars are still cooling on the counter but being the impatient person that I am, I've already cut them into squares and even packed a few slices to take to the workshop tomorrow. It'll be a 5-hour ordeal I'm afraid, so some sweets would definitely help! I'm glad I finally get to start though, it seems like I'm about the only person who has't got her license yet! (The bright side is I might be the first among my sibling to get one, haha!)

Packed for tomorrow

   Congo bars, you are good! Though I've yet to find a rival for my much beloved Butterbeer recipe. They are still my favourite so far!

Congo Bars
taken and adapted  from Bisous a'  Toui, the Kitchen Guardian and Bakerella

2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup butter (I still only have money to spend on good margarine, sobsob)
300 g brown sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence or extract
1 cup chocolate chips (or more if you like)

1. Sift flour and baking powder into one bowl. Add salt.

2. Beat butter around in one bowl until it has softened a bit, and add in brown sugar. Mix until all the sugar has been incorporated into the butter.

3. Add the eggs, one by one, and mix until well incorporated.

4. Add in vanilla essence and chocolate chips. Stir just until combined.

5. Fold in flour and stir until just until combined.

6. Pour into an 9 x 13 inch pan and bake in a preheated oven at 170C (16o for mine).

7. Cool for 15 minutes before cutting into bars.

8. Take pictures or whatever it is that you usually do after you've finished baking.

9. Stare at the pile of bowls, measuring cups and what-not that's sitting in your sink. Well, maybe not, if you were wise and washed them as soon as you've finished using one item. Like I did (smug).

Note: Feel free to ignore number 8 and 9. These bars are GOOD. I meant to have them a little fudgy but they were more cakey, which is still good anyway. It's quite an easy recipe, so even I managed not to get anything wrong. 


   I suppose by the time I come home from the workshop, the bars will all be gone. If I look at things in a positive light, it means a chance to bake more stuff! 

   Mum's sure the bill will be 'electrifying' when it comes. Oh well. At least our tummies are full!

Definitely delicious!


This recipe is a keeper! I'll definitely make these again!