Showing posts from January, 2013

No Bake Lemon Slice

What can I say about lemon that I haven't said before?

I've told the story of my mother's lemon tree that fruited three seasons of the year. And I think I've told the story of the minature lemon tree my husband and I were given for our wedding (which incidentally has fruited more lemons this year than we've ever had from it before).

Lemon is one of those classic flavours that just cannot be outdone. It's up there with chocolate and vanilla in my opinion.

When I was pregnant, I was surprised to find I craved lemon (and tomato). I would happily have eaten nothing else, which probably wouldn't have agreed with me since both are so high in acid. Yet those were the two flavours I wanted most.

I've had friends say in the past that a vanilla cake with lemon icing is the next best thing to heaven. Lemon when it is allowed to retain it's simple nature is a beautiful thing in cooking. So all hail the humble lemon! Here is my mornng snack tribute to l…

Chocolate Coconut Slice

One of the odd things about being a part time baker is, while I'm busy supplying quality baked treats to cafes and customers, I then get a cafe cake from the espresso bar where I get my coffee at work. I always find the choice limited and the quality questionable.

So this year, I've decided to be my own customer for cafe cakes. It means I get a treat to go with my coffee that I know will be good, I'll save about $3.50 a day which adds up to $17.50 a week. Plus I will keep my husband supplied with morning snacks too - although I think he eats the snackies I make him in the afternoon.

So here is my first cafe cake for the year - chocolate coconut slice, which has yielded 18 slices. We only need 10 for the week, so eight can go in the freezer and be enjoyed some other time.

2 cups plain flour
2 cups desicated coconut
1 cup caster sugar
4 tblsp dutch cocoa powder
370g butter, melted
1 tblsp vanilla essence

1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees celcius and line a…

Three Cheese Potato Bake

In 1998 my friend Sophie came to visit from France. It was the second time we met face to face, having been penpals since we were high school kids.

Sophie came armed with a swathe of genuine French recipes, which we attempted to cook for a dinner at my mother's house. While Potatoes Au Gratin had been served in our home before, the recipe we'd used was not like Sophie's. Hers was based on beef stock and creme fraiche, which unfortunately was unknown in Australia at that time (or at least in Penrith). It also had bacon interspersed through the layers of potato, and if I remember correctly, needed topping up with more creamy stock as the potatoes cooked.

My mother and I messed with Sophie's recipe so much, I don't think it resembled the French version much at all. And don't even get me started on the disaster of a cherry clafoutis, which we had no idea how to handle! It turned out rubbery and we could tell by the look on Sophie's face that it wasn't…