Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Very unusual – very, very delish. And flour-less! If you are like me, and like a dash of salt with your chocolate, these salty sweet cookies are delightful. I’d love to know what you think.

1 cup of peanut butter (You will get a different result using ‘smooth’ from the result using ‘crunchy’.  I like both, but be aware they do give a different finish)
1 cup of brown sugar
1/3 cup of castor sugar
1 egg
1 tbsp orange zest
2 tbsp vanilla paste
chocolate chunks for the top (I use Aldi organic fair trade dark, or Valrhona)
Maldon sea salt (Do not use table salt!)

Cream together all of the ingredients, except the chocolate and salt. Line a tray with baking paper. *Form tablespoon sized balls (BUT DO NOT FLATTEN THE BALLS!) … ok, there’s the cue for the porno blog trawlers….

Push a chocolate chunk (… OK, I do more than one!) into each ball, and sprinkle with sea salt. *Or, chop up the chocolate chunks and distribute through the batter.

Bake in a 180F oven for 10-12 minutes. Let sit on the sheet for 5 minutes more then transfer to a cooling rack.

Makes 16 cookies.

Enjoy!

Chicken skewers with kaffir lime leaves

I have a Kaffir lime tree, and always want more recipes for the leaves other than the standard curry.  But I hadn’t thought of using them like this, until I read through one of my old notes from a Spirit House class I went to a long time ago.
These are really good. If you try them, I’d love your feedback. If you have any other recipes using whole leaves – please share :)

Ingredients

  • 2 spring onions, peeled, finely chopped bulbs and stalks
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, white part only, finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp white pepper
  • 600g chicken thigh fillets, cut into 3cm cubes
  • 25 Kaffir lime leaves (I was told you can use jarred if you have no fresh)
  • ¹⁄³ cup water
  • Extra 2 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 Tbsp palm sugar
  • 1 small red chilli, finely chopped
  • Steamed rice, to serve
  • Lemon wedges, to serve, (optional)

Method

1 Put 12 bamboo skewers in a shallow dish, cover with cold water and leave to soak for at least 20 minutes or until needed. Put spring onions, lemongrass, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, oil, fish sauce, turmeric, salt and pepper in a bowl. Add chicken and stir until well combined. Cover and put in the fridge to marinate for 1 hour.

2 Finely chop 1 lime leaf and put in a small heavy-based pan with water, extra fish sauce, sugar, chilli and remaining lemon juice. Stir over a medium heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture comes to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Transfer to a bowl and leave to cool.

3 Remove skewers from water. Thread chicken and remaining lime leaves alternately onto skewers. Heat a large chargrill pan or large heavy-based pan over a medium heat. Cook skewers, in batches, for 3-4 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Serve with steamed rice, cooled sauce and lemon wedges, if desired.

Maple Chicken and Ribs

(Courtesy of Nigella Lawson’s Nigella Express)
Serves 6-8

This is one of my ALL TIME favourite meals and we have this at least monthly. Always when we have a lot of people for a BBQ, as it’s a no brainer.

12 pork spareribs
12 chicken thighs, skin and bone still on
1 cup apple juice, as sharp as possible
¼ cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 star anise
1 cinnamon stick, halved
6 unpeeled cloves garlic

1. Put the ribs and chicken pieces in a couple of large freezer bags or into a dish.

2. Add all the remaining ingredients, squelching or tossing everything together well before sealing the bags or covering the dish.

3. Leave to marinate in the fridge overnight or up to two days.

4. Take the dish out of the fridge and preheat the oven to 400°F.

5. Pour the contents of the freezer bag into 1 or 2 large roasting pans (making sure the chicken is skin side up), place in the preheated oven, and cook for about 1 ¼ hours, by which time everything should be sticky and glossed chestnut brown.

This was shared by DOMESTICALI, and it is, indeed, divine.

Austrian Eggs

Austrian Eggs
(4 servings)

1 c. sour cream
1/4 c. heavy cream
8 eggs
1/2 c. butter
1 tbsp. chives, chopped

Preheat oven to 350.  Pour sour cream & cream into baking dish.
Carefully slip eggs in from a cup, one by one.  Dot with butter, sprinkle with chives.  Bake for 15 minutes, until eggs are set.

As a quick entertainer or Sunday lunch, this is AWESOME!

I actually divide the recipe by 4, and use  tiny individual baking dishes,for each person. . .they’re easy.

Melting Moments

I first met Joh when she was a parent of a sweet boy in my class. Joh was outgoing, vibrant and fun. I was in awe of Joh because she was a chef – who was giving it all up to work in WPHS!  and Joh makes the BEST melting moments. This is her recipe. I can never make them as good as Joh.

Melting Moments:

250g butter, cubed
1/3 cup icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 ¾ cups plain flour
1/3 cup cornflour

Filling:
60g butter
1 tsp vanilla essence
rind of 1 orange (or I put passion fruit pulp if I have it)
2/3 cups icing sugar

1. Preheat oven to 160c. Line baking tray with non stick paper.
2. Use electric beaters to beat butter, icing sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.
3. Sift icing sugar and flour into mix and beat on slowest speed until just combined. Do not overbeat.
4. Roll teaspoons of mixture into balls. Place on tray about 5 cm apart. Use fork dipped in flour to flatten.
5. Bake for 15min or until just cooked through. Cool on tray, transfer to wire rack.
6. To make filling: beat sugar and vanilla, add sugar and rind. Sandwich two cooled biscuit together.
7. ENJOY!!