Friday, 20 April 2012

Coconut Butterscotch Cookies

When I was visiting family at Easter, my cousin Mike's wife Heather (yep, she's Heather too!  We're taking over the world.) mentioned Coconut Butterscotch cookies.

And I couldn't stop thinking about them.

I snooped around the blogs to see if I could find anything, and then I defaulted to Allrecipes, almost sure I would find something right.

When I came across a recipe that kind of looked like it was what I wanted I was terribly excited.  There were only 13 reviews, but they were all raves, so I decided to take a chance.

Plus, during a "preliminary Spring Clean inspection", I realised that I had a ton of coconut that needed to be used up before the summer came.  And the more I use up - the less I have to clean.

I'm lazy that way.

Off we go.

The recipe actually calls for 1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup butter flavoured shortening, but I didn't have any shortening, so I just used all butter.

First, beat butter, white sugar, and brown sugar in a mixer bowl until fluffy.

Then add in an egg, almond extract, and vanilla extract and beat together.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder.

Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and combine.

At this point I was SURE the dough wasn't going to come together.  It looked REALLY. WEIRD.  But, with a little patience, it did end up coming together.  Then add in the butterscotch chips and the coconut.

I ended up pulling the bowl off the mixer stand and finished mixing in the last bits of coconut and chips by hand because the dough wouldn't pick them up.

Then bake at 350 degrees F for about 10 minutes, until the edges are golden.  The recipe said to bake them at 375 - but I had my doubts.  So I just did what I wanted.

Okay, I know these don't look nearly done, but I checked the bottoms and they were nice and golden all around, so I KNOW they're done.  And I like my cookies SOFT.

These were actually REALLY good!  It's nice to have something a little different than just plain old chocolate chip (although I'm totally not knocking a classic).  The flaked coconut adds a really different texture and the butterscotch chips are fantastic.

I would definitely add this to my recipe book!

This is the Cane Girl - signing off.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Cadbury Creme Egg Muffins

Holy crap, I love Creme Eggs.

And really - how much more do you need to say.

I found this recipe on Nicole's website, Baking Bites.  When I saw it, I thought, "yeah, how could I NOT."

Remember the last time I did a "stuffed" cupcake?  Remember how the bar inside melted into nothingness at the bottom of the cupcake? 

I was worried it would happen again, and all that work would go down the drain.

Nicole suggested that a muffin would be an excellent complement to the Creme Egg, but to me, some muffins are just naked cupcakes.  Like, a BRAN muffin wouldn't be iceable (is that a word?  It is NOW!), but a VANILLA muffin could totally take Buttercream.  They'd be friends.

I didn't ice these...  At first. 

First, you whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.

Then, you mix together the melted (and cooled) butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until smooth.

Then add in the milk and mix together.

Then add the dry ingredients and mix on low until just combined.  I like to pull the bowl off the mixer stand and just give it a final mix with a spatula - just to be sure.

Fill your cupcake pan to 2/3 full and press in a mini Creme Egg into each well.

I had a little batter left over after portioning 6 muffins, so I used my smallest scoop and put batter directly over the Creme Egg.  But I didn't need to do that - I should have just used a knife to pull some of the batter up and around the egg.

Then bake.  Nicole says 14 - 16 minutes (until the top springs back when touch and the edges are golden), but I thought they didn't look nearly done, so I baked them for about 20 minutes.

What I thought?

I should have taken them out at about 17 or 18 minutes, because I found them a little dry (that's my bad).

The Creme Egg did NOT melt! (yay!)  The fondant center firmed up and the chocolate was soft. 

Now - if you'll excuse me - I'm putting buttercream on those babies.

This is the Cane Girl - signing off.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Cadbury Creme Egg Brownies (Version 2)

Last year, when Easter rolled around - I went crazy trying to get my hands on ANY Creme Egg recipe that I could.

This one was one of them.

I was totally excited about this recipe because you melt Creme Eggs with chocolate and then bake them up.

But the recipe called for Cadbury Bournville Chocolate.  Whaaa-aaat?  What's THAT?  I can't even find Ghirardelli baking chocolate!

Turns out Cadbury Bournville Chocolate is available in the UK.  It's entirely likely that I could have picked some up at the British import store in the Big Mall, but I refused to go all the way over there just to find out.

So I had to improvise using just semi-sweet Baker's chocolate.

Also, the measurements are all in grams and ounces.  Luckily, I used the last of a gift card that I had to buy a digital scale (which I do pull out quite frequently, surprisingly enough).  I suppose I could have converted everything to cups, but it was just as quick to measure everything (and maybe a little faster!).

On we go.

In a double boiler, melt together the chocolate, Creme Eggs, and butter.

I pulled the the chocolate mixture off and let it cool a little. 

Then whisked in the eggs.  You want the chocolate cool enough that it won't cook the eggs. 

But I messed up - I was supposed to add the sugar first.  Oh well.

Then I mixed in the sugar.

Stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt, then add to the chocolate mixture in three batches.

Pour the batter into a greased 9 x 13 pan and bake in a 325 degree F oven for 30 - 40 minutes.  I pulled mine out after 30 minutes.

Then cool completely.  The recipe author, James Montgomerie, recommends a minimum of two hours.

What did I think?  Sadly, I couldn't taste the Creme Eggs at all!  I was a little disappointed.  And mine didn't look like James's at all.

It's entirely possible I did something wrong.  Who knows.

Less than impressed, this is the Cane Girl - signing off.