Friday, 31 May 2013

Biscoff Sheet Cake

After I discovered the joy that is Biscoff Spread, I went CA-RAZY looking for recipes on the Internet.

I accumulated quite the little collection and then I kept going back and forth, and back and forth about what I wanted to make.  I really couldn't decide. 

Since I had JUST done a cream pie, it didn't make sense to do another pie.  But perhaps a cheesecake?  Or maybe cupcakes? 

But I didn't want to use too much and run out too soon - because Biscoff is hard to come by in my neck of the woods.  It's not actually hard to come by.  It's IMPOSSIBLE to come by.

And every time I would look in the "Biscoff Recipes" folder I would get flustered and move on to something else.

I finally threw my hands in the air and thought, 'GEEZ Heather, just PICK something'. 

Then suddenly, I realised that I knew EXACTLY what I wanted to make.  It had been a roller coaster of events and emotions in the two weeks preceding this decision and I desired only cake.

I had come across this sheet cake recipe on Buttercream Lane at some point and tucked it away in my file.

I was really unsure about doing a sheet cake.  But mostly because I don't have a sheet cake pan.

But in Margaret's recipe, she mentions that you can actually make this in a 9 x 13 pan and it will be just fine - you will only need to adjust your cooking time.

So I did.

In a large bowl, whisk together the brown sugar,


salt, and baking soda.

Then mix everything until well combined and there are no lumps.  I had a hard time with this one as my brown sugar was starting to get a little on the hard side.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and water together until almost boiling.  Then add the Biscoff to the butter and stir until smooth.

And add to the flour mixture.

But do you see what I'm missing there?

Yeah.  Me too.

I just improvised and heated up the Biscoff in the pot and added it after. 

No biggie.

Then.  In a medium bowl combine the milk and sour cream.

Add the eggs.

And whisk until smooth and well combined.

Then pour the milk mixture on top of the Biscoff and butter.  Like so.

Stir until just combined and pour into a cake pan.

And bake until cooked.  I checked mine at about 24 minutes and according to the toothpick test it was definitely done.

While the cake is baking, start the icing.  You'll need to pour the icing on the cake hot from the oven, so start now.

To be honest, putting icing on a hot cake goes against everything I've ever learnt about cake and cupcake making - so I was completely hesitant to do this.

But, I went ahead anyway.  It's what Margaret says to do!!!

Start the icing by melting the butter in a medium-size pot with the milk.

Add in the Biscoff.

Stir to combine and heat through.  It will look curdled, but don't worry - it's supposed to do this.

Add in the icing sugar and the vanilla extract and stir until smooth.

And pour over the hot cake.  Strangely enough, you will need to gently spread the frosting.

Mine was a little lumpy, but I think it's because I let the butter mixture get a little cool before adding the sugar.

I loved the brown sugary, caramely flavour of this cake.  It turned out dense, moist, and delicious.  However, I was somewhat concerned it was a little under-cooked.  But I was SURE it was cooked through.

This cake was a delicious way to use Biscoff and I can't wait to make it again.

But, be warned.  If you don't have easy access to Biscoff and have a limited supply, I would hold off on making this cake.  It easily uses a whole jar of this delicious spread.

But - YUM.  Maybe make it anyway.

Thank you to Margaret for creating this delicious recipe - I'm sure your Mother-in-Law is totally impressed! 

And thank you Margaret for being so sweet - it was a treat to "chat" with you last week!

xoxo - the Cane girl

If you would like the recipe for this incredible cake - head on over to see Margaret at  Buttercream Lane!

Monday, 27 May 2013

Mac & Cheese Mondays: Fontina Mac & Cheese

I can't believe that it's been so long since my last post.  Time just seemed to get away from me.

As always, I fully INTENDED to post - but life, once more, got in the way and I have a couple of announcements.

The first announcement, I suppose would be, that I recently started a new job!  It's a HUGE change for me, but I'm excited to have a new challenge and flex my "work brain" a little.  And when I say "a little", I mean a whole heckuvalot.

The second is that I will be moving a little over 300 kilometers away from where I live now into a much smaller city.

I'm terrified and excited, but am sure that it will turn out really well.

Good grief - keep your fingers crossed for me.

As for Mac & Cheese Mondays - I think this is the last one I will ever make in this kitchen.

Earlier this year I had mentioned that I really needed to start emptying out my pantry.  And fridge.  And now that I'm moving this is even more important.  Because the less junk that I have to move, the better.

Then when the news came about the new job and the move, I decided to really ramp up the clean out project.

After looking through what I had in the fridge - which, by the way, is a total mish-mosh of different kinds of cheese, and looking through the recipes I had saved away, I couldn't seem to find a recipe that would implement a variety of the cheeses that I already had. 

I came across a recipe from Annie at Annie's Eats that called for only fontina cheese, and I luckily happened to have leftover fontina from when I made Bacon Lover's Mac and Cheese for Dee.

Let's get it started shall we?

Start gently heating the cream.

Cook and drain the pasta.  In the same pot, add the butter and return the pasta to the pot.  Stir to coat the pasta with the butter.

Add the warm cream to the pasta.

Start adding the shredded fontina.

Stirring until melted and add in the salt and nutmeg.

Melt some butter.

Add some panko crumbs.

Then some grated Parmesan.  Stir to combine.

Pour the pasta mixture into a casserole dish and top with the panko mixture.

Bake until the sauce is bubbly and the panko topping is golden and crisp.

If you take a smell of fontina, you would expect that the flavour profile would be really sharp and strong.  Because fontina is kind of stinky.  But the truth is, it's quite smooth and creamy and wonderful.

I didn't think this ended up having as much of a cheese sauce as I would have expected from a mac and cheese, but someone I know really loved it and scarfed down a whole plateful!

This is the Cane girl - signing off.