Thursday, February 21, 2013

Frosted Milo Cookies

Cookie day again! I have not been baking enough since being back in New Zealand, I have no occasions to bake for, and the result is that my last batch of cupcakes were not up to their usual standard! Luckily, these cookies turned out nicely and got a lot of positive comments. Of course, if you are not in the southern hemisphere you won't know what Milo is and will have trouble finding it but I'm pretty sure you'll find a suitable subsititute - Milo is a malted chocolate drink powder that we use here to mostly make a hot drink with water and milk, but you can have it cold too (I prefer it cold). It's not strongly chocolatey and the malt taste is not too strong either. You could probably replace it with ovaltine and cocoa for this recipe, or some other malted drink powder. Or, go to you local Asian grocery store and just have a look around because technically we are Australasia and you can get Milo in many pacific countries, so you might just find it there, in a green tin.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Black Plum Chocolate Cake

Today's post has been a long time coming - I had a can of plums, I found a recipe, but first time around it majorly flopped and it took me awhile to get back to it. Now I have and it was good, really yummy, but not the prettiest cake. So if you're looking for an insanely rich dark chocolate cake with something a bit different, try this. Just don't be surprised if it does something unexpected, like rising massively into a mushroom shape and then sinking down until it is dense and less than flat.

Black Plum Chocolate Cake
adapted from

1 850 gram can black doris plums
200 grams dark chocolate
150 grams butter
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup milk
4 eggs

Take a deep round cake tin, about 23 cm in diameter and 5 cm deep, and line the bottom with a piece of baking paper. The depth of the tin is important if you want a pretty, nicely shaped cake! If it is too shallow your cake will rise and spread over the top and make your cake funny shaped like mine.

Turn the oven on to 180 degrees celsius.

Open the can of plums and pour into a colander to drain well, so that they don't make the cake soggy. Then cut each plum in half and remove the stone. Place the cherries in the bottom of the tin, cut side down.

Break the chocolate up and place it in a microwave-proof bowl. Add the butter on top of it and microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring well between each, until the chocolate has just melted and is smoothed. Be very careful to not burn the chocolate!!!

Separate the eggs and place the whites in a large bowl, along with the sugar. Beat them with an electric beater until they are quite thick and opaque (they did not get as big as meringue mixture, but you could feel that the sugar had dissolved by taking a pinch of mixture and rubbing between your fingers).

In a medium sized bowl combine the egg yolks, milk and chocolate mixture. Beat until smooth.

Pour the chocolate mixture into the egg whites and fold gently. Pour over top of the plums and quickly place the tin in the oven.

Bake for  40 minutes. Remove from the oven but leave it in the tin to cool. It will sink, don't be concerned about that though because you're going to turn it upside down anyway.

Let it get fully cold (put it in the fridge if you like), then turn it out onto a plate and admire the pretty plums on the top. It will be dense and incredibly rich so don't cut yourself too large a slice!