Bar One Cheesecake

Bar One Cheesecake

Bar One Cheesecake

The beautiful marble effect that this creamy, smooth and tangy cheesecake has is undeniably unforgettable. This cake is definitely not low in calories, but every mouthful is worth it!

What you need

Crust

100 g marie biscuits
50 g demerara sugar
50 g butter (melted)
1 Bar One (42 grams) (place in the freezer for minimum 1 hour before use)

Bar One Sauce

6 Bar Ones
100 ml cream
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon very soft butter

Cheesecake

750 g smooth cream cheese
180 g icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
350 ml double thick cream

The process

Grease and line a round, 20 cm cake tin (NB: cake tin must have a removable base, and only line the bottom of the tin, not the sides)

Making the crust
Place Marie Biscuits in a plastic packet. Using a rolling pin, crush the biscuits until they become very fine crumbs.

Grate the bar one – this may be a very tedious task, but adds to the deliciousness of the cheesecake. Add the grated bar one and demerara sugar to the crushed Marie Biscuits and mix thoroughly.

Melt the butter in the microwave; add it to the Marie Biscuit and Bar One mixture. Mix well.

Place the biscuit mixture into the prepared cake tin and press down firmly, ensuring that the entire base is covered. Place in the fridge to set.

Making the Bar One Sauce
Fill a pot half way with hot water. Place on a hot stove and bring to the boil.

Once the water is boiling, pour the cream into a glass bowl and place the glass bowl on top of the pot to create a double boiler (NB: it is very important that the hot water does not touch the bottom of the glass bowl – the steam is used to heat up the cream and melt the chocolate).

Once the cream has been slightly heated, add the Bar Ones (two at a time). Mix with a whisk continuously until a smooth, fairly thick sauce is formed. Whisk in the soft butter and pinch of salt. Remove from heat and set aside.

Making the cheesecake
Using a whisk, mix together the cream cheese, icing sugar and vanilla extract. Make sure the all the ingredients are well combined. Fold in the double cream.

Take the chilled crust out of the fridge and spoon a thin layer of the cream cheese mixture onto the crust. Spread evenly until the entire crust is covered, right up to the edge of the cake tin (NB: ensure that there are no air bubbles).

Take the Bar One sauce, whisk it up and generously drizzle it over the cream cheese mixture.

Continue making layers of the cream cheese mixture and Bar One sauce (remember to save some of the Bar One sauce to pour over the top of the cheesecake when it is complete.)

Leave in the fridge for at least 3 hours to set.

Serving the Cheesecake
Take a sharp knife and slide it around the edge of the cake tin to loosen the cheesecake. Push the base of the cake tin up to detach it from the sides.

Serve and Enjoy! (NB: this cheese cake will not become extremely firm when it has set, but remains fairly light and soft. In order to cut it, use a sharp knife with a warm blade – place the blade in hot water for a few seconds and then dry it.)

Raisin and bran muffins

Raisin and bran muffins

Rasin bran muffins

This recipe can be kept in the fridge for about a week and produces fantastic raisin bran muffins every time. I made a batch of this on Sunday and have enough for about another 4 muffins for tomorrow morning. In total it makes around 30 muffins in a muffin tin that has 6cm diameter holes that are 3cm deep and 2 is more than enough for me for breakfast.

Believe me, your family will love these, pop them in the oven while making your morning tea and by the time the first people emerge they will be ready to come out of the oven. What could be better than freshly baked, healthy and delicious bran muffins every morning?

What you need

5 cups flour
3 cups sugar
5 teaspoons bicard of soda
2 teaspoons salt
350g Rasin bran flakes (1 box) (or 200g All bran flakes and 150g raisins)

4 large eggs
1 cup oil
4 teaspoons vanilla essence
4 cups buttermilk (1 liter)

The process

Take a large bowl and add all of the dry ingredients together. Give them a mix and set aside.

Now add all of the rest of the ingredients to another bowl, give it a good whisk and then add to the dry ingredients.

Take a large serving spoon or heavy wooden spoon and mix them all together very well. It takes a bit of elbow grease because you have quite a lot of mixrure so enlist the help of the kids or anyone else who is going to benefit.

Fill your muffin tray almost to the brim and pop them in a 190 Celsius oven for 15-20 minutes.

Thats it, beautiful, hot home baked rasin bran muffins are ready for breakfast!

You can add nuts or other dried fruits to make them according to your taste just keep the proportions the same.

Believe me, you are going to want to try these! The recipe can be halved without any problem.

You might also want to try the Quick cheese muffin recipe for school lunch boxes or weekend treats.

Vanilla cup cakes

Vanilla cup cakes

Vanilla cup cakes

When you find a great sponge recipe it is something you are going to want to keep. Cup cakes are pure delight and when you top them with your favourite icing, fruit or shaved chocolate they can be as decadent as you need them to be. This is one of those recipes folks thanks to baked and delicious, so print it, bookmark it or copy and paste it, but whatever you do don’t pass it by. (makes 12 cup cakes)

What you need

The cupcakes

125g softened butter
125g caster sugar
2 large eggs beaten
125g self raising flour
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

The icing

75g softened butter
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
225g icing sugar
raspberries

The process

Pre heat your oven to 190 Celsius.

Beat together the butter and caster sugar in a large mixing bowl until the mixture light and fluffy.

Now take a whisk, add 1/2 the beaten eggs and whisk, then add the rest of the eggs and 1 tablespoon of the flour and whisk again to combine.

Now take a metal spoon, add the rest of the flour and fold it into the mixture. Add the milk and vanilla essence, give it a final few folds and then set aside while you lay out your cup cake papers onto a baking tray or muffin tin.

Spoon in equal amounts of the misture into each cup cake paper, pop into the oven for 15-20 minutes until beautifully risen and golden on top. It’s really important not to open the oven so resist the temptation.

Remove them from the oven and leave to cool on a cooling rack while you prepare the icing.

For the icing, place the butter in a bowl and beat it until it is completely soft, now add the milk, vanilla extract and 1/2 the icing sugar. Beat it for at least a few minutes and then add the balance of the icing sugar and keep beating until it is light and fluffy.

If you are going to colour your icing, add the colouring now, drop by drop while mixing until you get the right colour.

Ice each cup cake with a generous portion of the butter cream icing and top off with fresh raspberries.

These are real winners folks, try them.

Baked and delicious offer a fantastic collection of step by step fully illustrated recipes that are completely foolproof so go on over to baked and delicious and check out what they have on offer. They have an introductory offer that gives you the binder and free gifts which includes a kitchen scale, check out the subscription offer.

Slender challenge kicks off, see the contestants

Slender challenge kicks off, see the contestants

Slender Challenge Competition

The Slender challenge has officially kicked off and the contestants are making daily posts on their experiences to help everyone get an idea of what works and what doesn’t work.

To me the best part of being able to read the experiences of the contestants is to see what they go through mentally. We all justify things to ourselves and a mate of mine put it perfectly when he was going through giving up smoking, he said he had continuous internal dialogue which was the most difficult thing to beat and I am quite sure that these slimmer’s are going to be justifying all sorts of things to themselves.

It’s a bit like an idols for the slimming industry, so get on over to Slender challenge and choose your favourite contestant.

Follow the trials and tribulations of the Slender Challenge contestants and perhaps, yes perhaps all of us should be considering taking up the challenge.

PRESS RELEASE

Skin & Body Renewal’s national weight loss competition, Slender Challenge, has started! 30 Finalists will compete to see who will lose the greatest percentage of their body weight over a 12-week period.

Skin & Body Renewal Founder and Cosmetic Doctor, Maureen Allem, says they received three times more entries than they were expecting.

“Most people know that fad diets are not the answer. I have seen hundreds of patients successfully lose 8 – 15 kilos a month on our combination weight loss programme, which is why we are expecting some great results from this challenge,” Allem says.

This competition provides a unique interactive element. Throughout the contest period, the contenders will be blogging their progress daily on www.slenderchallenge.co.za. The public get the opportunity to join in the fun by following the blogs, asking questions, encouraging from the sidelines and posting their comments.

To engage the public even further, Skin Renewal is giving the public the opportunity to compete against the finalists by offering less 10% on their customised weight loss programme before the 11 July. Any public competitors, who beat the Slender Challenge winner, will receive a refund up to the value of R2 500.

The prize for the Slender Challenge winner is a 3-D Body Renewal Package from Skin & Body Renewal valued at R25 000. It is designed to reduce even more inches and sculpt the body.

Spot prizes, valued at R25 000, will be awarded to blog followers throughout the Challenge (04 July to 30 September).

www.slenderchallenge.co.za

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Red velvet cakes and cupcakes are an all time favourite that are adored by everyone – mom, dad, kids and even grand parents. Although the recipe may look extremely daunting and complicated, it is actually quite simple. Some people are not crazy about the cream cheese icing, so butter-cream icing can be used as a delicious alternative. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully and take every care to ensure that your measurements are accurate to produce the ultimate red velvet cupcakes. PS – remember to wear an apron; unless you want your clothes to turn gloriously red.

What you need

The Cupcakes
2 1/2 cups flour (sifted twice)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tablespoon cocoa powder
60 ml red food colouring
1/2 cup soft butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs (make sure they are at room temperature)
1 tsp vanilla essence (or vanilla extract)
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

The Icing
450g softened cream cheese
1/2 cup softened butter
1 tsp vanilla essence (or vanilla extract)
2 1/2 cups icing sugar (sifted)
1 pinch of salt

The process

The Cupcakes

Heat your oven to 180⁰C.
Place paper cupcake holders into muffin tray.
Combine the sifted flour, the baking powder and the salt.
In a separate bowl mix together the red food colouring and the cocoa powder until they are very well combined to form a liquid-like paste . It is very important that there are no lumps.
In another bowl (large) cream together the butter and the sugar. Beat for approximately 4 minutes.
Add the eggs individually. Beat for one minute after each addition.
Add the vanilla essence (or vanilla extract) and the red-cocoa paste.
Ensure that all the ingredients are well combined.
Add one third of the flour mixture into the creamed butter, sugar, egg and vanilla mixture.
Beat until well combined.
Add half of the buttermilk.
Beat until well combined.
Continue adding the flour mixture and buttermilk alternately until all the ingredients are perfectly combined.
In a small bowl, mix together the white vinegar and bicarbonate of soda. It will begin to fizz, but wait until the fizzing stops and add this to the mixture.
Fold the mixture to ensure that all ingredients are combined.
Spoon the mixture into the cupcake holders until they are three quarters full.
Place in the oven and bake for approximately 20 minutes.

The Icing

Mix the cream cheese and the butter together until well combined and smooth.
Using a low speed, mix the icing sugar, salt and vanilla essence (or vanilla extract) into the cream cheese mixture.
Beat until light and fluffy.
Ice the cupcakes immediately.

Buttermilk pancakes

Buttermilk pancakes

Buttermilk pancakes

These buttermilk pancakes are beautifully light and puff up so nicely. I love to put a nice size piece of soft butter on top of a stack, smother them in maple syrup and have a few pieces of crisp streaky bacon on the side but serve them with strawberries warmed in a pot with a little sugar or anything else you feel like. You cam alos break up the crisped bacon into small pieces and add them to the batter for something different. This makes about 12, 10cm diameter pancakes. Some people call these flapjacks, I call them pancakes.

If you want to serve these on a school morning, make the batter the night before and keep it in the fridge. Give the batter a stir in the morning and add a little more buttermilk if needed.

What you need

1 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
2 teaspoons melted butter
250ml buttermilk

Butter for frying

The process

Sift the flour, salt, bicard of soda and baking powder into a mixing bowl.

Make a well in the center and break in the egg. Now with a whisk mix the egg and add half the buttermilk and melted butter. Whisk gently drawing the flour in from the sides. If you add too much liquid it will become lumpy.

Now gradually add the rest of the buttermilk until you have a thick pouring cream consistency. The secret of these pancakes is to now leave the batter to stand for at least 30 minutes before you make your pancakes. If you are adding bacon bits to the recipe, do it now.

Heat a thick based pan on a medium heat and add a little butter. The best way to do this is to brush the base of the pan with melted butter. Take a ladle and spoon in the batter to form 10cm pancakes, wait for bubble to appear on the surface (about 3 minutes) and then flip them over and watch them puff up. The cooked surface should be beautifull browned.

Cook the other side for about another 2 minutes and make a stack of 3 or 4 per person.

YUM,YUM,YUM winter breakfast at it’s best.

Sticky buns

Sticky buns

Sticky buns

I can seldom pass a bakery without stopping in to see what is coming out of the oven and sticky buns have got to be a real weakness for me and making them is quite a process but worth every minute when you see them come out of the oven and get to dig in while they are still hot. I’ve also been known to smother them in custard for a real treat. This recipe makes 9 sticky buns in a 20x20cm cake tin. Baking needs to be exact and you really do need a scale for this one so if you don’t have one pop out and get one, they are inexpensive and make all the difference to baking.

What you need

The dough

1/2 cup milk
60g unsalted butter
7g dry yeast
60ml luke warm water
375g flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
45g sugar
1 egg lightly beaten

Filling

60g currants
60g sultanas
45g brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch nutmeg (about 1/4 teaspoon)
zest of 1 medium lemon

Honey glaze

100g sugar
60ml milk
60g butter
60g honey

The process

In a pot on a medium to high heat, add the water and butter, heat until the butter has melted then remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

While that is cooling take your mixing bowl and pour a little hot water into to warm it up, toss out the water and then dry it, sift your flour into the warm bowl, add the salt and sugar and make a well in the center.

In a cup with a little warm water, dissolve the yeast and then into the flour well. Now add the milk and the egg and using your hands slowly draw the flour into the liquid turning the bowl as you mix until all of the flour is mixed in and you have a smooth dough. If the dough is sticky add a little more flour.

Now turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and start kneading by pressing the heel of your hand into the dough, gathering it up turning it and then again. Repeat this process for 5 minutes, we want a well kneaded dough.

Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and leave to rise for 45 minutes and then place it onto a lightly floured surface again and roll out to a 25x40cm rectangle.

Now mix together all of the filling ingredients and sprinkle over the surface of the dough evenly leaving about a 2cm space on the edges. Roll it into a cylinder along the long edge, cut into 9 egual portions and place into the cake tin which has been lightly buttered. Leave them to rise for another 1/2 hour covered with a tea towel.

Heat your oven to 200 Celsius.

In a pot on a medium heat add all of the honey glaze ingredients and cook until the sugar has completely dissolved and the butter melted.

Pour the glaze over the buns and pop into the oven for 30 minutes or golden brown and a skewer comes out clean. Turn them out onto a rack to cool for few minutes and then break into individual portions.

That my friends is the ultimate sticky buns recipe.

You can add broken up pecan nuts instead of the sultanas as a real treat. Winter is a great time to spend some time in the kitchen, try out a few of the other baked goods recipes.

Coffee and chocolate froth

Coffee and chocolate froth

Coffee froth

This has got to be one of the easiest desserts to make and is so versatile you just have to try it. Make it with Enrista’s 3 in 1 coffee of chocolate for Coffee froth or chocolate froth or a combination of the two. You can have it as it is or dress it up with whipped cream and fruit and a few chocolate shavings but the froth is awesome. Imagine an aerated creamy jelly, just try it you will love it. Makes enough for 8-10 people depending on how you dress it up.

What you need

1 380g tin Evaporated milk
2 sachets clear unflavoured gelatine (look in the jelly section for Sheridans)
2 strong Enrista 3 in one coffee
2 Enrista hot chocolate

The process

The first thing you need to do is pop the tin of evaporated milk into the fridge to chill. Pop it in, in the morning for when you are ready, you want it to be nice and cold.

Get 2 serving bowls for the 2 different flavours.

Take 2 small mixing bowls and add 200ml hot water from the kettle and melt the 2 coffee sachets in one and the two chocolate sachets in the other. Mix it up with a spoon to ensure that the contents are completely dissolved. Then add a sachet of the gelatine to each and mix to dissolve.

Now place the two bowls in a cool place to cool. Don’t put them in the fridge, we don’t want the jelatine to set, we want it to cool. In winter it takes about 10 minutes.

Once it’s cooled add the cold evaporated milk to a large bowl and with your electric beater, beat the hell out of it for about 5 minutes until it has increased in volume about 4 times and is fairly thick.

Now put half of the cold cream into another mixing bowl and add the cooled chocolate mixture, beat it well for another minute or so and then transfer into a serving bowl, do the same with the coffee and then pop them into the fridge for about 10 minutes to set.

That’s it, simple and delicious, not too sweet and a texture unlike anything you have tried.

The idea for this came from my mom who makes it with fruit flavoured jellies.

Beef with broccoli

Beef with broccoli

Beef Broccoli

This is a super quick, delicious meat dish that you will use again and again. Chinese food is generally very quick, easy and healthy and this one is no exception. It’s a fabulous week night meal that takes just minutes to make. I really love Chinese food and this one, along with the egg fried rice and sweet and sour pork are real favourites of mine. Good for 4 people.

What you need

350g rump steak
1 tablespoon corn flour
5 ml sesame oil
1 head of broccoli
4 spring onions sliced diagonally
1 clove crushed garlic
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
120ml beef stock
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons sherry or rice wine
2 teaspoons sugar

The process

Remove the fat from the steak and slice into thin strips across the grain, this is really important or your steak strips can get tough.

Heat a wok/frying pan to very hot, add a little oil and fast fry the steak for about 2 – 3 minutes in 3 batches tossing them around so that they do not stew. You want them to sear on the outside but not cook completely, remove and set aside.

Now add the broccoli, spring onions, ginger, garlic and stock that has had the corn flour mixed into it and simmer covered for about 3 minutes. Mix the soy sauce,sherry and sugar together and add to the veg mixture. Add the beef back to the mixture and cook for another 2-3 minutes giving it a stir from time to time.

That’s that, you are done.

Serve it with egg fried rice or chinese egg noodles for classic Chinese food.

Enrista Coffees and Hot Chocolates

Enrista Coffees and Hot Chocolates

Enrista Instant pleasure

I can often be found in coffee shops in and around Joburg and am a coffee lover through and through so when Enrista approached me to review their products which are 3 in one premixed sachets of coffee and hot chocolate and the unsweetened 2 in 1 coffees I jumped at the opportunity because as you all well know, I am one for simple, quick and easy. I have also come up with 2 great recipes which you will be able to try so keep a look out, one is a dessert I’m calling chococino cloud… it’s not to be missed.

The first coffee I tried was the 3 in 1 strong coffee and I was delighted, it was a nice strong coffee with just enough creamer and the equivelent of a little less than than 1 teaspoon of sugar that needed absolutely no attention for me to enjoy it. The smooth flavour was really quite a surprise as I have experienced instant coffees that are quite bitter but this one really fit the bill, so I settled down with my coffee, turned on the tele, brought the heater up close and enjoyed a movie with a perfect steamy cup of coffee.

The next Enrista 3 in 1 I tried was the regular and on this one I am completely sold, the creaminess is what you would expect from a hot chocolate, it is a lot sweeter than the strong coffee thoroughly enjoyed it, in fact I now pop 2 sachets in my pocket on the way to work for a great first cup every day.

The coffees are a little over R2.00/cup and worth every penny.

The 2 in one regular coffee is for those who like unsweetened or only a little sugar and the creamy flavour is carried through. These are a real treat with my favourite being the 3 in 1 regular.

I don’t think I have had hot chocolate for a few months now and in the pack of Enrista products there were, and I emphasise “were”, 10 hot chocolates and 10 white hot chocolates for me try. Don’t get me wrong there is seldom a day that goes by when I do not eat chocolate and the minute I opened the rich dark chocolate packaging I knew I was in for a treat. I truly enjoyed every sip of the rich chocolate flavour and have treated myself to one at least 3 times a week since receiving the package.

The white hot chocolate was something completely different that I did enjoy but have to say the dark hot chocolate is by far my favourite so I asked a friends 12 year old daughter to try them and they really hit the spot with her and her friends, needless to say I have become the favourite “uncle”. The flavour is light and very creamy and a few marshmallows on top will not go amiss.

At R3.70/cup for a fantastic hot chocolate that all you need do is add water is a steal.

I have to say that the 3 in 1 is so convenient and such a treat that you will really want to try them, so look out for them in your local supermarket. Check out the Enrista website for some interesting facts about coffee.