Dark cocoa blackberry muffins

As all kind of muffins these one are simple and quick in preparing. And I can add: yummy, moist, soft and subtly smell of garden. I used partially lilac sugar made of lilac flowers covered with sugar in a jar and set aside for few days. You can easily omit it and just add the whole amount of ‘normal’ sugar. Dark cocoa (Dutch processed, alkalized) gives black colour and this distinctively sophisticated taste. Do not replace it with ordinary baking cocoa. Blackberries match perfectly other ingredients and enrich the whole flavour composition. Enjoy!

 

12 – hole muffin pan

 

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter, soften
  • ½  cup minus 2 tablespoon (80 g) sugar
  • ¼ cup minus 1 tablespoon (40 g) lilac sugar*
  • 1 egg
  • 300 g sour cream (naturally soured)
  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 3 tablespoons dark cocoa
  • 2½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 150 g blackberries (fresh or frozen)

 Icing:

  • 2/3 cup (100 g) icing sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon blue- or blackberry juice

 

 

Line 12 – hole standard muffin pan. Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a bowl of a stand mixer beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and sour cream beating until combined. In a separated bowl mix flour, corn starch, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Mix dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Beat short, until just incorporated. Fill each pan hole to the ¾ of capacity. Top with few blackberries and press them lightly down. Bake for 25 minutes (until the wooden skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean). Leave in the pan for few minutes then transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.  

Make icing: beat cream with icing sugar and juice until smooth, thick but still liquid. Pour over the cooled muffins and decorate with lilac flowers.

*Lilac flowers covered with sugar in a jar and set aside for few days. Lilac is edible.


 

Category: Cupcakes and muffins.

Tags: blackberry, cocoa.

No-bake lemon blackberry blueberry ombre cheesecake

No bake cheesecake, needs to spend overnight in the fridge. Perfect, light dessert for Summer time. Very delicate, foamy like clouds, you may eat it without compunction. Filled with fruits with cream cheese and yoghurt. Very pretty in its triple purple colour and yummy and triple tasty. I made it in silicon rose shaped mould but you may also use just round mould. Enjoy! !

 

You have to make this cheesecake a day before because it must spend the night in the fridge to become proper structure.

silicon rose shaped mould about 9 inch

 

 Ingredients:

  • 500 g cream cheese
  • 20 tablespoons (about 300 g) natural Greek yoghurt
  • 300 ml whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 cup blackberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 ½ cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 20 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 8 tablespoons gelatine

 

If using frozen fruits heat them in a saucepan until thawed. Blend in a blender (separately blue- and blackberries). Fresh fruit just blend (separately).

Place 2 tablespoons of gelatine in a small bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside for 5 minutes to swell.

In a bowl of electric mixer place 4 tablespoons yoghurt, 1/3 cream cheese and 6 tablespoons icing sugar and mix together. Add lemon juice and zest. Soften gelatine heat gently in a double boiler or microwave and stir to dissolve. Cool slightly. Pour 1 tablespoon of cheese mixture to warm gelatine, mix. Pour next 2 tablespoons of cheese mixture, mix well. If the gelatine is smooth and all ingredients are well combined pour it in over the bowl of cheese mixture and mix shortly with electric mixer. In a separated bowl mix 100 ml whipping cream until stiff. Gently add the whipped cream to cheese mixture and mix with rubber spatula. Pour cheese-cream mixture to the mould and chill in the fridge.

Place 3 tablespoons of gelatine in a small bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside for 5 minutes to swell.

In a bowl of electric mixer place 8 tablespoons yoghurt, 1/3 cream cheese and 8 tablespoons icing sugar and mix together. Add blackberry puree, mix.  Soften gelatine heat gently in a double boiler or microwave and stir to dissolve. Cool slightly. Pour 1 tablespoon of blackberry-cheese mixture to warm gelatine, mix. Pour next 2 tablespoons of blackberry-cheese mixture, mix well. If the gelatine is smooth and all ingredients are well combined pour it in over the bowl of cheese mixture and mix shortly with electric mixer. In a separated bowl mix 100 ml whipping cream until stiff. Gently add the whipped cream to cheese mixture and mix with rubber spatula. Pour the mixture to the mould over the lemon mixture and place the mould in the fridge.

Place 3 tablespoons of gelatine in a small bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside for 5 minutes to swell.

In a bowl of electric mixer place 8 tablespoons yoghurt, 1/3 cream cheese and 6 tablespoons icing sugar and mix together. Add blueberry puree, mix.  Soften gelatine heat gently in a double boiler or microwave and stir to dissolve. Cool slightly. Pour 1 tablespoon of blueberry-cheese mixture to warm gelatine, mix. Pour next 2 tablespoons of blueberry-cheese mixture, mix well. If the gelatine is smooth and all ingredients are well combined pour it in over the bowl of cheese mixture and mix shortly with electric mixer. In a separated bowl mix 100 ml whipping cream until stiff. Gently add the whipped cream to cheese mixture and mix with rubber spatula. Pour the mixture to the mould over the blackberry mixture and place the mould in the fridge for overnight.

Note: the amount of sugar provided is an instance. You can try all mixtures in any time of preparing and add more/less sugar depending on your taste. Sweetness in dessert is less detectable if chilled or frozen.

The next day place chilled cheesecake on the plate (blueberry part as a bottom) and carefully remove the mould. Decorate with/or blue- and blackberries.

 

 

 Category: No-bake cakes.

Tags: blackberry, blueberry, lemon, yoghurt.

Coconut rhubarb tart

Short rhubarb season came again so this is my suggestion for using this product. Tart which combines rhubarb and coconut. Shortbread base is filled with coconut mixture – delicate and aromatically sweet in taste. Pieces of rhubarb on the top give some addition of sour flavour. The whole cake is very tasty, light and perfect for tea time in garden. Enjoy!

 

1 tart 4.5 inch x 12 inch

 

Base:

  • ½  cup softened butter
  • 5 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ½ cups + 1 tablespoon flour

Filling:

  • ½ cup minus 1 tablespoon softened butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 100 g unsweetened very fine shredded coconut
  • 1 egg

Adds:

  • 4-5 rhubarb stems

 

 

Shortbread base: in the bowl of a stand mixer place the softened butter and sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Stir in egg, mix together. Gradually add flour still mixing on medium speed until the dough forms a ball (the sides of the bowl should be almost clean). The amount of flour you need could vary because of flour type. If the dough is still very soft and does not shape a ball add more flour, one tablespoon at the time. When is ready, remove it from the bowl, wrap in a cling film and let cool in the fridge for at least 1-2 hours.

Make filling: mix all ingredients together until became thick and smooth mixture.

Place the cooled pastry on a lightly floured surface and roll out into 1/5 inch thick rectangular pan size. Fill pan with prepared pastry and press to place properly. Pour the filling mixture over pastry base and smooth evenly. Put all over rhubarb cut in short pieces and press slightly. Place the tart in the fridge until the oven is heated.

Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes (until filling stops to bubble). Cool after baking on a wire rack.


 

Category: Tarts/pastries.

Tags: coconut, rhubarb.

Almond strawberry cake

This is an easy tea cake perfect for using seasonal fruits, today strawberries. I added almond flour to cake mixture and topped the cake with sliced almonds. The combination of almonds and strawberries is great and delicate. The cake is soft, moist and not too sweet. The top of strawberries and sliced almonds is luscious and crunchy at the same time. Icing threads give the proper drop of sweetness. Enjoy!

 

8 inch round pan

 

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter, soften
  • 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon (180 g) sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup (120 g)  all purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons almond flour
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 80 ml Greek yoghurt, natural
  • 1 teaspoon pure almondextract
  • 10-12 strawberries, sliced
  • 1-2 tablespoons sliced almonds

Icing:

  • 2/3 cup (100 g) icing sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon strawberry juice

 

 

Grease and line pan with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 325°F.

In a bowl of a stand mixer beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla extract. In a separated bowl mix flour, almond flour, baking powder and salt. Mix yoghurt with almond extract. Stir half of the flour mixture to the egg mixture. Stir in yoghurt. Add the rest of flour mixture and mix well. Pour dough mixture into prepared pan.  Arrange sliced strawberries on the top and sprinkle with sliced almonds.  Bake for 35-40 minutes (until the wooden skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean). Leave in the pan for few minutes then transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.  

Make icing: beat cream with icing sugar until smooth, thick but still liquid. Pour over the cooled cake creating thin lattice pattern.


 

Category: Tea/bundt cakes.

Tags: almonds, strawberry.

Pistachio dark chocolate biscotti

Biscotti are Italian double baked biscuits. They look dry and stale but it is confusing. Despite double baking they are still fresh and soft. The outside part of each biscuit is flaky, the inside is tender. They are baked in various flavours. I decided for dark chocolate and pistachios. The taste is very yummy and addictive – these biscuits are definitely on my top list. Enjoy!

 

30 biscuits

 

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 100 g unsalted pistachios
  • 100 g dark chocolate

 

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

 

 

Preheat oven to 350°F and line large baking sheet with parchment paper. Dust it with 1 tablespoon sugar.

Chop finely pistachios and chocolate. Place in a bowl and stir in flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder.

In the bowl of a stand mixer place egg and sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Mix in melted butter and vanilla extract. Add flour mixture to the eggs mixture still mixing on medium speed until the dough is smooth. The dough will be very thick. When is ready, remove it from the bowl and divide into two equal pieces. Roll each on a floured surface with your hands to shape a roll 2 inch in diameter. Place both rolls on prepared tray, dust with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar and bake for 20-25 minutes until rise and become hard.

Cool completely on tray.

Once the rolls are cooled slice them using serrated knife into 3/8 inch wide slices. Place biscuits onto the tray (you can use the same tray and paper as previously). Bake at 300°F for 20 minutes until dry to the touch. Cool on a wire rack.


 

Category: Cookies.

Tags: chocolate, pistachio.