August 26, 2012

Mini baked cheesecakes

I had a catering job last week that called for a 1.5 kilo block of cream cheese. This is a lot of cream cheese!
I got through about a kilo of it for my function and was left with the perfect amount for a family cheesecake. The last time I made cheesecake I didn't quite get the response I was after from the boys so I decided to revisit my old recipe and see if I could tweak it some how. I can't remember when I last made a full sized cake for the family? My mini cheesecake tin is an absolute favourite of mine at the minute and I love the look of individual portions not to mention the portion control. If I'd made a regular cheesecake I would of got about 10 pieces from it, however, the individual sizes gives me 14 portions which also makes me feel less guilty when I eat one.
OK so back to making these little lovelies.....I remembered I guessed the butter-biscuit ratio for the base last time and I hadn't put enough butter, hence, this time around I followed my original recipe to the T and was very happy with the end results as you can see.....

I didn't do a lot of changing, however, I did make a much better batch than the last effort and I think that was because of two reasons:
a) I set the oven at 170 degrees and turned the fan off
b) I beat the cream cheese and sugar until it was light and fluffy, then I added the cream

Whether I am right or wrong I cannot say for sure but one thing I do know, the family are hanging out for afternoon tea time just so they can have their own little cheese cake and lick the plate clean.

These light and yummy morsels are passion fruit and blueberry flavoured, however, I know they will work beautifully with raspberries (fresh or frozen), chocolate, orange, lemon, rhubarb, apple and the list goes on.

August 24, 2012

Egg and bacon pies are always delish

I got a text from my hairdresser a couple of days ago telling me she was looking forward to seeing me this Friday as it had been too long between cuts. It's the kind of text you love to receive because somebody is actually looking forward to seeing you!
My 6 weekly hair experience is always a pleasurable one. Teneil, my hairdresser is a gorgeous lively fun 20 something who always has plenty to talk about. After we get the pleasantries out of the way it is not long before I hear what she has been creating in the kitchen for herself and partner. She is stick thin but LOVES food, cooking and could I not like her?

I once told her about my favourite meal Nic cooks (stir fry beef with red cabbage and coriander), she got so excited, she went home and made it that night and loved it so much she took a photo and sent it to me!
She made me feel special, (always a warm fuzzy feeling) so I decided to make a yummy little something to take to my 10am appointment. I made one of my all time favourite snacks- egg and bacon pies.
It takes all of about 5 minutes to prepare, 10 minutes to cook and 2 minutes to eat- delicious!!!

I flavoured these little beauties with basil and goat's feta to give them a bit of a "I didn't really use up the only things left in my fridge feel" and it worked a treat.
My three top tips when whipping these up are:
a) hot oven, about 200 degrees
b) use a 'butter' puff pastry, the flavour is ten times better. The butter puff is usually only used for desserts but it is fab with these.
c) I also find that extra cracked pepper works a treat with the egg and bacon pies.

If all else fails and you don't have the time to make these then pop on over to and I'll whip you up a batch myself.