Roulette Cupcakes

I’m not much of a gambler. I tried poker a couple of times and lost miserably! Any time I thought I had a good hand I would just get this uncontrollable grin. I think I need to take some cues from Lady Gaga.

I’ve been thinking about gambling because I made some cupcakes for a gambling enthusiasts birthday.

I decided on Roulette cupcakes!

casino cupcakes

colouring black icing

casino cakes

harley quinn cupcakes

ROULETTE CUPCAKES

Start with a tasty set of cupcakes (I made white chocolate and blueberry  cupcakes).

1. Roll out fondant about a ¼ inch thick and cut out numbers with some number cookie cutters. Leave to dry out a bit.

2. Mix together a little vodka with some edible silver glitter (don’t worry you won’t taste it!) Paint the numbers with the edible glitter paint you just created and leave to dry.

3. Make a very small batch of vanilla buttercream and use gel food colouring to colour it bright leaf green.

4. Make a batch of chocolate buttercream and colour black (I recommend Americolors Super Black).

5. Make a batch of raspberry buttercream and use gel food colouring to make it a dark strawberry red colour. (Make raspberry buttercream by taking normal buttercream and adding crushed raspberries and some extra icing sugar.)

6. Pipe little mounds on each cupcake with a closed star tip (Wilton 2D tip) and press the fondant numbers into the side of each cupcake. Have a picture next to you as reference to make sure you get the right numbers on the right colour cupcakes.

7. Box up and give to the lucky birthday person.

 

xo Isabel

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Healthy Chocolate Granola

whole grain gluten free alternatives

Recently I got myself a little self care package of exciting foods to cook with. I ordered buckwheat having absolutely no clue what it was other than that it had high levels of magnesium.

Yesterday morning I tried it for the first time as ‘porridge’. It wasn’t porridge! Buckwheat kind of has the texture of brown rice when cooked and smells like sesame seeds. It was not what I expected in my breakfast foods and neither Luther nor I could get through our bowl.

Not to be disheartened I went on a search through the great expanse of the internet that is food blogs. I found two recipes that sounded tasty, easy, and most importantly like breakfast foods. (Well, that is a lie cause one of them is chocolatey goodness which I’ve been eating as a dessert but shhh).

The one I haven’t tried yet is Deliciously Ella’s raw buckwheat porridge. But anything that requires little effort in the morning is already a star in my books. I am so not a morning person.

The one I have tried is from My New Roots and I may have spent a few hours reading all of her posts ever last night…

This is Sarah’s Chunky Chocolate Buckwheat Granola.

buckwheat cereal

buckwheat breakfast

dessert breakfast granola

buckwheat granola buckwheat cereal

It is soooo good! And it uses buckwheat!! I made a half batch as there are only two of us in my little household and didn’t use any hazelnuts or coconut sugar. It was still sweet enough for me.

The dark chocolate flavour is perfect for satiating any chocolate cravings you might get and it is satisfyingly crunchy.

I am very much looking forward to trying to use my buckwheat in more granola variations.

Click here for the recipe.

xo Isabel

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Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Icing

dark chocolate frosting

Cupcakes have been my jam lately. I feel like I have made a batch for this event or another every week. The most common question I have been asked about them is how to do rose icing.

You need to buy a Wilton 2D tip. I think that if you have another brand it will be called a ‘drop flower tip’. Use this tip in your icing bag with some buttercream.

Start in the centre of the cupcake and spiral outwards. I first press the icing in the centre then lift the nozzle about 1-2 inches off the cake as I spiral. Keep an even pressure until the very end. It is a super easy icing technique and leaves the perfect icing to cake ratio.

banana chocolate

I am a fan of moist cakes. These banana cupcakes are moist and light and pair wonderfully with dark chocolate buttercream.

Banana Cupcakes:

  • 125g butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2-3 bananas (overly ripe ones are best)
  • dash of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt 

In a bowl, mash bananas then mix in yoghurt and vanilla. In another bowl, sift flour & baking powder together.

Soften butter and beat for 1-2 minutes. Add sugar and mix on high until creamed. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until combined. Alternate adding flour and banana. Stir until just combined.

Fill cupcake cases 3/4 full and cook at 170°C for 15 minutes or until the tops spring back when lightly touched. Allow to cool

 Dark chocolate icing

  • 125g butter
  • 1/3 cup cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cups icing sugar
  • 1-2 Tbsp milk

Beat butter until light and fluffy. Sift over cocoa and icing sugar. Mix on high until it is soft and airy. Add milk to your preferred consistency.

Pipe over the cooled cupcakes.

chocolate cupcakes

These should make 12-18 depending on the size of your cupcake cases.

 

xo Isabel

Old post circa June 2014

Dark Chocolate and Cranberry Brownie

Sometimes I just need to bake. Like if I don’t bake I get grumpy and mope around the house. But some evenings there isn’t that much time with chores and boring adult things to do.

This is my I have to bake but I have so little time recipe.

It is so easy! Just one pot, one spoon and one tray. And it is deliciously dark and chocolatey.

How do you like your brownie?

These are in between chewy and fudgy and are oh so good when you microwave them just long enough to make them a little gooey.

I’m drooling just thinking about it.

fudgy brownie chewy brownie

easy brownie cocoa

 

DARK CHOCOLATE AND CRANBERRY BROWNIE

PREP

175g butter
1 ¾ cups sugar
2 cups dark chocolate
3 eggs
1 cup flour
½ cup cocoa
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 175°C.
Grease or line a slice tray.

DO

Melt butter in a saucepan over a low heat. Add in sugar and dark chocolate. Stir this until the chocolate is melted. Remove from heat

Allow to cool slightly. It should be almost room temp. Beat in eggs one at a time. The mixture should look quite glossy.

Add in flour, cocoa, salt and cranberries. Stir until just combined.

Pour into a lined tray and bake at 175°C for 35-40 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out clean.

Optional: sprinkle extra cranberries on top before baking.

 

 

cranberry chocolate baking desserts
xo Isabel

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Chocolate Coffee Muffins

I’m not sure if this is a controversial opinion but I don’t think Monday is the worst day of the week. It is Wednesdays.

On Monday I am all refreshed and ready to start a week. It is like a new slate. By Wednesday I am already sick of getting up so early and it is ages away to the weekend. I hate Wednesdays.

These are Wednesday muffins. They have coffee (vital) and chocolate (delicious) and will get you through the dreaded Wednesday morning.

mocha muffins

 

CHOCOLATE AND COFFEE MUFFINS

PREP

1 ½ cups flour
¾ cups sugar
¼ cup cocoa
1 ½ tsp baking powder
100g butter, melted
2 eggs
100ml milk
½ cup yoghurt
1 to 1 ½ cups ground coffee
Optional: 12 chocolate buttons

Preheat oven to 175°C.
Grease or line a muffin tray.

DO

Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl (flour, sugar, cocoa and baking powder). 

Whisk together wet ingredients in a separate bowl (melted butter, eggs, yoghurt and milk).

Sprinkle the ground coffee over the dry ingredients. Pour over the wet ingredients and fold until it is just combined.

Spoon batter into the muffin tray and bake at 175°C for 12-14 minutes (or until the muffin tops springs back to the touch).

Optional: put a chocolate button on the top of each muffin prior to baking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

breakfast muffins i hate mondays

xo Isabel

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Homemade Thin Mints

peppermint cookies

There are some biscuits that are hidden from children and consumed straight from their hiding spot in the freezer on weekday evenings. Those biscuits are Thin Mints.

Thin Mints are like the after dinner mint but in biscuit form and more delicious. If it was a choice between nutella and these bikkies, nutella would get kicked to the curb.

There are a few steps to this recipe but it is actually really easy. You should definitely give them a go.

thin mint cookies

Homemade Thin Mints:

CHOCOLATE COOKIE:

  • 150g butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • pinch of salt

Cream butter and sugar until just combined. Add eggs and vanilla. Sift flour, cocoa and salt into a bowl. Add flour mixture in parts, stirring well after each addition. Chill the dough in the fridge for 20 minutes before using.

Roll to ½ inch thick and cut into circles. Cook for 7 minutes at 180°C. Cool on a rack before the next step.

PEPPERMINT FILLING:

  • 3 cup icing sugar
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp milk

Mix butter, icing sugar and extracts until well combined. Add milk until it gets to a similar consistency to the uncooked cookie dough.

Spread over cooled chocolate cookies in a layer about 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick.

COATING:

  • Dark chocolate
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil

Melt chocolate and oil together. Combine well and allow to cool slightly (don’t want to melt that filling!) Dunk cookies in the melted chocolate and allow to harden on a greased tray.

Enjoy!

dark chocolate peppermint

I was serious about eating them straight from the freezer. The biscuit base goes hard and the mint filling is cold and it’s just so. damn. good.

I also bought some cute patterned crockery to use for blog photos. What do you think?

What is your favourite treat for the middleoftheworkweek blues?

xo Isabel

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Old post circa March 2014

Dark Chocolate and Raspberry Cupcakes

Valentine's cupcakes

Valentine’s Day is about two weeks away so I thought I would start posting some things related to that. The only problem is that I am absolutely the least romantic person I know. If there was a class in preschool teaching kids how to be romantic, I missed it. Amongst my plans for Valentine’s posts I tried to come up with cool card designs and things like that. The best I could come up with was

“If you were on fire and I had a glass of water, I wouldn’t drink it.”

Ooh, doesn’t that just fill you with feelings of love and affection? Yeah nah. I think I will stick to the baking.

raspberry frosting

Chocolate is one of those foods that seem to work with every special occasion. We eat it at Christmas, Easter and birthdays. Summer or Winter, night or day, chocolate works. It is no wonder that people give it on Valentine’s! There is a 90% chance that the recipient will enjoy it.

For the season of luuuurve, I developed these raspberry and dark chocolate cupcakes. They can be made with frozen or fresh raspberries, and are a lovely gift for that special someone.

real raspberry buttercream

Raspberry and Chocolate Cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 125g butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 250g dark chocolate
  • 1 cup milk
  • 140g raspberries

Method:

Beat butter until pale and light. Add sugar and beat until lovely and creamy. Add eggs one at a time and then the vanilla extract. Make sure all of this is well combined.

Sift cocoa, flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Add to the mixture in parts. It will be quite a thick mixture at this point.

Melt chocolate and milk together. I find using a double boiler is the best way to do this. Allow to cool slightly, then a pour into the mixture. It may take a little while for it to combine. If at first it seems like clumps of mixture in the chocolate you need to keep mixing.

Carefully fold in the raspberries. Fill cupcake cases about 3/4 full. Place in the oven at 180°C (360°F) for 15-20 minutes. They are ready when they spring back when touched lightly. The best placement is to have the bottom of the tray in the middle of the oven.

Allow to cool before icing.

Raspberry Buttercream:

Ingredients:

  • 75g butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup raspberries (defrosted if using frozen)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp milk (optional)

Method:

Beat butter until pale and creamy. Add raspberries and Vanilla. Beat until well combined. Sift icing sugar into the bowl. It is best to do this in parts as the amount you need may change slightly depending on how much juice was released by the raspberries you used. Combine well. Add a little milk if you would like a smoother consistency.

I melted some chocolate and piped it over a baking sheet into the shapes I wanted. Any chocolate and berry combination would work with these. The raspberries develop this amazing molten texture after baking. It almost creates its own filling!

white chocolate cupcake

Although this may seem like a lot of steps and ingredients, the cupcakes are quite easy to whip up and are sure to impress.

xo Isabel

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Old post circa Feb 2014