Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Cinnamon Rolls

I'm ashamed to say I've only just discovered the deliciousness that are cinnamon rolls. As I mentioned before, My sisters and I recently took a trip state side.On one jet lagged stricken night, we got a SERIOUS craving for cake,cookies and all things sweet in general,so off we trotted around L.A at about 1.30a.m.......the things you do for cake! All we could find was a burger joint,so we raided them for their cookies and something called a Cinnabon. A love affair was born!

Honestly these are sooo good! The dough is not at all bread like. It is a sweet fluffy dough and with the buttery cinnamon oozing out where ever it can,they are packed with flavour.They may take a while to make but if you haven't already indulged in these sweet rolls, Go do it! They will not disappoint.

Adapted from a Paula Deen recipe

Recipe for Cinnamon Rolls

Makes 12-15




  • 7g packet fast-action yeast
  • 125ml warm water
  • 125ml scalded milk
  • 60g sugar
  • 75g butter,melted
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 520g plain flour


  • 115g melted butter,plus extra for pan
  • 250g sugar,plus extra for pan
  • 2 tbsp ground cinnamon


  • 60g butter
  • 250g icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 to 5 tbsp hot water


  1. In a small bowl or jug ,dissolve yeast in water and set aside until frothy and bubbly. This wont take long, a few minutes perhaps. 
  2. In a large bowl, mix milk,sugar and melted butter, salt and egg. Add flour and mix until mixture is smooth like. Add yeast mixture and mix,if it seems too wet add a some flour little by little. Using a dough hook, knead until dough is smooth and almost elasticky. This usually takes about 5 minutes using a mixer. Place into a well greased bowl, cover with clingfilm and let rise until double in size, 1 - 1 1/2hrs approx.
  3. When doubled in size,punch dough down. Roll out on a floured surface into a 15x9 inch rectangle. Mix sugar and cinnamon. Spread melted butter over dough (leaving a drop for the pan) and sprinkle sugar/cinnamon mixture over it (again leaving a bit for the pan). Beginning at the larger side (15inch) roll up dough and pinch edges together to seal. Cut into slices, I always aim for a 1 inch cut, hence the 12-15 serving.
  4. Coat bottom of baking pan with melted butter and sprinkle remaining sugar/cinnamon mixture. Place cinnamon roll slices close together in the pan. Let dough rise until doubled again, usually takes 45mins approx.Pre-heat oven to 180°C.
  5. Bake for 30 mins or until nicely browned.
  6. Mix butter, icing sugar and vanilla. Add 1tbsp of hot water at a time until the glaze reaches desired consistency. I like mine quite runny. Spread over now slightly cooled rolls and your done!

I've tried a few shop bought here since and they are soooo not the same. I know these take a bit of patience but they are the real deal. We demolished these in a matter of hours......there was 3 of us :-)

                                                     I'm not one bit ashamed, they are THAT good!

                                                                                 Shirley x

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Chocolate Drop Rainbow Cookies

I don't know why but American cookies are so different to what I consider cookies here. Cookies to me are always crunchy, which I'm not complaining about. I could (and have) polished off a packet of Maryland cookies all by myself........addictive!

So on a recent trip across to the states, I tried all different types of cookies. They are mainly chewy with a crumbly moist bite to them. My sister later informed me that you could get these kind of cookies here in places like Subway but I reckon they probably wouldn't be the same.

So when I came home all I wanted to do was replicate these moist chewy cookies. I tried a few different recipes and fought with the cup to gram converter many,many times. Eventually after four different batches, tweaking and changing up different ingredients. I got the perfect consistency of deliciousness. There is quiet a few ingredients in this recipe but it is pretty simple to throw together.

These cookies are sweet and moist. They have a soft chewy centre and a crunchy, crumbly outside. I added chocolate drops that taste like mini smarties. But I reckon you could add pretty much anything to it.

                                                  I'm dreaming of a chocolate hazelnut combo!

Recipe for Chocolate Rainbow Drop Cookies


Makes 25-30


  • 260g plain flour
  • 40g self-raising flour
  • 1/2tsp bicarbonate soda
  • 1tsp cornflour
  • 170g butter,softened
  • 165g light brown sugar
  • 165g caster sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk,room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 130g chocolate drops approx


  1. Pre-heat oven to 180°C. Line baking sheet.
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy and light. Gradually add egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract and mix well.
  3. Mix together both flours,bicarb and cornflour in a bowl. Add to mixture until a dough is formed. Fold in chocolate drops. Do not over mix this dough. Wrap in cling film and roll into sausage shape.Chill dough for at least 30 mins but preferably overnight.
  4. When chilled, form your dough into even quantities. Roll into sausage like shapes and stand them up on baking sheet. Chill again. The key to a good cookie is to keep the dough chilled. Ever wondered why you put lovely round balls in the oven and they come out a crispy thin cookie? Well the taller and more chilled you have your dough the less "melting" time it has. They still cook perfectly,they're just chunkier and more moist.
  5. Bake for 8-10 mins.....no more.I used a fan assisted oven, they were done in 7 mins.
  6. Leave on wire rack to cool. As always I did the warm and cooled taste test...they're pretty nice both ways!

                                              The best cookie I got was in a restaurant at The Grove in L.A.

                                      It was a cookie baked in a skillet, served warm, with ice-cream on top!

                                                              It's been months and I still think about it :)

                                                                                      Shirley x

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Lemon and Poppy Seed Cupcakes With Lemon Buttercream Frosting

I made these cupcakes only just last week but they are soooo good I made some again last weekend. I went for a little twist on the cupcakes I made last week and topped them with a lemon buttercream frosting instead of the vanilla buttercream

These cupcakes are lemony zesty goodness just by themselves. So I went a little easy on the addition of lemon juice in the buttercream. These are just as good as they were last week and my house is divided on which buttercream was nicer....vanilla or lemon?

Recipe for Lemon and Poppy Seed Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Makes 12


Lemon and Poppy Seed Cupcakes

  • 175g butter, softened
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 60ml full fat milk, room temperature
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1tbsp lemon juice
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 2 tbsp poppy seeds

Lemon Buttercream Frosting

  • 225g unsalted butter,softened
  • 400g icing sugar
  • 1tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp full fat milk, room temperature


Lemon and Poppy seed Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C.
  2. In large bowl, beat butter until completely softened. Add caster sugar and beat until light and fluffy. This may take a few minutes. Gradually add eggs and beat until well combined. Add milk,lemon zest and lemon juice and mix well.
  3. Gently fold in flour and poppy seeds until mixture is well combined. Evenly dollop mixture into cupcake cases. I usually use a ice-cream scoop for even distribution.
  4. Bake in oven for 12-15mins (I use a fan-assisted oven) or until a skewer comes out clean.
  5. Try and avoid temptation and leave cool on wire rack.

Lemon Buttercream Frosting

  1. In a large bowl, beat butter until extremely soft and almost fluffy.
  2. Add icing sugar and slowly beat working up to full speed.
  3. Add milk and lemon juice and beat mixture until light and fluffy.
  4. I piped mine just for the prettiness but a big dollop with a spoon is just as good!

    I'm sooo in love with these cupcakes...............can you tell lol?

    Happy Tuesday :)

    Shirley x