Triple Choc Chip Cookies

Triple Choc Cookies
1/2 lb butter - room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 large eggs - room temperature
2/3 cup cocoa powder
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp salt
1 1/2lb of chocolate chunks - use whatever chocolate type you wish, I used a mix of white, plain and milk.

Preheat oven to 180oC, 350oF.
Cream butter and both sugars until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and eggs (1 at a time) and mix well.
Add the cocoa and mix again.
Sift together the flour, bicarb and salt.  Add to the chocolate mixture and mix until just combined.
Fold in the chocolate chunks.
Use a 1 3/4 inch scoop or a rounded tablespoon and place on a baking sheet.
Dampen hands and flatten each ball slightly.
Bake for exactly 15 minutes, remove and cool slightly on the tray before transferring to a cooling rack.  The cookies will appear underdone when you remove them from the oven, this is fine.

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Mississippi Mud Pie

For the pastry case:
  • 190g plain flour, sifted
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 100g chilled unsalted butter, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons chilled water
For the Filling:
  • 30g butter
  • 30g plain chocolate, chopped
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso coffee powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soured cream
  • 3 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or essence
Preheat the oven to 180°C 350°F, gas 4. Prepare a 3.5cm deep, 23cm diameter, loose-based, well-greased flan tin.
  • To make the pastry, sift the flour, sugar and salt into a bowl. Rub the butter into the flour mixture until all the butter is mixed and the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
  • Mix the egg with the water and gently, with a fork, mix into the flour mixture a bit at a time, so that there is enough to make the flour mixture into clumps. Then bring together into a ball and cover with cling-film, and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • At this point you can set about making the filling.
  • When you are ready to prepare the pastry case, roll it out and line your flan tin, keeping chilled till you are ready to fill and bake.
  • Place a baking sheet in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven.
For the filling,
  • Gently melt the butter in a small saucepan. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate, cocoa powder and coffee, stirring until all the chocolate has melted.
  • Set aside.
  • Beat the eggs and the sugar together until the mixture is creamy and blended, then add the soured cream, golden syrup, and vanilla extract. Stir that mixture into the chocolate and coffee mixture.
  • Pour the filling into the pastry shell. Bake on the hot baking sheet in the lower third of the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until the filling puffs up and forms a crust on top.
  • Remove from the oven and place pie on a wire rack to cool. The filling will sink a little and crack a little as it cools.
  • When you are ready to serve, decorate the pie with chocolate curls; any colour chocolate will do very nicely, and vanilla ice cream also goes down a treat with this Mississippi mud pie recipe.
  • Keeps for 2 days in the refrigerator. Makes 8 to 10 slices.
May KEEP for two days but this didn't last one! I missed out the coffee as Farm Guy doesn't like it and it was still delicious, if you like 'em chocolaty then this is for you! And I found it really easy to make!

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Bacon and Mushroom Pasta

  • Pasta shapes or spaghetti (about 50g to 75g per person)
  • 6 rashers bacon, chopped
  • 10 mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 25g (1oz) butter
  • 25g (1oz) flour
  • 1/2 pint of milk
  • Handful of grated cheese

  1. Cook the pasta in boiling water according to packet instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, fry the bacon, mushrooms, onion and garlic for 10 mins, until done.
  3. In a separate pan, melt the butter and add the flour. Gradually stir in the milk, whisking to get rid of any lumps.
  4. Bring the sauce to the boil, then simmer. Add the cheese and allow it to melt.
  5. Take the sauce off the heat, mix in the bacon, mushrooms, onion and garlic. Pour over the drained pasta and serve.

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Cinnamon Fruit Scones

Cinnamon Fruit Scones
225g/8oz self raising flour
pinch of salt
55g/2oz butter
25g/1oz caster sugar
150ml/5fl oz milk
1 tsp vanilla essence
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tblsp sultanas
1 tsp cinnamon
  1. Heat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.
  2. Mix together the flour, baking powder and salt and rub in the butter.
  3. Heat the milk for 20 secs and add the vanilla essence. Place a baking tray in the oven.
  4. Stir in the sugar, cinnamon and sultanas. Add the milk to get a soft dough.
  5. Turn on to a floured work surface and knead very lightly. Pat out to a round 2cm/¾in thick. Use a 5cm/2in cutter to stamp out rounds and place on a baking sheet. Lightly knead together the rest of the dough and stamp out more scones to use it all up.
  6. Brush the tops of the scones with a little milk. Bake for 12-15 minutes until well risen and golden.

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Lemon Squares

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If you love lemony cakes then you'll LOVE these Lemon Squares! The topping is reminisant of Lemon Curd or the lemony bit of Lemon Meringue Pie - soft, squidgy and nice and tangy! And they are nice and easy and quick to rustle up!!

For Base
250g self-raising flour
70g icing sugar
175g butter
1/2 tsp vanilla essence

For Topping
2 large Lemons
4 large eggs
230g caster sugar
45g self raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder

Make Base
Put the flour and icing sugar in a bowl with a pinch of salt. Dice the butter and add to the flour mixture with the vanilla essence. Rub with fingers to form fine breadcrumbs.
Tip the crumbs into a 28x23x4cm greased baking tray and put in the oven (180oC) for 15 - 20 minutes until pale golden.

Make Topping
Zest Lemons and juice. Add zest and juice to all other topping ingredients and mix to form a thin batter. Pour the topping over the cooked base and return to the oven for 15 minutes, or until spongy to the touch.
Remove from the oven, cool, cut into square and remove from the tin.

You can dust them with more icing sugar before serving if you wish.

These seemed best when they were still slightly warm, just out of the oven, so you may wish to heat them slightly if there is a gap between making and serving!

Spongy Lemon Squares on FoodistaSpongy Lemon Squares
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Hot Cross Buns

  • 450g strong white flour , plus extra for dusting
  • 2 x 7g sachets easy-blend yeast
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 150ml warm milk
  • 1 , beaten
  • 50g unsalted butter , melted, plus extra for greasing
  • oil , for greasing
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • ¼ tsp grated nutmeg
  • 100g currants
  • 4 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  1. Put the flour, yeast, caster sugar and 1 tsp salt into a large mixing bowl with the spices and dried fruit and mix well. Make a well in the centre and pour in the warm milk, 50ml warm water, the beaten egg and the melted butter. Mix everything together to form a dough - start with a wooden spoon and finish with your hands. If the dough is too dry, add a little more warm water; if it's too wet, add more flour.
  2. Knead in the bowl or on a floured surface until the dough becomes smooth and springy. Transfer to a clean, lightly greased bowl and cover loosely with a clean, damp tea towel. Leave in a warm place to rise until roughly doubled in size - this will take about 1 hr depending on how warm the room is.
  3. Tip the risen dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for a few secs, then divide into 12 even portions - I roll my dough into a long sausage shape, then quarter and divide each quarter into 3 pieces. Shape each portion into a smooth round and place on a baking sheet greased with butter, leaving some room between each bun for it to rise.
  4. Use a small, sharp knife to score a cross on the top of each bun, then cover with the damp tea towel again and leave in a warm place to prove for 20 mins until almost doubled in size again. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.
  5. When the buns are ready to bake, mix the plain flour with just enough water to give you a thick paste. Spoon into a piping bag (or into a plastic food bag and snip the corner off) and pipe a white cross into the crosses you cut earlier. Bake for 12-15 mins until the buns are golden and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. While still warm, melt the granulated sugar with 1 tbsp water in a small pan, then brush over the buns.