In general, I don’t really like baking biscuits. I do love the taste of a chewy homemade chocolate chip cookie, but just the thought of repetitively rolling teaspoonfuls of mixture into little balls and cycling tray after tray through the oven, is enough to make me flip-out before I even begin. But when my friend Cathy sent this recipe the other day, I was forced to reconsider my anti-biscuit position. The recipe that follows does away with rolling balls of mixture (yay!) though you can still do that if you prefer, and is made in super-sized quantities that fit the bill for multi-purpose cooking (individually wrapped for school lunches, supper for Bible study, morning tea when cooking for a camp or just for filling the household cookie jar). Along with all these things, I fell in love with this recipe because each of the logs of uncooked cookie mixture can be wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for emergencies. Simply thaw the log out on 50% in the microwave, cut into rounds and bake for 10 minutes in a moderately slow oven. When I trialled this bumper cookie recipe, I chose to bake half the mixture into 48 biscuits, and freeze the other half in two logs for whenever I need them next. Using Nestle chocolate melts, this recipe, that costs no more than $12 to make (even less if you use homebrand chocolate) works out at just 12 cents per cookie and has definitely softened me up when it comes to biscuit baking!
- 500grams softened butter or margarine (I use butter)
- 2 cups/460g castor sugar
- 1 x 395 tin condensed milk (I use homebrand)
- 2.5 cups/380g plain flour
- 2.5 cups/380g self raising flour
- 190g each of dark, milk and white chocolate melts (half a Nestle Melts packet of each)
- Preheat oven to 170 degrees.
- Using an electric mixer or beaters, cream butter, sugar and condensed milk. Mixture perfectly fits 5L mixing bowl. If yours is smaller than this, use a plastic all-purpose bowl, readily available in laundry section of the supermarket.
- Stir in flours until combined and then stir in choc chips.
- On a floured bench top, divide mixture into four equal portions and roll into evenly shaped logs.
- Each log makes 24 biscuits, so starting in the middle, with a knife, cut the log in half leaving two portions to make 12 biscuits from each. Cut each section again to make 4 portions which will make 6 biscuits from each. Again, cut each of the four portions in half again, which will make 3 biscuits from each. Finally, cut each of these smallest portions into three equally sized rounds. Repeat the process for each log. This ensures evenly sized biscuits and production of exactly 96 biscuits.
- Roll each portion into balls, or do as I do and just place the cut up rounds straight on lined oven trays.
- For a crunchier biscuit bake until golden for around 12 minutes, and if you prefer a chewier cookie, cook for no longer than 10 minutes and remove from oven while still a little pale. Cool on tray or wire rack.
More often than not these days, I find myself in need of inexpensive and simple recipes that can be made in massive quantities. I’ve realised this is because I don’t have enough time to bake or cook for just one purpose: whatever is on the go has to meet the need of a freezer requiring a terms worth of school little lunches, morning tea for church or suppers for Bible study. I also find it’s much more cost-efficient. So when my friend Kim gave me this bumper recipe for 60 banana choc-chip muffins I was over the moon. Now that bananas have come down in price (it seems it’s not too hard to get them for $2 per kg), now is a great time to make these moist and fudgey treats. If you don’t need 60, this recipe is easily halved. An important tip about these muffins: feel free to use homebrand choc-chips. They’re much smaller than their more expensive counterparts and actually work better in this recipe. Depending on the price of bananas, all up this huge batch of deliciousness costs approximately $20. Thanks for sharing, Kim!
- 15 very ripe bananas (approx. 4kg)
- 3 1/2 cups sugar (700g)
- 5 eggs, slightly beaten
- 375g butter, melted
- 5 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 7 1/2 cups self raising flour (1.2kg)
- 4 x 250g packets choc-chips (1kg)
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius and distribute muffin cases across as many muffins trays as you have and will fit in your oven.
- Put all the bananas in the bowl of a food processor and blitz until creamy.
- Put all dry ingredients in a huge bowl or plastic 6L all-purpose basin (see picture).
- In a large mixing bowl combine mashed bananas, sugar, eggs and melted butter. Tip this wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until combined, but don’t over do it.
- Using two dessert spoons, dollop one heaped spoon worth of mixture in each muffin case. Bake for 15-20 minutes until brown and cooked through. Enjoy!
I can’t tell you how excited I am to be blogging about this cake! I’ve been fiddling about and am so happy with the flavour of this chocolate cake made on stevia instead of sugar. The cake that results is moist and chocolatey but isn’t at all rich. The whipped cream tops it off nicely, and although it looks dry when it comes out of the oven, it’s really not at all on the inside (the second picture shows it’s moist loveliness best). When covered in cream, this phenomenon isn’t noticed at all. This cake costs less than $5 to make and can be topped with berries of your choice for an even fancier (mostly) sugar free dessert (obviously berries have some sugar, but not much).
- 300 grams plain flour
- 100grams stevia (Natvia is my preferred brand for taste)
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon bicarb soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 200grams butter, cut into cubes and softened
- 50grams cocoa (Woollies homebrand has improved LOTS and is now quite useable)
- 200ml or ½ cup sour cream
- 3 large eggs
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 120ml or 1/2 cup milk
- 300ml cream, whipped
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (170 degrees fan forced). Grease and line your choice of 25cm springform tin, 25cm square tin or 25cm ring tin.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the flour, stevia, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
3. Then, using the electric mixer on a low setting, add the cubed, softened butter. This will produce a rough crumb-like consistency.
4. In a wide-mouthed measuring cup, whisk together the cocoa, sour cream, eggs and vanilla, then slowly add this cocoa mixture to the ingredients in the bowl, beating until thoroughly combined. With motor running slowly, add milk which will make the batter take on a dropping consistency.
5. Pour the batter into tin and bake for 40 minutes. The cake will have risen and cracked a little on top. Don’t stress about this – although it looks dry, it’s actually quite moist on the inside. Leave in the tin for 10 minutes on a cooling rack, then turn out to cool.
6. When cake has cooled completely, top with whipped cream and store in the fridge.
This is one of the easiest, yummiest and affordable dessert recipes I’ve ever come across. I love food that’s served in ramekins because it always looks great and costs are kept down by controlling portion size. Originally from Nigella Lawson’s Nigella Bites, this gluten free dessert is a winner in my book because it takes no more than 10 minutes to make and then it’s straight into the fridge for later – and it’s literally all done. Every time I make these rich little treasures they get devoured. The mixture makes 8 small ramekins (about 1/3 cup capacity each), but In the photo above, I over-filled mine and so it only made 6 portions. I picked up my little ramekins from Kitchen Antics for $1.95 each. Tonight they’re on offer because it’s the State of Origin and my sister and brother in law are coming to watch it with us. Total cost $3.
- 175 grams dark chocolate, minimun 70% cocoa
- 150 ml thickened cream
- 100 ml milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- Crush the chocolate to smithereens in a food processor. Heat the cream and milk until just about boiling, add the vanilla and pour down the funnel over the chocolate. Let stand for 30 seconds. Process for another 30 seconds, then crack the egg down the funnel and process again for 45 seconds.
- Pour into 8 little ramekins until 3/4 full. Refrigerate for 6 hours or overnight. Serve naked or topped with berries.