Thursday, December 23, 2010

Cats White Rum Balls

I was farting around in the kitchen - as I do - making another batch of Cats Rum Balls, and I decided to make yet another batch and dick with the recipe.
OMG they are so yum!

Cat's White Rum Balls
200g White Chocolate, chopped fine
30g Butter
1/4 cup cooking Cream
200g Arnotts Milk Coffee Biscuits (put through food processor until fine crumb)
 3 tablespoons dark Rum

Place cream and butter into a small saucepan and stir over low heat until it comes to a boil.
Pour mixture over chocolate (I use a glass bowl for all chocolate work).
Whisk until smooth then add rum. Whisk in.
Stir in biscuit crumbs until well mixed.
Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Remove mix from fridge and roll into small balls (placing on greasproof paper lined tray). Refrigerate again until cold.
Using a skewer, dip balls in melted white chocolate and return to tray.
Place in fridge to set.

For further decoration, melt dark chocolate and put into a ziploc bag, snip off corner and pipe zig zags onto the balls whilst on tray, returning to fridge to set.
Rum balls can be stored for up to a week in the fridge.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Photo update

I have had a busy 24 hrs!
Mini dark and white chocolate cupcakes. They were supposed to look like plum puddings, but it didn't really work out on the mini cupcake size, oOps. They were for Kindy end of year party, so it didn't matter.
This is what Plum Liqueur looks like (well, at the start). I have no idea how big the jar is, but you are looking at 3kg of plums, nearly a whole bottle of vodka, 2 cups of brandy and a heap of sugar!
Edited to add - I managed to get 4 wine bottles worth of liqueur out of this batch. 
It tastes yummy! Very plum jammy :)

I decided to go the plum jam instead of making the plum schnapps in addition to the liqueur. This is it at the start of the reduction - 100% plums.
And, of course I have been making chocolates! Here we have Salted Peanut Cream center chocolates, Honey Caramel center chocolates, Nutella center chocolates (I was getting lazy by then), and the ones to the right hand side are all rum balls! The chocolate dipped ones are Cats rum balls (yup, my recipe) and the coconut ones are all that is left of the super easy rum balls - all recipes a few posts back.
Edited to add - my Plum and Port jam is delicious!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Dear gods

Dear gods, 2 buckets of ripe plums arrived today.
Better get my butt off to the bottle shop and get some vodka and brandy (and rum for other stuff)!

Fudges are on my hit list!

675g Caster Sugar
500ml Double Cream
50g Butter
1 Handful of White Chocolate
1tsp of Glucose syrup
1 Vanilla Pod - optional

1. Put ALL ingredients except the White Chocolate into a good heavy saucepan! For the Vanilla pod, lay it flat on Chopping board, and run a sharp knife down the center of the Pod, split the pod in two and scrape out the hundreds of moist dense seeds from each half, add to the mixture! Grease and Line a baking tin ready to pour fudge in once cooled!)
2. Place saucepan on a VERY VERY low heat for the beginning stage! ( You want to dissolve all the sugar crystals before it comes to the boil! Look for a smooth liquid texture without any Graininess at all!)
3. Once sugar is dissolved, and you have a beautiful buttery, creamy golden sugar syrup, Increase the heat until it comes to Rapid Boil! (Keep stirring constantly or that cream in there will burn at the bottom of your pan and ruin your beautiful Fudge!)

Continue to boil and stir for 15-18 minutes!

4.'Soft Ball stage' (Beautiful Golden Thick Honey colour). It will be approximately between 112-115°C. Check its all reduced, a Deep Golden color, Thick yet smooth like Set Honey! ?
22 minutes.

5. Remove Fudge from heat once you feel you got the Beautiful Golden Thick Honey Syrup and put to one side!

6.You'll need a Cake/Pastry Mixer or you can do this by hand with whisk and bowl! Pour Fudge into Mixer or bowl and begin to beat! (people simply pour the fudge into tray and cool once cooked! This is WRONG! You need to cool the fudge slowly all the while beating it to give it that wonderful Smooth yet Crystaline texture!)

7. Cooling/Beating should take at least 10-15 min, all the while you'll see your fudge come into life as it begins to cool! About 5 minutes into the Cooling process..add the handful of White Chocolate while the fudge is hot enough to incorporate but not TOO hot to burn the Chocolate! (White Chocolate is very delicate and subtle!)

8. Now it should be getting quite cool by now before it starts completely setting, Spoon/Spatula the fudge mixture into your pre greaseproofed tin and smooth out so the mix lies flat (or you can always experiment with bread tins etc for different shapes :-)

9. Leave to cool out of the sunlight for at least 4-6 hours, (its best 36hrs after and lasts for 5-7 days after making!)

Mohan Thal (gram flour fudge)
  • 2 cups Gram flour (Besan) aka Chickpea flour
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee
  • 1 tablespoon warm milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup milk powder
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom seed powder
  • 1 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
Special Equipment:
  • Candy Thermometer
  1. Melt the butter and mix with gram flour by rubbing between both palms. Texture will become like a lightly rough powder. Keep aside for at least fifteen minutes.
  2. Add the milk. Milk should be warm, and rub the mixture again between your both palms.
  3. Next put the cream and milk powder in a frying pan and cook on medium heat. String continuously until mixture comes together and looks like soft dough. Remove from heat and keep aside.
  4. Mix the milk dough with gram flour mixture togather and stir fry on medium heat until it becomes light  brown in color and start giving off a sweet aroma. Tips: stir fry continuously making sure it stays powdery.
  5. Let it cool and add cardamom powder mix it well.
  6. In a saucepan, boil the sugar and water together on medium heat until syrup is 2 threads or 225 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
  7. Mix the syrup with flour mixture mix well and pour on a 8 inch greased plate. Do this quickly before syrup cools down.
  8. Mohanthal should be about ½ inch thick and shape it into a square shape on the plate. While it is still hot spread the sliced almonds evenly over the top to garnish.
  9. Cut the mohanthal into 1-inch square shapes while it is still warm.
  10. Serve at room temperature. At room temperature mohanthal can be kept for 2 weeks or refrigerate for a month.

Friday, December 10, 2010


I am getting given a crap load of ripe sweet plums this coming monday.
Sooooooo, I am going to have a bash at making a plum liqueur! I wish they were Ume plums as I love Umeshi, but it is not to be...
Putting recipes here for prosperity ... I will update if I make any alterations to the recipe.

If I have enough, I will do both of these recipes.... C did say he has an awful lot of plums this year...

Plum Schnapps
Use sweet and fully ripe plums.
The plums must be fresh, firm, unwrinkled, smooth-skinned with no blemishes or soft spots.
You can make the schnapps in different ways.
You can use either the whole fruits, the whole fruits with small holes in them, or the whole fruits cut into halves - with or without the pits.
Using different methods, you get different results. It's a matter of taste which method you may want to use.
Personally I prefer the method with whole plums with small holes in them - I use a thick needle to pierce the skin to the pit.
You can use frozen plums. Just remember to defrost them in the vodka.
  • Put 10-15 plums in a clean glass jar with tight-fitting lid.
  • Cover well with clear, unflavoured vodka - 40% alcohol content (80 proof).
  • Let steep for 3-6 months or more in a dark place at room temperature, 18-20°C.
  • Shake lightly and taste it from time to time.
  • Strain and filter your infusion into a clean glass bottle or jar with tight-fitting lid.
  • Store (age) for at least 2 months in a dark place at room temperature before serving.
If it comes out too strong, use the same base alcohol that you made it with (ie vodka) to dilute.
Serve your plum schnapps at room temperature.
Remember to keep your schnapps bottle tightly closed and in a dark place before and between servings.

Plum Liqueur
1 kilogram plums
2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups vodka
1/2 cup brandy

1. Wash plums and pat dry, cut in half or smaller, and pit. Place in an aging container, pour sugar over, and stir. Add vodka and brandy, stirring to partly dissolve sugar. Cap container and place in a cool, dark place for 2 months, stir occasionally.
2. Place a strainer over a large bowl and strain liqueur. Press the liquid from the plums with the back of a wooden spoon, and discard plum pulp. Re-strain liqueur through cloth until clear, and bottle as desired.
3. Plum liqueur is ready for drinking or cooking, however for best results, age for another month

And, just in case I get a total tonne of plums....
Plum Wine
 1 kilo plums
600 grams sugar
1.9 litres water (boiling)
1 teaspoon citric acid
Wine yeast

Wash and cut up the fruit and place in a fermentation bucket. Pour over the boiling water and cover bucket and leave for four days. Stir twice daily and then strain on to the sugar, stirring vigorously until all the sugar has dissolved. Add the yeast and cover. Stir regularly for five days and then pour into fermentation bottle, fit airlock and leave to finish fermenting.

When fermentation has ceased, rack the wine into a clean jar and place in a cooler environment and leave for a further few months. Rack again if necessary and leave until the wine is stable and then bottle. This wine can take up to 12 months to mature.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Chocolate Christmas Pudding  Balls
700g plum pudding
250g dark eating chocolate, melted
½ cup (125ml) brandy
½ cup (80g) icing sugar
200g white chocolate Melts
glacé cherries, cut to resemble berries and leaves

  1. Crumble pudding into large bowl. Stir in melted chocolate, brandy and sifted icing sugar; mix well.
  2. Roll level tablespoons of mixture into balls, place on tray; cover, refrigerate until firm.
  3. Melt white chocolate in small heatproof bowl over small saucepan of simmering water. Cool chocolate 10 minutes. Drizzle over puddings to form "custard"; decorate with cherries.
This recipe can be made two weeks ahead.
Use either bought or left over homemade pudding.
Rum Balls
250g Nice biscuits
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
395g can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1 teaspoon natural vanilla essence)
4 tablespoons rum

  1. Put biscuits and cocoa in blender until fine. 
  2. Add remaining ingredients. Mix well.
  3. Refrigerate for 30 mins, then roll into balls.
  4. Coat in coconut or chocolate sprinkles.

Super Easy Rum Balls
8 weetbix
1/2 cup coconut
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 tin condensed milk
Rum - 5 or 6 tablespoons (use less if using a dark rum)
Coconut for rolling

Crumble the weetbix by hand. Soak the weetbix in rum, add the condensed milk and everything else... mix well until all combined. Shape into small balls, roll in coconut and store in the fridge.

Cat's Rum Balls
I've just done this one (13 Dec), and yum! I basically took someone elses recipe and dicked with it :)

200g Milk Chocolate, chopped fine
30g Butter
1/4 cup cooking Cream
200g Chocolate Ripple Biscuits (put through food processor until fine crumb)
4 tablespoons white Rum

Place cream and butter into a small saucepan and stir over low heat until it comes to a boil.
Pour mixture over chocolate (I use a glass bowl for all chocolate work).
Whisk until smooth then add rum. Whisk in.
Stir in biscuit crumbs until well mixed.
Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Remove mix from fridge and roll into small balls (placing on greasproof paper lined tray). Refrigerate again until cold.
Using a skewer, dip balls in melted dark chocolate and return to tray.
Place in fridge to set.

For further decoration, melt white chocolate and put into a ziploc bag, snip off corner and pipe zig zags onto the balls whilst on tray, returning to fridge to set.
Rum balls can be stored for up to a week in the fridge.

Peanut Butter Cups

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
1.5 cups dark chocolate, chopped (or dark chocolate chips)
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter - here I used 1/2 cup of salted peanuts that I put in wizz with a tablespoon of oil
1/2 cup icing sugar
generous pinch salt - I left this out because I used salted peanuts.
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Set 2-dozen mini muffin/bonbon wrappers on a baking sheet.
2. Melt approximately half of the dark chocolate, using a microwave-safe bowl and cooking it in short (30 second) intervals, stirring frequently, until smooth. Use a spoon to pour a little chocolate into each muffin wrapper.
3. Use a small, very clean brush to paint the chocolate up the sides of each wrapper. Alternatively, you could add extra chocolate and swirl it around, pouring out the excess later, to coat the inside of the wrapper.
4. Chill candy shells until set, about 20-30 minutes.
5. In a small bowl, whisk together peanut butter(s), confectioners’ sugar, salt and vanilla. When the mixture has come together, heat it in the microwave (again in short intervals, stirring frequently), until it is very, very soft.
6. Working carefully with the hot filling, transfer it to a piping bag (or plastic bag with the tip cut off) and pipe a generous amount of the filling into each prepared candy cup. Chill again for approx 30 minutes, or until set.
7. Melt all remaining chocolate and, when the candy fillings have set, fill each muffin wrapper up with chocolate.
8. Chill until set.
9. Serve cold or at room temperature.

nb: Makes approximately 2 dozen.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Mars Bar Christmas Crackles

I keep seeing all these yummy things I want to make! My pantry and fridge are seriously understocked atm!

from Kidspot Kitchen

Mars Bar Christmas Crackles


200g Mars Bars, chopped
2 tbsp of thin cream
2 tsp cocoa powder, sifted
3 cups Rice Bubbles
Canola spray
100g white chocolate
24 red Smarties or M&M's


  1. Spray a little canola spray into 2 x 12 cup mini-muffin trays.
  2. Melt the Mars Bars, cream and cocoa in a glass bowl over simmering water. The bowl should not touch water. Stir the mixture until smooth.
  3. Put the Rice Bubbles in a separate large bowl, pour in the chocolate mixture and stir until well mixed.
  4. Spoon the mixture into the muffins tray and press down gently.
  5. Refrigerate for 2 hours and turn out onto a tray to decorate.
  6. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave checking and stirring it at 30 second intervals. Pour it into a piping bag while warm and snip the tip off.
  7. Turn the crackles upside down and pipe the chocolate on. Finish with a red Smartie/m&m on top of each one.
I made these today (7 Dec) and I have 2 comments
1) Sticky little suckers and very sweet.
2) Make sure that you ACTUALLY have white chocolate in the house, don't just assume that you do! Gah!

    Thursday, December 2, 2010

    Chocolate Mud Cupcakes

    Makes 7.
    1 x tablespoon = 20ml and 1 cup = 250g


    110g dark chocolate
    70g milk chocolate
    120g butter (if using unsalted butter, add 1/8 teaspoon fine table salt with the butter)
    100ml (5 tablespoons) water
    2 teaspoons (10ml) whisky
    1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules/powder
    75g (1/3 cup) sugar
    1 large egg (we use eggs with a minimum weight of 59g)
    80g (1/2 cup plus 2 teaspoons) plain flour
    20g (1 1/2 tablespoons) self-raising flour


    1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius (fan-forced). Line a patty tin with seven patty cases that measure 5cm across the base.
    2. Place dark and milk chocolate, butter, water, whisky, coffee, and sugar in a large saucepan.

    3. Stir over very low heat until chocolate and butter have just melted. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
    4. When mixture has cooled, stir in egg. Gradually stir in flours.
    5. Divide mixture evenly between cases.

    6. Bake for about 25 minutes. A skewer or knife inserted into the centre of a cake should come out clean.
    7. Allow cakes to cool in tin.

    Milk Chocolate Ganache
    100g milk chocolate
    2 tablespoons (40ml) thickened cream (35 percent fat)

    Place chocolate and cream in a small saucepan over very low heat, stirring frequently. When chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth, remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Spread ganache over cooled cupcakes.