Sunday, July 12, 2009

Chocolate Caramel Slice & Lemon Cupcakes

One of my colleagues, Ruth, is a big fan of my baking, and I recently made a couple of things at her request. After all, you don't let your fans down!

Last week, when Ruth asked for some baking to help her day go better, I made chocolate caramel slice, pictured above. (No matter how many photos I seemed to take of this, none of them turned out well - the above shot is the best of a bad bunch). This slice started out life as my school chum Katrina's caramel marshmallow slice, the recipe for which is printed out on an old dot matrix printer on the paper with the holes up the side to feed through the tracks on the printer. (Remember those printers?? As you can guess, it's been a while since I have been at school.) Unfortunately, when I got to making the marshmallow, I realised that I had no gelatine, and there are no shops open near my place that are open at 9pm at night. Accordingly, the marshmallow topping was hastily ditched for a chocolate topping, as I had plenty of chocolate in the pantry cupboard.

This slice is relatively easy and quick to make (hence why it was a "school night" choice), and is an amalgam of the base recipe for ginger crunch minus the ginger (as alas, Katrina's recipe merely states that you put the topping on a "biscuit base"), Katrina's caramel topping and melted dark chocolate. The "recipe" (if this is what you call this mish-mash from various sources) is as follows:

(adapted from the Ginger Crunch recipe in Cook by Kate McGhie)

125g butter
125g sugar
215g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat your oven to 160 degrees Celsius, and grease an 18cm x 28cm slice pan.

Beat the butter and sugar in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy.

Sift the flour and baking powder together into a bowl, and fold into the butter mixture. You will end up with a sandy textured dough. Press this dough into the prepared slice tin, and bake in the prehated oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Caramel topping

1/2 cup condensed milk
1 tablespoon golden syrup
1 egg yolk
1/2 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons butter

Place all of the imngredients into a small saucepan, and bring slowly to the boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat, and simmer the mixture for 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until it thickens and pulls away from the sides of the saucepan and turns a caramel colour. Remove the pan from the heat and spread the caramel over the hot biscuit base. Allow the base and the caramel to cool completely.

Chocolate topping

Melt 125g dark chocolate in a saucepan over a pan of simmering water. Once melted, pour over the caramel and spread out to cover the slice evenly. Leave the chocolate topping to set at room temperature.

Once the topping has set, cut the slice into squares (makes ~24 slices).

I also made these lemon cupcakes topped with white chocolate ganache when Ruth requested lemon cupcakes (as she is thinking of having cupcakes at her wedding):

The recipe is the Crabapple Bakery Vanilla Cupcakes, with part of the milk substituted with the juice of a lemon, and with the zest of a lemon in the batter. The ganache topping was leftover from the Pineapple Dacquoise.

Unfortunately, the cupcakes did not taste very lemony, so I will have to work on this, as I prefer a stronger lemon flavour.

Hope you enjoy these random recipes, and that you all had a good weekend.


Ivy said...

Cake, you are killing me. All these delicious cakes and I'm on a diet (sigh) :)

Cakelaw said...

Sorry Ivy - at least at this distance they are fat free.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I hear you! Whenever I know someone likes me food I love to bake for them. There's nothing better for a cook that an appreciative audience and these looks fantastic! :)

The Caked Crusader said...

I know what you mean - sometimes, for all the trying, it's impossible to get a photo that represents the gorgeousness of what you've baked!
You're spot on about keeping your fans happy...and I think you've more than achieved it!

Cakelaw said...

So true Lorraine - it makes it worthwhile to make someone happy.

Hi Crusader, I am glad to have a sympathetic ear here - I despair of getting my camera to co-operate sometimes. And thanks :)

Tammy said...

caramel slice is my absolute favourite. yours looks delicious

The Blonde Duck said...

I love the cupcakes!

Cakelaw said...

Hi Tammy, say the word "caramel" and I am in - I love it too.

Thanks Duckie :)

Karine said...

Chocolate, caramel and lemon.. great combination!