My sister is in New York at the moment. Yes, in the Big Apple New York. Everything is evidently big in there -skyscrapers, meals, even muffins…I also heard that the freezers bear so many different Ben and Jerry ice creams that one has problems to decide which one to choose every time. On the top of the fact that I am missing my sister I also feel jealous not to be able to enjoy world famous Magnolia Bakery’s cup cakes with her in Manhattan. I can only imagine how woderful it must be to finish your working day with a colourful cup cake in one hand and a huge cup of Starbuck coffee in the other.
My sister is a big fan of American chocolate cookies. The following recipe is the recipe she once gave to me and ask me to make. I tested these crunchy cookies and they are magical. How could they not be..buttery chocolate cookies are hard to spoil! Make big cookies, it is my tip. The bigger the cookie is the better it is!
5 1/2 dl white flour
1 tsp bicarbonate/baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 dl white flour
1 1/2 sugar
1 1/2 brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract/vanilla sugar
1. Mix the flour, salt and soda. Cut the chocolate into small cubes.
2. Melt the butter and add the sugar in it. Add the eggs into this mixture and vanilla extract too.
3. Combine the flour mixture sith the butter mixture. In the end add all the chocolate cubes.
4. Make round big cookies. Bake them in the oven of 180-190 degrees for 10 minutes. If the cookies are extremely big American like, it will take a bit longer to bake them.
All around the world people are using oat in cooking and baking. It is an exceptionally healthy grain even though it is the fattiest grain of all. It contains considerably bigger amount of good vegetable oil than any other type of grain. Oat is also suitable for people who suffer form gluten allergy (celiac disease) common in Northern Europe.
In Finland almost every grandmother knows how to make crunchy oatbiscuits for their grandchildren and those biscuits are considered very Finnish and also a significant part of ”wartime kitchen”. Unfortunately I have to shoot down this former claim although the latter one is quite true. It seems like in every country they have their own version of oatbiscuits that are part of so called ”traditional kitchen”. I realized this with my dear Aussie man when ANZAC day arrived. It is celebrated every year on the 25th of April. It is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zeland. The name ANZAC comes from the Australian and New Zeland Army Corps. On the ANZAC day people are remembering this army that fought in Gallipoli in Turkey during the World War I. Both Australia and NZ lost massive amount of soldiers albeit UK and France lost even more.
How oatbiscuits and ANZAC day belong together then? On ANZAC day in addition that Aussies want to dress themselves in green and gold they also bake oatbiscuits -funny tradition, but it has a story behind it. Traditionally it is thought that the wives sent oatbiscuits to soldiers abroad back in Gallipoli times. Why oatbiscuits? Because the oaty ingredients do not spoil easily and the biscuits kept well during naval transportation. Smart women and tasty biscuits! Finally those certain kind of oatbiscuits were called ANZAC biscuits and served every year on ANZAC day in April!
Here I want to share my Finnish modified recipe of oatbiscuits. It is my favourite one and you can also make the biscuits even tastier by adding some chewy date mousse topping on them. With all respect to Australian version of oatbiscuits, below you can also find a recipe for ANZAC biscuits. One of the most important ingredient for them is golden syrup.
FINNISH CRISPY OATBISCUITS
9 big biscuits
1 1/2 dl rolled oats
1 1/2 dl white flour
2 tl baking powder
100g melted butter
3 tbs honey
1 dl cream (milk goes as well)
1. Mix all the dry ingredients. Add the melted butter, honey and cream.
2. Form biscuits on the baking tray.
3. Bake them for 10-15 minutes in 225 degrees.
1 dl dates (seedless)
1/2 dl almonds
1. Soak the dates and almons together in a small amount of water for a few hours and smooth them in the end. Add the topping for biscuits and cook them in the oven. This date topping tastes like caramel sauce.
125 g flour
150g caster sugar
1 dl coconut flakes
1 dl rolled oats
1 tbs golden syrup
1/2 baking soda
2 tbs boiling water
1. Mix the flour, sugar, coconut and rolled oats. Melt butter and golden syrup. Dissolve baking soda in the butter-syrup mixture and add it with the flour mixture in a bowl. Mix well. Form biscuits on a baking tray.
2. Bake them in the oven of 180 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
For the following recipe I thank my friend Päivi, who is a master chef particularly regarding to desserts! Just before last Christmas we had girls sauna night and she served this heavenly chocolate cheesecake for dessert. After one bite I was already in love and demanding the secret recipe to surprise my Aussie man -who bye the way LOVES cheesecakes -! I also wanted to make it up to him that I blew up the New York cheesecake by baking an eggy omelette instead of smooth sweet cheesecake only a few months before.. Here I want to share for you all this magical recipe with which you can surprise your darling anytime…if any man is reading my blog I warmly recommed you to bake this cake for your sweet heart tonight..The recipe is so easy that even a clumsiest chef manages to prepare it perfectly. To bake this cheesecake requires zero pre-knowledge of cooking or baking. That’s why there’s not even a chance to be like me with my New York cheesecake and end up eating an omelette!
For base you need:
150g Domino/Oreo biscuits
50g melted butter
For the cheesecake:
400g cream cheese
1 3/4dl caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla sugar
1 1/2 dl cream
200g dark chocolate
1. Heat up the oven for 160 degrees. Melt the butter. Crush the biscuits. Mix them and prepare the base. You can use a round baking dish approximately 20cm in diameter.
2. Whisk the cream cheese before adding any other ingredients. When it is running add the sugar, then the vanilla sugar, then the eggs once at a time and in the end add the cream (non-whipped).
3. Take half of the cream cheese mixture and put it on the top of the base. Add the melted chocolate into the other half of the cream cheese mixture and put this chocolate cream cheese mixture on the top of the white layer in a baking dish. Then mix the white and brown mixture with a spoon so that the surface starts to look marbled.
4. Put the cheesecake into the oven in 160 degrees for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes turn the heat off and letthe cake stay there another hour or so.
5. Leave the cake rest in the fringe for at least 2-4 hours. It is actually at its best on the following day!
ENJOY with some amazing red wine!
This dessert is easy, but heavenly tasty. It is also very handy if you happen to hear in the morning about the coming guests. Chocolate ripple cake takes only half an hour to make and then it can sit in the fringe until the guests arrive.
When my dear aussie man asked me to make some Chocolate ripple cake and showed me a picture on the internet how it should be formed, I have to admit that it made me smile at first. This recipe, I think, is one of the most striking example of the fast-food culture we are living in. Luckily that culture hasn’t spread its wings to Finland, not yet! Or should I say unfortunately not yet…poor Finns have no idea what they have missed by not experiencing the tremendous taste of this cake…
As a Finn, I am used to do everything from the beginning to the end by myself and I try to avoid all the premade products…however I would say this is a dream recipe for a lazy cook! Perfect for busy people who don’t want to give up treats or taste!
2 cans of cream, 2 x 2dl
20-25 chocolate cookies
50 g chocolate
Whip the cream. Then follows the building of this delicious cake. The point is to buil a log of those cookies, actually to logs that are next to each other on a plate. You start by spreadin some cream on the other side of on cookie with a knife. Stand the biscuits on a serving plate one after another. Press them together so that they form a log. Build another log right next to the other one. Cover the log with cream. Flake some crushed chocolate on top. Let it rest in a fridge for few hours or even overnight. The point is that cookies get softer and a bit soggy. So easy but soooo delicious!
WARNING AND A TIP : This is NOT for the people who are ON DIET!!! I don’t recommend to use light cream because it doesn’t get thicker in the frridge but in fact it usually gets watery when sitting in a fridge for many hours. There is a high risk for an unsuccesful result!