Lemon cake -Sitruunakakku

Aviary Photo_130316673445669371

Sorry for this long lasting silence. I have no other excuse than that I have been super busy. So many changes in one week (will tell you later all the exciting news 🙂 ). I was supposed to post this recipe ages ago, in fact, right after the Finnish Independence Day but oh well it has taken almost two weeks to get this blog post written. Here it is, my tasty lemon cake with white chocolate cream cheese icing. It was super tasty. The cake recipe is a slightly modified version of Humming Bird Bakery’s lemon cake recipe. I hope you enjoy it. I love lemon cakes, they are refreshing and well..I have to make a confession, I ate lemon drizzle cake right after one of the most  amazing moments of my life this year -when our baby girl was born- and therefore the lemon cake flavour has such a unique meaning to me.

300g caster sugar

3 eggs

grated zest of 3 lemons

350g plain flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

250ml whole milk (I used rice milk)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

200g unsalted butter (I used sunflower dairy free margarin)

Icing:

50g butter (or dairy free margarin)

150g white chocolate (dairy free white chocolate if needed a dairy free option)

150g cream cheese (soya fresh cheese if hoping for dairy free option)

1. Preheat the oven  to 170 celsius degrees.

2. Beat sugar, eggs and lemon zest with electronic whisker.

3. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in one bowl and milk (rice milk)  and vanilla extract in another. Add flour mix and milk mix to the sugar-egg mix alternating the two. Mix well until the dough is fluffy.

4. Add melted butter (dairy free margarin) in and mix well.

5. Pour to an oiled cake tin and bake in the oven for 1h 15 minutes.

Icing preparation:

1. Melt the butter (or dairy free margarin) and chocolate in a sauce pan.

2. Let the mix cool down and add the cream cheese.

3. Spread the icing on the cool cake base, put the cake to the fridge and let the icing set.

The cake is at its best on the following day!

Anteeksi blogihiljaisuus. On ollut valtava kiire ja uskomaton määrä jännittäviä uusia asioita tapahtunut viime viikon aikana (kerron lisää pian!).Tässä siis sitruunakakkuohjeeni. Leivoin kakun itsenäisyyspäiväksi, mutta kuten mainitsinkin postauksen kirjoittaminen viivästyi odottomattoman paljon. Toivottavasti nautitte kakusta. Sitruunakakku liittyy elämäni yhteen tärkeimpään hetkeen, mutustelin sitruunakakkua viimeksi tyttäremme syntymän jälkeen, itse asiassa heti synnytyksen jälkeen ja siksi sitruunakakun maulla on minulle jotenkin aivan hämmentävän suuri merkitys ja tuo maku tuo muistoja mieleen. Yritän postata seuraavan reseptin pian! Tässä tämä.

300g sokeria

3 munaa

kolmen sitruunan raastettu kuori

350g vehnäjauhoja

1 1/2 tl leivinjauhetta

1 tl suolaa

250ml maitoa (käytin riisimaitoa)

1/2 tl vaniljauutetta

200g voita (käytin maidotontra margariinia)

Kuorrutus:

50 g voita (tai maidotonta margariinia)

150g valkosuklaata (maidotonta valkosuklaata)

150g tuorejuusto (soijatuorejuusto maidottomaan versioon)

1. Lämmita uuni 170 asteeseen.

2. Vatkaa sokeri, munat ja sitruunankuori vaahdoksi.

3. Sekoita jauhot, leivinjauhe ja suola yhdessä kulhossa ja maito ja vaniljauute toisessa kulhossa. Lisää jauhoseos ja maitovaniljaseos sokeri-munavaahtoon vuorotellen. Sekoita kunnen taikina on tasaista.

4. Lisää sulatettu voi (margariini) taikinaan.

5. Kaada taikina voideltuun kakkuvuokaan ja paista 1h 15min.

Kuorrutuksen valmistus:

1. Sulata voi (margariini) ja valkosuklaa kattilassa.

2.Jäähdytä voisuklaa seos ja sekoita tuorejuusto siihen.

3. Levitä kuorrute jäähtyneen kakun päälle, laita jääkaappiin, jotta kuorrute asettuu. Tarjoile!

Parhaimmillaan kakku on seuraavana päivänä kun maut tulevat esiin.

Mainokset

Päivi’s Brilliant Whisky Cheesecake

I could name my dear friend Päivi as the cheesecake chef of all. Like one of my chocolate cheesecake recipes, I also owe this whisky cheesecake recipe to Päivi. Last August Päivi and her husband invited me and my Aussieman for an amazing three course dinner. As a dessert she served this breathtaking cheesecake. I asked the recipe immediately, but for some reason I forgot to add it on my site.

My Aussieman loved this cake. He adores all the cheesecakes, but what could be better from man’s point of view than a cheesecake combined with some tasty whisky. I baked this cake for our party last autumn and guests ate it all..nothing was left (even though I secretly hoped I could have eaten some for brekkie).

I know that in Finland there have been wondering cheesecake recipes made of Bailey’s liqueur. By chance, a few days later after I tasted this delicous whisky cake for the first time my mum called and said that their family friends served them heavenly Bailey’s cheesecake the other day. I told her to wait a moment and I promised to bake the whisky cheesecake she wouldn’t ever forget. I baked it next time I visited Finland. My mum absolutely loved this cake and so did my dad (who is not that big fan of sweet desserts). The secret and weapon of this whisky cheesecake is that it is not actually very sweet. The taste of the cake is so unbelievably smooth and balanced. This cake suits also for people who do not like whisky as the flavour of whisky is very nicely combined with some cream cheese.

Base:

150 g crushed cookies (Digestive,McVitie’s)

50 g melted butter

Filling:

2 egg yolk
¾ dl whisky
1 tl vanilla sugar
100 g caster sugar
250 g cream cheese
5 leaves gelatine
1 dl hot coffee
2,5 dl whipped cream
2 egg whites
50 g sugar

Crush the biscuits and mix with the melted butter. Shape the base for the cake by using the cake tin with the removable edges. Soak the leaves of gelatin in the cold water (according to the packet’s instructions) and dissolve them into the coffee. Mix the egg yolks, cream cheese, whisky and sugars together. Add the gelatin-coffee mixture and whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Whisk the  two egg whites and 50g of sugar together until the mixture is foamy. Add the foam into the cream cheese mixture.  Pour the filling on the top of the base. Leave it to sit in the fridge for 4-5 hours or overnight. (I found 5 hours enough). If the guests come in the evening the cake is good to make in the morning.

Enjoy with a cup of coffee or by itself!

Shepherd’s Pie eli jauhelihaperunasoselaatikko

Dear readers, England is not only London as I try to tell myself every time when I find the streets full of people and I get anxious of this busy city. Oxford Street at Christmas time is a hell on earth I can tell. You feel like an ant climing the massive anthill that never ends.

London is full of contrasts. I think it is the city you hate and love at the same time. Nothing works, everything is broken all the time, but at the same time the city is vivid, it is always full of life, the exciting events never run out, there are always people keen for going out and party. I think the pubs capture the essence of London. There are multiple pubs, small and big, old fashioned, modern, oldemen pubs, yougsters’ pubs, fancy pubs, cozy pubs… We have been testing as many pubs as we have been able to. One dish you (almost) always find on the pub menus is the Shepherd’s Pie. English people love their pies, but for me this pie was a mystery. I haven’t ever actually ordered it because I wasn’t sure what kind of pie would be brought to my plate.

By googling the name, I finally found that Shepherd’s pie wasn’t actually a pie at all in the sense of an ordinary English pie. Shpeherd’s pie is what we Finnish people know as ”jauhelihaperunasoselaatikko” (a long word I know), which can be translated as ”mince meat potato mash pie”. This is a famous or should I say notorious Finnish school cantine dish. Every Finn has eaten this dish at school cantines. I have to admit that for me these memories are not the most pleasant ones. As much as Finnish school food is appreciated, the picture of this dish in my mind is some gluey potatomash floating with some greasy mince meat whilst having very watery consistency which means that the spoonful falls off from your fork and it never ends up to your mouth..

To face my bad memories of this dish I decided to cook it myself. I thought it must be even a little bit tasty if English people love it so much..or is the love of it simply explained by the bad British kitchen? To play a good and sweet English housewife, I wanted to test the recipe.

As Australians owe their cuisine mainly to British, my dear Aussie man knew immediately Shepherd’s Pie  and he almost smelled it from the corridor when entering home. He loved this dish and I have to say so did I. The home made Shepherd’s Pie was a totally different experience from the ones served in the school cantines back in the 90s. This is a cheap, good and healthy home food.

For the sauce

2 large onions finely chopped

2 tnsp olive oil

500g minced lamb or beef

2 tbsp plain flour

2-3 bay leaves (crushed)

1 tsp thyme

2 small slices of anchovy

1 big tin of chopped tomatoes

3tsp BBQ sauce

300-400ml beef or lamb stock

salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the pie:

6-8 potatoes

20-30g butter

1/2 dl milk

1 egg yolk

For the top:

cheese

1.Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.

2. Cut the onions. Cook the onions in the frying pan until they turn to golden.  Add the mince meat. Cook until the meat is brown. Add teh flour and the spices. Add the stock, BBQ sauce and the chopped tomatoes. Cook it in a low heat for 1h so that the sauce gets lovely sweet flavour. The secret is slow cooking!

3. Peel the potatoes and cut them into halves if they are big. Cook them under the water for 15min until tender. Make the mash with the smoother stick or electric whisker. Add the butter and milk, egg yolk and a pinch of salt if needed.

4. Build the pie. Set the sauce in the bottom of the baking dish. Set the mashed potatoes on the top of the sauce. Grate some cheese (Extra mature Cheddar or Parmesan) on the top. Cook in the oven for 20 min so that the top turns to nicely golden brown.

Banana Pecan Nut Muffins

We moved to London four months ago. It is a long time, but I have been too busy with all kinds of things and I have neglected my cooking blog which I feel so sorry about. Now the life has settled down a bit and I finally have time to start adding the recipes I have tested here. Nice.

I posted vanilla rasberry muffin recipe a long time ago. Here in England people seem to love all kinds of muffins, sweet and savoury. They also love so called ”breakfast loaf”  for breakfast. It is a small loaf shaped muffin and tastes heavenly. My favourite one over here is Costa Coffee’s Banana Pecan Breakfast Loaf. It is almost like a muffin, but not that buttery and sweet. I wanted to cook that kind of breakfast loaf, but I couldn’t find a recipe that looked good or worked. I tried one recipe, but I wasn’t happy with it at all. As I find the basic ingredients for my rasberry muffins so good I varied that recipe and created my own banana breakfast muffins. Below you can find the ingredients. They were super tasty!

6 large muffins

110 g butter

130 g white sugar (it is 1 1/2 dl= 2/3 cup)

3 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

210 g flour (it is 3 1/2 dl= 1 /2 cup)

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 jar (150-200g) Danone vanilla yoghurt

3 extremely ripe bananas

100g pecan nuts (crushed)

Preheat the oven 180 C degrees. Butter the muffin molds. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in the large bowl. In the other bowl, whisk butter and sugar until white and cream. Add the eggs one in time. Whisk well all the time. Add dry ingredients  into creamy butter-sugar-egg mixture. Mix well, do not whisk. Finish by adding vanilla extract and Danone yoghurt.  Mash the bananas with the fork and add this mash to the dough as well as the pecan nuts. Decorate the muffins with few pecan nuts. Bake them as long as they become beautiful and browny.

Original American Cookies

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

2 eggs

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.

Crispy Oatbiscuits

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.

DATE TOPPING

1 dl dates (seedless)

1/2 dl almonds

water

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.

ANZAC BISCUITS

125 g flour

150g caster sugar

1 dl coconut flakes

1 dl rolled oats

100g butter

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.

ENJOY!