I am really passionate about my cooking and I do like to share recipes with other cooks and bakers. This is my idea of how to do this. I hope you like it and will contribute with your own recipes! Simply comment or send me an email, I will put them up asap. Enjoy cooking!

Dec 18, 2011

Macaroons!!!! With Peanutbutter-Chocolate Ganache filling

My first real macaroons! They probably didn't turn out as pretty as they are in the shops, but I am a bit proud, they worked at all.

After reading up on macaroons for a while, I thought it was about time to get on it. With the Ganache in my hands, what better reason was there?

I decided for the french version, I am not so fond of making sugar syrup for the italian one.

  • 2 egg whites
  • 30 g fine granuled caster sugar
  • 140 g icing sugar
  • 85 g of finely ground almonds (I used the ones with skin on, but I think it makes prettier macaroons, if you use the ones without skin)
  • pinch of salt

And how I made them (I emphasise on "I" because I know there might be better ways!)

  • whisk the egg whites whith a pinch of salt on a low speed until there are stiff peaks appearing
  • without stopping to whisk, add the caster sugar bit by bit, so you receive a glossy texture
  • in a food processor, bleng almonds and icing sugar into a very fine powder
  • now with a spatula, fold in 1/4 of the almond mixture, when done, add another portion until everything is incorporated. You should have a soft but not liquid dough
  • spoon mixture in a piping bag (I put mine in a glass, and fold over the end, so I have a support)
  • pipe small circles of even size on a baking tray lined with grease proof paper (some people like to draw circles on the paper before piping out)
  • now important: bang the tray on your work top, so the air bubbles come up
  • let dry until there is a skin formed on the macaroons, this is important, otherwise they will crack (mine did, there wasn't enough skin formed because I was impatient). this might take 20 mins to up to an hour
  • once dried enough, bake in a preheated oven at 150 °C (don't use a fan) for roughly 15 mins (check that they don't get browned and don't crack
  • when ready, take out and let cool on a wire rack
  • when completely cooled, fill with whatever filling you have in mind, I used the ganache described before!
Even though mine cracked - for a first attempt, I think they are very delicious. I surely will try to make a few other batches, different fillings and so on. I'll keep you posted!

Peanutbutter-Chocolate Ganache

After a turbulent few days, I was desperately in need of some sweet treat. I stumbled over a "Sunday recipe" by Nigella Lawson, however, ot was sunday and I had no ice cream in the freezer.
So I decided to change her recipe slightly and make a ganache out of the sauce.

The Ingredients:
  • 100 mL of whipping cream
  • 100g of Crème double
  • 2 big spoon full of creamy peanut butter
  • 100 g good quality milk chocolate (or dark, if you prefer)
  • 3 tbsp golden syrup/honey
And how to make it - very simple!
  • break up the chocolate, put all ingredients in a sauce pan and bring together until completely molten
  • whisk until smooth, if the mixture splits, whisk more
  • let cool, ready to use!
So, now I was standing there with my yummy ganache, but what to do with it? First I thought, it would go perfectly well as a filling for a tarte. I will certainly try this at some point. However, I fancied something else, something really sweet... So, see in the next entry, what came up to my mind!

Dec 10, 2011

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Picture by F. Meier

This recipe comes from Franzi and I must say, the picture is making my mouth watering.. so, here the recipe:


  • 4oz (125g) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter
  • 1.5 cups (235g) all-purpose plain flour
  • 1/2 cup (45g) Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups (500g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract or half a vanilla bean
  • 1.5 cups (280g) miniature semisweet plain chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (60g) confectioner's icing sugar
And the Method:

  • Place the chocolate and butter in the top of a double boiler placed over barely simmering water. Heat, stirring often, until the butter and chocolate melt. Remove from over the water and set aside to cool slightly. In a bowl, stir together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large bow, combine the eggs, granulated sugar, and vanilla. Beat until light in color and thick, about 3 minutes. Stir in the melted chocolate mixture until blended. Add the dry ingredients and beat until incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips. Cover the bowl and refrigerate until the dough is firm enough to roll into balls, about 2 h.
  • Preheat the oven to 165 degC. Line two rimless baking sheets with baking paper. Sift the icing sugar into a small bowl.
  • To form each cookie, roll a rounded tbsp of dough between your palms into a 4 cm ball, and roll the ball in the icing sugar. PLace the cookies 7.5 cm apart on the prepared baking sheets.
  • Bake the cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until the tops are puffed and crinkled and feel firm when lightly touched, 13-17 min. Let the cookies cook on the baking sheet for 5 min, then transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
I will try them asap, but I am sure they are as delicious as they look!


Shortbread is most definitely one of my favorite biscuit types. For some reason, I never attempted to make them myself though. Last weekend, I had a first attempt - and let me say, it is really easy!

The ones I have made include stem ginger, but I will try different types, including plain shortbread.

  • 200 g soft unsalted butter
  • 100 g caster sugar (plus extra for sprinkling if wanted)
  • 260 g plain flour
  • 40 g rice flour (I make this myself - just blend rice in the blender)
  • good pinch of salt
  • extra: 40 g of either chopped stem ginger, chocolate, chopped pistacchios, nuts etc.
  • mix the soft butter and the sugar until creamy and smooth
  • sift the flour and the rice flour in the bowl, add the salt and any extra ingredients
  • now get in with your hands, bring all the ingredients together and knead until you get a homogeneous dough
  • roll into a log shape, wrap in clingfilm and put in the freezer for 20 mins.
  • after cooling, unwrap the dough and with a sharp knife, cut slices of roughly 1 cm 
  • set on a greased baking tray and bake for roughly 20 mins at 170 °C or until firm but not browned
  • after baking sprinkle with sugar and let cool completely on a wire rack for the shortbread to firm up
  • store in an airtight container
That's it, which ingredients would you add? I think I will try cinnamon and dried apples next.

Dec 4, 2011

Chocolate Spread Cupcakes - Nussnougat Cupcakes

Here is another cupcake recipe which I just tried. It is very simple and quick, so give it a go!


• 100 g soft butter or margarine
• 120 g caster sugar
• 2 eggs
• 80 g plain flour
• 40 g ground almonds
• 1/2 tsp baking powder
• 1 tsp cocoa powder
• 90 g chocolate spread (nutella does well here )

And how to make them:

• preheat oven to 170 degC
• stir butter and sugar until creamy
• add one egg after another and mix with an electric whisk
• mix flour, almonds, baking powder and cocoa and mix with the butter cream
• last add the chocolate spread
• distribute evenly between 12 paper cups and bake in a muffin tray for 20 mins.
• let cool completely
• for the frosting mix 150 g of cream cheese with 60 g of chocolate spread and distribute the mixture over the cool cupcakes

You can also use whipped cream or mascarpone cheese as topping. Since the cakes themselves are rather sweet, don't add too much sugar to the frosting. They are tasty enough even without any frosting.

Dec 1, 2011

Kokos Makronen - Coconut Macaroons

Ok, I have to admit, that this is not a "macaroon" in the original sense, but there is simply no better translation of the german "Makrone". If anyone knows a better word, pls let me know!

But, they are simple to make and really delicious:

Here is what you need:

  • 3 egg whites
  • 125 g caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of lemon juice
  • 200g of grated coconut
And how to make them:
  • whip the egg white with the lemon juice so that you get stiff peaks 
  • fold in the sugar followed by the grated coconut
  • line a baking tray with grease proof paper
  • with two teaspoons, put small heaps of the mixture on the tray
  • bake at 175 °C for roughly 15 mins. The macaroons should still be soft but can get a little bit browned on the outside
You can also replace the cocnut with ground haselnuts. Equally nice!
Enjoy and have a fabulous 2nd Advent!

Zimtsterne - Cinnamon Stars

Ok, here we have the first of hopefully a few christmas recipes. It is definitely one of my favorites and a famous christmas cookie in Germany - Zimtsterne.

Once baked, keep them in a tin so they won't dry out and get hard. The softer they are, the better is the taste.

Here are the ingredients:
  • 3 egg whites
  • 250 g icing sugar
  • 250 g ground almonds (skin on)
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • additional 200 g of ground almonds
This how to make them:
  • whip the eggwhites with the icing sugar into a firm, glossy mass, of that mixture take one cup full and put aside
  • to the rest, add the 250 g of ground almonds and fold them in carefully, add the cinnamon
  • cover the work bench with more ground almonds and put on the dough, patting it down to roughly 1cm in height
  • spread the extra egg mixture evenly on top and cut out star shapes and set them on a greased baking tray
  • let them dry out a bit before baking them for 7-8 mins in the oven (160 °C)
That's it, just enjoy.

Nov 19, 2011


Tonight I fancied Pizza. Sometimes I just go and get one from the italian restaurant at the corner, but today I felt like making one myself. Also, it is a very good way to get rid of left overs from your fridge.
There are plenty of ways how to make a pizza,  this is my way.


For the Dough:
  • 300 g plain flour
  • 125 mL warm water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 sachet of dried yeast or half a cube of fresh yeast

For the sauce
  • 3 fresh tomatoes, chopped up (alternatively also canned tomatoes)
  • 1 tbsp of tomato purée
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and chopped up
  • 1/2 large white onion, cut into small dice
  • 1 tbsp oregano (dried or fresh and chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • good pinch of black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sugar

And the topping:
Depends on what you like, for the pizza here I used mushrooms, tuna, olives, caperberries, onions and grated emmentaler cheese

How to make the dough:
  • sift flour in a bowl and make a well in the middle
  • add the oil and salt and pepper on the outer rim 
  • add the water (should be at least hand warm, but not hot) in the well and add sugar
  • crumble fresh yeast in water or add dried yeast
  • then with your fingers add more and more flour from the sides to the water mix to form a dough
  • knead for a bit and let rise for at least half an hour (the dough should double in size)

How to make the sauce:

  • heat a tsp of olive oil in a pan, add the onions and garlic to soften them
  • before the onions turn brown, stirr in the tomato puree and the fresh tomatoes
  • add herbs and spices and put a lid on
  • let the mixture simmer on a low heat, until the tomatoes are soft, then take lid off and reduce the liquid so that you obtain a "ketchup" like consistency

  • knead the dough again, then roll it out on a greased baking tray, any shape you prefer
  • spread the tomato sauce, but don't add too much, otherwise the dough will get soggy
  • distribute the toppings but again, don't add too much
  • add a bit of oregano to your own taste and a bit olive oil
  • finally spread the grated cheese
  • bake in a pre-heated oven (I use 150 °C fan oven) for as long as it takes, I would think mine took about 15-20 mins.
And finally, enjoy your Pizza! ( I have mine with a glass of Grauburgunder since it is a tuna pizza)

Christmas is coming...

Dear Everyone,

Christmas is coming closer each day and I have decided to add a special section all around christmas cooking and baking. I will contribute with some family recipes, but really your help is wanted: It would be nice to get a selection of traditional recipes for christmas from all around the world, maybe shared with a story on how christmas is traditionally celebrated in you home country. If you don't celebrate christmas, you maybe wanna add something equivalent, like traditional recipes for Diwali or Eid. In any case, I am really looking forward to the next few weeks and hope you are sending me all your favorite recipes!
 --Stef xx--

Nov 15, 2011

Spring Rolls

This is Ellies recipe (thank you!), I will try them soon, they sound very yummy!

  • slice lengthways ~2inch long carrots and spring onions put in bowl
  • add bean sprouts and either shredded cooked chicken or finely sliced cooked prawns. both work; then add
  • 1 tablespoon of dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine
  • 1 tablespoon of chinese 5 spice
  • 1 tablespoon of rice wine
  • mix
  • place neatly in either spring roll wrappers and deep fry, or if like me you can't find any use filo pastry. take 1 sheet cover half with melted butter and fold over. cut into squares and use to wrap the filling. then either deep fry or wash the top of the pastry parcel with melted butter and cook in the oven 200 degrees for approx 15 mins.
  • serve with sweet chilli sauce

Looking really forward to try those!


And here an all time favorite of mine, lovely scones :-) I always prepare a batch and freeze them right after they have cooled down. That way I always have some sitting in the freezer waiting for tea time.


  • 225 g plain flour
  • 2 heaped tsp baking powder
  • 50 unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • about 150 mL milk (I also made them with soy milk once, worked as well)
And how to make them, really one of the quickest things ever!
  • preheat oven to 220 °C (200 °C fan)
  • sift the flour and baking powder in a bowl
  • rub in the butter (this really only works by taking your hands). the mixture should have a texture of breadcrumbs
  • add the salt and sugar and salt and carefully add milk, just enough to form a stiff dough
  • don't knead the dough to much, this will destroy the texture, just pad it down to 1- 1.5 cm thickness and cut out circles (6-7 cm diameter is said, but I make them a bit smaller)
  • transfer on a baking tray lined with grease proof paper, well apart from each other
  • bake for 10-15 mins until risen and golden brown
  • let them cool on a wire rack and enjoy (best with clotted cream an jam but if non available with anything else! :-))

Rübli-Cupcakes (Carrot Cupcakes)

And these one I made last sunday. They are very simple but a bit different to the carrot cake. But be careful, even though there isn't much fat in the cupcakes itself, the frosting is a little bomb...

Anyways, here the ingredients:

  • 2 M eggs, separated
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 70 g caster sugar
  • 100 g ground almonds (I took half almonds and half haselnuts, was also very good)
  • 1 Tbsp plain flour
  • 75 g grated carrots (make sure to drain the liquid before you add them, otherwide everything goes soggy)
  • papercups
  • for the frosting you need: 100 g soft butter, 150 g soft cream cheese (phili does well) and 150 g powder sugar
How to make them:

  • preheat oven to 175 °C (150 °C fan)
  • whip the egg whites with the salt until very stiff, then add in the sugar slowly so that you obtain a smooth and glossy texture
  • add one egg yolk after the other, fold them in carefully
  • than add the almonds, flour and grated carrots
  • don't wait too long before spooning the mixture into the paper cups
  • bake for 25- 30 mins and let cool afterwards completely
  • for the frosting mix the butter and cheese and sieve in the powdered sugar
  • spoon the mixture over the cupcakes and let it set 
That's it! :-)

Stem Gingernuts

So, here is another one. A recipe I got on my last trip to Nottingham from Ellie, which in turn got it from the following Book: The Great British Book of Baking. I have changed it slightly as not all ingredients are available in Germany and also I preferred some changes to the spices.


  • 350 g self-raising flour (if in Germany, use normal flour and add half a pack of baking powder extra)
  • 1 Tbsp of ground ginger (I add it only if I don't have stem ginger, otherwise it is too strong, I rather add the same amount of cinnamon and or cardamom)
  • 1 Tsp. of baking powder
  • 200 g caster sugar
  • 115 g unsalted butter
  • 85 g golden syrup (basically not existing in Germany, but you can add either runny honey or Zuckerrübensirup)
  • 1 M egg, beaten
  • 35 g stem ginger, drained + finely chopped ( if I don't have any, I use candied or dried ginger or I use fresh ginger soaked in honey over night)
  • 3 baking trays, greased with butter
And how to make them:
  • preheat oven to 170 °C (150 °C with fan)
  • melt butter and syrup on a low heat and then set aside until handwarm
  • mix flour, ginger (or any spice) powder and baking powder together in a bowl
  • mix the syrup butter mixture with beaten egg and add to the flour, mix with a wooden spoon (haven't quite found out why it has to be a wooden one here, any ideas?)
  • add the stem ginger and mix thoroughly
  • roll into walnut size balls and set them well apart on the baking tray (careful, they spread quite a bit!)
  • bake for 15 to 20 mins, take them out and let them cool completely before eating (give yourself something else to do during that time... :-))

That's it, 3 of us have tried them and like them, so give them a go!

Nov 14, 2011

Baileys-Kekse / Baileys Cookies

Baileys-Kekse/ Baileys Cookies
So this is not my recipe, it was the wish of Martin D. to put it up here. The recipe is in german, but I will add a translation later as well. I am however not sure, if you can get the right type of biscuits for them somewhere else but in Germany...

This is the recipe then (I haven't changed a word :-):

- 1 Packung Eierplätzchen (ich weiß nur, dass sie der „Netto“ hat, sollten aber eigentlich die anderen Supermärkte auch haben)
- 200g Mascarpone (eher 2 Packungen)
- 1-2 Becher Sahne
- ca. 100ml (je nach Dosierung) Baileys, Sahnelikör oder  Schokoladenlikör
- Kokosstreusel

Zuerst nimmt man immer zwei Eierplätzchen und streicht mit dem Messer eine Schicht (höchstens 5mm) Mascarpone in die Mitte und presst sie soweit zusammen, bis die Mascarpone den Rand erreicht. Wurde dies mit allen gemacht, bereitet man zwei tiefe Teller vor. In den ersten gibt man einen Becher Sahne und einen ordentlichen „Schuck“ Baileys (Dosierung benötigt Erfahrung. In den zweiten Teller kommen die Kokosflocken. Nun werden die vorbereiteten Kekse in die Sahne-Mischung getaucht. Da sie schwimmen werden sie nach 5 bis 10 Sekunden umgedreht, lieber öfter wenden und dafür kürzer (Wenn sie zu lange drin bleiben, werden sie später matschig). Direkt nach dem Sahnebad werden sie im Kokos gewälzt. Am Ende stellt man noch alle Kekse ein paar Stunden in den Kühlschrank, damit sie durchziehen und auch innen weich werden.

Und dann nur noch genießen!

As promised, here is the english translation:

  • 1 pack of "Egg biscuits" (they are similar to the biscuits you would use for a tiramisu but round in shape)
  • 200 g Mascarpone cheese
  • 1-2 cups of whipping or single cream
  • 100 mL of Baileys or a similia liqueur
  • grated coconut
And how to make them:
  • spread a layer of mascarpone cheese on one of the bicuits (max. 5mm)  and put another one on top, press them together so that the filling reaches the outer rim
  • repeat with remaining biscuits
  • in a bowl, mix cream and liqueur, pour the gratet coconut in another
  • dip the filled biscuits in the cream mixture and turn them over quickly, be careful so that they won't get soggy
  • once done, roll in the coconut mix, repeat with all
  • set in the fridge for a few hours, so that they soak evenly, then enjoy :-)

Tom Yam Gai

So, some of you might know, that I am quite fond of Thai cuisine. Here is a warming and simple soup that is a standard in Thai kitchens and sold on the streets. There are many different versions of this and I am sure there might be better ones, but, this recipe works well for me.

  • 1 chicken breast (without skin)
  • 1 L of chicken stock
  • 4 spring onions, sliced
  • 2 stalks of lemongrass, cut into 2 cm long pieces and smashed with the knife to release the flavour
  • 1 red chili, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 Kaffir-lime leaves, fresh (frozen) or dried, both will do
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp of fish sauce
  • 1 Tbsp of palm sugar (or really any sugar)
  • juice of 1 lime (is sometimes use more, depends on the lime)
  • fresh coriander
And here is how it goes:
  • boil chicken in stock for 10-15 mins
  • take out and add spring onions, lemongrass, lime leaves, garlic and chili to the stock and simmer for another 10 mins
  • meanwhile, cut the chicken into thin slices
  • add the chicken again, together with fish sauce and sugar (here it is really up to your taste how much you use), simmer for 5 mins
  • turn the heat off and add lime juice, followed by chopped coriander (if you don't like coriander, try thai basil or even flatleave parsley)
  • eat while piping hot, otherwise it isn't as tasty
I get most ingredients in an Asia shop, in UK I used to get most of the things from the supermarket, hence, it was a bit easier. I think everyone has to play around a bit with the ingredients, sometimes I also add mushrooms or sprouts. It is a hot&sour soup and how much of both really depends on your own tastebuds.

Also, I will put a picture up next time I make the soup, which is happening often enough during winter ;-)


Nov 13, 2011

Chocolate Snaps

Dark Chocolate Snaps with Pistacchios

To begin with, a really quick and lovely way of treating chocolate - chocolate snaps.
I love them in dark with chopped salted pistacchios topping, but I think any sort of chocolate and nut would work. How about milk chocolates with haselnuts or white chocolates with almonds?
This is how I make them:

  • Melt 100 g of good quality chocolate over hot water. Don't stirr too much, otherwise it'll split and get grainy
  • When melted, pour with a teaspoon small circles (I do about 2-3 cm in diameter) on grease proof paper
  • Before cooled, top with chopped nuts
  • Let cool well before eating, I usually put them in the freezer for 10 mins or so
  • Keep in the fridge
Mine won't keep long though :-) I usually add some ground cardamom or some vanilla pods, depending on the chocolate, but this is to your own taste.
I hope all chocolate lovers will try and enjoy this simple recipe as much as I do.