Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!

Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!Still stuck on what to do for your Valentine this year? Why not give these gorgeously romantic, cheesecake filled, chocolate covered strawberries a try? They’re pretty easy & quick to make, so perfect for a last minute idea.  You honestly wouldn’t believe how delicious they are as well! I mean, chocolate covered strawberries are amazing on their own, but add vanilla cheesecake into the mix and Jiminy Cricket you’ve got heaven in a bite!

There are tons of recipes and methods out there for these little beauties but here’s how I did it.

(Recipe adapted from Make It & Love It.)

What you will need:

  • 160g Philadelphia Original Cream Cheese
  • 60g Icing Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 400g Punnet of Strawberries *
  • 150g Milk Chocolate
  • 50g White Chocolate (Optional)

*Double check the strawberries when you buy them. You want them quite firm but not green. (And obviously not soft & over ripe or they will be very difficult to work with!)

To make the cheesecake filling, either in an electric stand mixer with the balloon whisk attachment or a large bowl with a hand whisk, whip together the cream cheese, icing sugar & vanilla extract until it’s light, smooth & holds it’s own shape.

Chill in the fridge until needed.

Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!Meanwhile, prepare the strawberries.

Give them a wash & dry them thoroughly. Any water left on them could make the chocolate seize so it’s worth doing properly.

Hull them as you would do normally, then hollow out a little more so you can fit in more of that gorgeous cheesecake filling! (Don’t go too thin though as it will make it difficult to dip in the chocolate later – as I discovered!)

Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!Strawberries tend to seep juice once they’ve been cut so I actually found it best to dab the insides with a bit of kitchen roll before filling. Also, due to the seeping liquid, it’s best to not make these more than a couple hours before you plan on eating them.

Load a piping bag with a nozzle of your choosing (I used a 2D drop flower nozzle) and add the cheesecake filling.

Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!Place on a baking sheet lined with baking paper & pop into the fridge to chill whilst we melt the chocolate.

Either in a glass bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water or a bowl in the microwave – gently melt the milk chocolate.

Remove the strawberries from the fridge and dip each one into the chocolate. Set back on the lined baking sheet.

When all the strawberries have been dipped, pop back into the fridge to set.

Or, if you like, you can go a little further with the decoration & melt some white chocolate in the same way as you did the milk. Then pour this into a piping bag, snip the end & pipe zig zags over each strawberry.

Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!Chill in the fridge to allow the chocolate to set. If you are short on time – pop them in the freezer and they will set quicker.

Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Strawberries!Now you can enjoy them with your loved one. Who will be totally bowled over by how incredible these naughty little treats are by the way!

Seriously, don’t fill up on dinner when you have made these – you will want as much room spare in your belly as possible! No they’re not healthy and no they’re not low calorie – but what’s it all for if we can’t be a little mischievous every now and then eh??

Trust me, you NEED to make these. You will love them, your other half will love them & generally there will just be lots of cheesecake, strawberry, chocolate love in the air!

Hope you enjoyed the post lovelies.

Miss KitchenMason

 

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Pancake Day & a Judge Giveaway!

Pancakes/Crepes & a Judge Giveaway!

Ok, we’re a few weeks away from one of the best days in the foodie calendar – PANCAKE DAY! This week’s post is super exciting for 2 very good reasons. 1 – There is not just one, but TWO awesome pancake filling recipes to wet your whistle. And 2 – I have teamed up with Judge Cookware to give you lucky lovelies the chance to win every tool you will need to make the perfect pancakes on the day!

Sounds good right? RIGHT! Well let’s get cracking then. Here is what you will need to make the most epic pancakes in the world! (In my opinion obviously…)

For the Pancake Batter

(Makes approx 8 x 17cm Diameter)

  • 100g Plain Flour
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 1 Egg
  • 250ml Semi Skimmed Milk
  • Butter (for cooking fat)

For the Bacon, Cheese & Chive Filling

(Enough for 4 Generously Filled Pancakes)

  • 150ml Double Cream
  • 90g Cream Cheese
  • 4-5 Slice of cooked Smokey Bacon, chopped
  • Fresh Chives, chopped

For the Strawberries & Cream Filling

(Enough for 4 Generously Filled Pancakes)

  • 150ml Double Cream
  • 1 tbsp Icing Sugar
  • 227g Punnet of Strawberries
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon
  • Melted Belgian Chocolate/Icing Sugar, to serve (Optional)

 

Let’s start with the basic pancakes.

Sieve the flour into a large bowl and mix in the salt.

Make a well in the centre and crack in the egg.

PancakesMix with a whisk and gradually add in the milk. Keep mixing until all the milk has been used and there are no lumps. It should be the consistency of single cream.

PancakesPour the batter into a jug ready for cooking. (This makes it WAY easier to pour into the pan.)

Heat a non stick frying pan over a medium heat.

Add in a little butter and allow to melt around the pan. Pour enough batter to cover the bottom, then swill the pan round quickly to even it out.

PancakesAfter a couple of minutes, ‘shake’ the pan to loosen the pancake and lift an edge to see if it’s nice and golden.

If it is, you can either be brave and flip it – or a total wuss like me & use a spatula!

PancakesAllow to cook for another couple of minutes until the other side is nice and golden too. Then either keep warm in some foil or eat straight away with your choice of filling.

Repeat the process until all the batter is used up.

PancakesSpeaking of fillings…

Bacon, Cheese & Chive Filling

Whip the double cream in a large bowl to almost stiff peaks then beat in the cream cheese. Add a little salt for seasoning if you like.

Top Tip! Over whipped the cream so it’s gone grainy? Just add in a little milk and fold through to bring it back.

Divide between your pancakes and top with the chopped bacon & chives.

Pancakes

 

Strawberries & Cream Filling

Whip the double cream to stiff peaks in a large bowl. Then sift in the flour and gently fold through.

Top Tip! Over whipped the cream so it’s gone grainy? Just add in a little milk and fold through to bring it back.

Hull & slice the strawberries and place in a bowl. Squeeze over the lemon juice & give it a good stir.

Divide the sweetened cream between your pancakes and top with plenty of strawberries.

If you like, you could drizzle over some melted Belgian chocolate & dust with a little icing sugar for a really decadent finish.

PancakesSEE! I told you they were the most epic pancake recipes in the world! Just wait until you try them, oh my word… you won’t look back I promise.

Judge Pancake CompetitionNow, onto the equipment. I’ve gotta’ say – I’m impressed and I think you will be too!

The scales are very lightweight & really slim so take up next to no room in your precious kitchen cupboards. They’re also very accurate – exactly what you want in a set of digital scales.

The mixing bowl is also great. It’s nice and tall meaning you won’t splash your batter all over the place when using the balloon whisk. It’s lightweight too so easy on the wrists – giving you more elbow grease to work that whisk!

The glass jug does exactly what it says on the tin. With the measurements clearly visible on both sides & a comfortable handle, it’s a staple addition to any kitchen.

As for the frying pan and turner (spatula) – these two make very light work of pancake making! The non-stick coating on the pan is absolutely brilliant – not one single pancake stuck. The curved bottom shape also makes it perfect for pancakes allowing you to freely & easily move them without anything getting stuck in edges. The turner was the surprise win for me. It’s heat-resistant nylon end won’t damage the non-stick coating in the pan and it’s literally the perfect shape & size for flipping your pancakes. I will be using these two tools every Shrove Tuesday!

 

Fancy winning the whole kit just in time for the big day?

All you have to do to be in with a chance is one of the following:

 

1. Like the KitchenMason Facebook Page & Judge Cookware Facebook Page – share the photo pinned to the top of the KitchenMason timeline

2. Follow @KitchenMason & @JudgeCookware on Twitter and retweet the competition tweet on KitchenMason’s Twitter feed with the hashtag #WinJudgeKM

Not on social media? No problem!

3. Subscribe to my blog via e-mail or WordPress (on the right hand side of the page) and leave a comment on this post to say you’ve done so.

 

Competition is open to UK residents only and closes on Monday 9th Feb at 7pm.

The winner will be announced on both Facebook & Twitter shortly after.

 

Good luck everyone! Until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff Crepes!

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesSo Summer has finally arrived, and about time too! Wimbledon starts on Monday here in the UK. And you know what that means… strawberries. Lots and lots of strawberries!

I only recently discovered that I like them actually. As you will know from My Food Story, I was an incredibly picky eater as a child. And despite how much more I eat now,  there’s still a part of me that’s like that. I know, it’s a travesty right? Still! I’m aiming to right my wrongs and in doing so, provide you lovely lot with this unbelievably epic recipe!

Here is what you will need to make approx 7-8 (22cm) crepes. Easily halved or doubled.

(2x of these are plenty for one person)

For the Crepes

  • 125g Plain Flour
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 180ml Semi Skimmed Milk
  • 120ml Water
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 2 tbsp Unsalted Butter, Melted
  • Unsalted Butter, for Frying

For the Fillings*

  • Nutella
  • Biscoff Spread
  • Fresh Strawberries

* Quantities are entirely down to your individual tastes

Equipment

  • Food Processor (not essential)
  • 23cm Heavy Non Stick Frying Pan (approx)

First up, we need to make the crepe batter. Add all the ingredients to a food processor (minus the fillings obviously) and ‘pulse’ until everything is blended and is the consistency of single cream. If you don’t have a processor – just add everything into a large bowl and whisk vigorously until the same result is achieved.

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff Crepes

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff Crepes

Pour the batter into a tub/jug, cover with a lid/cling film and place in the fridge for a minimum of 30-40mins. If you are having them for breakfast, you can make this the night before and chill overnight.

Once your batter is chilled, lets get the fillings ready.

Hull and slice your strawberries. (Watch This Video on how to hull a strawberry if you’re unsure.)

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesIn small saucepans, gently warm as much Nutella and/or Biscoff Spread as you like just to loosen it. To warn – Biscoff gets very runny, very quickly so will only need a few seconds over heat. Nutella will take a little longer as it’s thicker.

Onto the crepes.

Get your pan nice and hot. (Not so hot that it burns the butter but hot enough that the batter starts bubbling ever so slightly when you pour it in.) Add a small knob of butter and allow to melt. Then swill it around to cover the whole pan.

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesPour in roughly 100ml of batter. (I used a measuring cup which helps keep them about the same thickness every time.)

Immediately swirl the mixture around the pan to even it out. This needs to be done very quickly or you will end up with thin & thick bits. (Just like I did – the trials and tribulations of photographing food that cooks fast!)

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesAllow to cook for a few minutes. If you’re pan is hot enough, it will start to bubble when it is ready to be flipped. But just keep an eye on it by lifting up an edge to check if it’s golden brown.

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesDon’t be tempted to keep moving it about either – that’s how they tear.

Once it’s ready, carefully flip the crepe and cook the other side for a minute or two until equally golden brown in colour.

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesSlide the crepe out the pan and onto a chopping board or mat.

Some people like to make and eat crepes as they go along. Me? I like to make all the crepes, put them on a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. But it’s entirely up to you.

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff Crepes Now for the good bit! Smear half the crepe with warmed Nutella or Biscoff.

Strawberry, Nutella Biscoff CrepesTop a quarter of the Nutella/Biscoff half with sliced strawberries.

Strawberry, Nutella Biscoff CrepesFold the top half of the crepe over the filling.

Strawberry, Nutella Biscoff CrepesThen fold the right over the left to make a ‘quarter’.

Strawberry, Nutella Biscoff CrepesStack as many as you can handle on a plate and drizzle with more Nutella or Biscoff.

Strawberry, Nutella Biscoff Crepes

Strawberry, Nutella & Biscoff CrepesSee – I told you it was an unbelievably epic recipe! I can’t express how difficult it was to refrain from eating this straight away. But I resisted just so I could take photos for you lovely lot to feast your eyes on! Yes, I really love you all that much! (I also love exclamation marks – but generally that’s just because I get so excited by food like this!)

Well I hope you all enjoyed this weeks post – I know I did *licks lips & rubs belly*

Until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

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In other news, fancy bagging yourself £100 worth of  Waitrose Vouchers? Click the image above for details. This is my entry – why don’t you give it a go?!

Strawberry Milkshake Cupcakes!

Strawberry Milkshake Cupcakes

This week I wanted to find a new cupcake recipe and this one sounded so awesome I had to try it! It’s a recipe from the new Hummingbird Bakery cookbook that the Mr treated me to a while ago. If you happen to be a baking addict like me – you’ll love it! It’s packed full of fantastic recipes and ideas for you to have a go at.

Here is what you will need to make approx 12-16 cupcakes.

For the Sponge

  • 70g Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 210g Plain Flour
  • 250g Golden Caster Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 210ml Whole Milk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 40g Strawberry Milkshake Powder

For the Frosting

  • 500g Icing Sugar
  • 160g Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 50ml Whole Milk
  • 100g Strawberry Milkshake Powder

For the Sugar Straws (Make 24 hours in advance)

  • White Fondant
  • Red Fondant *see notes

Note: you could also use white fondant coloured with a red food colouring gel.

Also, if you have time, take the butter, milk & eggs out the fridge to come to room temperature before you bake. This should prevent the mixture from curdling so you won’t have any big holes in the middle of your cakes. Ingredients also blend much better when they are at the same temperature.

How to Make Sugar Straws/Candy Canes1. To make the sugar straws, make the fondant more malleable by “massaging” it on a clean work surface until supple.

2. Roll out thin sausages of each coloured fondant.

3. Twist the two colours together.

4. Gently roll the fondant until smooth & even.

Home Made Sugar Straws/Candy Canes

Cut into 8cm lengths then shape into straws. Leave on a baking tray lined with baking paper to dry out overnight.

To make the sponge, preheat your oven to 170°C/Fan 160°C and line a muffin tin with foil cases.

In a stand mixer (or a food processor/then transferred to a large bowl if you don’t have a stand mixer) sift in the flour and add the butter, sugar & salt. Mix until it reaches a sandy consistency.

Making the SpongeIn a jug, mix together the milk, eggs & strawberry milkshake powder and beat with a fork.

The LiquidsSlowly add half of the liquid mixture to the bowl & mix on a medium speed until smooth and thick.  Then gradually add the remaining liquid whilst mixing on a low speed until you get a smooth batter.

Strawberry Milkshake Cake BatterSpoon the mixture into the foil cases until 1/2 full then bake for about 18-20 minutes until cooked through. Test with a skewer, if it comes out clean they’re cooked.

Leave to cool on a wire rack before decorating.

Strawberry Milkshake CupcakesTo make the frosting, sift the icing sugar into a bowl. Then soften the butter in a stand mixer (or by hand in a large bowl) and gradually add in the icing sugar. Mix until all the icing sugar is used up and the mixture is nicely combined.

Making the FrostingMix the strawberry milkshake powder into the milk then gradually add into the buttercream. Mix on a medium speed until light & fluffy.

Strawberry Milkshake Frosting

Strawberry Milkshake FrostingNow you just need to assemble these little beauties! Load the frosting into a piping bag fitted with a nozzle of your choosing. (I used a Jem 1M nozzle) Then pipe onto the cakes and top with a sugar straw.

Strawberry Milkshake CupcakesStrawberry Milkshake CupcakesI have to admit, this is one of the best cupcake flavours I have ever eaten! The sponge is so light and fluffy and the frosting is so creamy & smooth and tastes exactly like a glass of strawberry milkshake.

I love the decoration too, the fondant straws are so cute! A definite winner in my book and they went down a treat with my friends too.

Hope you all enjoyed the post my lovelies.

Until next week.

Miss KitchenMason

Peanut Butter & Jam Pinwheel Biscuits

Peanut Butter & Jam Pinwheel BiscuitsNot too long ago the Mr treated me to the new Hummingbird Bakery cookbook. I hadn’t planned on baking anything this weekend but suddenly got an urge to, surprise surprise! So I had a goosey gander through the book and came across these little beauties. Peanut butter & jam pinwheel biscuits. So without further ado, here is what you will need to make about 15 biscuits. (Recipe adapted slightly to what I had in the cupboards! See notes)

  • 60g Smooth Strawberry Jam (See Notes)
  • 1 tsp Cornflour
  • 100g Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 100g Crunchy Peanut Butter (See Notes)
  • 180g Golden Caster Sugar
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 2 tbsp Whole Milk
  • 340g Plain Flour
  • 1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
  • 1/4 tsp Salt

NOTES: The original recipe said to use raspberry jam & smooth peanut butter. I only had strawberry jam & crunchy peanut butter in the cupboards so I used them instead. They turned out delicious anyway! Plus I like the extra crunch of the nuts from the crunchy peanut butter.

Firstly, cut two sheets of baking paper to 38 x 25cm. (15 x 10″) and set to one side.

Then, mix the jam & the cornflour in a small bowl and stir until the flour has dissolved. Leave to one side until needed.

In a stand mixer (or a large bowl with an electric whisk if doing by hand) mix together the butter, peanut butter & the sugar until light & fluffy.

Starting The Dough MixThen add in the egg and the milk and mix until fully incorporated.

Ready for the FlourIn a separate bowl, sift together the flour, bicarbonate of soda & the salt. Then, a spoonful at a time, add the flour to the peanut butter mixture until it forms a dough.

DSCF7390 (2)Now get the 2 baking paper sheets you cut out earlier. Place the dough mix onto one of them and press down into a rough rectangle. Then place the second sheet on the top and roll it out so the dough reaches the edge of the baking paper. If it gets a bit uneven, you can always tear bits off and move them, then re-roll.

Ready for the Jam!Now we’re ready for the jam! Spread the jam/cornflour mix you prepared earlier over the biscuit dough. Try and be as even as you can and leave a 2cm border around the edge.

Ready to Roll!Now for the tricky bit. Carefully roll up the dough using the baking paper as a tool to help you. Roll it as tight as you can, you don’t want any gaps between layers. Take your time with this, you don’t have to rush it. When you’ve reached the end, make sure you seal the seam on the bottom then wrap it up in cling film.

All Wrapped Up!Leave this in the fridge for at least a couple of hours, or better yet, overnight. It makes it far easier to cut into slices & it will bake better too. (When the dough is cold it won’t spread too much so the biscuits will keep their shape.)

Once the dough is completely chilled, Preheat your oven to 170°C/Fan 150°. Cut the log into 2cm thick slices and place onto a baking tray. You may need to cook them in batches so as not to overcrowd the tray OR use multiple trays.

Ready to Bake!Place into the oven and bake on the middle shelf for about 12-13 minutes until they’re a light golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before consuming. (Although I’m sure there will be a couple of casualties!)

Peanut Butter & Jam Pinwheel BiscuitsAnd there you have it! Peanut butter & jam pinwheel biscuits. These were a big hit with the Mr, I’m starting to wonder if the book was actually a gift for me or for him haha! I must admit though, I’m quite proud of how pretty they look. It is a little more effort to make a pinwheel but I definitely think it’s worth it.

In other news, I would like to give a big shout out & a massive congratulations to my good friend Emma and her new husband, Patrick who got married this Saturday. Much like myself, Emma is a keen baker and even made her own wedding cake! (Which was absolutely stunning by the way.) So here’s to you guys, may you have many happy years together and plenty of  cake!

Hope you all enjoyed the post my lovelies.

Miss KitchenMason