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Butterscotch Latte Cupcakes October 27, 2009

Filed under: desserts,Food,Home Cookery,Pastries — Dobsessed @ 10:15 pm
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Butterscotch Latte Cupcakes

I really wanted to bake today because I received my delicious, gloriously red KitchenAid yesterday.  I bought it from Kitchenware Direct, it was great, $100 cheaper than what I saw in the shops, and it arrived within 6 working days (quoted 5-7 days) and in mint perfect condition, no dents or nicks – I checked.

On the weekend, I’d spent four and a half hours baking a Salted Caramel Cake with Brown Butter Frosting, a Daring Baker’s Challenge from last year, but I liked the idea of salted caramel and thought I’d challenge myself and gave it go.  The cake was pretty good, the whole cake was polished off within two days, but I was left with memories of the brown butter frosting (deliciously butterscotch) and a big container of left-over caramel syrup.  I decided to kill two birds in one stone, that is, break in my KitchenAid and use some of the caramel syrup.

I thought hard about what would go with butterscotch/caramel and my friend Nancy came to my mind.  We’re both known for drinking our ‘fake’ coffees, fake because she drinks caramel lattes, and my coffee order of ‘White chocolate mocha on skinny soy, extra shot with no cream” usually gets me a raised eyebrow or two.  I guess this cupcake is inspired by her coffee order :-).

butterscotch latte cupcakes

Butterscotch Latte Cupcakes – A recipe by ‘Bury Me In Food’

Makes 12 cupcakes



175g gluten free self-raising flour (I used Organ’s) – Sifted

175g softened unsalted butter

130g caster sugar

3 large free range eggs

4 tbls of Caramel Syrup (look for the recipe by searching for salted caramel cake)

1 tbls of coffee disolved in 2 tbls of hot water or 40ml shot of espresso


90g of butter

220g of icing sugar

1 1/2 tbls of caramel syrup

1 1/2 tbls of cream

1 tsp of coffee dissolved in 1tbls of hot water

Freshly ground rock salt


1. Preheat oven to 180c (fan forced).

2. Cream butter and sugar.  Add sifted flour, eggs and whisk. I did these in parts, eg. flour, eggs, whisk, flour, eggs, whisk etc.  Add caramel syrup and coffee and whisk until it is well incorporated.

3. Ladle into 12 paper cup cake cases and bake for 15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

4. Take cupcakes out of the oven and brush more syrup over the top – 1 layer is fine.

5.  For the frosting, melt butter on medium heat until it is brown and you can smell nutty, butter.  Don’t burn the butter or it will taste bitter.  Allow the butter to cool and strain through a fine sieve to get rid of all the gritty brown bits.

6. In a bowl, place your butter and icing sugar and whisk, gradually add the caramel syrup, coffee, cream until it’s thick. Ice the cupcakes with the frosting.

The combination of the slightly bitter coffee scent and the sweet butterscotch frosting went perfectly with the coffee came (not much of the caramel came through) but the coffee is faint and not overpowering.  The cake itself is soft, spongey and not crumbly.  There were slightly larger salt crystals in the frosting which contrasted well with the sweetness. This recipe can be adapted by using your usual non-gluten free flour.


Chouquette, New Farm October 21, 2009

A row of lime and fucshia seats outside Choquette

A row of lime and fuchsia seats outside Chouquette

Raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens, brown paper packages tied up with string, these were some of Maria’s favourite things from the sound of Music. Maria also liked cream coloured ponies and crisp apple strudels.

I think she had the right idea about some things, especially the copper kettles, the brown paper packages and the apple strudels. Vanilla Townies with tan coloured saddles, the smell of new shoes in their thick cardboard boxes, Japanese wrapping paper, fresh coffee in the morning, a delicious brunch with perfectly poached eggs…the list goes on.

One of my favourite things (funnily involving food) is a good morning or afternoon tea. I must admit that any meals of the day are my favourite things…but I think it’s much harder to find a good morning or afternoon tea than any other meal times of the day.

A peak into their kitchen

A peak into their kitchen

I had one of the best afternoon tea experiences recently when I went to Chouquette in New Farm. It was a Friday afternoon, so the bakery/café wasn’t especially busy (as I heard it can get on Saturdays). Next to the actual bakery, there’s a commercial kitchen you can see through, the café is small, with one wall lined with wicker baskets of freshly baked breads and croissants and a pastry case full of delectable delights. Small tables line the other wall, there were also a row of brightly coloured lime and fuchsia seats outside facing the street.

Georgeous fresh baked breads

Gorgeous fresh baked breads

Delectable delights in the pastry case

Delectable delights in the pastry case

YT and I went in and we were greeted in French, there were a few people enjoying their pastries and teas and a lone lady who looks like she visited Chouquette every afternoon. We spent a bit of time perusing their pastry case as there was a lot of choice. I was a bit disappointed that their Mille Feuille had sold out as YT had been raving about it for days. After much um and aahing and a recommendation from them, I went with the four layered gateaux ($6.30), a petit four choux pastry with praline cream ($2.90) and a green tea ($3.50) and YT got a chocolate mousse gateaux ($6.30), a petit four citrus tart and an Apple Isle.

Clockwise from left: Green tea, Chocolate gateaux, citrus tart

Clockwise from left: Green tea, Chocolate gateaux, citrus tart

YT’s chocolate mousse gateaux had a coffee flavoured centre, smooth and rich, with just the right amount of sweetness and bitterness to balance each other out. The macarons that came with it were light, chewy and absolutely delicious. Her citrus tarts were smooth but maybe a bit too eggy for me.

Four layered chocolate gateaux

Four layered chocolate gateaux

My four layer chocolate gateaux were delicious, rich, tasting strongly of hazelnuts and the last layer were light and crispy – sort of had the texture of Hershey’s 5th Avenues without the heavy sweetness and peanuts. It was definitely my favourite out of all the pastries we bought. My choux pastry was light, creamy and I probably should’ve eaten it before I tucked into my rich tasting gateaux. Before I left, I also bought a paper cone of the store’s namesake, 5 chouquettes for $1.50, these were light and only slightly sweet and also an apple and prune Danish for $5.70.

I will definitely be going back so that I can try the myriad of other pastries they have on offer, and I leave you with more pictures to drool over.

Rosey Cheeks

Rosey Cheeks

Their Petit fours, second from left is my choux with praline cream

Their Petit fours, second from left is my choux with praline cream

More pastries in the pastry case

More pastries in the pastry case


Mondo – New Menu October 16, 2009

Filed under: Fine Dining,Food,Food review — Dobsessed @ 10:59 pm
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First of all, I’d like to apologise for the lack of photographs from my recent Mondo dining experience. Mondo has muted low lighting, most of the illumination in the restaurant (inside and out) comes from tea lights that adorn every table. Nice atmosphere, but not so great for picture taking. Especially bad when the only thing I have to work with is my iPhone camera. Three things I’d liked this Christmas (but have a 0% chance of getting):

1. A KitchenAid Artisan Mixer in the Limited Edition Candy Apple Red – the colour is absolutely gloriously, delicious;

2. A very good camera – one of those intimidating big ones, just so I can look intimidating and knowledgeable; and

3. Funnily enough, a bicycle, but mainly because my sister just got one, and I’ve suddenly convinced myself that I’ve always wanted to ride to pilates etc etc (I think of all the myriad of uses to justify wanting one).

I digress, my point is, I don’t have a camera and I need one, but that’s also my justification of not having any pictures from Mondo, it was dark and I didn’t have my iPhone or a camera. I know most of us eat with our eyes, so let’s just trust in the fact that Mondo is good.

The service is friendly, attentive, water comes unasked and the waitresses are knowledgeable. Love that. I’ve actually been to restaurants where you ask them for recommendations and they say, “I’ve never had anything on the menu…” or “I don’t eat fish.” in a seafood restaurant, so it’s great when they know what is great. Plus, I love getting recommendations from people.

There were two cocktail specials that night, an apple and basil and a sugared bourbon and mint – there were all these other fancy alcoholic ingredients, but I’m sorry to say I don’t remember. My friend ordered the apple and I ordered the one with sugar. The cocktails came and I took a sip of mine, and managed to convice my friend to swap with me, it was just too strong for me, I’m not the greatest drinker. The apple martini drink I ended up with was sweet, had a twist of tang and was delicious.

An amuse bouche came almost straight away, a cold cauliflower soup with walnut sourdough. The soup was rich with cauliflower flavour and was a cool contrast to the quite sour sourdough bread. It definitely whet my appetite.

I was excited to go to Mondo because they have just had a menu change. To start I ordered seared tin can bay scallops with crispy skin duck and a cauliflower and cabbage terrine. Made me very happy, scallops being one of my favourite seafood and duck being my favourite bird, the scallops were small but seared perfectly so it was sweet and tender in the middle, the duck were tender cubes with crisp skins – though it didn’t have the roast duck taste you get in Chinese crispy duck. The cauliflower and cabbage terrine was strong in cauliflower taste and the texture – a smooth custard. Delicious.

I love a crispy, tender pork belly, so I went for the crispy skin pork cutlet baby leeks, celeriac, pear, fennel and cider puree. I was a bit disappointed, I could not find any crispy skin on the pork at all, the cutlet was a generous size but a bit dry, the pear puree only tasted of pear and the celeriac over powered the dish. Definitely doesn’t come close to a pork belly.

For dessert, I was tossed between the raspberry souffle and the chocolate pudding, but based on the waitress’s recommendation, I went for the souffle, which came with vanilla cream and lemon myrtle sorbet. I was not disappointed, the souffle came, bursting out of its ceramic confines, was billowy, light and delicious. The raspberry cut through the sweetness whilst the black specked vanilla cream balanced the raspberry. The lemon myrtle sorbet was interesting, had that sort of eucalyptus oil fragrance about it. It was a rather high end to the meal.

My friend and I chatted for a while after that and I never felt that we were rushed and we weren’t constantly pestered to see if we needed anything else. At around 10, shot glasses of their espresso cocktail was passed around – friendly, subtle hint to leave? I did and I was happy and satisfied.


Help! How do I get my Creme Brulee to set?! October 3, 2009

Filed under: desserts,Home Cookery,random — Dobsessed @ 9:01 pm
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So, I bought a blow torch today!! It was great, so easy to use and I had a lot of fun learning how to use it…I have a problem though, it won’t set!!

I don’t know if it’s because I didn’t cook it enough, if I didn’t leave it in the fridge long enough, or if I fiddled with burning the top too long, does anyone know how I can stop it from being so runny??

I might have to just do an experiment…watch this space for a possible creme brulee revelation…

Or please leave a comment and help a fellow foodie out!

Attempt #2

So a week after my failed creme brulee (it tasted great but it didn’t set), I tried again.  My second creme brulee attempt set, but I had to cook them much longer, which made the creme brulee curdle a little bit and it wasn’t smooth.  These were some of the things that I did different:

– I didn’t allow the creme to boil, apparently scalding point means to bring it to the point that it’s about to boil (small bubbles) but not;

– I ‘tempered’ the egg mixture by adding a ladle of scaled cream to it, mixing this, before adding the rest of the cream mixture (I previously let it cool – you actually need the hot cream to ‘set’ the egg yolks;

– I cooked the creme brulee on a higher oven temperature, 160 degrees celsius instead of 120 degrees; and

– I used full fat cream rather than light cream.

Tomorrow I’ll attempt it again, as it’s still not perfect…watch this space.

Attempt #3

So, I’ve been trawling different recipes to try to find one that will actually set properly (or technique) and I came across that instead of cooking it in a water bath in an oven, you cook it over the stove, stirring constantly on the lowest heat possible until it is the texture of a custard and then you pour this into a ramekin and leave it in the fridge to set.  The recipe also called for 2 tablespoon of corn flour (with one vanilla bean, 300 ml of full fat milk, 300 ml of full fat pure cream and 4 egg yolks).  This recipe has probably worked the best out of all the ones I tried…however, I’m not sure if I like the addition of the corn flour.  I still tempered the egg mixture with the warmed vanilla infused cream before I added the rest of the cream into the eggs (why you then transfer into a saucepan and stir over low heat til it thickens – this took me about 25 – 30 minutes).

The resultant creme brulee was a lot richer than the usual creme brulee but it set without curdling and was delicious.  I’ll try it again without the corn flour.

Creme brulee attempt no #3