Sunday, December 11, 2011

Maple Shortbread

Canadian maple syrup is one of expensive stuffs imported and sold in HK. It's truly sad when I recently had to throw a whole bottle away because I totally forgot and left it stand peacefully in the cupboard until it had passed the expiry date for a few months before I found out! And instead of blaming myself, I simply passed all my guilt for such a wasting thing onto time that seems to fly so quick..actually, too quick to use up all ingredients I've crazily stocked  in/on time!!

With a new bottle bought to replace the old one, I have promised myself not to let the same thing happen again, so I was determined to make something about it and for some reason ( which I couldn't remember what it was! ) I ended up with this shortbread..

Anyway, I couldn't find any recipe that I am really fond of or keen on I decided to create my own recipe using few recipes on the net to be a guide...and here is what I've done at the end..


  • 1 cup cold maple butter , cut into cubes
  • 1/4 scant cup caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt    
For the maple syrup, In a small saucepan, bring 2/3 cup of the maple syrup to a boil and reduce by half (this should take about 15 minutes) Remove from heat and let it stand at room temp. When it is cool, add the butter and stir or gently whisk until well blended. Then
  • place in frigde until firm (I left it overnight).

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Blend the maple butter, sugar, and vanilla in a food processor just until smooth, about 30 seconds. Sift flour, cornstarch, and salt over butter mixture and pulse just until clumps form.

    Press the dough evenly into 8 inch square pan lined with parchment paper. Prick all over with a fork and freeze 5 minutes. Bake in middle of oven until edges are golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack 5 minutes and, while still warm, cut into slices. Cool completely before removing from pan.



    It's all of a sudden that I felt like making these lamingtons..and nothing could stop me when this kind of feeling happens! After a quick search on google, I then ended up using two recipes which one is for the sponge cake and the other for chocolate frosting..

    The recipes could be found here ( the sponge cake) and here ( the frosting ).


    Saturday, December 10, 2011

    Echaudés à l'anis

    It's been a while that I haven't posted anything on my blog but it doesn't mean that I haven't done any baking! At this time of a year, there're so many things to do while so little time's in hand..

    Anyway, I've been recently baking a few things which some are things I've baked and posted them here before and some are new that I am sharing them with you here.

    One of them I'd like to show is Echaudés à l'anis which is kind of French cookies and it reminded me of Italian Taralli I've made before..

    250 g. AP flour
    1 egg
    Milk, as needed
    1 tbsp. oil
    1/4 tbsp. salt
    1 tbsp. aniseed seeds (I added 1 tsp. seeds and 1 tsp. aniseed extract)
    2 tbs sugar
    1.In a bowl, mix the flour, eggs, oil, salt and aniseed seeds together. Add the milk slowly as you knead until the dough comes just together. The dough should be very stiff. Rest the dough overnight in the fridge, then roll it out about half an inch thick, cut strips, then triangles.

    2.Drop the triangles into lots of boiling water, in small batches.

    3.As soon as they rise to the surface (they sometimes stick to the pot, nudge them a little to make sure they are swimming free), set them aside on a tea towel until they are no longer tacky to touch.

    4.Finish them in a 180°C until they puff up and get barely golden.