Peppermint chocolate slice

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Who else loves Christmas? I am one of those people who wants to start playing the Christmas music in October (I usually hold-out til mid-November!) so it suited me perfectly to test this recipe early (and a few times over!). Like candy canes in slice form, these mouthfuls are refreshingly pepperminty, with nuggets of chocolate, smooth coconut and bursts of cherry. Also a no-bake layering option with NO COOKING required! Perfect for a Christmas recipe in the southern hemisphere! Merry Christmas everyone!

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Peppermint chocolate slice

  • Servings: 25
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Ingredients

For the base:

  • 125g Marie biscuits, crushed
  • 2 tsp cocoa powder
  • 70g melted butter (?needs more)

For the filling:

  • 2 cups coconut
  • 395g sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tsp peppermint essence
  • 70g glace cherries, chopped
  • 70g dark chocolate chips

For the topping:

  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil

Directions

  1. Place the Marie biscuits with the cocoa powder in a food processor and whizz until they form a fine crumb.
  2. Stir through the melted butter and pour base mixture into a greased baking tray. Use a spatula to pack the base tightly and evenly across the baking tray. Refrigerate to set.
  3. To make the filling, combine filling ingredients in a mixing bowl. Pour on top of the base layer and spread evenly. Return to the refrigerator to set.
  4. After 30 mins or more, melt the chocolate and the oil in a mixing bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time. Stir with a spatula until melted and smooth. Pour on top of the filling and spread evenly. Refrigerate until set.

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Oat and apple chocolate brownies

A 'healthy' brownie with less butter and sugar, but just as delicious fudgey textureI have had a lot of yummy treats in the house recently, due to several big family occasions and much testing for new recipes! So, to counteract all of the temptation, rather than not cook any sweet treats at all, I thought I’d have a go at making brownies without all of the butter and sugar as per usual.

A 'healthy' brownie with less butter and sugar, but just as delicious fudgey texture

I would not go to as far as to say that these are healthy, but perhaps offer a less decadent choice! They sure don’t taste less decadent though! Super rich, with a fudgey texture and very very chocolatey.

These took me approximately 10 mins to make, and because they bake so quickly too, they’re the perfect recipe to have up your sleeve for last minute guest baking.

A 'healthy' brownie with less butter and sugar, but just as delicious fudgey texture

Oat and apple chocolate brownies

  • Servings: approx. 30
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Ingredients

  • 100g rolled oats
  • ½ cup plain flour
  • ¾ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 375g apple sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 75g dark chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180° Celsius. Grease a baking tray with spray oil and line with baking paper.
  2. Mix together the oats, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and brown sugar. Add the apple sauce and egg and mix to combine.
  3. Pour half of the mixture into the baking tray and spread to evenly cover the base.
  4. Sprinkle the chocolate chips all over the mixture and cover with the remaining brownie mixture.
  5. Bake for 15-20 mins. Do not be alarmed if the centre is gooey – the chocolate chips will have melted which is intended!

Raspberry and Milo chocolate mousse

A raspberry and malt flavoured chocolate mousse using Milo

I grew up in Australia, and as such, I am a natural ambassador for Milo. I am in love with the stuff. While I was pregnant, I enjoyed a hot cup of Milo as an alternative to a coffee.

A raspberry and malt flavoured chocolate mousse using Milo

As an adult, I think I have become more health-smart with my Milo to milk ratios. I know many a child who has filled a glass with the powder, and added a splash of milk to create a crunchy, malty paste. Hmmm description sounds far less appealing than the cheeky treat!

I actually was inspired to make this mousse after using a similar flavour combination for my porridge regularly this winter. Sprinkle a few frozen raspberries and a couple of teaspoons of Milo into your oats – it is delish! And so is this glammed up version of my fave childhood drink!

A raspberry and malt flavoured chocolate mousse using Milo

Raspberry and Milo chocolate mousse

  • Servings: 4
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Ingredients

  • 120g dark chocolate chips
  • 120ml cream
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 2 tbs Milo
  • 1 tbs caster sugar
  • ½ cup raspberries (I used defrosted frozen)

Directions

  1. Melt the chocolate and cream gently in a small mixing bowl, by placing in the microwave for 30 seconds, and stirring to encourage the rest of the chocolate to melt. Zap for another 30 seconds if needed.
  2. Once smooth, whisk the egg yolks and Milo into the chocolate mixture while still hot. Set aside to cool.
  3. Whisk the egg whites, adding the sugar, until stiff.
  4. Once the chocolate mixture is cool, fold through the egg whites, taking care to lose as little air as possible. Stir through the raspberries.
  5. Pour the mousse into serving glasses and set in the fridge for 4 hours, or ideally overnight.

Cherry chocolate crumble

A rich cherry, chocolate and coconut crumble dessert recipe

This is the second crumble that I’ve posted, but I really do love a crumble. They’re fruity, juicy, cakey, and ever so simple to make. The perfect dessert for entertaining too, because they’re so easy to upsize.

A rich cherry, chocolate and coconut crumble dessert recipe

Desserts really shouldn’t feature in my house as often as they do, and given there is only my husband and I to eat them, I try to align my cooking of them with weekly dinners with my family so that the delicious sweetness can be shared around. Much less tempting if it’s gobbled up by others and not in the house for long!

A rich cherry, chocolate and coconut crumble dessert recipe

Cherry chocolate crumble

  • Servings: 4-6
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Ingredients

For the filling:

  • 350g Morello cherries, pitted and drained
  • ½ cup reserved Morello cherry juice from the jar
  • 150g strawberries, sliced (can be frozen)
  • ½ cup caster sugar
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips
  • ½ cup dessicated coconut

For the crumble topping:

  • 60g unsalted butter, softened
  • 70g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ cup caster sugar
  • 30g dessicated coconut
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder

Directions

  1. Place cherries, strawberries, cherry juice and sugar into a medium saucepan and bring to the boil. Lower the heat, cover and simmer gently for 10 mins.
  2. Use a slotted spoon to remove the fruit from the saucepan and place in a bowl. Bring the cherry syrup to a boil for 5 mins until the liquid has reduced by half. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. In a separate mixing bowl, use your hands to rub the butter into the flour. Rub until the mixture becomes crumbly.
  4. Add baking powder, sugar, coconut and cocoa powder to the flour & butter mixture and stir to combine.
  5. Preheat the oven to 200° Celsius.
  6. Return the fruit to the cherry syrup. Mix through the chocolate chips and dessicated coconut. Spoon the mixture into individual sized ramekins. Sprinkle the top with a generous amount of crumble mixture.
  7. Bake in the oven for 20 mins or until the crumble is golden and the cherry mixture is bubbling underneath. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

Earl Grey Caramel Slice

A sticky, sweet caramel slice with Earl Grey flavour and a chocolate topping

It is hard not to find a caramel slice if you are in a bakery in Australia. And for good reason! I have yet to meet someone who does not love to eat it! For me personally, if a caramel slice is there on display amongst the array of other delicious looking cakes and pastries, it is very hard to order anything else.

For my recipe today, I have taken the traditional caramel slice and added an Earl Grey tea flavour to the caramel layer. I like to eat my caramel slice with tea, so why not combine the two?

This slice recipe was actually my first foray into doing my own thing in the kitchen – I first tried it out a year and a half ago. However, it’s been the hardest one so far to get right. Unfortunately for me, that’s meant a LOT of leftover caramel slice to eat 😛 However, after lots of tinkering I think I’m there! Let me know if you try it out 🙂

A sticky, sweet caramel slice with Earl Grey flavour and a chocolate topping

Earl Grey Caramel Slice

  • Servings: approx. 30 pieces
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Ingredients

For the base:

  • 150g plain flour
  • 50g brown sugar
  • 75g coconut
  • 100g unsalted butter, melted

For the caramel:

  • 100g brown sugar
  • 120g unsalted butter
  • 2 Earl Grey teabags
  • 2x 395g tins of sweetened condensed milk

For the chocolate layer:

  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 1 tbs vegetable oil

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180° Celsius. Grease a baking tray with spray oil.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, coconut and melted butter.
  3. Press the mixture evenly into the base of the baking tray and bake in the oven for 12 mins until golden. Cool on the bench for 10 mins and then put it into the fridge to cool until needed.
  4. For the caramel, melt the brown sugar with the butter and the contents of the two teabags in a medium saucepan on a medium heat. Whisk together and bring the mixture up to a bubble, and then take off the heat and cover. Leave to infuse for 2 mins.
  5. Add the condensed milk to the saucepan, whisk frequently and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and whisk constantly for 5 mins until the mixture is thick.
  6. Pour the caramel mixture onto the base and cook in the oven for 20 mins at 160° Celsius until the caramel layer is set. Cool on the bench for 10 mins and then place in the fridge until completely cold.
  7. For the chocolate layer, place chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for one minute. Stir to mix heat evenly and help to melt the rest of the chocolate. Continue heating the chocolate for one minute at a time, until all of the chocolate has melted. Add the oil to the chocolate and stir.
  8. Pour the chocolate over the caramel layer and, using a palette knife, spread evenly to cover the whole slice. Cool in the fridge until set.