Quick and easy licorice allsort slice

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Zagrandma loves licorice allsorts, needless to say she also loves this slice. If you know any licorice fans out there then this is a slice for them.
The best thing about this slice is how quick and easy it is to make. You don’t need to use the oven which is great when it comes to summer baking. It’s a great recipe to get the kids involved with, although you may end up a few licorice allsorts short if they are anything like Zakidlets!!!
Zagorgeous Aunty Gail gave me the inspiration for this recipe, she was the one who originally told me about the idea of a licorice allsort slice. After her telling me the basic idea and rough ingredients for the slice this is what I have come up with for the one I make.

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You will need:
250g Scotch Finger Biscuits
40g melted butter
1 Tablespoon golden syrup
1/2 tin Condensed milk
125g licorice allsorts cubed into 1cm pieces (I cube each licorice allsort into 8 pieces)

Topping:
200g Dark chocolate broken up into pieces
50g butter

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Process or crush biscuits to a fine crumb. (if you don’t have a food processor pop the biscuits in a snap lock bag and roll with a rolling-pin)

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Add wet ingredients: Syrup, melted butter and condensed milk and process or mix until you have a very wet, sticky sand like consistency. (If you think mixture is a little dry just add a little extra melted butter until you can see it will easily press into a slice tin).

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Add the licorice allsorts and fold thru with a wooden spoon.

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Line a slice tin 18 x 28cm with baking paper and press mixture into tin.
Cover with foil and place in fridge for 20 minutes.

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Mean while make up your topping. Combine chocolate and butter in a bowl over simmering water (the gentler heat helps the melting chocolate not to seize up) see how here. Stir until smooth, remove from heat.
Pour mixture over slice and spread out evenly with a knife.

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To pretty up the slice you can peel dark chocolate over the topping like I have above.

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I like a generous sprinkle of chocolate peels.
Place back in fridge for at least another hour before slicing into squares.

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The finished product deeeeelicious!!!!
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 1 week.

If you are not a fan of licorice allsorts just substitute something else for them instead like: cherry ripe, snickers, jersey caramels, pecan nuts, choc chips or a combination would work great too.
Whatever you do just have fun with it!!!

Don’t miss my Blog Post at the end of the week ‘Zagirlie Tea Party’ an inexpensive bit of home fun for the little people.

Until then my lovelies
Zamamabakes

Salted Caramel Brownie Sandwich Cookies

‘Sharing is caring!’, I love this saying especially when it involves a great recipe that someone thoughtfully brings to my attention.
Zagorgeous Aunty Gail is the beautiful soul who surprised me with a copy of this amazing Donna Hay recipe in my Christmas card. Earlier last year Zaauntygail visited our family and brought a batch of these delicious morsels along with her to share. When I Sampled my cookie all I could say was ‘Mmmmmmmm I want this recipe’. Some of you may already be familiar with Donna’s ‘Salted Caramel Brownie Sandwich Cookies’ for those of you who are not you need to become familiarised, they are devine. If you are like me and love chocolate and salted caramel you need to bake a batch of these cookies or find someone who can bake a batch for you.
I made a batch up this week and took them along to an afternoon tea I had been invited to. They got great feedback.

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You will need:

350g dark chocolate chopped (I used a 200g block Coles dark chocolate and used dark chocolate chips for the remaining 150g)
40g unsalted butter (I prefer standard butter I like the fuller flavour it gives)
2 eggs
2/3 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste)
1/4 cup plain flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon baking powder, sifted

For the frosting:
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup pouring cream
150g unsalted butter, chopped (again I used standard butter)
sea salt flakes for sprinkling

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Preheat oven to 180C (I did 170C for fan forced).
Place 200g of the chocolate (use the block chocolate for this part) and the butter in a small saucepan over low heat and cook stirring frequently, until melted and smooth (when melting chocolate I like to do it over a pan of simmering water, it’s a much gentler heat). Set aside.

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Place eggs, sugar and vanilla in an electic mixer and whisk for 15 minutes or until pale and creamy.

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This is how my mixture looked after 15 minutes of whisking.

Stir through the flour, baking powder, chocolate mixture and remaining chocolate (this is where I used the chocolate chips) and allow to stand for 10 minutes.

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Chocolate mixture.

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Drop tablespoonfuls of the mixture onto baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper, allowing room for spreading. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until puffed and cracked.

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Allow to cool completely on trays.

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To make the salted caramel icing, place the sugar and water in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir with a metal spoon until the sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to medium and bring to the boil. Cook for 8-9 minutes or until golden (I set the timer and sat with the caramel while it was boiling away, as soon as you see it start to get that golden tinge remove it from the heat straight away so it doesn’t burn). Once caramel is away from the heat carefully add the cream and butter (I stress carefully).

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When I added the cream and butter I ended up with a big hard clump of toffee in the saucepan but I just followed the recipe directions of returning the saucepan to the heat and stirring until the mixture was smooth again (this process took me a good 10 minutes or more).

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Remove saucepan from heat again. I allowed my mixture to cool to room temperature I then placed it in fridge and left it to cool completely (for me this was overnight) as I was getting tired and it was past my bedtime. The picture above show the caramel ready for the fridge and post overnight refrigeration.

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Place mixture in a mixing bowl and using an electric mixer whisk the mixture until soft peaks form.
Spread half the cookies with the frosting, sprinkle with salt and sandwich with remaining cookies.
Recipe says you should get 12 (I got 11.5).

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Voila!!!
I will just say enjoy, enjoy, enjoy and as Zasister would say YOLO!!!!

Coming up on the Blog next week is a little bit of Zamama sewing action (scary I know, as in no way am I an experienced sewer, year 9 and 10 textiles & design is the extent of my training!). I also Plan to share a delicious savoury appetizer with you all.

Until then
Zamamabakes

Zamamabakes is going to Market Part 3

What an adventure!!!!
Let me just start by saying Zamamabakes had a very successful Market experience on Sunday.
I believe the last baking preparation from part 2 was the making and freezing of Vienna Cream Icing.
To continue on from where we were up to I will begin with the prepping of cheesecake bases on Saturday Morning. I decided because I was going to be selling Cheesecake at the market I would make individual serves that would be easier for handling and serving. It was a bit of a risk as I had only ever made this cheesecake, ‘Easy Baked cheesecake’ as one large cake before. The good news is they turned out perfectly I just used two 12 hole muffin tins instead of the single spring form pan and reduced the baking time down to 35 minutes (my oven is fan forced).
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I think I had just popped the bases into the fridge when a little voice said ‘Mummy will you play with me?’ How could I resist an offer like that? So a quick game of ‘supermarkets’ it was before Zakidlets left with Zadada for a day out leaving me to get back in the kitchen and organise myself ready for Sunday’s market!! Thank you Zadada you are amazing (I know I say that a lot) but credit where credit is due and I don’t think you can ever thank someone too much.
Now on with the show!

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I had the pleasure of 2 beautiful helpers on Saturday. Zagrandma came out to lend a helping hand (love you Mum).
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Along with Zagorgeous Rikki my beautiful Sister-in-law. These 2 beautiful women gave up their day to help me and I just want to say a HUGE THANK YOU I would have been up preparing and baking until midnight without you.

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The Kitchen has had quite a workout over the last week. A good warm up for Christmas Day (another adventure in the pipeline) Christmas lunch is at our house this year.

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Here’s a sight you don’t see too often. I was icing ‘Nanna Mac’s moist Chocolate cake’ ,Zagrandma snapped the shot!!

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We baked our little hearts out ending up with only one baking failure which was entirely my fault, I used SR flour instead of Plain in the Butterscotch Blondies and it made a huge difference to their appearance and texture. They were not Market worthy however they still tasted delicious so I shared them out to the family to have a nibble on.
The line up of treats shaped up really well.
Nuts and bolts savoury mix
Chocolate balls
Easy baked Cheesecakes
Fairy cakes
Nanna loy’s Kansas Cockles
Nanna Mac’s Moist Chocolate Cake
Dark Chocolate and Jaffa truffles
Zamama’s Rocky Road
Ginger Truffles
Persian Love cake
The Persian Love cake and truffles were the best sellers of the day!!! If you haven’t tried either of these you really should try making them for your self at home. All the yummy treats I sold at the market are available here on my Blog.

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Sunday’s Market stall looked like this. I had a wonderful helper Zagrandma again, as my second set of hands she did a fantastic job!!

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It was a great Market everyone was really lovely. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to catch up and meet with some of my gorgeous readers as well as the general public.
This market was a first for everyone at this location and I dare say it won’t be the last. The organiser Cheryl From Tittle and Tatis already talking about a Christmas in July Market. Cheryl Did a fantastic job and Carmen from ‘Pure Balance Pilates & Yoga Studio’ who owns the venue did a great job helping Cheryl.
10am-3pm went really quickly and before I knew it, it was time to pack up.
It is was a huge job doing the market but was very rewarding to get so much support from my readers, perfect strangers, all my wonderful helpers, loaners (you know who you are) and a special mention to my Zasister doing up signage last-minute and Zanan (my gorgeous mother-in-law) doing some last-minute shopping for me. You all contributed to the success of my day and a success it was! Not only did I cover costs but Zamamabakes did make a profit which Zakidlets and I have already put to good use purchasing non-perishable Christmas fare to donate locally to the St Vincent de Paul Christmas appeal as well as making some gift purchases to donate to Operation Santa run by Uniting Care and promoted by Target department store. I will be doing a Blog post following up on our shopping/donating adventures later this week.

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I did manage to have a quick wander around the market, I couldn’t resist this cute little succulent at the stall of Retropickles, you really should check her out she is a beautiful talanted Lady.

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I had the most delightful surprise when the girls from Edenplace gifted me this 6 pack of delicious Cupcakes to bring home and share with my family. They were delicious!! Thankyou so much.

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Once all the unpacking was done (a big thankyou to Zagrandma again),to finish off a great day I got to watch the Zabigkidlets Blake and Ella doing something they both greatly enjoy, riding the pee wee 50 at home!! Alani and I sat back and had a little relax for 10 while they rode and Zadada whipper snipped!!
Stay tuned for my Blog Post towards the end of the week ‘The gift of giving’ to see where the profits from my market stall end up.
Until then my lovelies, stay safe.
Zamamabakes.

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Zamamabakes is going to Market Part 2

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Part 2 begins with this moist, misty morning which provided comfortable conditions in my kitchen for making Chocolate Truffles and Vienna Cream icing. All this is in preparation for the stall I am having at The Handmade Xmas Market this Sunday at Crystal Creek, for more details see here.
I have a list of tasks that I am working through, hopefully by Sunday Morning the list will have been successfully completed and I will be all ready for my planned 8am set up.

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How I wish my kitchen could always look this tidy! The reality is we are family of 5 and the kitchen rarely looks like this, but I love my kitchen and thought I should present it tidy for its online debut!
I snapped this picture after yesterday’s breakfast clean up.

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Just back tracking a little here, this was our Coles Supermarket visit on Wednesday to buy the remaining ingredients required for my ‘Market’ baking projects. We did this after I had finished work and done School pickup but before we collected Alani from day care (3 kidlets in the supermarket I only do when I absolutely have to!!!). I also did my usual weekly fruit shop from the fantastic Tweed Fruit Exchange. Then off home it was to unpack, make dinner, lunches, bath children, I won’t go on with the list, you would all know the things you have to do after a days work. It gives me comfort knowing there are many of us doing the same thing at the same time every school or work day!

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Once Zakidlets were in bed I made up a batch of my Rocky Road for the recipe see here. Then it was off to bed.

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Jumping back to yesterday now.
Morning!(comes around too quickly for my liking). Zadada took the kids to school on his way to work, giving me a full day at home which I greatly appreciate, especially when I work my 3 day week.
One clean Kitchen, washing hung, a general house tidy up and I was ready to start making truffles, the ones you see pictured here are gingerbread truffles which is an adaption of the Dark Chocolate Tim Tam Truffle Recipe see here.
I used ginger nut biscuits and white chocolate melts as alternate ingredients.

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The little gadget you see me using to dip the truffles is exactly that a truffle dipper (well that’s what I call it) I recently purchased it from my local kitchen shop Mallam House. I love it.

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In between all this creating there is a little person that requires my attention Miss Alani. Needless to say there is a fair bit of stopping and starting that goes on to keep her happy but that’s what parenthood is all about. This was one of those moments, I stopped what I was doing as she had asked me to play ‘Barbie’s with her. Today I met Woody and Jelly, great names for barbie doll’s don’t you think?

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Once Alani was down for her nap I finished off the Dark Chocolate Tim Tam Truffles I was making and made the Vienna Cream Icing see recipe here, ready for the cupcakes I’m baking on Saturday.
Note: I freeze my Vienna Cream Icing in airtight containers when I need to, it always defrosts perfectly, ready to be put on the cake/s.

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This was the end result after truffles set in the fridge.

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A picture of the kitchen, post cooking clean up.

I wanted to let you all know that any profits I make at the market on Sunday I will be donating to local Christmas charities in the Murwillumbah area. I thought it would be a good little Project to include Zakidlets in. Stay tuned for a Blog post on that later next week.

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I have had many people ask me where I find the time for projects like this and blogging in general. For a project like this (the market) I have the white board you see above, helps me to see where I am heading most of the time!!! I’m slowly learning it’s all about good time management which I am not very good at, but since starting blogging 6 months ago I am gradually starting to establish a bit of a routine. One which incorporates My family as the first priority, paid work as the second and blogging/baking/creating as the 3rd. Zadada and I are very fortunate to have 2 fantastic sets of Grandparents close by as well as a great bunch of Aunts and Uncles.
I am extremely grateful for the amazing, supportive husband I have (that’s why I married him). He is a fantastic hands on Daddy and he is an extremely patient man, tolerating my ‘Mummy lose it moments’, reassuring me things are not as bad as the Mummy moment presents. He is my rock and I love him dearly!

I know it’s a busy time of year but if you do have a spare part of the Day this Sunday come along to the Market, and say ‘hi’. I would love to see you. My stall is inside the Old Church House. It will be pink and pretty!!!

The Details
Date: Sunday 15/12/2013
Location: ‘The Old Church’, 1003 Numinbah Rd, Crystal Creek, NSW
Time: 10am-3pm

Stay tuned for Part 3 of ‘Zamama goes to Market’. Hopefully I’ll get it to you on Monday or Tuesday of next week. Busy times ahead but fun!!!

Until then,
Zamamabakes!!!

Zamamabakes is going to Market Part 1

It’s all happening around this neck of the woods!!! Zamamabakes is getting out and about for her first meet and greet!!
Yes you read it correctly! I will be having a pretty little stall at “The Handmade Christmas Market”, this Sunday the 15th December from 10am-3pm.
Where: The Old Church 1003 Numinbah Rd, Crystal Creek, NSW 2484.
I will have a selection of bite sized yummies to purchase and sample. All recipes are available on my Blog so if you sample something you like you can make it again at home for all your loved one’s. The main idea of me getting out and about is that I would love to meet as many of my gorgeous readers that I can. If you live in the area and you feel like getting out and about come and say hi, It will be a fantastic day!
There will be a great selection of stalls to browse around, we have some very talented crafters around this area.
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As you can see I am in the preparation stages for my stall, lots of pink! (my favourite colour). I paid a visit to the ever so useful Reject shop to pick up some supplies. Coles supermarket has already seen me once this week and I intend to pay them another visit today. Even when I make a list I always manage to still forget something.
Hopefully the pile of bits and pieces all comes together nicely on Sunday! Those of you who can’t make the market stay tuned for my Part 3 Of “Zamamabakes is going to Market”.

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Yesterday morning I wrote up some cute little labels all ready for the market, I got them at the Reject Shop (just quietly that shop is so handy for all your bibs and bobs).

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Just detouring a little for a moment.
No day is complete without a surprise or 3. I unexpectedly had my services required for rounding up cows, even managed it with Alani in tow. Got back to the house and about 2 hours later got my second surprise for the day, a phone call from the kid’s school informing me Ella had left her swimming bag in Zadada’s car. So a 40 minute round car trip later, Alani and I had accomplished our second mission for the day, delivering a set of swimming gear to an ever so grateful Ella (she loves her swimming lessons).
My 3rd surprise for the day was Alani secretly consuming 12 days worth of Advent calendar chocolates while I was distracted reading school notes. She came to me and said ‘I only ate 2 Mummy’. According to Alani there are now only 3 days until Christmas!!! I do feel partly to blame, I should have been paying better attention. As a consequence I had to deal with a sugar loaded 2-year-old for a few hours. Zadada got home and commented on her very active behaviour!! Fortunately Alani recovered from her sugar hit and amazingly did not complain of an upset tummy.

Continuing on with the fun stuff.
I did eventually get around to some more jobs I wanted to do for my Market stall. One of those was making a batch of ‘Nuts and bolts’, a savoury mix which comes in very handy at Christmas time. Great for guests that pop in unexpectedly for pre or post-Christmas drinks as it keeps in an airtight container for a good month.

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Here is the recipe to the Nut and Bolts. I found this recipe a few years ago in the recipe book that came with our Panasonic microwave.

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Easy Ingredients

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Combining the butter, curry powder, Worcestershire sauce and garlic powder. Give it the required buzz in the microwave. (P10 just means high power)

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You end up with a mixture looking like this.

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The end result is this.
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Next job on the list was Zamama’s Rocky Road, you’ll find the recipe here.

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This is my second batch for the festive season. This batch will be coming along with me to the Market. Again this will keep for a good month in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
I have a big day of baking planned for Saturday and I have some lovely assistants coming to help me. I look forward to sharing my market adventures in blog posts to come Part 2 and 3. Thursday I plan to be baking some more yummies for the Market. Stay tuned for the blog post Part 2 On Friday.

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In case you are thinking of coming this is the venue you are looking for it’s an old church that has been converted into a house. Even if you just come for the lovely scenic drive you’ll have a great day. Crystal creek is a beautiful place.

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Further details of the market for you all.
Hope to see you there.
Zamamabakes xxxx

Dark Chocolate Tim Tam truffles

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If you like chocolate then you are in the right place.
It’s that time of year where lots of us are baking for School Christmas parties, neighbourhood get togethers, gifts for teachers, you name it there is usually always a good reason to be baking especially at Christmas!!
I have been wanting to make truffles at Christmas for the last couple of years but just never seem to have got around to it?
After seeing posts on Facebook and pins on Pinterest I decided to adapt my own version of a truffle. Zadada and I don’t mind a bit of dark chocolate as a little after dinner treat, that’s how I came up with the ‘Dark Chocolate Tim Tam Truffles’.

INGREDIENTS
250g block Philadelphia cream cheese softened a little (just take out of fridge 1 hour before using)
2 x 200g pkts Dark Chocolate Tim Tams
125g Arnott’s Choc Ripple Biscuits
300g Dark Chocolate
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METHOD
1 Process all biscuits in a food processor until very fine.
2 Add Philadelphia cream cheese and process until well combined. Mixture will look a little like children’s Play Dough but a little rougher in texture.
3 Roll mixture into a ball sized to your liking. Bite size worked well for me I used a heaped teaspoon as my guide. Place rolled balls onto baking paper lined trays. Pop balls into fridge for about 20 mins especially if it’s summer where you live. Once you have melted the chocolate in the next step get them out ready for dipping.

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4 Melt chocolate ( I use the good old-fashioned method for melting chocolate, see here)
5 Secure balls on a skewer or fork ready for dipping in chocolate. I found spooning the chocolate over the balls in conjunction with dipping a good way to ensure good chocolate coverage. Let excess chocolate drain as best you can and place coated ball back on baking paper lined tray.
6 Decorate truffles with whatever your heart desires. I used shredded coconut and Coles brand edible white pearls.
7 Place in refrigerator to set, then transfer to an airtight container and continue storing in the fridge until they disappear.

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Extra Options
As you can see from the picture below I did a little bit of experimenting.
When my mixture was at the Play Dough stage I halved mixture placing 2nd half into another bowl. I then added a Jaffa twist by Squeezing the juice of 1/4 of orange and adding 1 teaspoon of fine orange zest. You may need to knead it through a little. I added some shredded coconut on top. I also had a bit of fun with some white chocolate on the Jaffa flavoured truffles. It’s all pretty much up to your imagination.
You could experiment with all the different flavours of Tim tam biscuits and hey why just limit it to Tim Tams the biscuit aisle at the supermarket has lots of inspiration on offer.
What ever you choose to do just have fun with it and enjoy!!!!

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Easy Chocolate Balls

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I thought I would continue on with the Christmas theme, after all we are only 1 day out from it being December.
There are always plenty of social events we get invited to at this time of year. If you are like me you never like to arrive empty-handed when you are a guest. This recipe is one that can provide a solution to the question ‘what should I take?’. The beauty of ‘Easy Chocolate Balls’ is that they’ll keep in the fridge for a good month, so if your token gesture of kindness doesn’t get consumed straight away it doesn’t matter.
I made my first batch of ‘Easy Chocolate Balls’ last weekend (Zakidlets had their School Tableau Cake stall) and I’m quite sure they won’t be my last for the season.

You will need:
250g Arrowroot or Marie biscuits crushed
1 teaspoon of vanilla (If you want them to be Rum balls add 2 dessert spoons of rum instead)
395g tin sweetened condensed milk
3 dessert spoons cocoa sifted
1 cup desiccated coconut (reserve 1/2 cup for rolling chocolate balls in)

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Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix until well combined (you will need your muscles at this point). Alternatively if you have a food processor that will fit all ingredients just pulse and blend until all ingredients are combined.
Roll mixture into balls to a size you like, I usually use a teaspoon of mixture as a guide for my Chocolate balls.
Roll in reserved coconut and place onto a foil or baking paper lined baking tray. Once all mixture is rolled place tray of chocolate balls into fridge to firm up. I usually leave them like this for at least 4 hours and then transfer them to an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to 1 month if they last that long at your place!!

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For a gift idea why not make a batch of my ‘Rocky Road’ as well as the ‘Easy Chocolate balls’ and combine them in some little gift boxes. Great for teachers, kids friend’s, work colleagues, everyone loves a bit of something homemade from the heart.

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Butterscotch Blondies

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Zagorgeous Cheryl from Tittle + Tat brought this recipe to my attention and boy oh boy am I glad she did. Cheryl found the recipe in issue 53 of Gathered by Mollie Makes.
The recipe is by Laura Mitchell, baker, creator blogger from Kit and Nancy.
If you have a sweet tooth then this recipe is definitely for you. Cheryl’s words were ‘They are so sinful, so much sugar, but oh so good!’. Cheryl thought they would be a great idea for Christmas presents in jars and I completely agree. Last year I made my ‘oaty choc chip cookies’presenting them in the same way, they were a great hit!
Yesterday was Blondie day. I was supposed to be dusting, vacuuming and mopping but knowing I had the ingredients in the cupboard to test this treasure out was just too tempting, I couldn’t help myself, I just had to bake. The good news for me is that I did manage to get the cleaning done too, JUST!!!!
Below you’ll see my process of making these little delights. I do have to confess that in all the excitement of making them and a few distracted moments with Zatwo-year-old Alani I actually forgot to add the pecan nuts!!!! Whoops! Apparently that didn’t matter according to Zakidlets, but after sampling one myself I think the pecans would help to balance the flavours (or should I say sugars) that little bit more perfectly.

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Butterscotch Blondies

Ingredients:

2 ½ cups of plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened (I prefer to use standard butter)
1 ¼ cups of light brown sugar
½ cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup toffee pieces (werthers Original chewy caramels)
chopped
2 or 3 cups of white choc bits
1 cup chopped pecans

Step One:
Preheat over to 180c
Grease and line a 25cm x 35cm brownie tin with baking paper (my tin was 16.5cm x 26cm x 3cm and still worked perfectly).
Beat the softened butter, sugar and vanilla until creamy with a hand mixer

Step Two: Beat in the eggs, one at a time and gradually add in the sifter flour, baking powder and salt.

Step Three:
Add the white chocolate, chopped caramels and pecans, stirring well

Step Four:
Spoon the mixture into the brownie tin and bake in the over for 35 minutes until golden brown.

The picture below is courtesy of the Zagorgeous Cheryl from incase you forgot Tittle+Tat. Cheryl bottled her Blondies up beautifully, they would make the perfect gift for that special teacher or friendly neighbour.
I would just like to say a special Thankyou to Cheryl for taking the time to share this fantastic recipe with me.

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Zakidlets most certainly enjoyed their afternoon tea yesterday of Butterscotch Blondies and Milk. I asked them to be judges and score them a mark out of 10, I’m still trying to work out Alani’s score!
We had fun regardless.

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Persian Love Cake

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I have 2 Zanewly wed friend’s Natalie and Dom who recently sparked my interest in a Persian Love Cake.
Natalie was working away from home a few weeks ago (I was lucky enough to catch up with her) and I noticed Dom had tagged Natalie to a picture of a Persian Love Cake cake posted on his FB page, he wrote with the picture ‘One slice is never enough’. Made me think that cake must be good, also made me think ‘Oh how romantic Mr Dom’, I think he was missing his beautiful bride and rightfully so. I kind of forgot about the cake for the week until Zagorgeous MIL Fiona came out to visit and reminded me of Dom’s Cake picture. I said right that’s it I have to find out what’s in it. That’s when I put good old Google to work and sure enough I got my recipe for a ‘Persian Love cake’. The recipe is by Gerard Yaxley and it was posted on Gourmet traveller. I read through the recipe, the ingredients sounded delicious, you really only have to say ‘sugar’and I’m there!! To give you a bit of insight on the ingredients we are talking raw sugar, almond meal, brown sugar, butter, yoghurt, nutmeg and eggs. I liked that the ingredients didn’t sound complicated and had the added bonus of being gluten free (not that I am but it is always handy to have a few GF recipes up your sleeve). Needless to say I added this little treasure to my list of ‘Must Bakes’.
Yesterday was baking project day and yes you guessed it ‘Persian Love Cake’ was on the menu in Zamama’s kitchen. You can find the recipe here.

Below you will see half the mixture pressed into the springform pan and half remaining in the bowl. When pressing base mixture’s into a pan I always find a flat bottomed glass does the job really well.

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I think you could easily use a narrower diameter in your springform pan especially if you want a cake with more depth then 2cm.

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The cake cooked up really well with no complications, all you need to do is follow the instructions.
I did detour from the recipe just slightly in 2 ways. I only had dried nutmeg and I always like to use standard butter in my cooking rather then unsalted I find the regular butter balances out the flavours a little more.

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I am seriously thinking about putting it on my Christmas menu for dessert. I love baked cheesecakes and this little treasure reminds me of a cheesecake but with a bit of a spiced twist, you also get a little crunch from the raw sugar in the base but that just enhances the whole tasting experience. Give this recipe a whirl you won’t regret it.
Oh and you must serve it with the Greek Yoghurt the recipe suggests it balances the sweetness perfectly.
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Carrot Quinoa cake

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It was Zadada that provided me with the idea of seeking a carrot cake recipe that incorporated quinoa. Where does one usually look first? Well for me and I think for most it’s taste.com.
Jackpot!!! I found what I was looking for and the recipe well and truelly delivered!! Sunday was my cooking day. This cake is beautifully moist, the quinoa adds a depth of extra texture and satisfies ones appetite very well. Sadly I have to say we finished off the last slice last night!! The good news is that gives me a great excuse to move onto my next baking adventure which at this point will be some treats to donate to our School tableau cake stall this weekend!! But for now it’s back to the quinoa carrot cake.

I did 2 things different then the recipe suggests, first I added 1/2 cup finely chopped dates to the cake at the same time you add the grated carrot. The 2nd detour was for the icing. I made 1 quantity of lemon
vienna cream icing instead of the cream cheese icing but you please yourself. NOTE: instead of using 2 Tablespoons of milk work with 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice adding gradually as you may not need it all.
Click here for this amazing cake recipe.

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You can see how delicious this cake looks and it eats just as well. It’s definitely a keeper!!
If you end up with left over quinoa why not make a salad like I did here.

Hope you enjoy it as much as our family has.

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