Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake

Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake. Whipped mascarpone cheese with fresh raspberries over a deep, chocolate ganache topped brownie base.

If I had known you were coming I would have made this elegant Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake.

Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake
Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake

How pretty does this cheesecake look?

You too can make it, with the help of an IfIKnewYouWereComing Artisan Chocolate Brownie Baking Box!

A slice of Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake
A slice of Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake

Look at the gorgeously dense and fudgey brownie base to this cheesecake. Chocolate and raspberry flavours work so well together and this Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake really is a dream dessert.

Recently our youngest daughter revealed that she really didn’t like the traditional biscuit that usually is on the base of a cheesecake. She does however, love the creamy, top part. So this cheesecake was made with her in mind.

She absolutely loves brownies (as do the rest of us) and I wondered what she would think, of a cheesecake made with a brownie base. I decided to add a layer of deep, dark chocolate ganache to the top of the brownie base, primarily to stop the base from becoming soggy, but also to add an extra layer of chocolate to this cheesecake.

Each ingredient comes in a separate package all I neede to do was add butter and eggs and follow the recipe!
Each ingredient comes in a separate package all I needed to do was add butter and eggs and follow the recipe!

I was impressed with the ingredient packaging and the instructions provided with the Artisan Chocolate Brownie Bake Box. Baking these brownies was very similar to making my own homemade brownies, except someone had already weighed the ingredients out for me! All I needed to do was add butter and eggs.

Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake fudgey chocolate base covered in light raspberry mousse cheesecake.
Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake fudgey chocolate base covered in light raspberry mousse cheesecake.

This Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake is utterly stunning to look at and even more delicious to eat.

The whipped, mousse like, raspberry cheesecake layer, isn’t overly sweet. With an added splash of raspberry liquer and vanilla notes of white chocolate, this dessert is an awesome combination of flavours.

Layered together, with a final swirl of the best quality dark chocolate, this cheesecake may be my favourite dessert yet?!!

Recipe: Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake serves 10-12

1 Brownie Bake Box from IfIKnewYouWereComing

(alternatively use half of my Chocolate Fudge Brownie Bites) recipe

115g Unsalted Butter

2 Large Free Range Eggs

300g/Raspberries I use frozen Raspberries from Waitrose when they are out of season

4tbsp Caster Sugar

2tbsp Framboise – raspberry liquer  – can be substituted for fresh apple juice

150g Dark Chocolate

300ml Double Cream

500g Tub Mascapone Cheese

100g White Chocolate

Method: Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan, gas mark 6

Making the Brownie Base:

  • Line the base of a 10″ (25cm) Springform cake tin with the parchment backed, tin foil provided.
  • Follow the recipe card provided to make the brownies.
  • Pour the brownie mixture into the springform tin and tap against the work top twice to release any trapped air bubbles.
  • Place the tin in the oven and bake according to the instructions – my brownie base took 15 minutes to bake.
  • Once baked remove the tin from the oven and place on a cooling rack. Allow to cool completely.
Delicious brownie base studded with dark chocolate chips.
Delicious brownie base studded with dark chocolate chips.

Making the Chocolate Ganache:

  • In a heatproof bowl add 100g dark chocolate and 100ml of double cream.
  • Place the bowl on top of a small saucepan that contains approximately an inch of barely simmering water – this is called a double boiler.
  • Stir the chocolate and cream together until the chocolate has completely melted and the mixture is thick and glossy.
  • Pour the chocolate ganache over the cooled brownie base.
  • Smooth to an even layer using the back of a metal dessert spoon.
  • Place in the fridge until the ganache has set.
Glossy chocolate ganache not only adds an extra layer of deliciousness, but also stops the brownie base from becoming soggy.
Glossy chocolate ganache not only adds an extra layer of deliciousness, but also stops the brownie base from becoming soggy.

Making the Raspberry Cheesecake layer:

  • Place the raspberries, caster sugar and framboise (or apple juice) into a blender.
  • Pulse until you have a smooth, deep cerise, thick raspberry coulis. Set to one side.
  • Break up the white chocolate and place into a heatproof microwaveable bowl.
  • Zap for 20 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until the chocolate has almost melted.
  • Remove from the microwave and continue stirring until completely melted. Set to one side.
  • In a large bowl add the tub of mascarpone cheese and 200mls of double cream.
  • Using a hand mixer, whisk until fully combined.
  • Pour the raspberry coulis into the cheesecake mix and whisk until fully incorporated.
  • Next pour in the melted white chocolate.
  • Whisk all of the cheesecake ingredients together until light and creamy.
  • Spoon the raspberry cheesecake on to the cold, set, chocolate ganache covered brownie base in the springform tin.
  • Smooth the top of the raspberry cheesecake to ensure a flat, even finish.
  • Cover the cheesecake with cling film and place in the fridge for at least 2 hours to allow to set.
Once you have smoothed the top of the cheesecake you can lick the spoon 😉
Once you have smoothed the top of the cheesecake you can lick the spoon 😉

Decorating the Cheesecake:

  • Remove the cheesecake from the fridge.
  • Run a palette knife between the outside edge of the cheesecake and the iside of the springform tin.
  • Place the springform tin centrally on a large tin of beans (or something equally as sturdy).
  • Release the springform catch and gently encourage the sides of the tin to fall away from the base.
  • Place the Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake on to a serving plate or cake stand – the base will still be attached, don’t worry that’s fine.
  • Use a palette knife, that has been kept in a jug of boiling water, to smooth the top and sides of the cheesecake.
  • Melt 50g of dark chocolate in a microwaveable, heat proof bowl, as before.
  • Pour the melted chocolate into a small, disposable piping bag.
  • Snip off the very end of the piping bag to create a small hole.
  • Pipe swirls of chocolate all around the edge of the cheesecake and larger loops in the centre. Continue piping over the swirls around the edge until the chocolate is all used.
Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake so beautifully decorated and yet so easy to achieve.
Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake so beautifully decorated and yet so easy to achieve.

Now stand back and look at the beautiful Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake that you have made and decorated.

Such a simple piping technique and yet incredibly elegant. This cheesecake is perfect for adding the wow factor to any dinner party or celebration. Pale pink and chocolate brown are a classic colour combination, ensuring this dessert looks elegantly appetising.

The taste and texture of the brownie base was perfect, just like homemade. I would definitely recommend it, especially if you bake only at weekends or for special occasions. As all the ingredients come pre-weighed, you can easily make and bake brownies in under 30 minutes!

If you have enjoyed this Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake then you may also like these recipes:

White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake

FF Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake
White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake.

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake

FF Chocolate Brownie Raspberry Cheesecake
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake.

I like to make cheesecakes all year round. Frozen raspberries ensure that a glimpse of Summer can be seen and enjoyed, in the midst of the colder months.

Whatever you are making and baking in your kitchens, have fun feasting on all your creations.

Sammie xx

IfIKnewYouWereComing supplied me with the Artisan Chocolate Brownie Bake Box for this recipe. All opinions and views are my own. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

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Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae

Every time I look at the colour of this Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae it makes me smile.

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae this dessert is big time wow!

The colours are bright, summery, vibrant and let’s face it beautiful!

Just wait until you taste this!

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae this is a party in a glass!

Ok, let’s clear one important matter up – this Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae does NOT have to only be eaten on Sunday’s!

I know, I can feel your relief 😉.

Great vanilla ice cream, draped in tart raspberry coulis and delicious, soft, chocolate meringue all layered in a tall sundae glass. An incredible flavour combination where every ingredient is distinct, yet each works in total harmony as a whole.

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae as delicious as it is beautiful.

You are so going to love this recipe. Apart from making the deeply chocolate meringues, there is no other baking involved!

Yippee!

As much as I love baking, I really, really do – sometimes it’s nice to pull together a fabulous dessert where very little effort.

In fact this Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae came about by accident. Having baked the chocolate meringues I was hoping to make an Eton Mess type dessert. The cream, which was well within it’s use-by-date had gone off, the strawberries were past their best. The whole Eton Mess thing just wasn’t happening – don’t worry it will be made!

Instead I improvised. Typically, when I wing it the result is either amazing or revolting! Fortunately the combination of flavours in this incredible dessert totally, utterly and completely worked.

I mean really, really, really worked!

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae share this with everyone.

Don’t you just love it when things turn out better than you could of ever hoped?

Recipe: Makes 6 Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundaes

For the chocolate meringues:

Note: for photos showing step by step pavlova instructions, please see here

3 Large Egg Whites

125g/4.5oz Cater Sugar

50g/2oz Cocoa Powder

1/2tsp Corn Flour

1/2tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen Massey

1/2tsp White Wine Vinegar

For the raspberry coulis:

300g/11oz Raspberries – I used frozen raspberries from Waitrose

1tbsp Caster Sugar

Juice of a Lemon

Ice Cream – 750ml Vanilla Ice Cream – really good quality ice cream or you can use my recipe for Very Vanilla Ice Cream

Method: Preheat the oven to 160C/140C fan, gas mark 3

Making the meringues:

  • Line a baking tray with baking parchment.
  • In a large bowl add the 3 egg whites and whisk until they can hold a stiff peak.
  • Continue whisking and addding in the caster sugar one tablespoon at a time.
  • Keep mixing until the egg whites are glossy and the caster sugar has been incorporated.
  • Add the vanilla extract, vinegar, corn flour and sift in the cocoa powder.
FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
These meringues are intensely dark and chocolatey.
  • Gently fold the ingredients into the meringue.
  • Dollop 6 clouds of chocolate meringue onto the baking sheet.
FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Chocolate Meringue Clouds ready for the oven.
  • Place the chocolate meringues into the oven an immediately turn the oven temperature down to 140C/120C fan, gas mark 1.
  • Bake the meringues for 40 minutes and then switch off the oven, allow the meringues to cool completely in the oven – this is how they will obtain their brownie like texture.
  • Once completely cooled they can be used straight away, or stored in a tin, separated by baking parchment, where they will keep for 5 days.
FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Chocolate meringues that taste like the best brownies!

Making the raspberry coulis:

  • Place the fresh or frozen raspberries into a medium bowl.
  • Sprinkle over 1 tablespoon of caster sugar.
  • Cover and leave for at least an hour.
  • Tip the raspberries, sugar and juice of a lemon into a blender.
  • Blitz in the blender until you have a super smooth purée.

Assembling the Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae:

  • Remove the vanilla ice cream from the freezer 20 minutes prior to assembling the sundaes.
  • Place a scoop of ice cream into each sundae glass.
  • Pour over some raspberry coulis, ensuring that you have a little left for the tops of the sundaes.
  • Add another scoop of ice cream to each sundae glass.
  • Break two thirds off of the chocolate meringue, break up and add on top of the second ice cream layer. Repeat for each sundae.
  • Add a third and final scoop of ice cream on top of the crumbled chocolate meringue.
  • Finish with a final drizzle of raspberry coulis and the final third of the chocolate meringue.
FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae ready to be eaten and enjoyed.

Serve with a long sundae spoon so that you can reach right down to the very bottom of your sundae glass. You are not going to want to waste any of this utterly luscious, refreshing dessert!

I bought these sundae glasses a couple of years ago, in Asda for £1.50 each. I had been wanting some for ages and as a rather clumsy person at times, I needed something sturdy that could withstand me and be used for smoothies, milkshakes and of course sundaes. Plus if I do break one it is cheaper to replace.

We all enjoyed these Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundaes for dessert today and were amazed a not only the awesome flavour combo, but also how refreshing they are. These are a massive hit and will be enjoyed on many more occasions throughout the warmer months.

Each Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae has a 50g serving of raspberries and fresh lemon juice in it – they are virtually a health food 😉

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae add spoon and devour.

In the photo above you can see how gloriously dark the inside of the chocolate meringue is – yummy!

Also, true to my promise, I am including more desserts on here – it’s a tough job……

If you have loved this recipe for Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae here are a few more you may like too:

Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
No Bake Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake

Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

FF Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundae
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

I never really urge you to try any particular recipe, but in this instance I am. The theme of Feasting is Fun is sharing and I’d be crazy not to encourage you to try these Raspberry Chocolate Ice Cream Sundaes at least once!

The meringues can’t fail as they aren’t meant to be light and fluffy, rather more like a dense brownie texture. Ice cream can be bought and the raspberry coulis is a whizz – literally.

Ooh I should also mention that this is a fab recipe if you have a sore throat – three of us here have sore throats at the moment and this cool, refreshing sundae really soothed.

Whatever you are making and baking in you kitchens this weekend I really do hope you have fun creating a feast to be share.

Sammie xx

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Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

Today was so beautifully warm and sunny, I simply had to make this Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream.

Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream - ice cream taken to another level!
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream – ice cream taken to another level!

Made with frozen blackberries from last year, this ice cream delivers massively on taste.

To quote Jennifer Aniston “Here’s the science bit”, when eating very cold food, such as ice cream, the flavours are dulled, due to the cold temperature. If you think of strawberries eaten straight from the fridge, they will never taste as good as those that have been left out to warm up a bit, or better, plucked straight from a sun warmed plant.

So when making ice cream, even simple Very Vanilla Ice Cream, the flavours need to be more pronounced so that you taste them.

Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream all that is needed is a spoon.
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream all that is needed is a spoon.

With this creamy, sharp, sweet, tangy Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream, you taste every bit of the beautiful blackberries. Sousing them in sugar and lemon juice encourages each berry to release it’s maximum, ripe berry flavour. On it’s own the blitzed blackberry sauce would be too tart and the berry flavour would be overwhelming, yet mixed into a delicate vanilla ice cream custard and churned until it becomes ice cream, the flavours mellow and meld together, creating one of the most exciting flavoured ice creams ever.

Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream THE dessert to serve your future mother-in-law!
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream THE dessert to serve your future mother-in-law!

Studded with chunks of deep, dark, chocolate that lend not only a slight bitter flavour but added texture this Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream becomes complete. Elegant enough to be served in pretty bowls at the end of a meal with nothing else to accompany it. This ice cream deserves to be savoured unaccompanied.

One thing is certain – this ice cream is certainly up there with the best ice creams I have ever tried!

Recipe: Makes approx 1 litre Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

300ml Double Cream

300ml Whole/Semi Skimmed Milk

4 Large Egg Yolks – I always use free range eggs

1tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen Massey

7tbsp Caster Sugar

Scant pinch of salt – less than 1/4tsp

1tsp Cornflour

Juice of 1 Lemon

300g Blackberries – I used frozen but use fresh in season

100g/4oz Good Quality Dark Chocolate minimum 65% Cocoa solids

Method: Ensure that the freezing part of the ice cream maker has been in the freezer for at least 24 hours.

Please see Very Vanilla Ice Cream for step by step photographs, showing how to make the ice cream custard.

  • Place the cream, milk and vanilla extract into a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add the egg yolks, sugar, salt and cornflour to a large heatproof bowl. Whisk until pale and creamy.
  • The milk/cream needs to reach scalding point. This is when little bubbles appear around the edge of the liquid.
  • When the milk/cream has reached scalding point remove the pan from the heat.
  • Whilst whisking the egg mixture, pour the hot milk/cream into the bowl – do not stop whisking.
  • Once combined tip the custard mixture back into the same saucepan, cooking over a low heat and constantly stirring, until the custard has thickened and coats the back of a wooden spoon.
  • Place a sieve over a clean, heatproof bowl and pour the custard into the bowl, through the sieve.
  • Place cling film directly over the top of the custard so that is touches it. This will prevent a skin from forming.
  • Allow to cool and then place into the fridge to chill.
  • Place the blackberries into a bowl and add the juice of one lemon and one tablespoon of caster sugar. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes.
  • Place the blackberry mixture into a blender and pulse until you have a smooth purée.
  • Pass the blackberry purée through a sieve to remove any seeds.
  • Once the ice cream base has chilled remove the cling film and add the blackberry purée.
This ice cream really does have the most beautiful colour.
This ice cream really does have the most beautiful colour.
  • Mix briefly, don’t worry too much as it will be well mixed in the ice cream maker.
  • Transfer the custard mixture to a jug.
  • Pour the blackberry custard into the ice cream maker (for mine it has to already be churning – check your instructions).
  • Whilst the ice cream is churning chop the dark chocolate into 1cm-ish sized chunks.
  • Churn the Blackberry Ice Cream until it is a thickened, yet soft ice cream.
Beautifully soft whipped Blackberry Ice Cream.
Beautifully soft whipped Blackberry Ice Cream.
  • Using a soft rubber spatula decant the softly whipped ice cream into a suitable, freezer safe, plastic tub.
  • Add the dark chocolate chunks to the blackberry ice cream once it is in the freezer container.
Blackberry Chocolate a Chunk Ice Cream such a delicious combination.
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream such a delicious combination.
  • Stir the dark chocolate chunks through the ice cream so that they are evenly distributed.
FF Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream ready for the freezer.
  • Clip on the lid, label and place the Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream into the freezer to finish freezing.
  • To serve, remove this ice cream from the freezer a full 30 minutes before serving – unless it really is an extremely hot day, then 20 minutes should suffice.
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream a delicious and elegant way to finish a meal.
Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream a delicious and elegant way to finish a meal.

I honestly cannot explain just how good this Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream is. Whilst it may look a little more like a sorbet it is in fact delightfully creamy, with a deep berry flavour to match its beautiful colour and studded with dark chocolate crunch that adds another heavenly level of flavour and texture. It cleanses the palette and refreshes, whilst ensuring that you know you have eaten dessert.

In essence it is truly sublime. A million miles away from mass produced, sweet gloopy ice cream, this is the dessert to serve those you truly want to spoil. Not that it is expensive to make, simply that it is an ice cream worth lingering over and savouring.

If you have enjoyed this Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream recipe, here are a few others you may enjoy:

Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

Very Vanilla Ice Cream

Very Vanilla Ice Cream
Very Vanilla Ice Cream

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake

Having an ice cream maker definitely makes the process of creating ice cream easier. It results in a much creamier, less icy, softer on the palate, cooling treat.

Unfortunaley whilst making the Blackberry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream another little piece of the plastic on our ice cream maker broke off – it really is on its last legs. Fortunately however, I will be reviewing a brand new model by Andrew James  over the coming few months, so expect lots of chilled recipes through the summer months.

It really gives me such a thrill reading your comments and I appreciate you taking the time to leave them. Likewise seeing my recipes being baked on Twitter and Instagram literally makes my day. Sharing is the heart of this blog and seeing you share your bakes with me always gives me a boost. Thank you.

Whatever you are making and baking in your kitchens, have fun and enjoy every feast that you create.

Sammie xx

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Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake

Summer is near, not that you’d know it, with certain parts of the country blanketed in snow and with it heralds the start of the soft fruit season. I do like all fruit, but soft fruits are my favourites; strawberries, raspberries, peaches, nectarines, apricots and plums, as well as many others. To celebrate this I have made this utterly divine Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake.

Strawberry Chocolate C\heesecake
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake the perfect no bake dessert.

No bake cheesecakes are incredibly easy to put together. So whether you’re an experienced home cook, or just starting out, I can guarantee that you can make this Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake.

All you need, aside from the ingredients is a 10″ (25cm) springform cake pan.

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake
A slice of delicious Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake?

Oh yes please!!

As promised, I am making a conscious effort to include more desserts on Feasting is Fun. I have been making cheesecakes for many years and the recipe has adapted over time. When I was younger I would whip vanilla angel delight into mascarpone and single cream. It makes an utterly delicious cheesecake, however, I can no longer find angel delight in the shops.

This has been a good thing! As good as the cheesecake of years passed was, this Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake is better!

Whipping melted chocolate into cream cheese and cream gives this cheesecake a wonderful lightness. This Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake is perfect to serve at any time, however, it is beautifully light after a large Sunday Roast Dinner like my Redcurrant Glazed Roast Lamb.

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake a delightfully light dessert.

One of the most important parts of a cheesecake to me, is the crust. I don’t want some flimsy – can barely hold it together, low carb nonsense – I need a thick, crunchy base, that is delicious and contributes to the cheesecake as a whole. Digestive biscuits are the answer! Not too finely broken up either. A few small chunks makes for incredible texture against the smoothness of the softly whipped cream cheese and cream.

Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake ooh look at this layer – delicious!

The crunchy, crumbly, golden base also gives this Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake a very slight, salty hit. Not as salty as pretzels, just enough to balance out the sweet tang of the chocolate cheesecake that covers it. To conclude, this cheesecake is more than the sum of it’s individual parts. Eating a little of each layer together will give your taste buds a flavour party like never before!

Before we start, I should mention that there are a few hours chilling in the fridge required, so it’s best to plan for that. If this cheesecake is needed for the same day, start the base in the morning, if you have a little more warning, I suggest making the base the night before. Actual time spent hands on making this cheesecake is very little, but it’s worth knowing about the chilling times before you start.

Recipe: Makes one Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake serves 8-10

300g/11oz Digestive Biscuits – Graham Crackers can be used as an alternative

150g/5oz Unsalted Butter

560g/2 tubs Philadelphia Cream Cheese

600ml/1 pint Double Cream

2tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen-Massey

200g/7oz Milk Chocolate – at least 35% Cocoa – or use plain chocolate if you want a richer chocolate flavour

1tsp Caster Sugar

10 Strawberries – or more

1tsp Icing Sugar to finish

Method: Line the base of a 10″ – 25cm Springform Pan with aluminium foil.

  • Place the digestive biscuits into a freezer bag and whack with a rolling pin until they are almost completely broken up. You can also you a food processor to blitz them, I’m just too lazy to get it out for a few biscuits 😉.
  • In a medium sized saucepan gently melt the butter. Note: if you melt the butter too fast it could spit and burn you, also the butter may burn. I have learnt this from experience!
  • Once the butter is melted, remove the pan from the heat and add the crushed biscuits to the melted butter.
  • Stir well, ensuring all the biscuit crumbs are covered in melted butter.
  • Tip the butter slicked biscuit crumbs into your foil line springform pan.
  • Press the biscuit crumbs into a uniform layer using the back of a metal spoon.
  • Cover the pan with cling film and place into the fridge to chill and set the biscuit layer – I actually made the base the night before – a couple of hours should be sufficient to set the base.
  • Once the base has set the cheesecake layer can be made.
  • Break or chop up the chocolate and place into a heatproof microwaveable bowl.
  • Zap for 30 seconds at a time stirring in between. When almost melted remove from the microwave and keep stirring until completely melted. Set the chocolate to one side.
  • Into a large bowl add the cream cheese, 200mls of double cream and 1tsp of vanilla extract.
  • Whisk until light and creamy – approx 3 minutes.
  • Next, whist whisking add the melted chocolate to the cheesecake mix – it helps if you have someone to hold the whisk whilst you add the chocolate, alternatively add the chocolate in thirds, whisking well after each addition.
  • Spoon the chocolate cheesecake mix on to the biscuit base. Smooth the surface with the back of a spoon.
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake
Once you have smoothed the top of the cheesecake lick the spoon!!
  • Cover the pan with cling film and pop back into the fridge for an 2 hours. This allows the chocolate to set the cheesecake layer. The cheesecake layer does not set to a firm consistency, rather it is able to hold its shape and support the whipped cream a strawberries on top.
  • When set and ready to decorate, run a palette knife that has been dipped in very hot water, between the pan and the cheesecake. Place the springform pan on to a large can (of beans or whatever you have in the cupboard) and release the spring latch. Allow the sides of the pan to drop down.
  • Place the cheesecake – still on the foil covered pan base – on to a cake stand or serving plate. Note: I have never successfully transferred an entire cheesecake off of its base, so I cover the base in foil to protect it from knife marks and keep the cheesecake on the pan base!
  • Into a large bowl add the remaining 400mls of double cream, 1tsp vanilla extract and 1tsp of caster sugar. Whisk until the cream holds its shape.
  • Fit a large piping bag with a large star tip – I use Wilton #1M.
  • Fill the piping bag with the whipped cream.
  • Pipe swirl roses – start piping the letter e and continue round – around the outside edge of the cheesecake. Fill in the empty spaces with simple piped stars.
  • Place a strawberry on each of the piped swirls – I removed the green stalks for these – and place three strawberries, with their stems still on, in the centre of the cheesecake.
  • Dust the Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake with icing sugar – I use a clean tea strainer – and serve.
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake
Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake a fantastically easy, yet sensational dessert.

How enticing does this Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake look?

It is said that we eat with our eyes first. Well this is certainly a feast to be gazed upon – and then eaten 😉.

This cheesecake travels well too. Simply prepare the cheesecake without the whipped cream and strawberries, take to your destination and complete the decoration there!

Once fully decorated this cheesecake is best eaten straight away, although it will keep for up to two days wrapped in cling film, or stored in an airtight container, and placed in the fridge.

Cheesecake for breakfast anyone??

I hope that you have enjoyed this Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake recipe, here are some others you may like too:

 

White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake

FF Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake
White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake

 

Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

FF Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

 

Strawberries and Cream Cake

FF Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake
Strawberries and Cream Cake

 

Thank you for all your lovely comments, please keep them coming I love reading your views on what I am posting. Again it is wonderful to see so many of you cooking and baking my recipes and popping a photo on Twitter or Instagram. I always feel genuinely honoured that you have chosen to make one of my recipes.

I am working hard to balance Feasting is Fun with a few more savoury recipes. Is there anything you would particularly like to see more of on here?

Have fun making and baking in your kitchens and enjoying the memories that you are making whilst feasting together with friends and family.

Sammie xx

@sammiefeasting Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest

 

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Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

Hello my lovely readers. I have a rare recipe on my blog for you today – a dessert. I was shocked when I realised just how few dessert recipes I have. It just goes to show, we may have cake or cookies in the tin, but I rarely make dessert, much to my Hubby’s disappointment. So in order to correct this I have made a delicious Lemony Strawberry Pavlova!

FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova so light and refreshing.

As you may be aware, I love lemons, especially in cakes like my Mini Lemon Drizzle Bundt Cakes. This lemon pavlova is the stuff of fairies, rainbows and dreams. It is incredibly light, with a crisp, outer shell that hides a soft, marshmallow like interior. It really does melt in your mouth!

Slathering the top with dreamy, lightly whipped cream, fragrant strawberries and finishing with a limoncello sticky drizzle. This Lemony Strawberry Pavlova is the perfect dessert, especially on a Sunday after a roast.

FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova a generous slice!

Having made a few pavlovas now, I think that I’ve got them pretty much nailed. Yes I know that the weather, in particular humidity, can play havoc with them, but they are a fairly easy, foolproof dessert. The way I see it is this; if the worse happens and they crack and crumble, then make an Eton mess – whipped cream, crumbled meringue and fresh fruit. Altenatively if the cracking isn’t that bad, slather them with whipped cream and fruit and nobody will notice the disaster you have managed to avert 😉.

FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova look at the marshmallow inner, utterly melt in the mouth.

Fortunately this Lemony Strawberry Pavlova behaved. Today is a sunny dry day and apart from me using a new baking tray that was just a teeny bit too wide for our oven, hence this pavlova was cooked on a slant, it turned out beautifully. Better than that it tastes amazing. If you’ve ever eaten lemon roulade, then that has a similar texture to this pavlova.

When I first started making pavlovas I hadn’t any pictures to guide me through the process, so I’ve included a few so that you will know how things are supposed to look!

Also I managed to get hold of some early season British strawberries, they smelled so fragrant. This pavlova would also work well with Raspberries, Blackberries and Blueberries, so use whatever fruit is in season.

Recipe: Makes one Lemony Strawberry Pavlova serves 8

6 Large Free Range Egg Whites – the yolks will keep for a day in the fridge and I’m making ice cream tomorrow which they will be perfect for!

300g/10.5oz Caster Sugar plus 1tablespoon for the drizzle

2 Lemons

1tsp Corn Flour – also known as corn starch

1tsp White Wine Vinegar

300ml Double Cream

300g/10.5oz Fresh Strawberries

50ml Limoncello – optional use water if preferred

Method: Preheat the oven to 180C/165C fan, gas mark 4.

  • Make sure the large bowl you will be whisking the egg whites in is scrupulously clean.
  • Cut 1 lemon in half and wipe around the inside of the bowl with it.
  • Separate the egg whites from the yolks and place the egg white into the clean, lemon wiped bowl.
  • Squeeze the juice of the cut lemon into the bowl with the egg whites, ensuring pips and pulp are caught by a sieve.
  • Start whisking on a slow speed and gradually build up to high.
  • Keep whisking until the egg whites have reached the stiff peak stage.
  • This is where, if you hold the whisk up the whisked egg white will not flop over
FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
This is a stiff peak – now time to start adding the sugar.
  • I couldn’t take a photo and hold the whisk up, but you can see the peaks in the bowl stand up and the egg white on the whisk didn’t move whilst I stopped to take a snap.
  • Resuming whisking on a high speed add the caster sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, or do as I did, pour it from a jug in a slow gentle stream so that it all becomes slowly incorporated into the egg whites.
FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Beautifully glossy, satin meringue.
  • Once the meringue looks glossy, with a satin sheen, the meringue is mixed.
  • Add the corn flour and vinegar and gently fold into the meringue, so as not to knock out any of the air.
  • Draw a 25cm circle on a piece of baking parchment that fits onto a baking tray.
  • I drew round a 10″ cake pan.
  • Flip the baking parchment over and secure to the baking tray with a dob of meringue in each corner.
  • Scoop half of the meringue onto the middle of the disc.
  • Using a palette knife spread the meringue out so that it fills the marked circle, ensuring it is fairly level.
FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
The pavlova base.
  • Fill a large piping bag, fitted with a large star tip, with the remaining half of the meringue.
  • Pipe a swirl pattern around the edge of the pavlova base.
FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Piped swirls around the edge of the base give this pavlova a very pretty finish.
  • Place the meringue into the hot oven and immediately turn the heat down to 150C/130C fan, gas mark 2.
  • Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes – 1 hour 30 minutes.
  • When baked the pavlova will have a hard outer shell with a hint of soft marshmallow deliciousness inside.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking tray.
  • Once cooled use a palette knife to slide under the pavlova and separate it from the baking parchment. Transfer to a cake stand or serving dish.
  • When ready to decorate, place the limoncello, juice of 1 whole lemon and tablespoon of caster sugar into a small pan. Bring to a bubble and reduce the heat until the liquid is about a quarter of its original volume.
  • Whilst the lemon drizzle is reducing, pour the double cream into a bowl and whisk until it has reached the floppy stage. It will not be stiff, just thickened enough to hold a figure of eight.
  • Spoon the whipped cream onto the inner part of the pavlova.
  • Decorate with strawberries.
FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Concentrated lemon luscious drizzle.
  • The concentrated lemon drizzle should look like the picture above.
  • Drizzle it over the strawberries, for an intensely lemon flavour.
  • Serve immediately.
FF Lemony Strawberry Pavlova
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova pretty delicious.

The lemon pavlova can be made, unfilled a day in advance. Store on the original baking parchment, but loosen it first with palette knife, wrap in cling film. The cream can be whipped ahead of time and stored covered, in the fridge. Make the drizzle and assemble just before serving.

This Lemony Strawberry Pavlova is sure to wow any dinner party guests and your family. It is so light and the lemon so refreshing, it is absolutely perfect for dessert after a heavy meal, such as a roast or curry.

One bite of this delicious delight and my mouth felt cleansed and ready for a second, third……. 😉.

Whilst I am unreliable at the best of times, I really am going to try to make one dessert a month. Yes really, a proper pudding, or lighter dessert during the warmer months. My husband will be a very happy man!

Are you a dessert person? Do you look at a restaurant menu, pick your dessert and plan your meal around it??

If you have enjoyed this Lemony Strawberry Pavlova here is my other pavlova dessert for you to try:

Raspberry Chocolate Pavlova

FF Raspberry Chocolate Pavlova
Raspberry Chocolate Pavlova soo good.

I love reading your comments, thank you for taking the time to leave them and keep them coming please? I’m usually around on Twitter most days, so if you have any cooking/baking dilemmas send me a tweet and I’ll do my best to get back to you? I may not always have the answers, but I belong to an awesome community of amazing cooks and bakers. Between us there isn’t usually much that we can’t help with!

Have fun whilst you are cooking/baking and remember a feast can be improved with good company.

Sammie xx

 

 

 

 

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Toffee Banoffee Waffles

You may have noticed I’ve been Waffle-ing a lot on here lately? Ever since I received my Waffle Maker my mind has been buzzing with different recipes. So much so that I wondered if I could make waffles using a packet cake mix – the result my Toffee Banoffee Waffles.

W Toffee Banoffee Waffles
Toffee Banoffee Waffles perfect with a glass of fresh juice for breakfast.

Look good don’t they??

Now I have some very delicious, made from scratch recipes for waffles like my Vanilla Bean Waffles which are utterly delicious. But I’m aware that not everybody has the time, or confidence to make waffle batter from scratch and that’s ok. I’m not going to beat up on you because you want waffles but feel intimidated by not only cooking them yourself, but also having to follow a recipe.

Everybody’s gotta start somewhere and if using a packet mix is going to help you get started on the scary home baking journey, then Sammie is here to hold your hand.

W Toffee Banoffee Waffles
Toffee Banoffee Waffles add a scoop of ice cream and you have a fabulous dessert!

Sometimes it’s also great for convenience to know you have a reliable packet mix in the cupboard for when the urge to Waffle strikes 😉.

So I set about testing some different cake mixes, so you can be sure your waffles will turn out brilliantly.

Wright’s Baking have a range of cake mixes that are very good quality. I was tempted by the toffee cake mix – with the idea of Toffee Banoffee Waffles already buzzing around my brain.

With one very small adaptation to the recipe the Wright’s toffee cake mix makes outstanding waffles. I mean these are seriously tasty and have a great texture too.

W Toffee Banoffee Waffles
Toffee Banoffee Waffles perfect for a weekend lazy morning brunch.

Toffee flavoured waffles, topped with banana slices and drizzled with caramel sauce – utterly scrummy!

Now my waffle maker by Andrew James Ltd. recommends wiping (although I use a soft pastry brush) butter or vegetable fat over the waffle plates before use. I prefer to use melted butter. Seeing as I had to melt butter to prepare the waffle plates it made sense to add melted butter, instead of vegetable oil to the cake mix.

That is the only change I made. Tip the contents of the toffee cake mix into a bowl, add the specified amount of water and melted butter (I think the butter gives the waffles a more waffle-like taste), whisk as instructed and you have waffle batter in around 2 minutes!

How easy is that??!!

So here are the pictures to take you through making Toffee Banoffee Waffles step by step:

One packet of Wright’s Toffee Cake Mix makes 12 waffles

Melt the butter and prep your waffle maker as per the instruction booklet.

  • Tip one packet of Wright’s Toffee Cake Mix into a bowl.
  • Add the water and melted butter, as per instructions on the packet.
  • Whisk for 1 minute.
  • Spoon 2 dessert spoons of mixture (or specified quantity for your machine) onto each waffle plate.
W Toffee Banoffee Waffles
Cake mix in a waffle maker? This Wright’s toffee one works a treat!
  • Close the lid and cook the waffles for 4-5 minutes.
  • The waffles will be slightly soft when cooked but harden on cooling.
W Toffee Banoffee Waffles
Toffee Banoffee Waffles serve straight away.

These cake mix waffles are best eaten straight away with a sliced banana, drizzle of caramel sauce and dusting of icing sugar. If eating for dessert I would absolutely add a scoop of ice cream, or a swirl of whipped cream and sprinkle over some crumbled Cadbury’s Flake.

Perfect!

Sometimes cheats are necessary and if they work well why not?!

Note: I tested other cake mixes by the same company and they were not suitable for turning into waffles. If more mixes become available I will add/link them to this post.

Do you have a super successful cheat that you’d like to share?

If you have enjoyed these Toffee Banoffee Waffles and would like to try making your own from scratch, here are the recipes:

Vanilla Bean Waffles 

W Vanilla Bean Waffles
Vanilla Bean Waffles utterly delicious and versatile.

Chocolate Dunking Waffles 

W Chocolate Dunking Waffles
Chocolate Dunking Waffles perfect alongside a delicious hot chocolate.

Please tag me in on Twitter/Instagram with photos of your makes and bakes. I love seeing what you are making?

Whatever you are feasting on, enjoy and remember food tastes better when it’s shared!

Sammie xx

@sammiefeasting Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest

Wright’s Baking provided me with the cake mixes to review. I was not paid to write this post. All opinions, views and content are my own. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

 

 

 

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Andrew James Waffle Maker Review

Waffles, I have been wanting to make my own forever – very slight exaggeration there, honestly though for a long time. I was sent an Andrew James Waffle Maker, by Andrew James UK Ltd to review and set myself the challenge of also coming up with a few recipes along the way!

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Chocolate Dunking Waffle anyone????

When reviewing a product, especially a non-essential kitchen item, which is what I would have classed the Andrew James Waffle Maker as, I’m pretty tough. If another gadget or electrical appliance is going to take up precious space in my already overcrowded kitchen, well, it’s got to earn its place.

So I look for durability, consistency, versatility, ease of use and the one we all love to hate, how easy is it to clean. I’m a home cook, not a chef, but I still want good quality and a variety of recipes, in order for an appliance to warrant being kept.

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
This is the Andrew James Waffle Maker that I reviewed.

Firstly I was impressed with how well the Andrew James Waffle Maker was packaged. There wasn’t any excess space in the box and the sides of the waffle maker were protected with polystyrene. Actually after use, once cooled and cleaned, I store it, in it’s protective packaging, back in the box.

I read through the instruction booklet, which was easy to follow, brief and concise. Before use it is recommended to wipe over the waffle maker, including the waffle plates with a clean damp cloth. This I did.

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Press the big button and this is what the Andrew James Waffle Maker looks like.

The instruction booklet recommends wiping over the waffle plates with butter/vegetable fat, prior to each use, to maintain the non stick waffle plates. Having square ridges on the waffle plates meant this could potentially be quite tricky. Instead I opted to brush melted butter onto the plates with a soft pastry brush, although a silicone brush would be suitable as well. Using melted butter also ensures, that as it cools on the cold waffle plates, you can see if you have evenly covered the plates.

Using the Andrew James Waffle Maker for the first time, I decided to make a batch of Vanilla Bean Waffles.

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Vanilla Bean Waffles – ooh so good.

As each waffle recipe calls for melted butter, that has been cooled, I melted an extra 20g of butter (than called for in the recipe), specifically for brushing onto the waffle plates.

Once the waffle plates have been brushed with melted butter, close the waffle maker and switch on via the plug. An orange light illuminates on the top of the waffle maker to show it is switched on. When the green light illuminates, the waffle maker is ready to use.

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Andrew James Waffle Maker orange light indicates that it is heating up.

From the time of switching on ALWAYS use suitable heat protection for your hands whilst using.

I found it very easy to open and close the waffle maker whilst wearing oven gloves. Also be aware that the top and sides of the waffle maker get very hot!

Once the green light illuminates you can start cooking your waffles.

The instruction booklet does not give any guidance as to how much waffle mixture should be added to each plate. I found that for all the recipes I used,  two dessert spoons  of waffle batter was sufficient.

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Andrew James Waffle Maker add the waffle batter to the middle of each waffle plate.

Close the lid of the waffle maker as soon as the batter has been added to the waffle plates. The length of time required for cooking each waffle varies with each recipe. As a guide it is between 4 – 6 minutes.

Whilst cooking, the waffle maker may emit steam. I simply wiped away any condensated water from the worktop after use.

Once the cooking time had elapsed, wearing oven gloves, I pressed the large button, opened the waffle maker and there were my very first, deliciously cooked waffles.

I used a simple wooden spatula to lift each cooked waffle from the waffle plate. Again metal, or anything abrasive should not be used against the waffle plates, as this may damage their non stick surface.

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Andrew James Waffle Maker and my first ever waffles!

You will notice that the waffles above have slightly irregular edges. This is because not enough waffle batter has been added to the waffle plates. However, from experience, I personally think it is better to slightly under fill the waffle maker. Once you have made your first two waffles you can slightly adjust the amount of batter added to the waffle plates.

If you overload the waffle plates with too much batter, you will still get beautiful waffles, as well as batter oozing out of the sides of the closed waffle maker and excess batter cooking on the hot surround of the waffle plates.

Although I found this relatively easy to clean up, it is a waste of waffle batter. I want all my batter to turn into delicious cooked waffles!

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Stacks of waffles cooked two by two with the Andrew James Waffle Maker

Over the period of 2 weeks I cooked over 60 waffles using the Andrew James Waffle Maker. I tested different recipes and consistency. Above is a picture of 28 waffles cooked one after the other, with the waffle plates having only been greased at the start of the waffle making marathon.

What I found was complete consistency, throughout the process – obviously quantity of batter added to the plates and cooking time were kept the same. Also throughout the whole review period NOT A SINGLE WAFFLE STUCK!

After each cooking session was complete, the waffle maker was switched off and left open to cool before cleaning. To be completely honest this was the part that I was not looking forward to!

Cleaning the Andrew James Waffle Maker

Once cold and unplugged I used the wooden spatula to scrape any excess cooled batter from the waffle plate surround. Then using a cloth rinsed in warm soapy water I wiped over the entire inside of the waffle maker. Certainly on the waffle plate surround, where excess batter had stuck, I had to rub a few times to clean it off. I then wiped around the back of the waffle maker, where the hinges are. Finally I found that the underside of the waffle maker became greasy, so that was then thoroughly wiped. I left the waffle maker open to dry and before packing away gave the top a quick wipe over and then dried with a clean tea towel.

Each time I cleaned the waffle maker it took no longer than 5 minutes.

To conclude, I absolutely love this Andrew James Waffle Maker! It was very easy to operate and use. During the waffle making marathon it proved to be consistent and durable. I was able to create a range of new recipes, both savoury and sweet, so it ticked the versatility box.

The Andrew James Waffle Maker has most certainly earned it’s place in my kitchen and is now classed as an essential kitchen appliance for me. I thoroughly recommend this waffle maker.

If you like waffles, you will love the smell of them freshly cooking, in your own home, using the Andrew James Waffle Maker.

Cherry Bakewell Waffles makes 8

Andrew James Waffle Review
Cherry Bakewell Waffles utterly delicious.

Vanilla Bean Waffles

200g/7oz Sugar and Crumbs Cherry Bakewell flavour icing sugar – alternatively use plain icing sugar with 1/2tsp almond extract added

50g/2oz Flaked Almonds lightly toasted

8 Glacé Cherries chopped into quarters

Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and add enough water to make a light drizzling consistency. Stir well to ensure there aren’t any lumps.

Toast the Vanilla Bean Waffleyou want them very slightly crisp.

Drizzle the flavoured icing over the waffles. Add a few pieces of cherry to each waffle and then scatter over with toasted almond flakes. Serve immediately, or let cool and keep in an airtight container for 3 days.

These are great for afternoon tea, picnics, or with a large latte and a good book!

In fact, these Cherry Bakewell Waffles are perfect any time of the day.

Smoked Salmon Waffle Appetisers makes 16

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Smoked Salmon Waffle Appetisers

These Smoked Salmon Waffle Appetisers are a perfect savoury twist for the waffle and they are completely delicious! Perfect for parties.

Use the Vanilla Bean Waffle recipe only adding 10g of sugar and leaving out the vanilla bean paste.

You need 4 waffles for this recipe – excess waffles can be frozen in a zip lock freezer bag for up to one month.

Toast each waffle so that it is slightly crisp. Set aside on a rack to cool.

Place 200ml Creme Fraiche into a bowl.

Add 4 heaped teaspoons of creamed horseradish sauce (I used the hot variety).

Stir to combine – add salt and pepper to taste.

Cut each waffle into quarters.

Place a teaspoonful of the horseradish/creme fraiche sauce on top of each waffle quarter.

Top with a slither of smoked salmon.

Sprinkle over chopped chives, or dill and serve on a platter.

If you have enjoyed the Andrew James Waffle Maker review you are sure to enjoy these recipes too:

Chocolate Dunking Waffles 

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Chocolate Dunking Waffles have fun with your waffles!

Vanilla Bean Waffles with Boozy Berry Sauce

Andrew James Waffle Maker Review
Vanilla Bean Waffles with Boozy Berry Sauce a classy dessert.

Do you love waffles?

Would you like to experience the aroma of freshly cooked waffles in your kitchen?

I for one am a complete waffle convert. I have loved seeing how tasty and versatile they are. Most of all, I have realised how much fun they can be. Breaking the ‘rules’ by dunking them in delicious hot chocolate, or serving as a classy appetiser with smoked salmon. Who knew??

As always have fun with your waffle experience. Enjoy the feasts you create and don’t forget to tag me in on Twitter/Instagram, I love seeing your makes and bakes.

Sammie xx

@sammiefeasting Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest

All opinions, recipes and content are my own. I did not receive payment for carrying out this review. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

To see the Andrew James Waffle Maker I reviewed please click here.

 

 

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Vanilla Bean Waffles

Vanilla Bean Waffles. Just think on that for a while, whilst you gawp stare graciously at this picture.

AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Vanilla Bean Waffles as pretty to look at as they are delicious to eat!

Light and fluffy inside, crispy and golden outer, these Vanilla Bean Waffles may just about be the best invention for breakfast, since sliced bread got a one-up and became toast!

AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Vanilla Bean Waffles everyone can relax as look, there’s a whole pile of them.

Now I have wanted a waffle maker for longer than I care to remember. Which in itself is kinda odd, seeing as I’ve never eaten a waffle before in my life! Let alone made one.

But, you see I do watch Diners, Drive-ins and Dives on Food Network UKGuy Fieri travel around the U.S. visiting various eating establishments and some of them serve waffles. So although I haven’t ever bought them pre-made from the supermarket, or even eaten them at a cafe or restaurant, I wanted to make them.

It’s a little thing of mine, if I can buy it I want to make it. With only a couple of exceptions, don’t mention the croissants homemade always tastes better than pre-made, packaged, mass produced, supermarket produce.

Please don’t misunderstand me? I really couldn’t manage without the convenience of my weekly online grocery shop, especially as I cannot drive at the moment. It is simply that, fresh from the Waffle iron, these Vanilla Bean Waffles are a million miles away from their shop bought counterpart. Plus you can switch up the flavours – more on that in an up coming post.

AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Vanilla Bean Waffles better than shop bought?

Fortunately our daughter has eaten (and loves) shop bought waffles. Her verdict after eating two Vanilla Bean Waffles was a firm 10 out of 10 and “so much better than any I’ve eaten before” verdict.

I have to say I was thrilled. She can be a tough cookie and 8.5 out of 10 is usually the highest she goes! So I knew I’d struck gold with this recipe.

Served warm with a dusting of icing sugar, super fragrant strawberries and a swirl of cream to seal the deal, the plate you see above was my lunch.

Oh boy. Why have I waited so long? All these years I’ve been missing out on the absolute, utter deliciousness of homemade waffles. Plus I was pretty pleased that I’d managed to nail the recipe on my first attempt!

Yeah I can be a bit competitive with myself. I’m working on it.

Back to the waffles. You have gotta try these. Seriously, even if you’re not the worlds greatest cook, with this recipe and a trusted Andrew James Belgian Waffle Maker, you can’t go wrong.

Note: It is always recommended that you read through the entire recipe before proceeding. This applies to all recipes on this site and in general.

Recipe: Makes 10 Vanilla Bean Waffles

This recipe assumes that you have read the waffle maker’s instruction booklet and carried out any pre-treatment required. Mine was simple to wipe over the non stick plates with a clean, damp cloth.

  • 120g Unsalted Butter
  • 3 Large Free Range Eggs
  • 150ml/5fl oz Whole Milk
  • 1tsp Vanilla Bean Paste
  • 30g/2tbsp Caster Sugar
  • 225g/8oz Plain Flour – Self Raising can be substituted, omit the baking powder
  • 2tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/8tsp Salt

Method:

  • Place the unsalted butter into a small saucepan on a low – medium heat. Allow the butter to completely melt. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  • Whilst the butter is cooling crack the eggs into a large bowl. Give them a quick whisk.
  • Add the milk, sugar and vanilla bean paste to the eggs and lightly whisk to combine.
  • Once cooled weigh 100g of the melted butter into the egg, milk, sugar, vanilla bean paste mixture and whisk briefly to combine (wet ingredients).
  • Weigh the flour and sift along with the baking powder and salt into the bowl containing the wet ingredients.
  • Gently mix both the wet and dry ingredients together until just combined – over mixing will lead to tough waffles.

 

AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Brush the waffle plates with the leftover melted butter WHILST THE MACHINE IS SWITCHED OFF.
  • Ensure that the melted butter completely covers each of the waffle plates.
  • Close the waffle maker and switch on. For the Andrew James Belgian Waffle Maker it is ready to cook with when the green ‘ready’ light illuminates.
  • Using oven gloves, to protect your hands, as the top of the waffle make plus the waffle plates get very hot, press the button and open the waffle maker.
AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Using an American 1/4 cup measure (50ml) pour the thick batter onto each of the waffle plates.
  • Close the lid of the waffle maker and set a timer for 5 minutes.
  • Ensure the room is well ventilated as the cooking process produces steam.
  • I found 5 minutes to be the optimum time for cooking these Vanilla Bean Waffles in this waffle maker. Adjustments to time maybe needed if using a different brand.
  • Really enjoy the smell as the waffles are cooking – don’t be surprised if your neighbours line up at your front door!
  • After 5 minutes, wearing oven gloves, press the button to release the lid of the waffle maker.
AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Ta -dah beautiful golden Vanilla Bean Waffles.
  • I used a wooden spatula to help remove the waffles from the plates. They came away really easily. Do not use anything metallic to remove the waffles as it could scratch the non stick coating on the waffle plates.
  • Repeat adding 1/4 cup (50mls) as before to each plate.
  • Continue until all the waffle batter has been used.
  • Once the last waffle has been removed switch the waffle maker off and leave to cool.
AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Happiness is a pile of warm Vanilla Bean Waffles.

Enjoy your Vanilla Bean Waffles however you want.

I went for sliced strawberries, a dusting of icing sugar and some whipped cream. Our children reheated their waffles in the toaster, before adding various combinations of ice cream, Nutella and strawberries! What you put on yours is up to you. A drizzle of maple syrup would taste amazing on these golden beauties.

They keep for up to 2 days in an airtight container and can be reheated in the toaster or oven. I will test to see if they freeze well – I’ll get back to you, right here when I know!!

AJ Vanilla Bean Waffles
Vanilla Bean Waffles perfect anytime of the day.

For a first attempt at waffle making I am surprised and pleased with how easy it is. I would happily make these at weekends, invite some friends over for a breakfast party.

Oh wow how much fun would that be??

However you enjoy your waffles, I really hope I have inspired you to have a go and make some at home. They simply taste so unbelievably good.

Vanilla Bean Waffles perfect for feasting, sharing and having fun!

If you have enjoyed making these Vanilla Bean Waffles you may also like these recipes:

English Muffins

Vanilla Bean Waffles
English Muffins www.feastingisfun,com

Spiced Fruit Loaf

Vanilla Bean Waffles
Spiced Fruit Loaf

Cherry Bakewell Waffles

AJ Cherry Bakewell Waffles
Cherry Bakewell Waffles

Always remember, food tastes better when it’s shared!

Sammie xx

The Andrew James Belgian Waffle Maker was provided for the purposes of review. All opinions, recipes and content are my own. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

 

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Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake

Hi, if you love chocolate, then you’re going to go crazy over this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake. There’s melted chocolate in the fudge cake and melted chocolate drizzled over. Topped off with a generous sprinkle of Callebaut’s Chocolate Crispearls.

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake drizzled with melted chocolate and topped with mini chocolate crispearls.

I love Bundt tins. I really do. They take a great cake batter and without any help from the baker, turn it into a beautiful cake. That has got to be a very good thing, right?

The tin I used for this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake is called the Jubilee Bundt made by Nordic Ware

I tend to buy my Bundt tins in the sale, or where I see them on special offer. They can be a bit pricey, but investing in just one tin, like this Jubilee, will give you a lifetime of intricately patterned cakes.

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
The Jubille Bundt Tin from Nordic Ware.

Can you imagine rocking up to a party with this gorgeous cake?

Yep, huge brownie points and that’s before anyone has tasted the cake!

I will warn you though – Bundt tins are addictive. A year ago I had one, now I have ten!!

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
Put the kettle on and enjoy every single bite of this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake.

If you, or someone you know loves chocolate cake, then this is the cake to bake.

And because I appreciate not everyone owns this gorgeous tin, this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake can be baked in a 10″ springform pan!

Although technically it would no longer be a Bundt cake??

So you get to think a whole new name up for it too!

Confused?? Yep me too.

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
The Crispearls give this moist Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake a crunchy topping.

Just look at this beauty – definitely made for sharing.

Now I love a sprinkle or two million.

I was sent these Callebaut Chocolate Crispearls to review. They are part of Callebeaut’s hot chocolate decoration range, which also includes, dark chocolate blossoms and dark chocolate granite – more on those last, two in future posts.

The chocolate Crispearls are just that, chocolatey and crispy. Perfect for adorning a melted chocolate drizzled, fudgey, chocolate cake.

All I can say is, this cake was so good, half had been eaten before dinner.

Thats like breaking all the rules (kidding) in our house. Life is too short to not have dessert before dinner on occasion! Yep we like to push the boundaries in our house 😉.

Recipe: Makes 1 Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake

Cake release spray – I use Wilton (available from Amazon, Lakeland, Hobbycraft)

350g/12oz Unsalted Butter – at room temperature

350g/12oz Dark Brown Muscavado Sugar

1tsp Vanilla Extract

275g/10oz Plain White Flour

3tsp Baking Powder

1/4tsp Salt

5 Large Eggs – I always use free range

100ml/4fl oz Sour Cream – left out of the fridge for an hour

175g/6oz Plain Chocolate – approx 70% Cocoa

175g Milk Chocolate – I used a good quality 49% Cocoa chocolate, ordinary milk chocolate is fine

Sprinkles to top the cake with

Method: Preheat the oven to 175C/160C fan oven

  • Break or chop the plain chocolate and place into a heatproof, microwaveable bowl. Heat for 30 seconds at a time, stirring the chocolate well. When the chocolate is almost melted, remove the bowl and keep stirring until you have smooth, molten chocolate. Set aside.
  • Into a large bowl add the butter and sugar. Whisk until fully combined, this will take a good 5 minutes.
  • Crack the eggs into a jug. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix.
  • Sift in one third of the flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk or beat slowly.
  • Whilst still whisking add half of the liquid contents from the jug.
  • Repeat the last two steps again.
  • Add the last of the sifted ingredients and gently mix until just combined.
  • Remove the beater or whisk.
  • Pour in the cooled, melted chocolate and immediately stir into the cake batter with a metal spoon. Continue until the batter is a uniform colour.
  • Spray the Bundt tin thoroughly with cake release.
  • Fill the Bundt tin 3/4 full with cake batter. Use a metal spoon to gently press the cake batter into the tin. DO NOT bang the Bundt tin on the work surface, as this could damage the tin.
  • NOTE: There will be a small amount of cake batter left – this can be used for a few cupcakes or bundtlettes.
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
If the tin is filled more than 3/4 full the baked cake may not release and/or the look of the final cake may be spoiled.
  • Place the tin into the centre of the preheated oven. Bake for 50-55minutes.
  • The cake is baked when it springs back from a light tough and an inserted skewer (I use wooden ones) comes out clean.
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin for 15 minutes.
  • Invert the Bundt tin onto a cooling rack. The cake should turn out immediately. If not leave to cool and the cake will release from the tin.
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
One beautiful Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake.

To Decorate This Cake:

  • Melt the milk chocolate as before (for the plain chocolate). Drizzle over the top of the cake using a spoon.
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
I choose to completely cover the top of the cake with melted chocolate and have a small amount dripping down.
  • Take whatever sprinkles you are using and sprinkle away. I kept the Chocolate  Crispearls on the top of the cake.
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake with Callebaut Chocolate Crispearls.

A stunningly beautiful cake, that also happens to deliver superbly on taste.

Who will you make this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake For?

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake
Cut a delicious slice of this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake and get ready to share.

Such a beautiful cake, it almost seems a shame to cut into it – almost!!!

If you are hooked and want to make another Bundt cake, here’s some more recipes:

Glazed Lemon Bundt Cake

Marbled Chocolate Bundt Cake

Sparkling Snowflake Cake

If you have any questions about ‘baking with Bundts’ please either leave a comment, or Tweet me @sammiefeasting. I am by no means an expert, but I’ll do my best to answer your questions.

Have fun baking and even more fun sharing!

Sammie xx

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Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble

It’s cold, it’s wet, it’s Winter – time for real puddings. This Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble, that just happens to be Gluten Free people, hits the spot.

Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble a drizzle of cream perfectly compliments this pudding www.feastingisfun.com
Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble a drizzle of cream perfectly compliments this pudding www.feastingisfun.com

That spot where only warm, fruity, drizzled with cream or custard, or both – I’m not judging – puddings can only hit.

Are you with me?

The pears are fresh and juicy, the blackberries are from the freezer, squirrelled away during our abundant, Autumn.

The perfect combination of fruit and nuts.
The perfect combination of fruit and nuts.

This crunchy, almond laden crumble comes together in mere moments, all the ingredients working in harmony together. The result an unctuous, fruity, crunchy, explosion in your mouth. You know, the kind of eating experience, where the inside of your cheeks suddenly suck in and your taste buds are woken up by the flavour party happening on your tongue.

Yep – that good!

And because as many as possible should be able to share in this pudding sensation, I made it Gluten Free. Because, why not??

Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble juicy, plump fruit, hides beneath the delicious, Gluten Free, crumble topping www.feastingisfun.com
Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble juicy, plump fruit, hides beneath the delicious, Gluten Free, crumble topping www.feastingisfun.com

What sends this Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble over the top, apart from my description, is the buttery, crunchy, flaked almond streusel, piled high, atop the juicy fruit.

No additional sugar is added to the fruit layer. The pears are sweet enough and I think it is good to have bursts of sharpness, from the plump, purple, blackberries. To provide balance, crunchy, caramel, demerera sugar is mixed in with the crumble topping. The result a pudding that absolutely sings!

Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble pour over the cream and tuck in! www.feastingisfun.com
Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble pour over the cream and tuck in! www.feastingisfun.com

Recipe: Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble serves 6 generous portions.

225g/8oz Gluten Free Flour – I use Dove’s Farm

100g/4oz Unsalted Butter – cold, straight from the fridge

225g/8oz Flaked Almonds

100g/4oz Demerera Sugar

1/4tsp Salt

3-4 Conference Pears

200g/7oz Fresh or Frozen Blackberries

Optional – Double Cream, Custard, Ice Cream to serve

Method: Preheat Oven to 185C/170C fan

Cut the cold butter into cubes and place in a large bowl with the flour and salt.

Rub the butter into the flour with your fingers, working quickly and lightly, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Gluten Free flour worked just as well as wheat flour in this recipe.
Gluten Free flour worked just as well as wheat flour in this recipe.

Alternatively place the cubed butter and flour into a food processor, with the steel blade attached and pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Add the flaked almonds and demerera sugar and stir with a spoon to mix.

Crunchy crumble topping.
Crunchy crumble topping.

Peel the pears, remove the core and cut into chunks.

Place the pears and blackberries into a 10″/26cm dish.

Delicious pear and frozen blackberries.
Delicious pear and frozen blackberries.

Cover the fruit with the crumble mixture.

Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble ready for the oven! www.feastingisfun.com
Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble ready for the oven! www.feastingisfun.com

Place in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes until the topping is golden and the fruit juices are bubbling.

Once baked remove from the oven.

Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble juicy, plump fruit, hides beneath the delicious, Gluten Free, crumble topping www.feastingisfun.com
Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble juicy, plump fruit, hides beneath the delicious, Gluten Free, crumble topping www.feastingisfun.com

Serve immediately with the accompaniment of your choice.

Eat and enjoy!

Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble just the comfort needed on a cold, winter's day www.feastingisfun.com
Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble just the comfort needed on a cold, winter’s day www.feastingisfun.com

Everyone in our house thoroughly enjoyed this warming, winter pudding.

Being Gluten Free makes this Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble accessible to more people. Now that has got to be a good thing!

Do you desire warm, comforting food when it’s cold? I certainly do.

If you enjoy this Almond Blackberry Pear Crumble, then you will love these recipes:

Apple Almond Cake also Gluten Free and delicious served warm

Amazing Apple Pie

I buy Dove’s Gluten Free flour from Waitrose.

Sammie xx

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