Sunday, July 14, 2013

Leche Flan with Macapuno toppings: Sugar rush!

When my sister got home from her trip to the US, one of the things she proudly shared with me was her recipe for Leche Flan, a sweet dessert that you would probably associate more with a very sweet, rich custard. I tried it immediately of course since it wasn't all that difficult to do and I loved it!
Recently, I made Ube Macapuno cake and found myself with excess Macapuno. I figured, why not? and decided to top the Leche Flan I would make with the delicious coconut.
I could not have been more pleased with the result! Although my husband says the topping looks weird but what does he know right? I told him its perfectly usual and he happily ate everything on his plate haha! It's a quick dessert to make but I warn you now, its swimming in sweetness. A slice of this slides down the throat easily but the taste stays on your tongue; creamy, rich, syrup-y goodness you'll find yourself looking forward to making again and again!
                  
Leche Flan
Ingredients:
1 can condensed milk
1 can evaporated milk
6 egg yolks
sugar
Procedure:
1. Combine condensed milk, evaporated milk and 6 egg yolks, mix well
2. Cover the bottom of a regular-sized lanera with sugar and macapuno and bake in the oven for 10 mins or until the sugar melts completely at 186'C.
3. Pour mixture halfway into the lanera then cover with aluminum foil. Make sure it is sealed tight!
4. Place the lanera in a large roasting pan and fill the surrounding area with hot water until it reaches up to the same height as the flan mixture.
5. Bake for 30-45 mins. or until mixture is set.
6. Chill overnight 
7. Serve cold and enjoy!
                  

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Crazy for Chocolate Chip Cookies!

In the beginning, I only wanted to bake cakes and cupcakes. I told myself, 'cookies are too simple to make!', 'I can buy them for so little at the store', and 'they all taste the same ayway!' and so I avoided making cookies as much as possible. Until I stumbled across this article on the New York Times, only to find out that so many people around the world were raving about this recipe. With good reason.
I finally gave it a try and my, oh my. These cookies spell perfection! They are crisp but chewy, delicious little disks that carry so much flavor.
The rich chocolate melts on your tongue and is absolutely decadent.

My favorite is the effect of the sea salt. I used Fluer De Sel, it enhances the taste of the cookie and the contrast between the sweetness of the chocolate and the sharp taste of the salt complements the overall flavor of the cookie.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
(Adapted from Jacques Torres)

Ingredients:
2 cups minus 2 tbsp (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour
1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp coarse salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tbsp (8 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate discs
sea salt

Directions:
1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. set aside
2. Using a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes
3. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in vanilla
4. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds
5. Drop chocolate pieces and incorporate
6. Press plastic wrap around dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours
Dough may be used in batches and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours
7. Pre heat oven to 350'
8. Scoop mounds of dough (3 1/2 ounces or golf balls)
9. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes
10. Transfer sheet to wire rack for 10 mins
 I have made this recipe and substituted the chocolate disks with white chocolate chips, candy coated chocolates as well as hardbake chippits, the result is consistent. These cookies are amazeballs!
Now I regret thinking cookies are just cookies. I regret not finding this recipe sooner and wasting all my time focusing only on cakes and cupcakes. I could have baked these babies much earlier! They are not just cookies. Thanks to this kick-ass recipe, these cookies are lifesavers. You want your life changed? Your world rocked? You've got to make these!