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Cover: Loco for cocoa

Recipes with condensed milk

05Jul 12

Millionaire’s Shortbread

Millionaire's ShortbreadMillionaire’s Shortbread is a timeless treat. It has 3 layers: a shortbread base, a caramel centre and a chocolate topping! I like to use more milk chocolate than dark chocolate on mine, but you can play with the proportions as you wish. Traditionally it is made completely with dark chocolate instead of using a combination.

This is a snack that we used to make at home sometimes after school with Mum. I loved rubbing the butter and flour together through my fingers, enjoying the sensation of getting my hands covered in the dough, and gradually breaking it down into finer crumbs as the butter separated and became covered in the flour – something very satisfying about that. Then there’s the fun of making the caramel and dipping a sneaky finger in to ‘check that it’s ok’! (If you love caramel flavours, then you will adore this caramel cake with butter cream icing.)

The chocolate part, well what can I say – it has to be the crowning glory doesn’t it? I used to loved eating my way through the 3 layers. Sometimes biting through the whole cake, and sometimes eating it layer by layer.

Millionaire’s Shortbread
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Millionaire’s Shortbread is a timeless treat. It has 3 layers: a biscuit base, a caramel centre and a chocolate topping.
Ingredients
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 75g plain flour
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 397g condensed milk (1 can)
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 125g good quality milk chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 100g good quality dark chocolate, broken into pieces
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Lightly grease an 18cm square cake tin – loose based or spring-form if you have one.
  2. Make the shortbread: Rub 50g of the butter and the flour together through your fingertips to create a fine breadcrumb texture. Add 25g caster sugar and combine the ingredients into dough. Transfer the mixture to the prepared cake tin, pressing it into a flat layer. Bake in the oven for around 20 mins until light golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
  3. Make the caramel next: Melt the remaining butter together with the condensed milk and the remaining sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan, stirring everything together. Once the sugar has dissolved, bring the mixture up to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer very gently for around 5 mins. The mixture will thicken and turn lightly golden. Pour over the shortbread and let stand for 2-3hrs to set.
  4. To make the chocolate topping: Melt the chocolate gently in a saucepan and pour it over the set caramel. Leave it to set before cutting the cake into squares.
Notes
3-4 hrs to set

 

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12Apr 12

Chocolate Fool’s Fudge with Almonds

Chocolate Fudge with almonds
Bite-size slices of crunchy fudgy heaven…

So called fool’s fudge because it is not made in the traditional way with all of the traditional ingredients.  It’s easier to make and will magically form just the right consistency, without you having to worry about it coming out too hard, or even too soft.  As with other no-bake sweet treats, the only demanding bit about making it is the time you have to wait for it to set before reaching those fingers into the fridge! (Also try these choc-cherry fudge slices.)

Chocolate fool’s fudge with almonds is great for parties and weekend treats.  Once sliced, you can wrap it up in parchment paper, tie it with pretty ribbons and give it to your friends as a ‘happy today’ treat to make them smile on any old day, or for birthday and Christmas presents.

Ingredients:

  • 175g good quality 70% dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 175g good quality milk chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 395ml condensed milk (one can)
  • A small pinch of fine salt grains
  • 30g butter
  • 75g raisins
  • 75g whole almonds
  • 1tsp almond essence

Preparation Guidelines:

  1. In a large heavy-based saucepan, mix the butter, chocolate, and condensed milk together; gently heating them until the butter and chocolate have melted.  Add the salt and the almond essence, and then stir everything together really well.  Leave to cool a while, but do not let the mixture begin to set.
  2. Meanwhile, put the almonds into a clean sandwich bag.  Lay the bag on a wooden chopping board, and use a rolling pin to split the almonds into smaller pieces within the bag.
  3. Once the chocolate mixture has cooled, stir the almond pieces and raisins in using a wooden spoon.
  4. Spoon the fudge mix out into a 23-25cm square foil tray using a spatula, levelling the top.
  5. Chill the mixture in the fridge until it is set, at least overnight.  In the morning, slice the fudge in its tray into bite-size chunks.

Note:  In my opinion, the texture continues to improve over a couple of days – but I suggest that you start enjoying it the morning after you’ve made it.  You can tuck into it sooner, as long as it is set.  The texture will be softer but the flavour equally as yummy.

Time: 15 minutes to prepare plus cooling and setting time

Cocoa Treats: 50 – 60 bite-size pieces

 

 

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26Mar 12

No-Bake Chocolate Biscuit Crunch

Chocolate Biscuit CrunchThis is a no-bake chocolate biscuit crunch.  I remember making it at school as a child.  I have strong memories of putting the digestive biscuits into a white plastic bag and bashing them with a rolling pin.  That bit was so much fun for us, though it must have been a moment of pure cacophony for the poor teacher!  I think we were about five or six at the time and we all felt very grown up putting on our little aprons and mixing together all of the ingredients.  Then taking our creation home to share with our proud mummies and the rest of the family – keeping a few big squares for ourselves of course!

This is a great recipe to make with little ones. They love making chocolate cookies, and this recipe is quick and easy. It’s very satisfying for them, and there are no hot ovens for you to worry about.  The only difficult bit is waiting for your chocolate biscuit crunch to set in the fridge before you can eat it!

Ingredients:

  • 175g good milk chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 175g good dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 115g butter
  • 400g condensed milk
  • 250g digestive biscuits

Preparation Guidelines:

  1. Line a baking tray or cake tin with greaseproof paper or clingfilm.  Choose your tin depending on the shape you want to create.
  2. Melt the butter and the chocolate together very gently in a saucepan, stirring regularly.  Remove from the heat.
  3. Pour the condensed milk into the mixture and work together.
  4. Put the digestive biscuits into large, clean sandwich or freezer bags and crush them by rolling and gently bashing with a rolling pin.  You may need to do this in 2 batches.  You are aiming to end up with small broken bits of biscuit and some crumble rather than all-biscuit crumble!  Stir the biscuits into the mixture.
  5. Spoon the ready mixture into your tin, pressing it well into the corners.  Leave the mixture to cool a while in the tin, and then transfer it to the fridge for setting.  It will take a minimum of 2 hours to set, and this will depend on the settings of your fridge.
  6. When you are ready to serve your chocolate biscuit crunch, take it out of the fridge and cut it into squares or wedges, depending on the tin you chose to make your mould.

Time: 20 minutes preparation time.  No cooking time.  At least 2 ½ hours cooling and setting time.

Cocoa Treats: 10-20 pieces

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