Peanut Sriracha Soup

Peanut Sriracha SoupI love Sriracha, I’ve said this before and I’ll probably say it again. I’m one of those annoying types who says things like ‘if I could I’d put sriracha on everything’. And I’ve put it on a lot, from sriracha ribs (sorry, any vegans/veggies reading this) and glazed tofu through to popcorn. It has a flavour under the warmth that compliments a lot of dishes. A few months ago I was put onto this peanut sriracha soup recipe by my friend Tiffanni and since then I’ve made it almost monthly. It’s really quick, perfect for a mid week meal, only needs a small selection of ingredients and includes two of my favourite flavours in sriracha and peanut butter.
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Courgette Pancakes

Courgette PancakesIf you don’t like pancakes, you’re lying. They are one of the most versatile food types. From crepes to fat american style there’s a huge amount of contrast in both texture and flavour. You can make them sweet or savoury, from the toppings down to the amount of sugar you add into your mix. This particular recipe, for Courgette Pancakes, can be eaten with sweet food (try with syrup and peanut butter like we did) or savoury (omit the sugar from the recipe and have them with something like avocado and eggs).
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Easter Mini Egg Nests

Easter is here. Which means mini eggs, everywhere. All the time. On top of everything. Inside everything (why not in brownies instead of the chocolate chips?). It also means the obligatory mini egg nests. Which is possibly one of the easiest “bakes” around and requires absolutely zero baking. Just some melting. And who doesn’t like melting stuff? (I tried to find a video of Phoebe first meeting her brother and him spending the whole time melting things, but the internet, for once, failed me).

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I’m going to keep this one short and sweet just because there isn’t all that much you can say about Easter (especially as a non-religious person) and even less you can say about nests. The one thing I would say is that I prefer shredded wheat to cornflakes. It goes less soggy and gives a much better crispiness/nest look. Let me know what you’re baking for Easter in the comments below!

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Easter Mini Egg Nests
 
Serves: 18
Ingredients
  • 300g Milk Chocolate
  • Tablespoon Peanut Butter (Optional)
  • 3-4 Large Shredded Wheat
  • 1 Packet of Cadbury’s Mini Eggs or equivalent non-brand.
Instructions
  1. Either in a microwave or in a heatproof bowl over simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water), melt the chocolate with the peanut butter until it’s smooth.
  2. Break in the shredded wheat and mix together, coating the shredded wheat well.
  3. Transfer spoonfuls of the mixture to cupcake cases, allowing to cool slightly before adding the eggs.
  4. Chill in the fridge to set.
  5. Eat. All of them.
  6. Have a good Easter.

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Nutter Butter Brownies

Well guys, it’s been a while. America was absolutely incredible, and I’ll be inundating you with photos soon enough. But for now, it’s time for what people seem to come here for, recipes. While I was away I was under strict instructions to bring back things to bake with. In particular Nutter Butters. My girlfriend originally bought some back when she went hoping I’d bake them in to something, but we kinda got drunk and ate them. Can you blame us? I mean, Nutter Butters are so damn tasty. I’d much rather have them in the UK than Oreos. But hey, I’ve got a bit of a peanut butter problem. The next decision to make was what to do with them. I mean, I’ve baked Reeses and Oreos in to pretty much everything imaginable; cakes, cookies, truffles, cupcakes. You name it, I’ve probably done it. So I had to do something different. Brownies. That’s right, Nutter Butter Brownies. Bake them in to something ridiculously rich and gooey. I decided no ordinary brownie would do. No, it had to be something decadent. Why not do something with even more peanut butter?

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I also decided that something this good needed layers. Three of them to be precise. Each slightly different to the last. Or at least, in how they were put together anyway.

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These will be made again, as long as I can get hold of Nutter Butters in England that is. Hook a brother up?

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Nutter Butter Brownies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 225g crunchy peanut butter
  • 200g bar dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 280g soft light brown sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 15-20 Nutter Butters
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C and line a 20cm tin with greaseproof paper.
  2. Set aside 50g of the peanut butter and 50g of the chocolate.
  3. Melt together the rest of the peanut butter and chocolate, along with the sugar. Stirring with a wooden spoon. Once the sugar has just about finished melting, turn off the heat. Mix in the eggs, one by one before finally, mixing in the flour.
  4. Spread a thin layer along the bottom of the line tin. Spread out several whole nutter butters over the layer and then cover with the remaining mixture. Break up several nutter butters and decorate this next layer with them.
  5. Melt the remaining peanut butter and chocolate, pouring them over the top of the current brownie. In addition I added a few splodges of peanut butter and topped with one final nutter butter.
  6. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the outside layer is crisp but the center is still slightly underdone.
  7. Once removed from the oven allow to cool in the tin and divide in to squares.

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Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting

What can I say? Life has well and truly gotten on top of me. It’s been several weeks since my last update, but that does not mean I haven’t been baking. I’ve just not had the time to spend to sit down and put everything together. My time has been otherwise engaged with a young lady, and I couldn’t be happier to have her taking up my time. She gets first dibs on trying everything that I bake these days though, and everything is coming up with the Kirsty seal of approval.

But enough of that, time to move on to the reason you people are here <s>my beard</s> food! First up of a run of updates will be Nutella stuffed chocolate cupcakes with Peanut Butter Cream Cheese frosting. These were a bit of an experiment to see if I could combine a couple of recipes that I’ve used in the past. They ended up being a gooey mess. One is most certainly enough but I wouldn’t let that put you off. The cupcake recipe is one I’ve used before and is here. They make very moist cupcakes which make the gooey center fairly stodgy. I’d save these for a dessert.

The key with the frosting would be to get a more expensive peanut butter, this means it’ll be less oily and will make a much better frosting. Alas, I hadn’t thought this through so ended up with a shiny and hard to use (if still tasty) frosting.

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Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • For the cupcakes:
  • 130g all-purpose flour
  • 200g granulated sugar
  • 65g cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 120 ml milk
  • 60 ml vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 120 boiling water
  • For the filling:
  • 170g Cream Cheese
  • 170g Nutella
  • For the frosting:
  • 200g Cream Cheese
  • 120g Peanut Butter (better quality the better)
  • 700g Icing Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Milk or Cream
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 150°C and line your cake tray with cases.
  2. Mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Whisk until it’s well mixed.
  3. Combine the Nutella and Cream Cheese separately.
  4. Add the “wet” ingredients, apart from the boiling water, and mix on a medium speed until well combined.
  5. Reduce the speed and very carefully add the boiling water. Slowly up the speed until it’s on high and allow to mix for around 1 minute. This will get a good amount of air into the mix.
  6. Distribute the batter evenly into the cases. Fill to around ¾ of the case. Depending on the size of the case you’ll get between 12 and 18 cakes, but always fill to about ¾. Drop a dollop of the nutella mix into the middle of each one.
  7. Bake for 12-25 minutes. The cakes will be done when a tooth pick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly in the tray before transferring to a rack.
  9. While they are cooling, prepare the frosting.
  10. Beat the cream cheese until soft. Mix in the Peanut butter. Beat until well combined.
  11. Mix in the Icing sugar and finally the milk or cream. Beat until it makes a stiff frosting.
  12. Pipe onto the cakes.

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