Chocolate cookies – just add awesome

Hello my lovely readers! Today I’m going to share one of my favourite Nigella Lawson biscuit recipes with you. I’ve been making these beauties for a few years now and they never fail. They’re called Totally Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies but I am taking the liberty of changing their name to Totally Awesome Chocolate Chip Cookies. I am a sucker for anything sweet and salty and I think that’s why I love these so much, there is a little saltiness to them that cuts through the sugar and complements the bitterness of the dark chocolate. They also have a gorgeous texture and they hold their shape well. I, on the other hand, may not hold my shape so well if I eat one more of these little suckers so I’d better stop. I went to a bridal expo today and there is nothing like the thought of squeezing yourself into a gown and paying someone thousands of dollars to photograph you to make you want to reach for a carrot stick. But, everything in moderation I say! That includes housework.

Milk & cookies

You can find the recipe for these here, courtesy of http://www.nigella.com.

Totally awesome chocolate chip cookies

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Smashing summery sides

Fancy a little something on the side tomorrow night? Give these smashed baby potatoes and this minty fresh quinoa salad a spin!

I need to go to bed so I’m going to make this quick, just like I made these delish side dishes. Ready, set, go!

Quinoa salad & smashed baby potatoes

Boil a bunch of fresh baby potatoes until they are cooked through. Arrange on a baking tray, ‘smash’ with a fork, drizzel with olive oil and season with sea salt and cracked black pepper and place under the griller until they become golden and crispy. Sprinkle with shredded parmesan, freshly chopped parsley and a good squeeze of lemon juice and serve immediately. Done and dusted!

Smashed baby potatoes

For the quinoa salad, cook 1 1/2 cups of quinoa (red or regular) to packet instructions then set aside to cool. Blanche a good handful each of asparagus and sugar-snap peas until just tender and put into iced water to refresh. Cube some fetta (about a pack of cards size black will do) and get a handful of snowpea tendrils washed and ready to go (or you could use baby rocket or spinach).

Quinoa salad with asparagus and sugar-snap peas

Once that’s all prepped whip up this amazing mint vinaigrette adapted from Pamela Salzman

Vinaigrette

½ cup fresh mint leaves

1 clove minced garlic

¼ cup roughly chopped red onion

3 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1 tsp honey

1/2 tsp sea salt

A good pinch of freshly ground black pepper

½ cup good olive oil

Splash of lime (or lemon) juice to taste

To make the dressing put everything except the lime juice and oil in a blender and blend together well, then, with the blender running, add the olive oil in a thin steady stream until it is gone. Taste and add the lime juice to give it that final zing. I like mine tangy but start with a little and see how you like it. The dressing will mellow out in the salad so dont be afraid if it gives you a little kick!

In a bowl combine the cooled quinoa, asparagus, snap peas, tendrils with the dressing and mix well then add the fetta and gently combine.

Lip smacking and best served with BBQ’ed crispy skinned salmon.

Quinoa salad with amazing mint dressing Potatoes, baby!

Sides, side by side

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Cranberry, muesli & white chocolate cookies

Here is a recipe for some delish cranberry, muesli & white chocolate biscuits I made for a friends birthday recently. I think they would be perfect Christmas biscuits because cranberries always feel so festive. They also have muesli in them which makes them suitable for breakfast. In my opinion.

This recipe is adapted from Taste and you will need

250g softened butter
1 1/2 cups caster sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla essence
2 eggs at room temperature
3 1/2 cups self raising flour
1 cup white chocolate bits
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1 cup muesli
Cream butter, sugar and vanilla until fluffy (in an electric mixer). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each addition. It’s important to have the eggs at room temperature so they dont cause the butter to seize up.
Add sifted flour to the butter mixture and then add cranberries, chocolate and muesli. Stir to combine. Roll out walnut sized balls, place them 5 cm apart on the trays and flatten with your palm.Bake for 12-15, swapping trays halfway through cooking, or until golden. Box up, wrap in a bow and give them to someone lovely.

 

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