I'm off to Tasmania in a couple of days, which means I'm going to disappear from this blog for a week or so. Not to worry, though, I've had a rather full sweet-filled weekend, so here comes an overload!
First off, these chocolate sprinkle spoons, which I took along with me to visit some relatives with little kids - possibly my second cousins or something along that line (I can never get this straight). These are easy and fun and so perfect for kids since they'll eat anything with rainbow sprinkles on them.
Chocolate Sprinkle Spoons
Makes about 15 spoons
150g milk chocolate (you can use dark if you prefer, but if you're making them for kids most will prefer milk)
2 tbsp or so of sprinkles, such as 100s & 1000s
15 plastic spoons
Melt the chocolate over a double boiler (pan of barely simmering water and a bowl on top; make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water). Scoop teaspoons of chocolate into the plastic spoons (don't be tempted to just dip and spoon the plastic, things'll get messy very quickly) until full. Set on a tray and top with a small pinch of sprinkles. Repeat until all the chocolate is used. Put in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm up the chocolate, and serve.
I've mentioned this Olive Oil Pound Cake before as a firm favorite in my house, but this time round I've added in a handful of walnuts which makes it really reminiscent of Hong Kong's Butter Walnut Pound Cake. You can argue but-there's-no-butter-so-it's-not-authentic-blahblahblah, but it is remarkably similar with its soft and spongy texture, cracked golden top and studs of walnuts. It rises beautifully tall and makes a great last minute gift (which is what this ended up being).
Walnut Pound Cake
Adapted from my Olive Oil Pound Cake, originally from Alice Meidrich
Makes 1 standard size loaf cake
225g all purpose or plain flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
150ml olive oil (note: don't use extra virgin here if you're going to add walnuts!)
210g caster sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste (or pure vanilla extract)
3 cold large eggs
150g walnuts, roughly chopped (save six whole ones to decorate on top)
Preheat your oven to 175C/350F. Grease and line your loaf tin (I like to line it up all four sides as well just for better presentation).
In a small bowl, whisk together flour and baking powder. Set aside.
Using an electric mixer, beat together oil, sugar, salt and vanilla in a large bowl until well combined. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. After the last egg is added beat for about 5 minutes, or until the mixture is pale and thick. Add one third of the flour mixture, beat until just incorporated, then add half the milk. Repeat with the remaining two thirds of the flour and milk, ending with the flour. Fold in the chopped walnuts (reserving the whole ones) and pour the mixture into the tin. Decorate the top with the whole walnuts.
Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling. The cake will keep for up to 4 days, but it's never lasted that long.