Well this is all very exciting. My first ever blog! I must admit, I don't really know what I'm doing, but after a little persuasion, here goes...
I've realised I spend a lot of my life thinking about food. Eating makes me happy. And knowing that I've made what I'm eating myself makes me even happier! So I'd like to share that little bit of happiness and tell you some of the recipes that brighten up my day. At the moment I'm studying in the south of France and you can't get much better than that in terms of bakery treats! Pain au chocolat, tartes aux fraises, éclairs, milles feuilles or just a simple baguette - the list is endless. My mission is to try them all by the end of my year here! And it just makes me want to bake them too!!
Today is Sunday, a fairly quiet day in France, so what better way to spend it than baking with friends! I've hardly done any baking since I've been in France and I miss it. I'm not sure whether baking itself is a particularly French thing (and it's certainly not very French to have your cake with a cuppa!), but that's what we did and we gave it a French twist I guess by making Macaroons. Of sorts anyway - the recipe actually called them cookies but they ended up looking more like Macaroons. Nutella was our inspiration. We fancied chocolate and you see Nutella everywhere in France (I've developed quite an addiction to it I think), plus this recipe only has three ingredients! Perfect, especially with our lack of equipment and utensils. The quantities we used were all a bit vague (scales are some what lacking), but the end result was a delicious, chocolately heaven! Definitely give them a go.
Yes, this really is all you need!Nutella Macaroons Makes around 8 Macaroons
Although if you're making these in France as we were, I maybe lying to you a little bit...Self-raising flour doesn't seem to exist in France so we used ordinary flour and added about half a sachet of levure chemique. If you're making these in the UK though, it is only three ingredients!!
1 cup (200g) Nutella (plus a bit extra for the filling)
1 cup (200g) self-raising flour
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
- Lightly grease a baking tray.
- Put Nutella and egg into a large mixing bowl.
- Whisk together using an electric mixer if possible.
- Add the flour and mix until combined. It should form a wet dough.
- Place dough on lightly floured surface and gently knead.
- Form small balls (about 3cm in diameter) and place on baking tray a few inches apart.
- Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes.
- Allow to cool.
- Spread Nutella on one side of a pair and sandwich together.
- Enjoy! (Preferably with a cup of tea!)
We also attempted to make a bakery treat that I'd never heard of until the other day called cakepops. These didn't go quite as well as the Macaroons but it was fun making them and they tasted yummy! (We managed to get very messy too). Basically, the idea is that you mix cake crumbs and butter icing together, put a lolly stick in them and dip them in melted chocolate. This was very much an experiment though and guess work - I definitely think our recipe needs refining! Here's how they ended up:
I think they're meant to be perfect balls - well ours certainly weren't! Expect to see some perfected ones somewhere in the future. What a lovely day of baking anyway.