Sunday, 14 June 2015

Angry Birds Star Wars Cake

The Angry Birds Star Wars cake in the making:

 This is how the cake eventually looked like:

Friday, 29 November 2013

Raspberry Ice Cream

I have just blogged about my raspberry tiramisu. As I said, I wasn't happy with the outcome of the original recipe, so I tried to modify it to fit my needs and especially my taste. When I first tried to modify the creme, it turned out too fluid. I didn't whip the cream, I just added a hint of double-cream to the mixture and I used much more yoghurt. What came out tasted so delicious, I couldn't bear to throw it away. I figured it had the perfect consistency for ice cream, so I used my molds and wooden sticks to create some homemade raspberry ice cream on a stick.

Was a huge success! Naturally, it didn't last long until it was finished. However, I felt better at trying to modify the tiramisu recipe - worst case scenario: more ice cream!

  • 200g plain yoghurt
  • 200g mascarpone
  • 50g whipping cream
  • raspberry juice
  • a shot of vanilla extract
  • a dash of lemon juice
  • tiny chocolate chips
How to

  1. Add the yoghurt, the mascarpone, the whipping cream, the vanilla extract, some raspberry juice, and the lemon juice into a bowl and mix well
  2. Adjust the sugar, raspberry, and lemon levels to your taste
  3. Sprinkle the bottom of the forms with some chocolate chips
  4. Fill a third of the form with your mixture
  5. Put in freezer for a minimum of 15 minutes
  6. When it is not completely frozen but cool enough not to lose its shape, Add some raspberry juice, the wooden sticks and cool again
  7. Take the form out of the freezer and add the top layer of the mixture into the forms
  8. Sprinkle some chocolate chips on top and put in freezer
  9. You will know when it is done: it should be all frozen and ready to be licked away - enjoy!

Raspberry Tiramisu

I love Tiramisu! But as much as I adore it I have to admit - coffee is not suitable for children. I was expecting the kids to stay over the weekend though, and I still had that craving for tiramisu, so it was time to think about coffee-free alternatives. I had a bunch of fresh raspberries at home as well as a raspberry juice, so after a bit of googling I came across a nice recipe for raspberry tiramisu. I tried it at once but I found it was too heavy so I adjusted it a little and am happy pleased with my creation.

Ingredients (original recipe)
  • 100 g powdered sugar
  • 300 g fresh raspberries
  • 1 pkg vanilla sugar
  • 1/2 lime (juice only)
  • 400 g mascarpone
  • 4 cl rum
  • 1/4 l coffee
  • 60 pieces ladyfingers (biscuit)
  • cocoa powder (zum Bestreuen)
  • 500 ml whipping cream
(My) ingredients

  • 250g mascarpone
  • 100g plain yoghurt
  • 100g curd cheese
  • 200g whipping cream
  • 200g fresh raspberries (although the more the merrier!)
  • raspberry juice (sorry, no exact measurements available, you'll know why)
  • vanilla extract/vanilla sugar
  • a dash of lemon juice
  • 2 packs of ladyfingers (biscuit)
  • optional: heart shaped wafers

How to (original recipe)

  1. Mince 150g of the raspberries
  2. In another bowl, whip the whipping cream
  3. Fold in the powdered sugar, lime juice, minced raspberries, and the vanilla sugar
  4. Add the remaining raspberries
  5. In a flat container, add the rum and the coffee
  6. Dip the ladyfingers in it, let them soak the fluid in a bit but do not let them become too wet or they'll break and become mushy
  7. Cover the bottom of your tiramisu form with the ladyfingers
  8. Cover this layer with a layer of the prepared creme
  9. Continue with a layer of ladyfingers
  10. Add a layer of creme
  11. Should you still have ladyfingers left, continue to form such layers until there are no more ladyfingers - the last layer must be a layer of creme
  12. Put in fridge and let cool for some hours
  13. Sprinkle the cocoa powder on top before serving

How to (my recipe)

  1. Whip the whipping cream
  2. In a bowl, mix the mascarpone, the curd cheese, the yoghurt, the whipped cream, and a bit of the raspberry juice
  3. Add the vanilla extract and taste to check whether you need sugar or the lime/lemon juice (usually there is enough sweetness and acidity in the raspberry juice). Adjust as desired.
  4. Ina flat container, pour in some of the raspberry juice (you might need to refill at some point)
  5. Dip the ladyfingers in as described in the recipe above. Let them catch all the good flavour of the raspberry juice, but do not let them get squishy. Usually, 1-2 seconds in the juice for each side are sufficient.
  6. Cover the bottom of your tiramisu form (or forms - I actually did a lot of small forms for easier consumption and as eye candy later on - was a bigger success than one big box and certainly is easier to store in the fridge)
  7. Cover with a layer of fresh raspberries
  8. Cover with a layer of creme
  9. Continue with another round of layers of ladyfingers, raspberries and creme either until you are out of ingredients or until you reach the top of your form. In the small forms, I had barely 1.5x3 layers whereas in the big form, I had as many as 5x3 layers.
  10. As in the recipe above, the last layer must be a layer of creme
  11. Add the heart shaped wafers if available and maybe some left over raspberries
  12. Let cool in the fridge of min. half an hour (the longer the better, 3 hours is more than enough to serve though)
  13. Enjoy!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Angry Birds Cake Balls

A day after the birthday party, we still had a lot of leftovers and I actually felt proud of their healthy decision not to eat too many sweets. Then suddenly, I was surprised by the actual reason behind the leftovers: the birthday boy approached me after breakfast and, very gently, trying to comfort me while confessing, he admitted that "Susi, I really love what you did, it's adorable, but , you see, I actually don't like marzipan...that all." (Check out the Marzipan version of the Angry Birds here) I was melting away seeing how uncomfortable he felt telling me, so I hugged him and decided to make up for the loss and make new Angry Birds - this time out of cake balls with a nougat core, so he could enjoy them, too. After all, the whole party should be all about him!

Technically, it was not very different from what I did the days before, however the time frame was very limited. It was Sunday, so he would be off to school the next morning where they'd have another celebration, meaning the balls had to be ready by the evening to give them enough time to dry. For the last Angry Birds to be finished, it actually took me 2 full days (I even took leave from work in order to finish in time), so there was some kind of pressure upon me that had not been there last time. Hence, I didn't really have time to track my progress in pictures. Nevertheless, I felt challenged and immediately started after lunch.

In a kind of mass production like manner, I formed and cooled the nougat cores while baking a chocolate cake. I did not even wait until the dough was completely cooled when crumbling the cake and adding some jam to it. I covered the nougat cores in it the cake-jam mix, forming the little ball shapes, this time trying to really keep them as small as possible. I put them in the fridge to let them cool properly in order to make them maintain their shape before applying the fondant. Meanwhile, I formed and arranged the little details such as feathers, ears, beaks, and eyes. While letting the details dry, I covered the cake-nougat balls in the differently coloured fondant. I finished applying the details at about midnight and was happy to show them to him the next morning :) A big smile was my reward - mission accomplished!

Angry Birds Marzipan Nougat Balls

Since last September, I wanted to make a special birthday cake for my significant other's little (sorry, now big!) boy. He was and is a huge fan of Angry Birds, Cars, and Lego. Last year I already made a Car's cake, so I thought it would be boring to have the same as a birthday cake - there was nothing special about it any more. I do not want to give anything away, but the Lego was already reserved for another birthday, so I ended up with a felt billion of pins on my Pinterest page all around Angry Birds cakes and playgrounds.

A feature of many cakes were actual Angry Birds modelled out of fondant that really caught my attention. I thought them very cute and adorable, as well as easy to eat. The only drawback was, I didn't want to make them all out of fondant - how boring would that taste! So I thought replacing the fondant core with marzipan should do the trick, especially because they are quite similar to handle in terms of consistency and shaping properties. There is a famous Austrian sweet treat, called Mozart Kugeln, that basically are small balls consisting of a nougat core, covered in marzipan, coated with dark chocolate. I still had some nougat left, so I thought it would fun to make Mozart-Angry-Bird-Balls and indeed it was.

I ended up with 8 pigs, 4 white birds, 4 red birds, 4 blue birds, 4 yellow birds, and 4 black bomb birds.

  • Nougat of choice
  • Marzipan
  • Fondant
  • Food colours if fondant isn't already coloured
  • powdered sugar to keep things from sticking together
  • Tools: fondant shaping tools, a sharp knife, shape cutters, drinking straws (for small circles), edible black food colour pen
How to

Forming the nougat cores
Covering the nougat cores with marzipan
Red is one of those colours that when you start working with, you'll soon notice everything surrounding you getting this rosy-red touch: the underground you are working on, your hands, basically everything it touches. Make sure to wash your hands before switching to another colour and work with a bit of powdered sugar to keep your working mat or table clean and non-sticky.
    I did not cover them all at the same time, nor did I form all the details in one go. It is best to start with the lighter colours and work yourself through to the darker colours so as not to have stains where you do not want any. Always wash and dry your hands carefully when switching from one colour to the next!
Mixing the right colour for the pigs
Forming the details
Covering the balls in the respective colours and adding details
Adding the ears - let the details dry a bit before attaching them, so they do not lose their shape and aren't as fragile due to the warmth anymore.

Be creative - do not make them all alike!
Adding some more details and painting some black to make the ears, noses, and eyes appear more realistic

Letting them cool a bit to stabilize them

Do not put different colours next to each other or on the same underground - they might get stains and do leave a bit of colour where they stand
Watching them being angry in the fridge :)


Christmas season is coming up and one of the things I treasure the most are the delicious smells that come along with it. A very typical smell would be that of freshly made gingerbread. I have accumulated a lot of different shape cutters over the past year, so I thought this would be the perfect dough to try them out on.

Following a gingerbread recipe I found on one of the cutter sets. It asks for some pre-made gingerbread spices mixture which is available in Austria. In case, you do not find it in your country, it is a mix of cinnamon, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, coriander, cardamom, ginger, anise seed, star anise, and, of course, black pepper. You should be able to find different instructions on how to mix the perfect gingerbread spice online.

The legs of both the horse and the bird were too thin, so they got rather crisp. The more area the shapes have, the better the results.

Loved by the kids, however this was the point when I figured out that it was best to bake similar sized shapes due to the difference in baking time.

The recipe is really great, the only problem I had is that the gringerbread came out really moist and yummy, however after letting it cool out as described, I found them to be as hard as rocks. I was desperate and did not want to throw them away, especially because my little friends wanted to take some of them with them to school. We thought about calling them gingerbread cookies as they really tasted delicious but were to crisp to be called gingerbread, but in the end I didn't give up and started searching online for tips and tricks to make it moist again.
After an hour of reading comments for other similarly frustrated baking goddesses, I found the one hint that made it all worth it:
Should your gingerbread turn out to be too hard and crisp, boil a pot of water and put it in the turned-off oven along with your gingerbread. Leave it there for some hours (best over night) and once taken out, the gingerbread will be as soft was when you first took it out of the oven. Put it into air-tight containers immediately to keep them moist and savoury.

I actually thought if the moisture was the issue, I could simply increase the amount of water added and they really turned out very fluffly and nice when first taken out of the oven. However, once cooled out completely, they again were as hard as rocks and I ended up doing the same over again. Now I simply plan ahead to give it time to re-absord the humidity from the pot when making gingerbread. Ideas are most welcome on how to avoid doing this time consuming work-around every time!


  • 1 tbsp orange zest (best freshly made from an untreated orange - will make slightly more than 1 tbsp, simply use it all for more intensive flavour experience)
  • 200g honey
  • 150g brown sugar (demarara)
  • 100g butter
  • 50g dark chocolate (I actually used more than called for in the original recipe, maybe about 100g)
  • 3 tbsps water
  • 500g flour
  • 1 pk ready-made gingerbread spice
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp potash/potassium carbonate (which I didn't use as I couldn't find it)
How to

  1. Should you use a whole orange, wash it with warm water and peel off the zest. Otherwise, simple add the pre-made orange zest into a pot which you can put on the stove.
  2. Add the honey, the sugar, the butter, the chocolate (best pre-melted), and the water into the pot and heat under constant stirring until everything is molten. Caution: the mixture should not get too hot! Medium heat is sufficient to melt the butter and chocolate.
  3. In another big bowl, mix the flour, the gingerbread spices, the potash, and the baking powder
  4. Pour the honey-butter mixture into the bowl and knead into a dough. It will already smell heavenly good!
  5. Cover the dough with cling wrap and leave it at room temperature to rest over night.
  6. The next day, pre-heat your oven to 150C if you have a circulating air option or to 175C for normal ovens.
  7. Roll out the dough and cut out the desired shapes. Pay attention that they should more or less have the same size (for a consistent baking experience) and avoid too thin shapes (will get crisp).
  8. Place your shapes onto a baking sheet and bake them for about 20minutes.
  9. Leave them to cool completely.

Monday, 12 August 2013

Low-fat Blueberry Muffins

After all the sugar and fat consumed over the past year due to my baking sprees and my poor, tortured scale moaning, I considered making less heavy recipes and pretend to go healthy :D Pictures to follow.


  • 250g flour
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp pimento
  • 120g powdered sugar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 40g low-fat margarine
  • 50g low-fat plain yoghurt (or low-fat blueberry yoghurt if available)
  • 5 drops vanilla essence
  • 80g fresh blueberries

How to

  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C and prepare the baking pan for about 12 muffins, e.g. fill with the paper cups or grease/use non-stick cooking spray
  2. In a bowl, mix the flour with the salt, the baking soda, 90g of the sugar, and half of the pimento - mix well.
  3. In another container, whisk the egg white until stiff
  4. Add the margarine, yoghurt, and vanilla to the whipped egg white, then fold in the blueberries
  5. Gently fold the blueberry mixture into the flour mixture but do not blend or stir too long - the dough will be best when it is still clumpy
  6. Distribute the dough into the cups
  7. Mix the rest of the sugar with the rest of the pimento and scatter over the dough
  8. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown on the top
  9. Can be served warm or cold