Tag Archives: Challenge

Mystery Solved – What Cheesecake is it?

Hello Everyone :) Please don’t hate me because I’ve kept you in suspense for the past couple of days :) For those lovely Readers who are a little confused about what I’m talking about lol let me quickly explain it hehe ~

Just the base :)

It all started with the mysterious cheesecake I made on Saturday and I posted it on Instagram (daisy_nevertoosweet) ~ I was quite nervous because it’s the first time I’ve made this type of cheesecake and it includes ‘folding’! Gosh I’m so scared of this ‘folding’ process >_<  but anyhow, it was a success YAY :) Many people commented on it and have been asking me what cheesecake it was :) Cuz i was very secretive about it hehe I even gave some to fellow bloggers Lianne (Food Made With Love) and Julie (I Dream In Chocolate), but even they didn’t know what it was hahhaa

Finished Product YAY!

Now it’s finally time to reveal the mysterious cheesecake *DRUM ROLLS PLEASE* it is a ‘Vanilla Honey Cheesecake’ :D

And I actually made it for the Alphabakes challenge this month ~ hosted by my dear blogger friend Ros (The More Than Occasional Baker) and the letter this month was “V”. As soon as I saw it…I freaked out…OMG what the heck am I going to bake for the letter “V”. Then Mr Bao rolled his eyes and said ‘Vanilla duh’… so that immediately comforted me hehe so then with the Queen’s Jubilee I wanted to make a ‘Victorian’ Sponge, but so many people were making it…so I was once again lost…was so close to just making simple Vanilla cupcakes…but what fun would that be >_<

Then I jumped on one of my favourite websites taste.com and typed vanilla and that’s when I found this recipe ‘Vanilla Honey Cheesecake’ that first appeared in the ‘delicious’ magazine a few years ago. Right then and there I knew I was going to make it because last year when I went to Beechworth I bought Honey Vanilla and had never used it like a lot of things I buy :P This was the PERFECT time to use it!

Honey and Vanilla Bean from Beechworth Honey

I’m sorry I don’t remember how much it was but unde $10AUD and not sure where else you can get it, because I bought it from the Beechworth Honey retail store in Beechworth, but you can buy it online through their website or find similar vanilla honey in specialty stores like ‘The Essential Ingredient’ or simply use normal honey :)

Essentially this is a baked cheesecake, but with the vanilla extract and vanilla honey it gives it another dimension of flavour ~ I hope you like it! Sorry I didn’t have my camera when I was making the actual cake, so I can’t show you the step-by-step, but I did take photos of making the biscuit crust ~ hope this will help you Winston (The Hungry Excavator) next time you make a cheesecake ~

Recipe – Vanilla Honey Cheesecake adapted from Delicious Magazine 

Ingredients (Makes 20cm cake)
75grams unsalted butter
150 grams caster sugar
350 cream cheese (Philadelphia)
4 tablespoon (20ml) Vanilla Honey
75ml thickened cream
3 eggs, separated
25 grams plain flour
1 vanilla bean, split or 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract/paste
50grams brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
50g flaked almonds

Biscuit Base
250 grams digestive/plain sweet biscuits
125 grams unsalted butter, melted

Method
1) To make the biscuit base, release the base of a 20cm spring form cake pan and invert it. Spray with oil and line base with baking parchment, place it back into the pan and secure it.

My fave digestive biscuits :)

2) You can either use a food processor to blitz the biscuits until it resembles sand and add 125grams melted butter and blitz again until it resembles wet sand.

OR

3) You can place the biscuits into a Zip Lock bag and use a rolling pin and ‘crush’ or ‘bash’ them :)

Love doing this bit!

I love doing this by hand, even though I have a food processor, because it gives me so much joy being able to ‘hit’ something lol but the key here is not to do it ‘too hard’ because the bag will just pop and you’ll get biscuits everywhere and lol this may sound really silly but you kind of need to hit with a bit of a rhythm :) Hope this tip with help anyone who has trouble with this ~

All crushed!

5) When the biscuits is evenly crushed and looks like sand, you can mix the melted butter and combine until it resembles wet sand.

6) Slowly placed spoonfuls of the ‘biscuit mixture’ into the cake tin and pack it into the base firmly and the side of the pan using the back of the spoon. You may want to use a glass to help with the edges and keep an even thickness of crust around the sides.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill, it’s now ready to be used :)

To make the filling
7) Preheat oven to 180°C/ 160°C fan-forced
8) Cream butter and sugar in stand mixer or electric mixer until pale.
9) Add cream cheese, 1 tablespoon of vanilla honey, cream egg yolks and flour when incorporated add vanilla seeds/extract and mix well.
10) In a clean bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form, then gently fold into cheese mixture. Pour into prepared biscuit base.
11) Combine brown sugar, cinnamon and almonds and sprinkle over cheesecake then bake for 1 hour. Turn the oven off and allow cake to cool inside the oven.
12) To serve, drizzle with extra honey.

Drizzle drizzle ;)

I obviously drizzled my slice with lots and lots of honey lol my Dad had a slice and said it was ‘really’ sweet so for those who don’t really have a ‘huge’ sweet tooth maybe just drizzle a tiny bit ~

I am SO SO SO happy with this cake :) It definitely turned out better than I expected and lol the photos turned out better than I expected too and I tried to do a little food styling ~ I’m still a noob so please excuse the ‘amateur’ efforts ~

I hope I didn’t disappoint anyone with this cheesecake :) and thank you for all the support and lovely comments I received on Instagram and Twitter ~

Who Wins – Caramel Chip Cookies

To all my Readers in Australia, HAPPY LONG WEEKEND :) Woo Hoo! We get tomorrow off because it’s Queen’s Birthday, it’s a little annoying though that we don’t get an extra day off like my friends in the UK do because it’s the Queen’s Jubilee celebration :D

Even though, I’ve only gone to the UK, I’ve always had a strong connection with the Queen hehe I’ve always liked her and the whole royal family ~ I was quite young when Princess Diane passed away but I still remember it was such a shock and have since read so many autobiographies of her :)

They’re both invincible and incredible together :)

I’m totally in love with this picture and just really wanted to share with everyone, Queen Elizabeth and her Prince Phillip are surely invincible and incredible together after so many years, they are still very much in love! Sooooo Sweet :)

Anyway,  I always get side-tracked lol like most couples… Mr Bao and I bicker a lot… and we always have stupid bets and challenges…and these caramel chip cookies are one of them.

Nestle recently released their new caramel bits for baking, which are the same as the chocolate chips but their caramel ones YAY :) I LOVE anything caramel hehe ~ so I immediately picked them up. I got quite busy so just left them lying at the back of my pantry, but then fellow blogger The Suz Chef Instagrammed a photo of these chips and jolted my memory.

So I made these last night, and while I was scooping them out onto the baking trays, Mr Bao decided my cookies were ‘ugly’ and that I should be using my hands and rolling them into little BALLS before I bake them… so he decided to come and ‘show’ me…

*Rolls Eyes*

*COUGH COUGH* Excuse me! Who’s the baker in the house? LOL

Anyway so we got into a pretty heated argument and we can’t decide who’s cookies look better?!? They taste exactly the same, but I must say mine are crunchier on the outside and oh so chewy on the inside.

So my dear lovely Readers, please vote who’s Caramel Chip Cookies look the best :D Just be honest and place a vote ~ I wont be made if you only voted for me hahaha.

If I win I wont need to do the washing for the next two weeks! But if I lose…I’ll have to do the washing and ironing…so PLEASE cast your vote :)

Mine – The Left
Mr Bao – The Right

Back to the recipe, these Caramel Chip Cookies were SO easy to make and SO good :) I think I’m gonna make another batch for work next week ~ They’re seriously sweet and delicious and very ‘Mrs Field’ like which is the type of cookies I like hehe ~


Recipe – Caramel Chip Cookies from Nestle (the package) 

Ingredients (Makes 15 large or 30 small) 
125 grams butter, soften
165 grams, brown sugar
1 egg
255grams, self raising flour
250 grams, Nestle Caramel Bits

Method
1) Preheat oven to 170°C/150°C fan-forced. Grease and line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
2) Place, butter, brown sugar and egg in a bowl of a stand mixer or use a handheld electric mixer, beat until mixture is plate and creamy.

3) Stir in flour.

4) Add Caramel Bits. Mix until well combined

5) Roll level tablespoon of mixture, place on prepared trays of about 4cm apart. Flatten slightly.

6) Bake in oven for 15 minutes or until golden. Set aside on trays for 5 minutes to cool; transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.

If you haven’t seen these Caramel Bits, you can get them from most Coles and Woolworths in Australia :) As for other places I’m not too sure ~ But if you do see them, pick some up and try making these yummy cookies!

Before I head off ~ Please please PLEASE cast your vote!

Thanks xoxo

PS. I’m the one on the LEFT :D

Alphabakes – Honey Joys

I never use to think there was much difference between writing a recipe post and a restaurant review post… but now that I’m working full-time and trying to blog part-time :P I have much less time and I find recipe posts to be much easier and less-time consuming. That’s because there are usually less photos for a recipe and because my ‘plating’ and decorating skills are so amateur lol I usually just take the photos on the kitchen bench or on a nice plate.

Another reason is with restaurant/café reviews, I like giving you an overview of the restaurant, the history and if I had the chance to speak to the owners share their story and experiences with you that’s why my reviews are usually so slower than my recipes.

Anyhows, I’ve gotta stop blabbering on about nothing hehe just a quick overview, I have survived two full weeks of full time work, slowly getting use to the new life style of getting up early in the morning and sleeping at a decent time. So far so good with the new job I really hope it just gets better woo hoo :) I’ve met some really nice people and made some great friends ~ would like to say a special thank you to Ri Ri for being so supportive from day one!

You may know through Twitter/Instagram that my sister (Win Win) is visiting from HK, so things have been a bit crazy lol working during the day, going out and night and a 6 hour trip to Sydney lol we’re two crazy sisters :D I’m gonna miss her SO SO SO much when she goes back tomorrow :( I managed to do quite a bit of baking the weekend before and one of them was for this month’s Alphabakes challenge, which is hosted by Caroline Makes this month.

The letter for the month is ‘H’ ~ I was so worried when I first saw the letter…uh oh…what cakes and desserts do I like that start with the letter ‘H’…and then Mr Bao said to me the other day when we were at a café…’Can we order a HONEY JOY?’ and that’s it! I was totally inspired to make Honey Joys for this challenge hehe of course I refrained him from getting the Honey Joy, it was $3.80 (AUD) for a single Honey Joy when it’ll cost me around the same price to make him 12 :P

Curtesy of Mr Bao he took the photo :)

Question for all my lovely Readers, are Honey Joys an Australian ‘dessert’? Because I was really surprised when I told Brian (blew1)  that I was going to make Honey Joys, he had no idea what they were ~ I grew up with Honey Joys, not something that you would buy but you would always see them at kids parties :D

They’re SO simple, quick and EASY to make it’s silly LOL it took me all up I swear 3 minutes to prepare, 3 minutes to put them in the little muffin trays then 10 minutes to bake, in which I had time to wash all the dishes while they were baking ~

For Readers who may not know what Honey Joys are they’re cornflakes covered with a mixture/syrup made of butter, sugar and honey, then you bake them for 10 minutes to ensure that they’re crispy! YUMMY!
Recipe – Honey Joys adapted from Kellogg’s Australia

Yield – 12 large or 24 small ones

Ingredients
90grams butter

1/3 cups (75 grams) sugar

1 tablespoon honey

4 cups Corn Flakes (plain not sugar coated ones)

Method
1) Preheat oven to 150 ° and line with patty cases

2) Melt butter, sugar and honey together in a saucepan until frothy

3) Add corn flakes and mix well (be careful because it’s really easy for the corn flakes to ‘jump’ out of the saucepan’

4) Quickly spoon the mixture into the patty cases


5) Bake in over for 10 minutes. Take them out and let it cool before serving.

See I told you they’re really easy to make and I’m sure the kiddies will love you if you made them some Honey Joys :D and oversized kiddies like Mr Bao will also like them ~

We Survived – Live Below The Line :)

I am truly SORRY everyone! For being MIA and also for the missing post! I don’t know what happened, but I had blogged about the Live Below The Line challenge, last week, but somehow it disappeared, and went back into my ‘Drafts’ folder, and the photos and some of my text had been deleted :( It’s never happened before and I definitely hope it wont happen again. I’m so sorry for everyone who have been looking for this post. But I’ve just republished it and really hope it works ~

WE SURVIVED! We survived a whole day – 3 meals and all that for under $2!

Well Done Mr Bao :)

I am so proud of our whole group! As of now Mr Bao and I raised a mere $340 but our team Food Lovers Collective as of now has raised over $3000!!! That is truly amazing!!! I would like to say a MASSIVE thank you to everyone who donated to me or the team! We never would have been able to do it without the support! I was absolutely blown away when so many people offered to donate, especially bloggers who I have never met before in person also donated and support us! THANK YOU!

Would also like to commend Mr Bao because he actually participated this challenge with me and did the whole challenge without cheating! I’m totally impressed, because when I told him about the challenge, he was very apprehensive and wasn’t keen in joining. And I don’t blame him…there’s not much food you can buy with $2 and he has quite a big appetite and he likes his meat. But he went through with it! Well done dear you did a wonderful job for a great cause :)

Now I wanted to give you an update and overview of what we ate yesterday and how we fit it into $2AUD ~

My Meal Plan

Breakfast - Eggs and Bread

Breakfast eggs and bread ~

I usually have muesli and yoghurt for breakfast, but yoghurt is quite expensive so is muesli, I had to find a cheaper option. So I worked out that eggs where actually quite affordable if you buy the smallest and cheapest in bulk, they work out to be around 13c each :) And if you buy the cheapest ALDI white loaf of bread ($1) it works out to be 6c per slice ~ cheapest carbohydrates I could find lol

Lunch - Banana and Bread

A slice of white bread again

Banana ~

I have breakfast pretty early at 6:30am so by the time it was 11am I was STARVING lol but still had to wait till 12:30pm for lunch ~ and instead of the normal salads, soup and sweets I’m use to ~ I had a banana and a slice of bread instead. I never knew bananas were so expensive…even if they’re only $1.99 per kilo, it works out to be 56c each! Pretty expensive when you only have $2 hehe then I had another piece of bread because that was the cheapest and easiest way to fill up. I was so hungry that I didn’t even take a photo of it hehe I loved how FakeGF (Joanna) described it as a ‘deconstructed’ banana sandwich hehe made me feel instantly better!

Dinner – Apple, Egg and Bread

I had tutoring after work, so I left work at around 4:30pm, got there at 5:30pm did my tutoring and at 6:30pm I was famished! But I had no food with me…until I looked into my bag and I found a Pink Lady Apple!

Saved my life!

I was SO happy I WAS about to scream and yell and do a happy dance! I have never been so happy to see an apple in my whole life and hahaha I have never felt so much love before! Mr Bao had intentionally placed it in there because he knew I’d be hungry after work~ YAY! I quickly finished off the apple, went home and Mr Bao had already prepared dinner for me…it wasn’t hard considering he had already boiled an egg for me and I just needed another piece of bread lol

My dinner ~ same as breakfast

And funny enough I had 31c left….and I was still hungry so Mr Bao worked out with 30c, I could have 65g of apple or something like that lol so he cut the apple in half weighed it out and gave it to me lol once again I was so grateful to have an apple because it’s actually quite filling hehe :P

31c worth of apple lol

Total Cost:
Eggs 13c each = I had 4 = 52c
Bread 6c each = I had 3 = 18c
Banana 56c each = I had 1 = 56c
Apples 43c each = I had 1 and 30c worth = 73c
Grand Total = $1.99

I just made it under the $2 mark :) WOO HOO! I was so worried that I was going to go over or that I was going to cave in because so many of my friends, family and colleagues were offering to donate food to me but I had to decline every single one of them :(

Mr Bao’s Meal Plan

Brunch – Eggs, Plain Mash and Bread

Mr Bao’s breakfast ~

Mr Bao doesn’t need to wake up early, so one of his strategy was to sleep in so he can have a ‘bigger’ brunch to make it more sustainable lol so he had a far bigger ‘brunch’.
He started off with eggs and bread, like me (we don’t have a toaster lol), then while he was munching on that he started boiling the potatoes to make his ‘plain mash’, with no butter and no salt lol we worked out that a kilo of potatoes were 87c, so he had already planned out to fill up he was going to eat 1kg :D I was worried that he wasn’t going to like the mash and was going to give up. But nope he ate the plain mash with the eggs, and surprisingly said it wasn’t too bad ~

Dinner – Bread, Plain Mash and Chicken and Ham Sausage

I was sure that with only $2 I wasn’t going to be able to eat any meat, so I had given up on even looking at buying any of it lol but Mr Bao was convinced that he was going to be able to find some type of ‘cheap’ meat and he wasn’t going to do the challenge if he wasn’t going to get some meat hahaha and alas he found a chicken and ham sausage roll thingy from ALDI for only $2.47 a kg!

Plain Mash and Sausage

Total Cost
Eggs 13c each = He had 4 = 52c
Bread 6c each = He had 4 = 24c
Plain Mash Potato = He had 1kg = 87c
Sausage = He had 100g = 26c
Grand Total = $1.89 

I can’t believe it! He spent less than I did and managed to eat MEAT lol I’m so glad we did the challenge, as it was definitely an eye opening experience for us, I know now food can be cheap and affordable if you’re willing to do some research and buy at ALDI or markets :) I have also learnt to appreciate the abundance of food that I have around me and not take it for granted. Hopefully we’ll be able to do the full challenge next year and raise even more money!

Celebratory Dinner :)

Would like to say a special Thank You to all team members especially FatBoo (Bryan) for inviting me to join the team and for the celebratory dinner we had the following Saturday after the challenge ~ It was the first time I’ve met other Melbourne bloggers it was an amazing night, of course most talk was about food but it’s so nice to be able to ramble on about food without feeling bad that I’m boring them :D Bryan was just as intelligent and witty as I imagined him to be, Winston was the most friendly and caring guy I’ve met and Leaf and Simon were the loveliest couple! I can’t wait for our next get-together :D A shame Jade and FakeGF (Joanna) wasn’t able to come but I’m sure we’ll find to meet later on ~

Thank you to all my friends, family and readers who have donated money to this challenge, just wanted to let you know that they charity is accepting donations until August :)
https://www.livebelowtheline.com/team/food-lovers-collective 

First Blog Challenge – Lemon Scones

Hello everyone :) I’m back in HK again! I had an amazing time in Taipei and I have so many good places to share with you! But before I bombard you with Taiwan posts. I’m so excited to be sharing with everyone my first ever Blog Challenge ~

Since I started blogged a few months ago, Ros from The More Than Occasional Baker has been nothing but supportive of me and always encouraging me! So when she told me about this new challenge that her friend Caroline from Caroline Bakes, I just HAD to enter and make something. The challenge is pretty simple :) each month the girls will generate a random letter and you will then need to bake something that starts with that letter. To read more about the challenge please refer to this link.

This month it was the letter ‘L’ so I immediately thought of the amazing Lemon and Blueberry scones I had in New York City at Alice’s Tea Cup. I bought their cookbook and remember tell you guys that I’ll try to share their recipe with you sometime hehe so I thought this was the PERFECT TIME!

But then I realised I was going to have trouble replicating the fabulous scones…even though the cookbook shares 19 scone recipes it doesn’t exactly share the Lemon and Blueberry! I started freaking out…then I had another problem :( the blueberries I had at home were off…at least I think they were and I didn’t want to use them. So I’m really sorry everyone, I simply omitted the blueberries and adapted the recipe to make a lemon scone with a lemon glaze :) they’re just as nice with a subtle lemon flavour ~

My mini cake stand :)

Recipe – Lemon Scone
Adapted from: Alice Tea Cup (Haley and Lauren Fox)
Makes: 10 to 12 scones

Ingredients
3 Cups of Plain Flour
1/3 Cup of Caster Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
2 1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
3/4 Teaspoon of Salt (I just used a pinch)
170 grams of Unsalted Butter, cubed
1 1/2 Tablespoon of Lemon Zest
1/4 Cup of Lemon Juice
1 1/4 Cups of Buttermilk
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Lemon Glaze
1/2 Cup of Icing Sugar
2 Tablespoons of Lemon Juice
1 Teaspoon of Milk

Method
1) Preheat the oven to 200° C or 400 °F.
2) In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients – flour, sugar, baking soda, baking power and salt.
3) Make sure your hands are clean and dry, using your fingers tips rub the butter into the dry mixture until it is well incorporated and resembles  breadcrumbs. Add the Lemon zest and mix well.
4) Make a well in the centre of the dry mixture, and pour the Lemon Juice, Buttermilk and Vanilla Extract into the well. Combine the dry and wet ingredients until it comes together. *Important* Do not knead the dough!
5) Sprinkle plain flour on a clean surface and gently place the dough over the service and pat it softly until it forms a rectangle that is about 1 1//2 inches thick. Using a dough cutter or knife, cut dough diagonally  to create little triangles or any shape you’d like.
6) Bake scones on a baking tray covered with baking paper, for approximately 12 minutes or until golden brown.
7) To make the lemon glaze, sift icing sugar into a bowl. Whisk in the Lemon Juice and Milk until it is smooth. Taste the Lemon Glaze and add more icing sugar or lemon juice according to your own personal tastes.
8) Drizzle lemon glaze over warm scones and allow to cool slightly before serving.

Ready to be baked!

Finished Product ~

I hope you like lemon scones ~ I think they’re perfect with jam and cream or honey :) because I didn’t have any jam poor me!

Thank you once again to Ros from The More Than Occasional Baker for hosting the first Alphabakes Challenge :D

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