Recipes

Mrs.DanielH

Sparrow
These and lamingtons (sponge cake covered in chocolate frosting and rolled in unsweetened coconut) are the only two Aussie desserts I have.

(I got these recipes when I went to Outback with a friend, and got annoyed that I didn’t know what they really eat down there. I actually don’t know what else they eat other than these desserts.)
I need your lamington recipe, they are so delicious!! Another classic food they eat are "pies" not dessert ones, savory ones like handheld chicken pot pie, but they do them in a bunch of flavors. They are really good too, but I had them at a bakery and never got that recipe. They eat kangaroo cause they are a nuisance animal over there like deer in the US. Otherwise I'd say it's a fair mix of british pub food, american food, and asian influenced food.
 

stugatz

Pelican
I need your lamington recipe, they are so delicious!! Another classic food they eat are "pies" not dessert ones, savory ones like handheld chicken pot pie, but they do them in a bunch of flavors. They are really good too, but I had them at a bakery and never got that recipe. They eat kangaroo cause they are a nuisance animal over there like deer in the US. Otherwise I'd say it's a fair mix of british pub food, american food, and asian influenced food.
Sometimes I take down measurements by weight, sometimes I do it by cup measurement, sometimes both - sorry in advance if this is confusing, but it all makes sense to me, I guess. (I have a few hundred recipes.)

I'll leave in the notes I took for myself - sometimes when I make a recipe and it's not completely successful (or there are other versions), I like to keep tabs on that.

This has the same desiccated coconut the ANZAC biscuits did - since that has the "coarse sand" texture, I'd also suggest here to chop up dried unsweetened coconut to get the coating right.

LAMINGTONS

NOTE: This recipe is delicious, but lamington recipes tend to not be quite this flour-heavy or butter heavy. Others have a significant amount of cornstarch mixed in with the flour. Explore other options just in case.

NOTE 2: My first batch of these used the frosting directions exactly, and I had far too much of it left over – the coconut, too. I at least had twice as much as I needed for the icing. Next time, begin with half and go from there.

NOTE 3: I used an 8x8 pan to bake this in, and it turned out fine. If using one, don't use one of those disposable foil ones with ridges inside of it - it makes it a whole lot easier when trying to make sponge cake squares even. A metal 8x8 is ideal, since it has the straightest sides.

NOTE 4: A friend said that these were delicious, but the unsweetened coconut on the outside made these a little bland at the end. Consider using sweetened coconut flakes.

CAKE
200g caster sugar (also called superfine sugar)
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g all-purpose flour (about 1.5 cups)
1 tsp baking powder
100g melted butter (roughly 7 tbsp butter)

FROSTING
50g melted butter (roughly 3.5 tbsp butter)
160ml whole milk (roughly 2/3 cup)
45g cocoa powder (roughly 6 tbsp)
290g icing sugar (roughly 2 1/3 cups)
pinch of salt

250g desiccated coconut (roughly 3.5 cups)

CAKE

Whisk together your flour and baking powder and sift together 3 times, set aside.

Place your sugar and eggs into a mixing bowl, and add your vanilla. Beat all three ingredients together with an electric mixer until the eggs have been whipped enough. (Since both yolks and whites are present here and you can't beat to stiff peaks, you need to test this in another way. Take a beater out of the batter, lift it up, and draw a figure eight with your falling batter. If the figure-eight holds for two seconds, your batter is ready.

Gently fold your flour mixture into your batter gradually (in thirds is best). Finish by folding in your melted butter.

Pour your finished batter into a 9x9 cake pan greased and lined with parchment. Put into an oven at 170 C (about 338 F) for about 25 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.

Let the cake cool for a bit in its pan, and then remove it with the parchment. Let the cake cool down completely – ideally, though, overnight is best, because it gives the sponge a chance to soften.

Cut your cake into cubes. Begin by cutting off all four sides, to give the cake pieces a nice uniform cube shape all the way around. Cut your cake into 16 even pieces, ideally using a ruler to make sure they're completely straight.

ICING

To make the icing, whisk your whole milk with your melted butter, followed by your cocoa and then your icing sugar and pinch of salt. Sift in your icing sugar to make sure the icing has few lumps. (Alternatively, you can do all of this through the indirect heat of a double boiler.)

FROST YOUR LAMINGTONS

Next, coat your pieces in chocolate – this usually works best by using a fork, so pieces of cake don't fall into the icing as you're doing it. When coated, let the piece drip briefly so it isn't oversaturated.

Coat each piece with coconut by dropping it in and sprinkling it on with your hands. Once it's well covered, roll it a little in the coconut before transferring the covered piece to a cooling rack with parchment under it.

The icing does not set hard like some icings do, but it definitely sets. Serve when the icing has done so.
 
I made a batch of caramels a couple days ago using This Recipe.

I've made caramel a lot of different ways, and I always come back to this basic formula. It's not quite "perfect" IMO, and I'll end up tweaking it eventually to be more to my liking (this time I added a little extra salt, but left the rest the same), but I love the flavor of the cooked down caramelized milk protein. You don't get that in a caramel made with just cream and butter.

It's also a good recipe for people who enjoy stirring. Some caramel recipes caution against stirring much if at all, but this one calls for it and requires it. I will say, I cooked mine to 242-243 degrees instead of 238, because I like my caramels closer to chewy than soft. Next time I'll let them go a little longer.
 

stugatz

Pelican
I made a batch of caramels a couple days ago using This Recipe.

I've made caramel a lot of different ways, and I always come back to this basic formula. It's not quite "perfect" IMO, and I'll end up tweaking it eventually to be more to my liking (this time I added a little extra salt, but left the rest the same), but I love the flavor of the cooked down caramelized milk protein. You don't get that in a caramel made with just cream and butter.

It's also a good recipe for people who enjoy stirring. Some caramel recipes caution against stirring much if at all, but this one calls for it and requires it. I will say, I cooked mine to 242-243 degrees instead of 238, because I like my caramels closer to chewy than soft. Next time I'll let them go a little longer.
That reminds me, I'll upload my toffee recipe. I like to make it in a big slab like the British do, where you have to then break it with a hammer to get it into edible pieces.

You definitely need a candy thermometer or a decent instant-read if you're doing anything involving candy making, though - you stop your toffee as soon as it gets to 300, and that turns into 350 VERY quickly.

I'd also suggest using cane sugar for anything caramel or candy-related - most cheaper sugar is beet, and it really can make a difference in the texture of the final product. The pecan pie I made around Christmas involved making a caramel out of brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, and cornstarch, and the beet sugar didn't really dissolve properly, resulting in a far grainier texture.
 
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stugatz

Pelican
TRADITIONAL ENGLISH TOFFEE

2 sticks unsalted butter
1 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
1/4 teaspoon of salt (roughly)

splash of corn syrup (optional)


Melt the butter in a tall pot, add your sugar relatively gradually to avoid a mountain of unmixed sugar in the middle. Stir with a wooden spoon until well mixed, and add your vanilla and salt. (Add corn syrup if desired – this helps the toffee from being too brittle, and makes the softness far more pleasing to chew.)

Continue stirring, with the burner on medium heat. (Some recipes say to do this constantly, some say that doing this encourages the toffee mixture to separate. Both have drawbacks - stirring constantly results in the mixture not heating up quickly, and not stirring at all will result in the toffee burning. I hedge my bets and just stir occasionally. Use your best discretion.)

The toffee mixture will eventually start to gently boil when it reaches 212 - keep stirring from time to time. As it progresses, the mixture cooks down, thickens, and becomes a golden brown. Keep heating until it becomes a typical brown toffee color, about the shade of peanut butter. Stop when your thermometer reaches the hard-crack stage at 300 F.

Pour into a cookie sheet or a Pyrex tray lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper. (Thickness is up to personal preference – some like it thin laid out on a cookie sheet, some like a traditional thick toffee slab that's about half of the size. To achieve the latter, I use a small Pyrex pan with a capacity of 3 cups.)

Sadly, not all of the toffee from your pot is going to make it into your pan - resist the urge to scrape the reserve bits out, because they will affect the uniformity of the texture of the candy. Fill your pot with very hot water to melt the sugar and make cleanup easier.

Cool until the toffee is hard enough to be shattered with a hammer – probably 2 hours or so, but ideally overnight.

Wrap the unbroken slab in plastic wrap. When finally broken, store the pieces in a plastic bag or Tupperware container.

NOTE: It's usually verboten to stir caramel when cooking it, as this disrupts the process and will crystallize it. Toffee seems to be a different animal, since it's a one-to-one combination of butter and sugar - so have no fear you'll waste precious ingredients by stirring.
 

Leeloo

Robin
Has anyone ever made a Beef Wellington? Whenever I see a picture of one it looks so delicious, but I’m too intimidated to try making it as it seems like a difficult recipe to come out perfectly.

I’m a pretty decent cook, but I’m wondering if you need really expert skills to pull it off?
 

stugatz

Pelican
Has anyone ever made a Beef Wellington? Whenever I see a picture of one it looks so delicious, but I’m too intimidated to try making it as it seems like a difficult recipe to come out perfectly.

I’m a pretty decent cook, but I’m wondering if you need really expert skills to pull it off?
My father made one for him and my mother for a special occasion once and told me it wasn't that hard (although he had to buy an entire tenderloin to make it, and that costed him nearly 100 bucks). It looks like the prep is time consuming, but that's about it.

Unless you make your own puff pastry - good luck with that.
 

Lamkins

Robin
Mmm, those Australian savory pies sound good. I’ve been thinking of branching out with the runza a recipe I use (a few pages back). I used to wrap smoked sausage or hotdogs in dough and bake. I’m a fan of easy all-in-one handheld food like that.
 

stugatz

Pelican

Nothing to add today except this YouTube page - it's completely desserts based. I'm probably going to end up adding about 80% of these to my personal recipe collection. She also has some useful instructional videos that have helped me become better at this - one in particular tells you how to correctly measure flour in recipes, which I wasn't familiar with until recently.

This baklava recipe in particular I wouldn't suggest an average person make (try working with phyllo dough without cursing a blue streak), but it's a good example of how well laid out her recipes are, even for something this complex and time consuming.

For anyone taking down the recipes, though, I'd suggest you take down what's at her website link, but watch the video too - she usually elaborates with extra information that helps greatly.
 

Starlight

Robin
Has anyone ever made a Beef Wellington? Whenever I see a picture of one it looks so delicious, but I’m too intimidated to try making it as it seems like a difficult recipe to come out perfectly.

I’m a pretty decent cook, but I’m wondering if you need really expert skills to pull it off?
My father made one for him and my mother for a special occasion once and told me it wasn't that hard (although he had to buy an entire tenderloin to make it, and that costed him nearly 100 bucks). It looks like the prep is time consuming, but that's about it.

Unless you make your own puff pastry - good luck with that.
Beef Wellington really isn’t that hard and I generally use store bought puff pastry without any trouble. Instead of buying an entire tenderloin, we’ll get a few filets and wrap each one with the duxelles and pastry individually. The tricky part is timing the meat and pastry so that they both finish cooking at the same time. I definitely use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. If the meat isn’t cooked yet but the pastry is beginning to brown, I just lightly cover it with aluminum foil until the meat finishes.
 

Leeloo

Robin
Beef Wellington really isn’t that hard and I generally use store bought puff pastry without any trouble. Instead of buying an entire tenderloin, we’ll get a few filets and wrap each one with the duxelles and pastry individually. The tricky part is timing the meat and pastry so that they both finish cooking at the same time. I definitely use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. If the meat isn’t cooked yet but the pastry is beginning to brown, I just lightly cover it with aluminum foil until the meat finishes.
I like the idea of making smaller, personal ones. I think this might be do-able for me. Adding it to my list for the next occasion for something special.
 

Leeloo

Robin
So I’m always looking to try new things and I’ve never in my life had lobster. I went down a rabbit hole the other day and learned of a company called Lobster Gram that delivers quality live lobsters to your home. I’m just amazed at the life of convenience we live in!
Anyway it made me realize that is pretty much the only live food you’re permitted to kill in your own home without regulation (in US). And then I started wondering how I would personally feel about that. It sounds like the lobsters arrive sort of in a comatose state and you don’t unpack them until seconds before shoving them into the boiling pot. I’m sort of grossly fascinated that people do things like this for the sake of “luxury food” and I honestly don’t know if this is a bucket list item for me or if I’ll pass. Just wanted to share.
 
I've always figured if you're going to kill something and eat it, it doesn't much matter how. I was raised an ethical/religious vegetarian, and it's always struck me as odd that so many people have a mental disconnect with where their food comes from - to the point that many are horrified by the idea of boiling a lobster. It's not that it's less cruel than anything else - it's just one of the rare instances where they have to actually SEE IT HAPPEN.

Me... since I decided to start eating meat... I'm not bothered by the killing... but I'm not eating anything with an exoskeleton. NUH-UH. NOPE. I don't care how fancy they say it is. :squintlol:
 

stugatz

Pelican
Lobsters used to be considered extremely low grade food and were set aside as food for people in jail.

I do like lobster, but not excessively. Last kitchen I worked was a trendy foodie place, and had lobster BLT sliders as an appetizer...I think the head chef just liked the sound of it better than the actual sandwich. Those two things can’t taste good together.

If you do end up preparing lobster at home, you can make the choice to mercy kill it with a kitchen knife first - not sure of the technique there, though.

As far as meat I am bothered by the prep of, I have major issues with foie gras.
 
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Lamkins

Robin
Here is a cheese dip recipe I just made and it’s yummy. Like sit-around-all-day-shoveling-it in yummy!

Cheese Dip
8 oz extra sharp cheddar, shredded
1/2 cup Monterey Jack, shredded
1/2 cup mayo
1 teaspoon worstershire sauce (add another tsp if you use cream cheese)
Sprinkle of onion powder
8 oz cream cheese, softened (optional)
6 scallions chopped up to where they’re slightly green
1 jar pimentos, 4 oz

Mix all but cream cheese and extra tsp worstershire. Taste. I added the cream cheese to cut the cheddar flavor because I’m not a cheese fan. My aunt uses pepper Jack instead of Monterey and green chilis and adds a sprinkle of cayenne powder.
 

Leeloo

Robin
Lobsters used to be considered extremely low grade food and were set aside as food for people in jail.

As far as meat I am bothered by the prep of, I have major issues with foie gras.

I did not know that about lobster being considered low grade. I can only imagine that when the country was first colonized and most major cities were at accessible ports, seafood and crustaceans would have been plentiful.


I’m also averse to the idea of foie gras. It seems torturous and unnecessary. I feel the same about the Japanese trend of eating still live frogs on the plate. It’s senseless and unnecessary.
 
I did not know that about lobster being considered low grade. I can only imagine that when the country was first colonized and most major cities were at accessible ports, seafood and crustaceans would have been plentiful.


I’m also averse to the idea of foie gras. It seems torturous and unnecessary. I feel the same about the Japanese trend of eating still live frogs on the plate. It’s senseless and unnecessary.
I didn't know about foie gras until moments ago. I agree with you.

I also hate the idea of boiling live lobsters.
 

stugatz

Pelican
I did not know that about lobster being considered low grade. I can only imagine that when the country was first colonized and most major cities were at accessible ports, seafood and crustaceans would have been plentiful.


I’m also averse to the idea of foie gras. It seems torturous and unnecessary. I feel the same about the Japanese trend of eating still live frogs on the plate. It’s senseless and unnecessary.
It seems like it's always the Japanese and the French that are the most sadistic. Another French dish (ortolan bunting) is probably the worst I've heard of. As someone who wanted to go to culinary school for many years, and loves trying new things - there's no way I'd touch that one.
 

Starlight

Robin
It seems like it's always the Japanese and the French that are the most sadistic. Another French dish (ortolan bunting) is probably the worst I've heard of. As someone who wanted to go to culinary school for many years, and loves trying new things - there's no way I'd touch that one.
Add Balut to the list. What is with the culinary obsession of torturing birds?

I’ve had traditional fois gras in France years ago and was pretty unimpressed given all the hype it gets. I’m happy with just a regular liver pâté any day lol. My mom makes a delicious chicken liver pâté. If you’re interested, I’ll ask her for the recipe.
 
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stugatz

Pelican
Add Balut to the list. What is with the culinary obsession of torturing birds?

I’ve had traditional fois gras in France years ago and was pretty unimpressed given all the hype it gets. I’m happy with just a regular liver pâté any day lol. My mom makes a delicious chicken liver pâté. If you’re interested, I’ll ask her for the recipe.
Oh, balut is vile - I'd forgotten all about that one before you mentioned it, ugh.

The one time I did try foie gras was when I lived in Chicago. A local hot dog vendor (since closed) had a ridiculous flagship item on his menu - a duck sausage served in a brioche bun, topped with foie gras and served with french fries deep fried in duck fat. It was so nuts I had to try it just one time - what I mainly remember about the foie gras was the silky smooth texture.

Sure, feel free to post the recipe - I have no problem with hoarding recipes, they're digital.
 
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