Sunday, May 17, 2015

How to make your own condensed milk

 If you buy (and eat) as much condensed milk as I do, you start thinking of ways to cut out the middleman. Luckily I did not have to think too hard, because my mother had the idea first and penned a recipe for her own condensed milk in our family cookbook. Bless her soul! 

Making your own will not only cost you 1/3 of the price of a store-bought tin, but it will also save you in those moments when you open the cupboard and (horror!) someone has beaten you to that tin. Because is there anything worse than planning a recipe only to realize you're missing that crucial ingredient?! 
Thank goodness making your own uses just 5 ingredients (3 if you're in a serious pinch). 

Did I mention how easy it is? It's embarrassingly easy. 
So easy I almost considered not even posting it at all. Almost. 

If you bake a lot of fudge (who doesn't?!) then it will save you a stack of money and you don't even have to use castor sugar - just blend up the normal granulated white sugar until it's fine and use that. All you're looking for is a finer texture so that it dissolves quickly so icing sugar will do the trick as well. 

Now I know I don't need to tell you that I have a STACK of recipes using condensed milk so I've included the links below the recipe because once you've made your own, you'll want to use it in a gajillion things, that's if you're left with any! 

Homemade Condensed Milk
Makes 400g (equivalent to 1 tin)

1 ¼ cups (310ml) powdered milk
¾ cup (180ml) castor sugar
60g butter, softened
1/3 cup (80ml) boiling water
A drop of vanilla essence (optional)

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth, thick and the sugar and milk powder are dissolved. 
Pour into a jar and store in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Almost forgot, here's a video of me making the condensed milk too ->


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Quadruple Chocolate Cake

A melt 'n mix white chocolate cake sandwiched together with whipped dark chocolate ganache and drizzled with THREE kinds of chocolate sauce. Why? Because I can. And because 4 types of chocolate exist and I couldn't choose my favourite (it's like choosing a favourite child!) so I used them all. And because it's International No Diet Day. Yes, I know every day on TheKateTin is no diet day... 

I once heard a dietician say (bet you NEVER thought I'd be quoting a dietician - ha!) that if you're going to cheat while on a diet, then do it properly! Half cheating just results in more cheating. But don't fear, there is no half cheating with this cake. I didn't call it a quadruple (bypass?) cake for nothing! 

The melt 'n mix white chocolate sponge is a revelation - it's so delicious and tastes just like a milky bar. YUUUUM! It's quite sweet so I balanced it out with a whipped dark chocolate ganache so there's a bit of bitterness. But all that balance kinda jumped out the window when I got to the top of the cake and decided to go all Jackson Pollock on it with white, milk and caramel chocolate. Oh well. My intentions were good! Does that count?

As for those of you who are feeling any sort of guilt at eating said cake? I'll leave you with this sweet quote from Jeanne Ray: 

"A slice of cake never made anyone fat. You don't eat the WHOLE cake... You have a slice and what it reminds you of is someplace that's safe, uncomplicated, without stress. A cake is a party, a birthday, a wedding. A cake is what is served on the happiest days of your life"

Quadruple chocolate cake
Because just 3 types of chocolate isn’t enough. A super-easy melt ‘n mix white chocolate cake topped with whipped dark chocolate ganache and caramel-chocolate sauce.
Serves 12

Recipe by Katelyn Williams

Melt ‘n Mix White chocolate cake
185g butter
1 cup (250ml) milk
1 cup (250ml) castor sugar
150g white chocolate, chopped
2 cups (500ml) cake flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
2 large eggs

Whipped ganache
100ml cream
200g good-quality dark chocolate, chopped

50g milk chocolate, melted
50g white chocolate, melted
50g caramelized white chocolate, melted (see TIP)

Preheat the oven to 160C. Grease and line 2 x 15cm cake tins.
For the cake, combine the butter, milk, sugar and chocolate in a saucepan and melt over low heat.
In a separate bowl, mix the cake flour and baking powder.
Add the chocolate mix to the dry ingredients and whisk well, then whisk in the eggs.
Divide the batter between the two cake tins and bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes or until golden and springy to the touch. A skewer inserted into the middle should come out clean.
Turn the cake out of the tins and allow to cool completely, then slice each cake in half horizontally.
For the whipped ganache, heat the cream until boiling then pour over the chopped chocolate. Allow to stand for a few minutes then stir until melted.
Allow to set completely then using a hand mixer, whip the ganache until light and fluffy (careful not to overwhip or it will split!)
Assemble the cake by layering the white chocolate cake alternately with whipped chocolate ganache.
Decorate the cake by drizzling with the 3 different types of chocolate.

TIP: To make the caramelized white chocolate, place broken up good-quality white chocolate on a baking sheet and drizzle with 1 tbsp vegetable or canola oil. Place in an oven preheated to 150C for 1 hour, stirring every 10 minutes until a rich caramel colour is achieved. If the chocolate is lumpy, simply blend it in a food processor or pass it through a sieve. If it’s too thick, add a little more oil.