I’ve sat here for a while trying to think of a way to describe the recipe I’m going to post about today. I was trying to compare this peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough frozen yogurt to something revolutionary Continue reading
Pikelets are just one of the many things I’ve been introduced to since moving to Australia. Pikelets don’t exist in the US, as far as I know, but are popular in Australia, New Zealand and some parts of Europe. While similar to American pancakes, pikelets do have subtle differences. For instance, pikelets are generally smaller and heavier than pancakes. They’re usually served cold with a bit of butter or jam (or other spread), whereas pancakes are always served warm and usually with maple syrup. The marketing for pikelets, at least in Australia, seems to be geared towards children, but as we all know, pancakes are for everyone, no matter how young or old they are! There are also differences in the batter – self-raising flour is common in pikelets and plain flour is usually used in pancakes, but you’ll still find milk, eggs and sugar in both recipes. Pikelet batter needs to be completely smooth and rested for 15-30 minutes before cooking. On the other hand, a good pancake batter should be a little lumpy and doesn’t need resting. All this said, though, there are still differences between pikelet recipes throughout the world.
I’ve found that pikelet recipes are an excellent way to get children into the kitchen. They can help with all aspects of the recipe (except perhaps with the actual cooking bit), and they always love to gobble the pikelets up when they’ve cooled! Pikelets make a great after-school snack, as well, when served alongside a helping of fresh fruit. If you’re a stay-at-home mum like I am, it’s simple to whip up a batch before heading out to pick up the kids from school; by the time you all get home, the pikelets will be cool and ready to be demolished.
You can easily put your own spin on any pikelet recipe by adding in some chocolate chips, blueberries, mashed bananas, apples, or whatever you’re in the mood for. For chocolate pikelets, just swap out a couple tablespoons of flour for cocoa powder, or use coconut milk instead of plain milk for coconut pikelets. You could probably add in a bit of peanut butter or Biscoff! The possibilities are nearly endless.
For this post, I’ve made chocolate chip pikelets, which are based on a plain pikelet recipe by Valli Little. The kids are in love with these. This particular version wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for Nestle Australia releasing their brand new mini chocolate chips; mini chocolate chips didn’t exist in Australia before this (or at least if they did, I never found them!). The normal size chocolate chips would have been too big, but the mini ones were just right.
Since we’ve started making our own pikelets, my kids have told me to never buy store-bought ones again!
Chocolate Chip Pikelets
Adapted from taste.com.au and Valli Little
1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
2 tablespoons caster sugar
3/4 cup (185ml) milk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2-3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips
Melted butter, to brush
Sift flour, sugar and salt together into a medium bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk milk, egg and vanilla together, then add to dry ingredients, whisking until smooth. Set aside and let batter rest for 15-30 minutes.
Heat a non-stick frypan over medium heat and brush with a little melted butter. Drop level tablespoonfuls of the mixture into the pan and immediately sprinkle over a few chocolate chips. Cook for half a minute or until bubbles appear on the surface.
Flip over and cook other side for 30 seconds, or until golden.
Allow to cool and serve plain, or with butter, jam, or peanut butter (whatever you’re in the mood for, really!).
In case you hadn’t noticed, I kind of have a thing for matcha. If you don’t know what matcha is, I can sum it up by saying that it is simply finely ground green tea. Continue reading
This post is full of exciting stuff; I don’t even know where to begin! It’s got Biscoff, it’s got pumpkin pie, it’s got my first successful attempt at making my own pie crust! Continue reading
A little over 7 years ago, I was staring into my baby’s wide open eyes, wondering what on Earth she’d look like and what she’d be like once she grew up. Wondering what sort of things she’d be interested in and what sort of conversations we might have one day. Continue reading
Pie is one of those special foods that always makes me remember my family, my grandma particularly. She is the queen of pies and always serves up a banquet of them at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Continue reading
What are some of your favorite foods to pair with chocolate? Peanut butter? Strawberries? Bananas? Cherries? Coffee? Those flavors all go very well with chocolate, but have you ever tried chocolate and ginger? Continue reading
Summer is in full swing in my home state of Indiana this week – in fact, the high there today is supposed to be 102! Here I am in Sydney complaining that it’s too cold, but my family in Indiana is complaining that it’s too hot! Well, my fellow Hoosiers, this recipe will cool you down a real treat. The flavors of matcha and strawberry (one of my all-time most favorite flavor combinations) combine into one amazing, refreshing and cooling popsicle.
I have not yet seen this flavor combination in popsicle form. Some inspiration lent itself from the matcha strawberry cupcakes I made for an Iron Cupcake: Earth competition in June 2009. Those cupcakes were out-of-this world delicious.
But these popsicles are even more amazing. The flavors of both the matcha and strawberry are strong and ice cold. The striped popsicles were lovely, but I wanted to get the matcha and strawberry in one single bite. So I filled some matcha popsicles with my strawberry mixture. As you do.
Yes, now that was perfect! Matcha on the outside, strawberry on the inside! Wondering how to do that clever little trick? It’s so easy. You’ll need a Zoku Quick Pop Maker though. Fill the molds with your outside flavor (in my case, matcha). Wait for 30 seconds-2 minutes, depending on how thick you want the outer layer to be and how quick your Zoku is freezing the liquid. Then, stick a straw to the very bottom of the mold (but don’t poke through the outer layer – be gentle!) and suck out the unfrozen liquid. If you have a thin sort of turkey baster thing you can use that too (or you can use the siphon tool in this set from Zoku). Then pour in the flavor you want on the inside and let it freeze. Easy.
I’ve also made strawberry popsicles with a yogurt filling. Those were very yummy too!
A quick note on the matcha popsicles – the longer you leave them in the freezer (we’re talking over one day), the darker the matcha will become. It doesn’t seem to affect the flavor, just the color. And why did I call them “matcha latte”? Because I made the matcha part of the popsicles with lots of milk and cream!
If you’re after a refreshing and cooling pick-me-up treat this summer, I guarantee that these matcha latte strawberry popsicles will do the trick!
Adapted from Zoku Quick Pops recipe book
Makes 6 popsicles (plus some leftover to drink!)
For the matcha latte layer:
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh matcha (it should be bright green), sifted
1/2 to 1 teaspoon warm water
1 1/3 cup 2% milk
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/3 cup heavy cream
Combine sifted matcha and warm water in a small bowl and stir until it forms a smooth paste. You may need more warm water. Set aside.
Heat the milk in a small saucepan over low heat (do not boil). Whisk in the matcha paste (you don’t have to add all the paste if you feel the matcha flavor is strong enough and the color is green enough) and the sugar. You’ll probably notice little lumps of undissolved matcha – that’s okay, mine didn’t dissolve fully either. Remove from heat and let cool about 10 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream. Place in the refrigerator until completely cool, stirring every so often.
For the strawberry layer:
8 1/2 ounces hulled, quartered strawberries
3 1/2 tablespoons whole milk
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon heavy cream
3 tablespoons caster sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Puree strawberries and milk in a blender until completely smooth. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve to remove the strawberry seeds – you’ll need to use a spoon to help push the mixture through the sieve. Whisk in the cream, sugar and vanilla until incorporated and the sugar has dissolved.
Assembly: Freeze in alternate layers in your Zoku Quick Pop Maker (refer to freezing instructions that came with your Zoku if unsure), letting each layer freeze completely before adding the next layer. Or, fill molds with matcha latte layer, freeze for 30 seconds-2 minutes, depending on how thin or thick you want the outer layer to be. Stick a straw into the unfrozen liquid in the middle and suck it out. Fill the empty matcha shells with the strawberry layer and let freeze completely. Remove popsicles according to the Zoku instructions.
Oh no! I’m almost out of Biscoff spread! Er, well, I’m scraping the bottom of jar #1. I do still have one jar left, but I have a feeling it won’t last much longer. I’m saving it as long as I can, to try to think of a stunning recipe to make with it. Continue reading