Vanilla Cloud Meringues

In Switzerland, a famous dessert is meringue with Crème de Gruyere (which is not cheese but a sort of double cream). It’s amazing. The sweetness and crispness of the meringue fits so well with the unctuosity and smoothness of the cream.

I don’t make meringues very often because I rarely find myself with a lot of egg whites. But the other day, I made Pots de Crème au Chocolat (which uses only yolks) so I had a lot of whites left over.

 

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I like my meringues crisp on the outside but slightly chewy on the inside and that’s a question of cooking time:

Completely Crisp – 2 hours

Crisp on the outside but still soft – 1 ½ hours

 

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Makes 24 meringues

 

180g egg whites (approx. 6 eggs)

1 ½ cups of sugar

¼ tsp cream of tartar (optional)

¼ tsp salt

2 tsp vanilla extract

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 100 C or 215 F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the egg whites with the sugar on high speed until stiff peaks form (about 2-3 minutes).
  3. Add the cream of tartar, salt and vanilla extract. Beat for another minute or 2 or until your meringue is glossy.
  4. With an ice cream scooper, drop dollops of meringue on the baking sheets, leaving an inch between (In case they spread).
  5. Bake for 1 ½ hours for chewy meringues or 2 hours+ for crisp.

 

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Mini Caramel Cheesecakes

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A friend of mine gave me a cheesecake book. I salivate just looking at the pictures and have been dying to try basically every recipe. The first I attempted was this salted caramel cheesecake. Of course, I’d used up the cream the day before and the only sort of cream cheese I had was 1 full fat pack and 1 light pack. Being Sunday in Geneva, shops were closed, so I used the cream cheese I had and replaced the ½ cup of cream necessary with ½ cup unsweetened, natural yogurt. I was a little worried about the cheesecakes not turning out as creamy as they should, but they were absolutely, mouth-wateringly velvety and delicious.

 

Makes 12

 

Cookie Base

1 package of Graham Cracker or Digestive Cookies (or gluten free cookies), pulverized into crumbs

2 tbps butter, melted

  1. Mix the butter and the cookie crumbs. (I use a ziploc and a rolling pin to crumble my cookies. Stick them in the plastic bag. Close it getting all the air out, and pass your rolling pin over it until you have fine crumbs).
  2. Line a cupcake mold with wrappers.
  3. Place 1 tbsp of the crumb mixture inside each paper liner and with the bottom of a glass (I used my kids drinking cups) , press the crumbs into the bottom so they are tightly packed.

 

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Caramel Sauce

45 g sugar

50 ml water

15 g salted butter

2 tbsp thick cream

  1. Boil the sugar and water in a saucepan over high heat until amber. Take off the heat.
  2. Add the butter and whisk. Return to low heat for 1 minute or until mixture is homogenous.
  3. Take off the heat for good and whisk in the cream.
  4. Let caramel sauce cool while preparing the cheesecake filling.

 

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Cheesecake Layer

350 g cream cheese (I used 1 box of full fat and completed the amount with the lighter version)

90 g sugar

2 eggs

1 full-fat plain unsweetened yogurt

1 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 180C or 350 F.
  2. In the bowl of a standmixer, beat the sugar and the eggs on high speed until light and creamy (about 2 minutes).
  3. Add the yogurt, the cream cheese, and the vanilla extract and mix until batter is smooth.
  4. With the mixture on low, pour in the cooled caramel sauce. Whisk until combined.
  5. Ladle on top of crumb base, filling wrappers to the top. Cheesecakes don’t puff up.
  6. Prepare your water bath: fill a large and deep baking pan that can hold your cupcake pan with water. Add the cupcake pan on top.
  7. Lower your oven temperature to 150 C or 300 F.
  8. Bake for 1 hour. Turn the oven off but DO NOT take out cheesecakes. Place a wooden spoon to crack oven door open and leave in the oven another hour.
  9. Take out of the oven and place in refrigerator without unmolding cheesecakes.
  10. Let chill at least 3 hours before serving.

 

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The Assassin

It was my cousin’s birthday the other day and to celebrate she made this chocolate cake. She posted it on Facebook and it looked so lethal, I absolutely had to know what it was. Ironically enough, the recipe was called The Assassin (it comes from a French baking blog). Even though I was told not to tweak the recipe, I could not help myself. I had to reduce the sugar, by just a little (50g). The result was perfect, to die for…

 

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So I’m keeping the name.

 

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The Chocolate Fondant Recipe

200 g sugar

50 g water

10 g all-purpose flour (or gluten-free flour if you want to make this flourless)

3 eggs

150 g salted butter (if you don’t have salted butter, use butter and a 1 tsp fleur de sel)

125g bittersweet chocolate, melted in the microwave

 

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  1. Preheat the oven to 300 F or 145 C degrees. Line a spring form (cheesecake) mold with parchment paper so that your cake will be easy to unmold.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the eggs with the flour for 2-3 minutes or until light and frothy.
  3. In a saucepan, set the sugar and water over high heat and boil until mixture becomes amber and smells like caramel. It takes approximately 5 minutes. Just keep an eye on it because once it darkens, it darken quickly.
  4. Once it has reached the amber color, take it off the heat and add the butter. It might splash a little so be careful at that step. Whisk until combined.
  5. With the mixer on low speed, drizzle the buttery caramel into the frothy eggs. Once you’ve poured it all in, set the mixer on med-high and beat until homogenous.
  6. Pour in the melted chocolate and whisk again. Mixture should be delectably smooth by that point.
  7. Ladle into your mold and bake for 50 minutes.
  8. Cool down to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours up to overnight.
  9. Remove from the fridge 20 minutes before serving, peel off the parchment paper.

 

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The Rose ate the cake… and wilted from Bliss.

 

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Beware, Gabrielle… Eat at your own risk.

 

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Creamy Chocolate Cheesecake

My husband doesn’t like cheese in any of its forms, except when mixed with chocolate. This doesn’t apply to all cheeses. Blue cheese and chocolate, I’m imagining, would not taste very good, even to a cheese lover like myself.

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This is a beautiful, silky, and creamy cheesecake. If you want a lighter version, discard two of the yolks and do half full-fat cream cheese and half reduced-fat cream cheese. Cheesecakes are such versatile desserts that they can be tweaked and still come out gorgeous and yummy.

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Oreo Crust
1 sleeve of Oreos (approximately 12)
¼ tsp fleur de sel
1/4 cup of butter, melted

  1. Line a spring form pan with parchment paper.
  2. Crush the Oreos with a rolling pin or pulverize in a food processor until you have fine crumbs.
  3. Add salt and melted butter and mix.
  4. Press the wet crumbs into an 8″ spring form pan. Set aside.

 

Chocolate Cheesecake Filling
600 g of cream cheese, room temperature (I believe it corresponds to 3x 8oz packages)
¼ cup sugar
½ cup unsweetened light cream
300 g semisweet chocolate, melted

4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

¼ tsp salt

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F or 160 C degrees.
  2. In a microwave safe bowl, melt the chocolate and the light cream. Let cool (just the time it takes for you to whisk the next ingredients).
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar until becomes light and creamy.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat well after each addition. Add the vanilla, salt, and mix again.
  5. Ladle in the cooled melted chocolate mixture and whisk until combined.
  6. Pour on top of Oreo crust. Line the outside of the spring form pan with aluminum foil (it will prevent water from water bath to soak your cheesecake).
  7. Place the aluminum-coated cheesecake mold into a large roasting pan. Add water to the roasting pan until it comes halfway up the sides of the mold.
  8. Bake for 1 hour or until cheesecake jiggles. Poke the mold with a wooden spoon. If it jiggles like jello, then it’s ready. If it sloshes around, bake longer.
  9. Turn off the oven and stick the wooden spoon in the door so that cheesecake cools down in cooling oven (about 1 hour).
  10. Take out of the water bath, discard aluminum foil, but keep the cheesecake in the spring form pan. Place in refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight before unmolding and serving.

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Double Chocolate & Coconut Cloud Cookies

Double Chocolate & Coconut Cloud Cookies

 

I’m obsessed with these cookies. Like obsessed-obsessed. I’ve made them so many time I’ve lost count and they come out perfect every time. These cookies are flourless (bonus!). They are chewy and chocolatey and just the perfect bite of chocolate. They’re not unlike a meringue cookie, just less finicky and easier to bake. The original recipe “Chocolate Chip Clouds” is pretty perfect on its own but I think the coconut just adds a perfect extra little chewiness and flavor. Enjoy!

Recipe:

Double Chocolate & Coconut Cloud Cookies (adapted from SkinnyTaste.com “Chocolate Chip Clouds“)

Makes 24-30 cookies

1/2 cup egg whites (about 3 large eggs)

1/8 tsp cream of tartar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (desiccated coconut)

1 cup mini chocolate chips

  1. Preheat your oven to 300˚F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your electric mixer, place you egg whites and cream of tartar. Whisk on medium-high speed until frothy. Slowly add the sugar and turn the speed up to high. Continue whisking until egg whites are white and glossy and hold stiff peaks.
  3. Add the vanilla, cocoa powder and coconut and whisk on low just to combine evenly. Give it a quick whisk on high speed to re-fluff it up if necessary.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Drop in large tablespoonfuls on your baking sheets. Try to shape them how you want them to look because they’re going to keep the same shape post-baking.
  6. Bake for 34-40 minutes. When the cookies are dry to the touch, they’re done (so keep an eye on them the first time in case they need less than 34 minutes).
  7. Allow to cool slightly and transfer to wire rack. Best enjoyed slightly warm or room temperature.

The Life Bread

It’s a bit of a stretch calling this loaf, bread. It’s more of a dense mixture of nuts and seeds held together by this magical ingredient called psyllium husk. I will not go into any detail about it because the author of the recipe I based my bread on did just that in her post, The life-changing loaf of bread.

 

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I eat most of my bread with peanut butter or cheese so I left out the 3 tbsp of oil she adds to her recipe. I also left out the maple syrup. Maple syrup is delicious, but not necessary if you don’t want any added sugar.

I have made this bread so many times that I have experimented with a variety of combinations of nuts and seeds. My favorite was sunflower seeds + pumpkin seeds + dried cranberries.

Slice and toast for the most fragrant, wholesome, and delicious cracker.

 

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Makes 1 loaf

1 ½ cups water
1 cup sunflower seeds
¼ cup flax seeds
½ cup hazelnuts or pecans or pumpkin seeds
1 ½ cups rolled oats
2 tbsp chia seeds
¼ cup psyllium seed husks
1 tsp fine grain sea salt

½ cup cranberries or raisins (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 F or 180 C and toast the sunflower seeds and hazelnuts (or other nut of your choosing). Bake until golden and fragrant.

2. Pour them into a large bowl and mix in the rest of the ingredients.

3. Place the mixture in a silicone loaf pan and let sit at room temperature for about an hour. The uncooked bread will stick together even when you push away the sides of the mold.

 

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4. Bake at 350 F or 180 C for 20 minutes. Then turn your bread onto a baking sheet and slip off the mold. Cook for another 40 minutes.

5. Slice only when cooled so that it doesn’t fall apart.

 

This is the version with pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and cranberries.

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The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless)

The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless) | sisterbakers.com

So remember a while back when I made some super healthy chocolate chip cookies using bananas and almond butter & meal? Well, I may have outdone myself and made them even more delicious. I know what you’re thinking: “That’s impossible!” “That’s crazy talk!”. Okay fine, you’re probably not thinking anything at all except about yummy cookies at this point, and frankly I don’t blame you. But I did indeed manage to make those cookies even better with just a little (teeny-tiny I swear) extra-effort! (Psssst… the secret is hazelnut meal and homemade almond butter) So here you go, a newer, better rendition of a healthy chocolate chip cookie! Oh and did I mention these are gluten-free too? You’re welcome.

Recipe:

The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless)

Makes 15 cookies

Homemade Almond Butter

1 1/2 cups roasted, unsalted almonds

 

Cookies

1/4 cup overripe banana, mashed (about 1/2 a large banana)

1/4 cup homemade almond butter

1/4 cup honey

1 egg

1 1/2 cups hazelnut meal

1 tbsp flax meal

1/2 tsp baking soda

Pinch of salt

3/4 cup mini-chocolate chips

 

To make the Almond Butter:

  1. Put all the almonds in a food processor.
  2. Process for 10-15 minutes until you have almond butter. You’ll wonder after about 5 minutes how the powder could become nut butter, but good things come to those who wait. Promise!
  3. Once you’re happy with the consistency (thick but spreadable), store the almond butter in a glass jar or container, at room temperature or in the fridge. This makes approximately 1 cup almond butter.

 

To make the Cookies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the banana, almond butter, honey, and egg. Whisk to combine.
  3. Add the hazelnut meal, flax meal,baking soda, and salt. Whisk until smooth.
  4. Fold in your mini chocolate chips.
  5. Drop the dough in 1 1/2 tablespoonful amounts on your parchment paper (I like using a medium ice-cream scoop), spreading them out so that they don’t touch. With very wet hands or a very wet spatula, lightly press the top of each cookie to flatten it slightly (re-wetting as you go). This just helps them get a nice cookie shape.
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden.
  7. Allow to fully cool on your baking tray (they’re too fragile to handle when hot).

The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless) | sisterbakers.com

Chocolate Almond Cake

In the mood for chocolate (as always), I tried my whisk at yet a new recipe, a flourless almond chocolate mousse cake. It made me think of the Nigella Lawson mousse cake I did a while back. It has a little bit more consistency than the chocolate cloud cake (ie holds together more), but tastes as light and wonderful.

 

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Serve with sweetened vanilla whipped cream for ultimate, lick-your-plate effect. Although, as you can tell from the pictures of Gabrielle below, whipped cream wasn’t quite necessary. Fingers dipped straight into the molten cocoa center seemed to work just as well.

 

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makes 1 large cake

 

6 oz (170 g) semisweet chocolate, chopped

½ cup coconut oil

½ tsp salt

4 eggs, separated

½ cup light brown sugar

1/3 cup plain whole milk yogurt

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup almond meal (ground almonds)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F or 180 C. Line a medium round baking tin with parchment paper.
  2. In a microwave safe bowl, melt the coconut oil with the chocolate (1-2 minutes).
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the egg whites on medium-high with ¼ cup of the sugar until stiff peaks form.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix the egg yolks with the remaining ¼ cup of sugar until light and creamy. Add the yogurt and the vanilla and mix. Whisk in the chocolate-coconut oil mixture until fully incorporated.
  5. With a spatula, fold the egg whites into the egg-yolk mixture until mixture is homogenous and fluffy.
  6. Pour into prepared baking tin. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until center is set and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  7. Since this is a delicate cake, let it rest in the pan until cooled down.

 

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And my favorite picture: Girl vs Cake

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Super Healthy and Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies

Super Healthy and Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies - Sisterbakers.com

Ready for some magical words you never thought could be uttered in the same sentence as delicious chocolate chip cookies? No butter, no flour, no sugar. Yes you read that right and no it’s not a typo. These are seriously delicious and though I can’t say they taste  like a good old-fashioned chocolate chip cookie (they bake up like a cookie with a muffin texture), they will certainly curb any cravings you might have and are great for people on restricted diets. Enjoy!

Super Healthy and Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies - Sisterbakers.com

Recipe:

Super Healthy and Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies:

Makes 30+ cookies

1/2 cup mashed banana (approx. 1 large banana, over-ripe)

1/2 cup unsweetened almond butter

1/2 cup honey (add 1/4 cup honey if you like sweeter cookies)

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

3 cups almond meal/flour

1 – 1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips (65% or more)

  1. Preheat your oven to 350˚F. Line two baking sheets with silpats or parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the banana, almond butter, honey, eggs and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine until smooth. 
  3. Add the salt, baking soda and almond meal. Mix well.
  4. Fold in your chocolate chips.
  5. Using a medium ice cream scoop (approx 1 1/2 tbsp), distribute the cookies evenly on the prepared baking sheet.
  6. Wet your hands or wet the bottom of a measuring cup, and lightly press each cookie down to flatten the tops (re-wetting as needed). Because there is no butter or oil in these cookies, they won’t spread out when baking. They’ll bake in whatever shape you put them on the cookie sheet. If you like the ball shape, then by all means, leave them on the baking sheets as your dropped them on without flattening them. I prefer the look of a flattened cookie.
  7. Bake for 10-11 minutes until lightly golden.
  8. Allow to cool 15-20 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack. Allow to cool completely and enjoy warm or at room temperature!

Flourless Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

Flourless Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies - Sisterbakers.com

If my sister is obsessed with brownies I think it’s becoming pretty obvious I’m obsessed with variations of chocolate chip cookies, in particular the flourless kind. These cookies were the brainchild of leftover unsweetened coconut flakes and a craving for chocolate chip cookies. I substituted the almond meal from my Flourless Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with coconut flakes and the result was ah-mazing! The cookies were soft and chewy and oh-so-delicious. If you love coconut and chocolate, then you will looove these. Enjoy!

Recipe:

Flourless Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies:

Makes 28-30 cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup unsweetened creamy almond butter

2/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate-chips

  1. Preheat your oven to 350˚F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpats.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter, almond butter and sugar and mix until thoroughly combined.
  3. Add the eggs and vanilla. Mix again.
  4. Add the coconut flakes, baking soda and salt. Mix until completely combined.
  5. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  6. Drop the cookies in 1 1/2 tablespoonfuls balls onto your prepared baking sheets, making sure to leave space between them as they will spread out when baking.
  7. Refrigerate the cookie dough for 15-30 minutes.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden.
  9. Allow to cool completely on baking sheets before transferring them to a plate or they will fall apart. These are very fragile when warm.

Flourless Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies - Sisterbakers.com

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