White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice

The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice, is too good to resist.

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With the combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, these little morsels of deliciousness are too good to refuse.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

It’s the end of term. The summer holidays loom large. I don’t know about the rest of parents out there, but I’m reaching my tipping point. I’m maxed. Between sports days, special assemblies, summer fetes, non-uniform days, beach days (oh yes); with four kids all in separate classes, I’ve stopped knowing whether I’m coming or going. My wine consumption has hit a new high. I guess it has the advantage of making me look forward to the holidays. I can’t bloody wait.

Another aspect of this is teachers gifts. I’m not the biggest fan of the concept as I think it’s putting added pressure on parents. But then on the other hand I’m so grateful there’s folk out there willing to put up with my cherubs so I don’t have to, they probably deserve something. With 4 teachers and 3 TAs, that’s a fair few gifts. So I decided to bake. It seemed like a good idea, definitely cheaper. But as I was trying to wrap up 14 bags of traybake squares, I wasn’t so convinced. However, it’s done, and I’m drinking red wine.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

This recipe is one of the traybakes I made for the teachers (the other was my Triple Chocolate Fudgy Brownies). It’s a couple of recipes rolled into one, sprinkled with a bit of my own design. It’s good. The Husband is a huge fan – and this contains condensed milk which usually puts him off. But the combination of white chocolate, lemon curd, and desiccated coconut is a winner, I promise. The only thing you’re actually making here is a basic cookie recipe – the rest is just throwing stuff in. It’s simple, and bloody lovely.

Ingredients

220g unsalted butter, softened
120g granulated sugar
140g brown sugar
2 medium eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
380g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 (half) tsp salt
150-200g white chocolate, chopped into chunks
60g desiccated coconut
80-100g lemon curd
3/4 (three quarters) tin condensed milk

1. Preheat your oven to 170°C (fan). Grease and line a 12×9″ tin, or something similar in size. I use groundnut oil to grease as it has no taste, but butter is good too. Just use some greaseproof paper and don’t bother cutting it to size or anything, just shove it in and make it fit.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

2. In a mixer, or using a hand mixer, cream the butter with both sugars until it has slightly lightened in colour (you don’t have to spend ages at this as you’re making a cookie dough, not a cake). Beat in the eggs and then the vanilla. Add the flour, baking powder and salt, and stir gently until fully combined. Press about 3/4 (three quarters) of the dough into your prepared tin. Put the remainder of the dough in the fridge until you need it.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

3. Pop the tin into your preheated oven for 10 minutes. Whilst you wait for that, chop up your white chocolate.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

4. Remove the cookie base from the oven. It should have started to turn a light golden brown.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

5. Sprinkle over the coconut, evenly covering the cookie base.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

6. Top this with the white chocolate. I used 200g of white chocolate. I’m not scared of it. The more, the merrier. Bring it on. But if you’re not sure (or just have 150g of white chocolate), you could use slightly less *cough* *wimp*.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

7. Add small dollops of lemon curd, evenly spreading them across the base. Use as much as you feel it needs. The tartness of the lemon curd contrasts the sweetness of, basically everything else in this recipe, so don’t be shy of using the full 100g.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

8. Pour over the condensed milk. Now I hate waste, and not using the full tin of condensed milk went against my nature. But this recipe doesn’t need the full tin. So I poured over the required amount. And ate the rest. Winner.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

9. Top all of this lovely goodness with pieces of the remaining cookie dough.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

10. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until nicely golden all over.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

11. Remove and leave to cool completely before trying to slice.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

Depending on the size of your squares, you should get about 20 from this recipe. I tend to trim the edges to make for neater squares. I then eat the trimmings. But they don’t have calories so that’s ok.

White Chocolate, Lemon & Coconut Chewy Cookie Slice - The delicious combination of white chocolate, lemon and coconut, merged together in a chewy cookie slice. | thehecticcook.com

This traybake lasts for a good few days in an airtight container, and the flavours actually seem to intensify over a day or two. There’s something about white chocolate and lemon that goes so well. Give this a go and let me know what you think.

Happy cooking!

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Classic Chocolate Tiffin

Classic Chocolate Tiffin – Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey buttery chocolate mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous!

I love traybakes. Especially ones that require no baking. Simplicity. Always good. If I have to throw together a quick cake for something, I’ll usually make my Mars Bar Slice – in fact that’s exactly what I had to do for a Halloween party the other day when my Oreo Truffle Ghosts were looking a bit pathetic. But I chucked together some Mars Bar Slice as well, and dressed it up as a Mummy (of the Egyptian kind) to claim a Halloween theme.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Tiffin is another super simple traybake that can be thrown together at the drop of a hat. If, like me, you have memories of tiffin from your childhood – biscuity, chocolatey, basically yummy – then hopefully this recipe will make you happy. It’s fairly classic tiffin. I have thrown some marshmallows in, which technically aren’t in the original, but seriously, who’s going to grumble at marshmallows?? However this is classic tiffin in that it doesn’t use melted chocolate like a fridge cake. The chocolate taste is purely from cocoa. So use decent cocoa.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Ingredients

300g digestive biscuits
175g unsalted butter
50g sugar (caster or granulated)
100g (5tbsp) golden syrup
75g cocoa
75g sultanas
40g mini marshmallows
300g milk chocolate
100g white chocolate (optional, if that’s possible)

Note: I use supermarket chocolate for my tiffin as, despite being an ardent Cadbury’s fan, I feel it has too strong a taste to top this traybake. It detracts from the actual tiffin. Obviously this is down to personal taste, but thought I’d mention it 🙂

1. Start by preparing your tin. I used a 9×9″ tin which produced a nice thick tiffin (I’m not in to weedy thin tiffin). Double layer it with clingfilm. I do this for a bit of extra strength, and also because my clingfilm wasn’t quite wide enough, so I laid the first piece horizontal, then the 2nd piece vertical in order to cover the tin completely. This will make removing your tiffin later really easy.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

2. Next, place the digestives in a large bowl or plastic bag, and bash them into small pieces.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

I used the end of my rolling pin to bash them down, which works really well.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

I’m not a fan of large lumps of biscuit in my tiffin, so I crushed them pretty small, but this is totally up to you.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

3. Next, place the butter, sugar, syrup and cocoa in a small pan over a low heat.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Let the mixture melt slowly, stirring often until everything is fully melted – the sugar will dissolve, just be patient.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

4. Add the chocolatey mixture to your bowl of crushed biscuit and stir really well until the biscuit is fully covered in mixture.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

5. Add the sultanas and marshmallows, and again stir really well.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

6. Pour this into your prepared tin and press down well. This will ensure it sticks together nicely. A metal spoon is best for this as the mixture won’t stick to it too much.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Pop this in the fridge for at least an hour to come together.

7. Melt your milk chocolate and white chocolate (if using) either in the microwave – in 15-20 second bursts, stirring in between to avoid it burning – or in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Pour the milk chocolate over the tiffin and spread evenly to the edges, covering every inch. Then drizzle the white chocolate on top.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

I then used a skewer to swirl the white chocolate into a pretty pattern. Because I was taking photos of my tiffin for the blog, I’ve gone all pretty with the white chocolate because it looks nice. You don’t have to do this, and your tiffin will be just as tasty with only a milk chocolate topping. It’s totally up to you.

8. Pop your tray back into the fridge until the chocolate has solidified – at least an hour. Remove from the fridge and, using the clingfilm, take the tiffin out of the tin. Remove the clingfilm and slice your tiffin into square.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

Obviously you can add whatever you like to your tiffin. If you don’t like marshmallows, don’t add them. Crush up some Maltesers and add them in. Chopped up Mars Bar, Smarties, whatever your favourite chocolate is, can all be added. Just don’t go too overboard or your tiffin won’t hold together.

Classic Chocolate Tiffin - Crushed biscuit, sultanas and marshmallows mixed with a gooey chocolatey syrup mixture, then smothered in milk and white chocolate. Absolutely gorgeous! | thehecticcook.com

This doesn’t have to be kept in the fridge once made. Indeed it actually tastes better at room temperature. Super simple and super tasty. Tiffin is a classic and rightly so.

Happy cooking!

Why not try one of these other traybakes? Flapjack, Nutella Magic Bars and Mint Chocolate Brownie Slice 🙂

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.comNutella Magic Bars - A biscuit base topped with Nutella and chocolate morsels, encased in a gooey caramel, these Nutella Magic Bars are sublime! | thehecticcook.comChocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Rich chocolate brownie topped with a delicious mint layer, topped with more chocolate = heaven | thehecticcook.com

 

Chewy Flapjack

Chewy Flapjacks – These are possibly the best flapjacks you’ll ever find – chewy, buttery, syrupy and delicious!

Over the summer we went camping. Yup, all 6 of us. In a very large tent. It was great. Really. I actually thoroughly enjoy camping – when Hannah isn’t getting confused in the middle of the night and weeing on her brother. Reason I’m telling you this (apart from the fact I’m a blogger and oversharing is my thing) is that we went to a pub for a drink whilst on said camping trip, and thought we’d get the kids a wee snack. They were selling homemade flapjack (bit random for a pub, I know) and it was awesome. Like, really good. I love flapjack anyway, but this made me want to get home and try to recreate it asap. It took me two attempts, but I think I may well have cracked it. Seriously, I’m dead chuffed with this. It’s so bloody good. And I’m British, so not comfortable blowing my own trumpet. But this stuff rocks.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

Ingredients 

360g (4 cups) porridge oats
300g (approx. 1.5 cups) unsalted butter
200g (3/4 cups) golden syrup
150g (1 cup) soft light brown sugar
120g (1 cup) sultanas
1/2 tsp salt

1. Preheat your oven to 170°C (fan)/325°F.

2. Butter/oil your baking pan really well (no need to line, just grease it really well).

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

3. Melt the butter, syrup and sugar together in a small pan on the hob over a low heat. You don’t want this to boil so go slow. Remove from the heat once everything has fully melted.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

4. In a large bowl (and I stress the word large as I have a tendency to start with too small a bowl) measure out the oats, salt and sultanas. Mix well.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

5. Add the melted butter mixture to the oats and stir until thoroughly mixed, and all the dry mixture is coated in the buttery mix.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

6. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and pat down really well with a metal spoon (it’ll stick like crazy to a wooden spoon). The more you pat it down, the better it will hold together and the chewier a flapjack you’ll get.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

7. Bake in your preheated oven for 25-30 minutes until nicely golden. The edges will brown quicker – you want a nice colour on the whole tray but take it out before the edges start to turn black. The longer you cook it, the chewier it will be.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

8. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for about 10 minutes before cutting the flapjack into squares, in the pan. The flapjack will be a bit crumbly to cut at this point, especially with the sultanas making it a bit difficult to slice through, but press the crumbly bits down and leave to cool completely before removing the flapjack squares from the pan. It will come together as it cools, hence the importance of leaving it to cool before removing from the pan.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

If you like a flapjack that holds together well, has a lovely chewiness to it, and that is buttery and syrupy, this could well be the flapjack for you. I originally made them in an 8×8″ pan. They were lovely and thick, but not very easy to cut in half for the kids (this was important as I’d calculated the calorie content of each square and it was fairly horrific – I’m not telling you it as I don’t want to scare you). So I made them again in my 13×7″ traybake pan, they came out lovely, and I felt less guilty about feeding them to the kids. If you have a pan that’s similar in size (by area) to a 13×7″ I’d bake the flapjack in that (9×9″ would work well). If you don’t care about the calorie content of each square and want your flapjack a bit thicker, use an 8×8″ pan and cook it for a little longer.

Chewy Flapjacks - These are possibly the best flapjacks you will ever find. Chewy, buttery, syrupy, delicious! | thehecticcook.com

Happy cooking!

 

If you’re looking for some more traybake ideas then check out my Mint Chocolate Brownie Slice, Mars Bar Slice and Nutella Magic Bars.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Rich chocolate brownie topped with a delicious mint layer, topped with more chocolate = heaven | thehecticcook.comMars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.comNutella Magic Bars - A biscuit base topped with Nutella and chocolate morsels, encased in a gooey caramel, these Nutella Magic Bars are sublime! | thehecticcook.com
 

Mars Bar Slice

Mars Bar slice – really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

The plague has come to the HC house. The plague I tell you. Well a crappy virus at least. My little germ factories (aka the children) brought it home originally. They all fell ill, one after the other, then both the Husband and I came down with it too. He’s been away with work though. I’m not sure what is worse. Being ill away from home, or being ill with 4 children to look after. I, at least had the cavalry (my mum) for a couple days which helped a lot. But all-in-all, it’s been a fairly miserable week for all of us.

So what could possibly make the week a little brighter? Well, lets start with this Mars Bar Slice. This is so friggin simple, but so ridiculously tasty. I can’t have this in the house as I tend to sneak a square every time I go into the kitchen (and I practically live in the kitchen). Aside: Does anyone else have to covertly eat sweet things, without their kids catching a whiff? – usually at the barest crinkle of a wrapper, or opening of a tupperware my 4 kids are on me like a pack of hyenas.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

This has become my favourite treat to take to parties and barbecues. I can throw it together in a morning, it’s so bloody simple, and yet folk seem to love it. It’s a crowd pleaser.

Before we start on the actual making of this slice, we need a serious chat about chocolate. Now I love most kinds of chocolate. I’m not really a chocolate snob. For baking I’ll use the supermarket own stuff because it is really tasty, cheap, and has no real distinctive flavour. As much as I love Cadbury, I find it’s unique flavour can be a bit overwhelming on certain cakes and traybakes. So more often than not, I would recommend using an unbranded milk chocolate. However. In this case I cannot over stress the need to use Galaxy chocolate to top this Mars Bar slice. Obviously both Mars Bar and Galaxy are the same brand, so using the same chocolate to add a thick chocolate coating to the top of the Mars Bar slice, properly takes them to the next level. It may sound insignificant. It is not. That is all.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

Ingredients

9 Mars Bars, cut into small slices
170g unsalted butter, cubed
1tbsp golden syrup
170g Rice Krispies
390g Galaxy chocolate

Note: I use 9 Mars Bars because you can buy a pack of 9. If it’s cheaper to buy two packs of 4, that will be fine. The amount of Mars Bars can be variable, just don’t vary too far from 9 as you want your Mars Bar slice nice and chewy. Also, I use the 390g bar of Galaxy, hence the random quantity.

1. Melt the Mars Bar slices with the butter in a large bowl in the microwave.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

I do this in 30 second blasts, stirring in between. The Mars Bar will remain a little lumpy due to the nougat, but as long as all the butter is melted, you’re done. Add the syrup and stir in.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

2. Add the Rice Krispies and mix well.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

Don’t do what I always do and forget that I need to use a bigger bowl.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

3. Once the mixture is mixed thoroughly (really mix it to ensure all the cereal is coated with chocolate), flatten the mixture into a lined tray. I use a 9″ square silicon tray, so I don’t have to line it. I find this is a good size for this amount of mixture.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

 

Refrigerate this for at least an hour to harden.

4. Break up the chocolate for the topping in a bowl, and melt it in the microwave (again, 30 second bursts).

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

 

Pour this over the tray of Mars Bar slice, sprinkle with some sprinkles to decorate if desired (who doesn’t need sprinkles in their life?), and pop back in the fridge to firm up – but not too long as it’s easier to slice if not rock solid.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

 

Slice and eat serve.

Mars Bar slice - really simple, incredibly tasty treat made from Mars Bars and rice cereal | thehecticcook.com

This tends to lose its ‘crunch’ the longer you keep it. So don’t keep it too long. Eat it. Eat it all.

Happy cooking!

 

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice

Chocolate brownie and mint join forces to create this amazing traybake. A must for all chocolate mint fans.

I have a bit of sweet tooth. Ok so the Husband is currently guffawing into his tea. Fine, it’s maybe more than a bit. It’s maybe more like a whole mouthful of sweet teeth. I keep seeing all these tv programmes about how bad sugar is for you, and the celebrities giving it up left, right and centre. And I have tried. But I can’t. I just can’t.

I have a particular fondness for cake. So much so, that just over a year ago I started a cake club with a few of my friends. We started off trying new things, having a theme each month, and experimenting with what we made. That has since turned into just any excuse for us to get together of an evening once a month, without any screaming children, drink some wine, and eat cake. Needs must.

DSC_0066

So this was my last bake for Cake Club (it deserves the capitals). I’m an absolute sucker for chocolate mint. I’d happily chomp my way through a box of After Eights given half a chance – or if the guilt didn’t set in. So I’d seen these knocking about Pinterest for a while, and decided it was time to give them a go. I used my own recipe for the brownie, and made something up for the mint layer. Thankfully it worked, and the result was a pretty god damn good slice of deliciousness.

Ingredients
Brownie:

200g dark chocolate, 70% cocoa
250g unsalted butter, softened
300g caster sugar
100g plain flour
50g cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
3 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

1. Line and grease a 9″ tin, or a similarly sized tin. You can see that by ‘line’, I was highly precise. I used some groundnut oil to grease, but you could use spray oil or melted butter.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.comChocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com2. Melt the dark chocolate, either in the microwave in 30 second bursts (stir well between each time, as chocolate burns pretty easily), or in a bowl over a pan of simmering water on the cooker. Set this aside to cool slightly.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

3. Cream the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy. I used a hand mixer this time which takes a bit more mixing than my standing mixer, but this is what adds lightness to your mixture so you can’t really be half-arsed about it. Then beat in the 3 eggs and finally the vanilla.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

4. In a separate bowl sieve the flour, cocoa, salt and baking powder. It’s best to sieve these ingredients to avoid any lumps.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.comChocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com
5. Add the melted chocolate to the butter/sugar mixture and fold in. Try to be as gentle as possible to retain as much air in the mixture as possible.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com
 Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

6. Add the dry ingredients and again fold everything in together. This is quite a thick brownie mixture – often brownie mixes are fairly liquid.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

7. Fill your pre-lined tin with this mixture and smooth out as much as possible. It’s so thick this mixture, that it takes a bit of effort to get it into the corners, and evenly spread – the baking parchment moves about a lot and makes it quite fiddly, but the parchment is a godsend when you have to take the slice out of the tin.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

8. Bake this for 30 minutes at 160°C(fan)/300°F/Gas 2. Don’t worry about whether the centre is cooked or any such gubbins at this point. Just trust the process. Let the brownie cool completely on a wire rack (still in the tin), then put it in the fridge for at least an hour to fully cool. The trick with brownie is to cook it at a lowish heat until its not quite done, then cool it completely once out so that it retains that lovely gooey middle we all love, but you can slice it fairly easily.

Mint Layer:

100g unsalted butter, softened
400g icing sugar
3 tbsp milk
3 tsp peppermint extract
green colouring

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

9. Start to beat the butter and icing sugar (no need to sieve) together, then add the remaining ingredients and beat and beat and beat some more, until you have a lovely light fluffy minty green buttercream. This is where standing mixers come into their own – I had no idea buttercream could be so fluffy and gorgeous until I owned my mixer. However, if you don’t have one, at least use a hand mixer (beg, borrow or steal if necessary) and beat it until you’re thoroughly bored. Then beat it some more. I promise you, the more you beat it, the better it will be.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

10. Layer the mint buttercream onto the brownie (still in the tin) and spread it evenly to fully cover the bottom layer. Chuck this into the fridge for at least half an hour to let the buttercream harden.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

In case you were wondering, I used the above peppermint extract (mine is from Lakeland, but I think most supermarkets will have some) and green colouring (it’s a paste because that’s what I use for cake decoration, but you could use any green colouring you can get your hands on). If you’re like my lovely friend Sarah, who goes loopy at the merest hint of colouring, you can leave it out completely. It’ll still taste exactly the same, it just won’t have that amazing 70’s vibe about it.

Chocolate Top Coat:

200g milk chocolate
15g unsalted butter

11. Melt the chocolate together with the butter, again either in the microwave or in a bowl over simmering water. Pour this over the mint layer and spread to fully cover. I topped mine with some Aero mint balls for decoration.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

12. Leave the chocolate to cool and set at room temperature, then take the whole thing out of the tin (using the paper) and slice into whatever sized pieces you desire.

Chocolate Mint Brownie Slice - Chocolate brownie and mint come together in this decadent traybake, a must for all mint fans | thehecticcook.com

I found that the longer this was left, the mintier it seemed to get. Not that it lasted that long. With the three layers, its not the quickest of traybakes to make, but its one of those first bakes that I’ll most definitely be baking again. It is truly worth it.

Anyway, I promised myself some Ben’n’Jerry’s once I’d finished this blog. So I’ll be off….

Happy cooking!

Nutella Magic Bars

These are honestly, just like the title suggests, pure magic. I only came across them recently, from Pinterest, but they have made a big impression, and will feature in my baking repertoire from now on. A lot. If you like Nutella (or in this case, a supermarket substitute claiming to be the same), and gooey, sticky caramel, this recipe is definitely for you.

Nutella Magic Bars - A biscuit base topped with Nutella and chocolate morsels, encased in a gooey caramel, these Nutella Magic Bars are sublime! | thehecticcook.com

It would appear that ‘magic bars’ are a type of traybake from our friends across the pond. From what I can gather – and do let me know if I’m wrong – pretty much anything and everything can top a magic bar. The key ingredients appear to be a biscuit base and condensed milk poured over everything, then baked.

So let’s get down to brass tacks.

Ingredients

12 digestive biscuits
30g butter, melted
80g Nutella
100-150g chocolate chips
20g toasted hazelnuts, chopped
1 can of condensed milk

Note: The quantity of chocolate is really just a guide. Use as much as you want. It’s your arteries. Like I said before, the toppings are completely your choice. The sweetie aisle is your oyster. You could totally omit the Nutella if you’d like; use desiccated coconut; use white, milk and/or dark chocolate (I personally like a bit of each); use other types of chocolate like M&M’s or smarties (great for kids) or chopped up Mars bars etc. All that’s stopping you is your own imagination.

1. Either throw the digestives in a blender/blitzer, or bash the living daylights out of them in a bag with a rolling pin. Add this to the melted butter in a bowl.

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2. Line a baking tray with baking paper/parchment – by ‘line’, I mean ‘place in’. Nothing fancy. Just put the paper in the tray. My tray was 12″x7″, but a 9″ square would work, or anything of similar size.

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3.  Pour the biscuit mix into the tray and squish it down well and good. Get it really quite compact and into the edges and corners.

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4. Plop the nutella all over this base layer. Just plop it on, as random as you like. Or in nice straight rows for you OCD types.

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5. On top of this, sprinkle all the toppings you want to add. Spread them all over the biscuit layer and Nutella, no need to be fancy, just a nice even layer of loveliness. Then pour your whole tin of condensed milk over that. And then lick out the tin.

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6. Pop this in a preheated oven – about 170C fan – for about 25 minutes, until it’s bubbling and golden. I might have slightly over done mine (again I’m still using the excuse of a new oven, although that’ll get old soon). Let it cool pretty much completely before you take it out of the tray and slice it up. If you can. Mine was still pretty warm when I started into it.

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I might have eaten three squares in the process of cutting it up. It’s just that good. It can’t be helped. Well unless you’re weird like the Husband who, ‘doesn’t like caramel’ – weirdo. So I had to offload a fair bit of this to my friend Laura to save me from myself. Sorry Laura – she’s a lot skinnier than me though, so I don’t feel too bad.

Nutella Magic Bars - A biscuit base topped with Nutella and chocolate morsels, encased in a gooey caramel, these Nutella Magic Bars are sublime! | thehecticcook.com

If you don’t like this, I’m not sure I can be your friend (I have to let the Husband off as we have four kids together…). Enjoy!

Happy cooking!