Waffle Birthday Cake

wafflecake

Here’s a different twist on a traditional layered birthday cake, I made it using 4 round Belgian waffles. It’s kid-friendly to assemble! For this one, I chose a special Belgian Waffle recipe that is tasty just on its own. I added maple syrup in-between layers to keep the waffles moist. To finish off I iced the “cake” with chocolate ganache and decorated with mini candy-coated chocolate bits.

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Here’s all the layers of waffles after brushing  maple syrup in between layers and adding ganache on the cake sides.

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Here’s a picture of the waffle cake of what was left from a birthday party.

Tips

  1. The trick to making light waffles is to add whipped egg whites to incorporate air into the batter.
  2. Freeze the waffles ahead to save time. Adding the maple syrup to a thawed waffle will help keep the moistness of the waffles.
  3. Use a serrated knife or bread knife to slice the cake.

Ganache Recipe

  • ½ cups heavy cream
  • 12 oz semi-sweet chopped chocolate (or 50-60% cocoa)
  1. Scald the cream.
  2. Take off heat.
  3. Add chocolate. Let it sit for 2 minutes.
  4. Mix. until well blended.

For frosting cake: Leave at room temperature overnight

For truffle: Leave in refrigerator overnight.

Ice cake: Use in liquid form.

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Spaghetti Squash Quick Meal

Another savoury dish that is quick, easy, and healthy based on this recipe. I changed it according to what freshest ingredients I had on hand and to taste. It is almost like a salad best served at room temperature. You can keep the leftovers in the fridge and heat up later but I find that it was not as well-received in the family as when it was first served.

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Ingredients:

  • Spaghetti squash – roasted cut side down with a bit of oil (bake at approx. 30 minutes of until done)
  • bacon bits (to add some crunch and savoury taste)
  • sliced olives
  • tomato wedges – cherry or grape tomatoes
  • grated cheese (I used French Gruyère)
  • olive oil – the good kind you would use in salads
  1. Roast the spaghetti squash in the oven, cut side down.
  2. Scoop out the spaghetti squash flesh using a big spoon but keeping the long strands to resemble “spaghetti noodles”.
  3. Add the bacon bits, sliced black olive, fresh tomatoes and grated cheese.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil.

Best served at room temperature.

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spaghetti-squash-meal

 

Blueberry Tart on Puff Pastry

What to do with bucketful of blueberries after picking fresh from the farm? A quick and easy dessert with puff pastry and fresh blueberries. This dessert was inspired from this Blueberry Tart recipe. Mine turned out smaller but the taste is wonderfully light and sweet with a bit of tanginess from the cream cheese and lemon.

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I suggest you follow the recipe from the source. With the smaller puff pastry, I adjusted the cream filling proportionately.

 

Delicious Monkeybread With Easy Shortcut

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If you ‘re like me, I like to make our own baked treats at home but sometimes I don’t want to make everything from scratch. This is a shortcut to making delicious monkey bread using a bread machine for the dough and finishing it off in the conventional oven. I’ve reduced the amount of the caramel sauce by half as I find it is just enough sweetness and buttery richness with half the sugar and fat. The result is a pull-apart bread with evenly distributed caramel/cinnamon goodness as an afternoon treat or dessert.

Here’s a step-by-step on how to make it. The recipe follows below.

  1. Prepare the dough as per your bread machines instructions. Use the dough only setting.
  2. Prepare the caramel sauce (with raisins) and set aside.
  3. Once the bread dough is ready, knead a few more times on a clean floured surface and divide into 4 balls. Make into logs and cut into 12 pieces to make approximately 48 pieces of dough.
  4. Dip each small ball of dough in the caramel sauce and layer in a bunt pan. Add the nuts (optional) in between layers. Remember to use oil spray on the inside of the bunt pan. Repeat until all balls of dough are in the bunt pan.
  5. Cover the filled bundt pan and let the dough rise for approximately 20 minutes or until the dough rises to the top level of the bunt pan.
  6. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
  7. While still hot, using oven mitts, carefully put a plate on top of the bundt pan and invert the bundt pan. The monkey bread should easily slide off on to the plate.

 Recipe

For the dough

  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 3 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

For caramel sauce

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup pecans or walnuts

Healthy options and tips

  1. Flour substitute  I substitute up to 3/4 of the white flour to a combination of 1/4 cup oat flour, flaxseed flour (2 tbsp), and whole wheat
  2. Use only half of the caramel sauce.
  3. Add a dash of freshly ground nutmeg.