White Chocolate Liqueur

white choc meltDo all creative writers like to cook? I certainly do. Cooking feels as creative as writing, even for something as mundane as making dinner every night.

Last week, I decided to combine a little craftwork with cooking (or rather heating and stirring, it wasn’t that taxing) and came up with these very cute bottles of white chocolate liqueur for my sister’s birthday.

I got the recipe from Prima, but I did find as I made it that I needed to do some adjustments to the basic recipe. The recipe I had suggested simply heating double cream and condensed milk together until just about to boil. Anyone who has ever made caramel for millionaire’s shortbread will know that it burns really easily so slow, gentle heat and continual stirring is a must.

Anyway, here is the recipe. Enjoy!

White Chocolate Liqueur

  • Servings: 30 small bottles, approx
  • Time: 30 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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  • white choc liqueur400g white chocolate, finely chopped
  • 500ml double cream
  • 397g tin sweetened condensed milk
  • 400ml white rum

Place the double cream and the condensed milk into a saucepan and slowly bring to the boil, stirring frequently (otherwise the condensed milk will stick and burn).

Put the finely chopped white chocolate into a bowl and pour over the hot mixture. Mix well until it has all melted. Leave to cool for five minutes.

Pour in the white rum and mix well to combine. Allow to cool completely. Pour into sterilised bottles, seal and store in the fridge. Will keep for up to a month.

 

I got my little bottles from Miniature Glass Bottles

Victoria Beckham Scoffs Enormous Cheesecake…

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Vickie B – pic courtesy of the International Business Times

A friend of a friend of a friend once told me a story about Victoria Beckham

Apparently, the Beckhams are actually lovely employers (the friend of a friend etc knew someone employed by them), but they do (allegedly) insist on one stipulation from their employees – thou shalt not eat in front of Victoria.

I am intrigued. Is such a rule put in place because Victoria turns feral when faced with people tucking into food? There you are, innocently eating your cheese and ham sandwich and about to dive into that home-made flapjack when suddenly Victoria ATTACKS you. She snatches the sandwich from your lips and wolves it down in seconds. She grabs the flapjack from your hands and crams it into her gob. She finishes the food and howls at the moon, “GIMME MORE!!”

Oh please, let my imagining of this story be true! Anyway, I mention this as I am conscientiously trying to live as Paleo as possible (more of this in the next blog post), so I fear a feral moment of my own may well be coming on soon.

If such a wild deviation from the path of the hunter-gatherer diet did present itself, it would probably take the form of Mama Highheelsandpinkglitter’s white chocolate cheesecake. Don’t bother with that baking cheesecake nonsense and instead create this lovely vision of white deliciousness…

Enjoy – and if you do want to go feral on it, I’d recommend reading the following guide to The Attack on The Cheesecake

White Chocolate Cheesecake (serves 10-12)

Sunflower Oil for greasing
40g unsalted butter
50g dark chocolate
200g packet hob nobs
250 g marscapone
200g Greek yogurt
500g white chocolate (cheaper stuff melts better)
75g castor sugar
284 ml double cream, lightly whipped
Cocoa powder for dusting

Lightly oil a n 8-in loose bottomed cake tin with the sunflower oil. Melt the butter and half the dark chocolate in a pan, then stir in the biscuit crumbs until well mixed. Press on to the base of the cake tin and chill.

Melt the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. When it’s melted beat in the marscapone, yogurt and sugar.

Fold the whipped cream in and pour on to the biscuit base.

Grate the rest of the dark chocolate and scatter over the top of the cheesecake, then dust with sieved cocoa. Chill 4 hours or overnight.
 

 

Fortune Favours the Spendthrift

Favours – again, what’s with weddings and daft names..? Wedding breakfast when you probably don’t mean bacon and eggs eaten at 9am and favours when you mean small gifts dished out to guests.

Should the budget bride splash out on such extravagances? You can pay a small fortune for customised miniatures, bottle stoppers*, chocolates et al. Again though, the pink, frothy tidal wave that is wedding planning may well sweep me off my feet and I’ll feel as if my wedding just isn’t right without some wee piece of kitsch to give out at the end of proceedings.

Sweet, sweeter, sweetest? On sale at Lakeland. Diabetics, look away now

So, I could make my own… I visited Lakeland at Windermere recently. Any bakers out there? If so, you’ll know what a huge deal Lakeland Windermere is; the mothership of baking. Here, all kinds of wonderful things are available to buy – moulds, tins, chocolate melts, sugar paste, sugar craft. If baking and all things creatively culinary is your thing, best leave the credit card safely at home.

I picked up a handmade chocolate mould at said store, so I’m wondering about venturing down the home-made chocolates road. This could get really serious! I could temper the chocolate for a smooth, glossy finish. Then there could be a variety of fillings:

Alas, my concentration span isn’t the longest**. I fear I would embark on this fine endeavour and get really, really bored half-way through, quality control would dip rapidly and the guests would end up with half a chocolate each. This probably needs a re-think…

LATE NEWS

Flash update! I’ve been diet coke free for two weeks. So, my teeth feel better (less sensitive), my stomach feels flatter and I feel as if my energy levels are more evenly spaced throughout the day.

There is an awful lot of miraculous things written about deserting the D-word, including the weight loss one. Y’know, you stop drinking something rammed packed full of nasty chemicals and suddenly you lose three or four pounds. Sadly, not true in my case…

 

 

*I love these bottle stoppers, but they would cost in excess of £300 for all of my guests…

**Personally, I blame the iPhone. Instant access to all those apps has ruined me forever.