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Thursday, 31 July 2014

Coconut Mocha 'Frapp'

Last week I broke up for the summer holidays and as tradition goes I always treat myself to something yummy on the way home from work.  Last year it was a strawberries and cream frap from Starbucks and this year it was one of their coconut mochas.  I was really in the mood to try one before however at the time I wanted a hot drink and had it in my head that the new drink I had seen on a billboard somewhere was for a hot chocolate with coconut, at the time I really wanted a hot drink not ice cold so I passed on it.  But last week, Wednesday, was super hot and very sunny and an iced drink really hit the spot.

I love coconut and chocolate.  This drink tastes like a bounty bar whizzed up with ice.    I passed on the cream topping but they did sprinkle it with toasted coconut.  It was very yummy!  The coffee hit worked well with the chocolate and the coconut isn't too sweet.  This isn't the same consistency as the strawberry and cream frap though, this one is more liquid than slush.    

After trying it I knew I had to try and make it at home.  I watched as they made my drink and all they put in the blender was coffee shot, a few pumps of coconut syrup, some ice and the all important chocolate frap mix.  So my first task was to locate the correct ingredients.

First I knew where I could get coconut syrup.  I always keep a stock of hazelnut in the house and still have gingerbread left over from Christmas.  My local Makro store sells all the monin range, but you can get it online if you don't have Makro membership.  Ice and espresso, tick done.  The chocolate frap mix can be brought online from specialist coffee shops that sell for industry.  The stuff I came across was a powder that you mix with milk and store ready to use - a bit like Starbucks.  It was rather expensive though so I decided to experiment.

First I tried this with cocoa powder.  It worked but was rather bland.  Next I tried chocolate milkshake mix (Nesquik) and found it far too sweet.  Finally I decided to try ready made chocolate milkshake, the bottle I used is from Sainsbury.  Just like Goldilocks this was just about right.  So my recipe follows...

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Simple Lemon Bars

I have always loved lemon flavoured cakes, biscuits and puddings.  Lemon Tart has to be my all time favourite, as I have said before, I can quite easily eat a whole tart to myself over a weekend.  Today's recipe is inspired from my 'Leon' cookbook.  Lemon bars are simple to make and consist of a shortcake like base topped with a lemon tart egg mixture.  Baked in the oven and dusted with icing sugar you end up with a tray of sharp but sweet tasting bars.  Perfect with a cup of coffee eaten outdoors.

I have slightly adapted the Leon recipe to make the tarts a little more sharper, simply reducing the amount of sugar does this.    You do need to make sure you have a tin with high sides or you might struggle to get all the mixture in.  I used my 'Delia Silverware' swiss roll tin as it was the correct measurements for the recipe and the height is good although could have been a little taller.

Best to chill and then dust with icing sugar just before serving.  You will find that the icing sugar is absorbed when these little goodies are left overnight so you may need to dust again before serving if you don't intend to eat them all in one go.