Tasty Caramel Wedel Chocolate Balls

November was such a successful month for Kikiliciouss so I decided to start the beautiful month of December with another Wedel chocolate-based recipe. I was so glad to read your comments on the brownie and the wonderful feedback. I hope this recipe is just as popular and why not, even more popular than the previous one.

I wanted to create a chocolate truffles recipe, because they are just ideal for this time of the year when we have more free time to cook and why not leave a great mark on our loved ones through cooking.

Parting from my beloved dark chocolate, this time I decided to create truffles with a base of caramel Wedel chocolate. The combination of all these flavors is fantastic and the truffles just melt in your mouth and it`s a sweet pleasure.

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No-Bake Oreo Cheesecake

I would lie if I would say that I’m an Oreo-cookie addicted. I like them of course; but always take away the filling. Way to sweet for me.
This dessert was a request from a dear friend of mine who visited Albania this summer. He is obviously in love with these cookies, so I was up for it. I googled and searched a bit about Oreo desserts and ended up with this great no bake Oreo cheesecake, a different recipe of cheesecake that me and you are used to.
To be honest I was touched by his words after finishing his first slice of my cheesecake. I would love to share his message with you, but he wants to remain personal and of course I will fulfil his desire. His words, your words, comments; make my day brighter and inspire me to keep working harder !

 

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Blackberry Cobbler

I love blackberries and this period of year is perfect for experimenting and creating tons of new recipes. Desserts, bake or no bake, drinks, frozen treats, cocktails etc.
This recipe is not only super delicious, but easy and quick aswell. It’s also a great take away if you’re having picnic or outside party.

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Method:

 

Preheat oven to 176°C

In a small bowl toss blackberries with 25 gram of sugar

In a clean bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and 50 gram of sugar

In another bowl whisk liquid ingredients : milk, melted butter and vanilla

Mix together into a batter dry and liquid ingredients

Divide evenly the berries into ramekins

Cover berries with an equal amount of the batter

Place ramekins on a baking sheet

Bake for 40-45 minutes until topping is golden brown and blackberries are bubbling

Top with ice cream or whipped cream

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Photography by Eranda Janku, unless otherwise stated

Pie Crust Recipe

An easy and worth doing it from scratch pie crust recipe !

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 Method: 

 

In a food processor, place the flour, salt, and sugar and process until combined

Add the butter and process, using the pulse button, until the mixture is crumbly (about 15 seconds)

Pour 60 ml of ice water in a slow, steady stream, through the feed tube until the dough starts to clump together when pinched (it should not be a solid ball of dough)

Add remaining water, if necessary

Do not process more than about 30 seconds

Turn the dough out onto your work surface and gather it into a ball

Divide the dough into two equal pieces, flatten each portion into a 12 cm disk, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 – 60 minutes; or until firm enough to roll out (This will chill the butter and allow the gluten in the flour to relax)

At this point you can also freeze the dough for about a month

Defrost the dough in the refrigerator for several hours or even overnight before using

For each disk of pastry, on a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry to fit into a 20-23 cm pie pan

To prevent the pastry from sticking to the counter and to ensure uniform thickness, keep lifting up and turning the pastry a quarter turn as you roll (always roll from the center of the pastry outwards to get uniform thickness)

To make sure it is the right size, take your pie pan, flip it over, and place it on the rolled out pastry

The pastry should be about 2 inches (5 cm) larger than your pan

When the pastry is rolled to the desired size, lightly roll pastry around your rolling pin, dusting off any excess flour as you roll

Unroll onto the top of your pie pan

Never pull the pastry or you will get shrinkage (shrinkage is caused by too much pulling of the pastry when placing it in the pan)

Gently lay in pan and with a small floured piece of pastry or with your fingertips, lightly press the pastry onto the bottom and up the sides of the pan

Flute the edges of the pastry or use the tines of a fork to seal the pastry

If possible, chill the pie crust before filling and baking

The pastry is now ready to use

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Photography by Eranda Janku, unless otherwise stated

Strawberry Crostata – Pasta Frolla Version

I love Italian food, especially the sweets. A crostata is an Italian baked tart or pie, a “rustic free-form version of an open fruit tart” that may also be baked in a pie plate.

Today’s version is made (like it should actually be cooked) with Italian sweet pastry dough – pasta frolla (find the recipe of it on web HERE).

This easy recipe to prepare, but really delicious to taste will definitely make your day and it is perfect dessert for family and friends “Dessert Time” !

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How To Cook Traditional Greek Bougatsa

Greek Bougatsa always reminds me of my childhood and holidays in Greece. I have been exploring a lot Greece with my family during our summer vacations and I would always have for breakfast this Greek pastry called Bougatsa. This is like one of my fondest childhood memories to me, and even now as a grown up I crave for Bougatsa and try to cook it whenever I’ve got time. I got this recipe from our friends in Greece and tried it. It’s not easy cooking Bougatsa, as you must try several times to actually get the right flavor. But I guarantee you; you’re going to love it as much as I do. And making it by yourself is always a special feeling. Last morning I felt like cooking my own Greek breakfast and now it can be your Greek craving too.

The key to make the most flavourful Greek Bougatsa is to use a good quality fresh butter to butter the phyllo sheets. The authentic Greek Bougatsa recipe calls for ‘galaktos’ butter made from cow’s milk, which gives a very rich flavour and amazing smell! When preparing phyllo based Greek desserts, like this Bougatsa recipe, a little trick to make the phyllo crispier and flakier is to sprinkle the melted butter over the phyllo sheets, rather than brushing them. Working with phyllo can be tricky as its brittle and can dry out very quickly, so check the handling tips before start preparing this Bougatsa recipe. Don’t forget to brush the top of the bougatsa with enough butter and scar with a knife to help release the steam.

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Ingredients for phyllo dough :

1024 gram all-purpose flour

2 tsp Raki (or white vinegar)

2 tsp of extra virgin olive oil

juice of 1 lemon

293-314 ml hot water

flour for work surface and hands
Note: The key to the recipe is hot water. Use hottest tap water.

To roll out with a pasta machine

 

Method:

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix by hand until it holds together

On a floured surface, knead by hand for 15-20 minutes until soft and malleable, with a smooth feel

Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight before using

To make phyllo sheets for pastries, run it through the pasta machine (with settings from 1-10, with 1 being the thickest), gradually working it down to setting mark 9 on your machine.

Unused phyllo can be kept in the refrigerator, in air-tight wrapping, for up to 10 days after making

Yield: approximately 1.3 kg

 

Ingredients for the bougatsa :

400-450g phyllo dough

200g butter, melted

1kg milk

200g sugar

120g all-purpose flour

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

For the topping :

ground cinnamon

icing sugar

 

Method:

Make the filling : add in a large bowl the sugar, eggs and flour; whisk until the ingredients combine

Pour into a saucepan the milk and the vanilla extract and bring to the boil

Right before the milk comes to the boil, ladle 1/3 of the milk into the flour mixture and stir

Turn the heat down and add the flour mixture into the saucepan with the remaining warm milk

Whisk very quickly, until the mixture has thickened and is smooth and creamy (Do not remove the pan from the stove) This should take 2-3 minutes

Remove the pan from the stove and stir occasionally, to keep the custard from forming a skin on top, while you prepare the rest of the bougatsa recipe

For this bougatsa recipe you will need a large baking tray, approx. 20×30 cm

Using a pastry brush, butter the bottom and sides of the tray

To make this bougatsa recipe you will need 10-12 phyllo sheets

Use 5-6 sheets of phyllo for the bottom of the bougatsa and 4-5 sheets for the top

Begin by layering the sheets one by one on the bottom of the tray, making sure to sprinkle each one thoroughly with melted butter

Tip in the custard, smoothing the surface with a spatula and fold the phyllo sheet flaps over the custard.

Top the bougatsa with 4-5 phyllo sheets, sprinkling each sheet with melted butter

With a knife trim some of the excessive phyllo, if you like, and roll the rest on the edges

Brush the top with enough butter and scar the top of the bougatsa with a sharp knife

Bake the bougatsa in preheated oven at 160 for 45 minutes, until the phyllo is crisp and golden

Let the bougatsa cool down for a while before serving and sprinkle with icing sugar and cinnamon

 

Enjoy while still warm with a hot cup of coffee or tea !

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Photography by Eranda Janku, unless otherwise stated

White Chocolate Cake

I have some white chocolate lovers requesting me to a do a white chocolate cake, so here I am sharing one of my few white chocolate recipes. I got to the conclusion I should cook more often with white chocolate !

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Method:

 

Preheat oven to 180°C and line with parchment paper a 23-25cm round springform pan (or any pan u have in hand)

Melt 225 gram of white chocolate with the butter over simmering water, using the rest of chocolate for decoration

Mix egg yolks and sugar until dense and creamy

Slowly while continuing to mix add the melted chocolate

Add flour and chopped almonds

In a clean bowl whisk the egg whites until they stiff peaks

Fold the egg whites carefully into the batter

Bake for 45 minutes or until you insert a toothpick and it comes out clean

Melt the rest of white chocolate and pour it on top, you can add some shaved chocolate aswell

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Photography by Eranda Janku, unless otherwise stated

Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Pie is a traditional sweet dessert, often eaten during the fall and early winter, especially for Thanksgiving and Christmas in the United States and Canada. The pumpkin is a symbol of harvest time and featured also at Halloween.

This recipe is fuller, creamier and this way heavier. But in the end, who can turn down such delicious dessert like pumpkin pie ?!

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