Salted Caramel Cookies

Hello my dears!

 

Shortcuts are great. This way you can reach your goal or destination faster and save valuable energy – I’d be lost without my keyboard shortcuts, which make my workflow so much easier… But there are also moments when it pays of to choose the long way and put in a little extra work.

Let’s put that to practical use: While making these cookies we’re adding a small extra step will make that makes a big difference in the end. So do not roll your eyes at me when I ask you later in the recipe to brown the butter before baking the cookies. Because at first glance it may seem like an unnecessary gimmick but later it makes for incredibly tasty cookies. And the caramel of course – that is also very important 😉

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Salted caramel cookies

makes about 15 cookies

  • 200 g of butter
  • 260 g flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 150 g brown sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • approx. 15 soft caramel sweets
  • sea salt

 

Heat the butter in a frying pan and let it brown for 2-3 minutes. Place in a heat-resistant bowl and allow to cool to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 175° C and line two baking trays with baking paper.

In a bowl mix butter and brown sugar until creamy. Mix in egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Then add flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and mix until a cookie dough forms.

Take a heaped tablespoon of dough and wrap it around a piece of caramel until it is fully enclosed. Roll into a ball and place on the baking tray – always keeping enough space between the dough balls. Slightly flatten with your fingers. Sprinkle with some sea salt and bake for about 13 minutes. Leave to set for 5 minutes on the tray, then transfer to a cake rack and allow to cool completely.

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I’m going to repeat myself here: Such a small step with such a great effect! I can not wait to push the next batch of these amazing cookies ❤

Stay sweet & HAPPY BAKING!

xx Kristin

Caramel Cheesecake Ice Cream

Hey Zebras,

I declare this day officially Ice Cream Friday! The weekend is coming and that’s a good reason to celebrate, right? In addition, I had to finally test the ice cream maker add-on for my KitchenAid 🙂

No matter what you are celebrating – this ice cream recipe will be the making of any party! Ice cream, cheesecake, caramel – I mean, how do you top that? Maybe with a large dose of spring sunshine, but as we can never rely on that, let’s get on with this lovely recipe.

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Caramel cheesecake ice cream

for about 1 litre of ice-cream

  • 2 large eggs
  • 150g sugar
  • 200ml cream
  • 300g cream cheese
  • 50g crumbled biscuits (eg ladyfingers)
  • 125g caramel cream (eg from San Ignacio)

 

Prepare your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer information.

Beat the eggs in a large bowl for 1-2 minutes until they are creamy. Gradually add the sugar and beat for about another minute. In a second bowl, mix the cream cheese until creamy, then stir in the cream. Combine both bowls and stir until everything has mixed well. Leave to chill for 1-2 hours in the refrigerator.

Pour into the ice cream maker and freeze for 30-45 minutes, depending on the machine. Add half of the ice cream to a freezer-safe container. Spread half of the caramel cream and biscuit crumbs on the ice and mix lightly with a fork. Add the remaining ice cream on it, cover it with caramel and biscuits and store in the freezer until ready to serve.

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Whether serving alone or together with a warm chocolate cake – this is a world class dessert and insanely delicious!

 

Remain sweet & HAPPY ICECREAM MAKING!

xx Kristin

 

Caramel Shortbread | Let’s travel to Glasgow together!

Hello my lovelies!

 

Today I’m going to take you on a short trip to Scotland, the homeland of Mr. Zebra. We will explore not only the sights but also a few culinary highlights – are you in?

Let’s jump back to the year 2015: I am on a flight, headed to Glasgow, looking to celebrate Hogmanay and hoping to relax a little bit. Conveniently, I had my own personal guide there who could show me the most exciting parts of the city – not just the ones you can find in the guide books. Finally, we stood in front of a small delicatessen shop in Glasgow’s West End and Mr. Zebra had purchased for us an unassuming looking little triangle of biscuit, caramel and chocolate. “Better than Haggis,” I thought and I quickly bit a piece off. And I was far from disappointed! This treat is simple but also very, very tasty! And as you already may know, I have a weak spot for caramel… 😉

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It was my aunt’s birthday soon after I arrived back in Germany and I of course wanted as always to bring her a sweet little thing. With Glasgow in mind, I opted for Caramel Shortbread, or “cat biscuits” as they will be known in my family from now on. Why? That will be revealed by the end of the post.

 

Caramel Shortbread

makes about 24

  • 115g soft butter
  • 55g sugar
  • 175g flour
  • 85g brown sugar
  • 135g butter
  • 3 Tbsp agave syrup or if it’s available: Golden Syrup
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (400g)
  • 140g chocolate

 

Preheat the oven to 200°C (or Gas Mark 6). Prepare a rectangular baking pan or a baking frame (about 20x25cm).

For the base, cream together the butter and sugar, then add the flour and knead until the mixture forms a dough. Press the mixture evenly into the pan and prick it with a fork. Pop it in oven for 10-15 minutes until it is golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool completely.

For the caramel, add brown sugar, butter, syrup and condensed milk in a large shallow pan and bring to a boil over a medium heat. Once it’s hot allow the mixture to simmer for about 5 minutes while you stir constantly until the mixture thickens and turns dark golden. Pour over the cooled shortbread base before smoothing it and leaving it to set.

Melt the chocolate (white, milk, dark, whichever you prefer) in a double boiler and spread in a thin layer evenly over the caramel. Store it briefly in the refrigerator so that it can set, then loosen the frame or the baking pan and cut into pieces.

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And now we can all enjoy a piece of caramel shortbread and some impressions of Scotland…

Now back to the cat biscuits …

When I baked the shortbread for the first time it was colder outside than in the refrigerator so I put the leftover caramel shortbread on the terrace in our “natural fridge” for a few minutes because it had started to melt a bit. Unfortunately I forgot about it and an asshole cat crept up unnoticed, scratched with its claws and then licked up the caramel. When we finally realised something was up there was a large crater in the shortbread and the cat no doubt had a sore tummy… hence the name cat biscuits!

Have you ever been to Scotland? What did you think about their delicious treats?

 

See you, stay sweet & HAPPY BAKING!

xx Kristin

[December 20th] Orange Caramel

Fräulein Zebra Xmas

Still need a sweet gift for Christmas? This might solve you problems…

 

Orange Caramel

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All kinds of sweets make a great gift for Christmas and usually I made a big batch of chocolates for my family – this year it’ll be something different but I can’t tell you yet because they might read this post. But it was always a favorite so why not start a new tradition in you family?

Today I’ll show you a very simple recipe – suitable even when you never made something like that before..

Orangen Caramell

makes about 60

  • 300g sugar
  • 3 teaspoons of vanilla sugar
  • 200ml cream
  • 60ml orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon orange aroma
  • 40g clarified butter / ghee

Mix all the ingredients in a big pot and start heating it up. Let it simmer for about 20 minutes on low heat and stir ocassionally. Then increase the heat to the highest level and boil for another 5-6 minutes to thicken the mix.

Let cool down for 10-15 minutes. Prepare a piping bag by sealing the tip with a clip. Then pour in the caramel mix and secure with another clip. It should look like that:

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Now let it rest in the fridge for 15-20 minutes but check the consistency regularly – you want it to be pipeable not rockhard!

Then you can take out a sheet of baking paper and pipe little swirls of caramel. Let them dry completely, then pack them.

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And now imagine dipping these in some dark chocolate…yummy! But they also taste great without chocolate and will definitely impress everyone!

 

Have a calm weekend & HAPPY COOKING!

xo Kristin

[December 3rd] Turtle Cookies & a great idea for all Cookie Lovers

Fräulein Zebra Xmas

Don’t worry – no animals were harmed while making these cookies! From the outside they resemble the turtle shell but inside they taste like chocolate, nuts and caramel – can it get any better than that?!

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Turtle Cookies

makes about 60 cookies

  • 140g flour
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 115g butter
  • 130g sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 75g grinded hazelnuts
  • 50g chopped almonds
  • 20 soft caramels
  • 4 tbsp cream
  • 50g semisweet chocolate

Separate egg. Mix flour, cocoa powder and salt. Use another bowl to whip up the butter and sugar, then add the egg yolk and milk. Eventually add the flour mix and form a smooth dough. Place in the fridge for about an hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Mix egg white and 4 tbsp of water. Combine hazelnuts and almonds in a little bowl. Form the dough into little balls, dip them into the eggwash and then roll them in the nut mix. Put on a baking tray lined with baking paper and use a little measuring spoon or something similar to make a dent in the middle of the cookies. Bake for 12 minutes – maybe you have to push the dents down again imediately after baking. Let cookies cool completely.

Mix caramels and cream in a little bowl and mircowave – you can also heat it up on the stove – until you have a creamy sauce. Fill caramel sauce into the dents and allow to cool.

Put the chocolate in a zip lock bag and submerge the bag in hot water. Wait till the chocolate is melted, then cut off a little tip and decorate the cookies.

 

Adapted from this recipe.

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That is exactly my type of cookie!! In case you’re searching me – I’m in cookie heaven! What’s your favorite cookie?

 

Lastly I want to tell you something about a great thing that found its way into my advent rituals: The cookie afternoon. Invite all your family and friends: Everybody bakes a big batch of their favorite cookie and packs lots of little bags. Then you take them with you and meet somewhere for coffee. In the end you exchange the cookie bags and you have so many different types of cookies to make you happy!

I love the idea of this because it kinda gives you a kickstart into the christmas time and you get to try so many new recipes you might have never found.

Here are a couple of photos of our cookie afternoon this year:

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Maybe you like the idea, too?

Take care & HAPPY BAKING!

xo Kristin

#quickmonday | Plum Pancakes

Yippieeeee! Finally no more babyfood for me!

I got my wisdom teeth removed last friday and since then my food choices were limited to mush, soup and really soft rolls. But it’s finally getting better! My cheeks are almost back to normal and the rainbow of colours is slowly disappearing from my face.

But still, today’s #quickmonday recipe is very easy to chew – I’m sure you understand 😉

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Plum Pancakes with Cinnamon Caramel Topping

males 10-15 pancakes

  • 100g plum
  • 1 egg
  • 50g yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 50g flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • butter
  • 75g sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp caramel sauce

 

Wash, pit and finely dice the plums. Beat egg until white and creamy, add yoghurt, sugar and oil. Mix flour, baking powder and salt and fold into egg mix. Add plum pieces.

Melt a little bit of butter in a pan and heat on medium-low heat. Scoop teaspoons of batter onto the hot surface and cook from both sides until golden brown.

For the topping mix sour cream, cinnamon and powdered sugar. Swirl in the caramel sauce.

Serve with pancakes and some fresh plum.

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To me this recipe is pure late summer bliss ❤

Today the weather here is also really, really beautiful and I’m thinking about going for a little walk to get my circulation going.

 

Have a lovely week  & HAPPY COOKING!

xo Kristin

Mini Caramel Cheesecakes [bite-sized deliciousness]

I am addicted.

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I know, I know. This is horrible news to you and I should really try to get away from this stuff. But I can’t. It’s just NOT possible. I always get back to this creamy, sugary, honey golden treat.

During my New Year’s Trip to Ireland [Photos will be soon online here] we discovered a gorgeous, cute and fantastic gay café in Dublin where we also had our Dinner on New Year’s Eve. Besides the super tasty main course they had the most amazing cakes for desert! The cake I had was epic!! When our host Al said the magic words “.. and we also have a Caramel Cheesecake topped with Pecans and Chocolate” I had an instant smile on my face – I knew this would be a great night! And I was right! The cake was even better than I imagined it and left me with a round belly and a satisfied grin.
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Ever since that evening I can’t forget about the lovely combination of cheesecake and caramel. So when fellow Bloggerette Clara from tastesherrif announced the theme for her monthly baking event [ CHEESECAKE! ] it only took me seconds to decide what I would try to bake.

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And so the search began. None of the recipes I found online really convinced me, but after some little changes here and there I am happy to present you the final result! But be careful – if you’re addicted to caramel or cheesecake you might not want to read more and eventually increase your addiction.

Mini Caramel Cheesecakes

makes about 20 mini cakes

  • 340g unsalted cream cheese
  • 60g sugar
  • 60g whipping cream
  • 1 egg
  • 60g caramel sauce
  • 90g whole wheat cookies (e.g. graham crackers)
  • 2 tbsp. softened butter
  • And some extra tbsp. caramel sauce for the topping

I used a mini muffin tray made of silicone, so I could easily remove the cheesecakes. If you only have metal trays you should probably line them with paper muffin cups!
Preheat oven to 350° F.

Crush crackers in a small bowl, add butter and mix with fork. Put the mix into mini muffin trays (about 2 teaspoons per muffin). Flatten with a little glass or a bottle cap.
Add cream cheese, sugar, whipping cream, egg and caramel to a bigger bowl and beat until mixed. Pour mix evenly in the muffin pan.
Bake for 15-17 minutes. [Pro-Tip: If you want to make sure the cheesecake won’t crack, place the muffin tray in a hot water bath while baking!] Let it cool down for at least an hour before removing the cheesecakes from the pan.
Drizzle with caramel and serve.

All done!

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Bite-sized (or maybe two bites) deliciousness is waiting to be eaten by you and maybe some of your lucky friends!

Do you love caramel as much as I do? Or is there something else that is your weak spot?

Have a lovely week and HAPPY BAKING!

xo Kristin