Southern Highlands Love: Gumnut Patisserie Brioche Hot Cross Buns

A True Love of Mine: Gumnut Patisserie Brioche Hot Cross Buns

I know that looking at this picture it must be difficult to believe that I don’t really like hot cross buns. I think its┬áthe orange peel that is sneakily included in the super fruity ones that puts me off. I think that they should come with a warning label if they’re going to have peel in them. I always have the intention of baking my own custom buns with choc chips and cinnamon instead of currants and peel but somehow I never get around to it. Perhaps because Easter comes at the end of Term 1 which always stretches out interminably and leaves me utterly exhausted at the end. Far too exhausted for adventurous baking.

What to do with all those Easter Eggs – Easter Egg Brownie Bites

So the bunny has been, the long weekend has ended and I still have easter eggs left on my kitchen table. I think there might be something wrong with me. I did get sick over easter, so perhaps the sickness entered my brain and altered my chocolate lobe? Are there any doctors out there that can recommend treatment? Particularly as I feel like I cannot scavenge for half price eggs this year as they might just end up going to waste. Although if YOU, my lovely reader, have been able to scrounge some super cheap eggs or have any left over and are wondering what to do with them, read on. I have some suggestions. Either way, here is the story of my easter and the terrible affliction that I seem to have been left with.

It started with a strange anomaly with the bourke st bakery flourless chocolate cake.

I only had one piece. Yes, you read that right. One.

No matter, no worries, all things must pass. Right?

Wrong.

Out of all these easter goodies from my beautiful students, I just didn’t feel like eating much.

Even my favourite Lindt bunnies seemed to have lost their jingly allure.

so I put these cute bunnies on top of some cupcakes to take to the S family for easter.

Didn’t actually eat any. Despite them being super cute.

I rallied a little with some delicious easter afternoon tea at the Observatory Hotel

Which was, as always, fantastic.

Brilliant service, lovely food, a vast array of tea and great ambiance, I cannot recommend them highly enough.

I also gave myself an easter mani with Bloom ‘Corfu’ and OPI ‘Teenage Dream’. I thought it made them reminiscent of the shimmery easter egg foil and might induce some chocolate appetite.

But I still had many eggs left over. So I decided that I had to get baking and sort myself out.

Which led me to these Easter Egg Brownie Bites. Perhaps one of the easiest recipes ever.

And it’s therapeutic! Sorry Mr Bunny, but you had to go.

After all, perhaps all I needed to do to appease the chocolate gods and restore me to health was a sacrifice?

It is a one bowl recipe and doesn’t even require a mixer of any sort! Easy!

Hide your eggs in the brownie batter (and relieve your lovely weekend memories of easter eggs hunts!)

then bake, bake, bake, my pretties!

Just 12 minutes is all it takes

And then enjoy the warm, gooey, melty centre.

Good lord, these are tasty and last for days as all they need to restore gooey-ness is to be nuked for 30 seconds in the microwave. And, even better, they used up two packets of small easter eggs and make great gifts for morning/afternoon teas.

So, my lovelies, now that I have helped you with your easter egg excess, are you able to help me with my predicament? Do I just need to bite the bullet and eat all the chocolate in order to re-store my factory settings? This blog has documented my love of chocolate over the last two years and I refuse to believe that this is a permanent state of nonchalance re: chocolate. Send me your solutions!

Easter Egg Brownie Bites – Adapted from this recipe from taste.com

Ingredients

150g unsalted butter

100g dark choc easter eggs

100g Lindt milk chocolate easter bunny, chopped.

1 packet mars bar easter eggs

1 packet malteser easter eggs

1/2 cup caster sugar

1 cup plain flour

2 eggs, lightly beaten

Method

1. lightly grease your mini muffin pan (1 1/2 tbsp capacity) and heat your oven to 160 degrees celsius (fan forced)

2. place butter, dark chocolate eggs and chopped up bunny into a microwave safe bowl and nuke them all on 50% power for 2 mins. Make sure that you pause every 30 seconds to stir your chocolate around, you don’t want to burn it!

3. Stir in sugar and leave to cool slightly

4. mix in the flour then eggs making sure that you incorporate each ingredient properly

5. spoon the mix into your muffin pan. As there is no rising agent in this mix you can safely fill them almost to the top of the hole, just remember that some of the batter will be displaced by the egg when you insert it

6. unwrap your easter eggs and push them into the centre of each hole making sure to cover the top of the egg with batter

7. bake for 12 mins

8. eat while still warm!

Note: these will store for a few days if left in an airtight container. If you want to heat them up again (which I highly recommend) you just need to pop them under the grill for a few mins or put them in the microwave for 30 seconds

Broken Rules – Hot Cross Buns After Easter

Im the first to admit that I play it pretty safe. I figure that most rules are there to make life easier and keep me safe. I don’t like to cross the road against the lights, I don’t break the speed limit, I always put I before E except after C. However, I am also the first to admit that there are certain rules that are absolutely made to be broken. I like to wear odd socks, I frequently miss deadlines and I eat Hot Cross Buns whenever I damn well like. Not just at Easter. Want to know why?

The answer lies beneath this enormous thesaurus.

Oozing Chocolate Hot Cross Bun French Toast

I got the idea from Kitchen Wench when I was browsing around Easter time for some different ideas for Hot Cross Buns. However, with the craziness that inevitably comes with Easter and the end of school holidays, I didn’t get around to testing this one out until after Easter was over. But boy was it worth it. Worth it enough to justify the baking of Choc Chip Hot Cross Buns well after Easter has ended. I guess if I don’t bake them with a cross, they don’t necessarily count as hot cross buns?

And the recipe is so ridiculously easy! Slice your buns lengthways three times. Scatter some choc chips between the slices, squish under something heavy (e.g. the weight of the entire English Language) and dip into your french toast mixture.

Fry it so that it is crispy and caramelised on the outside, and soft and gooey on the inside

Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve with double cream. Why would you bother with anything less than double?

mmmmmm…. gooey….

And the best part is, if you make a whole batch of choc chip buns, you can make this for breakfast every day for a week. What could be better than that?

You can find the recipe here.

So, my lovelies, what rules do you like to break?

Happy Easter To You!

Firstly, before you read any further , I want to wish you happy easter and offer you a cupcake

HAPPY EASTER!

Now, on to business. Ever since I was a little girl i’ve always been a fan of movies that contain singing and dancing. I’m sure it all started with Disney and the Disney Princesses who I have, of course, still watch outgrown. Ok, i’ve never been a good liar, I will happily sit down to a marathon of The Little Mermaid, Peter Pan, Mulan and Beauty and the Beast. But what girl wouldn’t?

However, for the sake of my job (in answer to the ever popular question from teenagers “miss, what’s your favourite movie?”) I have had to come up with some more adult sounding favourite movies.

1. Rush Hour

2. Any of the following: Grease, The Wizard of Oz, The Holiday Inn, The Easter Parade, Moulin Rouge, any kind of musical (i’m always living in hope that they will make Wicked the movie)

Thankfully, many musical movies end up being tied to a particular holiday. Exhibit A:

The Easter Parade

After all, what is a holiday without Fred Astaire? The addition of Judy Garland only elevates this movie from amazing to absolutely amazing! And so, every year when Easter rolls around, you will find me humming the tune to the Easter Parade. Humming because the only lines I can ever remember when singing it are

“here’s a hat that is trimmed with lace – happy easter”

and

“happy easter to you”

I clearly have a very short attention span.

Thankfully, one thing that can keep me focussed is baking, while watching The Easter Parade of course! So what did I bake for easter? Well, firstly I made some pretty little Easter Cucpakes

Here they are baking in the oven. Lookin’ pretty cute!

And here they are all iced with chocolate eggs.

The yellow and white ones are vanilla, the pink ones are musk and the blue ones are violet. Who says I can’t diversify?

For the cake and icing I used this Magnolia Bakery recipe which is always a winner. I also added a few drops of flavouring to each icing mixture t make them all different.

But something was still lacking. There had been a little idea for a big easter cake growing in my mind over the past few weeks. The cake version of the easter bunny basket. I used the same recipe as for the cupcakes above and it made two good sized cakes that could be cut in half to make four layers.

So first comes the basket.

This was my first attempt at basket weave and I have to say I’m pretty pleased with the results. A little wonky but nothing some more practice wont fix.

Then come the decorations!

And a better shot of the easter bunnies and eggs with better lighting and a better camera!

And the vanilla-y chocolatey innards!

It’s not really wonky, I carved the sides a little so that it would look more slopey like a real basket would. Ho hum.

So, all in all, it was a pretty happy, delicious and relaxing easter. How was your easter my lovelies? Did the easter bunny visit?