I am very grateful to have received news that I have reached the second level in the Gourmet Garden Cook Off!
It all began with a blog off, and the eliminations have taken place. Thankfully I was not eliminated! So where to from here? I am to go to the Brisbane Good Food and Wine show in November and have a cook off against another lucky blogger. I'm calling on a cheer squad to give me confidence! Will you be there?
Apparently I will be cooking-off against another foodie blogger on The Chopping Block Stage, and the final product is to be judged by celebrity chefs. I hope they are kind upon my savory efforts when the time comes. I have no more details as of yet, but I will certainly keep you all updated.
I didn't think I would honestly get this far, so I want to thank all the people who helped me: my husband Luke in supporting me (he even told me not to get my hopes up, the sweetie!), the family in taste testing, and also to my mother in law Geraldine for coming to look after my babies while I had a cooking marathon to prepare for the Gourmet Garden Dinner Party. Phew! Without you all I wouldn't have gone to level two. So many, many thanks. I'm counting on you all to be there on the day to cheer me on! (it's my last favour) I am going to need all the luck I can get. Whipping up something and having it plated within a half hour time span will be quite a fete.
Anyway, that's still six months away. I hope my excitement won't have cooled down too much by then.
Well, to keep us going for the next six months of waiting and growing impatient, I have a whole stack of great recipes coming up. Keep your eyes and ears open!
Here is somewhat of a re-post. Well, the recipe is re-posted, with some tweaks made to the physical form of the original. The post went down so well the first time, and it got me thinking of the endless possibilities with this delicious recipe. It was originally a jelly slice, but I love making individual desserts and they are less messy to cut. With the aid of my silicone 12 hole muffin tray from Chef's Toolbox, I made these lovely layered desserts. They have a crispy sweet base, a tangy lemon cheesecake-like filling, and are topped in delicious red jelly in a flavour of your choice. Life doesn't get much sweeter than this. It really doesn't.
INDIVIDUAL STRAWBERRY JELLY CHEESECAKES
1 cup Self Raising flour
1/2 cup plain flour
1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
125g butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla essence
1/2 can (200g) sweetened condensed milk
2 lemons, juiced
2 tsp. unflavoured gelatine
3/4 cup boiling water
1 packet raspberry jelly
1 1/4 cups boiling water
Preheat the oven at 180C. To make the base combine flours and sugar in a bowl. Add melted butter and vanilla, and stir until well combined. Place a tablespoon of mixture into each of a 12 hole silicone muffin tray (or a well greased/lined metal muffin tin) Press down the mixture into each base using your fingertips, until compact and evenly covering the bottom of the tray. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. When cool enough to touch, press down the cooked bases with your fingertips to flatten.
To make the lemon filling, place the boiling water into a small bowl and gradually shower the unflavoured gelatine into it, so that it does not clump. Stir until dissolved. Add the lemon juice and condensed milk and stir until well combined. Spoon over each cooled base and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until set.
When the lemon layer is firm, take the raspberry jelly crystals and combine with the boiling water. Stir until completely dissolved and sit aside to cool for 15 minutes. Gently spoon the raspberry jelly liquid over the lemon layer, evenly amongst the 12 holes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until set.
To remove the cheesecakes, smoothly run a butter knife around the sides of each cheesecake, careful not to pierce the silicone. Dig the knife a little deeper until it is underneath the base and gently lift the cheesecake out, applying a little pressure to the tray base.
Garnish if desired, and serve.
NOTES: The above recipe makes 12 muffin sized cheesecakes. You can also use the Chef's Toolbox mini muffin silicone tray for a more miniature version, which are perfect to serve as petits fours. Use the 24 hole silicone mini muffin tray, only half the base recipe, the whole lemon layer recipe and half the amount of jelly.
If you want to purchase any Chef's Toolbox kitchen ware, head over to Pauline Phillip's facebook page and give her a holler! She's lovely.