Saturday, January 30, 2016

Blueberry and Lemon Friands

I love these simple little cakes. I know they look quite plain, but trust me, they are absolutely delicious. The best thing about them is that they are so easy to make.

In Australia, friands are typically baked in small oval cake tins. You can of course bake these in standard muffin pan.

Now on the topic of brown butter (beurre noisette) vs melted butter. The brown butter apparently gives a nutty note to the cake. I found that it didn’t make a whole heap of difference worthwhile the effort of browning the butter. Well, that’s my opinion anyway. So melted butter for my friands it is.

Of all the different favours I have experimented with, my favourite is still the classic blueberry and lemon. When baked, the blueberries will burst and become jammy and delicious.

These little cakes are best served still warm from the oven, with the crust crisp and the centre moist and light. Having said that, they are just as wonderful after a day or two.

Blueberry and Lemon Friands

Makes about 5

100 grams icing sugar
25 grams plain flour
85 grams almond meal (ground almond)
Zest of 1 lemon
120 grams egg whites (about 3 eggs)
100 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled
About 85 grams blueberries
About 1/4 cup almond flakes

Additional butter and flour for prepping the cake pan. See method below.

To make Blueberry and Lemon Friands:
Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius conventional (or 180 degrees celcius fan-forced).

Rub softened butter in the holes of the friand or muffin pan, and dust each hole lightly with flour. Tap the pan, upside down, over the sink to get rid of excess flour. Set aside. (Note: Don't be tempted to skip this step even if you have a non-stick pan. It not only helps to guarantee that the friands won't get stuck in the pan, the butter and flour will give a nice golden crust all over.)

Combine icing sugar, plain flour, almond meal and lemon zest in a large bowl. Set aside.

Lightly whisk egg whites in a separate bowl until they form a light foam. (Note: It's important not to over whisk the egg whites or you will rubbery friands. This step is only for breaking up the egg whites slightly so that it can be folded into the dry ingredients easier.)

Tip egg whites and cooled melted butter into the dry ingredients. Using a spatula, lightly fold the mixture together until just combined.

Divide the batter into the holes of the prepared pan up to 3/4 full. Drop about 6 blueberries in each hole. Lightly crush almond flakes with your fingers and scatter over the cake batter.

Bake for about 25 minutes, or until golden and a skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean.

Serve warm with a light dusting of icing sugar.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Hazelnut Opera Cake

Cheers to a new year! I hope you have enjoyed the festive season, and all pumped for the new year? I know I am! Bring it on 2016!

This is my first blog post of the year. So it should be about cake. Of course.

This one I'm excited about. Hazelnut Opera Cake. My take on the classic opera cake.

My hazelnut opera cake consists of 5 components - hazelnut joconde, coffee kahlua syrup, nutella spread, coffee buttercream and chocolate ganache glaze.

I found that getting the ratio of the components right is the trickiest part of making this cake, and also the most important as it has a huge impact on the overall balance of flavours. I tried to make the joconde and buttercream the same thickness at about 5mm. For the nutella layer, I found that it's best to keep it about 1mm or it can be too sweet and overpowering.

I kept the decoration simple with a light sprinkle of coffee beans, cocoa nibs and almond meal.

Hazelnut Opera Cake

Makes one 15cm cake

Hazelnut Joconde
125 grams icing sugar, sifted
125 grams ground hazelnut (hazelnut meal)
40 grams plain flour, sifted
160 grams whole eggs, room temperature
30 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled
100 grams egg whites (reserve yolks for the buttercream)
30 grams caster sugar

Coffee Kahlua Syrup
125 ml water
80 grams caster sugar
125 ml espresso
2 tablespoons kahlua

Coffee Buttercream
2 teaspoons coffee granules
2 teaspoons hot water
60 grams egg yolks
100 grams caster sugar
30 ml water
225 grams unsalted butter, softened, cut into small cubes

Chocolate Ganache Glaze
125 grams dark chocolate
20 grams liquid glucose
130ml whipping (pouring) cream

You will also need Nutella.

To make hazelnut joconde:
Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius conventional (or 180 degrees celcius fan-forced). Line two 35 x 22cm baking trays with baking paper.

Using an electric stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, whisk icing sugar, hazelnut meal, flour and whole eggs for 10-12 minutes until the mixture is light and aerated. With the mixer still running, slowly add cooled melted butter to the mixture until incorporated. Set aside.

Using an electric stand mixer, with a separate clean dry bowl and whisk, whisk egg whites until foamy. Gradually add in caster sugar and whisk until stiff peaks form.

Using a spatula, fold in a third of the stiff egg whites into the hazelnut batter to loosen. Carefully fold in the rest of the stiff egg whites.

Spread the mixture onto the prepared baking trays to about 5mm in thickness. Bake until golden brown and the sponge springs back when pressed gently. This should take about 12-15 minutes.

To make coffee kahlua syrup:
In a small saucepan, bring sugar and water to boil, and cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat, add espresso, and leave to cool. Add kahlua.

To make coffee buttercream:
Combine coffee and water, set aside.

Place yolks in the bowl of the electric mixer fitted with whisk attachment.

In a small sauce pan, bring caster sugar and water to boil without stirring. When the temperature of the syrup reaches 115 degrees celsius, remove from heat, start mixer at high speed, pour the syrup in a thin stream into the yolks, and whisk until thick and cools completely. It should take about 10 minutes.

Start adding small lumps of the softened butter a little at a time, whisking well after each addition and scraping down the bowl from time to time. When all the butter has been incorporated, add coffee mixture, and continue to beat until light and aerated.

To make chocolate ganache glaze
(Note: Make this after you have assembled the cake and the cake has been allowed to firm up in the fridge for at least 1 hour. You will not need to use all the glaze.)

Melt chocolate over bain marie or in microwave.

Stir glucose and cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until glucose dissolves and mixture comes to a gentle simmer. Remove from heat. Gradually add hot cream to the chocolate, mixing continuously to form an emulsion. Let cool slightly (about 5 minutes). Use immediately.

To assemble:
Cut hazelnut joconde into 3 squares (about 17 x 17cm).

Place one of the squares on a baking paper, brush square generously with the coffee kahlua syrup. Spread a layer of nutella (about 1mm thick). Spread coffee buttercream over (about 5mm thick). Repeat with second square, syrup, nutella, buttercream. Repeat with last square, syrup, buttercream.

Cut the cake with a 15cm cake ring. Leave the cake in the ring, remove scraps, and place in fridge to set for at least 1 hour.

Prepare chocolate ganache glaze, pour a thin layer on top of cake, give the cake a few firm taps on the kitchen bench until the glaze evens out, return cake to fridge for at least 1 hour. Demould and serve.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Brandy-snap Basket

Brandy-snap basket with vanilla ice-cream and strawberries will forever hold a special place in my heart. It was the dessert that we had on our wedding day. It was our 4th year wedding anniversary last Friday (OMG, has it really been 4 years?). So I thought I will attempt to recreate this very special dessert. It came out perfect on my first attempt. A little fussy to make, but not difficult at all. I do love the delicate lace-like texture of the basket.

Brandy-snap Baskets
(adapted from Matt Moran When I Get Home)

Makes about 10-12 baskets

120 grams unsalted butter, softened , room temperature
140 grams brown sugar
180 ml liquid glucose
2 teaspoons brandy
140 grams plain flour

To make brandy-snap baskets:
In an electric stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add glucose and brandy, beat until well incorporated.

Using a spatula, carefully fold in flour until just combined.

Cover and refrigerate for an hour until firm. Don't leave the mixture in the fridge for too long or it will be too stiff to work with.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius conventional (or 160 degrees celcius fan-forced).

Using a tablespoon, scoop out a tablespoon of mixture. Roll out the mixture between two sheets of baking paper to about 10cm diameter and 1mm thick. For a neat finish, use a large 10cm cookie cutter to make 10cm round, scrap off excess around the cookie cutter. If the mixture gets too soft to work with and sticks to the baking paper, put it in the freezer for 1 minute to firm up.

Place the disc on a baking tray line with baking paper. Bake for 8 minutes or until golden brown. The disc will starts to bubble, creating the beautiful and delicate lace-like texture. Keep a close eye on it as it will start to burn very quickly.

Remove from oven, and cool for 15 seconds. Working very quickly, place the disc on an upside-down bowl or mug. Carefully peel off the baking paper, and press the sides of the disc to form a basket. Set aside to cool.

Repeat steps above with the remainder of the mixture. (Note: Keep the mixture in the fridge while working on the disc.)

Store in an airtight container until required.

Serve with vanilla ice-cream and fresh strawberries.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Breakfast Panna Cotta

Dessert for breakfast? Why not?

Yogurt panna cotta, granola and roasted strawberries - my idea of the perfect breakfast dessert for summer. It's light, refreshing, and a little indulgent. It's a bit like yogurt parfait which, by the way, is one of my favourite breakfast food and has inspired me to make this dessert.

If you are lazy to make the granola and roasted strawberries for this dessert, replace it with your favourite store brought granola and fresh berries. I promise I won't judge.

Breakfast Panna Cotta

Makes 6

Yogurt Panna Cotta
2 gold strength gelatine sheets (2 grams per sheet)
175 ml pouring cream
175ml milk
50 grams caster sugar
1 vanilla beans, halved and seeds scraped
200 grams greek yogurt (sugar free, unflavoured and full fat)

Roasted Strawberries
500 grams strawberries, hulled and halved
4 tablespoons caster sugar

200 grams traditional oats
85 grams walnut, roughly chopped
30 grams shredded or flaked coconut
pinch of sea salt
Zest of 1 orange
50 grams unsalted butter, melted
120 ml maple syrup
50 grams dried cranberries (craisins)

To make yogurt panna cotta:
Soak gelatine sheets in cold water until softened.

Meanwhile, combine cream, milk, sugar, vanilla bean and seeds in a small saucepan. Stir over medium heat, and when mixture just starts to simmer, remove from heat.

Squeeze the excess water from the gelatin and stir the gelatine into the warm mixture until dissolves.

Add yoghurt to the mixture and stir until well combine. Strain mixture into dariole moulds.

Refrigerate for 4 hours or preferably overnight.

To turn out the panna cottas, dip each mould into very hot water and give it a little shake. Turn the mould upside down onto a plate and shake gently to dislodge.

To make roasted strawberries:
Preheat oven to 180C conventional (or 160C fan-forced).

Toss the strawberries with the castor sugar. Spread strawberries snugly in a single layer on a deep baking dish/tray. Roast for 40-50 minutes or until the strawberries are soft, starting to caramelise and release their juices.

Allow to cool completely, transfer the strawberries and juices to a bowl, cover with clingwrap, and refrigerate until ready to use.

To make granola:
Preheat oven to 150C fan-forced.

In a large bowl, combine oats, walnuts, coconut, salt and zest.

Heat maple syrup in microwave for 30 seconds or until hot. Whisk melted butter into maple syrup until well combined.

Pour the maple syrup mixture over the oat mixture, and stir until everything is well coated. Spread the mixture in a thin layer on a baking tray lined with baking paper.

Bake for 40-50 minutes or until the granola is deeply golden. Give the mixture a quick stir a couple of times during the bake. Add craisins to the granola and stir to combine.

Allow to granola to cool completely, then store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Raspberry, Lychee and Vanilla Cake

Who knew raspberry and lychee can be so good together! They certainly don't sound all that impressive on paper. But OMG! I had an OMG moment when I tried it the first time. Like OMG, why didn't I try this earlier? In a way, I think, I love these flavours together because they reminiscent of spring, and romance, and girly tea parties. And maybe also for the simple reason that I love raspberry and lychee.

I want to make a delicate cake to go with these flavours. A chiffon-like cake that is light and fluffy, but sturdy enough to be baked in a standard cake pan. And billowy swiss meringue buttercream two ways; raspberry buttercream for the filling, and vanilla buttercream to dress the cake like a dream. And of course plenty of lychee in the raspberry buttercream filling, and lychee sugar syrup to amp up the flavour. To make this cake extra special, I decorate it with pink macarons on the side to give it a wow factor, and pile on a generous amount of raspberries on top of the cake that sit so enticingly like red rubies.

I have to say. This is the prettiest cake I have made to-date. And I am so excited to share it here on this blog.

Raspberry, Lychee and Vanilla Cake

Makes an 8" cake

4 egg yolks, room temperature
40 grams caster sugar
80ml milk, room temperature
60ml neutral flavoured oil (I used rice bran oil. You can also use veg oil, corn oil, etc.)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
135 grams cake flour (Or plain flour. But cake flour gives a softer texture cake.)
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 egg whites, room temperature
40 grams caster sugar

Lychee Sugar Syrup
1 can (560 grams) lychee in syrup
50 grams caster sugar

Raspberry and Vanilla Buttercream
250 grams fresh or frozen raspberries
2 tablepoons caster sugar
4 large egg whites (about 80 grams)
200 grams caster sugar (I used vanilla caster sugar)
350 grams unsalted butter, soften, cut into small cubes
120ml milk, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

You will also need 250 grams fresh raspberries and macarons to decorate. Recipe for macarons here.

To make sponge:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius conventional (or 160 degrees celcius fan-forced).

Using an electric stand mixer, whisk egg yolks with 40 grams sugar until very pale and creamy.

Combine milk, oil and vanilla extract in a bowl, with mixer at low speed, add to egg yolk mixture until combines.

Combine cake flour and baking powder in a bowl, with mixer still at low speed, add to egg yolk mixture until combines. Set aside.

Using an electric stand mixer, with a separate clean dry bowl and whisk, whisk egg whites until foamy. Gradually add in the remaining 40 grams sugar and whisk until stiff peaks form.

Using a spatula, take 1/3 of the stiff egg whites and fold into the yolk batter. Fold in the rest of the whites.

Divide batter into 2 x 8" cake pans. (Note: I didn't grease or line the cake pans. However, I did use non-stick cake pans with removable base. Line your cake pans if you wish, especially if your cake pans do not have a removable base.)

Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Remove from oven, turn cake pans upside down on a cooling rack and allow cakes to cool completely in pans.

Once cakes are completely cool, trim cakes to your preference.

To make lychee sugar syrup:
Strained syrup from a can of lychee. Reserve lychees for the filling.

Combine 125ml lychee syrup and sugar in saucepan, stir, over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Allow to boil for 5 seconds. Set aside to cool completely.

To make raspberry and vanilla buttercream:
Combine raspberries and 2 tablespoons sugar in a saucepan, cook over medium heat until raspberries break down and release its juice. Continue to cook, stirring constainly, until juice thickens slightly and coats the back of a spoon.

Strain the raspberry mixture through a sieve into a bowl, pressing down with the back of a spoon and discarding the solids. Allow the raspberry mixture to cool completely before incoporating into buttercream.

Meanwhile, combine the egg whites and caster sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water and whisk continuously by hand until the egg white mixture reaches 70°C on a sugar thermometer. (You can make this icing without a sugar thermometer. Simply whisk until the sugar is dissolved (about 8-10 minutes). Test by rubbing a small amount between your fingertips; it should feel completely smooth, without sugar grains.)

When the sugar has dissolved and the syrup is warm to the touch, remove the bowl from the pan. Using an electric mixer, whisk for about 10 minutes until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled (checked by touching the bottom of the bowl). The meringue needs to be completely cooled before you add the butter.

Start adding small lumps of the softened butter a little at a time, whisking well after each addition and scraping down the bowl from time to time. The icing may appear to curdle and split as you add the butter, but keep going and it will come back together again. Gradually add the milk and vanilla extract until everything is well incorporated, and the vanilla buttercream is smooth.

To make raspberry buttercream, scoop out 1/3 of the vanilla buttercream in a seperate bowl. Add cooled raspberry mixture into the 1/3 buttercream and whisk until everything is well incorporated.

To assemble:
Brush lychee sugar syrup on one side of a cake layer. Pipe over raspberry buttercream, then top generously with lychees. Brush lychee sugar syrup over second cake layer. Place cake layer, syrup side down, on top of buttercream. Brush lychee sugar syrup on top of cake layer. Cover cake with the vanilla buttercream. Decorate with macarons and raspberry. Note: To ensure that the macarons stick to the side of the cake, pipe or spread some buttercream on the macarons and press it gently onto the cake.

This cake is best served at room temperature. Take the cake out of the fridge for 10 minutes before serving on a hot day, or 20 minutes on a cold day to allow the buttercream to soften.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Mango Bliss

When I see mangoes, I think of summer. And comes summer when mangoes are in season, I will buy a box (usually 16 in a box) almost every week. I can never get sick of them.

I prefer mangoes on its own. It feels like a shame somehow to hide them in salads, cakes, smoothies, etc. But sometimes we couldn’t consume the mangoes fast enough and they have gone too ripe and mushy. I would then store them away in the freezer for smoothies later. Do you know that sweet overripe mangoes make the best sugar-free smoothies?

This entremet is a celebration of the season’s mangoes. I want only the mangoes to shine through. So I decided not to include other flavours. I used Kensington Pride mangoes. They are the best type of mangoes to use for cakes and smoothies, in my humble opinion.

If you can’t get Kensington Pride, I recommend using a variety that does not have a firm flesh. And use only the sweetest mangoes. I afraid there is no other alternative.

Now I know some of you are going to ask- can we use canned mangoes. The answer is NO. I hate canned mangoes. They are like some weird mango flavoured things with the grossest texture that taste nothing at all like the real stuff.

I didn’t include the macaron recipe here but will instead refer you to my go-to macarons recipe which I used. I made a mango white chocolate ganache for the filling, which is 200grams melted white chocolates with 100grams warmed mango puree.

You will need about 8 medium size mangoes. Slightly overripe mangoes are the best for this recipe. And please please please use only the sweetest mangoes.

Mango Bliss

Makes 6 numbers of 7.5cm diameter cakes

Mango Puree
8 medium size mangoes (I recommend Kensington Pride)

To make mango puree:
Remove skin and cut out the pit. Cut mango flesh into pieces. With a small food proccesor, puree mango until smooth. Set aside.

Mango Jelly
200ml mango puree
2 sheets (6 grams) gelatin (I used titanium grade leaf gelatin)

To make mango jelly:
Soften the gelatin in a bowl of cold water.

Warm mango puree in small saucepan. The puree should be warm and not boiling. Remove from heat.

Squeeze the excess water from the gelatin. Stir it into the warm mango puree. Pour mixture into holes of mini muffin tin to about 2cm high.

Freeze mango jelly until completely frozen. To unmold, dip bottom of muffin tin in a tray of hot water for 5 secs. Flip muffin tin upside down on a baking paper and give a gentle shake to get the mango jelly out. Return the unmolded mango jelly rounds back into the freezer immediately until ready to assemble.

Sugar Syrup
150ml water
100 grams caster sugar
2 tablespoons of orange liqueur (cointreau)

To make sugar syrup:
Combine water and sugar in saucepan, stir, over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Allow to boil for 5 seconds. Cool completely before adding orange liqueur.

90 grams egg whites
80 grams caster sugar
80 grams egg yolks
40 grams cake flour
20 grams corn flour
35 grams unsalted butter, melted

To make sponge:
Preheat the oven to 200C (or 180C fan-forced). Line 30x20cm cake pan with baking paper.

Whisk egg white until foamy. Add one quarter of the sugar and whisk for a while. Then add remaining sugar and beat until stiff peaks form and egg whites are glossy. Add egg yolks and whisk until combine.

Combine and sift both flours. Gently fold flours into the batter with a spatula until combine. Fold in melted butter until combine.

Pour batter into the prepared pan, spread evenly, and bake for 15 minutes or until when a toothpick is inserted in the center comes out clean.

When sponge is done and cooled, peel away (by gently rubbing) the layer of brown skin on the top.

Mango Bavarian Cream
2 sheets (6 grams) titanium grade gelatin
2 egg yolks
50 grams caster sugar
125ml mango puree, room temperature
200ml whipping cream

To make mango bavarian cream:
Soften the gelatin in a bowl of cold water.

Whisk egg yolks and sugar in a heatproof bowl until pale and creamy. Add mango puree, and whisk to incorporate. Place bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water, whisk constantly, until the mixture reaches 85C. Remove from heat.

Squeeze the excess water from the gelatin. Stir gelatin into the mango mixture until gelatin completely dissolves. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a bowl. Place the mixture over a bowl of water with ice. Stir mixture until it cools to room temperature. (Alternatively, place cling wrap over surface of mixture, and place in freezer for about 5-10 minutes until it cools.)

Meanwhile, whisk cream to firm peaks (be careful not to overwhip). When the mango mixture cools completely, carefully fold whipped cream into the mango mixture with a spatula until combine.

At this stage, start assembling the entremet. The bavarian cream needs to be use immediately before the gelatin start to take effect.

To assemble (1):
Line a cookie tray (or any rectangular baking tray) with baking paper. Place 7.5cm diameter X 4.5cm height cake rings on top. You will need 6 cake rings.

Cut out 7.5cm diameter round cake sponge using the cake ring. Brush sponge generously with sugar syrup. Place sponge in the cake ring.

Place the frozen mango jelly on top of the sponge. Pour mango bavarian cream over, and level with a spatula. Place in freezer until completely frozen.

Mango Glaze
100 grams white chocolate, finely chopped
3 sheets (9 grams) titanium grade gelatin
100ml mango puree (after strain through a sieve)
50 grams caster sugar
100 grams liquid glucose
70ml whipping cream
Optional: 1 or 2 drops of yellow food colouring

To make mango glaze:
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over, not touching, simmering water. Stir occasionally to assist the melting. When the chocolate has melted, remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

Soften the gelatin in a bowl of cold water.

Combine mango puree, sugar and glucose in a saucepan over medium heat, stir until sugar and glucose disolves, and mixture starts to boil. Remove from heat.

Stir cream into the syrup mixture. Squeeze the excess water from the gelatin, and stir gelatin into the syrup mixture. Pour over the melted chocolate, then stir gently to combine. Add yellow food colouring if required.

Allow glaze to cool to room temperature. The glaze will thicken as it cools to the right temperature. To check if the glaze is ready to use, dip spoon into the glaze. The glaze should coat the back of the spoon. Use glaze immediately.

To assemble (2):
Unmould entremets from cake rings. (Tip: To unmould, I place the entremet, still in the cake ring, in a ziplock bag. Slowly lower the ziplock bag into a bowl of hot water, careful not to get water in the bag. Leave ziplock bag in the hot water for 5 secs, then quickly lift the bag out of the water, take the entremet out, and gently push the entremet out of the cake ring.)

Place entremets on a cooling rack set on a baking tray line with baking paper. Working very quickly, and in a confident and smooth motion, pour glaze over frozen entremet.

Allow entremets to thaw in fridge for 4-6 hours before serving.

Totally optional, decorate with mango macarons (macaron recipe here) and edible gold leaf.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Baileys Coffee Mini Cheesecakes

It's been way too long. I know. It's like, what, 3-4 months since my last post? Terrible. I have a million reasons. Too busy, too lazy, not feeling inspired, ate too much during the festive season, my baking is making me fat, trying to go on a sugar free diet (with little success I should add), and blah blah blah.

Anyway, I thought I will share an easy bake before I go MIA (missing in action) for a few months again. Haha. Just kidding. Maybe.

What can I say about these Baileys Coffee Cheesecakes except that they are pretty amazing. They are like Irish coffee, but with Baileys and in mini cheesecakes form. They are so amazing in fact that I actually crawl out of my "blogger's block" so that I can share it with anyone who are still following my blog. That, my friend, is how awesome it is!

Baileys Coffee Mini Cheesecakes
(Adapted from Taste magazine March 2015)

Makes 6 muffin size cheesecakes

120 grams plain chocolate biscuits (I used oreos without the filling)
50 grams unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons instant coffee powder
1 tablespoon boiling water
250 grams cream cheese, at room temperature
60 grams brown sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons baileys
125 grams thickened cream, whipped
Cocoa powder, to dust

To make baileys coffee mini cheesecakes:
Preheat oven to 150C or (130C fan-forced). Line standard muffin/cupcake pan with paper cases. (Tip: Use two paper cases to prevent the cheesecakes from stucking onto the pan.)

Process chocolate biscuits in a food processor until finely crushed. Add butter and process until well combined. (Tip: If you don't have a food processor, just pop the biscuits in a ziplock bag, crush the biscuits with a rolling pin, transfer the crushed biscuits into a bowl and stir in butter until well combined.)

Scoop about 1 heap tablespoon of the biscuit mixture into the paper cases, and press the mixture firmly down to form a base. Bake until set, about 10 minutes. Allow to cool.

Meanwhile, combine the coffee and boiling water in a small bowl until dissolve. Set aside.

Whisk cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, then add coffee mixture and baileys, and whisk until well combined. (Tip: Press mixture through a sieve into a large bowl to remove any stubborn lumps to get a smooth mixture without overmixing.)

Pour mixture into pan. Set pan in a large roasting pan filled halfway with hot water, bake for 25 minutes or until just set. (Tip: To check, give the pan a little shake, it's done when the mixture is firm around the edges and wobbles a little in the middle.) Remove muffin pan from roasting pan, cool cheesecakes (still in the muffin pan) in the oven with the door slightly ajar. Once cheesecakes are cooled completely, transfer cheesecakes in an airtight container and into the fridge to chill overnight.

Before serving, pipe or spoon a tablespoon of whipped cream over cheesecakes and dust with cocoa powder.