Chocolate Rye Brownies with Sea Salt

My favorite type of brownie has a fudgy yet chewy texture with a crinkly top, and this recipe delivers just that! The addition of rye flour in the batter brings a delicate nutty taste to the brownies and pairs perfectly with bittersweet/dark chocolate. Don’t skip the flaky sea salt at the end, it adds an unexpected layer of crunchiness and balances out the sweetness of the brownie.

Recipe adapted from theboywhobakes

Ingredients
175g Bob’s Red Mill rye flour
50g natural cocoa powder 
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
200g unsalted butter, diced
300g dark chocolate (65-75% cocoa solids)
125g caster sugar
200g light brown sugar
4 large eggs, cold
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan). Lightly grease a 9×13 inch (23x33cm) pan with butter then and line the bottom and sides with parchment paper, allowing overhangs for easier transfer in step 6.
2. In a large bowl sieve together the rye flour, cocoa, salt, and baking powder to remove lumps of cocoa. The bran from the rye flour left at the end can be added back into the dry ingredients.
3. Place the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water. Heat the mixture while stirring occasionally until fully melted. Remove and set aside to cool.
4. Place the eggs, sugars, and vanilla into a large bowl and using an electric mixer whisk together for 5 minutes on medium speed until the eggs have increased in volume and the mixture is pale and fluffy. This whisking action helps to give the finished brownie a shiny crackly crust.
5. With the mixer still running pour in the cooled butter and chocolate mixture, whisking until fully combined. Switching to a spatula fold in the dry ingredients until everything is just combined.
5. Scrape the batter into the prepared brownie pan and spread into an even layer using an offset spatula. Sprinkle the top with Maldon flaked sea salt (optional).
6. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes (do not overbake!). The finished brownies will be puffed up a little but still gooey inside. Allow to cool at room temperature for an hour before transferring to the fridge for a couple of hours to cool completely. Lift the brownies from the pan using the parchment paper overhang and use a sharp knife to cut into squares.
7. The brownies will keep for 3-4 days in a sealed container and freeze beautifully for up to a month. 

Ricotta Sheet Cake with Raspberry Crumble

This heavenly ricotta fruit cake was my obsession this summer. It’s light, airy, moist with a strong raspberry flavor.

Inspired by Anna Olsen’s recipe.

Ingredients:
Cake
250 g (1 cup) full-fat ricotta cheese
150g (¾ cup) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
55g (¼ cup) unsalted butter, melted
2 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
2 Tbsp lemon juice
240g (2 cups) all-purpose flour
1½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
3 cups fresh or thawed, frozen raspberries
A handful of sliced almonds

Streudel
120g (½ cup) all-purpose flour
50g (⅓ cup) granulated sugar
¼ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
3 Tbsp (¼ cup) unsalted butter, melted

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C) and grease a 9-x-13 inch (23x33cm) rectangular pan.
2. Whisk the ricotta, sugar, eggs, melted butter, vanilla, lemon zest, and juice together really well.
3. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Sift over ricotta mixture and stir with a spatula just until blended. Spread this in the prepared pan.
4. Sprinkle the raspberries over the ricotta cake (if using thawed frozen berries, drain excess juices and toss the berries with 2 Tbsp of flour) and top the cake.
5. For the streusel, stir the flour, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon together and then stir in the butter until the mixture is evenly combined. Sprinkle over the fruit. Then top it off with sliced almonds. Bake the cake for 45 to 55 minutes, until a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan, and sift powdered sugar before serving.
6. The cake will keep, wrapped and unrefrigerated, for 3 days.

Muhallabieh (Lebanese Milk Pudding)

A quick and easy Lebanese milk pudding dessert that’s so quick to whip up. I love making this for breakfast, a brunch get together, or an afternoon dessert.

Ingredients
1 Liter (4 cups) whole milk
50g (6 Tablespoons) cornstarch
110g (½ cup) granulated sugar
2 Tbsp orange blossom water
Strawberries, blueberries, crushed pistachio or any other nut for decoration

Directions
1. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch with a little milk to form a loose paste. Pour the remaining milk into a heavy-based pan and stir in the sugar. Bring the milk to barely a simmer, stirring continuously until the sugar has dissolved.
2. Reduce the heat and stir a spoonful of the hot milk into the cornstarch paste, then tip the mixture back into the pan. Keep whisking constantly to prevent the flour from forming lumps. Bring the milk to the boil again. Take the pot off the heat when the pudding is thick and coats the back of the spoon. Stir in the orange blossom water.
4. Pour the muhallabieh into a large 9″ (23cm) glass dish or small bowls. serving bowl and let it cool, allowing a skin to form on top. When cool, wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours. Decorate with fruits and sprinkle with pistachios right before serving.

Chocolate Chunk Vegan Brownies

Recipe:

45g (1.5 oz) semi-sweet or dark chocolate (I used Guittard 75%)
45g (6 tbsp) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp espresso Powder
½ tsp salt
120ml (½ cup) boiling water
50g (¼ cup) melted coconut oil
2 tbsp tahini (or sub coconut oil)
150g (¾ cup) coconut or castor sugar
1 tsp vanilla Extract
1 cup (120g) All-Purpose Flour (you can use spelt or rye flour too)
½ tsp Baking Powder
90g (3oz) dark chocolate, chopped into chunks
½ cup toasted walnuts, chopped
Maldon sea salt for finishing touch

1. Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Grease and line an 8″ (20cm) square pan.
2. In a bowl, combine dark chocolate, cocoa powder, espresso powder and sea salt. Pour boiling water over and whisk until you achieve a smooth chocolate mixture.
3. Add coconut oil, tahini, sugar and vanilla and whisk to combine. Leave to cool for 5 minutes.
4. Once cooled, add flour and baking powder to the mixture and whisk till smooth. Fold in dark chocolate chunks and walnuts.
5. Pour batter into pan, sprinkle with sea salt and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and leave to cool for at least 2 hours or until completely cool before cutting (you can also chill them in the fridge).

Buckwheat Rhubarb Galette

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit

120g (1 cup) all-purpose flour
40g (1/3 cup) buckwheat flour
113g (1 stick) butter, cold
40ml (2 Tbsp) ice water
2 Tbsp sugar
pinch of salt

500g rhubarb stalks
100g castor sugar
1.5 Tbsp cornstarch
Egg wash (1 small egg whisked with a splash of water)
Turbinado sugar

Optional – Rhubarb Glaze:
150g (5ox) tops and tails of rhubarb
100g (1/2 cup) castor sugar
A splash of water

Dough

1. Whisk all-purpose and buckwheat flours, sugar, and salt in a large bowl to combine. Add butter and work into dry ingredients with your hands, mashing it into big flat pieces and smooshing it between your palms into the flour, until you have pea- and nickel-size pieces.
2. Drizzle ¼ cup ice water over mixture and rake it in with your fingers until evenly dispersed. Squeeze clumps with your hands to moisten until a shaggy dough forms, then turn out onto a work surface.
3. Gather dough together, pushing and working it into a ball, then flattening it, until only a few dry spots remain. Pat into a ¾”-thick square. Using a bench scraper or knife, divide dough into 4 pieces. Stack pieces on top of one another, placing any unincorporated dry bits in between layers, and press down to combine. Form dough into a ¾”-thick disk and wrap tightly in plastic. Chill until firm, at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.

Filling and Assembly

4. Preheat oven to 400°F and Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Take out the chilled dough a few minutes before rolling out.
5. Roll out dough on a well-floured surface to a 14″ round, rotating dough and tossing more flour underneath as needed to keep it from sticking. Transfer dough to the baking sheet and refrigerate to chill.
6. Prepare the rhubarb: cut off and discard the leaves, trim off and reserve the ends of each stalk. Cut the stalks into three or four pieces and then cut each piece lengthwise into 5mm (1/4″) strips. Toss the rhubarb pieces with the cornstarch and sugar in a medium bowl.
7. Remove the baking sheet from the fridge and arrange and mound the rhubarb filling in center of dough, making sure to leave a 4cm (2″) border around edges. Fold dough up and over filling, overlapping slightly, and make a decorative edge. Brush dough with egg wash and sprinkle dough and filling generously with turbinado sugar for a nice crunch.
8. Bake galette until filling is bubbling and crust is deeply browned, 40–50 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve with whipped cream.
Optional:
You can make a glaze for the galette by boiling the reserved bits or rhubarb with the sugar and water until the fruit is soft. Strain the syrup into a bowl and brush it over the baked galette for a nice shine.

Sesame Oatmeal Cookies

Tahini is that one ingredient that’s constantly on rotation in my kitchen. I love to use it in salad dressings, drizzle it on roasted vegetables, or mix it in carob molasses for a quick dessert. I’ve also been experimenting with it in pastries and found that the sesame taste overpowers neutral-ish ingredients like a carrot or zucchini. However, it sometimes compliments and enhances dominant ingredients wonderfully like this chocolate soufflé cake. Or it can also add unexpected notes of nuttiness and bold flavors in these oatmeal raisin cookies.

Recipe adapted from Melissa Clarke

180g (1 cup) golden raisins
160ml (⅔ cup) rum for soaking (substitute with apple juice, or any other liquor)

180g (1½ cup) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp cinnamon
¾ tsp baking soda
½ tsp fine grain salt
226g (1 cup, 2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
250g (1¼ cup) light brown sugar
50g (¼ cup) granulated sugar
2 large eggs, cold
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp tahini
1 tsp rum
300g (3 cups) thick rolled oats
15g (2 Tbsp) sesame seeds

1. Optional: Soak the raisins in the rum for at least an hour. Lightly toast the rolled oats and sesame seeds on a baking sheet until lightly golden (6-8 minutes in a 350°F/180°C oven).
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, 2 tsp cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
3. Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the softened butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on medium speed for 5 minutes until pale and creamy. Turn off the mixer and scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. On low speed, beat in the eggs, tahini, and vanilla until well incorporated.
4. Add the flour mixture and mix until barely combined. Drain the raisin (reserve the rum for another use or add in a splash in the batter!) and mix that in with the oats until just combined.
5. Put the bowl in the fridge for 30 min until the dough firms up.
6. Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 350°F/180°C and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
7. Scoop 1 tablespoon portions of the batter and place them 2 in./ 5 cm apart.
8. Bake for 9-12 minutes, rotating the baking sheets halfway through baking, until the edges are golden and the tops look underdone. After 2 minutes of taking them out of the oven, transfer to wire racks to cool completely and firm up.
9. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days (they can also be frozen for up to a month).