Tag Archives: biscuits

6 recipes/ideas to start your amazing journey with Paneton French Bakery’s new chocolate pastry


If you have ever tried making short crust pastry, you would know that while it isn’t very difficult (at least when compared to making puff pastry), it does take a bit of time to make and rest before you can roll it out for baking. Add to that my preference for a chocolate shell to go with a dark chocolate ganache – I end up making far fewer tarts than other desserts.

Cue Paneton French Bakery. Their short crust pastry has always been, in my view, an exemplar of pastries.  When they released the ready-rolled chocolate pastry, I felt as if a weight has lifted off my shoulders – I can finally make tarts quickly!!! I then went about challenging myself to see how many things I can make using this gem! Here are my 6 recipes/ideas, for now 😉

1. Chocolate tarts – Solomon’s Gold 70% smooth dark chocolate ganache with Lewis Road Creamery double cream

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The pastry is not very sweet and it serves as a very good base for any dessert tart. Here are my favourites:

– Solomon’s Gold 70% smooth dark chocolate ganache with Lewis Road Creamery double cream

– Solomon’s Gold dark orange chocolate ganache with Lewis Road Creamery double cream and Fresh As Freeze dried mandarin segments

– Forty Thieves‘ salted macadamia butter with chocolate ganache

– Forty Thieves‘ cacao hazelnut butter with chocolate ganache

Makes 10 individual tarts

Ingredients:

  • 500g roll of Paneton French Bakery Chocolate Pastry,
  • 300g Solomon’s Gold smooth dark chocolate or dark orange chocolate, chopped into small pieces in a heat proof bowl
  • Forty Thieves nut butters
  • 375ml Lewis Road Creamery double cream
  • Decorations – Valrhona crisp pearls, batons, Fresh As Freeze dried fruits, Solomon’s Gold cacao nibs

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Instructions

    1. Thaw pastry overnight in the fridge.
    2. Carefully unroll the pastry to prevent any breaks (but it is ok if it breaks! Just push it back together)
    3. Using a sharp knife, cut out squares or circles of pastry to fit your tart mould.
    4. Push the pastry into the moulds carefully, be sure to mend any breaks. Prick the pastry all over with a fork.
    5. Blind bake in 180C oven for 9 minutes. Let cool on a rack.
    6. Make ganache by heating cream in a pot till just starting to boil, then pour over the the chocolate pieces.
    7. Let is sit for a minutes for the chocolate to soften, and then mix it till the mixture becomes glossy and thick.
    8. If using nut butter, add a dollop onto the baked shells before the next step.
    9. Pour ganache into individual tart shells, and decorate!

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2. Ice cream bowl – individual dessert bar

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Here the pastry is shaped into a bowl (I used the Wilton’s cookie bowl mould ) and used to serve up Kohu Road Cookies and Cream ice cream. Perfect with a tray full of garnishes for you to decorate to your heart’s content. Halzelnut praline, freeze dries raspberries and Manuka honey, Valrhona chocolate crisp pearls and batons…hmmmm

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3. Ice cream sandwich with Kohu Road Cookie and Cream

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Scoop the ice cream into a flat container and refreeze to solidify the ice cream again. Cut out rectangle slices of ice cream and sandwich them between rectangular shaped pastry cookies.

4. Biscuits with Fresh As freeze-dried powders
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J made some rocket ship and butterfly biscuits here with cookie cutters. We then dipped them into melted chocolate, followed by a sprinkle of Fresh As freeze dried raspberry powder. The acid tang was sooo good with the bitter pastry biscuit.

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5. Tim tam cheesecake

Instead of lining the whole mould with the pastry, place a disc of it on the bottom of the mould. Bake and after cooling, pour in your favourite no-bake cheesecake filling (see my Tim Tam cheesecake) and let it set in the fridge.

6. Chocolate soil

This is as simple as baking the chocolate pastry and then crumbling them in a food processor or by giving them a good bash in a zip bag with a rolling pin. Sprinkle over or on the sides of desserts and voilà you have a Masterchef style dessert 🙂
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Hope this gets you going with your adventure using Paneton’s Chocolate Pastry!

Citrus Shortbread biscuits


This week at Sunday School, the kids made little cut outs from carrot slices, using little cookie cutters. It immediately brought me back to my childhood years, where these are almost always found in chinese stir fry dishes in restaurants in Hong Kong. Next moment I get a flash back of these wonderful citrusy shortbread biscuits I used to make, using the same cookie cutters. This could be among the first few things we learnt to bake at school, perhaps even before we did the good old chocolate chip cookies.

When we got home, I ran to the kitchen and dug through my folder of old recipes to see if I’d brought it to NZ.

There, among other old recipes, is this recipe on letter-sized paper with typewriter-style font. The paper is still impeccably clean, straight and readable.
I said to J: ‘look, this is mummy’s recipes from 20 years ago! It is still perfect!’ she gave me a funny look, like ‘what is 20 years??’. I stopped myself from explaining about ageing, remembering that she had earlier espressed her dislike of growing old.

Just like that, I was brought back to that school kitchen 20 years ago, baking alongside my friends. It warmed my heart to remember that I’ve always loved cooking, with the joys of success in the kitchen not matched or surpassed by many other things (well perhaps a perfectly exposed photo in the dark room in my later years). This isn’t just a hobby, it is what makes me, ME. That’s why a day off at home usually means a baking marathon or culinary challenge. That’s why I record, watch and re-watch episodes of Masterchef Masterclass. That’s why I have an insatiable appetite for cook books, cooking shows, learning new techniques and cooking challenges.

I have just found another piece of the puzzle about who I AM.

citrus shortbread biscuit

Ingredients

250 g butter (firm, straight out from fridge)
350g plain flour
a pinch of salt
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon or orange or lime
100g caster sugar
Extra caster sugar for dredging

Method

Line two baking sheets with baking paper, preheat the oven to 170°C.

Sift the flour and salt together, then rub in the butter until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Use a knife to cut further to make it more crumbly. This will take about 10 minutes. It was quite nice feeling the textures come together in my hands, and the memory of doing it the first time is still right there in my head, bringing a smile to my face. I resisted the temptation of getting the processor out.

Add the sugar and zest, then knead the mixture until it binds well together. It will be crumbly at first, but just give it a good knead and it will come together.

Turn this dough onto a lightly floured board and press into a round shape. Roll out to 1cm thick.

These are the cutters I used – 20 years ago!

Cut with cutters, re- roll left overs and cut until the dough’s all been cut.

Prick the shortbread surfaces with a fork.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, until surface is golden.

Remove from oven, leaving it to rest on sheets for another few minutes, before transferring carefully to wire racks to cool for a bit.

I also remember dredging them with caster sugar but it isn’t in the original recipe…

I couldn’t resist making little “Thomas” and “Percy” engine-shaped biscuits…the flowers look like the steam clouds! Cute~

Citrus Shortbread

I hope you will enjoy making these as much as I did!

To my friends of class 2X: do you remember these? how long has it been since you made some? Carmen, what about you?