Speculoos Spread Cookies and Chocolate Syrup from Have Cake, Will Travel

When I started looking for vegan recipes online years ago, Celine’s Have Cake, Will Travel was one of the first food blogs I found and it remains one of my absolute favourites. Some of the first vegan recipes I ever made were from her website (mostly breads and baked goods) and they really helped me fall in love with cooking and baking. My favourite is probably her recipe for French vanilla cupcakes (which I can’t find on the blog right now, but is similar to this equally lovely lemon cake), which is the best cake recipe I’ve tried. Celine has also written a number of excellent cookbooks, but since I’m focusing on blogs this month, I picked two new recipes to try from her site!
Speculoos Spread CookiesFirst up is this recipe for Speculoos Spread Cookies because I couldn’t resist the idea of taking a spread made with biscuits and then turning it back into a cookie again. I had to scale the recipe down considerably as my jar of Speculoos was nearly empty (how did all of that disappear so quickly?), so I got two good-sized cookies out of it. This amount was actually perfect as my small oven can’t hold that many cookies anyway, I got to use my new mini baking sheet, and my boyfriend and I each got to have one of them to dip into our hot chocolate, which we made using Celine’s chocolate syrup:
Chocolate SyrupThis recipe is quite simple but it’s great to have on hand. My boyfriend really appreciated the chocolate soy milk, and I’m looking forward to trying the syrup on fruits and desserts as well!

I hope everyone’s enjoying MoFo so far! I haven’t had much time to read posts yet so I can’t wait to catch up.

Chocolate raspberry tartlets and market produce

Chocolate raspberry tartletsWhen I came home from the market with two boxes of raspberries that needed to be used quickly (more on that below), I immediately thought of this amazing-looking white chocolate raspberry tart I’d seen on Celine’s blog. Unfortunately I didn’t have the white chocolate or silken tofu required for the filling, so I went with a slightly different idea and made mini dark chocolate tarts instead. I halved Celine’s crust recipe, replaced the whole wheat flour with plain flour as that was all I had left, added a little cocoa powder for extra chocolate flavour, and baked it in a muffin tin (about 8 minutes for 6 mini crusts). The filling is a recipe from Vegan Pie in the Sky (Lagusta’s Chocolate Raspberry Pie) and even though I think I let the chocolate melt too quickly which prevented the ganache from firming up properly, I’m really happy with the way they turned out. I like that they’re not too sweet, so the flavour of the raspberries really shines. I’d love to try the white chocolate pie as well!

Back from the marketLately I’ve been buying most of my vegetables (especially the ones that tend to be overpriced at supermarkets) at a local market. After shopping there a few times at different times of day, I now try to go in the morning when it’s not too busy and there’s still a good variety of produce to choose from. I usually bring a limited amount of cash (say, €10) and stick to that as my budget. I often spend less than that and just bring as much as I can carry, which will last us for 1-2 weeks. And I’ve found some pretty good deals! Here’s what I brought home today:

- eight (striped) aubergines for €1
- a bag of tomatoes (also striped! couldn’t resist the gorgeous patterns) for €1
- five courgettes for €1
- three ears of corn for €1
- one watermelon for €1
- two artichokes for €2,60
- two boxes of raspberries for €1,50

I did my best to protect the raspberries while carrying them home, but some of them still got crushed in my bag. Oh well, all the more reason to eat them straight away! The mushier berries were perfect in the tart filling and most of the whole ones found their way into our mouths by the end of the day as well. I don’t buy fresh raspberries very often so they’re a wonderful treat.

The artichokes were a little more expensive than I’d hoped, but I decided to splurge on them anyway because I love artichokes and my boyfriend has never tried them! I’ve never cooked them myself so I’ll have to look through my cookbooks for tips first. I’m hoping to counter my boyfriend’s reluctance to try new vegetables by appealing to his love for foods that come with dipping sauces, so I need to make a good vinaigrette or mayonnaise (or both)! Any ideas? :)

Thanks to everyone who’s been reading my posts and/or leaving comments! <3 Hope you have a lovely day.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Chocolate Sauce

I almost forgot to post my MoFo meal for today!

Chocolate Chocolate Chip PancakesThis morning I made these delicious Chocolate Chocolate Chip Pancakes from 500 Vegan Recipes. They were really good all on their own, but then I figured since we were already having chocolate chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast, why not go ahead cover them in chocolate sauce as well? Mmm. These were amazing, as you probably guessed. I made a huge stack, so we still have leftovers, too!