Thursday, 15 June 2017

Strawberry Time - Strawberry, Mascarpone & Chocolate Cake

Some say it is best to eat foods that are in season. I especially enjoy this with regards to strawberries. They taste so much better, when they are fresh from the region compared to the ones you get at the supermarket and are imported from who knows where. Last year we didn't take full advantage of that, but this year will make up for it. Nearby is a large field of strawberries where you can pick them for yourselves at a very good price. Therefore whenever we feel like it we head over and get some fresh strawberries. Well, that is when we have finished off the last once we got. Usually the last remaining once end up in a smoothie or something like that.
There are many ways to enjoy the strawberries. You can eat them fresh, with yoghurt, with your muesli, with curd cheese, in smoothies, in cakes, in salads ... well, we just watched Forrest Gump the other day, but I think I really shouldn't go into this part in detail of what you can do with strawberries like they did in the movie with shrimps ... hm ... eh ... well ... eh ... and that's about all you can do with strawberries. Well, I haven't got that much time and I really can't imagine an end of that list.
Therefore I will rather limit my writings to what I did and what I announced in the title of this blog post: Strawberry, Mascarpone & Chocolate Cake.



I tried to think of another name for this cake, but I really couldn't come up with any and above that in these days there are certain words you rather shouldn't use in public. Anyway, let's focus on the more important things ...



Picking strawberries is really enjoyable for me, in the sun, it's relaxing after a full day at the office. I reckon we still have a few weeks, maybe about two and then it will already be over with this field. I guess, though, it is not our fault.




We usually get about two kilos or a wee bit more of strawberries. After all we can easily return and get some more another day.



After we have gotten one of the key ingredients for our Strawberry, Mascarpone & Chocolate Cake, I reckon it is about time to start with the preparation ...

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Travelling and Cooking: Salad with Green Plantain

We have been travelling a bit, flying over the Atlantic ocean from Madrid, Spain to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. There was a lot of running involved at the airport. At one point there was an employee of the airport shouting all the time at passengers that people with a European passport go to one line and other to another. I wonder for how long she made it. Anyway, it was a wonderful vacation with sun, sea, beach and food.
One day La Romana, Dominican Republic, we went to the mall and there was a cooking show going on with Gabriella Reginato. Well, I have never heard of her before, but hey ... it was about food and we still had a bit of time. The first dish she showed was Sangria without alcohol. There was some rosemary involved in this and it tasted good.
Next up was a salad with green plantain. That was very delicious and we thought we have to try it at home, just to have some other fine dish with plantains. 
Therefore I had to adjust the recipe of Gabriella a bit to fit the ingredients we have available here and to have it written in English.


Ingredients:
1 green plantain, cut into small cubes
1/2 red bell pepper cut into small pieces
1/2 yellow bell pepper cut into small pieces
1 green pepper, cut into small pieces
Some leaves of coriander
2 spring onions, cut into small rings
1 tbsp Olive oil
1 lemon
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper


Method:
To start with, we are going for the cooking of the plantains. Put them in salted water with the juice of half of the lemon. Bring to the boil and cook for 10 minutes. Then let them cool down a bit.


The rest is super easy, for as you have done all the chopping already. Well, don't call me lazy when it comes to writing up things. It's just the way it is. No, not the lazy part, but putting the dish together.
Put the plantains, peppers, spring onions, garlic, coriander in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper, then add the remaining juice of the other half of the lemon. Finally add the olive oil and then you are ready to it, if ... you like it at room temperature. Otherwise you can put the salad into the fridge to let it cool down further.
Anyway, this amount of salad would serve for two people, but of course it is only a side dish.

I hope you try it out. Have a look also at the original version, when we tried it the first time in the Dominican Republic in the mall.


Again, another post comes to an end. It went quickly, just as the vacations. It seems that those always end to fast. Have a luvly time!

Hasta luego!

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Rodrigo's Paella

Summer and sun? – Check!
Lot’s of food? – Check!
Some drinks? – Check!
Crazy? – Check!
So far it has been a lovely summer with a fair share of sun, lot’s of food and some drinks. You can call me crazy for various known and unknown reasons. I leave that up to you, but for today, you can call me Rodrigo.
So, make sure to keep that in mind. I settled with a friend on that and he tries to call me Rodrigo. Since we have established that, we can go on with some food.
However, before we get to that, we need something else.
Spanish music? – Check!
These days with all those music streaming services and Internet radios, it’s not that complicated.
Now playing: Amistades Peligrosas – Me Quedaré Solo
Well, I don’t know about that, but I’m not sure whether I like that message. Anyway, that isn’t the subject of this post nor of this blog. I don’t want to get that personal here.
Calling back to mind what we want here now: Food.
Therefore I bring you now Rodrigo’s Paella …

You still remember, who Rodrigo is, don’t you? No Dices Más. Well, that is fitting now and the song that is playing right now: Moenia – No Dices Más.
Right, you don’t have to say anything as we start finally
Ingredients:
Olive oil
2 small chorizos
350 g chicken breast
100 g duck breast (optional, it was a leftover)
100 g shrimps
100 g mussels (ready to eat)
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
150 g cherry tomatoes
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
Salt
Pepper
Paprika powder (mild)
3 cups of rice
2 bay leaves
700 ml chicken stock
Pinch of saffron
Method:
Put a large pan on heat and add some olive oil.
Get a sharp knife to do all the cutting. Make sure it’s really sharp, so you get a clear cut in case you should cut yourself … oops … I didn’t mean it. I am sure, you can get through the recipe without cutting yourself. Anyway, I heard you cut yourself more often, when the knife is too dull. So it’s better to use a sharp knife, that does its job properly.
Now we go on with doing our job properly.
Cut the chorizo into small pieces and add it to the pan. Cut the chicken breast (and duck breast) into small chunks and brown them together in the pan with the chorizo. When it all has gained some good colour remove all the meat from the pan and set aside.
Finely chop up the onions and fry them in the pan until translucent. Chop up the garlic and add it, too.
Then quarter the tomatoes and put into the pan.
Cut the bell peppers into mouth-manageable size and add them to the pan as well.
Season everything with salt, pepper and the paprika powder.
Afterwards add the rice and the chicken stock. Add the meat back again as well. Add also 2 bay leaves and the pinch of saffron.
Let it all simmer until the rice is cooked. If you feel, the paella gets too dry, add a tiny bit of water.

Almost there! At the end add the shrimps and the mussels and heat them up. That shouldn’t take too long.
Now you are ready to plate up and enjoy Rodrigo’s Paella.
Well, I am not 100% sure whether that is a typical paella for I have never eaten paella in Spain – or at least I don’t remember. I have to put it on my list I want to do. Argh, that list is too long anyway. I also have a kind of list or better say a pile of papers of recipes I still could post. There are 11 papers and I don’t know how to manage. Anyway, you might see some of those things on this blog one day, so make sure to come back.
First, though, have some more paella and, if you like a bottle of beer with it. For sure there are more days coming to enjoy and … if I am able to put my eyes on a computer screen again – besides work – I will write you something more.
Well then, see you, when I see you. Next time I may be Chris again and not Rodrigo anymore. We will see ... 

Monday, 15 May 2017

Pannekoek ... do as you wish ...

While thinking about visits to the Netherlands and eating just a few things come to my mind like eating Loempias on the market of Enschede, Kibbeling on a different market somewhere else (can’t remember the place now) and then there are Pannekoeks. Just now I realise how many Dutch words we used back then in my childhood or how similar the daily spoken language was with Dutch. Or maybe it was all because my grandmother was Dutch. I don’t know. Anyway, as it’s time to contribute to my very own challenge Bloggers Around the World: The Netherlands, I reckon I have to do as previously announced and have Pannekoeks or pancakes. We once (at least) visited a Pannekoek house in the Netherlands to have some food. You could have all sorts of pancakes, sweet or savoury, as you wished.
Then there is also a place in Germany, in Bremen, a Pannekoek restaurant on a sailing ship on the water, not far from the city centre. The place is called Admiral Nelson. Anyway, we would have had pancakes … if it would not be closed on Mondays ...
Now there you could have all kinds of pancakes as you already see. They had also for example a Mexican style and an Indian style pancake on offer.
But we want to have our own. First of all, you go for your basic pancake batter:
One cup on flour, one cup of milk, an egg and a pinch of salt. If you want more batter, just multiply the amounts.

At the time I was having pannekoeks I was limited to what kind of ingredients I had at home. Here I used chorizo and cheese.
I just gave some batter into the hot and oiled pan. After a while I added the chorizo, cheese and a bit of dried oregano. You could put a lid on, if you like or later put the pancake quickly under the grill to get the cheese a bit more melting.
Well, all this was not much, but just imagine the possibilities, you could have a pancake topped in the same way you could top a pizza. So, go for a mushrooms or tuna version.

Fine, I just added the obligatory chilli sauce, just because I wanted to. No worries.
Or simply do a triple or quadruple or even quintuple cheese one. Use your imagination, this is the only limit you have here.

If you wish you could also put some kind of salad on top. Just now I am thinking about it, how good it would have been to put Parma ham and rocket leaves on it.
Then there is also always the option to go the sweet way, if you want to. I don’t want to today.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Breakfast with bills II

What is the first thing that comes to your mind, when you think about breakfast?
I said the first thing, so don’t ponder to long over it. For me, always the sentence ‘Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.’ comes to my mind. Now I don’t want to argue over it, saying anything for or against it.
The second thing that comes to my mind is … eh … wait, I just asked about the first thing, so there is no point in talking about the second.
Whatsoever, there are many ways to have a great breakfast. Some, though, require going the extra mile. This for sure applies for the three things I want to show you today in my … eh … series ‘… with Bills’ which I started due to ...
Anyway, let’s have a closer look at number one: Coconut Bread:

As is mentioned in ‘Bills Sydney Food’ it is good to ‘Keep slices in the freezer for workdays when you’d rather be in the Caribbean.’ Well, to this I can only say: My freezer isn’t that big. However, I tried it as far as possible in my case.
Having breakfast alone, you’ll never need one loaf in one go. No, you even don’t need it when having breakfast with two persons. I was fine settling with two slices, leaving some to be put into the freezer for one of those days or for any day. Did I say both could be the same in my case? Nah, anyway …
You could enjoy this bread with salt-fish relish. Fine, I don’t have any and I don’t get any, but you can also enjoy it in other ways. Just some icing sugar on it is lovely. On the other hand, putting something else on it might give it that extra kick, but that I yet have to find out.

The bread contains eggs, milk, vanilla essence, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, sugar, shredded coconut and butter, just to give you an idea what to expect.
Well, I enjoyed it very much and by this I remind myself now to make one again soon for my freezer isn’t really that big. Oh, I don’t even have a real freezer, just a small freezer compartment in the fridge and since I just can’t … eh, but could … fill it all the way with coconut bread, I have to take another approach here.

So, have two slices of coconut bread and a cuppa with it. At least once I also had a Mango and Banana Sunrise Drink together with it. That’s lovely, too. It’s a mixture of orange juice, mango, banana and a bit of yoghurt. You can’t go wrong with that.
On to the next splendid breakfast. I can tell you, it’s not a light one. For that one you need peaches and … eh … although I know, I might earn myself a comment for this … eh … I will mention it nevertheless: you have to get those peaches naked …
Whatever the case, we want to do something with those peaches apart from slicing them up and putting them in a bowl with lemon juice and sugar for 30 minutes. Eh … you see, again you need some time, so you have to carefully think about it when you want to have it for breakfast.
Right, what do we want to do with those lucky peaches?

Basically, it’s French Toast Stuffed with Peaches. Well, there is additionally to some eggs, milk, cream vanilla, more sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg involved.
Bread?
Right, I especially went to the bakery next door to get some lovely white bread, although Bill said to use brioche bread. I didn’t see any at that time, but found some later … and bought it … and just ate it plain as it was. Putting things in mind together … that would have been really gorgeous using that brioche for the French Toast, although it was already great the way it was, topped with some vanilla yoghurt and maple syrup.
Definitely a wonderful start into the day, you just need to have sufficient time in the morning. After all you can’t just pull that pre-arranged French Toast thingy from your freezer – that is if you have one – as you could do with the coconut bread just mentioned above.
Along that line, just shift to something you could pull from your freezer – that is if … eh … forget it. The whole process starts somehow like this …

No, that is actually wrong, this isn’t really the start of it, it’s just the first photo I took in the course of preparing Iced Cinnamon Snail Rolls … and I already crave some. I have to come to the conclusion, this post is a tad dangerous for me. However, I also can’t stop right now. We have to go on.
At the point of the photo, we already have prepared a dough with yeast having aloud it an hour to double in size. You see, you definitely don’t want to make it fresh in the morning you want to enjoy some for breakfast.
We have brushed the dough with melted butter and sprinkled it with brown sugar and cinnamon.

After that it’s rolling up to make a log. Guess what, then it’s time to slice the log up into thick slices to place on a baking tray and leave once more to double in size. Yes, it really takes some time with all this rising business.

You can already see where this is getting to. At one point then you have to get the heat on in your oven and … yes, bake and wait even more while the baked goods are cooling down on a rack. All this is really a job of patience, but since you will be able to fr…. eh … it will be absolutely worth it. Trust me, just this once. I know what I’m doing … do I?

For the most part they already look great, maybe apart from the second from the left in the middle row. Fine, at least we have one, we can just much away on as soon as we feel the temperature of the rolls is suitable for not hurting any parts of your mouth.
Right, don’t forget the icing consisting of icing sugar, warm water and vanilla. I really tried my best to drizzle it on.

To draw a conclusion from this … those three recipes are something lovely I would not just take for breakfast. In fact, I would be happy with any of it right now. It’s only too bad I can’t right now.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

A French evening with ...

Bonsoir!
No, I am not doing it again this time and have a post in French. I wouldn’t be that good with it. Nevertheless we are going to have some French food. Are we? Well, I don’t want to insult someone or something like that, but …
… sometimes having something French for me means …

Yes, a board of fromage, some bread and vin rouge. It’s all quite simple. Just unpack the cheese, place it on a board. Open a bottle of red wine and pour it into a glass and … et voila!
Fine, did I forgot something? A French evening with … With whom? No, not with whom, with what? Bread that is, garlic bread to be a bit precise.
So, pouring the wine and unpacking the cheese is quite simple, but baking your own bread is a bit of work …
Sift 500 g of flour into a bowl, add 7 g of yeast, pour over 250 ml of water and bring it together. Add a few tablespoons of steamed garlic t it.
Knead the dough for 5 minutes, let it rest 10 minutes, knead for 20 minutes (quite some work). Leave the dough to rise for 1 hour.
Then shape it into two balls and let it rise for 45 more minutes. Afterwards get it into the desired final shape and leave it for another 35 minutes. Then bake it at 230 °C for 20 minutes and then …

Maybe let it cool down a bit, if you like.
Fine, now I rushed a bit through the whole process of baking the bread leaving out a few details, like the precise shaping, the cut on top and the water in the oven for a good crust.
Anyway, it’s quite a process and as for me, sometimes you get nice bread and sometimes it’s not just perfect. Well, I enjoyed the bread, but it was a bit compact and not so lightly. Nevertheless, it worked out fine with the cheese and the wine.
For now I leave you with a picture of my adventuring time in France …

Au revoir!

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Sale el Sol Tortillas del Trigo

Hoy tenemos algo completamente diferente. Ya ves. Vamos a tratar de cocinar algo Español en español. Empezamos de inmediato …

Ingredientes:
Un poco de ensalada verde
Seis tomates pequeños
Un pimiento rojo
Un pieza de la carne sazonada/marinada – 100-200 Gramos (de vaca, pollo o cordero)
100 g chorizo
Una cebolla pequeña (las rojas son mejor)
Un poco de queso
Tortillas del trigo
Sel, pimienta
Un poco de zumo de limon
Elaboración:
Cortar la ensalada verde, los tomates y el pimiento rojo en trozos pequeños. Sazone con sal y pimienta. Mezclar con el zumo de limón.
Cortar la cebolla en aros.
Freír la carne y el chorizo. Después cortar en trozos pequeños.
Ahora, empezamos con el tortilla del trigo. Calentar la tortilla. Después ponga la ensalada en la tortilla.

Después los trozas del chorizo y un poco de queso.

Después la carne y los aros de cebolla.

Eso es todo. Ahora envolverlo y comérselo. Disfrute de su comida!
Un poco de papel de aluminio podría ayudarle.

Are you still with me? How good was your Spanish to understand the recipe or did you need no knowledge of Spanish at all, because the photos were telling everything?
Just to make sure, let us go through it again …
Sunrise wheat tortillas
Maybe there is a reason for the name of the dish, but at least the sun is really out these days. I could have called it summer tortillas, but … I didn’t. My call!
But now, without any further ado …
Ingredients:
A little bit lettuce
Six small tomatoes
One red bell pepper
A piece of seasoned/marinated meat – 100-200 g (beef, chicken or lamb)
100 g chorizo
One small onion (the red ones are better)
Some cheese
Wheat tortillas
Sal, pepper
A splash of lemon juice
Method:
Cut the lettuce, tomatoes and red bell pepper into small pieces. Season with salt and pepper. Mix with the lemon juice.
Cut the onion into rings.
Fry the meat and the chorizo. Then cut it into small pieces.
Now, we can start with the wheat tortilla. Warm up the tortilla. Then put the salad on the tortilla.
Then the chorizo and cheese.
Then the meat and the onion rings.

That’s all. Now wrap it up and eat it. Enjoy your meal!
A little bit of aluminium foil could help you.
Und weil das ganze jetzt so schön war hier nochmal für alle die, die weder viel mit Spanisch noch mit Englisch am Hut haben …
Wir wollen da, wie schon zuvor, nicht lange rum fackeln und einfach loslegen …
Sonnenaufgangstortillas
Gut, euch kann ich’s ja sagen, wenn ihr wollt könnt ihr es auch zum Frühstück essen oder auch zum Mittag oder zum Abendessen oder nachts oder zwischendurch oder wenn ihr Hunger habt. Was auch immer, die Sonne ist draußen, also hier mein Beitrag …
Zutaten:
Etwas grüner Salat
Sechs kleine Tomaten
Eine rote Paprika
Ein Stück gewürztes/mariniertes Fleisch – 100-200 g (Rind, Hähnchen oder Lamm)
100 g Chorizo
Eine kleine Zwiebel (die roten sind besser)
Etwas Käse
Weizentortillas
Salz, Pfeffer
Ein wenig Zitronensaft
Zubereitung:
Den Salat, Tomaten und rote Paprika in kleine Stücke schneiden. Kit Salz und Pfeffer würzen. Mit dem Zitronensaft mischen.
Die Zwiebel in Ringe scheiden.
Das Fleisch und die Chorizo anbraten. Dann in kleine Stücke scheiden.
Jetzt können wir mit der Weizentortilla anfangen. Die Tortilla aufwärmen. Dann den Salat auf die Tortilla geben.
Dann die Chorizo und Käse.
Dann das Fleisch und die Zwiebelringe.
Das ist alles. Nun zusammenfalten und essen. Guten Appetit!
Ein wenig Albfolie könnte helfen.
So, nun habt ihr wohl genug, oder soll ich das ganze jetzt nochmal in irgend einem Dialekt abspulen. Aber ich denke bei ‘datt’, ‘watt’, ‘ett’ und irgendwelchen Spezialausdrücken flippt die Autokorrektur – oder doch eher ich – völlig aus und es wird kein glückliches Ende nehmen.
Das würde niemand wollen.
No one would want that.
Nadie querría eso.
Kimse isterim.
Personne ne voudrait que.
कोई भी उस चाहेगा।
誰もそれを望んないだろう。
I think, this is a very good point to stop this post. I hope you enjoyed it. Hey, after all, this still is … Cooking Around the World!

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Gammon and Baked Beans Casserole

Here I am again sitting in front of my computer and typing away. Well, not really typing away. I’m not quite sure what kind of post I should put up today. I’ve prepared the images already and I have a name for the post, so it’s not that. There is some kind of food and recipe thing waiting to be fashioned into a post and maybe as well in a way that someone who wants to recreate the dish can do so.
Then it is something different. I’m not sure whether I should turn this again into a psychological or weird post or whether to simple through the recipe at you.
However, as the title promised food, I have to give you my Gammon and Baked Beans Casserole. I could think of any other proper name for it.
Gammon and Baked Beans Casserole
First of all we need a 20 x 20 cm casserole dish. Feel free to use another size, if you want, but the following is based on that size.
Drizzle some olive oil into the casserole dish. So, take note of this first ingredient. Then we move on to the next step.

We continue with a layer of sliced potatoes. You don’t have to do them that thinly, but not that thickly either. Let me think, that might be about 4 or 5 potatoes in that dish. We move on.

Next some onion rings. What you reckon, how many onions are this? Hm, well one or two I’d say. If you want more, though, or have a different size of onions, adjust accordingly.

Time for some gammon then. Or do you prefer bacon? It’s your call. At least we don’t have to argue about the number of slices I used here. It’s obvious, isn’t it. At the time I did this, I had to think about a way to use these up as I had a brunch with some friends at my place and I had some leftovers. Speaking of leftovers brings us also to the next step.

There were some leftover baked beans. So I continued covering the gammon with a generous layer of baked beans. Here we go.

Cheese, we need to have cheese. It always makes sense for me. For simplicity I just put on two slices of cheese. If you have some grate-worthy cheese available, go ahead.

That leaves us with a final layer of gammon again. Somehow I have to get rid of it and after all I want to call it Gammon and Baked Beans Casserole. So I had to use more than three slices.
Now that leaves us with putting it into the pre-heated oven. You for sure know my rule. So, that is 30 minutes at 180 °C. Then things should look fine. Otherwise leave it in for a couple more minutes.

For me that looks ready. To give it all a little colour offset, a bit of chives will do nicely and I had to use it before the whole plants things of kicking the bucket due to it’s limited lifespan or my poor treatment.

Plate it up and enjoy it. Cucumber? Mostly the same reason as the chives, but then you need some more veggie bit on that dish, don’t you?
I guess, I already said too much again, but then again, there is no way in stopping me once things get started. However, most of the time things don’t get started.
With that we … end.

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Millenium Falcon Salted Caramel Cake

May the fourth be with you!
Again another year has rolled passed. While I don’t care much about any kind of holiday and special cooking and baking for it, I like May the 4th – Star Wars Day, well I like the pun on the phrase “May the force be with you!” Fine, I liked the movies, too.
But that’s it. Ah, well, when I have the chance I bake something … and I reckon, I will go to the cinema to watch episode VIII in December.
However, I am not going to send a model of a spacecraft into space in order to get some attention. Hm …!?! Maybe I could sent a cake of a spacecraft into space …
Anyway, during the weekend I was talking to a friend and he suggested I could maybe make a Death Star cake. Nah, that would be too much work. What about some cupcakes. We arranged some batter and added green food colouring. After baking, the idea was to add some marzipan to make them look like Yoda heads. Well, the cupcakes didn’t turn out that green and the homemade marzipan not that good for modelling, although it tasted very yummy due to the addition of Amaretto.
Then I got an idea for May the 4th …

A rough sketch of the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars that would help me the next day to build a Millennium Falcon cake.
We would need a sponge and some sort of filling or topping. I did some more pondering and researching …
I wanted something with caramel and cream cheese. A quick look at the basics again for achieving it and we are off to shopping. Maybe a marzipan cover would be lovely.
Shopping ready! Now, let’s go for it …
Ingredients:
Sponge:
225 g butter
225 g sugar
4 eggs
225 g (self-rising) flour
1 tsp baking powder
Vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Salted Caramel Sauce:
200 g brown sugar
85 g butter
120 ml cream
Vanilla extract
1 tsp fleur de sel (or sea salt)
Buttercream:
225 g butter
115 g cream cheese
Vanilla extract
The salted caramel sauce
400 g icing sugar
Method:
Don’t worry, the sponge is just a standard sponge as you might use for a Victoria Sponge cake as well. So, if you don’t feel like Star Wars, have a normal round one, but …
We feel like Star Wars now. After all, John Williams is assisting us through the whole process. So turn up the volume of your speakers. Yes, it would be best this post comes with a soundtrack,but if you want to hear anything, you have to put on the music yourself.
Fine, “Bake we must!”
Take a bowl, add the butter and the sugar for the sponge and get whisking … until it’s fluffy.
Yeah, I don’t know whether that is fluffy, but that’s the way I’m gonna use it. Crack one egg into it. Beat it. Crack another egg. Beat it again. Next egg. More beating. Last egg. Finish beating. Add the vanilla extract.
Now sift in the flour and the baking powder. Don’t forget a pinch of salt. Incorporate everything to get a smooth batter.
For the baking the oven is heated up to 180 °C.
Line a baking tray with baking parchment and spread the batter on it …
Like this it goes into the oven for 25 minutes.
At this point you could be tempted to start the salted caramel sauce. Don’t do it! see where you can tidy up things while the sponge is baking.
Remove the sponge from the oven and give it time to cool down.
Now you can feel free to start the salted caramel sauce. Get yourself a saucepan and add the brown sugar and cover it all with water. Place the remaining ingredients for the sauce nearby …
Put on the heat … full power … energise!
The sauce seems a bit tricky. Obviously, you can’t see when the sugar starts to get an amber colour, for it already has such. Hear it is, where you need to use the force, you need to feel it. Well, you don’t have to close your eyes for the next step, but if you want it, go for it.
Reach out with your senses and feel the caramel getting ready as the liquid is bubbling away. You will sense a change in the bubbling or a tremor in the force …
When that happens, reduce the heat from full to medium, get a wooden spoon into your right hand … eh … or left hand, if you prefer that. Start stirring.
Throw in the butter. Stir and watch it melt away.
Pour in the cream and watch it distribute, stirring all the time.
Add the vanilla extract and the fleur de sell (sea salt), while you continue stirring.
At this point, I turned off the heat and continued stirring with the remaining heat until the caramel sauce stopped bubbling. Then set it aside for cooling.
Back to the sponge. I cut it into half and placed one piece above the other to follow my Millennium Falcon blueprint to cut it out of the sponge.
Hm … it looked … okay …

That will do. In order to be able to proceed here, we need the buttercream ready.
Another bowl, some more whisking and we are ready …
Add the butter and the cream cheese to the bowl and whisk it together. There goes another bit of vanilla extract.
The salted caramel sauce isn’t that hot anymore, so we can spoon it into the bowl as well and mix it in thoroughly.
Bit by bit we add the 400 g icing sugar. That sounds like awful a lot. No worries! Combine it all well. Ah, that looks like awful a lot of buttercream. Fine, we are going to use it all up anyway.
Spread a layer of … let’s say one third of it … on the bottom sponge …

Carefully place the top sponge … eh … on top of it. No big deal, huh?

Use some of the sponge cuttings to create a satellite dish, a round object placed on a wedge.
It’s time to use up that remaining buttercream and cover the whole cake in it. Give it your best to get the cream on. If you have any cream in undesired places, I’m afraid you have to remove it and eat it up. Well, that’s what I did.

Hm, you get an idea of the Millennium Falcon at this point, but we still can do better with some chocolate buttons and a bit chocolate from a decorating pen …

That’s it. In order for my cake decorating skills to improve, I reckon I have to do a few more cakes. Well … if I get any ideas, that is.
When I was younger … much younger … I never had a Millennium Falcon model, but now I have a Millennium Falcon cake and … the only thing can do with it, is eat it up. However, considering the over 500 g of sugar and the amount of sugar in it, I guess, I have to enlist the help of others to deal with the cake. Otherwise I’ll have a BIG problem.
So, if you are i the neighbourhood anytime soon …
Well, I had a model of a TIE-fighter once. I already thought of making some TIE-fighters with cookies and marzipan or even a marzipan X-Wing, but … that would have been a lot harder.
Speaking of marzipan, there was no room for a marzipan cover here, so I definitely have to make some more cake involving that soon.
For the time being, though, I wish you a lovely day and … if you feel like it … share some of your Star Wars Day creations in below in the comment section.
Otherwise, have a delicious Salted Caramel cake …