Sugarbird's Sweet Nothings

I am passionate about food. And cooking. And baking. And running. Come and find a new recipe, a funny story, some strong opinions and whatever else I feel like throwing in the mix today.

Archive for the ‘Chocolate’ Category

July 5th, 2011 by Clarabella

Rum & Raisin Chocolate Truffles

Rum + Raisin = Sublime

Rum + Raisin + Chocolate = Divine

These homemade Rum & Raisin Chocolate Truffles = Perfection

I have not done much chocolate making in my life, but I have been thinking a lot about chocolate and making things from home recently. Then the other day I happened to be watching an episode of the Barefoot Contessa that was based around all things chocolate, and she made some Rum and Raisin truffles. Needless to say I was smitten, and almost the second it was finished, I was in the kitchen, rummaging in my chocolate storage box for all the chocolate I could lay my hands on to start making a bounteous batch of these beauties.  Read the rest of this entry »

April 16th, 2011 by Clarabella

White Chocolate Blondies

Technically, white chocolate isn’t really chocolate at all as it does not contain cocoa solids. I did not know that until recently. But I never really though about it, let alone did any research on it before. White chocolate contains cocoa butter (pale yellow pure vegetable fat extracted from the cocoa bean), sugar, milk solids, vanilla and lecithin (an emulsifier that allows all the ingredients to be bound together in a stable way). Beware of any white chocolate that does not contain cocoa butter. The cheap & nasty versions replace the cocoa butter with generic vegetable fat.  Shame on them!

I have a renewed interest in white chocolate lately and subsequently have made a few cookies and biscotti containing white chocolate. so when I came across this recipe in my new Fat Witch Brownies book, they were on the To Do list immediately. And now I have read up on the subject of white chocolate a bit, so if you’re at all interested you might like to know… Read the rest of this entry »

April 12th, 2011 by Clarabella

Cappuccino Biscotti

Foreword: I haven’t been able to run properley for over a week. I rested for a week and a half and I tried running on Saturday, and it hurt. I tried again on Sunday hoping that it may have been my imagination, and it still hurt. What the heck!? I just go over shin splints and now this random pain. I will have to self medicate with chocolate and then go and get my legs pummeled by Mr Physio Guy.

I like my morning coffee. I’m not a big coffee drinker and its generally the only coffee I will have in the day, but its part of my routine and there is something comforting and gently awakening about the warm, creamy drink that makes the day start ok. No matter how grey and dreary it is outside, not matter how late I woke up after the alarm went off, no matter what trials joys I know the day has in store for me, no matter whether I forgot my lunch, again. Its ok. I have my warm, frothy, soothing coffee. Read the rest of this entry »

April 4th, 2011 by Clarabella

Pistachio Petit Four Surprise Birthday Cake

Why not start my post with the pretty picture of the whole and beautiful cake? Because this is the best bit about making a cake. When its been hacked to pieces and everyone around you is munching it. Awesome. And it makes me happy looking at this picture. And right now, while injured and unable to run, with this annoying dull ache in my leg, I need pretty cake pictures to make me smile.

I was commissioned to make this birthday cake by my neighbour Kevin for a surprise birthday party for his wife Geri. This weekend was her 50th birthday, and after insisting that she did not want a 50th birthday party, he decided to throw her a 49.9th birthday party instead. And just to make sure that she could not object or get out of it at all, he made it a surprise party so she knew absolutely nothing about it. As Kevin is a frequent devourer of my cookies, cakes and other tempting treats, he knew I would be delighted to make the cake for the party, which I was, provided I could come along and see the surprise on Geri’s face for myself. And just for good measure we brought along my mom and sister who were visiting for the weekend. It worked out nicely as it was my mom’s birthday the very same day, so I took advantage of the fact that Kevin was barbecuing and putting on a good party and celebrated with her as well.
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March 8th, 2011 by Clarabella

Caribbean Chocolate Brownies

Chocolate. Whoever invented it, thank you. You have given hundreds, thousands, hundreds of thousands of women something that can make them feel better, no matter how bad things may be.

Bad day at work? Chocolate brownie.

Found out your simple car service has a £600 bill attached to it? Chocolate Log.

Coffee break after paining the living room, hallway, and banisters for 5 hours solid? Kit-Kat.

Boyfriend/husband/other half has been away in Barbados surrounded by blonde bimbos for a week and you’re home alone? Toblerone.

Gruelling 10 mile uphill trail run in the rain and you finish triumphant but soaked with 2kg of mud attached to each shoe. Hot hot hot chocolate.


So, with my baking craving on, I went to a shop yesterday, innocently looking for bread and smoked salmon to satisfy a sensible lunch requirement, and I walked out with those, and a slab of chocolate.

This slab.

Looks innocent does it?

Now look at it next to a regular 100g slab of chocolate.

Impressed? I thought you might be. I just couldn’t resist this (reduced) 950g bar of chocolate. It filled me whith chocolatey inspiration. It had to be mine. Now, I keep thinking about the white chocolate version. I am resisting the temptation to go back. Its hard.

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