Pumpkin Bread with Chocolate Chips

Pumpkin Bread with Chocolate Chips Yeah, yeah, I know: where is the meringue I promised?

I wish I had a decent excuse. Something like: I was abducted by aliens with green, pointy heads and weird names such as Wrchzyzk and Yshdmeb. Or something along the lines of: the Rocking Rebel and I have won the lottery and went to the Bahama’s to celebrate. That would have been nice, wouldn’t it? Even ‘a dingo stole my mixer’ would have been fine! I mean, who makes meringue without a mixer? It’s impossible…

But no. I don’t have a decent explanation. Just my thesis. Which is my excuse for everything these days!

So instead of posting 2000 words on making French meringue today, I thought I’d share my favorite don’t-disturb-me-I’m-writing-my-thesis-snack with you guys today. Because it’s amazing!

Okay, so the first thing you’ll need to know is that I’m going through an orange phase right now. Meaning that I like to eat orange things these days. Maybe because the leaves are turning orange? Maybe because there are pumpkins everywhere? Maybe because orange makes me think of a sunset in the Bahama’s instead of how many words I still need to write before the 30th of November?

Who knows…


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Life Happens

Life Happens Soooo. As the title of this post suggests, I don’t have a recipe for you today. Not even one for French meringue, which I very clearly promised to you in my last post. Nothing of the sort… You see, as the title of this post also indicates – and you all know how much I looooove self-explanatory post titles – life happens! Which, in my case, mans that I have been spending a lot of time in Thesis Land! 

Yay… I – cough, cough – love it there… cough

No, all joking aside, Thesis Land is not that bad. It can be frustrating sometimes – because hey, I do need to get a crazy amount of words on paper – but it’s can also be really rewarding.

I guess…?

Aaaanyways, this past week, the few days I haven’t spent riding the Rollercoaster of Despair in Thesis Land (it’s really a lot like Disney Land, but with scarier rides) have been all about puppies, celebrations and romantic dinners. So instead of going over the usual stuff – you know, desserts – I thought I’d share some photo’s!


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Salted Caramel Macarons With a Whipped Caramel Filling

Salted Caramel Macarons Ah, macarons… Those gorgeous, little French cookies. They’re delicate and pretty. They’re fluffy and delicious. And they are so super cute! Aren’t they? Uuuum, no! Don’t let their cute appearance fool you. Macarons have caused more home bakers to collapse onto their kitchen floors crying in utter frustration than any other cookie! But if you’re willing to overlook that little piece of information, then yes: they are cute!

Cute and notoriously finicky…

Lucky for me, I’ve never collapsed onto my kitchen floor in utter frustration because of a bad macaron. Nope, macarons never did that to me. It happened to others, but not to me. I can honestly say that I never experienced a nervous break down after pulling a batch of macaron shells out of the oven.

So what does that mean? I’m the most gifted baker in the universe? Not really… iIt’s kind of embarrassing to admit, but when I first started making macarons about six – oh my god has it been that long?? – years ago, I was just an idiot who didn’t have a clue what a proper macaron was supposed to taste like.

There, I said it: me was idiot.

Oh yeah, hollow, tough macarons used to make me feel proud of myself. As long as they kind of looked like the real deal, with the shiny top and the cute feet, I’d be happy with them. I’m not sure if being an idiot who doesn’t know the first thing about macarons is really the best approach to take when it comes to making these babies, but it sure saved me a lot of tears! Not even undercooked macarons would disappoint me… Jeez…

Of course, when the Rocking Rebel brought home a box of real Parisian macarons (from Ladurée) it dawned on me that the macarons I had been making up until then were, um, not worthy of the name ‘macarons’. They were too dry, too tough and waaaay too chewy… But in a delicious kind of way. Luckily, by that time I had just purchased a brand new cookbook with shiny pages and the perfect macaron recipe. And that perfect macaron recipe taught me this: French style macarons are not my thing! And when I say ‘French style’, I mean macarons made with French meringue. 


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Different Kinds of Meringue: How To Make Italian Meringue

Italian Meringue Okay, back with the next post of my still-kind-of-new series about the different kinds of meringue, called… here it comes: ‘The Different Kinds of Meringue’. I thought that title was convenient… Creative? No. Self-explanatory? Yes!

It just makes life so much easier…

This is actually the second post of my very well-titled new series. Last week, I started the series with a post devoted to Swiss meringue. Which just so happens to be particularly perfect to top pies with, because – unlike the fluffy goodness I’m discussing today – it’s completely safe to eat! Salmonella-wise, I mean… So, naturally, I followed the Swiss Meringue post with a recipe post in which I used that gorgeous, fluffy, marshmallowy Swiss meringue to top some amazing Mini S’Mores Tarts!

Soooo. Gooood.

But enough about Swiss meringue and the things you can make with it. On with the Italian meringue! Just a heads up: if you’re squeamish about using uncooked eggs in desserts, you’re wasting your time here. Italian meringue is for those of us who like to live on the edge a little! The eggs in Italian meringue are definitely NOT cooked!

Got it? Good.

Anyway, a few weeks ago, I had to make Italian meringue for a gorgeous Strawberry Mousse Cake. I accidentally stumbled upon the idea of using Italian meringue to make a fruit mousse after I completely messed up a whipped-cream-based fruit mousse recipe. Three times! Wait, that’s probably confusing. Let me clarify: me, whipped cream and fruit purée? Bad things happened. Three times! Me, Italian meringue, fruit purée and whipped cream? Match made in heaven.


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Mini S’mores Tarts

Mini Smores Tarts Okay, so I made Swiss Meringue last week, right? For my new series on the different kinds of meringue. I started with the Swiss meringue, because I loooooove it! You know why? Because it’s fluffy. And dreamy. And deliciously thick and marshmallowy. And super easy to make. And… wait, did I just say ‘marshmallowy’?

I did!!

And when I say ‘marshmallowy’, I think marshmallows. And when I think marshmallows, I think campfires. And when I think of marshmallows and campfires together, I think: s’mores! Duh. who wouldn’t… Anyway, because I had a big bowl of Swiss meringue, and some pretty basic pantry staples like chocolate and digestive biscuits – because graham crackers? What are graham crackers? I never had a single graham cracker in my life!! – I decided to whip up some cute mini s’mores tarts!

And they were gooooood!


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