Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Speculoos Crème Caramel

Photo and Recipe by: Bittersweet blog


1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/4 Cup Water
1/4 Teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar

Speculoos Custard:

3 Cups So Delicious Vanilla Almond Milk
2/3 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1 Cup Creamy Speculoos Spread
1 Tablespoon Agar Agar Powder
2 Teaspoons Arrowroot Powder
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract

Lightly grease six 6-ounce ramekins and set aside, but keep them nearby so they’re easily accessible.
Beginning with the caramel layer, combine the sugar, water, and vinegar in a small saucepan. Stir to moisten all of the sugar, but keep your spatula out of the pan from here on in, to prevent crystallization. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until the mixture starts to darken around the edges; 8 – 10 minutes.
Rather than stirring, gently swirl the pan to mix the sugar syrup and evenly color the whole mixture at once. This will also ensure that it doesn’t burn in the corners or on the bottom of the pan. Continue to cook until the sugar turns dark amber. It should be just on the edge of burning and smoking, but not so close that it smells acrid. Once it starts to darken, it will continue to take on color very quickly, so keep a very close eye on it.
Turn off the heat and immediately pour the liquid caramel into your prepared ramekins, equally distributing it between the six. Let the custard cups sit, undisturbed at room temperature for the caramel to harden.

Meanwhile, turn your attention to the custard portion of the dessert.
In a medium saucepan, vigorously whisk together the non-dairy milk, sugar, salt, speculoos, agar, and arrowroot. It can be difficult to break up the mass of speculoos spread at first, so you may find it easier just to toss everything into your blender and give it a quick blitz instead. Either way, make sure that there are no lumps remaining before placing the saucepan on the stove over medium heat. Whisk frequently but gently, taking care to scrape the bottom and sides of the pan as as it heats. Cook until bubbles begin to break regularly on the surface and the liquid has significantly thickened.
Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the vanilla, stirring until fully incorporated. Carefully pour equal portions of the custard into the waiting ramekins. Tap the bottoms of the cups lightly on the counter to knock out air bubbles. Smooth out the tops with a spatula if necessary.
Let cool to room temperature before transferring to the fridge. Let rest until chilled; at least 2 hours, and up to 2 days.

To serve, simply tip each custard out of its ramekin and onto its own dessert plate. If it doesn’t release right away, run a thin knife around the edges and try again.
Makes 6 Servings

Speculoos Spread Pound Cake

Photo and Recipe by: Becca Bakes

Makes two 8 layers

3 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2½ cups sugar
1 cup butter, unsalted and at room temp
1 cup Speculoos Spread
4 eggs
½ cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 350º. Grease two 8 cake pans
2. In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
3. With a mixer, cream together sugar, butter and Speculoos Spread.
4. Add eggs one at a time, making sure each egg is thoroughly incorporated. Add milk.
5. By the heaping spoonful, add the flour mixture to the butter/sugar mixture. Mix until combined.
6. Divide batter evenly between pans. Fill up NO MORE THAN HALF.  Bake until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. This can be anywhere from 45 min-over an hour..just keep checking.
7. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before frosting
Note: This recipe also works very well as a Bundt

Speculoos Spread Cream Frosting

Makes enough to cover two 8 layers
1 cup butter, at room temperature
3-4 cups confectioner’s sugar
2 tablespoons Speculoos Spread
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pinch salt
1-2 tablespoons milk, as needed
1. In a large bowl, cream the butter until pale, light, and fluffy
2. With a mixer on low, slowly add 1/2 confectioner’s sugar until well combined
3. Add the Speculoos spread, vanilla extract, and salt
4. Add remaining 1/2 confectioner’s sugar
5. If frosting is too stiff, add a bit of milk. If too liquid-y, continue adding confectioner’s sugar until desired consistency is reached. Play with it!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

No-Bake Speculoos Spread Ginger Molasses Cookies

Photo and recipe by: averiecooks
1/4 c  Speculoos spread
1/2 c  speculoos spread crumbled (or use molasses cookies, gingerbread cookies, storebought gingersnaps, graham crackers/graham cracker crumbs, etc. – Beat cookies or crackers them with the back of a knife in a small ziplock baggie or crush up a neutral cereal such as Rice Krispies or Corn Flakes.  You could likely use oats or ground oats, too.)
1/4 c brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 c chocolate chips, melted (for drizzling over the top of finished cookies.  Or try 1 tbsp chocolate chips + 1 tbsp cookie butter, melted together, then drizzled)

1 to 2 tbsp molasses
pinch ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, to taste
For chocolate cookies, add 1 to 3 tbsp cocoa powder to the dough

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix with a spoon until dough comes together.  Form into small cookies or balls.  Melt chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, in 20 second bursts, stopping and stirring to encourage melting after approximately 20 seconds.  Drizzle melted chocolate over the top of cookies and allow to set up before serving.

Notes: Dough may seem a bit crumbly but use your hands to encourage it to come together.  The fat content in the cookie butter spread combined with the brown sugar will likely allow for crumbly looking dough to come together.  “Squeeze” the dough with your hands to see if it comes together but if it doesn’t, add a bit more cookie butter spread as needed.
Conversely, if dough seems to wet to form into cookie shapes, add more dry ingredients, i.e. Speculoos cookies/gingersnap cookies/graham crackers until appropriate dough consistency is reached.

Yields: 9 small cookies (or fewer depending on size.  The beauty of this recipe is that it’s small.  Double or triple recipe as desired).