Week 5 – Traybakes and Biscuits

YAY! This week I was very keen to get going with my bake-along. I did actually complete this bake within hours of the episode being on TV. I just haven’t quite got around to blogging about it yet. The creations of the contestants were so unusual. I especially loved Howards tower of tea flavoured biscuits and I was destraught when Frances’ beautiful tower of buttons collapsed. This week also featured one of the hardest (IMHO) technical bakes to date. I would love to have had a go at the tuiles but my other half announced that if I messed up the kitchen to that extent he would have to seriously consider continuing to live with me. Luckily I had my heart set on the Traybake anyway. The creations presented by the contestants were superb and I hope to try making most of them in the future but I wanted to do something different and of my own. I have a huge number of chopped walnuts in my baking cupboard for an unknown reason so I decided that I would use up some this excess and incorporate them into my bake.

I decided to adapt this recipe I found online but I altered it by including some coffee (1tsp instant coffee granules) in the chocolate layer. This bake was fantastic although I think that cutting it into 24 portions would be a bit mean. Sixteen seemed about the right number. The walnut biscuit was very short with a nice crumbly texture and buttery flavour. The chocolate layer recipe is more unusual and not something that I have come across before. The combination of water and butter to make this gave an almost curdled texture when raw. I was beating the mixture together with a wooden spoon and this was insufficient to get the smooth glossy texture described. I would recommend beating the ingredients together in a different order, adding the water last to make a batter although the appearance of the raw mixture was not detrimental to the final outcome. The chocolate layer was soft and slightly chewy giving a nice contrast to the biscuit base.

DSC_0574

I loved this bake and Mr Elbi was also very pleased describing it as tasty trail mix. The addition of coffee and high nut content tempered the sweetness normally associated with chocolate and biscuit making it ideal for consumption on our recent walking break in Wales. I am tempted to try a second generation version of this bake soon with a thin layer of carmel between the biscuit and the chocolate. This would hopefully be a more indulgent variation on this recipe perfect for afternoon tea.

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