Thursday 23 November 2023

Pineapple Mini Muffins

Mini muffins?  Yes please!  They are so cute.  I have had mini muffin tin liners in my pantry for mmm... quite some time, so I decided to use them - and use them.  I've made these twice in a week, once for the talk I gave to the Historical Society and once for our friend who is having a massive cleanup of her home.  She ordered in a big skip, and asked everyone who could, to help with getting rid of junk.  Hope it doesn't sound mean, but her hubby (who passed away in January) was - shall we say? - a blooming great hoarder :=)

Mr P. and I are getting into the de-clutter mode lately, so things are getting turfed!  I usually read a book and give it away, and we are chucking or selling lots of our stuff!  There was a TV show once, which was actually called Stuff, about the things we humans collect, and what we do with them.  It's such a ubiquitous human trait.

This recipe is from a website called: Chocolate Covered Katie.  She apparently has one of the top 25 food websites in the U.S.  This is a great recipe I have to say!  I am of course using local pineapple (even though Heinz bought the Aussie company out some time ago.)  They also make tinned beetroot, which is a massive part of our culture; I mean a real Aussie burger HAS to have tinned beetroot!  (And often a slice of pineapple.)

I need one of these now :=)

Makes 24 mini muffins or 9 normal ones:


1 x 450g./16 oz tin of crushed pineapple, well-drained (drink the juice/syrup if you fancy)

2 Tbs milk - your choice

1 Tbs white or cider vinegar

1.5 tsp vanilla extract or paste

3 Tbs vegetable (neutral) oil  - I used sunflower oil

1 cup plain flour

1/2 tsp each of - bi-carb (baking) soda, sea salt and baking powder

1/3 cup caster sugar


Grab a large mixing bowl, and whisk together the first 5 ingredients

Set aside for 10 minutes - just do it! :=)   See Notes

On goes your oven to 180C/355F

Line a muffin tin with cute paper liners

Stir the other ingredients into the mixture in the bowl till just combined - go gently, not like a mad cement mixer

Bake for 20 minutes if using a normal-sized tin, and a bit less for the mini muffins - stick a skewer in one to check if done - you want it mostly clean

Let 'em cool down; eat at once if you can't wait, or leave for a day in an airtight container, as the flavour becomes better after a day


Yes, it is important to set aside the first 5 ingredients for 10 minutes; some chemical reaction going on, my friends

For once in my blogging/baking life I did indeed just use cup measurements rather than finding out the grammage!

combine the pineapple et al together

and baked!  so cute, so delicious

I shall be making these again (after this post goes up) for a friend's art studio Christmas event.  Weirdly, I took only these 2 photos when baking these!  Usually I have a plethora to choose from for the blog post!

c. Sherry M.

Thursday 16 November 2023

Potato Chip Cookies

I have made a chocolate bark with salty, delicious potato chips/crisps before, so I was very happy to give this one a go for Cookbook Club.  I really enjoy a sweet and salty treat.  This recipe is from Baking Yesteryear by B. Dylan Hollis, one of my fave cooking YouTubers.  He is hilarious!

I rushed to buy his book when it came out recently (sounds familiar; he came out not that long ago) hehehe!  These are his tried and tested recipes from the 1900s to the 1980s.  And for a bit of hilarity, he includes a chapter at the end on the Worst of the Worst, including Prune Whip Pie and Pickle Cheesecake.  Oh me, oh my!  

Speaking of the worst - reminds me of the time my SIL stayed with us, and laboriously hand-chopped many nuts for baklava, and made a beautiful syrup to pour over ...  You guessed it; she picked up the salt instead of the sugar.  Catastrophe, my friends!

can't wait to eat 'em!

Makes 2 dozen:


170g./6 oz butter, softened

165g./6 oz dark brown sugar

100g./3.5 oz white sugar

2 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

230g./8 oz potato chips/crisps of your choice - crushed and divided into two lots

280g./10 oz plain flour

1 tsp bicarb-soda (baking soda)

1/4 tsp sea salt flakes

255g./9 oz chocolate chips - I chose dark but you choose


Cream together the butter and the sugars in a large bowl, till pale, light and fluffy

Beat in the eggs and vanilla

Stir in one half of the crushed chips

Grab a medium mixing bowl, and mix together the flour, bi-carb soda and salt

Stir this dry mix gently into your creamed butter and sugar, then kindly stir in the chocolate chips

Whack it in the fridge for at least an hour!

In the meantime, give the other half of your potato chips a really good belting so you end up with finer chips than before :=)

On goes your oven to 180C/350F

Dylan says to make rounded tablespoons of the dough (I used 2 spoons), and roll it happily in the crushed chips

Put the tablespoons of dough onto a large baking tray lined with baking paper, and bake for 11-15 minutes, or till the edges of the cookies are going brown (I say cookies rather than biscuits as that is what Dylan calls them, even though here in Australia we say biscuits; except for chocolate chip cookies!)


beat the butter, sugar and eggs

beat those chips

and fold them into the dough

and in go the chocolate chips

ready for rolling in the twice-thrashed chips

spoons at the ready

rolled and coated in chips

looking tasty and super golden :=)

salty sweet treats

3 at once?  why not? :)

c. Sherry M.

he's so hilarious

(Joining up with Min from Write of the Middle blog for the ##WWWhimsy linkup.)

Thursday 9 November 2023

Chocolate Ganache and Blackberry Bundt Cake

Is there anything better than a thick, dark chocolate river running down the sides of your freshly-baked cake?  'Course not!  Obviously, Charlotte Ree feels the same, as she has this delightful cake in her book Just Desserts.  I've made her lemon and olive oil cake a couple of times and it's a beauty, as was this one!

The bundt tin apparently originated with Nordic Ware in Minneapolis in the 1950s, and is based on the Kugelhopf tin.  Bundt is derived from 'bund', the German word for a gathering or federation of people.  I love saying that word!  I pronounce it the German way, not like 'bun'; I guess that's how mum taught us to say it.

I was at a cookbook chat at my fave bookshop recently, and the lovely Fiona who owns Avid Reader Books pronounced it the German way.  A couple of ladies across the aisle from me started whispering when they heard her say it like that.  'Interesting', says I  to myself.  'I guess they are of the 'bun' school of pronunciation.' 

let's hoe in now!

Serves 12:


250g./8.8 oz plain/all purpose flour

65g./2.3 oz Dutch-processed cocoa

3 tsp baking powder

170g./6 oz butter, softened (not melted) i.e. at room temp.

225g./8 oz brown sugar

2 large eggs, at room temp.

400 mL/14 oz milk

250g./8.8 oz blackberries or berries of your choice

Chocolate ganache:

150 mL/5 oz thickened cream

150g./5.3 oz dark chocolate (70% cocoa), chopped or broken up - see Notes


On goes your oven to 160C/320F to heat up

Grab your bundt tin and give it a good spray with non-stick spray, or do what I do - get Mr P. to grab the butter, and grease it really, really well, then throw around some plain flour to coat it really well

Sift the flour, cocoa and baking powder into a medium bowl

Beat the butter and sugar till pale and fluffy (I used my electric handbeaters but use a stand mixer if you have one)

Add the milk and dry stuff bit by bit till nicely mixed, and spoon/pour into the baking tin

Bake for 50 minutes, or till your skewer comes out as clean as a ... clean thingy

Cool your cake right down! i.e. let it sit in the tin till cold

Then, heat up the cream and add it to the chocolate which is sitting in a small, heatproof bowl

Let it sit for a couple of minutes, then stir together well, and pour over the cake, which is now sitting on a plate of course

Place the fruit all over the top, and serve

Leftovers can sit in an airtight container for a couple of days (here in sunny QLD, it will go into the fridge)


I suggest using Lindt chocolate or similar, as it is very easy to break up (just with your fingers) and melts so very easily

look at that batter!  I could swim in it ...

pour into the bundt pan/tin

and baked beautifully at 160C for 50 mins.

oops! a few sticky bits :=)

a glorious pool of ganache

throw on your berry of choice

I could bury my face in that!

lemme eat that now!

c. Sherry M.

(Disclaimer: I rewrote the prose of this recipe, so according to Australian copyright laws, I am not in breach!  Just for those nasty yobs who keep telling me I am!!)

Wednesday 1 November 2023

In My Kitchen - November 2023

How many weeks till Christmas???  Eeeeeek ...  Here we are, at the penultimate IMK for 2023 already!  My second and last cataract surgery is on the 30th November, so I can't wait for that one to hurry up and arrive.  My first eye op. went really well, and I have great vision (on the right side), but as I still can't wear my spectacles, I am getting around half-blind.  

My surgeon is an interesting fellow, and doesn't seem to think it at all odd that I am not able to see properly for so many weeks.  He tends to talk to his laptop, while I struggle to catch up!  I dragged Mr P. in with me the other week so he could hopefully hear the pearls of wisdom falling from on high.  Nah, neither of us ended up with much of anything :=)

In My Kitchen:

a gift from our Persian friends - wine and saffron - excellent stuff

a gift from another friend

there was citrus-cordial-making

and mustard making (overseen by many Minions; I love Bob!)

I bought myself a Fluicer from Dreamfarm

I could not resist this beautiful cookbook

bought an "antique" Japanese soy sauce pourer - mmm ... Plastic lid!!

the curveball - by Sally Willbanks

I love the beautiful landscapes that Sally creates.  So calming and colourful! - and deceptively simple for sure.  My walls are groaning!  Where oh where are the other pieces we have bought/commissioned going to go?  Wait till next month to see the marvellous watercolour rendition of our house by our Persian friend Ms. Atee.

and here's Minion Bob giving us a wave :=)

That's it from me; your turn now! 

Be a part of our friendly IMK community by adding your post here too - everybody welcome!  We'd love to see you.  Tell us about your kitchen (and kitchen garden) happenings over the past month.  Dishes you've cooked, preserves you've made, herbs and veg. in your garden, kitchen gadgets, and goings-on.  And one curveball is welcome - whatever you fancy; no need to be kitchen-related.  

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