Edible Glitter|Adding A Touch of Frost

On a recent visit  to Ireland and awake at the crack of dawn meant I witnessed the beauty of the sun rising on a rather chilly and frosty morning. White blankets of tiny ice crystals shimmering and glistening in the sun, not the type of weather we ever witness living in Bahrain… but I believe

The coldest temperature ever recorded in Bahrain was on January 20, 1964, when it dropped to -5C in Awali and 2.4C at Bahrain International Airport. That particular freeze was accompanied by a white-out, with icicles forming on trees and fences at Awali. (Gulf Daily News)

The only hope of some shimmering frost in my kitchen comes from little jars of edible glitter. These jars of iridescent “frost” are highly reflective, shiny and add a touch of sparkle and shimmer that catches the light. You can buy jars of edible glitter/dust in cake decorating supply shops, or you can buy them on-line.

All you need do is make something delicious like these Chocolate Dipped Strawberries, Shortbread Biscuits, Sugared Mint Leaves, Pavlova or what ever you fancy and sprinkle over the desired amount of edible glitter.

The Frost Effect:  Dip a fine dry artists paintbrush (only for use with food) into a pot of edible glitter.  Hold the paintbrush over the item, gently tapping the brush handle with your finger to release the dust and sprinkle over… it’s that simple!

Edible dust can also be brushed directly onto the surface of any dry cake decoration or chocolate.

Keep a look out for more little touches of frost!

chocolate dipped strawberries with orange flavoured liqueur

Having acquired a flavour injector from a friend and wanting to put the injector to some culinary use, I decided to make a favourite of mine… strawberries dipped in dark chocolate… but this time injecting the strawberries with a subtle flavour of Grand Marnier (orange flavoured liqueur), making these delicious gourmet treats a little extra special.

Using the flavour injector is quite a simple procedure but does take a little practice. Too much pressure applied when injecting the strawberries resulted in me desperately trying to control the escaping stream of liqueur from the needle tip, air trapped in the syringe and you will have a spray of liqueur… now if I was a medical student I may have just killed my first patient! I do suggest setting aside a few strawberries so you can practice your injecting skills… you never know you might just get addicted!

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries with Grand Marnier

Ingredients:

  • 24 medium-sized strawberries
  • Grand Marnier or liqueur of your choice
  • 200g of good quality dark or milk chocolate (approximately)
  •  edible glitter dust (optional)

Useful Kitchen Jewelry: 

  • flavour injector
  • toothpick
  • silicone baking mat
  • cookie sheet
  • heat-proof bowl
  • saucepan

How to make:

Line a cookie sheet with a silicone baking mat or some baking parchment.

Wash and dry the strawberries (do not remove the stems), make sure the strawberries are completely dry as water will cause the chocolate to “seize up,” turning it into a grainy mess.

Tip: Before injecting the strawberries with the liqueur, insert a toothpick just under the stem to create a hollow channel about 3/4 ways down into the middle of the strawberry, otherwise bits of the strawberry get caught in the needle and block the flow of liqueur. While the toothpick is inserted in the strawberry, gently wiggle it around to create a cavity for the liqueur.

Insert the needle and carefully fill the strawberry cavity with the liqueur. Set the strawberries aside for about 15 minutes to help dry off any liqueur that might have overflowed, also room temperature strawberries (cold causes condensation) work better with melted chocolate than refrigerated ones.

Meanwhile, melt the chocolate until smooth in a heat-proof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water.

Holding onto the stem, carefully dip each strawberry into the melted chocolate, giving the strawberry a little shake as you withdraw it from the chocolate, twisting slightly before placing onto a prepared cookie sheet.

Refrigerate the tray of strawberries until the chocolate has set before transferring onto a serving plate.

 Add a little touch of sparkle… dust the chocolate dipped strawberries with some edible glitter dust! 
Do you have a flavour injector and what do you use it for?

Fresh Eggs and Happy Hens

Hens 2-0222

Meet Ronnie… the man about the house coop.

Visiting my family on a recent trip to Ireland, I met Henrietta, Rosie, Bride, Moon and Shelly… these feathered ladies supplied my sister’s household with an abundance of fresh eggs. I have always favoured the colour of brown eggs over white… they look much more appealing. Apparently there is no difference in the taste between white and brown eggs, other than the colour of the shell. Do you disagree? Did you know that the ear lobes of hens dictate the colour of the egg-shell, white ear lobe = white shell, red ear lobe = brown shell… I picked that bit of information while attending a cooking class in Bali… the chef was giving a talk on fresh produce. Continue reading

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