When good food styling turns bad

I need to be careful with this post and word things very delicately indeed, just so that Google doesn’t relegate my entire site to the ‘smut’ category without realising that I am just reporting on a pretty average food styling day in the kitchen.

Things started out well enough – first round testing on some new recipes. Always a risky endeavor, the first go at a recipe is rarely perfect and often needs quite a bit of tweaking. Also rare is photographing a recipe at this stage, but for some reason on this occasion, I decided that I would. So the camera was all set.

Inspired by nut cake recipes, I’d decided on devising some little nut ‘puffs’ – cakes in patty pans. And with walnuts and other good ingredients, these are a treat with a bit of fibre and not too much sugar.

And the little things turned out quite well. Yummy straight out of the oven – quite bready and not too sweet. But deciding that they could be more ‘special’, I decided to ice them – something rarely done in my kitchen due to the hassle, the sugar factor and the impatience factor as both I and the kids are keen to get stuck in. Still, combining icing sugar mixture and lemon juice together is hardly a bother and away I went. Deciding on a ‘rustic’ finish to suit the look of the cakes, I splashed the gooey white stuff about. Standing back to examine my handiwork I could immediately see my error of judgment. Instead of ‘Donna Hay’ gorgeous rustic, my cakes look like soiled props from some nasty adult film. Bless those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about.


Dismayed, I decided that leaving them as is would only lead to much mirth from my best friend (and much humiliation for myself) – the only thing that could save them (and me) now was chocolate. So my healthy little nut cakes ended up with not one icing, but two! Still the kids were happy enough and I must say they tasted pretty good.

Dark chocolate and lemon icing nut puffs


But as with all recipes, a second go at them made the world of difference. A bit of mixed spice to jazz up the flavour and I’ve given the cum icing a miss – just some dark chocolate melts, melted and spooned over, then topped off with a pecan. Despite their soft-porn history I refuse to rename them, thus here are my dark chocolate nut puffs. Enjoy.

Take two – delicious.

Dark chocolate nut puffs

1 1/2 cups self raising flour
2/3 cup almond meal
2/3 cup chopped walnuts (or hazelnuts)
1/2 cup oatbran
1/4 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp baking powder
50g softened butter (if you’re not scared of fats, they’re even better with 75g)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg, lightly whisked
1 cup full fat milk
Pecans or almonds (optional)

Heat the oven to 180C. Grease 24 patty pans.

Sift the flour into a bowl then mix in the almond meal, walnuts, oatbran, spice and baking powder.

In another bowl, use a hand held mixer to cream together the butter and sugar. Stir in the dry ingredients. Mix through the egg and milk. Divide between the pans and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and cooked through.

Eat warm with some sifted icing sugar sprinkled over the top, or top with melted dark chocolate and pecans or almonds.

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2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Melissa said,

    Porn or not, they look delicious!

  2. 2

    Jonah said,

    ‘cum icing’…class. Doubly appropriate though, given the nuts. Stop it.

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