24 January 2022

Hershey’s Cookies N Cream Egg (Tesco) By @Cinabar

Hershey’s Cookies N Cream Egg

If you are after a white chocolate egg this year (and can’t find the competition prize one from Cadbury) why not give this easier to find Hershey’s Cookies N Cream Egg a try. They were by the tills in our local supermarket. It is actually quite difficult to get your hands on white chocolate eggs in general, and it is a much under appreciated form of chocolate.

The wrapper on this egg is cute and looks like a little chick. I opened it up and egg is dotted with cookie pieces, and the chocolate has a swirl pattern on it. I bit into the egg and found it was surprisingly hard to bite into. The white chocolate is quite thick, but the filling is also firm. I wasn’t sure my teeth were up to it! :-D I did manage it though!

Hershey’s Cookies N Cream Egg

The taste is gorgeous, the white chocolate is ever so creamy and I really liked the contrast with the dark chocolate cookie bits, it is such a nice flavour combination. I’m not completely sure that the egg is the best format for this Hershey bar, but I’d probably still buy these Hershey’s Cookies N Cream Egg again, just for the nice novelty.

Hershey’s Cookies N Cream Egg

23 January 2022

Brewdog - Tony's Hopolonely - White Chocolate & Raspberry Milkshake IPA by @NLi10


I have heard lots of talk of pudding bears and pastry stout, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and to buy this Brewdog concoction.  It's an IPA version of the nice White Chocolate & Raspberry Milkshake bar, we talked about the very similar chocolate before.  Turns out it's Dutch (thanks for the comment!).

Sounds exciting!

Messages of positivity!

Slave free chocolate is a very good idea.

...but my god this tastes strange.  It's like someone's taken a decent beer, and a decent chocolate and put the wrong flavours in the wrong mixer.  As someone who is a big fan of taking two very different things and putting them together - this comes as an unpleasant surprise.  

I suspect this will be a very limited edition, and if it wasn't for the other half a pint in the fridge I certainly wouldn't be having more.  Once you get over the initial shock then it's drinkable, but very much under sufferance. 

22 January 2022

Köstritzer Black Lager (@koestritzerDE) By @SpectreUK

Köstritzer Black Lager

Cinabar will probably correct me, but I think I've been blogging about beer for more than twelve years. In that time I've written about many different beers, a few lagers, ciders and even the odd flagon of mead now and then. I've started quite a few of those blogs with "I don't think I've tried this sort of beer (or whatever) before…" and I'm pretty certain that applies to this Köstritzer Black Lager. The Köstritzer Brewery was established in Germany in 1543, so you'd reckon by now they know what they're doing.

On pouring this 4.8% in volume Köstritzer Black Lager I thought I could detect a little chocolate malt in the aroma and some herbal hops. Deep black in colour, Köstritzer Black Lager was bottom fermented but was not too fizzy for my tastes. In fact this lager was just right for me. Sumptuously tasty there was sweet smooth chocolate malt to start with, but no roasted coffee flavours here. The taste moved into rich yet subtle bitterness from the herbal hops, which mixed together for a lip smacking refreshing finish of malt chocolate into the aftertaste. I reckon I could best describe Köstritzer Black Lager as a pudding lager, which I have definitely not tried or blogged about before. Gorgeous!

21 January 2022

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box) By @Cinabar

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box)

Today we are having a go at making a Ginger and Spice Cake kit that I received as a Christmas gift, from The Bake Off Box. The kit was purchased online by mum and the delivery was slow, it was ordered in November and arrived jus before Christmas, but it did arrive. It is branded with the ‘Bake Off’ logo, and is the official product. I opened up the box and was a little bit worried by just how complicated the cake looked in the pictures! I don’t have those sort of skills! :-D I absolutely love that the kit has a Bake Off apron in the box, that is so smart and I put it on in the hope it would increase my baking skills.

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box)

There is a 34 section instruction manual to follow, again quite daunting, but I started at the beginning and decided to just follow it through. I have used baking kits before and up until now they all have one thing in common, everything is pre weighed out for you. Not in this kit, this kit requires scales to measure out the sugar, flour, spices etc, and every stage everything had to be weighed and sieved. I started off by making the sponge, weighing it all out and whisking and folding. 

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box)

This went quite well as I do bake cakes a fair bit. The sponge mix was split between two tins (not included) and put in the oven. Next up for the cake decorations was the ginger bread mix. I don’t make biscuits that often, and was a bit confused by only needing a tablespoon of egg white, which was a bit faffy to sort but I did. This went in the fridge to chill, while the sponges finished off.

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box)

The next step was the making of the buttercream (I ended up washing and reusing the bowls/whisk so often during this whole process). While the sponges cooled I traced around the gingerbread template on to greaseproof paper. I rolled the biscuit dough out and cut some gingerbread house shapes. I didn’t do Christmas trees as it felt like we have passed that point. The biscuits went in the oven to bake, while this was happening I filled the cake with buttercream, and make an attempt to smother the cake in buttercream all over. I’m not very neat, but it looked ok! Once the biscuits were cooked and cooled I decorated them and put them on the cake. 

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box)

I know my icing skills are basic, but it still looked ok! It tasted amazing though. Fluffy moist sponge, and loads of spice. It was stunning! This isn’t your usual simple cake to make, but it was worth it for a special occasion.

Ginger and Spice Cake (The Bake Off Box)