We test out recipes from Love, Laugh, Bake! by Silvia Colloca
Earlier this week we tested out a selection of recipes from Silvia Colloca’s delicious and joy-filled new cookbook, Love, Laugh, Bake!, and we invited Silvia to come in and select the best one! Here are the results…
Bronte Coates made ‘Parmesan and sesame seed spelt diamonds’ (pg. 222):
If you’ve ever imagined what it would be like to forego filling and simply eat the crust of a pie – these are the biscuits are for you. A decadent combination of spelt flour, butter and Parmesan cheese, complete with an egg wash and sprinkling of sesame seeds, these moreish crackers will prove irresistible at dinner parties. I’m not the most careful of bakers so my diamonds are a little ‘rustic’, but they still taste great. As a bonus, they smelled truly incredible when they were baking.
Judges' comments: Delicious and fragrant. Really good, and not over manipulated.
Anthony Shaw made ‘Jam cornetti’ (pg. 166):
Making this recipe seemed like a great idea at first but halfway through, I realised that it is would be a long and intricate process. Who knew that laminating dough would involve so much effort? Despite this, I pushed on and used the time while the dough rested to relax and unwind, before rolling again and again. After literally hours of rolling, folding and resting, the cornettis were ready for the oven. Once they started to cook the smell which filled my house was amazing. The warm buttery pastry aromas were a sensory delight, a temptation which was almost impossible to resist. My sleep was punctuated by dreams of fresh buttery pastries.
The result did bear a resemblance to Silvia’s and I was happy to share them. The flavour was very brioche(y), with the added sweetness of strawberry jam. Was it worth the effort and would I cook them again? A resounding yes to both! I would however serve them still warm, within an hour of removing them from them oven. Bon Appetito!
Judges' comments: One of the most challenging recipes in the book, and pulled it off wonderfully. Sensational!
Lian Hingee made ‘Apple and hazelnut cake’ (pg. 268):
My partner is a big fan of apple cakes, and my bestie is vegan, so giving this recipe a whirl was a bit of a no-brainer for me. It’s one of those easy, one-bowl recipes that you can whip up in five minutes. I didn’t even have to get the beaters out of the cupboard, it all came together beautifully just with a hand whisk. I ended up using some of my mum’s special Rosella Jelly to brush the apples instead of apricot jam, and the sweet tartness of it worked really well and gave the cake a pretty glossiness. The flavour and texture was lovely – unexpectedly fluffy with a wonderful nuttiness from the hazelnut meal. I can tell it’s going to make regular appearances at afternoon tea from now on.
Judges' comments: Looked fantastic! You can really taste the hazelnut flavour, and you’d never know it was vegan.
Chris Gordon made ‘Raspberry swirl cake’ (pg.263):
Surely, this is the easiest cake in the world to make. Using Silvia’s excellent yogurt and olive oil batter as a base (think no butter or milk, but rather, delicious rich Greek yogurt and excellent olive oil), you simply add the fruit and swirl. The colour of this concoction was the most gorgeous, vibrant magenta colour. and the smell of it baking brought my entire family begging to the kitchen. I followed the instructions exactly and you know what? It came out just like the picture in the book! Amazing because we all know that doesn’t always happen… I imagine you can add any old fruit or favouring to this batter and still have an excellent outcome. This, my friends, is the cake to bake.
Judges' comments: Beautifully moist with a perfect crumb. The inside of the cake is perfect.
And the winners are…
Apple and hazelnut cake!