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Matcha Pistachio Blondies

19 July 2018

They say it's not easy being green. True, these funny little blondies do have something of the Kermit the Frog about them, but I think it's kind of amazing. Let me elaborate.

I know I'm a little (read: about five years) late to the matcha craze. What can I say? I suppose the slightly acrid flavour profile learnt from several terrible matcha lattes - complete with burnt milk and creepy latte art - put me off. I finally decided to give matcha another chance and, experimenting with this enigmatic ingredient in my own kitchen,  my eyes have been well and truly opened to a whole new world of subtle, aromatic flavour that is perfect for baking.

Blondies are one of my favourite things to bake (and to eat). Their sweet, gooey, melty, butterscothey deliciousness is the perfect canvas for chocolate, nuts and fruit, either fresh or dried. Matcha pairs beautifully with white chocolate; the silky texture and sweet flavour is the perfect foil to the earthiness of the tea. I've tweaked my blondie recipe here to add melted chocolate to the base, giving the finished blondies the most incredible, decadent texture. Verdant pistachios, like crunchy little jewels, bring even more greenery to the party.
 THE INGREDIENTS
250g unsalted butter
175g white chocolate
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
150g caster sugar
100g pistachios, shelled 
150g plain flour
10g matcha
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking power

THE RECIPE
Line a 20x30cm baking tin with parchment, and heat your oven to 150°C. Place the butter in a small saucepan along with 75g of the white chocolate, and melt over a very gentle heat. As soon as the butter has melted, remove from the heat. Any chocolate pieces that have not fully melted should do so by sitting in the warm butter. Set aside.

Place 50g of the pistachios in a food processor. Pulse until ground to a coarse, sandy powder. Set aside. Chop up the remaining 100g white chocolate into pieces, and set aside.

Place the eggs, vanilla and caster sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk for a couple minutes until thick, pale and fluffy. Carefully pour in the melted butter and chocolate, whisking until just combined. 

In a separate bowl, whisk together the ground pistachios, flour, matcha powder, salt and baking powder. Add to the egg mixture, and mix until just combined. Add the remaining 50g whole pistachios and the white chocolate chunks, and mix through. 

Pour into the prepared tin, and spread the mixture to level. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, until the surface is set but the centre of the blondies wobbles very slightly when shaken. Allow to cool completely before slicing. Use a clean, hot knife to achieve clear cut edges.

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