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Chocolate Cookie Cheesecake

Reviewed: Sep. 12, 2010
This cake was brilliant! I didn't change anything deliberately, but I forgot to add the brown sugar to the base. It came out great, so it was ok. Whoever said you could bake this in a 9" must have a very very tall cake tin, as I tried it and found that I couldn't possibly fit the batter in. I left about 2" on the top for the sour cream mix but realised that the cake rose and cracked. I baked it for around 50 mins in my fan assisted oven. Let it cool for quite a bit, waiting for it to go down so I have room for the sour cream. I only managed to fit in a very thin layer. The cracking didn't matter since the sour cream evened everything out. I baked it for another 10 mins, then turned off the oven and left it in for another 30 mins. Then I let it cool for a bit before putting the cake in the fridge with a stainless steel bowl to cover it. I had massive trouble getting the ganache topping, I must have heated the cream too fast and it all curdled. I just melted some dark chocolate instead and poured it over. Next time I will do it the known way of heating cream and adding it to the chocolate rather than putting it in the pan altogether. The cake itself was eaten a day after and it was very very yummy, everyone was pleased. Will bake again but in a 10" and maybe use a waterbath to prevent cracking.
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Five Minute Ice Cream

Reviewed: Feb. 20, 2010
If you have a good heavy duty blender, use a few ice cubes to upp the volume. You can all sorts of quick "ice creams" use frozen banana slices (slice and freeze openly in your freezer) and omitt the cream. Add a cup of fresh spinach to get some vitamins too, you won't taste it but makes it go green! I also like to sweeten with agave or honey or maple syrup. If you want it to be VERY thick add some xantham gum (1/2tsp when doing 4 servings) it will thicken your ice smoothie a lot! You can experiment with any frozen fruit and add whatever you like, vanilla is always good!
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Caramel Shortbread Squares

Reviewed: Feb. 15, 2010
I have had better millionaire's shortbread before. This recipe only gets 3 stars because it isn't very CLEAR. It does not say if you're supposed to stir the butter/milk/sugar combo in the pan or just leave it. Since it says ti beat it after it has been boiled for 5 mins. I assumed you're supposed to leave it alone (when you melt sugar you're not supposed to stir it until a certain temp.) I did that on a VERY low heat and found that the sugar was burnt and the caramel was grainy and had a lot of black bits in it. So the second time (I threw away the first batch), I melted the butter first, then added the condensed milk, then the syrup and then the sugar, mixed it and let is get to a boil on the lowest heat possible and yet again, the sugar burnt. I accepted defeat and used it anyway, it tasted very good, just like twix but it just didn't look smooth or golden. The shortbread too, was grainy, nut velvety smooth and buttery rich like the shortbread I'm used to. I looked up other caramel shortbread recipe and almost all call for caster sugar and not granulated sugar, which would result in a finer shortbread. Also, on its own it tastes bland, I'd suggest to add some salt to it. All in all, it tastes good but isn't great, I'd definitely look for a different shortbread recipe and stir the caramel the whole time until thickened.
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Lemon Cream Cupcakes

Reviewed: Feb. 12, 2010
These were decent cupcakes. Fresh out of the oven, they tasted very fluffy, light with a crispy top, very nice, worth 4 stars but just one day later they were quite heavy and quite chewy which is not the consistency I want for cupcakes. I didn't make the icing so this review is for the cakes only. Instead I used the buttercream icing from this site. I might make them again but they are nothing special.
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Photo by TableTennis

Robbi's M&M Cookies

Reviewed: Feb. 12, 2010
Here's the deal: These cookies TASTE VERY GOOD. I even liked the batter and I hate eating raw batter. They are easy to make, I used a food processor. The cons are: They spread A LOT! My first two batches were basically one huge square cookie but I think that is because of 3 things: 1. I used butter instead of shortening 2. The batter was refrigiated but got a little warm when I dropped them onto the cookie sheet. 3. I didn't space them far enough apart. How to make this recipe work for you: When using butter, increase the flour to maybe 2 3/4 cup. Don't add the M&Ms to the batter but press them into the cookie. Refrigiate the batter before using, I rolled it all in teaspoon sized balls, put them on a floured tray and stuck it in the freezer while the cookies were baking. Grease and flour the cookie sheets so it's easier to take them off once baked. I cooked for around 10 mins but my oven is a little slow. I took them out once they browned a little bit and let them cool for a couple of minutes, then transfered them onto a wire rack. So why 5 stars? I can't compain about the flat cookies since I chose to use butter. They taste amazing! Chewy, not crunchy, you don't have the horrible taste of butter coming through either. So delicious! I sold them at the bakesale and needless to say they were a hit! This is a keeper, will add more flour in the future!
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Russian Tea Cakes I

Reviewed: Dec. 24, 2009
Phenomenal! I followed the recipe to the T and the balls came out fantastic! They melt in your mouth and are perfect for christmas gifts. I wasn't sure if it was done after 12 mins since they looked pretty pale, I tried one and it was perfect! I rolled it in icing sugar while still warm and then again once completely cool. I used ready chopped nuts which were a mix of peanuts, almonds and walnuts. Definitely will do these again, so easy! Thanks!
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Delicious Ham and Potato Soup

Reviewed: Nov. 7, 2009
Delicious! I omitted the celery and added frozen peas instead. I also used a little more ham and added parsley at the end. I can't believe how easy this was! My bf who isn't a huge soup fan really liked it too! I've frozen the leftovers for a quick meal. Very very good! :)
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Good Old Fashioned Pancakes

Reviewed: Nov. 1, 2009
I could not believe the taste! Apart from the fact that they were very very thick which, some people may like or prefer, they were incredibly SALTY. A whole teaspoon of salt is WAY too much!!! My boyfriend who isn't picky about sweet things wouldn't even want to finish his one pancake! Maybe some people expect salty thick heavy pancakes? Maybe it's because they eat bacon with it? If you're looking fir a puffy nice sweet pancake look elsewhere, I've made these sort of pancakes a lot and I am not a novice cook. Keep well away from these if you like your pancakes sweet!
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Photo by TableTennis

Perfect Pumpkin Pie

Reviewed: Oct. 31, 2009
Very easy and very delicious recipe! This is the first time I've made pumpkin pie and it's very nice! I used a ready rolled shortcrust pastry, I recommend blind baking it first otherwise the bottom might be a bit soggy. I baked for 15 mins, then another 35 and it came out nicely. The spices are very strong btw, so if you like it a bit milder then I suggest reducing the ginger and nutmeg a tiny bit. Great recipe, great pie!
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One Bowl Chocolate Cake III

Reviewed: Jun. 1, 2008
OH MY GOD! This is hands down the BEST, EASIEST and MOISTEST chocolate cake EVER! I was very skeptical about this recipe, after all I tried cake mixes before and they were heavenly but oh my was I impressed! As others suggested I used 1 cup of cocoa but other than that I did nbot change a thing. I checked the cake at about 25 mins and the toothpick came out clean so I took it out. So you should keep an eye on that, some ovens might not take that long to cook the cake. I greased the tin and cut out a circle of stickproof baking paper and the cake came out very easily. Even though it is so moist, you can still lift it and it won't break, of course you have to be careful with that. I iced and filled it with some ready made chocolate icing and it was divine! I also left it out all night and it taste just as moist and delicious as the day I made it. Thank you SO much for this recipe, it is definitely a keeper and will make it many many times! Btw, for the people who pointed out that this recipe is from the Hershey cocoa package, does it really matter? They don't sell that cocoa here and I would have never known about this recipe if the user did not post it here. Baking is about sharing good things and that was definitely done.
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Chantal's New York Cheesecake

Reviewed: May 25, 2008
Really good! I followed the advice, room temp ingredients, water bath and leaving it in the oven till completely cooled. I did not add the milk of the flour as some people suggested it makes it a bit too cakey and not dense enough. I tried not to overbeat and banged it in the kitchenn surface a bit to get the air bubbles out. I placed it in a waterbath and after an hour the top was still nice and pale but I didn't have a circle as some people said, it was a bit wobbly and reminded me of vanilla pudding but yeah, I ran a knife around the edge though I think it didn't need that as I greased the tin very well. I left it in the oven over night as it was pretty late. Next morning I put it in the fridge and after like 7 hours I had my first slice and it was really creamy and had a good flavour. I do believe this is the best cheesecake one ca probably make at home. I do prefer the really dense ones which is basically totally solid but I really enjoyed this cake.
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Banana Muffins II

Reviewed: May 6, 2008
Nice! I halved the recipe since there are only two of us but used 2 medium bananas than the 2 1/2 stated, I also added 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and 1/4tsp cinnamon, obviously would be double if I made the whole recipe. I used a small muffin tin and it yielded 9. They are very nice and very basic. I had 2 ripe bananas and thought I should use them up so looked for a very basic recipe and found this one! Next time I'd add some chocolate chips or some nuts and maybe have a streusel topping since these aren't very sweet. Overall a good recipe and great with a cup of coffee or tea. :)
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Award Winning Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Reviewed: May 4, 2008
Okay, I made these with the changes suggested, like a lot more vanilla etc. But even then they weren't that great in my opinion. They tasted a bit bland, the texture straight out of the oven is nice, everyone loves fresh warm soft cookies but after cooling they became more like a crumbly scone rather than a crispy but soft in the centre cookie. They are alright and my bf eats anything baked anyway. But probably won't do them again.
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Awesome Korean Steak

Reviewed: Apr. 13, 2008
This is a good basic recipe to make Bulgogi which is the Korean name for this dish. But I made a few changes to make this recipe authentic. 1. instead of using shallots I used spring onions 2. I used half brown sugar and half white 3. I also added 1 tsp crushed ginger which is a key ingredient for this dish, I'm surprised it's not listed. 4. Instead of using mirin which is Japanese, I used Korean cooking wine, attention: rice wine vinegar is NOT a substitute!!!! You can however use mirin if that is the only thing you can find. 5. to soften the meat, add shredded Korean pear to the marinade, if you can't find it, someone suggested Kiwi pulp which is good too. 6. The sesame oil should be added after the meat has been marinated for a while as it prevents the flavour get into the meat. And if you don't like chuck eye, try topside sirloin, works just as well! The meat is tradtionally served with steamed rice. Hope this info is useful.
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Best Brownies

Reviewed: Mar. 2, 2008
Very good! Like someone said on here, don't expect a fudgy brownie or a cakey brownie, it's something in between. I made it, dead easy, followed some advices from other reviewers and lightly beat the egg before I added it to the mixture. I didn't overbeat it either, just carefully folded everything in. I baked it for exactly 25 mins, and let it cool down before I cut it, it was so yummy, that I ate about 3 while cutting them into squares once they were chilled. I also added choc chips into the mixture and some on top. Realy delicious! Next time I'll put white choc chips in it. Oh and I didn't make the frosting and I'm glad I didn't cuz they were perfectly sweet as they were, I think the frosting would have been too much.
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