Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Vegan Brioche Recipe (with pictures)

So school has really been trying to make life hard for me.. Since I refuse to buy anything non-vegan, and I have to make most of the things we bake at school, at home, I basically have to try my damnedest to make these very NON vegan recipes, vegan :-S

Last week it was croissants, which you can check out here (they turned out BEAUTIFULLY!)

So this week I decided, as my last week of having to bake using yeast, to make brioche. Now i'm not sure if you're familiar with it, but if you aren't (as I wasn't before baking in class), it is a french pastry, traditionally made of many eggs and LOTS of butter, which make it basically a really unhealthy form of bread.. YUM!

At school this meant using a lot of butter, and lots of eggs to make this gloopy dough, which when baked turned into a very very very fatty muffin (not sure why, but they made us bake it in muffin tins).

This is how I made my home-made vegan brioche (which I divided into smaller amounts, as a larger one would likely give you a heart attack):


Tools used: 

  • Kitchen Aid
  • Dough hook
  • Scales
  • Oven @ 180C
  • Scraper
  • Muffin tin
  • Stainless steel bowl (or other)
  • Cling wrap
  • Tea towel


  • 250g Flour
  • 3.5g  Yeast
  • 5g     Salt
  • 50ml Milk (I used rice)
  • 140g Soy yoghurt / egg replacer / flax seed & water (I used soy yoghurt)
  • 15g   Sugar
  • 150g Vegan butter (I used Nuttelex) - Softened
  • Canola spray oil


  1. Combine Flour, Yeast, Salt and Sugar in the mixing bowl
  2. Slowly add milk and yoghurt/egg replacer. 
  3. Add in the butter gradually, and make sure it has been softened (so not straight out of the fridge).
  4. Make sure each piece of butter has been well incorporated before adding the next piece. 
  5. Let the dough mix on high until combined. NB if you're having issues with the dough being too wet, or too dry, feel free to add a little more flour/milk/butter slowly with the mixer on low, and let the dough mix a while before adding any more to make sure it doesn't go the other way :-P 
  6. Once combined, take the mixture from the bowl and place on a lightly floured bench top.
  7. Knead a little to get it into a ball, then place into an oiled bowl and cover for 45 mins to an hour to rest. (It should hopefully double in size)
  8. Once the dough is well rested (hah!), turn it out onto the bench again to knead (or knock back). Knead it for a minute or two. 
  9. Divide the dough equally into the muffin tin (or you can use a loaf pan, whatever suits you!), and round the little dough mixtures in your hands, so they are smooth over the top.
  10. Spray the balls with some canola spray, then place somewhere warm to prove. 
  11. Put in the oven when the dough is springy, and bounces back to shape when you poke it with your finger. 
    Looking a little tired
  12. Remove from oven once the tops are golden. 
  13. Et voila! Brioche! :) 

Mmmmm Choc filled deliciousness! 



So we like these plain, or with some Nuttelex, but you can fill them with so many things! We put some Sweet Williams chocolate pieces inside some, cut some open and buttered them with chocolate spread, peanut butter, Tofutti Better than Cream Cheese, the possibilities are endless! 
At school they made savoury spreads for them, so you can always make something yummy out of the cream cheese! 

Saturday, 22 March 2014

My New Bike!

Travis bought me a new bicycle today! How pretty is it?? I'm in love <3
I've been complaining since we got here about how expensive it is to park here, especially on school days, where I have to pay nearly $10 (in coin) to park for the day… Ridiculous! Not to mention when I go to the shops!
So now my plan is to ride my bike to school, to the shops, and to work! 

Yay for helping the planet! 

Lucky for me, Canberra is a city for cyclists :)

Do you ride a bike in stead of driving places? 

Baking Bread and Markets

Saturday has become my favourite day of the week lately. Ever since Travis has started his new job, he hasn't had to work Saturdays anymore, which is fantastic! It means we now have an entire weekend together.
Our Saturdays tend to go like this:
Wake up late, feed the dogs, have a relaxing breakfast, get all of our bags together and go to the markets, come home, make some food from our new produce, then relax.
It's so lovely!

Some of our produce

The markets we've been going to is the EPIC markets at the Exhibition Park in Canberra (E.P.I.C), on the north side. They're not far from our house, so it's a short 5 minute drive to get there, and there is always good parking.
We've found that it is easier to just walk around and pick things as we see them, rather than taking a list, then getting anxious when there isn't things from our list there due to the climate in our area, or the season.
So the fun part about market shopping is that we find things there that look fantastic (the pumpkins at the moment are beautiful!), and decide what we will eat that week from there!
So this week we got a half pumpkin, a bunch of chinese broccoli, some plain broccoli, swiss brown and field mushrooms, apples, sweet potato, a cute eggplant, and a ridiculously large zucchini! (For real guys, this zucchini is MASSIVE!)

After the markets this week Trav had to do some work, so I decided I wanted to bake some bread. It is one of the most relaxing and rewarding jobs to do at home I think. Mainly because it is just such a home-y thing to do, it saves a bit of money (if you eat as much bread as we do), and the smell is just intoxicating! There aren't many smells that can top a fresh bakes bread in the oven..
Flour is so cheap, and the other ingredients are always sitting in your pantry anyway, and you can make it however you like it! Next weekend I'm thinking of getting some yummy olives to put in a loaf, and having one that is all for me :) (Travis loathes olives).

Isn't it cute?

After baking, we sat down and watch some of the first season of 90210 (the 1990's version), and although Travis finds it insipid, we both spent most of the night watching and laughing at their oversized computers and "mobile" phones.

For dinner we decided to make home-made pizza and twists, topped with fresh garlic and home-made queso cheese (I'll post a recipe, it is DE-LISH!). The pizza turned out amazing, and the twists were great as a starter!
I know, I know, not the healthiest day for us, but hey! That's what Saturdays are for aren't they?

Do you bake your own bread at home? What do you put in yours?

Friday, 21 March 2014

My NEW Job!

As you may have read in my previous post, we've just moved to the beautiful city of Canberra, are living in an amazing little house in the inner suburbs, I'm studying patisserie at a school near us (which is amazing!), and I recently got a new job at a vegan bakery!! BAKING! 

I know, I know, dream job yada yada. :-P 

It IS pretty amazing though. 
The cafe is called Sweet Bones Bakery, and it is located on Lonsdale St, within the Lonsdale St Traders in Braddon (a suburb just out of the city). It is very groovy, and hip, and I am far too nerdy to be socially adequate in many of their cool situations, but it is seriously, the best job I've ever had!
They bake vegan wedding cakes and cupcakes, and make so many cool things! I've so far made their lemon cheesecake (YUM), cupcakes, cookies, brownies, muffins, pretzels (yummy!) and I'm sure there's more. 

The only down side to this job is that I am surrounded by delicious and decadent vegan food all day, and there are chefs there who are willing to make me a tofu burger any time.. Sounds upsetting right? Yeah, well my waistline is not happy about it!! 

:-P So if any of you are ever in Canberra, feel free to drop in and try some ah-mazing food and come say hello! 

Did any of you check out my vegan croissant recipe? It's up! And it's beautiful :) PLEASE tell me if you make them, and if they turn out well! 

Sleepy Domino says hi! 

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Vegan Croissant Recipe (with pictures)

For anyone who is vegan, I know there are many things you think you'll never eat again, including delicious flaky croissants.
Think again! 

These babies were made using completely cruelty free ingredients! 

And we know they're not perfect, they're all a little oddly shaped. But they are all delicious! 

This is what happened when I pulled one apart: 

Flaky deliciousness!

Of course I quickly smothered it in more Nuttelex and devoured it. 

Enough drooling over the pictures! Let's get baking!!!! 



60g   Shortening (I used Crisco, but you can use any form of vegetable shortening)
100g Vegan margarine - preferably with a high fat content (I used Nuttelex Original)


20g   Shortening
30g   Vegan margarine
275g Plain flour
12g   Sugar
6g     Salt
5g     Dried yeast
100g Water (cold)
50g   Rice/Soy milk (cold)


50g  Sugar
50-100ml Water


  1. Mix all dough ingredients together in a Kitchen Aid (or similar) until dough is elastic. Add more water (cold), or flour as needed. 
  2. Transfer dough to a floured bowl, sprinkle flour over the top, cover in cling wrap and refrigerate for an hour-ish (I'm a very impatient person, so you can refrigerate for less or more time, more preferably) 
  3. Melt the shortening, mix through the margarine until completely combined and smooth. Refrigerate. 
  4. Remove dough from fridge and roll out into a rectangle. 
  5. Remove butter from fridge once semi-set and lay down cling wrap on bench.
  6. Place the butter on the cling wrap, and mould into a flat square around half the size of the rectangle dough. 
  7. Cover butter square in cling wrap, and replace in fridge until cold.
  8. Once cold, unwrap the square of butter, and place on one half of the dough. 
    I actually broke up the pieces of butter and spread them out more evenly on the half after this
  9. Fold the other half of dough over the buttered side and leave to acclimatise to each other. (around 10 mins)
  10. Once acclimatised, grab a rolling pin and roll out the rectangle (forward and back - not sideways to create a long rectangle) until about 2-3cm thick. NB Please be gentle in this section! You do NOT want the butter coming through the dough! If you do, get a pinch of flour and sprinkle over before continuing to roll, and do not roll much further.
  11. After rolling out, take one side of the rectangle, and fold it 1/3 of the way over the middle, then fold the other side over the top - These are the beginnings of the beautiful layers! 
  12. Rotate the folded dough around until a folded side is facing you. It should look a bit like an S shape facing your body. 
  13. Roll out again, forward and back, until the dough is around 2-3cm thick. If the butter starts coming through please be careful, and sprinkle some flour over the top. 
  14. Repeat 11 again. 
  15. Place on a chopping board and cover in cling wrap, refrigerate for around 10 mins. 
  16. Take out of the refrigerator and place on the bench so that the folds are facing you again to repeat the rolling process again. Re-fold, place the folds to you, and re-roll.
  17. Once the dough is flat and long, make sure it is as squared as can be, then grab a knife and cut a diagonal line from the left corner to about 10cm from the bottom left corner \
  18. Continue cutting along from left to right, leaving around a 10cm gap between cuts.
  19. Using the second cut from the left as the starting point, slice down to the bottom left corner, to create 2 triangles. Follow along the dough in the same way. NB Sharp knives are the best for this, the dough won't bunch up as much when cutting.
  20. Take your first triangle, and make a small cut between the top 2 points of the triangle, and stretch out the sides. 
  21. Roll the dough up from this side, stretching out the tip slightly to elongate the roll. 
  22. Place the tip on the bottom of the rolled dough, and attach the two ends to each other to create a weird circle. 
    Look at these little cuties!!!
  23. Let the little croissant prove while you complete the rest of the rolls. Place somewhere warmish to prove. 
  24. Place on a well greased tray in oven at 160C for around 15-20 mins depending on your oven. Mine is not great, and not fan forced, nor is it gas :( so it kinda depends on how yours operates, but i prefer to cook mine for longer at a lower temp to make sure it cooks all the way through. 
  25. While the little beauties are baking, place water and sugar in a saucepan over moderate heat. Dissolve the sugar, and let it simmer until it becomes like a watery syrup, then take off heat.
  26. Once the croissants are baked, take out of the oven and cool until they can be handled. 
    Waiting for the croissants was tedious for myself, and the cat.
  27. Dip the top of the croissants in  the glaze and let set - PLEASE NOTE that if you want these to be savoury croissant, e.g. with a yummy vegan queso or something in it (recipe soon!), then DON'T glaze!!! 
  28. If you're not choosing to sugar glaze yours, brush them with some melted vegan margarine before baking. Et voila! 


Ta Daaaa! Delicious VEGAN croissants for everyone to enjoy :)

Let me know how you go, and if you can think of anything I may have missed… xo

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Vegan Croissants!

Holy mother of vegan baked goods!

I know what all of you are thinking:

"What a nut-bag"
"How the?"
            etc etc.

FEAR NOT! Vegan croissants are possible!

I made this baby today after many many weeks of procrastinating:

Adorable little croissant!
I am so gosh-darned proud of myself right now!

I will have a recipe up soon!!!

Birthday Surprises and an Amazing Gift

1 week ago I turned 25…. It was devastating! I can't believe how quickly it snuck up on me!

My darling boyfriend decided to conspire with my sister and mother to have them spring a surprise visit on me. It was so beautiful! I hadn't seen my family in a few weeks, so this was quite emotional for me.. 
Travis took me out to lunch at a local vegetarian eatery (My Rainbow Dreams), we sat down, I ordered a yummy juice, and perused the menu. 
I looked up at Travis (blank face - he should play poker), who said "Surprise", and my sister and her partner grabbed me by the shoulders!!! 
2 minutes later my mum and step-dad sauntered up casually. 
I love my family.
We all spent a lovely lunch eating delicious vegan lunchables and enjoying each others company (and some scrummy brownies). 

After lunch my amazing family gave me my birthday present:

Cream Kitchen Aid

Are they not the best??? Is this not the BEST???
This is something I had been whinging and whining about for months to Travis, and basically anyone who had ears.. So I was (and obviously still am), so excited by this little beauty. 

Vegan Baking

So as I mentioned in a previous post, I have started a patisserie course here in Canberra.
It is pretty amazing. So far we have completed 5 weeks of baking with yeast.
Some photos below of some of the (non vegan) products we've made so far:


Chelsea Buns, or Cinnamon Scrolls depending where you're from ;-)

A little tin of smiling chelsea buns

Un-cooked little croissants - how adorable are these??

Finished products - Croissant

Cherry and apple danish

Aren't they cute? It has been SO much fun learning how to bake properly, in a proper kitchen, with proper equipment!

Here are some photos of some VEGAN goodies that I baked at home, so that Travis and I didn't feel so deprived after looking at all my scrumptious goodies from school:

Some basic bread rolls

Choc-chip peanut butter biscuits

Hot Cross buns (i didn't have a piping bag handy, so the "crosses" are a little skew-iff)

 My piping practice on some delicious chocolate cupcakes

Monday, 17 March 2014

New Home

Our new house is amazing. Just sayin', I am completely in love… Aside from it being FREEZING in the morning (it's only Autumn here!), and on a main-ish road, it is absolutely perfect for us!

The doggies have been having a ball in their new backyard:
Radley's found about 6 bones in our backyard!

Suzie licking her lips

Play-fighting over some bones

Unpacking was the worst part of moving (and this is only half the boxes!):