Bill Skolsbård

Baking, Bread, Dessert, Snack, Sweets

Between Michael on Survivor and my ongoing obsession with Kameron Michaels on Drag Race, you’d be forgiven for thinking I had reached peak thirstiness. But I haven’t, dear reader, I haven’t. Well, technically hadn’t, until my dearest Billy Skars dropped by to catch up.

While I will always hold Alexander up on a pedestal as my number one Skars, there is something about Bill that fills my heart with joy. And well, make blood rush to other places.

But anyway, I first met Bill through Al – after he stopped seeing me as a creepy stalker – a few years ago and I instantly knew he had that certain something Stellan, Al and Gustaf all had, so I vowed to make him a star. I got him a job with Kiz, Az and Cazza on Anna Karenina and followed it up with my husband and my family movie, The Divergent Series: Allegiant with our cousins Shailene Woodley and Ashley Judd.

I then spoke to Finn and got him the job on It … and the rest, as I oft say when I can’t think of anything to add, is history.

After Bill and I caught up and then caught up, we were positively famished so it was super convenient I had a big fresh batch of my Bill Skolsbård hidden away by the bed.

 

 

Fresh, warm, spicy and pillowy dough, jam packed with sweet, creamy custard, these babies are the perfect thing for an afternoon snack … after an afternoon delight. And they’ll definitely make your stomach see skyrockets in flight. Boom.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Bill Skolsbård
Serves: 6.

Ingredients
1 ⅔ cups milk, plus ½ a cup for the custard
60g unsalted butter
7g yeast
½ cup raw caster sugar, plus 2 tbsp for the custard
4 cups plain flour
1 tsp cardamom
½ tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
2 yolks, plus one whole egg, whisked, for brushin’
½ cup cream
2 tsp cornflour
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup icing sugar
½ cup desiccated coconut

Method
Combine the not-for-custard milk and butter in a saucepan over low heat and stir until it has just melted and combined. Remove from the heat and stir through the yeast and caster sugar and leave to foam for ten minutes or so. While things are getting frothy, combine the flour and spice in the bowl of a stand mixer before slowly combining the liquid. After it reaches peak froth, obvi. Knead using a dough hook on medium for five minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Transfer to a large oiled bowl, cover and leave to prove in a warm place for 2 hours, or until doubled in size.

Once doubled, knock the dough back down to size like an emotionally abusive parent and divide the dough into quarters. Roll each into logs, cut them into 4, shape each into rounds and transfer to a lined baking sheet. Cover and leave to prove for a further halfies.

While the buns are rising – as opposed to making me rise – preheat the oven to 180°C and start work on the custard. Combine the remaining milk in a saucepan with the cream and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from the heat straight away. Meanwhile whisk the yolks, cornflour and vanilla in a clean, dry bowl before slowly whisking in the warmed dairy until smooth and combined. Return the mixture to the saucepan and place over low heat and cook, stirring, until starting to thicken. Transfer to a bowl via a sieve, cover directly on the surface with cling and chill until ready for bakin’.

Do as I do and press into each bun to make a deep indentation. Fill said hole with the fresh, creamy custard. Brush the exposed buns with the egg to glaze and transfer to the oven to bake for 20 minutes or so, or until golden and risen. You may need to rotate / swap the trays throughout baking if you’re without a fan force. But is anyone these days? Please let me know in the comments.

Transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool for ten minutes or so before combining the icing sugar with a tablespoon of water to form a paste. Brush each bun with the glaze and sprinkle with the coconut. Leave to set for ten minutes or so before annihilating. Sorry, I mean devouring.

 

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Gaberry Soufflibe

14th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Baking, Dessert, Snack, Sweets

After a hint of Megs and a dash of Shirls, we’ve arrived at the televisual stardom section of my egg-based ritual. And based on her successful post-Precious TV career with The Big C, American Horror Story: Coven through Hotel and Empire, my girl Gabs Sidible was the only person worthy of joining me for day three of this year’s Easter Meggstravaganza.

I’ve known Gabs for years after meeting on the set of Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire. I was there visiting my part-time lover Lenny Kravtiz and was immediately drawn in by her performance and vowed to make her a star, and get her an Oscar. While she was robbed by my frenemy Sandra Bullock – she should have been robbed by Meryl instead – she never held my inability to bring Bullsy down against me.

Given how busy I’ve been being Miley and the sort, and she is still hard at work on Empire, Gabs and I haven’t had the chance to catch-up in a while. And let me tell you, it was such a treat to see her again.

She was not only so excited to see me again and reconnect, but also help bring Megs the renewed fame she deserves. We laughed, we hugged, we plotted my way into American Horror Story and finally put on our ritualistic robes and devoured a Gaberry Soufflibe.

 

 

Don’t let the terrible photos scare you – the air conditioning really did a number on them – these babies are damned near perfection. Light, sweet and full of berrylicious tang, it is the most fun you can have with your clothes on. Or off, TBH.

Enjoy!

 

 

Gaberry Soufflibe
Serves: 6.

Ingredients
½ cup raw caster sugar
100g blueberries
100g raspberries
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp cornflour
2 egg whites
icing sugar, to serve

Method
Preheat oven to 200°C.

Combine the ¼ cup of sugar, berries, vanilla and cornflour in a saucepan over medium heat with 2 tablespoons of water. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook for five minutes or so, or until broken down and thickened. Remove from heat and allow to cool for an hour or so.

When you’re ready to rock and or roll, place the remaining sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer with the egg whites and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold through the berry mixture and pour into 6 small ramekins, place on a lined baking sheet and bake for ten minutes or until risen (like Megs’ career, yo).

Dust with icing sugar and devour.

 

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Kent Nelsonion Rings

Australian Survivor, Australian Survivor (2017), Side, Snack, TV Recap, Vegetarian

Previously on Australian Survivor, Tara and Anneliese were voted out of Samatau and were saved by the game’s first twist, switching tribes instead. As there must be balance, Ben and Henry volunteered to switch from Asaga, leaving the Jac of Jacry all alone. After losing immunity, Luke then finally claimed the upper hand, pulling in the new Asagans and booting my dear Queen Jacqui.

Returning to camp, Luke was feeling hella confident after blindsiding Jacry and taking control of Asaga … which feels more like pride cometh before the fall. Michelle was also thrilled, as was Tara who pointed that each of the original tribes were eight and eight, making me feel like she isn’t all Asaga strong. Poor Kent on the other hand, was feeling on the outs and was desperately trying to keep his feelings in check.

We returned to Asaga the next day where Anneliese and Tara were feeling up, surviving against all odds. Sarah then pointed out a rainbow and made my heart swell. On the other end of the mood spectrum, Kent was still feeling pretty crummy though hoped that being underestimated could help him dodge yet another vote. Anneliese, Tara, Sarah and Michelle then gossiped about Kent, with the latter saying that Odette and Kent were behaving like the children she nannies. Though she DGAF that he is against her, since she is playing harder. Do I have a Jacs replacement already?

Over at Samatau, Ziggy was fanging for a swim while we finally heard from Bern? Ben, who said that as the youngest, he was missing being doted on by his parents though was glad to be on Samatau, where people were respecting him. We were then treated to Jarrad trying to woo him over, which my gut is saying is going to end up like Ziggy flipping to Tara and Locky. Ben agreed to get rid of Henry to get further, though I reiterate, the conversation seemed more about seeing if Ben knew about an idol rather than aligning.

On the Henry note, he was feeling extremely confident in his charm, and the majority he left back at Asaga … which was destroyed at the last tribal council. Shit is gonna be awkward in a few minutes!

As expected, JoJo arrived for reward where my little Henny arrived to discover that his girl was booted at the last tribal council, leaving Luke and Tara with the biggest shit-eating grins imaginable. He tried to act like it didn’t hurt, but you could tell it really did. Locky then spoke about how good it was to see both Tara and Anneliese, which started painting the target back on their backs. Jonathan then explained the rules for an ice-cream reward, where the tribes had to push a cart of puzzles up a course before building a palm tree.

Kent was inexplicably removed from the challenge for medical reasons, before Ziggy and Locky completely dominated Luke and Jericho to get Samatau out to a huge lead. Ben being Ben, he then struggled with some knots before the combination of Henry, AK, Ben and Tessa tried to maintain their lead with Anneliese, Sarah, Odette and Jericho on their tails. Close to the end, Samatau discovered they had made some mistakes, allowing Asaga to claim a come from behind victory. Which is obvi my favourite kind.

Arriving at their ice cream reward, Jericho seemed to cream his shorts while the rest of the tribe were feeling pretty damn good. Just not cream in your shorts good, you know. He then devoured a shit tonne of ice cream before pointing out his lactose intolerance. They then started throwing hella shade at AK – which I can always get behind – before Anneliese stubbled upon a clue which led her to another, which she got sprung trying to find.

Before we could see if Anneliese had just screwed herself, we returned to Samatau where Henny was smarting over Jacqui’s boot while the OG Samatauns were thrilled – or angry, I don’t know – to discover Tara and Anneliese survived. While Henry was shook, Ben tried to use it to his advantage by pointing out to AK that he has no options left without Jacqui.

Back at reward, Anneliese was still removing husks from the palm pretending that she was looking for firewood where she finally found the clue without anyone noticing. It instructed her that the idol was hidden at the next immunity challenge, as such, she decided it was important to share the clue with someone to run cover, choosing Naomi Campbell’s mate Sarah. Thankfully Sarah was thrilled with the news, as she could use said news to extricate from her newly formed alliance of Luke and Jericho … filling me with equal parts hope and pride.

Things were still not looking up for Henry on Samatau where he spoke to Locky about how he was royally screwed without Jacs. He obviously then decided that creating his own beach-drawn game would be the best way to ingratiate himself with the tribe, which won over Ziggy and made Ben look like an absolute moron. That being said, Tessa and AK knew that his likability was a problem for their games and because of that, he needs to go ASAP.

Anneliese and Sarah awoke on day 24 to plot how best to snatch the idol at the upcoming immunity. Given the fact Anneliese is becoming the puzzle queen, she couldn’t actually snatch it for herself and instead handed over the clue and responsibility to Sarah to snatch.

On that note, JoJo returned for said immunity challenge where Jericho gloated about the previous reward before Henry pointed out that he and Ben were on the outs and in desperate need of a win. The challenge involved the tribes transporting disc along a rope challenge before releasing them, pushing them up a ramp, into a barrel and then up a shoot – where the idol was hidden – to release the puzzle pieces. As seems to be the case, Samatau got out to an early led with Ben – shockingly – turning in a strong performance, while poor Sarah was left to untangle the discs for Asaga solo. Will Sarah even make it to the idol before Samatau finish? It isn’t looking good.

Samatau continued to extend their lead, getting the puzzle pieces before Sarah – finally joined by Jericho – had even finished the first obstacle. Anneliese then paces the course, desperate to snatch the idol while Samatau snatched immunity. After successfully taking the idol, Anneliese joined her tribe before Henry handed an idol clue over to Jericho out of nowhere making me hopeful that he planted a fake idol where he found the old one and I forgot. Did that happen and we’re about to see Luke or Jericho humiliated? Please.

The defeated Asaga returned to camp, trying to make themselves feel better about their loss. While everyone was upset, Luke was loving it since he was in control … which feels like he is being set up for a fall. Anneliese and Sarah disappeared to discuss their alliance, with Sarah continuing her strong gameplay by confirming she Anneliese’s idol is hers alone and she wanted to work with her as best as she could.

Sensing he is next to go, Kent opened up his strategy shop down the beach hoping to lure people over to discuss options with him. After an awkwardly long period of sitting lazily at the end of the beach, Tara approached Kent to see if he was open to getting rid of Michelle which is what he was hoping anyway. Tara then approached Anneliese to get rid of Michelle, which the latter wasn’t keen on given the fact Sarah wouldn’t be keen on it. Tara then approached Luke about keeping strength, with Luke suggesting Odette – who is the strongest woman left in the game – instead of Kent.

Michelle, Anneliese and Sarah discussed the upcoming vote by the fire, where Michelle started to drink the overconfidence kool aid which appears to have rubbed Sarah the wrong way. She then approached Kent to discuss the fact he and Odette were next to go, which he countered that the options were actually Michelle and Kent. Given that Sarah is aligned with Michelle, she tried to sway the vote to Luke or Jericho instead to lock in a majority and take control.

They arrived at tribal council where JLP was quick to rub in the fact they completely bombed the immunity challenge, with Jericho and Luke  explaining the loss in an extremely basic manner. Michelle spoke about how difficult the challenge was, before Anneliese admitted that they are kinda screwed given the fact that Samatau was stacked with athletic members. Michelle then raised some eyebrows talking about getting rid of threats and keeping people she can trust, rather than strength. Odette, Jericho and Luke debated which was the right option, before Michelle and Kent were outed as causing most of the disharmony in the tribe. After talking about not really getting on, Kent offended Michelle by pointing she doesn’t contribute much at camp. She then challenged him to point out how he does any better, which he struggled with. Sarah then spoke about the fact there is a clear majority, though those on bottom should be working hard to claim back the majority. Despite signalling that she was on the precipice of flipping, Sarah stuck with current majority to take out my speedo loving daddy Kent.

Since he is the Chief Financial Officer of a Government Department, I have long known to keep my dear friend Kent on my good side. How do I do that, you ask? By whipping up a big batch of my Kent Nelsonion Rings.

 

 

Despite the fact it is bleedingly obvious that you can’t go past fried food when looking for comfort, I figure I should do my best to sell you on these babies. Though the crisp batter, sweet, melting onion and whack of salt kinda do that for me, no?

Enjoy!

 

 

Kent Nelsonion Rings
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
2 large onions
125ml milk
1 egg
70g flour
2 tbsp cornflour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp muscovado sugar
½ tsp salt
½ tsp paprika
oil, for fryin’

Method
Slice the onions into 1cm wide rings and heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat until 180°C.

Whisk the wet and dry ingredients together, separately – aka wet together, dry together – before whisking them all together.

Dip the onions in the batter and fry a few pieces at a time for a couple of minutes, or until golden and crisp. Transfer to some kitchen towel and repeat the process until the onion is all gone.

Season with salt and pepper and devour, in a melancholic yet accepting manner.

 

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Brandy Custard

Condiment, Dip, Party Food, Sauce, Side, Snack, Sweets

Guys *spoiler alert* this is the last regular, non-Survivor, non-festive-spectacular recipe of the year. Can you believe it?

Now before you start applauding and rioting on the Facebook – which if you ask my mother-in-law’s man-friend is the internet – begging for us to be banned from the internet in 2017, just enjoy these last few moments for the year and I’ll let you have a few weeks off before I terrorise your eyes for another year.

Please – I’m just a poor, old, flailing millennial and I need this outlet. Where is Probst to comment on my generation, when I need him?

Anyway – I’ve gotten sufficiently off track … but I feel such a beautiful and talented soul like my dear friend Brandy Norwood is deserving of some long winded preamble, as terrible as said preamble is.

I first met Brandy in the early ‘90s when I hired her as a backing vocalist for my defunct girl group Gurlfriend. It is defunct because the hit Australian girl group Girlfriend sued me for being a blatant rip off.

Which it wasn’t.

I had promised Brands fame and fortune if she took up the role, so to make it up to her I secured her the lead role in Moesha.

Despite a brief falling out after she won a Grammy in ‘99 for That Boy is Mine, which i wrote but was sadly stricken from the credits, we reconnected on the set of Brie Larson’s defunct sitcom Raising Dad in 2002.

Fun fact: to punish her for making me miss out on a Grammy, I went back in time and forced her to star in I Still Know so that I could watch her be survived by JLH. How do you deal, Brands?

While yes, sending her back to star in that trainwreck was cruel, Brandy took it all in her stride and we’ve remained close ever since. She is, no lie, a damn saint.

So I had completely forgotten that you can’t have an Eve Plumb Pudding without a generous helping of Brandy Custard. Thankfully Brandy had a clear schedule – I mean empty, bupkis, zippo – and was able to jump straight on the plane to whip some up with me to help devour the leftovers.

 

brandy-custard-1

 

Full disclosure and likely not shocking anyone, I used to be the proud owner of an irrational fear of brandy custard. As far as I’m concerned though, anyone that has suffered through the cartoned crap should.

Brands finally wore me down and convinced me to whip her up a batch and now I have a passionate love for the boozy, velvety delight – enjoy!

 

brandy-custard-2

 

Brandy Custard
Serves: 8.

Ingredients
6 egg yolks
⅓ cup raw caster sugar
2 tbsp cornflour
⅔ cup milk
3 cups double cream
¼ cup brandy
1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Method
Combine the yolks and sugar in  one bowl and the cornflour and milk in another.

Heat the cream in a saucepan over low heat and slowly whisk in the egg and cornflour mixtures, followed by the brandy and vanilla bean. Continue whisking for a couple of minutes, or until thick and glorious. Serve warm with Eve Plumb Pudding.

 

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Kristie Belette

Australian Survivor, Baking, Cake, Dessert, Snack, Sweets, TV Recap

Say what you will about Kristie’s game, her journey from a paranoid Abi-Maria-lite meltdown on day two, to Samoan sea-witch that laid low to dodge the vote at twenty tribal councils is an impressive feat.

I mean sure, a game littered with big moves is far more exciting for the audience at home – amirite Ciera? – but Kristie was playing with a group largely dominated by castaways like Lee who had barely seen the show and labelled anyone that was actually playing a snake and immediately turned on them. Her only real option was to ride it out being underestimated for as long as should could before making the moves she needed to end up in the Final Two.

And given that she ended up in the Final Two, you’ve got to give her credit despite the large amount of luck involved in her game.

Plus, what she did with her slot in the finals was fascinating to watch. As Lee fumbled and was unsure of what to do, Kristie put her 16 years of watching the show to good use and took responsibility for her game and was assertive and eloquent in explaining why she played the best game given the cards she was dealt.

And thankfully the jury – minus El, obviously – rewarded her for the effort as she was crowned Sole Survivor.

Obviously I have been friends with Kristie for a couple of years, after meeting at an occult convention and eventually starting a wildly unsuccessful witches coven. But maybe that is because I was serving us ritualistic Kristie Belettes which are far more fitting as a victory dessert, rather than an offering to the gods.

 

kristie-belette-1

 

Like island living, this dessert is the perfect, rustic treat to serve to someone who would need to acclimate back into real life. You can pretty much make this using any combination of fruit you like or switching out the nuts but there is something I love about the earthy pecans, working with the sweet apple and tart blueberry.

It almost feels, triumphant – enjoy!

 

kristie-belette-2

 

Kristie Belette
Serves: 1 Sole Survivor, or 6-8 normal peeps.

Ingredients
½ cup pecans, lightly toasted
1 cup plain flour
2 tsp raw caster sugar for dough, ¼ cup for fruit mixture, plus more for dusting
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp cinnamon
½ cup chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 cups blueberries
1 apple, peeled, cored and finely diced
1 tbsp cornflour
1½ tsp lemon juice
2 tbsp milk

Method
Blitz pecans in a food processor to make a coarse meal. Add in the flour, 2 tsp sugar, salt and cinnamon and blitz briefly to mix. Then add butter and you guessed it, blitz again until it resembles wet sand. Kinda like Aganoa after the wave washed out their camp on night one?

Transfer the mixture to a bowl, add in some ice cold water – a tablespoon at a time – and mix until it just comes together. Form the dough into a disc, wrap in cling wrap and chill for at least an hour.

Preheat oven to 180°C.

While the oven is adding some heat to your life, combine the blueberries, apple, cornflour, lemon juice and ¼ cup sugar in a large bowl. Set aside.

Roll out the dough between two layers of baking paper until it is about a half a centimetre thick disc. Transfer to a lined baking sheet – or you know, flip one of the baking sheets you used to roll the dough over onto said sheet – mound the blueberry-apple mixture in the centre of the dough, leaving a 5cm edge which you then fold over in a rustic fashion, to ensure Kristie isn’t too uncomfortable by the high class of my baking after just escaping the jungle.

Brush said rustic fold with milk, sprinkle with sugar and bake until it is browned and crisp, with a molten berry centre aka 40 minutes. And I say browned, rather than golden because I clearly burnt this. What are you gonna do when you’re sipping mai tais while baking every other day in paradise?

Allow to cool slightly and devour. If it is warm, devour with ice cream – why not, she is our winner after all?

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Google+.