Saturday, 5 May 2012

Failed Experiment - 'Peek Freans'

(There is now a successful recipe for these, which you can view here, though they are not actual Peek Freans, just something inspired by the description.)

Bah.  It really doesn't seem to be my week.  First the chocolate chip cookies, and now these.  Of course, these were an experiment based on mixing a few things which ended up not working.  But still.  I do hate it when things don't work out.  However, I still think I should blog about these things.  Good to keep track of mistakes so I don't make them next time.  Hence, I'll have entries labelled as failed experiments, which will not include recipes.  Hopefully I'll perfect the ideas and then I can post successful entries with recipes.

Anyway, the idea for these came from watching the first season of 'The Fringe'.  At one point in one of the episodes, a character is offering up cookies.  He calls them 'Peek Freans' and says they are comprised of a vanilla wafer with a lemon cream and raspberry centre.  It sounded interesting so I went hunting for a recipe for such a thing.  I could not find one.  'Peek Frean' is apparently a biscuit company and were the ones that developed Bourbon biscuits.  But nothing like described in the show.  So I decided I would try and make my own version by finding recipes and combining elements.  For the vanilla wafer I ended up doing a vanilla sugar cookie recipe.  They turned out rather nice and would work very well on their own.  For the filling, I found a recipe for uncooked fondant which is usually used for the inside of sweets.  I went with this idea as investigation into Custard Cremes turned up that the filling is a fondant.  Unfortunately, this fondant was what ruined it for me.  It is far, far too sweet.  Teeth rotting-ly so.  I blame the golden syrup, which I substituted for the light corn syrup the recipe asked for because from what I read, that is the UK equivalent, with treacle being the equivalent of dark corn syrup.  

Flavouring the fondant was interesting.  I really wasn't getting the lemon through in my lemon one.  You could smell the raspberry in the other one but I don't feel I could taste it.  Obviously need to work on this area.  Also, I will run whatever I use for the raspberry flavour through a sieve first to get rid of the seeds.

When I try this out again, I'll use the same biscuit recipe because, as I said, I rather liked them.  However, I would probably make the biscuits a lot smaller.  They ended up too big, especially considering there are two sandwiched together.  I'm also abandoning that fondant recipe entirely.  I'm thinking I could just use ready to roll fondant icing.  I really like the taste of that type of icing and it's easy to colour.  I don't know about flavouring it though but then, that's what experimenting is for.

Edit - 21:25: Well, my boyfriend just got in from work and tried one.  He really likes them!  He can taste the lemon really strongly and got a hint of the raspberry.  So that's good.  Someone will enjoy them.

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