There is one thing guaranteed to conquer my nerves of cooking for people outside my immediate friends and family: the promise of homemade sweets delivered to me in exchange!
This month I participated in the inaugural The Sweet Swap, along with 54 other Australian food and lifestyle bloggers. Each blogger was matched with three other bloggers, to send and receive parcels of homemade sweets. The registration fees were donated to The Sweet Swap’s charity partner, ChildFund Australia, to help improve nutrition for children and their families in Uganda.
Despite hearing about some sweet-swap-making fails from other bloggers, I foolishly underestimated how much of a challenge sweet-making could be for a first attempt. Luckily (…) I’m not working at the moment, so I had unlimited time to complete the challenge.
For bonus pressure, I left it to 2 days prior to the send-date to attempt an Indian sweet (Laddu) that I’d never made before.
My massive fail was a nasty shock. Let me bake a cake over sweets any day, please!
Happily, my second attempt was a success! …Though I would have been quite concerned if it wasn’t, seeing as there is no cooking involved in these Coconut, Currant & Orange Milk Balls.
The stress was all worth it once I received my packages! The Popcorn & Macadamia Chunks from Dining with a Stud were a fantastic combination of sweet, salty and crunchy. Freckle Shapes from The Random Foodie were beautifully rich and made my kitchen smell divine (while they lasted…). Finally, the Peanut Butter Choc Chip Fudge from Cooking Crusade was insanely rich, creamy, salty and sweet – I will love peanut butter and chocolate forever.
Coconut, Currant, and Orange Milk Balls
Adapted from ‘Orange and Currant Simply Wonderfuls':
Great Vegetarian Dishes by Kurma Dasa
Prep time: 20-30 minutes.
- 190g unsalted butter, room temperature (or softened in microwave at 80% power for 10 seconds, if your room temp is cold winter)
- 1 1/2 cups icing sugar, sifted
- 1/2 tsp finely grated orange rind
- 2 tbs currants
- 1 1/2 cups full cream milk powder
- 1 cup desiccated coconut, in a small bowl
- Cream the butter, sugar, and orange rind in a large mixing bowl until pale.
- Stir in the currants and powdered milk until combined. Tip onto a large piece of baking paper and knead until a soft dough is formed.
- Pinch off walnut-sized portions (I weighed each piece to 20g) and roll into smooth even-sized balls.
- Roll each ball in the coconut to coat. Chill until ready to serve.
Visit The Sweet Swap to see everyone’s fantastic recipes and stories.