Are You a Master Baker or Disaster Baker? Contest and Giveaway RECIPE #2

Are You a Master Baker or Disaster Baker? Contest and Giveaway

My bake along challenge began last week with Recipe #1 Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake. You can find Manuela’s recipe and my recreation HERE. You can also view all the contestant submissions in the Woobox Gallery link at the bottom of this post.

The requirements for this week’s challenge are the same as Recipe #1; and are as follows: bake the next recipe in the challenge series then take a photo of your “Masterpiece or Disaster” piece. The Woobox Submission Form is listed at the end of this post, and is also where you will share a photo of your creation. The link will be available on all my social media sites for easy access to post your photos for the duration of the contest. 


In order to be eligible to win the $700.00 Ankarsrum Original Mixer you must enter a photo for  ALL 6 recipes in the challenge. To win the Baking Book: Love Manuela,  you are required to enter 3 recipe photos.




Manuela's Cream Cake

BLØTEKAKE ( NORWEGIAN CREAM CAKE) by Manuela Kjeilen. All photos courtesy of, Lise Sternersen,and created by Manuela Kjelien (unless otherwise noted).

This stunning creation is the work of Norwegian born award-winning blogger and “Master Home Baker” –  Manuela Kjeilen.

( You can read more about Manuela and the Contests Official Rule HERE )

Attached to each of the six recipes sent to me by Manuela were notes written by her as they related to each of the recipes. Below is what Manuela said about Recipe #2:

The second recipe is a Bløtekake (Norwegian Cream Cake) typical of a cake you would see at bakeries in Norway! Contestants can just fill it with strawberries rather than all of the fruits that I used. This is how we do cakes in Norway and I love this cake.

Manuela you’re so right! Norwegians really know how to make a delicious cake! This  beautiful cake is filled will all my favorite things: pastry cream, mascarpone whipped cream, chopped walnuts, dark chocolate, and a mixture of fresh fruits.  This fabulous recipe is perfect for any summertime gathering, but would look great at your red, white, and blue 4th of July party. I love that the American and Norwegian flags share the same colors! 

Some Thoughts on My Second Bake 

I feel more accomplished as a baker after the first challenge last week. I’ve had less anxiety about making a traditional sponge for the Norwegian Cream Cake;  yet I worry about my lack of  technique  in the decorating department.  I’ve never made a layered cake that didn’t look like the Leaning Tower of Pisa;  plus I suffer from a lack of understanding when it comes to executing the perfect slice.  

The use of acetate or plastic cake collar is a new technique for me as well. If you don’t own acetate cake collars, you can substitute with heavy plastic wrap and use large spring form pans and outer clamping ring for the adjustable cake ring step. 

This is going to be a fun bake, and I hope  you all will bake along.

So now that you’ve seen the STUNNING photo of Manuela’s BLØTEKAKE  (NORWEGIAN CREAM CAKE) (see photo above), say hello to my rendition:

Cream Cake by Becka


You’ll notice my piping on the sides of the cake are too close together, jagged, and don’t look finished where the cake top meets the piped sides. You’ll also see that the top of my cake resembles a mosaic or road map  rather than the 6 perfect triangle slices on Manuela’s cake.  My rendition of the cake is pretty, but not correct if we’re trying to replicate Manuel’s recipe. My decoration looks more like a mosaic than Manuela’s 6 perfectly piped triangles 

Rebecka's Cream Cake2


Rebecka's Cream Cake Slice 1

Leaning Tower of  BLØTEKAKE  (NORWEGIAN CREAM CAKE) by Rebecka Evans

My slice is leaning to the side as it almost fell onto  the floor on its way from the cake to the plate.

Manuel’s recipe offers the option to use 8 or 9 inch springform pan or two – 3X8 – inch round baking tins, or 10 -inch springform pan. Recipes for both options are listed.  I opted to use a 10  inch springform pan to bake my sponge. I over baked the cake (again), so I had to use more orange juice on the slices to moisten them. I also used an additional 4 cups of heavy cream to make my whipped icing. Finally, I used Manuel’s Vanilla Frosting made with mascarpone. You can use your own favorite recipe for whipped icing, or you can find Manuela’s recipe HERE

I love the color and textures of this cake. The vanilla cream is the best I’ve ever made. I could eat an entire bowl of the luscious cream in one sitting. The decadent whipped cream tastes so fresh, and is the perfect cover for my mistakes despite my messy execution. My rendition of Manuela’s BLØTEKAKE  NORWEGIAN CREAM CAKE isn’t a “masterpiece,” but it’s not bad for my second bake. 


  1. You will need a 9-inch spring form pan, parchment paper, cooking spray, a metal and plastic cake collar, and acetate film. I found the metal adjustable collar and acetate cake collars at a local baking shop.  Acetate is sold per piece in large sheets. If you don’t care to spend money on a metal adjustable cake ring, you can use the clean, dry ring from a springform pan. (You can watch Manuela’s Video HERE to get a better idea of this technique)
  2. You will need medium disposable piping bags and a Wilton 1 M piping tip.
  3. When the recipe calls for chopped dark chocolate, I used my favorite dark chocolate bar which is 70% cocoa.
  4. The recipe conversions from European Measurements are Manuela’s US converted recipes or were calculated with the iPhone APP “Kitchen Pro”
  5. The recipe calls for 2 cups whipped cream to fill the cake. I made an additional 4 cups of whipped cream to decorate my cake using Manuela’s Mascarpone Whipped Frosting. You can find the recipe HERE

I have pushed myself to work outside my comfort zone and I’ve just added two more delicious recipes to my baking repertoire: Norwegian Sponge Cake and Vanilla Pastry Cream. The list keeps getting longer and my skills are growing with every delicious recipe. 


Serves 8
BLØTEKAKE ( NORWEGIAN CREAM CAKE) Photo is Rebecka's rendition of Manuela's recipe
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Cook Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
  3. 1/3 CUP ORANGE JUICE (I used about 1 cup)
  9. 1 CUP CHOPPED WALNUTS (optional)
  1. 2 CUPS (500 ML) WHOLE MILK
  3. ⅜ CUP (85 G) SUGAR
  1. Start by making the vanilla cream some hours before and put it in the fridge
  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the milk and vanilla bean paste, stirring occasionally, until the milk is hot but not boiling
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt.
  3. Whisk in yolks all at once until light and fluffy and batter reaches the ribbon stage.
  4. As you continue whisking, slowly add one-third of the hot milk to the yolk mixture to temper the egg yolks.
  5. Whisk in remaining milk into yolks and return entire mixture to saucepan.
  6. Place over medium heat and whisk frequently until the mixture begins to boil.
  7. Whisk the mixture vigorously for 2 minutes, while boiling, until the cornstarch dissolves completely.
  8. Remove the pan from the heat.
  9. Strain the vanilla cream mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl.
  10. Whisk in the butter.
  11. With a silicon, spatula spread the vanilla cream to a thin layer on a small baking sheet.
  12. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap directly over the vanilla cream.
  13. Allow it to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for a few hours.
  14. When ready to use, loosen the cream with a spatula or whisk.
  15. Pastry cream should be refrigerated and used within 3 days of making.
  1. Make the sponge cake in a 24 cm or 25 cm ( 9-inch or 10-inch springform)
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease the bottom of three 8– inch (20 cm) round cake pans and line with parchment paper; Or if you prefer you can use an 8-inch spring-form pan line bottom with parchment paper and spray.
  3. In a medium bowl, sift the flour and cornstarch or if you use potato starch, and set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a standing mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs and sugar on low-medium speed for 1 minute.
  5. Increase the speed to medium, and continue beating for 5 minutes.
  6. Add water or buttermilk and beat for another 1-5 minutes on medium-high speed.
  7. Add vanilla bean paste, and beat for one minute more.
  8. The batter should be very thick. When the whisk is lifted, the batter should ribbon from it back into the batter in the bowl.
  9. Pour the batter into a large wide bowl.
  10. Sift in half the flour mixture. Use a large silicone spatula to stir and fold until only a few streaks of flour are visible.
  11. Repeat with remaining flour mixture. Make sure to maintain the batter’s volume while folding;
  12. it is important to not deflate the batter.
  13. Pour the batter into the prepared pan or pans using a spatula to distribute batter evenly.
  1. 20 minutes → 3 x 8-inch pans, always check with a cake tester
  2. 30 minutes for → One springform 9-inch (24cm), always check with a cake tester
  3. Bake the first two cakes on the middle rack of oven until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs
  4. Let the cakes cool in the pan on wire racks for 10 minutes.
  5. Use a knife to loosen the sides of the cakes and carefully turn them onto wire racks. Peel off the parchment paper and let cool completely.
  6. Use a sharp knife and scrape away any dark crust on the sides, optional
  7. If you baked this cake in one springform, Cut the cake into 3 even layers.
  8. Place the first cake layer on a silicon mat or parchment paper and place it on a baking sheet that fits into a fridge!
  9. Drizzle the first cake layer with some orange juice, or milk.
  10. Add raspberry jam, use one with a good quality ( homemade = best) with an offset spatula just spread it all over the first cake layer.
  11. Add the vanilla cream, and spread it all out on the first layer.
  12. Add whipped cream, with an offset spatula spread it all over the cake layer.
  13. Add chopped dark chocolate and walnuts.
  14. And add fruit of your choice, I used mango, banana, strawberries, raspberries.
  15. Add a little more cream on top, so the next cake layer stays in place.
  16. Place the second layer on top, If you have packed your cake with loads of yumminess, it might come out on the side.
  17. If that happens just take your offset spatula and lift the cake layer and push it in the cake.
  18. Repeat the same thing as the first cake layer.
  19. Put a cake collar ( that´s a plastic film for assembling cakes used inside the cake ring, and place a cake ring around the cake.
  20. Add the last layer, leave it in the fridge some hours to firm up.
  21. Decorate the cake with some more whipped cream and if you wish to decorate the top with some more fresh fruit!
  22. Hope you are going to love it, with love from Norway.
At Home with Rebecka
Now it’s your turn to bake your “Master or Disaster” piece and post a photo of your completed dish to the Woobox link below by July 15, 2018 Midnight CST.


For a list of 6 handpicked recipes and the Official Rules click HERE

June 18, 2018 Initial Rules and Information Post
June 24, 2018 First recipe in the series (Recipe #1)
July  1, 2018 First Recipe Due Midnight CST

July 8, 2018 Second Recipe in the series (Recipe #2)
July 15, 2018 Second Recipe Due Midnight CST
July 22, 2018 Third Recipe in the series (Recipe #3)
August 1, 2018 Third Recipe Due Midnight CST
August 5, 2018 Fourth recipe in the series (Recipe #4)
August 15, 2018 Fourth Recipe Due Midnight CST
August 19, 2018 Fifth Recipe in series (Recipe #5)
September 1, 2018 Fifth Recipe Due Midnight CST
September 9, 2018 Sixth Recipe in series (Recipe #6)
September 15, 2018 Sixth Recipe Due Midnight CST

Are You a Master Baker or Disaster Baker? Contest & Giveaway – RECIPE #1

Welcome to my latest contest and giveaway. Are you a Master or a Disaster Baker? Let’s find out!

Self-proclaimed “Disaster Baker” Rebecka Evans hosts this bake along contest and giveaway. TV personality Manuela Kjeilen will handpick 6 recipes for the competition; the grand prize winner will walk away with a Ankarsrum USA stand mixer. Another lucky contestant will win a “Passion for Baking Cookbook, Love Manuela “The Baking Book”. Are you ready to take the challenge?


Today marks the beginning of our contest as we start with our first recipe in the series; Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake.


Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake

Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake

Mocha Meringues Ice Cream Cake by Manuela Kjeilen  All photos curtesy of Lise Sternersen and created by Manuela Kjelien unless otherwise noted 

This stunning creation is the work of Norwegian born award-winning blogger and “Master Home Baker” –  Manuela Kjeilen.

( You can read more about Manuela and the Contests Official Rule HERE )

Attached to each of the six recipes sent to me by Manuela were notes written by her as they related to one of the recipes. Below is what Manuela said about Recipe #1:

The first recipe is a mocha meringues ice cream cake with a gooey almond crust, I want them [that’s you] to taste how we make our cakes in Norway, Almonds crust we use a lot. I think they will love this one! 

I think she is right! This ice cream cake has everything: mocha ice cream, coffee flavored meringues, and gooey almond crust; it’s absolutely delicious. 

The challenge begins today with my attempt to recreate Manuela’s baked masterpiece: Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake. I’ll post a photo of my rendition for the world to see. The contestants that choose to take the challenge will bake along with me and post a photo of their attempt to recreate Manuela’s beautiful recipes. 

The Woobox Submission Form is listed at the end of this post, and is also where you will share a photo of your creation. The link will be available on all my social media sites for easy access to post your photos for the duration of the contest. 

*NOTE: In order to be eligible to win the $700.00 Ankarsrum Original Mixer you must enter a photo for  ALL 6 recipes in the challenge. To win the Baking Book: Love Manuela,  you are required to enter 3 recipe photos.


I am an award winning home-cook and a DISASTER baker. 

The fact is I want to create beautifully baked masterpieces and learn from the best. However as I get closer to recreating Manuela’s recipes for the series, I begin to experience some serious anxiety. The anxious feelings led to a few sleepless nights as I wondered  how I was going to feel about posting failed recipes. This has been brutal; and it even led me to call in a close friend Lisa Keys, owner of the Good Grief Cook  to seek council for my anxiety as I was melting down over my failed Mocca Meringues for this recipe.

Despite all of Lisa’s advice, my bad luck prevailed and the recipe didn’t turn out. I was well aware the fault was my own because I didn’t follow Manuela’s instruction to “add 1 teaspoon of sugar at a time,” so the meringue mixture lost its fluff.

Part of why baking is so difficult for me is due to the slow and tedious process of adhering to the recipe’s exact measurements. It’s a real struggle to stay attentive as your work you way through a recipe; especially when you have to add 2 cups of hot sugar, 1 teaspoon at a time.

Here’s how my mind works as I begin my first bake:

The hot sugar comes out of the oven and I start to make the meringues. Checking and re-checking the directions I then pour the egg whites into my stunning Black Pearl Ankarsrum Mixer, and watch as they begin to transform. I stare mesmerized my mind wanders off: “I’m so blessed that Ankarsrum sponsored my contest with a mixer for the winner and so nice for them to send me one as well.”  A few more minutes pass and then I add more sugar. I admire how beautiful the egg whites look as they dance between the beaters when a question comes to mind: “Did I heat the sugar too long and is it cooling off too fast?”  I ponder for a moment, and I quickly reassure myself that everything is okay as I tell myself: “No. You followed the directions and they look fine.” I add more sugar and I hear thunder crack and I begin to worry about the weather, and another question comes to mind,  “Will the rain effect the barometric pressure and ruin my meringues?” Mind you, I’ve only added 1/2 a cup of hot sugar at this point and my blood pressure is rising. Then my mind screams at me, “Oh no, should I stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl or will that mess up my meringue?” My answers,”Yes, I’ll stop the mixer and scrape the sides. Dear Lord, that was a bad idea! The meringue looks weird, I should have left it alone.”

More sugar is added and I hear my favorite song on the radio,”Tennessee whisky, Tennessee whisky,” George Jones has such a beautiful voice, I love that song. I start singing along. George is done singing and I’m still standing there adding sugar, 1 teaspoon at a time, I want to be done. After what seems like 30 minutes (in reality probably only 12) I think, “How in the world can it hurt to add more than 1 teaspoon of sugar at a time?” I knew the minute I threw in the rest of  the sugar my meringue had broken, what a disaster. 

Unfortunately since I didn’t follow the directions, the Mocca Meringues were wet and difficult to pipe, rendering them almost impossible to cook properly; they were undercooked and gooey on the inside regardless of my effort to cook them 20 minutes longer than the recipe calls for.

Even though the product didn’t turn out as hoped, I still tried to present my “disaster” beautifully in my photo. My attempt to disguise the ugliness of my creation failed, as it turned out to be more like trying to put lipstick on a pig than food styling!

On the bright side, the Mocca Meringues get crushed up and added to the ice cream cake and were so good that my husband even mentioned how much he liked the “chewy things” in the ice cream!

You see, we never know how it’s going to turn out unless we try! I promise from now on that I will follow the recipe and do as Manuela instructs because without her guidance it’s seemingly impossible for me to execute the recipe with perfection. 

failed mocca meringues

I know this makes absolutely no sense to “Master Bakers,”but for someone like me, baking recipes way outside my comfort zone makes me feel like crying. Therefore, being transparent about my failed recipes is difficult to say the least. As if my disaster attempt at the recipe wasn’t enough, I managed to finish my first day of baking by dropping my favorite glass mixing bowl onto the tile floor; shattering it into pieces! 

As Manuela says, “Practice, practice, practice! The more you bake the more you learn,” and intend to challenge myself  because I aspire to succeed in the same way Manuela excelled until she became the Master Baker she is today! 

So now that you’ve seen the STUNNING photo of Manuela’s Mocca Meringue Ice Cream Cake above, say hello to my rendition:

mocca meringue cake becks

Food and Photo by Rebecka Evans Recipe by Passion for Baking.comMocca Slice

Working to present the cake as best I could despite my set backs, the cake looks scrumptious. I even utilized my ugly mocca meringues to style the photo.

The almond crust was super easy to make once I got the hang of whipping egg whites and following the directions! I over baked the crust a bit and had some trouble keeping the cake frozen enough to get a good photo before the Texas heat began to creep in; and for a first attempt I think I did a pretty good job.  

My family loved the flavors of the cake, but especially loved the coffee ice-cream. It’s so rich and super easy to make. Plus, there is no need for an ice-cream machine! This cake is so delicious despite my failed Mocca Meringues. I plan to make the Meringues again to work on my technique.

What I Love About This Challenge:

I have pushed myself to operate outside my comfort zone and I’ve just added three delicious new recipes to my baking repertoire; almond cake, no churn mocca ice cream, and mocca meringues. I also feel more accomplished as a baker after my first bake, I hope you will too! 

Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake Notes:
  1. You will need a 9-inch spring form pan, parchment paper, and cooking spray
  2. Invest in some vanilla bean paste for all of Manuela’s recipes. I use Cambie Confections Pure Vanilla Bean Paste 
  3. Don’t freak out over making the Mocca Meringues like I did.
  4. Follow the recipe! When Manuela says,  “Add 1 teaspoon of sugar at a time” listen!
  5. The recipe conversions from European Measurements are Manuela’s US converted recipes or were calculated with the iPhone APP “Kitchen Pro”
  6. Don’t over bake the almond cake. Make sure you watch your timer closely to make sure you get the perfect golden brown
  7. If you or your family suffer from nut allergies you can substitute crushed cookies when the recipe calls for ground almonds

I’ve added a few more notes in the recipe, however if you need step by step instruction after reading Manuela’s recipe then please check out her helpful how to videos.

(Manuela’s beautiful photos of her creations are located HERE)

Now it’s your turn to bake your “Master or Disaster” piece! Remember you must post a photo of your completed dish to the WooBox link (listed below) by July 1, 2018 Midnight CST.

Manuela's Mocca Meringues Ice Cream Cake
Serves 6
Photo is my version of Manuela's recipe for the Contest and Giveaway
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
50 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
50 min
Almond Base
  1. 4 egg whites, at room temperature
  2. 2 cups (220 gram) powdered sugar or confectioners’ sugar
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract, optional
  4. 2 cups (250 gram) ground almonds (Nut Allergy: substitute your favorite crushed cookie)
Mocha Ice Cream
  1. 2 1/2 cups ( 500 ml ) heavy cream, cold
  2. 5 oz(150 ml) sweetened condensed milk, cold ( see note below ↓)
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
  4. 2-3 tablespoon strong espresso coffee, cold (I used Via Roma Espresso Instant Coffee)
  5. 12-15 Mocca meringues, crushed into small pieces (or crushed cookies)
  1. Makes ( 40 pieces)
  2. 2 cups (400-gram) superfine sugar or sugar
  3. 3/4 Cups (200-gram) egg whites
  4. seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean pod, optional
  5. 2 tbsp. espresso powder (I used Via Roma Espresso Instant Coffee)
  6. lemon juice for cleaning the bowl and whisk
  7. You will need...
  8. piping bag
  9. wilton 1M nozzle
Before you start
  1. Wipe a stainless-steel bowl and the whisk attachment, of a standing mixer, with a paper towel moistened with lemon juice.
  2. This step is done to eliminate any trace of grease, which would hinder the egg whites from stiffening.
Mocca Meringues
  1. Preheat your oven to 200 C° / 392 F°
  2. Line two large baking trays with a silicone mat, or use parchment paper and set aside.
  3. Prepare the standing mixer, by wiping the standing mixer bowl and whisk with a paper towel moistened with a little lemon juice to eliminate any trace of grease.
  4. Line a medium baking tray with baking parchment, pour in the sugar and warm it in the oven for 7 minutes. ( use a timer)
  5. A soon as the sugar is in the oven, right away pour the egg whites into a mixer and whisk them slowly for some minutes, allowing small stabilizing bubbles to form, then increase the speed to medium so the meringues become stiff peaks.
  6. When you have 30 seconds left of the sugar being in the oven, turn your mixer up to high speed.
  7. Take the sugar out of the oven, and turn the oven down to 225 F° (100 C°)
  8. With your mixer on full speed, very slowly add one teaspoon of the hot sugar into the beaten egg whites, take your time when you do this, and don’t be tempted to add more than one teaspoon at a time. (She means it...don't lose your mind and start adding more sugar)
  9. Make sure the mixture comes back up to stiff peaks after each teaspoon of sugar
  10. Once you have added all the sugar, add the seeds of the vanilla bean pod, and continue to whisk on full speed until you have a smooth, stiff and glossy mixture and all of the sugar is incorporated.
  11. Add the espresso powder and continue to mix for one minutt more.
  12. You will need a disposable piping bag and a wilton 1M nozzle, place the nozzle in the bag and cut the tip-off.
  13. Spoon your meringues mixture into a large piping bag.
  14. If you are using parchment paper to pipe the meringues on, you will need to add some meringues mixture underneath the parchment paper below so it sticks to the baking tray.
  15. Pipe out your meringue swirls, ( watch the video
  16. Bake for about 50 minutes or until the meringue bases come off the parchment paper clean.
  17. These mocca meringues keeps well for 2 weeks, in a container or wrapped in plastic wrap.
Directions for the Almond Base
  1. Preheat the oven to 320°F (160°C). Line a 9-inch (24 cm) round springform pan with parchment paper, grease the sides and set aside.
  2. Combine one cup of the confectioners’ sugar with the ground almonds in a bowl and set aside.
  3. Place the egg whites into the bowl and beat on low speed until foamy, about 30 seconds. increase the speed to medium-high and beat until soft peaks form about 1 minute.
  4. Increase the speed to high then add the remaining powdered or confectioners’ sugar, one spoonful at a time.
  5. Beat on high speed until stiff peaks form and the meringue is glossy and thick.
  6. Add the vanilla and combine with a spatula.
  7. With a silicone spatula, fold in the ground almonds and powdered /confectioners’ sugar mixture.
  8. Pour the mixture into the prepared springform pan.
  9. Use your spatula to spread evenly and to eliminate any air bubbles.
  10. Bake on the middle rack of oven for 25-30 minutes.
  11. Do not over bake this cake! )Manuela bakes her cake base 25 minutes because she loves her almond cake gooey on the inside. I over baked mine but it still tasted great!)
  12. Let cool completely. Meanwhile, proceed to make the Mocha ice cream.
Directions for the Mocha Ice Cream
  1. Pour cold heavy cream into a bowl, whisk until fluffy, and cold sweet condensed milk and with a spatula combine.
  2. Add vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract and with a spatula combine. (you can skip this step if you don’t have vanilla)
  3. Add the cold strong espresso coffee, followed by the crushed mocca meringues and blend together with a spatula.
  4. Have a taste if you feel you want more coffee flavor, add a spoonful cold espresso coffee, and with a spatula combine.
  5. Pour the mixture over the cooled almond crust, tap the pan on the counter a few times to make the ice-cream layer is even.
  6. Freeze for at least 5 hours or overnight, covered well.
  7. This ice cream cake can be kept in the freezer for up to 6 weeks.
  8. 20 minutes before serving, take the ice cream cake out of the fridge.
  9. Slice and enjoy!
  1. Sweet condensed milk usually comes in tins 14oz / 400g by weight, which equals 1 1/4 cups (10 oz / 300 ml by volume)
  2. Have a great day you all. Love Manuela xo
At Home with Rebecka

June 18, 2018 Initial Rules and Information Post
June 24, 2018 First Recipe in the series Announced (Recipe #1)
July  1, 2018 First Recipe Due Midnight CST

July 8, 2018 Second Recipe in the series Announced (Recipe #2)
July 15, 2018 Second Recipe Due Midnight CST
July 22, 2018 Third Recipe in the series Announced (Recipe #3)
August 1, 2018 Third Recipe Due Midnight CST
August 5, 2018 Fourth Recipe in the series Announced (Recipe #4)
August 15, 2018 Fourth Recipe Due Midnight CST
August 19, 2018 Fifth Recipe in series Announced (Recipe #5)
September 1, 2018 Fifth Recipe Due Midnight CST
September 9, 2018 Sixth Recipe in series Announced (Recipe #6) 
September 15, 2018 Sixth Recipe Due Midnight CST

Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream Recipe {Ice Cream Depot Review}

Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream is homemade soft serve ice cream. This soft serve ice cream recipe comes together quickly and easily with the use of a soft serve ice cream machine.

The folks at Ice Cream Depot gifted me one of their World’s First At-Home Automatic Soft Serve Ice Cream Machines to review, right before the holidays. Unfortunately, I had shoulder surgery November 2016, and I’m still suffering with just the use of one arm.

Automatic self-serve ice cream machine, from Ice Cream Depot

Photo courtesy of Ice Cream Depot

Despite the doctors recommendation, I’m feeling well enough to finally post my review of this amazing machine, along with an associated soft serve ice cream recipe, Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream with Homemade Nutty Cinnamon Granola.

My matcha mascarpone ice cream recipe has been submitted to Chef’s Roll Milk Contest

This is my take of food trend predictions for 2017, using milk as an ingredient. My prediction, and many other food trend enthusiasts agree, is that we should be eating ice cream for breakfast!

Making the argument for ice cream at breakfast is simple because it’s delicious, and very nutritious. Matcha mascarpone ice cream is made with whole milk and heavy cream and packed with calcium, vitamin D, and protein. Matcha green tea powder is high in antioxidants, loaded with Catechin, EGCg.  It enhances a sense of calm and boosts memory and concentration, it also increases energy levels, and endurance.

Another crazy fact: Matcha burns calories and detoxifies the body and fortifies the immune system. This nutritious bowl of ice cream is fortified with more protein and fiber by adding homemade granola, made with an assortment of nuts and whole oats.

Mascarpone cheese adds a decadent creaminess to the ice cream, as well as 4 percent of your daily calcium needs. In addition to keeping your bones strong, calcium plays a role in the function of your heart, muscles and nerves, too. Another nutritional plus of mascarpone cheese is the low sodium content. With all the health benefits in a bowl of ice cream, it sounds like a really good choice for breakfast to me.

So skip your morning donut and have some matcha mascarpone ice cream for breakfast. 

About the competition:

Calling all CALIFORNIA Chefs and Cooks – show us your food trend predictions for 2017 using MILK as an ingredient or in a perfect pairing for a chance to win awesome prizes! From the entries, our panel of judges will pick 12 semi-finalists that will win a custom Got Milk Chef Spoon, then 4 finalists will be chosen and receive a special Got Milk apron by Lost Car Chef Apparel. The selected Grand Prize winner will get a $750 KitchenAid Commercial Blender! The contest is NOW OPEN for submissions until January 22nd 10pm PST!

Enter here:

Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream


My package from the company included 20 soft serve, milkshake and drink mixes! The professional-quality soft serve ice cream maker can make an assortment of frozen yogurt, sherbet and frozen adult beverages, right at home. The good news, the Ice Cream Depot SX1000 Home Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine comes fully assembled, all you need to do is plug it in. It makes batch after batch, in just minutes, with no bowls to freeze. Just pour in your mix, set the timer and walk away. Dispense when you’re ready, it’ll keep your soft serve cold for hours until you’re ready to enjoy.

The machine makes 35 ounces (1.125 quarts) of frozen product (roughly 8-10 soft serve cones). It makes either soft serve, slush drinks, milk shakes or adult beverages, and weighs approximately 45 pounds. It takes up a bit of counter space, but is compact enough to easily store when not in use. 

The first week we had the ice cream maker I had to enlist the help of my husband because of my shoulder. He loves how easy the machine is to use, as well as the ease of using the pre-packaged ice cream mixes. The pre-mixed product is blended with water or milk, resulting in a beautiful creamy soft serve.

We tried all of the flavors over the course of a few weeks. Our favorite flavors are Butter Pecan soft serve, Chocolate soft serve, and Caramel Macchiato Frappe. The big kids love the Margarita mix. The only favor my family doesn’t like is the Strawberry. It is just too sweet, and has an artificial aftertaste.

I was happy to try homemade recipes next and curious to see the difference in homemade versus the pre mixed packets. I was extremely pleased with the result. 

I tried three homemade soft serve ice cream recipes to date, and all of them have turned out beautifully.

My favorite thus far is the matcha mascarpone soft serve, so I’ve chosen to share the recipe with you.  

Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream with Home-made Nutty Cinnamon Granola
Serves 6
My take of food trend predictions for 2017 using MILK as an ingredient. Seriously...who wouldn't want to eat ice cream for breakfast?
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
15 min
For the Ice Cream
  1. 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  2. 1/2 cup heavy cream
  3. 1 1/2 tablespoons powdered Matcha
  4. 4 large egg yolks
  5. 3/4 cups sugar plus 2 tablespoons
  6. 1 cup mascarpone cheese
  7. 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  8. pinch salt
For the Granola
  1. 3 cups old-fashioned roll oats
  2. ¾ cup slivered almonds
  3. ½ cup pine nuts
  4. ¼ cup sun flower seeds
  5. ¾ cup crushed pecans
  6. 1 cup dried cranberries
  7. ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  8. 5 tablespoons butter
  9. 1/3 cup honey
  10. ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Ice Cream
  1. In a large bowl, combine egg yolks with 3/4 cup sugar and mix with a handheld mixer until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  2. In a sauce pan, combine milk and cream and remaining 2 tablespoon sugar, bring to a simmer (do not boil). slowly add warm milk to the egg mixture. Return the mixture to the saucepan. Turn heat to medium low and cook stirring constantly, until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (about 5 minutes) again, do not let the mixture boil. Turn off the heat, add the matcha and mascarpone. Blend until smooth. Pour mixture into a glass bowl add lemon juice and salt. Mix to combine.
  3. Cool over an ice bath for about 30 minutes. Be sure to stir the mixture to aid cooling process. Pour custard into ice cream maker and process per the manufacturer's instructions. Serve immediately or transfer soft serve ice cream to an airtight container and freeze until firm. About 2 hours
For the Granola
  1. Pre heat oven 325 degrees F.
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment
  3. In a large bowl combine oats and nuts. Stir to combine
  4. In a small sauce pan, melt butter with honey. Add cinnamon and vanilla extract. Pour mixture over oat mixture and stir to combine.
  5. Spread granola evenly onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake, stirring every 5 minutes until golden brown. About 20 minutes.
At Home with Rebecka
On a scale of 1-10 (ten being the highest) I give the Ice Cream Depot SX1000 Home Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine a 10! I really love this machine! Thank you Ice Cream Depot for gifting me the machine for review. I’ll be using it for upcoming Birthday parties, office gatherings, anniversaries, ice cream socials. My family and friends are going to love it too!

Ice Cream Depot has generously offered a personalized discount code for At Home with Rebecka blog subscribers ‘ATHOME50’ Visit their website and SAVE $50 on your purchase of an Ice Cream Depot machine.

Here’s another fun idea: make Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream Sandwiches…YUMMY!

Matcha Mascarpone Ice Cream Sandwiches

Another delicious ice cream recipe to try:

Citrus Mint Sherbet No Churn Ice Cream

Food Network Clash of the Grandmas Winning Recipes

Food Network Clash of the Grandmas Winning Recipes

Food network Clash of the Grandmas RebecKa Evans Photo courtesy of Food Network

Food Network Clash of the Grandmas Rebecka Evans-Photo courtesy of Food Network

I’m happy to say that my Food Network debut went better that I could have ever expected. Four grandams battled it out on Food Networks new Holiday series “Clash of the Grandmas” and I took home the First Place win and 10K Grand Prize with my Mexican Biscochito Cookie with Cinnamon Tequila Ice cream Sandwich.

Hosted by Cameron Mathison, Holiday-Themed Cooking Battles
Begin Sunday, November 13th at 10pm ET/PT
NEW YORK – October 13, 2016 – Grannies with top-notch cooking skills kick off Food Network’s holiday season with the six-episode primetime competition series Clash of the Grandmas, premiering Sunday, November 13th at 10pm (all times ET/PT). In each episode, host Cameron Mathison welcomes four grandma super-cooks to the kitchen – but only one emerges as the $10,000 winner. From Thanksgiving stuffing transformations and savory hand-held mac and cheese creations to decadent desserts, these grandmas are reinventing dishes with masterful home-cooking skills.” 

Mexican Biscochito Cookie with Cinnamon Tequila Ice-cream Sandwich.

Mexican Biscochito Cookie with Cinnamon Tequila Ice Cream Sandwich. Recipe by Rebecka Evans. Photo Courtesy of Food Network

If you would’ve told me a year ago that I would be a competitor on Food Network’s “Clash of the Grandmas” I would have laughed. It’s been months since I filmed the show and even after winning, I’m still pinching myself in disbelief that it ever really happened.

You may be wondering what it takes for a grandma like me to be a part of Food Network and win 10K. The first hurdle is to make the conscious decision to put yourself out there and audition for the show.  Honestly, I think this is the most difficult decision in the entire process. So many thoughts run through your head as you think about your ability to compete under such stressful circumstances. “Do I have what it takes?” “Can I finish my recipes on time?” “What will I look like on TV?” After working through the anxiety, my competitive nature takes over and I jump headlong into the process.

The next step: Contestants are required to fill out a very long written application, send in head shots, photos and videos of their food, and family, all in hopes of being chosen. After that…the waiting begins. I was surprised when I got a phone call that evening from a talent scout at Triage Entertainment. She introduced herself as a representative from Food Network and told me she was submitting my application to the producers for Clash of the Grandmas! I was ecstatic of course, as I did a little happy dance and maybe even shed a few happy tears. Unfortunately, getting picked for the show doesn’t come that easy, this was just the first step in a very long process.

I spoke to several different producers over the next three weeks; they loved me, but every conversation ended with “You look too young to be on the show.” How am I  supposed to respond to that? I took the news as a compliment, but felt that my grandma status was being overshadowed by an old perception of what grandmas should look like. I guess I’m not your “typical” grandma, but I have a true grandmothers heart. I proudly earned grandma status six years ago with the birth of our first granddaughter, Amber. Since then, we’ve welcomed three more granddaughters: Alexis, Annalee, Norah. We have also welcomed one grandson, Owen into our lives.  They are all precious human beings, that I adore. After speaking to producers throughout the process, I thought my chances of being picked for Food Network’s “Clash of the Grandmas” we’re slim to none! 

My beautiful grand babies Alexis, Annalee, Amber, Norah, and Owen Photo by Rebecka Evans

After waiting several more weeks and going through more interviews, I finally got the coveted final-cut Skype interview! It was my moment to shine, so I prepared several of my favorite recipes for the producers that day. A few weeks later I got the call and they said yes!  The next step sign a contract with Food Network

Crunch time: After all that waiting and hoping, emails and phone calls started to roll in and didn’t slow down until my hotel reservations were booked, my flight was booked, and I was on my way to Universal Studios in Los Angeles. Did I mention my hubby got to travel with me? Food Network asked my husband to join me so they could interview him about my cooking skills during the filming of my episode. However, I had a suspicion they might use him for more than just an interview.

Food Network CLASH Rebecka Evans

Robin Daumit (Annapolis, Maryland), Rebecka Evans (Danville, CA) Cleo Johnson (Houston, Texas), Barbara Mayo (Colliersville, Tennessee) Photo courtesy of Food Network

After arriving at the studio, I met the other grandmas. Robin Daumit (Annapolis, Maryland), Cleo Johnson (Houston, Texas), Barbara Mayo (Colliersville, Tennessee). We all took a minute to size each other up while the crew got us into our granny aprons, fixed our makeup and fluffed our hair. It didn’t take long for us to realize how much fun it was going be together on the set the Clash of the Grandmas. These beautiful ladies were talented cooks with big personalities, so I knew I had my work cut out for me. Although we were all there to win, it was obvious that each grandmother wanted to represent their families and grandchildren in the best way possible and none of these grandmas we’re going to throw anyone under the bus. 

Finally, with a lot of tenacity and focus mixed with prayers and supplication, I walked into my first television competition without any knowledge of what to expect. It was nerve-racking, amazing, and wonderful.

Food Network’s Clash of the Grandmas

Cameron Mathison-food network

Cameron Mathison Emmy-nominated actor and television host is the co-anchor of the most-watched entertainment news program in the world, Entertainment Tonight. Photo courteous of Food Network

The Food Network made the experience shine with our host, Cameron Mathison.  His kindness and fun personality put us all at ease. Not to mention, he’s one good looking man. He treated us grannies with respect and dignity but he didn’t go easy on us when it came to the competition. 

First, the four grannies create handheld versions of mac and cheese to hold the family over until dinner.”

I was sure I’d be sent home the first round after I created and hand-held mac & cheese taco with tequila dipping sauce. I was struggling with the size of my pasta being too big to fit the taco shell just as my tequila sauce burned. I had to make another sauce without having the opportunity to taste it before Cameron announced the cooking time was up. Thank goodness the judges, Eddie Jackson, Brandi Milloy, and Jamika Pessoa liked my dish well enough to send me to the second round. It was great to have some positive feedback heading into the second round.

Next, they have only 30 minutes to make meatloaf for unexpected guests, with the help of unexpected sous chefs: the grandpas!”  FULL VIDEO HERE

Best sous chef EVER! Photo courteous of Food Network

I was happy to hear meatloaf dinner was our challenge for the next round and felt very confident until Cameron announced he had a surprise group of sous chefs waiting in the wings. Our husbands walked onto the set and there was my man wearing an apron! I suspected something like this might happen when Food Network asked that he travel with me to the show. By the looks on their faces, the other grandmas were really in shock, however due to the fact I know my husband’s picky palate and that we work well together, I was not as overwhelmed. I made my Blackberry Hoisin Meatloaf with Roasted Potatoes and Asparagus.  I put Blake in charge of making the potatoes while I focused on the meatloaf. He was the perfect sous and assisted me so well, I made it to the final round. 

Then, the final two grandmas try to freeze out the competition by producing an ice cream sandwich worthy of the $10,000 prize using liquid nitrogen.”

Rocking the goggles using liquid nitrogen. Photo courteous of Food Network

Making it to the final round was beyond my comprehension. I was competing for $10,000 and I was also about to experience cooking with liquid nitrogen for the first time in my life. I was exhilarated about the opportunity to get my hands on the liquid nitrogen and found myself feeling like a kid in a candy store. Gloves check, goggles check, liquid nitrogen check! I was having so much fun with the liquid nitrogen, I got carried away and over froze my ice cream. I had to warm it up bit in the oven to release it from the sides of the mixing bowl. Despite that one set-back, my last recipe went off without a hitch and the judges loved it.

Rebecka Evans and Barbara Mayo The last two standing. Photo courteous of the Food Network

Clash of the Grandmas – the winner is…

The final decision with my competitor Barbara Mayo.  We both stood hopeful to be the top winner and yet thrilled for the other grandma if she wins. There’s nothing better than true camaraderie between competitors. Barbara created a delicious goat cheese and basil ice cream sandwich with lemon cookies. I got the chance to taste the ice cream before we went to the judging table. The flavors were delicious and creamy and by any account, a winning dish. I believed it would be her name they called in the final moment; yet however, with Gods good favor,  fate, or just plain good cooking, Cameron announced me as the winner. 

Food network Clash of the Grandmas

I WON!  Photo courtesy of Food Network

Mexican Sugar Cookies

Heirloom Mexican Sugar Cookie Recipe Food and Photo by Rebecka Evans

My winning recipe: Mexican Biscochito Ice cream Sandwiches with Cinnamon Infused Tequila Ice Cream made with liquid nitrogen!

Biscochitos -Mexican Sugar Cookies are a Holiday tradition in my family. The are a crispy butter or lard based cookie flavored with anise and cinnamon. It was developed by residents of New Mexico over the centuries from the first Spanish colonists of New Mexico.

The recipe for making the cookie has been greatly influenced not only by local and indigenous customs, but also by recipes brought to New Mexico by immigrants from other Hispanic countries. It is served during special celebrations, such as wedding receptions, baptisms, and religious holidays (especially during the Christmas season).  Source: Wikipedia

You can find my family recipe for Mexican Biscochito cookies posted on At Home with Rebecka  December 2010 HERE. Due to my contract with the network, I’m unable to share the full recipe for my winning ice cream sandwich. You can make your own version using store-bought ice cream as the filling. It may not be exactly the same as on the show but I can guarantee they will be delicious.

Clash of the Grandmas video links and memorable moments


GRANNIE’S 10 Rules for Great Cooking

Clash of the Grandmas Schedule and air dates

Unofficial full length youtube video Standard Youtube License.

Tune in for the final episode of Clash of the Grandmas and watch my friend Ally Phillips in “Grandmas World Tour” Sun, December 18, 10|9c Read more at:

A special thanks to Food Network, Producers, Staff, Cameron Mathison, and Judges: Eddie Jackson, Brandi Milloy, Jamika Pessoa

Citrus Mint Sherbet – no ice cream maker necessary and my 204th blog post

I can’t believe I totally missed my 200th blog post.  After checking my post count today, I’m at 203 and counting.  I’d say that 203 blog posts is a big milestone for me given the fact this “blog thing”, was just a whim when I started.  What began as a fanciful hobby became a true passion and labor of love.   I suppose this 204th blog post is as good as any to celebrate the continuing chronicle of my life in food.

Citrus Mint Sherbet -no ice cream maker necessary

Temperatures are still topping out in the nineties here in Colorado so I’m choosing to take advantage of the weather and capture the last vestiges of summer with my sweet and creamy Citrus Mint Sherbet!

Tangy and refreshing, my sherbet recipe has just a hint of dairy.  Only a 1/4 cup of heavy cream is added to create a velvety texture without losing all the crisp refreshing flavors.  In addition, the mixture of the three different citrus juices give the recipe an unusually rich and smooth flavor. 

One of the citrus juices I used for the recipe is the delightful grapefruit flavored Yuzu juice.  Originating in East Asia, Yuzu is tart and has a hint of Mandarin orange flavor.  Check out the two links above to see two more of my recipes utilizing Yuzu juice and it’s cousins  Sudachi and Kabosu juices.

I’ve chosen the freezer method for this recipe for those of us who don’t have an electric or hand crank ice cream maker at our disposal.  Unfortunately, my previous hand crank ice cream maker finally broke down after years of loyal service.  I’ve found that preparing the recipe in the freezer doesn’t change the flavor or deplete the consistency of the sherbet, it just takes a lot longer to prepare.  

Optional: This recipe can be adjusted by omitting the heavy cream turning it into a delightful sorbet. 


1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup Yuzu juice
1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream (optional: buttermilk)
zest from one lemon


  • in a medium heavy bottom sauce pan blend water, sugar, citrus juices and fresh mint leaves, stir to combine
  • bring to a boil
  • remove from heat and steep mixture for 10 minutes
  • strain mixture into a non conductive metal bowl or pan, shallow bowls will freeze much faster
  • add lemon zest and whipping cream and whisk to combine
  • place in freezer for 6-12 hours
  • every two hours or so, stir the mixture to bring all the frozen particles into the mixture for more even texture

The sherbet melts quickly so I generally freeze my serving bowls or glasses prior to serving my guests.

Frozen Yogurt Disks

Easy to prepare as a healthy snack and the perfect finger food for our grand daughter’s tiny hands.  
Filled with loads of protein and live cultures to aid digestion, Amber loved them! 
Amber Bug!!
1-2 containers of your favorite flavor yogurt
  • spoon yogurt into a sandwich bag, cut a small hole into one end of bag and pipe small dots onto parchment lined cookie sheet (after preparing the dots, I found that the parchment is not necessary)
  • freeze for 1 hour, transfer to a zip top sandwich bag and store in the freezer