ALL · Cakes and Biscuits

Chocolate & Almond Marble Bundt Cake

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Oh yummy! I fancied something a little naughty with my coffee this weekend so thought I’d try out my new Bundt cake tin. It was supposed to be marbled, however, I think I put to much chocolate into the mixture and swirled it too many times…….lol! The flavour was fantastic though.

A Bundt cake  is a cake that is baked in a Bundt pan, shaping it into a distinctive ring shape. The shape is inspired by a traditional European cake known as Kugelhupf, but Bundt cakes are not generally associated with any single recipe. The style of mould in North America was popularised in the 1950s and 1960s, after cookware manufacturer Nordic Ware trademarked the name “Bundt” and began producing Bundt pans from cast aluminium. Publicity from Pillsbury saw the cakes gain widespread popularity.

 

Ingredients for 1 Bundt tin

180g softened butter

225g caster sugar

3/4 tsp almond extract

2 tsp baking powder

180 g plain flour

75g ground almonds

3 large eggs

2 tbsp milk

3 tbsp cocoa powder with 3 tbsp water – mix to a paste

100g dark chocolate chips

Icing sugar to decorate

 

  1. Pre heat your oven to 180 deg or if you have a cake setting, set to Marble Cake setting. Brush the Cake tin with melted butter, ensure it is thoroughly covered.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy, stir in the almond extract.  20190830_183238
  3. Mix together the flour, baking powder and ground almonds together. Beat in the eggs one at a time to the butter mixture with 2 tbsp of the flour mixture, repeat until all eggs have been added then fold in the remaining flour mix.
  4. Stir in the milk and mix, then spoon 1/2 of the batter into a separate bowl and mix in the cocoa paste into 1 and the chocolate chips into the other.            20190830_184820
  5. Add spoonfuls of each batter alternately to the cake tin and drag a handle of a spoon through the mixture to create the marble effect, do not over do this.        20190830_185255
  6. Bake in the oven for about 40-50 minutes until a knife comes out clean
  7. Let it cool for about 10 minutes in the tin before turning out. Once cooled, sprinkle with icing sugar and serve. Yummy!

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ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Desserts · Pastries and Pies

Hazelnut Chocolate Tart

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I was watching James Martin on Saturday morning and he made a raspberry chocolate tart, we sat there dying to try a bit. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any raspberries so a hazelnut version it was.

I decided to do a hazelnut nut pastry just to add extra flavour.

 

For the Pastry:-

125g Plain Flour

50g Icing Sugar

50g Crushed Toasted Hazelnuts (plus 10g for decoration)

Pinch of salt

80g Butter, cold, diced

1 egg yolk

 

For the Filling:-

300ml Double Cream

125ml Whole Milk

200g Dark Chocolate or Milk Chocolate with at least 40% cocoa solids

2 eggs

50g golden caster sugar

pinch salt

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

 

 

  1. To make the pastry, sift the flour and icing sugar into a food processor, add the hazelnuts and blitz together. Add the butter and pulse briefly until mixture looks like breadcrumbs, don’t overmix. Add the egg yolk and pulse until dough comes together. Shape dough into a flat disc, wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
  2. Roll the dough out onto a floured surface. Using a loose bottomed tart tin, grease tin then line the tart tin with the pastry pressing into all corners. Trim any loose pastry. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 160 deg. Prick the bottom of the pastry and line with greaseproof paper and baking beans. Bake for 25 minutes, remove the baking paper and beans and return to the oven for a further 10 minutes.
  4. Remove and trim the edges in line with the tart tin.
  5. Meanwhile, to make the filling, place milk & cream into a pan and bring to just below boiling point, do not boil. Take of heat and stir in the chocolate to melt.
  6. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla. Gradually whisk in the chocolate mix, whisking constantly.                                                        20190803_190241
  7. Pour the mixture into the pastry case and bake on a wire rack in the oven for about 25 minutes until the filling has a slight wobble. Remove and sprinkle with chopped hazelnuts. Allow to cool in the tin before removing.                                          20190803_190518
  8. Slice to serve. Yummy!

 

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ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Desserts · Snacks and nibbles

Orange strip meringues

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I had some egg white left over from a recipe that only required an egg yolk, so I decided to try patterns on meringues, turned out o.k. I thought. I’m know dying to try more patterns and colours……watch this space.

 

You can get my original meringue recipe here, all I done was draw lines inside a piping bag with orange food colouring and then filled the bag and piped, quite simple actually but creates a great visual pleasure.

 

 

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ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Desserts

Crunchie Biscuit Base Galaxy cake

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I wasn’t really sure what to call this as it was a mishmash of 2 cakes….I was going to bake a chocolate tart and realised I didn’t have all the ingredients for the sweet pastry. So I decided to make a biscuit base instead. Then I discovered I didn’t have double/whipping cream but only single cream, so I therefore now had to bake. Despite all my misfortunes, this did actually turn out quite nice.

I was only making a small one for my other halves birthday, he loves chocolate…lol!

 

Makes a small portion for 1 or 2

For the filling:-

100g Milk Chocolate, minimum 35% cocoa

100ml single cream

50ml whole fat milk

1 egg

For the base:-

4 Digestive biscuits

1 Crunchie chocolate bar

1 tbsp butter – melted

For the toppings:-

small chunks of honeycomb to decorate

small edible spray glitter (optional), it was a birthday after all.

 

  1. In a food processor put the digestives, crunchie bar and blitz until breadcrumbs, add in the melted butter and bring together.
  2. Line a small springform tin with greaseproof paper. Empty the biscuit mixture into the tin and push/flatten down with your hands evenly. Refrigerate.
  3. Empty the cream and milk into a pan and bring to the boil.
  4. Place the chocolate into bowl in pieces.
  5. Pour the hot cream and milk over the chocolate to melt, stir until blended. Set aside to cool.
  6. Crack the egg into a dish and using a hand mixer, mix until fluffy.
  7. Once chocolate has cooled, pour egg into bowl and mix through.
  8. Remove biscuit base from fridge and pour in the chocolate mix.
  9. Preheat your oven to 130 deg. Gently place the tin in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes. You want it set but with a slight wobble. Remove and allow to cool.
  10. Sprinkle some cocoa powder over top (optional) the sprinkle the honeycomb pieces on top. Serve.
  11. This can be chilled and kept for later. Serve at room temperature.

 

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ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Snacks and nibbles

Cranberry & Walnut Scones

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Oh yum. I’ve not had a scone in a while, so looking in my cupboards I had some Walnuts & Cranberries to use up and decided to give it a try. These were absolutely delicious, served with a good quality butter they were perfect with a cuppa. Lovely little afternoon tea scone.

 

Makes 6

100g Light Brown Sugar (or white caster sugar) (plus 1 tbsp)

2 tbsp lemon juice

300g Plain Flour

1 tbsp baking powder

Freshly grated lemon zest – 1 lemon

1 tsp salt

75g unsalted butter

50g dried cranberries

50g chopped walnuts

50ml Milk

50ml Double cream

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 190 deg. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Mix 1 tbsp sugar & 1 tbsp lemon juice together in a dish and set aside, this will be for the glaze.
  3. Whisk flour, baking powder, lemon zest, salt, and sugar in large bowl. Add chilled butter & using fingertips, rub in until you get breadcrumb like mixture.        20190710_141425
  4.  Mix in cranberries and walnuts. Then add in the milk & cream and mix through 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Toss with fork or hands until dough comes together in moist clumps.
  5. Floured a work surface and roll out till about 1 inch thick. Using a cutter (about 7-8cm diameter) cut out 6 servings and place onto your baking sheet. Using the glaze brush lightly over the scones. Bake for about 18 minutes. Or until a knife comes out clean and slightly browned                                                                              20190713_145835
  6. Serve with some butter. Yummy!

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ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Desserts · Pastries and Pies

Easy Sweet Pastry

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This was my first attempt at sweet pastry, it was actually quite simple and tasted amazing.  I was making a bakewell tart. (recipe to follow)

 

250g plain flour

50g icing sugar

125g unsalted butter, cool

1 tsp vanilla essence

1 large egg

Splash of milk

 

  1. Sieve the flour and icing sugar into a bowl
  2. Chop the butter into cubes and gently work it through the four mixture so that it resembles breadcrumbs                                                                  20190710_141425
  3. Beat the egg with the milk and vanilla essence, add to the flour mixture and bring together to create a ball of pastry. Do not over work.
  4. Sprinkle a little flour onto a work surface and flatten pastry to about 2.5cm thick, wrap in cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.                                20190710_142015
  5. Using a 25cm spring form tart tin, lightly oil all over.
  6. Dust a work surface with flour and roll out the pastry to about 1/2 cm thick. Using the rolling pin  wrap pastry around and unroll over the tart tin. Ease the pastry into the tin pushing to the sides. Trim of any excess pastry.
  7. Prick the base with a fork and put in freezer for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove and line baking paper over the pastry, fill with baking beans and blind bake for 10 minutes at 180 deg. Remove the paper and beans and continue to bake for a further 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to fully cool.

 

ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Healthy Eating Ideas · lunch/ light bites · Snacks and nibbles

White Chocolate Blondies

OMG…..I saw this recipe from PON and just had to try as it was lower in calories. (I’m always curious how the flavour will be without all the sugar etc…lol). I have to say these were delicious. I did change the recipe slightly, but still low in calories. Just 70 calories a slice.

 

Makes 15 slices.

100g Self Raising Flour

50g low fat butter (I used lurpak lighter)

4 medium eggs

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

4 tsp clear honey

50g White chocolate chips (20g to melt for topping)

4 tbsp light brown sugar (or use sweetener for lower calories)

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 170 deg and line a square 8″ tin with greaseproof paper
  2. Place all of the ingredients, except 25g of the white chocolate chips.                                                  20190623_150805
  3. Pour into the baking tin and sprinkle about 10g of white chocolate chips over the top, bake for about 20 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.
  4. Meanwhile melt about 15g of chocolate chips in a microwave dish for about 1 minute.
  5. Allow the cake to cool at room temperature, once cooled drizzle the melted chocolate over the top and cut into slices.
  6. Serve with a lovely cuppa. Enjoy.

 

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