Sunday, 11 November 2012

Fudgy Cake Pops

Recently I bought a Cake Pop baking Tin from Lakeland.
 I am very impressed with it.  The Cake Pops baked well and turned out of the tin beautifully.
This is the recipe that came with the tin:-

For the Cake Pops
125g dark chocolate drops
120g butter
150g sugar (I used caster)
20g cocoa powder
 2 medium eggs
90g SR flour
0.25tsp salt

To Decorate
24 lolly sticks
chocolate or fondant icing
sprinkles or decorations of your choice

1.  Preheat oven to 160'C fan.  Grease and flour both sides of tin.
2.  In a medium saucepan (or microwave) melt chocolate drops and butter together.
3.  Pour into a medium bowl and add sugar and cocoa powder.  Mix together.
4.  Add eggs, one at a time and mix well.
5.  Add flour and salt and stir until well blended.
6.  Spoon mixture into bottom half of tin (without holes), filling each well so that it is mounded.
 7.  Place top half of tin onto bottom half and lock into place.
8.  Bake for approximately 12 minutes.  Test with a wooden toothpick through the holes in tin.  Toothpick should come out almost clean.
 9.  Remove top of tin and leave to cool for 3 minutes.
 10.  Remove from tin and allow to cool.
11.  Wash and prepare tin for next batch.
12.  Repeat from step 6 with remaining batter.  Makes 24 cake pops.
 13.  When completely cool, trim rim with a sharp knife and decorate.
 I coated my Pumpkins in orange-flavoured chocolate and a added a stalk and tendril.
The Ghosts are simply a circle of fondant icing with 3 circles cut out for eyes and a mouth, using a piping nozzle.
The Toffee Apples are coated in toffee with sprinkles shaken over them.  Set in fridge.

Pumpkin and Chocolate Cake

The original recipe for this cake is by Fiona Cairns and includes beetroot, but my husband and I weren't so keen on the taste, so I adapted the recipe for Halloween and used pumpkin instead of the beetroot.  I also added ground cinnamon and more cocoa powder.  My two posts about this cake can be found here and here
For the Cake
180ml sunflower oil
250g pumpkin - cooked, pureed and drained
3 medium eggs
250g caster sugar
190g SR flour
80g cocoa powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1.5tsp ground cinnamon

For the Icing (optional)
250g icing sugar
food colouring
decorations of your choice

1.  Preheat oven to 160'C fan.
2. Grease and base line a deep, 23cm cake tin.
3.  In a large bowl or food processor, beat together the oil, pumpkin and eggs.
4.  Add the sugar and beat.
5.  Mix together the flour, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and ground cinnamon.  Add to the mixture and beat well.
6.  Pour into tin and bake for 45-55 minutes, use a skewer to test if cooked (it should be clean when removed from centre of cake).
7.  Leave to cool in tin for 10 minutes and then remove to a wire cooling rack.
8.  Decorate as desired.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Vanilla Sponge Cake

For the Sponge
6oz caster sugar
6oz unsalted butter, softened
1tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
6oz SR flour
1tsp baking powder

For the Filling and Topping
Unsalted butter, softened
Icing sugar
Vanilla Extract

1.  Preheat oven to 160'C fan.
2.  Grease and flour sides of two 20cm sandwich tins and line the bases.
3.  Mix together the flour and baking powder.
4.  In a large mixing bowl, beat together the sugar, butter and vanilla extract (I use an electric hand-held whisk) until light and creamy.
5.  Add the eggs one at a time and beat well.  To prevent the mixture from splitting add a spoonful of the flour as necessary.
6.  Add the remaining flour and beat well.
7.  Divide equally between the two tins and level.
8.  Bake in centre of oven for approximately 18-20 minutes, until risen and lightly golden.  When cooked the sponge should spring back when lightly touched.
9.  Leave to cool in tins for 5 minutes, before turning out onto a wire rack.
10.  Once completely cool, beat together the butter, vanilla extract and icing sugar for the filling and/or topping.  I haven't given quantities for this as I never measure out my butter-cream.  Traditionally it is roughly half butter to icing sugar, but I prefer less butter and I often add a splash of milk.
11.  Smooth a layer of butter-cream onto one of the sponges.  Spread jam over the butter-cream and top with the other sponge.  Decorate top as you wish.
For special occasions I make a larger sponge base by adding another 2oz of butter, sugar and flour and an extra egg to the above ingredients.
The mixture can then be divided into three
or four layers.
To colour sponge, divide mixture equally into 3 or 4 basins and add food colouring.
I only have two sandwich tins, so I bake the mixture in batches. 
If making four layers the sponges are slightly thinner and may take slightly less time to bake.
Top can be dusted with icing sugar and sprinkles.  I think a little edible glitter looks good for special occasions.  Of course the sponge doesn't have to be flavoured with vanilla; I have also used lemon, orange and almond extract.  Also some of the flour can be replaced with cocoa powder.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Gingerbread Cake

225g SR flour
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tbsp ground ginger
1tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp ground mixed spice
115g unsalted butter, cubed
115g dark muscovado sugar
115g black treacle
115g golden syrup
200ml milk
1 medium egg
1tsp icing sugar (optional)
1.  Preheat oven to 150'C fan and grease and line a 20cm round, deep cake tin.
2.  Mix together the flour, bicarbonate of soda and spices.
3.  In a large saucepan heat together the butter, sugar, treacle and syrup, until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved.  Remove from the heat.
3.  Beat the egg into the milk (whole or semi-skimmed) and stir into the liquid mixture.
4.  Add the dry ingredients and mix well.
5.  Pour into the prepared tin and bake for approximately 50-55 minutes, use a skewer to test if cooked (it should be clean when removed from centre of cake).
6.  Leave to cool completely in tin.  Can be dusted with icing sugar using a sieve.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Cheese Scones

Makes 6
2-3 tbsps fat-free natural yogurt
8oz SR flour
3oz butter, if using unsalted add .25 tsp salt
.25 tsp paprika
black pepper
1 large egg
2oz mature cheddar - grated, plus extra for topping
milk to brush tops

1.  Preheat oven to 190'C.
2.  Rub butter into flour.
3.  Add spices and salt if using and mix.
4.  Add grated cheddar and stir.
5.  Mix together egg and 2 tbsps of yogurt.
6.  Add to flour mixture to form a soft dough.
(Additional tbsp of yogurt can be added at this stage if necessary.)
7.  Gently roll out to a thickness of 1" and cut out scones.
8.  Place on a lined or greased baking tray.
9.  Brush tops with milk and add additional cheese.
10.  Bake for approx. 10-12 minutes, until risen and golden.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

American Blueberry Pancakes

This year I felt like a change from making the Traditional English Pancake and I made American Blueberry Pancakes instead.  I used this recipe from here.
200g SR flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 large egg
300ml milk (I used semi-skimmed)
A knob of butter, melted
75g blueberries, plus 75g for serving

butter for greasing pan

Simply whisk all of the ingredients together, except for the additional butter for cooking the pancakes.
Grease and heat the pan.  Place tablespoonfuls of the batter into the pan and cook on a medium heat for 2-3 minutes until bubbles start to rise through the mixture. Turn and cook for a further 2-3 minutes until golden.  Remove from pan and place on a warmed plate and cover whilst cooking the remainder of the batter.
Of course you have to have Maple Syrup with your pancakes!