The HOPEFULLY lemon drizzle cake

Whilst slowly getting lost in Hyde Park, cake was our plan B. Not only was it delicious but the drizzle from the weather made it extra comforting, yet not too sweet.

Ingredients

4 oz butter
6 oz self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
6 oz caster sugar
2 large eggs
6 tbsp milk

Grated rind of 1 big lemon

Method

1. Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees (fan) and grease an 8 inch loaf-tin, ideally in parchment paper.

2. Put all the ingredients into a bowl and beat with either a spoon or electric hand-whisk until smooth.

3. Pour into the tin and smooth with the back of a spoon. Bake in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

4. To moisten up the cake, an icing should added. When the cake is still hot, mix the juice of 1 lemon and 4oz of sugar into a paste and spread over the cake.

Take it to Hyde Park, get a bit wet and lost to enjoy the full benefit of this AMAZING cake. (recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson)

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Carrot Cake

Baking is my way to de-stress. In the mist of exams, there is nothing better than creating a yummy treat and licking the bowl after you finish. It is the perfect escape. Carrot cake does just that. This recipe is very easy and extremely tasty, the perfect pre-revision treat.

Ingredients

100g wholemeal bread flour

150g plain flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

2 tsp mixed spice

200g caster sugar

225ml sunflower oil

3 eggs

350g carrots (grated)

75g raisins

50g chopped walnuts (optional but adds flavor and a nice crunch)

Icing

125g unsalted butter

250g cream cheese (full fat is best)

275g icing sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla essence

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees fan. Grease a tin. I used a 20cm loaf tin and also got four cupcakes out of it. You can also use a circular 23cm tin. It helps if you line the bottom of it with greaseproof paper, then butter and flour the sides (I have had experiences of it sticking)

2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a big bowl and make a well in the centre.

3. Add the oil and crack the eggs. Mix well.

4. Mix in the carrots, raisins and walnuts until you have a stiff mixture.

5. Pour into the tin (and cupcake cases if using) and bake in the middle of the oven for about 50 minutes (cupcakes take around 30 minutes). An inserted cocktail stick should come out clean.

6. Take out of the tin and leave to cool.

7. For the icing: I always find that I make too much icing. This recipe makes enough to ice twelve cupcakes, however I usually make the whole batch, then freeze the left-overs (it freezes well) for next time. Beat together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla using an electric hand-whisk until smooth. Slowly add the icing sugar.

8. Spread over the cake using a palette knife. I’m not too fond on too much icing, but this is not too sweet and compliments the cake beautifully.

 

Enjoy!!ImageImage

Nutella Cheescake

I have to admit it, cheesecake is one of my guilty pleasures. There’s nothing better than a slice of New York Cheesecake. It was my friends birthday this week and she also love cheesecake. I wanted to create something personal, a bit different, so combined my love of cheesecake and chocolate to come up with this whopper. I was worried about it being too sweet, but the icing sugar creates a perfect balance. Best of all, it is no bake and very easy, perfect for a last minute pudding.

Ingredients

250g digestives

75g butter

500g cream cheese (full fat)

1 jar of nutella (yes-a whole jar)

50g icing sugar

Method:

1. In a food processor, crumble the digestive biscuits. Melt the butter in a small saucepan then slowly add it to the biscuits, pulsing the machine as you go, until it looks like wet sand. Add 1 tbsp of the nutella into the mixtue and whizz again.

2.To create the base and straight sides, I removed the base of a 22cm springform tin. I then placed the side ring onto my serving plate. Tightly pack the sand mixture into the bottom, using either your hands or the back of a metal spoon to get into the corners. Put into the fridge to set.

3. For the filling, cream together the cream cheese and nutella. Slowly add the icing sugar (if you add it too fast it just goes everywhere). If using an electric hand whisk (I recommend it) it should take around 4 mins and start to look creamy and resemble a mouse.

4. Pour on top of the cooled biscuit base, smooth off with a  palette knife. I sprinkled white chocolate chips over mine, but you can add whatever suits. From dried fruit to toasted hazelnuts.

5. Leave in the fridge to set for at least 4 hours (ideally overnight). When removing the outer ring, go round the edge with a palette knife to ensure none of it gets stuck. It maybe tempting, but only remove the ring just before serving. It keeps nicely in the fridge for 5 days.

Enjoy!

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this recipe has been adapted from Nigella Lawson 

Princesstårta

Swedish Princesstårta is one of my favorite cakes. A light sponge, filled with jam and cream, topped with a layer of green marzipan, who could want more?? I’m Swedish myself and for my dad’s 50th birthday I conjured up the courage to attempt at making one. I wasn’t sure where to start this complex cake but with help from Sasha Martin’s Swedish recipe and multiple tries I have put together this easy recipe. Be brave and try it, it is worth the effort and makes an amazing cake! So basically the cake has three layers and goes like this: bottom, jam, cream, middle, vanilla paste, top, cream, marzipan. Yes, I know it sounds sickly but one can indulge themselves from time to time…

Ingredients 

For the vanilla paste (this is just the perfect amount to make):

240ml milk

50g sugar

2 egg yolks

20g cornflour

For the cake (22cm tin):

150g self-raising flour

2 tsbp baking powder

4 eggs

200g sugar

180ml luke warm water

 

Method:

1. To make the vanilla paste, heat the milk in a small saucepan. Mix the egg yolks and cornstarch in a bowl (the egg whites can be kept in the fridge for another use). When the milk is hot, little by little pour the the milk into the egg mixture whisking as you go. If it looks like scrambled eggs, you’ve added the milk to fast and have curdled it (that’s when you start again…) Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and return it to the heat. Whisk until thickened, then place on a large plate and spread thinly to allow it to cool quickly.

2. Now it’s the cake. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees (fan assisted) and grease a 22cm spring form tin, inserting a piece of parchment paper at the base. Combine the flour and baking powder. Using a hand-held mixer, whisk the eggs till pale yellow and frothy. Slowly whisk in the water, then fold in the flour mixture. Pour into the tin and bake for about 40 mins (or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.)

3. Take out of the tin and let it cool (ideally over night so nothing will melt during assembly..)

4. To colour the marzipan, take a 500g packet and split in two. Using green gel food coloring (liquid makes it go sticky) work it into both balls, then combine to get one solid chunk, all of a consistent colour. If it becomes too sticky, place it into the fridge and let it cool down. When rolling, lightly cover the surface in icing sugar, and roll to about 3mm thick. Keep moving the marzipan or otherwise it will stick and tear. Ensure that it is big enough to cover the top as well as the sides.

5. Now for the hardest part assembly. Cut the cake into three. Place the bottom piece onto your serving plate. Add 3 Tbsp of jam (any flavour) and spread with a pallet knife. Whip 500ml of double cream and spread half of it on top of the jam. Make sure that it goes right to the sides. Put the second cake layer on top. Then spread all of the vanilla paster over it. Place the top layer on top of the vanilla paste-pushing down slightly to make sure that everything is well ‘stuck’ together. Cover the top and sides with the remaining cream.

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6. You only get one chance with the marzipan. Carefully lift the marzipan off the surface (i like to roll it around my rolling pin) and drape it over the cake. Carefully apply pressure to the sides, smoothing off as you go. If it cracks, i recomend applying a second layer of marzipan over the top.

7. To finish, melt 25g of chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of boling water. Drizzle or pipe any decorations as you please and finish off with a dusting of icing sugar.

Due to the vanilla paste and cream, keep in the fridge for up to a week. ENJOY!!

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Granola and Cranberry Bars

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In the mist of exams and all the stress, baking is where I turn too. As a keen rower I often look for yummy, healthy..ish recipes to fill an empty stomach. This recipe is an alteration of a flapjack recipe, with less sugar but are truly delicious and work every-time. Best of all, they stick together!! With this recipe you can add whatever you want, from seeds to raisins, the worlds your oyster…

Ingredients

225g rolled porridge oats 

handful of almonds

125g honey

50g butter (baking margarine works a treat)

50g caster sugar

splash of vanilla extract

100g cranberries

as much broken up chocolate as you want…

Method

1.Pour the oats over a baking tray and place in an oven (160 fan-doesn’t have to be preheated) and toast for 12 minutes, occasionally shaking the tin around. The oats may not change in colour but should be hot and slightly crunchy.

2.Near the end of the cooking time, in a small saucepan melt the butter, sugar, vanilla and honey. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved.

3. In a bowl, mix the oats and butter mixture together until incorporated. Add the cranberries and half the chocolate-it might fizz (that’s the heat) and the chocolate will start to melt. This helps the bars to stick together.

4.Line a 9-inch square tin with tin foil and pour in the mixture. Using the back of a spoon (or your hands) squash the mixture down and pack it in tightly.

5.Sprinkle the rest of the chocolate fragments over the top and press into the oats slightly.

6.Put in the fridge to set for 2 hours (if you can wait that long!) then cut into bars.

 

Enjoy!! (Don’t keep them in a fridge as the oats will go soggy. An air tight tin should do the trick)

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About

Hello to all you keen baking enthusiasts. I thought that I would share my love of baking with you all. Like the real world, we all know that baking can be disastrous at times, but I promise to share my triumphs and failures with all of you. We can learn from each others mistakes and make something truly scrumptious….