10 Sep 2016

Kiwi Cupcakes

No Comments Baking and Cupcakes

Kiwis are a delicious summer fruit and an interesting variation to cupcakes. These have strawberry buttercream on top.

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11 Jun 2016

Strawberry Tarts

No Comments Baking and Tarts / Pies

Sweetcrust pastry with vanilla creme patissiere and strawberries on top. The pastry is extremely light and flaky due to the cream. It’s pretty much shortbread, so you can bake any leftover pastry and eat on it’s own.

I also made a gluten free one with crushed gluten free digestive biscuits. Instead of pastry, crush a handful of biscuits and mix with just enough melted butter to moisten. Don’t overdo the butter – it’s easy to misjudge at first and add more than needed. Once you the butter into the biscuits the mixture should hold together.

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09 Apr 2016

Peach Crumble Cake

No Comments Baking and Cake

A sponge cake with a layer of peaches in the middle and crumble on top. This would go well with custard but I used a simple lemon glaze instead.

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24 Mar 2016

Simnel Squares

No Comments Baking and Bars / Traybakes

After last years success with Simnel cake, I wanted to try something the same but different for Easter this year. Last year’s simnel cake had a biscuit/pie crust on the bottom and cake on top (with marzipan of course), but this version is more like a cake with streusel on top. Considering fruit cakes are usual heavy, this is a pretty dense cake – not too dense but not like an airy sponge cake.

I used a mix of raisins, dried apricots and cherries soaked in rum and spices overnight, but you can mix up the ratio if you prefer one fruit over another – just keep the total weight roughly the same.

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05 Dec 2015

Mince Pie Slices

No Comments Baking and Bars / Traybakes

Mince pies don’t always have to be in a pie. These slices are 60% mince pie (the mincemeat part) but also full of nuts, raisins and rum. The puff pastry makes them light and they’re quick to make too (as long as you buy the puff pastry pre-made). As an added bonus, you can make jam tarts with any leftover pastry.

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28 Nov 2015

Rum and Fruit Stollen

No Comments Baking and Breads

Stollen is loaded with rum and packed with marzipan and fruit and can be made with or without yeast. This version uses regular flour and baking powder as a raising agent and despite the golden brown crust on the outside, the centre was squishy and moist.

Marzipan and fruit

Strands of marzipan and fruit in the centre

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08 Nov 2015

Chocolate Apples

No Comments Baking and Everything Else

Not really a ‘recipe’ in the traditional sense, but still delicious and absolutely necessary for bonfire night. Rather than the traditional toffee/chocolate apples which are a whole apple on a stick, these are wedges which means you can eat them without getting chocolate all over your nose.

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27 Sep 2015

Plum Sponge Pudding

No Comments Baking and Cake

A tree full of plums, cupboards full of plum jam, plums for breakfast, dinner and tea. This sponge pudding/upside down plum cake is a good way to use up any you might have. It would also work well with damsons or other fruit.

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02 Sep 2015

Apple and Blackberry Tarts (With BONUS!)

No Comments Baking and Tarts / Pies

What’s the bonus you ask? Scroll to the bottom (after reading the recipe) to find out. Blackberries seem to be everywhere at this time of year. Given the extortionate price of them in shops, it seems wrong not to pick as many of them as you can to bake.

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19 Jul 2015

Fruit Tarts

No Comments Baking and Tarts / Pies

Really easy to make and possibly my favourite dessert due to the copious amounts of creme patissiere. The recipe for both the tart shells and custard were both different to the fruit tarts I made last year. The pastry smelled amazing when I was rolling it out, probably due to the high cream content. You’ll probably end up with some leftover pastry, which you can cut out with a cookie cutter and make Linzer biscuits/Jammie Dodgers – the dough will hold it’s shape fairly well in the oven.

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