Sunday, 25 November 2012

Thank you!

Another little note just to say THANK YOU.

This blog has had over 1000 hits since I started it in and that's crazy. I didn't think anyone would bother to read it! So just wanted to say a sincere thank you to everyone who reads, who comments and to anyone who tries one of the recipes themselves.

Thank you X Bo

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Just a little update.

I have been baking again today, although I can't share too much about it as it's research for foodie Christmas gifts for my friends. 

I did just want to share a lovely recipe I found in the Sainsbury's magazine. 

Sticky sausages

Marinade 12 sausages in 3 tablespoons of honey, 1/2 tablespoon of soy sauce and 1/2 tablespoon of sesame oil. Cook at 180 for 25 minutes. Sprinkle sesame seeds over and cook for another 5 minutes until golden brown and the sauce is thick.

Best served with a baked potato and garden peas! 

Hopefully more baking will be coming up soon! Until next time... X Bo

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Chelsea Buns, again.

These went down very well the first time around. I had some time spare today so thought I would give them another go. (First attempt found here: http://bakingbo.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/chelsea-buns.html

Ta da!

Today's batch turned out well. About to have one with a cup of tea X Bo

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Iced Gingerbread Stars

Feeling very festive today. If you find yourself in a similar mood I definitely recommend throwing on a woolly jumper, making and decorating a batch of these delicious biscuits, whilst listening to some jolly Christmas music. 

350g plain flour
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground mixed spice
pinch of salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
175g unsalted butter
150g dark muscovado sugar
4 tbsp golden syrup
1. Sift the flour, ginger, cinnamon, mixed spice, salt and bicarb into a mixing bowl. 
2. Put the butter, sugar and syrup into a saucepan. Melt until smooth then add to the flour mixture. Mix with a wooden spoon to form a dough.
3. Tip out onto a floured surface and knock into a ball. Wrap in cling film and chill for 20 minutes in the fridge. 
4. Roll out and cut out star shapes. Re-roll and re-cut until you have used all the mixture. 
5. Preheat the oven to 160. Place the stars on a baking tray and bake to 10-12 minutes (It helps to rotate the baking trays half way through their cooking time to ensure an even colour.)
6. Move to a wire rack. Once cool, ice using royal icing in a piping bag. You could pipe dots, zig-zags, swirls, snowflakes onto your stars. 

Ta da!

I absolutely loved making these biscuits. It was so easy and fun to decorate them. Left me feeling very jolly and a little prematurely festive. Absolutely recommend Michael Buble and She & Him's Christmas albums to listen to whilst icing. Signing off... 

Monday, 12 November 2012

Marbled Cupcakes

Decided to adapt a recipe from the GBBO Book I'd already tried, the Mocha Marbled Loaf Cake: http://bakingbo.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/chocolate-mocha-marble-cake.html
I wanted to make it in cupcakes, instead of a loaf to make it easier to share with my pals! 
Also had to change it so it didn't have coffee in it... I have a fussy friend. 

Ingredients for the sponge
250g unsalted butter, softened 
250g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 large eggs, beaten
250g self-raising flour
pinch of salt
For the chocolate mixture
30g cocoa powder

2 tbsp milk
For the vanilla mixture1 tsp vanilla extract
Chocolate chips
For the glaze
100g white chocolate
100ml whipping cream

1. First, make the sponge mixture! Put the butter in a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until very creamy. Gradually add the sugar and then the vanilla. 
2. Gradually add the eggs, one tablespoon at a time, beating well with every addition. When you're down to the last two spoonfuls, add one tablespoon of flour too. This keeps it from curdling. 
3. Add the remaining flour and salt into the bowl and fold in using a metal spoon. Then divide the mixture into two bowls. Add the cocoa powder and milk to one and mix. Then add the vanilla to the other and mix. 
4. Spoon both mixtures into a muffin tin, adding a spoonful of each alternately and scattering chocolate chips in between each layer. Using a skewer or a chop stick, marble the cake by swirling it through the layers. 
5. Preheat the oven to 170. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cake is well risen and a tester comes out clean. Cool in the tin. Then take out of the tin and leave to cool completely. 
6. While the cake is cooling, chop the chocolate for the glaze and put in a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream and butter until hot, but not boiling. Then pour it over the chocolate and leave to stand, then stir until completely melted, smooth and glossy. 
7. Leave to thicken for about an hour, until it is spreadable. Then put on top of your cakes! 

Ta da! 

I only had one left to photograph, they went down  very well with my friends and family. X Bo

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Tarte Tatin Take Two!

Today is the birthday of the most important woman in my life, my Mum. She taught me how to bake, she's the person I turn to when something goes wrong. She is truly wonderful and I cannot express with words how much I love her. 

To celebrate her birthday I made banana tarte tatin again. (First attempt found her e: http://bakingbo.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/tatin-torture.html

Ta da!

It was so much easier this time! The caramel was simple this time. I'd made the pastry the night before so it was chilled perfectly and rolled out like a dream. Very happy X Bo

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Tuesday Scones

As it's my Mum's birthday tomorrow I decided to celebrate by baking her a few treats! Started off with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's scones.

450g self raising flour
pinch of salt
2 tsp baking powder
100g butter, cubed
100g caster sugar 
300ml buttermilk

1. Preheat the oven to 200. Put the flour, salt and baking powder in a bowl. Add the butter and rub in until it resembles bread crumbs.
2. Mix in the sugar. Then add the buttermilk and combine to make a rough dough, using a palette knife. Turn out onto a floured surface.
3. Roll out and cut using a scone cutter. Place on a baking tray, lined with greaseproof.
4. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown.

Ta da!

I filled mine with apricot jam and clotted cream and they were delicious! More to follow later X Bo 

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Caramel Layer Cake

This was a big challenge but very rewarding... and sweet. Another recipe from the GBBO Show Stopper Book. 

Had a bit of a disaster with my first attempt...

Needless to say I started again and it came out very well!

Ingredients for the sponge

300g self-raising flour
pinch of salt
300g caster sugar
250g unsalted butter, very soft
4 large eggs
4 tbsp buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the filling
225g unsalted butter, very soft
450g dark muscovado sugar 
175ml double cream
300g icing sugar
pinch of salt flakes 
100g dark chocolate
1. Preheat the oven to 160. Grease and line 3 20cm sandwich tins. Put the flour, salt and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter. In a separate bowl whisk the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla using a fork, then add to the flour mix. Beat together using an electric hand mixer until everything is thoroughly combined and very smooth, thick and light. 
2. Divide the mixture between your 3 tins and spread level. Bake for 25 minutes. Leave to cool on a wire rack for 2 minutes then turn out of the tins.
3. Meanwhile, make the caramel filling. Put 175g of the butter into a pan with the muscovado sugar and cream. Heat until the butter has melted, then bring to the boil, stirring. Reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes. Pour into a bowl and gradually beat in the icing sugar, using an electric mixer. Gradually add the butter, followed by the salt. 
4. Gently melt the chocolate. Spoon half into a piping bag. Put the other half in a bowl with a quarter of the caramel mixture. 
5. To assemble the cake set one sponge on a serving plate. Spread one third of the caramel mixture on it. Spread the second sponge with the chocolate-caramel mixture and set on top. Place the third sponge on top. Leave to set for a little bit, otherwise it might landslide! When set cover the top and sides with the remaining caramel mixture.
6. Cut the end off the piping bag and pipe a spiral of chocolate on top of the cake. 'Feather' by drawing a skewer or cocktail stick through the icing and chocolate before set. 

Ta da!

This was my contribution to my friend's Halloween house warming party. Everybody seemed to really like it, so I'd say it was a success in the end. Happy new flat Elisa & Jamie! X Bo