Treat Petite August – Round Up

Treat Petite August – Round Up
The theme for this month’s Treat Petite was The Great British Bake Off (GBBO) and anything made on any previous series could be submitted (as long as it was given the Treat Petite treatment!) Bake off fever is continuing to sweep to the nation and I love seeing everyone’s ‘bake alongs’. It’s such an inspiring show, and I hope you’re as equally inspired by the wonderful bakes below…

Pebble Soup made this gorgeous Tear n Share Crossaint Crown. Crossaints featured in the final episode of last year’s GBBO and this take them to another level by stuffing them with tasty ham and cheese.

Only Crumbs Remain made these beautifully golden Mini Madeiras. Flavoured with lemon, they are a classic bake and the full size version featured in episode one of this year’s GBBO.

I was also inspired by episode one of this year’s series, and I gave the showstopper a go, but in miniature, with these Mini Black Forest Cakes which were my first attempt at Black Forest flavours and left me wondering why I hadn’t done it sooner!

Baking Queen submitted these dainty Mini Damson Madeira Loaves which are made with damson’s picked from her garden. I love the burst of deep purple against the golden sponge.

Photobrook Photography was brave enough to given the technical challenge from this year’s biscuit week a try and made these fabulous Arlettes. They look wonderful and I’m seriously impressed!

Sweet buns featured a few years ago on GBBO and Tin & Thyme made these stunning Liskeard Buns inspired by local history and tradition. Don’t you just want to dive into this photo and grab one?!

Biscuit week was certainly popular this year and Foodie Quine made these Gingerbread Biscotti complete with tiny gingerbread men sprinkles to decorate. These would make an amazing gift at Christmas!

Belleau Kitchen made some melt in the mouth Orange Blossom Chocolate Creams which look incredibly pretty and after they won first place at a local village show I know they would certainly be welcome on GBBO!

I absolutely love Cake Of The Week’s Sour Cherry & Pistachio Crocodile Biscuits, they are so much fun! She found the crocodile cookie cutter on a recent trip to Sweden.

My Treat Petite co-host Cakeyboi was inspired by a Ben & Jerrys ice cream flavour to make Classic Chocolate Chip Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies. Get me a glass of cold milk and a plate of these right now!

Finally from The More Than Occasional Baker we have more delicious biscotti with her Chocolate, Orange, Almond & Cranberry Biscotti. They sound scrumptious.

Thanks to everyone who joined in! Check out Cakeyboi for next month’s theme annoucement soon.

Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Prosciutto, Manchego and Balsamic Onion Soda Bread: GBBO Week #3

Prosciutto, Manchego and Balsamic Onion Soda Bread: GBBO Week #3

I have to say, bread week on The Great British Bake Off was absolutely phenomenal! The contestants started by making a quick bread, also called soda bread. This is a bread that is made without yeast, therefore requires no kneading or proving. Instead the rising agents used are baking powder or bicarbonate of soda. Mary and Paul warned against using too much raising agent as this would affect the taste of the bread.

There were a mixture of sweet and savoury flavours from the bakers. Both Mat and Nadiya made a Mexican style bread, Ian picked wild garlic from some nearby woods for his bread, and Sandy used a family recipe containing bacon that she often makes on trips to Ireland. Ugne went for the sweetest flavour with a chocolate quick bread topped with salted caramel sauce, and Paul made a cranberry and orange quick bread – which he got a Paul Hollywood handshake for!

Cheese featured in both Tamal, Alvin and Dorret’s breads. Tamal used goats cheese, Dorret went for Stilton and Alvin chose Manchego. Paul called Alvin’s bread a ‘thing of beauty’. They loved Tamal’s bread too, but weren’t overly positive about Dorret’s. Overall, everyone did fairly well, with only a few disparaging comments.

This week’s technical challenge was to make 4 identical crusty baguettes. Of course Paul left out major parts of the recipe, for example how long to prove the dough, and to put water in the oven to create steam when baking. A few of the bakers figured this out and added water, but the rest did not. They all left the dough to prove for an hour, whenever I watch them waiting for things to prove I always wonder why they are not allowed to take a book with them!

The bakers weren’t sure where to put the dough during proving, or how to score the top of the bread before baking. I love how such a simple thing, like a baguette, can lead to so much over thinking and confusion! Paul was very brutal during judging and Mary really had to push him to say something nice. Paul, Mat and Nadiya were the bottom three, Tamal came third, Flora came second and Ian came first. Although Paul still wasn’t 100% happy even with the better baguettes!

The showstopper challenge was to make a 3D bread sculpture using up to three types of dough, and one of the type had to be a filled bread. A very tricky challenge! Paul Hollywood noted that as dough grows it can loose definition so this was a particularly difficult remit for the bakers. This however, did not affect most of the bakers as they produced some fabulous results! Paul stood out with his brilliant bread sculpture of a lion. I was blown away by how good it was! Paul Hollywood said it was exceptional and the best thing he had seen made in bread ever.

I also loved Ian’s flower pot sculpture, it was so clever. He brought another home made baking tin with him to make it, such a talented guy! Alvin also made an absolute ton of bread, and he made it all beautifully for his cornucopia sculpture. Paul Hollywood said his bread baking skills were perfect.

 

Tamal made a very impressive bicycle sculpture, which was even more amazing because it stood up. Paul Hollywood called it spectacular and loved his range of techniques. And Nadiya made a fabulous snake coming out of a woven basket. The level of creativity and skill was stunning.

Dorret and Sandy didn’t do too well. Dorret’s unmade bed sculpture was not baked through, and Paul Hollywood did not think it looked like 5 hours worth of work. Sandy’s bread sculpture looked messy and was told her pitta bread poppies tasted like cardboard.

Dorret left us this week, to be honest I have thought she was lagging behind everyone else since the first episode, but she had managed to stay under the radar. With this week’s amazing bakes, hers just could not compete. Ian was awarded star baker for a second week running, deservedly so! Paul also got a special mention for his lion sculpture as even Paul Hollywood said he would never have attempted something like that. Next episode: desserts!

I absolutely loved the sound of Alvin’s quick bread and I found the recipe for it on the BBC website, so I decided to give it a go myself. As it includes meat, I made two of them, one without any prosciutto for my vegetarian boyfriend. I’ll detail the ingredients for just one loaf below, so if you want to make two, double the ingredients. Or if you want to make a vegetarian version, just omit the prosciutto.

I started by cooking 1 finely sliced red onion in 1 tbsp olive oil. When it was soft I added 1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar and 1 1/2 tbsp soft light brown sugar. I let them simmer for around 15 minutes. The recipe suggested more balsamic vinegar, but when I added half it looked more than enough.

I diced up 200g manchego cheese. I’ve never tried manchego before, it’s pretty expensive! But it is very tasty so for a one off recipe I felt it was ok. I also cut up 80g prosciutto.

In a bowl I sieved out 450g plain flour, 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda and 1 tsp table salt. I rubbed 30g cold diced butter into the flour until it resembled breadcrumbs.

I mixed the cheese, prosciutto and onion into the flour along with a squeeze of basil puree, I reserved a small amount of the fillings for topping the bread.

In a jug I mixed 300ml buttermilk with 25ml water.

I added the buttermilk to the flour and brought it together to make a dough. I worked it as little as needed. I shaped it on a lined baking tray, dusted with flour and scored it with a cross down the middle.

I topped it with the reserved cheese, onion and prosciutto.

I baked the loaf on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for an hour. It took a bit longer than the recipe suggested. I covered it with foil after the first 40 minutes as it was browning enough. I waited until it sounded hollow when tapped on the bottom to take it out. The kitchen certainly smelled good! I brushed it with melted butter and left it to cool.

Well my bread certainly didn’t look as good as Alvin’s! But for a first attempt I was pleased, it was cooked all the way through and it tasted really delicious. My boyfriend loved his vegetarian version too and we both gobbled up a chunk of the bread with some soup.

I’m linking this bread up to Bready Steady Go, hosted by Jen’s Food and Utterly Scrummy Food for Families.

Print

Prosciutto, Manchego and Balsamic Onion Soda Bread

Ingredients

  • 1 Red onion finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Light brown sugar
  • 200 g Manchego cheese
  • 80 g Prosciutto
  • 450 g Plain flour
  • 1 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
  • 30 g Butter cold and diced
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 300 ml Buttermilk
  • 25 ml Water
  • Basil puree

Instructions

  1. Cook the red onion in the olive oil. When it is soft add the balsamic vinegar and light brown sugar. Let it simmer for around 15 minutes
  2. Dice up the manchego cheese and cut up the prosciutto
  3. Sieve the plain flour into a bowl and add the bicarbonate of soda and salt. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs
  4. Mix the cheese, prosciutto and onion into the flour along with a squeeze of the basil puree, reserve a small amount of the fillings for topping the bread
  5. In a jug mix the buttermilk with the water
  6. Add the buttermilk to the flour and bring it together to make a dough. Work it as little as needed. Shape it onto a lined baking tray, dust it with flour and score it with a cross down the middle and top it with the reserved cheese, onion and prosciutto
  7. Bake the loaf on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for an hour. Cover it with foil if it gets too dark. When it sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom it's done. Brush with melted butter and leave it to cool
Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Golden Oreo Cheesecake

Golden Oreo Cheesecake
We are pretty familiar with Oreos now in the UK, but unlike America we don’t have easy access to all the different Oreo flavours and varieties. Well the wait is over as two new flavours are now widely available in all major UK supermarkets! I recently got sent the two new Oreo flavours being released in the UK. Golden Oreos, which have a vanilla biscuit surrounding the cream centre. And Peanut Butter Oreos, which are the standard chocolate biscuit filled with a peanut butter flavoured cream. So of course I had to bake with them, and I came up with this indulgent cheesecake for the Golden
Oreos
.

Check out the Peanut Butter Oreo Truffles I made with the Peanut Butter Oreos!

I started by whizzing 200g of the Golden Oreos into fine crumbs using a food processor.

I added 50g melted butter to the crumbs and then pressed it into a springform tin, making sure it was compact and even. I chilled it for 30 minutes in the fridge.

Using my Kenwood kMix Hand Mixer I whisked up the egg whites of 3 eggs until stiff.

In a separate bowl I mixed together 575g full fat cream cheese, 3 egg yolks, 135g caster sugar and 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract.

I added the egg whites and folded them in gently.

I poured the mixture over the chilled biscuit base and baked it for 40 minutes on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Make sure to put the tin onto a baking tray as I had some butter leak out of the tin while it was cooking and it got all over the bottom of my oven – not a fun clean up job! I
let it cool fully to room temperature before decorating. Unfortunately my cheesecake decided to do it’s best impression of the Grand Canyon!

I whipped up 200ml double cream and spread it over the top of the cheesecake.

I broke up the leftover Oreos and sprinkled them all over the top, finally I melted 5 blocks of white chocolate and drizzled it all over the cheesecake.

I loved the final look of the cheesecake, it looked so indulgent! The cheesecake itself is really light and moussey because of the addition of whisked egg whites. The Golden Oreos tasted delicious, they have a beautiful vanilla flavour and the creme centre is fabulous as usual. This cheesecake was a huge hit with my boyfriend and his friends!

NB. I was sent the oreos for free to bake with, all opinions are my own.

Print

Golden Oreo Cheesecake

Ingredients

  • 2 packets of Golden Oreos
  • 50 g Butter melted
  • 3 Eggs
  • 575 g Cream cheese
  • 135 g Caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 200 ml Double cream
  • 5 blocks of White chocolate

Instructions

  1. Start by whizzing up 200g of the Golden Oreos into fine crumbs using a food processor
  2. Add the melted butter to the crumbs and then press the mixture into a springform tin, making sure it is compact and even. Chill it for 30 minutes in the fridge
  3. Using an electronic hand mixer whisk up the egg whites of the 3 eggs until stiff
  4. In a separate bowl mix together the cream cheese, egg yolks, caster sugar and vanilla extract. Add the egg whites and fold them in gently
  5. Pour the mixture over the chilled biscuit base and bake it for 40 minutes on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Make sure to put the tin onto a baking tray as butter may leak out. Let it cool fully to room temperature before decorating
  6. Whip up the double cream and spread it over the top of the cheesecake
  7. Break up the rest of the Golden Oreos and sprinkle them all over the top, then melt 5 blocks of white chocolate and drizzle it all over the cheesecake
Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Chocolate Dipped Almond & Orange Biscotti: GBBO Week #2

Chocolate Dipped Almond & Orange Biscotti: GBBO Week #2
We’re on week two and that means biscuits on The Great British Bake Off. The first challenge was to make Biscotti – an Italian, twice-baked biscuit. They had to make 24 of them whilst maintaining consistency. Paul and Mary were looking for a dry biscuit with a good snap, but not so dry it breaks your teeth!

There was some really experimental and unusual flavours being used in the biscotti. Alvin flavoured his with jackfruit, which is very popular in South East Asian cooking. Ian added rosemary to his mix, and Ugne used white wine and goji berries. We also found out that Paul (the contestant Paul, not Paul Hollywood) used to be a cold stream guard aka one of those guards in the big black fuzzy hats that stand outside Buckingham Palace!

The biscotti had to cool before it’s second bake, que a lot of baking tray wafting from the contestants. I was impressed with Mat’s dedication to uniformity, he used a ruler to measure each biscuit before slicing! My favourite’s were Tamal’s Cinnamon, Maple & Cranberry Biscotti. They looked amazing, but the judges felt there was too much going on in terms of flavour. Ian got glowing results for his addition of rosemary to his biscotti Dorret didn’t do too well as Paul said her biscotti had no flavour.

This week’s technical challenge was to make eight Arlettes. Of course, no one had heard of them! They are biscuits made from puff pastry and rolled to be wafer thin and create a pretty swirl. They originate from France and are cinnamon flavoured. Paul was rubbing his hands together and grinning quite wickedly at the thought of the bakers trying to make these!

The bakers struggled with time as they had to fold the dough and chill it several times, they also weren’t sure at which stage they should add the cinnamon, and which way to roll up the dough. Marie really struggled as her oven wasn’t set correctly and only presented four Arlette’s, which meant she came last. Paul and Nadiya didn’t do very well either. First place went to Dorret with Flora in second and Ian in third.

I was really excited by the showstopper this week as it sounded so fun and really opened up the opportunity to be creative. We have some really imaginative bakers on the show this year! They were asked to make 36 biscuits, presented in a box also made out of biscuit, but a different kind of biscuit. Mary wanted them to be ambitious, show a variety of techniques, and of course taste amazing!

For the box, most contestants went for gingerbread and shortbread as they are sturdy. For inside the box both Ian and Paul made pink macarons, both Flora and Mat made earl grey flavoured tea bag shaped biscuits, Alvin went for brandy snaps and Nadiya chose fortune cookies (pictured above). Ugne made some traditional Lithuanian biscuits, Tamal made checkerboard shortbread and Dorret made some green tea flavoured frog biscuits, although Paul Hollywood though using a cookie stamp was a ‘shortcut’. Not sure if I agree, surely he didn’t expect her to cut out 36 frogs by hand?! Oh wait, he probably did…!

Ian very cleverly made a cylindrical box using a tin he had made himself, which impressed the judges. Sandy was the only one to make a savoury biscuit box using sundried tomato and parmesan flavours. Mat made a fire engine box which I thought looked brilliant! And Paul agreed, calling it ‘fantastic’. Both Alvin and Nadiya didn’t manage to finished their boxes, with Alvin unable to construct his and Nadiya unable to decorate hers. Despite that, both their biscuits were really impressive and well made.

Marie left us this week, the judges felt her bakes were too simple and she wasn’t pushing herself out of her comfort zone. Ian won star baker, deservedly so! Next week it’s time for bread week, or as Mat would say, a doughverload!

I’m not a huge fan of biscotti, and I have made it once before, but I was a bit pushed for time this weekend as I went to Aberdeen to visit my brother. I would have liked to have given the biscuit box a try, maybe when I have more time! I loved how Tamal dipped his in chocolate so I decided to do the same as I think it improves the presentation and overall look of the biscotti.

I started by toasting 145g blanched almonds. I laid them out onto a lined baking tray and popped them in the oven on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 8 minutes.

Once they were toasted I left them to cool, then chopped them up.

For the biscuit dough I weighed out 260g plain flour, 150g granulated white sugar, 1 tsp baking powder and a pinch of salt. I mixed them together.

In a separate bowl I beat 3 eggs with 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1/2 tsp almond extract. I also added the zest of 1 orange.

I mixed the wet and dry ingredients together, along with the chopped almonds, which made a very wet dough.

I carefully shaped it on the baking tray into a rectangle, it was approximately 35cm long and 10cm wide. I didn’t bother rolling it on the work top as it was far too wet.

I baked the dough on 150C/300F/Gas Mark 2 for 35 minutes. Depending on your oven it will take 30-40 minutes. I left it to cool for about 30 minutes.

I used a serrated knife to carefully slice the cooked dough. I baked the slices again for 20 minutes, turning them over at the 10 minutes mark. They were nice and crisp and when I pressed them in the middle there was no give.

For the final touch I melted 130g dark chocolate and dipped in one of the edges of each biscotti. I left them to set on some baking paper.

I was really pleased with my second attempt at biscotti! It went much better this time and I actually really liked them! So they must’ve been alright. The almond flavour was lovely and the orange came through, if you wanted a stronger orange flavour you could double up the zest quantity, but I was happy with how these turned out. They were just crunchy enough so no risk of any teeth breaking! I think I’m going to go and have one with a hot drink…

Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food.

Print

Chocolate Dipped Almond & Orange Biscotti

Ingredients

  • 145 g Blanched almonds
  • 260 g Plain flour
  • 150 g Granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • A pinch of Salt
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp Almond extract
  • 1 Orange
  • 130 g Dark chocolate

Instructions

  1. Lay the almonds out onto a lined baking tray and pop them in the oven on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 8 minutes. Once they are toasted leave them to cool, then chop them up
  2. For the biscuit dough mix together the plain flour, granulated white sugar, baking powder and salt
  3. In a separate bowl beat the eggs with the vanilla extract and the almond extract. Then add the zest of the orange
  4. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together, along with the chopped almonds, to make a wet dough
  5. Carefully shape the dough on the baking tray into a rectangle, approximately 35cm long and 10cm wide
  6. Bake the dough on 150C/300F/Gas Mark 2 for 35 minutes. Leave it to cool for about 30 minutes
  7. Using a serrated knife, carefully slice the cooked dough. Bake the slices again for 20 minutes, turning them over halfway through
  8. Melt the dark chocolate and dip in one of the edges of each biscotti. Leave to set on some baking paper
Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Mini Black Forest Cakes: GBBO Season Six Begins!

Mini Black Forest Cakes: GBBO Season Six Begins!
My favourite baking show was back on TV last week and I was excited as always to see who the new bakers were and what challenges they would be faced with. I actually applied for GBBO this year, but when they called me I turned into a bit of a bumbling idiot and rushed my answers. I think the excitement and nerves got to me! If I decide to apply again next year, I will definitely be remembering to calm down and take my time.

There is a real variety amongst the bakers this year in terms of backgrounds and experience, we’ve got a prison officer that likes to make sugarcraft flowers, an anaesthetist that likes to inject his cakes, and a body building Lithuanian woman. I think this year is going to be a lot of fun!

For the first challenge the bakers were asked to make a Madeira Cake. A very simple cake, of which Mary is a huge fan. She wanted to see a dome on the cake with a crack in the middle, and didn’t want the bakers to stray too far from the classic flavours as it can’t be beaten in her eyes.

Madeira Cake is traditionally flavoured with lemon and a lot of the bakers opted for citrus fruits for flavouring, as well as making candied peel to decorate. Ugne paired lemon with thyme, Nadia paired orange with cardamom, and Ian paired lime with rum and ginger – all with varying results! Paul and Mary were not pulling any punches with their judging in the first round.

For the technical bake the bakers were asked to make Mary’s classic Walnut Cake. For me this was horrifying as I can’t stand walnuts! It was also pretty complicated for a first time technical. They had to make sure the walnut pieces were evenly distributed throughout the sponge, that the frosting was spread in an even layer all over the cake, and they had to caramelise sugar to dip walnuts in for the decoration. Caramelising sugar can be tricky, my first time doing it was a disaster!

Alvin and Stu both had a lot of trouble making caramel, Nadia didn’t ice her whole cake, and several of the bakers had problems with grainy frosting. Stu and Nadia came bottom, Marie came third, Alvin second and Ugne first.

The final showstopper challenge was a Black Forest Gateau. Mary wanted to see something special which included chocolate work. Paul wanted a light sponge, chocolate in particular.

Stu got a bit controversial by using beetroot in his sponge. Ian decided to show off his macaron skills. Tamal made a tempered chocolate collar for his cake and several of the bakers made chocolate tree decorations. I was really impressed by everyone’s skills and creativity. If this is the standard already, I’m excited to see what else they come up with as the series progresses.

Dorret had a disaster with her chocolate mousse as it did not set, she was very upset but Sue did an excellent job of comforting her. I bet the camera crew had a great time devouring all 12 cakes once filming finished! Marie won star baker this week. I’ve heard some ‘controversy’ recently about her having professional training, however upon further research I found out she did one pastry course back in 1984… So I think we can let her off with that!

The first baker to leave us was Stu. I felt really bad for him as he is clearly a very talented baker who just had a bit of bad luck. He was perhaps a bit too alternative for Mary and Paul! Check out his blog The Alternative Kitchen. Next week is biscuit week!

I decided to make Mini Black Forest Cakes this week for my bake along, however I miniaturised them! I’ve never made anything Black Forest before and I really don’t know why not. I mean, chocolate, alcohol, cream and cherries – bliss!

I headed to Aldi to get my ingredients for this bake as they contacted me recently to let me know about their selection of baking ingredients. I used to shop there a lot in the past, but I don’t get the chance much these days. Which is something I need to remedy as their baking ingredients are great quality and such a bargain! I particularly like the cupcake cases.

I started by whisking together 5 eggs and 140g caster sugar with my Kenwood kMix Hand Mixer.

I whisked for 5 minutes until the mixture grew in size and was pale and thick.

I gently folded in 100g self raising flour and 25g cocoa powder that I sieved first with a metal spoon. Finally I folded in 25g melted butter.

I poured the mixture into a lined tray, any baking tray with a lip will work, but a Swiss Roll tray would be perfect.

I baked the sponge on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 12 minutes. I turned it out onto a cooling rack to cool down completely.

Once fully cool I cut out discs using a 7cm diameter cutter. I got enough for 7 mini cakes.

I brushed kirsch over the cake half that would be the bottom layer, which is cherry liquor, and I found this bottle in Tesco. I used about 1 tsp per cake.

I whipped up a 200ml pot of double cream and piped it onto the bottom half of the cakes. I cut out an extra half for a baker’s snack!!

I sliced some cherries in half and put three halves onto each cream topped cake.

I brushed the underside of the top layer of cake with a bit more kirsch (why not?!) then placed it on top. I piped on more cream, sprinkled over some grated dark chocolate and placed a cherry in the middle.

I was really impressed with the final look of the cakes! I took them along to a family meal and everyone loved them and commented on how professional they looked. I devoured mine and could’ve eaten another easily! The sponge is so light and the cherries, which were from Aldi, were gorgeously juicy. I had a few problems with some of the cakes being a bit wonky, I think extra cream on top of the cherries in the middle would’ve helped the sponge stick to it more. I’ll also add more kirsch next time as I think it could’ve been stronger, but that depends on personal taste.

I am entering these cakes into myself and Cakeyboi’s challenge Treat Petite. This month the theme is The Great British Bake Off.

I am also entering this into this month’s We Should Cocoa, hosted by Tin & Thyme and this month’s theme is Anything Goes.

NB. Aldi supplied me with the ingredients for this post, but all opinions are my own. Recipe from BBC Good Food

Print

Mini Black Forest Cakes

Servings 8

Ingredients

  • 5 Eggs
  • 140 g Caster sugar
  • 100 g Self raising flour
  • 25 g Cocoa powder
  • 25 g Butter melted
  • 50 ml Kirsch
  • 200 ml Double cream
  • 21 Fresh cherries
  • 6 blocks of Dark chocolate

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the eggs and caster sugar with an electric hand mixer, whisk for 5 minutes until the mixture grows in size and is pale and thick
  2. Sieve the self raising flour and cocoa powder then gently fold it in. Then fold in the melted butter
  3. Pour the mixture into a baking tray with a lip or a Swiss Roll tray
  4. Bake the sponge on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 12 minutes. Turn it out onto a cooling rack to cool down completely
  5. Once fully cool, cut out discs using a 7cm diameter cutter. Brush the kirsch over the cakes
  6. Whip up the double cream and pipe it onto the bottom half of the cakes
  7. Slice the cherries in half and put three halves onto each cream topped cake
  8. Put the other pieces of cake on top. Pipe on more cream, sprinkle over some grated dark chocolate and place a cherry in the middle
Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Baking Class at Wilmslow Cookery School

Baking Class at Wilmslow Cookery School
Last weekend I was invited to Wilmslow Cookery School by Joe’s Bloggers in partnership with Curry’s and Kenwood, to experience the school’s Introduction to Baking class. I consider myself to be a fairly experienced baker, but that wasn’t going to stop me enjoying a few hours of baking fun!

We got to use Kenwood kMix Stand Mixers for our baking, which was exciting for me as I’ve never used one before. I have a mixer at home, and although it does the job, it’s not quite the same caliber as Kenwood’s mixers. As well as coming in a variety of pretty colours, they have a powerful 500W motor and a 5 litre bowl, and now you can also get a glass bowl, so you can see the food much better as it mixes. Plus they look pretty swish!

I teamed up with Kristina from Mode of Style and we called ourselves Team K – for Kat, Kristina and Kenwood of course!

We started by making some mini meringues. Sarah, the instructor showed us how to complete each step before we went back to our stations and gave it a go ourselves.

An unusual technique that I had not heard of before was to warm up the sugar in the oven at 65C before adding it to the whipped egg whites. This works in a similar way to making Italian meringue in that it cooks the egg white so your meringue will be a lot more stable and also not raw before baking. Perfect for piping directly onto a cake or tart and then blow torching, or if you want to sneak some of the mixture!

After applying some food colouring to the inside of our piping bag, we filled it with the meringue and did our best to pipe out some pretty shapes! They went into the oven for an hour to bake.

Meanwhile we moved onto the next bake, the chocolate tart. We made a chocolate pastry using the Kenwood stand mixer and then brought it together with our hands.

Kristina rolled out the mixture between two layers of cling film. I love this technique for rolling out pastry as it means you don’t have to add any extra flour to the dough, plus it keeps your work surface clean!

After lining the tin as neatly as we could, the pastry then went into the fridge to chill.

Next we moved onto our third and final bake, a Swiss Roll. The instructor had a glass bowl on her Kenwood stand mixer and it looked awesome! It was so cool watching the mixture rise and rise. I want!

We followed suit and soon we had Swiss Roll sponges fresh from the oven. They don’t take very long to bake, around 10-15 minutes.

Once the sponge was cool we spread a mixture of whipped cream and creme patisserie that the instructor had made earlier over it. Everyone else filled their rolls with strawberries, but I went for raspberries.

And then we rolled! Not the neatest Swiss Roll I’ve ever rolled, but hey ho. I liked the raspberries sticking out and the sponge was beautifully light.

To decorate the top of the roll I piped some more of the cream mixture along the top and then placed raspberries and some of the meringues we made earlier in a neat line. I was really impressed with the final effect!

Back to the chocolate tart. After blind baking the pastry we made the filling using cream, sugar, chocolate and egg yolks. We took turns carefully pouring the sauce into our pastry cases whilst they were still on the oven rack, which avoids any spills as the sauce fills the case right to the brim.

After a bit longer in the oven, the chocolate tarts were finally ready. I tried a little bit when it was still hot, but I definitely preferred this bake served cold when I got home with some cream to balance out the richness of the chocolate.

At the end of the day, not only did we get to leave with our delicious creations, but everyone also got a Kenwood kMix Hand Mixer each! I was so thrilled as I have wanted a hand mixer for a while, and to get a Kenwood one was fantastic. It was a great day and I really enjoyed it. It was a bit strange taking instructions on things I usually bake at home, but I think if you’re someone who doesn’t bake very often this class would be a fantastic way to boost your confidence.

Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Baked Vegetable Omelette

Baked Vegetable Omelette
As an office worker I’m always on the lookout for healthy and nutritious lunch ideas. I like things that are easy to make, can be frozen and are transported easily. This baked vegetable omelette fits all those requirements perfectly! Plus it’s also delicious, low calorie, packed with protein and can be adapted to suit different tastes. Simply Health are a company that help businesses to support the health of their employees and they are currently focusing on promoting healthy lunches at work. It’s proven that eating a healthy lunch improves your performance at work, which is the perfect information you need when convincing your boss to get a fruit bowl in the office or to arrange cooking classes for staff! You can read more tips from Simply Health on their website.

I started by pre-cooking the vegetables in a pan with a little oil. The spray oil in a can is the best kind if you are watching your calories. I used a bunch of spring onions, 1 red pepper, half a white onion and a squeeze of garlic puree. I fried them until they were soft.

I used a rectangular dish to bake my omelette in and I brushed it with oil first to ensure the omelette didn’t stick. I find a rectangular dish better as square pieces of baked omelette are easier to portion.

I whisked together 3 eggs, 3 egg whites (for tips on how to use up the yolks click here) and 185ml semi-skimmed milk. You can season with salt and pepper at this point to your liking.

I tipped the vegetables into the dish, then poured in the egg mixture. I sprinkled 65g parmesan cheese over the top.

I baked the omelette on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 35 minutes until the omelette was golden and didn’t have a wobble to it anymore.

I like to eat this omelette with salad and cous cous. When it’s fully cooled you can cut the baked omelette into squares and you will get 6 good sized portions from it. It can be frozen too and defrosted overnight – perfect to grab and go for lunchtime!

I’m entering this into Belleau Kitchen’s challenge Simply Eggcellent. This month’s theme is Anything Goes.

I am also entering this into Fuss Free Flavours and Utterly Scrummy‘s challenge Extra Veg. This month’s challenge is hosted by Jen’s Food. This vegetable filled omelette gives you an extra portion of veg when served with salad or cooked vegetables.

 

Print

Baked Vegetable Omelette

Servings 6

Ingredients

  • 1 Red pepper
  • Half an Onion
  • Garlic puree
  • Bunch of Spring onions
  • 1 tsp Olive oil
  • 3 Eggs
  • 3 Egg whites
  • 185 ml Semi skimmed milk
  • 65 g Parmesan , grated

Instructions

  1. Pre-cook the vegetables in a pan with a little oil. Fry them until they are soft
  2. Brush a 27x18cm rectangular dish with oil
  3. Whisk together the eggs, egg whites and semi-skimmed milk. You can season with salt and pepper at this point to your liking
  4. Tip the vegetables into the dish, then pour in the egg mixture. Sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the top
  5. Bake the omelette on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 35 minutes until it is golden and doesn't have a wobble to it anymore
  6. Slice into portions and eat hot or cold
Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr

Treat Petite August

Treat Petite August
Welcome to Treat Petite August!

If you haven’t checked out July’s Round Up
over on Cakeyboi yet, please have a look. The theme was Summertime Special and
there were some superb summery entries.

This

month’s theme is… ‘The Great British Bake Off’. My favourite show is back this week and so this month we’re looking for anything that has been made by the contestants on GBBO before, of course for any larger bakes they must receive the ‘Treat Petite treatment’! If you’re stuck for ideas check out my GBBO Challenge pages where I’ve made things off the show for the past 3 years.

Treat Petite is for all of those delicious bites, which can
be individually portioned. Tray bakes are fine, cookies, cupcakes, brownies,
macarons and so on. No cakes, puddings,
whole loaves
– you get the idea…here are those all-important rules:

1. Add your petite treat to the Linky Tool at the bottom of the current
month’s post by the 25th of the month, midnight at the latest

2. Post your bake onto your blog and link back to Cakeyboi and The Baking Explorer, stating who is hosting this month

3. Follow Cakeyboi and The Baking Explorer blogs on Google+ (see sidebar links), if you haven’t already.

4. If you tweet use #treatpetite and mention @MrCakeyboi and @BakingExplorer – we will retweet

5. Add the challenge logo to the post and ‘Treat Petite’ as a label to the post

6. Use any recipe as long as the source is noted

7. If you like, add your photo to the ‘Treat Petite’ Pinterest board (request access from Cakeyboi)

8. Feel free to enter old
posts as long as you update the post and meet all the requirements above!

Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on YummlyEmail this to someonePrint this pageShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditShare on Tumblr