Cheese, Marmite & Potato Pasties

Cheese, Marmite & Potato Pasties

When it comes to Marmite, I am a certified ‘lover’! I’m pretty sure I’ve loved it from birth as I can’t remember a time when I didn’t enjoy this salty spread. I once even took a jar on holiday with me as I was worried it wouldn’t be available abroad! With the nights drawing in and the air getting distinctly colder I’m craving hot, carb heavy food this month. These cheese, marmite & potato pasties certainly fit the bill. They are packed with comforting potato, sweet onion, tasty cheese and of course salty Marmite. All wrapped together in a crispy pastry shell! I’ve used homemade pastry, which is easy and quick to make, but of course you can use shop bought to save time. (And if you happen to be a ‘hater’ then you can leave out the Marmite too…!)

Jump straight to the recipe!

To make the pastry I rubbed the butter into the flour, then added the eggs and mixed it together until a dough formed. I wrapped it in cling film and chilled it for 30 minutes.

To make the filling I chopped up the onion and fried it for 5 minutes in a pan with some oil until it was soft. I diced up the potato into cubes no bigger than 1cm, then added them to the onion.

I poured in the grated cheese and the Marmite, and mixed everything together until the cheese and Marmite coated the vegetables. Then I took the mixture off the heat and left it to cool.

Using a rolling pin, I rolled out the pastry onto a mat dusted with flour, and I used an 8″ side plate to cut out rounds.

I spooned a generous amount of filling onto half of the circle, brushed the edge with beaten egg, then folded it over and crimped the edges with a fork. Using a silicone pastry brush, I brushed beaten egg all over the whole pasty, and cut two slits in the middle with a sharp knife.

I baked them on 180C Fan/200C/400F/Gas Mark 6 for 25 minutes until the pastry was golden all over.

Cheese, Marmite & Potato Pasties

Wow, I absolutely loved these cheese, marmite & potato pasties, I have to admit, I ate more than my fair share! I just can’t resist cracking through the crispy golden pastry to get to that savoury filling. Personally, I would add more Marmite, so if you like it strong like I do, whack a bit more in there!

Cheese & Marmite Pinwheel Biscuits

Cheese & Marmite Scones

If you liked these cheese, marmite & potato pasties, try some of my other yummy Marmite recipes!

 

I’m linking this recipe up with Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Cook Blog Share hosted by Hijacked By Twins, Cook Once Eat Twice hosted by Searching For Spice, and Fiesta Fridays hosted by Cooking with Aunt Juju and Spades, Spatulas & Spoons.

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5 from 2 votes
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Cheese, Marmite & Potato Pasties

This recipe make four large pasties, if you cut the rounds smaller you'll get more pasties but they'll be smaller. Or double the recipe for 8 large pasties!

Servings 4

Ingredients

For the pastry

  • 350 g Plain flour plus extra for dusting
  • 170 g Butter or baking spread
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Beaten egg for glazing

For the filling

  • 2 Medium white potatoes diced into cubes no bigger than 1cm
  • 1 White onion chopped
  • 1 tsp Vegetable oil for frying
  • 120 g Mature cheddar grated
  • 1 heaped tbsp Marmite

Instructions

  1. To make the pastry rub the butter into the flour in a large mixing bowl until it resembles breadcrumbs

  2. Add the eggs and mix it together until a dough forms. Wrap the ball of pastry in cling film and chill it in the fridge for 30 minutes

  3. Pre-heat your oven to 180C Fan/200C/400F/Gas Mark 6

  4. To make the filling, fry the chopped onion in the vegetable oil for 5 minutes in a pan

  5. Add the potato, Marmite and cheese, and stir everything together until it's all coated with the Marmite, take the mixture off the heat and leave it to cool

  6. Roll out the pastry onto a mat or work surface dusted with flour, for large pasties use an 8" side plate or cookie cutter to cut out rounds

  7. Spoon a generous amount of filling onto half of the circle, brush the edges with the beaten egg, then fold it over and crimp the edges with a fork

  8. Place the pasty onto a lined baking tray and brush more beaten egg all over the whole pasty, then cut two small slits in the middle with a sharp knife

  9. Bake them for 25 minutes or until the pastry is golden all over, you can lift them up gently to check the pastry underneath is cooked through

  10. Serve hot, or allow to cool and re-heat

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Gingerbread Cupcakes

Gingerbread Cupcakes

After a wonderful weekend spent at The Cake & Bake Show in Manchester, I am fully in the Christmas spirit! What better way to begin celebrating the Christmas season than with these gingerbread cupcakes. Gingerbread flavour and gingerbread men just scream Christmas, they make me feel so festive and ready to curl up under a blanket on the sofa. I’ve infused these gingerbread cupcakes with ground ginger and mixed spice for that classic gingerbread flavour, and there’s also ground ginger in the buttercream for extra yum! I found some absolutely adorable gingerbread men fondant decorations and sprinkles to decorate them with, and you can easily find these online. I’ve linked them below too via Amazon so you can easily recreate every element of this recipe!

Jump straight to the recipe!

To make the gingerbread cupcakes I started by melting the butter, light brown sugar and golden syrup together in a pan on a low heat. I let it cool for 5 minutes.

In a mixing bowl I whisked together the eggs. I added the melted butter mixture, spices and flour, and whisked everything together.

I seperated the mixture into cupcakes cases

I baked them on 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 20 minutes until they were golden brown.

To make the buttercream I used my electric mixer to beat together the butter, icing sugar, vanilla extract and ground ginger.

I piped it onto the cupcakes using my Wilton 2D nozzle, then added some little gingerbread icing shapes and sprinkles.

gingerbread cupcakes

These gingerbread cupcakes are absolutely yummy and just looking at them makes me so excited for Christmas! They taste just like gingerbread biscuits in cupcake form, and they look super cute with the little men on top.

 

I’m linking this recipe up with Bake of the Week hosted by Casa Costello, Treat Petite hosted by me, Baking Crumbs hosted by Only Crumbs Remain, Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Cook Blog Share hosted by Hijacked By Twins, and Fiesta Friday hosted by Life Diet Health and My Culinary Saga.

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5 from 4 votes
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Gingerbread Cupcakes

Servings 12

Ingredients

For the cupcakes

  • 175 g Butter or baking spread
  • 75 g Light brown sugar
  • 100 g Golden syrup
  • 3 Eggs large
  • 175 g Self raising flour
  • 1 tsp Ground ginger
  • 1 tsp Mixed spice

For the buttercream

  • 200 g Butter
  • 400 g Icing sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tsp Ground ginger

For the decoration

  • Gingerbread man fondant shapes optional
  • Gingerbread man sprinkles optional

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4, and line a muffin tin with cupcake cases

  2. Melt the butter, light brown sugar and golden syrup together in a pan on a low heat. Let it cool for 5 minutes

  3. In a mixing bowl whisk the eggs together

  4. Add the melted butter mixture and whisk it in

  5. Add the groudn ginger, mixed spice and flour, and whisk it until the flour is fully combined

  6. Divide the mixture equally between the cupcakes cases



  7. Bake them for 20 minutes until they are golden brown, remove them from the tin and place them on a cooling rack to cool down fully

  8. To make the buttercream use an electric hand mixer to beat together the butter, icing sugar, vanilla extract and ground ginger until smooth

  9. Pipe or spread the buttercream onto the cupcakes, then add gingerbread man icing shapes and sprinkles if desired

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Double Chocolate Cheesecake (No Bake)

Double Chocolate Cheesecake (No Bake)

As someone who makes and eats desserts on a regular basis, it’s always so hard to pick my favourite. The classics never fail, like banoffee pie, chocolate fondant or creme brulee. I was recently sent the Dessert Collection by Lily O’Briens and asked to make my own dessert inspired by the collection. After doing some through chocolate eating research, my favourite just had to be the raspberry infusion. I adore the mix of tart raspberries with sweet dark chocolate, plus the chocolate has a hidden layer of white chocolate truffle inside! I mean, wow! This layer of white chocolate really inspired me to make this double chocolate cheesecake with a brownie base, and two layers of chocolate infused cheesecake. I went all out and topped the double chocolate cheesecake with marbled chocolate shards, whipped cream and meringue kisses too!

Jump straight to the recipe!

The dessert collection contains six chocolates inspired by classic desserts: banoffee pie, passion fruit posset, key lime pie, raspberry infusion, hazelnut torte and creme brulee. I’ll certainly be treating some of my friends and family to a box of these at Christmas!

I started by making the brownie base. I melted the butter and dark chocolate together in a pan, then let it cool for 5 minutes.

In a bowl whisked together the egg and light brown sugar.

I added the melted chocolate and butter mixture to the eggs, whisking as I poured. Then I stirred in the flour and baking powder.

I poured the brownie batter into the tin, which I lined with baking paper at the bottom. I baked it on 180C for 15 minutes. I let it cool completely, then I removed it from the tin, peeled off the baking paper, then put it back in the tin.

To make the white chocolate cheesecake layer I used an electric hand whisk to mix together the cream cheese and icing sugar until smooth. I added the double cream and whisked the mixture until it was thick and held it’s shape. Then I folded in the grated white chocolate.

I smoothed it into the tin on top of the brownie base, then put it in the fridge to set for a couple of hours.

To make the dark chocolate cheesecake layer I used an electric hand whisk to mix together the cream cheese, cocoa powder and icing sugar until smooth. I added the double cream and whisked the mixture until it was thick and held it’s shape. Then I folded in the grated dark chocolate.

I smoothed it into the tin on top of the white chocolate layer, then put it in the fridge to set for a couple of hours.

Whilst the cheesecake layers were setting in the fridge I made the decorations. I started with the chocolate shards. I melted the dark chocolate and smooth it out into a rectangular shape onto a lined baking tray. I added the white chocolate in blobs all over it.

Using a cocktail stick I swirled the mixture around until it looked fully marbled and pretty.

Then I sprinkled freeze dried raspberry pieces all over it.

I put it in the fridge to set and when it was almost set, I chopped it into triangles using a very sharp knife. Then I put them back in the fridge to fully set.

To make the meringue I started by warming the caster sugar in the oven on a lined baking tray for 5 minutes at 200C. Meanwhile I whisked up the egg white until stiff peaks formed.

I poured the warmed sugar into the egg whites bit by bit whilst I continued to whisk. I kept going until I could rub the meringue between my fingers and not feel any sugar grains. This took around 5 minutes.

I put the meringue into a piping bad and piped little ‘kisses’ onto a lined baking tray.

I baked them on 90C for 30 minutes. They should easily peel off the baking paper when they are done. I let them cool.

Double Chocolate Cheesecake   Double Chocolate Cheesecake

To assemble and decorate the double chocolate cheesecake I pushed the wide end of the shards into it on one side, then I piped whipped cream all around them. I stuck some meringues to the cream, then sprinkled some more freeze dried raspberries all over it.

Double Chocolate Cheesecake

I was so pleased with the look of this double chocolate cheesecake, it came out just how I had imagined it in my mind (which is rare!) My family absolutely loved it too, the whole thing disappeared within minutes! It was so decadent and indulgent, with so much rich chocolate flavour and creamy cheesecake goodness.

Double Chocolate Cheesecake

This double chocolate cheesecake would make a fantastic centrepiece for an elegant dinner, family party or Christmas celebration. If you’re wanting something more casual, you can just make the cheesecake and decorate it with whipped cream and fresh raspberries.

      

I’m linking this double chocolate cheesecake recipe up with Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Cook Blog Share hosted by Easy Peasy Foodie, We Should Cocoa hosted by Tin & Thyme, and Fiesta Fridays hosted by Zoale and The Not So Creative Cook.

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5 from 8 votes
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Double Chocolate Cheesecake (No Bake) with chocolate shards and a brownie base

Servings 12

Ingredients

For the brownie base

  • 115 g Dark chocolate
  • 85 g Butter
  • 1 Egg
  • 85 g Light brown sugar
  • 35 g Plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp Baking powder

For the chocolate shards

  • 200 g Dark chocolate
  • 50 g White chocolate
  • 2 g Freeze dried raspberries

For the white chocolate cheesecake

  • 375 g Full fat cream cheese
  • 150 ml Double cream
  • 100 g Icing sugar
  • 100 g White chocolate grated

For the dark chocolate cheesecake

  • 375 g Full fat cream cheese
  • 150 ml Double cream
  • 100 g Icing sugar
  • 20 g Cocoa powder
  • 100 g Dark chocolate grated

For the whipped cream

  • 150 ml Double cream
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp Icing sugar

For the meringues

  • 1 Large egg white
  • 80 g Caster sugar
  • 1/8 tsp Cream of tartar

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Line a 23" springform tin with baking paper

  2. To make the brownie base melt the butter and dark chocolate together in a pan on a low heat, then let it cool for 5 minutes

  3. In a mixing bowl whisk together the egg and light brown sugar

  4. Add the melted chocolate and butter mixture to the eggs, keep whisking as you pour it in. Then stir in the flour and baking powder

  5. Pour the brownie batter into the tin and bake it for 15 minutes

  6. Let the brownie cool completely in the tin, then carefully remove it from the tin, peel off the baking paper at the back, then put it back in the tin

  7. To make the white chocolate cheesecake layer use an electric hand whisk or stand mixer to mix together the cream cheese and icing sugar until smooth


  8. Add the double cream and whisk the mixture until it is thick and holds it's shape. Then fold in the grated white chocolate

  9. Smooth it into the tin on top of the brownie base, then put it in the fridge to set for a couple of hours

  10. To make the dark chocolate cheesecake layer I use an electric hand whisk or stand mixer to mix together the cream cheese, cocoa powder and icing sugar until smooth


  11. Add the double cream and whisk the mixture until it is thick and holds it's shape. Then fold in the grated dark chocolate

  12. Smooth it into the tin on top of the white chocolate layer, then put it in the fridge to set for a couple of hours

For the chocolate shards (optional)

  1. Melt the dark chocolate and white chocolate in separate bowls. You can do this either in glass bowls over a pan of simmering water, or in the microwave - start with a 30 second blast, then do 10 second blasts stirring in between

  2. Smooth the dark chocolate out into a rectangular shape onto a baking tray like with baking paper. Add the white chocolate in blobs all over it

  3. Using a cocktail stick, swirl the mixture around until it looks fully marbled and all of the blobs of white chocolate have been swirled around

  4. Then sprinkle freeze dried raspberry pieces all over it

  5. Put it in the fridge to set and when it is almost set, chopped it into triangles using a very sharp knife. Then put the pieces back in the fridge to fully set

For the meringue (optional)

  1. To make the meringue warm the caster sugar in the oven on a lined baking tray for 5 minutes at 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Meanwhile whisk up the egg whites using an electric hand whisk of stand mixer until stiff peaks formed (when you can hold the bowl over your head without it falling on you!)

  2. Pour the warmed sugar into the egg whites bit by bit whilst continuing to whisk. Keep going until you can rub a little bit of the meringue between your fingers and not feel any sugar grains. This takes around 5 minutes

  3. Put the meringue into a piping bag fitted with a piping nozzle of your choice, and pipe little 'kisses' onto a lined baking tray

  4. Bake them on 90C/200F/(it's hard to convert this into Gas Mark as it's less than a half so do it on the lowest setting you can) for 30 minutes. They should easily peel off the baking paper when they are done. Let them cool

To decorate

  1. Whip up the cream with the icing sugar and vanilla using an electric hand whisk or stand mixer

  2. Push the wide end of the shards into the cheesecake, then pipe the whipped cream all around them. Stick some meringues to the cream, then sprinkle some more freeze dried raspberries all over it

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Treat Petite November 2017

Treat Petite November 2017

Welcome to Treat Petite November 2017!

Thank you to everyone that linked up in October! There were some seriously spooky treats for Halloween, and lots of signs of Autumn’s arrival like pumpkin recipes and bonfire night treats. Don’t forget to give the blog’s featured some comment love and social media sharing if you like or make any of the recipes featured!

Ghostly Pumpkin Mini Rolls by The Gluten Free Alchemist, Blackcurrant & Liquorice Spider Cupcakes by Only Crumbs Remain, Slime Cupcakes by me and Breadstick Wands or Fireworks by Searching For Spice.

Pumpkin & Cinnamon Muffins with Plum Jam by Jo’s Kitchen Larder, Cheat’s Version Portuguese Custard Tarts by The Crazy Kitchen, Ginger Spiced Pumpkin Muffins by Proper Foodie and Red Bean & Pineapple Mochi Rice Cakes by Lili’s Cakes.

Caramel Brownies by Curly’s Cooking, Salted Caramel Cookie Frozen Yogurt Bark by Foodie Quine, The Best Tiramisu with Tia Maria by Proper Foodie and Easiest Rocky Road by BakingQueen74.

Les Patiences Fraxinoises Biscuits by As Strong As Soup, Baked Doughnuts by Green Gourmet Giraffe, Gelatin Free Coconut Water Jelly by Cooking With Smile and Mini No Bake Lemon Cheesecakes by Caroline Makes.

 

Now for November’s link up! Enter anything you like, just remember the Treat Petite rules below…

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 whole cakes, loaves, large pies or tarts – you get the idea… Both sweet and savoury treats are accepted, as well as no-bakes such as individual cheesecakes, or ice lollies for example.

1. Add your petite treat to the Linky Tool at the bottom of this page by the 25th of the month, midnight at the latest

2. Post your bake onto your blog and link back to The Baking Explorer

3. Follow The Baking Explorer on Google+, if you haven’t already.

4. If you tweet use #TreatPetite and mention @BakingExplorer and @MrCakeyboi (Cakeyboi will still retweet any #TreatPetite tweets he’s mentioned in!)

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 (The Baking Explorer will add all entries to the board – please include pinnable images in your post)

8. Only 2 entries per blogger per month

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

I will share all linked up treats on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram Stories and Twitter. I’ll also leave comments on all blog posts and like on Instagram (please tag me so I can do this – @thebakingexplorer) as well as regramming some posts.



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Carrot Cake Baked Donuts (Vegan)

Carrot Cake Baked Donuts (Vegan)

Strange as it may sound, I didn’t used to like carrot cake. Nowadays, I absolutely love the stuff! I find the spiced sponge and creamy frosting rather irresistible. I’ve made non-vegan baked donuts several times, and I really wanted to try a vegan version, so carrot cake immediately sprung to mind. Baked donuts are like little cakes as they are baked in the oven in a donut tin. I’ve spiced these carrot cake baked donuts with cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg and drizzled a sweet glaze over the top. They are truly yummy and will delight vegans and non-vegans alike. These carrot cake baked donuts are dairy and egg free, and they could be nut free too if you use soya milk rather than almond milk and don’t add the chopped pecans on top. No one needs to miss out on yummy donuts!

To start, I placed all of the dry ingredients into a bowl except the bicarbonate of soda.

In another bowl I whisked together the oil, almond milk, vanilla and cider vinegar. Then I added the grated carrots.

I combined the wet and dry ingredients, then added the bicarb last.

I put the batter into a piping bag and piped it into my donut pan which I’d greased with dairy free butter.

I baked the donuts for 15 minutes until they were risen and golden. Using a butter knife I gently loosened them around the edges, then tipped them out onto a cooling rack. I quickly washed the tin and did another batch.

For the glaze I mixed together the icing sugar with the milk and dipped the donuts in. I sprinkled the pecans on while the glaze was still wet.

Carrot Cake Baked Donuts

These carrot cake baked donuts came out beautifully risen and soft. In my recent vegan baking experiments, the one thing I’ve really struggled with is baking sponges but I think I’ve finally got it! The sponge is not overly sweet to make up for the super sweet and sticky glaze that’s drizzled on top – it provides all the sweetness you need.

Carrot Cake Baked Donuts

These donuts are really good freshly made, but if you can manage to wait till the next day they go super moist and sticky – which is how I like my donuts!

          

I’m linking this recipe up with Cook Blog Share hosted by Everyday Healthy Recipes, Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Bake of The Week by Mummy Mishaps, Free From Fridays hosted by Le Coin De Mel, and Fiesta Friday hosted by Everyday Healthy Recipes and Indfused.

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Check out my other baked donut recipes!

5 from 4 votes
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Carrot Cake Baked Donuts (Vegan)

Servings 12

Ingredients

For the donuts

  • 160 g Self raising flour
  • 80 g Wholemeal flour
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
  • 100 g Light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp Mixed spice
  • 1/4 tsp Ground ginger
  • 100 g Carrots grated
  • 200 ml Almond milk or other dairy free milk
  • 30 ml Vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp Cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp Baking powder
  • Dairy free spread for greasing

For the glaze and decoration

  • 200 g Icing sugar
  • 2 1/2 tbsp Almond milk or other dairy free milk
  • 50 g Pecans chopped

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas mark 4, grease a donut pan with the dairy free spread

  2. Put both flours, the salt, light brown sugar, baking powder and all four spices into a bowl and stir together

  3. In another bowl whisk together the oil, almond milk, vanilla and cider vinegar. Then add the grated carrots

  4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and whisk together, then add the bicarbonate of soda and stir in

  5. Put the batter into a piping bag and pipe half of it into the donut pan (or all of it if you have a 12 ring pan)

  6. Bake the donuts for 15 minutes until they are risen and golden

  7. Using a butter knife, gently loosen them around the edges, then tip them out onto a cooling rack

  8. If you are using a 6 ring donut tin, quickly wash the tin and do another batch

  9. For the glaze, mix together the icing sugar and the almond milk. Dip the donuts in to coat the top half. Sprinkle the pecans on while the glaze is still wet

  10. If you can, store in an air tight container and enjoy the next day when they will be super moist! Or just dig right in!

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Butternut Squash, Leek & Stilton Tart

Butternut Squash, Leek & Stilton Tart

I’m a huge fan of an easy and tasty meal that can be rustled up quickly after a long day at work. This butternut squash, leek and stilton tart is a healthy and delicious option for a weeknight meal. I’ve used ready made pastry and frozen pre-prepared butternut squash to make this tart even more simple to put together. You can also be safe in the knowledge that you’re feeding your family a nutritious meal. Both leeks and butternut squash are great sources of vitamins and minerals.  I like to serve this savoury tart with salad and potato wedges, but there are lots of other options too such as extra veggies or sweet potato fries. It’s a great way to use up leftover stilton! If you’re not a stilton fan you can use regular mature cheddar, or any cheese that melts well.

I started by chopping the onion, garlic and leeks, I added them into a pan with the warmed oil and butter inside. I cooked them on a low heat until they were soft, then set them aside.

I used pre-chopped frozen butternut squash, but you can also use fresh. I mixed the cubes of squash with a drizzle of vegetable oil and 1 tsp sage in a bowl.

I’d left the pastry at room temperature so I rolled it out onto a baking tray. I covered it with the leek mixture, leaving a 1-2cm border all around the edges.

Then I added the butternut squash, and crumbled the stilton all over. I brushed the milk around the edges.

I baked the tart for 25 minutes until it was golden and bubbling.

butternut squash, leek and stilton tart

It looked so attractive with the orange hue of the squash scattered all over the tart, and the cheese lusciously melted into the leeks. I do love a good bit of crispy pastry too, the golden edges on the tart are calling my name! It’s positively packed with flavour, from the strong cheese and the earthy sage, to the delicate leeks and sweet squash.

butternut squash, leek and stilton tart

You can store the butternut squash, leek and stilton tart in the fridge and re-heat it the next day so it can cover multiple meals. That is, as long as your family aren’t demanding seconds like mine were!

       

I’m linking this recipe up with Cook Blog Share hosted by Recipes Made Easy, Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Eat Your Greens hosted by Allotment 2 Kitchen and The Veg Hog, and Fiesta Friday hosted by Food Eat Love and Curry & Vanilla.

butternut squash, leek and stilton tart

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5 from 4 votes
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Butternut Squash, Leek & Stilton Tart

Servings 6

Ingredients

  • 375 g Pre-made puff pastry sheet
  • 3 Leeks Chopped
  • Half a Large white onion Chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic Chopped
  • 1 tbsp Vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 250 g Butternut squash (fresh or frozen) Cubed
  • 1 tsp Dried sage
  • 150 g Stilton
  • 1 tbsp Milk

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 180C Fan/200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Take the pastry out of the fridge, un-package it but don't unroll it yet

  2. Warm the oil and butter in a pan on a low heat then add the onion, garlic and leeks. Cook them on a low heat until they are soft, then set them aside

  3. Mix the cubes of squash in a bowl with a drizzle of vegetable oil and the sage until they are fully coated

  4. Roll the pastry out onto a baking tray, if it doesn't come with baking paper make sure the tray is lined with it

  5. Pour the leek mixture onto the pastry, leaving a 1-2cm border all around the edges

  6. Add the butternut squash, and crumble the stilton all over

  7. Brush the milk in the empty border of the pastry all around the edges

  8. Bake the tart for 25 minutes until it is golden and bubbling

  9. Serve hot, or allow to cool, refrigerate and re-heat as desired

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Slime Cupcakes

Slime Cupcakes

I absolutely love Halloween and all the spooky themed food that comes with it. These Slime Cupcakes fit the bill perfectly as they look rather scary with their black “burnt” sponge, bright green “toxic” buttercream and creepy candy eyes, but don’t be fooled – they taste absolutely yummy! Once you bite into their menacing exterior you’ll find gooey “radioactive” slime inside! I used a lime marmalade to create this effect, but you could use strawberry jam for a “blood and guts” theme inside too. Kids and adults alike will love making these fun slime cupcakes to disgust and delight their family and friends over the Halloween season!

To make the cupcakes sponges I creamed together the butter and caster sugar, then added the black food colouring.

I whisked in the eggs, vanilla extract and then the self raising flour.

I divided the batter into the black cupcake cases.

They baked for 20 mins, I had to use a cake skewer to check they were done as they were so black!

When they fully cooled, I used a cupcake corer to make holes in the middle of each cake.

  

I added a little bit of lime green food colouring to the lemon and lime marmalade, then spooned it into each cupcakes.

I made the buttercream by mixing together the butter and icing sugar. I added the vanilla extract and the lime green food colouring until I had a nice bright green colour.

I piped it onto the cupcakes then added the candy eyes!

Despite the spooky appearance of the slime cupcakes, they were extremely popular. Everyone was attracted to their bright and unusual colours. My friends and family were pleasantly surprised by the light vanilla flavour of the sponge and buttercream, and they loved the citrus zing of the lime marmalade filling.

    

I’m linking this recipe up with Cook Blog Share hosted by Hijacked By Twins, Bake of the Week hosted by Mummy Mishaps, Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Treat Petite hosted by me, Baking Crumbs hosted by Only Crumbs Remain, and Fiesta Friday hosted by Food Eat Love and Curry & Vanilla.

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5 from 8 votes
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Slime Cupcakes

Ingredients

For the cupcake sponge

  • 175 g Baking spread
  • 175 g Caster sugar
  • 25 g Black food colouring
  • 3 Eggs
  • 175 g Self raising flour
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract

For the buttercream

  • 200 g Butter
  • 400 g Icing Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • Lime green food colouring

For the filling and decoration

  • Lemon & lime marmalade
  • A few drops of Lime green food colouring
  • Candy eyes

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4, line a large cupcake or muffin tray with black cupcake cases

  2. Cream together the butter and caster sugar, then add the black food colouring, you will need quite a lot

  3. Whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract, then add the self raising flour and whisk in

  4. Divide the batter between the black cupcake cases

  5. Bake for 20 mins, you will have to use a cake skewer to check they are done because of the colour!

  6. Let the cupcakes fully cool, then use a cupcake corer or a knife to make holes in the middle of each cake

  7. Add a little bit of lime green food colouring to the lemon and lime marmalade, then spoon it into each cupcake

  8. Make the buttercream by mixing together the butter and icing sugar until smooth, then add the vanilla extract and the lime green food colouring until you have a bright green colour

  9. Using a piping bag, pipe the buttercream onto the cupcakes. Then add the candy eyes!

 

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Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake (No Bake)

Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake (No Bake)

Pumpkin spice is slowly gaining popularity in the UK, but there’s still definitely people that aren’t aware of how delicious pumpkin and pumpkin spice is in baked goods. Or no-baked in the case of this Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake! Most people in the UK think pumpkin is a savoury ingredient, but it’s wonderfully versatile and works so well in sweet recipes too. If you like pumpkin pie you will love this beautifully light and creamy cheesecake. There is pumpkin puree mixed into the cheesecake filling and it’s flavoured with cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and allspice. This Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake absolutely screams Autumn, it’s easy to make and tastes absolutely delicious. It’s quite a large cheesecake, it completely filled my tin right to the brim! So you could reduce the recipe if you don’t want it that big, but really, why wouldn’t you?!

To make the base I used my food processor to whizz up the biscuits until they turned into crumbs. I added the cinnamon and melted butter and mixed them in, then I pressed the mixture into the bottom of a 23″ springform tin and put it in the fridge to chill.

I moved onto preparing the filling. I used my electric hand whisk to mix together the cream cheese, pumpkin puree, icing sugar, vanilla and pumpkin spice mix until it was smooth with no lumps.

Then I added the double cream and whisked more until the mixture thickened considerably.

I tipped the cheesecake mixture on top of the base and smoothed it over. Then it went back into the fridge to set overnight.

The next day I decorated it. First I melted the white chocolate and drizzled it all over the top. Next I whipped up some cream with icing sugar and vanilla and piped it around the edges. Then I sprinkled orange hundreds and thousands, and pumpkin shaped sprinkles in the centre. I also made some pastry leaves to decorate the Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake, which I brushed with edible glitter and placed all around the edge. Of course, you can decorate the cheesecake any way you like!

Those not in the know on the deliciousness of pumpkin were in awe of how tasty this cheesecake was! They loved how creamy it was, and how it was full of pumpkin pie flavour – and so did I! The sweet white chocolate drizzled on top was perfect against the velvety filling and the pastry leaves were an extra crunchy treat.

This Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake would make an awesome centrepiece for Thanksgiving, Halloween or a family meal during Autumn. It will certainly feed a crowd and is sure to impress!

If you like this, you’ll love some of my other pumpkin recipes!

       

I’m linking this recipe up with Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Cook Blog Share hosted by Easy Peasy Foodie, Simple & In Season hosted by Feeding Boys and Fiesta Fridays this month hosted by A Pug In The Kitchen and Ginger & Bread.

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5 from 5 votes
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Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake

Ingredients

Pumpkin Spice Mix

  • 3 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp Ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp Allspice

For the biscuit base

  • 300 g Digestive biscuits
  • 95 g Butter melted
  • 1 tsp Ground cinnamon

For the cheesecake filling

  • 450 g Pumpkin puree
  • 450 g Full fat cream cheese
  • 250 g Icing sugar
  • 450 ml Double cream
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp Pumpkin spice mix see above

For decoration

  • 300 ml Double cream
  • 2 tbsp Icing sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 50 g White chocolate melted
  • Orange/Pumpkin themed sprinkles optional
  • Pastry leaves optional
  • Edible glitter optional

For the pastry leaves

  • 115 g Plain flour
  • 56 g Butter
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Cold water

Instructions

  1. Mix the spices together for the pumpkin spice and set aside

  2. To make the base, use a food processor to whizz up the biscuits until they turned into crumbs. Or you can put them in a bag or a bowl and bash them up with a rolling pin

  3. Add the melted butter and cinnamon and mix them in, then press the mixture into the bottom of a 23″ springform tin and put it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes

  4. To make the cheesecake filling. Use a stand mixer with a whisk attachment or an electric hand whisk to mix together the cream cheese, pumpkin puree, icing sugar, vanilla and pumpkin spice mix until it is smooth with no lumps

  5. Add the double cream and whisk more until the mixture thickens considerably

  6. Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the biscuit base and smooth it over. Then put it back into the fridge to set overnight, or for at least 5 hours

  7. To decorate, remove the cheesecake from the tin and put onto a serving plate

  8. Melt the white chocolate and drizzle it all over the top

  9. Whip the double cream together with the icing sugar and vanilla, then pipe it around the edges using a piping bag fitted with a nozzle. Sprinkle the sprinkles in the centre

  10. If you have made the pastry leaves, brush them with edible glitter and place them all around the edge on top of the cream

Pastry Leaves (optional)

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4, and line a baking tray with baking paper

  2. Put the flour into a bowl and add the butter, rub the butter into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs

  3. Add the water, little by little, until it comes together into a dough

  4. Wrap it in cling film and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes

  5. Flour your work surface and roll the pastry out to 4-5mm thick, use a leaf shaped cutter to cut out the shapes and place them onto a lined baking tray

  6. Bake for 10-15 minutes until they are golden, then allow to cool completely.

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Traditional Czech Kolaces

Traditional Czech Kolaces

I absolutely love traditional recipes that have been passed from one generation to the next. They truely survive the test of time and you can guarantee they will be absolutely delicious! Czech Kolaces are one such recipe. The base is an enriched dough and they can be filled with a variety of sweet things such as fruit or jam. They can also be small or large, which is another thing about traditional recipes, every family has a different version. So why not find your favourite! As kolaces originated as desserts at Czech weddings, their perfect pairing is with a drink of course. Budweiser Budvar lager is brewed in the Czech Republic using 700 year old traditional methods and local ingredients. If you want to steep yourself in Czech tradition, then crack open a Budvar and learn how to make these delicious treats – you won’t regret it!

To learn more about the kolaces watch this beautiful video that Budvar have made! Or you can read the story by clicking here.

To make the dough I started by warming up the milk in a pan until it was luke warm. I added the yeast and caster sugar, then covered it with cling film and left it for 10 minutes.

After the 10 minutes I uncovered it and added the egg yolks and melted butter and whisked it all together.

In a bowl I stirred the flour together with the salt. I poured the milk mixture into the flour and mixed until a dough formed. I covered it with cling film and left it in a warm place to prove for 1 hour.

Whilst it was doing that I made the cheesecake filling by whisking the cream cheese, caster sugar, lemon zest and egg yolk together. I whisked it until it was thick then I folded in the whipped egg white.

Once the dough was proved, I cut the dough in half. With one half I made little kolaces by rolling it out then cutting out rounds with a cookie cutter.

I used the bottom of a glass to make indentations in the dough.

I filled them with the cheesecake mixture, then added a few blueberries too. I also glazed them around the edges with beaten egg.

They baked on 180C Fan for 20 minutes. I kept re-rolling the dough until it was all gone.

I also made some with blackcurrant jam in the middle instead and a sprinkling of the crumble on top.

With the other half of the dough, I rolled it into a rectangle and spread it out on a lined baking tray.

I sprinkled breadcrumbs on top, followed by blueberries and rum soaked cherries, then finally sprinkled the crumble all over. I also glazed the edge with beaten egg.

I baked it for between 20-25 minutes on 180C Fan until it was golden brown.

I made the kolaces whilst I was round at my friend’s house and they went down an absolute treat. It was so relaxing to chat and bake with a few Budvars, then enjoy the kolaces warm from the oven! I shared the beer out with my boyfriend and friends too. They really enjoyed drinking it with the kolaces, and I heard several poorly pronounced shouts of “Na zdraví!” – which is cheers in Czech!

The kolaces filled with jam were my favourite and they’re also the easiest to make. I really liked the big traybake version too as it’s less time consuming than cutting out rounds. However, the little rounds would be perfect for a party! The bread was soft and light, and the fillings sweet and fruity

      

I’m linking this recipe up with Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too, Cook Blog Share hosted by Everyday Healthy Recipes, Cook Once Eat Twice hosted by Searching For Spice, and Fiesta Fridays hosted by Food For The Soul and The Not So Creative Cook.

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5 from 3 votes
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Small Czech Kolaces with Blueberries & Cheesecake or Jam

Servings 20

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 500 g Plain flour
  • 75 g Caster sugar
  • 75 g Butter melted
  • 250 ml Whole or semi-skimmed milk
  • 3 Egg yolks
  • 7 g Sachet of fast action yeast
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Lemon zest only

For the cheesecake filling

  • 250 g Full fat cream cheese
  • 60 g Caster sugar
  • 1 Egg yolk
  • 1 Egg white whipped
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/4 Lemon zest only

Other toppings

  • 50 g Blueberries
  • Jam

For glazing

  • 1 Egg beaten

Instructions

  1. To make the dough warm up the milk in a pan until it is luke warm

  2. Add the yeast and caster sugar, then cover it with cling film and leave it for 10 minutes

  3. After the 10 minutes uncover it and add the egg yolks and melted butter, and whisk it all together

  4. In a bowl stir the flour together with the salt. Pour the milk mixture into the flour and mix until a dough forms. Cover it with cling film and leave it in a warm place to prove for 1 hour

  5. While it's proving, make the cheesecake filling,

  6. Pre-heat your oven to 180C Fan/200C/400F/Gas Mark 6

  7. Once the dough is proved, flour your work surface and roll it out to 4-5mm thick. Cut out rounds using a cookie cutter

  8. Use the bottom of a glass to make indentations in the dough

  9. Fill the indentations with the cheesecake mixture (or jam if using), then add a few blueberries too. Glaze them around the edges with the beaten egg

  10. Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown

  11. Allow to cool, then serve with a cold Budvar!

5 from 3 votes
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Large Czech Kolac with Blueberries & Cherries

Servings 12

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 500 g Plain flour
  • 7 g Sachet of fast action yeast
  • 75 g Caster sugar
  • 75 g Butter melted
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 250 ml Whole or semi-skimmed milk
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Lemon zest only

For the kolace crumble

  • 40 g Butter
  • 40 g Caster sugar
  • 70 g Plain flour

For the topping

  • 25 g Breadcrumbs
  • 300 g Blueberries
  • 12 Kirsch soaked cherries

For glazing

  • 1 egg beaten

Instructions

  1. To make the dough warm up the milk in a pan until it is luke warm

  2. Add the yeast and caster sugar, then cover it with cling film and leave it for 10 minutes

  3. After the 10 minutes uncover it and add the egg yolks and melted butter, and whisk it all together

  4. In a bowl stir the flour together with the salt. Pour the milk mixture into the flour and mix until a dough forms. Cover it with cling film and leave it in a warm place to prove for 1 hour

  5. While it's proving, make the kolace crumble. Put the butter, caster sugar and plain flour in a bowl and rub it all together until it resembles breadcrumbs

  6. Pre-heat your oven to 180C Fan/200C/400F/Gas Mark 6

  7. Once the dough is proved, flour your work surface and roll it into a rectangle, then spread it out on a lined baking tray

  8. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top, then the blueberries and the kirsch soaked cherries, then finally sprinkled the crumble all over. Brush the edges with the beaten egg

  9. Bake it for between 20-25 minutes until it is golden brown

  10. Allow to cool, then slice and serve with a cold Budvar!

NB. This is a sponsored post, all opinions are my own.

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Treat Petite October 2017

Treat Petite October 2017

Welcome to Treat Petite October 2017!

Thank you to everyone that linked up in September! There were several Great British Bake Off inspired bakes, four different delicious versions of sandwich biscuits, and you can tell Autumn is coming as blackberries and plums featured too. Don’t forget to give the blog’s featured some comment love and social media sharing if you like or make any of the recipes featured!

Chocolate & Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies by Only Crumbs Remain, Peanut Butter & Nutella Sandwich Cookies by The Crazy Kitchen, Chocolate & Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies by Curly’s Cooking and Almond & Vanilla Viennese Whirls (Gluten Free & Vegan) by Peachicks Bakery.

Snickers Cupcakes by Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen, Salted Peanuts & Peanut Butter Millionaire’s Shortbread by Jo’s Kitchen Larder, Spiced Plum Vegan Flapjacks by me, Blackberry & Pear Cupcakes by Only Crumbs Remain and Blackberry Prune Squares by Everyday Healthy Recipes.

Cardamom, Orange & Cinnamon Teacakes by The Crazy Kitchen, Whisky Truffles by Tin & Thyme, Chocolate & Raspberry Chickpea Brownies by the Flourishing Pantry, Caramel Cupcakes with a Hidden Centre by Caroline Makes… and Angel Fish Cookies by Mummy Mishaps.

Now for October’s link up! Enter anything you like, just remember the Treat Petite rules below…

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 whole cakes, puddings, loaves – you get the idea… Both sweet and savoury treats are accepted, as well as no-bakes such as individual cheesecakes, or ice lollies for example.

1. Add your petite treat to the Linky Tool at the bottom of this page by the 25th of the month, midnight at the latest

2. Post your bake onto your blog and link back to The Baking Explorer

3. Follow The Baking Explorer on Google+, if you haven’t already.

4. If you tweet use #TreatPetite and mention @BakingExplorer and @MrCakeyboi (Cakeyboi will still retweet any #TreatPetite tweets he’s mentioned in!)

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 (The Baking Explorer will add all entries to the board – please include pinnable images in your post)

8. Only 2 entries per blogger per month

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

I will share all linked up treats on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram Stories and Twitter. I’ll also leave comments on all blog posts and like on Instagram (please tag me so I can do this – @thebakingexplorer) as well as regramming some posts.



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