Mince Pie Cake

Mince Pie Cake

I am a huge fan of Mince Pies and I’ve made Mince Pie Cupcakes with Brandy Buttercream several times now around Christmas, and they always go down well. Of course the next step in my mind was to go bigger and make this Mince Pie Cake. It’s made up of three layers of spiced sponge, a luxurious brandy infused buttercream, mince pie filling and mini mince pies on top! Calling all mince pie lovers – this is the cake for you!

Jump straight to the recipe!

To make the sponge I first creamed together butter and caster sugar.

I then added eggs and mixed in well.

Then I folded in self raising flour and mixed spice, and divided the mixture into the tins. They baked for about 25 minutes until golden brown.

I made the brandy buttercream using icing sugar, butter and brandy.

When the sponges were cool I levelled them off with a knife.

  

I started to stack the cake, piping buttercream on each layer and topping with a luxury mincemeat, laced with port and brandy, and packed with fruit. Of course you can use home made mincemeat if you have some.

Mince Pie Cake

I piped buttercream rosettes on top and decorated with mini mince pies! I also added some sprinkles for extra festive fun!

Mince Pie Cake

The Mince Pie Cake is definitely enough to feed a hungry family, or group of friends around Christmas time.

Mince Pie Cake

I had a lot of compliments on the Mince Pie Cake, and I was really pleased with it too. It’s a fantastic Christmas treat!


Mince Pie Cake

Servings 12

Ingredients

For the sponge

  • 500 g Butter or baking spread
  • 500 g Caster sugar
  • 9 Eggs large
  • 1 tsp Mixed spice
  • 500 g Self raising flour

For the filling

  • 1 jar Mincemeat

For the buttercream

  • 350 g Icing sugar
  • 700 Butter or baking spread
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Brandy

For decoration

  • 8 Mini mince pies optional
  • Sprinkles optional

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4, grease and line three 8" cake tins

  2. For the sponge, cream together the butter and the caster sugar in a large bowl with a spoon until fluffy, or mix using an electric mixer

  3. Add the eggs and whisk in well

  4. Add the self raising flour and whisk in until you can't see any flour anymore

  5. Divide the mixture between the tins, use scales for accuracy

  6. Bake them for 30-35 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Leave them to fully cool either in the tins or on cooling racks

  7. If the cakes have domed on top, level them off with a cake leveller or knife

  8. Make the brandy buttercream by mixing the icing sugar, butter and brandy together until smooth. Put into a piping bag with your chosen nozzle

  9. Put one of the sponges on a cake stand or a serving plate, pipe buttercream all over the sponge, then spoon mincemeat over it. Add the second sponge on top and do the same

  10. Add the final sponge and pipe larger rosettes, top with the mini mince pies if using and sprinkles

  11. Leftovers will keep in an airtight container in a cool place for 2-3 days

You can find more of my Cake recipes by clicking here! Or click here for more Christmas recipes!

Mince Pie Cake

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Things To Do With… Christmas Leftovers

Things To Do With… Christmas Leftovers

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas! All that build up, months of planning, crafting, shopping, wrapping and baking… and it’s finally over for another year. If you’re anything like me, you bought far too much food and now have tupperware boxes full of leftover veg, cupboards bursting with Christmas chocolates, pieces of various cheeses wrapped in cling film and half full jars of condiments that only get eaten once a year. To help you clear out and avoid food waste I have found a collection of recipes to inspire you to use up all those Christmas leftovers…

Vegetables
     
Pasnip & Maple Syrup Cake  Sweet Potato Brownies  Carrot & Orange Cake
Uses 250g parsnips  Uses 250g sweet potato  Uses 200g carrot
   
 Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie  Bubble and Squeak Patties Carrot Cake
 Uses 4 leeks and 3 large potatoes – or use half for a smaller pie  Uses 1kg potatoes and 500g Brussel sprouts Uses 325g Carrots
Potato & Leek Soup Butternut Squash & Tomato Soup
Vegan Carrot Cake Donuts Cheesy Potato & Leek Soup Vegan Butternut Squash & Tomato Soup
Uses 100g Carrots Uses 3 leeks and 4 large potatoes Uses 1kg butternut squash
Chestnut, Sage & Parmesan Palmiers
Butternut Squash, Leek & Ricotta Lattice Pie Chestnut, Sage & Parmesan Palmiers
Uses 2 medium butternut squash and 3 leeks Uses 200g chestnut puree
 Cheese
   
Asparagus & Stilton Tarts  Brie & Cranberry Tartlets Brie, Leek & Onion Quiche
 Uses 60g Stilton  Uses 250g cranberry sauce and approx 200g brie Uses 6 large slices of brie
Cheese & Red Pepper Muffins butternut squash, leek and stilton tart
Cheese & Red Pepper Muffins Butternut Squash, Leek & Stilton Tart Cheese, Sundried Tomato & Pesto Scones
Uses 125g Cheddar Uses 150g Stilton Uses 150g Cheddar
Onion Chutney & Cheese Swirl Bread Cheese, Marmite & Potato Pasties
Onion Chutney & Cheese Swirl Bread Cheese, Marmite & Potato Pasties
Uses 100g cheddar Uses 120g cheddar
Desserts
 
Christmas Pudding Trifle Panettone Pudding Cranberry Sauce Muffins
Uses 500g leftover Christmas pudding Uses 250g Panettone Uses 415g Cranberry Sauce
Stollen Muffins
Stollen Muffins Vegan Mincemeat Plait
Uses 60g marzipan & 25ml brandy Uses 1 jar mincemeat

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Chocolate Yule Log

Chocolate Yule Log

I’m not a huge fan of Christmas cake so my absolute favourite dessert to have at Christmas time is a Chocolate Yule Log! It’s a light chocoate sponge filled with whipped cream and coated in a rich chocolate ganache – what’s not to like! This recipe is based on a Mary Berry one, with a few of my own touches. I’ve made it so many times over the years I’ve lost count… It always disappears fast whenever I serve it! And I’m always hoping there’s enough left so I can go back for another slice!

Jump straight to the recipe!

To start I make the ganache topping because it has to cool down and set in the fridge for a few hours. I heated the double cream and butter on a low heat, then I mixed in dark chocolate until it was smooth and glossy. Then I popped it in the fridge for a few hours.

For the sponge I used my food mixer to whisk up eggs with caster sugar until frothy and at the ‘ribbon stage’. Then sifted in self-raising flour and cocoa powder and folded it into the egg mixture gently so as not to lose the frothiness.

I poured the mixture it into a lined baking tray with a lip and baked for 10 minutes.

 

Whilst it was baking I prepared a sheet of baking paper dusted generously with icing sugar, when it was done I tipped the sponge out onto it straight away. Then I peeled off the baking paper it was baked in and rolled the sponge up as tight as I could, taking the fresh baking paper with it. I left it to cool fully still wrapped in the paper.

Once the sponge was cold, I whipped up some double cream with icing sugar and vanilla for the filling. I unrolled the sponge and spread out the cream onto it using a palette knife. Then I rolled it back up again.

I cut the roll diagonally at one end and positioned on a serving board to look like a branch.

The ganache was nice and thick by now. I piped it onto the sponge and used a fork to create texture.

Christmas Yule Log

I made a holly sprig with fondant and dusted the Chocolate Yule Log with icing sugar.

Christmas Yule Log

If like me you stand in the camp of not liking Christmas pudding or cake, the Christmas Yule Log is a great alternative dessert idea for Christmas Day!

Christmas Yule Log

I usually make about three of these every year to take to all my Christmas events and meals. To make it a bit easier, you don’t have to cut the roll, you can just leave it straight too.


Chocolate Yule Log

Ingredients

For the ganache

  • 300 g Dark chocolate
  • 300 ml Double cream
  • 30 g Butter

For the sponge

  • 4 Eggs large
  • 100 g Caster sugar
  • 65 g Self raising flour
  • 40 g Cocoa powder

For the filling

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

For decoration

  • Icing sugar
  • Green fondant optional
  • Red fondant optional

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/400F/Gas Mark 6, line a large swiss roll tin or a baking tray with a lip, with baking paper

  2. Make the ganache first as it needs time to cool. Heat the double cream and butter in a pan on a low heat, you want to to be warm but not so hot you couldn't hold your finger in it

  3. Take it off the heat and add the dark chocolate broken into pieces. Leave for a few minutes, then stir and the chocolate should have melted. Put in the fridge to set for 3 - 4 hours

  4. For the sponge, whisk the eggs and sugar together with an electric whisk or in a food mixer for 8 minutes until it reaches 'ribbon stage' - this is when you can drizzle the mixer in a figure 8 and it doesn't sink back immediately

  5. Gently fold in the flour and cocoa powder, trying not to lose the volume

  6. Pour into the tin, and tip the tin to spread the mixture around. Bake for 10 minutes

  7. Remove from the oven and tip onto a clean sheet of baking paper that has been dusted with icing sugar

  8. Remove the baking paper the sponge was baked with, then roll up the sponge, taking the clean baking paper with it, then leave to cool completely

  9. Whip up the double cream, icing sugar and vanilla for the filling

  10. Gently unroll the sponge and spread the cream all over it

  11. Re-roll the sponge, diagonally slice about a third of the sponge off and position it along the side of the larger piece of sponge to look like a tree branch

  12. Remove the ganache from the fridge, it should be very thick by now. If it's too stif, microwave it for 30 seconds and stir well to loosen it up again. Pipe or spread the ganache all over the sponge. If piping, use a star nozzle to create texture. If spreading, use a fork to create texture

  13. Dust with icing sugar and add a decorative holly leaf made from fondant in the centre if you like

  14. Serve immediately, store any leftovers in the fridge for up to 2 days

Recipe slightly adapted from Mary Berry.

You can find more of my Christmas recipes by clicking here!

Chocolate Yule Log

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Mince Pie Cupcakes with Brandy Buttercream

Mince Pie Cupcakes with Brandy Buttercream

I’ve seen different versions of Mince Pie Cupcakes, from other bloggers and from recipe websites. Some have had the mincemeat mixed into the batter, and others in the centre of the cupcakes. I adore mince pies at Christmas time, and as soon as I see them in the shops I buy a box! So I knew I had to make my own version. I decided to put a luxury mincemeat laced with brandy and port in the centre of a spiced sponge, and lavish it with brandy buttercream. A delicious luxury Christmas treat!

Jump straight to the recipe!

  

To make the sponge I creamed together butter and golden caster sugar. Then I add eggs and whisked in.

  

Next I mixed in self raising flour and mixed spice. Then I divided it between paper cases.

I baked them for 20 minutes, until they were golden brown. Then I left them to cool completely.

  

I cut out the centre from the cakes with a cupcake corer. And I filled them up with a luxury mincemeat that was laced with brandy and port.

  

I made the buttercream by mixing icing sugar, butter and brandy together. Gosh it tasted good! Brandy is delicious stuff! Then I piped the icing onto the cupcakes, and added sprinkles and edible glitter too.

Mince Pie Cupcakes

I have to say that these Mince Pie Cupcakes are one of the tastiest thing I have ever made. I ate four of them from the first batch!

Mince Pie Cupcakes

Any mince pie fan will adore these cupcakes and devour them quickly! They’d be perfect for a Christmas party or buffet.

Mince Pie Cupcakes with Brandy Buttercream

Servings 12

Ingredients

For the sponge

  • 175 g Butter or baking spread
  • 175 g Golden caster sugar
  • 3 Eggs large
  • 1 tsp Mixed spice
  • 175 g Self raising flour

For the buttercream & filling

  • 200 g Mincemeat
  • 200 g Butter or baking spread
  • 400 g Icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp Brandy

For decoration

  • Sprinkles optional
  • Edible glitter optional

Instructions

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

  2. To make the cupcake sponge, cream together the butter and the sugar until smooth

  3. Add the eggs and mix well with a whisk

  4. Then whisk in the self raising flour and mixed spice

  5. Divide the mixture between the cupcakes cases, and bake them for 20-25 minutes until then are golden brown. Put them on a rack to cool completely

  6. Cut out the middle of each cupcake using a cupcake corer or a sharp knife
  7. Fill each hole with the mincemeat
  8. To make the buttercream, mix together the butter and icing sugar with a spoon or electric hand whisk, when it starts to come together, add the brandy and mix until smooth

  9. Pipe the icing onto the cupcakes using a star nozzle and piping bag. Or spread on with a spoon

  10. Add sprinkle and edible glitter if you like

  11. Keep in a cool place, and eat leftovers within 3 day

Recipe Notes

Mixed spice is a British spice blend containing Cinnamon, Coriander Seed, Nutmeg, Clove, Pimento, Ginger. If you can't get hold of it, use a Pumpkin Spice mix instead

You can find more of my Cupcake recipes by clicking here! Or click here for more Christmas recipes!

Mince Pie Cupcakes

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Gingerbread House

Gingerbread House

A Gingerbread House just screams winter and Christmastime doesn’t it?! I absolutely love how they look, how they all can be so different, and of course how delicious they taste!  It’s such a fun baking project to get you in the festive mood, plus kids and adults alike will have so much fun getting creative and decorating the house. I’ve created a free template for the pieces, which you can download and print out by clicking on the links within this post. Of course you can also buy Gingerbread House cookie cutter sets too. I really love the gingerbread recipe for this house as it’s the perfect texture and taste. Don’t forget to tag me on social media so I can see your Gingerbread House!

Jump straight to the recipe!

In a bowl I put plain flour, bicarbonate of soda, and butter. Using my fingers I rubbed the mixture together until it resembled fine breadcrumbs.

Then I added the ground ginger, mixed spice, and light brown sugar and stirred it in.

In a pan I gently heated golden syrup, and in a bowl I beat eggs. I made a well in the flour mixture, and poured in the eggs and golden syrup. I combined the mixture together until a dough formed. Then I wrapped it in cling film and put it in the fridge to chill for 1 hour.

I didn’t use a cookie cutter set for this house, I made my own template which you can print and download using the link below. I rolled out the dough to about 5mm thick and used my template to cut out the shapes of the house: two sides, the front and back, and two roof pieces.

Click here to download and print out my Gingerbread House template!

I placed them onto lined baking trays and baked each one for 15 minutes. Then I let them cool fully on cooling racks.

To display the Gingerbread House I covered a 12″ cake board in green fondant.

I decided to use caramel to stick the pieces of the Gingerbread House together as it sets quickly and goes very hard. First I heated sugar until it went golden, then I kept the caramel on a very low heat whilst I stuck the pieces together.

I started with the front piece and stuck both the sides to it. Then I put the back on, and finally the roof. Caramel hardens very fast so you have to work quickly, and an extra pair of hands is highly recommended.

To decorate the Gingerbread House and create a snow like effect I made some royal icing by whisking together egg whites, icing sugar and cream of tartar until thick.

Gingerbread House

I placed the house on the cake board and began decorating. I piped roof tiles, window and door shapes onto it using the royal icing which I had put in a piping bag with the end snipped off.

Gingerbread House

It’s up to you what sweets to decorate with, I chose M&Ms, Smarties and Jelly Tots and stuck them on with the royal icing.

Gingerbread House

I added a Christmas tree at the front of the Gingerbread House, which I made by wrapping a waffle ice cream cone in green fondant and sticking mini Smarties onto it for baubles.

Gingerbread House

And the Gingerbread House was complete! All that’s left to do is snap a few festive photos, then it’s demolition time!

Click here to download and print out my Gingerbread House template!

I’m linking up with Baking Crumbs hosted by Apply To Face Blog.

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Gingerbread House

Ingredients

For the gingerbread biscuits

  • 600 g Plain flour
  • 2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
  • 200 g Butter or baking spread
  • 3 tsp Ground ginger
  • 3 tsp Mixed spice
  • 300 g Light brown sugar
  • 200 g Golden syrup
  • 2 Eggs large

For the caramel

  • 100 g Caster sugar

For the royal icing

  • 3 Egg whites large
  • 450 g Icing sugar sifted
  • 1/2 tsp Cream of tartar

For decoration (optional - pick what you like!)

  • Smarties
  • Jelly tots
  • M&Ms
  • Sprinkles

Instructions

  1. In a pan gently heat the golden syrup, set it aside to cool for 5 minutes

  2. Put the plain flour, bicarbonate of soda, and butter into a bowl and rub the mixture together with your hands until it resembles breadcrumbs

  3. Add the ground ginger, mixed spice, and light brown sugar and stir them in

  4. Beat the eggs together in a small bowl or cup

  5. Pour the eggs and golden syrup into the flour mixture, then mix until a dough forms. Wrap it in cling film and chill for 1 hour in the fridge

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

  7. You can use a cookie cutter set for this house or download and print my template (see the link before and after this recipe) - you will need two of each piece for a full house

  8. Roll about a quarter of the dough out onto a well floured surface to a thickness of 5mm using a rolling pin and use your template or cutters to start cutting out the shapes of the house. Keep rolling out more dough until you have all the shapes. If you don't have enough baking trays to put all of the shapes on, then you can pop any unrolled dough back in the fridge wrapped up in cling film while you're waiting for pieces to bake

  9. Place your cut out pieces onto the lined baking tray(s) and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown all over. You may need to bake them in batches if you don't have enough space on the tray(s). Remember to leave gaps between them as they will spread a bit

  10. Let them cool on the tray for at least 5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack as the biscuit will be very delicate when hot, then let them cool fully on cooling racks

  11. To assemble the house, first check the side and front/back pieces to see if they need trimming and do so carefully. You want to make sure the edges on the bottom are flat so the house doesn't wobble, and that the ends of the side pieces are flat so they stick neatly to the front/back pieces. I use a serrated knife to gently trim the biscuit pieces

  12. I assembled my house first on a chopping board covered in baking paper so the caramel wouldn't stick to it. I had a cake board covered in green fondant ready for the house when it was assembled. I prefer to use caramel as it sets fast, but you can also use royal icing if you prefer - if using the royal icing then you can stick it straight on the fondant base or serving plate

  13. To make the caramel heat the sugar in a pan on a low-medium heat until it goes golden. Keep it on a low heat whilst assembling otherwise the caramel will harden quickly

  14. Safety first! You will need someone to help you assemble it, this is a two person job. Also please be careful! Caramel is very hot and hurts a lot if it gets on your skin when it's hot. I find wearing rubber gloves helps to protect your skin

  15. Start with the front piece and stick both the sides to it by dipping the biscuit into the caramel then pressing the edges together. You can also drip more caramel along the edges using a spoon to secure it. Then put the back on, and finally the roof pieces. You may need to trim the roof and test the fit before applying the caramel

  16. Once the house is assembled, the caramel will harden and cool fairly quickly. You can then put the house onto the serving plate or cake board

  17. To decorate, put all of the royal icing ingredients in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment - or use a handheld electric whisk - and whisk for 7-10 minutes until it's thick and holds it shape. You can also buy ready made royal icing if you prefer

  18. Then it's time to get creative! Put the royal icing into a piping bag and pipe on roof tiles, windows and a door. Stick any sweets onto the house using the icing as 'glue'. Add more icing to cover the edges of the house and make it look like it's been heavily snowed on!

  19. I made a Christmas tree by wrapping a waffle ice cream cone in green fondant and sticking mini smarties baubles onto it. I also added a pile of snowballs next to the house. Add whatever you like, maybe some gingerbread people with extra dough? Make sure to have fun and make it your own!

Click here to download and print out my Gingerbread House template!

You can find more of my Biscuit recipes by clicking here!

Gingerbread House

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