Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Strawberry Yogurt Lollies

These homemade strawberry yogurt lollies are super refreshing and a doddle to make.  In fact it's a great child friendly recipe (though some supervision may be needed depending upon the age and skill of the child).  Containing fresh strawberries, yogurt and just a small amount of added refined sugar, these homemade popsicles are a great guilt free summer time treat.

How to make homemade strawberry yogurt lollies, with just a few basic ingredients.

I apologise, the break in the recent heatwave which was being enjoyed by many here in the UK is down to me making our refreshing and tasty homemade Strawberry Yogurt Lollies!  It was almost like doing a little rain-dance!  I'm really not a fan of baking hot days.  Having a so-called English rose complexion of pale skin and blue eyes usually means I try to avoid being out in the hottest part of the day, in fact it has been known for me to spend far longer than usual down the freezer and chillier aisles in the supermarkets when the weather hots up!   

Of course ice cream and ice lollies are a great summer time treat for keeping cool too!  These homemade strawberry ice lollies were just what I needed last week.  Being made with yogurt does mean that these homemade strawberry lollies aren't as creamy as an ice cream, but depending upon your point of view that could be a good thing - after all there's fewer calories in yogurt than cream for a start!  As well as being super refreshing and tasty, they contain real fruit pieces and just a small amount of added refined sugar meaning that I can enjoy one without feeling guilty about it.  

Thursday, 22 June 2017

19 Perfect Picnic Recipes

Check out this collection of 19 vegetarian picnic foods.  These recipes are sure to provide you with  great inspiration for your next family picnic this summer!

19 vegetarian picnic recipe ideas, all are easy to make, package up and transport to a beautiful countryside location

If you've been on social media these past few days I'm sure you will have noticed that it's National Picnic Week here in the UK this week (16th - 25th June).  Given the glorious weather of late, it seemed churlish not to gather together my wonderful foodie blogging pals to share with you a mouth watering collection of vegetarian picnic recipe ideas!

Now, although National Picnic Week was the prompt for this collection, picnics are of course a great family activity throughout late spring, summer and even into autumn.  Though I do draw the line at eating alfresco in the throws of winter!  Packing up some delicious food together and then going for a walk to build up an appetite before settling to eat in your favourite countryside spot is surely what beautiful summer days are about!

So if you're planning a picnic and are looking for some inspiration for easy, tasty and transportable picnic food - which also happens to be vegetarian - then cast your eyes over these!  If any recipe catches your eye my blogging pals would love it if you clicked the green title text for a read!


Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Coffee & Walnut Chocolate Brownie

These coffee & walnut brownies are soft, squidgy and punctuated with healthy walnuts.  The classic flavour combination is teamed with lots of delicious chocolate in this brownie recipe.  They're the perfect bake when time is limited and the comfort of chocolate is needed.

How to make Coffee and walnut chocolate brownies, a quite and easy bake

What's a girl to do when time is of a premium but a therapeutic baking session is needed?  Make brownies of course!

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Homemade Coffee Cream Chocolates

Filled with a coffee flavoured chocolate ganache, these Coffee Cream Chocolates pack a punch!  They're the perfect homemade gift for any coffee lover!

How to make homemade coffee flavoured chocolates, a great confectionary making the perfect  gift for coffee lovers

Now that Father's Day is just around the corner here in the UK, thoughts in the Only Crumbs Remain kitchen have largely centred around what to treat my Dad with this year.  In previous years we've made him a Bavarian Slice, homemade Fig Rolls, and even a scrummy chocolate & cherry cake which I really need to share here. 

Knowing how much Dad enjoys coffee centred chocolates it was the perfect opportunity to hone my chocolate tempering skills.  Now, I have to admit that these chocolates weren't exactly perfect, but I had great fun in practicing!  Well, we are talking chocolate!  Despite their small flaws they were thoroughly enjoyed, being as nice if not nicer than the mass produced confectionary bought in shops.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Raspberry & White Chocolate Tarts

This recipe for raspberry & white chocolate tarts has a white chocolate ganache draped invitingly over the fruit, & the classic flavour combination is finished with a sprinkling of freeze dried raspberries.  They're as delicious as they are aesthetically pleasing.     

How to make a raspberry fruit tart.

Don't you just love how chocolate can drapes seductively over bakes, completely transforming them from being run of the mill nice to something totally irresistible?  It doesn't seem to matter whether the chocolate is drizzled over a buttercream frosting, ice cream, or even fruit, chocolate really does have the right properties to caress the food beneath resulting in something incredibly sexy and inviting.

I finally realised how aesthetically wonderful chocolate can be (I already know how amazing chocolate is in the taste department ๐Ÿ˜‰) whilst making these Strawberry Cupcakes a couple of weeks ago.  There was such a difference in the cupcakes between plonking the strawberry onto the buttercream frosting to drizzling a little dark chocolate ganache over the top!  The chocolate completely transformed those simple summery cupcakes.  

Strawberry Cupcakes with a dark chocolate ganache drizzle

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Strawberry & Vanilla Fudge

Like all confectionery, this homemade Strawberry & Vanilla Fudge recipe makes the perfect edible gift.  It's packed with yummy naughtiness, and is actually straightforward to make!

How to make homemade strawberry & vanilla fudge, the perfect edible gift!

During the past week or two it seems that I've been on a bit of a love fest with the beautiful strawberry here on Only Crumbs Remain.  And why not, when they scream of summer!

Not only have they recently starred in our Strawberry Cupcakes with a Chocolate Drizzle as well as our Strawberry & Basil Upside Down Cake.  But now they feature in this Strawberry and Vanilla Fudge.

strawberry cupcakes with a dark chocolate drizzle Strawberry & basil upside-down cake

Having some freeze dried strawberries left over from our upside-down cake, we chose to use them in this scrumptious homemade fudge recipe.  I have to admit that I have a bit of a weakness when it comes to fudge!  Especially homemade fudge!  If you like you can check out all of the flavour variations I've shared in my confectionery recipe index.

Homemade fudge not only tastes immeasurably better than mass produced shop bought fudge, it keeps really well, and is the perfect edible gift for those with a sweet tooth!  Think of birthdays, Christmas, mother's day or father's day, or simply as a 'thank you'.  Surely it'd be perfect packaged in a pretty bag for your child's teacher at the end of the school year!   

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Strawberry & Basil Upside-Down Cake

This flavoursome and aromatic strawberry & basil upside-down cake is easy to make.  The colourful pink strawberries, cooked with the cake, negates the need for any frostings.

How to make a strawberry and basil upside-down cake

Don't you just love it when a bake comes together as well, if not better, than you hope and envisage?

Being a huge fan of fresh strawberries, Mr E & I regularly have some during the summer months.  Even though they're delicious simply served with a little vanilla ice cream, or even on their own, we thought it would be fun to include some in one of our bakes.  Regulars to Only Crumbs Remain may have seen our strawberry cupcakes with a dark chocolate drizzle, but as delicious as they were the beautiful red strawberry wasn't actually incorporated IN the bake.

This strawberry cake is not only easy to make, but delicious and pretty too without the need for frostings

Being reluctant to mix the strawberries into the cake batter, due to their high water content, the strawberry halves were arranged on the base of the cake tin before being topped with the prepared cake batter.  If you're old enough to cast your minds back to the 70's and 80's think of pineapple upside-down cake (you may even recall Alvin making one, sadly to the dismay of Mary & Paul, on GBBO a few years ago) and you'll be along the right lines with this strawberry and basil version.

Strawberry and Basil Upside-Down Cake

The halved fresh strawberries, baked at the base of this Victoria sponge cake which once turned out becomes the top, provides heaps of flavour, a delicious aroma, a pretty colour and lots of interest.  What more can you ask for from a homemade cake?  How about even more flavour and interest with  freeze dried strawberries and shredded basil leaves peppered throughout the sponge?  Surely this negates the need for any frostings and fillings.

And if you're wondering about using basil leaves with strawberries, let alone in a cake, well all I can do is encourage you to try it.  Strawberries and basil work incredibly well together, like in my Strawberry & Basil Pavlova and even with these macerated strawberries which accompanied some griddled peaches.  But, if you prefer replace the shredded basil leaves for a few drops of vanilla extract instead.  

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Strawberry Cupcakes with Chocolate Drizzle

These strawberry cupcakes are a pretty, summery bake.  The inviting drizzle of dark chocolate ganache helps to counter the sweetness of the cupcake and buttercream frosting! 

Strawberry Cupcake recipe, finished with a drizzle of dark chocolate ganache

Summer is almost upon us, though you'd be forgiven for thinking it had already arrived if the glorious weather we're enjoyed here in the UK is anything to go by.

For me, the foods of summer definitely include berries starting with the beautiful red strawberry.  I recall the first year that Mr E & I grew some in our small garden, it was fun watching the bees being drawn to the pretty white flowers for them to develop into what we know as strawberries a few short weeks later.  But having only a handful of young strawberry plants that year we couldn't really describe our harvest as 'bumper'!  We just about picked enough to have a couple each with a slice of cake when friends came round for dinner! ๐Ÿ˜

How to make strawberry cupcakes with a dark chocolate ganache drizzle

Strawberries are great perched on top of a simple Victoria sponge cupcake.  Imagine a soft vanilla cupcake, topped with a simple vanilla buttercream finished with a ripe strawberry and a drizzle of dark chocolate ganache!   I don't know about you, but it certainly sings summer to me.  Even Dad found them enticing being pretty quick in grabbing a few tea plates from the cupboard so we could all dive in and enjoy them!


Monday, 29 May 2017

14 Beetroot Recipes

If you're look for some new and exciting beetroot recipes, whether that's a refreshing salad, a more substantial main meal or even a sweet bake then continue reading!

Although we often think of beetroot as being a salad vegetable (though there's certainly nothing wrong with that), the humble beet can be used in so many other ways.  Savoury bakes, cakes, pizza, and even shakes!  This collection of 14 beetroot recipes, brought to you with thanks to some top UK food bloggers, definitely has something for everybody!

So if you're looking for some new and inspiring ideas, are unsure of how to make the best use of a bunch of fresh beetroots which may have been gifted to you, or even have a jar of pickled beetroot lurking in the back of the cupboard begging to be used, then check out these recipes and follow the links in green for the actual recipe. 


Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Beetroot & Chocolate Cupcakes

An easy to make beetroot & chocolate muffin style cupcake, which is as delicious with or without the vibrant pink beetroot frosting.  These cupcakes are beautifully moist, and are punctuated with chocolate chips.  They're perfect for sneaking a little extra nutrition into our diets. 

Recipe for Beetroot and Chocolate Cupcakes

Although beetroot and chocolate cakes have been on my radar for a number of years, I have to confess that until now I've never tried them.  It's not that I was never sufficiently enticed by the idea of using beetroot in a cake, after all carrots work beautifully in them, but given that Mr E doesn't care for beetroot (he even declined my recent Beetroot & Lentil Pie in favour of Homity Pie!) so a large cake just for me seemed a little bit excessive.

How to make Beetroot and Chocolate Cupcakes

Logic eventually prevailed and my desire to try a beetroot and chocolate cake, morphed into cupcakes. Cupcakes are, of course, the perfect compromise as far as cake is concerned.  Even though cupcakes often don't have the same head turning qualities as a cake often has, cupcakes are quicker to bake, and of course any surplus can easily be frozen (without any frosting) with no spoiling effects (not that these beetroot and chocolate cupcakes had chance to be frozen, they were soon devoured ๐Ÿ˜‰).

Using beetroot in baking

This beetroot and chocolate cupcake recipe, is quick and easy (though it does take a little longer if you choose to use fresh beetroot, as we did, rather than vac packed beets).  It's almost as quick as an all-in-one batter once the beetroot is pureed.  There's no creaming or folding.  Just good old mixing!

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Raspberry & White Chocolate Mini Trifles

Flavoured with the popular combination of raspberry & white chocolate, these mini trifles are not only elegant and eye catching but are also a perfect dessert for dinner parties.  They're ideal regardless of the number of guests.

How to make raspberry & white chocolate mini trifles, perfect for dinner party desserts

Trifles have a very special place in my heart.  They bring back such fond happy memories of spending Sundays with Grandma when my brother and I were young.  Each week she would make us Sunday lunch, sometimes it would be a roast beef with amazing Yorkshire Puddings and other times it would be a simple salad.  But regardless of the main meal she would always treat us to a fruit trifle for dessert.

Not that Grandma was a one recipe wonder, far from it.  It was simply a case of making what was popular.  Trifle, with its soft sponge, tasty fruit, wobbly jelly, vanilla custard and rich cream, is undoubtedly a family favourite of ours.  And of course the squelch, as the spoon is lifted with the first portion from the trifle bowl, never failed to produce lots of hilarity and giggles!

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Lemon Drizzle Olive Oil Cake

This lemon drizzle cake, made with olive oil in place of the usual butter, is perfect for a mid-afternoon treat.  What it lacks in aesthetic qualities it makes up for with flavour and lightness.

How to make a Lemon Drizzle Olive Oil Cake

I have to admit that baking is hardly the healthiest of pastimes, with all of that butter, cream and sugar, and the calories associated with it it's hardly diet food.   And of course being a food blogger, and one who predominantly bakes cupcakes, cakes and pastries, not to mention the occasional batch of fudge, it'd be easy to allow the pounds to pile on and the waistline increase!  Thankfully Mr E and I have some great neighbours, not to mention family and friends, who are happy to try our bakes ๐Ÿ˜‰.

Of course we often make smaller batches too and bake 'just' a couple of times a week, but recently I've found it fun to temper the 'naughtiness' by substituting the butter with olive oil.  Regulars to Only Crumbs Remain may recall the pastries of our Vegan Beetroot & Lentil Pie, Apple Rose Tart and Pear and Almond Tart were made with oil rather than butter with great success.
Vegan Beetroot and Lentil Pie recipe How to make an apple rose tart. A classic pear and almond tart recipe.

Having enjoyed a handful of pies and tarts made with oil, it seemed logical to try an olive oil cake as well.  Not only did lemon seem to be the appropriate addition to work alongside the characteristic flavour of olive oil, it's most probably my favourite cake flavour too.  Even above chocolate cake!  So allow me to introduce you to our Lemon Drizzle Olive Oil Cake.


Friday, 5 May 2017

Rhubarb & Strawberry Meringue Cupcakes

These Rhubarb & Strawberry Meringue Cupcakes are a delicious & pretty twist on the classic Lemon Meringue Pie.  The slightly sharp curd filling contrasts beautifully with the sweet marshmallowy Italian meringue.

How to make Rhubarb and Strawberry Meringue Cupcakes, made with Italian meringue

If you're looking for a special cupcake which is as delicious as it looks then you've come to the right place!  Allow me to introduce you to this scrumptious rhubarb and strawberry curd filled cupcake topped with a swirl of marshmallowy Italian meringue.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Chocolate Orange Magic Cake

Wow family & friends with this chocolate orange magic cake.  It's a tray bake style bake, which is equally delicious as it is interesting.  Magic cakes are relatively easy to make, using one batter to produce a cake with three layers.

A magic cake recipe, a relatively simple cake made with one batter to produce a three layered cake.

One batter.  One cake.  Abracadabra.  Three layers.  It's a magic cake!

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Pear & Almond Tart

With a classic flavour combination, this Pear and Almond Tart not only looks inviting but also tastes amazing.  This frangipane tart, which was glazed with a little apricot jam to produce a wonderful sheen to the bake, was made to mark #BakeACakeForBowelCancerAwarenessMonth.

Pear and Almond Tart recipe

Cancer.  It's a word which conjures fear and dread in the vast majority of us.  Being a disease which can affect any part of our body, it's something which most of us will be familiar with, either having experienced it ourselves or through having a family member or friend who's been affected by it.

Now, I don't often talk about melancholic subjects here on Only Crumbs Remain, after all it is a baking blog.  But when I learnt that April is Be a Star, Bake a Cake for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month I knew instantly that I wanted to embrace it here on the blog.

It's the fourth most common cancer in the UK (and the second most common cause of cancer death in the UK) with over 41,000 people being diagnosed with it each year.   That's 1 in 14 men, and 1 in 19 women. (Information from Bowel Cancer UK).

One of those people was my dad.

17 years ago, back in spring of 2000, we received the news nobody wants to hear.  Dad needed major surgery and 6 months of chemo.  It was a difficult time for all of us, but especially for dad, clearly.  But due to the fantastic skill of the surgeons, oncologists, strength of body (he was only in his early 50's at the time) and mind and a lot of TLC, he came through it.

Happily he's still with us to tell the tale.     
How to make a classic pear and almond tart


Thursday, 20 April 2017

Coffee & Walnut Fudge

This homemade Coffee & Walnut Fudge recipe is far from shy and retiring.  It's robust, packed with flavour, and the coffee flavour cuts through the sweetness of the confectionery beautifully.  It's a great alternative fudge flavour! 

Coffee and Walnut Fudge Recipe

I think it's fair to say that I've gone slightly fudge mad in recent months!   There's been quite a foray into the world of homemade fudge here in the Only Crumbs Remain kitchen.

And why not when it tastes oh so good, is relatively easy to make and lends it's self incredibly well to being the carrier for a host of different flavour combinations.  And if that wasn't enough, let me tell you that friends and family will be your bestest friends ever (bestest ever I tell you ๐Ÿ˜‰) when you share your creation ..... that's assuming you're prepared to share!

How to make Coffee and Walnut Fudge

Just last week another batch was sliced into with Mr E commenting how much more flavoursome it is than shop bought fudge. I openly admit that I used to love treating myself to the occasional bag of shop bought mass produced fudge.  Invariably I would opt for a vanilla fudge, and yes that shop bought fudge was nice.   But since making our own we can honestly say that homemade fudge is far far tastier than the mass produced stuff.

Homemade fudge carries so much flavour!  And this homemade Coffee and Walnut Fudge is definitely no exception.


Thursday, 13 April 2017

Side-by-Side Baking - Meringues

If you've ever wondered if  frozen egg whites produce a better meringue than a fresh, or even pasteurised one, then keep on reading.  In this side-by-side comparison bake I look at meringues, comparing egg whites in four different states to determine if one is better than the other.

A meringue baking comparison, looking at fresh, frozen and pasturised egg whites.

Regulars to Only Crumbs Remain may recall our Rhubarb and Custard Genoise Cake, I know we recall it not least because it was absolutely delicious!  With the numerous egg whites left over from the creme patisserie, meringues seemed to be a bake not far on the horizon.  However, being a little short of time, and conscious that we had a wonderful cake to keep our sweet tooth happy, the egg whites were popped into the freezer for another day.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Raspberry & White Chocolate Meringue Kisses

These Raspberry & White Chocolate Meringue Kisses are as delicious as they are pretty.  They combine a popular flavour combination which works so well accompanied with meringues.      
Raspberry & White Chocolate Meringue Kisses recipe, perfect for a summer party.

These pretty little raspberry & white chocolate meringue kisses came about after carrying out a side-by-side-baking comparison this past week.  The four way look at meringues left me with masses of meringue kisses, which I clearly needed to use in some way.

The dainty shape of these meringues certainly lent themselves to being combined with some good flavours as well as a feminine and girlie colour.  And surely there's no colour more girlie than pink! 

A handful of a few fresh raspberries crushed into some whipped double cream created the perfect shade of pink for sandwiching together these lovely meringue kisses.  And the white chocolate not only complemented the raspberries perfectly, but also helped to protect the meringues from spoiling quickly from the moisture of the raspberry flavoured cream.  


Saturday, 1 April 2017

Double Chocolate Fudge with Mini Eggs

This Double Chocolate Fudge recipe produces a delicious melt in the mouth confectionery.  The addition of mini eggs not only makes it a perfect recipe for Easter treats, but also introduces a fun pop of colour and a wonderful contrast in texture.  Keep reading too for top visual clues when making fudge without a sugar thermometer.

Double Chocolate Fudge with Mini Eggs recipe

Ooh how I wish I could bring you smelly vision where this Double Chocolate fudge is concerned!  The aroma of chocolate filtering through the house whilst this fudge bubbles away, and for a number of hours afterwards, is delightful.

Of course the highlight of this Double Chocolate Fudge with mini eggs doesn't end there!  It gives a wonderful melt in the mouth experience and the mini eggs bring a great contrast of texture too.  If you love homemade fudge, trust me, you'll love this one.  It's sheer bliss!

Monday, 27 March 2017

38 Easter Bakes, The Ultimate Collection!

The ultimate collection of 38 Easter bakes, from traditional Easter treats like hot cross buns, and Simnel cake through to fun Easter themed cupcakes and plenty of ways to use up left over Easter chocolate.

38 Easter Bakes, containing traditional Simnel cake & hot cross buns, through to fun Easter themed cupcakes, free-from Easter recipes and ideas to use up left over Easter chocolate

As Easter is fast approaching you may be looking for some Easter bake inspiration.  With the help of a fabulous group of top food bloggers, I can bring you 38 amazing Easter recipes.  Here we have everything from traditional Easter bakes like Simnel cake and hot cross buns, through to tips for making your own Easter eggs and ideas for using up any left over Easter chocolate.  And if you're catering for those with allergies there is a delicious selection of free-from Easter recipes to whet your appetite, from gluten-free, to lactose-free and even sugar-free!

So with a huge thankyou to my blogging friends for allowing me to share this ultimate collection of Easter bakes with you, lets check them out!

  38 Easter Bakes


~  Showstopper Easter Cakes  ~ 



A Showstopping Easter cake, Malteser MaltEaster Bunny & Mini Egg Chocolate Cake

This cake has serious 'wow' factor! It's the perfect Easter showstopper cake if you were hosting a party.  Though you could, of course,  make it just because..!   Jenny not only tells us this cake is perfect for those who love Easter and the chocolate which comes with it, but she also shares a 'how to' video alongside her recipe demonstrating how easy this Easter showstopper cake is to assemble.  The difficult part would be ensuring the children (big and small) didn't eat the mini eggs before it was finished!


Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Easter Bunny Butt Cupcakes

These Easter & springtime themed cupcakes are so much fun!  They're surprisingly easy to make and would be perfect for children's parties, family get togethers and charity bake sales.

How to make Easter Bunny Butt Cupcakes

I'm sure Easter Bunny Butt Cupcakes need no real introduction.  With the cute fondant bunny butt poking through the buttercream grass and pretty flowers they shout out Easter and springtime loud and clear.

Ever since successfully making our fondant Christmas characters, a few short months ago, I've wanted to make these cute fondant bunny butt cupcakes which I see all over Pinterest at this time of year!  A recent journey over the Pennine hills to Lancashire to visit Mr E's side of the family was the perfect excuse to get creative. 

Easter Bunny Butt Cupcakes are perfect for springtime parties!

Creating fondant characters is, believe it or not, new to me having had my first dabble leading up to Christmas with our snowman, choir boy, penguin and Santa cake toppers.

Despite the detail in our Easter themed cupcakes, the fondant bunny is actually relatively easy to achieve as most of the shapes are merely balls of fondant of varying sizes.  The body, fluffy tail, and pink pads on the over sized feet are just balls of fondant. Even those bunny feet started off life as a ball!  Hopefully you will see the basic component parts with the images.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Apple Rose Tart

Apple rose tarts are eye catching, resembling a pretty bouquet of roses.  They're just as delicious as any apple pie!

Apple Rose Tart Recipe

Mother's Day is fast approaching and for the past week or so I've been wondering what to make for my Mum this year.  Of course I could make her some elaborate chocolate showstopper, or something equally indulgent, but knowing that my Mum is very conscious about the types and quantities of fat that she includes in her diet such bakes really wouldn't have been appropriate for her.

So, wanting to make her something which was relatively healthy yet eye catching, I recalled the pretty vibe of our apple roses which I made last year and was inspired to make this family sized apple rose tart.

Healthy Apple Rose Tart Recipe

Of course pastry itself isn't the healthiest of choices having invariably been made with butter packed with saturated fats.  But having successfully made a vegan pastry just last week for our Beetroot & Lentil Pie, which was so much healthier having been made with an olive oil, I knew that that vegan pastry recipe would be perfect for this healthy Apple Rose Tart.   This pretty tart recipe does include a certain amount of refined sugar, a total of about 85g, but the individual serving quantity would be minimal once this posh apple pie is divided between guests.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Homemade Hazelnut Noisette Chocolates

These handmade Hazelnut Noisette Chocolates are the perfect gift for chocolate lovers!  The tempered milk chocolate shell contains a rich milk chocolate hazelnut ganache!     

Homemade Hazelnut Noisette Chocolates

So many celebrations often call for a lovely box of chocolates; birthdays, thank you's, Valentine's day, and of course Mother's day.   It's so easy to pop into a shop and select a lovely box of chocolates, but just imagine how special the recipient would feel if you'd made those chocolates yourself!  You would certainly earn some brownie points if you were to make a few handmade chocolates.

And before you disappear thinking that it's beyond a regular home baker, hang around for a little longer and trust me when I say it's really not that difficult to do!  These homemade Hazelnut Noisette Chocolates are only my third attempt at making handmade chocolates, the first being a batch of hazelnut and caramel chocolates which I made to mark my blog's birthday.

Friday, 10 March 2017

Beetroot & Lentil Vegan Pie

With a wonderful earthy flavour, this vegan beetroot & lentil pie recipe produces a delicious, colourful and nutritious meal which is perfect served with vegetables and potatoes or a simple salad.

Beetroot & Lentil Vegan Pie recipe

This past week was British Pie Week.  I'm sure that all of your social media feeds, just like mine, were packed with wonderful pie creations.  Fruit pies.  Savoury pies.  Single crust pies.  Double crust pies.  Rustic pies.  Pretty pies.

Given that our household is a great big fan of pies I couldn't let British Pie Week pass by without coming up with another pie recipe.

How to make a vegan Beetroot & Lentil Pie

This delicious Beetroot & Lentil Pie has such a wonderful earthy flavour courtesy of the roasted beets.  And just check out that amazing colour once the pie is sliced into!  There's definitely no need for food colourant in this recipe thanks to the amazing pigments the beetroot has.  For that very reason I'd also recomend wearing something different to your favourite white blouse / shirt when preparing (or even eating) this lovely savoury vegan pie!   Rubber gloves also come in useful too whilst skinning them after they have been roasted.  

Monday, 6 March 2017

Hazelnut & Caramel Chocolates + Giveaway!

There's nothing more special than handmade chocolates, and they're surprisingly not as difficult to make as you might imagine.  These handmade hazelnut & caramel chocolates were just the ticket to celebrate Only Crumbs Remain's birthday, alongside a giveaway!  (NB Giveaway now closed).  

How to make Homemade Hazelnut & Caramel Chocolates

When there are things to celebrate, alongside cake, chocolates are very much the order of the day.  So given that Only Crumbs Remain turned two today, I thought we'd celebrate with chocolate!  Though not any box of mass produced shop bought chocolate!  We're talking homemade ones here, specifically Hazelnut & Caramel Chocolates!  They're similar in may ways to Quality Street's The Purple One, apparently the most popular chocolate in their selection!

How to make Hazelnut & Caramel Chocolates at home

And if handmade chocolates weren't excitement enough to celebrate my blog's second birthday we are also hosting a giveaway as a way of saying 'thank you' to so many people for their continued support.  Returning readers, new visitors, fellow bloggers, collaborators, family and friends!  Thank you!

So from a fan of home baking, who wants to say thank you, here's your chance to win 'The Chocolatier's Baking Bundle!'  


Wednesday, 1 March 2017

20 Awesome Dinner Party Desserts

We've got you covered with this awesome collection of 20 dinner party dessert recipes from top UK food bloggers.  There are so many to choose from, including free-from desserts, chocolate creations, cheesecakes and so much more!

20 Awesome Dinner Party Dessert Recipes

My food blogging pals certainly came up trumps when I put the call out on FaceBook for dinner party dessert ideas.  They certainly didn't let me down with the breadth of awesome and delicious dessert recipes they shared with me!

Every single one of the recipes listed below can be made well ahead of time (though one or two may perhaps need to be scattered with crumbled biscuits or perhaps dusted with cocoa powder at the last moment), even a day or two before in some cases, allowing you to be the perfect attentive host when your guests arrive. 

So, whether you're after a rich chocolate dessert, a cheesecake, something free-from, or even a frozen creation, then look no further.  There's sure to be something to whet you're appetite in this ultimate dinner party dessert recipe collection! 

The difficulty comes when choosing which to make first!


Monday, 27 February 2017

Orange Posset with Rhubarb & Shortbread

This delicious and eye catching dessert is perfect when hosting a dinner party not least because it is super easy to make, looks and tastes amazing, but needs to be made a few hours ahead of time allowing you to be the perfect attentive host!  The luxurious orange posset is teamed with a naturally vibrant rhubarb and orange jam, which not only provides aesthetic interest and combines a flavour combination which really works, but the sharpness of the rhubarb breaks up the richness of the dessert beautifully. 

Orange Posset with Rhubarb and Shortbread Fingers

I love desserts.  Puddings.  Afters.  Sweets.   What ever you want to call them they have my name all over them.  Just check out my recipe index if you need any more convincing!    Whether they're homely like a Mincemeat & Apple Galette, traditional like a Yorkshire Curd Tart,  or complex like a Marjolaine I just love desserts.

But for me, easy, eye catching, and delicious desserts are what's called for when we have dinner guests coming round.  Even better if the recipe can be made way ahead of time to allow me to natter and entertain our friends and family rather than being stuck in a hot kitchen where it's easy to become stressed over how long things may be taking.  Delicious make ahead desserts are certainly what's called for, and if you need some further dinner party dessert inspiration why not check out my 20 Awesome Dinner Party Desserts from top UK food bloggers!

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Rhubard & Custard Genoise Cake

This delicate genoise cake recipe marries the classic flavour combination of rhubarb and custard, teaming it with orange for extra deliciousness.  It produces a wonderfully delicious light sponge cake which is perfect for sharing over afternoon tea.    

Rhubarb and Custard Genoise Sponge Cake Recipe

Now that forced rhubarb has hit the shops it would seem rude not to take advantage of those delicious & beautiful slender red stems and bake something equally delicious.   It's such a versatile fruit vegetable which can easily be used in a host of different recipes, such as crumble (like our classic recipe for rhubarb and ginger crumble), in cakes, or even made into a jam or curd.  I'm also led to believe, for those carnivores out there,  that the natural sharpness of rhubarb cuts through the oily qualities of mackerel really well!

Rhubarb and Custard Genoise Sponge Cake Recipe, made with forced rhubarb and a little orange

One cake I'm particularly drawn to, aesthetically, is the Fraisier cake, no doubt popularised by GBBO's technical challenge a few years ago.  The halved strawberries positioned upright around the edge of a classic genoise cake and surrounded by creme patissiere simply looks stunning.  Last spring that cake inspired me to try something similar, replacing the strawberries with with rhubarb and orange.  Short baked batons of rhubarb stood on end around the edge of a sponge cake, alternated with orange segments and filled with a patissierie custard.  Alas, though, despite its amazing flavour combo, it didn't make it to the blog due to structural stability, or rather instability! 

That wasn't the end of the rhubarb and custard cake inspiration though.  The idea has stayed in my 'to bake list' all year.  As forced rhubarb is now available in the supermarkets and a genoise sponge cake had been made in my recent side-by-side baking comparison the cake was revisited with a few necessary alterations.


Monday, 20 February 2017

Side-by-Side Baking - Genoise Cake

A comparison bake exploring 2 different methods of making genoise cakes.  The aim is to identify if one is more effective than the other.

Continuing with my Side-by-Side Baking series, this month I chose to look at two ways of making a genoise cake, specifically using the gentle heat of a bain marie whilst beating the eggs and sugar together to ribbon stage compared to a batter made without any heat.

About my Side-by-Side Baking Series.

If you're new to Only Crumbs Remain, you may be wondering what my Side-by-Side Baking series is all about.  Basically, it's an ongoing series of posts where I look at the effects certain techniques and food products have on given bakes.  More often than not, and I certainly include myself here, we are shown how to make, say a Victoria Sponge, but with little understanding of why we may be folding in the flour so gently and what would happen to our cake if we didn't.  This series is designed to experiment with and highlight such techniques and products with a view to appreciating why we carry out them out.  So for instance, last month we looked at curdled cake batters, but I've also looked at resting Yorkshire Pudding batters before baking, folding in flour by hand against that folded in with a spatula, butter quality in cake batters and the all-in-one method against the traditional creaming-in-method.  These bakes are designed to focus upon one aspect of baking (or even ingredient) to see if we can make our bakes even better or even if there are some, dare I say, short cuts we can take to achieve a good result.  Therefore, in this series there will always be at least two separate batches baked in these comparisons to allow me, and you as the reader, to literally compare them Side-by-Side.

Side-by-Side Baking - Making a Genoise Cake.

So, as I've already mentioned, for this month's comparison bake I chose to look at two different ways to make a genoise sponge cake, to determined if there is a method which produces a cake with a better rise and with more aeration.

The prompt for this bake came some months ago, though if truth be told it was over 12 months ago, when my mum celebrated her 65th birthday.  To mark the occasion we made her an Apple & Cinnamon Genoise Cake, which by the way was absolutely delicious and was the perfect cake to round off her birthday which had seen us at a lovely (almost swanky) fish & chip shop complete with chandeliers!


Monday, 13 February 2017

Homity Pie

Homity Pie is a simple, homely, and nutritious bake just like a great big hug in pie form!  It is a vegetarian open pie packed with potatoes, spring onions, leeks, and cheese, and is delicious served either with a green salad or a medley of your favourite vegetables.  

Homemade Homity Pie

The first time that Mr E & I came across Homity Pie, I seem to recall, was some three or four years ago whilst having lunch in a lovely vegetarian tea room / cafe in the market town of Skipton one chilly November day.   It was listed on the specials board, 'homity pie served with seasonal vegetables'.  Neither of us had heard of it, but after quizzing the waitress Mr E quickly decided that that was for him.

You see, Mr E loves his potatoes and Homity Pie is packed full of the humble potato.  They're certainly the star of the show.  But with a few other basic ingredients, of onions, cheese and parsley, this vegetarian open pie is transformed into a delicious and nutritious family feast.


Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Vegan Rich Chocolate Orange Dessert

This easy to make chocolate orange dessert is completely luxurious!  It would be perfect for date night, or those ocassions when you feel the need for a delicious chocolate pudding.  This recipe is vegan friendly, meaning it is also suitable for those who need to avoid dairy and / or eggs.  It is also gluten free.

Vegan and Gluten Free Individal Chocolate Orange Dessert Recipe

If you're planning a romantic meal for you and your special somebody, then, regardless of what you have for your main course, you're going to need an indulgent and delicious dessert.  Surely that means a chocolate dessert.

Chocolate desserts, to me at least, are a must for Valentine's Day.  They're also perfect for date night, birthdays, when entertaining friends and family, and quite possibly every other day which ends in a 'y'!

Easy Vegan and Gluten Free Chocolate Orange Dessert Recipe

This dessert is both gluten free and vegan friendly.  Now, although it is free of ingredients like butter, cream, milk and eggs which we ordinarily rely on to bring a certain amount of flavour to a recipe, this Rich Chocolate Orange Dessert is far from being flavour free.