Monday, 28 November 2016

Mini Christmas Cakes

Christmas cakes are an integral part of the festivities for many people.  Why not make some mini Christmas cakes to give to friends and family, either as a small gesture or as part of a delicious homemade foodie hamper. 

Homemade Mini Christmas Cakes, perfect for an easy to make edible gift.

Christmas, as we all know, is the season for giving.  Though, often it can be difficult choosing gifts for loved ones who seemingly have 'everything'.  They already have more than one bottle of their favourite perfume / aftershave, a bookshelf of novels by their favourite authors, and that chunky knit woolly jumper is folded away in the draw next to their seasonal one, decorated with Santa carrying a bunch of mistletoe!

For those friends and relatives why not present them with a hamper, large or small, full of delicious goodies.  Imagine that hamper packed with homemade goodies like relishes, chutneys, biscuits, cheeses, fudge, truffles and mini Christmas Cake.  Surely a homemade gift, that you've spent time and care over, that you've made yourself with love and finished off with a  Christmassy ribbon says 'Merry Christmas, I love you' far more than any unwanted gift hurriedly picked from a department store shelf.


Thursday, 24 November 2016

Mince Pies with a Frangipane Crust

These delicious mince pies with a frangipane crust are a perfect alternative bake to the pastry rich, double crust pies usually enjoyed around Christmas time.  They're easy to make, and with shop bought pastry you'll be sat down enjoying one before you know it!

Mince pies are a much loved part of Christmas festivities.  In fact you could possibly go as far as to say that they're almost a staple treat for many households.  If Family Fortunes were to pose a question along the lines of: 'Name foods commonly associated with Christmas', then I'm more than sure that mince pies would be a popular answer nestled amongst turkey, brussel sprouts and Christmas pudding.


Monday, 21 November 2016

Cookie Monster Cupcakes with a Full Tummy!

These fun and easy to make cupcakes are perfect for children's parties, family get togethers and charity bake sales.
How to make Cookie Monster Cupcakes with a full tummy of ganache

These past few weeks has seemingly seen Cookie Monster, from Sesame Street, along with his friends Big Bird, Elmo, Bert and Ernie, and Count von Count everywhere.  They've been on tv trailers and even the One Show where Cookie Monster was a little 'upset' having had to wait for his cookie which, when he did get his jaws around it, sent crumbs all over the place!

He's even been in the Only Crumbs Remain kitchen!  OK, perhaps not Cookie Monster himself, leaving crumbs in his wake, but rather in the guise of Cookie Monster Cupcakes!


Sunday, 13 November 2016

Pear, Chocolate & Spice Cake

With warming fragrant spice, crowd pleasing chocolate and naturally sweet & nutritious pears, this delicious recipe for pear cake is perfect for the chillier autumn months.  Finishing this seasonal cake with sliced pears, a glaze of apricot jam and a little chocolate ganache removes the temptation to laden it with a sugary frosting.   

A delicious pear cake made extra tasty with complementary spices and chocolate.

Like most households, I suspect, we occasionally have fruit which has been languishing in the fruit bowl for a few too many days, turning a little too soft and gradually spoiling, being passed over for those fresher, shinier more inviting pieces.

Having a couple of pears in this sorry state just last week, it was the perfect excuse to don my pinny and gather the flour and sugar from the cupboard.

This pear cake is simply finished with sliced pears, apricot jam glaze and chocolate ganache.

It would have been such a shame to dispose of those pears in the food-waste caddy just because they were a little too soft with the skin starting to brown a little.  After peeling and coring the pears, it was evident that the fruit was still very much edible.  The juicy fruit was diced and the pieces made their way into our Pear, Chocolate and Spice Cake.


Thursday, 3 November 2016

Baked Bengal Curds with Macerated Berries

Think of this dessert as an easy baked cheesecake.  With creamy cheesecake like curds, colourful berries and contrasting texture courtesy of the almond crumble, this traditional Indian dessert of Baked Bengal Curds is certainly one to try.  It is naturally gluten free. 

A traditional Indian dessert called Baked Bengal Curds, or Bhapa Doi

If you're looking for an easy dessert recipe which is not only tasty but perfect either as a mid-week treat or to serve when entertaining guests then look no further, you've found it!

All three elements of this delicious dessert, the curds, almond crumble and macerated berries, require just 10 minutes of hands on time, which includes getting the kitchen scales out of the cupboard and weighing the ingredients, or up to 15 minutes if you're working particularly slowly!  If that's not enticement enough just check out how inviting the dessert looks with those beautiful summer berries against the creamy white of the baked curds.  And the piece de resistance, for some, me included, is that this dessert tastes remarkably like cheesecake!

Easy baked cheesecake recipe