Jaffa Cakes

It’s been a while. In fact it’s been 41 days, 16 hours, 20 minutes and 49 seconds at the time of writing this post since I lasted uploaded something. Apologies for that. To be honest, I don’t really have an explanation, it’s just been one of those times when life takes over and my poor little baking blog gets pushed to one side. Nevertheless, I’ve still been in the kitchen and am finally ready to start sharing some of my baked treats with you. For this weeks post I’ve decided to go for something a little different to what I’d usually opt for and have a go at making my very own Jaffa Cakes. I know there’s the debate as to whether a Jaffa Cake is a cake or a biscuit however, since my own turned out HUGE, I think for now, I’ll settle on them being a cake.

INGREDIENTS
Orange Jelly Cubes
1 Orange
50g Plain Flour
50g Caster Sugar
2 Eggs
200g Dark Chocolate, melted

RECIPE

1. Zest the orange and set to one side. Dissolve the jelly in roughly 300ml of hot water and squeeze in the juice of the orange.

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2. Line a shallow baking tray with cling film. Pour the jelly mixture in and pop in the fridge to set.

3. Preheat an oven to 180ºc/Gas Mark 4, ensuring the shelving is centre.

4. Boil a pan of water and reduce to simmer. In a bowl over the water, whisk together the sugar, eggs and orange zest until pale and fluffy. This should take around 10 minutes.

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5. Carefully fold in the flour until throughly combined.

6. Grease a muffin tin with a little butter. Divide the mixture equally.

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7. Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 10 minutes until golden and they spring back when touched.

8. Ease the sponges loose once cooled but keep them in the muffin tin.

9. Using a small circular cutter, cut 12 discs from the jelly sheet and place one on top of each cake.

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10. Melt the chocolate in either the microwave or over a pan of simmering water. Drizzle the chocolate to that it completely covers the top of the Jaffa Cakes.

11. Pop the Jaffa Cakes back in the fridge to set before removing them from the muffin tin.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe Sorted Food |

| Previous Post Almond & Lemon Sponge |

Marble Cake Cupcakes

I’m a big fan of marble cake. I love all the snazzy patterns you see as you bite into it. Plus, chocolate and vanilla are just one of the best combinations. I spotted this recipe for marble cake cupcakes in a magazine by Tesco this week. I thought they were a nice idea for something a little different over the summer and they’re still super easy!

 INGREDIENTS
Cupcakes
150g (5oz) butter, softened
150g (5oz) caster sugar
175g (6oz) self-raising flour
3 medium eggs
50ml warm milk
3 level tbsp cocoa powder, sifted

Frosting
150g (5oz) butter, softened
250g (8oz) icing sugar

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4. Line a 12-hole muffin tin with muffin cases.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

3. Sift in the flour as well as alternating between adding the eggs and warm milk. Mix until smooth.

4. Divide the mixture between two bowls. In one stir in the cocoa powder.

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5. Alternate between spooning small dollops of the plain mixture and chocolate batter in the cake cases. Using a skewer or knife, swirl the two cake batters together. (But not too much or it’ll ruin the marble effect!)

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6. Bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes and until a skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin before transferring to a wire rack to completely cool.

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7. Mix together the softened butter and icing sugar until a smooth buttercream forms. Add a splash of milk if you need to.

8. Pipe or spoon a little buttercream onto each cupcake and decorate with sprinkles.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe Tesco Good Food |

| Previous Recipe Chocolate Chip Scones |

Sweet Pear Sponge

For my bake this week I decided to turn back to one of my favourite recipe books. I love the Marks & Spencers Simply Baking book because its recipes use ingredients that most of us have in our cupboard home. Since I was unable to decide which recipe was my favourite, I decided to start from the beginning with this sweet pear sponge.

INGREDIENTS
175g/6 oz butter, softened
175g/6 oz soft brown sugar
3 eggs, beaten
150g/5½ oz self-raising flour, sifted
15g/½ oz cocoa powder
2 tbsp milk
2 small pears, peeled, cored & sliced

METHOD 

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4, ensuring the shelving is centre. Grease and line a 23cm/8inch loose-bottomed cake tin.

2. In a bowl, cream together the softened butter and sugar until pale and creamy.

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3. Gradually add the beaten eggs. Ensure that you beat the mix throughly as steadily add the eggs.

4. Sieve the self-raising flour and cocoa powder into the cake batter and folder gently until the ingredients are combined.

5. Stir in the milk.

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6. Spoon the mixture into your prepared cake tin. Smooth the top with a spoon or knife.

7. Arrange the pear slices on top.

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(Hopefully you’ll do a better job at slicing the pears than I did!)

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8. Bake in the centre of the oven for roughly 1 hour or until the cake is firm to touch.

9. Leave to cool in the tin before transferring to a wire rack.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Recipe from Simply Baking at M&S |

Unfortunately, since the book is a little old now, I’m unable to point you in the direction of this specific book, however if you are looking for a new recipe book, I’d highly recommend that you check out the M&S baking range.

| Previous Recipe White Chocolate Blondies |

Coconut Bars

Now I say Coconut bars, but to be honest, they turned out more like boulders – nothing like the nice neat bars I had visioned on creating. Nevertheless, these coconut bars were creamy and delicious, best served straight from the fridge.  When it comes to covering them in chocolate, it does get a little messy, but that’s just part of the fun, right?!

INGREDIENTS
200g Desiccated Coconut
397g Condensed Milk
300g Milk Chocolate

METHOD 

1. Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.

2. In a bowl, mix together the desiccated coconut and condensed milk.

3. Take small handfuls of the mixture and shape into bars.

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4. Place in the fridge to harden up slightly before covering with chocolate. (I left mine for an hour but 30 minutes should be fine)

5. Melt the chocolate either in the microwave or over a hob, making sure the bowl avoids touching the water. Once melted, spoon the melted chocolate over the bars and place back on the grease proofed baking tray.

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6. Place back in the fridge for half an hour or until completely set.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe Homemade Bounty Bars | | Previous Recipe Maltesers Cupcakes |

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Malteser Cupcakes

These Maltesers Cupcakes are such a fun idea and a perfect treat this weekend. Despite the original recipe having vanilla buttercream, I went with chocolate because in my eyes, the more chocolate, the better!

INGREDIENTS
Cupcakes:-
200g Unsalted Butter, Softened
150g Caster Sugar
50g Brown Sugar
2 Teaspoons of Vanilla Essence
4 Medium Eggs
200g Plain Flour
10g Baking Powder
Pinch of salt
80g Maltesers, Crushed

Chocolate Buttercream:
110g Unsalted Butter, Softened
170g Icing Sugar, Sifted
55g Cocoa Powder, Sifted
1-2 tbsp Milk
Maltesers

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to 180°c/gas mark 4, ensuring the shelving is centre. Line a cupcake/muffin tin with 12 cupcake cases.

2. Cream together the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy.

3. Add the vanilla essence.

4. Begin alternating between adding the flour and the eggs. Mix until smooth.

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5. Add the baking powder and salt. Stir in the crushed Maltesers.

6. Equally divide the mixture between the cupcake cases and bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer comes out clean.

7. For the buttercream, cream together the softened butter and icing sugar.

8. Add in the cocoa powder and gradually add the milk.

9. Either spoon or pipe the buttercream onto each cupcake and decorate each with Maltesers.

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I’d recommend you eating these pretty sharpish – just because the maltesers tend to go a little off over time. But they’re so delicious, I’m sure you won’t have any problems finding someone to eat them!

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe Lorraine Pascale Malteser Cupcakes |

| Previous Recipe Honey Cake |

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American Cookies

You must know by now that I like a cookie or two. To me an American Cookie is one of the best, the crunchy outside is perfect against the soft, chewy centre that’s oozing with chocolate. It’ll always be a winner to me!

american cookies

INGREDIENTS
250g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
170g unsalted butter, melted
200g dark brown soft sugar
100g caster sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1 egg yolk
Milk & White Chocolate Bars (As much as you like!)

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to 170 C / Gas mark 3. Grease and line two or three baking trays.

2. Sift together the flour and salt. (The recipe also said bicarbonate of soda, but reviews said it gave the cookies a strange taste, so I left it out!)

3.In a separate bowl, mix together the melted butter, brown sugar and caster sugar until well combined. Beat in the vanilla, egg and egg yolk until light and creamy.

4. Mix in the sifted ingredients. Break the chocolate into chunks and stir into the mix. (Roughly I used a big bar of milk chocolate and a big bar of white chocolate.)

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5. Place a generous tablespoon of the cookie dough on the tray, making sure there is plenty of room between the cookies to than can spread as they cook without getting stuck together. The recipe suggests 18 cookies, I think I managed about 14, so just judge as you go how far you can stretch the dough to.

6. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Don’t be tempted to bake them longer as you’ll lose the chewy texture. Cool on baking trays before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe American Chewy Cookies | Previous Recipe Nutella Marble Cake |

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Nutella Marble Cake

I admit I am a Nutella newbie. Having only ever made these Nutella Cupcakes before, I wanted to find a new recipe but something that was still fairly straight forward. This is what I came up with!

NUTELLA MARBLE CAKE

nutella marble cake

INGREDIENTS
8oz Unsalted Butter, Softened
8oz Caster Sugar
8oz Self-Raising Flour, Sifted
4 Eggs
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Essence
A Generous Serving of Nutella

METHOD

1. Preheat your oven to gas mark 4 ensuring the shelving is in the centre. Grease and line two sandwich tins.

2. Cream together the butter and the sugar.

3. Gradually sift in the flour adding an egg each time as you go.

4. Mix the vanilla essence into the cake batter.

5. Divide the mixture equally between the two sandwich tins.

6. In each tin, dollop roughly 3 tablespoons of Nutella into the batter. Using a knife, swirl the Nutella throughout the batter to create a marble effect.

DSCF3490(A little messy!) 

7. Bake the cakes in the centre of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

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8. Leave to cool in their tins before beginning to assemble. Spread a generous serving of Nutella on one side of the cake before sandwiching the other on top.

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9. Dust with a little icing sugar before serving.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Previous Recipe Honeycomb Cheesecake |

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Chocolate Brownies

Whilst I know many new years resolutions will include eating healthy and to do a little more exercise here and there (I am included in this!), I have already broke this solution on several occasions, so I thought why not treat myself and tuck in to a good ole chocolate brownie!

chocolate brownies

INGREDIENTS
185g unsalted butter
185g best dark chocolate
85g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
3 large eggs
275g golden caster sugar
50g milk chocolate
dusting of icing sugar

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4/160C. Grease and line a shallow 20cm square tin with baking paper. (My tin was rectangular 11×7 as that was all I had!)

2. Melt the unsalted butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot water. Occasionally mix. Once melted leave to cool slightly.

3. Sift the plain flour and cocoa powder into a bowl.

4.  In a separate bowl beat together the  eggs and golden caster sugar.

5. Pour the melted butter and chocolate into the egg and sugar mixture. Gradually add the dry ingredients of flour and cocoa.

6. Break the milk chocolate and add into the mix. Give a final stir together, the mixture should be fairly thick  and dark.

7. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes. The brownies should be a little gooey when they come out the oven so try not to overcook. You should look out for the brownie coming away from the sides of the tin.

8.. Leave to cool before dusting with a little icing sugar and cutting into squares.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe BBC Best Brownies Ever |

| Previous Recipe Homemade Hot Chocolate |

Peppermint Creams

I remember first making peppermint creams way back in primary school when we made them as a Christmas present. Seeing as we’re well into the festive season, I thought it’d be fun to give these another go, turning a simple sweet into a pretty Christmas gift. They’re perfect to give if you’re on a budget this Christmas or if you simply fancy adding that personal touch to a present, I’d definitely recommend you give these a go, not only do they look cute, but they’re delicious!

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INGREDIENTS
1 Egg White
450g/ 1lb Fondant Icing Sugar, plus a little for dusting
1-2 Drops of Peppermint Oil or Essence
Green Food Colouring (optional)
150g Dark Chocolate, good quality, at least 50% cocoa

METHOD

1. In a bowl, whisk the egg white until stiff and peaks form.

2. Gradually sift in the icing sugar and mix until firm.

3. Add one to two drops of peppermint. (The trick is not to add too little, but to also not to add too much! 1-2 drops is plenty!)

4. Add the green colouring to give a food peppermint colour. If not, leave white.

5. On a clean surface, lightly dust with icing sugar and kneed the fondant. Place in a polythene bag and leave at room temperature for one hour.

6. Line two baking trays with baking parchment.

7. Roll out the fondant to 5mm thickness. Using a 4cm round cutter, cut approximately 40 circles.

8. Place the rounds on the baking trays and leave in a cool place for 12 hours, or overnight, until completely set and dry.

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9. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until melted.

10. Dip each peppermint round into the chocolate, covering one half of each sweet.

11. Place the sweets back on the backing tray and leave for 1 to 2 hours to set.

12. If giving as a gift, put a handful of sweets in a clear cellophane bag and tie with ribbon.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe by Simple Pleasures |

| Previous Recipe Sausage Danish | Previous Review Chocolate Cupcakes |

Chocolate Cupcakes

After absolutely loving this Lemon Cupcake mix from Tesco a little while ago, I decided to try the same mix but the chocolate version. These were SO delicious with the cake being super soft and moist, and there being plenty of frosting with curls to give a generous portion on each cupcake. As always, they’re not as good as baking you’re own, but they were still pretty good!

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Like the previous mix, these are super easy with you just needing to add an egg, a splash of milk, oil and butter for the frosting. The cakes were a decent size and were easy  to make with you just having to throw all the ingredients in the bowl.  Whilst they were chocolatey, they weren’t too chocolatey which was good, seeing as aside from me, there aren’t many chocoholics in my household! There was more than enough frosting for each cupcake which is surprising for a packet mix and meant I could try out my new star nozzle for the piping!

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Costing just £1.39 in the supermarket, these are definitely worth giving a go. Whether its baking with the children or just if you have an hour spare, you will be thrilled with the cupcakes as a result!

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Previous Recipe Sausage Danish |