Victoria Sponge

Here in the UK, Wimbledon is well underway. Whilst I may not be the biggest fan of tennis, I am most certainly a fan of the strawberry and cream tradition associated with the sport. Therefore, I decided to bake this classic sponge in honour of the game where I even went and picked the strawberries myself.

INGREDIENTS
Cake:
200g caster sugar
200g softened butter
4 eggs, beaten
200g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp milk

Filling:
100g butter, softened
140g icing sugar, sifted
drop vanilla extract
340g jar strawberry jam
icing sugar, to decorate
strawberries, to serve

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 5 ensuring the shelving is centre. Grease and line two sandwich tins.

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

3. Gradually alternate between adding the eggs and sifted flour. Add in the baking powder. Stir in the milk and mix until thoroughly combined.

4. Divide the mixture equally between the two cake tins. Smooth the surface and bake in the centre of the oven for 20 minutes until a skewer comes out clean or until golden brown. Leave to cool in the tins before transferring to a wire rack.

5. For the filling, beat together the softened butter and sifted icing sugar. Add in the vanilla extract.

6. Spread the buttercream over the bottom of one of the sponge. Spread the strawberry jam over the other sponge and sandwich the two together. Dust with icing sugar and serve with a few strawberries on the side.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe BBC Victoria Sandwich |

| Previous Recipe Marble Cake Cupcakes |

Chocolate Chip Scones

For as long as I can remember, I’ve had some kind of fear towards scones. It might sound a little strange but allow me to explain. When I was little, my Nan and Grandad would always smother baked treats such as scones and madeira cake with butter. Ever since, this has been something that I cannot get my head around and for the past fifteen years or so, I’ve refused to eat a scone! To me, having a scone with butter is just a no go. I know its still a popular choice among many but I am just not a fan! Anyway, I thought that it was time to get over this fear and I decided to bake my own, but this time with chocolate chips and a little jam and cream. Now that’s my idea of a scone!

INGREDIENTS
225 (8oz) self-raising flour, sieved
60g (2oz) butter
1tbsp caster sugar
50g (1 ¾oz) chocolate chips
roughly 150ml (5fl oz) milk

METHOD

1. Lightly grease a baking tray. Preheat the oven to gas mark 7, ensuring the shelving is centre.

2. Place the flour in a mixing bowl. Cut the butter in to small pieces and rub into the flour using your fingers until a the mixture forms fine breadcrumbs. DSCF3735

3. Stir in the caster sugar and chocolate chips.

4. Mix in enough milk to form a soft dough.

5. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a rectangle of 10 x 15cm or 4 x6 inches and about 2.5cm/ 1 inch thinck.

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6. Cut the dough into 9 squares.

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7. Place the scones on the baking tray ensuring they are well spaced apart.

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8. Brush each with a little milk and bake in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.

scones with jam and cream

9. Slice the scones in half and serve with butter (ew!) or jam and cream.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe Simply Baking at M&S |

| Previous Post Diggers |

Honeycomb Cheesecake

I’ve been a little bit hesitant as to whether to post this recipe or not because to be honest, it was a complete disaster. I don’t know if it was me, my ingredients or the recipe but something just wasn’t right. Firstly, I do admit I ignored the instructions to grease and line the tin because I thought as it was a loose-bottomed tin, I’d be able to get the cheesecake out easy. Wrong. The biscuit base was incredibly oily from the butter and having left the cheesecake overnight to set, I found in the morning a honeycomb yoghurt floating in my fridge rather than the cheesecake I had intended on finding. Nevertheless, it was still pretty yummy, it just it didn’t look like a cheesecake, or even taste much like a cheesecake. Anyway, if you’d like to recreate this and hopefully make something that resembles some kind of cheesecake, the recipe is below! How many times have I said cheesecake?

HONEYCOMB CHEESECAKE honeycomb cheesecake

INGREDIENTS
150g Butter
200g Digestive Biscuits
1 Vanilla Pod or 1 tsp Vanilla Essence
500g Cream Cheese
100g Caster Sugar
300ml Double Cream
4 Crunchies

METHOD

1. Grease and line a spring form cake tin (23cm) or alternatively, this recipe will make 12 individual cheesecakes if you prefer to use ramekins.

2. Place the digestive biscuits in a zip-lock bag and bash using a rolling pin until fine.

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3. Melt the butter in a saucepan over a low heat until melted. Add the biscuit crumbs and stir together.

4. Squash the biscuit base down into the bottom of the tin and leave to set in the fridge for at least one hour.

5. In a bowl, mix together the cream cheese, caster sugar and vanilla.

6. In a separate bowl, whisk cream the cream until soft peaks begin to form. Crush 2 or 3 Crunchies and add to the mix.

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7. Gently fold the whisked cream and honeycomb mix to the cream cheese.

8. Pour the mixture on top of the biscuit base and leave to set for a few hours, or preferably overnight.

9. Finish by sprinkling some crushed honeycomb or chocolate for decoration.

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If you have any idea why my cheesecake was a total flop, please let me know!

Everyone else on the original recipe seemed to say this was a success – maybe it’s just me!

Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

PS. Bake With Me Blog is now on Facebook. Be sure to like the page for exclusive content, new recipes and all things baking!

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| Original Recipe | Honeycomb Smash Cheesecake |

| Previous Recipe | Gingerbread Cupcakes |

Homemade Hot Chocolate

I recently saw this recipe for homemade hot chocolate over on  Tanya Burr’s beauty and lifestyle YouTube channel. I’ve never thought about making my own hot chocolate, it’s just something I’ve thought would be easier to buy, when it’s actually so simple to make and a perfect drink whilst it’s still a little chilly outside.

HOMEMADE HOT CHOCOLATE 

homemade chocolate

INGREDIENTS
1 Mug of Milk
2 Squares of Milk Chocolate
2 Squares of Dark Chocolate
2 Square of White Chocolate
Whipped Cream
Mini Marshmallows

1. Pour your milk into a mug to measure out exactly how much you want.

2. Pour this milk into a saucepan and gentle warm over a low heat.

3. Add the squares of chocolate. If you want a more chocolatey drink, add a few more squares.

4. Keep stirring to help the chocolate melt and avoid the milk burning.

5. Once the chocolate is completely melted, pour back into your mug. Finish off with some whipped cream and marshmallows. Dust with a little cocoa powder.

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x

| Original Recipe by Tanya Burr |

| Previous Recipe Apple Dessert Cake |

Apple Crumble

This weekend, I decided to make a dessert that can be had after a Sunday roast. Since a roast dinner is typically British, I decided to follow on with tradition and make an apple crumble, since this too, is another quintessentially British dish. I realised that when taking photographs for this post, that making an apple crumble look posh and fancy can be rather difficult but, I think that is what makes the apple crumble such a classic, as even though it doesn’t look particularly spectacular, its a good hearty and wholesome dessert. Instead of following one recipe, I followed a combination of two found both on the BBC website and by Mirror Columnist, Nadia Sawalha.

APPLE CRUMBLE

Apple Crumble.

INGREDIENTS
Filling
1lb Apples
50g Caster Sugar
1 or 2 tsp. Cinnamon

Crumble
170g Cold Unsalted Butter
170g Caster Sugar
200g Plain Flour
70g Fine Oats
Pinch of Salt

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 3.

2. Core and peel the apples, and cut them into chunks. Place the apples into a pie dish or oven-safe dish.

3. Sprinkle over the caster sugar and cinnamon and then cook in the oven for 10 minutes.

4. In a bowl combine together the cold butter, caster sugar, plain flour, oats and salt using your fingers, until they resemble a fine crumble mixture. Sprinkle the crumble over the top of the warmed fruit and cook in the oven for a further 50 to 60 minutes, until firm and a golden colour.

5. Best served warm with lashings of cream or ice-cream!

Apple Crumble

Enjoy!

Quick note before I go – The Great British Bake Off is back on our TV screens tonight, 8pm on BBC2.

Be there or be square!

– Charlotte x

|Previous Recipe Chunky Chocolate Cookies|

Mini Victoria Sponges with Fresh Cream

If you don’t fancy baking a huge Victoria Sponge, perhaps these Mini Victoria Sponges with Fresh Cream are the perfect alternative! I was really pleased with these – the cakes were light and fluffy, and the jam and cream were perfect together. A perfect treat this summer!

MINI VICTORIA SPONGES

Mini Victoria Sponges

INGREDIENTS:-
Cake:-
– 4oz unsalted butter, softened
– 4oz caster sugar
– 4oz self-raising flour, sifted
– 2 eggs
– half teaspoon of vanilla essence


Filling:-
– 300ml whipping cream
– raspberry jam
– icing sugar, sifted

Method

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4. Place 12 cupcake cases in a fairy cake tin. (Tip! Since the cakes are taken out of their cases once cooked to cut and fill them, I’d recommend using any spare cases you have lying around or just simple, plain ones – just so you don’t waste any fancy or pretty cases you may have)

2. Cream together the butter and sugar in a bowl until a creamy mixture forms.

Butter & Sugar

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3. Gradually sift in the self-raising flour, adding in the eggs as you go and mix.

Add in flour & egg

4. Stir in the vanilla essence.

5. Divide the mixture equally between the cake cases and bake in the centre of the oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. (Tip! To check if your cakes are ready, using a fork or skewer, insert this into the cake. If the fork comes out clean and is not sticky, your cakes are ready! If not, pop your cakes back in the oven for a few more minutes.)

Divide the mixture

Fairy Cakes

6. Once the cakes are cool, remove them from their cake cases and cut each of the sponges in half.

7. Whip the cream either using an electric or hand whisk until the cream thickens and soft peaks begin to form. (Tip! Be careful not to over whip the cream. To avoid over-whipping ensure both the cream and bowl are chilled and always start by whipping the cream slowly. If you whisk too fast, the cream can very easily separate – as I have found out on many occasions!) If you want a sweeter cream, add a little icing sugar to the mixture.

8. Spread a little of the raspberry jam to one side of each of the cakes and spoon a teaspoon of cream to the other, and sandwich the two together.DSCF1749

9. Dust each cake with icing sugar. (Depending on how much mixture you fill each of the cakes with, these can become a little heavy – so do take care!)

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Enjoy!

– Charlotte x