Wednesday, 25 March 2015

EASTER LEMON CUPCAKES


How cute are these! They're what I made with my Junior Chefs this week.  A delicious lemon curd cupcake topped with marshmallow bunny ears.

We used the same technique as the chrysanthemum cupcakes but with large size marshmallows.  Cut the marshmallow in half diagonally and dip the sticky cut edge into coloured sugar.  we also coloured some coconut with green colour paste for grass and used a tiny mini egg as a nose.

Lemon Curd Cup Cakes

50g Butter
70g Sugar
2 tbsp Lemon Curd
1 Egg
125ml Milk
175g Self Raising Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder

Lemon Curd, Buttercream, Desicated Coconut & Marshmallows to decorate

Cream together the butter and sugar till fluffy then add the remaining ingredients and combine to make a smooth batter.

Divide the mixture between 12 cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes at 180C

Once the cakes have cooked and cooled, remove a small piece of the sponge from the tops of each cake to make a small hole.  Fill the holes with lemon curd then cover the surface with buttercream.

Pop on your bunny ears and a nose then finish with a sprinkle of coconut.

HAPPY EASTER

Monday, 9 February 2015

TOFFEE APPLE PANCAKES


WOOHOO! PANCAKE DAY!

Is there really anyone that doesn't love pancakes, if you don't, you just haven't found the right filling.  As a child it had to be golden syrup for me and to be honest it hasn't really changed that much.

On Shrove Tuesday we will only eat pancakes, I may stuff some with chilli beef and sprinkle on some crushed tortilla chips and cheese but we swiftly move on to a stack set aside for pudding.

In the past I've made this filling with banana but have decided to give apple a go this time. This is enough to make four pancakes.

Pancakes: 150g Plain Flour, 1 egg, 200ml Milk.

Measure the flour into a measuring jug and add the egg, whisk with a fork till the egg is mixed in, now add the milk a little at a time, whisking in between to form a smooth batter.

Heat a frying pan with a teaspoon of oil.  Pour enough batter in to cover the pan with a thin layer.  Cook the pancake on both sides and put to one side till needed. Cook the remaining
pancakes.

Filling:  4 Small Eating Apples, 80g Butter, 80g Soft Brown Sugar, 80ml Double Cream

Cut the apples into 1/4s then remove the core. Now slice each 1/4 into 4 slices.

In a large frying pan melt the butter then add the apple slices, cook the apples on both sides till they become soft and are starting to brown.  Next add the sugar and heat till it melts.  Lastly pour in the cream and stir to make a thick sticky sauce. Divide the apples and sauce between the pancakes and serve.

Remember, pancakes are not just for Shrove Tuesday!

Thursday, 29 January 2015

CHERRY MALLOW PIE

Marshmallows have become a very popular sweet to make at home and they're well worth the effort.  The home made version are so soft and melt in the mouth.  They're the perfect gift because everyone loves them and are so impressed at your confectionary skills.









Now it's even simpler with this kit from Sainsbury's, in fact it's so simple that I gave my 11 year old son a box to make.  We drizzled his with chocolate and sprinkled some with toasted coconut, unfortunately we scoffed the lot before I could get any photos!  I did however make more with fruit layered into them.  This worked so well because the cherries and blackberries that we used cut through the sweetness of these fluffy cubes of cloudiness which enabled us to eat more without them being too rich.


My Mother used to make a pudding called Cherry Mallow Pie which used cherry pie filling and was topped with something that had melted marshmallows added to it.  Cherry pie filling is one of my guilty pleasures, added to custard it makes my favourite toasted sandwich - yes you did read that right. And of course the greatest cake of all, black forest gateaux would not be the same, in my opinion, without it.

Anyhoo, this marshmallow kit gave me an idea and here is my very simple, mostly assemble not much cooking, Cherry Mallow Pie.  I searched high and low for cherry pie filling but couldn't get it but I did find a posh jar of cherry compote full of whole morello cherries that was the perfect substitute.

Base
300g Bourbon Biscuits
60g Butter melted

1 x 400g Jar Sainsbury's Taste The Difference Morello Cherry Compote
Dash of Kirsch (optional)
1 Sainsbury's Marshmallow Kit

Crush the bourbon biscuits in a food processor then add the melted butter and whizz together till it clumps together.  Press the biscuit into the base and sides of a deep 25cm fluted loose bottom tin and chill to harden.  

Now follow the instructions on the marshmallow kit which has everything you need in it. It's very simple and just a matter of adding water to a sugar mix and simmering it for 10 minutes then whisking up a gelatine mixture and adding the two together.

Once this is done cover the base of your pie with the cherry compote and top with the luscious mallow.  Pop it in the fridge to set, it says 2 hours but it was ready in 1 hour then decorate with grated chocolate.


You could of course toast the top with a cooks blow torch instead of grated chocolate to finish