Monday, 22 November 2010
This weekend was hectic in the best possible way, lots of family and fun!! It was Mr.Colehill's nephew's fourth birthday party, and I (somewhat bravely) offered to make the cake for the occasion, and here is the finished article!! I'm quite pleased with it since it's only my second go at cake decorating - the first being the baby cake for the birthday boy's new baby brother a few months ago.
I definitely want to take a course at some point to learn the tricks of the trade and improve on the basics and foundations of cake decorating, but for a new hobby and a fairly ambitious idea I'm happy with it. If anyone knows of any good courses that run I'd appreciate some tips!!
Both the moon and the rocket are entirely cake - a vanilla sponge with chocolate buttercream, and the astronaut is modeled out of sugarpaste. hope you like it!!
Thursday, 11 November 2010
All hail Nigella, she's done it again. I recently bought her latest book Kitchen without having read any reviews, without flicking through it first, and without umm-ing and ahh-ing over it as I usually do with a hefty new cookbook. Should I have been a little more cautious before racing to the counter? A resounding no. It's a triumph and an absolute gem of a book to read, let alone use any of the recipes. There is a beautifully written introduction and a lengthy section on utensils worth having, and perhaps more importantly, gadgets absolutely not worth having. I hold my hands up to making some of the same purchasing errors as her, but it's so tempting at the time!!
50g cocoa powder, sifted
100g dark muscovado sugar
250ml boiling water
125g soft unsalted butter
150g caster sugar
225g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarb
2 tsp vanilla extract
30g dark muscovado sugar
175g unsalted butter, cubed
300g dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line 2 sandwich tins.
Put the cocoa and muscovado sugar into a bowl and add the boiling water, set aside.
Cream the butter and caster sugar until pale and fluffy.
Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarb in another bowl, set aside.
Add the vanilla extract to the butter mixture, still mixing, then the eggs one at a time.
Keep mixing then add the flour mixture, then fold in the cocoa mixture.
Divide between the two tins and bake for about 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
For the frosting put the water, muscovado sugar and butter in a pan and melt over a low heat.
When it begins to bubble take off the heat and add the chopped chocolate, leave for a minute to melt before whisking till smooth and glossy.
Leave for about one hour, giving it a whisk every now and then.
When the cakes have cooled and the frosting is ready, put some frosting between the cakes, then cover with the rest.
Friday, 17 September 2010
Sunday, 5 September 2010
Slice and enjoy with a cuppa for the perfect afternoon tea!
Friday, 13 August 2010
Monday, 9 August 2010
Monday, 26 July 2010
500g caster sugar
300g chopped walnuts
Wednesday, 21 July 2010
These cookies really are lovely. Raisins of course add to the sweetness and chewy-factor, and are hugged by soft cookie in which the cinnamon flavour is very delicate, just enough to give a warming flavour to the cookies, and the addition of brown sugar gives a slightly toffee-ish essence.
Wednesday, 14 July 2010
Here is another success from his Everyday cookbook, and is a little different from the normal chocolate cakes you get. It’s made with almonds in the mix which gives it a lovely moist texture as well as a sort of warm taste if you know what I mean. There’s something really comforting about almonds, and whenever they sneak in to a recipe you really can tell, there’s a certain flavour that sort of envelopes you, they make the dish that little bit more luxurious and rich without overwhelming you. I don’t know if I’m explaining this very well, let’s just say they bring a certain je ne sais quoi to the cake!!
250g dark chocolate
250g unsalted butter
4 medium eggs, separated
100g caster sugar
100g soft light brown sugar
50g plain flour
50g ground almonds
Melt the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water.
Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until well combined, then add the melted chocolate and butter to the yolk mix.
Combine the flour and almonds then fold these in too.
In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until they form firm peaks.
Stir in one spoonful of whites to the chocolate mix to loosen it, then continue to fold in the rest of the whites, careful not to knock out the air.
Put the mixture into a prepared baking tin anf bake at 170 degrees for 30 minutes, until only just set. Take it out when there is still a wobble in the middle - this will result in the sticky gooey texture I was raving about!!
Leave to cool on a wire rack before turning out of the tin.
It isn’t decorated with anything; no frills, no frosting, nothing, and honestly – it’s at its best this way. The texture is too delicate to sustain any buttercream, and the flavour of the almonds with the chocolate really shines and would be completely overwhelmed by any heavy frosting.
I don’t think this is a special occasion cake, it’s more of an ‘I need a cup of tea and a treat’ type of cake. It’s not decadent and fancy, but humble and utterly satisfying, enjoy!!
Friday, 9 July 2010
It’s no ordinary cake recipe; the ratio of eggs, butter, sugar and flour is nothing like any other cake I’ve made – for starters there are SIX eggs!! … and then the very healthy addition of sour cream, which, you know, I have no problem with!!
350g unsalted butter
350g caster sugar
2 tblsp and 2 tsp baking powder
280ml soured cream
250g fresh blueberries plus extra to decorate
Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, then add the eggs one at a time.
Beat in the sifted flour and baking powder until well mixed, then add the soured cream and mix well until liht and fluffy.
Gently stir in the blueberries and pour into a tin and bake at 170 degrees for 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
Leave to cool on a wire rack. When completely cooled cover with the cream cheese frosting and sprinkle with blueberries.
Cream Cheese Frosting:
600g icing sugar
100g unsalted butter
250g cream cheese
Combine the icing sugar and butter until well mixed, before adding the cream cheese and beat until light and fluffy.
This is definitely a heavy cake, in typical Hummingbird fashion – they don’t do anything by halves!! I would say it’s probably best as an afternoon tea type of thing rather than dessert – I just can’t imagine ever having enough room for this cake after a meal! Either way though, completely indulgent and berries add a summery touch, enjoy!!
Monday, 5 July 2010
Thursday, 1 July 2010
As well as the other Hummingbird recipes I've made, I've made this cheesecake before, about a year ago, and it really is rather huge. But it went down a storm with everyone (no surprise there really!) so I knew there would be no problem getting rid of this beast, and I was not wrong!! Despite the almost unbearable heat over the weekend, a third of the cheesecake was swiftly demolished, and now there are but a few crumbs left to prove it was ever there!!
200g digestive biscuits, finely crushed
2 tbs cocoa powder
150g unsalted butter, melted
900g cream cheese
190g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
The base is your usual biscuit base. Melt the butter then mix it into the crushed biscuits and cocoa powder before pressing into a a 23cm round springform cake tin, greased and base-lined with greaseproof paper. Leave this to chill and harden in the fridge while you make the filling.
For the filling, melt the chocolate in a bowl over simmering water, then set aside to cool slightly.