Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies

Easter weekend is finally here. Four days holiday for most people. Enjoying the good weather, lawns are mowed, kitchens prepare treats for the weekend, while teenagers prepare for upcoming exams. Whatever you and your family are doing, this Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies bake is sure to bring about a smile.

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies using Wright’s Brownie Mix.

The base of these brownies is a chocolate biscuit. More like a slightly harder version of the soft, squidgy brownie on top. The advantage being that, with a firmer base these brownies are easier to pick up and hold. While developing this recipe my thoughts were directed by practicality.

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies perfect for packed lunches and picnics.

No matter how practical these brownies are, they absolutely had to be fun, as well as tasty. Since the addition of pretty, pastel Cadbury’s eggs, was a necessity. So also were the party streamer, piped coloured chocolate drizzles. Resulting in a beautiful, yet fun, Easter bake.

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies perfect for celebrating.

While this may look like a complicated bake, it absolutely isn’t. First of all the biscuit base is made, then baked. Once cooled the Wright’s Brownie Mix, which takes seconds to make, is poured over. Followed by a generous sprinkle of chocolate mini eggs, another quick bake. Finally after cooling you can let your creativity run wild, decorating your bake.

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies. Complete fun!

A quick note: This bake will look and taste just as good if you’d prefer not to use coloured Candy Melts. Since this is your bake, feel free to add coloured sprinkles, chocolates or whatever you like. Most importantly, have fun!!!

Recipe: Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies makes 24

For the Biscuit Base

225g/8oz Unsalted Butter

150g/5oz Light Brown Sugar

1 Large Free Range Egg

1tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen-Massey

75g/3oz Cocoa Powder – I use Callebaut

200g/7oz Plain White Flour

For the Brownies

2 x Packets of  Wright’ Baking Brownie Mix – available online in the U.K. – if you are unable to obtain the Mix please use this recipe Chocolate Fudge Brownie Bites.  Leaving out the addition of chocolate chunks out of the recipe.

Decoration:

1 x Family Pack (326g) of Cadbury’s Mini Eggs or the rough equivalent weight in smaller bags/tubes

75g/3oz of each of the following :

White Chocolate, Rainbow Dust Pink/Blue/Purple Candy Melts -available from Party Animal Online

Any additional decorations that you like – I found a bag of really small mini eggs from Sainsbury’s.

Method: Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan, gas mark 4

First of all grease a 33cm x 23cm x 5cm (13″ x 9″ x 2″) tin with a little butter. Line the base and sides with baking parchment.

  • Starting with the biscuit base, add the butter, salt and sugar to a large bowl. Beat until fully combined and free from lumps.
  • Next add the egg and vanilla, continue mixing until smooth.
  • Sieve the flour and cocoa powder into the same bowl. Starting at a slow speed mix the ingredients until combined.
  • Finally tip the biscuit base dough into the baking tin. Spread the dough, using the back of a spoon until it evenly covers the base of the tin.
  • Place the tin into the middle of the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes.
  • While the base is baking, make the Brownie Mix, according to the packet instructions.
FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Creating and baking the layers of the Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
  • The biscuit base, once baked may still be a little soft to touch, however it will be darker than the uncooked dough.
  • Remove the tin from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  • Pour the brownie batter over the biscuit base. Tilt the tin to ensure even coverage.
  • Follow by sprinkling 200g of mini eggs on to the brownie batter.
  • Place the tin back in the oven and bake for a further 20-25 minutes.
  • The brownie batter is baked when it has a sheen and does not wobble in the centre.
  • Remove the tin from the oven and allow to cool completely.
FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Portioning and decorating the Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
  • Once completely cooled remove the entire bake from the tin and place on a solid surface.
  • Cut centrally through the length and width with a sharp knife. Now cut each half into 12 even sized portions.
  • Place 75g of each coloured Candy Melt or chocolate into a separate heatproof, microwaveable bowl.
  • Heat the first bowl for 20 seconds at a time, stirring in between until the chocolate is fluid.
  • Spoon the liquid into a small, disposable, piping bag. Be careful, it will be very warm.
  • Snip the very end of the bag off and pipe whatever pattern you wish over the top of the bake.
  • Continue, in exactly the same way with the second colour.
  • Follow this by adding extra mini eggs or decorations, hold a few back.
  • Prepare and pipe the third colour, allowing some to cover the newly added eggs.
  • Finally finish with white chocolate, piped all over the bake and sprinkle any remaining decorations.
FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Happy Easter!

Place to one side to allow the chocolate to set.

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies Happy Easter.

Serve with a big smile and my preference, a glass of cold milk.

If you have enjoyed the recipe for Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies you may also like these:

Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake.

Chocolate Monster Mini Egg Cookies

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Chocolate Monster Mini Egg Cookies

Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies
Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream

 

Since most of these recipes are designed specifically for Easter and for using left over chocolate, I hope that you will make them throughout the year. Although, that may not be a good thing for our bodies. Maybe the fun is in making them only during the Easter Holidays.

I wish everyone who reads this a very Happy Easter, please see Important Stuff.

Sammie xx

Wright’s Baking gave me the Brownie mixes to create this recipe. All opinions, view, content and photography are my own. Please do not copy it. For your information please see my Disclosure Policy.

This month I am linking up with Stuart at Cakey Boi  and Kat at The Baking Explorer  who is hosting this month’s Treat Petite .

FF Chocolate Biscuit Base Mini Egg Brownies

 

 

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Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream

Easter is just over a week away. Will the sunshine break though as it has today, or not? The reason I ask is directly related to this Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream. Will a cold wet day force us to enjoy it inside, or better still, will we sit outside, in the warmth of the sun, munching on ice cream filled cones? I know where I’d rather be!

FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream in colourful ice cream bowls.

As Smarties mini eggs are not available all year round, yet this ice cream deserves to be made more often than Easter, here’s a solution. Simply use the same weight of regular Smarties. Since they don’t need to be chopped, making the ice cream will be even easier. Although, it isn’t a difficult recipe to make at all.

FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream a bigger batch, so more to share.

Suitable for both adults and children, a larger batch means that there is more to go around. Extra mini eggs on top of each serving show what is in the frozen treat and add to the fun. Since Easter is a time for celebrating, what better time to make this ice cream. Finally an ice cream maker makes the whole process simple and easy. I recommend Andrew James ice cream maker.

FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream a refreshing dessert.

Recipe: Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream makes approx. 1L

400ml Double Cream

400ml Whole Milk

2 tsp Vanilla Bean Paste – I use Nielsen-Massey

6 Large Free Range Egg Yolks

1.5 tsp Corn Flour – I use Doves Farm

6 tbsp Caster Sugar

150g Dark Chocolate

2 x 100g Packs of Smarties Mini Eggs

Method:

Ensure the frozen part of your ice cream maker has been in the freezer for a minimum of 24 hours, or according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Detailed step by step photographs can be found here Very Vanilla Ice Cream

  • First of all, Place the milk and cream into a heavy bottomed saucepan, over a medium heat.
  • Now add the egg yolks, vanilla bean paste, corn flour and sugar into a large, heatproof bowl. Whisk the egg yolks with the other ingredients, starting slowly and increasing in speed, until thoroughly combined.
  • As small bubbles appear around the rim of the hot liquids in the saucepan remove the pan from the heat. This is called the scalding point.
  • With the whisk on low, pour the hot liquid into the egg mixture slowly. Continue whisking until thoroughly combined. Pour the egg custard mixture back into the saucepan, placed over a low heat.
  • While the custard is heating stir with a wooden spoon and quickly wash up the bowl
  • Place the chocolate into the base of the bowl. While stirring the custard also place a sieve over the bowl.
  • When the custard starts to bubble and coats the back of a wooden spoon it is cooked. Remove at once and pour through the sieve, on to the chocolate in the bowl.
FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Making the chocolate ice cream base.
  • As the custard base moves through the sieve, any lumps are filtered out.
  • Remove the sieve and stir the hot custard. As the custard melts the chocolate it will become visible. Continue stirring until all of the chocolate has melted.
  • Place cling film directly on top of the hot custard. This will stop any skiing from forming.
  • Move the bowl to a cool place. Once cooled to warm, place the bowl in the fridge.
  • While the chocolate custard is chilling the Smarties can be prepared.
  • Carefully chop one whole packet of mini eggs in half and tip them into s bowl containing a packet of whole smarties mini eggs.
  • When the chocolate custard is cold, set up the ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Pour the chocolate custard through the specific whole in the covering. For my machine, the paddle needs to be turning first.
  • Allow the ice cream to churn until it is softly set. Similar consistency to whipped ice cream.
  • Once this point has been reached, turn the machine off and remove the paddle.
  • Transfer the chocolate ice cream into a freezer proof tub with an air tight lid.
  • Now add all of the mini eggs, both chopped and whole. Gently stir to mix in the mini eggs. Then clamp on the lid and place into the freezer, where it will freeze completely.
FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Preparing the eggs and ice cream ready for the freezer.
  • Leave the ice cream to freeze solid. Overnight is ideal.
  • To serve, remove the ice cream from the freezer 20-30 minutes prior to scooping. As this ice cream doesn’t have any additives to keep it soft, leaving it on the side prior to serving allows it to soften.
  • Scoop the ice cream into cones or bowls. Also, sprinkle over a few extra mini eggs or Smarties.
FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream crunchy, creamy, chocolate Fun.

These bowls of ice cream are bound to produce lots of smiles.

Store in the freezer for one month.

If you have enjoyed the recipe for Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream then you may also like these:

Chocolate Rolo Ice Cream

FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Chocolate Rolo Ice Cream

Lemon Ripple Ice Cream

FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Lemon Ripple Ice Cream

Chocolate Honeycomb Ice Cream

FF Smarties Chocolate Mini Egg Ice Cream
Chocolate Honeycomb Ice Cream

Homemade ice cream is unique. Since you can change the flavours to whichever you prefer. Also, the convenience of having an ice cream maker allows you to make ice cream whenever you want.

Whatever you do this Easter, I hope that you take a moment to pause and remember it’s true meaning. Please see Important Stuff

Sammie xx

Please note: The chocolate ice cream by itself is gluten free, providing gluten free corn flour is used. However, the min smarties eggs do contain gluten.

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Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns

Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns packed full of plump vine fruit and spices.

These Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns really do take the humble, yet delicious Easter Bun to another level. As their spiced aroma escapes the kitchen, it fills the whole house with warmth. Turning a house into a welcoming home. While neighbours, out in their gardens, stop, wondering whose house the aromatic aroma originates from.

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns filled with more fruit and spice.

Easy to make and bake, these Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns are so worth the little effort required. These are not the small, pappy, squidged into a ball, cheap supermarket versions. Instead they are filled with fruit, in a good sized bun, that also contains a small amount of wholemeal flour. Indeed, one bun is a substantial breakfast.

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns deliciously good for you.

Since these buns are homemade, we know every ingredient they contain. Yet, what they don’t have is any artificial ingredients. Also they work out much cheaper to make, than bought ones. Plus, the extra smell when you split and toast them, is priceless!

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Anyone hungry?

The absolute thrill for me, when developing a new recipe, is my family’s reaction. Good or bad, I know it can be trusted. Words like “yummy”, “can I have another one please?” and “have you taken the photographs yet?” all feed into my sense of recipe security. As I’m going to be sharing the recipe with my readers, it needs to be robust and reliable. Hence only tried and tested recipes make their way on to this blog.

Recipe: Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns makes 12

  • 150ml Tap Water
  • 150ml Whole Milk – slightly warmed to body temperature
  • 2 Large Free Range Eggs
  • 10g Fast Action Dried Yeast – I use Allinson in the green pot or sachets
  • 1tbsp Honey
  • 450g/1lb Strong White Flour – I use Shipton Mill
  • 50g/2oz Strong Wholemeal Flour
  • 10g Salt – I use Maldon
  • 50g/2oz Unsalted Butter cut into small cubes
  • 200g/7oz Mixed Dried Fruits – Sultanas/Raisins/Currants
  • 4tsp Cinnamon
  • 1tsp Ginger
  • 50g/2oz Plain White Flour and 50mls Tap Water for the crosses.
  • For the glaze:
  • 3tbsp Runny Honey plus 1tsp water

Method:

First of all, grease a large baking tray with butter.

  • Into the bowl of a stand mixer add the water, milk, eggs, honey and yeast.
  • Next, on top of the liquids add the strong white and wholemeal flour.
  • Then add the salt and butter.
  • Fit the stand mixer with a dough hook and then lock the bowl into place.
  • Lower the dough hook and start mixing on a slow speed. Continue mixing at this speed for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes has elapsed gradually increase the mixer speed to moderately high. Again mix for a further 5 minutes, then stop the mixer and lift the dough hook.
  • Remove a small piece of dough and stretch it until you can see light through it. This is known as the windowpane test. If the dough tears continue mixing, checking every couple of minutes until it passes the windowpane test.
  • Once it has finished kneading, turn the speed on the mixer to low and add the spices and fruit. Mix for a further 2 minutes to incorporate the fruit and spices.
  • Following this, stop the mixer, raise the dough hook and scrape any dough into the bowl using your fingers.
  • Unlock the bowl, cover with a clean tea towel and place somewhere draught free.
FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
The dough has more than doubled in size.

For detailed set by step photos please see Hot Cross Buns

  • Tip the dough out on to a lightly floured surface, it will be quite sticky. Knead the dough lightly to form a ball and then weigh it. I place baking parchment on flat, digital scales. Note the weight and then divide it by 12, leaving the parchment on the scales.
  • Now cut the dough in half. As each bun is weighed this doesn’t have to be exact.
  • Follow by forming each dough half into a log shape. Cut each dough log into six.
  • Weigh the first piece of dough and adjust as necessary to obtain the correct weight.
  • Hold the dough in one hand while using the other to turn and tuck the underneath in, creating a tight ball shape. Place the ball on to the baking tray. Continue until all 12 balls have been made.
  • Cover the tray with a clean tea towel and place in a draught free place until doubled in size.
  • While the buns have their second prove, make the paste for the crosses. Place the flour and water into a bowl, mix until lump free. Spoon the white flour paste into a small piping bag, secure the top with a peg/rubber band and stand the bag in a glass until needed.
  • Preheat the oven to 220C/200C fan, gas mark 7.
FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Before and after proving Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
  • Once doubled in size, snip off the very end of the piping bag.
  • Pipe straight lines of paste. First of all piping across the tray and then down the tray.
FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Pipe each separate row continuously for neat crosses.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 25-35 minutes. When baked they will be golden brown and sound hollow when rapped on the base with a knuckle.
  • Once baked remove from the oven. Remove the buns from the tray on to a cooling rack, with a clean baking tray underneath.
  • Measure the honey and water into a small microwaveable bowl. Heat in the microwave until bubbling. Remove carefully as it will be hot.
  • Stir the honey and water to mix.
  • Use a pastry brush to cover each hot bun in honey.
FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Sticky, cooling, Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns.

Wait for the buns to cool before eating. Then serve as is or toasted and buttered with a big smile.

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns delicious fresh from the kitchen.

The buns will keep for 3 days if toasted. Also they freeze extremely well for up to one month.

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns then you may also like these:

Ginger Date Hot Cross Buns

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Ginger Date Hot Cross Buns

Cherry Bakewell Hot Cross Buns

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Cherry Bakewell Hot Cross Buns

Chocolate Mini Egg Browies

FF Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns
Chocolate Mini Egg Brownies

It would be very easy to double up on this recipe and share homemade Extra Fruity Hot Cross Buns with friends, neighbours and family.

Whatever you are making, baking and creating in your kitchens, have fun preparing your feast.

Sammie xx

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Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake

Easter is nearly upon us. Shops are filled with fluffy bunnies, chocolate chicks and all manner of chocolate eggs. Amongst the vast selection, I found Galaxy Chocolate Golden Mini Eggs. Utterly perfect for decorating an Easter celebration cake. Such as this Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake.

FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake, ideal for sharing.

Easter Sunday is the Christian celebration of new life. Although Jesus had died two days prior, hanging on a cross. When His friends went to visit Him the following Sunday, the tomb where He had been placed was empty. Shocked and outraged, one of the women spoke to the gardener, wanting to know where He had gone. The response came “Why look for the living among the dead.”

As the prophecies had foretold, Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, had risen from the dead. He had overcome death. Forever. That we, may have life, in Him. Hence the chicks and eggs, bunnies and lambs in the shops, represent new life. Gold, for me on this cake, represents the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Jesus. He who could not be contained by death. Even though He was brutally punished and died wearing a crown made from thorns. Is now alive, bearing the scars of death, yet as alive as you and I. Please see Important Stuff.

FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake celebrating new life in Jesus Christ.

While celebrating over Easter, take a moment, to think about what it means to you. As you make and bake this cake, remember the love, His love, that He offers you. Even now, as Easter is treated as an extra holiday. Consider the real truth behind it. With Jesus their is always hope, without Him, who do you place your hope in?

FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake what does Easter mean to you?

Recipe: Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake serves 8-10

225g/8oz Unsalted Butter softened

225g/8oz Light Brown Sugar

1tsp Vanilla Eaxtract – I use Nielsen-Massey

1/4tsp Salt -I use Maldon

5 Large Free Range Eggs

100ml Buttermilk

150g/5oz Plain White Flour

75g Cocoa Powder – I use Callebaut

2tsp Baking Powder

For frosting and decorating:

3-4tbsp Salted Chocolate Spread – I use Hawkshead Relish new MUDD spread

200g/7oz Unsalted Butter

400g/14oz Plain Icing Sugar

1tsp Vanilla Extract

2tbsp Hot Water – from a recently boiled kettle

2 x 80g bags Galaxy Golden Eggs

Optional – gold/copper sprinkles

Method: Preheat the oven to 160C/140C fan, gas mark 3

Grease 2 x 20cm/8″ sandwich tins with butter. Line the base of each tin with baking parchment.

  • First of all, place a sieve over a bowl. Then sieve the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder into the bowl. Set the bowl to one side. Dry ingredients.
  • Next, place the eggs and buttermilk into a jug. Whisk lightly using a fork. Wet ingredients.
  • Place the butter, brown butter and salt into a large bowl. Beat until well combined and free from lumps.
  • Next add the vanilla extract. Continue to beat until incorporated.
  • Take the jug of wet ingredients and pour on to the butter mixture. Then add the sifted dry ingredients.
  • Beat the ingredients in the bowl gently, scraping down the sides of the bowl halfway through. Continue to beat the ingredients until fully combined.
  • Divide the chocolate sponge batter equally between the two prepared cake tins.
  • Place the cake tins into the centre of the preheated oven and bake for 40-50 minutes.
FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Making and baking the chocolate sponge cakes.
  • The cakes are baked when they spring back from a light touch and a cake tester comes out clean.
  • As soon as the cakes are baked remove them from the oven.
  • Allow the cakes to cool in the tin for 20 minutes and then tip them out on to a cooling rack.
  • Once cooled carefully remove the baking parchment from the base of each cake.

Making the frosting and decorating the cake:

  • While the cakes are cooling the buttercream frosting can be made.
  • Place the butter into a large bowl, or the bowl of a free standing mixer with paddle attachment.
  • Next add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
  • Now whisk or beat the butter until it is softer and pale.
  • Add all of the icing sugar to the bowl and 2 tablespoons of very hot water.
  • Start mixing very slowly and then as the butter and icing sugar start to combine increase the mixing speed. Continue until the frosting is light and fluffy.
  • Fit a large icing bag with a large closed star, or drop flower piping nozzle. I have a Wilton  #2D piping nozzle.
  • Fill the piping bag with the whipped buttercream.
  • Place the bottom of the cake on to a plate.
  • Spread the Salted Chocolate Spread over the cake. Follow by piping the buttercream so that it covers the spread. Start at the outside edge of the cake, piping in circles until the centre is reached.
  • Place the top of the cake evenly on to the bottom.
FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Filling and frosting the cake.
  • Pipe buttercream on to the top of the cake, in the same way the base was covered.
  • Pipe 6 swirls, slightly set in from the edge of the cake, as in the photograph.
FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake fully decorated.
  • Decorate the top of the cake with the golden eggs.
FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Finished Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake ready to serve.

Finally the cake is ready to be served.

Serve with a smile and love. Knowing that all food tastes better when shared.

This cake will keep in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Refrigerate is the weather is hot.

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake you may also like these:

Vanilla Mini Nest Egg Cupcakes

FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Vanilla Mini Egg Nest Cupcakes

Hot Cross Buns

FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Hot Cross Buns easy and delicious to make at home.

Chocolate Monster Mini Egg Cookies

FF Golden Egg Chocolate Sponge Cake
Chocolate Monster Mini Egg Cookies

Do you celebrating Easter?

If you do, what are your reasons for celebrating it?

Have fun making, baking and creating you feast.

Sammie xx

Hawkshead Relish supplied me with a complimentary jar of Salted Chocolate Spread. This is not a sponsored post. All views, opinions, content including photographs are my own. The entire content of this post is covered by Copyright and I.P. laws. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

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Fruit Filled Butter Scones

Today it is Mother’s Day here in the U.K. A day where mums, aunts, grandmothers and other significant women in our lives are celebrated. My Grandma had a hugely positive input into my upbringing. Indeed it was at her apron strings that I learned the basic fundamentals of baking, that I still employ today. The day prior to any beach trip, picnic, or family celebration, she would be found, busy baking in the kitchen. I am certain she would enjoy these Fruit Filled Butter Scones.

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Fruit Filled Butter Scones perfect with Afternoon Tea.

Afternoon Tea may consist of small cakes, pastries, finger sandwiches and other sweet or savoury nibbles. Yet it is incomplete without the inclusion of delicious scones, clotted cream and jam. Also small plates are used as it is small portions that are served. Enough to keep you going until dinner, yet not enough to spoil the main meal later in the day.

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Fruit Filled Butter Scones served with clotted cream and strawberries.

Even young children, supervised by an adult of course, can easily make these scones. Also if you choose not to have clotted cream, these are light, not dry or claggy. So, perfect to eat unaccompanied. Since both the fat and sugar levels are fairly low, they can also be enjoyed by those watching their weight. As a result, these are an the ideal treat.

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Flaky layers within the Fruit Filled Butter Scones

Did I mention that they take approximately half an hour from make to bake. What’s stopping you 😉?

Recipe: Fruit Filled Butter Scones makes 12 scones

200g/7oz Plain White Flour

2tsp Baking Powder

50g/2oz Cold Unsalted Butter cut into cubes

1/4tsp Salt – I use Maldon

2tbsp Caster Sugar

75g/3oz Sultanas

165mls Buttermilk – alternatively add 1tsp/5mls of lemon juice to 160mls of milk and stir. Wait 5 minutes before using.

1 Free Range Egg plus one tablespoon of milk combined for the egg wash

Method: Preheat the oven to 220C/200C fan, gas mark 7

Prior to starting line a large baking tray with baking parchment.

  • First of all, sift the flour, baking powder and salt together in a large mixing bowl. If using sea salt crumble straight into the bowl.
  • Next add in the cubed butter and rub into the flour, or cut into the flour using a pastry cutter. The mixture should resemble breadcrumbs with some pea sized lumps of butter present.
  • Now add in the caster sugar and mix lightly.
  • Make a well in the centre of the ingredients and pour in the buttermilk. Follow by mixing with a butter knife 4-5 times.
  • Add the sultanas and bring the scone dough together with one hand.
  • Tip the dough out on to a lightly floured, clean surface.
  • Knead the dough lightly until it forms a disc. Gently roll out the disc until it is 2.5cm/1 inch thick.
  • Use a 4cm/just under 2 inch deep cutter to cut out the scones. Do not twist the cutter when pushing down, as this can affect the rise.
  • Place each cutout scone on to the lined baking tray.
  • Combine leftover scone dough pat out and cut out more scones. Continue until all of the dough has been used.
FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Making and cutting out the Fruit Filled Butter Scones.
  • Brush the top of each scone with egg wash and then place in the top of the oven to bake for 15-20 minutes.
FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Egg washed and then baked.
  • The scones are baked when they are golden, well risen and sound hollow when tapped on the base.
  • As soon as they are baked remove from the oven.
  • Transfer the scones on to a cooling rack.
FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Fruit Filled Butter Scones cooling on a rack.

Serve slightly warm or cold. Since these scones have sultanas in, they can be eaten as is, with butter or clotted cream. Also, fresh fruit is nice served alongside. Rather than one single tea, offer a selection, including fruit teas.

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Fruit Filled Butter Scones with tea and fresh fruit.

Most of all serve with a smile.

If you have enjoyed these Fruit Filled Butter Scones, you may also like these:

Iced Bakewell Tart

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Iced Bakewell Tart

Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea

Marshmallow Frosted Mango Cupcakes

FF Fruit Filled Butter Scones
Marshmallow Frosted Mango Cupcakes 100% gluten free.

Since creating the Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea for Steamer Trading, I have enjoyed creating small, bitesize treats. As well as being able to have a little taste of everything, afternoon tea is the perfect opportunity to share. Food, conversation, fun. Most importantly love and creating memories.

Sammie xxx

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Steamer Trading Host Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea

Mother’s Day will soon be upon us. Sunday March 26th 2017 here in the U.K. To help celebrate Mothering Sunday, Steamer Trading asked me to help them set up an Afternoon Tea. I jumped at the opportunity, knowing that the quality and variety of kitchen and cookware they sell is outstanding. While also confident that some easy bakes would partner perfectly with beautiful table and bakeware. See for yourself how Steamer Trading Host Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Steamer Trading Host Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea beautifully laid out delightful sweet treats.

Homemade cakes and treats always taste much better than shop bought. If, however, baking is an area where confidence is lacking here’s the perfect solution. Buy a few pretty cakes and then make the scones, Super Light Scones . Since this recipe is the easiest on Feasting is Fun and guaranteed to bring a smile to Mum’s face. Add a pot of luxurious clotted cream and strawberry jam to turn this Afternoon Tea into a real feast!

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Afternoon Tea using the Burleigh Felicity tea set

No Afternoon Tea is complete without a beautiful tea set. Having been sent a Burleigh Felicity Teapot I decided to start a collection. Tea cup and saucer, large dinner plate, side plate, pasta bowl and finally a sugar bowl. All bought to start my own collection. As a result of having built a whole set over time. The pattern and style have a timeless quality and style.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
The domed two tier cake stand takes centre stage.

Within the items sent to me was this Domed Slate Cake Stand. Perfect for keeping bugs out and cakes fresh. Since the slate cake stand also stands alone, the wooden base and dome may also be used to display another tasty item. Maybe cheese and crackers. Most of all, the packaging keeps the cake stand and dome well protected between use. While the slate is sturdy and creates a solid background from which to display the cakes.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Heart shaped Strawberry and Cream Victoria Sponge.

Picture above is Sophie Conran Cake Server. Highly polished, with a simple, smooth design. As beautiful sitting on the table as it is practical in serving the Heart Shaped Strawberry and Cream Victoria Sponge. Baked using the  Springform Heart Tin. In addition to baking cakes, because of the springform element, this tin would be especially good for creating cheesecakes.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Afternoon Tea display enhanced by beautiful tableware, fresh flowers and tasty treats.

Bowls of fresh strawberries with both large and smaller vases of flowers enhance not only the table setting, but add to the special theme of Mother’s Day. Also, they can be wrapped up, alongside any leftover cakes and scones, for Mum to take home with her. As a result Mum receives a double treat. After all, Mother’s Day is a special day, set aside to thank Mothers.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Tiny little Turkish Delight cakes along with regular cupcakes add quaintness to the pretty table setting.

Since I had been sent Masterclass Mini Muffin Tin, I made tiny, pixie cupcakes. Turkish Delight in flavour, their larger cupcake cousins were also baked. Impressed with the strength, non stick coating and durability of the mini muffin tin, I would definitely look to this brand for larger fairy cake and cupcake tins.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Treat Mum to a special Afternoon Tea in your own home.

Finally, no Mum, or Afternoon Tea is complete without a touch of chocolate. Chocolate Drizzle Cake Squares are easy to make and even easier to eat!

Recipe: Chocolate Drizzle Cake Squares makes 15

175g/6oz Unsalted Butter – softened

175g/6oz Caster Sugar

1/4tsp Salt – I use Maldon

3 Large Free Range Eggs

1tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen-Massey

75g/3oz Good Quality Cocoa Powder

125g/4.5oz Plain White Flour

1.5tsp Baking Powder

200g Bar Each of Milk and White Chocolate

Method: Preheat the oven to 160C/140C fan, gas mark 3.

  • Lightly grease, with butter a 28cm x 20cm x 5cm ( 12″ x 8″ x 2″ ) tin and line the base with baking parchment.
  • In a large bowl add the butter, sugar and salt. Whisk until pale and fluffy.
  • Next add the eggs, vanilla extract and milk. Then sift in the cocoa, flour and baking powder on top. Whisk slowly until all of the ingredients are combined.
  • Spoon the chocolate cake batter into the prepared tin. Smooth the batter so that it fills the tin evenly.
  • Place the tin in the centre of the oven and bake for 25-35 minutes.
  • The cake is baked when it springs back form a light touch. It will also be coming away for the sides of the tin.
  • Once baked remove the tin from the oven and set to one side to cool.
  • When the cake has cooled, tip out on to a parchment lined, flat board.
  • Remove the parchment from the base of the cake and for afternoon tea portions, slice the cake into 15 x 2″ (5cm) squares.
FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Chocolate Drizzle Cake Squares
  • Place the cake squares on to a cooling rack that is placed over a large baking tray.
  • Into separate, heatproof, microwaveable bowls, break up the white and then the milk chocolate.
  • Place one bowl at a time into the microwave. Heat for 30 seconds at a time, stirring after each zap.
  • When both the white and milk chocolate are completely melted transfer into 2 medium disposable piping bags.
  • Start with the milk chocolate, snip the very end of the piping bag off leaving a small hole. Pipe in a zigzag pattern across all of the chocolate cake squares.
  • Turn the baking tray and pipe as before, except you will now be piping across the chocolate milk, forming a criss-cross pattern.
  • Allow the chocolate to partially set and then transfer the chocolate squares to a clean piece of baking parchment, on a tray and leave to one side to set. Note – in warmer weather it may be necessary to place in the fridge for a few minutes to allow to set.
  • Store in a baking parchment lined container, using parchment to separate layers.
  • These Chocolate Drizzle Cake Squares will last upto 4 days in an airtight container.
FF Steamer Trading Mothers Da Afternoon Tea
Chocolate Drizzle Cake Squares perfect to serve with Afternoon Tea.

Different types of cake provide a beautiful setting and greater sense of variety.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Afternoon Tea

Finally Remember

While the tableware and homemade goodies look beautiful set out for Aternoon Tea, here are some added little touches that take it to the next level.

Doillies – in contrasting and complimenting colours.

Fresh flowers – placed in large and/or small vases. Clean jam jars make inexpensive vases and flowers picked from the garden can look beautiful.

Rose petals – one rose had a limping flower head. Break off the petals and scatter around the table.

Bowls of fresh fruit. Strawberries are always popular and provide balance to the cake and scones.

Cellophane bags of truffles, tied with a complimenting ribbon, add an extra wow factor.

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Complimentary bags of truffles enhance the look of the table.

Lastly, don’t panic. Relax, enjoy yourself and your Mum will too. If you can’t bake then buy the cakes. Afternoon Tea on Sunday 26th March is about celebrating Mother’s. Your Mum, important female figures in your life, will be thrilled and honored that you took the time to celebrate them, with Steamer Trading helping you to Host Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea.

I hope that you have enjoyed Steamer Trading Host Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea, here are some recipes you may also enjoy:

Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes

Iced Bakewell Tart

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Iced Bakewell Tart

Chocolate Vanilla Viennese Finger Biscuits

FF Steamer Trading Host Mother's Day Afternoon Tea
Chocolate Vanilla Viennese Finger Biscuits

Whatever you make, bake and create to celebrate Mother’s Day, have fun enjoying you feast.

Sammie xx

Steamer Trading provided me with the five items directy linked to their site. All opinions, views, content and photography are my own. I was not paid for writing this post. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

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Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart

Some ingredients, when cooked together, simply bring out the best in each other. As is the case with this Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart. Also, the leek’s subtle onion flavour is enhanced by the crumbled Stilton cheese, in an egg and cream custard base. The nutty pastry crust provides the perfect crunchy texture and flavour. A delightful balance, that is a treat to our tastebuds.

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart a delicious combination of flavours.

While the chopped walnuts give the pastry a rustic, wholemeal look, it is, in fact light and crumbly. Adding additional flavour to the finished bake. Likewise, the crumbled Stilton cheese mellows on baking. Providing a salty contrast to the mild egg custard. Surprisingly, the mild onion flavour of the leeks doesn’t get lost in this tart. Rather, it brings everything together and sings on the tastebuds, above the other flavours.

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart a feast for the eyes.

Slices of leek are sautéed gently, before placing in the tart. This not only ensures they are soft in the baked tart, but also concentrates the flavour. While baking, the rings separate and rise up through the tart. Also ensuring that each bite has tasty fresh, green leek in it.

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart crunchy and creamy.

This tart is perfect for a light lunch, with salad, or as a main meal with a hot, buttered jacket potato. Also, it makes perfect picnic or buffet food, as it can be served at room temperature. The added nutmeg is barely noticeable, yet enhances all of the tart’s flavours. Leave it out and the finished bake tastes as though it is missing something. I encourage you to include it, freshly grated, if possible!

Recipe: Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart serves 4-6

For the pastry

200g/7oz Plain White Flour

50g/2oz Walnuts – finely chopped

1/8tsp Salt – I use Maldon

1/8tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper

125g/4.5oz Cold Unsalted Butter

60mls Cold Tap Water

For the filling

100g/4oz Stilton Cheese

1 Large Leek

4 Large Free Range Eggs – plus 1 extra for the egg wash

3tbsp Double Cream

1/4tsp Nutmeg

1/4tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Method:

A loose bottom tart tin that is approximately 25cm wide x 5cm deep or 10″ x 2″ is needed for this recipe.

Making Walnut Pastry Crust

  • First of all, in a large bowl add the flour, chopped walnuts, salt, pepper and diced, cold butter. Then using your hands, or a pastry cutter, rub/cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles bread crumbs with pea sized chunks of butter present.
  • Now make a well in the centre of the mixture and add the cold tap water 10mls at a time. Using your hand, fingers bent and shaped like a claw, mix the dough after each addition. Work quickly to avoid the dough warming up and becoming oily. You may not need the full amount of water specified. Stop adding water once the dough comes together to form a rough ball. Set the bowl to one side.
  • Wipe the worktop with a clean, damp cloth. Then place the cling film (approximately the size of a large baking sheet) directly on to the damp surface. It will ‘stick’ and not move around.
  • Finally, tip the walnut pastry dough on to the cling film. Knead the dough lightly into a disc shape. Avoid working the pastry for too long as this will result in a hard, tough, crust.
  • Wrap the pastry disc in the cling film and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, or until it is chilled. Making pastry the night before use allows it to chill thoroughly before rolling out.

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart

    Making the Walnut Pastry Crust.
  • 10 minutes before rolling out the pastry, preheat the oven to 220C/200C fan, gas mark 7.
  • If you wish, lightly butter your tart tin, I never do. Place the tart tin on to a baking tray and put to one side.
  • Place the chilled pastry on to a clean worktop and roll out evenly, until it is a slightly larger circle than the combined width and depth of the tin. Approximately 30cm/11″ in width.
  • Roll the pastry around the rolling pin and transfer to the tart tin. Allow the pastry to settle into the tin. DO NOT stretch it as it will only shrink while baking.
  • Ensure the tin is fully lined and then trim away any excess pastry.
  • Dock the base of the pastry tart with a fork and then line with baking parchment. Fill the lined tart with baking beans, or ceramic balls and place into the top of the oven.
  • Bake the pastry for 15 minutes, then remove from the oven and lift out the baking parchment and beans.
  • Return the tart to the oven and bake for a further 5 minutes.

Filling and Baking the Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Preparing the Leek and Stilton filling.
  • While the pastry is baking, prepare the leek. Strip the outer 2 layers, cut off the root end and top, then rinse thoroughly with cold water.
  • Cut the leek into whole rings, approximately 1cm deep and the gently sauté in a dry pan over a medium/low heat for 10 minutes, or until slightly softened.
  • Remove the pastry shell from the oven when baked.
  • Carefully transfer the whole leek rings to the tart shell. Add any odd pieces of leek around the whole rings in the tart.
  • Cut the rind away from the Stilton. Now, using a fork, break up the Stilton, on a board, into crumbs. Sprinkle the crumbs over the leek  in the tart shell.
  • Reduce the oven temperature to 200C/180C fan, gas mark 6.
FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Preparing the egg custard and decorating the tart.
  • Crack 4 eggs into a large jug. Add the double cream, nutmeg and pepper. Whisk together using a fork, until the mixture is uniform.
  • Pour the egg custard carefully into the pastry tart.
  • Carefully, as the tart is still warm, run a piece of butter around the top perimeter of the tin. This will stop any pastry decorations sticking.
  • Gather together the pastry offcuts. Roll to the thickness of a one pound coin.
  • Use a 1 inch/2.5cm approx. cutter to cut out about 25-30 circles. These will be placed around the edge of the tart.
  • Break an egg into a small bowl, add 1tsp of cream or milk and whisk together. This is the egg wash.
  • Take the first cutout and with a pastry brush, dipped in egg wash, brush both sides of the circle. Place the circle on to the edge of the tart. The centre of the circle should be in contact with the edge of the tart. Continue, using the same egg wash method and placing the 2nd circle so that just overlaps the first disc.
  • Keep going until the whole perimeter of the tart case is covered. I used 22 pastry discs. The number you need will depend on the size of your tart, how much the discs overlap and other variables.
  • Finally, when the decorations are in place, pour any leftover egg wash into the tart. As long as there is room.
  • Place the tart carefully into the centre of the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes. The tart is baked when there is no wobble in the centre, the filling has set and the egg custard is golden.
  • When fully baked remove the tart from the oven and allow to cool before removing from the loose bottom tart tin.
FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Golden Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart

This tart is delicious served warm for lunch or dinner, Also is is very tasty eaten cold or at room temperature, making it ideal for summer picnics and buffets.

It will keep for up to 3 days, stored in a container or, wrapped in cling film and kept in the fridge.

If you have enjoyed this recipe For Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart you may also like these:

Smoked Bacon Asparagus Quiche

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Smoked Bacon Asparagus Quiche

Bath Soft Cheese Chilli Tarts

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Bath Soft Cheese Chilli Tarts.

Quiche Lorraine

FF Walnut Pastry Crust Leek Stilton Tart
Quiche Lorraine

Homemade quiche and tarts taste a million times better than most shop bought varieties available. Seasoning, ingredients and indeed the pastry can all be tailored to our own personal tastes. While I haven’t taken on the challenge of Filo Pastry yet, shortcrust is incredibly easy, see Perfect Butter Shortcrust Pastry.

Whether served with a jacket potato and salad for a substantial meal, or grabbing a slice to eat whilst on the go, tarts and quiches are easy to make. They are also very satisfying to eat.

Do you have a favourite flavour combination for quiches and tarts?

Whatever you are making, baking and creating in your kitchens, have fun.

Sammie xx

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Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes

Who doesn’t love a cupcake? A beautifully decorated, perfectly portioned, whole cake to yourself. While I’m known for encouraging people to share, here on Feasting is Fun, that’s not a problem with cupcakes. Simply bake a batch and share them with whoever you want. These Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes are perfect for sharing.

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes beautifully delicious.

Cupcakes are great for those who struggle to share. Indeed I used to not be as keen on sharing when I was younger. Nowadays, however, if you visit, knock on the door, clean the windows, etc I am more than willing to give you a cookie or cupcake. Since cupcakes come as a complete package, they are easier to share. Our window cleaners and post lady were very appreciative of these Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes that I gave them today.

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes great with Afternoon Tea.

Light sponge tinged pink with chopped maraschino cherries, topped with a swirl of frosting and a whole cherry. Dark chocolate is drizzled over the frosting. Resulting in a perfect balance of flavours. The dark chocolate tempers the sweet frosting and compliments both the cherry and almond flavours.

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes so cheerful.

The unique flavour of maraschino cherries can be tasted through every single bite of these cupcakes. Adding almond extract to the frosting emphasises their flavour too. Substituting glacé cherries wouldn’t give the same result. Maraschino cherries are easily found in the supermarket. Usually near the alcoholic drinks section.

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes pretty perfect!

Since these cupcakes are each topped with a bright red cherry, they would also make a great ‘Red Nose Day’ bake!

Recipe: Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes makes 12

125g/4.5oz Unsalted Butter softened

125g/4.5oz Caster Sugar

1tsp Vanilla Extract

2tsp Liquid from the maraschino cherry jar.

1/4tsp Salt – I use Maldon

50g/2oz Maraschino Cherries plus 12 whole cherries to top the cupcakes

150g/5oz Plain White Flour

1.5tsp Baking Powder

For the frosting and decoration:

400g/14oz Plain White Icing Sugar

200g/7oz Unsalted Butter softened

1tsp Almond Extract – I use Nielsen-Massey

2tbsp Very Hot Water – from a recently boiled kettle

50g/2oz Dark Chocolate minimum 70% Cocoa

Method: Preheat the oven to 160C/140C fan, gas mark 3

  • First of all, line a cupcake or muffin tin with 12 cupcake cases.
  • Remove 12 nicely shaped, maraschino cherries from the jar and place on to kitchen towel to drain. Weigh out slightly more than 50g of cherries and place into a bowl. Tip away any excess liquid that collects in the bowl. Follow, by cutting the cherries in the bowl into small pieces and set to one side.
  • Next, into a large bowl add the sugar, butter and salt. Beat until pale and creamy.
  • Add the vanilla extract and 2 teaspoons of liquid from the cherry jar. Now beat these into the mixture.
  • Using the ‘all in one’ method, add the eggs to the bowl and then sift in the flour and the baking powder. Finally add the chopped cherries and gently mix the ingredients together until they are combined.
  • Fill each cupcake case with one dessert spoonful of cake batter.
  • Place the tin into the centre of the preheated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes.
  • The cupcakes may look a little darker than usual. This is due to a combination of the cherries in the batter and the liquid from the jar added to the cake batter.
  • They are fully baked when the sponge springs back from a light touch, or an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  • Once baked remove the cupcakes from the oven.
  • Remove the cupcakes from the baking tin and place on a cooling rack.
FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Making the batter, filling the cases and baking the cupcakes.
  • While the cupcakes are cooling make the buttercream frosting.
  • Into a large bowl add butter and then sift in the icing sugar.
  • Next add the hot water and almond extract.
  • Start whisking on a very slow speed, until the butter and icing sugar have combined. Then gradually build up the whisking speed to high. Continue whisking until the frosting is pale and fluffy.
  • Spoon the frosting into a piping bag that has been fitted with a large star tip. I use a Wilton #1M.
  • Starting at the outside edge, on the top of the cupcake pipe a complete swirl. As the next swirl overlaps, lift the piping bag to bring the swirl inwards. Continue piping in swirls, finishing in the centre, by pulling the bag away. Similar to piping a Mr Whippy ice cream.
  • Continue until all of the cupcakes have been piped with frosting. Do not worry if there is a little buttercream left in the piping bag.
  • Next place a cherry on top of each cupcake.
FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Making the frosting, piping and decorating the cupcakes with maraschino cherries.
  • Allow the icing to set on the cupcakes.
  • While the cupcakes are setting, make the chocolate drizzle.
  • Break up, or chop the chocolate and place into a small, heatproof, microwaveable bowl. Heat for 20 seconds at a time, in the microwave. Making sure to stir the chocolate after each heating. When the chocolate has completely melted pour into a small, disposable piping bag.
  • Snip the very end of the bag off and drizzle chocolate over each cupcake.
FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes melted dark chocolate drizzle adds the finishing touch.

Finally, allow the chocolate to set before serving these Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes.

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes

These cupcakes will last for 5 days if kept in an airtight container. However, it is doubtful, once shared that they will last that long 😉.

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes you may also like these:

Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes

Marshmallow Frosted Mango Cupcakes

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Marshmallow Frosted Mango Cupcakes with a gluten free option.

Coconut White Chocolate Snowball Cupcakes

FF Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Drizzle Cupcakes
Coconut White Chocolate Snowball Cupcakes

Sharing baked goodies, not only makes others happy, but also keeps waistlines from expanding! While selling my own bakes is not something I ever wish to do, sharing them allows me to follow my real passion. Since that is recipe development, mixing flavours, textures, being creative, giving away baked treats actually helps me. Resulting in smiles all round!

Do you enjoy baking for others?

Sammie xx

 

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Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova

Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova a delicious crisp outer shell, with a deep, brownie-like inner, topped with whipped cream and chocolate dipped strawberries. The perfect dessert to share with those you love.

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova perfect for sharing.

I adore pavlova. Both making and eating it! This chocolate heart pavlova is so pretty and also easy to make. Simply follow the recipe and instructions and you too can bake this beautiful dessert.

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova ideal for Afternoon Tea.

Last week Valentine’s Day was celebrated, I wanted to create something that would be perfect to share with those I love. That said, everything posted on Feasting is Fun, is designed to be shared! Since, hearts, strawberries, chocolates and flowers are all associated with February 14th, I wanted to incorporate as many of these as possible. Resulting in a beautiful and tasty dessert that should not be confined to one day of the year, in my opinion!

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova with added chopped strawberries for extra decoration and flavour.

For this pavlova the heart is piped, with swirls around the outside, defining the heart shape. It is not difficult to do and creates a different, yet pretty finish, once baked. Also, this heart pavlova contains only cocoa, not chunks of chocolate, making it possible to pipe. The resulting meringue mixture resembles a light, airy mousse. Which, once baked keeps its shape perfectly.

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova each layer distinct.

Lightly whipped double cream tops the chocolate pavlova, rather like a down duvet covers a bed. Moulding and fitting to the contours. Creating a soft, velvety contrast to the crisp and fudgey pavlova. Chocolate dipped strawberries add the final touch of decadence, crowning this dessert with their contrasting colours.

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova served on heart embellished china.

One mouthful of this delightful dessert and you are lost to the complimenting flavours and contrasting textures. Fortunately, one serving provides plenty of time to fully appreciate this beautiful pavlova. However, I wont tell if you go back for seconds!

Recipe: Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova serves 6-8

4 Large Free Range Egg Whites

200g/7oz Caster Sugar

1tsp Balsamic Vinegar

50g/2oz Cocoa – I use Callebaut

1tsp Corn Flour – I use Doves Farm

300mls/ 1/2 pint Double Cream

400g Fresh Strawberries

100g/4oz Milk Chocolate

50g White Chocolate

Method: Preheat the oven to 200/180C fan, gas mark 6

Prior to starting ensure the bowl used to mix the meringue is scrupulously clean. Wipe around the inside of the bowl with half a lemon to ensure no fat is present. The presence of fat, or oil will stop the egg whites from whipping up and incorporating air.

Also line a large baking tray with baking parchment. Draw a large heart on the reverse of the parchment with pencil, approximately 25cm wide by 27.5cm high, 10″w x 11″h.

  • Pour the egg whites into the large clean, prepared bowl.
  • Whisk until the egg whites hold a stiff peak.
  • Continue whisking on high, adding the sugar one tablespoon at a time until it is all incorporated. The meringue should be white and glossy, holding a stiff peak. Rub a little of the meringue between your finger and thumb, it should feel smooth. If at all gritty, continue whisking, as not all of the sugar is dissolved into the egg white. Continue until the mixture is smooth.
  • While the egg whites are whisking fit a large piping ba with a large, open star nozzle, I use Wilton  #1M.
  • Once the meringue has been whisked sift in the corn flour and cocoa. Then add the balsamic vinegar.
  • Using a large, clean, metal spoon fold all of the ingredients together carefully. Taking care not to knock out the air that has been whisked into the egg whites.
  • Place four dots of meringue in the corners of the baking tray, then place the baking parchment on top. This will hold the baking parchment in place.
  • Place a large spoonful of chocolate meringue into the centre of the heart. Spread the meringue with a palette knife, so that it fills the heart outline. There is no need to be too precise as it will be piped over.
  • Fill the piping bag with the remaining chocolate meringue.
  • Pipe swirls around the outline of the heart, leaving the bottom point and the top dip until last. Pipe a swirl at the bottom of the heart and then the top dip. Next pipe stars, inside the heart, on the base.
FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Making and creating the chocolate heart pavlova.
  • Place the pavlova into the centre of the oven and immediately reduce the heat to 160C/140C gas mark 3. Do not open the oven door whilst baking!
  • Bake for 1 hour exactly. After the baking time has elapsed turn the oven off and open the oven door a fraction, so that the pavlova cools slowly. I place a wooden spoon between the door and the oven.
  • While the pavlova is cooling the strawberries can be prepared. Into separate, small heatproof, microwaveable bowls, break up and add the milk and white chocolate, separately. Heat for 20 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until the chocolate has melted. Spoon the melted white chocolate into a small piping bag.
FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Preparing and decorating the strawberries.
  • Select 10 of the biggest strawberries and leave their tops on. Dip 5 of the large strawberries into the milk chocolate, using a teaspoons to help fully cover them. Place the dipped strawberries on to some baking parchment. Tip – if the strawberries are kept in the fridge until needed they will be chilled. This will help the chocolate set quickly.
  • Next pipe lines across the 5 chocolate covered strawberries and also the 5 un-dipped ones, this gluten free recipe also uses chocolate strawberries. Leave to set on the baking parchment. In warm weather place in the fridge for a couple of minutes.
  • When the pavlova has completely cooled it can be removed from the oven.
  • Pour the cream into a bowl and whisk until it has thickened but is not stiff.
  • Gently run a palette knife under the pavlova to loosen it from the baking parchment. Place the pavlova on to a flat plate, or stand from which it is to be served.
  • Spoon the cream inside the shell of the pavlova.
FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Preparing the cream and filling the pavlova.
  • Arrange the chocolate dipped strawberries on the top of the cream, removing the tops if necessary.
  • If liked, chop the remaining strawberries into fairly small pieces and sprinkle around the whole strawberries.
FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova ready to be served.

Now all that is needed is someone to share this stunning dessert with!

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova served with a hot cup of tea.

Serve sliced, ensuring each portion has a chocolate strawberry.

This Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova is at its best eaten on the day assembled. The pavlova can be made the day before and left to cool, overnight in the oven. The strawberries can be prepared 4 hours ahead and left in a cool place. Likewise the cream can be prepared at the same time as the strawberries and left in the fridge, it may need a quick whisk to bring it back to the consistency required.

The Pavlova will last, covered in foil, in the fridge for 2 days after assembly.

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova you may also like these:

Raspberry Coulis Drizzled Mixed Berry Pavlova

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Raspberry Coulis Drizzled Mixed Berry Pavlova

Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Lemony Strawberry Pavlova

Raspberry Chocolate Pavlova

FF Strawberry Topped Chocolate Heart Pavlova
Raspberry Chocolate Pavlova

All of the pavlova recipes on this blog are gluten free. Making them a suitable dessert for more people. Ensure that the corn flour used in each recipe is certified gluten free.

Since it is in my nature to be as inclusive as possible, serving a naturally gluten free dessert to friends and family ensures that everyone feels special. Likewise, no one can feel that they have been ‘too much bother’ due to any dietary limitations they may have. Resulting in a relaxed, enjoyable meal and atmosphere.

Have fun creating, making, cooking and baking in your kitchens.

Sammie xx

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Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread

If you are a frequent visitor to this blog, you will know how much I enjoy making bread. While I am very happy to let kitchen appliances carry out the hard work, indeed for this loaf they are necessary, shaping the dough is always fun to do by hand. Since I first tried an eight strand plaited loaf last year, I have become hooked on intertwining lengths of dough and observing the final, baked result. This Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread is delicious and easy to make.

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread a delicious breakfast.

Having re-tested the recipe and technique I have full confidence that you too can make this delicious bread. Even if you have never plaited before, the step by step photographs will show you how. Such a small amount of extra effort and you will be rewarded with a stunning loaf. While the smell of cinnamon dough, baking, will have you counting the minutes until your first slice!

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread golden and bronzed with a hidden inner.

When baking, it always pays to use the very best ingredients available. However, not everyone’s budget can stretch to premium ingredients. If you can make one change here, I strongly recommend using free range, or organic eggs. Their golden yolks are what help give this loaf its amazing colour. Both in the bread itself and the egg wash, brushed on before baking. Resulting in both the golden and bronzed baked crust.

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread beautiful inside and out.

Serving this bread, sliced for breakfast or as an afternoon treat with a hot drink, is sure to brighten anyone’s day. Since it is a large loaf, why not take it to work, pre-sliced and share with your colleagues? Since all food tastes better when it is shared, that is the only way to improve this bread. Simply by sharing it.

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread simply delicious.

Recipe: Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread 

300mls Whole Milk

2 Large Free Range Eggs

1tsp Caster Sugar

10g Dried Yeast – I use Allinson in the green tub or sachets

600g/1lb 5oz Strong White Bread Flour – I use Shipton Mill

50g/2oz Unsalted Butter

10g Salt – I use Maldon

For the cinnamon filling:

75g/3oz Light Muscavado Sugar – I use Billington’s

4tsp Cinnamon

1 free range egg plus 1tbsp milk to brush over the loaf.

Method:

The method given for making this Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread uses a dough hook fitted to a stand mixer. The enriched dough is very, very sticky, prior to its first prove. Using a stand mixer ensures that the dough is kneaded properly. Resulting in a light textured crumb once baked.

  • First of all ensure that your kitchen is warm. It will really benefit the yeast, during the dough making process.
  • Measure the milk into a jug and warm in a microwave for 20 seconds. Ideally the milk should be body temperature 37C. However, do not overheat as it may kill the yeast.
  • Pour the milk into the bowl of a stand mixer.
  • Crack 2 eggs into the jug and add these to the milk in the bowl. I always break eggs into a separate container first. If any shell escapes it can then be removed and also, extremely occasionally, should an egg be bad, it will not spoil the whole recipe.
  • Next add the sugar and yeast. Swish the liquid about with clean fingers to break up the eggs and mix lightly.
  • On top of the liquid mix add the flour.
  • Now add the butter and salt.
  • Lower the dough hook into the bowl and mix on the slowest speed for 5 minutes. Then, gradually increase the speed to medium and mix for a further 5 minutes.
  • After the mixing time has elapsed stop the mixer.
  • Remove a small piece of dough and stretch it between your fingers. The dough is kneaded when it can be stretched so thinly that light can be seen through it. This is called the windowpane test.
  • If the dough tears before it can be fully stretched, lower the dough hook and continue mixing, checking every 3 minutes, until it passes the windowpane test.
  • Once the dough passes the windowpane test it is ready to prove. Scrape the dough from the dough hook and allow to drop into the bowl. Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and place somewhere warm and drought free.
  • Allow the dough to prove until doubled in size – approximately 1 hour.
  • While the dough is proving grease a large baking tray with butter. Also, into a small bowl, weigh out the sugar and add the cinnamon. Stir to mix and break up any large sugar lumps using your fingers. Set to one side.
  • Once doubled in size turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface. Use your hand, or a dough scraper to remove all of the dough.
  • Shape the dough into a round and then weigh it. I use digital scales, placing the dough on to a piece of baking parchment. Make a note of the weight of the dough. Now divide that figure in 3.
  • Cut the dough into 3 pieces that are equal in weight.
  • Roll each piece of dough into a length and then flatten, using your hands or a rolling pin. Each flattened length of dough should measure 50cm/20″.
FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Preparing three dough strands for the cinnamon/sugar filling.
  • Sprinkle the sugar/cinnamon mixture down the middle of each piece of dough. Dividing it equally between three strands.
  • Dab a little tap water down the right side of the first strip of dough. Now bring the left side over and pinch to secure the sides together. Similar to making a sausage roll.
  • Continue until all three lengths of dough have their filling securely encased.
  • Roll each length of dough so that the join is underneath and not visible.
  • Join all three lengths of dough at the top. Place on top of each other and pinch together to secure.
FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Filling, securing and attaching the top of the plait.
  • Plaiting the dough:
  • Starting from left to right, number the strands 1, 2 and 3. Number 1 strand will always be to the left, 2 in the middle and 3 on the right.
  • Pass strand 1 over strand 2.
  • Now pass strand 3 over strand 2. Ensure the strands are not pulled tight and likewise there should be no gaps.
  • Repeat the past two steps until the plait is finished. (Strand 1 over 2, then strand 3 over strand 2 and repeat.)
  • Pinch the bottom 3 strands together so that they are secure and look tidy.
  • Lift the plait using both hands at either end and place diagonally on to the greased baking tray.
  • Cover with a clean tea towel and leave, as before, in a draught free place.
  • While the plaited dough is proving preheat the oven to 240C/220C gas mark 9. Break an egg into a bowl, add the tablespoon of milk and whisk with a fork to mix. This is the eggwash.
  • Once the plaited dough has doubled in size use a soft pastry brush and carefully brush the egg wash over.
FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Plaiting the dough strands, proving and egg washing before baking.
  • Place the egg washed Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread into the centre of the preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes. Then reduce the oven temperature to 220C/200C fan, gas mark 7. Continue to bake for a further 15-20 minutes.
  • The bread is baked when a deep, golden crust has formed and the base sounds hollow, when rapped with a knuckle.
  • Once baked remove the bread from the oven.
FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Beautifully baked Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread.
  • Slide a pallet knife under the baked bread, then carefully transfer to a cooling rack.
FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread cooled and sliced, revealing the hidden centre of each strand.

Allow the loaf to cool to body temperature before slicing. Attempting to slice while the bread is still hot will compact the bread. Also eating freshly baked, hot bread, is not good for our digestion!

Serve sliced with a smile and a complimenting drink.

Placed in a bread bin, or wrapped loosely in foil, once fully cooled, this loaf will last up to three days. It can be toasted, although I’d advise not to use a toaster due to the sugar present. Under a grill, or even better, in front of a log fire, this bread makes excellent toast!

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread you may also like these:

Large White Bloomer

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Large White Bloomer

Knotted Poppyseed Rolls

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Knotted Poppyseed Rolls

Ginger Date Hot Cross Buns

FF Cinnamon Plaited Brioche Bread
Ginger Date Hot Cross Buns

Homemade bread is the most luxurious food, for me, to bake. Enticing smells as it is baking, make our house feel like a home. Appreciative comments when a fresh loaf is on the table, to be served with dinner, or for breakfast, make me smile. Not for the accolade, or indeed achievement, from others, of having made my own loaf. Simply the fact that I am giving my family, delicious, additive free, tasty bread, is enough to keep me baking.

What do you really enjoy cooking and baking? Who do you like to share it with?

Sammie xx

 

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