Cherry Cobbler Squares
The summer has been a bit of a bust so far. A few nice days here and there but that’s it. To compensate I made some summer fruity cobbler bars that would be nice for an indoor picnic.
I used cherries and blueberries for the first batch. I love fresh summer cherries.
I used fresh apricots and raspberries in the second batch.
The second batch had more of a crumble topping going on. I love the tartness of the apricot and raspberries together.
adapted from Brown Eyed Baker (makes 12 bars)
2 1/2 cups diced fruit (I used 2 cups cherries 1/2 cup blueberries and 1 punnet apricots, skins removed with a handful of raspberries)
1 tbs lemon juice
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1. Pre-heat the oven to 375 F/190 F and grease a 9 x 9 pan. In a small bowl combine the diced fruit and lemon juice. Fold in the sugar, flour and salt.
2. To make the dough whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Using a pastry blender or two knifes and combine the butter in until the mixture is crumbly. Add in the egg and combine to form a dough.
3. Split the dough in half and spread one half into the pan.
4. Pour the fruit mixture over the dough. Then take the second half of the dough and crumble it on top of the fruit. If the dough is not crumbly enough add in one or two handfuls of flour.
If you add a little more flour it can get a little more crumbly than this
5. Bake for 45 minutes until brown on top. Cool before cutting into squares.
Enjoy with some cream or ice cream.
Royal Wedding Whoopie Pies
I had just enough time to squeeze in one more Royal Wedding treat! I decided to go with a simple Victoria Sponge but styled into a bite size whoopie pie. These are really quick and easy to bring to your local street party! I still haven’t decided how to spend my day off from work. Any suggestions?
Victoria Sponge is the most classic British cake, after a fruit cake. It’s two vanilla cakes with whipped cream and raspberry jam sandwiched in the middle. It’s not overly sweet but a good contrast to the sweet Bubbly Peach Cupcakes I made earlier.
I used cookie cutters to make stencils out of the aluminium foil for the icing sugar dusted on top. A little glitter mixed in there would look nice too. You could also make a reverse template to what I’ve done.
I used Hannah Miles book Whoopie Pies: Fun Recipes for Filled Cookie Cakes, which is absolutely adorable (I bought my sister the book and in the US it is in cup measurements not grams)! I thought about dying the cake red and blue but figured that wouldn’t be sophisticated enough for such an occasion.
Victoria Sandwich Whoopie Pie
adapted from Hannah Miles ‘Whoopie Pies’ (makes 12)
125g unsalted butter, at room temperature
220g caster/superfine sugar
1 tsp vanilla
320g self rising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
100ml hot water (not boiling)
300ml whipping cream
icing sugar, for dusting
1. Preheat the oven to 350 F/180 C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grease a whoopie pie tin. Sift together the flour, salt and baking powder together in a medium bowl and set aside.
2. In a large bowl cream together the sugar and butter with an electric mixer on medium speed, until light and fluffy about 3 minutes.
3. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Whisk in the buttermilk, alternating with the flour mixture. Whisk until Incorporated. Stir in the hot water.
4. Scoop one spoonful of batter into the tin or onto the tray. Alternatively for a uniform smooth pie put the batter in a piping bag. Let stand for 10 minutes and bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from tin after a few minutes and set aside to cool completely.
5. Make the filling by whipping the cream until stiff peaks form. Place in a piping bag and swirl onto a round.
6. Place another cake on top a dust with icing sugar.
Fiona Cairns White Chocolate and Cardamom Cake
This is the first cake I made from Fiona Cairns’s book Bake & Decorate. Read my review of the book here.
This was a simple sponge cake to make but looks most impressive with the addition of a few strategic glittery roses that are ridiculously easy to make!
I was never really that into decorating but there are a lot of really easy ideas in the book that could be mixed and matched with any kind of cake. Make sure to read the introduction and pages in the back as this is where the idea for glittery roses was.
This picture doesn’t do the final product justice at all. They were spectacular in the light and everyone was really impressed at work that I made them myself. It’s not easy taking photos at 10pm.
Note: If you want edible flowers check with your florist that they can be eaten (you never know if something has been sprayed of them). I bought these at the supermarket and was pretty sure that they weren’t safe to eat. I took them off when served.
The only change I would make is to use less or omit the rose essence. There are already a lot of great flavors going on in this cake and I think the rose took away from that. I enjoyed the pistachios and raspberries more, personally. I would maybe add a little more cardamom in the cake next time as well.
White Chocolate and Cardamom Rosewater Sponge
From Fiona Cairns Bake & Decorate (with permission from Quadrille)
For the Cake
130g unsalted butter, at room temperature
20 green cardamom pods
170g self-raising flour
100g white chocolate, chopped
130g caster sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
For the frosting/ganache
200g white chocolate, finely chopped
200ml double cream
2-3 tsp rosewater (or to taste, I find it quite strong)
For the decoration
100g whole pistachios (roast in the oven for 5- 10 minutes at 170 C ahead of time and then shell)
250g fresh raspberries
7 roses, cut with a inch of the stem remaining
1 egg white
1. Preheat oven to 180 C. Butter and line your cake tin with parchment paper.
2. De seed the cardamon pods by cutting them in half and emptying out the little seeds. Grind the seeds finely with a pestle and mortar. Sift afterwards to remove any husks.
3. Place the chocolate in a food processor with half of the sugar. Process until as fine as possible. Add 2 tablespoons of hot water (not too hot, you should be able to stick your finger in it). Dribble into the chocolate, process until it has melted.
4. From this point the directions continue to use the food processor but I don’t have a big one so I used my hand mixer. I transferred the chocolate mixture to a large bowl. Add the remaining sugar and butter and beat well. Add the eggs, flour and vanilla and beat again.
5. Pour into the tin and bake for 25-30 minutes. Remove and place on a wire rack for a few minutes, then turn on a wire rack and remove the paper. Leave until it is completely cool.
6. Make the ganache by placing the chocolate in a bowl. In a pan bring the cream and rosewater to a boil. Pour over the chocolate, leave for a few seconds, then gently stir until smooth. Leave until completely cool.
7. Whisk until thick like frosting (I beat for a few minutes with my electric mixer).
8. Carefully cut the cake in half. Using the flat half for the top.
9. Fill with ganache and then a layer of raspberries.
10. Top with the flat layer cake. I then dry iced it with a thin layer of ganache and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
11. Evenly spread another layer of ganache around the sides and top of the cake (I really wish I had a cake decorating turntable). Decorate the sides with the shelled and roasted pistachios.
12. Make the glittery roses by placing the egg white in one bowl and the edible glitter in another. Brush the sides and top edges of the flower with egg white using a pastry brush, then roll the flower in the edible glitter. Don’t brush the egg white on too thick or the glitter will look lumpy. Place in the hole of a cooling rack to let the glitter dry.
13. Press the stems of the roses in the center of the cake in a circle pattern. Any mistakes can be covered with any extra icing so the holes don’t show.
Peach Melba Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes
My friend sent me a Nordicware ice cream cone cupcake pan for Christmas. It’s amazing, they’re perfect for making cupcakes with a little surprise inside as there’s more space for filling than a normal cupcake.
Monte Cristo Sandwiches
I had some leftover ham from the Christmas period that I stuck in the freezer. Last year I made soup with the leftovers and well that’s pretty boring! This time I decided to spice things up and make indulgent Monte Cristo sandwiches. If you’re still going strong on your New Years Resolutions look away now. If you want to break them, keep reading!