Thursday, 28 November 2013

Banoffee Pie

Recipe from Sprinkle Bakes

Banoffee Pie

For the base
2 cups digestives
½ cup chocolate sprinkles or chips
¼ tsp salt
113g (8tbsp) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
25g (2tbsp) granulated sugar
pinch of salt
1tbsp caster sugar
For the filling
4 large bananas
2tbsp lemon juice
227g (1 cup) butter
2 x 14oz cans sweetened condensed milk
283g (1 1/3 cup) light brown sugar
60ml (¼ cup) golden syrup
For the topping
320ml (1 1/3 cups) double cream
chocolate shavings

1. For the base, crush the biscuits with a rolling pin or in a food processor and mix in the chocolate sprinkles/chips, salt and sugar. Pour the melted butter into the centre and mix together until thoroughly combined. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 x 2.5 inch springform pan and refrigerate.

2. Slice two of the bananas, place in a bowl and toss with 1tbsp lemon juice. Arrange the banana slices over the bottom of the base and refrigerate.

4. Place the butter, brown sugar, condensed milk and golden syrup in a large saucepan. Stir over a medium heat and raise to a medium-high heat once the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Keep the mixture bubbling gently for 6-10 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature before pouring over the bananas in the crust. Chill for several hours or overnight, until set.

5. Slice the remaining bananas and toss with 1tbsp lemon juice. Whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Place a few of the banana slices over the top of the pie, top with the whipped cream and then add the remaining banana slices and the chocolate shavings.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Gooey Cookies and Cream Bars

Recipe from Willow Bird Baking

Gooey Cookies and Cream Bars

113g (1/2 cup) butter
124g (1/2 cup + 2tbsp) caster sugar
1 egg
1tsp vanilla extract
208g (1 1/3 cups) plain flour
3/4 cup (around 100g) oreo cookie crumbs
1tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
140g white chocolate bars
191g (1 1/2 cups) marshmallow fluff


1. Preheat the oven to 180◦C/ 350F/ gas mark 4 and line an 8 inch square tin with buttered foil.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, then beat in the egg and vanilla.

3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, oreo crumbs, baking powder and salt. Mix the dry ingredients into the butter mixture until just combined.

4. Divide the dough in two and refrigerate half. Press the other half of the dough into the prepared pan. Place the chocolate bars over the dough (break the chocolate to fit if necessary)- there should be a full layer of chocolate of about 1/4 inch thickness. Add the marshmallow fluff to the top and spread evenly over the chocolate. Take the remaining dough from the fridge and place it on top of the marshmallow layer into a thin, even top layer.

5. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned. Allow to cool in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely and slicing into bars. If desired, just before serving, microwave the bars for 25-30 seconds, until the middle is gooey.

Monday, 25 November 2013

Caramelised White Chocolate Brownies

Recipe from The Little Loaf

Caramelised White Chocolate Brownies

For the caramelised white chocolate250g good quality white chocolate, broken into pieces
pinch saltFor the brownies300g good quality dark chocolate, chopped
180g unsalted butter, diced
180g light brown soft sugar
4 eggs
1 egg yolk
115g ground almonds
100g plain flour
15g cocoa powder
1tsp baking powder
1tbsp milk


1. Preheat the oven to 125C/250F/mark ½. Place the white chocolate on a rimmed baking tray and place in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, spread into a thin layer over the baking tray and return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Repeat this process every 10 minutes for 50 minutes or until the chocolate is a deep brown caramel colour. Remove from the oven, stir in the salt and set aside.

2. Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/mark 3. Grease and line a 9 inch/23cm square pan.

3. Melt the dark chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Once melted, set aside to cool slightly before whisking in the sugar.

4. Beat the eggs and egg yolk into the dark chocolate mixture, once at a time, beating continuously until thick and glossy. Fold in the ground almonds, then sift in the flour, cocoa and baking powder and fold gently to combine. Stir in the milk.

5. Transfer half the batter to the prepared pan. Pour half the caramelised white chocolate over the batter, then top with the remaining batter. Drizzle the remaining white chocolate over the top and drag a skewer or knife across the top of the brownies (in perpendicular lines) to create a lattice pattern.

6. Bake for 25 minutes or until set but still a little squidgy. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before slicing.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Banana Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting

Frosted Pecan Banana Bread

115g (½ cup) unsalted butter
150g (¾ cup) brown sugar
2 eggs
80g (1/3 cup) yogurt
480ml (2 cups) mashed bananas (about 4 bananas)
1tsp vanilla extract
250g (2 cups) plain flour
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp baking soda
¼tsp salt
½tsp cinnamon
70g (½ cup) pecans, chopped
For the frosting
112g  (4 ounces cream cheese)
60g (¼ cup) unsalted butter
120g (1 cup) icing sugar
1tbsp milk
pinch salt

2tbsp pecans, chopped, to sprinkle on top

1. Grease and line a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan. Preheat the oven to 180◦C/350F/mark 4.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the yogurt, bananas and vanilla.

3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt ad cinnamon. Gradually fold into the wet ingredients. Briefly mix until there are no more flour pockets, then fold in the pecans. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes, cover with foil, then continue to bake for a further 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes away clean.

4. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

5. For the frosting, beat together the cream cheese and butter until soft and creamy. Sift in the icing sugar and beat until combined. Add the milk and salt and more icing sugar as required to reach desired consistency.

6. Spread the frosting over the cooled banana bread and sprinkle with the additional chopped pecans.

Blackberry, Lemon & White Chocolate Cake

Recipe adapted from Serious Eats

Blackberry, Lemon & White Chocolate Cake

Ingredients:For the Cake
350g (1 ¾ cups) caster sugar
2tbsp lemon zest, grated
60ml (¼ cup) lemon juice
255g (2 ¼ cups) cake flour
2tsp baking powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
180ml (¾ cup) milk
1tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs, separated
1tsp salt
225g (1 cup) unsalted butter

For the white chocolate frosting300g (1 ½) cups caster sugar
1tbsp lemon zest, grated
180ml (¾ cup) lemon juice
40g (¼ cup) plain flour
28g (¼ cup) cornflour
½ tsp salt
360ml (1 ½ cups) milk
280g (10 ounces) white chocolate, chopped
1tbsp vanilla extract
225g (1 cup) unsalted butter
For the assemblyblackberry jam
280g white chocolate,
fresh blackberries
1-2tbsp icing sugar


1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/mark 4 and grease and line two 9-inch cake pans.

2. For the cake, combine 300g of the sugar and lemon zest in a food processor until no zest strands remain.

3. Sift together the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and set aside.

4. In another bowl, combine the milk, lemon juice and vanilla.

5. Whisk the egg whites and salt until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 50g sugar and continue whisking until stiff peaks form.

6. In a separate bowl, cream the butter and lemon sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, one at a time. Add the flour mixture in thirds, alternating with the milk mixture. Stir one third of the egg whites into the batter until fully incorporated. Fold in the remaining egg whites.

7. Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake for 20-25 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cakes comes out clean. Transfer to wire racks to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pans and leaving to cool completely.

8. For the frosting, combine the sugar and lemon zest in a food processor until no zest remains.

9. Transfer the lemon sugar to a medium saucepan, add the lemon juice and bring to a boil over a medium-high heat. Cook until reduced to 80ml (1/3 cup), 10 to 15 minutes.

10. Combine the flour, cornflour and salt. Add the milk and whisk until smooth and add to the saucepan. Cook for about 5-7 minutes over a medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture boils and thickens. Stir in the lemon mixture, white chocolate and vanilla. Transfer to a bowl to cool to room temperature.

11. Beat the frosting mixture in a free-standing mixer with the whisk attachment. Add the butter, in tablespoon-sized pieces, until completely incorporated. Increase the speed of the mixer and beat until light and fluffy.

12. To assemble, slice each cake in half and sandwich the first two layers together with blackberry jam. Spread some of the frosting on top and add the other cake layer. Spread some blackberry jam on top and then add the final cake layer. Frost the top and sides with the frosting.

13. Melt the chocolate and spread in a thin layer over a sheet of foil. Leave to cool to room temperature, refrigerate until hard and break into shards. Press the shards into the sides of the cake, then top with the blackberries and dust with icing sugar.
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