Because they make VW’s and Black Forest Cherry Cake of course.
My father absolutely loves Black Forest Cherry Cake as I’m sure I’ve told you before. I’ve tried to make a Black Forest Cherry Cupcake before and I even posted about it but I think this cake was absolutely perfect.
If you don’t like the idea of so much cream (I know it makes it incredibly rich and I personally believe that’s why it goes down so well) you can always use some buttercream but I suggest just going with the cream.
For the Cake:
- 260g Plain Flour
- 50g Cocoa
- 1 1/2 tsp Bicarb
- 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 tsp Salt
- 60g Shortening
- 190g Caster Sugar
- 90g Dark Soft Brown Sugar
- 2 Eggs
- 1 tsp Vanilla Essence
- 375ml Buttermilk
- 1 TBsp Milk
1. Measure out the flour, cocoa, baking powder, bicarb and salt. Instead of sifting, try whisking these together. It’s easier and it works a treat.
2. Cream the shortening and sugar together, then beat the eggs in one by one. Add the vanilla.
3. Add the flour and the buttermilk and the milk alternating between them.
4. Pour the mixture into two 8″ pans and bake for 25-30 minutes at 180 degrees C. Keep checking the cakes after 20 minutes cos the cocoa burns really quickly.
For the Buttercream:
- 125ml Kirsch
- 90g Butter
- 380g Icing Sugar
- 1 TBsp Strong Coffee
- 300g pitted cherries
- 1 TBsp Milk
1. Cream the butter and icing sugar.
2. Brew the coffee by adding a touch of boiling water to the coffee powder and dissolving the powder. Add this to the creamed sugar and butter.
3. Add the kirsch, cherries and milk and beat the buttercream for 8 to 10 minutes until pale and fluffy.
For the Cream:
- 1 Carton Double Cream
- 3 TBsp Kirsch
- 2 tsp Vanilla Essence
1. Whip the cream to stiff peaks.
2. Add the kirsch and vanilla essence
Right, now you need to assemble this bad boy.
I suggest chilling the cakes before you start assembling as this will make sure the icing spreads easily. Cut the two cakes in half horizontally. You’re going to put the coffee icing on the first layer, then put the cherries on top of that and put another layer of cake on top of the cherries. You can add the cherries to the icing when you’re mixing it, but I prefer to do it seperately.
You’re going to repeat this step until you’ve layered all of the cakes on top of each other.
The cream mixture is going to cover the top and sides of the cake. You can spread it on thick or thin, it’s up to you. I like to crumble Flakes on top or you could decorate the cake with cherries and chocolate shavings.
This cake is incredibly delicious so enjoy!
These are Valentine’s cupcakes for people who have no interest/clue how to decorate a cupcake and need something fast. It’s easy…like super easy…like, chill with a drink while you prepare to decorate these bad boys kinda easy.
Unless you burn water, you will manage these cupcakes.
It’s a simple Vanilla sponge with strawberry jam running through it, a cream cheese frosting and some pink sugar dust on top. It still looks impressive and you will get an “aww” for presenting them.
140g Plain Flour
150g Caster Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder (I use double action because nothing rises in Cornwall)
1 tsp Vanilla Essence
150ml Milk (or 3/4 C)
1. Start by mixing the flour, sugar, butter and baking powder in an electric mixer or with a handheld mixer. You want a sandy consistency.
NOTE: I like to add a bit of custard powder to my cupcakes. Why? Because it makes the mixture a little thicker and makes the cupcake a little sturdier so you don’t have to treat it like it’s going to cave in at any moment. You can add it to the wet ingredients or to the dry ingredients.
2. Add half the milk to your dry ingredients and mix on a medium speed.
3. Whisk the egg with the remaining milk and vanilla essence.
4. Add the rest of the wet ingredients. Make sure you scrape down the sides of your bowl evertime you add a new ingredient to be mixed. It helps with the process.
5. This is strawberry jam time! Put as much or as little strawberry jam into the mixture as you like (I personally only like a little bit) And then stir it through the batter. Don’t overmix, you want streaks of the jam in your cake, not just mixed in.
6. Bake your cupcakes at 180 Degrees C for 10 to 12 minutes.
500g Icing Sugar
1tsp Vanilla Essence
1/2C Cream Cheese
1. Mix the icing sugar and butter together in an electric mixer until the butter has broken up.
2. Add the vanilla essence and the cream cheese and mix together until the frosting comes together.
3. Add the milk to the mixture (adjust the amount if you need more or less) and turn the mixer speed up fairly high and allow the frosting to be beaten for up to 8 minutes. The longer you beat, the fluffier it gets!
The Coloured Sugar:
There is a whole how-to guide about coloured sugar. Now, technically, you are supposed to use sand sugar, but I used caster sugar and it looked fine.
It comes out all sparkly and lovely. For stuff like this in the shops, we pay nearly £4 in the UK and that’s if you’re lucky enough to find it so thanks Sugarbelle! This is a technique I will definitely be using in the future. I even have old jars that I have cleaned in prep for storing these new found sugar sparkles.
There you are, easily decorated cupcakes for Valentine’s Day!
So as most people know, shipping cupcakes can be an absolute nightmare!
Where does the frosting go? What if the postman drops them? What if they get smushed before they arrive because the van had to swerve to avoid a fox and it ended up in a Cornish hedge along with a thigh master?! Ok, totally not sure about the Cornish hedge thing, but it could happen. It could.
Well apparently the answer is this: A cupcake pod.
They are like small capsules to encase your cupcake and make it feel at home. It can get all cosy and warm and homely in there without having to worry about foxes or hedges or thigh masters. Clever thing.
This image is not mine. It is from the Card Cuts website.
I ordered a few of these cupcake pods as I will soon be ready to ship my very own creations. I have bought myself a snazzy industrial oven, I got myself some qualifications and I’m just going to go for it. Hell be damned. It’s all going on over here!
So if you’re interested in these amazing cupcake pods then you should head on over to Card Cuts and have a look around. They’re fairly cheap compared to some places and they have a large variety of things to look at. It’s also not the biggest business and their courrier service is fantastic as mine arrived two days later (I ordered at like 11pm so that’s understandable) they had a cute little note in them and even thanked me for purchasing. How considerate! They were fantastic to deal with, they take PayPal and all major credit cards and they ship from the UK but can arrange international shipping as far as I know.
Honestly, there was nothing I felt they wouldn’t do for me. Marvellous.
Now, my cupcakes will be available to buy soon so if you’re interested then comment or email me and we can get our cupcakes on!
They will come in one of these pods so be prepared to be amazed!
Yes, it is a well known fact that carrots do not let you see in the dark but rather that they strengthen your carbon rods and therefore allow your eyes to see more clearly and with most focus…this is why you should always eat your carrot cake and never moan when your mother tells you to finish your veggies.
I have found possibly one of the best carrot cake recipes ever. It comes from the Great British Book of Baking which I talked about in my previous post and enjoyed you to snap up immediately. However, the recipe I share with you today is a slightly modified version and one that I think makes the cake just a little more special…if there is even such a thing to behold. Once again, I must stress that I use a Kenwood Chef Mixer in my kitchen but if you have a handheld whisk then you just whisk your heart out and don’t let anything anyone says stop you. Also, the following (ON) stands for Or Not so if you see that then it means you are more than welcome to ommit that ingredient from your cake if you do not like it or simply do not have it in your kitchen. Totally up to you.
- 225g Self Raising Flour
- 1tsp Baking Powder
- 1 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp Ground Mixed Spice
- 1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
- 225g Soft Light Brown Sugar
- Grated Zest of a Lemon
- Grated Zest of an Orange
- Walnut or Pecan Pieces (ON)
- 3 Eggs
- 150ml Sunflower Oil
- 150g Carrots
- 1 TB Sunflower, Seseme, Poppy or Pumpkin Seeds (ON)
- Sift the flour, baking powder and all of your spices into a large bowl. Mix in the seeds if you’re using any or all of the seeds mentioned above and add the sugar and nuts. You can also add the zest of the orange and lemon at this point. I like to mix the dry ingredients around so that they are evenly dispersed into the flour.
- Beat the eggs and add them to the dry ingredients.
- Add the sunflower oil and the carrots. You can either grate the carrots or food process them if you want them to be like a pulp, but this can cause the cake to become mushy in the middle so grating is the best option, even if it is a pain in the ass and makes your arms bulge like PopEye.
- You will need to mix and combine all of the ingredients well. Make sure you cannot see any flour and that the mixture is sort of sticky and stretches when you lift the spoon out of the bowl. Then you’ll know it’s ready.
- Bake the cake for about 25 minutes at 180 degrees C. I tend to use 2 x 23cm cake pans that have baking parchment fitted into the bottom and that I have greased the sides of. This makes it easier for the cake to be lifted out at the end.
There are a few tips you’ll need for this recipe. Firstly, let’s talk zest – you do not want to zest all the way down to the white of the peel because that stuff is nasty so just avoid it if you can. Also, rolling your fruit is the best way to get the zest to release all of the oils and juices that it contains. Just roll it gently between your palm and the counter top, it’s nothing too complicated so try not to mess it up. Also, I want to talk moisture. Carrot cakes are known to be moist and lovely and if a carrot cake is dry then you should throw it out because it will do nothing but cement up your mouth and cause you to choke – don’t do it to yourself. However, do not under any circumstances, think it’s ok to make the cake so moist that it turns to slush in your mouth. That’s not cool either. Let’s aim for a middle ground shall we? Good good.
Now, I generally take my two cakes and stick ‘em together with either lemon buttercream or cream cheese frosting or with the cheesecake topping that you can find here. As Alexander would say: “Simples”. But you always want to make it look a bit decorative so don’t forget that! I normall
y had a few pieces of pineapple or some peach slices or even some of the seeds on top of the cake. It makes it look pretty. My own version was not looking so wonderful when I took these pictures but the cake is resting upon a beautiful Nigella Lawson Cake Stand that I indulged in and had to share with you. So enjoy!
Long title, I know! I haven’t posted anything in a while due to having to work quite a bit but these are really good and I made them about two weeks ago. I hope you enjoy them, they’re really sweet and delicious and perfect for a cocktail party as they are bitesize and easy to pick up with a drink in the other hand.
The Oat Balls
- 2 TB Syrup
- 80g Butter
- 1-2C Rolled Oats (it depends on how sweet you want the recipe to be)
- 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 1 TB Soft Light Brown Sugar
- Pinch of Salt
- 150g Milk or Dark Chocolate
- 1 – 3 tsp Chilli powder
- Start by melting the butter, syrup and sugar together over a medium heat and allow the mixture to bubble slightly but not boil.
- Stir together the cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and oats in a separate bowl and add slowly to the butter mixture over the heat. This will allow you to see how much of the oats you want in the mixture. It will also allow you to melt more butter/syrup to add the mixture quickly (I normally melt butter and syrup in the microwave if I have something in a pan and don’t want to wait to heat another pan.
- Allow the mixture to cook slightly. You want the oats to cook but not to burn so make sure you keep an eye on the mixture as the syrup and sugar has a tendency to suddenly burn.
- Take the mixture off of the heat and wait for it to cool slightly. You want the mixture to be warm but not set. I recommend using gloves when you roll the balls or you could spread it in a baking pan and cut the mixture into slices if you prefer. Place the balls or the slices into the fridge and allow to set for 1 hour.
- Using a double boiler system (placing a bowl over simmering water) melt the chocolate. I tend to add a dash for milk to get a good dipping consistency but you don’t have to do that. When the chocolate is almost melted, add the chilli powder. You should add this slowly so that you get the right amount of heat. Stir the chilli into the chocolate and then dip the balls or the slices into the chocolate mixture and place them back into the fridge to set for another hour or until ready to serve.
I like to use milk chocolate personally because I think the flavour is a lot milder and suits the recipe better but there are some people who swear by dark chocolate and that’s just fine too. I suppose it depends on the palate which means that this recipe is quite picky because it also depends on how spicy you like the chocolate to be.
Chilli and chocolate has been used together for centuries and it’s something that I find incredibly entertaining to play around with. It’s a different way of looking at things and trying something new is always a good thing. I hope you enjoy this recipe and stick around for others!
Ok, so the person that inspires me and makes me want to be the best I can ever ever be at baking is my dad. The man is a Computer Wizard and a culinary genius. My childhood has been filled with delicious dinners and outstanding breakfasts and the man with the golden spoon is my dearest father. I don’t often praise him in real life so hopefully he’ll stumble upon my blog one day and see how fond I am of both him and his kitchen skillz…yes he’s cool enough for a z at the end of skillz.
So when I bake something, the first person I enlist as taste tester is the very man that married my mother and helped to create me 21 years ago. His answer to the majority of my questions is: “Yes, that icing tastes good” or “I like how you added some coconut to that” because it’s normally a cupcake that he’s being forced to consume. But a friend of mine sent me this amazing website and I quite liked the look of the no bake cheesecake and my father’s comment was “Make that, make that now”. So I adapted the recipe to suit myself…considering I had no Tennis Biscuits, Graham Crackers, Rich Teas or Digestive Biscuits in the house. So here it is, the recipe of all recipes in my opinion and the go-to cheesecake that I would definitely bake if I was to ever enter Come Dine With Me…which I won’t because I’m allergic to bell peppers and that’s all those people seem to make.
- 6 – 8 Ginger Nut Biscuits
- 100g Butter
- 2 TBS Soft Light Brown Sugar (Dark will also do)
- 2 TBS Dessicated Coconut
- 1 C Rolled or Instant Oats
- 1/2 C Pecan Nuts or Almonds
- Start by food processing the ginger nut biscuits to crumbs. I like to get some chunks in there as well as the fine powder. If you don’t have a food processor then you could always put them in a sealable bag and crush them with a rolling pin…depending on your anger levels, this may or may not be a wise move.
- Melt the butter in a pan and allow it to bubble a little bit without burning or cooking properly.
- Mix the ginger nut biscuit crumbs, the brown sugar, the coconut, the nuts and the oats together in a bowl. I like to food process the nuts as well but you can leave them whole or cut them into halves depending on what you like the most.
- Add all the ingredients to the butter and stir well. Allow the mix to cook for a few minutes before removing from the heat.
- You’ll need a 23cm dish if you’re making a standard cheesecake, otherwise you can use individual moulds or smaller dishes. I like to use a 23cm glass Pyrex bowl so that people can see all the layers before I serve it. You need to compact the mixture into the dish with the back of a spoon and then pop the dish into the fridge for 10 to 15 minutes to allow the base to set.
The CheeseCake of the Cheesecake
- 220g Cream Cheese
- 1C Icing Sugar
- 1/4C Granulated Sugar
- 2tsp Flavouring eg. Lemon juice, orange juice etc
- Zest of a lemon or an orange – alternatively you can add fruit to your cheesecake such as strawberries or blackberries
- 220g Double Cream
- Using either an electric mixer or a handheld electric mixer (I do not suggest making this recipe with an ordinary whisk as you will end up with RSI wrist) beat the cream cheese until it is light, fluffy and completely and utterly dead to the cream cheese world.
- In a bowl, combine the icing sugar and granulated sugar and add it to your cream cheese. Beat the ingredients together until the cream cheese has incorporated all of the sugars and has gone a bit runny.
- Add your flavouring. I like to add lemon flavouring because cheesecake should be lemon to me, but you can take this in any direction you fancy. I have tried to add coconut and lime to the cheesecake at this point and it turned out really well. You will also now need to add any zest you plan on putting in. Beat the cream cheese mixture a little more…you know you want to.
- Add the cream and beat the mixture until it has thickened and resembles whipped cream.
- Now it’s time to build your cheesecake…so crack out the base you made and start spreading that cream cheese mixture goodness onto your base. You can also add fruit to your cheesecake here so if you really wanted to then you could put some pineapple chunks down on the base or some strawberries etc and then layer the cheesecake mixture on top of the fruit.
- Place the cheesecake in the fridge to cool and set for about an hour.
And that’s it! All done and dusted. I like to also grate some chocolate over the top and of course you can add a fruit syrup or colis to it, but we won’t go into why I detest colis and think it should be banned in all countries, especially the ones where I reside.
I hope you enjoy the cheesecake recipe and let me know how it goes for you! If you have any questions then don’t hesitate to ask.