Sunday, 26 January 2014

Funfetti (Sprinkle) Cake

I've seen several funfetti cake recipes on Pinterest recently, all of which look amazing, and so I thought I'd give it a go myself. It makes a simple sponge look much funner with lots of coloured sugar strands throughout the cake. 

As all the recipes on Pinterest were American and used cups as a measurement, I used a Victoria sponge cake recipe instead and added about 3/4 of the pot of sprinkles to the mixture.

The sprinkles are added in last after the cake mixture has been made.

Then once you have buttered the baking trays, split the mixture into two and bake for between 25-30 minutes.


Next is the butter icing, I used 5oz of butter with 10oz of icing sugar to make the one below. Make sure the cakes are completely cool before spreading on the butter icing as the butter will begin to melt otherwise.


Turnover one of the cakes, and spread a thick layer of butter icing on the top before placing the other cake on top (this is the middle of cake). 

Then you can begin on the outside of cake by spreading a thin layer of icing all over the cake. Otherwise known as a crumb coat, this thin layer will pick up all the crumbs from the cake before you add the final top layer of butter cream. Once you have done the crumb coat, pop the cake in the fridge for roughly 10-minutes before adding the second layer.

Then you can decorate it however you wish, but being a funfetti cake I choose to decorate it with even more sprinkles!

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Hummingbird Bakery Apple Streusel Cake

Apple streusel cake is a three layer cake consisting of Victoria sponge, layered apples and a crumble topping. What's not to like?

The first step is to make the 'streusel' which is the crumble topping. Rub the sifted (70g) plain flour, (1 1/2 tsp) cinnamon (I prefer to use mixed spice instead) and (40g) cubed butter together to form breadcrumbs before adding in the (70g) light brown sugar. 

To make the sponge; cream the (60g) butter and (100g) caster sugar together until pale and fluffy, then add the egg and (1/2 tsp) vanilla essence, followed by the (140g) plain flour, (1 tsp) baking powder, (1/8 tsp) salt and (80ml) milk - this last part is added in two halves.

 Then you can move onto the apples by peeling, coring and slicing three granny smiths into quarters and then into 3/4 slices, depending on the size of the apples.

Then comes the fun bit, layer the cake by evenly spreading the cake mixture on the bottom, layering it with apple slices and then sprinkling on the crumble topping.

Place it in the oven at 170c for between 35-45 minutes, until golden brown and crunchy on the top. To check it is baked the whole way through, insert a skewer (or end of a teaspoon) and if it comes out 'clean' (no trace of raw cake mixture), it's done.

Then all that is left to do, is to get the cream out of the fridge and put kettle on.

Friday, 10 January 2014

Cake Pops

I've been wanting to make cake pops since the craze first stared but I've never been sure which method to use as there are three main ways; using a 'cake pop maker', combining pre-brought cake with butter cream icing or using a cake pop mould (like the one I used below).

Making the cake pops themselves is the easiest part, simply weigh out and combine; caster sugar (4oz), butter (4oz), (3) eggs, plain flour (4oz) and vanilla extract to form the cake mixture. The mixture then needs to be spooned into the individual moulds (up to the rim) but make sure it isn't the side with the little air hole as that is the top.

A top tip to make sure they don't stick to the mould once they are done is to (very) lightly coat the silicone tray beforehand with oil (using a spray oil is the easiest way to control the amount you use) and flour. They need to go into the pre-heated  (180oc) oven for approximately 20 minutes, however I found they needed a little longer than this but be careful not to take them out to early as it will cause them to drop in the middle. 

Once they have cooled for roughly 20-30 minutes, melt the chocolate you are going to use to coat the cake pops and individually dip the sticks into the melted chocolate before inserting them into the cake pops. You need to be careful not to push them too far as they might go through the other side. I'd recommend inserting them a third of the way into the cake pop. 

There are a range of different cake pop stands online but with a bit of wood and a drill my dad quickly rustled me one up and my mum ( being the keen crafter she is, set to work decorating the cake pop stand, which you can see above. I found the how-to for this cake pop stand from rosebakes, it provided a great step-by-step guide.


Once the cake pops have been left in the fridge for roughly an hour and a half, you can begin dipping them into the melted chocolate. The best way to do this is to melt the chocolate over a bain marie, allowing more control over the temperature of the chocolate (less likely to burn). It will also keep the chocolate hot whilst you coat each cake pop, as when microwaved it will begin to thicken as it cools at a much quicker rate (as you can see above).

I choose to melt milk chocolate and white chocolate for these but you can choose whatever chocolate you want to coat the cake pops. 

There are a thousand different ways to decorate cake pops (you only need to do a Google search to see the vast amount of cake pop designs), but it is completely up to you as to what you choose to decorate them with. As you can see I raided the cupboard and found every single tub of sprinkles possible. 


Sunday, 5 January 2014

Mars Bar and Milky Way Cookies

Still got chocolate tins left lying around the house from Christmas? This is the perfect recipe to use them all up before starting the January diet (or not in my case). I used a BBC Food basic cookie recipe and swapped the chocolate chunks for various tin chocolates. If your household is anything like mine it will be the mars bars, bounties and milky ways.

Just like any other cookie recipe; cream the butter and sugar together, add an egg and drop of vanilla extract, then a pinch of salt and self raising flour, before finally adding in the chopped up chocolates (I just used all the chocolates I had left).

Then roll the dough into walnut sized balls, any bigger and it will be one big cookie, and be sure to leave enough room between them (I did three in a row).

As you can see they go delicious and crunchy but don't be fooled, they are still incredibly gooey inside but you've got to eat them warm!