Sunday, 25 May 2014

Chocolate Chip Pancakes

This chocolate chip pancake recipe is from the GU cook book (yes GU the amazingly chocolately pudding GU), it's a bit more fussy than your usual pancake recipe but its definitely worth doing.

First sift 100g of plain flour, 1tsp of baking powder and 2 tbsp of cocoa powder into a bowl. Then in a jug whisk together 150ml milk with 3 egg yolks, before combining it all together.

In a separate bowl whisk the three egg whites together until they form soft peaks, then add 25g of caster sugar and a pinch of salt until it resembles 'shaving foam'. Mix in one third of the the whisked egg whites into the batter before folding in the rest.

Heat a non-stick pan (I added a small amount of butter just to make sure they didn't stick) and spoon on the mixture (to make one pancake I used roughly a tablespoon and a half). They only need 30 seconds on each side but you'll know when they need turning as bubbles will start to form on the top of the pancakes.

Depending on what time of the day you are eating them, they are even tastier with chocolate sauce and ice-cream...but maybe not for breakfast!

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

These have been on my list of things to bake for a long time and this weekend (being the hottest weekend in a long time) seemed like a good time to try them out.

I used a simple BBC Food recipe to make these, so simple in fact you just throw all the ingredients into a bowl and mix. This includes; 200g butter, 200g caster sugar, 200g plain flour, 4 tbsp custard powder, 1 tbsp vanilla essence and 2 eggs. I halved this recipe to make 6 cones but in the end it made around 9.

Then spoon the mixture into flat ice cream cones which need to be placed into a muffin tin to make sure they stay upright whilst baking. Fill the cones 2/3 of the way with mixture so that the cakes rise to the top of the cone.

They will need to go into the oven for about 30 minutes but I found mine needed to come out before then, so keep an eye on them and take them out when they are golden brown in colour (use a cake tester to make sure it comes out clean).

To make the butter icing combine 350g of butter, 350g icing sugar and 2 tbsp of vanilla essence. Then spoon it into a piping big, ideally one with a star shaped nozzle or a relatively big one.

Once the cakes are cool, you can pipe the icing onto of the cones, starting from the edge into the centre.

Then you can decorate them with whatever you fancy, I went for the traditional 99p cone as you can see, only with added sprinkles (obviously)!

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Cake in a Mug

I've seen several microwave mug cakes on Pinterest recently (unfortunately mine doesn't look quite as good as them), so I thought I'd give it a go and it turns out it is even easier and quicker than I thought.

             1. Add 4 tbsp of S.R. flour, 4 tbsp          2. Stir in one egg until all the 
             of caster sugar and 2 tbsp of cocoa      ingredients are combined.
             powder into a mug and mix.

              3. Add in 3 tbsp of milk and                  4. Put the mug in the microwave
              3 tbsp of vegatable or sunflower          on a high heat for 4-5 minutes
              oil. As well as any extracts or               or until it has stopped rising.
              additional chocolate drops.

Then tah-dah, you've made a cake in less than 10 minutes!

Whilst I can't say it was the tastiest thing I have ever baked, it was by far the quickest bake I have ever done.

Friday, 2 May 2014

Chocolate Smartie Bark

If you're struggling to get through your Easter eggs or trying to start your diet again but you've still got lots of chocolate lying around the house, why not throw it all together and just be done with it.

Chocolate bark, layered chocolate topped with sweets, nuts or even more chocolate, is probably the easiest thing you could possibly make. I can't even pretend any effort went into making it but it is fun to do and looks great afterwards.

First I melted a Cadbury's Easter egg in the microwave - be careful as the chocolate is so thin it is easy to leave it in the microwave until the lumps have melted completely but it will more than likely be burnt by then so take it out whilst there are still chocolate pieces and mix them in. Then pour this into a baking tray which is already lined with grease-proof paper.

Then put it in the freezer until the chocolate has set (I'm sure this isn't normally how you do it but I was too impatient to wait). 

Then I melted a bag of white chocolate buttons and spread it evenly over the milk chocolate (make sure the white chocolate is cool as it will melt the milk chocolate and it will no longer be white). Alternatively you could drizzle or splatter this on top to make it more decorative. The great thing about using white chocolate is you can colour it too, a drop of pink food colouring would look great for chocolate bark.

Then it is up to you how you decorate your chocolate bark, I used smarties (half whole and the rest crushed) with a sprinkling of silver dust (obviously).

Then all that's left to do is smash it up into pieces of chocolate bark.