Saturday, 25 March 2017

Simnel Spiced Easter Cheesecake


I've had a really rough couple of weeks, and I apologise in advance if you're squeamish, but I won't go into too much detail when I explain what happened. I had a wisdom tooth removed; the procedure itself went fine and I came home with a very numb mouth and giggling from the after effects of the drugs they used to sedate me. I took painkillers consistently for the next few days to keep the pain at bay. A few days later it all started to go downhill and the pain intensified to a point when I mentally and physically could not cope with it anymore, the painkillers stopped working and I became desperate for it to stop. After a visit to the dentists I was told the area was infected and I was given antibiotics. They did their magic, but made me very sick for several days. It's now nearly two weeks later and I'm finally back to myself, and most importantly I can eat and chew again! Besides the pain, not being able to eat properly was the worst part for me. So as soon as I could I was back in the kitchen baking to my hearts content, well no-baking this cheesecake full of Easter spices and flavours.


I started by whizzing up 250g fruit shortcake biscuits (I got mine from Tesco and they were the own brand in a purple packet) in my food processor until they were fine crumbs. I added 80g melted butter, mixed them all together, then pressed into the bottom of a 23" springform tin. I put it in the fridge for 30 mins to set.


For the cheesecake filling I used my electric hand whisk to mix together 750g full fat cream cheese, 180g icing sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 1/2 tsp mixed spice and 1/4 tsp nutmeg. Once it was combined I added 300ml double cream and continued too mix until it was thick.


I put the filling over the base and smoothed it down as best I could. I left it in the fridge overnight to set.


To decorate the cheesecake I whipped up 200ml double cream along with 2 tbsp icing sugar and 1 tsp almond extract. I piped two rows of cream using my Wilton Number 6B Open Star tip (slightly obsessed with this tip at the moment!)


I then added Golden Galaxy Eggs all around in between the rows of cream, and in the middle I sprinkled a mixture of toasted flaked almonds and some gold confetti sprinkles I found in Tesco. I then added some gold glitter all over the cheesecake as the final touch!


The cheesecake was so creamy and the spices and almond in the cream all combined to create that Easter flavour that reminds you of simnel cake and hot cross buns. The Galaxy golden eggs and gold glitter made it look decadent and added extra indulgence. This would be an amazing dessert to enjoy after Sunday lunch, or any time over the Easter season.


I'm linking this recipe up with Cook Blog Share hosted this month by Easy Peasy Foodie.


And with Recipe Of The Week hosted by A Mummy Too.


And with the Sunday Fitness & Food Link Up hosted by Ilka's Blog and Marathons & Motivation.


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Simnel Spiced Easter Cheesecake
Ingredients
  • 80g Butter, melted
  • 250g Fruit shortcake biscuits
  • 750g Full fat cream cheese
  • 180g + 2 tbsp Icing sugar
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp Mixed spice
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
  • 1 tsp Almond extract
  • 500ml Double cream
  • 1 pack of Golden Galaxy Eggs
  • A handful of Toasted flaked almonds
  • Golden confetti sprinkles
  • Golden glitter spray
Instructions
Use a food processor to whizz up the fruit shortcake biscuits until they are fine crumbs. Add the melted butter and mix together, then press the mixture into the bottom of a 23" springform tin. Put it in the fridge for 30 mins to setFor the cheesecake filling use an electric hand whisk to mix together the full fat cream cheese, the 180g of icing sugar, the cinnamon, mixed spice and nutmeg. Once it is combined add 300ml of the double cream and continue to mix until it thickensPour the filling over the biscuit base and smooth it down. Leave it in the fridge overnight to setTo decorate the cheesecake whip up the 200ml of double cream along with the 2 tbsp icing sugar and the almond extract. Pipe two rows of cream using a Wilton Number 6B Open Star tip, or any other rosette tip you haveAdd the Golden Galaxy Eggs all around the cheesecake in between the rows of cream, in the middle sprinkle a mixture of the toasted flaked almonds and the gold confetti sprinkles. Then add gold edible glitter all over the cheesecake as the final touch

Monday, 13 March 2017

Baileys Cheesecake Chocolate Brownies


People often think I am from Irish descent due to my pale skin and red hair, but as far as I know, I don't have any Irish in my blood. It is hard for me to be certain of this due to a rather tulmutuous family history, but no one else in my direct family has the same colouring as me. This certainly led to a lot of musings about being adopted when I was younger! One thing I know for sure is that I love Irish food and drink, and Baileys Irish cream is one of my favourite drinks (I currently have three bottles in my cupboard). I love to bake with it, one of my favourite ever cakes is my Chocolate Guinness Cake with Baileys Buttercream, so I just had to find another way to put it in a bake and these brownies were created!


To make the Baileys cheesecake filling I mixed together 350g full fat cream cheese, 65g caster sugar, 1 egg and 4 tbsp Baileys irish cream liquor.


For the brownie mix I whisked together 250g dark brown sugar and 3 eggs, I also added 2 tbsp Baileys.


I added 350g melted dark chocolate and 250g melted butter to the mixture, then added 120g plain flour and 1 tsp baking powder.


I poured about two third of the mixture into a lined tray bake tin, then I poured the cheesecake mixture on top, then I poured the rest of the brownie mixed on top.


I swirled it around a bit using a knife then baked it on 180C/160C Fan/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 35 minutes.


I left it to cool completely before cutting into squares. These brownies were divine and did not stick around for long at all! I even had to treat myself to a second piece. The baileys really comes through in the cheesecake and it pairs perfectly with the soft chocolatey brownie.


I'm linking this recipe up to Treat Petite, hosted by Cakeyboi this month and me on alternate months.


And with We Should Cocoa hosted by Tin & Thyme.



And with the Sunday Fitness & Food Link Up hosted by Ilka's Blog and Marathons & Motivation.


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Baileys Cheesecake Chocolate Brownies
Ingredients
  • 350g Full fat cream cheese
  • 4 Eggs
  • 65g Caster sugar
  • 6 tbsp Baileys
  • 350g Dark chocolate
  • 250g Butter
  • 120g Plain flour
  • 1 tsp Baking powder
  • 250g Dark brown sugar
Instructions
To make the Baileys cheesecake filling mix together the full fat cream cheese, caster sugar, 1 of the eggs and 4 tbsp of the Baileys until smoothFor the brownie mix start by melting the dark chocolate and butter in a glass bowl over simmering water, once melted, set aside to coolIn a bowl, whisk together the dark brown sugar and 3 of the eggs until frothy, add 2 tbsp Baileys and mix inSlowly pour the melted chocolate and butter into the mixture, whilst constantly mixingAdd the plain flour and baking powder and mix inPour about two third of the brownie mixture into a lined tray bake tin, then pour all of the cheesecake mixture on top, then pour the rest of the brownie mix on topUsing a knife, swirl the mixture around a bit, then bake it on 180C/160C Fan/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 35 minutesLeave it to cool completely before cutting into squares

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Biscoff & Banana Cake with Caramel Drizzle


I think I severely underestimated how much time moving into a new house takes up even after you move. I've been so busy recently doing very grown up things like going to the tip on Saturdays, spending scary amounts of money on furniture and attempting to pick paint colours. I had some bananas that were slowly going brown in the fruit bowl and I decided that it was the perfect excuse to fit in some baking. My boyfriend is obsessed with Lotus biscoff spread and he loves it on sandwiches with banana. He's been working so hard recently that I wanted to combine those flavours into a cake for him to enjoy and this is what I created!


To make the sponge I started by mixing together 360g butter, 150g golden caster sugar and 150g light brown sugar.


I then added 3 eggs and 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and whisked in, then I mixed in 4 mashed up bananas. Finally I folded in 450g self raising flour and 1 1/2 tsp baking powder.


I seperated the batter into three 20" sandwich tins, and baked on 160C for 25 minutes. I left them to cool completely.


For the biscoff buttercream I started by mixing together 300g butter with 600g icing sugar. I then added 540g Lotus biscoff spread and 6 tbsp double cream and mixed it well until smooth.


I put the first sponge on my turntable to start decorating, I spread on a layer of buttercream and smoothed it over.


Then I sprinkled on some crushed Lotus biscuits for extra crunch between the layers, I then did the same for the next layer and then topped it with the final sponge.


I covered the whole cake in a layer of the buttercream, then put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.


I took it out of the fridge and smoothed on a final layer of the buttercream, I used a palette knife to make it as smooth as I could all over. I refridgerated it again for 30 mins.


I was going to make my own caramel, but I had a bit of a disaster as I burnt the sugar. My new house has gas hobs rather than the electric hobs I've been used to for the past 5 or 6 years living in flats, so I'm still getting used to how hot they can get so fast! Luckily I had some Carnation caramel in the cupboard. I tipped about half the jar into a bowl and stirred it to smooth it out. I added 1 tsp salt to give it a salty kick, then put it in a piping bag.


This the first time I've made a 'drip' cake so I carefully piped blobs of the caramel on the edge of the cake, I was quite stingy with the amount as I knew it would carry on dripping more than I would realise. I then covered the whole top of the cake with a thin layer of the caramel. I put it back in the fridge for 15 minutes to firm up the caramel.


I put the rest of the biscoff buttercream in a piping bag and piped rosettes around the edge using my Wilton Number 6B Open Star tip. I then crushed up some more Lotus biscuits and filled the middle of the cake with crumbs. Finally I chopped some pieces of dairy fudge in half and placed them neatly on top of the buttercream.


And the cake was done! I was pretty pleased with my first 'drip' effect cake, as I think it does give a really professional finish. You just have to be as stingy as possible with the amount of caramel, so it doesn't flood the cake. The cake was a huge hit at work, I had some lovely comments from my happy colleagues on both it's looks and taste. The banana cake was super moist and full of banana flavour, the crunch between the layers gave the cake some added texture, and the buttercream was pure biscoff heaven!


I'm linking this recipe up with Cook Blog Share hosted this month by Hijacked By Twins.


And with The No Waste Food Challenge hosted by Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary as I was making use of 4 ripe bananas languishing in the fruit bowl, and the fudge pieces were also left over from a previous cake decorating session.


And with Recipe Of The Week hosted by A Mummy Too.


And with the Sunday Fitness & Food Link Up hosted by Ilka's Blog and Marathons & Motivation.


And with Dessert Island Dish hosted by Good Egg Foodie.



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Biscoff & Banana Cake with Caramel Drizzle
Ingredients
  • 660g Butter
  • 150g Golden caster sugar
  • 150g Light brown sugar
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 4 Ripe bananas, mashed
  • 450g Self raising flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 600g Icing sugar
  • 540g Lotus biscoff spread
  • 6 tbsp Double cream
  • 8-10 Lotus biscuits, crushed
  • 175g Carnation caramel
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 4 pieces of Dairy fudge
Instructions
To make the sponge mix together 360g of the butter, the golden caster sugar and the light brown sugarAdd the eggs, one at a time and mixing between each addition, then add the vanilla extract and whisked it inMix in the bananas, then fold in the self raising flour and baking powderSeparate the batter into three 8" lined and greased sandwich tins, and bake on 180C/160C Fan/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 25 minutes. Turn out onto cooling racks and leave to cool completelyFor the biscoff buttercream mix together 300g of the butter with the icing sugar. Then added the Lotus biscoff spread and double cream and mix it well until smoothTo decorate, put the first sponge on a turntable and spread on a layer of buttercream and smoothed it overSprinkle some crushed Lotus biscuits over the buttercream layer, then add the second sponge and do the same, then top it with the final spongeCover the whole cake in a layer of the buttercream, using a palette knife to smooth it out, put it in the fridge for 30 minutesRemove from the fridge and smooth on a final layer of the buttercream, again using a palette knife to make it smooth all over. Refridgerated again for 30 minsTip the Carnation caramel into a bowl and stir it to smooth it out. Add 1 tsp salt and put it in a piping bagCarefully pipe blobs of the caramel around the edge of the cake so it drips down the sides, use less than you think as it will drip more than you expect and you can always add more. Then cover the whole top of the cake with a thin layer of the caramel and put it back in the fridge for 15 minutesPut the rest of the biscoff buttercream in a piping bag and pipe rosettes around the edge using a Wilton Number 6B Open Star tipTip the remaining crushed Lotus biscuits into the middle of the cakeFinally, chop the dairy fudge in half and place them neatly on top of the buttercream