Posts Tagged ‘cake’

Cakes & Bakes: Saffron loaf

Thursday, December 4th, 2014

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saffron loaf cake with a large mug of tea | @hisforhome

I’ve somehow managed to get to the wrong side of mid-40 without ever having tasted saffron, although Justin’s used it in some of the kitchens he’s worked in (he’s so windswept & interesting!).

saffron in a saucepan of milk | @hisforhome

It’s often added to rice dishes and sauces, but I obviously decided to give it my first outing in a cake!

cubes of butter on flour | @hisforhome

Saffron loaf is a traditional Cornish recipe. It’s a very straightforward bake; mix the dry ingredients, crumb in the butter, add the saffron-infused milk, form a soft dough, a short prove then pop it in the oven for about an hour.

flour and dried fruit mixture | @hisforhome

This isn’t a dainty cake. You can cut it into small, delicate pieces for a touch of refinement, of course… but we didn’t go down the Ritz afternoon tea route and had a large slice (with a scraping of butter!).

pouring saffron milk and yeast mixture on to dry mixture | @hisforhome

 A rustic pottery mug full of strong tea was the ideal accompaniment.

saffron loaf dough | @hisforhome

 It’s sweet & fruity with the subtle, yet distinctive, saffron flavour coming through nicely.

saffron loaf dough in baking tin | @hisforhome

A delicious late afternoon pick-me-up – a perfect way to satisfy that peckish stage between lunch & dinner.

Saffron loaf
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Ingredients
  1. 0.1g saffron threads
  2. 125ml/4½fl oz milk
  3. 500g/18oz plain flour
  4. 10g/⅓oz dried, fast-action yeast
  5. pinch salt
  6. ¼tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  7. 250g/9oz cold butter, cubed
  8. 250g/9oz golden caster sugar
  9. 350g/12oz mixed dried fruit (I used raisins, currants and sultanas)
  10. saffron loaf cake ingredients
Instructions
  1. Grease a 1kg/2.2lb loaf tin
  2. Heat the saffron and milk in a pan over a medium heat until the mixture has turned yellow and is almost simmering
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt and nutmeg
  4. Add the butter and sugar and rub in using your fingertips or pastry blender until it forms the consistency of breadcrumbs
  5. Stir in the dried fruit until well combined
  6. Add the yeast to the saffron milk mixture, stir well before adding it to the dry mixture
  7. Mix until the mixture comes combines to form a soft dough
  8. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead lightly until smooth
  9. Put the dough into the greased loaf tin, cover with a damp tea towel and leave in a warm place for an hour to rise
  10. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/Gas mark 4
  11. Bake for an hour, or until the loaf is beginning to brown
  12. Remove from the oven, leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before removing it from the tin on to a wire rack and allowing it to cool further
Notes
  1. Great spread with butter and/or thin slices of cheddar cheese. Have it toasted when it's a few days old.
H is for Home Harbinger http://hisforhomeblog.com/

Cakes & Bakes: Lemon curd

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

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Lemon curd layered sponge cake | H is for Home

For someone who claims to hate lemons, I sure cook a lot of lemon-based Cakes & Bakes recipes!

This week, I needed one lemon for something or other but saw one of those string bags of lemons in the supermarket for a whole 25p – cheaper than buying it singly.

I ended up with half a dozen lemons in the fruit bowl that needed using up. More drizzle cake? Cookies? Sorbet? Meringue?

I’ll let you in on a secret. Even though I generally can’t bear lemon, I LOVE lemon curd – I don’t know why! Lemon curd on hot, buttered toast is divine – and it’s a doddle to make.

I found a really simple recipe in my favourite celebrity chef, Delia Smith’s Cookery Course Part Two. I scaled up her recipe which made enough to fill two 400ml Mason jars. As well as being good on breakfast toast, you can use it in a sponge sandwich like I did here, lemon curd tarts or lemon roulade.

Lemon curd sponge sandwich with jar of home made lemon curd

Don’t worry if your mixture looks like it’s curdling when it begins to cook. Once the temperature is low, you keep stirring and the butter begins to melt – it will all be fine!

Cakes & Bakes: Lemon curd

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 2 x 400ml Mason jars

Cakes & Bakes: Lemon curd

Ingredients

  • 300g/10½oz caster sugar
  • 4 large lemons, finely grated zest and juice
  • 8 large eggs
  • 200g/7oz butter
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Instructions

  1. Put the grated lemon zest and sugar into a large bowl
  2. In a large measuring jug, whisk the lemon juice together with the eggs
  3. Pour the lemon juice & egg mixture over the zest & sugar mixture
  4. Add the butter cut into small cubes and put the bowl over a pan of just simmering water
  5. Stir frequently until thickened - about 30 minutes
  6. Decant into sterilised jars before screwing the lids down tightly
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-lemon-curd/

Cakes & Bakes: Redcurrant muffins

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

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Redcurrant muffin with a cup of tea | H is for Home

So far on our allotment, the only things that have come to fruition are the currant bushes that we inherited. The last time we were there we did a little bit of weeding but we spent the vast majority of our time picking shiny, jewel-like blackcurrants and redcurrants. We harvested almost a kilo of the latter – that’s over £10-worth from a supermarket! 125 grams of it was put towards making a batch of redcurrant muffins.

We acquired a silicon muffin tray in a boxed lot at an auction many moons ago that we surprisingly, have never used. Fished out, dusted down and washed; it turned out 6 big, beautiful muffin specimens! Silicon is a revelation – baked goods ease out of it with no cajoling whatsoever! If you’ve not tried it before, Lakeland does a good range of affordable silicon baking tins, pans and trays.

The redcurrant muffin recipe used here was found on the Abel & Cole website. The rest of the redcurrants have been put into the freezer temporarily, waiting to be turned into jam, jelly and relish; so keep a watch out for some more redcurrant recipes to follow!

Cakes & Bakes: Redcurrant muffins

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: makes 12 small or 6 large muffins

Cakes & Bakes: Redcurrant muffins

Ingredients

  • 60g Stork or butter
  • 175g plain flour
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • ½tsp salt
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 120ml milk
  • 125g fresh redcurrants
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Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350ºF/Gas mark 4
  2. Grease a 12-hole muffin pan (We have a 6-hole silicone muffin pan that makes lovely large, tall muffins!) or insert paper muffin cases
  3. Put the Stork/butter into a microwave-proof bowl or measuring jug and heat on a low setting for 20 seconds. Set aside to cool
  4. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl
  5. Add all but 2 tbsp of the caster sugar - this is being reserved to sprinkle over the muffin tops prior to going into the oven
  6. In a small measuring jug, beat the egg a few times until the yolk & white is just combined
  7. Whisk in the milk and melted Stork/butter
  8. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, stirring quickly and gently until flour is just dampened
  9. Gently fold in the redcurrants, being careful not to burst too many of them
  10. Spoon the batter into prepared muffin , filling each slightly more than half full
  11. Sprinkle the 2tbsp of reserved sugar over each muffin
  12. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown and an inserted skewer comes away clean
  13. Cool on a wire rack for a few minutes prior to serving
  14. Keep in an airtight container in a cool place for up to 3 days
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-redcurrant-muffins/

Cakes & Bakes: Rhubarb and berry shortcake pie

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

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Rhubarb and berry shortcake pie |H is for Home

We have a rhubarb plant growing in a dolly tub our garden that hasn’t done at all well this year. The stalks normally stand tall and to attention but they seem to have lost their va va voom. They’re thin and bendy from the weight of their huge leaves. I decided to chop them all down today in the hope that they’d revive with more vigour next year.

We also still have an ice cream tub full of frozen blackberries that we picked late last summer. We kept some back when we did our jam & jelly making to use in compotes, crumbles etc. Ripening fruits are already in evidence on this year’s bushes so I thought I’d clear out the freezer in readiness for the new crop.

I found and adapted a rhubarb, blueberry and strawberry shortcake pie recipe found in Pie: Delicious sweet and savoury pies and pastries from steak and onion pie to pecan tart by Dean Brettschneider. It’s very much like a cobbler and is delicious hot or cold with vanilla ice cream, cream or – my favourite – a dollop of Rodda’s classic Cornish clotted cream!

Cakes & Bakes: Rhubarb and berry shortcake pie

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: makes 8 slices

Cakes & Bakes: Rhubarb and berry shortcake pie

Ingredients

  • For the shortbread
  • 125g butter, softened & cubed
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 225g plain flour
  • 25g cornflour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • For the filling
  • 3–4 stalks rhubarb
  • 3tbsp Demerara sugar
  • 250g fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 125g fresh or frozen blueberries
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Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400ºF/Gas mark 6
  2. Line a shallow 20–22cm round cake tin or flan dish with baking/parchment paper
  3. Put the cubed butter and caster sugar into a medium mixing bowl and, using a hand-held electric whisk, combine until light and fluffy
  4. Add the egg before sifting in the flour, cornflour and baking powder. Combine until just mixed
  5. Press the dough evenly over the bottom of the tin/dish
  6. Set aside the remainder of the dough, covering it with cling film
  7. Trim & slice the rhubarb before putting it into a large, non-stick frying pan
  8. Sprinkle over the Demerara sugar
  9. Put the pan over a low heat shaking the pan occasionally, until fruit is almost tender
  10. Add the blackberries & blueberries to the rhubarb, gently mix for a few seconds before turning off the heat and allowing the fruit to cool
  11. Spread the lukewarm fruit over the shortbread base before carefully dabbing pinches of the leftover dough over the top, allowing a little of the fruit to peep through
  12. Bake for 30 minutes or until the shortcake top turns golden brown
  13. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire cooling rack and then onto a serving plate
  14. Sprinkle with icing sugar, slice and serve!
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-rhubarb-berry-shortcake-pie/

Cakes & Bakes: Magic Cake

Thursday, May 1st, 2014

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slice of magic cake with a cup of tea | H is for Home

Magic cake is quick & easy to prepare, doesn’t have that many ingredients and most of all it’s very tasty!

I found the recipe on the Jo Cooks blog and she in turn first saw it on FoodEpix. The cake gets its name from the fact that it magically forms itself into three layers when cooked. It tastes a bit like an egg custard or a sweet soufflé. I like it warm, but I love it cold.

Don’t be alarmed by the thinness of the batter, it’s VERY thin. And don’t mind that it’s a bit lumpy when you’ve added the egg white – it’s meant to do that too! You can tweak the recipe to make lemon magic cake, chocolate magic cake or butterscotch magic cake… Magic! :-)

Cakes & Bakes: Magic Cake

Yield: makes 6-8 slices

Cakes & Bakes: Magic Cake

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 150g/5oz caster sugar
  • 125g/4½oz butter, melted
  • 115g/4oz plain flour
  • 500ml/17½ fl oz milk, lukewarm
  • icing sugar to dust (optional)
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Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 160ºC/325ºF/gas mark
  2. Grease a 20cm/8-inch square cake tin
  3. Separate the eggs
  4. Add egg whites to a food mixer, using the whisk attachment, whip until stiff and forming peaks
  5. Spoon the whites into another bowl and set aside
  6. Clean the mixer bowl, add the egg yolks and caster sugar and beat until light
  7. Add the butter and vanilla extract to the mixture and continue beating for another minute or two
  8. Add the flour until combined well
  9. Gradually add the milk, beating until well combined
  10. Add the egg whites in three stages, gently folding them into the mix using a spatula or metal spoon
  11. Carefully pour the batter into the cake tin and cook for 40-50 minutes or until the top is lightly golden
  12. Allow to cool in the tin
  13. Once the cake has completely cooled, lightly sprinkle icing sugar over the top, slice and serve
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-magic-cake/