Rather than allow the buttermilk to reach it’s ‘best before’ date, I used it to make a coconut buttermilk pound cake.
I found the perfect recipe on the Martha Stewart website – I already had all the ingredients in the kitchen.
Sometimes, on an online recipe, the comments made by people who have tried out the recipe are hugely useful. A couple of people stated that the size of the loaf tin recommended wasn’t big enough and they had left over batter. Because of this, I used my largest loaf tin – 19 x 15 x 10cm (8 x 6 x 4-inch). This was probably a bit to big – a smaller one would have sufficed.
Martha Stewart’s original recipe uses sweetened, shredded coconut however, dessicated coconut is easier to get hold of in the supermarket here in the UK. Dessicated is much finer than shredded, so I altered the recipe slightly.
It’s not often that there’s a ‘how to’ video of a recipe available – the one I embedded at the bottom of the post shows just how easy this recipe is.
Click here to save it to Pinterest for later – you won’t be disappointed!
- 170g/6oz butter, softened
- 170g/6oz caster sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 240g/8½oz plain flour
- 1½tsp baking powder
- 1tsp salt
- 240ml/8fl oz buttermilk
- 75g/2⅔oz dessicated coconut, toasted
- 2tbsp buttermilk
- 125g icing sugar
- 1tbsp dessicated coconut, toasted
- Preheat the oven to 175ºC/350ºF/Gas mark 4
- Grease a 12 x 22cm (4½ x 8½-inch) loaf tin
- In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy
- In a small measuring jug, lightly whisk the eggs
- Add vanilla, then the beaten eggs, combining well
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt
- Carefully add the flour to the mixture in 3 additions, alternating with two additions of buttermilk. Combine well
- Using a silicone spatula, fold in the 75g of toasted, dessicated coconut
- Spoon the batter into the prepared loaf tin and bake for 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes away clean
- Allow the cake to cool in its tin on a wire rack for about an hour
- Remove the cake from the tin and allow to cool completely
- Whisk together the icing sugar and 2 tbsp buttermilk making sure there are no lumps
- Drizzle over the cake and sprinkle with tablespoon of dessicated coconut
I’ve been wanting to treat myself to some mini bannetons since I saw them on Amazon a while ago. They’re the perfect size for making bread rolls or sourdough burger buns. I came across a seller offering a set of ten for £48.50 with free P&P which I thought was good value.
They’re 13cm/5″ in diameter and can hold around 225g/8oz of sourdough – enough to make an extra-small boule. On this occasion, I only put 140g/5oz of dough in each – a perfect amount for sourdough burger buns.
Prior to use, give each a wipe with a clean, dry cloth or tea towel and sprinkle with flour to stop the dough from sticking. For this, I’ve used plain flour and semolina; however, I’ve found that rice flour is by far the most successful option.
I’ve tweaked and speeded up my favourite 24-hour sourdough loaf recipe to make half a dozen rolls.
The addition of a sprinkling of black sesame seeds makes them look pretty and adds a lovely nutty flavour.
They may be burger buns – however, they’re also perfect for bacon sandwiches, sausage sandwiches, fried egg sandwiches… or a combo of them all!
- 290ml/10¼fl oz water at 27ºC
- 90g/3oz 1:1 (100% hydrated) fresh, active sourdough starter
- 450g/15½oz strong white bread flour
- 4g/⅛oz fine sea salt
- 1tbsp sesame seeds (I used black sesame seeds)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the warm water and starter and mix well
- Add the flour and, using the dough hook, mix until all the ingredients just about come together into a ragged ball shape. Cover with a damp tea towel or large plastic bag/cling film and allow the dough to rest in a warm place for an hour
- Sprinkle over the salt and knead until it is evenly distributed. Cover again with a damp tea towel or large plastic bag/cling film and allow the dough to rest in a warm place for about 2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size
- Dust each bun banneton generously with rice flour
- Lightly sprinkle a work surface with bread flour, pour out the dough and divide it into 6 equal portions (you can weigh them out) - each piece should be about 140g/5oz)
- Carefully form each piece of dough into a ball and place them into the bun bannetons
- Sprinkle with rice flour and cover the bannetons with a damp tea towel. Allow to prove in a warm place for an hour or two, or until the dough has doubled in size
- Preheat the oven to 220ºC/425ºF/Gas mark 7 (put your baking stone in now, if you have one)
- Once the oven (and baking stone) has reached the correct temperature, dust a peel with rice flour, turn the buns out on to it and slide them onto the baking stone. If you don't have a peel, dust the baking tray with the rice flour before turning the buns out on to it
- Using a spray bottle on the fine mist setting, dampen the tops of the buns and sprinkle with sesame seeds
- Carefully slide the buns off the peel (if using) on to the baking stone (if using) or slide the baking tray into the hot oven
- Bake for 5 minutes before turning the heat down to 200ºC/375ºF/Gas mark 5. Bake for a further 5-10 minutes until the tops are golden brown and they sound hollow when knocked on the bottom
In the days following Christmas, there are lots of recipe ideas for the food leftovers knocking about. So we thought we’d offer the same service after Easter. You know, for all that chocolate that you’ve not eaten. Are we being a bit optimistic that you’ve got chocolate leftovers?!
This is a lovely, simple recipe. The cake is perfect as an indulgent afternoon coffee accompaniment – or dinner party dessert.
It incorporates readily available ingredients and can be rustled up in a few hours – with time between stages to get on with other jobs if required.
The cake delivers everything that you might expect from a chocolate fudge tart – it’s intense, rich and smooth on the palate. A small amount of salt flakes add a delicious, subtle contrast to the sweetness. There’s flexibility regarding the chocolate that you incorporate depending upon your personal taste or budget. You also have the option to add a bit of booze if you like. Rum, brandy, Cointreau, amaretto, Kahlua – maybe a bit of whisky. Perhaps you’ve got some of those left over from Christmas (or is that wishful thinking again?). Wherever you get the ingredients from, make sure to give it a try.
- 150g/5¼oz Hob-nobs
- 45g/1½oz cocoa powder
- 45g/1½oz light brown sugar
- ¼tsp table salt
- 80g/2¾oz salted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
- 1 x 400g/14oz tin condensed milk caramel*
- 375g/12¼oz dark chocolate
- 150g/5¼oz double cream
- Pinch of sea salt flakes
- Line the base of a 25cm round tart tin with greaseproof paper, grease the sides with some extra butter
- In a food processor, blitz the Hobnobs, cocoa powder, sugar and salt
- Add the butter and pulse a few times to incorporate
- Firmly press the crumb mixture into the tin, taking extra care with the sides and aiming for an equal thickness throughout
- Chill for 10 minutes in the freezer
- Bake the tart case at 200ºC/390ºF/Gas 6 for 10-12 minutes. Set aside to cool
- Put all the ingredients (apart from the salt flakes) into a saucepan and gently warm over a low-medium heat. Keep stirring the mixture until the chocolate has melted and the ganache is smooth and glossy
- Pour the filling into the cooled tart case and chill in the fridge for a couple of hours
- Just before serving, sprinkle with the salt flakes
Paasstol is a traditional Dutch sweet bread eaten around Easter. For some reason, now lost in the mists of time, when the exact same bread is eaten at Christmastime, it’s referred to as kerststol.
It’s a yeasted loaf full of mixed, dried fruit with a log of almond paste or marzipan enveloped in the middle.
I used a combination of raisins, currants and sultanas. However, you can choose to add candied peel, dried cranberries or succade. People sometimes add chopped or nibbed nuts to the equation – the choice is yours!
To finish, brush the top generously with warm, melted butter and dust with icing sugar. To consume, slice whilst still warm, spread with even more butter and enjoy with a lovely cup of tea!
- 100g ground almonds
- 100g icing sugar
- 1 large egg white
- 600g mixed dried fruit (I used raisins, currants and sultanas)
- 3tbsp dark rum
- 500g/18 oz plain or strong bread flour
- 10g salt
- pinch of cinnamon
- pinch of ground cardamom
- 25g/1oz dried yeast
- 200ml/7 fl oz milk, lukewarm
- 100g/3½oz sugar
- 100g/3½oz melted butter
- 1 egg, beaten
- zest of ½ lemon
- melted butter to brush
- icing sugar to dredge
- Put the ground almonds, icing sugar and egg white into a food processor and, using the chopping blade attachment, combine for about a minute until a ball of marzipan is formed
- Cover in cling film and set aside while you make the dough
- Soak the dried fruit in the rum for at least an hour, stirring every so often so all the fruit comes into contact with the liquid
- In a measuring jug, stir the yeast into the lukewarm milk until dissolved.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, salt and sugar
- In another small measuring jug, mix the egg with the melted butter and lemon zest
- Make a well in the dry ingredients, pour in the wet ingredients and mix using the dough hook. Knead for 5-7 minutes on a low setting, until the mixture comes together to form a soft, smooth and slightly sticky ball of dough
- Cover the mixer bowl with a damp tea towel or cling film/plastic bag and leave in a warm place to prove for half an hour
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a rectangle
- Discarding any rum that hasn't been absorbed, sprinkle the soaked fruit evenly across the dough
- Roll the dough up and gently knead by hand for about 5 minutes until the fruit is evenly distributed throughout
- Put the fruited dough back into the mixer bowl, recover with the damp tea towel or cling film/plastic bag and leave in a warm place to prove for a further hour
- After rising, turn the dough out onto a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper
- Form the dough into a rectangle about 3cm thick
- Shape the almond paste into a log around 1cm shorter than the rectangle of dough
- Place the almond paste log in the centre of the dough and fold all four sides of the dough over. Roll gently back and forth to seal the edges
- Recover with the damp tea towel or cling film/plastic bag and allow to rise for another half an hour
- Brush the bread with milk and put it in a preheated oven at 180ºC/ºF/Gas mark
- Bake for 40 minutes
- Allow to cool on a wire rack
- Brush with the melted butter and sprinkle with the icing sugar
- Slice and serve
Just a couple of weeks ago, we featured a round up of waffle irons on Price Points. This week, I’ve made my first ever batch of sourdough waffles; the miracle of internet shopping!
I wanted a cast iron, stove-top waffle iron that I could store away in a drawer when not in use – and this is the one I finally decided to purchase.
As with all new cast iron pans, it needed to be seasoned well before its maiden voyage. With all the snow and freezing temperatures we’ve had recently, our wood-burner has been chuffing away almost constantly – so that was the ideal place to do it.
This sourdough waffle recipe – as with most that use a starter – needs some forward planning. Ideally, you’d get your starter/flour/sugar/salt combined the night before if you want waffles for breakfast.
The iron produced delicious crispy waffles. Justin and I both fancied maple syrup with them, but then we diverged slightly.
He went for the sweet/salty thing and opted to serve with crispy bacon. I chose sliced bananas. The possibilities are endless of course. The caramelised bananas I made for this series a couple of weeks ago would work a treat. Also, any other fresh fruit, compotes or preserves, yoghurt, honey and cream would be perfect. They’re going to be a regular breakfast/brunch from this day forth!
- 115g/4oz butter
- 225ml/8 fl oz milk
- 275g/9¾oz sourdough starter (100% hydration)
- 1tsp salt
- 1tbsp soft brown sugar
- 170g/6oz plain flour
- 2 eggs
- ½tsp bicarbonate of soda
- Combine the starter, salt, sugar and flour so it forms a thick batter
- Cover the bowl with cling film and set aside at room temperature for 8-12 hours. If you do this before going to bed, you can time the batter to be ready for breakfast the following day
- In a small saucepan over a low flame, heat the butter and milk until the butter has melted. Put the mixture aside and allow it to cool to room temperature
- Preheat your waffle iron for 10-15 minutes.
- Uncover the batter and whisk in the eggs
- When the waffle iron is ready, add ½tsp bicarbonate of soda to the batter. Do not over mix or you'll beat the air out of it
- Carefully pour enough batter onto the hot waffle iron to cover the base. Place the lid of the waffle iron on top
- Cook on one side for about 3 minutes before flipping the waffle iron over and cooking the other side
- You can store any uneaten waffles in zip-lock bags in the freezer for up to 3 months.
It’s been a while since I’ve made a batch of cookies or a round of shortbread. I’ve hit two birds with one stone with this salted butter chocolate chunk shortbread recipe from Alison Roman.
They’ve become so popular that she now simply refers to them as “The Cookies” – all her Instagram fans know what she’s talking about!
The recipe makes two ‘logs’. Cooking off one log at a time is enough for our 2-person household. The other log is now in the freezer, waiting for the first batch to be demolished.
Refrigerator cookies are so convenient. A quick ten or so minutes in the making, about the same amount of time in the oven, cook off as many as you want and no waste.
The recipe is very straightforward. However, there’s one step that needs to be followed to the letter. Chilling the logs in the fridge for 2 hours before cooking is the absolute minimum.
I whisked them out of the fridge a little too early as we wanted to catch some daylight for our photos. That’s why my cookies spread a little too much in the oven and the chocolate chunks didn’t hold their shape very well. The next batch will be super chilled!
They still tasted great – and that second log won’t be languishing in the freezer for long!
- 255g/9oz salted butter, cold, cut into small pieces
- 100g/3½oz granulated sugar
- 50g/1¾oz light brown sugar
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 295g/10⅓oz plain flour
- 170g/6oz dark chocolate, chopped (you want chunks, not thin shards of chocolate)
- 1 large egg
- A few tablespoons Demerara sugar, turbinado etc for rolling
- A few pinches of flaky sea salt for sprinkling
- Beat the butter, granulated and brown sugars and vanilla with an electric or stand mixer until light and fluffy, scraping down bowl as needed
- Add the flour and mix until just until combined
- Add the chocolate chunks, mix just until incorporated. The mixture will look crumbly
- Divide the dough between two sheets of parchment paper, cling film and use your hands to form the dough halves into log shapes about 5cm/2" in diameter
- Chill until totally firm - around 2 hours
- Preheat the oven to 175ºC/350°F/Gas mark 4
- Line one or two large baking sheets with parchment paper
- Lightly beat the egg and open up your chilled cookies logs to brush it over the sides
- Sprinkle the coarse, brown sugar on the open paper or plastic wrap and roll the logs in it, coating them thoroughly
- Using a sharp serrated knife, cut the logs into 1cm/½" thick rounds. You'll hit some chocolate chunks, so saw gently, squeezing the cookie to keep it from breaking
- Arrange the slices on the lined baking sheets 2½cm/1" apart, then sprinkle each with a few flakes of salt
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the edges just begin to turn golden brown
- Allow to cool slightly before transferring them to wire racks to cool
- The dough can made ahead and stored - tightly wrapped in cling film - for up to 1 week in the fridge or 1 month in the freezer. Baked cookies keep in an airtight container for 5 days
This week, we had a day out in Skipton – antique centre visit, charity shop trawling, shopping and lunching. We stopped off in our usual coffee shop, down one of the pretty little side streets off the main drag. Justin had eggs Benedict and I went for the pancakes with caramelised bananas.
As soon as the food arrived, Justin wished he’d ordered what I’d ordered. Not that his eggs weren’t cooked to perfection – they were, It’s just that my pancakes looked magnificent!
I felt a little sorry for him so I decided that I’d make some cinnamon pancakes with caramelised bananas for this week’s Cakes & Bakes offering.
This pile should keep him going for a while!
The caramelised bananas were unctuous and sweet – and layered generously between the pancakes. Clotted or whipped cream makes for the perfect accompaniment.
It’s a great dish for extravagant brunch or hearty dessert.
Fancy trying it yourself? Click here to save the recipe to Pinterest.
- 200g/7oz self-raising flour
- 1½tsp baking powder
- ½tsp ground cinnamon
- 1tbsp golden caster sugar
- pinch of salt
- 3 eggs
- 25g/⅘oz butter, melted
- 200ml/fl oz milk
- A little butter or vegetable oil for cooking
- 2 bananas, peeled and sliced
- 60g/2oz soft brown sugar
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 2tbsp hot water
- knob of butter
- Preheat the oven to 120ºC/250ºF/Gas mark ½
- In a large measuring jug (or mixing bowl), combine the flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, caster sugar and salt Make a well in the centre and add the eggs, melted butter and milk. Mix well until there are no lumps
- Use a little butter or vegetable oil to grease a griddle or heavy-bottomed frying pan(s)
- Heat over a medium to high heat. When it begins to sizzle, carefully pour on the batter to form small circles of about 10cm/4" across
- When the top just begins to dry out around the edge flip it over and cook for a further minute
- Remove from the griddle/frying pan, place it on a heat-proof plate and put in the warm oven. Repeat this until all the batter is used up
- Put the sugar, vanilla extract and hot water into a heavy bottomed skillet frying pan over a high heat
- Allow it to begin bubbling rapidly before you add the sliced banana.
- Turn the banana over so that it's completely covered in the caramel
- Add the knob of butter and carefully mix in until completely melted and combined
- Serve hot with clotted or whipped cream
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