Category Archives: Cakes

Find all the Cakes you will need here! Whether you are looking for a simple and delicious cake to enjoy or something a bit special for an occasion; you will find both here. 

If you are a baking novice or are just looking for something a bit more simple, try a loaf of sheet cake. There are also a number of tasty layer cakes with delicious frosting building up to more special options for more confident bakers. 

Some of the most popular cakes are:
Blueberry & Lemon Swirl Loaf Cake
Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake
Pistachio Cake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing
Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Raspberry & Mascarpone Layer Cake 

Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake

Light and fluffy cake with a tasty blueberry layer and lemon. My Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake is perfect to enjoy as the weather makes you crave fresh, zesty flavours. 

Discovering blueberry jam 

A while ago I was talking to Mr Curly’s cousin Katharine about my favourite jam – Bonne Maman’s raspberry jam. She mentioned that their blueberry jam was her favourite and I didn’t even know it existed! I knew I had to track some down and get baking!

I love blueberries and lemon together and I also think blueberries go really well with almonds. This is why my Raspberry Bakewell Cake came to mind so I tweaked it to come up with this Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake. 

Do you like using fresh fruit in cakes?

As we get closer to Spring and more fruit starts coming into season, I find myself fancying cakes with fresh fruit such as my Gluten Free Blueberry Muffins or Double Orange Cake. Fresh fruit adds a lovely pop of flavour to cakes. With a fruit like blueberries that aren’t typically the juiciest, the addition of the jam makes a lovely moist cake. 

What makes this a Bakewell cake?

The use of almonds in the cake and the drizzle across the top are the reason I have called this a Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake. The flavours of almond, lemon and blueberries go really well together. The drizzle adds another level of moistness to the cake as well as enhancing the delicious lemon flavour. 

If you like blueberries and lemon, why not try my Blueberry & Lemon Swirl Loaf Cake

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Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake

Light and fluffy cake with a tasty blueberry layer and lemon. My Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake is perfect to enjoy as the weather makes you crave fresh, zesty flavours. 

Course Cake
Cuisine British
Keyword Blueberry, Lemon, Almond, Bakewell
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 300 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

For the cake

  • 140 g margarine
  • 140 g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 140 g ground almonds
  • 140 g plain flour
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 150 g blueberries
  • 3 tbsp blueberry jam
  • 2 tbsp flaked almonds

For the drizzle

  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 50 g icing sugar

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 180ºC (fan assisted, 200°C non fan) and line a loose bottomed 8″/20cm cake tin

  2. Mix the butter and sugar until light and fluffy - at least 5 minutes
  3. Add the eggs, ground almonds, flour and vanilla extract and mix together until combined
  4. Spread half the mix into the tin and then add the jam and spread out. Scatter the blueberries over the top
  5. Spread the rest of the cake mix on top of the blueberries and scatter with flaked almonds. Bake for 50 minutes and then check it's cooked by inserting a cocktail stick, if it comes out clean, the cake it cooked
  6. Allow to cool slightly in the tin before turning out and cooling completely on a wire rack
  7. Once cooled, mix together the lemon juice and icing sugar and drizzle over the cake

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is given as a guide only and my vary.

Nutrition Facts
Blueberry & Lemon Bakewell Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 300 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Cholesterol 27mg9%
Sodium 123mg5%
Potassium 53mg2%
Carbohydrates 34g11%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 20g22%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 464IU9%
Vitamin C 6mg7%
Calcium 37mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake

Super light, fluffy and deliciously moist, no one will believe you that this Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake is actually vegan!

Vegan cakes are delicious!

If you are vegan you don’t need me to tell you this, you already know! Before I’d given vegan baking a try, I was very sceptical. I didn’t know what the texture would be like and whether the texture would be different to the baking I was used to. 

This Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake was my first attempt at vegan baking. Obviously I needed some help and that came in the form of Kate from Veggie Desserts. If anyone refers to a cake as The Best Vegan Chocolate Cake, you know it has to be great. So I took this as my base recipe and gave it a few tweaks to make it into my version which is Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake.

Vegan food is increasing in popularity 

Over the last few years, veganism has become a lot more popular. Whether you are vegan, dairy free or just trying to eat less dairy; vegan cakes are great to have in your repertoire. It is always nice to have a collection of recipes you can go to so that everyone’s dietary requirements are catered for. It makes people feel more loved and included if you can cater for them which is always lovely. Another variation that you might like are Gluten Free & Vegan Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

Do vegan cakes taste different?

Not at all. If you weren’t told this Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake was vegan, I strongly believe you wouldn’t be able to tell. Numerous people have tasted this cake and other vegan cakes I have baked and they wouldn’t have guessed. When they find out they are surprised at how light and fluffy they are. 

I know this cake doesn’t have buttercream, but I think dairy-free margarine makes absolutely delicious buttercream. My Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes are my favourite cupcakes and a lot of this is to do with the silky smooth buttercream. 

Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake baking tips 

One of my least favourite baking tasks is sifting ingredients. Because of this, I do try to avoid sieving as much as possible but please do make sure you sieve the flour and cocoa powder for this cake. If you don’t you do run the risk of little lumps of flour finding their way into your finished cake. While this isn’t a disaster, it doesn’t look the best in the finished cake. So bite the bullet and get your sieve out! 

Don’t get alarmed by adding coffee to the cake! Coffee is a great way of enhancing the chocolate flavour in baking. You won’t taste it in the finished cake but it will have worked its magic. 

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Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake

Super light, fluffy and deliciously moist, no one will believe you that this Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake is actually vegan!

Course Cake
Cuisine British
Keyword Chocolate Orange, Vegan, Dairy Free
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Servings 14
Calories 207 kcal
Author Adapted from Veggie Desserts

Ingredients

  • 280 ml soy milk or any non-dairy milk such as almond
  • 1 orange zested
  • 4 tbsp orange juice
  • 150 g dairy free margarine
  • 3 tbsp golden syrup
  • 1 tsp instant coffee granules
  • 275 g self raising flour
  • 175 g caster sugar
  • 4 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºC (fan assisted, 180ºC non fan) and line a 2lb loaf tin

  2. Zest the orange before juicing it. Whisk the orange juice and soy milk together and set aside

  3. In a pan over a medium heat, gently melt the margarine, coffee and golden syrup. Once melted take off the heat and allow to cool slightly
  4. Sift the flour, cocoa powder, sugar and bicarbonate of soda together in a bowl before adding the milk and margarine mixtures and orange zest. Stir well until the batter is smooth

  5. Pour the cake mix into the loaf tin. Bake in the oven for 50 minutes or until a cocktail stick comes out clean when poked into the cake

  6. Allow to cool for a few minutes in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack and leaving to cool completely

Recipe Notes

Keep in an airtight container for 2-3 days. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only and my vary.

Nutrition Facts
Vegan Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 207 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 101mg4%
Potassium 101mg3%
Carbohydrates 34g11%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 18g20%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 109IU2%
Vitamin C 9mg11%
Calcium 37mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Spiced Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Deliciously moist cake with the subtle flavour of pumpkin and spices covered in soft cream cheese frosting – this Spiced Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting will become a new favourite. 

   

Have you had pumpkin cake before?

Pumpkin based food seems to have gone crazy this year or is it just me? I’ve always associated pumpkin with November and the run up to Thanksgiving, but the pumpkin craze started earlier this year. It has been really great to see so many people using the flesh from their pumpkins that they have carved for Halloween in dishes instead of just throwing them away as it makes some very tasty things – especially cake!

Pumpkin has always been popular in America for Thanksgiving which is how I first came across it in baking. An American friend I used to work with brought in her Pumpkin Cake Bars that she always makes for Thanksgiving. I needed quite a bit of persuading to try them because pumpkin in cake seemed a little strange to me back then. They were delicious and she kindly shared the recipe with me which I have made every year since. 

Time for a change

As I have mentioned before, the Pumpkin Cake Bars are Mr Curly’s all time favourite. Instead of just making them again this year, I decided to spice things up a bit – literally! I’ve added lovely spices which really compliment the pumpkin but don’t overpower it’s subtle flavour. 

Do I buy pumpkin puree or make it?

You can do either. For the first time I attempted making my own pumpkin puree using a recipe from Jo’s Kitchen Larder.I hadn’t previously realised that it was something that could quite easily be made yourself. Although I was impressed with the simplicity of making the puree, I’m not convinced I would rush to do it again. This is partly due to it being slightly time consuming and partly due to laziness. The advantages of making the puree yourself are that it is a great way of using up pumpkin at Halloween instead of there being waste. It is also far cheaper to make it yourself. The pumpkin I bought was 45p for a medium sized pumpkin around 2kg. It made approximately 600g worth of puree. This compared to a 425g tin of puree which can start at £2 is a huge difference in price which can’t be ignored.  

I cannot deny making the pumpkin puree yourself is cheaper and can help combat waste, but quicker it was not. I don’t buy pumpkins to carve at Halloween so waste isn’t an issue for me, but this is when it comes down to my laziness. Can you get much easier than opening a can? The tinned puree in my experience is a more vibrant orange colour which gives the final cake a lovely colour and it has a thicker texture. The texture especially worried me when I made it myself because I didn’t want it to be too wet, but didn’t want to remove all of the moisture. 

Please do try making the puree yourself and make your own decision. Jo has great instructions and it really is quite simple to do.  

If you haven’t tried pumpkin cake before, do not be put off by the idea of it like I initially was.  Vegetables in cake are delicious! The chances are you like carrot cake so there is nothing about this you wouldn’t like. It has the same moistness of a carrot cake with a warming flavour from the tasty spices. 

The first time I make a new cake, I’m always a little nervous to see how it turns out – not every recipe trial is a success you know! I selected my lucky taste testers and awaited their opinions. I’m pleased to say they all loved it – success! You can really tell the difference if people like something or if they really like it. I am pleased to say that this was the latter. Mr Curly had one comment for improvement – more frosting; but he would eat it straight from the bowl if he got the chance!

Tweaking the recipe 

If you don’t want to bake the mix in three tins, you can use two and monitor the baking time. I would check after 25 minutes but I would suspect it would take at least 30. 

The spices create such a warming and comforting flavour to the cake. It is perfect for Autumn, but something you could enjoy at anytime of the year. This is definitely a cake you should try!

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Spiced Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Course Cake
Cuisine American
Keyword Cream Cheese, Pumpkin, Cake
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 16
Calories 553 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

For the cake

  • 385 g caster sugar
  • 300 g plain flour
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground all spice
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 240 ml sunflower oil
  • 425 g pumpkin puree
  • 4 eggs

For the frosting

  • 100 g unsalted butter
  • 550 g icing sugar
  • 245 g full fat cream cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºC (fan assisted, 180°C non fan assisted) and line three 8 inch sandwich tins

  2. Add all of the ingredients to your bowl or mixer and beat until completely combined
  3. Divide the mixture equally between the three tins. I did this by roughly weighing the amount of mix I added to each tin but you can do it by eye
  4. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until a cocktail stick poked into the cake comes out clean
  5. Allow the cakes to cool in the tins for 20 minutes or so before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely
  6. Once the cakes are completely cooled, make the frosting
  7. Beat the butter until smooth and softened
  8. Add the cream cheese and icing sugar and beat until it is completely smooth and there are no lumps
  9. Take the first layer of cake and turn it over onto the plate or stand you are using. Add a generous layer of the frosting and spread out evenly. Repeat with the second layer
  10. With the final layer, place it on top of the other layers but the right way round. Cover the cake completely with the rest of the frosting - you're going for a semi naked look so don't worry if you can see the cake through the frosting

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is given as a guide only.

Nutrition Facts
Spiced Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Amount Per Serving
Calories 553 Calories from Fat 189
% Daily Value*
Fat 21g32%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 54mg18%
Sodium 98mg4%
Potassium 153mg4%
Carbohydrates 75g25%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 59g66%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 4350IU87%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 47mg5%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake

This Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake is a great way of celebrating the rhubarb season in a different way to the usual crumble. The rhubarb and vanilla compliment each other to make a delicious cake.  Rhubarb is a quintessential British fruit. I don’t know any nation that seems to love it as much as us Brits. This could possibly be because it is something that grows so well in our less than sunny climate. Both my Mum and Mr Curly’s Nan grow rhubarb so I am very lucky to receive lots of home grown rhubarb during the summer months. This year has been a particularly good year so I have bagged some up and frozen it to use later in the year. 

As I have so much rhubarb, I didn’t want to just save it for crumbles like my Oaty Rhubarb & Port Crumble as although they are delicious and comforting, I wanted to try some new bakes. That is where I came up with this Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake!

The yogurt in this cake means it is quite a dense cake, but really moist. The rhubarb adds a little sharpness to the sweet cake and makes a delicious combination. It may not be the prettiest cake, but it is tasty!

I made this Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake to take to Mr Curly’s family’s house and although there were 8 of us, the cake didn’t last long at all with people going back for seconds! Even Mr Curly couldn’t get enough of it and he will be the first to admit he’t not a big cake fan. 

I made the cake again recently because I wanted to update the photos. This time, I took it into work and everyone really loved it so it has been tested by enough people for me to be confident in saying it is a big hit!

I do love a cake that doesn’t need anything further doing to it once it has cooled. Don’t get me wrong, cakes with buttercream etc on them are delicious, but from a lazy point of view I have to be in the right mood to make them because once they’ve baked you then need to wait for them to cool before icing them. This cake is fantastic because when it’s out of the oven you just need to wait for it to cool and then you can enjoy! 

I think this would be a great cake to have later in the afternoon after a lovely roast lunch. It is great as it is, or you can eat it with ice cream, cream or custard if you want to make it more of a dessert. 

Making this Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake also coincided with the new series of The Great British Bake Off which is a extremely popular baking show here in the UK. There has been a lot of anxiousness around the new series due to the change to Channel 4 and the new presenters, but for me it is about the baking so I still enjoyed the show. 

So with the start of the new series comes the opportunity to bake along! A couple of years ago I baked something inspired by the show along with others or the Great Bloggers Bake off hosted by Jenny at Mummy Mishaps. I was very pleased that Jenny is hosting it bake along again this year and can’t wait to see everyone’s bakes. 

Updated 2018

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Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake

This Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake is a great way of celebrating the rhubarb season in a different way to the usual crumble. The rhubarb and vanilla compliment each other to make a delicious cake.

Course Dessert
Cuisine British
Keyword Rhubarb, Vanilla
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 432 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

For the roasted rhubarb

  • 400 g rhubarb
  • 50 g caster sugar

For the cake

  • 250 g margarine
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 150 g non fat yogurt
  • 250 g self raising flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Begin by roasting the rhubarb – heat the oven to 180ºC (fan, 200ºC non fan). Rinse the rhubarb and dry off any excess water. Trim the ends and cut into pieces roughly one inch in length

  2. Put the rhubarb on a baking tray and sprinkle over the sugar. Toss together making sure all of the rhubarb is coated and then put the rhubarb in a single layer 

  3. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes before removing the foil and giving the rhubarb a quick stir. Return to the oven without the foil for a further 5 minutes

  4. Using a colander, allow the rhubarb to drain as it cools
  5. Reduce the oven temperature to 160ºC (fan, 180ºC non fan) and line a 9 inch loose bottomed or spring form tin

  6. Beat the butter and sugar together before adding the rest of the cake ingredients and mixing until combined
  7. Spoon half of the mixture into the cake tin and spread evenly. Then add the rhubarb and spread out

  8. Add the remaining cake mixture on top of the rhubarb and smooth out the best you can. Don’t worry if the rhubarb mixes with the cake mix

  9. Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes then cover with foil and bake for the last 15-20 minutes. You’ll know its ready when a cocktail stick comes out clean
  10. Allow to cool slightly in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack and cooling completely
Nutrition Facts
Rhubarb & Vanilla Cake
Amount Per Serving (200 g)
Calories 432 Calories from Fat 198
% Daily Value*
Fat 22g34%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 65mg22%
Sodium 275mg12%
Potassium 153mg4%
Carbohydrates 51g17%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 31g34%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 990IU20%
Vitamin C 3.2mg4%
Calcium 75mg8%
Iron 0.5mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Baked Nutella Doughnuts

Fluffy doughnuts with a rich chocolatey nuttiness – heaven. These Baked Nutella Doughnuts are the perfect fix for any Nutella lover. 

The perfect doughnuts for Nutella fans

I am obsessed with Nutella. This chocolate and hazelnut spread is the perfect flavour combination in my opinion. These Baked Nutella Doughnuts have Nutella in the doughnut batter which provides a subtle flavour. But it is the icing that really packs the Nutella flavour. Well that is if it can even be called icing as it is just melted Nutella! The toasted hazelnuts add a delicious crunch that finishes these doughnuts perfectly. 

I have always been a fan of Nutella and never bought any other brand of chocolate hazelnut spread. However after finding out Nutella has palm oil as one of it’s ingredients I have been trying to find an alternative. So far the only chocolate hazelnut spread I have found that doesn’t contain palm oil is by Gü. It is a very tasty option so you might want to keep your eyes open for it the next time you are in the supermarket. 

Baking instead of frying doughnuts 

Baked doughnuts are so much easier to make because you don’t need to worry about frying them. This also means that they’re healthier, and I’ll take any excuse to make myself feel like baking is healthy! They are just as easy and versatile to make in my opinion as cupcakes.  You can get children involved with icing and decorating them as dunking in Nutella is a bit easier for children than frosting cupcakes.

Baked Nutella Doughnut baking tips 

The only slightly tricky part of doughnut making is filling the doughnut tin with the perfect amount of batter. Too little and you’ll have a thin doughnut, too much and when it cooks the mix with cover the hole. Don’t get me wrong, if you overfill it is by no means the end of the world, but you just don’t get the iconic doughnut hole through the middle.

I find the easiest way to fill the doughnut tin is to put the doughnut batter in a piping bag. I think this is easier than spooning the batter in and you can more evenly distribute it. I fill each doughnut hole half way and find this is the perfect amount. 

I bought roasted chopped hazelnuts because they were only fractionally more expensive than whole hazelnuts. If you have whole hazelnuts, I do recommend roasted them as it brings out their flavour. To roast then, lay them on a baking tray and put them in the oven for 5-10 minutes at 180ºC. Make sure you keep a eye on them so they don’t burn. You can then either crush them with a rolling pin or pulse them in a food processor. Remove any pieces of hazelnut skin there may be at this stage. As you can see it is easier to buy the roasted chopped hazelnuts! 

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Baked Nutella Doughnuts

Fluffy doughnuts with a rich chocolatey nuttiness - heaven. These Baked Nutella Doughnuts are the perfect fix for any Nutella lover. 

Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword doughnuts, Hazelnut, Nutella, Donuts
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 178 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

For the doughnuts

  • 140 g plain flour
  • 70 g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch instant coffee granules
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 125 ml milk
  • 1 egg
  • 30 g Nutella
  • 30 g unsalted butter melted and cooled
  • Spray oil

For the topping

  • 120 g Nutella melted
  • 2 tbsp toasted chopped hazelnuts

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºC (fan assisted, 180°C non fan) and spray two six hole doughnut pans lightly with oil

  2. In a large bowl or your mixer, mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, salt and coffee granules

  3. In a large jug whisk together the milk, eggs, melted butter and Nutella
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until everything is just combined

  5. Divide the mix between each doughnut mould. I find the easiest and less messy way of adding the batter to the moulds is by using a piping bag - remember not to overfill!
  6. Bake the doughnuts for 13-15 minutes until a cocktail stick comes out clean
  7. Allow to cool in the pan until they are cool enough for you to transfer to a wire rack
  8. Melt the Nutella and dip each doughnuts in making sure they are thoroughly coated

  9. Sprinkle with the toasted hazelnuts

Recipe Notes

These are best eaten on the day you bake them or the next day. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only and my vary.

Nutrition Facts
Baked Nutella Doughnuts
Amount Per Serving
Calories 178 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 20mg7%
Sodium 64mg3%
Potassium 131mg4%
Carbohydrates 23g8%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 13g14%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 99IU2%
Calcium 47mg5%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Honey Rum Drizzle Cake

2017-01-08 21.06.03

I am very lucky because my parents have a villa in Fuerteventura which means I can pop over there for some sun. It seems customary to offer shots of honey rum at the end of a meal. Although this isn’t in all restaurants, it seems to happen more often than not following an evening meal. There seem to be endless different brands and each restaurant appears to have their favourite – some are definitely better than others!

When my family were out there over New Year, we hunted down one of our favourite bottles. My Mum and boyfriend started then having a few shots before we went out for an evening meal! Before you panic, it has a lower alcohol percentage than other spirits at around 20%. I say shots, but really my Mum was sipping it which was far safer for her.

2017-01-08 17.22.27

I was also lucky enough to go out to Fuerteventura for my Hen Do in February with some of my closest friends. Honey rum obviously played quite a large part with us losing track of just how many shots we were having. The difference with honey rum to other liqueurs is that honey rum actually tastes nice so is enjoyable which is more than can be said about other liqueurs!

2017-01-08 21.02.21

Honey rum has some great memories for me so I wanted to make a cake that incorporated the delicious drink. The first thing that came to mind was a honey rum drizzle cake where I could add the honey rum to both the cake and the glaze. The cake turned out just how I wanted with the flavour of the honey rum but without there being an overpowering taste of alcohol.

If you’re not heading to the Canary Islands anytime soon and still want to make this cake; you can buy honey rum online and it isn’t too expensive.

2017-01-08 21.03.57

For the cake
250g margarine
250g caster sugar
4 large eggs
250g self raising flour
100ml honey rum

  1. Preheat the oven to 170ºC and line a 1kg loaf tin
  2. Cream together the sugar and the butter until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat on a high speed
  3. Add the flour and mix before adding the honey rum and mixing again until just combined
  4. Pour the mix into the prepared tin and smooth the top slightly

2017-01-08 17.29.22

  1. Bake in the oven for 45- 50 mins or until a cocktail stick comes out clean. If the top is getting a little too brown, cover it loosely with foil

2017-01-08 19.11.22

  1. Allow the cake to cool slightly in the tin before turning out and allowing to cool completely on a wire rack

For the icing
3-4 tbsp honey rum
100g icing sugar

  1. Mix the icing sugar and rum together until smooth
  2. Drizzle all of the cooled cake

Gin Drizzle Cake

2015-07-05 17.18.35

Think lemon drizzle cake, but with added gin. Yes, it is as good as it sounds, and yes this cake is just for adults!

There have been a few articles in the news recently that gin actually has health benefits such as helps reduce wrinkles, fight cancer and is low in calories so is good for your waistline. I came across the recipe for this cake and although I never need an excuse for a little gin, I thought this was the perfect opportunity.

This recipe is slightly different to usual cake recipes because it doesn’t have set weights for each ingredient. The weight of the eggs dictates the weight of the sugar, butter and flour so each cake will be slightly different. As it could be slightly different each time it is important to check the cake with a cocktail stick to make sure it is baked.

2015-07-05 17.19.20

I’ve made this cake a couple of times now; once for a family BBQ and another time when my Uni friends came to stay. Everyone has enjoyed it so far, although my Uni friends did find it a little strong at first. I think this was partly due to them wanting to eat it as soon as I had poured the drizzle on. When they had some more the following day, the gin had had time to seep into the cake so the flavour wasn’t as stong.

The recipe is from Truly Madly Kids. In the original recipe, they keep the cake in the tin when pouring the drizzle on. This would help keep all of the drizzle in the cake and not dripping off, but I was worried this would make the cake too saturated. Take your pick at which method you would like to try.

For the cake
4 medium eggs – weigh with their shells on
Caster sugar – the same weight as the eggs
butter – the same weight as the eggs
Self raising flour – the same weight as the eggs
Zest of 2 lemons
Juice of 1 lemon
90ml gin

  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC and line a 1kg loaf tin
  2. Cream together the sugar and the butter until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat on a high speed
  3. Add the flour and lemon zest and mix again until smooth. Add the gin and lemon juice and mix again

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  1. Pour the mix into the loaf tin and bake until a skewer comes out clean – test it after about 35-40 minutes. Mine took roughly 50 minutes

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  1. Allow the cake to cool for a few minutes before removing it from the tin and leaving it to cool completely on a wire rack

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For the drizzle
110ml gin
150g granulated sugar
Juice of 1 lemon

  1. Mix the gin, lemon juice together, I do this in a jug so it is easier to pour over the cake

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  1. Make holes in the cake with a skewer. Keeping the cake on the wire rack, but a baking try underneath the rack to catch any drizzle that doesn’t soak into the cake

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  1. Slowly pour the drizzle mixture over the cake

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The second time I made this cake, the sugar hardened on top a bit more so was more visible which I thought looked quite nice. Not quite sure why it did this time but not the first time!

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Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Moist cake with smooth cream cheese frosting, a true British Classic cake.2015-10-11 17.09.45

Carrot cake is hands down the most popular type of cake that I make. I’ve been making carrot cupcakes for ages now, but sometimes you just want a lovely big cake. I have made some very small changes to the recipe to adapt it to make a cake instead of cupcakes. This mix is perfect for making a two or three layer cake.

It is no secret that I really don’t like making carrot cake. The only reason for this is I really don’t like grating carrots (yes I realise that sounds lazy). However, as I am still borrowing (holding hostage) my Mum’s MagiMix, I used the grater attachment. Oh my goodness, I need to get myself a MagiMix! It made grating the carrots an absolute breeze, but not only that the carrot was quite a coarse grate which added a lovely texture to the cake. I should mention that I’m not being asked to rave about MagiMix’s in my last few blog posts, I am just genuinely excited by how great they are.

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I had big plans of how I was going to pipe little carrots onto this cake, but as you can see that never happened. As with most of my weekends I start off wanting to do loads of things and then realise weekends aren’t as long as I wish they were. So I decided to go with a simple decoration of bronze crunch around the edges.

I can’t believe GBBO is finished! At the beginning, I didn’t think I was going to be able to bake along until the end as I thought I would have either moved house or had everything packed ready to move. I am very pleased that Nadiya won and along with half of the UK, I teared up a little bit!

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For the cake:
150g light brown sugar
150g dark brown sugar
3 free range medium eggs
300ml sunflower oil
300g plain flour
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp (heaped) cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
300g grated carrot

  1. Preheat the oven to 170ºC and line two or three 8 inch cake tins
  2. Mix together the sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla extract. Before adding the sugar to the rest of the ingredients, try to break up any large lumps in the sugar
  3. In another bowl, mix the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt together
  4. Gradually add the wet mix to the dry mix stirring as you go
  5. Add the carrots and keep stirring until thoroughly mixed

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  1. Split the mix between the prepared cake tins and smooth. Bake in the oven for 30 – 35 minutes if you are using two tins or 20- – 25 minutes. Use a cocktail stick to test the cake, it is cooked when the stick comes out clean

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  1. Allow to cool slightly in the tins before turning out and allowing to cool completely on a wire rack before frosting

For the frosting:
75g unsalted butter
450g icing sugar
185g full fat cream cheese

  1. Make sure the butter is at room temperature. Beat it until it is softened

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  1. Add the icing sugar and beat until combined before adding the cream cheese. Mix until combined

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  1. Place one of the cakes upside down on your serving plate and put half of the frosting if you’ve made a two layer cake or one third if you’ve made three layers on top and spread out evenly

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  1. For the top layer, place it on top the right way up and smooth the remaining frosting
Mummy Mishaps

Check out Mummy Mishaps and The Boy Who Cooked to see what other people have linked up to #GBBOBloggers2015 with

Summer Berries & Mascarpone Cake

Light and fluffy sponge cake with delicious fresh summer berries and smooth mascarpone; the perfect cake for a summer afternoon.2015-07-11 09.37.05

My sister asked me if I could make a cake for a colleague’s birthday quite last minute. When people know you make cakes, they seem to sometimes think you do nothing else so their last minute cake request isn’t a problem. I do love baking and hate to turn people away, especially family, so I squeezed this in around the wedding taster cupcakes I was making.

My sister said she was ideally looking for a cake with fruit, so with that and knowing she doesn’t like cream or buttercream, I came up with this cake. I was very pleased with how the cake turned out and it went down extremely well and I even received my first thank you note which was incredibly kind.

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I split the batter into three tins but you can always just use two if you’d prefer. You can also use vanilla extract if you don’t have vanilla bean paste but I really like the specks of black throughout the sponge because then you know vanilla is in the cake.

The lady that the cake was for wrote my a lovely card to say thank you for making her the cake which made my day!

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For the cake
225g caster sugar
225g butter or margarine 
4 eggs
225g self raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp vanilla bean paste 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line 3 8inch sandwich tins
  2. Beat the sugar and butter together until pale and fluffy. Then add the eggs one at a time, mixing between each before adding the vanilla bean paste
  3. Add the flour and baking powder and mix until completely combined and then divide into the tins

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  1. Put in the oven for 17-20 minutes until a cocktail stick comes out clean. Allow to cool for a few minutes in the tins before turning out and allowing to cool completely on a wire rack

For the filling
400g strawberries
300g raspberries
200g blueberries
200g mascarpone
200ml fromage frais
½ tsp vanilla bean paste

  1. Wash all of the fruit then hull and slice the strawberries
  2. Beat the mascaropone, fromage frais and vanilla until smooth and velvety

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  1. Place one of the cake layers on your cake board or plate so that what was the top is now the bottom. Spoon a third of the mascarpone mix and spread out to cover the cake. Arrange a layer of the fruit and then repeat with the next two layers of cake

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Rainbow Layer Cake

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Unassuming and simple from the outside, but when it’s cut into it has the most amazing layers of colour. This cake really does have the wow factor!

I’d been wanting to make this cake for a long time but hadn’t found an reason good enough to actually make it. I waited long enough and the perfect occasion came around – Rien’s brother, Daarek’s birthday. I knew this would be the perfect cake for him and I wasn’t wrong! He is always so complimentary with my cakes so I wanted to step it up for him and make him a birthday cake that was a bit special.

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The inspiration for this recipe came from a lovely blog, Kerry Cooks. Her blog was the first place I remember seeing a rainbow layer cake that actually gave you a recipe to make the cake yourself. A lot of the American recipes  use a boxed cake mix. Her blog has some fantastic tips which I was able to use and adapt slightly to create my Rainbow Layer Cake.

You may look at this cake and feel slightly scared, but there is really no need to be! You need to make sure you have the right equipment and then you’ll be fine. To make this cake as easy as possible, I bought the Easy Cake Layer Pan Set by Wilton from Lakeland. I’m sure there are plenty of places you can buy them online. One tip if you do buy these cake pans; do not believe them when they say they are non stick! I stupidly believed that they were the first time I used them to make an ombre cake and ended up with some cake getting stuck to the pans. I recommend lining the tins with baking paper to prevent this from happening. On her blog, Kerry used disposable pans which you can find in lots of supermarkets and pound shops which is a great tip if you don’t want to buy any new equipment.

The cake pan set is for 5 layers, so the recipe below will make you a 5 layered rainbow cake. Each pan is 6 inches which I think is the perfect size for this cake seeing as you are stacking 5 layers of cake with lots of buttercream. It also means each layer isn’t too thick. If I were to make this cake for myself, I would use cream cheese frosting like Kerry did. However most people, including Daarek, prefer buttercream so that is what I used.

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You also need really good gel colouring to get the fantastic vibrant colours. The liquid food colourings you can buy in supermarkets just aren’t good enough. You need concentrated gel colouring which you can buy online or in shops like Lakeland and Hobby Craft. My favourite brand to use is Wilton because they have a great range of colours an can give you really bright colours without having to use loads of it.

When it comes to icing cakes I think it is definitely worth investing in a cake turntable. This allows you to smoothly turn the cake backwards and forwards when you’re decorating it which is a huge help! I also use a large off-set spatula to apply the buttercream to the cake holding it at a 90° angle. A spatula dipped in hot water and then dried is a great way of getting a smooth finish on your cake. There are lots of different techniques and ways people find help them, but this is what works for me.

What I like most about this recipe is this one cake mix will make enough for all 5 layers so you don’t have to faff around making different mixes. An obviously that it looks pretty amazing!

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For the cake 
225g butter or margarine
225g caster sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

225g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan. Line you cake pans
  2. Add the butter and sugar to your bowl and cream until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time starting on a low speed and increasing it after each egg has been added. I find this helps incorporate the eggs better. Add the vanilla and mix again before finally adding the flour and baking powder
  3. Split the cake mix equally into 5 different bowls. I do this by weighing my mixer bowl when its empty and then taking this away from the weight when it has the finished cake mix in. I then divide this by 5. You can do it by eye but I prefer to be exact as this will help make even layers
  4. Colour each bowl of cake mix a different colour – I coloured mine red, orange, yellow, green and blue but feel free to use whatever colours you like. Start with a small amount of colouring as a little bit goes a long way. You an always add more and make it brighter but you can’t make it lighter again!

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  1. Pour each bowl of coloured cake mix into your prepared tins and bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes. They’re done when a cocktail stick comes out clean

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  1. Allow the cakes to cool slightly in the pans before turning out onto a wire rack and let them cool completely

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  1. Once completely cooled, level the cakes so that they stack more evenly. I do this with a cake wire which allows you to cut a clean level line using a serrated wire. You can use a knife but I find this works better and reduces the risk of making a mistake! I set the cake wire to the height of the cake that needs the most cut off it to make it level. You’re looking to take the smallest amount of cake off to make the cake flat

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  1. Once the cakes are leveled, you’re ready for the buttercream!

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For the buttercream
420g unsalted butter
840g icing sugar
4 – 6 tbsp milk

  1. Mix the butter and icing sugar together until pale and smooth. Add enough milk until it is a smooth spreadable consistency
  2. Starting with the blue layer, place one layer onto your cake board and then add a generous layer of buttercream. Repeat with all 5 layers

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  1. Once all of the layers are stacked, it is time to apply the crumb coat. This locks all of the crumbs in place so that the final layer of buttercream is smooth and crumb-free. Do this by applying a thin layer of buttercream to cover the whole cake. At this stage it doesn’t have to look pretty. After you’ve applied your crumb coat, but in the fridge for at least 30 minutes for it to set slightly

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  1. Once the crumb coat has become firm to the touch, you can now apply the final layer of buttercream. Make sure you use quite a generous amount of buttercream and take your time!

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  1. You can decorate the cake however you would like. I chose to keep it completely plain on the outside and made some bunting to stick in the top

Make sure you check out Kerry’s blog http://kerrycooks.com/easy-6-layer-rainbow-cake-step-by-step/

Apologies for the photos not being the best, I always find it hard to take photos of cakes I have made for people. And I can’t take my usual kit with me!