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Home Sweet Home Bakealong 72: Cornflake Cookies

June 15, 2017

What. A. Joy.

These cookies were easy to make, did exactly what the recipe said they would and tasted good.  Get behind me Eton Mess Cupcakes, I shall call this a comeback.

This is a basic cookie, but in true Hummingbird bakery style it’s got a load of extra yummy and horrificly bad for you things thrown into the mixture as well. Namely sugar and malt-powder encrust cornflakes and a large amount of chocolate.

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It’s worth noting two things if you are going to make these:
1) Once you’ve made the caramelised cornflake mixture, don’t try it. If you do then you may find you have none left to put in the cookies. You may also get a horrific sugar crash.
2) I found that the mixture benefitted from 5 mins in the freezer before rolling into balls to bake. I also blasted them in the freezer again before baking and I think that helped them stay a sensible shape. I was baking on a hot  day though.

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Cornflake Cookies
from Home Sweet Home by the Hummingbird Bakery

Makes 18-22 cookies

For the cornflakes:
80g cornflakes
20g malt powder (e.g ovaltine or horlicks)
20g caster sugar
1/2 tsp salt
50g melted butter

For the dough:
225g softened butter
350g soft light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
400g plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
200g dark chocolate chips

First make the caramelised malt-cornflakes by crushing them, mixing with the dry ingredients and then the melted butter. Stir well and then pop on a lined baking tray to toast in the oven fi 10 mins at 170c

Meanwhile,  make the cookie dough (for copyright reasons you have to work this out)
Mix in the choc chips and cornflake mixture. (I then froze this for 5 mins)
Scoop into golf-ball sized balls and bake for up to 15mins at 170c.

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Join Beckie and me in our Epic 100 part bakealong. Next: Soured Cream Pie (I’m skipping Apple and Blueberry cobbler until it’s colder weather)
#HomeSweetHomeBakeAlong

World Gin Day: Gin & Tonic Cupcakes

June 9, 2017

It’s World Gin Day tomorrow (10th June). If you’re based in the UK you might be of the opinion that this is particularly well timed. I could not possibly comment.

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In celebration of this, I made some Gin & Tonic Cupcakes for my monthly blog over at Rangemaster. The recipe below is slightly tweaked but mostly borrowed from the brilliant Bake It Instinct blog where there is also a very tempting recipe for Gin & Tonic Macarons. You can find a host of other gin based ideas at Charlottes Lively Kitchen and Good Housekeeping.

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Gin & Tonic Cupcakes

Makes 12-14

Ingredients 

  • 175g caster sugar
  • 175g baking margarine or butter
  • 175g self raising flour
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 4 tbsp of a pre-mixed can of gin and tonic
  • 2 tbsp gin
  • 250g butter, softened
  • 500 – 650g icing sugar (i find the weather affects this)
  • Zest of two limes and a little juice
  • 4 tbsp gin
  • 2 more limes for the decoration

Method  

  1. Preheat the oven to 170c
  2. Cream together the butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy
  3. Turn the mixer to slow and add the eggs one at a time
  4. Add a little flour if it starts to curdle
  5. Fold in the flour
  6. Stir in the gin & tonic mix
  7. Spoon the mixture into the cupcake cases and fill about 2/3rds full
  8. Bake for 20mins until just golden (don’t let them go too brown as they will go hard)
  9. While the are cooling, prick them with a fork and drizzle the gin over

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To make the icing:

  1. Beat the butter until soft and then add the icing sugar
  2. Beat until light and fluffy, then beat some more!
  3. If it’s too wet, add more icing sugar – I made mine on a hot day and it needed loads more
  4. Beat in the gin and lime zest
  5. Pipe onto the cooled cakes and top with a slice of lime and some more zest

Home Sweet Home Bakealong 70: Eton Mess Cupcakes

May 29, 2017

After a pow-wow with Beckie we agreed that previous experience with custard/cream mix cupcake toppings meant that we were allowed to make adjustments and not risk another sloppy, bitty, garnish on our cakes. I foolishly though decided that I was going to try and get the better of that custard making and would have another bash. Little did I know that this would be the least of my worries.

This is as close as you’ll get to Eton Mess Cupcakes from me

IMG_1939For some reason, even though the cakes looked and felt cooked they weren’t. So when I let them cool they retracted into a stodgy lump. The custard was just about ok. Though on the edge of bitty again. But it was the cream that got me. I tried to whip some cream to fold into the custard. I tried to do that on the hottest day we’ve had in a long time. It skipped the whipped stage and went straight to butter. That’s ok I thought, I can use the tub I have in the freezer. So I defrosted it only to discover that double cream does *not* freeze. Ah well I thought. Maybe I can put some custard in the centres and then put a simple sugar icing and top with strawberries and meringue. But of course when I dug out the centre I realised how awful it was and when I took the strawberries out of the fridge I discovered that they had gone mouldy AND the overenthusiatic chiller had also frozen them.

I don’t like waste but I’m afraid this lot was wasted. I’m not going to try again, sorry. Onwards to the cornflake cookies!

Join Beckie and me in our Epic 100 part bakealong. Next: Cornflake cookies
#HomeSweetHomeBakeAlong

Home Sweet Home Bakealong 69: Coconut Squares (Coconut Ice)

May 29, 2017

This brings back memories of childhood. Though I’m not sure it’s something you should let kids eat. Icing sugar, condensed milk, desiccated coconut and red food colouring – surely that’s a recipe for hyperactive children?

Anyway, it was in the list so I made it. It is literally as simple as mixing the ingredients above, splitting in half, colouring half pink and then layering and leaving to set at room temperature. It should look like this:

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But I didn’t factor in that I was using epic American strength food colouring. So mine looked more like I was showing an allegiance to Southampton United FC.

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I was going to show you, but I accidentally deleted the photo. It’s probably for the best.

Still, Mr B’s workplace woolfed it down pretty sharpish.

Join Beckie and me in our Epic 100 part bakealong. Next: Eton Mess Cupcakes
#HomeSweetHomeBakeAlong

Home Sweet Home Bakealong #66: Red Velvet Roulade

May 12, 2017

I think I’ve found my baking mojo again, not as far as quality is concerned but at least as far as desire and actual output. This week I steeled myself to make a roulade, which I’m notoriously bad at. The red food colouring made the mixture curdle a bit which was odd. As you can see, it’s  bit of a mess, but it’s the opposite of last week’s bake because it’s light and moist. I’ve never managed to make a roulade which didn’t crack and this was no exception. It felt almost too moist but surely if I bake it longer the dryness will stop it rolling? Also, I have a query about Red Velvet. If you’re not putting much cocoa in, why bother at all? Surely you get a better red colour without it. I would have thought that it’s only if you’re using beetroot for the colour that you want cocoa to work the flavours out. With this little cocoa I’m not really sure you notice the taste.

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Red Velvet Roulade
from Home Sweet Home by the Hummingbird Bakery

For the sponge:
130g plain flour
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2tsp bicarbonate of soda
pinch of salt
120ml buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
120g unsalted butter
150g caster sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp red gel paste colouring
30ml water

For the filling (I didn’t do this – I just made a lemon buttercream as our corner shop was out of cream cheese) 

250g full fate cream cheese
130g white chocolate, melted
50g unsalted butter, softened
50g icing sugar

32x32x2cm swiss roll tin

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Cream butter and sugar
Add egg
Weigh out dry ingredients
Mix wet ingredients (except egg)
Alternate adding wet and dry, finishing with wet
Spread onto lined baking tin and back at 180 for 25 mins
Cover with damp teacloth to cool a little, then cover with another sheet of baking parchment and roll up while you make filling

Beat filling ingredients (butter, sugar first then add rest) until fluffy
Unroll sponge, cover in filling, roll back up
Dust with icing sugar

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Join Beckie and me in our Epic 100 part bakealong. Next: tbc
#HomeSweetHomeBakeAlongM

Home Sweet Home Bakealong #76: Maple and Walnut Streusel Cake

May 6, 2017

A few weeks ago I noted there were lost of little moths around and I was worried they were coming from my baking cupboard so I cleared everything out. This means I’m a bit low on the standard baking items as I haven’t fully re-stocked yet. You’ll be glad to know I’ve not seen a moth since.
So, that is by way of explanation for the fact that this isn’t the next bake on the list but I wanted to make a cake for my Mum’s birthday and I had the ingredients to do this one.

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It came out rather dense but not as dry as a feared from the look of it. Definitely needed tea or coffee with it though and works well with custard.

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Maple and Walnut Streusel Cake
from Home Sweet Home by the Hummingbird Bakery

For the streusel:
50g soft brown sugar
80g plain flour
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
45g unsalted butter, cubed
80g walnuts, chopped (I used toasted pecans and slightly less of them as that’s all I had)

For the sponge:
170g unsalted butter
150g caster sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (I didn’t use this as I had run out)
280g soured cream (I used Skyr Honey yoghurt as it has similar qualities and I hoped the honey would make up for the lack of vanilla)
420g plain four
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda (I used a sachet of Lievito Pane Degli Angeli instead of this and the b.p. It is awesome stuff. It’s a raising agent with vanilla that you can get fro italian delis and it’s pretty infallible)
1/2 tsp salt
100ml maple syrup, to drizzle

For the glaze:
170g Icing sugar
4 tbsp maple syrup

1x 10inch ring cake tin (mine was smaller so I put some in another tin)

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Rub together the streusel mix and set to one side
Cream butter and sugar, add eggs
Add the sour cream
Sift flour and raising agent together
Mix into wet mixture
Sprinkle half of streusel into base of pan
Add half of cake mix
Sprinkle rest of streusel
Top with rest of cake mix
Bake until golden and set (50ish mins)
When hot, drizzle maple syrup over

After cooled make icing and sprinkle with chopped nuts

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Join Beckie and me in our Epic 100 part bakealong. Next: I guess I should go back to the plan and do Red Velvet Roulade
#HomeSweetHomeBakeAlongM

Home Sweet Home Bakealong #71: Cookies & Cream Cake

April 30, 2017

Don’t fall off your chairs. I’m back. I’m sorry it has been so long. I got put off by the ingredients list of the Red Velvet Roulade and dispirited by the marshmallow failure and, well, I just got out of the rhythm of it all. I’ve been baking, but mainly less glamorous things like freezer cookies and healthier stuff for my other blog www.blandontherun.com

Anyway, enough of the ‘cat ate my cheesecake’ excuses and back to the baking. I went out of order so I’ll come back to the aforementioned  Roulade-Rouge. This one is a Hummingbird cake all over. Take a good cake, add a LOT of icing and then, well, let’s throw some cookies in as well. Talk about gilding the lily! It’s good though and really not that hard to make.

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Cookies and Cream Cake
from Home Sweet Home by the Hummingbird Bakery

For the sponge:
110g unsalted butter, softened
280g caster sugar
320g plain flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
320ml buttermilk
3 large eggs
135g any type of fresh cookies from the bakery section (but not white choc ones)

For the frosting (halve this! It’s loads):
1kg icing sugar
320h unsalted butter, softened
500g mascarpone
2-3 cookies, crumbled

3 x 8 inch loose bottomed sandwich tins

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Method:
Preheat oven to 170c and line cake tins
Beat butter, sugar and dry ingredients together until breadcrumby texture
Mix wet ingredients
Add to dry
Crumble cookies and stir through batter
Pour into cake tines and bake until golden brown

Beat butter and icing sugar together
Slowly add mascarpone

Assemble cake. Crumble cookies on top.

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Join Beckie and me in our Epic 100 part bakealong. Next: going out of order again – Maple and Walnut Streusel Cake
#HomeSweetHomeBakeAlong