Showing posts with label white chocolate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label white chocolate. Show all posts

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Sunday Baking: surprise muffins

Photo credit: That'll be me! I learnt to focus folks! Now for staging..

The thing about getting to the point both literally and emotionally where you feel comfortable and settled is that you can start to build the things you enjoy into your life as opposed to them always feeling like they're tagged on to the end of another too long day. 

For me this is meaning that I'm finding time (and M is supporting me) to blog, and most excitingly of all helping me to take better pictures. You'll notice that the most recent (non Instagrammed) ones are so much better than I usually manage it all credit has to go to M for them. If he'd step forward I'd suggest we offer him a round of appluase, but in absence of that I've made him muffins. The special thing about these muffins is that they're something he likes, and I don't - white chocolate and I do not get along. 

He doesn't know yet about their secret ingredient as the Belgian Grand Prix was on (Go Jensen!) whilst I was making them, this will probably pop up in his inbox tomorrow, so sorry M. 

White chocolate surprise muffins

5oz grated parsnip
3 large eggs
6 floz sunflower oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 large bar white chocolate chopped up into small chunks
8oz self raising flour

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line a 12 hole muffin tin with cake cases
Whisk together the parsnip, eggs and sugar until light and foamy
Add in the sunflower oil, vanilla, chocolate and make sure everything is whisked in
Fold in the flour gently and spoon either an ice-cream scoop or 3 dessert spoons of batter into each
Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, take out and leave to cool

M will be taking them in his packed lunch. I like to delude myself that the secret vegetables will make him healthier, whilst not denying him his RDA of cake. 

Don't forget that my Simple Summer Round up competition ends tomorrow - so make sure you've entered to win £50 of Asda vouchers

Thursday, 9 February 2012

As long as you're mine: Valentines Chocolate cakes

A little while back the people from Baking Mad asked me if I'd be interested in making their Valentines Chocolate Heart cakes for St Valentine's day. In this house we don't celebrate St Valentine's as such, we celebrate St Dwynwen's day (the Welsh equivalent) instead, and that's the 25th January.

However, I was still in hospital then, so this year we've been a bit betwixt and between with me not being well (still) and M working ridiculously long hours. So, I thought I'd make these Valentines chocolate heart cakes as a little something to make him smile.

The recipe is super duper easy, if you have a heart shaped muffin tin, or cake tin that's terrific. If not, then do as I did and bake in any cake tin you have and use a heart shaped cookie cutter to shape the cakes. I've got another post lined up for what to do with the offcuts - some Valentines cake pops! Which is a first from the Pantry.

If you have children that you want to get involved, this is a really easy recipe for them to help with. I would melt the chocolate in the microwave (in 30 second bursts to stop it burning), and let them go wild with the decorations! Most supermarkets (although Sainsbury's especially) have really fantastic baking sections these days, and if you can't go mad at Valentines, when can you? Snow Days, Easter, Christmas, Birthdays... Or is that just me looking for any excuse?

Valentines Hearts Cakes

125g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
3tbsp milk
150g softened butter
150g caster sugar
3 eggs
200g plain flour
1tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

Butter and dust your tins with cocoa (if you use flour, you end up with a white dust on your cakes, cocoa eliminates this)
Melt the chocolate with the milk in a bain marie (bowl over a saucepan of simmering water). Once melted together, remove from the heat and let cool slightly while you start on the other ingredients
Beat the butter until it's pale in colour
Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy
Add the melted chocolate (it needs to have cooled to stop it scrambling the eggs in the next step)
Add in the eggs, one at a time  with a spoonful of flour with each egg to prevent it curdling
Sift in the rest of the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and bicarb
Fold in gently with a metal spoon
Scrape and pour the mixture into your tin or moulds
Cook in a preheated oven for 25 minutes for individual moulds, and for an hour for one big cake

Allow to cool completely, if cutting out heart shapes, remember your primary maths lessons on tesselation and work out how many you can fit in. Slice each in half with a sharp bread knife so that you double your heart shapes

Now make a White chocolate buttercream to fill your hearts with:

100g white chocolate
140g butter
140g Icing sugar

Beat the ingredients together (lay a damp teatowel over your mixing bowl to avoid the icing sugar dust going everywhere!) for a good 5-10 minutes until it's all combined. Check the taste, I found I preferred a little vanilla extract in there to round out the overall flavour. Using a really lovely white chocolate like Green and Blacks would eliminate the need for this.

The only thing you need to do now is decorate your hearts anyway you like. I used mini chocolate fingers stuck on around the edges. Did I mention M has an insanely sweet tooth? These are going to hit the spot perfectly with him. White chocolate frosted chocolate Valentine's Heart cakes... Well they say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach...

This is a sponsored post, all opinions are my own. Click here for my Disclosure policy


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