Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Oreo Cupcakes

I've had my eye on baking these for a while, and as I have a lot of time off this week it seemed like the perfect procrastination tool from tidying my room. The recipe I followed came from this lovely baking blog, which I would urge you all to visit!

The recipe is nice and simple, really quick and easy as well! And the sponge is lush! I think next time (I will be making these again) I'll use dark chocolate instead of milk though. Here's the recipe:

2 packets of normal sized Oreo cookies

Dry Ingredients:
225g self-raising flour
225g sugar
21g cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon of salt

Wet Ingredients:
120ml milk

2 eggs
55g chocolate (melted)
110ml boiling water
90ml oil
½ tablespoon vanilla essence

Oven temp -180 degress ish for 10 minutes.

1) Line a muffin pan with large paper cases and then place half of a large oreo biscuit in the bottom of each one. (Twist the oreos carefully so you get all the cream on one side). Keep the other half of the oreos to one side for later.

2) Melt the chocolate and allow to cool.

3) In a large bowl, whisk together all your dry ingredients.

4) In another large bowl, whisk your eggs until they thicken slightly and turn pale in colour.

5) To the egg mix, add in the milk, vanilla and oil and whisk well.

6) Then add in the cooled chocolate, and again whisk.

7) Add the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until combined. Then mix in your hot water.

8) Fill the cupcake liners about 3/4 of the way full. You may want to add a little bit of the mixture into the bottom of the case before you put the half of an Oreo in.

9) Bake in the oven for around 10-12 minutes, or until when the sponge bounces back when pressed lightly with a fingertip.

Frosting ingredients
125g unsalted butter
250g icing sugar
1-2tbp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
Oreo halves (crushed)

1) First of all, take your oreo halves and blitz them either in a food processor, or place in a freezer bag and bash with a rolling pill until they reach crumb consistency. If you want to pipe your icing, make sure all the crumbs are smaller than your icing tip hole!
2) Whisk together the butter and icing sugar, adding a splash of the milk and vanilla extract until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add in the oreo crumbs.

3) Once the cupcakes are completely cooled, either pipe on the frosting with a piping bag and nozzle, or just spread over the cake with a knife.

4) For final decoration, stick a mini Oreo in the top just before serving.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Mississippi Mud Pie Cupcakes

I can never spell that right, thank God for autocorrect!

Not my favourite cake, in fact I haven't really tried them *ashamed* but I do have one good reason for it... I hate rum/brandy/99% of alcohol in cake or chocolate! This recipe uses our good friend, Jim Beam for an extra kick. And a lot of it. As you can tell, the mix is quite runny. This is another cake recipe from my new Lets Make Whoopies! book, and once again, I am impressed. Or at least, my boyfriend who's slowly working his way through all 14 is.

This was full when I started. OK, well... At least, above the label! Now about half full. Far too much used!
Just baked, note the brownie like appearance (and the uh, slight burnt bits)

Despite the runny mix, they're pretty dry. I think I over cooked them. 

The one thing I really liked about this recipe was the icing, which was a different, more fudgey style than the cream cheese frosting which Grey seems to favour. It involved all manner of fun things like boiling sugar and evaporated milk...

This icing all has a large glug of J.B in. Nom. It's really easy to make (despite all the intricacies!) but the trouble comes in waiting for it to cool down before using it! It needs a good four hours to get to a workable temperature, and you'll probably have to beat it before you use it as it'll start to set. Don't try to ice your cakes before it's cold like I did, you will burn yourself! 

Got lots of time off this week so I'll make something that I can post the recipe for, probably Wednesday. 

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Strawberry Cheesecake Whoopies

Everyone loves strawberries in summertime! They're beautiful and sweet at the moment, and all British grown.  We had a few left over from a punnet so I decided to try a recipe that was a bit out of my comfort zone - one that requires purées and two different mixtures and creaming things. 

For my 21st, I got given Let's Make Whoopies! by Sophie Grey. A whoopie, for the uneducated, is a flat disc of cake with a filling and then another flat disc of cake - almost like a cake sandwich, if you will. The strawberry cheesecake version features strawberries and strawberry cream in the middle, with a marbled cheesecake and strawberry sponge cake. 

I'm very impressed with these; the recipe seems to work spot on (I've had trouble in the past with recipes being too 'industrial' for home baking) and they taste beautiful! I'm not the biggest fan of fresh strawberries or strawberry flavoured things but these are really something else. The sponge is sticky and cloying but this works fantastically with the sweet cream and fresh strawberries inside. The cheesecake mixed in cuts through the sweetness and stops the strawberry flavour from being too over powering. 

I'm not going to give out the recipe because to be honest, this is a book you really need to get if you're into cakes at all. The recipes can all be transformed from whoopie to cupcake to full sized cake, so it's really a book for anyone. Plus it has recipes for savoury whoopies that can be used as canapes etc.! I'll do a review of it at some point, when I next have a day off work. For now, satisfy yourself with these pictures of my (new favourite!) thing to bake!

Friday, 3 June 2011

Lemon Drizzle Cake Recipe

This recipe was recommended to me by a friend. I've made it a couple of times now, with complete success!

Cake ingredients
4 oz softened butter
6 oz self raising flour with a sprinkle of salt
1 tsp baking powder
6 oz golden caster sugar (though normal caster sugar will do)
2 eggs
6 tbsp milk
Finely grated rind of one large lemon

Oven temp: - 180 degrees C, for about 30 minutes. For fan assisted ovens, drop the temp. by 20 degrees.

1) Mix together all the cake ingredients and beat until smooth. It helps here to have the softest butter you can. If you think it's a bit too hard, cream the sugar and butter together first before adding the rest of the ingredients to the bowl.

2) Put the batter into a greased and lined baking tin and put into the oven. Whilst the cake is baking, prepared the icings.

Icing ingredients
Juice of one large lemon
3 oz caster sugar (original recipe calls for 4 oz, but this is too sugary)

1) Beat together ingredients and check consistency. If it's too grainy, there's too much sugar so add more lemon juice. If it's too tart (taste it!) then add more sugar. This depends on the size of your lemon and the amount of juice you can get out of it. 

2) When the cake is cooked, before you remove it from the tin, get a skewer and make a few holes in the top of it. Then pour on the icing.

Optional secondary icing ingredients
The first time I made this cake, I made it in two halves and sandwiched it together with a simple lemon frosting. Unfortunately I don't have exact measurements because it's quite trial and error-y but here's a guess... You will probably need to adjust them!

225g icing sugar
75g softened butter
1 tbsp milk
3 tbsp lemon juice

1) Combine all the ingredients with a hand mixer. The icing should be stiff and taste lemony - if it's too runny, add more icing sugar. If it's too stiff add another 2 tbsp of milk and beat again. It gets better the longer you beat it. Ideally, you want to be able to drag a knife through it and the line to stay for about 10 seconds. 

2) Sandwich together the two sponges when cooled and enjoy!

Recipe credit: http://www.nigella.com/recipes/view/lemon-drizzle-cake-765

Trying something new with this blog....

Proper post coming up in a minute, I promise! Anyway, as this blog is going to be about my baking and cookery, I'm going to give the 'Amazon Associates' app. a go. This basically means when I blog about a book or tool that I use, I'll put one of these nifty little boxes in the post and then it's easy for you to follow the link to the Amazon listing.

I'm also going to try and organise this blog better than previous ones, so you can search or just click on a category and find all posts related to that category. :)

Coming up in the next post: Lemon drizzle cake recipe :)