For The Biscuit Lovers

Hi and welcome to my blog “Scrummmy Friday’s” As you well know (if you have been following me) 2016 means a ‘healthier beginning’ for me. I am a cake maker and decorator and I find I’m snacking on what I have baked. So I have beenresearching  better option recipes to try to help me on my diet. I am a believer of having something that you crave to help aid the diet. “Little and often” But I wanted to aid my weight loss with ‘better’ options.

At the moment I’m loving Davina McCall’s recipes, from her latest book ‘Smart Carbs’ There are really great recipes including main meals, deserters and snacks/treats.

I am a biscuit fan and love to dunk a biscuit in my cup of tea. So this week I have made Davina’s ‘Hobby Nobby Biscuits’

His recipe make approx 24 biscuits and here’s how to make them…

Ingredients 

200g butter (I world recommend using butter as if you opt for low-fat margerine, the  biscuit is likely to crumble before it reaches your mouth) 

175ml maple syrup

300g wholemeal flour or wholemeal spelt flour, plus extra for dusting

250g oatmeal

50g porridge oats

Pinch of salt 

2 tsp baking powder

Method

  1. Put the butter in a saucepan and melt over a low heat, then stir in maple syrup. Set aside
  2. Put flour, oatmeal, oats, salt and baking powder in a large bowl and mix the dry ingredients.
  3. Make a well in the centre of the dry mix and pour in butter and syrup, then gradually work in the dry mixture until you have a coarse dough.
  4. Roll the dough into 2 balls and wrap with cling film and chill in the fridge for about half an hour.
  5. Pre-heat oven to 200C or 180C for fan oven. Roll out each ball on a lightly floured surface to about 5mm thick. Using a 7 inch cookie cutter, cut out your cookies and place them onto a baking tray lined with grease proof paper. You can use a small cookie cutter and that will give you more than 24 biscuits. If you don’t have a cutter, you can use a glass but it is tricky to get the dough out at times.
  6. Bake the biscuits for about 15-20mins or until lightly golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly on the tray before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. 

These do look good and if you cut them out using a 7 inch cutter then they are approx 175 calories per biscuit. 

Happy baking

Em X

    Advertisements

    Soft Warm Chewy Cookies

    Hi cake fans! It’s another Scrummmy Friday and this week I have a real treat! 

    It has been so cold outside and when it’s cold, I don’t really think about eating all too healthily  (Bang… There goes my New Year’s resolution!) 

    This week my daughter and I decided to make cookies to go with our hot chocolate!

    These are our favourite type of cookies! They are really great and very easy to make. There is no chilling involved with these cookies either!

    So let’s get baking…!

    Ingredients

    200g plain flour

    1 tsp bicarbonate soda

    Pinch of salt

    125g unsalted butter at room temp

    105g light brown sugar

    6 tbsp granulated sugar

    1 egg

    1 tsp vanilla ext

    3 small tubes of smarties
    Method

    I find it is easier to mix by hand with a wooden spoon rather than a food mixer.

    1. Combine butter (that is softened) and both sugars in a bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until smooth.
    2. Beat in the egg and vanilla.
    3. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, bicarbonate soda and salt.
    4. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and blend until well incorporated.
    5. Add one tube of smarties to the mixture and fold in.
    6. Preheat oven to 160C (for fan oven) and line baking trays with grease proof paper.
    7. Using two teaspoons, scoop out a small about of dough and round it by scrapping from spoon to spoon.
    8. Place dough on the tray but allow enough space between them as they do spread out whilst baking.
    9. Place in the oven for 15-20 mins or until golden round the edges.
    10. Then remove from oven and put a few smarties on top for decoration.
    11. Allow to cool on the tray for 5 mins before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. But they are at their best when they are still a warm. Yummm!

    Enjoy with your chosen hot drink, like us!

      

    Happy Baking!

    Em X

    No Added Sugar Fruit Loaf

    As I am still sticking to my ‘New Years resolution’ of a healthier beginning. I am still researching ‘better options’ for treats to have with a cup of tea or coffee.

    I have had this recipe for a while and it is favoured by my dad (as he is diabetic) but the rest of the family love it too. Obvisouly this doesn’t give a diabetic an excuse to eat the whole thing in one sitting, but it can be kept in an airtight container for a few days or even freeze for a month.

    It is great because it has no added sugar. The only sugar this recipe contains is from natural sugar from the dried fruit used. You could also make it low in fat by substituting the butter for a low-fat margarine. Then here comes the bonus… This recipe also uses wholemeal flour that provides a source of fibre too.

    lowsugarfruitcake-7036

    Ingredients 

    100g mixed dried fruit

    50g butter or margarine

    150ml skimmed milk or soya/almond milk

    150g wholemeal flour

    2 tsp baking power

    1/2 tsp mixed spice

    1 tsp cinnamon

    1 large egg, beaten

    Method

    1. Pre heat oven to 180C or for fan 160C. Grease and line a 1lb loaf tin
    2. In a small pan, put butter, milk and dried fruit in and bring to the boil then simmer for 10 mins
    3. Remove from heat and allow to cool before adding the beaten egg.
    4. In a seperate bowl, mix the dry ingredients, then gradually add dry mix to fruit mix.
    5. If the mixture seems a little stiff just add a little milk until you get a ‘slow drop’ off the spoon.
    6. Pour mixture into tin and bake for 30-40 mins or until firm on top and screwer comes out clean.
    7. Leave in the tin for 15 mins, then turn out on to a wire rack to cool completely.

    Serve sliced, as it is or with a little butter or low-fat spread.

    Happy Baking

    Em x

    Healthier Beginnings!

      
    Happy new year to you all! It’s January, and to many of us, imparticularly me, that means a healthier start to the new year. But hang on, I’m a cake maker, how can I have a healthier year if I bake all those tasty treats, that are full of refinded sugar and butter laced? And yes I am always tempted to eat, sorry I mean ‘test’, what I bake.

    So this has got me thinking….?. Is there such a thing as a ‘healthy’ cake/bake/treat? Well to be honest, no there isn’t, in such, that’s why they are called ‘treats’. But wouldn’t it be great if we could maybe reduce the impact slightly and bake a tasty treat, that is ‘lower in fat &/or sugar’?

    This has lead me on to doing some investigating. I have researched on the Internet and some baking magazines to find these so called ‘healthier’ treats. The search hasn’t been hard, as most celebrities and top chefs have either brought a book out or an article on healthy living.

    I starting off with trying to find my favourite bake, the ‘chocolate brownie’. At this point I’ve either got you intrigued or laughing your head off at the darfed idea of a ‘healthier’ brownie. Come on it has chocolate in it…!

    I was surprised with what I found. There are lots of different variants on the web but the one that really caught my eye was in a popular Sunday newspaper supliment, “You”. I was reading about Davina McCall and there was an article taken from Davina’s new book ‘Smart Carbs’. 

    The exert talks about ‘smart carbs V dumb carbs’ and how we can make wiser choices, not just with sweet treats but also with meals.

    So scanning through, there it was, Davina’s “Chocolate and banana traybake”… now they look good!

    Here is the link to ‘You magazine’ online for Davina’s Smart carbs if you would like to see all of her recipes, they do look good! 

    But I just had to have a go that this chocolate and banana traybake recipe!

    Davina’s recipe uses a 24cm x 24cm tin, which makes approx 16 squares or cut smaller for less calorie intake. You can find the exact amounts used, in the link above.

    For myself, I used at 16cm square tin and these are the amounts of ingredients I used to make 9 squares of loveliness! I have also changed a couple of ingredients as I didn’t have the exact ones in my store cupboard. 

    Ingredients

    134g whole meal plain flour 

    35g cocoa powder 

    1 tsp baking powder

    Pinch of salt

    120g low fat butter/margarine

    100g honey

    2 small ripe bananas, mashed

    4 eggs

    Method

    1. Preheat oven to 160 C for a fan oven or 180 C otherwise. Grease and line your tin
    2. Put flour straight into a bowl and add sifted cocoa, pinch of salt and baking powder into that bowl.
    3. In a small pan, melt gently the butter and honey together. once melted remove from heat and mix in mashed bananas.
    4. In a separate bowl, break eggs and whisk until frothy (you may want to use an electric mixer for this) Then add the dry ingredients, then butter, honey and banana mixture and fold in until well mixed. It should be quite runny.
    5. Pour mixture into tin and bake for about 30 mins or until it has risen and is springy to touch.
    6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10mins before transferring to a wire rack and cut into squares.

    You can store in an airtight container for a few days (if they last that long!) or freeze them and consume within a month.

    These are excellent once frozen because you can get one out of the freezer, pop it in the microwave, on a non-metallic plate, for a minute or 2 and serve warm with berries, fat free natural yoghurt or creme fraiche. Mmm scrummmy!

      
    Have a go yourself and tell me what you think.

    Happy Baking

    Em x

    Merry Christmas!

    IMG_1794

    Welcome to the final Scrummmy Friday before Christmas.

    Here is something to get you in the festive mood.

    These Santa and Snow man cupcakes toppers are fun and easy to do.

    Here’s how…

    Starting with Santa

    Bake your favourite cupcake, my was Vanilla.

    Roll out coloured fondant or ready to roll icing with a round cookie cutter, that the same size of the cupcake. Cut out circles to make the base of the faces.

    IMG_1790

    Then with the same colour fondant, roll into balls then press to flatten it out into a nose shape.

    Next roll out red fondant and cut out circles (again with the same size cookie cutter) then move the cutter down to cut a semi-circle to create a hat. Stick together using a small amount to cooled boiled water

    Roll out white fondant and with the jagged edge of the cutter, cut out circles. With the smooth edge of the cutter cut another semi-circle (quite narrow, see picture) to make the woolly edge of Santa’s hat. With the remaining white circle, using a knife, slice across to make Santa’s beard. Again Sticking them together with a little water.

    IMG_1791

    With a little pink or red food colouring and a small brush, dabble a little amount of colouring on to santa’s face for his rosie cheeks. Then fix on his nose with a little water. With black fondant, make two tiny eyes and press on.

    Using a small amount of buttercream to fix the faces/toppers to the cupcakes.

    Be creative, imaginative and most important of all….have fun!

    I think Santa would love to get one of these upon delivery of gifts!!

    Merry Christmas All

    And I will be blogging again in the new year.

    Em x

    Twinkle Twinkle little star

    So today saw the completion of another birthday cake! YAY!

    I can not believe I have been so fortunate to be given the chance to make and bake my cake creations for such lovely and wonderful people. Thank you!

    So your probably wondering “What’s happened to Scrummmy Friday’s?” Fear not, it will return!

    I have been so busy with these wonderful custom cakes (as well as parent stuff, with the run up to Christmas…) I haven’t got enough hours in the day.

    So back to todays cake….

    This is a gorgeous vanilla sponge filled with strawberry jam and creamy buttercream. Yummmy!

    I hope the luck birthday boy has a superiffic birthday!

    stars-6971

    Em x

     

    Colourful Saturday

    Once again I have to apologise for my absence from Scrummmy Friday’s.

    This week has been one full on week with celebration cakes.

    So I thought, seeing as yesterday was ‘Black Friday’ in the UK, I would add a splash of colour today.

    Ta Dah… Rainbow cake for twins celebrating their 2nd birthday today!

    This is a mammoth 14″ x 10″ vanilla sponge, filled with jam and covered with piped rainbow colour buttercream! Yummm!

    rainbow2cake-6966