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!

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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.

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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.

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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!

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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!

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Quick n Easy Christmas Cake

Hello and welcome to my blog, SCRUMMMY FRIDAY

With Christmas only 6 weeks away (ahhhh!) I thought I’d share a fairly easy Christmas cake recipe that I use every year and without a doubt the best tasting and reliable recipe.

It is best to make it about 5 or 6 weeks before Christmas, this gives the cake time to mature. MMM YUMMMY!

It’s really not that hard and pretty quick. Stick with it and you won’t regret it at Christmas. So here goes…

This recipe will make an 8 inch cake, but what I like to do is make a 1lb loaf size, for myself, and some mini cakes (I get the cases from a ‘well known’ supermarket in packs of 10)

Here are my mini cakes all wrapped up, with handmade gift tags, ready to give as Christmas pressies!

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Tools Needed

Large Mixing Bowls

Wooden Spoon

Greaseproof Paper

1lb loaf tin

Mini Loaf Cases

Rolling pin

Ingredients

The Cake

500g Dried Mixed Fruit with Mixed Peel

(You can buy separate dried fruit, but the is a quick recipe)

50g Glace Cherries (Halved)

45ml/ 3tbsp of brandy (For a non-boozy cake use orange juice instead)

225g of Plain Flour

Pinch of salt

225g of Unsalted Butter, Softened

½ tsp of Cinnamon

½ tsp of Mixed Spice

1 tbsp of Cocoa

225g of Dark Brown Sugar

4 Eggs

100g Mixed Nuts (roughly chopped)

Decorate

Apricot Jam

1kg box of Marzipan

1 kg box of Fondant Icing

Method

1 – The day or two before baking the cake, soak the dried mixed fruit with peel in a bowl with the brandy. Cover and leave to soak up the brandy.

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2 – Grease and line your tin with greaseproof paper. Make the paper stick up above the tin by about 1 or 2 inches. For the mini loaf, lightly grease the case.

Pre-heat oven to 150 degree C.

3 – Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs (one at a time whilst beating)

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4 – Add chopped nuts, glace cherries and the boozy fruit, plus any liquid left over.

5 – Sift flour, spices, salt and cocoa into a bowl, then add this to the mixture.

6 – Spoon the mixture into your tin and mini loaf cases. Gently tap on a work surface to disperse air bubbles.

7 – Put in the oven for approx 30 minutes for the mini loaf and 1 to 1 ½ hours for the 1lb loaf tin or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted in to the cake.

8 – allow the 1lb tin to cool slightly before removing from the tin and transferring to a wire rack. The mini loaf cakes can stay in there cases on the wire rack.

9 – Once cooled completely, wrap in tin foil (not too tightly and it needs the air)

Then store in a cool place (like a spare room) in an open box (DO NOT SEAL! this will make the cake go mouldy)

Then once a week feed your cake(s) with a little brandy.

10 – A few days before Christmas, you can decorate your cake. YAY!

11 – Remove cake from greaseproof paper. Warm the apricot jam in a saucepan (this just helps to spread it) Spread all over cake. For the mini loaf cakes spread on top. I use the back of a teaspoon.

12 – Lightly dust the work surface with icing sugar. Remove marzipan from its packet and gently knead it to soften it up. Then roll out to size to cover the entire cake. For the mini loaf cakes enough to cover the tops.

13 – Do the same as the marzipan with the Fondant. Trim away excess from the bottom of the cake.

14 – Now for the really fun part…decorating the cake!

This I will leave entirely to your creativeness, as it is your cake, it should have your mark on it!

If your good with a piping bag, them pipe a boarder, if not then I suggest and pretty ribbon around the bottom. Use cookie or fondant cutters to cut some fondant decorations, like traditional holy leaves or snowflakes. How about making a 3D snowman/family for the top. However you decorate it, this is your cake and I would love so much to see what you have baked. Please do show me!

Em x

Scrummmy Friday – Week 5

Hello cake lovers.

I am sorry but this week I don’t have a yummmy scrummy recipe to share with you as I’ve been busy caking and responding to quotes and orders.

So instead and I am going to share with you an amazing site called Cake Journal

This is a site where I get a lot of inspiration from.

I promise I will return with an awesome recipe for you all to try at home. You won’t be disappointed

Em x

Snickerdoodles

 

Hello and welcome to another week of Scrummmy Friday’s

This week I have chosen to make an American Classic, the Snickerdoodle cookie.

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These cookies are crisp at the edge with a gorgeous, melt in the mouth middle.

They are also super quick to make, so if you have some hungry mouths wanting a treat, these are just perfect. This recipe makes about 12 cookies

Tools required

2 large baking trays, lined with baking paper.

A bowl

Wooden spoon

Ingredients

115g Unsalted Butter, Softened

100g Dark Brown Sugar

2 tbsp Maple syrup or a few drop of caramel flavouring

175g Self-raising flour

2 tbsp Caster sugar

A sprinkle of Cinnamon

A handful of chopped pecans (optional)

Method

1 – Preheat oven to 160·C (this is for a fan oven) & Line your trays.

2 – Put the butter and dark brown sugar in a bowl and beat together until light & fluffy. then add maple syrup or caramel flavouring & mix well. Then sift over the flour, gradually, on top of the mixture & beat well until a rough dough is formed.

3 – Divide the mixture into balls (about the size of a walnut).

4 – on a plate, put the caster sugar, chopped pecans (if using) and cinnamon & roll the dough balls on the plate & flatten slightly.

5 – Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes on the tray before transferring on to a wire rack to cool completely.

Yummm!

Em x

 

Scrummmy Friday’s – week 3

It’s week 3 of Scrummmy Friday’s and I have the world’s easiest NO BAKE recipe that I know everyone loves.

I have fond memories of making these, as a young girl (many moons ago), in my mum’s kitchen. I hope with this recipe, I can inspire fresh new hopefuls to become great cake markers!

So here is it, this week, I present… Marshmallow Rice Krispies Bites

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Tools required

Medium saucepan

2 desert spoons

2 bowls

Scales

8”x8” tin

Baking/Greaseproof paper

Ingredients

25g Unsalted Butter

100g Rice Krispies

150g Marshmallows

200g White Chocolate

Handful or 2 of mini marshmallows

Method

  • 1- Melt butter in saucepan over a low heat
  • 2- Add marshmallows to the saucepan of melted butter and melt them too.
  • 3- Remove from heat and add Rice Kripsies to the saucepan (Trust me, this works better than adding then to the bowl!) Mix well ‘til Rice Kripsies are well coated.
  • 4- Line tin with baking paper. Put mixture into tin and press down. Now use a clean desert spoon, wetted with cold water, and smooth over the top to level.
  • 5- Melt chocolate in the microwave. 30 sec at a time, on high power until chocolate is melted.
  • 6- Pour on top of Rice Kripsies and level out
  • 7- Scatter a handful or 2 of mini marshmallows on top
  • 8- Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes
  • 9- Remove from fridge and cut into desired size squares. (I made 16 bite size squares)

You can be as creative as you want. Maybe use milk chocolate instead of white. Maybe add a different topping, maybe your favourite biscuit or chocolate sweets?

Please remember, I would love to see your creations, please post me a comment either on Facebook or on Twitter, of your delicious and yummmy treats.

Em x

Scrummmy Friday’s

Welcome to Emmm’s Cakes second week of Scrummmy Friday’s.

This is my new blog, where I share quick and easy recipes for you and your family to try at home over the weekend.

I would also love to see all your yummmy treats you have baked or not baked, from no bake recipes. So please do leave a comment and share your creations!

This Scrummmy Friday’s recipe is a NO BAKE, Simply no baking involved!

The classic CHOCOLATE TIFFIN

 

Tools needed for this are –

10” x 10” tin (I use a spring form tin)

Baking/greaseproof paper

Large saucepan.

Microwaveable bowl

 

Ingredients

110g Unsalted Butter

2 tbsp Caster Sugar

2 tbsp Golden Syrup

2 tbsp Cocoa Powder

200g Digestive Biscuits

A Handful of Raisins

200g Milk Chocolate

 

Method

1- in the saucepan, melt butter, sugar, golden syrup and cocoa over a low

heat. Mean while crush the biscuits into bite size chunks.

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2- once all melted and well combined, add crushed biscuits and raisin and mix well.

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3- pour mixture into a lined tin and press down firmly.

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4- melt chocolate in the microwave. (High for 30sec at a time, until all melted) and pour over the biscuit mixture.

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5- set in fridge for about 1 hour or over night.

6- remove from the fridge and leave at room temp before cutting.

7- DEVOUER!

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To add an extra dose of yummminess, add a layer of caramel between the biscuit and chocolate topping.

Em x

Scrummmy Friday’s

Hi and Welcome to Scrummmy Friday’s

#Scrummmyfridays

Each week I will post a quick and easy recipe for you to bake and enjoy a yummmy treat over the weekend!

My first recipe to share with you is…..

Halloween Ginger Shortbread.

This is a family friendly recipe, so why not all try!

Ingredients for Cookies

200g Unsalted Butter

200g Light brown Sugar

1 Medium Egg

400g Plain Flour

2tsp Ground Ginger

1/2 tsp Cinnamon

Pinch of Salt

Tools

Baking trays

Baking/Grease proof  paper

Rolling pin

Ginger bread people cutters

Method

Pre heat oven to 160 Deg C

1 – Ensuring butter is at room temp before starting (makes it easier to mix)  Place the butter in a bowl

2- Add light brown sugar and beat until well combined

3- Add beaten egg and combine well

4- Add flour, spices and salt. Mix a little at a time with a spoon and when the mix become to hard to work with the spoon, finish off with using your hands, by kneading well. Keep working at it until the mixture comes together and forms a ball.

5- Place on a floured worktop and knead some more until smooth.

6- Rollout until it is 5mm thick (Keep moving the dough around between rolls to stop it from sticking to your worktop)

7- Cut out shapes and place on the baking trays lined with baking/Grease proof paper.

8- Place in the oven for 10-15mm or until the edges are turning a golden brown colour.

9- Leave on the tray for 10mins (if you try lifting before cooling on trays they will break) once cooled, lift them off and place on a wire rack until completely cool (They will harden up as they cool)

To Decorate

Royal icing

Water

Piping bag or food/freezer bag

1- Put royal icing in a cup and add a tiny amount of water at a time. (The consistency you want is like toothpaste)

2- Put icing into a piping bag or food/freezer bag (just use one corner of the food bag and snip the corner off to the desired size)

3- Pipe on your halloween monsters outline.

4- For the flood icing (this is to fill the inside of your lined monsters) use more royal icing but this time make it the consistency of cream.

5- using a spoon and cocktail stick, pour a little icing on and spread it around until it fills the cookie and allow to dry.

Be imaginative and use food colourings and decorations to create different spooky designs.

Please show me what you bake, I look forward to seeing all your wonderful designs and creations

Em X

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