Friday, 31 October 2014

Halloween Spiced Pumpkin Muffins with a Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting



Trick or treat???? I'm definitely the treat one ;) Halloween is a perfect excuse for those who love sweets! You can have as many candies as you want!!!! On this day your motto should be: " Eat, drink and be scary!" 
You will love the spiced pumpkin muffins! The pumpkin puree makes the muffins super moist and soft and the cinnamon frosting gives them a perfect touch! 

Ingredients:
makes approx. 24 muffins*
  • 325g light brown sugar
  • 100g unsalted butter, softened 
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 240g plain flour
  • 2½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ¾ tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 115g buttermilk
  • 280g pumpkin puree
*Recipe adapted from Peggy Porschen

For the cream cheese frosting:
  • 250g mascarpone
  • 100g softened butter
  • 200g icing sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
Preparation: 
For the muffins:
Pre-heat the oven to 175°C and line the muffin tins with cupcake cases.
Melt the butter and leave to cool slightly. Place the pumpkin puree, salt buttermilk and sugar in a large mixing bowl and stir together by hand with a balloon whisk until all well mixed.
Add the eggs one at a time to the mixture, whisking well in between each addition.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, backing soda and spices and add this to the liquid mixture in two batches, lightly stirring through with the whisk. Lastly, add the melted butter and gently incorporate this with the whisk again until just mixed in.
With a spoon scoop evenly into the prepared cupcake liners. Remember to fill the muffin cases only 3/4 cavity otherwise they might overflow. The mixture will be quite liquid but don't worry it is just like it should be!
Bake for approx. 18 minutes. You can check tif the muffins are ready by sticking a cocktail stick into the centre of each muffin. It should come out clean. Cool down before frosting.

For the frosting: In a mixing bowl beat the butter, add mascarpone and beat all together, add sugar and cinnamon. Don't get scared if you see that the ingredients start separating from each other forming crumbles, just keep whisking. It might take a while but everything will combine don't worry!  








Sunday, 26 October 2014

Vanilla cupcakes filled with home made strawberry jam



So you know already that I love baking but you didn't know before I also love jams! The entire summer  when all the fruits you like the most are available I was making jams! For me it is like closing a bit of summer into this small jar which later in the cold winter you will take out of your cupboard you will open it and immediately the fragrance you will smell will remind you of summer! I like to combine my favorite cupcakes with my favorite jams! Hmmmm this is the best combination and I am sure you will enjoy it as well!!!

Ingredients:
For the muffins:
makes approx 15 normal muffins
  • 80g butter, softened
  • 280g sugar
  • 1 package vanilla sugar (16g)
  • 240g flour
  • 1 sp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 240 ml milk
For the cream cheese frosting:
  • 250g mascarpone
  • 100g softened butter
  • 200g icing sugar
  • red food collaring - optional
For the strawberry jam:
  • 500g strawberries
  • 250g high pectin sugar (jam sugar)
Preparation: 
For the muffins: Preheat the oven to 175°CLine your mini muffin tin with paper liners.
In a mixing bowl beat together butter, sugars, salt until smooth and creamy. Keep steering and start adding eggs one by one, add milk and mix until all combines. Add flour and baking powder and whisk until all the ingredients combine. With a spoon scoop evenly into the prepared cupcake liners. Remember to fill the muffin cases only 3/4 cavity otherwise they might overflow. Bake for about 20min. You can check if the muffins are ready by sticking a cocktail stick into the centre of each muffin. It should come out clean and not sticky, if it is still sticky just leave it in the oven for 3-5 minutes more.

For the jam: Before you start, sterilize the jars and their lids to get rid of any bacteria. I usually put them in the sink and cover with boiling water.
Wash and clean the strawberries and cut into small pieces. Put the strawberries in the pan and cook on a very low fire. When the strawberries start to loose liquid add sugar and bring them to the boil then simmer for another 5-10 minutes. Take it of from the fire and carefully divide between the jars. Close the jars and put them away up side down (this will help to close better) after 15 minutes bring the jars to their normal positing. Leave to cool down. 
For the frosting: In a mixing bowl beat the butter, add mascarpone and beat all together, add sugar and beat again. Don't get scared if you see that the ingredients start separating from each other forming crumbles, just keep whisking. It might take a while but everything will combine don't worry! 
Cut a small hole in the cupcake and fill them with your strawberry jam. 
To decorate the cupcakes I have divided the frosting in two parts. One I have colored with the red food coloring. To pipe the cupcakes I have used the piping bag which half of the bag I filled with my pink frosting and the other half with my white frosting. This will give you an rose effect while you will spread the frosting over your cupcake, but if you don't want to make it too difficult just use a knife spreading the frosting over the cupcakes. You can also decorate with small caramel candies or spread a bit of sea salt! Enjoy!!!





Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Raspberry Yoghurt Bundt Cake



It is rainy and windy outside and everybody is into pumpkin, eggnog, cinnamon and all other autumn flavors (which I of course love as well) BUT now I just miss summer! I disagree with this autumn atmosphere and I want my summer back! So when I saw this beautiful raspberries spreading around this sweet delicate aroma for a second I felt like the summer had just started…So without thinking I took them to my basket and run home and … ..baked!!! You will love this moist, flavorful and soft bundt and the raspberry aroma will steal your heart!!! I could eat it every day! 


Ingredients:
  • 300g flour
  • 200g sugar
  • 200g yoghurt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 200g soft butter
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 package of vanilla sugar (16g)
  • 250g of raspberries + 3 spoons for the raspberries (either frozen or fresh)
Preparation:
Preheat your oven to 175ºC and prepare your bundt pan. 

In a mixing bowl beat together butter with sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs one by one and keep whisking until everything combines. Now add flour, baking soda and baking powder and combine all together. At the end of whisking add yoghurt and whisk gently until you reach a creamy structure. 

Sprincle your raspberries with 3 spoons of flour (this will prevent the raspberries to fall to the bottom of the cake) and using a spatula gently mix ten into the paste. 
Pour the paste into the cake pan and bake for approx 60min, until so called dry cocktail stick. Cool down and enjoy :)



Sunday, 5 October 2014

Royal Icing Rose Cookies


My nice who is probably my biggest fan complained that I have been lazy and didn't bake anything new recently! Hmm…so no excuses I had to catch up! And as I am not a royal icing expert I thought this was a great opportunity to practice my skills! That is how this beautiful rose cookies have been created! I used the wet-on-wet technique with is very easy to do even if you are a beginner. You can create many patterns from marbling cookies to this beautiful roses! Hope you like them :)

Ingredients:
For the cookies: 
makes 10-15 large or 25-30 medium
  • 250g butter
  • 250g sugar
  • 1 egg (if you are not planning to do royal icing use 2 eggs)
  • 1 yolk (keep the egg white for your royal icing)
  • 1 package of vanilla sugar (16g)
  • 400g flour
For the Royal Icing:
  • 1 egg white
  • 250g powder sugar
  • vanilla extract - optional
  • food coloring
Preparation:
For the cookies: In a bowl of an electric mixer beet the butter and sugars together until creamy and fluffy. Ad the egg and the yolk and mix until all combines. Now add the flour in few stages and mix until all ingredients come together. Take your dough out of the bowl and cover with clingfilm and refrigerate at least for 30min.
Take your dough out of the fridge, sprinkle some flour on the work surface and roll out the cookie dough to about 5mm thick. 
Using cookie cutters cut your cookie shapes and place them on baking trays lines with baking paper. Return to the refrigerator to rest again for at least 30 min. 
Preheat the oven at 180C for about 10min. 
Bake the cookies for about 15min, depending on their size or until they get a nice golden brown color. 
Leave them to cool down completely before decorating them with royal icing or storing them. 
For the royal icing: Sift the powder sugar into a mixing bowl of an electric mixer, add the egg white and mix together for about 10min. Until the icing has reached a stiff-peak consistency (which is what you would need for sticking on decorations and gluing cakes together). But we now need a thinner consistency of icing in order to be able to create this beautiful roses. You will have to add some water to the icing but do this step by step. To get the best consistency I have used the 10 seconds rule - you can find may tutorials on royal icing. Once you are happy with your icing consistency color your icing using eatable food colorings. Pour the icing into the piping bags and start from outlining around the edge of each cookie - I used white icing. Then with the same icing flood inside the outlines on the cookies. Immediately before the icing starts to dry put some dots on the icing and with a toothpick make some swirls or zig-zags to get different designs. Hope you enjoyed!!! 





Sunday, 24 August 2014

Carrot Cake Whoopie-Pies


I have never baked any whoopie-pies before but heard so many delicious comments about them that I had to try myself! I have chosen this carrot version so everybody who loves carrot cake will definitely go crazy for this small treats! They are moist, soft, aromatic and the marshmallow filling makes them to die for!!!! You must try!!

Ingredients:
makes 8-10 pieces
  • 1 egg
  • 150g sugar
  • 2 packages of vanilla sugar (16g each)
  • 125ml yoghurt
  • 25ml milk
  • 75g butter, softened
  • 275g flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon back powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 100g grated carrot
Filling:
  • 170g soft butter
  • 280g icing sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 220g marshmallow fluff
Preparation:
In a mixing bowl mix together, egg, sugar and vanilla sugar. When all the ingredients combine add yoghurt and milk and whisk all together, add the soft butter and whisk until all combines. 
To another mixing bowl pour flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger, backing powder and backing soda and whisk all together. Then pour a half of the flour mixture into the egg mixture and combine all ingredients, next pour the rest of the flour mixture and whisk again until all combines. Take the grated carrot into your hands and press out the juice, next pour the carrot into the paste and whisk to combine.
Now put the mixture into the fridge for approx 30min to rest.
Preheat the owen to 175°C.
Take out from the fridge and with a spoon form 16-20 round small heaps (approx 3-5cm diameter) keeping 2-3cm distance from each other. Bake for 10-13 minutes until the cakes get a nice golden color. 
In the mean time prepare the filling:  In a mixing bowl mix butter, icing sugar, cinnamon until they get fluffy, now add the marshmallow fluff and whisk until everything combines. Put the filling into the fridge for the next 30minutes. 
When your pies are cool spread one spoon of the filling on one half of the pies, take the other half and press gently together. Enjoy!!!!! 




Sunday, 17 August 2014

Forget Me Not Vanilla Mini Cupcakes


This was a special evening for me! My lovely auntie was celebrating her Bday and I was in charge to prepare the seating cards so I thought I will prepare mini cupcakes which will hold the names of the guests. As it was an unforgettable evening the cupcakes had to be decorated with small forget me not flowers :) I think they turned out very sweet and the guests were happy as well!! 

Ingredients:
For the muffins:
makes approx 30mini muffins or approx 15 normal muffins
  • 80g butter, softened
  • 280g sugar
  • 1 package vanilla sugar (16g)
  • 240g flour
  • 1 sp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 240 ml milk
For the cream cheese frosting:
  • 250g mascarpone
  • 100g softened butter
  • 200g icing sugar

Preparation:
For the muffins: Preheat the oven to 175°CLine your mini muffin tin with paper liners.

In a mixing bowl beat together butter, sugars, salt until smooth and creamy. Keep steering and start adding eggs one by one, add milk and mix until all combines. Add flour and baking powder and whisk until all the ingredients combine. With a spoon scoop evenly into the prepared cupcake liners. Remember to fill the muffin cases only 3/4 cavity otherwise they might overflow. Bake for about 20min. You can check if the muffins are ready by sticking a cocktail stick into the centre of each muffin. It should come out clean and not sticky, if it is still sticky just leave it in the oven for 3-5 minutes more.

For the frosting: In a mixing bowl beat the butter, add mascarpone and beat all together, add sugar and beat again. Don't get scared if you see that the ingredients start separating from each other forming crumbles, just keep whisking. It might take a while but everything will combine don't worry! 

To decorate the cupcakes I have prepared the forget me not flowers from a rolled blue fondant then left over night to firm before I placed them on the cupcakes. For the frosting I used a piping bag, but if you don't have one you can use a knife spreading the frosting over the cupcakes. You can also decorate with small caramel candies or spread a bit of sea salt! Enjoy!!!




With all my love… <3



Sunday, 15 June 2014

Apple Apricot Pie


I love apple pie but I wanted to tune it a bit and ad some summer touch! So I added some apricots! Their sweet and sour taste makes a perfect mach with apples. The dough is very delicate and crispy so every time you bit in the apple apricot filling will gently melt in your mouth. It is super easy and I am sure you will love it!

Ingredients:

For the pastry:
  • 250g of cold butter
  • 400g flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 yolk
  • 150 g sugar
  • 1 small teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 package of vanilla sugar
For the filling:
  • you can use 250ml prepared apple mouse or do it yourself from here: My mum's apple pie
  • 2 fresh apricots, cut in small cubes

Preparation:

You can make your pastry by hand, or simply pulse all the ingredients into a food processor. If making by hand, sieve the flour with the baking powder, sugars into a large mixing bowl. Add chopped butter and mix with your hands until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg and the yolk and gently work it together until you have a ball of pastry dough. Sprinkle a little flour over the pastry, then wrap it in cling film and pop it into the fridge to rest for 0.5h - 1 hour.

Preheat your oven to 180ºC. Take your cooled pastry out of the fridge. Prepare a pie dish around 28cm in diameter. Flour a clean surface and a rolling pin. Cut off the half of your pastry and put that aside. Roll the rest into a circle just over 1.5cm thick.  Put your pastry circle into the dish and push it into the sides. Take a fork and make some small holes in the pastry, then put the dish into the oven and prebake for about 15min. Take it out and cool down.

Take your apple mouse and the apricot cubes and pour into the prebaked pastry. Take the remaining half of the pastry and roll again over 1cm thick. With a knife cut the pastry into stripes, put them on the top of your apricot - apple mouse forming a chequered pattern.
Again put it into the oven and bake for another 30min until the top of the pie gets a nice golden color.

Bon appétit!!!