Posts Tagged With: custard

A Year in Cake – 2016

As I’m currently tucked up in bed with a rotten cold on New Year’s Eve, I thought I’d do another blog post like I did this time last year looking at my top bakes of 2016.

I won’t bore you with the details but this year has been the worst one for a long time for many reasons and has left me a bit emotionally battered to say the least. I’m hoping with all my strength that 2017 is an improvement and that the changes I’m desperate to make in my life will come about.

Still, baking is a part of my life come rain or shine and I’ve managed quite a few successful bakes this year, including several celebration cakes which I was really pleased with. My creations will never be up there in the showstopper stakes, but I think my presentation skills have improved and I’ve been a bit more daring with decoration.

One new thing I’ve tried this year is meringues. I’d always been a bit nervous to try them as I got the impression they’d be very temperamental and difficult to pull off, but happily I was wrong. My piping skills are still as dire as ever, but they were surprisingly easy to make and tasted absolutely delicious – crispy on the outside with a gooey marshmallow-like interior. And so SO much better than the brittle, chalky shop-bought ones. I was hoping to make a chocolate or cappuccino pavlova for NYE dessert and unfortunately being ill has put paid to that, but I’m keen to make something meringuey again soon! Like an idiot I forgot to include the fruits of my labour in the collage below so here’s a snap of my cute little ghost meringues from Halloween:

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I’ve decided to make on culinary resolution this year, and I’m sure I’ve made it before. I would really like to have a go at making proper bread, i.e. using yeast (not soda bread!) I’m a very impatient cook which is what’s put me off trying this previously but the effort would be worth it in order to create a nice big tear-and-share centrepiece, either a delicious chocolatey monkey bread or a mouth-watering sundried tomato and cheese number. I also fancy having a go at brioche, which is my all-time favourite bread, with its indulgent melt-in-the-mouth buttery sweetness and cloud-like texture. Watch this space!

So anyway, here’s a wee compilation of my personal favourite bakes from 2016:

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  1. Chocolate Orange Bonfire Cake (recipe here)
  2. Spiced Tea & Chocolate Cake with Cinnamon Ganache Icing (recipe here)
  3. Banana, Peanut Butter & Caramac Loaf (recipe here)
  4. Honeycomb & Chocolate Flapjacks with Marzipan Bees (recipe here)
  5. Raisin Spice Christmas Cake with Fondant Sealies (base recipe from the 1000 Cakes & Bakes cookbook)
  6. Moomin Lebkuchen (base recipe from the Bake Off Christmas cookbook)
  7. Lady Baltimore Cake (recipe here)
  8. Ducky Custard Cream Cake (base recipe here)
  9. Cheese & Sundried Tomato Quiche (recipe here)

I’ll sign off now by wishing everyone in the Bakeosphere a very happy and healthy 2017! 🙂

Cloud9.1 x

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Custard Cream Flapjacks

I’m officially obsessed with flapjacks. Up until a couple of months ago, I don’t think I’d ever actually made them, but after creating Caramac and honeycomb & chocolate ones, I now find myself whipping up a batch or two at least every couple of weeks!

I just love how they’re both so foolproof and so adaptable. Simply mix together butter, sugar, syrup and oats et voila – you’ve got the base for a million varieties and you can add pretty much whatever goodies you feel like. And all without the ever-present fears of over-mixing, soggy bottoms or sunken sponges.

Aside from the aforementioned types, other flapjacks I’ve attempted include Malteser, Fudge bar, cherry bakewell, white chocolate & cranberry, date & raisin, Dime bar, salted caramel, Milky Way…and many more to come I suspect.

As I love anything custard cream related, I decided that these yummy biccies would form the basis for my next flapjack experiment. The results were deliciously vanilla-y, moreish, and heartily demolished by my colleagues!

Oh, and if you’re also a custard cream fan, why not try my custard cream cake?

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INGREDIENTS – makes 12 large flapjacks or 15 small flapjacks

  • 130g/4.5 oz butter or margarine
  • 170g/6 oz granulated or caster sugar
  • 3 tbsp golden syrup
  • 4 tbsp custard powder
  • 255g/9 oz oats
  • 100g/3.5 oz white chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3-4 custard cream biscuits, roughly crushed

    METHOD
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line a rectangular baking tin with parchment paper.
  2. Melt the butter/margarine, sugar, golden syrup and vanilla extract together – either in a saucepan on the hob or in a large mixing bowl in the microwave – until smooth.
  3. Stir in the oats, white chocolate and custard powder until evenly coated.
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  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and pop in the oven for around 15-20 minutes until the edges are slightly brown (the mixture will will firm up as it cools).
  5. Leave to cool on a wire rack for about 15-20 minutes and scatter the crushed custard creams over the top while still warm, gently pushing larger bits into the flapjacks.
  6. When completely cool, slice in squares using a sharp knife.
Categories: flapjacks, Traybakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Custard Cream Cake

Originally posted 21/03/2015

This recipe is basically a large version of the cupcakes I created but never got round to blogging about after being inspired by the custard cream biscuits I made here: http://www.cloud9point1.wordpress.com/2015/06/03/custard-creams-strawberry-milkshake-creams/

I made this quick and simple cake on a whim while round my other half’s after discovering he had custard powder in the cupboard and it was absolutely scrumptious with its light sponge, smooth icing and lovely vanilla flavour. If you want to make it a bit more of a ‘show stopper’ bake by all means double the quantities and make as a double layer cake sandwiched with extra custard buttercream and top with some custard cream biscuits or other decorations to finish, but if you’re just after something delicious with minimal faff then look no further than the recipe below 🙂

I love the sunshine yellow colour!

INGREDIENTS – makes 1 deep sponge of approx. 8in/20cm diameter

For the cake:

  • 160g/5.5 oz self-raising flour
  • 170g/6 oz caster/granulated sugar
  • 170g/6 oz butter/margarine
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 heaped tbsp custard powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

For the icing:

  • 100g/3.5 oz icing sugar
  • 50g/2 oz butter (unsalted if preferred)
  • 1 tbsp custard powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

METHOD

For the cake:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line the cake tin with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk the butter/margarine and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until pale then whisk in the eggs.
  3. Fold in the flour, custard powder and vanilla extract until a batter of a soft dropping consistency has formed.
  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake for around 20-25 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the sponge comes out clean.
  5. When baked, leave to cool on a wire rack before turning the sponge out of the tin. At this stage the cake can be frozen for decorating at a later date if you wish.

For the icing:

  1. Place the butter and vanilla extract into a bowl and whisk while gradually adding the icing sugar and custard powder until a thick, fluffy mixture has formed.
  2. Spread the icing onto the top of the cooled cake using a palette knife, then dive in!

This recipe can also be used to make around 12-15 cupcakes instead of one large cake (sorry about the very dodgily edited old photo!):

Categories: Layer Cakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Best Ever Blondies

Originally posted 06/05/2014

My first attempt at blondies were a sickly, sticky mess but these are ridiculously good! I was reluctant to reveal my secret ingredient to my eager samplers but I shall share it here for the benefit of the baking community at large (ahem). And that secret ingredient is…*drum roll*…custard powder.

This idea came about when I was simply too lazy to look up a blondie recipe and decided just to go by my failsafe brownie recipe and substitute the milk chocolate for the white variety. It then dawned on me that I had no idea what to add in place of the cocoa powder. There’s no such thing as white cocoa powder (to my knowledge?!) and I was worried that making up the cocoa quantity with more flour would affect the flavour and make them too plain so, in the absence of butterscotch Angel Delight, I reached for the vanilla scented custard powder. And hey presto! The rest is scrumptious cakey history.

The lovely golden blondies pictured with their darker chocolate bretherin, pre-cutting… 

INGREDIENTS – makes approx. 15

  • 200g/7 oz granulated or caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 85g/3 oz self-raising flour
  • 120ml/4 fl oz cooking oil
  • 130g/4.5 oz white cooking chocolate
  • 4.5 tbsp custard powder
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • Few drops of Lakeland buttery caramel flavouring (optional but really makes the butterscotchy flavour pop!)

METHOD

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line a rectangular baking tin with parchment paper.
  • Briefly whisk the sugar, eggs, oil, vanilla extract and caramel flavouring together in a large mixing bowl.
  • Chop the chocolate into small chunks and melt in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot water or place in the microwave and heat in blasts of about 1 minute until smooth, then pour into the mixing bowl.
  • Fold the flour and custard powder into the mixture then pour into the prepared tin.
  • Pop in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the cake comes out pretty much clean, then leave to cool.
  • Cut the blondies into squares using a sharp knife and marvel at their deliciousness as you dive in.
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