Posts Tagged With: pink

Pinkies (Strawberry Milkshake Blondies)

I’m not really sure how this idea popped into my head. Perhaps it was because I had pink on the brain from helping to organise my gran and stepgrandad’s 10th wedding anniversary celebrations, which featured the colour as a theme (including a pink rosewater cake as a centrepiece, made by yours truly).

I’ve baked with strawberry milkshake powder before and I love the delicate rosy shade it delivers. And, despite being a vaguely gothic looking 28-year-old, I always think of pink as a fun colour that carries the promise of something devilishly sweet and exciting when it’s used in an edible context.

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Why limit yourself to dark and white chocolate brownies and blondies, I thought, when there’s room in the great Bakeosphere for other flavours? I’m happy to say this whimsical idea paid off, despite my initial worries that the finished product would be too synthetic, too soggy, or just downright vile. The strawberry flavour is quite subtle and really complements the white chocolate batter, adding a novel twist on the much-loved blondie.

So, don’t be shy – grab the Nesquik and have some fun with these cheery pinkies! And, if you like these, why not check out my strawberry milkshake biscuits?

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INGREDIENTS – makes approx. 18 squares

  • 200g/7 oz granulated or caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 85g/3 oz self-raising flour
  • 120ml/4 fl oz cooking oil
  • 100g/4 oz white cooking chocolate
  • 5 tbsp strawberry milkshake powder (I used Hello Kitty brand but any will do!)
  • 2 tsp strawberry extract
  • Quarter tsp red gel food colouring
  • 18 sugar butterflies, to decorate (optional)

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 and strawberry extract 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 in the flour, milkshake powder and gel food colouring until you have an even, pale pink hue, and then pour the mixture into the prepared tin.

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  • Pop in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes until the edges are wrinkled and very slightly brown and a cocktail stick inserted into the cake comes out pretty much clean. Leave to cool.
  • Cut into squares using a sharp knife and gently push a sugar butterfly into the top of each pinkie.

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Categories: Traybakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Neapolitan Cake

Originally posted 10/03/2015

I’ve been sticking to lower fat/sugar bakes for the last couple of months as part of my new year (mostly) healthy eating regime but last weekend while back home at my parents’ I was desperate to just go nuts and make a proper double decker sponge with lashings of scrummy frosting. I’ve wanted to try a tri-colour Neapolitan ice cream inspired cake, with layers of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry, for a while so this was the perfect time to give it a go. I’m really pleased with how it turned out and think it looks really pretty and cheery!

The frosting I used in this recipe is just egg white beaten with icing sugar plus flavouring and food colouring and this makes for a lovely light, almost marshmallow-like texture which is less sickly than buttercream. However, a word of warning: it starts to shrink and evaporate after 24 hours or so so if you’re making the cake in advance I’d recommend using buttercream icing instead as it will last much longer.

INGREDIENTS – makes 2 sponge layers of 8in/20cm diameter

For the cake:

  • 225g/8 oz self-rasing flour
  • 225g/8 oz caster/granulated sugar
  • 225g/8 oz butter/margarine
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 heaped tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50g/2 oz chocolate chips (optional but very yummy)

For the icing/jam filling:

  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1 tsp strawberry extract
  • Few drops of red food colouring
  • Handful of coloured vermicelli
  • 4 tbsp (approx.) strawberry jam

METHOD

For the cake:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line the two baking tins 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 and vanilla extract until a batter of a soft dropping consistency has formed.
  4. Separate half of the mixture into a second bowl and and fold in the cocoa powder and chocolate chips.
  5. Pour the mixtures one each into the prepared cake tins.
  6. Pop in the oven and bake for about 15-20 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the sponge comes out clean.
  7. When baked, place on a wire rack and leave to cool before turning the cakes out of the tins. At this stage the cakes can be frozen for decorating at a later date if you wish.

For the icing & filling:

  1. Spread the strawberry jam generously onto the top of the cooled chocolate sponge and sandwich the vanilla sponge on top.
  2. Separate the egg white into a clean bowl and whisk with the strawberry extract until stiff peaks form while adding the icing sugar a few teaspoons at a time.
  3. Add the food colouring a couple of drops at a time and whisk again until you have your desired shade of pink.
  4. Spread the icing over the top of the cake using a palette knife – tap roughly with the palette knife to achieve the fluffy effect in the photo – and then sprinkle with rainbow vermicelli as a colourful finishing touch.
Categories: Layer Cakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Coconut Ice Cakes

Originally posted 26/05/2014

I should probably begin this post by admitting that I’m not really the biggest fan of coconut, or sweeties in general. However, for some bizarre reason, I’m a huge fan of the colourful sugary treat known as coconut ice. I’ve been craving this by the bucketful the last few weeks and so, out of curiosity, had a Google to see whether anyone had had the stroke of genius to incorporate it into a cake recipe. Shockingly enough, turns out no one had. Naturally, I had to try and resolve this so I donned my experimental chef’s hat and hit the kitchen armed with desiccated coconut, red food colouring and crossed fingers. I’m pleased to say the result was fantastic – simply adding desiccated coconut to regular buttercream icing really does make it taste very reminiscent of the sweet itself – and it went down a storm with my colleagues 🙂 For an extra homemade touch, you could make the actual coconut ice yourself (it’s very easy – mostly just desiccated coconut and condensed milk) but, if I’m brutally honest, *whispers* I prefer the bought stuff. On that bombshell, here’s my recipe…

Aren’t they pretty??

INGREDIENTS – makes approx. 12 large squares

For the cakes:

  • 340g/12 oz self-raising flour
  • 340g/12 oz butter/margarine
  • 340g/12 oz granulated/caster sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 55g/2 oz strawberry milkshake powder
  • 1 tsp strawberry extract
  • Few drops of red food colouring
For the coconut icing/jam filling:
  • 115g/4 oz icing sugar
  • 55g/2 oz butter (unsalted if preferred)
  • 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Few drops of red food colouring
  • 4-5 tbsp strawberry jam
  • 12 small cubes of coconut ice (or 6 large chunks cut in half)
METHOD
For the cakes:
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line two identical rectangular cake tins with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk the margarine/butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until pale then whisk in the eggs.
  3. Fold in the flour until a batter of soft dropping consistency has formed then place half of the mixture into a separate bowl.
  4. Add the vanilla extract to one bowl and set aside.
  5. Add the strawberry milkshake powder and strawberry extract to the other bowl then stir in the red food colouring a drop at a time until the mixture turns a pale pink colour.
  6. Pour each bowl of cake batter into the two separate tins and bake for about 15-18 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the sponges comes out clean.
  7. When baked, place the cakes on a wire rack and leave to cool. At this stage they can be frozen for decorating at a later stage if you wish.

For the coconut icing & jam filling:

  1. Spread the strawberry jam onto the top of the pink sponge and carefully place the yellow sponge on top (you may wish to trim the tops to make them nice and flat so they sandwich together more easily).
  2. Place the butter and vanilla extract into a bowl and whisk while gradually adding the icing sugar until a thick, fluffy mixture has formed.
  3. Stir in the desiccated coconut and red food colouring until the icing turns your desired shade of pink.
  4. Spread the icing over the top of the cake in an even layer then neatly trim off the outer edges of the cake to get the full effect of the lovely coloured sponge layers (but don’t throw away the offcuts, they’re still yummy!)
  5. Cut into 12 even squares then top each one with a piece of coconut ice.
Categories: Layer Cakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Custard Creams & Strawberry Milkshake Creams

Originally posted 20/10/2013

Although I try, as a rule I’m not one for aesthetic neatness and elegance when baking. Despite numerous attempts, my piping is never up to scratch and my cookies are always sloppy and uneven (in fact, this is the primary reason I have still not yet plucked up the courage to have a go at posh French macarons despite having bought a packet of ground almonds for this purpose over a month ago). But I impressed myself with these lovely little biscuits which were a bit of a labour of love. The secret of their prettiness is that the dough barely puffs up at all during baking which means the biscuits keep their beautiful even shape.

Although it took me a while to lovingly craft each button using a round scone cutter, a tiny espresso cup and a straw, these colourful treats certainly aren’t complicated to make. And they were certainly worth the extra time as they received an abundance of compliments on both taste and appearance – in fact, Edd Kimber himself (whose recipe I used for the custard creams) saw them on Twitter and said they were fantastic! Praise indeed 🙂

The pink strawberry milkshake creams were an original invention of mine – I simply followed the same recipe as I did for the custard creams but substituted the custard powder and vanilla extract for strawberry milkshake powder and strawberry extract respectively. The result was utterly delicious and I will definitely be making them again!

If you don’t have the time or patience to make buttons, just use your favourite cookie cutters like I did for the mini stars and hearts below. To make a Bourbon cream-esque variation, you could substitute the custard/strawberry milkshake powder for chocolate milkshake powder or cocoa.

The yellow custard creams were made using Edd Kimber’s fab recipe which can be found here – http://theboywhobakes.co.uk/2011/06/custard-creams/ – so I’m just going to post the recipe for my strawberry milkshake cream version.

Strawberry Milkshake Creams

INGREDIENTS – yield depends on the size and shape of cookie cutter used but the below quantities resulted in the number of pink biscuits seen in the photo above

For the biscuits:

  • 225g/8 oz plain flour
  • 50g/2 oz icing sugar
  • 50g/2 oz strawberry milkshake powder (I used Hello Kitty brand but any will do!)
  • 180g/6 oz margarine/butter
  • 1 tsp strawberry extract
  • Splash of red food colouring+ cookies cutters of your choice or a round cutter, an espresso cup & a plastic straw if you want to make buttons like in the photo

For the filling:

  • 100g/3.5 oz icing sugar
  • 25g/1 oz butter (unsalted if preferred)
  • 1.5 tbsp strawberry milkshake powder
  • Splash of milk
  • 0.5 tsp strawberry extract
  • Drop of red food colouring

METHOD

For the biscuits:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line two large rectangular baking trays with parchment paper.
  2. Place the flour, icing sugar and strawberry milkshake powder into a large mixing bowl then add the margarine/butter and strawberry extract.
  3. Rub the fat into the dry ingredients so that crumbs form and then squish together into a large ball of dough. If it’s too sticky, add a little more flour. If it’s too dry and crumbly, add a little milk.
  4. Add the red food colouring, a tiny splash at a time, and knead the dough in the bowl until it turns your desired shade of pink.
  5. Take the dough out of the bowl, wrap tightly in clingfilm and leave in the fridge to chill for about 20-30 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle flour over your work surface to prevent sticking then roll the dough out until it’s roughly 1cm in thickness (remember you’ll be sandwiching them together two at a time so you don’t want them too thick or they won’t be pleasant to eat unless you have an extremely massive gob!)
  7. Cut out as many circles as possible using the round cookie cutter and stamp each circle with the espresso cup, firmly enough that it makes a definite indent but not so hard that it cuts through the dough. Then use the end of a plastic straw to stamp out four tiny circles in the middle of each biscuit to make a button, transferring each one onto the baking trays as you go.
  8. Squish all the off-cuts together then re-roll the dough and repeat the process. If you’re lazy like me, cut out other small simple shapes such as hearts or stars once you’ve made 20 buttons.
  9. Pop in the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes until the bottoms have started to colour very slightly at the edges, then transfer onto a wire rack and leave to cool.

For the filling:

  1. Place the butter and strawberry extract into a bowl then add the icing sugar and strawberry milkshake powder gradually while stirring/whisking. Add a splash of milk and continue to stir/whisk until a smooth, spreadable mixture has formed.
  2. Add the red food colouring a tiny drop at a time and stir until the mixture turns your desired shade of pink (you’ll only need a very tiny bit).
  3. Spread a small blob of the icing onto the back of one of the pink biscuits using a palette knife then sandwich together with another biscuit of the same shape and repeat until they’ve all been paired up.

Edit: I also used Edd’s custard cream recipe to make these cute jammy heart biscuits – just make imprints in the dough with your thumb then fill with raspberry or strawberry jam 🙂

And I also used the button cutting technique on pink fondant icing to make cupcake toppers for my friend’s baby shower!

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Categories: Biscuits/Cookies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Cheer-Me-Up Angel Cake

Originally posted 08/06/2013

Of all the cakes I’ve made this is certainly not one of the most elegant – I even overcooked the sponges (although I seem to have mastered the art of nice even cupcakes, my large round cakes always come out abysmally) – but after a horrible week of suffering from a severe chest infection and generally feeling rubbish, by the weekend I had a serious craving for a massive dose of unapologetically sinful sweet, spongey, jammy, melt-in-the-mouth, no-frills CAKE. CAKE just for me!! And the result was blissfully delicious, though unfortunately so much so that my family managed to devour the majority of it! I used my favourite vanilla buttercream icing and, being a sucker for girly prettiness, I made pink and yellow angel cake sponges topped off with rainbow sprinkles for added cheeriness. As I said, this is by no means the most sophisticated of cakes but it’s super easy and certainly won’t fail to raise a smile!

INGREDIENTS – makes 2 sponge layers of 8in/20cm diameter

For the cake:

  • 225g/8 oz self-raising flour
  • 225g/8 oz caster/granulated sugar
  • 225g/8 oz margarine/butter
  • 4 eggs
  • Half a tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Few drops of red food colouring

For the filling/icing:

  • 2 tbsp (approx.) jam of your choice (I used strawberry)
  • 225g/8 oz icing sugar
  • 55g/2 oz cream cheese (at room temperature, full-fat works best)
  • 55g/2 oz butter (unsalted if preferred)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Coloured sprinkles, to decorate

METHOD

For the cake:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line two round cake tins with baking parchment.
  2. Whisk the margarine/butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until pale then whisk in the eggs.
  3. Fold in the flour, baking powder and vanilla extract until a batter of a soft dropping consistency has formed.
  4. Pour half of the mixture into one of the cake tins – it shouldn’t be any more than three quarters full to avoid overspill.
  5. Add a few drops of red food colouring to the remaining batter until it has turned a pale pink colour. Don’t worry too much if it doesn’t look the perfect shade, it will look different when baked.
  6. Pour the mixture into the second cake tin – again, it shouldn’t be any more than three quarters full (if you have any leftover batter at this stage why not fill a few cupcake cases? 🙂
  7. Pop in the oven and bake for about 18-20 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the sponge comes out clean.
  8. When baked, leave the sponges to cool on a wire rack. At this stage they can be frozen for assembling and decorating at a later date if you wish.

For the filling & icing:

  1. Whisk the butter, cream cheese and vanilla extract together in a bowl and then gradually add the icing sugar until a pale spreadable mixture has formed. If too stiff, add a little milk and if too runny, add some more icing sugar.
  2. If the sponges have risen up too much in the middle, saw off the tops using a sharp serated knife so that they’re nice and flat, otherwise they’ll be horribly wobbly when stacked together. See below for an idea of what to do with the offcuts!
  3. Place the yellow sponge on something flat that it will not need to be moved from when completed, e.g. a cake board, tray or tin lid (moving the finished cake is best avoided if possible!), then spread a thin layer of jam all over the top of the yellow sponge followed by a thin layer of the buttercream icing. If any bits of the sponges have fallen off these can be ‘glued’ back on with jam 🙂
  4. Firmly place the pink sponge on top then spread the buttercream icing all over the assembled cake with a palette knife, smoothing out the top and sides as you go, while attempting to resist repeatedly sampling its fluffy, vanilla-y deliciousness.
  5. Decorate with rainbow sprinkles for some extra colour.

Leftover sponge and icing…?

Simply layer torn up chunks of pink and yellow sponge and jam in small individual containers (e.g. ramekins or teacups) then top with icing and sprinkles to make some cute little trifle-style angelic desserts!

Categories: Layer Cakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Raspberry Ripple Ice Cream Cupcakes

Originally posted 24/05/2013

Of all the recipes I’ve invented this is definitely one of my favourites; the results are not only delicious but just oh so pretty and pink 🙂 And the swirly two-tone sponge looks fantastic! As soon as I discovered Morrisons raspberry ripple ice cream flavour squash I knew I had to find a way to combine it with a cupcake, and I’d been wanting to try out my mum’s new duo piping bag (from Lakeland), so I managed to kill two birds with one stone here. I took some of them into work the other week and needless to say they didn’t last long! I can imagine that kids would love them too.

Admittedly these cupcakes are a little ‘synthetic’ and if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth they probably wouldn’t be your cup of (non-sugary) tea but the tartness of the jam compliments the sweet icing perfectly…and hey, they’re only little! Strawberry jam also works well if you don’t have raspberry.

INGREDIENTS – makes approx. 10-12

For the cakes:

  • 115g/4 oz self-raising flour
  • 115g/4 oz caster/granulated sugar
  • 115g/4 oz margarine/butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 0.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp Morrisons raspberry ripple ice cream flavour squash (not diluted)
  • Couple of drops of red food colouring

For the filling/icing:

  • 6 tsp (approx.) raspberry jam
  • 225g/8 oz icing sugar
  • 115g/4 oz butter (unsalted if preferred)
  • 0.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp Morrisons raspberry ripple ice cream flavour squash (not diluted)
  • 1 tiny drop of red food colouring
  • A few rainbow coloured sprinkles, to decorate

METHOD

For the cakes:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line a baking tray with 12 paper cake cases.
  2. Whisk the margarine/butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until pale then whisk in the eggs.
  3. Fold in the flour, baking powder, vanilla extract and raspberry ripple squash until a batter of soft dropping consistency has formed.
  4. Add a drop or two of red food colouring (no more than that, use it sparingly!) and swirl through the mixture a few times using a skewer. Don’t overdo this or the batter will simply turn pink and you won’t get the lovely marble effect!
  5. Drop the mixture into the paper cases using a teaspoon until they’re each about three quarters full.
  6. Pop in the oven and bake for about 12-15 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the sponge comes out clean.
  7. When baked, place on a wire rack and leave to cool. At this stage the cakes can be frozen for decorating at a later date if you wish.

For the filling & icing:

  1. When they have cooled, use a teaspoon or small sharp knife to carefully cut out a hole (about 2cm in diameter and 1.5cm in depth) in the top of each cupcake, being careful not to cut too deep into the sponge. Don’t discard the bits you’ve cut out!
  2. Drop about half a teaspoon of raspberry jam into each hole and gently push the sponge part that was cut out back into each one.
  3. Divide the butter, vanilla extract and raspberry ripple squash equally between two separate bowls and whisk while gradually adding half of the icing sugar to each batch until a fairly stiff, fluffy mixture has formed. Add a tiny splash of red food colouring to one bowl and stir to turn the icing a pale pink – I find the best way to do this is to dip the end of a cocktail stick into the bottle of food colouring and then push it into the icing mixture to ensure it doesn’t turn too red.
  4. Here, I used my mum’s wonderful duo piping bag from Lakeland to top the cakes with swirly two-tone pink and white icing but I realise not everyone has one of these! It’s possible to create a similar effect by adding alternating layers of the pink and white icing to a regular piping bag or, alternatively, you could simply spread the two lots of icing onto the cakes and randomly swirl together using a palette knife or teaspoon.
  5. Scatter a few rainbow sprinkles onto the top of each cake for extra ice creamy prettiness.
Categories: cupcakes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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