Archive of ‘Baking’ category

Spiced Plum & Marzipan Braid

spiced plum & marzipan braid

I spent a good portion of this week taking apart a couple of wooden pallets (which is bloody hard work!), sanding the boards down and staining and painting them to make a couple of new photography backdrops. The process wasn’t helped by the fact that my belt sander died a death whilst sanding the very first board so I was forced to do the rest using a detail sander, which wasn’t quite up to the job. It took me hours and I didn’t manage to get them quite as smooth as I would have liked. However, I am happy with the ones that I have painted so I needed to bake something to try them out! (more…)

Coconut & Almond Pancakes With Spiced Plum Compote

high protein coconut and almond pancakes

I am a boring breakfast eater. Most days I’ll just have a bowl of cereal or occasionally porridge because I wake up hungry (surprise, surprise…I’m always hungry…), so I want something quick, I don’t want to faff around cooking while I’m hungry and half asleep (I am not a morning person…). But on the odd occasion I’ll be in the mood for something a bit more special, and what is a better breakfast than pancakes? Sticking with my resolution to try to make healthier, lower sugar things for a few weeks, I made healthy pancakes. Now I am not by any means gluten free, or on the paleo diet (give up carbs and dairy? Never! The idea is laughable!), but I came across a recipe for coconut and almond pancakes which sounded interesting, and also happened to be gluten/grain/dairy/sugar free and paleo diet friendly. I thought I’d give them a go and despite my reservations about the lack of flour, they were delicious, moist and full of coconut flavour. They also paired beautifully with the spiced plum compote I made and are very high in protein so they fill you up. (more…)

Marbled Chocolate And Peanut Butter Banana Bread

marbled chocollate and peanut butter banana bread

I don’t really do New Years resolutions and definitely don’t buy in to the whole dieting and getting fit in January thing, because quite frankly (for me at least) it is doomed to fail. January is the worst possible month to give up hearty comfort food and force yourself out into the cold to exercise…I simply try to keep up a good level of exercise and healthy eating throughout the year. Having said that, I have been craving a lot of soups and vegetables recently so clearly my body is in need of some healthier food after indulging over Christmas…so I have resolved to try and bake things over the next few weeks that contain healthy ingredients and are a bit lower in fat and sugar. (more…)

Ontbijtkoek – Dutch Sweet Bread

For the month of December, Andrea from 4pure took us on a trip to the Netherlands. She challenged us to take our taste buds on a joyride through the land of sugar and spice by baking three different types of Dutch sweet bread

ontbijtkoek

This was my second challenge with the Daring Bakers and it was a suitably spiced one in time for Christmas. We were challenged to make Ontbijtkoek (which I still haven’t figured out how to pronounce…), which is a Dutch sweet, spiced quick bread. It is generally baked with rye flour and contains no fat which led to it being promoted by the food industry as a healthy snack despite the fact that 50% of the total ingredients consist of sugar… (more…)

Mulled Wine Chocolate Cupcakes With Spiced Orange Mascarpone Frosting

mulled wine chocolate cupcakes

Christmas has snuck up on me way too fast this year, I’m usually super organised and have all my gift shopping done by the first week of December but I think that this year a lot of people are going to be getting their presents a tad late…I have however managed to get in a decent amount of Christmas baking, my favourite of which (so far) has been these cupcakes. I’d had the idea in my head for a while that I wanted to make a mulled wine cake, so when I stumbled across a recipe for red wine chocolate cake I knew that I just had to adapt it to come up with a christmassy version. (more…)

Chocolate, Ginger & Almond Biscotti

almond, chocolate, ginger biscotti

I bake biscotti every Christmas (and a few times throughout the year as well) as they are so good to give as gifts – they keep for ages, aren’t too delicate so they travel well and are really versatile and adaptable, you can chuck whatever flavourings you like in there. Biscotti translates as twice baked, the dough is first shaped into a log and baked at a moderate temperature until it is risen and firm; the oven is then turned down to a low temperature and the log cut into slices which are spread out on a baking sheet and baked again until crisp. (more…)

Stollen Plait

stollen plait

Baking stollen is one of the very few Christmas traditions that I have and I make it in some form or another every year. I don’t think I have ever baked the exact same recipe twice, I like to play around with it and try new recipes, I have tried many variations ranging from a very traditional German recipe to cinnamon roll style stollen buns. The one constant is that it must contain marzipan; I LOVE marzipan and will happily eat chunks of it out of the packet as I bake, although I try to control myself so that I have enough left for whatever it is that I am baking… (more…)

Mini Panettone With Cranberry And Ginger

mini panettone with ginger and cranberry

I spent the day yesterday moving domesticgothess.com from wordpress.com to self hosted wordpress.org. I say I moved it…but really I spent the day watching over his shoulder as my fiance did it for me and asking stupid questions…It took a while, there were a few confusing moments and the site had a bit of downtime but we (he) got there eventually. I wanted to move to self hosted so I could use plugins and customise the site a little more so I will be having a play around and making a few changes over the coming weeks. (more…)

Salted Caramel Chocolate Fudge Cake

salted caramel chocolate fudge cake

This cake turned out beautifully but boy did it give me some hassle! Firstly, the cakes were meant to take 35 minutes to bake but ended up taking nearly an hour…then I had MAJOR swiss meringue buttercream issues – it curdled, which is normal, but even after over half an hour of whisking (which makes my lack of stand mixer all the more annoying) it was still curdled…I saved it in the end by microwaving a small bowl of the mixture for 10 seconds then pouring it back in to the rest of the mix while whisking, a couple more minutes of whisking later it came together into silky smooth buttercream, phew! (this is a very handy tip). Finally, once it was all assembled and looked fantastic, with its luscious drizzle of salted caramel, when I came to photograph it, it was the most grey, miserable, dark day imaginable, so even right next to the window in the early afternoon there was no light. So unfortunately I didn’t manage to take any photos that do this impressive cake justice. (I went back a couple of days later when it was sunny and took some better photos of a slice of it). (more…)

Butternut Squash And Goat’s Cheese Pies

butternut squash goats cheese pesto pies

I like the idea of winter, but am less than enamored with the reality. I like the idea of going for a dog walk on a crisp, frosty winter morning, until I get outside and my fingers go numb, my nose starts streaming and it hurts to breathe…I like the idea of snow (and do enjoy it for about an hour) but then it gets trodden into brown slush and the pavements turn into sheets of ice. The one instance in which the reality is as satisfying as the idea when it comes to winter, is the food and drink – mulled wine, gingerbread, stollen, mince pies, eggnog, christmas pudding, panettone, yule logs, crumble, christmas cake…and pies. There is something inherently comforting about wrapping food in pastry on a cold, miserable day. (more…)

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