Archive of ‘Chocolate’ category

Chocolate Dipped Lebkuchen

Chocolate dipped Lebkuchen - German spiced honey biscuits (cookies) similar to gingerbread, perfect for Christmas!

These chocolate dipped Lebkuchen are really easy to make, keep well and embody all the flavours of Christmas. Lebkuchen are a traditional German festive biscuit, similar to gingerbread but are softer and more cakey. They are made with honey, ground almonds and lots of spices and are topped with a sweet glaze as well as often being dipped in chocolate. (more…)

Mocha Marshmallows

Mocha marshmallows - pillowy soft homemade marshmallows flavoured with espresso coffee and rippled with dark chocolate

You may think that marshmallows are tricky to make at home, but actually they are really easy. It does involve scalding hot sugar syrup though, so they aren’t a project to make with kids; but they involve very few ingredients and most of the work is done by your stand mixer. For very little effort you will be rewarded with pillowy soft marshmallows in any flavour you choose. One little word of warning however – unset marshmallow is the stickiest substance known to man and if you aren’t careful it will get EVERYWHERE! (Including in your hair….yes. yes I did). (more…)

Chocolate Ginger Pumpkin Bread Wreath & September & October Degustabox Review

Chocolate and ginger filled yeasted pumpkin bread twisted wreath

Are we over pumpkin yet or do I still have time to share a couple more recipes? Given than tinned pumpkin will keep for years and butternut squash is available year round there’s really no reason why we should be limited to a short ‘pumpkin season’, and yet I feel like if I were to share pumpkin recipes in the Summer they would just sink without a trace. I’ve got a couple more to share before everyone loses interest, starting with this chocolate ginger pumpkin bread wreath. (more…)

Chocolate Glazed Black Cat Doughnuts

chocolate glazed black cat doughnuts - delicious, soft, chocolate glazed fried yeasted doughnuts with super cute cat face designs

I made these super cute chocolate glazed black cat doughnuts to take to a Halloween party on Saturday, but really their appeal is not just limited to Halloween; omit the black food colouring and you have a brown cat doughnut; omit the cat design altogether and you are left with a delicious, soft, chocolate glazed ring doughnut. (more…)

Mini Bleeding Heart Halloween Cakes

Mini red velvet layer cakes with ermine frosting topped with a bleeding heart and ganache 'blood'; perfect for Halloween

I haven’t had as much fun in the kitchen in a long time as I had making these mini bleeding heart Halloween cakes; yes I am still trying to clean the food colouring off my hands and worktops but it was a fun and almost therapeutic craft project. The hearts are the brainchild of Lily Vanilli, an incredibly talented baker and author who originally designed the hearts as an anti-valentines cake. I thought they would be great for Halloween and would look even more impressive placed on top of mini red velvet layer cakes with a cascade of ganache ‘blood’ down the side. (more…)

Meringue Bone Palace Halloween Cake

meringue bone palace halloween cake - moist chocolate cake filled with vanilla swiss meringue buttercream and raspberry jam covered in meringue bones with berry coulis blood on the side

So now it’s October (how already?!) I think it’s acceptable to start posting Halloween things. I love coming up with Halloweeny bakes, it’s a chance to let my gothic creativity run wild and I have so many ideas that there’s no way I’ll be able to make them all. I actually made this cake a couple of weeks ago but have been waiting till October to post it; I wasn’t quite sure what to call it – meringue bone garden? Pile? Graveyard? In the end I went with palace but any of the former would fit. Basically it’s a chocolate cake filled with vanilla swiss meringue buttercream and raspberry jam, covered in meringue bones with berry coulis ‘blood’ on the side. (more…)

Tangzhong Chocolate Swirl Buns & VonShef Stand Mixer Review

tangzhong chocolate swirl buns

One of the biggest powerhouses in any baker’s arsenal is the stand mixer, it renders a great many tasks considerably easier and enables you to do other things whilst at the same time mixing cake batter, making meringue or kneading bread dough. Unfortunately they are generally prohibitively expensive, which is why when my (second-hand and gifted) KitchenAid mixer exploded I was unable to afford to replace it and have been without one for a long time. I still have it, sat in a cupboard awaiting the time when I get round to finding a replacement circuit board for it, but I keep forgetting to do so. (more…)

Chocolate Porter (Or Stout) Ice Cream & A Giveaway

milk chocolate porter (or stout) beer ice cream with porter caramel sauce

It was only a few years ago, while managing a country pub, that I started to like beer; before then I had found the taste too bitter. But maybe something to do with the fact that I was serving many pints of it a day and taking care of the casks in the cellar changed my mind, and I grew to appreciate the bitterness. I have not however managed to grow to like drinking stout or porter, it is just too strong for me; but, pair it with chocolate and add to to ice cream (or cake) then it is a whole different story. Used in this way the deep, rich flavour complements and accentuates the chocolate and adds a malty flavour without overpowering. It is in short, utterly delicious.

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Balsamic Roasted Cherry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream & July 2016 Degustabox Review

Balsamic roasted cherry and chocolate chunk ice cream

It feels like an age since I last posted, and I was planning on putting this post up last week but life (and my seven month old niece who I was babysitting for the week – how does anyone get anything done while looking after a baby?!) got in the way so it’s taken me an awfully long time to get this done! I’m also going to Bloodstock festival (heavy metal) tomorrow so will be away until next week; I’m hoping for a warm, sunny weekend but doubt I’m going to get it so I’ve got my (black, naturally) wellies packed just in case; I say packed, but currently I just have piles of stuff to take dotted around the house and haven’t actually packed anything yet…I am not very prepared! (more…)

Chocolate & Vanilla Gold Sprinkles Cake

Chocolate & vanilla gold sprinkles cake - velvety American white cake dyed turquoise with fudgy chocolate buttercream & a cascade of gold sprinkles

It’s been a while since I last made a layer cake, I didn’t even make one for my birthday (I had ice cream instead), the reason for this is that they are so big and there is mostly just the two of us to eat it. Therefore I will take advantage of any occasion where there is a gathering of people large enough to make one; a couple of weeks ago there was just such an occasion – a barbecue for a friends birthday so of course I made a cake. (more…)

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