The other day I attempted to squeeze the bowl for my ice cream maker into the freezer, which resulted in me having to re-arrange the entire freezer and remove several items in order to fit it in (there may be an overabundance of cake in there…); that in turn led to me making these black forest meringue nests as I took out a tub of egg whites (which I always seem to have several of in there) and a packet of frozen cherries to make room for the bowl. The logical conclusion was meringues with cherry compote, at which point it seemed wrong not to add chocolate and some quark whipped cream to make sort of black forest mini pavlovas. (more…)
Welcome to my review of the April 2016 Degustabox. If you’re not familiar with the Degustabox then in brief it’s a subscription service whereby each month you’re sent a box full of goodies to try; most are either new brands or products and it works out far cheaper than buying everything individually in the shops. It is a bit of a lottery however as you have no idea what you will be sent, some products you may love, and others you might not be so keen on; the surprise element is quite fun though, and it encourages you to try products that you wouldn’t normally think to buy. If you fancy giving a box a try yourself then simply enter the discount code BLDEG15 at the checkout and you’ll get £6 off your first order! (more…)
I don’t really buy into the idea of Valentines day, I’m not keen on the idea of forced romance…I prefer a little more spontaneity when it comes to that kind of thing. I do however enjoy playing with food colouring and given that at this time of year it is practically mandatory to dye everything pink or red I might as well make the most of it!
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…)
I am always on the lookout for recipes that use up egg whites as I hate to waste them and after making blackberry ice cream the other day I had four whites leftover that needed to be used. These cherry cakes were perfect. They are made using a slightly odd method, meringue is stirred into batter that is made with the addition of natural yoghurt, but it results in a very light, delicate, moist cake and also helps prevent the fruit from sinking. (more…)
One of the problems with making your own ice cream is what to do with all the leftover egg whites. Meringue is the obvious option but I am not a massive meringue fan and although I have never had any problems making it in the past, with the crappy oven I currently have I just can’t seem to get the temperature right for meringue; it goes from being too hot so that it burns, to too cold so that it doesn’t cook at all, with no middle ground or temperature sweet spot. (more…)