Monthly Archives: February 2009

Take 2


Decided to take a second swing (sports metaphors – who knew!!) at the previous flapjack recipe as I wasn’t too happy with the banana flavour in the previous batch (although others did rather like the banana). Like I mentioned in the previous post I thought the recipe I used last time would stand up to a lot of playing around with and it appears I was right. To be fair flapjack recipes are pretty basic and simple.



I always prefer butter in the place of margarine so I switched out the Butter and Margarine ratio’s and increased the butter by 10g as I wasn’t including the banana. I also let the Butter, Sugar and Syrup mixture cook a little longer to caramelise the sugar slightly. 



To recap then the ingredients are the same but the Butter is 70g and the Margarine 30g but everything else is the same as is the technique except cook the sugar, butter, syrup a little longer. If you prefer your flapjacks more simply flavoured and as originally made then these are much more down your alley.


Treat to Myself


I have been wanting to buy a mixer for a long time and this weekend I opened my wallet and parted with my cash and treated myself to a lovely Kitchenaid Artisan mixer. Annoyingly in the UK for some reason they cost so much more then thy do in the US but now that ive got it I don’t even mind. Im so happy with it, to give it a test run (like I needed an excuse) I made a cake for my Brothers birthday. I was requested to make a red velvet cake after the success of my cupcakes. I used the exact same recipe but as originally intended as a cake. 






 I wasn’t really paying attention to the  time but everything seemed a bit easier  and i ended up with a little less to clean  up












As before I used the basic cream cheese frosting but I think was a little mistake. Whilst it tasted great it just wasn’t thick enough to hold up properly so next time I make this ill try the frosting recipe in the Baked book




In May im going to New York and im so excited I cant wait. I am however a bit of a list person and I like to plan ahead. Tonight I sat down with a slice of the cake and planned some of my trip. If anyone has any must do suggestions drop me a line or leave a comment


Quick, Simple 20 Min Flapjacks




When I woke up this morning I was          thinking about possible items to bake  for a fair stall I am thinking of doing in  the near future, and flapjacks came to  mind as something easy, cheap but  delicious and so I made these this  morning. 












80 g Brown Sugar

40g Unsalted Butter

60g Margarine

250g Oats

Pinch of Salt

1 Medium Banana, mashed

3 Tbsp Golden Syrup



1. Melt the Butter and Margarine 

2. Add Sugar and Syrup and keep on heat until mixture is liquid (not long a minute or two), make sure you keep the heat low enough not to burn the butter

3. Add the oats and a pinch of salt, mix to combine

4. Mix the mashed banana into the oats making sure that its well combined

5. Add the mixture to a foil lined pan and bake for 15 minutes until the edges turn a darker brown.

I washed up whilst they were in the oven but got a nice burn on my arm when I took them out.


Whilst these were very nice I wasn’t the biggest fan of the added banana but then i do prefer a really simple flapjack. I want to play around with this recipe. Ill be making it with just butter mixing  less to create a more crumbly texture. I might also melt the butter separately in the microwave and add this to a slightly caramelised sugar mixture to get more flavour. I would also experiment with different sugars and different oats



Red Velvet Cupcakes

Red Velvet Cupcakes – Baked NYC


After my trip to London to see my brother, where I had a great Red Velvet Cupcake, I  decided I wanted to try my hand at them. For a recipe I turned to my new favourite  cookbook “Baked: New Frontiers In Baking”. They’re recipe calls to use a boiled  flour cinnamon frosting, but I have a soft spot for Vanilla Cream Cheese frosting so I went with that.



The problem with using a recipe from an American book is that they sometimes call for ingredients that are either uncommon or not available here in the UK. In this case it was Cake Flour I couldnt get hold of. The nearest thing I could get was called “supreme sponge which is exactly what I could have used except for the fact it is a self rising type. I used a workaround that Matt Lewis of Baked suggested, to replace 2 tablespoons of the all purpose flour with cornflour, which I did and which worked great.

Frosting Recipe

450 g – Cream Cheese

6 Tblsp – Unsalted Butter, softened cut up into pieces

1 1/2 tsp – Vanilla Extract

5 Cups – Sifted Icing Sugar


1. With either a hand  or Stand mixer on medium beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy, around 3 minues.

2. Add the vanilla and beat in well.

3. Add the sugar, one cup at a time, beating continuously until smooth and creamy .

4. Refrigerate until ready to use but not more than 3 hours.


Cupcake Recipe

1/4 Cup – Dark Unsweetend Cocoa Powder

2 Tablespoon – Red gel food colouring ( I used the more liquid type as I forgot to buy gel – worked fine)

1/4 Cup – Boiling Water

6 Tablespoons – Unsalted Butter, softened, cut into small pieces

2 Tablespoons – Vegetable Shortening, at room temp (available in the UK as Trex or White Flora)

1 2/3 Cups – Sugar

3 – Large Eggs

1 Cup – Buttermilk

1 Teaspoon – Fine Salt

1 Tablespoon – Cider Vinegar

1 Teaspoon Baking Soda

2 1/2 Cups Cake Flour



1. Preheat oven to 325f and put liners in your pan.

2. In a small bowl whisk together the cocoa, colouring, boiling water and set aside.

3. In the bowl of your mixer (or with a hand mixer if you haven’t bought yours yet – that would be me) bream the butter and shortening until smooth.

4. Scrape down the bowl and add the sugar, beat until light and fluffy – about 5 minutes.

5. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

6. Stir the buttermilk into the cooled cocoa mixture.

7. Sift the flour and salt together into another bowl. With the mixer on low add the flour and coca mixtures into the egg mixture in 3 additions starting and finishing with the flour. Beat until incorporated.

8. In a small bowl mix the cider vinegar and baking soda until the soda dissolves. The mixture will fix. Add to the batter just till combined.

9. Divide into your cupcake papers (I used just under a third a cup per paper – made 20) and bake until a toothpick comes out clean around 20 mins.


10. Once the cupcakes are cooled completely and the frosting has sat in the fridge a while, frost the cakes and let sit a while or if you cant wait eat now

Flavour Experiments

Simple post this time around ( im making some red velvet cupcakes tomorrow, first time making american style cupcakes or frosting, so a bigger post tomorrow). I had decided to make some more macarons to get some practice in and to try and improve. Well that didnt happen exactly! I used my tried and true Pierre Herme recipe using a sugar syrup for my egg whites but something, and I have no real idea what, went wrong. The eggs just wouldn’t get to the stage I needed them so I made do with as best as I could get them but I wasn’t happy. Earlier today when I was deciding on the flavours to make I suddenly though to have a little experiment with my favourite cookie the Oreo. Some may see this as the bastardisation of the macaron but i thought it was fun. I also made a raspberry. Both these fillings were just simple flavoured creams, I wasn’t really in the mood for making a buttercream after my earlier problem so I stuck with simple. The flavours are not bad the raspberry is not too strong and light and the oreo is nice in a guilty way but then theres nothing wrong with a guilty pleasure. 


As you can clearly see the macarons were far from perfect, but im happy with the flavours. I wont bother to post the recipe as its already on the blog and the fillings were very simple flavoured creams and I didnt follow a recipe.