Sunday, 27 November 2011
I have been on holiday the last couple of weeks in South Africa, hence the lack of posts. It was an amazing holiday whose highlight was seeing a whale do a triple jump in the wild. The South African food was pretty fantastic too which has led to sightings of a whale in the South London area since my return! I was keen to be back to the baking for my blog but have to say it isn't the ideal diet for the latter described whale.
This gingerbread is my entry for this month's Tea Time Treats Challenge which is hosted alternatively by two fantastic bloggers - Karen at Lavender & Lovage and Kate at What Kate Baked. This month's theme is Ginger and Bonfire Treats and it is Karen's turn to host. You have to visit her blog just to see the wonderful gingerbread house she has made.
I love ginger, bonfire night and all related treats. I decided to make gingerbread as firstly I love it and haven't made it for ages and secondly as I wanted to use my mini bundt tins. One of out two ain't bad! The mixture just didn't work in the bundt tins as it was too crumbly so I ended up using mini loaf tins instead. The cake itself was from a recipe I had jotted down ages ago so I'm not sure where I originally found it - probably on the internet as it's in cups. I have made some changes to the recipe which include using Wholemeal flour instead of plain and substituting stem ginger for the original ginger powder. I love getting little bits of stem ginger when you eat a cake. When I took it out of the oven it smelt just like Thornton's treacle toffee and tasted like Jamaican Ginger Cake (I used to love that cake especially the sticky topping). I think I read a blog the other day where someone had made a cake which reminded them of this classic cake too. I've added a lemon icing glaze for some contrast to the ginger.
1 2/3 cups wholemeal flour
1 1/4 tspns bicarb of soda
2 stem gingers finely chopped
3/4 tspn cinnamon
pinch of salt
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 egg beaten
1/2 cup black treacle (licking of spoon after getting it out of tin obligatory)
1/2 cup rapeseed oil (I added some of the stem ginger syrup to this measurement too)
1/2 cup boiling water
1. Preheat oven to 180c.
2. Sift the flour and bicarb into a town. Add the spices, salt, sugar, egg and treacle. Mix together until combined. Add the oil and boiling water and mix well together until it makes a smooth batter.
3. Place in your choice of tin (square would probably work well) making sure you grease and flour it. Bake for about 30 mins until springy.
4. To make the icing mix together icing sugar and lemon juice so you have a thickish icing consistency. Drizzle over the cake while still warm.
Sunday, 6 November 2011
These cookies are my entry for this month's We Should Cocoa Challenge hosted by lovely Chele at the fantastic Chocolate Teapot blog. The ingredient to be paired with chocolate for November is apple. I'm not overly keen on chocolate and fruit combinations but I do like being challenged to try making something I might not normally bake. I wanted to do Chele's challenge early this month - partly because I failed miserably to enter last's month's event and also because I'm going on holiday so won't be posting for a couple of weeks.
I thought about making an apple and chocolate cake but it just wasn't doing it for me. I then thought about doing an apple crumble incorporating white chocolate into the topping but I'm a bit of a crumble purist. So after some internet research I finally decided on making these cookies whose recipe I found on www.food.com. I'd say the chocolate slightly dominates the apple but only a little bit. The apple was grated which meant it didn't produce a soggy cookie, in fact they are very cake like. I'm just not sure about them but it then occurred to me as I tried my second that they fit my 'Jaffa Cake theory'. I'm just not sure either about Jaffa Cakes but every time I'm offered some I always have to have at least two to check that I still don't like them. Let's face it if you don't like something you don't go back for more so these cookies are in the same category. I'm not wild about them but I don't dislike them. Mr CB however loves them so it is definitely just a personal thing.