Coconut Snowy Rocky Road

Christmas and rocky road are two of my absolute favourites so I thought why not combine the two together to make a snowy rocky road. It contains all the usual suspects but I’ve packed this one full of sweet coconut for all the snowy Christmas vibes.

Ingredients

200g milk chocolate

60g marshmallows

50g coconut – desiccated and extra to sprinkle when serving

80g golden syrup

180g choc chip cookies

135g butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method

Line an 18cm x 18cm tin with greaseproof paper.

Start by smashing up your cookies into small bits ( not crumbs).

Chop up your marshmallows or just use mini ones to save doing this.

Melt the butter, chocolate and golden syrup over a low heat in a saucepan, stirring all the while and once fully melted and slightly cooled add the marshmallows and cookies. Stir so it’s all combined.

Finally, add your coconut and vanilla extract, mix thoroughly so every bite is full of coconut.

Transfer to your tin, smooth over with a palette knife but still leave it a bit rocky. Allow to refrigerate for a few hours but preferably overnight.

Remove from fridge, chop into pieces and sprinkle over more coconut for more snowy delightfulness.


Chocolate Orange Millionaire’s Shortbread

Oh my, what can I say about this one. I’ve been dreaming of this recipe for ages but wanted to save it for you until Christmas. So the 1st December seems fine. Trust me when I say it’s probably going to be one of the most delicious things you’ve ever eaten. The orange gives it a delightful fragrance and a real festive feel.

Shortbread, gooey caramel, rich chocolate orange. Serve it with a cup of tea and it’s heaven on earth. If you’re a millionaire’s shortbread fan and let’s face it who isn’t, you’re going to be in your element.

Ingredients

Shortbread

100g butter

50g caster sugar

50g cornflour

Few drops of water to mix

For the caramel

1/2 can of caramel – I used Carnation

Topping

1 Terry’s chocolate orange

Method

Pre heat oven to 160c / 140c fan

Grease and line a square tin. You could use an 8″ round cake tin but you will have triangles instead of squares.

Make sure your greaseproof paper overhangs slightly so you can ease out the shortbread.

Cream together your butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl.

Now add your plain flour and cornflour bit by bit. I do this in about four stages so it’s easier to mix into the butter and sugar and doesn’t puff all over the kitchen.

Knead the mixture to bring it together into a ball and press it into your tin. Level off with a palette knife and prick with a fork around the edges.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 55 minutes. Slightly before the baking time is up ( about 5 mins before) gently press on the centre of the shortbread to check that it’s crisp. If not allow it to bake for another 5 mins.

Remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes or so.

Now pour over your caramel and allow to set in the fridge for at least an hour.

Melt your chocolate in short bursts in the microwave or in a basin over a saucepan on the stove. It won’t hurt if you have a sneaky slice before you melt it. Stir so it’s lovely and smooth and pour over the top of your caramel.

Pop back in the fridge for at least 2 hours. I did mine overnight.

Remove from tin and chop into squares with a sharp knife.

Have yourself a piece with a cup of tea.


Fruit Topped Cupcakes

You can pretty much choose any fruit you like to top these gorgeous little cupcakes but I like berries at this time of year.

These go down surprisingly well with everyone and they are a great idea when you are trying to sneak fruit into the children’s diet albeit surrounded by sugar but there we are!

If they last long enough without being scoffed, I’d recommend keeping them chilled in the fridge to prolong the life of the fruit.

Makes 12

Ingredients

For the sponge

125g butter

125g caster sugar

125g self raising flour

Teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoons milk

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Buttercream to top

250g icing sugar

85g butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Few drops of icy water to mix

Topping

1 punnet of raspberries

1 punnet of blueberries

1 punnet of blackberries

Method

Preheat oven to 200c / 180c fan

Line a 12 hole muffin tin with cake cases.

Add all of your ingredients for the sponge to a large mixing bowl. Whisk together until you have a smooth and creamy mixture that drops off the whisk.

Spoon evenly into your cases and bake in the centre of the oven for 15-20 minutes.

When they are lightly golden and springy to the touch they are ready to come out the oven. I’m obsessed with that saying!

While the cakes are cooling mix up your buttercream.

When the cakes are fully cooled pipe around the edge of your cakes to make a nest in the centre for the fruit to sit in.

Place your fruit in the centre of the buttercream.

Spoil yourself and have one with a cup of tea or glass of fizz.


Peppermint Cream Rocky Horror Road

Happy Halloween!

You might have gathered that I’m slightly obsessed with rocky road. It’s my favourite and I love thinking up new versions. This spooky rocky horror road is packed with crunchy oreos, milk chocolate, fluffy marshmallows and peppermint creams. Too good for the trick or treaters!

Ingredients

100g milk chocolate

120g peppermint creams – chopped into quarters

75g mini marshmallows

80g golden syrup

200g oreos

135g butter

Method

Line an 18×18 inch tin with greaseproof paper

Bash up your oreos so they are in fragments rather than crumbs. I do this by putting them in wax wrap and hitting them with a rolling pin.

Add your butter, golden syrup and milk chocolate to a pan and melt over a low heat. Allow to cool for 5 minutes or so.

Now add the oreos, marshmallows and lastly the peppermint cream quarters.

Mix to combine and transfer into your lined tin.

Cool in the fridge for a few hours but preferably overnight.

Cut into whatever size pieces you desire.

Tip: This variety is best served straight from the fridge


Pumpkin Spice Halloween Cake Pops

Perfect for trick or treat. Filled with pumpkin spice cake and buttercream or pickled onions the choice is yours haha!

Thank you to my girls for their input and assistance with this one.

Makes 16 cake pops

Ingredients

For the sponge

125g butter

125g self raising flour

125g caster sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 eggs

2 tablespoons milk

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon pumpkin spice

Buttercream

110g icing sugar

50g butter

Half teaspoon vanilla extract

Drop or 2 of cold water to mix

Decor

150g white chocolate

Black writing icing in a tube

Method

Preheat oven to 180c / 160c fan

Line and grease an 8 inch cake tin.

Add all ingredients for the sponge to a large mixing bowl and whisk until fully combined and you have a smooth and creamy consistency.

Spoon into your cake tin and bake in the centre of the oven for approx 25 minutes until lightly golden and springy to the touch.

Meanwhile mix up the buttercream in a separate large bowl.

When the cake is baked remove from oven and allow to stand in the tin for 5 minutes or so, then transfer to a wire rack to fully cool.

Snap the cake into pieces, add to your bowl of buttercream and mix together. Roll into balls ( a bit smaller than a golf ball), pop in a stick and leave to set in the fridge for an hour.

Remove from fridge, melt your white chocolate and dip each cake pop in to fully coat.

Once the chocolate coating is completely dry draw on your ghoul faces with the tube of black icing.

Tip: If you don’t have cake pop sticks just use straws.


Lemon Shortbread

There’s something so delightful about shortbread. I’ve been developing a lovely shortbread recipe for Christmas and along the way I thought I’d try out a delicate lemon shortbread.

I’m so happy with it. Buttery, melt in the mouth shortbread with a subtle zesty lemon undertone.

Get the kettle on quick before it all disappears.

Ingredients

100g butter

50g caster sugar

100g plain flour

50g cornflour

Zest of a lemon

Sugar to sprinkle

Method

Preheat oven to 160c / 140c fan

Line and grease an 8 inch cake tin making sure the greaseproof paper overhands the tin slightly so you can remove the shortbread easily.

In a large mixing bowl cream together your butter and sugar.

Now add your plain flour and cornflour bit by bit. I do this in about four stages so it’s easier to mix into the butter and sugar and doesn’t puff everywhere.

Add your grated lemon zest, stirring to combine.

Knead the mixture to bring it together into a ball and press it into your tin. Level off with a palette knife and prick with a fork around the edges.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 55 minutes. Slightly before the baking time is up ( about 5 mins before) gently press on the centre of the shortbread to check that it’s crisp. If not allow it to bake for another 5 mins.

Remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes or so. Remove from tin and chop into slices with a sharp knife and sprinkle over a little sugar. Icing sugar is fine but I like crunchy sugar the best.

Enjoy warm with a cup of tea.


Coconut and Almond Fairy Cakes

I love both coconut and almond so I thought I’d include both in a recipe for some lovely little fairy cakes. They make a nice change and are so light and fluffy.

Makes 12

Ingredients

125g butter

125g caster sugar

125g self raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons milk

2 eggs

To decorate

Cup of dessicated coconut

6 glacé cherries cut in half

200g icing sugar

A few drops of iced water to mix

Method

Pre heat oven to 200c / 180c

Line a 12 hole muffin tin with cake cases.

Start by beating together your butter and sugar until light and creamy. Beat in your flour and baking powder bit by bit.

Add your eggs, almond extract and milk and whisk until you have a creamy mixture that drops off the whisk.

Spoon the mixture into your cake cases as evenly as possible and bake in the centre of the oven for approximately 15 minutes until they have risen and are springy to the touch. You want them to be lightly golden.

Remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin for a few minutes and then transfer to cool on a wire rack.

While the cakes are cooling mix up your icing in a large bowl adding your iced water a tiny drip at a time to get a paste like consistency that will be easy to smooth over the cakes. Spoon your icing onto each cake as evenly as possible and while the icing is still sticky scatter over your coconut and top with a cherry. Voila!


Chocolate Orange Turkish Delight Rocky Road

I wonder if I can invent a recipe with a longer name! if you want to bribe me, give me Rocky Road! I find it rather irresistible so I don’t make it too frequently.

This version is full of all my faves, chocolate orange, Turkish Delight, marshmallows and cookies. It’s an explosion of deliciousness. Promise you’ll make it and save me some.

Have you ever made Rocky Road? I’m already thinking up my next version.

Ingredients

200g chocolate orange

60g marshmallows ( mini ones are easier)

60g Turkish Delight – chopped small

80g Golden Syrup

200g cookies

135g butter

Sprinkle of icing sugar to serve

Method

Line and grease an 18×18 inch shallow tin with greaseproof paper. Make sure the paper comes up over the sides of the tin so you can ease it out.

Start by smashing all your cookies into small bits. I love this part. We ‘re going for chunky bits of cookie not crumbs here so don’t go too mad.

The best way to do this is to wrap the cookies in wax wrap and bash a bit with a rolling pin but feel free to do it your way.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan along with your chocolate orange and golden syrup. Make sure you keep the heat low as you want the chocolate to melt nicely not end up in sticky clumps. Once it’s all melty and gorgeous fold in your cookie bits and Turkish Delight pieces.

Pour into your tin and spread out with a palette knife. If it doesn’t fill the whole tin that’s fine just make it nice and compact with the palette knife.

Pop in the fridge for at least four hours.

Gently east it out of the tin with the greaseproof paper and chop into treat size squares. Feel free to dust over a little icing sugar.

Tip: Best kept in the fridge


Banana Muffins

How can anyone resist these soft, squishy banana muffins with zingy icing. The ultimate comfort food with a cherry on top.

They smell amazing when they are rising in the oven and much quicker to bake than your standard banana cake.

You don’t need to ice them but I find they are so much better with a bit of icing . I mix up the juice of half a lemon in the icing to cut through the sweetness of the icing sugar and give some added health benefits. It’s all about balance darling ha ha. What’s not to love?

Makes approx 16 muffins

Ingredients

250g butter

225g caster sugar

2 eggs

3 ripe bananas – mashed

75ml milk

375g self raising flour

Icing

70g icing sugar

A few drops of cold water

Juice of half a lemon

8 glacé cherries (cut in half) to decorate

Method

Firstly line a 12 hole muffin tin or 2 with muffin cake cases (the slightly larger ones to fairy cakes).

Preheat oven to 200c / 180c fan

Start by creaming the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.

Now whisk in your eggs. Once they combine together add your mashed bananas and whisk some more.

Add your flour bit by bit and whisk. I use an electric whisk for ease.

It will look a bit dry but this is fine as now we add the milk and keep whisking until we have a creamy mixture.

Divide between your muffin cases. I find 2 large dessert spoons of cake mix per muffin case is perfect.

Bake in the centre of the oven for approximately 20 minutes.

Remove from oven around end of cooking time when they have risen and are golden and springy to the touch.

Allow to cool on a wire rack and while cooling mix up your icing. When the muffins have fully cooled spoon over your icing and add a cherry on top. Simple.


Raspberry and Almond Squares

I really hope you try these as they are heavenly. The raspberry and almond are such a lovely combination. Always a compliment when your Mum who is the Queen of cakes eats one and takes the rest home.

Get yourself a good book, a cup of tea and one of these. Reminiscent of a bakewell only fruitier and squidgier.

Makes 12

Ingredients

225g butter

300g caster sugar

150g plain flour

Half teaspoon baking powder

3 eggs

175g raspberries

Handful of flaked almonds – to scatter on top

1 teaspoon almond essence

Icing sugar to dust over

Method

Pre heat your oven to 200c / 180c fan

Line and grease your cake tin. Leave a little of the greaseproof paper hanging over so you can lift the cake out easy once it is cooked. I used a 28x19cm oblong shallow tin.

You’re going to love this cake as it’s fabulously easy. Simply place all your ingredients for the cake except your raspberries and flaked almonds into a large mixing bowl and whisk with an electric whisk or however you wish until smooth and creamy.

Now add your raspberries and fold them into the mixture evenly. Smooth over so it’s nice and flat with a palette knife and sprinkle on your flaked almonds.

Pour into your cake tin and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 35 minutes.

You will see it rising and when it’s ready to take out it will be lightly golden and springy to the touch in the centre.

Remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes or so. Once the cake has cooled down remove by lifting out by the greaseproof paper and place on a wire rack to cool. Slice into squares and scatter over a little dusting of icing sugar for aesthetic purposes.