Tuesday, 27 January 2015

#CookBlogShare 4


I have mondo impressed with the entries of this week's #CookBlogShare! I wish I could highlight them all because there are so many gems in here! Clearly everyone is feeling inspired despite January traditionally being a bit of a meh month. I am also very happy to see some new faces among the usual suspects – this link party needs to grow!

Without further ado lets take a look at some of the fabulousness on offer...
1. Pear and vanilla pies from Blue Kitchen Bakes – these are just the perfect snack... reminds me how much I missed baking pies and pastry.
2. Seared venison salad from Laura of A girl & her home - this looks delectable and is on my list of allowed foods. Am going to make very soon!
3. Irn Bru Ham in honour of Burns night. This is making me salivate – from Foodie Quine.
4. This malted chocolate bundt cake is glittering perfection – from Chocolate Log Blog.



#CookBlogShare guidelines
• Link up your post using the InLinkz tool below
• Please add the “Cook, Blog, Share” badge to your post and link back to this page. If you need help tweet me (@supergolden88) or comment below and I will walk you through it : )
• Spread the word - lets get this party started! 
• Come back next Tuesday to check the write up and join a new #CookBlogShare link party.
• Tweet me your entry @supergolden88 using #CookBlogShare hashtag and I will RT.
• Do check the other entries if you get a chance and share the comment love.



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Monday, 26 January 2015

Red velvet cakes for Valentine's Day

Red velvet cakes for Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day. Not sure where I stand. On the one hand it is unbelievably corny and definitely somewhat of a Hallmark holiday. On the other hand there's something incredibly romantic about having someone you love – or have a massive crush on – give you a card or flowers or a gift. I guess I want to be a cynic (and, trust me, I mostly am) but in my heart of hearts I want to be a believer in all the mushy, gushy, V-day sentiments. And I guess any excuse to eat chocolate and receive flowers is kind of OK in my book.

But quite apart from the joy of receiving gifts, Valentine's Day offers the perfect excuse to bake and that should be celebrated all the way! These mini red velvet cakes are obviously perfect for gifting (and eating!) and they look so festive and pretty they are sure to melt even cynical hearts. I baked a batch in upcycled tin cans to create the layer mini cakes and the rest in a silicone heart-shaped muffin tin. You can do either or even make a lovely layer cake using this recipe. Make sure you use bake stable paste food colouring (not liquid) for a true red – I used Sugarflair Paste Colour - Christmas Red.

Red velvet cakes for Valentine's Day

For the frosting
200g | 7oz full-fat cream cheese
150g | 5.3oz icing (powdered) sugar
1 tsp vanilla paste 
200g | 7oz double cream, whipped to soft peaks

Method
1. First, whip the double cream and icing sugar till you have soft peaks. Transfer to another bowl.
2. Place the cream cheese and vanilla paste in the bowl of your stand mixer and whip until soft and fluffy. Slowly add the whipped cream and whip together until just combined. Keep cool until needed.

Red velvet cakes for Valentine's Day

Red Velvet cake recipe
Makes 2 20cm/8in cakes or 24 mini cupcakes or 6 mini cakes 
250ml | 1 cup buttermilk
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 large eggs
175ml  | 6.1fl oz Lurpak Cooking Liquid
1 tsp red food colouring, more if needed
1 tsp vanilla paste
200g | 7oz plain flour
250g | 8.8oz sugar 
2 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch)
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
heart shaped sprinkles (optional)

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 160C (325F). Grease and flour the cake tins or spray the muffin tin with cake release spray. If you are using tin cans make sure you line the bottom and sides with baking paper and spray them with cake release.
1. Put the buttermilk, vinegar, eggs, Lurpak cooking liquid, food colouring and vanilla in the bowl of your stand mixer and whisk together until thoroughly combined. Check you are happy with the colour and adjust, if necessary.
2. Sift the remaining ingredients together and gradually add to the mixing bowl, mixing them in on medium speed until combined. Do not overmix.
3. Divide between the cake pans or muffin tins etc. Bake the cakes 25-30 minutes, mini tin cakes for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in centre comes out mostly clean. Bake cupcakes for 15-18 minutes.
4. Cool slightly and remove from the tins carefully. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
5. Put the frosting in a piping bag fitted with a small star nozzle and pipe over the cakes. Eat on day of decorating as the frosting contains fresh cream. 

Red velvet cakes for Valentine's Day

This recipe was developed for Lurpak as part of their Food Adventures.