Tag Archives: Bakesheet

By Popular demand.

Frilly’s Cork Battenberg

So, let’s start with two simple everyday Madeira Bakes, in Loaf form, one brown one yellow.

The basic mix per sponge

240gms soft butter, 200gms caster sugar, 3 eggs, 210gms Self Raising & 90gms Plain Flour sieved and mixed together. One with 50 gms cocoa sieved in with flour, the other loaf with 45 gms Custard powder + 3 or 4 tbls milk

Grease and line a standard sized loaf tin, or a pair if you have two the same, and start heating the oven to 170°

Cream the butter and sugar until a nice soft fluffy ducky colour

Add one egg, and one third of the flour (+ cocoa) mix, blend gently, and repeat. That’s your brown sponge done.

For the yellow, proceed as above, then mix your custard powder with part of the milk, get it to a barely pouring consistency, and add to your sponge mix, while beating gently, and that’s your yellow sponge.

Bake for one hour but check at 50 and maybe 55 minutes with a skewer, if you are happy at either touch point do take them out, and remove from the tin onto a cooling tray. Let them go stone cold. If possible, leave overnight. They need to be proper Madeira firm lads.

Mallow Fluff

Do not attempt this unless you have a good reliable kitchen thermometer and a sturdy stand mixer, one that can go at full belt for at least 8 minutes without fuming. The alternatives are to melt shop bought white marshmallows, or buy it in altogether.

105gms Granulated Sugar and 170 mils of Golden syrup, or if you can get it, a light corn syrup.

If it helps, I used golden syrup only because it was already open in the press, but it does leave your ‘Mallow with a winter white complexion. If you want Cork Whiter than Daz White, then you need to use a clear light corn syrup.

Two egg whites, ¼ tsp cream of tartar
Tsp vanilla paste, ¼ tsp salt

* Into a pot over a low heat and mix to dissolve the sugar, once dissolved rack up to full heat, and have your kitchen thermometer at the ready.

Decent stirring now but do not let the syrup boil over, at 116° on the dot remove from heat immediately. (start again if you smell burn)While the sugar and syrup are heating up to dissolve, in your stand mixer, start gently whisking or beating if you like, your egg whites and cream of tartar into a light foam.

* Once your sugar syrup is at the 116° its now molten caramel, so bring it over (carefully) to your now foam’ishly egg whites, bring your mixer hup’to full speed, and slip your syrup in. Keep your mixer on full speed for 8 minutes, until its a thick white glossy fluff triumph, but importantly, at room temperature.

Tip in your vanilla paste and salt and go full speed again for about two minutes. Don’t be alarmed by the pitch black spots specked on the edge of your mixing bowl. That’s the centrifugal effect on the vanilla seeds. This is why baking is considered by many as a science – using centrifusion force to create your Battenberg is the work of champions.

Health and Safety warning, this stuff is sticky, sticky like ye’ve never made with eggs before sticky, so clean as you go with it. Have clean containers, and spatulas, and palette knives if you have them all ready. And don’t attempt to make ‘Mallow Fluff without an apron or with smallies in the vicinity.

This stuff might smell and taste lovely but has the welding power of Sudocreme and with all the allure of a marmalade made with honey and too much sugar. With sprinkles. And it goes everywhere if you let it.

Assembly

Level off your Madeira Loaves, and splice into equal halves. You should have four even layers, two of each.

Start with brown, and layer of ‘Mallow Fluff, and start to bevel the long sides. say 30° on the left and 120° on the right. I used a paring knife and had a container ready for the cut offs.

Next your yellow, start the bevelling from the finish point of the base layer, when you’re happy its even and tis starting to look like the second floor of a pyramid, slather another layer of ‘Mallow Fluff.

Repeat the above to create the brown, scrawny white, yellow, brown, scrawny white, yellow of Real Battenburg. If you have done well with the cut offs, you should be able to create another layer for the sharpish apex of your Real Battenberg.

Next…

The Chocolate external coat and render

600 gms Dark (good quality) Cooking Chocolate
125 mls Double Cream

Melt your chocolate – in a bowl over just-under-the-boil water, and make sure your bowl doesn’t touch the water. Do not use a microwave to melt your chocolate. Ever.

When its runny and smooth, just gorgeous like, whisk by hand andblend in the cream. Keep whisking, and whisk every so often, as you go along like.

Paste a thin layer all over your Real but still naked Battenburg, and let it rest for about five minutes.

Then lash the rest all over, a thick as you can. Then wait as long as you can before trowelling it all over with a fork for the Real Battenburg horizontal ridges.

Tah dah!

But wait an hour or so before cutting into it. Gather around to hear that heel hit the plate. You’ll know tis all about Cork but without the ropey version of de’ Banks.

If ye don’t mind like, since Cork people don’t like to be told what they should do, especially with Cork food, and they’d be dead right of course, but I use unsalted butter.

That ‘Mallow Fluff, there’s going to be loads left, but it should keep for a week or so in the fridge for other adventures, just make sure tis in a good, sealed container that you can trust.

You might want to just use all Self Raising in the brown Madeira element as the Cocoa does hinder the rise, but only slightly. Or you could use a half tsp of Baking Powder to help it out.

You can also just take the sponge mixture on its own like, add the zest & juice of a lemon, for an old school Madeira. But do sprinkle a good tbls of Caster Sugar, or even two, on top before going into the over for the traditional Madeira crack affect your Aunty had.

Before I leave ye to it, let me tell ye, I loved planning and putting this together, yep, tis about time too since I talked about it for ages. But less of that, and more of this, Real Battenberg is a great cake to make, but give yourself the time and the attention Real Battenberg is entitled to, whether you like cake or not.

And do you know what lads, change the colours, the flavourings, even the coatings. Shur its always going to be our Battenburg anyway, we we can do what we like with it. Hon’ Cork.

All pics by Vanessa Foran

Vanessa is a principal at Recovery Partners. Follow Vanessa on twitter @vanessanelle.

Both!

By popular demand.

Millie’s Spiced Banana Bread

Reader Millie writes:

This is one of my favourite bakes ever. I confess, I’m not a huge fan of banana bread – but this loaf changed my mind. There is something immensely comforting about this bake, whether it be how easy it is to make or the delicious smell that wafts through the house as it bakes and lingers for hours after. It’s a very forgiving recipe too, in that you can adjust the spices to your personal taste and in that you can swap the Greek yogurt for sour cream or natural yogurt, and you will still get a delicious loaf. It lends itself especially well to toasting, requiring only a minute under the grill before the sugar begins to caramalise. I like it slathered with butter and a good-sized cup of coffee.

You will need:

115g butter, softened
200g caster sugar
2 large eggs
190g plain flour
1tsp baking soda/bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp mixed spice
½ tsp ginger
½ tsp nutmeg
240g mashed banana (roughly 2-3 bananas, depending on size)
120g greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract

How To:

1. Preheat oven to 170C/160C (fan). Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

2. Whisk eggs together and slowly add to the butter-sugar mixture, making sure to beat the mixture well after each addition. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl too, as this will ensure your mixture is fully combined. This, according to Her Majesty Queen Mary Berry of Cakes, will help to avoid the dreaded curdling of the egg. I’d also recommend keeping your butter and eggs at an even temperature, as this can also help. In any event, I usually carry on with the bake, even if it has curdled a bit.

3. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and spices. Add to butter, sugar and egg mixture and fold together until just combined.

4. Next, mash your bananas. I should add that I never actually weight out the bananas, just throw in 2 or 3 ripe bananas and the loaf has always turned out well. Add mashed banana, Greek yogurt and vanilla extract and mix again.

5. Pour mixture into greased and floured loaf tin and bake for approximately 50-60 minutes, until a deep golden brown and a skewer, when inserted, comes away clean.

Oo-er.

Pics via Millie

Caribbean Rum Cake

By popular demand.

Bring de rum.

Janet writes:

Just in case you’re dreaming of the sun and turquoise waters this is a Christmas favorite from somewhere a little warmer, boozy and lush but not as heavy as puds, transform that dusty bottle of maybe not great rum at the back of the cupboard into something that lasts 24hrs max in our house.


Janet’s Caribbean Rum Cake


Ingredients
:

125 g fine semolina
1 liter of milk
75 g caster sugar
15 sugar cubes or 15 tsp ( for caramel)
3 eggs
75 g of blond raisins
4 tbsp. dark rum ( I like to use a spiced ginger one, I just add ginger and cinnamon to the bottle ( sometimes red chilli) and let it rest for a week or so).

Preparation:

In a saucepan with a thick base, put the pieces of sugar on a medium heat.
Let it melt, shaking the handle of the pan often.

As soon as the caramel turns blond, pour it into a mold (preferably high and fluted, but a loaf tin works grand, silicone is handy for the turnout), tilt it in all directions to evenly distribute the caramel on the bottom and the edges.

Preheat the oven to 160 ° (th 5/6).
Put the raisins in a bowl with the rum, let them swell.

Break the eggs, separating the whites from the yolks. Put the yolks aside for now.
Beat the egg whites until stiff.

Heat the milk and powdered sugar in a saucepan.
When simmering, throw the semolina in and stir with a wooden spoon for about 10 minutes, so that the semolina swells.

Off the heat, add the egg yolks, one at a time, stirring thoroughly with each addition.
Add the raisins , mix again.

Then add the egg whites delicately.
Pour the preparation into the caramelized mold and bake for about 30 minutes.

Take the mold out of the oven, let it rest for 10 minutes, then turn out the semolina cake on a serving dish and let it cool. Serve warm or cold. It’s nice with ice cream, or fresh cream and stewed peaches or pineapple.

Feel free to pour on a little more rum.

Hic.

Previously: Millie’s Chrismas Eve Brownies

Janet’s Steamed Clootie

A Millie Christmas Eve Brownie

By popular demand.

Broadsheet reader Millie writes:

First things first, there’s nothing actually Christmassy about these brownies. It began life as a Rachel Allen brownie recipe and over the years was adapted many times over the years, before becoming a beloved Christmas bake. I usually make these on Christmas Eve, and the house is full of the scent of melting chocolate and good, Christmassy cheer. They’re usually gone before Stephen’s Day. It’s a good tradition, if you ask me.

I like to use a blend of caster sugar and muscovado sugar, which you can play around with according to what you have – but the muscovado sugar is a must in order to achieve the fudgy texture essential to a good brownie. You can, of course, add nuts if you wish but that’s considered high treason in my house.


Millie’s Christmas Eve Brownies

175g chocolate – 100g milk chocolate, 75g dark chocolate (you can use all dark chocolate if you prefer, but I find it too rich for my tastes)
175g butter, cubed
25g good quality cocoa, sifted
3 eggs
225g sugar – 150g dark muscovado, 75g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
100g plain flour, sifted
100g chocolate chunks – 50g milk chocolate, 50g dark chocolate
Icing sugar, sifted

1. Preheat oven to 180C.

2. Melt chocolate, butter, and cocoa powder in a bowl, over a pan of gently simmering water. Make sure that the water doesn’t touch the bowl or the chocolate will ‘catch’, resulting in a lump of chocolate that will not melt and, frankly, a waste of perfectly good chocolate. Once melted, remove melted chocolate from heat and set aside to cool.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract, for around 5 minutes or so, until the mixture is nice and treacly.

4. Add the cooled melted chocolate mixture to the eggs and sugar, before combining using a spatula or wooden spoon.

5. Sift the flour into the mixture, folding until just combined.

6
. Add the chocolate chunks and carefully mix until well dispersed, taking care not to over-mix. I prefer to use roughly chopped chocolate, as they make for good hearty chocolate chunks, which overall bake a lot better than chips or finely chopped chocolate. There is nothing more unpleasant than a shard of hard, burnt chocolate.

7. Transfer mixture to a greased and lined tin and bake for 15-20 minutes, until just set. I use a 12 inch x 9 inch baking tray to bake mine, but use whatever tray you have and adjust the time accordingly. I would recommend that you don’t use a larger size tray, as there isn’t quite enough batter for that.

8. Once brownies are baked, remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly in the tray before cutting into generous slices. Serve warm with ice cream or cream. But really, it’s gotta be ice cream, doesn’t it?

Previously: Janet’s Steamed Clootie

From top: Disgusted by the quality of cakes, Paul Hollywood walks out of the tent during last night’s Great British Bake-Off on Channel 4; Vanessa Foran

And the responsorial psalm is Full fat all the way;

I know he went home (and we’ll talk some more about it later) but for many of us that’s pure gospel; maybe a truck driver called Phil is my Patronus; maybe not, but he speaks to my spirit anyway. Full fat all the way.

There’s so much to talk about in last night’s Signature, but first I want to just bring us back to our own Bakesheet interests.

The first bake I did from the new kitchen here was Millie Murderlarks Buttermilk Sponge from last season’s Bakesheet; I remember her saying it was a Friendly Cake.  I didn’t share this with ye before because, well, nobody was really in the humour for cake least of all a Friendly Cake at the time.

Anyway, it was a no brainer for me to follow through with because I usually have a litre of buttermilk in the fridge just for baking.  Just like a baker will always have both plain and self-raising, and a range of sugars from caster to dark muscovado to icing.

And of course tubs of sour cream for just about everything else.

I was delighted with myself following the Signature last night, like there was more going on than just cultured dairy to share with the bakers at home; I loved that it was Cake, and pretty much all of them are easy, well the four here are tagged easy.

I wouldn’t be so sure about Helena’s spooky sponge or Michael’s Sour Lemon sponge with cheesecake filling – but feck I would have ate it, all of it, even the plate it was on, no matter what condition it came in.

The only difficulties are, and by way of an Ask a Broadsheeter – oil spray or butter for those fancy Bundt tins?

It is well established by now that I hate to promote anything here that requires kit that isn’t already in the everyday kitchen baking press.

But since I’ve a healthy suspicion it might be on a lot of bakers Christmas wish list; and I’m getting one anyway, so I thought I’d ask and share a Mary Berry’ism that I live by myself; get the very best you can afford.

So if you have fifty yoyos – spend the fifty, and not go home with one reduced to twenty.

And in fairness, Steph’s Rasa Chocolate Fudge was made for it.  Shur you’re worth it.  (and if someone can post up a reliable source for the freeze dried rasas’ you’ll be on the short list for the hamper.)

Another whinge for what was a great mutual Signature collective experience is that Rosie’s homemade Limoncello isn’t included in the recipe for her Limoncello & Basil cake and I think we are being short changed here.

OK, I know we are getting the recipe for free from the producers, but in fairness she got a brag and they got a telly moment out’ve Prue sneaking it away. It’s a Just Saying, that’s all.

The Technical; so bad it was good.  Even the Hollywood turned his backside to it.  Good in the sense we were introduced to a bake we’d never heard of, and one we wouldn’t dream of, Mary Anne Boermans excepted of course (who has the best bake blog going – @wotchers btw.)

In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if she came up with that technical for the producers.

Is it any wonder I’m now gagging at sharing this, I’d say that tent smelled like baby’s vomit – in the back seat of a ten year old car, in July.  And no matter the state of it was, Steph was the best of the lot.

Showstoppers; would ye?  Definitely not for me, boiling milk and stirring and stirring? I’d rather change the beds.

So I’ll be leaving it for the milk sweet experts and the lovers of Mishtie, the only interest I had in it was hoping Helena’s lemon sherbet recipe would be shared, and shouting you silly boy! at Henry to leave the freezer closed.

Jesus he couldn’t leave it alone, I was convinced he was going, I really was, so when Phil got called out, I too was shocked.

But you know, he wasn’t going to progress all that much further anyway; and it’s worth remembering we don’t get to see everything in the tent or witness the full depth of the judging.

Yet even from my own viewing of this year’s bakers, I would agree that Henry the tie man and Pirya deserved another round of challenges before being culled.

Big shout out to my fav from the start, Steph , Star Baker was well deserved last night.  She’s enjoyable and endearing; and good telly , also my pick for the final, along with last week’s Star Baker Michael.

Another great night for Helena who is clearly thriving.

I’m not getting Michelle or Dr Rosie but they deserve to be taking seriously in fairness.

Roaring Twenties next week.  Cocktails and Custards apparently.

I think I’ll have to go all out and put feathers in my hair.  Till then; BAKE!

Pic: Channel4