Lemon Drizzle Easter Cake!

Lemon Drizzle Easter CakeThere are lots of things that people don’t tell you about becoming a parent. Particularly some of the dilemmas a foodie parent might face…

For example, when I was making this cake – my 6 week old daughter Tilly decided that she wanted feeding 10 minutes before it was due to come out the oven. PANIC STATIONS! I somehow, miraculously, managed to solve both problems but it was an interestingly tense situation I can tell you!

I am slowly learning that timing is everything in these early weeks. Especially if you are trying to bake or cook as well. I’ve also learnt that one handed multi tasking is something you have to adapt to…

Lemon Drizzle Easter Cake TillyLets be honest though – there was nothing that was going to get between me and that pudding!

And these tiny people are much more intelligent than they let on. I mean, Tilly already knows how to take a selfie!

Lemon Drizzle Easter Cake TillyBaby antics aside, I wanted to keep it nice and simple again with this weeks recipe. Truth be told, I don’t have time for anything other than simple at the moment! So here’s what you need to make a gorgeous lemon drizzle cake with an easy Easter decoration.

(Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food.)

For the Cake

  • 225g Unsalted Butter, Room Temp
  • 225g Golden Caster Sugar
  • 4 Eggs, Room Temp
  • Zest of 1 Lemon
  • 225g Self Raising Flour

For the Syrup

  • 85g Golden Caster Sugar
  • Juice of 2 Lemons

For the Icing & Decoration

  • 225g Icing Sugar
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 180g Cadbury’s Mini Eggs

Essential Equipment

  • 20cm (8″) Round Loose Bottomed Cake Tin

Lightly grease the base & sides of the cake tin and line the base with baking paper.

Preheat your oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C.

Either in an electric stand mixer or a large bowl with an electric hand whisk, cream together the butter & sugar until light and fluffy.

Lemon Drizzle Easter CakeCrack the eggs into a jug and beat. Then, a quarter at a time, add them to the butter mixing well inbetween each addition.

If the mixture starts to curdle, just add a tablespoon of flour into the batter and mix it through.

Add in the lemon zest & sift in the flour. Mix again until the batter is nice and smooth but try not to over mix.

Lemon Drizzle Easter CakePour the batter into the prepared cake tin. Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Lemon Drizzle Easter CakeWhilst the cake is in the oven, let’s make the syrup.

Simply weigh the sugar into a jug & squeeze over the lemon juice. Give it a good stir until the sugar has dissolved, then leave to one side until the cake has come out of the oven.

Lemon Drizzle Easter CakeWhilst still warm in the tin, use a skewer to poke holes over the whole cake. Then evenly pour over the syrup and allow to cool completely before decorating.

To make the icing, sift the icing sugar into a large bowl and add the lemon juice. Stir well with a spoon until smooth. It should be a little thick but still runny.

Now for assembly!

Remove the cake from the tin & peel off the baking paper from the bottom. Place on a wire rack set over some newspaper or a baking sheet.

If your cake has domed in the middle, you may like to level it off with a sharp knife first. Otherwise, simply pour the icing over the cake and encourage it to drizzle down the sides with a spoon.

Lemon Drizzle Easter CakeTop with the Mini Eggs & marvel at your creation! (Even though it was really quite easy to make, but sshhhh, if you don’t tell I won’t!)

It will keep in an airtight container for 3-4 days. Lemon Drizzle Easter CakeI absolutely love lemon drizzle cake! Not only is it a baking classic, it’s incredibly simple to make and really easy to turn into an Easter dessert. It’s also something that the kids can get involved with. And no, I don’t mean by screaming when it’s almost ready like Tilly, I mean by actually getting stuck in and baking!

What a fabulous dessert to have at the centre of your dinner table this upcoming Easter weekend.

And on that note, I will catch you all next time!

Miss KitchenMason (And Tilly! x )

 

 

Victoria Sandwich Cake

Victoria Sandwich CakeIt’s Mother’s Day this Sunday & I’m quite excited as it’s the first one I actually qualify for! Although I’m of the firm opinion that we should appreciate our Mums all year round, I also think it’s nice that we set aside a day to really spoil them rotten. And what’s the best way to do that? With cake of course!

This brilliant ‘back to basics’ recipe for a classic Victoria Sandwich Cake is so simple, it’s perfect for Dads & kids to team up and really put a smile on Mum’s face this weekend.

So, here is what you will need to make an 8″ cake.

(Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food.)

For the Sponge

  • 200g Golden Caster Sugar
  • 200g Unsalted Butter, Room Temp
  • 4 Eggs, Room Temp
  • 200g Self Raising Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 2 tbsp Milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract (Optional)
  • 1/4 tsp Salt

For the Filling

  • 100g Unsalted Butter, Room Temp
  • 140g Icing Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract (Optional)
  • Approx 300g Strawberry Jam
  • Icing Sugar for Dusting

Essential Equipment

  • 2 x 8″ (20cm) Round Loose Bottomed Cake Tins

A little note about the Room Temp instruction. Cake batters work much better when all ingredients are the same temperature. They blend together easier & you’re far less likely to end up with a curdled batter which can create large holes in your finished cake. Plus, it makes it far easier to work with. Simply take your ingredients out the fridge at least an hour or so before you want to use them.

Now, lightly grease the base & sides of your cake tins & line the bases with baking paper.

Preheat your oven to 190°C/Fan 170°C.

Either in an electric stand mixer or a large bowl with an electric hand whisk – add in all the sponge ingredients & mix together until smooth & lump free.

Victoria Sandwich CakeDivide the batter evenly between the two tins & smooth with a spatula. To prevent the cake from doming so much in the middle – put a ‘dip’ in the centre of the batter.

Victoria Sandwich CakePlace in the centre of the preheated oven (preferably on the same shelf) for about 15-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Victoria Sandwich CakeLeave to cool in the tins for 10 minutes. Then slide a pallet knife around the sides of each cake to loosen, remove from the tin, peel off the baking paper from the base & leave to cool completely on a wire rack before decorating.

To make the buttercream filling, place the butter, icing sugar & vanilla extract (if using) into either an electric stand mixer or a large bowl with an electric hand whisk. Mix slowly to start with (or you may find yourself head first in a mushroom cloud of icing sugar!)

Increase the speed and beat until light and fluffy. (At least 3-4 minutes.) Scrape down the sides of the bowl periodically and if you need to loosen the mixture a little – add a splash of milk and continue to mix.

Victoria Sandwich CakeOnce the sponge layers have completely cooled, place one layer onto a cake stand. If you need to, level the top by slicing any domed cake off with a large, sharp knife.

Then smear the buttercream evenly all over the top, right to the edges.

Victoria Sandwich CakeTop with the jam and spread out evenly. Not quite right to the edges, but close. Remember this will squash outwards slightly when you put the top layer on.

Victoria Sandwich CakeWhen you’re happy with that, top with the remaining sponge layer. I like to level any dome and use the bottom side to give a nice flat edge. But it’s entirely up to you.

Place a heaped teaspoon or two of icing sugar into a sieve, then generously sprinkle all over the top of the cake.

Store in an airtight container and eat within 2 days.

Victoria Sandwich CakeI told you it was easy! I love the all in one sponge method. It’s so simple & quick that anyone can do it! Yes, even those of you who claim you can’t bake – you can do it too!

So here’s to all you wonderful Mums out there that put up with our dirty washing, our bad tempers and untidy bedrooms, yet still (somehow!) love us unconditionally. You are all incredible and I hope you are showered with appreciation and love this Sunday, because you deserve it.

Until next time my lovelies!

Miss KitchenMason

Christmas Tree Brownies!

Christmas Tree BrowniesWith just over a week left until the big day, I found myself wondering what other awesome Christmas bakes I could try – then I came up with these little beauties. Christmas tree brownies! Not only are they delightfully gooey & rich, they’re really fun to decorate AND vegetarian & gluten free. It’s also a great recipe to get the kids involved in. What more could you want?!

One thing to note – these brownies work best if made the night before and allowed to cool completely before attempting to slice & decorate. Also – they are the most awesome, rich & gooey brownies you will ever make. (And that’s a KitchenMason promise!)

Here is what you will need to make 14.

For the Brownie

For the Decoration

  • 100g White Chocolate **
  • Pack of Candy Canes **
  • Red/Green Sugar Balls **

Essential Equipment

  • 30 x 20cm Rectangular Cake/Swiss Roll Tin

*Regular self raising flour works fine if you don’t need it to be gluten free.

** Most are vegetarian/gluten free but check the label just in case.

 

Right, let’s get cracking!

Grease and line the cake tin and set to one side until needed.

Preheat your oven to 190°C/Fan 170°C.

Break the dark & milk chocolate into a large bowl and add the butter & salt. Gently melt either in a bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water or in the microwave.

Stir until smooth & shiny then leave to one side to cool.

Christmas Tree BrowniesEither in an electric stand mixer with the balloon whisk attachment or in a large bowl with an electric hand whisk – whisk the eggs for at least 3-4 minutes until really light and pale.

It should leave a slight trail when you remove the balloon whisk/beaters.

Christmas Tree BrowniesAdd in the muscovado sugar & vanilla extract and whisk again until evenly blended but still fairly light in texture.

Christmas Tree BrowniesIn thirds, pour in the cooled chocolate & gently fold through using a rubber spatula.

Sift over the flour and carefully fold this in – just until you can’t see any more lumps of flour and the mixture is smooth & still quite light.

Christmas Tree BrowniesPour the mixture into the prepared cake tin – be careful not to overfill as it will rise slightly.

Then bake in the preheated oven for approx 25-30 minutes.

Christmas Tree Brownies

Christmas Tree BrowniesAs mentioned before, it is best to make these brownies the night before and allow to cool completely before attempting to remove from the tin & slice.

So, when completely cooled  -run a spatula down the sides of the brownie to release from the tin then gently lift out and place on a chopping board/mat.

Now, I’m a bit of a perfectionist so yeah – I got a ruler out at this point! But basically, cut the brownie into 14 triangles. You will have 4 spare bits for you to taste test too! (Clearly I couldn’t wait to take a photo…)

Christmas Tree BrowniesTake each candy cane out the wrapper and snap into pieces approx 3cm long.

Place the brownies on a wire rack over a piece of newspaper & carefully insert a piece of candy cane into the base of each one.

Christmas Tree BrowniesMelt the white chocolate in either a bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water or in the microwave and pour into a piping bag.

Snip the end and pipe ‘tinsel’ across each tree then place sugar balls down the edges in the chocolate for the baubles.

I found it best to decorate in half batches – just to ensure the chocolate doesn’t set before you have stuck the ‘baubles’ in.

Christmas Tree BrowniesAllow the chocolate to set for about 30-40 minutes or so before either devouring straight away or placing in nice presentation boxes to give as gifts to your loved ones.

I find it best to store these in an air tight container in the fridge – due to their extreme ‘gooeyness’ they can become a little delicate if stored at room temperature.

Christmas Tree BrowniesGo on, admit it – they’re SO cute aren’t they?! I think these make great little home made gifts for people and, with the decoration element – you can let the kids go nuts adding edible glitters, hundreds and thousands or whatever else they can think of!

Don’t forget to enter my awesome competition to win a fabulous Scanpan Roasting Tray! You can enter via the Website, Facebook or Twitter.

I hope you enjoyed the post my lovelies – until next time!

Miss KitchenMason