My grand plan was to have this post up for you on the morning of the 28th – so you were all set for Pancake Day – but a sick kitty foiled my plans. Howevever, I now bring you something to do with all of those left over crepes you have lying around (yeah, right!) and my cat Enzo seems to be on the mend. It’s all good!
I was asked to create a recipe using a crepe maker for AO.com, which got me thinking….other than the perfect crepe recipe, which a brain much brighter than mine has already created, what on earth can I do. After some Pinterest seaching (where would we be without it!), I stumbled across the world of crepe cakes. (more…)
Today I am delighted to welcome my friend and co-baking club runner Susan from Mess in the Ness. Susan and I met up after I moved back to Inverness last year because we had both been members of baking clubs in our previous cities and were looking to do the same in Inverness. So far Let’s Bake has been a great success and I have a new foodie friend to go on cake road trips with! Over to you Susan.
There’s nothing quite like a Saturday drive in the sunshine down to the Cairngorms, for the purpose of eating cake! That’s what Kirsty and I did this month – about an hours drive from Inverness is one of the top 10 cake shops in the UK (according to the Guardian). Tucked away about 5 miles from Aviemore, Inshriach Nursery and Potting Shed Tearoom is a little oasis of flowers, cakes, birds and squirrels. I’ve actually posted about Inshriach before – I visited last summer (note: shameless bit of self promotion here) so knew it was a great little spot.
A thing to note is that it really is a cakeshop – there are no lunch options available, just cake to accompany your choice of hot or cold drink. My tip is to grab lunch in Aviemore, and build up to an afternoon cake stop by walking round Loch Morlich or Loch an Eilein first!
As well as usual café tables and chairs, there is also a high-rise bar with stools that you can watch the birds and red squirrels feasting on nuts, lard and fruit. It’s a feast for the eyes as well as the tummy!
On to more important things though – our choices of cake! There was about 10 choices of cake when we arrived (including a couple of wheat free choices). It was really hard to make a choice but I eventually went for the Black Cherry Cake: 3 thin layers of vanilla sponge sandwiching some whipped cream and tasty black cherries. (more…)
There should be a banana bread for every season. In spring, with it’s fresh mornings, bright evenings and new blooms, banana bread should be kept pure and simple. Rich in flavour, dense in texture and a celebration of the pure banana experience. In summer you want to kick it up a notch by flinging in some pineapple and shredded coconut, or a burst of citrus with lime juice and zest, or a generous handful of summer berries to add some summertime sass to your favourite banana loaf recipe.
By the time Autumn rolls around you’re through with fruit and salad and any pretence at healthy snacks, you want indulgent treats to help you suffer the wind, rain and ever darkening days. The only answer? NUTELLA! Yes, the autumn banana bread must surely contain a substantial swirl of my favourite thing to come out of a jar. Some sort of peanut butter concoction would also be perfect, just don’t forget the chocolate chips. (more…)
This is the last recipe in my pumpkin fortnight and I think I’ve saved the best until last. Not to blow my own trumpet but I just adore the look of this cake! The fondant pumpkins and leaves mixed with the sugar and spiced pecans….it’s sort of a thing of beauty. So excuse the excessive amount of photographs!
The other pumpkin recipes on here use pumpkin puree but this one is a bit different as it uses grated pumpkin, in much the same way as carrot, which means you can substitute the pumpkin for carrot if that’s what you have in the cupboard.
This sponge has a similar flavour and texture to a light carrot cake but the orange zest which is infused with the sugar gives it a little extra kick. The pecans are roasted before using to enhance their flavour but if you are in a rush they could be roughly chopped straight from the packet and thrown in. To prepare the pumpkin for grating I first cut it in half, then scoop out the seeds and cut each half in to four segments which are then peeled and grated. To make up for the extra steps in the cake the mascarpone icing is very straight forward and can be whipped up in no time at all. (more…)
Happy pumpkin week! Or happy countdown to Hallowe’en week. I hope everyone has plans to carve a pumpkin before Friday night. I’m going round to a friends house for the festivities and have been instructed to bring a pre-carved pumpkin to go on display so I better get planning! Not that I’m making it competitive or anything…
The theme for our Hallowe’en get together is witches so I’m going as Sabrina the Teenage Witch! Cop out? Maybe, but I just want to break out my 90’s choker and find a stuffed, talking cat. There will also have to be some creepy baking on. I had a lot of fun making edible blood for a Game of Thrones cake a couple of weeks go so I’ll need to work that in somehow.
Anyway, back to todays offering. Last week I showed you how to make your own pumpkin puree, well this week I’m going to show you what to do with it! First up is a loaf cake which celebrates my absolute favourite (overpriced) caffinated beverage, the Starbucks PSL (pumpkin spice latte for those not in the know).
The loaf batter is lightly spiced and the pumpkin puree adds a subtle flavour and keeps the cake moist, much like banana in a banana loaf. I wanted the coffee flavour to pack a solid punch so I mixed up a streusel mix with sugar spices and ground coffee which is layered throughout the loaf. This looks pretty but also means you get a strong hit of spiced coffee flavour. (more…)