All posts tagged: Cake

Tinned Pear Cake, 36p [Tin Can Cook]

This soft, sweet, rich and heavy cake was written for Tin Can Cook, as I sat surveying tins of fruit and wondering how to plump up my pudding chapter. My eyes roved greedily over the tinned peaches, pears and cherries, looking for inspiration, and there it was. Fat, fulsome pears swimming sodden in their own slippery, succulent syrup – what a treat! I could barely wait as I sat typing up the recipe, my home rich with the scent of freshly baked goods, impatiently picking at the slice I promised myself as a reward for committing it to paper. I love this, and it’s all the better for using tinned pears; I hope you love it too. If you do happen to have ripe pears needing using up, first quarter them and carefully scoop out the seeds with the point of a small sharp knife. Cut away the very tip of the stalk and the woody star shape at the base, taking care to remove as little of the flesh as possible in the process. …

Courgette Chocolate Cake, 16p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

Courgettes in cake came into fashion a few years ago, but I only really bothered with them when I had a glut of the green blighters one autumn. Desperate to get rid of them, I made them into wholesome soups, pestos, pasta sauces and smuggled a few into this big chocolate cake. The courgettes are virtually indetectable – a novel way of smuggling vegetables into your children or fussier members of your household – but the moisture gives a pleasurable density and a little heft to an otherwise light snack. Eat your greens, go on! Serves 6 rather generously at 16p each, (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) 2 courgettes, 40p (£1.60/1kg courgettes, Sainsburys Basics) 50g dark chocolate or 25g cocoa powder, 21p (84p/100g, Sainsburys own cocoa powder) zest and juice of 1 lime or 1 tbsp bottled lime or lemon juice, …

Spiced Vegan Banana Bread, 11p

I almost had the audacity to call this recipe ‘Christmas-spiced Banana Bread’ as I am currently testing some new recipes for a December project (more on that below) but I didn’t think I could cope with the outrage of the Internet if I dared use the C-word halfway through September. So instead, euphemistically, this is an Autumn-spiced banana bread, warming, comforting, and pull-your-jumper-around-you warming delicious bliss. Based on the vegan banana bread recipe from A Girl Called Jack, but better. For best results you will need a small powerful blender to grind the spices into the sugar; I have used this one for years and absolutely swear by it as a blender, smoothie maker, curry paste machine and spice grinder, so it’s worth a look. And a third of the price of it’s hifalutin equivalent… Serves 6 very generously at 11p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you …

Lemon Curd Sponge Puddings, 24p [A Girl Called Jack]

Luckily for me, as I shop very carefully, I have most of the ingredients for this in the cupboard at all times. Unluckily for my jeans, that means I’m never more than thirty-two minutes away from a cake… This is a simple, classic, sticky treat, that Small Boy and myself enjoy every now and again. They also freeze well, so I make four – we have one each, and pop the remaining two in the freezer. If you don’t have pudding tins, then a deep muffin tray will do the job just as well, but may make six smaller desserts instead. 95p for 4 or 24p each (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) 100g self raising flour, 4p (65p/1.5kg) 70g butter, 34p (£1.20/250g) 2 eggs, 44p (£2.65/12 free range) 50g sugar, 5p (89p/kg) Splash of lemon juice, 2p (60p/250ml) 8 heaped …

White Chocolate Tea Bread, 9p [A Girl Called Jack]

This came about because I LOVE chocolate-chip brioche – so I decided to try to make some chocolate-chip bread as a replacement. Unfortunately, though, the chocolate chips all melted into the dough as I added warm water and I ended up with this Chocolate Tea Bread instead – but it was still delicious! Then I experimented with tea and white chocolate and stumbled on something heavenly. Bliss! Makes 1 small loaf to serve 6 people from 9p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 275g self-raising flour, plus extra to knead the dough, 8p (45p/1.5kg) 7g fast-acting dried yeast, 7p (£1/100g) 50g sugar, 3p (69p/kg) 100g white chocolate, 30p 25g butter or baking block, plus extra to grease the loaf tin, 6p 150ml boiling water with a tea …

Chocolate Ice Cream Cake, 5p

Ice cream is my catch-all cheer-up indulgence, eaten by the pint in front of light comedic television, or crime scene dramas, depending on my mood. One Saturday evening, alone, on the turn of Autumn, I found myself partway down a tub of chocolate ice cream, wondering if I could use it as a substitute for the majority of ingredients in a traditional cake recipe. Ice cream is, after all, made from eggs, fat (the milk and/or cream) and sugar, all key building blocks in a standard sponge. I pottered to the kitchen with it in hand, and set it on the worktop to melt – an act of extraordinary willpower, if I may congratulate myself briefly for it, as I have been known to eat two tubs back to back and make generous inroads into a third. A little maths and some crossed fingers later, and I was tucking into an atrociously light chocolate loaf cake, made with just two ingredients and a dash of incredulity. I later learned that I was not the first …

Biscoff Key Lime Pie, 66p

I’ll be frank with you, this pie is something of a commitment. It needs starting the night before, with two separate trips to the oven and two to the fridge, but the result is fantastically worth it. I make this in a 15cm (six inch) deep cake tin; although it looks smaller when presented to guests or family, the depth on it is astounding, and the ratio of lime cream to base works very well. As a naturally clumsy person, I find that smaller, deeper crumb crust pies are easier to handle, with less chance of cracking than their wider, slender counterparts. If you use a thinner tin, reduce the cooking time accordingly. I used standard limes for this, as key limes are hard to come by in May in Southend on Sea, and when I was researching this recipe, the general consensus seemed to be that although key limes are traditional, other limes are acceptable. Some cooks use a blend of limes and lemons to achieve the tart, slightly unripe sourness of a true …

White Chocolate & Peach Traybake, 27p [A Girl Called Jack]

A lovely man called Rhys, who follows me on Twitter, told me last week that he made this recipe for a woman he was courting in a bid to try to impress her, and reader, she married him! I was tempted to ask if they had it for their wedding cake… I’ve made it with a tin of fruit cocktail in place of the peaches before – a riot of colour and an inevitable scramble for the piece with the cherry in – but i’m yet to make it for Mrs J! Serves 8 at 27p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 240g baking block or butter, plus a little extra to grease the cake tin, 55p 200g sugar, 14p (69p/kg) 3 eggs, 45p (89p/6 free range) …

Whirlybuns, 11p [Cooking On A Bootstrap]

These little weighty wistful whirls of whimsy came about entirely by accident. I was going to stay with friends in Manchester for the weekend, to all fling our small boys at one another for a raucous time, and I never like to accept hospitality empty handed. So, I set about making a hulking great fruit bread big enough to energise 3 grown men, 3 grown women, and 3 small and boisterous boys. I mixed it, kneaded it, left it to rise…and promptly forgot all about it until I was halfway across the country. Silly me. I came home to find it fermenting beautifully, tickling the top of the teatowel flung over the top of it. I gave it a ginger sniff, it smelled a lot like sourdough. Vaguely remembering a yoghurt based bread I had made a few years ago, I figured it would be fine, and whipped it into these whirlybuns. J and A, here’s what you coulda had… Sorry! Makes a dozen pleasingly enormous buns at 11p each 750g plain flour, 28p (55p/1.5kg/Basics) …

5 Ingredient Salted Caramel Chocolate Mocha Yule Log, 38p

This is a fairly cheeky little recipe, mostly because it involves very little work at all – and looks and tastes far more impressive than it should do, considering the sum of its parts. I should confess I didn’t make the Yule log in the centre; I bought one from Asda on a whim and made it better. I’m a busy person, and also, I’ve never successfully managed to roll a Swiss roll up without smashing the whole thing to bits with my clod-handed impatience, so I wasn’t going to take the risk. The good thing is, Asda Swiss rolls (and other premade brands are available, I just live near Asda) are alright; the right side of soft, generous with the buttercream swirl, and left out on the counter all night by accident, they stay pretty moist and squishy. Sometimes, just sometimes, you can treat yourself to cheating. Because who cares for blood and tears and martyrdom with fondant sugar, when it tastes this good? (If you object to Flakes, use milk or dark chocolate …

Apple & Cinnamon Loaf Cake, 15p [A Girl Called Jack]

This recipe started off as muffins that I made at school many years ago, and eventually became a warm, sweet, moist loaf cake. It’s quite soft due to the quantity of apples used, lending it a crumbly texture that makes it delicious to eat in a bowl with custard or natural yoghurt. It firms up by the next day – that is, if there’s any left! Serves 6, from 15p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 3 small apples, cored, 22p zest and juice of ½ a lemon or 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice, 3p 100g butter or baking block, plus extra to grease the tin, 11p 100g sugar, 7p 2 eggs (or 2 tbsp applesauce, to make it vegan), 30p a generous handful of sultanas, 9p …

Stop Throwing Food Away! Your Guide To #ZeroWasteWeek and Better Budgeting (Part 1)

Every week, the UK throws away tonnes of food – the Guardian reports that the average family throws out twenty four meals a week. Twenty four meals! Now I know some of my readers definitely *aren’t* in that statistic, but we do all sometimes find a rogue bag of salad in the fridge, bread going slightly stale around the edges, yoghurt turning sour, so here are my handy hints and favourite ways to use them up, to help reduce food waste, and your food bills, even just a little bit. Salad. Salad is one of the most wasted foods out there, because it seems to start going bad as soon as you get the bag open and let some air into it. One day it’s a bag of fresh crispy goodness, the next, a sodden mush. But don’t throw it away! Smash it up into a Salad Bag Pesto, or toss it through pasta with a little cheese, or make it into bubble and squeak, or an omelette or frittata, use it in a curry …

Caramel Banana Cake, 16p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

This cake is a cheap but luxurious twist on my original banana bread, slightly more moist and gooey than the first iteration, with a home made sticky syrup sauce to drizzle over the top, ideally warm from a jug. I have made this as a loaf cake and also as a round, Victoria sponge type cake, split in the middle with a buttercream style icing and extra syrup sandwiching it together. It can be as simple or as showstopper as you want it to be. If you keep frozen berries kicking about, scatter a few on top of the cake mixture as it goes into the oven; as it cooks, they will gently sink to suspend in the finished delicacy; if you stir them in, there is a risk they will all sink and give you a soggy bottom. If this happens, I generally allow the cake to cook completely before removing from the tin, level off the risen top so it is completely flat (a bread knife is best) and carefully turn it over …

Don’t Throw That Away! An A-Z of leftovers, tired veg, etc and what to do with them.

This piece started after an article in the Independent about the top 10 foods that we apparently throw away in the UK. I took to Twitter to ask people what usually ended up in their bin, and then spent a whole day and night answering hundreds of queries – some of them came up a lot, like bread and mushrooms, and some were rather more surprising, like ‘half a jar of caviar’ (not a problem I can say I have ever had, but I am here to help, and inverse snobbery is as ghastly as the original kind so please, resist the urge.) I have compiled them all here as an A-Z, and will keep this list going, and add to it regularly, as a handy reference point – so keep checking back! And add your own tips at the bottom, our ‘hive mind’ is a much better thing than my admittedly limited experience!! Also remember you can always use the search bar on the blog to find recipe ideas too, for that stray carrot, …

Beetroot Chocolate Loaf Cake

This Christmas period I have so far cooked four enormous meals in four different houses as four Christmas presents for friends and family –  it’s the best Christmas present I can offer – swooping in to someone else’s kitchen and taking the stress out of catering for large groups of people, repurposing the leftovers into a pile of ready meals for the freezer, before packing my suitcase and moving on to the next one. It’s been a marvellous way to spend the week – I have so far slept in six different beds in as many days and made a lot of new friends, drunk a lot of wine, lost two knives along the way and had glorious fun. I have made a host of new recipes along the way – nothing gets my creative juices flowing like other people’s sparse storecupboards or a host of dietary requirements – and this was one of the winners. Faced with a stinking hangover from the night before’s foray into home made cranberry and orange vodka, a young …