Take a banana malt milkshake with a side of cookies, then convert that into a cake. Read More
These malted milk treats have a beautiful fudgy flavour thanks to the malted milk powder that I use in the baking process. There are a couple of brand names if you’re looking to pick it up for yourself. The ones that are easiest to find in the supermarket are Ovaltine & Horlicks.
Allegedly, the malted milk that I like is used in a large Irish diner-style chain of restaurants for their malted milkshake. Ever wanted to make one yourself at home? Simply add a couple of tablespoons to some quality partially melted vanilla ice cream.
The first thing you could do with the malted milk is to include them in some food-themed gifts for Christmas.
That includes some fudge cookies in a jar inspired by The Pink Whisk:
Also some malted hot chocolate inspired by a Jamie Oliver recipe from an old show of his. Both gifts will go down splendidly well.
What will be a huge hit though have been my malted milk malteaser cookies. As per usual with my cookies, the dough can be chilled in advance and baked within 3 days or frozen for up to a month before baking. This recipe makes approximately 20 large cookies which are chewy in the middle and crunchy on the outside.
Ingredients Method Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celcius and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof baking paper. Cream the milk extract, caster sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Beat in the 2 eggs until fully combined then add the flour and baking powder and mix again. Finally crush the malteasers in your hands before stirring them into the cookie dough. Using a dessert spoon, spoon the mixture directly onto the tray, leaving a lot of space between each cookie. I normally bake only 4 on each tray so you will need to rotate your trays, however it’s rare you’d bake the whole batch all at once. That is, unless your step-daughter decides to stick her fingers in each of the cookies on one tray as soon as they come out of the oven. Ahem. Bake in the oven for between 9-12 minutes. As soon as they start to turn golden brown, remove the trays and leave the cookies on the baking paper for 10 minutes before gently moving with a spatula to a cooling rack. The cookies will keep for up to 7 days in a sealed container kept in a cool, dry location but honestly I’d refrigerate or freeze your dough and bake these cookies fresh.
make ahead cookies
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celcius and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof baking paper.
Cream the milk extract, caster sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Beat in the 2 eggs until fully combined then add the flour and baking powder and mix again. Finally crush the malteasers in your hands before stirring them into the cookie dough.
Using a dessert spoon, spoon the mixture directly onto the tray, leaving a lot of space between each cookie. I normally bake only 4 on each tray so you will need to rotate your trays, however it’s rare you’d bake the whole batch all at once. That is, unless your step-daughter decides to stick her fingers in each of the cookies on one tray as soon as they come out of the oven. Ahem.
Bake in the oven for between 9-12 minutes. As soon as they start to turn golden brown, remove the trays and leave the cookies on the baking paper for 10 minutes before gently moving with a spatula to a cooling rack. The cookies will keep for up to 7 days in a sealed container kept in a cool, dry location but honestly I’d refrigerate or freeze your dough and bake these cookies fresh.
Not everybody is a fan of desserts with dried fruits in them. However, I really love the appearance of a Christmas pudding. So we get around this by making a chocolate biscuit Christmas pudding cake. I like to lace mine with crunchy malteasers but you can add in any chocolates, sweets or nuts that you like!
As this recipe has no baking to be done I think it’s a brilliant one to make with children with little supervision. Once again I have a video to go along with the recipe on YouTube!
These Christmas Fruit Parcels are a lighter alternative to cakes and puddings and have no suet and very little fat, no eggs and can be prepared quickly. They can easily be adapted for vegans too. Read More
A couple of weeks ago the folks at Margaret’s Happily Free Range Eggs contacted me and asked me if I’d like to try out their produce. Free range is something that is very important to me, obviously it’s why we made the decision to rear our own pigs, so I was delighted to accept. Then, on a day where I managed to snag some beautiful organic unwaxed lemons, there was little else I could do other than make my tried and tested lovely lemon curd. If you’re interested in finding out more about Margaret, the woman who has names for every single one of her flock, and is passionate about rearing free range poultry then click here.
To make this recipe easier to follow, and so that you can see just how easy it is to convert 4 simple ingredients into the most delectable lemon spread, I also recorded a video to go along with the recipe! You need to trust me on this, once you make your own lemon curd you will never buy it from a shop again. There is simply no comparison between the two! Read More
a bit a lot of a strawberry jam glut here. Imagine that! I ran out of jam jars and space to store them in, leaving me with the jam in the bottom of the pan. It’s my moral obligation to make sure that the jam doesn’t go to waste so it might as well go to waist.
Daft puns aside.
If you’re going to eat something with sugar in it, eat a bun, not a cupcake. Based on my own expert (cough) visual inspections, a bun is about half the size of a cupcake. Meaning they are easier to portion and just eat the one. Cupcakes are lovely but flipping huge and a bun is just the right size. Read More
By special request, I’ve collated some of my best apple recipes, along with a new recipe for an open apple pie, in the one spot. This will make it easy for that somebody who has a glut and there are a couple of savoury options as well as sweet. My big secret with apples is that I use them instead of a sweetener such as sugar or even honey in recipes. They boost the flavour in a sauce or a soup and I even use the peel to make my jams and marmalades set. It’s no wonder they are one of my favourite seasonal and Irish fruits!
*Cough* It is World Pi Day after all… ;)If you’re wondering what to do with your apples, here are some ideas for you to consider:
I love a regular Victoria Sponge but I’ve recently started to make buttermilk cake as an alternative. Buttermilk cake has a lighter texture than an all butter cake and just as simple to make. With the addition of this warm white chocolate ganache, the buttermilk cake becomes a serious treat. As the ganache is sweet, I’ve lowered the sugar in the cake mix. I also used this basic cake mix to make some banana cake last week. It was more bread-ish than cake-ish if you get what I mean. Still it was the perfect snack for my elevenses – a time when I find I’m dipping in energy during the day.
Meanwhile over here at my desk I’m finalising the arrangements to speak at a special conference for International Women’s Day on a topic close to my heart. I’m very excited to take part and as soon as the details are published I’ll let you know in case you’d like to come along! Read More
Jam is sweet. It’s meant to be sweet; the sugar used preserves the fruit and makes the jam last for longer. In my house that could mean up to a year; providing I use a sterilised jar, and store it in a cool, dark place.
What if there was a way to make low sugar jam? You’d still have a “set” consistency, but the trade-off would be that you’d have to make smaller quantities because the jam wouldn’t last so long.
I’ve tested plenty of jam recipes over the years. I’ve made jam with less sugar than recommended, replaced the refined sugar with fruit sugar (fructose), used honey, and used alternative sweeteners like aspartame and xylitol. Typical jam recipes are made on a 50:50 ratio of fruit to sugar. This recipe turns all that wisdom around and uses far less than that. Read More
Apparently simnel cake is traditionally eaten on Mothering Sunday. I have to say I never remember eating simnel cake then, but it always featured on our Easter table as I was growing up.
Technically simnel cake is a similar mixture to a Christmas cake, and has some of the same flavours. However unlike Christmas cake, you won’t find any sickly sweet white icing (be it fondant or royal), and the almond paste is baked into the cake, with a thin layer on top that’s caramelised under the grill before serving.
The thing is though, simnel cake is beautiful but a flipping heavy cake to make. It is prone to collapsing in the middle it’s so heavy. I’m cheating with these simnel cupcakes because they are so darn easy to make, bake, and then even freeze if you want to. I have cheated twice I’m afraid (sorry), because I used some ready-to-roll marzipan to make life even easier on myself. Read More
What is curd? Sweet curd is made with 4 main ingredients. 3 of which are always butter, sugar, and eggs. The 4th ingredient is normally a tart or citrus flavour. Once made properly it sets to a dropping consistency. This is because both the butter and the egg yolks play a part in the setting process.
You’ve probably heard of lemon curd. It is extremely easy to make – in fact, if you want to see me make it, plus get the recipe you can head on over to my lemon curd recipe by clicking the image below. Read More
I’ve come over a bit romantic and have been revisiting my favourite recipes just in time for Valentine’s Day. This is not sugar-free, gluten-free or fat-free. This is a whole sugar, fat, wheat in your face kind of dessert that is perfect with a spoon of whipped cream or even eaten warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
I don’t want to be virtuous all the time, everything is okay in moderation.
Of course the raspberries are frozen as they’re out of season, but that’s okay! Read More