Sunday, 20 April 2014

Homemade Chocolate Easter Eggs


Happy Easter Everyone! I hope everyone is enjoying the long bank holiday weekend. We had a lovely picnic out yesterday and tucked into our Easter eggs today. I decided to make my own Easter eggs this year with a mould that I bought from Lakeland. It's really easy to make and you can customise your own eggs. I made a selection of dark, milk and white mini eggs and a milk chocolate shell. I packed it in a gift bag tied with my special ribbon that says "handmade with love". J had a special egg that was half dark and half milk as requested. It looked good and tasted very chocolatey and he was most impressed with the little eggs inside!

Happy Easter Everyone! 
.

 there are 4 large moulds and 3 mini moulds in the pack. Melt the chocolate and fill the moulds

 making the mini eggs 

 brush a thin layer or chocolate in the large mould and allow to set in the fridge. Repeat the process at least 4 times otherwise it will be too fragile



 ready to assemble - place the small eggs inside the large one and brush a bit of melted chocolate on the outer edges. Gently place the other large shell on top and allow to set in the fridge

 The finished egg

 with some Easter packaging 

 my favourite ribbon :) 

Friday, 18 April 2014

Chocolate Easter Eggs with a Twist


I'm really excited to share this Easter treat with you. I made it 2 years ago and everyone was so impressed by it I thought it was time to make them again.  It's a really simple idea but it's so effective and it's guaranteed to impress. Last time I made multi coloured pastel eggs but this time I chose to make chocolate eggs (cake) and some lemon ones too. I used my favourite Nigella's old fashioned chocolate cake recipe but substituted the sour cream for yoghurt as that was what I had in the fridge. I also made up a lemon sponge batter and made some lemon cupcakes as well.

The most time consuming part is saving the eggshells. I saved a total of 40 eggshells over the course of a few weeks. I poked a small hole at the top with a sharp knife and gently peeled back the edges to make a hole large enough to pour the egg out. You will need a skewer to help get all the egg out especially the egg yolk. Then rinse the eggshells thoroughly in water and place in a large bowl of salted water. The salt helps the eggshells sink to the bottom and also helps to clean them. Soak for at least 30 minutes.  Then rinse the shells again and dry them upside down (hole side down) on a paper towel until completely dry -this is very important as the shells will go mouldy otherwise. Store in an airtight container until you need them. 



Pipe the cake batter into the eggshells and bake in the oven for about 15-18 minutes until cooked. The cake batter will overflow as there is not much room for the cake to expand. If you underfill the eggshells, you won't get a full egg shaped cake but a half egg. Remove the excess cake gently and wipe the eggshells with a damp towel. I cracked a few eggs doing this so it was a good thing I had extra! I also have a lot of excess cake which is good for making cake pops.


I'm sharing this with a few blog challenges

We Should Cocoa founded by Choclette from Chocolate Log Blog and hosted by Rachel from Rachel Cotterill. The theme this month is Easter.


Treat Petite hosted by Stuart from Cakeyboi and Kat from the Baking Explorer. The theme this month is 'Spring into Easter' and these are perfect for Easter.


The Biscuit Barrel Challenge hosted by Laura from I'd Much Rather Bake Than... has the theme of 'fun' this month. These were really fun to make and especially fun to watch people's reactions on receiving the cake and eating them as you crack the eggs open to reveal cake inside.


Calendar Cakes hosted by Rachel from Dolly Bakes. The theme this month is Easter Bakes.

Made with Love Mondays hosted by Javelin Warrior where the idea is to make everything from scratch.


Easter Bake & Make Competition hosted by Ruth from The Pink Whisk and Two Little Fleas 



 


 Scrunch up a small piece of foil to use as a base to support the egg shells 

 Fill up to about 3/4 full of cake batter 

 Don't worry if they look like this when they come out of the oven! Just peel away the excess cake and wipe the shells with a damp towel 

 How cute are these? 

 Here's what the cake looks like once you've peeled the shell 


 They make great gifts for Easter - I also saved up egg cartons in addition to the eggshells and decorated them with Easter stickers and easter chicks and bunnies. You can also paint the eggshells. 

 I also made some lemon cupcakes with the extra batter. I spread some chocolate cream cheese on top and sprinkled over some green coconut 'grass' (leftover from my minecraft cake) and topped it with mini eggs. 





Monday, 14 April 2014

Chocolate Easter Egg Nests


This is a really quick and easy no bake treat for Easter. I love eating these but have never made my own so decided to give it a go this year. It's cornflakes set in melted chocolate, golden syrup and butter and topped with mini eggs. They look really cute especially in colourful cases. I've made 3 batches of these already and may make more for Easter.

I'm sending this to The Biscuit Barrel Challenge hosted by Laura from I'd Much Rather Bake Than... which has the theme of 'fun' this month. These are really fun to make and eat and the kids can join in the fun of making them. 


I'm also sending this to Treat Petite hosted by Stuart from Cakeyboi and Kat from the Baking Explorer.
The theme this month is 'Spring into Easter' and these definitely scream Easter.


And to Calendar Cakes hosted by Rachel from Dolly Bakes. The theme this month is Easter Bakes.


It's also perfect for Dead Easy Desserts created by Sarah from Maison Cupcake and hosted by Michelle from Utterly Scrummy Food For Families. These no bake treats are ready in under 30 minutes excluding chilling time. 




 cornflakes, golden syrup, chocolate, mini eggs, butter 

 mix the cornflakes into the melted chocolate mixture 

 Place into fairy cake cases and top with 3 mini eggs 

 Set in the fridge for a few hours or overnight 



Recipe from BBC Food recipes 

200g chocolate
2 tablespoons golden syrup
50g butter
75g cornflakes
36 mini eggs

  • Line a 12-hole fairy cake tin with paper cases.
  • Melt the chocolate, golden syrup and butter in a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water.
  • Allow to cool slightly. 
  • Stir in the cornflakes until it's completely coated in the chocolate mixture.
  • Divide the mixture between the paper cases and press 3 chocolate eggs into the centre of each nest. Chill in the fridge for 1 hour or overnight until set.


Sunday, 13 April 2014

Chorizo and Manchego Cheese Hot Cross Buns


When I was brainstorming ideas for Stork's Hot Cross Bun challenge, J came up with this chorizo and manchego cheese combination. As my savoury hot cross buns were a surprising succes, I decided to give these a go as well and we both agree that this is much better. The bread is soft with a lovely crumb texture and the chorizo really gives it an added depth of taste and flavour. The manchego cheese is quite mild and you could probably get away with a stronger cheese like cheddar which I am planning to try next week. I tried making the cross out of grated cheese which worked a bit better than melted cheese piped on to the buns. 

I'm sending this to The Biscuit Barrel Challenge hosted by Laura from I'd Much Rather Bake Than... which has the theme of 'fun' this month. These were fun to create and tasted absolutely delicious.


I'm also sending this to Treat Petite hosted by Stuart from Cakeyboi and Kat from the Baking Explorer. The theme this month is 'Spring into Easter' and these are perfect to serve at Easter breakfast or brunch.


And to the Easter Bake & Make Competition hosted by Ruth from The Pink Whisk and Two Little Fleas 


And Calendar Cakes hosted by Rachel from Dolly Bakes. The theme this month is Easter Bakes.

 paprika, white bread flour, butter, chorizo sausage, manchego cheese, yeast 

 adding grated cheese and cooked chorizo 

 before proofing 

 ready to bake 

 add the grated cheese after baking for about 10 minutes 

 fresh from the oven 




 delicious served warm with butter 

An original recipe by bakingaddict

1 cup warm water
7g dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
450g strong white bread flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons paprika
75g butter, melted
1 egg
130g cubed chorizo sausage
1 teaspoon paprika
100g manchego cheese, grated + extra to create the cross on top

For the egg wash
1 egg
1 tablespoon water

  • Start by placing warm water in a jug. Add the yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar and set aside for at least 10-15 minutes. It will become frothy when it's ready. 
  • Lightly pan fry the Chorizo cubes with 1 teaspoon of paprika and allow to cool slightly. 
  • In an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, mix the flour, sea salt, paprika, butter and egg.
  • Add in the fried chorizo and grated cheese and continue mixing.
  • Stir in the yeast mixture. 
  • Knead the dough until firm and smooth. 
  • Place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film.
  • Leave in a warm place for 1-2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size (preferably overnight).
  • Punch the risen dough and knead for a few minutes.
  • Divide into 12 even pieces (I weighed the dough then divided by 12)
  • Place on a baking tray spaced apart and cover with cling film that has been sprayed with cooking oil or non stick spray. 
  • Leave for about 30 minutes or so until the dough has risen further.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C. 
  • Using a pair of kitchen scissors, make a small 'x' shaped cut on top of each bun.
  • Brush with egg wash and then bake for about 10 minutes.
  • Take the buns out of the oven and sprinkle grated cheese on top in the shape of an 'x'. 
  • Return to the oven and continue baking for a further 10 - 15 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. 
  • Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack or eat warm straight from the oven with some butter. 

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Chocolate Chip Cookies made from Leftover Chocolate Frosting


I had a lot of leftover chocolate frosting from making the Minecraft Birthday Cake and a Giant Kinder Bueno Cupcake so I got to thinking what I could do with it. I didn't feel like making more cupcakes and I remembered making cookies from leftover lemon frosting previously. I decided to do the same and make chocolate chip cookies! I had to make up the recipe proportions but essentially you add a similar but lesser amount of flour to your icing (otherwise the cookie will  be too doughy), an egg and some chocolate chips and voila - delicious homemade chocolate chip cookies. These cookies were really crispy and packed full of chocolate flavour (the icing had melted chocolate in it). It was difficult to stop at just one and everyone who tried it really enjoyed it. 

I'm sending this to The Biscuit Barrel Challenge hosted by Laura from I'd Much Rather Bake Than... which has the theme of 'fun' this month. Chocolate chip cookies are definitely fun anytime of the day and for any age!


I'm also sending this to No Waste Food Challenge hosted by Jibber JabberUK and Elizabeth from Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary.




 leftover chocolate frosting (this is only 1/2 of it!), an egg, flour and chocolate chips 

 adding chocolate chips 

 ready to bake 

 delicious!

An original recipe by bakingaddict

636g leftover chocolate frosting
500g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
200g chocolate chips

  • Preheat the oven to 180C.
  • If your frosting has been in the fridge like mine then place it in the microwave for 10 seconds just to soften it.
  • Place into an electric mixer and beat for a few minutes until smooth.
  • Add in egg then flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda.
  • Finally stir in the chocolate chips.
  • Place small ice cream scoops of dough spaced apart on a baking tray and bake for approximately 8-10 minutes or until its brown around the edges.
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the tray before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.