#Recipe: Mini Victoria Sandwich

I haven’t baked anything new in ages and whilst a Victoria Sandwich is not a new bake, I’d not tried this Weight Watchers recipe for mini versions.  I’m still persisting with the weight loss plan but I still like to enjoy my cake!  There’s a vast array of recipes in the WW app that I subscribe so I’m not short of inspiration…just time!

What you need:

Makes 15-20 depending upon mould size

110g low fat spread (I used Clover lighter)
110g caster sugar
2 medium eggs, beaten
1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
110g white self raising flour, sifted
60g jam, strawberry or raspberry
1 tsp heaped icing sugar, sifted

 

What you do:

  • Preheat your oven to 180ºc.
  • Beat together the spread and sugar until smooth.
  • Beat in the egg a little at a time with the vanilla.
  • Fold in the flour.
  • Spoon the mixture into a nonstick mini muffin mould and bake for 15–18 minutes until golden and springy to the touch.  It’s helpful to spray the mould with a little frylight.
  • Cool in the mould for 10 minutes, then loosen the cakes and remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • When the cakes are cold, slice in half and fill with jam.
  • Dust with the icing sugar and serve with a nice cup of tea…or coffee 😉

These were so light and fluffy and just enough to satisfy the cake craving and only 3 Weight Watchers points per cake…yum!

Until next time…Happy Baking!

Recipe Post: Peach, Vanilla and Poppy Seed Scones

Here I have for you another tried and tested recipe from the lovely National Trust Book of Scones. According to the book, these are a favourite of Grey’s Court in Oxfordshire.  I’ve not been here myself but their scone recipe is lovely!

I still haven’t quite managed the art of getting the right thickness of scone, so, more testing is required – shame!

Perfect for Summer afternoon tea, don’t worry if you don’t have fresh peaches, I used tinned and the scones were just fine!

 

 

 

What you need:

Makes 10

500g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
100g caster sugar
125g butter, cubed
3 fresh peaches, roughly chopped
1 tsp poppy seeds
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg, beaten
100 ml milk

What you do:

  • Preheat your oven to 190°c and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  • Sift the flour, baking powder and sugar into a mixing bowl, and then, using your fingertips, rub in the butter until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
  • Stir in the chopped peaches, poppy seeds and vanilla.
  • Add the egg and enough milk to make a soft dough.
  • Lightly flour your work surface and turn out the mixture.
  • Roll to about 4cm thick and stamp out the scones using a 7cm round cutter.
  • Use your scraps for re-rolling and cutting out some more! 😉
  • Place on your baking sheet and brush the tops with milk.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

As suggested, I served with apricot jam and clotted cream – jam on first!

Until next time….Happy Baking!

Recipe Post: Old School Chocolate Tarmac / Chocolate Concrete / Chocolate Crunch

I think this old school cake has a different name depending on where you went to school and when.  I know it as Chocolate Tarmac, or just plain old Tarmac.  If you’ve not experienced this cake before then you’ve missed out.  The only way I can describe it like a chocolate shortbread but less biscuit like, and more cake like – great description huh!!

What you need:

1 greased and lined 8″ sandwich tin
200g plain flour
200g granulated sugar
50g cocoa powder (don’t be tempted to use hot chocolate powder)
100g butter

 

 

What you do:

  • Preheat your oven to 180°c.
  • In a mixing bowl mix the flour, sugar and cocoa.
  • Melt the butter (either on a hob or in microwave) and add to your dry ingredients.
  • Using your fingers rub in the butter until you have a crumble consistency.
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and pat it down so it becomes compacted.
  • Bake for 20 mins.
  • Sprinkle on a little extra sugar, if required, straight out of the oven.

Serve as a dessert à la school with chocolate or pink custard or on its own with a nice cup of tea!

Not gonna lie this is the one of the best things I’ve baked in flippin’ ages and got the thumbs up from my overly cake fussy daughter!

Do you remember having this at school? If so, what did you call it? 

Until next time…Happy Baking!

Novice Baker – Going Forward

You may or may not have realised that my novice baker posts have slowed down of late, this is somewhat due to lack of baking audience (otherwise known as guinea pigs..sorry I mean eaters) but also because I started Weight Watchers on the 6th February.  This year I’m really committed to losing a considerable amount of weight (at the point of posting I’ve lost 11lbs in 4 weeks), obviously this means cutting out the rubbish, being more aware of what I’m eating and portion size and so cake has (mostly) had to go.

However, I’ve invested a lot of time in my Novice Baker posts to date and also money on some new equipment and I still have a cupboard full of baking necessities which need to be used up and honestly I don’t want to give up on a hobby I’ve come to enjoy this past couple of years.  So…how do I move forward?

I suppose the main thing is to cut back on the sugar and the fat so I’m going to need to find some recipes that are basically lower in these ingredients and and ultimately test if the substitutes can taste as good as the real thing.

Can the low calorie option (right) ever taste as good as the classic (left)?

So that’s gonna be my new challenge for this year, find some new recipes and see how they work out.  Unfortunately Weight Watchers don’t have a dedicated baking recipe book so I’ll need to find them from other sources.  They do though, have a handy app if you’re on the plan, so I’ll probably start there.  Hopefully, you’ll still find these baking posts interesting and entertaining.

If you have any recommendations or have tried making low fat or low sugar cakes, do let me know 🙂

Double Chocolate Muffins

I’d seen this recipe over at Claire’s blog some time ago and I’d wanted to have a go and now that I have my super duper silicone muffin tray I had a go.  I used half of the measurements below which comfortably made 6 muffins.

What you need:

375g self-raising flourimg_2620
1 tsp baking powder
25g cocoa powder
175g caster sugar
200g chocolate chips or chopped up regular chocolate
(I ended up using half chips and half chopped up Wispa bites)
175ml milk – semi skimmed works fine
175ml vegetable oil
2 eggs

What you do:

  • Preheat your oven to 190°c and line a muffin with paper case if you don’t have a silicone tray.
  • If you’re using regular chocolate, chop it up.
  • Sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder into a bowl.  Add your chocolate chunks and the sugar to the bowl. In a separate bowl or jug, whisk the eggs, milk and oil together.
  • Pour the wet mixture into the dry and mix with a metal spoon until combined.double-chocolate-muffins
  • Bake for approx. 20-25 minutes.
  • Leave to cool on a wire rack.double-chocolate-muffins

I did slightly over bake mine so were best eaten on the day of baking as they were a tadge dry but yummy on the same day 🙂

double-chocolate-muffins

Until next time…Happy Baking!