Crumbly, buttery shortbread, rich with toasty pecan and maple flavours. Who doesn’t want that with their morning coffee? Did I mention that I’ve dipped them in chocolate for good measure? If these don’t perk up your day I’m not sure what will! Ingredients makes 20ish […]
Tag: maple syrup
What better Autumn teatime treat could there be than a slice of sweetly spiced loaf cake baked with butternut squash and sweet dried apricots?
This cake is deliciously moist (sorry, I don’t have another word for it!) and a little like a fruitier carrot cake. It’s got great texture and the rich creamy maple cream cheese frosting finishes it off beautifully. The recipe is really quick to throw together so you can have one of these baking in the oven in no time.
I’ve used oil rather than butter in this because at this end of the year it’s pretty much impossible to persuade butter to become room temperature in my kitchen, so oil makes for a nice easy shortcut!
100ml vegetable oil
40g maple syrup, something with plenty of flavour
pinch of salt
150g plain flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
150g grated butternut squash
75g dried apricots, chopped
35g pistachios, roughly chopped
120g full fat cream cheese
50g icing sugar
1 tbsp maple syrup
Pre-heat the oven to 180°c and grease and line a loaf tin. Beat together the oil, sugar, maple syrup and salt for a minute or two and then add the eggs. Beat until the mixture becomes a little foamy. Sift the flour, raising agents and spices into this mixture and then beat it again to leave you with a nice smooth batter. Briefly beat in the grated squash, chopped apricots and chopped pistachios before pouring the batter into the prepared tin. Bake the loaf for 50 minutes, covering the top with foil if it gets a little too brown.
Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes and then turn it out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Make the frosting by beating together the butter and cream cheese until they are well blended. Add the icing sugar and maple syrup and beat until you have a thick fluffy frosting. Spread this over the top of the cake and then pop it in the fridge to firm up a little before slicing.
When I was younger I would generally end up dodging breakfast, much to my mothers frustration I should imagine. I always felt that the extra 15 minutes in bed was far more preferable! I’m quite different now and get positively excited about the first meal […]
So I’m on a mission to use up all the bits and bobs that are left in my pantry before our imminent move back to the UK. That’s how this epic breakfast treat occurred.
I had half a jar of malt extract (I still need to use the rest of that actually!) and various bags of nuts, none of which had much left in them. There was also a little bit of self-raising flour in there, which I hardly ever use because generally I prefer to use plain flour and baking powder. All things that can be tossed into pancake batter.
These are really light and fluffy and the malt extract gives them lots of rich, almost caramel flavour. I’ll tell you one thing…they really set you up for a day of packing!
30g butter (melted)
3 tbsp malt extract
150g self-raising flour
40g whole wheat flour
1 tbsp baking powder
60g finely chopped mixed nuts (anything you like)
pinch of salt
Whisk together all of the dry ingredients except the nuts in a large mixing bowl. In a separate jug whisk together the milk, eggs, melted butter and malt extract until they are well combined.
Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in about a third of the wet mixture. Mix this together, working from the centre outwards, incorporating a little of the dry mixture at a time. Repeat this until everything is blended together into a thick, smooth batter. Finally fold through the chopped nuts.
Lightly grease a large frying pan and place it over a moderate heat. Pour the batter into the pan to create your pancakes, however big or small you like and cook them for a couple of minutes before flipping them over and cooking them on the other side. Serve hot with butter and a drizzle of maple syrup.
Parsnips should be more than just an accompaniment to your Sunday roast. They should be cake in fact. If it’s good enough for carrots then it’s good enough for parsnips!
This recipe makes a wonderfully moist sponge with a nice amount of spiciness and warmth from the fresh ginger. The parsnips aren’t overwhelming either, they just add sweetness and a subtle hint of ‘rootiness’ (I’m sorry, I tried but I can’t come up with a better adjective than that). It’s similar to it’s carroty cousin but different enough to be worth your while giving it a try. In fact, I think that I might prefer it. I wonder how many slices I have to eat for this to count as one of my five a day…
150g soft light brown sugar
2 medium parsnips (about 250g before peeling and trimming)
1 medium apple (about 130g before peeling and coreing)
1 heaped tablespoon grated fresh ginger
200g plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
Maple cream cheese frosting
50g unsalted buttter
125g cream cheese
125g icing sugar
2 tbsp maple syrup
Pre-heat the oven 180°c and lightly grease and line a couple of sandwich tins.
Beat together the butter, salt and sugar until they are pale and fluffy. Set aside.
Peel and grate the ginger, parsnips and apple.
Beat the eggs into the butter-sugar mixture, one at a time, adding a spoonful of the flour between each addition and beating well.
Sift together the remaining flour and raising agents and stir this into the batter. Very briefly beat in the buttermilk and then fold through the grated parsnip, apple and ginger. Make sure everything is well combined but don’t over-mix the batter.
Divide the mixture evenly between the prepared tins and smooth off the tops. Bake the sponges for 30 minutes, by which time they should be well rise, golden brown with a slight bounce to them.
Leave the sponges to cool on a wire rack.
For the frosting, start by beating together the butter and cream cheese. Mix in the syrup and then beat in the sugar. The frosting should be quite thick and creamy. Spread half of the frosting onto whichever sponge you want to use as the base of the cake and then sandwich the other one on top. Swirl the remaining frosting on top to decorate the cake.
We took a little road trip up to Vermont in October to meet up with a couple of our friends from back home. This nicely coincided with my friend’s birthday. We also realised whilst we were away that we’ve known each other for 25 years, […]