It’s taken me the whole month to get round to it. Which is quite funny seeing as I was chomping at the bit to find out the letter of the month on the 1st of March. Busy month.
So I chose a Walnut Truffle cake using Mascarpone cheese. Recipe again is a Dan Lepard recipe from the newspaper and can be found online here.
Quite an interesting recipe which requires blitzing walnuts, sugar and cocoa.
Add in mascarpone, eggs and vanilla and melted chocolate to get a very liquid mix.
I used all dark chocolate rather than diluting it with white chocolate so it was intense and deep. Just what I like in a chocolate cake.
Hoewever, I got a little impatient waiting for it to cool completely before taking out of the tin and did a little exploratory pushing up of the base, but WHOOPS!!! the base tips up and out falls the cake. Noooooooooooooooo!
What a mess…
What a glorious chocolatey mess….. all the better to eat it all up!
I will be making this again – but listening to Dan next time when he says “leave to cool in the tin completely!”
So here is my entry for the Alphabakes blog challenge for February. The aim is to bake something with an ingredient that begins with the letter L …………. I have chosen Lemons.
I did say that I was going to give myself an extra challenge to make decorated cookies each month representing the chosen ingredients to practice my decorating skills. Well, I realised with Lemons I could combine the two and I decided to make lemony biscuits in the shape of lemon segments decorated with lemon icing. The inspiration came from a picture I saw on the web somewhere of biscuits decorated to look like slices of lime to go with cocktail cookies (here actually). However, I soon realised there was a bit of a discrepancy between what was in my head and what I could actually achieve with my current decorating and piping skills, but then that’s the aim of this and these were my first ever flood iced and decorated cookies and I now know how I would do them better next time.
I chose to adapt a butter biscuit recipe from the Nigella Domestic Goddess book. I decided to substitute the vanilla extract for lemon juice and zest. I have only done half the recipe amounts too but tried to make them quite lemony.
85g unsalted butter
100g caster sugar
1 tsp Lemon juice and zest of 1 lemon
200g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
Cream butter and sugar together and beat in the eggs and lemon juice/zest. Add flour, baking powder and salt and mix to a dough. Put to rest in clingfilm in the fridge for 1 hour. I cut out circles and semi-circles and some free hand lemons. Bake at 160C fan oven for 12 minutes.
Once cool I used royal icing to outline the lemon segments and then some Lemon flood icing to fill (I used glace icing so I could use the remaining lemon juice to make the icing lovely and lemony).
I then added royal icing piping detail in yellow or white. I have realised that with piping I need to use a nozzle in order to get a consistent line. I know you can just snip the end of a hand-made baking parchment piping bag but I find that it gets bigger and squarer as I go along. I only have 1 icing nozzle and therefore had to use the no-nozzle method for the white icing, hence the inconsistency in my piping.
I have decided to take part in a blogging challenge. The AlphaBakes challenge hosted by The more than occasional baker and Caroline Makes. A monthly challenge where the aim is to bake with an ingredient that starts with the random alphabet letter chosen for that month. A random letter generator will give us our letter of the month with which we have to bake. Oohhh excitement.
The letter chosen for the month of February is the letter L.
Lemon is the obvious ingredient that springs out at me, and although I feel I should challenge myself with a more exciting ingredient however, I do love lemon bakes; lemon cakes, lemon biscuits, lemon tarts… so why not indulge. To keep up my cake decorating practice I am going to give myself an extra challenge to bake and decorate cookies to represent the special ingredient.