Home Sweet Home- Cookies from The Hummingbird Bakery

I have always loved baking cookies and was keen to try out some of the cookie recipes in the latest Hummingbird Bakery cookbook.  Last week though I had a good excuse as there was a jumble sale in a local village in aid of my son’s old primary school.  There is always a cake stall along with yummy bacon butties and I thought I could bag up the cookies so that people could take them home afterwards.

I chose to bake 3 different recipes: Giant Linzer Cookies, Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cookies and finally Cornflake Crispy Cookies.

The chocolate peanut butter cookies sounded absolutely delicious, as  a huge peanut butter lover (and my daughter is just the same) I was worried that the cookies wouldn’t even get anywhere near the jumble sale. Thankfully I managed to make 20 equal sized cookies with no leftovers!  Flour, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt were sifted together in a bowl.  Then, I creamed butter and sugar together, adding in some crunchy peanut butter. I prefer the Whole Earth peanut butter. It is more expensive but doesn’t have loads of additives or sugar like other peanut butter brands.  Afterwards, I added free range egg and vanilla extract to the mix along with  the dry ingredients.  The mixture formed a dough really quickly. In the Hummingbird recipe you need to add extra caster sugar to roll the dough in before putting the cookies on the baking tray. I decided not to add this extra sugar but just put the cookies straight in the oven.  The smell was absolutely delicious and wafted throughout the house.  The cookies only took between 12 and 15 minutes to bake so definitely one to try again and again!

002
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Next up was the Cornflake Cookies or rather they had to be Cornflake Crispy cookies in our house. I had some Variety packs in my cupboard which needed using up.  My kids always eat the chocolatey and sugary ones first leaving the cornflakes and rice krispies left!  What makes me laugh is my son says these cereals taste “boring” but he used to love them! The recipe called for 80g of cornflakes but as I weighed out the cornflakes I realised I didn’t I wouldn’t have enough!  I decided to get the rice krispies out to make the shortfall. The other missing ingredient was that I needed to add Ovaltine or Horlicks, something else I hadn’t got in the cupboard but managed without!   The cereal was crushed slightly, added to a baking tray with some sugar, salt and some melted butter. This was baked in an oven for 15 minutes so that the crushed flakes would crisp up.  I was hoping I wouldn’t burn them!  While these were crisping up I creamed butter and brown sugar together, then added beaten egg along with vanilla extract. The dry ingredients- flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder and salt were sifted together before everything was combined along with some plain chocolate chips.  Another delicious smelling dough, which made about 25 cookies this time.  I personally don’t like the cookies overcooked and too crunchy so I had to make sure I took them out of the oven after only 12 minutes or so.  They did firm up straightaway though so I hoped they wouldn’t make anyone break their teeth on them!

003
Cornflake Crispy Cookies

My final bake from the Hummingbird Bakery Home Sweet Home recipe book were these giant Linzer cookies.  These are a huge favourite of mine as they remind me of Jammy Dodgers and I make them a lot, varying the shape in the middle.  I use stars and Christmas trees as well, but the heart ones always go down well whatever time of year.  The Linzer cookies recipe in the book shows a picture of the cookies made with a fluted heart cutter.  I decided to use a plain one. My jam was some homemade strawberry jam I had left in the cupboard which sadly was a bit runny.  I also burned a couple of the cookies as the phone rang when they were in the oven.  In the end I decided not to send the cookies along to the Jumble sale but they stayed at home for my family to try out!  They disappeared very quickly but there were only 6 cookies that were suitable to use as the rest got binned!

Giant Linzer Cookies
Giant Linzer Cookies

Finally, I thought I ought to make another batch of cookies to add to the cornflake and the peanut butter cookies.  This time I didn’t use a Hummingbird recipe as most of them involved ingredients I did not have or used nuts.  I didn’t want to have everything containing nuts that I baked!  In the end I looked through another favourite book of mine- Jo Wheatley’s “A Passion For Baking”  and chose to make her Custard Creams.  This was another first for me, I’ve scoffed plenty of shop bought custard creams in my time but never made my own.  I couldn’t wait to try making them myself.

Jo’s recipe made 12 mini custard creams and I chose to use a small square fluted cutter.  The biscuits were made by beating together butter and sugar, then sifting flour, custard powder and cornflour together. The mixture was then combined to make a dough which was put into the fridge to chill for about 20 minutes in some clingfilm.  I used the chilling time to sit down with a cuppa.  The biscuits didn’t take that long in the oven and it gave me time to clear up and make up some custard cream filling. This was icing sugar, butter, custard powder and milk mixed up to make a firm icing.  Jo suggested to pipe the filling onto one half of the cooled biscuits but I spread mine on with a pallette knife hoping it wouldn’t run.  It seemed ok doing it this way but I hoped I wouldn’t make a mess, thankfully they turned out fine.

Custard Creams as made from Jo Wheatley's A Passion For Baking Book.
Custard Creams as made from Jo Wheatley’s A Passion For Baking Book.

I took the cookies all bagged down to the Jumble sale about an hour before it started as everyone was setting up. I just dropped them off there as I had to get back, give everyone lunch and go back out again to my Clandestine Cake Club event.  I don’t know whether the cookies sold, whether they turned out ok or whether whoever bought them liked them or not.  I hope so.

Happy Baking!

Love Sam xx

Overnight Tea Loaf

I’m still excited about the launch of the new Clandestine Cake Club cookbook and can’t praise it enough.  Now I’ve got my copy I can’t wait to try my hand at everything in the book.  It’s difficult to know where to start though as all the recipes look fab.

The pretty pastel retro feel front cover of The Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook
The pretty pastel retro feel front cover of The Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook

I thought I would start with a recipe of a cake that I’d actually been able to taste before as made by it’s creator!  I went for the “Overnight Tea Loaf” on page 66 in the Fruity Cakes section of the book.  The tea loaf recipe was created by Sharon Clarkson who is the organiser for Pudsey and West Leeds CCC.  She brought her cake along for the shoot we did for BBC Look North a week last Friday (more about that here) and another to the Leeds Clandestine Cake Cookbook Book Launch which was last Tuesday. I have written another blogpost about that event, as well.  Sharon has her own blog humbugshouse.wordpress.com  where you can find out about her Fruit loaf recipe, her other delicious bakes and about the Pudsey CCC.

The Overnight Tea Loaf recipe from Sharon Clarkson (Pudsey CCC organiser)
The Overnight Tea Loaf recipe from Sharon Clarkson (Pudsey CCC organiser)

Sharon told me that she varied the dried fruit in the recipe, the first one she made had cranberries in it, the second had dried apricots along with all the other dried fruits like raisins, etc. Her other great tip was to serve the cake with butter or even a wedge of Wensleydale.  As a cheese lover, I was looking forward to eating this with the cake.  However, when I served up the cake later on, my two children slathered their pieces with the last of the Nutella lurking in my baking cupboard! That wasn’t meant to happen!

I have made tea loaves before and likened the tea loaf to the utterly delicious Welsh Bara Brith which I am addicted to. It also brings back special memories of holidays in Wales as well as my four years at teacher training college in Bangor in the early 1990’s.  But being as I have spent half my life in Yorkshire I always make my tea loaves with gold old Yorkshire Tea.  What is more not only is it the only tea I will drink if I have a choice but Yorkshire Tea are sponsoring the Clandestine Cake Club this year!

So, down to the actual cake baking then!  On Sunday afternoon I had been baking a Boston Cream Pie which was not for us at home but wanted something we could have at Sunday teatime or something the kids could have a slice of after school. The fruit loaf ticked all the boxes.

So here’s how it was made:

The mixed dried fruit was left to soak in tea along with demerara and dark muscovado sugars.
The mixed dried fruit was left to soak in tea along with demerara and dark muscovado sugars.
My loaf tin greased and lined.
My loaf tin greased and lined.
All the mixture (fruit, egg and flour) combined. This was a fatless recipe.
All the mixture (fruit, egg and flour) combined. This was a fatless recipe.
Just out of the oven and cooling down after about 50 minutes baking time.
Just out of the oven and cooling down after about 50 minutes baking time.
Sliced up and ready for tea.
Sliced up and ready for tea.
The way it is done in Yorkshire- a slice of Yorkshire Fruit Loaf, with a wedge of Wensleydale, washed down with a steaming hot cuppa of Yorkshire's finest tea!
The way it is done in Yorkshire- a slice of Yorkshire Fruit Loaf, with a wedge of Wensleydale, washed down with a steaming hot cuppa of Yorkshire’s finest tea!

As I am now having to watch my sugar intake, I allowed myself a small slice for tea with my sliver of cheese. It was perfect.

Happy Baking!

Love Sam xx

Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook Book Launch at Waterstones, Leeds- February 19th 2013.

Last Tuesday only 5 days after the official publication of the Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook over 80 members and guests got together at the massive Waterstones on Albion Street in Leeds.  We were there to celebrate the book’s publication, meet and chat with Lynn Hill the Clandestine Cake Club founder and of course to eat cake!

I had already got my copy of the book which arrived on the day of publication and I love it.  I began to recognise lots of familiar names next to the recipes, some of the recipe creators were going to be there with their cakes on the night. As I joined the CCC after the recipes were submitted I had nothing to do with the book’s evolvement but I was just as excited to see it as lots of other CCC members had been talking about the book on Facebook and Twitter.

About 30 or so cakes were brought along to the launch. They were all recipes featured in the book but I had a job deciding which one to pick until I remembered I had always wanted to try one of Rachel McGrath’s famous bundts.  I had heard a lot about Rachel , the organiser for Bolton CCC (aka Dollybakes) who regularly publishes eyecatching and delicious bundt cakes on her blog.  Rachel has three bundt recipes in the book and I was keen to try baking the Raspberry Yoghurt Birthday Bundt for myself.

My version of Rachel McGrath's stunning Raspberry Yoghurt Bundt cake with her original recipe pictured behind!
My version of Rachel McGrath’s stunning Raspberry Yoghurt Bundt cake with her original recipe pictured behind!

I added the optional fresh raspberries to the bundt mixture, although I did not have enough due to my hubby nicking some to stick on his cereal that morning. He wasn’t to know, though, bless him!  I also decided to add drizzled melted white chocolate and more fresh raspberries to the top of the cake instead. I do like the pink buttercream and the white chocolate stars on Rachel’s recipe though.

It was really exciting to go along to the book launch and to meet up with everyone.  We all had some bubbly, elderflower cordial and water for the drivers and after Lynn’s talk we went for the cake. As I was told only that afternoon I had to watch my sugar intake and lose weight, I decided I would try two tiny slices of cake.  We were also given a huge goody bag from Hobbycraft crammed full of crafty and baking items, what a lovely treat!

After seeing the recipe in the book and being a huge Tiramisu lover I went for a slice of Helen Jones’ (aka Baking Aitch)  Tia Maria and Mascapone Cake which is on page 121 in the book.  It was gorgeous and I wished I could dive in and scoff the lot.  The same went for the photogenic showstopper cake that adorns the front cover. Lynn Hill’s very own Pistachio and Lime Cake.  Once again, my tastebuds were in for a treat but I forced myself to stop there.

This is Lynn Hill's Pistachio and Lime Cake as seen on the CCC Book's front cover.  It not only looks fab, it is fab!
This is Lynn Hill’s Pistachio and Lime Cake as seen on the CCC Book’s front cover. It not only looks fab, it is fab!

Everyone was completely bowled over by all the cakes and there was nothing left at the end of the night because as with a regular CCC event you always bring a plastic box to take home some treats!  My kids wanted some of my cake but they were disappointed.

Here are some of the photos I took on the night, unfortunately only having my phone with me a couple of the pictures were a bit blurred.  They do show that we had a brilliant night though!

Two huge tables laden with cake.
Two huge tables laden with cake.
Everyone brought their cakes along and there were drinks all around.
Everyone brought their cakes along and there were drinks all around.
They look too good to eat but they did get eaten!
They look too good to eat but they did get eaten!
There were so many cakes that a second table was brought out. This photo was taken before some more stunning cakes were added to the display,
There were so many cakes that a second table was brought out. This photo was taken before some more stunning cakes were added to the display,
008
Lynn gave a speech before we sampled all the cakes.

#ForeverNigella 23 Boston Cream Pie- Nostalgia

ForeverNigella_Banner_23

Forever Nigella is a Blog Hop Link which was originally thought up by Sarah from http://www.maisoncupcake.com. Sarah has a book published at the moment which is a joy to use.  It is Bake Me I’m Yours – Sweet Bitesize Bakes and is available in all good book shops. Different bloggers take it in turns to hold this monthly Nigella themed event and this month’s Forever Nigella is hosted by Urvashi from The Botanical Baker.  You will remember Urvashi from Series 2 of the Great British Bake Off who created some gorgeous bakes on the programme.

The idea of Forever Nigella is that each month there is a theme.  You bake or make one of Nigella’s recipes either from one of her books or a recipe which is published online but you mustn’t repeat the recipe word for word because of copyright.

So what did I choose for this month’s theme of Nostalgia?  Well, this was a difficult one for me. Lots of Nigella’s recipes conjure up nostalgic feelings for me and it was a difficult decision to choose just one recipe. In the end I plumped for Boston Cream Pie, one of the variations Nigella lists on her Victoria Sponge recipe in her How To Be A Domestic Goddess book.

032
Boston Cream Pie from Nigella’s recipe featured on page 21-22 of How To Be A Domestic Goddess.

Why Boston Cream Pie?  Well nearly 5 years ago I had the opportunity to go to Boston with my hubby for a few days away. It was a very special trip for us as it was the first time we had ever been to the USA and we had always wanted to go to Boston.  My hubby had been on a fear of flying course and I am a nervous flyer so it was a big thing for us. We had managed flights to Europe ok on family holidays and couple breaks but this was the first time we were going long-haul.  It was a brilliant experience for us, we enjoyed ourselves even though we missed our two children who were 10 and 8 at the time. They did have a lovely holiday with their grandma though and we were so excited when we got back to see them!

The Boston Skyline as seen from a catamaran on the way to Salen.
The Boston Skyline as seen from a catamaran on the way to Salen.
This was our view from our hotel bedroom. Completely out of sync, we went to sleep at 8pm straignt after dinner, woke at 3am and couldn’t get back to sleep again. So we watched the sunrise!

As Nigella says in her recipe introduction Boston Cream Pie was invented at the Parker House Hotel in Boston by the pastry chef there at the time in about 1850.  He had had the idea of adding a chocolate glaze to the top of what was originally a Boston Pie which was a custard layer cake. Why it is referred to as a pie and where the cream comes from in the title, I don’t know. The custard and the chocolate icing contains cream though. We did not get to try the famous Boston Cream Pie although the hotel was pointed out to us as we went on a special tour in converted streetcars around the city, I think from what I remember was that we had had lunch in the Cheers Bar and I was full up of burgers and ice cream already! So, remembering I had the recipe somewhere back at home I promised my hubby I would make it for him.

This is the Parker House Hotel in Boston where the Boston Cream Pie was invented.
This is the Parker House Hotel in Boston where the Boston Cream Pie was invented.

Believe it or not this will be the third time I have made this cake and both previous times I wasn’t impressed by my efforts.  However, I was hoping third time lucky. I decided to make the cake and take it into work to share with my work colleagues.  It went down well but it wasn’t very professional looking!

016
My two 9″ sandwich tins were greased and lined.
017
The sponge mixture (like a Victoria Sponge) was spooned into the two tins equally.

… Continue reading

Lemony Lemonade Cake from the Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook

As the organiser of Knaresborough and Ripon Clandestine Cake Club I have been really excited by the publication of the new cookbook.  I was so excited when my copy arrived in the post and I couldn’t wait to see what I could bake first. There are so many recipes that I want to bake that I have decided on one thing: I am going to bake them all!  If you love baking and have a copy of the book, another fellow blogger has set up a Clandestine Cake Club Cake-Along on her blog.  To find out more, click here! I will have a go but I am not promising I can commit to every bake.

The pretty pastel retro feel front cover of The Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook
The pretty pastel retro feel front cover of The Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook

Last Sunday my hubby was out motorracing for the whole day and I was at home with my children. Being teenagers they were doing their own thing and I was catching up with chores. After they were done I wanted to bake so I had a look in my cupboard and then a look in the CCC book to see what I could start off with.

After much umming and ahhing I settled for the “Lemony Lemonade Cake” on page 138.  This recipe was created by Rob Martin one of the members of the Leeds CCC.  He says that the cake is “a fantastic way to use up leftover lemonade, this droolsome, almost pudding like cake is perfect for a party.  Children love it too. If you’re feeling playful, decorate the top with gummy sweets,” 

The recipe called for buttermilk and luckily I had half a carton left in my fridge after our Shrove Tuesday pancakes. This was just enough for the recipe, thankfully.  Surprisingly I had some lemonade left over unopened from Christmas that I’d forgotten about.  The same went for a small packet of Haribo Tangfastic sweets which were lurking in the cupboard. So surprising Robert the sweetie monster hadn’t spotted them!

To make the lemony lemonade cake you had to grease a springform cake tin. I think mine was a little bit bigger than the one specified in the recipe but I hoped it wouldn’t make a difference. I then had to heat some lemonade and the butter in a saucepan until the butter had melted. While this was going on I weighed out plain flour, salt, caster sugar and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl.  Once the butter had melted I tipped this all over the dry mixture in the bowl.  In another bowl, I grated some lemon zest, broke an egg and mixed in buttermilk. This was then combined with the other mixture to make the batter.  Rob Martin mentioned that the batter will be quite runny which mine was.

I don't think I've ever cooked with lemonade before, but here I am heating up lemonade and melting butter together in the pan!
I don’t think I’ve ever cooked with lemonade before, but here I am heating up lemonade and melting butter together in the pan!

As I was distracted when I put the cake into the oven I did not look at the clock at the time. I also completely forgot to set my timer so I was completely clueless to see when the cake would be ready. The recipe said it would take about 40 minutes but I had lost track of all time. I just had to go by intuition!  I did manage to get the skewer to come out clean though or so I hoped.

I left the cake to cool for a while when I went off to walk the dog and then decided to make the icing.  My children by this time were back in or their friends had gone home so I asked them if they wanted to decorate the cake.  They both were keen to have a go so my daughter weighed out and measured the butter and lemonade into the pan to melt.  My son added the lemon juice. He then weighed out some icing sugar. I forgot to remind him to sift it into the bowl but both my children took it in turns to mix the icing up.  They then spotted the sweets and their eyes lit up like flying saucers!  I even saw my son sneak a mini fizzy cola bottle into his mouth! They put the sweets onto the cake quickly then asked if they could have a slice of cake. It was intended for our pudding at dinner time when my hubby got home. I cut a slice to photograph but when my back was turned the piece of cake had slid into my kids’ mouths. I was furious but I couldn’t blame them. I cut myself a small slice and it was lemonade heaven. It melted in the mouth, so yummy.

The finished Lemony Lemonade Cake as decorated by my two children.
The finished Lemony Lemonade Cake as decorated by my two children.

 

The Lemony Lemonade cake cut up ready to be scoffed up!
The Lemony Lemonade cake cut up ready to be scoffed up!

 

This cake appeals to both adults and children alike!

Happy Baking!

Love Sam xx

The Clandestine Cake Club- Being Filmed By BBC Look North

On Friday 15th February Lynn Hill the founder of The Clandestine Cake Club,  a few members from the Leeds club as well as some of the Yorkshire based group organisers all got together and met up at the beautiful Arch Cafe in the centre of Leeds.  The Arch Cafe is situated next to the St. John’s Centre and is near to the Headrow.

The Arch Cafe serves delicious homemade cakes, some of which are recipes featured in the Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook and also serves Yorkshire Tea, amongst other things.  When I arrived it was clear to see that the Arch Cafe was a popular meeting place and all the tables were occupied!  The staff were whizzing in and out of the kitchen serving mouthwatering paninis, what a shame I had already had a jacket potato beforehand! I did enjoy a couple of cups of their coffee though and will be back to sample more of what they have to offer next time I am in Leeds!

The reason being for our meeting was to celebrate the publication of the new Clandestine Cake Club Cookbook and BBC Look North came to film us chatting over cake.  They also wanted to chat to Lynn Hill about how the phenomenon which is the Clandestine Cake Club came about.

As I was fairly local to Leeds and my own Clandestine Cake Club, the Knaresborough and Ripon group is getting off the ground, it was lovely to come along and meet some of my cake club friends and the faces behind some of the recipes in the book!

The cakes all looked fantastic.  I made an orange drizzle cake and iced it with sugarpaste and pink hearts.  It looked nice on the table but I did not like the taste of the sugarpaste.  I was very disappointed in it.  Some of the cakes were less fancy than others but they tasted fabulous.  As we all know at CCC it is not a cake decorating, village show competition,  we simply get together because we like cake.

Soon after we had put the cakes on the table, an area at the back of the cafe was cordoned off so we weren’t disturbed.  Then the lovely presenter Amanda Harper arrived with a friendly and kind cameraman called Daniel (though we heard the name Jo Jo mentioned as well so we do hope we have his name right).  Both Amanda and Daniel were great and put us at our ease.  Daniel filmed the whole cakes and the table, then got us to sit down and chat as we usually do at our gatherings.

Then we had to start eating the cakes which we really enjoyed doing. From chocolate cheesecakes to fruit loaves, to champagne strawberry gateaux and stem ginger cakes we were in our element. Lynn had to be interviewed and she explained how the CCC came about.  Afterwards Duanne and I were interviewed, although I made a complete fool of myself talking about my cake. I felt like a game show hostess describing my cake and I cringed when I watched myself back on TV later that day! I was shaking afterwards and couldn’t hold my coffee cup!

If you would like to find out more about the Clandestine Cake Club then please feel free to visit the website www.clandestinecakeclub.co.uk.  There are now about 170 clubs all over the country and even a few overseas. If there isn’t one up and running in your area, why not contact Lynn Hill to see about starting one up yourself?  I am organiser for the Knaresborough and Ripon CCC and we have regular events roughly once a month, usually on a Saturday afternoon.  Our next one is on March 2nd and we are baking cakes to a Springtime theme.  We meet in “Clandestine” locations in the Knaresborough and Ripon area at present although I am organising some events to include the Harrogate area as well.

Sadly, my phone camera decided to freeze on me so if you want to see any pictures of our Look North experience, my fellow group organisers Sharon from the Pudsey group on her blog humbugshouse.wordpress.com  and Sue from the SpenValley group, please  visit eviesgran.wordpress.com  have also blogged about our experience being on Look North!

My cake- orange drizzle zest cake topped with sugarpaste hearts. The only picture I managed to take thanks to my camera letting me down!
My cake- orange drizzle zest cake topped with sugarpaste hearts. The only picture I managed to take thanks to my camera letting me down!

Jaffa Cake Cupcakes

My son is obsessed with Jaffa Cakes and if I didn’t stop him would happily wolf his way through multi packs of the stuff.  If he is ever with me in the supermarket he always asks if we can have a packet of Jaffa Cakes in the trolley.  I do occasionally treat him but every now and again I wish he liked biscuits that I didn’t like, like Fig Rolls!  Then I wouldn’t be tempted to eat any!

He spotted me looking through my brand new copy of the Hummingbird Bakery’s “Home Sweet Home” recipe book that has only been published a few days.  In the first chapter of the book  which is devoted to Cupcakes, there is a collection of cupcakes based upon traditional biscuit flavours such as Custard Creams and Jammy Dodgers.  These are very involved recipes as they require you to make the mini cookies first, then add them to the cupcakes.  A bit like a two in one treat.

Rob noticed the very first recipe in the book was for Jaffa Cake Cupcakes and although it is possible to make your own Jaffa cakes (something I have not yet attempted) this recipe used ready made mini ones, the sort you get in lunchbox snack packs.  He asked if I could bake some and as we were at home on Sunday afternoon all day while my hubby was out motor racing, I thought well why not?  I asked if he wanted to help me. At first he said yes he would and I was looking forward to some mother-son baking time.  Just as I was looking out the cupcake cases his friend knocked on the door asking if he could play out. That put an end to baking with me but at least he was happy!

The baked cupcakes cooling on the rack. They are plain vanilla ones.
The baked cupcakes cooling on the rack. They are plain vanilla ones.

First, I made some vanilla sponge cupcakes in the usual fashion. This was done in my trusty KitchenAid mixer.  I chose to bake them as the picture in the book suggested, in some gold foil cupcake cases to add a pretty contrast to the chocolate colour.

004
Filling the cupcakes with a spoonful of smooth orange marmalade.

Once the cupcakes had cooled down I started to add the orange marmalade filling. This was done with a cupcake corer which I had bought from my local hardware shop.  I found it a bit fiddly at first but got the hang of it by the time I got to the last one.  The marmalade was some I had left over from last year, a bit too sweet but a good way of using it up.

Leftover chocolate frosting from icing the chocolate jaffa cake cupcakes.
Leftover chocolate frosting from icing the chocolate jaffa cake cupcakes.

The chocolate icing was made by using cocoa powder, icing sugar, butter and milk mixed together. I used my hand mixer to do this and it became quite runny.  It was a bit runny when I tried to iced the cupcakes in the Hummingbird style.  As this made it sloppy I decided to do it my own way and hope that it worked out for the best.  It looked ok but not as professional as the Hummingbird ones. Usually to keep my icing neat on my cupcakes I make to order I pipe it on in a swirl with a star shaped nozzle.

Mini Jaffa Cake cookies, these are Sainsbury's own brand ones which came in a little bag for about £1.
Mini Jaffa Cake cookies, these are Sainsbury’s own brand ones which came in a little bag for about £1.

The recipe made 12 cupcakes but the bag had 22 mini Jaffa cakes in them.  I gave them to my son and his friend to share out.  He said they tasted horrible and weren’t “proper” Jaffa cakes. They werent. they were Sainsbury’s own brand ones, but I thought they were fine.

The finished Jaffa Cake Cupcakes.
The finished Jaffa Cake Cupcakes.

The verdict:  The finished cupcakes looked gorgeous and good enough to eat.  I cut one up and decided to taste a mouthful.  To be honest, even though I have a sweet tooth I found it too rich for me.  The marmalade was very sweet and sickly, the chocolate was too much along with the mini Jaffa cake. The sponge part tasted ok though and I could taste the vanilla flavouring.  My son didn’t like the marmalade either.  He ate his Jaffa cake off the top and licked all the chocolate but left the sponge and marmalade.  What a shame.

One cupcake cut up to show the filling inside.
One cupcake cut up to show the filling inside.

Would I make this recipe again? Sadly, I think not unless I can tweak it a bit to make it less sweet and sickly.

Happy Baking!

Love Sam xx