Surprise Oreo Cupcakes

Today I’ve got a delicious Sunday treat for you all. My sister and I have always been drawn to Oreo cupcakes when we pass the cake stands in London. There’s just something so satisfying about biscuits in cake form – it’s like two treats for the price of one!

We followed this BBC Good Food recipe and they turned out brilliantly. These cupcakes are essentially wonderfully rich and light chocolate cupcakes, with Oreo frosting and a surprise biscuit at the bottom.

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Makes: 15 cupcakes. Baking time: 20-25 minutes. 

YOU WILL NEED

FOR THE CUPCAKES:

  • 200g plain flour
  • 40 g cocoa powder
  • 280g caster sugar
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 80g butter
  • 240ml whole milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 15 Oreo biscuits

FOR THE FROSTING:

  • 100g butter
  • 200g icing sugar
  • 6 Oreo biscuits

TO MAKE

THE CUPCAKES:

Preheat the oven to 170C/160 fan. Place half an Oreo in each muffin case with the cream facing upwards.

Mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and butter until combined. In a jug whisk the milk, eggs and vanilla extract. Gradually add to the mixture and mix until smooth.

Bake for 20-25 minutes.

THE FROSTING:

In a bag, smash up 6 Oreos.

Mix the butter and sugar until you have buttercream. Gently fold in the Oreo crumbs.

When the cakes are cool, ice and enjoy!

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Homemade Tropical Granola

I love granola. I love it on yoghurt, I love it on smoothie bowls and I love it straight out of the packet. Those little nutty clusters are just so satisfyingly crunchy and sweet.

The problem with granola is it’s usually absolutely filled with sugar. It also tends to be incredibly expensive. So, to crack both problems I have a delicious homemade recipe for you.

Granola is one of the simplest things to whip up, it requires only basic equipment and it’s so customisable. One of my all-time favourite granolas is Sainsbury’s tropical granola, with coconut and dried pineapple chunks (and a ridiculous amount of sugar). This is my sugar-free recreation, which tastes just as incredible! As I said though, anything goes with granola – so add and remove whatever you feel like.

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YOU WILL NEED:

  • 3 cups plain rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup flaked almonds
  • 3/4 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups mixed seeds
  • 2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 cup dried pineapple
  • Generous pinch of salt

TO MAKE:

Preheat your oven to 180C.

Place everything but the pineapple into a large mixing bowl and mix really well.

Put the mixture into a tray (with sides) lined with baking parchment.

Bake for about 30 mins (or until golden brown) while mixing every 5 mins, so it doesn’t turn into one enormous granola bar. Add the dried pineapple two minutes before you take it out of the oven.

Remove, and leave to crisp up. Enjoy when it’s super crunchy!

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Homemade Christmas Gingerbread

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Happy Christmas Eve, everyone! This post is, of course, as festive as they come (even though it’s a bit of an embarrassing contrast to my last post about detoxing and wellness). Today I’m going to share with you a homemade Christmas gingerbread recipe, with all the butter, all the sugar and all the treacle.

This is a recipe that my sister and I found after trawling the internet and it’s a pretty good one. Warning, the dough is very oily because of the melted butter, but wait for it to cool before you start cutting your shapes and try not to use too much flour and you’ll be fine. It also makes the entire house smell amazing. Perfect to whip up just before the celebrations begin tomorrow!

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Makes: Roughly 20 gingerbread shapes. Baking time: 10-15 minutes.

YOU WILL NEED

  • 75g light brown soft sugar
  • 2tbsp golden syrup
  • 1tbsp black treacle
  • 1tbsp water
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1tsp ground ginger
  • 95g block butter
  • 1/2tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 225g plain flour

TO MAKE

Put the sugar, golden syrup, treacle, water, cinnamon, ginger and butter in a pan and melt over a low heat.

Mix the bicarbonate of soda in as it’s melting.

Sift the flour and add to the mixture, mixing in well.

Leave the mixture to cool and roll it out to 3mm thick. Cut your shapes!

Bake for 10-15 minutes (keep an eye on it).

Leave the gingerbread to cool and ice. We used a simple water icing but do whatever you feel like!

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Gingerbread Cupcakes with Toffee Frosting

The tree has gone up and everyone is getting into the festive spirit, so it seemed only right to whip up some Christmassy goodies. This time, my sister and I decided to have a go at gingerbread cupcakes with toffee frosting, which is one of Tanya Burr’s recipes and her video can be seen here.

I wouldn’t normally bake from a YouTube video, I much prefer to have a recipe in front of me, but my sister had made them before and persuaded me. These cupcakes are so delicious, and so easy to make! We bumped up the original measurements to make 16 cupcakes.

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Makes: 16 cupcakes. Baking time: around 15 minutes. 

YOU WILL NEED

FOR THE CUPCAKES:

  • 200g butter
  • 200g soft brown sugar
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 4 eggs

FOR THE FROSTING:

  • 200g butter
  • 50g soft brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 200g icing sugar (plus extra)

TO MAKE

THE CUPCAKES:

Preheat your oven to 180C.

Cream together 200g butter and 200g sugar, then add 200g of self-raising flour and 1 teaspoon each of cinnamon and ginger. Mix together well. Crack in 4 eggs and mix.

Put the mixture into cupcake cases and put in the oven. Bake for around 15 minutes but keep an eye on them. Leave them to cool.

THE FROSTING:

To make the toffee syrup, melt 50g butter and 50g brown sugar over a low heat, then add 2 tablespoons milk. Leave to cool.

Mix together 150g butter and 200g icing sugar. Pour the cooled syrup into the mixture and combine.

The syrup will make the mixture sloppy, so keep adding icing sugar until it is stiff and ready to pipe (this might be quite a lot!).

When the cupcakes are cool, ice and decorate!

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Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookies

As the winter nights are drawing in, am I the only one who has started craving comfort food? There is nothing better than a plate of these deliciously gooey cookies by the fire with a hot drink on a Sunday evening and they are super simple to make.

As always when my sister and I suddenly feel the need to bake, we turn to the trusty Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook. It has so many of our favourite bakes in it, from red velvet cupcakes to sugar cookies and chocolate brownies. These chocolate chip cookies are no exception, although we like to use chunks of chocolate instead of actual chocolate chips and we use white and milk to make them a bit more interesting. We also halved the recipe from 24 cookies to 12, because who needs 24 cookies for a quiet Sunday?!

THE HUMMINGBIRD BAKERY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

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Makes: 12 cookies. Baking time: 10-15 minutes. 

YOU WILL NEED:

  • 112g salted butter, at room temperature
  • 175g soft light brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 200g plain flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 100g of white and milk, roughly chopped
  • 2 baking trays, lined with greaseproof paper

TO MAKE:

Preheat the oven to 170C (325F) Gas 3.

Put the butter and sugar in a freestanding electric mixer with paddle attachment (or use an electric whisk) and cream until light and fluffy. Add the egg and mix well. Turn the mixer to a slow speed to add the vanilla extract.

Add the flour and bicarbonate of soda and mix until a smooth dough as formed. Stir in the chopped chocolate until evenly dispersed.

Arrange 6 equal amounts of cookie dough onto each tray and make sure there is enough room for them to spread (because they will!). Bake for about 10 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and the cookies are quite flat.

Leave the cookies to cool before turning out onto a wire cooling rack to cool completely. If you can’t wait, the cookies are absolutely delicious warm with the chocolate still slightly melted!

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