Monday, 20 March 2017

Amaretto Sour Bundt Cake

Amaretto Sour Bundt Cake
There's no place like home... So I tapped my heels together and made a sparkly little cocktail bundt to take to my friend's house! My challenge was the classic Amaretto sour. That warming mix of almonds, with the sharp citrus fruits; it's just scrumptious!

As well as being soaked in Amaretto, I added some ground almonds in place of all the flour, which makes a moist cake with almost a frangipane-like texture. This one was actually a gluten free version, which can easily be made by substituting the plain flour for Dove's farm plain flour. The only change I'd recommend to your normal baking is to use a tin with fewer nooks and crannies, as the cake itself is a bit softer, but just as delicious.

Cake:
  • 225g butter
  • 450g golden caster sugar
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 300g Homepride plain flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 250ml plain low fat lemon yoghurt 
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 100ml Amaretto
Topping:
  • 300g icing sugar
  • More Amaretto 
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • GlacĂ© cherries
  • Red cake glitter (optional)
  • Segments of orange
  • Cocktail umbrellas (essential)
Method:
  1. Preheat the oven to gas 3/160 c
  2. Prepare a regular sized bundt tin - 2.4l, 10 cup, 10 inch with Cake Release/melted butter and dust with flour.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. 
  5. In a separate bowl, measure out the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and ground almonds.
  6. Pour the yoghurt into a jug, and add the Amaretto, vanilla extract and lemon zest.
  7. Stir in a third of the flour mix followed by half the yoghurt. Repeat this until everything is combined. 
  8. Give everything a quick mix on a low speed for about 10 seconds.
  9. Pour the mix into your prepared tin. 
  10. Bake in the centre of the oven for about 1 hour 15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. 
  11. Leave the cake to cool for ten minutes before removing from the tin.
  12. When completely cool, add the orange juice to the icing sugar, and mix with enough Amaretto to make a runny icing. You can use a bit of water if you like.
  13. Tip it over your cake and let it drip down. 
  14. Decorate with glacĂ© cherries rolled in red cake glitter, segments of orange, and my fave naff umbrellas. 
Bloggers: Please respect the fact I am sharing my own ideas and basic recipe. Blood, sweat and many tears have gone into getting this right, so you may enjoy a perfect bundt. If you wish to re-blog a recipe from these variations, please credit my blog and link to this original post rather than pasting the recipe on your own page.

Too Good to be Gluten Free Pie Review

Too Good to be Gluten Free Pies
My tame taste tester has been at it again. This time, I've had her trying pies of the gluten free variety for National Pie Week. Here's what she had to say for her little self.

I pride myself on being a proper Northern bird, which, amongst other things, means I LOVE a pie; in fact I believe that most food can be improved by the addition of a pastry crust. So when Rach asked if I would like to try some pies, I was keen to get involved. 
Too Good to be Gluten Free Pies

Too Good to be Gluten Free make a great variety of gluten free products including quiches, pies and sweet treats. We were sent the following pies:
  • Slow cooked steak and ale
  • Red Thai chicken and cauliflower
  • Kale and Stilton open top pie

The steak and chicken pies were ear marked for a big Sunday feast, which I served with chips and peas. The steak was soft and tasty, perfect with a dollop of gravy and chunky chips. The Thai chicken pie was perfectly spicy, filled with tender chicken. The pastry was deliciously short and tasty, and I was very impressed. Needless to say they were demolished in record time!

I cooked the cauliflower, kale and Stilton pie at the same time and took it to work the following day for lunch with a salad. This was my personal favourite, strong Stilton flavour and lovely veg, it was filling, and felt like a real treat. 

I really enjoyed these pies and would recommend them to anyone, they are a nice size so you don't need to feel bad about eating a whole one to yourself! We were very excited to see them in our local supermarket the other week, and I have now got my eye on the dark chocolate and salted caramel tart, droooool!


Too Good to be Gluten Free Pies
Disclaimer: I was not paid for this post. Too Good To Be Gluten Free sent Lee some pies to test free of charge.

Paloma Bundt Cake

Paloma Bundt Cake
I can't make the same cake twice. It's boring. What's the point? I like my baking to be exciting, and a little bit terrifying. I almost like looking through the oven door and thinking 'have I pushed it too far this time?' It's never happened yet, but you never know. 

On Saturday we were going to our friends' for dinner, and it was declared that there would be a Mexican theme. The obvious choice would be a Margarita bundt, however, it had been done already, and was therefore dead to me. A bit of research geekery later, and it turns out that the most popular cocktail in Mexico is a Paloma (meaning Dove, not the ginger singer). 

A Paloma is predominantly made form tequila, grapefruit juice, and lime, which are perfect for putting into a cake. I split them out to give the flavours some depth, which got a pretty good reaction from my fellow party-goers. 

It works a bit like this; tequila and lime flavoured cake, the first layer of icing would be made from pink grapefruit juice with a shot of tequila, but the thicker green icing is made from neat lime juice. This means you get a taste sensation with every bite.

Cake:
  • 225g butter
  • 450g golden caster sugar
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 350g Homepride plain flour 
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 250ml low fat lemon yoghurt
  • Zest and juice of a large lime
  • 5 tbsp Tequila

White icing:
  • 300g icing sugar 
  • 3 tbsp Tequila
  • Grapefruit juice
Green icing:
  • 200g icing sugar
  • Lime juice
  • Green food colouring gel
  • The naffest of naff foil umbrellas
  • Lime and grapefruit segments

Method:
  1. Preheat the oven to gas 3/160 c
  2. Prepare a regular sized bundt tin - 2.4l, 10 cup, 10 inch with melted butter and dust with flour.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. 
  5. In a separate bowl, measure out the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt and ginger.
  6. Pour the yoghurt into a jug, and add the Tequila and the lemon zest and juice.
  7. Sift in a third of the flour mix followed by half the yoghurt. Repeat this until everything is combined. 
  8. Give everything a quick mix on a low speed for about 10 seconds.
  9. Pour the mix into your prepared tin. 
  10. Bake in the centre of the oven for about 1 hour 15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. 
  11. Leave the cake to cool for ten minutes before removing from the tin.
  12. When completely cool, make the white icing by mixing the icing sugar with 3 tbsp Tequila and enough pink grapefruit juice to make a runny icing (must be strained if it has bits - mine did!)
  13. Tip it all over the cake.
  14. Leave it for about 30 mins.
  15. Make the green icing by mixing the icing sugar enough lime juice to make a thick icing, still runny enough to fall off a spoon.
  16. Add a little green food dye. 
  17. Spoon over in a zigzag manner, or pop it in a squeezy bottle for a bit more control.
  18. Decorate with citrus segments and whatever cocktail naffness you can get your mitts on. 



Bloggers: Please respect the fact I am sharing my own ideas and basic recipe. Blood, sweat and many tears have gone into getting this right, so you may enjoy a perfect bundt. If you wish to re-blog a recipe from these variations, please credit my blog and link to this original post rather than pasting the recipe on your own page.
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