Strawberry and Pistachio Crumble Cake

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I created this delicious cake because it’s along the same lines as the Lemon and Coconut tea cake I made a few weeks ago πŸ™‚ It’s got the same cake base as this cake but with a fresh strawberry filling and a pistachio crumble topping! So yummy! It’s easy to whip up for an afternoon tea with girlfriends πŸ™‚ Enjoy xx

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Strawberry and Pistachio Crumble Cake

Inspired by Butter Baking.

Ingredients:
For the cake:
1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
3/4 cup caster sugar
90g butter, chopped
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

For the strawberry filling:
500g strawberries
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbs cornflour

For the crumble:
1 1/4 cups plain flour
2/3 cup demerara sugar
80g pistachios
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
110g melted butter

Method:
Pre heat the oven to 160Β°C, grease a 23cm springform pan and line with baking paper.

For the cake, sift the flour into a bowl, add the sugar, then rub the butter into this mixture until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the egg and vanilla to form a soft dough. Press the mixture into the base of the cake tin.

For the crumble, process the pistachios in a food processor until they resemble fine breadcrumbs. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl with a fork until all incorporated. Spread the mixture onto a large baking tray lined with baking paper to about 1cm in thickness. Bake crumble for about 20-25 minutes or until just starting to golden around the edges then remove from oven. Increase the oven temperature to 180Β°C.

For the strawberry filling, hull and quarter the strawberries then mix in the sugar and cornflour until the strawberries are evenly coated. Scatter over the cake batter in the tin.Β Spread the crumble in an even layer over the strawberries in the cake pan and bake for about 25-30 minutes until golden.

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Nutella Brownie

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Last week was a massive baking week for me! I’m baking all the time at the moment. At work, in class and at home! On Tuesday, it was my boyfriend’s birthday. We went out for dinner with a big group of his family and friends and I was on cake duty. For 30 people. So I made 3 cakes! I made a no-bake lemon cheesecake at my boyfriend’s request, which very sadly did not set properly and therefore flopped into a puddle on the plate 😦 …but it still tasted pretty good. I made a lemon curd to mix in with the cream cheese and sugar and finished it with fresh berries on top. I also made this with a gluten free base because we had a few people are gluten intolerant. So I’ll work on getting this cheesecake to set and get back to you πŸ™‚

The next thing I made was a tiramisu! A crowd favourite πŸ™‚ I used frangelico, a hazelnut liqueur, just because that’s what I had in the cupboard! My grandma brought it around to me a few months ago because she didn’t need and I knew I could use it in some sort of dessert πŸ™‚ And the tiramisu was a hit! I even got a praise from an italian saying is was better than his nonna’s tiramisu! What a compliment!

And the third cake I made, is the one I am most proud of. I experimented a little with this one. It’s a white chocolate and raspberry torte. I made a white chocolate mud cake base, a raspberry custard middle and a white chocolate mousse top layer, finished off with fresh raspberries πŸ™‚ This will definitely be on the blog for you soon πŸ™‚

I also had an order put in this week! I had a request from my dad’s work to make a big cake to serve everyone on his team πŸ™‚ So I made a big square chocolate mud cake, with dark chocolate ganache and finished with some white chocolate decorations πŸ™‚ I think the cake went down well because I have an order for another cake in 2 weeks time for a caramel mud cake this time!

However today I have a Nutella Brownie recipe. And it is SO easy! Go make it now! It just involves mixing everything together and baking it and the result it a delicious, gooey, rich brownie made even more delicious with Nutella πŸ™‚

This recipe is adapted from a fantastic brownie recipe that was given to me by a family friend and it has been a favourite in both our households for years πŸ™‚ Enjoy!

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Nutella Brownie

Ingredients:

180g butter, melted
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 eggs
1 cup (320g) Nutella
3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Method:

Pre-heat the oven to 160Β°C and grease a large tin/dish. I used a glass lasagne dish.

Mix melted butter, sugar and vanilla together in a bowl. Add the eggs and Nutella and beat well with a spoon.

Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl, add the salt and gradually add this mixture to the wet ingredients until combined. Spread into greased dish and bake for 40-45 mins.

Allow to cool in pan and cut into squares to serve.

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Caramel Coffee Hazelnut Slice

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This slice I have made has a combination of some of my favourite ingredients! A thick, chewy caramel made with sweetened condensed milk, espresso coffee and roasted hazelnuts! Delicious! Please, please, please make this! You will love it πŸ™‚

This recipe is great. I have tried many different caramel slice recipes and I finally found one I was happy with and this was the winner, adapted from the Delicious Sweet recipe book. And the coffee and hazelnuts make it even better! I absolutely love baking things with caramel so expect more to come! I’m thinking something with a salted caramel element will be coming up soon… Enjoy the slice!

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Caramel Coffee Hazelnut Slice

Adapted from the Delicious Sweet recipe book.

Ingredients:
395g can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 firmly packed cup brown sugar
50g unsalted butter
30ml espresso coffee, or 1 tsp instant coffee dissolved in 30ml boiling water
1 cup hazelnuts
200g dark chocolate

For the base
1 + Β Β Β 3/4 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/3 firmly packed cup brown sugar
150g unsalted butter
60 ml expresso coffee, or 2 tsp instant coffee dissolved in 60 ml boiling water

Method

Preheat the oven the 180Β°C. Grease an 18cm x 26cm slice tin and line with baking paper.

For the base, sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and stir in the sugar. Melt the butter and mix into dry ingredients along with the coffee. Press mixture into tin and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.

Meanwhile prepare the toppings. Place the hazelnuts on a tray and roast in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool slightly before placing them in a tea towel and rubbing the skins off the nuts. Roughly chop and set aside.

Place the condensed milk, sugar, butter and coffee in a pan over low heat and continuously stir for about 10 minutes until thickened.

When base is ready, sprinkle over the hazelnuts then spread over the caramel filling. Bake for 10 minutes or until the filling starts to bubble around the edges. Cool completely.

Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water) until melted. Pour chocolate over the caramel filling and spread to an even thickness. Allow chocolate to set completely before cutting into squares.
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Berries and Cream Tarts

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The recipe I have to share with you today, is adapted from my favourite baking blog. A friend who used to work at the cupcake shop with me has an amazing blog called Butter Baking. I’m not sure if you have already checked it out or follow her blog but if you haven’t, have a look now! It’s fantastic! I have baked so many things from this blog and love everything that she posts! She was a major inspiration to me in starting my own blog. And these tarts I have made for you today are gorgeously light and delicious πŸ™‚ They have a crumbly sweet short pastry shell, filled with a creamy mixture of pastry cream and whipped cream, topped with fresh, tart berries. I had a play around with the arrangement of the berries on my tarts so feel free to as well! Give them a try because they are delicious! Enjoy πŸ™‚

Mel xx

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Berries and Cream Tarts

Pastry adapted from Mastering the Fundamentals of French Pastry by Christophe Felder.
Filling adapted from Butter Baking.

Makes 9 tartlets

Ingredients

For the pastry:
2 cups plain flour
140g butter, cubed
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tbs water

For the filling:
1 1/4 cups (310ml) milk
1 vanilla bean
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornflour
1/4 tsp salt
4 egg yolks
100ml thickened cream
300g fresh berries (I used strawberries and raspberries)

Method

For the filling, mix the sugar, cornflour and salt in a small bowl. In a large heatproof bowl, whisk the egg yolks, then whisk in the flour mixture one tablespoon at a time.

Split the vanilla bean lengthways and scrape out the seeds. Put this, including the vanilla pod into a medium saucepan with the milk. Place over high heat on the stove and heat until little bubbles start to appear around the edges. This is called scalding the milk. Pour the milk into the egg mixture, whisking continuously until combined.

Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over a medium heat. Continuously whisk the mixture until it becomes thick and begins to bubble. Then whisk vigorously for 10 seconds and remove from the heat. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a heatproof bowl, discarding the vanilla pod. Cover right onto the whole surface of the pastry cream with plastic wrap (this prevents a skin forming) and refrigerate until cold. This will take about 4 hours.

For the pastry, place the flour, sugar and butter in a food processor and process until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the eggs yolks and water and pulse in the processor until the mixture starts to come together. Turn the pastry out onto the bench, form into a disc, cover in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for one hour.

Pre heat the oven to 180Β°C. Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out between 2 sheets of baking paper to a 3-4mm thickness. Grease 9 mini tarts pans (mine were 10cm in diameter however just use the size you have), and press cut outs of the pastry into the tart pans, trimming away any excess. Re-roll out excess pastry for more tart shells. Prick the base of the tart shells many times all over with a fork. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and after 5 minutes, turn the tart cases out of the pans and cool on a wire rack.

Whip the cream in a standing mixer with the whisk attachment or with hand-held electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Stir the pastry cream to soften then fold through the whipped cream. Using a piping bag fitted with a round size 13 nozzle, pipe dots into the tart cases to fill. Top the tarts with chosen berries and keep in the fridge until served.

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