Tag Archives: nuts

Chocolate and Vanilla Marble Cake Topped with Buttercream and Walnuts

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Chocolate and Vanilla Marble Cake Topped with Buttercream and Walnuts

Marble Cake Recipe

Marble Cake

Come 9:30pm yesterday, I really wanted a yummy treat. So, like any crazy person, I decided to bake one right then. I searched my cupboards and decided on marble cake with butter cream and as I had some leftover walnuts from another baking session, I thought I’d try it out. To my Hubby’s delight it turned out just as I’d hoped.

Ingredients for Cake
225g Plain Flour
225g Caster Sugar
225g Softened Butter
2 tsp Baking Powder
100g Cocoa Powder
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
4 Medium Eggs
2 tbsp Milk

Ingredients for Topping
100g Butter
200g Icing Sugar
½ Cup Chopped Walnuts
½ tsp Milk

Using a pre greased and floured 8-9″ spring release cake pan. (Phew, that was a mouthful)

Directions
Pre-heat oven to 180°C.

Cream butter and sugar in electric mixer until pale. Add one egg at a time mixing thoroughly between each addition. Stir in Vanilla.

In a separate bowl sieve flour and baking powder together.

Add spoonfuls of flour into butter mixture along with milk. Mix briefly until flour is incorporated.

Using a large spoon place half the mixture into the pan in 4 individual spots. Add Cocoa to the remaining mixture, stir thoroughly and fill in the gaps in the cake pan with the chocolate mixture.

Using a skewer or something similar, swirl the chocolate into the vanilla and vice-versa. But not so much that you lose the vanilla too much.

Bake for 40 Mins or until firm to touch or skewer comes out clean.

Once cooled on a rack prepare the topping.

Mix together butter and icing sugar and add in milk.

Spread over the top of the cake generously and sprinkle on the walnuts, or a nut of your choice.

Now all there is to do is let everyone enjoy and appreciate your hard work!

Best Butter Tarts

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Ingredients
Filling mix:
2 Medium Eggs
2 Cups Light Brown Sugar (packed)
2 tbs Lemon Juice
½ tsp Vanilla Extract
½ Cup Melted Butter
1 Cup Raisins/Currants
¼ Cup Chopped Walnuts

Cases:
Shortcrust Pastry. You will need double the amount of the recipe on this blog Best Shortcrust Pastry Recipe

Directions

Pastry Lined Tins

Pastry Lined Tins

Mix all the filling list of ingredients together in a bowl.

Beat together and fill no more than ¾ full in pastry lined cake tins.

Bake for 20-25 mins at 180°C (350°F)

Makes 38+


Butter Tarts

Butter Tarts

Notes: For a tasty change you can add maple syrup and pecans.

Winter Bird Feeding – bird cakes

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bird food

Make your own bird food hangers

Make those little feathery friends happy with a tasty treat…

I made these little bird fat balls by using leftover ingredients from baking and food I had in the store cupboard.  They are really easy to make and very rewarding once you see those little birds pecking away!

Firstly I’d like to note that I havn’t specified quantities on the dried ingredients as these may vary from cupboard to cupboard. Use what you have, don’t worry if all you have are fruit or oats and nuts. The birds will still love every morsel. Just stay true to the lard to dry mix ratio.

For advice on what is recommended to feed your garden birds please visit
http://www.rspb.org.uk/ as I am not an expert on wildlife and have taken my recipe from their guidance.

What you’ll need:

+ Thick String or any stringing material (I used ribbon as I didn’t have any string)
+ Mixed Nuts (i.e peanuts, walnuts and pecans etc)
+ Dried Fruit ( i.e apple, apricot, raisins and berries etc)
+ Uncooked porridge oats and/or bran flakes
+ Lard, you will need approx one third volume in lard to the dried food.
+ Small saucepan
+ Silicone Cupcake Moulds (or any easy release moulds that are at least cupcake size)

Directions:

Chop all fruit, nuts and oats and cereal into small pieces and reserve into a bowl.

Cut strings into approx 10in lengths, you can always cut more if you run out as the lard takes a couple hours in the refrigerator to set. Tie each of the strings ends together to form a circle and double/triple knot them to form an anchor in which the lard mixture will eventually stick to.

Next you will want to melt the lard on the hob on a low heat. Once just melted, add your lard to your dry mix until everything is well coated, you may want to be generous as this will help it all stick together.

Place your strings, knot first, into your silicone/easy release moulds. Scoop your mixture into the individual moulds making sure that the knot is well placed in the centre of the cake. Push the mixture so that it is tightly packed.

Now place the tray of bird cakes into the fridge for at least 2.5-3 hours, longer if you can as they will only benefit from the setting process. Once rock hard, pop out your little birdy cupcakes and hang high on the nearest tree.

Note: If you don’t fancy stringing these up you can always omit the stringing process and place on clean trays on the ground or on bird tables. They will still be enjoyed!