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Pea Lime Coconut Cake Recipe

Pea Lime Cake with Coconut Lime Mascarpone

Pea Lime Coconut Cake Recipe

Pea Lime Cake with Coconut Lime Mascarpone

This Pea Lime Cake with Coconut Lime Mascarpone Icing is a quick recipe that I whipped up one sunny weekend as a post-lunch treat. A cake that definitely falls into the easy and casual category, it is light and delicious and sings of summer. Although it may sound a little unusual, there is nothing more joyful than producing something for dessert that is a talking point for family and guests. Do read on and give it a try!

Pea Lime Coconut Cake

Pea Lime Cake

I first came across using peas in a cake from the book Sticky Fingers Green Thumb by Hayley McKee. Her cakes are inspired by a love of garden produce, and her book contains a pretty Green Tea bundt cake with a Garden Pea Cream. The idea of using garden peas in a dessert makes quite a bit of sense, they have a delicate if earthy sweetness, and that vibrant green colour is nothing short of beautiful.

For this recipe I added the peas in a simple cake recipe that uses vanilla for a little more sweetness, and lime zest to give that summery zing.

Pea Lime Coconut Cake

Lime Coconut Mascarpone Icing

I absolutely adore any type of mascarpone icing. The coconut cream and lime zest keep this particular icing light, fresh and creamy. It is quite a soft icing, almost a yoghurt-like consistency, something that actually doesn’t matter too much for this type of casual cake. It does however firm up a little in the fridge.

The quantity of icing makes more than is needed to cover the cake, but I have used these amounts so as to correspond with the quantities of the mascarpone tub and coconut cream can. There is nothing worse than having a spoonful or two of an ingredient left in a container. The extra icing can be served alongside the cake, or even eaten on its own with some summer berries perhaps!

Pea Lime Coconut Cake

Serving and Storing

Feel free to decorate this cake with what you have to hand, edible flowers and herbs, dessicated or shredded coconut, meringue pieces or nut pralines would all work well. The cake is best eaten on the day but will keep overnight in the fridge also. Bring back to room temperature before serving.

I hope you enjoy this cake, do tag us on social media @covecakedesign with your creations!

Suzanne x

Pea Lime Cake with Lime Coconut Mascarpone

Ingredients for the Pea Lime Cake:

  • 140g frozen garden peas (or fresh if you have them)
  • 25ml whole milk
  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 250g plain flour
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla bean paste
  • Grated zest 2 limes
  • Pinch salt

Ingredients for the Coconut Lime Mascarpone Icing:

  • 250g tub mascarpone
  • 160g can coconut cream
  • 200g icing sugar
  • Zest 1 lime

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven (fan) to 150⁰C/300F. Grease and line the base and sides of a 20cm/8” cake tin. 
  2. To make the cake, bring the peas just to the boil in a small saucepan of water. Drain immediately (you only want to just cook the peas so they retain their vibrant colour).
  3. Place the peas in a high powered blender with the milk and blend to a smooth vibrant green puree. You may need to add a little more milk. The smoothness you achieve will depend on your blender, but it is best to get it as smooth as possible as you don’t want whole or large bits of pea in the cake.
  4. In the bowl of a mixer, beat together the butter, sugar, vanilla extract and lime zest for 2-3 mins until light.
  5. Beat in the eggs one at a time.
  6. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt and add to the butter mixture. Mix on low until just combined.
  7. Add in the the pea puree and mix again until combined.
  8. Scrape the mixture into the tin and bake for approximately 45-55 mins or until springy to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10 mins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  9. To make the lime mascarpone coconut icing, place all the ingredients in a mixer and beat for a few minutes until smooth.
  10. To assemble the cake, place the cake on an appropriate plate or stand. Spread about half of the lime and coconut mascarpone icing on top, reserving the rest to serve.
  11. Decorate as desired, I used dessicated coconut, pistachio praline and some dried edible flowers

 

 

Chocolate Ginger Cake Recipe

Chocolate Ginger Cake, Chai Pear, Pecan Praline

Chocolate Ginger Cake Recipe

Chocolate Ginger Cake, Chai Pear, Pecan Praline Recipe

Winter months and their associated festivities bring with them a desire to cosy up indoors with woollen jumpers and log fires, while our palates turn from light and fresh summer fare to rich and aromatic flavours. This recipe for Chocolate Ginger Cake with Chai Buttercream, Chai Poached Pear and Pecan Praline is inspired by those warm and spicy scents and flavours of winter.

This recipe was originally created in 2017 for a feature in American Cake Decorating magazine and it subsequently was featured in The Taste.ie. It is such a good seasonal cake which I have made many times. I thought it was time that I shared it directly with my followers for you to enjoy too!

Chocolate Ginger Cake Recipe

Chocolate Ginger Cake Flavours

The chocolate ginger cake is deliciously light and moist, with the ginger adding just the right amount of heat to give a little winter kick, without being overbearing for those who are not so inclined towards ginger.

Chai is a spiced milk tea from India, with the spices used varying from region to region but generally including the heady mix of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, cardamom and pepper, a perfect spicy compliment to the ginger of the chocolate cake. I have introduced the chai flavour with a flavoured butter in the buttercream icing, and also in the chai poached pears. Chocolate and pear is a match made in heaven and the pears are a beautifully sweet and fresh addition to this cake.

The final flourish is the pecan praline, adding a little crunch and extra seasonal decadence!

Chocolate Ginger Cake Recipe

Chocolate Ginger Cake Details

Decorated with a half poached pear, candied pecans and a little gold leaf this cake is a little bit special and would make a delectable centrepiece dessert for seasonal gatherings. Much can be made in advance in preparation for entertaining: un-iced the cake keeps well in an airtight container for up to a week while the buttercream can likewise be made in advance and stored in the fridge. Once assembled it can be wrapped tightly in cling film and kept in the fridge for 1-2 days…..if any lasts that long!

I hope you enjoy this cake, do tag us on social media @covecakedesign with your creations!

Suzanne x

Chocolate Ginger Cake Recipe

Chocolate Ginger Cake, Chai Pear, Pecan Praline

Ingredients for the Chocolate Ginger Cake:

  • 175g unsalted butter
  • 150g 70% dark chocolate callets
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 150g soft light brown sugar
  • 45g cocoa powder
  • 225mls hot coffee
  • 1tbsp dark treacle
  •  2 large eggs, beaten
  • 210g plain flour
  • 2heaped tsp ground ginger
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • Pinch salt

Ingredients for the Chai Swiss Meringue Buttercream:

  • 340g unsalted butter
  • 3 chai teabags
  • 150g fresh egg whites
  • 250g granulated sugar
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger

Ingredients for the Chai Poached Pears

  • 500ml water
  • 3 chai teabags
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 2 pears

Ingredients for the Pecan Praline

  • 75g caster sugar
  • 50g pecan nuts, toasted and roughly chopped

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 150⁰C/300F. Grease and line the base and sides of three 15cm/6” cake tins. 
  2. To make the cake, melt the butter and chocolate in a saucepan over a low heat.
  3. Remove from the heat and whisk in the sugar and cocoa powder until incorporated.
  4. Slowly add the hot coffee and whisk until smooth.
  5. Whisk in the treacle and then the eggs one at a time.
  6. In the bowl of a mixer (or a large bowl), sift together the flour, ginger, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix gently until combined.
  7. With mixer on low speed gradually pour the chocolate mixture into the flour mixture. Once added, beat on medium-high speed for approximately 1min. Scrape the bottom of bowl and beat again briefly until there are no lumps and everything is well mixed.
  8. Divide the mixture between the three tins and bake for 25-30 mins or until springy to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave cakes to cool in the tin for 10 mins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  9. To make the chai poached pears, place the water in a saucepan with a squeeze of lemon juice and bring to the boil.
  10. Remove from the heat and add the chai teabags. Leave to infuse for approximately 10-15mins before removing the teabags.
  11. Add the sugar to the chai tea and bring to a simmer again to dissolve.
  12. Peel the pears and add to the poaching liquid.
  13. Simmer for approximately 25-30mins until pears are soft through.
  14. Remove the pears from the poaching liquid, drain of excess liquid and set aside to cool completely.
  15. To make the pecan praline, heat the sugar in a small saucepan over a medium heat, swirling from time to time until sugar has melted and starts to turn a golden brown colour. Take care not to burn.
  16. Remove from the heat and quickly add the chopped pecans, stirring to coat.
  17. Quickly scrape the praline onto non-stick baking paper and spread out. Leave to cool before roughly breaking up in a small blender or pestle and mortar.
  18. To make the chai swiss meringue buttercream icing, melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat. Heat until the butter begins to sizzle, darkens slightly and exudes a delicious toffee-like aroma.
  19. Remove from the heat and add the chai tea bags. Leave to infuse for at least 30 mins.
  20. Remove the tea bags and pour the butter into a bowl. Place in the fridge until firm.
  21. When ready to make the buttercream, remove the flavoured butter from the fridge and allow to warm up slightly (you want the butter cool but not fridge cold).
  22. Clean the bowl and whisk of an electric mixer with a squeeze of lemon juice and dry with paper towel to remove any traces of grease.
  23. Place the egg white and sugar into the bowl and place over a pot of simmering water, whisking constantly, until the temperature reaches 160°F on a candy thermometer. If you don’t have a thermometer, whisk until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.
  24. Transfer the bowl to the mixer and using the whisk attachment whisk until the meringue is thick and glossy and the bottom of the bowl feels neutral to the touch.
  25. Switch to paddle attachment and with mixer on low speed add the butter a cube at a time, mixing until incorporated after each addition.  If the mixture curdles continue to mix until it comes back together. Add the cinnamon and ginger and mix again briefly. If the buttercream is too runny, refrigerate until firmer and mix again before using.
  26. To assemble the cake, trim the tops of each cake so they are the same height.
  27. Place one cake layer on a plate or cake stand. Pipe one third of the chai buttercream on top and smooth with a palette knife. Chop one and a half of the poached pears into small pieces and sprinkle half on top of the buttercream (you don’t have to add all the pear if you feel it is too much). Sprinkle over a third of the praline. Repeat with the second cake layer.
  28. Invert the final cake layer on top. Pipe and spread the remaining buttercream and sprinkle with the remaining pecans. Place the remaining half a poached pear on top. If desired add a little gold leaf.

 

 

Matcha Blackberry Cake Recipe

Matcha White Chocolate Cake with Lemon Curd, Blackberry Buttercream and Blackberry Thyme Jam

Try this recipe for a rich white chocolate match cake with tangy lemon curd, blackberry buttercream and homemade blackberry thyme jam.

Carrot Orange Walnut Layer Cake

Carrot Cake with Orange, Walnut and Thyme Caramel Recipe

Carrot Orange Walnut Layer Cake

Carrot Cake Recipe

Carrot cake is a definite classic and a flavour that I adore. We actually had carrot cake as one of the tiers in our wedding cake many years ago. Despite my love for carrot cake, I haven’t actually made it for a long time. I was delighted to revisit it recently however in the creation of this comforting layer cake recipe which I am so pleased to share with you. 

The Carrot Cake

This carrot cake recipe is one that I had been testing out for my ebook, Layer Cakes The Essential Collection. It didn’t however make the final edit as the book was focused on cakes that can be cut neatly into finger portions, something which is required for wedding and celebration cakes. Carrot cake recipes like this one tend to be a little crumbly due to their oil based structure and grated carrot pieces. This cake is hence not particularly suited to cutting into neat finger slices, but is however especially delicious and very much worth sharing!

Carrot Layer Cake Recipe

The Carrot Cake Details

This is a traditional carrot cake recipe with oil, brown sugar and aromatic spices such as cardamom and cinnamon. I have paired the cake with an orange and walnut praline buttercream and delicious thyme caramel. The thyme caramel is my favourite element in the recipe, adding a little bit of a decadent flavour twist.  I love using herbs in baking.  Thyme is the perfect partner for carrots in savoury dishes, and translates equally well as a pairing for a cake. You may have a little extra caramel from the quantity in the recipe which can be drizzled over the top or served in a jug with the cake.

Feel free to make your own variations too, other nuts such as pecan or pistachio would make great substitutions for the walnut for example. I have specified baking in two 6″ tins and cutting each layer in half horizontally to create a 4 layer cake, you could also bake in two 8″ tins for a 2 layer cake.

I hope you enjoy this cake, do tag us on social media @covecakedesign with your creations!

Suzanne x

Carrot cake recipe Cove Cake Design

Carrot Cake with Orange, Walnut and Thyme Caramel

Ingredients for the Cake:

  • 300g self-raising flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g light soft brown sugar
  • 185ml rapeseed (or other) oil
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • 2tsp bicarbonate soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 300g grated carrot
  • 2tsp vanilla
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1tsp mixed spice
  • 1tsp ground cardamom
  • Grated zest of one orange (optional)
  • 1tsp freshly chopped thyme (optional)

Ingredients for Thyme Caramel:

  • 75ml cream
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 50g cold unsalted butter
  • Few sprigs fresh thyme
  • Pinch salt

Ingredients for the Walnut Praline

  • 50g walnuts
  • 50g caster sugar

Ingredients for the Buttercream Icing

  • 300g icing sugar
  • 175g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Finely grated zest of one orange

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 150⁰C/300F. Grease and line the base and sides of two 15cm/6” cake tins. 
  2. To make the cake, whisk together the eggs, sugars, oil and vanilla in a large bowl or in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the grated carrot, orange and chopped thyme (if using) and mix to combine.
  3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate soda, salt and spices into a separate bowl. 
  4. Slowly add the flour mixture to the egg and sugar mixture and mix to combine. 
  5. Divide the batter evenly between the two tins. 
  6. Bake for approximately 40-45 mins until springy to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 mins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Wrap in cling film and leave for at least a few hours or overnight before filling.
  7. To make the thyme caramel, heat the cream gently in a small saucepan and add the thyme, leaving to infuse.
  8. Put the sugar into a larger saucepan and heat on med–high until sugar starts dissolves and turns a golden caramel colour, swirling to ensure it is even.
  9. Remove from the heat and add in the butter a little bit at a time and stir until smooth (it will sizzle a bit when butter added).
  10. Slowly strain the heated cream into the caramel (take care as it sizzles) and stir again until smooth. Add the salt and stir.
  11. Pour the caramel into a small jar. You can put a fresh sprig of thyme in the jar to infuse further, remove before use.
  12. To make the walnut praline, toast the nuts for 8–10 minutes until golden. Chop finely.
  13. Heat the sugar in a saucepan over a medium heat until dissolved. Swirl gently but do not stir. Continue to heat gently until the sugar has turned to a caramel colour. Remove from the heat, add the nuts and stir with a spatula to coat.
  14. Quickly scrape out onto a piece of baking paper and leave to cool.
  15. Break up the praline in a small blender or pestle and mortar.
  16. To make the buttercream icing, place all ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat with the paddle attachment for 8–10 minutes, scraping down intermittently, until light and fluffy. Add the walnut praline (you may not need all of it) and mix to combine.
  17. To assemble the cake, trim the tops of each cake and cut in half horizontally. Place the base cake layer on a board or plate. Spread approximately 1/4 of the buttercream icing on top of the first cake layer and drizzle over the thyme caramel. Place the next cake layer on top and add a layer of buttercream and thyme caramel. Repeat for remaining cake layers, finishing with a layer of buttercream icing. Drizzle caramel over the top or serve the additional caramel in a jug.

 

 

Layer Cakes The Essential Collection Ebook Cove Cake Design

Layer Cakes Ebook Launch

Ebook cover

My First Ebook!

I am so excited to announce the launch of my first ebook, Layer Cakes – The Essential Collection on Wednesday 18th November 2020. My business very much started from a love of baking delicious layer cakes and importantly, experimenting with flavour combinations. My flavour profiles have been what has regularly drawn clients to choose my cakes for their weddings and celebrations. I am often asked about my flavour inspiration and the recipes I use, demonstrating a demand for ideas and quality recipes in the cake making community. Having shared recipes over the years on my blog, I always wanted to do something a little bit more, to arm people with the skills and inspiration to create cakes of taste. I wanted to write a book.

Why an Ebook?

Cake ingredients

My ultimate dream was to write a hardback book that would grace the shelves of bookshops the world over. I started to research this avenue only to discover many disheartening tales of rejection, loss of creative direction, and ultimately low returns for the years spent working on a book. I wanted to get my recipes to my followers and have control over what I produced. With the digital age an ebook was an obvious and simple choice as a starting point on my book writing journey.

What is Layer Cakes – The Essential Collection about?

Champagne elderflower rhubarb cake

I wanted to start my collection at the beginning. Layer Cakes – The Essential Collection is a collection of key recipes, tips and techniques that aims to enlighten and inspire amateur and professional cake makers alike to make layer cakes of flavour. I took the most common cake flavours, such as Vanilla, Chocolate, Lemon, Coconut, Coffee etc, and and provided ‘base’ cake recipes for each. These recipes are all suitable for layered cakes that are used in wedding and celebration cakes. A chapter on fillings such as jams, curds, caramels and icings/frostings allows readers to create fillings and icings from scratch. The book then provides a variety of flavour combinations using these cake and filling recipes, each with a twist on classics. Flavour pairings such as Vanilla Pear Macadamia, Chocolate Blackberry Bay and Coconut Black Sesame Passionfruit, are sure to spark interest. My ultimate hope is that readers will be inspired to create their own combinations too. I can’t wait to see what you make!

What If I Am A Baking Novice?

Eggs for baking

This book is for you too! I wanted my recipes to be attainable and relatively straightforward for all levels of baker. I have started the book with baking tips, techniques and essential equipment. In many instances I have provided alternatives for those who don’t want to invest in unusual or expensive tools or ingredients. I have given ideas on how to decorate with items such as flowers and other edibles. I have also included a step-by-step photographic guide for filling and icing a cake with buttercream icing.

What Recipes are Included in the Ebook?

Almond Matcha Raspberry Cake

This is the exciting bit! I worked hard on creating the recipes in the book to give achievable yet interesting cake flavours. There are a few classics such as Lemon Blackberry Lavender or Chocolate Pear Salted Caramel, but my favourites are Almond Matcha Raspberry, or the cover cake, Coconut Black Sesame Passionfruit. All cake flavours can be simplified if preferred, for example Lemon and Blackberry alone makes a wonderful combination. Or indeed I hope the base cake flavours and filling recipes allow readers to create their own flavour combinations.

Who Helped You With The Book?

Wedding cake

I am so grateful to a wonderful team of creatives who helped me pull this together. Firstly I took a course at Food Photography School earlier this year which gave me further skills and confidence to take my own photos for the book which I am so proud of. A few key photos in the book were also taken by the talented Claire Brown Photography who did my original branding work for me. I am so grateful to my sister, Emma Brady, a professional copyeditor, who worked so hard on editing my text. I was thrilled to work again with my wonderfully talented graphic designer, Natalie, from Keady Row, who ultimately brought the book to life. Natalie succeeded in creating an ebook that has the look of a glossy lifestyle magazine, and importantly has a style that is right on brand with Cove Cake Design. Finally I must thank my web developer Mick from Smudge Design who was on hand as always to assist in the website side of getting things done.

So How Do I Buy the Book?

Chocolate Blackberry Bay Cake

It’s easy! The book will be launched on Wednesday 18th November 2020 and will be for sale through my online shop. It is downloadable in pdf or epub format for reading on your preferred device. As a further incentive when you buy the ebook you will be entitled to exclusive access to my new private members Facebook group, Cove Cake Design Baking Club, where we can share our experiences with the recipes, give further tips, and ask and answer questions. Sign up to my mailing list at the top of the page to be notified of the launch to make sure you don’t miss out (and shh…to receive an exclusive mailing list member discount!).

Thank you so much for your interest in my cake recipes and support of my little business. I hope when you buy the book and try the recipes you will enjoy the process and results. Don’t forget to tag me on social media, @covecakedesign #ccdlayercakes so I can see and share your wonderful bakes!

Suzanne x

Suzanne Brday

Orange Almond Cake Recipe Cove Cake Design

Orange Almond Cake with Basil Mascarpone Recipe

The Flavours

Orange Almond Cake is an option that I find hard to resist on cafe menus! With flavours reminiscent of sunny Spain, it is generally a moist and nutty cake with a refreshing citrussy burst of flavour…delicious! I was inspired to develop this Orange Almond Cake with Basil Mascarpone recipe having been sent samples of fruit syrups by  Dasha Caffrey Photography, who is developing the range as a new business venture. With fruity flavours such as Raspberry and Thyme, the syrups were delicious mixed with cocktails and even sparkling water. I was particularly drawn to the Orange Basil flavour, a combination that I hadn’t tried before. As well as adding the syrup to drinks, I of course had to experiment with the flavour combination in a cake!

Orange Almond Cake with Basil Icing

The Recipe

This simple single layer Orange Almond Cake with Basil Mascarpone recipe is adapted from a recipe I use for layer cakes, with a higher percentage of ground almonds for that denser, nuttier texture. I used Dasha’s Orange Basil syrup as a flavoursome soak, but have included the recipe for a simple orange syrup here. The basil mascarpone icing is a tangy and not too sweet contrast to the cake and adds an interesting twist to a classic orange almond combination.

I brought this to a summer barbecue dinner with friends and it went down a real treat…I urge you to try it! (And don’t forget to tag your bakes on social media, @covecakedesign #bakingwithcovecakedesign, for me to share!)

Happy Baking!

Suzanne x

Orange Almond Cake Slice

Orange Almond Cake with Basil Mascarpone Icing

Ingredients for the Cake:

  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • 5  medium eggs
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • Grated zest 1 orange
  • 50ml whole milk yogurt
  • 2-3tbsp orange juice
  • Pinch salt
  • 1-2 drops almond essence

Ingredients for Orange Syrup:

  • Juice 2 oranges
  • 100g caster sugar

Ingredients for the Basil Mascarpone Icing:

  • 250g tub mascarpone
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 175 icing sugar
  • 20 large basil leaves
  • 2-3 tsp orange juice (or more as required to taste)
  • Crushed pistachios to decorate (optional)

Method:

  1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 150°C/300F.  Grease a 20cm/8″ round cake tin with butter and line the base and sides with baking parchment.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
  3. Cream together the butter, sugar, orange zest and almond essence in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until pale and light. Scrape down the sides intermittently.
  4. Turn the mixer down and add one egg and a tablespoon of the flour mixture and mix on low before turning up and mixing well. Repeat with the remaining eggs, adding one tablespoon of flour with each addition.
  5. Add the rest of the flour mixture and the ground almonds and mix on low until just combined.
  6. Add the yogurt and orange juice and mix on low. The batter should be thick but have a dropping consistency.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared tin.
  8. Bake for approximately 45-50 mins until springy to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  9. To make the syrup, heat the sugar and orange juice in a saucepan over a medium heat. Simmer until the sugar is dissolved and the syrup has reduced (approx 5 mins).
  10. While the cake is still hot and in the tin, poke holes in the cake with a skewer and pour the hot syrup over the cake allowing it to soak down into the cake.
  11. To make the icing, finely chop half the basil leaves and beat with the butter and icing sugar in a stand mixer until pale. Add the mascarpone and enough orange juice to create a spreadable icing and mix gently to combine. Pound the other half of the basil leaves in a pestle and mortar to begin to release some of the herby liquid. Scrape into a sieve and place the sieve over the bowl of icing. Press down with a spatula to get some of the basil juice into the icing. Mix. Test the icing to taste for basil. If the flavour is not strong enough for your liking repeat the latter step and/or add more chopped fresh basil.
  12. When the cake is cool, generously spread the icing on top and decorate with crushed pistachios.
  13. Because of the mascarpone icing this cake needs to be stored in the fridge. Bring to room temperature before serving however. It should keep for 2-3 days although I will be honest and say that we didn’t manage to let it last that long to test!

 

 

Carrot Cardamom Loaf Cake Recipe Cove Cake Design

Carrot Cardamom Loaf Cake Recipe with Burnt Honey Cream Cheese Icing

Carrot cardamom loaf cake slice

Carrot Cardamom Loaf Cake

I have always loved carrot cake (I even had it as one tier of our wedding cake!). I tend to nowadays veer towards flavours that are new and interesting but there are times when the classics are called for and comforting. With the global shutdown for coronavirus currently confining us to our homes and lending an air of anxiety to our daily lives, I decided to make a classic carrot loaf cake (with a twist of course!) for an Easter treat.

Carrot Cardamom Loaf Cake

The Recipe

The Carrot Cardamom Cake

The recipe is based on standard carrot loaves, using oil instead of butter and brown sugar for depth of flavour. I used half plain and half wholemeal flour, but all plain flour will work too. I also used a mix of dark soft brown sugar and caster sugar, but for this type of rustic cake I think it is fine to play fast and loose with whatever sugar you have (espeically given the current shopping restrictions too!).  Cinnamon and mixed spice are typical additions to carrot cake, but I chose to add some cardamom too for an extra layer of flavour.

The Burnt Honey Frosting

Burnt honey was something I came across in my browsing of recipes and was a bit of a revelation! If you have a really good honey perhaps with citrus flavour this would work beautifully. I only had a standard honey in my cupboard which is perfectly fine too. The bicarbonate of soda aids in the caramelisation of the honey. The recipe makes extra honey but use this can be kept and used in any recipe or situation you use honey. If you don’t want to make burnt honey a little plain honey or as an alternative some citrus zest would also work well in the icing.

Happy Baking!

Suzanne x

 

Carrot Cardamom Loaf Cake with Burnt Honey Cream Cheese Icing Recipe

Ingredients for the Cake:

  • 150ml rapeseed oil (or other oil), plus extra for greasing
  • 2 free range eggs
  • 100g dark soft brown sugar
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 300g grated carrot
  • 90g plain flour
  • 90g wholemeal flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  • 1tsp ground cardamom
  • 1tsp mixed spice

Ingredients for Burnt honey:

  • 120ml honey
  • 1/8 tsp bicarbonate soda
  • 30mls water

For the Cream Cheese Icing :

  • 50g butter
  • 50g icing sugar
  • 180g tub cream cheese
  • 3-4 tbsp burnt honey plus extra for drizzling

Method:

  1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 160°C/320F.  Grease a loaf tin with some oil and line with baking parchment.
  2. Place the grated carrot, rapeseed oil, eggs and sugars into a large bowl and whisk to combine. .
  3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt.
  4. Pour the dry ingredients into the carrot mixture and stir well to combine.
  5. Pour the mixture into the loaf tin.
  6. Bake for approx 60mins, until a skewer inserted into centre comes out clean.
  7. Leave the tin to cool for 10mins before turning out onto a wire wrack to cool completely.
  8. To make the burnt honey, heat the honey in a small saucepan over a medium heat until it starts to bubble and turn a darker brown colour. Reduce heat to low and gently add they tiny amount of bicarbonate soda. Be careful as it will bubbble. Stir using a wooden spoon. Remove from heat and add the water, stirring to combine. Set aside to cool.
  9. To make the icing, beat the butter and icing sugar together in a stand mixer. Add the cream cheese and beat again. Finally add burnt honey to taste.
  10. Once the cake is cool, spread with the icing and drizzle extra honey over the top.
  11. As this cake has a cream cheese icing store in the fridge.

 

 

Lime Basil Blackberry Bundt Cake Recipe Cove Cake Design

Lime Basil Blackberry Bundt Cake Recipe

Lime Basil Blackberry Bundt Cake

Bundt Cakes

This Lime Basil Blackberry Bundt cake is a refreshing, delicious and easy recipe to make. Bundt cakes are so easy to make, require little decoration and serve a crowd…hence I always love making a bundt cake for weekend treats or family celebrations! There are various bundt tins on the market with different shapes but I particularly love my silicone one which makes this sharp mountainous style. The silicone makes it easy to release too.

Lime Basil Blackberry Flavour Combination

I have recently been experimenting with basil in some of my cake recipes, which was inspired by an incredible vanilla and basil ice-cream that I tasted in a gelateria in Lisbon a while ago. Basil pairs well with berries such as strawberries, but with blackberries in season just now I wanted to try it with this alternative and I thought the colour contrast would be quite visually appealing too. Lime and basil are another known flavour pairing and the lime gives this cake a flavoursome lift.

I have made this cake with just a simple lime syrup or also with a glace lime icing, either work well to give an added citrusy sweetness. This cake is the perfect afternoon or teatime treat. Not too sweet…and the flavour pairings will surely be a talking point for those who get to sample a piece!

Happy Baking!

Suzanne x

Lime Basil and Blackberry Bundt Cake Recipe

Ingredients for the cake:

  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 3 medium free range eggs
  • Approx 10 large basil leaves (you can vary this depending on your preference for the basil flavour)
  • Pinch salt
  • 2-3 tbsp milk
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lime
  • 150g fresh blackberries
  • Rapeseed or other flavourless oil for greasing.

Ingredients for the syrup or glaze:

  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 50g caster sugar (for the syrup) or 150g icing sugar (for the glace icing)

Method:

    1. Preheat the oven to 160°C/320F.  Grease a bundt tin by brushing with a flavourless oil such as rapeseed oil.
    2. Put the caster sugar and basil leaves into a high speed blender and pulse or blend for a minute or two until the basil is incorporated into the sugar. The sugar begins to clump due to the moisture in the basil so you may need to stop and shake it around a bit. Any large pieces of basil that fail to get blended can be removed if preferred.
    3. Cream together the basil sugar with the butter, salt and lime zest in an electric mixer or by hand until light.
    4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
    5. Add in the flour and mix on low speed until combined.
    6. Add a few tbsp of milk and mix again to a soft dropping consistency.
    7. Finally add the blackberries and give one last stir with the mixer. I like to do this to break up the blackberries slighly which creates nice little flecks and streaks of colour. You can of course do this as much as you like or indeed keep the blackberries fully whole by placing them into the cake batter once it is in the tin.
    8. Pour the mixture into the bundt tin and bake for 40-50 mins until the top of the cake is firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 mins before turning out onto a rack to cool completely.
    9. To make the syrup (optional): Add the lime juice and sugar to a pan and bring to the boil. Allow to simmer until reduced slightly. Pour over the bundt cake while the cake and syrup are still warm. It helps to insert a skewer into the cake in several places to create channels for the syrup to penetrate the cake.
    10. To make the glace icing (optional): The glace icing can be added as well as or instead of the syrup. Mix lime juice and icing sugar to get a consistency such that it is not too runny but will still drip down the side of the cake. You can add more lime juice or icing sugar as required. Pour or spoon over the cake when it is cool.

Lime Basil Blackberry Bundt Cake

 

Healthier Chocolate Bundt Cake Cove Cake Design

Healthier Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Recipe with Orange Coconut Cream Ganache

The Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Cake

It was my birthday this week (I’m an April fool!), and this year I had time to make cake. We are currently in a global shutdown to combat a coronavirus pandemic and it is an anxious time for everyone I think. We have to live day-by-day and hope that we can overcome it together. In the midst of all the gloom it is important to keep busy and do things you love…and that would include baking!

I chose to make this Chocolate Beetroot Bundt cake from a desire to maintain a nourishing and healthy diet at this time. While no cake is healthy, this one uses honey as a sweetener, rapeseed oil in place of butter and of course has one of your 5-a-day in the form of nutritious beetroot! It is also dairy-free, making it suitable for those with dairy intolerances or dietary preferences.

The Flavours

The recipe is adapted from one by Green Kitchen Stories, who write wonderful vegetarian cookbooks. I have made changes to their Decadent Beetroot Chocolate cake by substituting some flour for wholemeal, adding in ground almonds for added moisture and increasing the chocolate content. I also decided to go all-out (it was my birthday after all!) and add a vegan Chocolate Orange Ganache icing, which really makes the cake! I sometimes pair beetroot with orange in a salad and I think the flavour combination works well here too. I love vegan ganache (perhaps more so than regular ganache actually!), made with coconut cream it is equally as rich as that made with dairy cream but has added flavour. Any leftover could be rolled into delicious vegan truffles.

Healthier Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Cake

Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Cake Variations

As shopping and stock availability is not always easy in the current global shutdown, feel free to make variations with whatever you have available. If you don’t have a bundt tin, this recipe would also works well in an 8″ or 9″ round cake tin. I have used a mix of wholemeal and plain flour but if the flour shortage seen in supermarkets here is widespread, feel free to use any flour you have, eg. self-raising (omit the baking powder), or gluten-free or other flour alternatives.  Ground almonds are also a non-essential element. The original recipe calls for 70% dark chocolate but I only had 54.5% available so clearly either will work.

I hope you enjoy this recipe, it is an easy one to make so kids can be roped in too. And perhaps a nice nourishing choice for an Easter treat too!

Happy baking!

Suzanne x

Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Cake Slice

Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Cake Recipe with Orange Coconut Cream Ganache

Ingredients for the Cake:

  • 150ml rapeseed oil (olive would work too), plus extra for greasing
  • 120ml honey
  • 75g dark chocolate (70% best but I used 54.5%)
  • 250g grated raw red beetroot
  • 3 free range eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla extract (optional)
  • 100g wholemeal plain flour
  • 100g plain flour
  • 25g ground almonds
  • 75g good quality cocoa powder
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • Pinch salt

Ingredients for Ganache:

  • 150g coconut cream (can take cream settled at top of tin of coconut milk or use a small tin coconut cream)
  • 150g 54.5% dark chocolate
  • Grated zest of 1 small orange

For decoration (optional):

  • Whatever you have available! I used dried rose petals, other dried flowers, toasted nuts, sliced fruits etc would also work well.

Method:

  1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 160°C/320F.  Grease a 20cm bundt pan with oil. I use a silicone bundt mould which is best to avoid sticking. If using a metal one it may be advisable to also sprinkle with flour to avoid sticking. If using a cake tin, grease and line.
  2. Heat the rapeseed oil, honey and dark chocolate together on a low heat in a medium sized pan.
  3. Add the grated beetroot, beaten eggs and vanilla and stir to combine.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt. Add the ground almonds.
  5. Pour the dry ingredients into the chocolate beetroot mixture and stir well to combine.
  6. Pour the mixture into your chosen cake tin.
  7. Bake for 25-35mins, until the top is cracked and a skewer inserted into centre comes out clean.
  8. Leave to cool for 10mins before turning out onto a wire wrack to cool completely.
  9. To make the ganache, place the chocolate and coconut cream in a bowl over a pan of simmering water and stir to melt chocolate. Add the orange zest and stir. Pour over the cooled bundt cake. Decorate as you wish.
  10. Enjoy!

Chocolate Beetroot Bundt Cake Slice

 

Chocolate Chestnut Cranberry Layer Cake Recipe Cove Cake Design

Chocolate Cranberry and Chestnut Cake Recipe

Cake layers

The Chocolate Cranberry and Chestnut Cake Recipe

I am always a little indecisive about what to make for a Christmas dessert, but generally come to the conclusion that a centrepiece cake can never go amiss!  I have hence been experimenting with some traditional seasonal flavours and am delighted with this resulting Chocolate Chestnut and Cranberry layer cake recipe.

Chocolate Cake

The chocolate cake is light and moist and is adapted slightly from a recipe in Tessa Huffs fabulous cake book, Layered. The lightness of this chocolate cake gives the perfect balance to the rich bitterness of the cranberry ganache and the sweetness of the chestnut meringue buttercream.

Cranberry Ganache

The cranberry ganache is adapted from a macaron filling recipe by patissier Eddy Van Damme. It is deliciously decadent with a fabulously rich colour. You may not need to use all of this ganache but leftover can be used to fill macarons or frozen for use in a future bake. It would pair well with other flavours too such as cranberry or gingerbread.

Chocolate Chestnut Cake Slice

Chestnut Swiss Merginue Buttercream

For the chestnut puree in the swiss meringue buttercream I used the French brand Clement Faugier but others are available in good supermarkets or delis. Leftover puree can be used in a variety of recipes such as with meringues in the classic Mont Blanc dessert, added to cakes or brownies, or made into chocolate chestnut truffles which would actually be a lovely decoration and accompaniment for this cake. I didn’t have time to do this but there are recipes available online.

Enjoy!

The cake is rich and decadent and will hence easily serve a crowd of 10-12..just what is needed for the festive season! The cake itself will keep well for 4-5 days wrapped in tightly cling film.  Once filled and iced eat within 2-3 days. I don’t think this will be a problem!

Happy baking!

Suzanne x

Sliced chocolate cake

Chocolate Cranberry and Chestnut Cake Recipe

Ingredients for the cake:

  • 235g plain flour
  • 70g best quality cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 120ml rapeseed or other flavourless oil
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 180ml whole milk
  • 240ml strong coffee

Ingredients for Cranberry Ganache:

  • 180g fresh cranberries
  • 120g cream
  • 120g sugar
  • 120g 54.5% dark belgian chocolate

Ingredients for the  Swiss Meringue Buttercream:

  • 150g fresh egg whites (about 5 eggs)
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 240g unsalted butter, cool but not cold
  • 4-5 tbsp tinned sweetened chestnut puree (or more to taste)
  • pinch salt

For decoration (optional):

  • Fresh cherries or other seasonal fruits

Method:

  1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 160°C/320F.  Grease three 7″ round cake tins and line with baking parchment.
  2. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a bowl.
  3. Beat the oil and sugar together in a stand mixer for a few mins until pale. Add the eggs and beat again until combined.
  4. Turn the mixer to low and add the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the milk. Scrape down the bowl and mix again to combine.
  5. Finally with the mixer on low add the coffee and mix until just combined.
  6. Divide the mixture between the tins and bake for 25-30 mins until the top of the cakes are firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  7. Remove the cake from the tin after 10-15mins and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.
  8. To make the cranberry ganache: Put the cranberries, cream and sugar into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and puree in a blender. Strain back into the pan to remove skin and seeds of the cranberries.
  9. Put the chocolate callets into a bowl.
  10. Bring the cranberry cream mixture back to the boil and then pour over the chocolate mixture. Leave for a few mins to allow the chocolate to melt before stirring to achieve a smooth ganache. Set aside to cool and thicken.
  11. To make the icing: Clean the bowl and whisk of an electric mixer with a squeeze of lemon juice and dry with paper towel to remove any traces of grease.
  12. Place the egg white and sugar into the bowl and place over a pot of simmering water, whisking constantly, until the temperature reaches 160°F on a candy thermometer. If you don’t have a thermometer, whisk until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.
  13. Transfer the bowl to the mixer and using the whisk attachment whisk until the meringue is thick and glossy and the bottom of the bowl feels neutral to the touch.
  14. Switch to paddle attachment and with mixer on low speed add the butter a cube at a time, mixing until incorporated after each addition. If the mixture curdles continue to mix until it comes back together. Add the chestnut puree and salt and mix to combine.
  15. If the buttercream is too runny, refrigerate until firmer and mix again before using.
  16. To assemble the cake, trim the tops of the cooled cakes to level. Fix one cake layer to a cake card or directly onto a cake stand using a small bit of buttercream. Pipe a layer of cranberry ganache on top followed by a layer of the buttercream, smoothing each with a palette knife. Repeat with a second cake layer and another layer of ganache and buttercream. Top with the final cake layer. Refrigerate until firm.
  17. Once the cake has been chilled for at least 30 mins and is firm, crumb coat the cake in a thin layer of buttercream, scraping away any excess. Refrigerate again.
  18. Continue to add layers of buttercream, using a scraper to remove excess until the cake is covered in a smooth layer of buttercream icing.
  19. Decorate as you wish with gilded fruits, sugared cranberries, chocolate truffles or anything else that takes your fancy!

Chocolate Chestnut Cranberry Cake Layers