Recipe: Easy Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes

As Valentine’s Day approaches, my thoughts turn to little bakes I can do to gift to my loved ones. When I was younger, Valentine’s Day was reserved for the one special person in your life, but these days anything goes. I tend to make a slight fuss of my boy, he’s a bit too young for actual romance, but he’s never to old to be told his mum loves him. One of the ways I express my love for him and others is in the kitchen, so I whipped up a batch of these Baileys Irish Cream cupcakes and decorated them in a manner fit for Valentine’s Day!

Easy Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes

These cupcakes are really easy and decorating them is pretty simple too. I piped buttercream roses into mine, and they’re a lot easier to do than you’d think. If you’re not sure how to do it, watch this short video. You can add sprinkles, chocolates, drizzles of sauce, whatever you want. I went for some simple heart shaped sweets I got from a local shop and some chocolate hearts I spotted which I thought might fit the bill.

This recipe makes about 24 cupcakes and if you’re quick, you can have them baked, decorated and ready to it in about an hour. I love quick and easy bakes, I’m a busy mum and finding loads of time to bake these days is a bit difficult at times.

Easy Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes

Ingredients
225g soft butter or baking margarine like Stork
225g caster sugar
200g self-raising flour
25g cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla essence
4 large eggs
6 tablespoons of Irish cream, I used Baileys

For the Irish cream buttercream
150g soft butter
300g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
20g cocoa powder
6 tablespoons of Irish cream, I used Baileys

Easy Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes

Method
Preheat the oven to 190c. Grab a couple of bun trays and put a paper cupcake case in each of the holes. You need to have 24 paper cases ready.

Beat the butter (or margarine) and sugar together until pale and fluffy. I used an electric hand whisk, but you can use a wooden spoon if you prefer. Add the eggs, cocoa powder, vanilla and Irish cream and mix together. Gently tip in the flour and baking powder and combine until it’s all smooth.

Using a spoon, drop the mixture evenly into the cases. If you were feeling like being precise, you can weigh each one to make sure they are more or less the same weight. This will help them look more uniform, it’s not essential, measuring by eye also works.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 18 minutes or so, until they are cooked through and risen.

Turn your cupcakes out onto a wire rack and leave to cool fully. If you’re in a rush, you can pop them in the fridge for half an hour or so.

Easy Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes

While you’re waiting for your buns to cool, it’s time to make the buttercream icing. Sift the icing sugar and mix with your softened butter in a mixing bowl until smooth. Beat in the Irish cream and cocoa powder with the vanilla essence.

Once your cupcakes are cool, put your Baileys buttercream in a piping bag with a star piping nozzle – I used a Wilton 2D nozzle. Starting in the middle of the cupcake, swirl your buttercream around until you’ve got a buttercream rose shape. If you’re not sure how to do it, watch this short video.

It’s really simple, and if you’ve not happy with your first few efforts, you can scrape the buttercream back into the piping bag and start again. Once you’re happy with your cupcakes, feel free to embellish them however you want, with sprinkles or hearts or whatever you fancy.

Tip: Once you’ve finished decorating your rose cupcakes, you could pop them in the fridge for an hour so the buttercream firms up a little before serving.

These Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes are really pretty and very easy to bake. The icing is much easier that you’d think. I’m no expert cake decorator, but with a little bit of practice and patience, you’ll be piping buttercream roses like a pro!

if you enjoyed this, you might also like to try my simple Baileys Irish Cream cake, or these simple heart shaped Danish Butter Cookies.

Easy Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes

Christmas Recipe: Christmassy Rocky Road

I love baking at Christmas, but sometimes I just want to step away from the oven and make something colourful, a bit silly and something that Will Ferrell’s Elf might fancy for breakfast. This Christmassy rocky road is a great thing to make with kids, it’s all bashing and stirring and waiting patiently (and impatiently) for it to set so it can be cut up and gobbled down greedily.

Rocky road usually has marshmallows in it, but I decided to swap these out for Haribo Christmas Trees to make each slice extra festive. If you want to leave the gummy sweets out and stick to the traditional marshmallows, then just swap them in the recipe.

Christmas Recipe: Christmassy Rocky Road

CHRISTMASSY ROCKY ROAD

Ingredients:
200g Milk Chocolate, broken into small pieces
2 Tablespoons of golden syrup
135g Unsalted butter
200g gingerbread men
100g Christmas sweets, I used Haribo Christmas Trees
75g Dried Cranberries
60g Smarties or M&Ms
Christmas sprinkles

Method:
Line a high sided baking tray with baking parchment. I used a square 20cm tin.

Put the milk chocolate, golden syrup and butter in a glass bowl. Using a bain-marie (put an inch or two of hot water in the pan and place the glass bowl over the top making sure the water doesn’t touch the bowl) over a gentle heat. Stir the chocolate, golden syrup and butter until everything has melted together.

While the chocolate mixture is slowly melting, put the gingerbread biscuits into a plastic bag and bash them with a rolling pin until they’re broken up, but not crumbs. Ideally you want a mixture of chunky pieces and smaller, crumbly bits. Once bashed, tip them into a mixing bowl. Add the marshmallows and raisins and the Smarties or M&Ms and add them to the biscuit mix.

Christmas Recipe: Christmassy Rocky Road

Once the chocolate mixture has melted, take it off the heat and carefully tip the biscuity mix into the chocolate. Stir it well and make sure everything is coated. Then tip it onto your baking tray spread the mixture out and gently press it down with the back of a spoon. It needs to be about 2cm deep as a minimum, but the thicker the better as far as I’m concerned.

Lastly, sprinkle over your Christmas sprinkles and put somewhere cool (or in the fridge) to chill and set for a few hours, preferably overnight if you can wait that long!

If you enjoy regular rocky road, then this Christmas version is so much extra. The gingerbread biscuits really make it extra special, and all the festive treats packed into it make feel like a bar full of festive joy.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try –

Christmas Recipe: Christmassy Rocky Road

Christmas Recipe: Danish Butter Cookies

I grew up in the 1980’s and you could always tell when Christmas was coming by the appearance of a blue tin of Danish Butter Cookies on top of the fridge. They were simple but incredibly moreish and they were to us at least, an exotic festive treat.

A few years ago, I started making my own Danish Butter Cookies with my son. They are incredibly easy to make and they are a nice predictable bake, meaning that they never fail. I’m pretty good at cake baking, but for some reason my kitchen confidence always leaves me when it comes to biscuits and cookies. Perhaps the dependability of the recipe is why I make them so often.

Christmas Recipe: Danish Butter Biscuits

Because to me, and other children of the 80’s, Danish Butter Cookies are forever linked to Christmas, it’s at this time of year I tend to make them the most. A batch of cookies neatly wrapped in brown paper, or in a decorative bag or box make a lovely little edible gift for someone.

Danish Butter cookies

Ingredients:
375g butter, room temperature
250g caster sugar
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
500g plain flour
Milk (entirely optional)

Method:
In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla essence and mix in thoroughly.

Beat in the plain flour, I tend to do this in batches so the kitchen doesn’t get covered in a flour cloud. Once it’s all mixed in, you need to decide if your mixture is loose enough to pipe, or if it needs letting down a bit. If it’s a bit stiff, add a couple of tablespoons of milk and beat the mixture again.

Heat the oven to 180° and line some large baking sheets with parchment paper. If you’re choosing to pipe your cookies, select a wide piping nozzle and put in your piping bag. I prefer to use disposable piping bags and a Wilton 1M nozzle, but you use whatever you’re comfortable with.

Carefully pipe circles of the biscuit dough onto your parchment paper. I used a knife to help poke them into shape as my piping was a bit rusty. Once you’ve piped a tray (leaving room for them to spread a little), put them in the oven to bake for 12-15 minutes. You don’t really want them to get brown, because like shortbread, these Danish Butter Cookies are supposed to be pale and interesting.

Christmas Recipe: Danish Butter Biscuits

Once you’ve removed them from the oven, leave on a cooling rack until they are properly cool. Resist the urge to eat them all, especially if you’ve baked them as gifts for Christmas.

These Danish butter cookies should keep in an airtight tin for a week or so, should you be able to resist them for that long!

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try –

Danish Butter Cookies

Recipe: Chocolate Cherry Porter Cake

About 15 years ago I had my first slice of chocolate stout cake in a café in Didsbury. It was probably the best cake I’d ever eaten and I once I started baking regularly, I wanted to make one for myself.

I’ve baked this cake many times now, each time with a different stout or porter. It’s such a rich, delicious cake and really very simple to make. After going to this year’s Didsbury Beer Festival, I was reminded how good the Dunham Massey Chocolate Cherry Dark Mild was and I knew I needed to bake this with it.

Recipe: Chocolate Cherry Porter Cake

A bottle of the Dunham Massey Chocolate Cherry Dark Mild usually has 500ml of stout in it, which is enough for two cakes, so I often double up the recipe and bake two cakes. Un-frosted, they keep quite well, though that’s never really an issue in my greedy house.

Chocolate Cherry Porter Cake

250ml Stout or porter, I used Dunham Massey Chocolate Cherry Dark Mild
250g Butter
75g Cocoa powder
400g Caster sugar
150g Sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
275g plain flour
3 teaspoons of Bicarbonate of soda

For the frosting
250g Cream cheese
150g Icing sugar
2 tsp Cornflour
125ml Double cream

Recipe: Chocolate Cherry Porter Cake

How to make a Chocolate Cherry Porter Cake

Preheat your oven to 180°C and grease and line a 9 inch cake tin.

In a large saucepan, melt the butter and add your stout or porter. Add the cocoa powder and sugar and whist gently until the sugar dissolves.

In a mixing bowl, beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla and then pour into the pan and finally whisk in the flour and the bicarbonate of soda.

Pour the cake batter into the greased and lined tin and bake for 50 minutes to an hour. As the batter is quite wet, I tend to leave it in the cooling oven for 15 minutes to stop the cake shocking and sinking in the middle. If it does sink a little in the middle, it’s not a disaster, it’s just a tasty dent you can fill with the frosting! Once you’ve removed the cake from the over, leave it to cool completely in the tin on a cooling rack.

When the cake is completely cool, it’s time to make your frosting. In a clean bowl, whip the cream cheese until it is smooth, sift the icing sugar through a fine sieve and do the same with the cornflour; then beat to combine with the cream cheese.

In a separate bowl, whip your double cream until it is thick and then fold it through the cream cheese mixture. Spread it thickly over the top of your cake, which should look like a dark pint of stout with a rich creamy head.

If I’d thought it through at the time, I would have also decorated the cake with chocolate dipped fresh cherries; but maybe that’s one for the summer when they’re in season.

This cake works really well with all kinds of stouts and porters; so pick your favourite and give it a whirl!

Recipe: Chocolate Cherry Porter Cake

If you enjoyed this, you might also like –

Halloween Recipe: Creepy Chocolate Cupcakes

In the UK, Halloween usually falls during half term, so it’s a great excuse to get the kids in the kitchen to whip up some terrifying treats. This year time was short and energy was low, so we made a quick batch of creepy chocolate cupcakes and decorated them in a suitably spooky style.

I usually have a decent selection of cake sprinkles in the cupboard, and I’d stocked up for the occasion with some edible eyes, food colouring and some Halloween sprinkles from Cake Angels. So we were well prepared to make some spooky bakes.

Halloween Recipe: Creepy Chocolate Cupcakes

This recipe makes approximately 24 cupcakes.

Creepy Chocolate Cupcakes

Ingredients:
200 g caster sugar
200 g softened butter or margarine (I use Stork)
4 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 tbsp milk
25g cocoa powder
175 g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder

To decorate
2 large bars of white chocolate
1 pack of edible eyes
Food colouring, we used green
Assorted Halloween sprinkles

Method:
Heat your fan oven to 190c. Get two bun trays and set out your cupcake liners in each tray. You will need about 24 of these.

In a large bowl, beat your butter and sugar together until fluffy (I used a hand mixer). Add the eggs, milk and vanilla and combine, then add the cocoa powder,  flour and baking powder and mix together until you have a smooth batter.

Using a dessert spoon, dollop an equal amount of the mixture in each cupcake liner and then bake in your pre-heated oven for 15-18 minutes. If you’re feeling like being precise, then you can weigh your cupcakes to make sure they are all the same size.

Once baked, take your cupcakes out of the oven and leave them to cool on a cooling rack. Once they are cool, you can set to work decorating them.

Halloween Recipe: Creepy Chocolate Cupcakes

Break up your two bars of white chocolate and put them in a microwave proof bowl. Microwave in short blasts until it is just about melting, stir with a small spoon until it is smooth and lump free. Beware! White chocolate melts much quicker than milk or dark chocolate, so this won’t take long.

Once melted, add a small splash of food colouring and mix it through, add more and stir until you get the shade of creepy you are looking for.

When you’re happy with your coloured chocolate, drop a small spoonful on the top of each bun. Swirl it around a bit with the back of the spoon to spread it around, the chocolate will naturally spread a bit. When you’re happy, it’s time to decorate with those edible eyes or the Halloween sprinkles.

Halloween Recipe: Creepy Chocolate Cupcakes

Once decorated, leave the creepy chocolate cupcakes somewhere cool and out of the way of hungry children (and adults) until the chocolate sets. Once it has set, they’re ready to eat.

We had a lovely time making these very simple little cakes. They were so easy to make, but light as a feather and they looked suitable spooky for Halloween.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try these recipes…

Halloween Recipe: Creepy Chocolate Cupcakes

Great Bakes: Rhubarb Drizzle Cake

There’s been rhubarb growing in my garden since I was a child. It’s a fruit which some people really love and others hate. It can be sour, but I think the sourness is why I love it so much. I’ve made rhubarb upside down cake over and over, and I’ve been puzzling on what else I can bake it with. Lemon drizzle is a real classic and given how sour rhubarb can be, I thought it might make a pretty drizzle cake. My rhubarb drizzle cake turned out incredibly well and it was so moreish!

Do not adjust your screen settings – it really is this colour!

Great Bakes: Rhubarb Drizzle Cake

I love getting my bundt tin out, it always makes the prettiest cakes, and if you’re baking something fairly simple it can make it look much fancier than it actually is. The great thing about a bundt tin is your cake is baked upside down, so if you’re adding fruit it will sink… but that’s fine because it sinks to the top of the cake.

Rhubarb Drizzle cake

Ingredients
For the drizzle (you need to do this first)
300g rhubarb – this was about 4 or 5 sticks
100g caster sugar
4 tablespoons of water

For the cake
250g caster sugar
250g softened butter
4 eggs
250g self-raising flour
1 heaped teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

Great Bakes: Rhubarb Drizzle Cake

How to make your Rhubarb Drizzle Cake:

To begin with you need to poach your rhubarb for the drizzle. Chop your rhubarb sticks into approx. 2cm long. Put in a pan with 100g caster sugar and 4 tablespoons of water. Poach the rhubarb slowly until they have softened. With a slotted spoon remove the rhubarb and set to one side to cool, this will later go in your cake. The syrup you’ve cooked your rhubarb in needs to simmer for a little longer until it thickens slightly. Don’t cook it too long or it will go jammy, you want it to pour almost like maple syrup.

To make the cake; pre-heat the oven to 190° and liberally grease your bundt tin with melted butter.

Beat your butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla, eggs, flour, baking powder and lemon zest and juice and give them a really good mix. Add the cooled rhubarb you cooked earlier and stir in gently.

Pour the mixture into your bundt tin. Smooth the top of the batter and bake in the pre-heated oven for 30 minutes. Once baked through, remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for at least 15 minutes.

Once cool, turn out onto a suitable plate or cake stand and make up the drizzle icing. Do not even attempt to drizzle the icing on until the cake is fully cooled.

Prick your cake all over with a skewer and carefully spoon the rhubarb syrup over, try to get some of it down the little holes in your cake. Leave it in a cool place for the icing to set a little, then serve with a pot of tea.

It’s as light as a feather and an absolutely fabulous spring bake. If you don’t have a bundt tin, you can always bake it in a regular cake tin, just adjust the cooking time as you see fit.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try this rhubarb and ginger upside-down cake, this blueberry and lemon drizzle bundt or this lemon and ginger drizzle cake.

Great Bakes: Rhubarb Drizzle Cake

Recipe: Cheese and Wild Garlic Pesto Twists

Each spring the woodland footpaths here abouts are fringed with wild garlic. I often pick a handful of leaves on my morning dog walks. Sometimes if I’ve got some time on my hands, I’ll pick enough to make a jar of wild garlic pesto, if I make enough of it, I’ll freeze some for later in the year. Wild garlic pesto is a potent thing, and should be consumed with caution, especially if you’re planning a hot date later that evening.

If you’ve got a couple of tablespoons of wild garlic pesto going spare, then these cheese and wild garlic pesto twists are a simple but excellent way to use the pesto. If you have no wild garlic pesto at all, then they’re just as good with regular pesto.

Recipe: Cheese and Wild Garlic Pesto Twists

It’s pretty straightforward and if they’re keen to get involved, it’s a fun thing for kids to get stuck into making too.

Cheese and Wild Garlic Pesto Twists

You will need:
Wild garlic pesto, about 1-2 tablespoons
1 sheet of ready rolled puff pastry
50g grated cheddar cheese
1/2 a ball of mozzarella, torn into small pieces
Melted butter to brush over

To make your Cheese and Wild Garlic Pesto Twists:
Pre-heat your oven to 200c. Line a baking tray with baking parchment and assemble your ingredients.

Lay out your puff pastry sheet and cut it in half down the middle lengthways. Spread your wild garlic pesto over one of the halves and sprinkle the cheddar and mozzarella over the top.

Lay the other piece of pastry over on top of the pesto and cheese; press down gently and then using your fingers, pressing around the edges to seal them together. Cut into 8 strips widthways and when you lay them in the baking sheet, twist them. Make sure there’s space between them as they will spread out a little in the oven.

Recipe: Cheese and Wild Garlic Pesto Twists

Brush each one with melted butter and bake for 15 minutes or so in your pre-heated oven. They should be nicely browned and some of the cheese may have escaped and bubbled a bit. This only makes them more delicious.

Once baked, remove them from the oven and leave them to cool on the baking paper. The cheese will make them soft and prone to flopping and breaking unless you leave them to cool before moving them.

The finished twists make an excellent lunch with a pile of nice salad, or a great on the go snack for busy people. I usually bake two batches of these (double the quantity) because once they’re cool, they seem to disappear very quickly – always a good sign!

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try this wild garlic focaccia or these wild garlic and cheese scones.

Recipe: Cheese and Wild Garlic Pesto Twists

Recipe: Simple Baileys Irish Cream Cake

In my family, May is a busy birthday month. This week alone there are two birthdays to cater for; for the first, I produced a rocky road and for the second I whipped up this delicious Baileys Irish Cream Cake.

I’m a bit experimental with my baking, I couldn’t find a recipe I liked, so based on my fool-proof sponge cake recipe I made up my own. It turned out exceptionally well and will now regularly feature in my repertoire of bakes.

SIMPLE Baileys Irish Cream Cake

Ingredients
225g soft butter or baking margarine like Stork
225g caster sugar
200g self-raising flour
25g cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla essence
4 large eggs
6 tablespoons of Irish cream, I used Baileys

For the Irish cream buttercream
150g soft butter
300g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
20g cocoa powder
6 tablespoons of Irish cream, I used Baileys

Method
Preheat the oven to 180C. Butter and line the base of two deep 20cm sandwich cake tins.

Beat the butter (or margarine) and sugar together until pale and fluffy. I used an electric hand whisk, but you can use a wooden spoon if you prefer. Add the eggs, cocoa powder, vanilla and Irish cream and mix together. Gently tip in the flour and baking powder and combine until it’s all smooth.

Divide the mixture evenly between the two greased and lined baking tins. I usually weigh them to make sure they are more or less the same weight.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes until cooked through. I tend to open the oven door and leave my cakes in for five minutes so the shock of coming out of the oven is less. Maybe I just bake sensitive cakes.

Turn your cakes out onto a wire rack and leave to cool fully. If you’re in a rush, you can pop them in the fridge for half an hour or so.

Recipe: Simple Baileys Irish Cream Cake

To make the buttercream icing, sift the icing sugar and mix with your softened butter in a mixing bowl until smooth. Beat in the Irish cream and cocoa powder with the vanilla essence.

When they are cool, put a blob of the buttercream icing on your cake plate or stand; place the first layer of your sponge cake on top. The blob of buttercream will anchor the cake in place and stop it from sliding about. Smother the top of your first layer with about half of the buttercream, then sandwich the second layer on top of that. Swirl the rest of the buttercream on the top layer. I topped that with some grated chocolate, but you can leave it plain if you prefer.

I was very generous with the buttercream. If you think it’s far too much, then use what you want and put the rest in the fridge for topping cupcakes or whatever at a later date.

This Baileys Irish Cream cake is really light, but rich. It’s full of lovely Irish cream flavour and a great bake in general. It’s not too boozy, just enough to give a good flavour without making you fall over after eating a slice. The buttercream is excellent and would be great to top cupcakes with too. Happy baking!

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try my really simple mocha cake recipe.

Recipe: Simple Baileys Irish Cream Cake

Recipe: Easy Wild Garlic Pesto

Each spring the woodland footpaths here abouts are fringed with wild garlic. I often pick a handful of leaves on my morning dog walks. Sometimes if I’ve got some time on my hands, I’ll pick enough to make a jar of wild garlic pesto. It’s a pretty simple thing to make and it stores well in the fridge. It’s also excellent to use in all kinds of dishes, not just your standard pasta with pesto.

Recipe: Easy Wild Garlic Pesto

I have all kinds of kitchen gadgets, but for pesto for some reason (I think possibly because it’s usually a small quantity) I use my nutribullet to whizz it all up. I like to add some fresh parsley to my pesto, I just really like parsley. You can leave it out if you prefer.

Easy Wild Garlic Pesto

Ingredients
200g wild garlic leaves, washed
50g fresh parsley, roughly chopped
50g parmesan, finely grated
1 garlic clove, finely chopped or grated
½ lemon, zested and juiced
50g pine nuts or walnuts, toasted
200ml good olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Recipe: Easy Wild Garlic Pesto

To make your wild garlic pesto:
Rinse and roughly chop your wild garlic leaves. Put all the wild garlic, parsley, parmesan, garlic, lemon zest and juice and the toasted nuts in your blender or nutribullet, add the oil a bit at a time and whizz it all up until it’s chopped up and combined. Don’t use all of the oil, you’ll need a tablespoon or two for the top of the pesto.

Taste the pesto and season to taste, feel free to add a bit more lemon juice if you feel it needs it. I felt like I added a lot more salt than I imagined I’d need to, so don’t feel you need to be too frugal with the salt shaker.

Pour the wild garlic pesto into a clean jar and top with the remaining oil. The pesto will need to be used fairly quickly, ideally within two weeks.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like to try these wild garlic pesto twistswild garlic focaccia or these wild garlic and cheese scones.

Recipe: Easy Wild Garlic Pesto

Retro Recipe: Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard

Ever since I served up a giant helping of school dinner style chocolate cake with chocolate custard to my family last year, I’ve been itching to make a version of that which many people who went to primary school in the 1980’s will remember fondly – chocolate cake with minty green custard. It’s a similar recipe, but the custard is green and flavoured with peppermint. 

If you didn’t go to primary school in the 1980’s, then this pudding may be a bit alarming to look at. I make no apologies for that. The version I remember was a slightly less vibrant shade of green, but this slightly too green version appealed to my son, who said it looked like a Minecraft block. I will take that as the compliment it was clearly intended to be.

Retro Recipe: Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard

Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard

Ingredients
250g baking margarine or unsalted butter
250g golden caster sugar
4 medium eggs, beaten
250g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp dark cocoa powder
50g dark chocolate chips or dark chocolate, grated
1 tsp vanilla extract
100mls milk, warmed slightly

For the custard
1 pint of milk
3 tablespoons of cornflour
3 tablespoons of sugar
Green food colouring
Peppermint essence

Retro Recipe: Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard

How to make your Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard:

Preheat the oven to 180° degrees and grease and line a square 20cm cake or brownie tin with baking paper.

Beat the butter and sugar together until soft, light and fluffy; I use an electric hand mixer for this, but a wooden spoon or a stand mixer work just as well.

Add the eggs one by one, beat well after adding each egg. Sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa into the mixing bowl and mix well, once combined, add the chocolate chips or grated chocolate and stir through.

Add the vanilla extract and enough of the warm milk to create a smooth mixture with a dropping consistency. Pour into the tin and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Once baked, pull it out of the oven and leave to cool a little on a baking tray. This cake is good served warm or cold.

To make the custard…

To make the custard, mix the cornflour, sugar and a dash or two of the milk and mix it together to make a smooth paste. Add more milk if you need to.

In the meantime, put the remaining milk in a pan and heat until it is almost at boiling point. Once it’s almost boiling, remove the pan from the heat and pout the hot milk into the bowl with the cornflour paste, keep whisking until it dissolves and there are no lumps.

Adding the paste to the milk instead of the powder should mean you don’t get a lumpy custard!

Pour the milk back into the pan and return to the heat, stirring continuously until thickens and the custard reaches almost boiling point again. Once it’s thickened and smooth, turn the heat off.

Now for the exciting bit, cautiously add a few drops of the green food colouring, whisk the colouring through and add more if you want until you get to your desired shade of green. Traditionally it’s a fairly pale but distinctively green shade, but you can go darker if you dare!

Similarly it’s time to add some of your peppermint essence. I urge caution at this stage, add a few drops at a time, whisk through and taste as you go. Too minty and it’ll taste like toothpaste, but a few drops is probably all you need.

To serve, cut your cake into handsome squares (warm or cold, your choice), and generously top with your minty green custard. Guaranteed clean plates all round.

Retro Recipe: Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard

If you enjoyed this, you might also like my recipe for school dinner style cornflake pie.

Retro Recipe: Chocolate Cake with Minty Green Custard