Chocolate Week 2010 ends on Sunday 17th October this week (boooo...), but National Baking Week 2010 starts on Monday 18th October (hooray!). To celebrate, ACHICA has some delightful promotions starting next week. These include useful baking tools such as spatulas, cooling stands and measuring spoons from Kitchencraft, as well as silicone rolling pins from Sil-pin. There will be super-sharp professional knives from Sabatier, cake moulds from Lekue and some rather nifty kitchen scales from Salter too.
To get you in the mood to bake up some treats, here are some delicious recipes from Master Patissier Eric Lanlard, from his new book Home Bake. These recipes are definitely one for a lazy Sunday afternoon bake. Anyone for Double Chocolate Marshmallow muffins? Or would you prefer Chai Tea cupcakes? They might just inspire you to do some winter baking and get ready for Christmas (there's a Festive Recipes section in Eric's Home Bake book too).
Double chocolate marshmallow muffins
"These are a chocoholic’s dream! As much as I hate to admit it, I’ve been seen placing these muffins when cold in a microwave for a moment or so, and serving them warm with some ice-cream… Divine!" says Eric Lanlard.
Makes 12 muffins
Preparation time: 10 minutes + cooling
Cooking time: 20 minutes
For the muffins
2 large eggs
175ml (6fl oz) vegetable oil
300ml (10fl oz) milk
500g (18oz) self-raising flour
a good pinch of salt
2 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp pure cocoa powder
250g (9oz) caster sugar
4 tbsp dark chocolate nuggets/chips
150g (5oz) mini marshmallows
For the decoration
1 jar Marshmallow Fluff topping (buy in
larger supermarkets and specialist
sweetened cocoa powder
1 Preheat the oven to 200ºC (fan 180ºC)/400ºF/gas mark 6. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with muffin papers.
2 Put the eggs and vegetable oil into a large jug and mix them together, then mix in the milk.
3 Next sift the flour, salt, baking powder, cocoa powder and sugar together into a large bowl. Now add the jug of egg mixture
to the bowl of dry mixture and mix until it all comes together. Fold in the chocolate nuggets.
4 Scoop enough batter into the muffin papers to half fill them. Divide about three-quarters of the mini marshmallows
between the centres of the muffins, and then top with the remaining batter.
5 Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes until the thin blade of a knife inserted comes out clean. Leave to cool on a wire
6 With a small fork create ‘spikes’ with the marshmallow topping on top of each muffin. Add the remaining mini
marshmallows and dust with sweetened cocoa powder.
Don’t add the Marshmallow Fluff topping until you are ready to serve, as it will start to melt.
Chai Tea Cupcakes recipe
"These original cupcakes have a great flavour,' says Eric. 'I tried them first in New York with a vanilla base, but I much prefer this chocolate one. Chai is a mixture of tea leaves and spices (cinnamon, fennel, cloves etc) originally from India. Chai tea mix is available in all good supermarkets, in the tea and coffee section.'
Makes 12 cupcakes
Preparation time: 15 minutes + cooling
Cooking time: 15 minutes
For the cupcakes
125g (4½oz) plain flour
25g (1oz) unsweetened cocoa powder
25g (1oz) instant chai tea mix
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp fine salt
100g (3½oz) unsalted butter
150g (5oz) caster sugar
2 large eggs
½ tsp vanilla extract
80ml (3¾fl oz) milk
For the orange and chai butter-cream frosting
200g (7oz) unsalted butter, softened
50g (2oz) instant chai tea mix
60g (2¼oz) icing sugar
finely grated zest of 1 orange
1 Preheat the oven to 180ºC (fan 160ºC)/350ºF/gas mark 4. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake papers.
2 Combine the flour, cocoa, chai mix, baking powder and salt in a bowl, and mix together.
3 In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together, using an electric hand whisk on medium speed. This will
take about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time and beat in well. Then stir in the vanilla extract.
4 With the whisk on low speed, alternately add the flour and milk to the creamed butter mixture and beat until well
combined and smooth.
5 Fill the cupcake cups with this batter up to three-quarters full. Bake in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until
risen, and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.
6 For the frosting, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until smooth. Refrigerate until the
cakes have cooled.
7 Spread the frosting on top of the cupcakes and, if you like, sprinkle with extra cocoa powder and icing sugar on top as a
Check out next week's baking promotions with Sabatier, KitchenCraft, Sil-pin and Lekue at ACHICA
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shop at ACHICA.
Emily Peck, Editor
View all posts by Emily Peck, Editor