/ The great UKC bake off

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Denni on 27 Mar 2013
Morning all,
our daughter Daisy is 3 and we try to do a lot of baking because she loves it. Easy stuff, Victoria Sponges, fairy cakes, the usual suspects.

I managed to make a dinosaur cake for her third birthday which was quite adventurous and bloody messy.

So what are the UKC favourites to make, can you recommend something unusual to try or just a classic with a twist?

I don't mind saying I'm getting quite into it!
Cheers, Den
mattrm - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

Lemon Drizzle and One Mix Fruit Cake are my faves. But I end up making lots of choccy cake as that's what people like.
Denni on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to mattrm:

We're not massive fans of cakes with chocolate but I like the idea of lemon drizzle.
ripper - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: I like banana cake - I always seem to be left with two bananas that go a bit over ripe, which means they're prefect for mashing and making into a scrummy cake. I have a very quick, easy basic recipe (melt butter and sugar in a pan, add mashed bananas, egg, flour and a bit of milk, stir and bake in a loaf tin), and I usually add a little bit of something to tweak it each time - few chopped walnuts, some ginger, few chopped dates or dried apricots, crunchy demerara sugar topping. Lovely on a sunday afternoon if we're just chilling at home.
annieman - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: I'm in the middle of Pasty production. Fiddly for one off's but OK when you make a dozen and stick some in the Freezer.

Guess what I'm having for my tea tonight.

Also have all of the ingedients for a carrot cake ready to experiemnt with a Macmillan recipe. I've run out of days that I can eat it - could I freeze it?
Robin
ice.solo - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

triangular flap jacks
ollieollie - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: ooh, i prefer lime drizzle cake!
kate8 on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:
A Caterpillar cake which is basically...

a row of ginger nut biscuits pre soaked in brandy (but not for too long as they go soggy!), stuck together (and covered) with whipped cream and made into a caterpillar like log shape. Then decorated with chocolate buttons and flakes for legs.

Dinosaur cake sounds interesting!
Tall Clare - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

I made my third-ever cake the other day for Mr TC's birthday, using the brilliant Peyton & Byrne British Baking book. It was a marbled chocolate cake with white chocolate icing - the best bit was that the kids, who are notoriously critical, said that it was 'better than cake bought from a shop'. I fair glowed with pride :-)
owlart - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Tall Clare: Yay, nice one!

To the OP: How about making cookies? They're dead easy, melted butter, sugar, flour, flavourings to taste (choc chips, smarties, raisens, chopped apricot, cherry,...), dollop on a baking sheet and bake for 8mins.
TheDrunkenBakers - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: I like to cook but Ive actually never baked a cake - does baked rhubarb crumble count.

I once baked a fresh loaf of bread having lovingly mixed and kneaded the fresh ingredients by hand, followed the recipe to the letter and was very proud of the aesthetic look. Tasted alright too.

Though it did have the weight and consistency of iron.

owlart - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to owlart: erm, I missed an egg out of my cookie there! Oops.
Tall Clare - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

Make gingerbread mix - the best one I've found so far comes from the Usborne Farmyard Tales Children's Cookbook (seriously!) - and cut shapes out. We have some letter shapes and some dinosaur shapes :-)
monkeymark - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

For quick and easy try this:

http://www.ecurry.com/blog/desserts-sweets/microwave-cupcake/

It tends to be a bit dry so I fill mine with giant white chocolate buttons and then a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.

It for more entertaining try whoopie pies. There are some great recipes out there for them.

Mark
nufkin - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to kate8:

> ginger nut biscuits pre soaked in brandy


For a three-year-old?!



What about some sort of steamed pudding? Not too complicated to make, if a bit slow to cook - though I seem to remember Dan Leopard giving some microwaveable recipies in his Guardian column a few weeks ago
Pursued by a bear - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: Parkin's my favourite. Easy enough to make though you can have fun dripping treacle everywhere if you aren't careful.

The recipe calls for 6 oz of golden syrup and 4 oz of treacle. In the past I've replaced the syrup with honey, which was delicious, and I've recently been using 7 oz of marmalade and 3 oz of syrup, which is equally delicious.

Sticky fingered fun to make, and very tasty to eat.

T.
kate8 on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to nufkin:
I think its more 'dipped' in brandy really. Just a slight flavour to soften the biscuits.
Tall Clare - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

Jay Greengrass, who used to post on here as JayH, made this brilliant weather cake for her three year old's birthday last week. Complete with full instructions: http://grumpyoldtrout.wordpress.com/2013/03/23/minis-weather-cake-photo-tutorial/
The Lemming - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

Cake in a mug?

Ingredients
• 4 tbs / 45 gms self raising flour
• 4 tbs / 55gms caster sugar
• 2 tbs / 17gms cocoa powder
• 1 egg
• 3 tbs / 43 mls milk
• 3 tbs / 25 mls sunflower oil
• 3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)
• A small dash of vanilla extract
• 1 large coffee mug
• Double cream or creme fraiche - optional for serving
Method
1. Add dry ingredients to the mug, and mix well.
2. Add the egg and mix thoroughly
3. Add the milk and oil - mix well (don't forget the corners / edges of the mug).
4. Add the chocolate chips (if using) and vanilla extract, and mix again
5. Put your mug in the microwave and cook for 3 minutes (in a 1000 watt microwave).
6. The cake will rise above the top of the mug, but don't worry it’s supposed to!
7. Allow to cool a little, tip out onto a plate.
joan cooper - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: Cheese scones and boiled fruit cake (the fruit is boiled not the cake) lovely and moist but doesnt last long!
Tall Clare - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to joan cooper:

A good serviceable fruit cake is the best sort of cake, in my opinion.
Ramblin dave - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:
If you can handle American recipes (ie cup measures and a few odd terms) then Smitten Kitchen is brilliant:
http://smittenkitchen.com/recipes/#Cake

(Her savoury stuff isn't bad, either.)
joan cooper - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Tall Clare: trouble is I have to be mean and ration it!!!
joan cooper - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to joan cooper: and I have just made a batch of hot cross buns and I have to ration myself!!!
lost1977 - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

chocolate+beetroot or possibly banana with peanut butter icing are favourites at this moment
ripper - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: mmm I made some cracking choc and beetroot brownies a while back, very simple, very yummy and not too guilt-inducing (so long as one didn't think too hard about the amount of butter and sugar in them).
Also some flapjack-cum-power bar thingies with peanut butter, flax seeds, and frozen blueberries added to the usual oats/butter/syrup mix.
Alyson - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni: At the moment, and I don't know whether this is a strange pregnancy symptom or just me being weird, I'm really into baking but I'm not really into eating the results! Me and baby are all about the savouries right now. So I have recently made (but not eaten) orange tuile biscuits, and hazelnut and chocolate biscotti - both because I fancied a go at something difficult-ish and fiddly. I have also just baked my simnel cake ready for the weekend (although I might eat some of that one).

As for recommendations, I have two fall-back cake options which I use regularly. One is Nigella's Chocolate Orange Storecupboard Cake (or words to that effect) which is made with chocolate and marmalade, is ridiculously easy and tastes divine (from How To Be A Domestic Goddess).

The other is a chocolate, fig and almond cake which is from the Green and Blacks Cookbook, and everyone I've given it to asks for the recipe. It might be my favourite cake ever.
ripper - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Alyson:
> (In reply to Denni)
> The other is a chocolate, fig and almond cake which is from the Green and Blacks Cookbook, and everyone I've given it to asks for the recipe. It might be my favourite cake ever.

OOOH I have that G&B book, might give that a try this weekend :)
TryfAndy on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Denni:

I'm rather fond of a bog-standard fruit cake, made using the rubbed-in method. The recipe I use is from an old Be-Ro cookbook my mom had when she was at school, and it tastes lovely with a cup of tea.
Alyson - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to ripper: You won't be disappointed! The only thing I would say is not to sprinkle the cocoa on the top. They suggest something mad like 4 tbsp and it's horribly dry and bitter. I leave it off entirely and it's far better.
owlart - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Alyson: Oh, I have the G&B book too, I might try that out at some point! The Chocolate Orange cake sounds divine, but I'd end up eating it all myself as others who I bake for tend not to like the choc & orange combination :-(

Congrats on the baby, btw, hadn't picked up on that if it's been mentioned elsewhere!
kathrync - on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to Tall Clare:
> (In reply to Denni)
>
> Jay Greengrass, who used to post on here as JayH, made this brilliant weather cake for her three year old's birthday last week. Complete with full instructions: http://grumpyoldtrout.wordpress.com/2013/03/23/minis-weather-cake-photo-tutorial/

I was about to link to that as well :o) There is a brilliant video of the reaction of her daughter when she saw the inside of it.
Denni on 27 Mar 2013
In reply to kathrync:

Cheers for all the ideas folks, am loving the weather cake! Cookies etc will be the next thing to try at the weekend I reckon and I have just discovered we have the Mary Berry and the PB book as well so will try to get some more inspiration.

Now, anyone fancy posting me a pic of their work?!

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