I have a confession. I am obsessed with watching Instagram videos of cakes. Specifically cakes being lavishly smothered in buttercream, covered in intricately piped buttercream flowers or ganache dripped round the edges. Its taking over my life. Craig is so sick of watching them over […]
I remember the first time I had a creme egg. It was a scorching hot day in the summer holidays, as all childhood summer days seemed to have been, and my sister had bought me one to try. It was practically all melted and the fondant filling oozed everywhere, and I remember thinking that I wasn’t too sure on this odd chocolate treat. Fast forward 20 years and I’m one of those ‘is January too early for Easter chocolate?’ I can’t get enough of them, especially now that they come in miniaturised form. So a creme egg cheesecake was just a natural progression in my eyes…
I love cheesecake, its one of those really decadent desserts that you don’t feel so bad eating because they’re usually accompanied with fruit or a raspberry coulis. Because a coulis totally counts as one of your five a day right… However, I’m afraid this creme egg cheesecake covers up no sins. Three bags of chopped mini crème eggs enrobed in luscious vanilla cheesecake, with a double chocolate digestive buttery biscuit base. Because if you’re going to go in, go all in.
This is a no-bake recipe, which in my head means no-fuss and this recipe doesn’t disappoint. Crushed biscuits are added to melted butter to create your super buttery chocolaty base. That’s then chilled while you crack on with your filling. For this you simply pop all your ingredients in a bowl, mix together and then spread onto the chilled base. Da dahhh! I have made it slightly trickier by adding food colouring to a 1/3 of the filling to give it that creme egg feel, but that’s an optional extra.
There are a serious amount of creme eggs in this – 4 bags of mini’s in fact!! But for an Easter treat I think we can just about get away with it…
Let me know how you get on, and how quickly it goes!
I love chocolate, but seasonal chocolate is my absolute favourite. Why eat a bar of chocolate when you could eat a chocolate shaped bunny? Or a cute speckled egg? And easter egg chocolate genuinely does taste better than normal chocolate right? So adding Easter chocolate to rocky road was a natural step for me.
Rocky Road is one of those super versatile, quick to make and loved by all recipes. You can’t really go wrong and you can add pretty much anything you like. For me, crushed digestives and mini marshmallows create the best base and then you can go wild. I added mini eggs, mini creme eggs and mini Malteaser bunnies because apparently I like everything miniaturised…!
In some ways I feel a little silly calling rocky road a recipe, when its so simple. You’ll need maximum 20minutes in the kitchen and then the fridge pretty much does all the work. My main recipe tip, is that slow and steady definitely wins the race when melting the chocolate, golden syrup and butter. The different boiling points can mean you end up with a split oily mess, and thats a serious waste of chocolate!
Once everything is melted and silky smooth all you need to do is chuck all your goodies in and give it all a good stir. Then pop it into a square tin and leave to set in the fridge for a few hours. Then you’ll have 12 glorious slices of chocolatey, biscuity rocky road goodness!
Rocky road is a perfect bake (can we call it a bake?) for Easter weekend with all the little one’s in your life, especially with all that chocolate involved. Though who am I kidding? My mid-twenties self loved making it just as much as I imagine my three year old self would have!
Let me know if you whip up a batch yourself, and what Easter treats you include!
As you read this I will be living it up in Paris probably eating my weight in macarons, drinking red wine and definitely eating pain au raisins!! The French really know how to breakfast, I can’t think of anything better than a steaming mug of hot coffee and a warm pastry. It makes my morning porridge pale in comparison.
This was my first time making pain au raisins, I’ve made croissants before and other danishes but pain au raisins always seemed a bit tricky! I followed Edd Kimbers recipe to the letter, and it was surprisingly simple. Danishes seem like such an out of reach bake, but honestly give them a try! Yes they’re time consuming, but the majority of that time is the pain au raisins working on themselves while you can put your feet up.
So just to pre-warn you now, if you’re thinking of making these this afternoon I’m afraid thats not going to happen. This danish pastry dough must be chilled overnight, to rest and rise. They’re a labour of love and you need to be up for the challenge. But I urge you not to be put off, they really are so worth it!! And everyone will be impressed with your house wife/husband skills.
For this recipe you need to grate the butter onto the dough. This really helps in distributing the butter without it getting too warm. Warm butter is your enemy when making pastries! It does look a bit like you’ve put a load of cheese onto raw dough, but its so much easier than trying to flatten butter with a rolling pin. Believe me!
The turning process is what gives danishes their lamination i.e. all of the delicious flaky layers! You’ll need to ‘turn’ the dough at least three times before leaving it to rest overnight. By turning I mean rolling the dough into a rectangle, then folding up the bottom third and folding the top third over the bottom third so all ‘thirds’ are on top of each other. The dough is then placed in the fridge for at least 20 minutes to chill. Before repeating the process, you then ‘turn’ the dough 90 degrees so the layers are folded in a different direction.
Now I hate custard. Like hate it! But, even I have to admit the creme patisserie is the real star in these pain au raisins. I think it was the vanilla bean paste I used, it really made such a difference to the flavour. Please try and use the highest quality vanilla you can when making it, none of that vanilla essence will cut it! Creme pat is really easy to make, and thickens surprisingly quickly. You can make it the night before with the dough and leave to cool in the fridge, meaning you’re raring to go in the morning.
To actually make the pain au raisins, you simply roll out the dough, spread on the creme pat and scatter with your raisins. Then its just a case of rolling up and slicing! Make sure you allow for additional proving time in the morning once you’ve created the classic pain au raisin shape. Though they don’t need you to watch over them, so you’re more than entitled to pop back to bed before baking time!
I really hope you love these as much as I did. They taste best fresh out the oven, but the remainders were still enjoyed by my work colleagues the next day!
Tea and toast. Cheese and crackers. Coffee and cake. Some pairings are just meant to be. But caramel makes everything better right?
If I’m not keeping it simple with an americano, my Starbucks order is always a caramel macchiato. The strong coffee mixed with vanilla and caramel just works so well. And why not turn the things you love into cake?!
I think coffee cake is really underrated. Usually paired with walnuts and a sickly sweet buttercream, it just doesn’t do it justice. This cake though is paired with the dreamiest silkiest buttercream you ever did taste. Its a classic swiss meringue buttercream with 175ml of glorious caramel. AHH. I could just eat the buttercream from the bowl. It was my first time using my KMix to make buttercream and oh god the difference. It just made it so light, and even easier to spread on the finished cake.
But, back to the cake! The sponge has instant coffee, a full cup of freshly brewed coffee AND a coffee soak to add when baked. So you could say I like coffee… though the caramel SMB cuts through it all to balance the bitterness out. Now I couldn’t call it a caramel macchiato cake without the signature caramel topping could I? I popped some caramel into a piping bag and went to TOWN. I promise you though, the cake really isn’t as sweet as it sounds with all that caramel flying around. I think thats why I love swiss meringue buttercream so much. It may be richer than regular buttercream with the additional butter, but its so much less sweet! No teeth-grinding icing sugar round here thank you very much.
The whole cake was actually surprisingly quick to make, I made it in an afternoon last weekend and I was enjoying a slice after dinner. I also didn’t make my own caramel for once, as it was a spontaneous bake and that sped the process up! I used a jar of Bonne Maman’s caramel and its really delicious if you fancy being lazy too. If not, my recipe for salted caramel here would work really well, just remember to omit the salt. Although salted caramel buttercream with coffee would be delicious too!
Let me know if you try it, it’s the perfect Sunday afternoon treat with, you guessed it, a cup of coffee!