16 November 2014

Easy Cheesecake

Hello everybody!

Cheesecake! I love cheesecake! I always buy the frozen variety from the supermarket which is gone in nearly a day. I found this recipe by Nigella for a Nutella cheesecake. I love Nutella, and I love cheesecake, so I thought I'd give this a try. It worked fantastically! It tasted amazing and was super easy to make.

The link to the original recipe is here. I made quite a few changes to my cheesecake so I will explain those now.

In the cheesecake I made, I used:
- 250g shortbread biscuits (Aldi didn't have any digestive biscuits at the time, so I had to improvise)
- 75g soft butter (make sure it is soft, it will be a nightmare if it has just come out of the fridge!)
- 1 jar of Nutella
- 500g cream cheese (it didn't specify what sort, so I used light. It worked well, but would probably be more solid if you used the full-fat kind)
- Around 80g of icing sugar (I used the recommended 60g, but it looked a bit too runny, so I added a bit more. Probably stick to 60g if yours works fine)

Firstly I put the 250g of shortbread biscuits into one of those sealable plastic sandwich bags. I then hit it with a rolling pin to crush them. Next I poured the biscuits into a bowl, and combined with the butter and a tablespoon of Nutella (You're supposed to crush the biscuits and combine in a food processor. Mine was far too small, but a rolling pin and a fork works just as well). The mixture should look like chocolate biscuit mixture. It was very difficult to avoid eating the whole lot.

Next I greased and lined a round springform cake tin, poured the biscuit mixture in, and pressed it down with my hand to form a base. It was quite hard to do with a spoon. Next the recipe said to place into the fridge to chill, but it did not specify how long. I left mine for an hour and it was set quite nicely.

The third step was to beat the cream cheese, Nutella and icing sugar together. Like I said before, I added a bit more icing sugar to mine to thicken it up. Then I poured this mixture on top of the biscuit base and smoothed it over, and chilled it for around 3 and a half hours (my mum did not want to wait the full 4 hours to eat it). After the first hour, I sprinkled some biscuit crumbs over the top of the mixture (the recipe says hazelnut - Aldi had none of these either). I waited for an hour because I thought they might sink into the cheesecake.

After waiting 3 and a half hours, I finally took it out of the fridge and it looked and tasted amazing!

If you make this cheesecake, please send me a picture on Twitter or Instagram using #cupcakestallbaking

2 November 2014

Chocolate Orange Cake

Hello everybody!

A few months ago in Aldi, they had the annual British week. During this week, they were selling Terry's Chocolate Orange. If you do not know what they are, you should definitely try one, as they are the most amazing food items! My mum loves chocolate oranges, and she went a little mental stocking up on them.

Obviously this stock ran out, and we can no longer buy them for another year. The other day I was looking through an old recipe book, and found different kinds of sponge cake. The idea struck me to make a chocolate orange cake.

For the chocolate orange cake, there are two layers. The base, which is orange, and the top bit, which is chocolate.

For the orange cake, you will need:
- 2oz butter
- 2oz sugar
- 2 eggs
- 4oz self-raising flour
- The juice and rind of one orange

To make the chocolate cake, you will need:
- 2oz butter
- 2oz sugar
- 3 eggs
- 4oz self-raising flour
- 3oz cocoa powder

To make these cakes, all you need to do is grease and line two round baking tins. Then you need to mix together all the ingredients for the orange cake, and pour that into the first tin, and then do the same for the chocolate cake. You then want to make these for around 30 minutes at 200⁰C. The chocolate cake should have risen quite nicely, but the orange one may be quite flat and look a bit like a large biscuit.

When you take the cakes out of the oven, you want to place both of them upside down, with the flat side facing upwards. This is because the next step is to make orange buttercream to ice the chocolate cake, and chocolate buttercream to ice the orange cake.

To make the orange buttercream, you will need:
- 4oz icing sugar
- 2oz butter
- The juice from half an orange (do not make the same mistake I did by using the entire orange - only use half!)

To make the chocolate buttercream, you will need:
- 4oz icing sugar
- 2oz butter
- 2oz cocoa powder

With the orange buttercream, you just need to cream together the butter and icing sugar, and then add in the orange juice. For the chocolate buttercream, I have found it is best to combine the icing sugar and cocoa powder, and then cream the butter in.

Tip - Leave the butter out for 5-10 minutes so it is at room temperature.

Once the buttercream is ready, just spread the orange buttercream over the chocolate cake, and the chocolate buttercream over the orange cake. Then pop both of these into the fridge to set whilst you complete the next step.

The next thing to do is to melt a bar of chocolate, and combine with a tablespoon of melted butter.

Take both the cakes out of the fridge. Turn the chocolate cake upside down and place on top of the orange cake. To hold them in place, place a couple of toothpicks through the cakes.

The final step is to pour the chocolate-butter mixture over the cake, and set into the fridge for a few minutes.

 Presentation-wise mine isn't so great, but it did taste amazing!

If you make this, please send me a picture on Twitter or Instagram using #cupcakestallbaking!