Sunday, 29 July 2012

Miette Chocolate Truffle Tart and Tartlets

It has been a long time since I've made anything from the Miette book, sometimes I put it off because I know the recipes are so detailed and contain so many processes and having baked all week, I wanted something simple. But alas, this chocolate tart caught my eye and I had to try Miette's filling - egg yolks in ganache, who'd have thought? AND it was truly indulgent! Who'd have thought? The 'Pate Sucree' is a great recipe, but my pastry skills are far to none so mine came out tougher than anyone's teeth can handle. 
The Recipe:
Pate Sucree Tart Shell
3 and a half cups all purpose flour (or plain)
Quarter cup caster sugar
Half tsp salt
2/3 large egg yolks
4 to 8 tbsp double cream
227g/1 cup unsalted butter, cold
1 tbsp cold water

note: I found that Miette's recipe did not form a dough, so I added an extra egg yolk and some cold water which helped!

Chocolate Ganache 
283g dark chocolate
71g icing sugar
Three quarter cup plus 1 tbsp double cream
2 large egg yolks
3 tbsp unsalted butter

To decorate 
Sprig of mint

The Recipe:
  • Start by preparing the dough for your tart shells. Throw in the flour, sugar and salt into a mixer and let blend for 30 seconds. Then cut up your butter into cubes and throw it in and mix some more until you have fine breadcrumbs; about 1 minute. 
  • In a small bowl, mix the egg yolks with 3 tablespoons of the double cream and then gently pour the mixture into your breadcrumbs to form a stiff dough. If a stiff dough does not form, simply add some cold water or more double cream until one does (remember to be sparing!). 
  • Once a dough has formed, take it out of the bowl, wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for half an hour (or longer if you wish). 
  • Prepare your tart shells by dusting with flour and take your dough out of the fridge. 
  • Flour your surface and begin to roll it a quarter inch thick, and make sure you roll out large enough! Wrap the dough around the rolling pin and with a light hand, fit the dough into your tart shell/s. 
  • Prick the shells with a fork in several places and put in the freezer for a further half an hour. 
  • Once the dough has firmed completely, bake your shells in the oven for 10-12 minutes at 180 degrees. 
  • Take out of the oven and let cool completely. 
  • To make the ganache, put the chocolate and icing sugar into a bowl. 
  • In a saucepan, heat the cream till just simmering and then pour it over the chocolate until the icing sugar is combined. 
  • Now put the mixture over a ban marie and stir.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs. 
  • Add about half a cup of the chocolate mixture to the egg yolks and whisk till combined. Then add it to the original chocolate mixture and continue to mix. 
  • Take off the heat and pour 2 tbsp of hot water on top and leave. Insert a hand mixer (immersion) into the ganache and mix for 3 minutes, making sure not to let any air bubbles in or obstruct the top of the ganache. 
  • Pour into tart shells and refrigerate for 1 to 8 hours to firm up. 

Miette Chocolate Truffle Tart
Mbakes x

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Serenity Cupcakes come to London!

This weekend I had the ultimate pleasure of baking for an amazing Danish bakery, they were invited to hop on a plane to London so that they could sell their bakes at Alexander Docks for the Olympics! Serenity used Faircake to prepare their delicious products and I've had the chance to bake for them! Sadly none of the cupcakes were iced at Faircake so the above picture must be credited to an awesome Danish photographer whom I do not know.

Each and every one of their recipes is unique and downright delicious. Serenity use authentic Danish ingredients that are sourced locally, they even shipped most of them to Faircake! They used some really crazy stuff, but it made all the difference and definitely means that Serenity's cupcakes are a cut above the rest!
Serenity's chocolate Oreo cupcakes with dark chocolate chips
Bohemian Raspberry cake batter
Their cupcakes will be sold in London until Sunday, and they have chosen some seriously delicious choices which are - Bohemian Raspberry, Liquorice Devil, Apple Blossom, Carrot Karma & Chocolate. The Bohemian Raspberry won itself over as my most favourite, it had a sweet vanilla sponge with a few raspberries dotted around which was also accompanied by some gorgeous melted white chocolate chips. As for the real bakery - it boasts such a boutique feel, I'm definitely going to plan a  trip to Copenhagen so I can visit pretty damn soon! 

My afternoon's work for Serenity!

Mbakes x

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Primrose Bakery; Covent Garden

Vanilla Cupcake from Primrose Bakery 
A distinctive choice to take my Nikon up to London with me today has led to another cupcake related review. Firstly let me start by saying this will be the last Nikon featured post, as within the next couple of days I will have purchased my new baby, the Canon D60 18-135mm!!!! Major excitement happening inside of me right now as this is my first actual big purchase EVER on the planet earth as a female named Emine. 
Inside Primrose Bakery 
Queue Primrose Bakery. Primrose Bakery, to me - has some faults. For example - try to put this into perspective - two middle class women sitting at home bored out of their skulls thought it would be a good idea to turn their hobby into a new career - all is well and good, let the ladies pursuit their 'passion' right? Well, no. Not if their bakery is hot off the press and sitting in some of the most elite areas of London, and getting praise for something that in actual fact - they're not very good at (only in terms of taste). And why are they so hugely popular? Well, because they have the money to be. They have had various affiliations with Jamie Oliver, not to mention two successfully published recipe books! It simply upsets me that talent is not the forefront of meritocracy - money is.

 For Primrose, style comes before taste, just look at the fact that their first book contains step by step instructions on how to ice a cake as opposed to step by step instructions on how to get the perfect cupcake. 

After having a nibble on their signature vanilla cupcake today, I was put off. It didn't wow me in any instant. It was milky and dry with zilch tenderness. Nonetheless, there are some great things about Primrose to mention, the staff were so lovely and helpful, they squeeze out some great coffee - and their cupcake style is quite something, the pastel buttercream's work very well with the interior of the bakery, even if it does slightly rip off New York's Magnolia Bakery... 

PS. Please note that I am still a massive fan of Primrose Bakery, and will always love their work - this post was published to merely outline some areas that I may not agree with. 

Outside Primrose Bakery 
Mbakes x

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Betty Crocker's 'Extra Moist' Funfetti Cake

Betty Crocker Funfetti Cake (you are disgusting)
It's not often, or AT ALL that I will divulge myself into a bad review - but this cake gave me just the excuse. If you read my blog you will know that I am a big fan of American goodies - but this store bought American cake batter actually put faith back into the British world of baking for me!

I'm not one to go to a supermarket and buy a Betty Crocker packet mix whenever I want to get my baking fix, but since this was 'the real' stuff I thought I'd give it a go. I've seen various amazing funfetti cakes on American blogs and I truly thought this was my only way in! I've changed my mind now. I added half a cup of corn oil, one cup of water and 2 eggs to the stuff (maybe I should have taken Pintrest's advice). I baked the cake two days before I assembled it, so it could firm up in the fridge, ready for icing. The cake itself was so artificially moist, and when left to stand had formed a syrupy, sticky sheen of cake on its top. Unpleasant. This meant that it was near to impossible to create a crumb coat. What made it worse was that the 'frosting' was so gloopy and 'smooth' it ceased to firm up in the fridge! Thus, crumbs all over my cake.

As for taste - it felt like I was eating wet cake. Cake soaked in tap water. There was absolutely no need to chew! I placed a piece of tap water cake onto my tongue and it unnaturally melted into my taste buds. 

Three cheers to the Betty Crocker of America, you have rightfully taken the 'home' out of baking. 

Betty Crocket Funfetti Cake
Mbakes x

Monday, 16 July 2012

Homemade white chocolate fudge pretzels/Flipz

Ever since I can remember I have had a weakness for white chocolate covered Flipz, unfortunately about 10 years ago these little things became less available to us Britons, and now they can only be bought from American sweet shops. This weekend I decided to recreate my own, and they tasted so close to the real thing! They were salty yet sweet, my only qualm was that the pretzel itself became a little stale when leaving the chocolate to set, if anyone has any suggestions on how to stop this from happening then please do share!

ALSO absolutely thrilled to say that my blog has been short listed for best food blogger award over at Cosmopolitan! Thank you to whoever voted :)!!! And if you'd like to vote for me again please do over here :) !

The Recipe:
1 bag of salted pretzels 
150g good quality white chocolate 
75ml single cream

The Method:
  • On a double boiler, melt the chocolate until smooth and leave to cool slightly.
  • Add the cream and mix till you get a gloopy consistency.
  • Dip each pretzel into the ganache, and using a toothpick poke each hole in the pretzel. 
  • Leave the pretzels to cool on some baking parchment for 2 hours.
  • Enjoy!

Mbakes x

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Peggy Porschen Parlour, Belgravia & The Diner, Carnaby

Peggy Porschen Parlour
Who knew it was possible to be a tourist in your home city? Well I was'nt exactly a tourist, but I surely visited London this saturday like a tourist! We even visited M&M world! Of which nothing but sheer disappointment came from it.
The reason for my touristy day out in London was because I wanted to visit Peggy Porschens Parlour. Seriously. I think I want to be a wedding cake designer when I'm 'older' now. We tried her Red Velvet, her Vanilla Chiffon and of course,  her award winning Chocolate Heaven Cupcake. After all, I werent travelling to one of the most affluent areas of London and not spending over £20 on some sponge! Her classic Vanilla Chiffon was topped with the same most gorgeous cream cheese topping as the red velvet, I had never tried such a combination until that (divine) moment, and thought it really worked. To me, a classic vanilla cupcake would always have classic vanilla buttercream swirled on top of it.
Vanilla Chiffon 

The Parlour's Cake Display
Afterwards we indulged in some classic American diner food at a great place called The Diner just off of Carnaby Street. All in all a weekend full of foodie CLASSICS. Let me say it one more time. Classic.

Corndogs at The Diner 
Sloppy |Jose at The Diner 

Mbakes x

Sunday, 8 July 2012

I don't even have a title for this

It saddens me (in the cringe worthy sense) that I haven't made a blog post in such a long time because I hate to say it, but I've had no time. So much so that this post doesn't even have any bulk to it. It is simply some boring vanilla cupcakes spruced up with some fabric. No really. That is it. The urge to make these came when I calmly FORCED my boyfriend to build a humungous flat pack, that quickly (slowly) came together as a beautiful chest of draws. Hope you like the result!
Vanilla Cupcakes
Mbakes x
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