Thursday, 3 December 2020

Chocolate Caramel Sandwich Biscuits

Chocolate biscuits sandwiched together with a creamy caramel filling 

It's been a while since I made biscuits, and Christmas always feels like the best time to make lots! I went for star shaped this time purely for the festivities but you can use whatever cookie cutter you have or fancy, simple circles would make more probably, which means more to gobble up! These chocolate biscuits are soft with a slight crunch and the caramel is so creamy just how I like it. I suggest you make the caramel ahead of the cookies, you want it to set as much as possible so that it's thick. 


Check out my other biscuit recipes for more inspiration!


Recipe

Prep:1 hour 15 minutes
Cook: 12 minutes
Serves: 18 stars

Ingredients

225g Butter softened
200g Caster sugar
55g Dark brown sugar
65g Applesauce
280g Plain flour
85g Cocoa powder
1 tsp Caramel extract or vanilla
1 tsp salt
Caramel sauce - I used this recipe


Method

✿In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars together with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add the applesauce and mix until combined - it might separate a little but that's okay.
Combine the flour, cocoa powder and salt and add to the wet ingredients a little at a time until incorporated.
Divide the dough into 2 equal parts; flatten each portion into a disk and wrap in cling film and refrigerate for about an hour and 30 minutes until firm. 
Preheat oven to 350°. Line two baking trays with baking paper. 
Place 1 portion of dough on a lightly floured surface, and roll to about 1/4-inch thick. Make sure your rolling pin is coated with flour as it can get stuck. It might take a few goes to roll out smoothly, this is quite a fragile dough!
Cut out shapes with a cookie cutter (a star or your choice of shape) and use a smaller star to cut out the middle of 9 of the biscuits - these will go on top.
Carefully lift the stars up with a thin spatula and transfer to the baking tray. Leave about 1.5 inches between the biscuits. 
Bake at 350° for 12 minutes until firm. Keep an eye on them, since the dough is dark, it’s hard to tell when they are done, don’t let them burn! Let them cool for a few minutes on the tray, then transfer to wire racks.
Once cool, spread 1 tsp of caramel onto a whole star biscuit (the ones without holes) and then place a holed-biscuit on top so the caramel can be seen. 
Store the biscuits in an airtight container for up to a week. Enjoy!

Christina
xx

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Tuesday, 1 December 2020

Mocha Hazelnut Porridge

 Add a hint of caffeine and nuttiness to your morning porridge

It's been a while since I made or bought myself a mocha. Whoever had the idea of mixing coffee with chocolate is absolute genius, these are two things I could not live without! So as always my morning porridge turns into a bit of a trial with flavour combos, let's be honest what can't you do with porridge? It's so versatile. Warm porridge oats, infused with coffee and a dollop of cocoa hazelnut spread - I mention that I use Meridian here but I've also had Nature's Store and I've seen Whole Earth have released a chocolate hazelnut spread so you've got options! Or if you're up for it you can make it from scratch, there's  a lot of good recipes out there and as long as you have a good blender it's very easy :) If you don't like coffee (a real shame) then you can still have a lovely chocolate hazelnut porridge which would be just as tasty!


Check out my other porridge recipes for more inspiration!





NOTE: every ingredient I use is vegan so make sure you check your ingredients if you're following a Vegan lifestyle.

Recipe

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 3-4 minutes
Serves:

Ingredients

45g Oats
1tsp Instant coffee + 2 tbsp boiling water
1 tsp Cocoa hazelnut spread - I like Meridian
200ml Soya milk
1 tbsp Chia seeds
Toppings optional
Banana
Hazelnuts
Yoghurt
Chocolate sauce - I used Sweet Freedom Choc Shot


Method

✿Mix the coffee with the water until completely dissolved then add all ingredients into a bowl and stir together.
Place in the microwave for 3-3 1/2 minutes stirring in-between, make sure it doesn't spill over. Add the toppings and serve. Enjoy!

Christina 
xx


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Wednesday, 25 November 2020

Peanut Butter Rocky Road - no bake, only 7 ingredients!

 An easy no-bake recipe filled with peanut butter, chocolate, marshmallows and biscuits!

I am loving these rocky road variations, and peanut butter rocky road may just be my new favourite! After discovering Buttermilk's Dairy Free Peanut Butter Crunch bites, I instantly knew a no-bake recipe was the one, and what better than a rocky road? Their products are so tasty which sometimes can be hard when finding good vegan treats, but these little bits of peanut butter are so moreish you may devour the whole pack which is the way to go!It doesn't take long to throw this recipe together in one big bowl and then it's just the setting time (if you're patient enough ;)) and then you've got yourself a fabulous little tray of snacks. Perfect for when you've got friends or family visiting, or just a big lot of treats for yourself! This is a good recipe to make with children, it's not top messy and they can help with most steps!

I've used smooth peanut butter in this recipe, but if you're more of a crunchy peanut butter fan that would work just as well. You could always add peanuts, or play around with the peanut butter treats :)

Check out my other no-bake recipes for more inspiration!

Recipe

Prep: 5-10 minutes
Cook: N/A + 1-2 hours chilling time
Serves: 16

NOTE: every ingredient I use is vegan so make sure you check your ingredients if you're following a Vegan lifestyle. 

Ingredients

200g Dark chocolate 
200g Milk chocolate 
150g digestives chopped
150g Mini marshmallows
100g Smooth Peanut butter
2 tbsp Golden syrup

Method

✿Roughly break up both dark and milk chocolate and place in a bowl to melt it bain-marie style or in the microwave in 20 second intervals until fully melted.
✿If you have a stiff peanut butter, melt it in the microwave for about 20-30 seconds to loosen it up a bit. 
✿In a large bowl, add the digestives, peanut butter crunch bites and marshmallows.
✿Pour over the melted chocolate, peanut butter and golden syrup and give everything a good mix till combined.
✿Line a deep rectangle/square baking tray with baking paper and then spoon the mixture into the tray spreading out evenly. Place in the fridge for a couple of hours to set completely. 
✿Once set, lift out of the baking tray - I always run a knife around the edges first to loosen. Then carefully cut into 16 squares, or smaller ones if you want. Store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge for up to a week. Enjoy!


Christina
xx
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Sunday, 22 November 2020

Pumpkin Spiced Layer Cake

 You need this pumpkin spiced cake to make your Autumn even more cosy!

I intended to have this cake recipe out way earlier than planned, but as I am now a student, my time spent blogging is a little less than I 'd like! I made this as a little halloween celebration and I absolutely loved piping these pumpkins on the cake, it's so much easier than I thought it would be, and if you need any pumpkin inspiration, I always look on Pinterest, it's really the best. This cake is full of delicious moist pumpkin layers and a pumpkin spiced buttercream and whilst it is pretty decadent, there is never an excuse to not make it and enjoy every bite! :)

If you like pumpkin, check out my other recipes!

Pumpkin Pancakes



Makes x3 6 inch cake layers

Recipe

Prep: 5-10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Serves: 8-10

Ingredients

Cake
280g Self-raising flour
150g Caster sugar
100g Light brown sugar
1tsp Salt
270g Pumpkin purée
170ml soya milk + 1 tbsp Apple cider vinegar
90ml Vegetable/coconut oil
3 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Ginger
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Mixed spice
Buttercream
300g Vegan butter softened
500g Icing sugar
1 tsp Vanilla extract
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Mixed spice
1/4 tsp Ginger
Fondant pumpkins optional
Orange food colouring 


Method

✿Preheat the oven to 180℃ and grease and line x3 6 inch cake tins with baking paper.
In a jug, mix together the soya milk and ACV and let sit for a few minutes to create a 'buttermilk'. 
In a large bowl, whisk together both the sugars and the oil until combined. Add the pumpkin and 'buttermilk' and mix again.
Sift in the flour, spices and salt and fold together gently until there is a smooth batter.
Spoon the cake batter into the cake tins evenly and tap on the surface a few times to get rid of any air bubbles. Place in the oven for 20 minutes and once cooked leave to cool completely in the tins then remove onto a wire rack.
Meanwhile make the buttercream. Using an electric whisk or a stand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the icing sugar about 100g at a time, and mix together making sure to stop and scrape in and around the bowl to collect all of the icing and butter.
Add the spices and vanilla last and mix together and you should have a fluffy buttercream doubled in size. 
To assemble the cake, place one cake layer on a plate or cake board and spread a few tbsp of buttercream on top. Repeat with the next two layers and then cover the cake in buttercream.
I usually do a crumb coat which is a thin layer of buttercream around the cake and chill in the fridge until the buttercream is firm to touch. Then repeat with a thicker layer of buttercream smoothing around the sides and piping swirls on top last. If you want to pipe pumpkins on, keep a little buttercream to the side and use the orange food colouring to dye it orange, I judge this by eye so add as much or as little as you need. I used a 1M Wilton tip.
Keep in the fridge until ready to serve. Enjoy! 

Christina
xx

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Pumpkin Pancakes

 Easy to make pumpkin pancakes with everyday ingredients!

I look forward to these on a chilly weekend morning when it hits Autumn here in the UK, especially when it's a little bit miserable out, you know you can cosy up with a big stack. The pumpkin in these makes them so soft and almost cake-like and a big drizzle of maple syrup hits the sweet spot. Add whatever toppings you like, but I fancied berries, pecans, dates and pumpkin seeds. If you don't have seasonal pumpkins, you can use butternut squash or any member of the squash family would work well!

Check out my other pancake recipes for more inspiration!



Recipe

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Serves: 8-10 pancakes

Ingredients

100g Oats
20g Plain flour
90g Pumpkin purée 
240ml Plant based milk + 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Baking powder
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ginger
1/2 tsp Mixed spice
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
Toppings optional
Maple syrup
Berries
Nuts/seeds
Banana


Method

✿Place the oats in a blender and blend into a flour, then add the rest of the ingredients and blend till combined and you have a smooth batter.
Heat up a large non-stick frying pan. Drop about 2-3 tbsp of batter in the pan into a circle to make one pancake and repeat with another 1 or 2 pancakes depending on how big your frying pan is. 
Cook each pancake on one side for about 2 minutes until bubbles start to appear on the surface. When you can lift the pancake with a spatula and it slides in the pan you can flip it and cook another 2 minutes then remove to a plate.
Repeat the process with the rest of the batter until all cooked. Serve warm with the toppings you like. Any leftovers can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge up to 2 days. Enjoy!

Christina
xx


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Thursday, 19 November 2020

Pumpkin Bread

 The best pumpkin bread is homemade and an autumn favourite with lots of warm spices!


This is probably my last pumpkin recipe of 2020, and I didn't think I'd ever say that, I know I got a little excited with the pumpkin desserts this year! Not that there's any problem with that, I made a lot of use of my big old pumpkin I bought as I hate food waste, there is SO much you can do with a pumpkin. I've only tried a few vegan pumpkin bread recipes, and they were lovely but I knew I needed to have a go at my own one. This is honestly one of my favourite pumpkin recipes, the sponge is so moist and it's even better with Pip and Nut's Pumpkin Spice Almond butter, an absolute game changer for a glaze! I'd even recommend spreading some more on each slice, it is so tasty I could have eaten the whole tub.

Check out my other pumpkin recipes for more inspiration!

Pumpkin Pancakes
Pumpkin Spiced Cake

Recipe

Prep: 5-10 minutes
Cook: 50 minutes
Serves: 10 slices

Ingredients

Pumpkin bread
170g Plain flour
150g Caster sugar
120g Aquafaba
120g Vegan butter melted
170g Pumpkin purée 
90ml Soya milk + 1 tbsp Apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp Baking soda
1/2 tsp Baking powder
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Vanilla extract
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ginger
1/2 tsp Mixed spice 
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
Glaze
3 tbsp Pip and Nut Pumpkin Spice Almond Butter
2 tbsp Maple Syrup
2-3 tbsp Soya milk
Pumpkin seeds/pecans on top



Method

✿Preheat the oven to 180℃ and grease and line a 2lb loaf tin with baking paper. 
In a large bowl, use an electric whisk or standing mixer to whisk the aquafaba and butter together until pale and foamy. 
Add in the sugar, pumpkin purée and vanilla and mix again till combined.
Fold in the flour, spices and salt until you have a smooth batter. Pour into the loaf tin and spread evenly. 
Place in the oven on the middle shelf for 40 minutes and then check on it - if it looks like it might burn cover the top with foil and place back in the oven another 10 minutes, until a knife inserted comes out clean. Let the pumpkin bread cool in its tin before removing onto a wire rack.
To make the glaze, mix together all of the ingredients in a bowl until smooth and a runny consistency. Add more milk if needed and really mix loosen the almond butter. 
Drizzle or spread the glaze over the cake when it is cool and then sprinkle over the pumpkin seeds and pecans. Will keep at room temperature covered for up to 5 days. Enjoy!

Christina
xx
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Monday, 16 November 2020

Spiced Apple Porridge

 A simple recipe to make for you morning porridge

Using apples in recipes is so easy here in the UK as we have apples growing all year round so it's good to eat seasonally as much as possible. I love apples in a crumble or pie so this porridge should hopefully match that nostalgia of those warming desserts. If you're not a big fan of apples, you could swap them for pears as they work really well and I for one and am huge fan of pears so maybe I'll try that myself!

Check out my other porridge recipes for more inspiration!



Recipe

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5-10 minutes
Serves: 2

Ingredients

100g Oats
250ml Soya milk
3 tbsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Cardamom
1 tsp Ginger
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1 Apple grated
Toppings
1 Apple thinly sliced
Figs/dates 


Method

✿Place all ingredients for the porridge into a medium saucepan on a low-medium heat and stir to combine.
Let it simmer for about 5-10 minutes until the liquid is absorbed and the oats are cooked through, you may need to add more milk or water if you have thicker oats. Stir regularly to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Once cooked serve into 2 bowls and top with the sliced apple and figs or dates if you like. Enjoy!

Christina
xx
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Monday, 9 November 2020

Pumpkin Pie Porridge

 Warm spiced porridge perfect for an autumnal breakfast


I tried to recreate all of the beautiful flavours of a classic pumpkin pie but in a porridge formation and I have to say it's pretty good. I love all things pumpkin still, it's such a versatile vegetable and I know many may think it's weird to have vegetables in your morning porridge but don't knock it till you try it, plus it contributed to one of your five-a-day so that definitely counts.The pumpkin makes the porridge nice and fluffy and adds a little flavour, especially with the warming spices, it's very hearty. I topped mine with a creamy soya yoghurt, pecans and chopped dates. If you don't/can't find pumpkin you can always use squash as they work the same.


Check out my other porridge recipes for more inspiration :)



Recipe

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Serves: 1

Ingredients

150g Pumpkin purée 
40g Oats
100ml Soya milk
100ml Water
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ginger
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Mixed Spice
Pinch of salt
Toppings optional
Soya yoghurt
Pecans
Dates


Method

✿Heat a small saucepan on a low to medium heat. Add all of the ingredients and mix together.
Leave to simmer for about 5-10 minutes until the porridge has soaked up all of the liquid. Depending on what oats you use you may need more liquid. Stir occasionnally so the mixture doesn't stick to the bottom.
Once cooked spoon into a bowl and dollop about 2 tbsp of yoghurt on top if using. Sprinkle on some pecans and dates and serve whilst warm. Enjoy!

Christina
xx
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Friday, 6 November 2020

Chocolate Caramel Cupcakes

 Chocolate cupcakes filled with a creamy vegan caramel and topped with caramel buttercream!


I knew when I saw the Buttermilk Dairy Free Salted Caramel Cups that these cupcakes would be the perfect recipe. To show them off in their prime, these little bites of absolute heaven, topping the cupcakes as they rightly should. If you haven't before tried these chocolate caramel cups, you absolutely must! Vegan chocolate caramel is still hard to come by but these really hit the spot and don't make you feel like you're missing out - I for one was someone obsessed with dairy milk caramel nibbles and these are even better. The cupcakes are really just mimicking the yummy structure of these, and you could always swap it around and have caramel sponges with chocolate buttercream :)

Check out my other cupcake recipes for more inspiration!

Banoffee Pie Cupcakes
Lotus Biscoff Cupcakes
Party Ring Cupcakes


Recipe

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 18 minutes (cupcakes) 15 for the caramel
Serves: 12 cupcakes

Ingredients

Cupcakes
170g  Self-raising flour
170g Caster sugar
220ml Soya milk + 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Vanilla extract
3 tbsp Cacao powder
70g Vegetable oil
1 tsp Baking soda
Pinch of salt
Caramel Sauce - I use this recipe
Buttercream
200g Vegan butter
400g Icing sugar
1 tbsp Caramel sauce

Method

✿If you haven't made the caramel sauce yet do this first as it needs to cool down before you can use it. Simply use this recipe. 
Whilst the caramel is cooling, make the cupcakes. Preheat the oven to 180℃ and line a cupcake tray with cases.
Combine the soya milk and apple cider vinegar in a jug and leave to curdle a few minutes to create a 'buttermilk'. 
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
In a separate bowl, beat the sugar with the vegetable oil until combined. The stir in the 'buttermilk' and vanilla.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet and gently stir together until you have a smooth cake batter.
Using two spoons, add cake batter evenly into the cupcake cases about ⅔ full, then place in the oven to cook between 15-18 minutes, until a knife inserted comes out clean.
Leave to cool in the cupcake tray before removing and the keep covered so they don't dry out. 
Make the buttercream. Beat the butter until soft and creamy (can be done with an electric mixer or with some elbow grease!). 
Once smooth and no lumps are visible, gradually add the icing sugar about 100g at a time. Keep mixing until all the sugar is combined and you have a fluffy buttercream. Lastly add the caramel and mix together - add more for desired taste. 
To assemble the cupcakes, use a an apple core to take out the middle of each cupcake and then fill 1 tsp of caramel sauce in the middle. Repeat for all 12.
Spread or pipe buttercream on top of the cupcakes and then top with a salted caramel cup and more caramel. Keep in the fridge to keep firm. Enjoy!

Christina
xx


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