It’s suddenly hit me that Easter is not much more than a week away. Time to get organised with Easter eggs and a bit of Easter baking. These almond Easter thumbprint cookies turned out to be a real hit. They’re made with wholemeal spelt flour and ground almonds with a good dollop of amaretto chocolate ganache in the middle. Oh, and a cheeky little Easter egg perched on top – it’s all about the nest at this time of year.
Easter just isn’t Easter without a suitable bake. And as far as I’m concerned it’s all the better for the inclusion of chocolate. So, with that in mind, I wish you all a very Happy chocolate filled Easter and hope you enjoy my Simnel Mincemeat Easter Cake with chocolate apostles.
If it wasn’t for We Should Cocoa, I probably wouldn’t have managed a Christmas bundt cake this year. I’m still recovering from flu and lacking in energy, so cooking has been mostly off this Christmas. However, I’m really glad I made the effort as it’s a light and delicious fruit cake that even CT will eat – he’s not a fan of either fruit cake or mincemeat, but is weirdly happy to indulge in this festive treat.
Last month on Valentine’s Day, I received a surprise tray of stone fruit from Beautiful Country Beautiful Fruit – I felt the love. These colourful, juicy ripe and ready to eat plums and nectarines were most welcome after the months of excessive grey, rain and cold we’ve been experiencing this winter. They tasted of warmth and sunshine. With summer very much in mind and wanting to show off the fabulous purple of the plums, ice-cream was the first thing that sprang to mind. Just like cherries, I find that almonds go particularly well with plums, so I decided to use some amaretto liqueur in the mix along with a few amaretti biscuits for a touch of additional luxury.
The ice cream turned out just as I’d hoped. The fruit gave a welcome splash of tartness, cutting through the sweet cream and the flavour of both fruit and almond was well to the fore; the additional crunch from the biscuits gave added interest.
I am submitting this to #RecipeOfTheWeek over at A Mummy Too
I’m entering this into Dead Easy Desserts over at Maison Cupcake where any preparation has to be achieved within 30 mins. Despite cooking plums and melting chocolate, this is a simple dessert that can easily be achieved in this time if the chocolate is melting whilst the plums are cooking. You could even melt the chocolate over the cooking plums.
- 500g purple plums (6 large ones) – washed and stoned
- 2 tbsp Amaretto
- 200ml Condensed milk
- 600ml Double cream
- 80g White chocolate
- 7 amaretti biscuits
- Chop the plums and place in a pan with the 2 tbsp water. Simmer until soft (about 10 mins). Leave to cool. Add Amaretto & blend to a puree.
- Melt the chocolate in a bowl suspended over hot water (make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water). Stir in 100g of the condensed milk.
- Whip the double cream until soft peaks form, taking care not to over whip. Add the rest of the condensed milk and whip again to ensure peaks remain.
- Add the white chocolate and stir in.
- Crush 5 amaretti biscuits and stir in.
- Fold in the fruit mixture to create a ripple effect. Spoon into a 2 x 1 litre freezer containers. Crush an amaretti biscuit over each batch. Cover and freeze.
Yield: 2 litres
Well, that temptress Tango Like Raindrops from Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary, made this chocolate biscuit cake for We Should Cocoa last month and I just couldn’t resist. If you haven’t seen the mango round-up yet, do take a look.
I have seen the recipe many a time in my copy of Green and Black’s Unwrapped, but was always put off by the use of a raw egg. However, when I thought about it, I realised the egg should be pasteurised by the heat of the chocolate mixture and indeed when I read the recipe properly, that is exactly what it says. I decided to use cranberries and ginger rather than cherries and add a little Amaretto to the mix. I also used my newly created dandelion honey rather than golden syrup. Other than that, I pretty much followed the recipe!
This is how I made
Chocolate Biscuit Cake
- Melted 125g unsalted butter in a medium size pan over low heat with 3 tbsp dandelion honey and 200g dark chocolate (G&B 70%).
- Beat in a medium egg until well incorporated.
- Added a slug of Amaretto
- Added 100g of roughly broken digestive biscuits (should have been 50g, but I do like digestives in tiffin).
- Stirred in 50g whole walnuts, 50g raisins, 25g died cranberries and 25g crystallised ginger.
- Poured into a lined 20 cm sq tin and placed in the fridge to set for three hours.
- Cut into 16 squares.
This should come with a serious health warning: it is very addictive and if you have as little willpower as I do, a locked fridge might be a good idea. Despite it’s deliciousness, it was messy to eat with a very soft texture which melted all over our hands. I’m glad I’ve finally tried making tiffin with an egg, but I think I will stick to my firmer and egg fee version in the future.
It’s Easter and I haven’t made a simnel cake for a couple of years, so it just seemed the right thing to do. Last year I made these Amaretto cupcakes decorated with crystalised primroses which were delicious, but just not quite the same as a proper Easter simnel cake – I do like my traditions.