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The Lazy Cook's Pumpkin Pie

 

Thanksgiving may have come and gone but I couldn’t miss the opportunity to try out America’s most famed Thanksgiving desert – The Pumpkin Pie. Armed with a uk friendly recipe, (albeit the American Pumpkin puree was from Amazon) and an already made pie crust, I completed my laziest recipe to date.

Ingredients

For the pastry
  • sweet short crust pastry case (or a packet of ready made sweet short crust pastry with 40g/1½oz crushed pecans mixed in.)
For the filling
  • 450 g/1lb prepared weight pumpkin flesh, cut into 1in/2.5 cm chunks
  • 2 large eggs plus 1 yolk (use the white for another dish)
  • 3 oz/75g soft dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ level teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 10 fl oz/275 ml double cream

Preparation method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
  2. Use a shop bought sweet crust pastry case, about 9 inch/23 cm diameter and 1½ inches/4 cm deep.
  3. Lightly whisk the eggs and extra yolk together in a large bowl.

    Lightly whisk the eggs

  4. Place the sugar, spices and the cream in a pan, bring to simmering point, giving it a whisk to mix everything together. Then pour it over the eggs and whisk it again briefly.

    Blend the spices on the stoveBlend the spice mix and eggs together

  • Now add the pumpkin pureé, still whisking to combine everything thoroughly.

    Blend the pumpkin mix with the rest of the ingredients

  • Pour the filling into your pastry case and bake for 35-40 minutes, by which time it will puff up round the edges but still feel slightly wobbly in the centre.

    Pumpkin pie ready for the oven

  • Remove the pie from the oven and place the tin on a wire cooling rack. Serve chilled (stored loosely covered in foil in the fridge) with some equally chilled créme fraïche, but warm or at room temperature would be fine.

    The finished product

What I thought: ‘Though this recipe was quick and easy to make, its taste didn’t exactly get rave reviews from my taste testers. Overall it felt a little too savoury to be served as a desert and is not something I’ll be rushing to make in a hurry again.’

Happy Baking,

Love,

Miss Trays xxx

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Tip top tier

Well it’s been over a week since Will and Kate said ‘I do’ but one of the most exciting events to take place in Great Britain coudn’t go amiss without a batch of celebratory Union Jack cupcakes. Armed with my union jack cupcake cases and flags (£1.00 for 50 The Works) and my cupcake stand (£3.99 The Works), I set about created a masterpiece surely worth a royal mention.

Quick and easy to make, these just require the standard cake mix I have used in previous recipes and accompanied with red icing, to match William’s uniform of course.

Happy Baking,

Love Miss Trays xx

Jumbo cupcake

I bought a jumbo cupcake mold last summer (well behind, the curve I know) but have yet to share a recipe worth blogging about. My first attempt was a rather bigger disaster than this one, which involved the cupcake overspilling the mold in disasterous propotions.

Reading other comments online I found a pretty easier recipe and adapted it to suit my mold. Here is a taster picture of the result and I will share my recipe shortly.

Christmas wrapping paper was used to disguise the poor baking

Happy Baking,

Love

Miss Trays xx

Xmas tree cupcakes

Just to wet your appetite I’ve going to post a picture of the delightful xmas tree cupcakes that I made earlier this week………

Xmas tree delights

……recipe to follow.

Miss Trays xx

Snow time

With 10 inches of snow here in the valleys, I can’t make it out of my drive let alone out of the town, which has been perfect timing for me to share some of recent baking ‘masterpieces’. I have been a busy little baker, cooking pudsey biscuits for children in need, gingerbread christmas cookies for my nephew’s xmas party and an abundance of cupcakes for charity bake sales in work.

First up was children in need and armed with my Pudsey cookie cutter and a novice baker friend, I set about creating brightly coloured spotted cupcakes and crunchy pudsey biscuits.

Delicious pudsey charity biscuits

Ingredients

  • 200g Self raising flour
  • Bag of chocolate chips
  • 115g Caster sugar
  • 115g butter
  • 1 medium egg

Method

1. Preheat your oven to 180c  and grease two baking trays.

2. Mix flour, choc chips and sugar together and rub in the butter.

Rub the butter into the mixture with your fingers

3. Add sufficient egg to make a stiff dough.

4. Roll out the dough until about 7.5mm thick and use the bear cutter to create bear biscuits.

5. Place the biscuits on the baking tray and bake for 15 mins.

6. Cool on a wire rack and decorate using icing pens.

Be creative with the biscuits and add cherries, coloured icing and chocolate

I was pretty impressed with my effort until I went into work and found the below biscuits from my baking nemesis/work friend that seems to create amazing biscuits and cakes with literally no baking experience. Check out her pudsey and blush biscuits below.

Pudsey's female companion blush

Amazing pudsey and blush biscuits
Create the blush biscuits by supplementing a third of the flour for cocoa powder

Although we did make £83.00 for our efforts.

I will be posting the cupcake recipes in a few days but keep busy with the yummy biscuits.

Happy Baking,
Love,
Miss Trays xxx

Red Velvet Bonfire cake

My amazing bonfire creation

To celebrate Guy Fawkes night, I found this delightful recipe in my all time favourite bakery book, Gorgeous cakes by Annie Bell.

Ingredients

  • 120g butter
  • 300g golden caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 300g sifted plain flour
  • 230g buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 20g sifted cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (approx.) red food colour paste
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Icing

  • 120g butter
  • 100g icing sugar
  • 300g full fat cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 x 150g boxes matchmakers

Method

1. Cream the butter and sugar in a food processor until light and fluffy.

2. Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl between each addition.

3. Now add the flour in three goes, alternating with the  buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour.

4. Add the salt, vanilla extract and cocoa.

5. Add the food colouring a knife tip at a time until the mixture is a dramatic dusky red: it needs about 1/2 teaspoon in all.

6. Mix the vinegar and bicarbonate of soda together and add to the batter.

7. Spread the mixture evenly between two cake tins and bake for 20-25 minutes at 170c fan/gas mark 5.

To make the icing

8. Cream the butter and icing sugar in a food processor then blend with the cream cheese and vanilla extract.

Creating the bonfire

9. Stack the three sponges on top of each other and with a bread knife carve the stack into a cone, starting about an inch from the centre, to make the shape of a tall bonfire. Stack the remaining pieces on tops to create more layers.

Cake stack

10. Separate out the layers again, spread 2-3 tablespoons icing over the base layer using a palette knife, top with the middle layer and smooth over 1 1/2 tablespoons, then lay the top in place.

11. Coat the sides of the cone with the remaining icing.

12. Then stack the chocolate matchsticks upwards towards around the outside, breaking them in half towards to the end to fill the gaps.

13. Dust the whole cake with cocoa and marvel at your creation.

Happy Baking,

Love,

Miss Trays xxx

Create your own bonfire

Just in time for Guy Fawke’s night, I made this delightful little masterpiece complete with ‘twigs, ash and flames’. Here’s the inspiration photograph and I will follow with the recipe shortly.

Happy Baking,

Love,

Miss Trays xx