Blackberry Cake with Orange Drizzle

Today was a cake day- grey, wet, cold.

Plus uni finished yesterday so I have nothing to do any more except bake (what a nightmare!)

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PLUS I found these blackberries in the reduced section in my local shop- a section I must admit, I frequent often!

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This cake, with a cup of tea, was the perfect antidote to a grey Wednesday afternoon!

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Blackberry Cake with Orange Drizzle (recipe stolen from here!)

110g softened butter

140g caster sugar

2 eggs

zest from 1 orange

125g plain flour

1 tsp baking powder

200g blackberries

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

juice from 1 orange

30g caster sugar

Beat together the sugar, caster sugar (except for the last 30g), eggs, orange zest, flour, baking powder and vanilla in a large bowl and beat until smooth and well combined. (I did this by hand (because I don’t have an electric mixer- sad) but if you do, feel free to use that!

Then fold in the blackberries. If you toss them in a bowl with icing sugar before hand, this should prevent them from sinking to the bottom! (I only very recently learned this sneaky trick!)

Pour the mixture into a loaf tin lined with greaseproof paper and bake in a 180 degree oven for 50-60 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.

While it is cooling, mix together the orange juice and sugar to form a sort of syrupy liquid. Poke deep holes all over the top of the cake and spoon the mixture over the top of the cake and into the wholes.

Leave to cool completely, then sprinkle with icing sugar and enjoy!!

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xxR

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Stressing Out Carrot Cake Cupcakes

It’s me that’s stressing out, not the cupcakes. I have two essays due next week PLUS a dissertation due after Easter, so I’m feeling a bit snowed under. I realize that baking is probably the least valuable use of my time at the moment, but I need to try and take my mind off the work load before I break down!

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Carrot cake is the ultimate relaxation device.

Carrot Cake with Ginger Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe adapted from here)

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1 c flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1 c sugar

1/2 c vegetable oil

2 eggs, room temp

1 tsp vanilla

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1 c (or about two large carrots) grated carrots

Sift together the flour, baking powder, soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and sugar in a large bowl and mix well.

In another bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, vanilla and maple syrup. Add to the dry ingredients and mix until everything is thoroughly combined. Grate in the carrots and mix.

Bake for 15- 20 minutes in a 180 degree oven.

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For the cream cheese frosting:

Mix a big dollop of cream with with about double the amount of icing sugar (I completely eyed this up, and then relied on tasting and testing to get it right.) It should be a smooth creamy consistency, but not too runny! Mix in some ground ginger (if you want- I think this is delish with carrot cake!) Grate some orange rind on top (again, totally optional, just looks pretty!)

 

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Enjoy!

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xxR