Banoffee Pie

Banoffee Pie

Banoffee Pie

I swear I’m not being paid by the BBC Good Food group to promote their website but here’s another one of their amazing recipes to get your taste buds going!

Banoffee Pie really couldn’t be any easier. It’s always so much more simple to pull off than you think and always seems to end up looking absolutely scrumptious. It’s got to be one of my ultimate guilty pleasures, I reckon I could eat at least half the entire thing in one sitting.

But like all recipes, this one needs just a little bit of fiddling with!

Instead of using Hob Nobs, I much prefer sticking to the traditional Digestive biscuit because I don’t think the ‘oaty one’ gets as crispy a finish (besides, if you’re using Digestives you can pull a fast one and buy value brand biscuits which taste just the same)!

The only other thing I really want to say is that you shouldn’t be lazy and use store bought caramel! Not only does it get too thick, making your own toffee sauce tastes better, has a much better texture and is easy as pie – pun intended – to make as long as you have the patience and the eye of an eagle.

All you have to do is slowly melt 200g of sugar in a saucepan on a low heat, whisk in 100g of butter and remove from the heat. Once you’ve let it sit for roughly ten seconds, start whisking in 100ml of heavy whipping cream and viola, you’ve got yourself the tastiest toffee sauce ever!

Good luck you Fongtastic bunch of future bakers!

If you tried making a Banoffee Pie using this recipe, tweet your results @FongtasticFood

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Chocolate and Salted Caramel Mousse Cake

BBC Good FoodWhen BBC Good Food called this Chocolate and Salted Caramel Mousse Cake ‘decadent’, they really meant it! I don’t think I’ve ever spent so much money on ingredients to make a cake before, but this might just have to be one of my very own proudest bakes.

I’m not going to lie though, this wasn’t one of the easiest cakes to execute so I wouldn’t recommend it to someone who hasn’t got that much experience (especially considering how I’m away from home and had to conjure this beast up without my beloved electronic scales, absolute #nightmare)!!!

Now on to the actual recipe review. This recipe does not, I repeat, does not, need nearly as much light brown soft sugar, cocoa powder or finely chopped dark chocolate (for the ganache) as it suggests. Unless, of course, you’re hoping to live a short but happy life. 500g of sugar is just ridiculous and I’m sure I only put in about half of this and my cake turned out fine, same goes for the cocoa and chocolate.

Chocolate and Caramel Cake

Chocolate and Salted Caramel Mousse Cake

My one disappointment with this cake was that I couldn’t taste the salted caramel. Even though the recipe overindulges in regards to the cake mixture and ganache, it leaves you having to spread across your caramel rather sparingly. More caramel is a definite must if you want to try baking this beauty. Otherwise, you will end up wasting your time patiently standing by the cooker to make sure your sugar doesn’t burn, for absolutely nothing.

Overall though, I have to say this was the ultimate guilty pleasure and it’s so enormous that I still have leftovers four days later (and it hasn’t even gone as dry as a boot yet)! It stays moist, it’s full of chocolate and double cream, and it’s one of the best cakes I’ve ever made. If only I knew, I would’ve saved it for Easter lunch to have with friends and family (and to show off, of course). Oh well, I guess I’ll have to finish it off all on my own!

If you baked something you’re particularly proud of, tweet it @FongtasticFood with the hash-tag ‘#proudbakes‘.

Tate & Lyle Unveil Cake Hotel

Hand-Stitched Meringue Rug

A hand-stitched rug made of meringues.

A team of 14 cake-makers has spent almost 3,000 hours baking and decorating over 100 pieces of edible art to fill a three-storey luxury hotel in Central London.

The edible project has been set up to promote a new line of Tate & Lyle Sugars, inspired by regions from around the world. Over 600 kilograms of this sugar was then used to reflect each different region across eight separate rooms.

A pirate room contains a giant treasure chest filled with pearls and gold coins.

A pirate room contains a giant treasure chest filled with edible pearls and gold coins.

The eight tasting rooms include (from press release):

  • A Mediterranean-inspired bedroom, with edible furnishings, a caramel popcorn-filled bathtub, floating meringues and edible pearlescent popcorn bunting, all created using Light Soft Brown sugar.
  • A Pirates of the Caribbean room, with a giant treasure chest full of edible pearls, ginger spiced doubloons and cutlasses, which visitors can spray gold themselves, and rum and raisin chocolate brownies and tea cakes – all made from Taste Experience Caribbean-inspired Light Muscovado sugar.
  • A British-inspired Golden syrup sugar room, with a giant golden-syrup lion, patriotic treacle tarts in the shape of the British Isles and a giant tower of doughnuts.
  • A Mayan-inspired room hidden in the cellar featuring a Mayan fudge temple, complete with floating meringue ‘clouds’, ‘sacrificial’ salted caramel and chocolate hearts, and Mayan-inspired carved gold cookies all made from Taste Experience Mayan-inspired golden caster sugar.
  • A Mississippi-inspired ‘Mardi Gras’ room featuring a five foot long rainbow cake in the traditional colours of green, yellow & purple, gold baby heads and of course King Cakes.
  • A Barbados-inspired library, with edible shells, and beautiful hand-painted cookies, fruit cakes and florentines showcased as museum features inside vintage glass jars, all made from Barbados inspired Dark Muscovado sugar.
  • A Guyanese-inspired room, complete with a sea turtle cake, and cake ‘turtle eggs’ buried in mounds of Demerara sugar.
  • A South Pacific-inspired room with a huge two metre high Easter Island statue, made entirely from chocolate mud cake baked using Golden Granulated sugar.
Giant edible sculptures include a 2-metre long vanilla sponge turtle cake.

Giant edible sculptures include a 2-metre long vanilla sponge turtle cake.

In the Barbados-inspired library, edible shells line the shelves.

In the Barbados-inspired library, edible shells line the shelves.

James Whiteley, Tate & Lyle Sugars Senior Brand Manager said: “We think the cake hotel perfectly captures the excitement, inspiration and expertise behind the creation of our new range of golden and brown cane sugars. The Taste Experience range is about more than just adding sweetness; it’s about subtle flavour differences, texture and appearance. We hope that through the cake hotel we can showcase the versatility of golden and brown cane sugars and inspire people to get creative in the kitchen.”

The Soho-based hotel is open from now until Wednesday, March 27. For bookings, tweet @welovebaking saying why you want to stay over in the first cake hotel, including the hash-tag ‘#TastingHouse‘.

For more information, please contact Mischief PR at Tate&Lyle@MischiefPR.com

No More Tantrums at the Till

The campaign has named Asda as one of the worst offenders, displaying over thirty different types of sweets at the checkout.

The campaign has named Asda as one of the worst offenders, displaying over thirty different types of sweets at the checkout.

Major supermarkets are being targeted by a new campaign to stop unhealthy foods and drinks from being displayed at the checkout.

The Children’s Food Campaign, coordinated by Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming and funded by the British Heart Foundation, has launched Chuck Junk off the Checkouts to provoke Government action and bring an end to the marketing of junk food to children.

Malcolm Clark, the campaign’s coordinator, said: “What we want to see is actual proper regulation and government stepping in so that this isn’t just left to the whim of supermarkets and when we move on to the next issue, the supermarkets just switch back to their old bad habits.”

Although some supermarkets are responding positively towards the campaign, many are choosing to remain silent on the subject. Lidl are now ensuring that at least one in seven of their checkouts is completely junk-free, while Morrisons have released a statement saying they would only be willing to remove unhealthy foods from their checkouts if it was recommended by the Department of Health’s responsibility deal.

The Children’s Food Campaign is relying on the public to support Chuck Junk off the Checkouts, encouraging people from across the country to lobby supermarkets and help put a stop to the promotion of unhealthy food to children.

Catherine Dimmer, mother of two and campaign supporter, said: “I don’t like the way [supermarkets] try to make money out of people at any opportunity whatsoever and it’s the fact that it’s not particularly healthy for the children either is it; the chocolates, it’s going to ruin their teeth [and] make them fat.”

Here are a few ways to get involved and help Chuck Junk off the Checkouts:

  • Action 1: Sign Up – sign up to support the campaign and be kept up-to-date by visiting www.childrensfood.org.uk
  • Action 2: Wall of Shame – take a picture of the checkout at your local supermarket and post it to the campaign’s Facebook wall (www.facebook.com/childrensfood) or tweet @childrensfood.
  • Action 3: Checkout Test – if you are unhappy with the checkouts at your local supermarket, make both a verbal and written complaint.

For more information on Chuck Junk off the Checkouts, please visit: www.sustainweb.org/childrensfoodcampaign/chuck_junk/

Avocado and Banana Milkshake

Avocado and Banana Milkshake

Avocado and Banana Milkshake

I reckon it’s time to crack out something a little bit different, a little bit strange, but very, very tasty.

Taking inspiration from some of the world’s most famous unusual flavour combinations – chilli and chocolate, cheddar cheese and strawberry jam, just to name a few – I decided to make a milkshake with a twist.

The avocados and bananas were sitting side by side in my fruit bowl and I got to thinking…

What would an avocado and banana milkshake taste like?

Because the classic banana milkshake just isn’t cutting it at the moment, obviously.

So into the blender went 2 bananas and a whole avocado, with a teaspoon of honey and a splash of milk.

Surprisingly, it worked! I think I even surprised myself, but the flavours just went hand in hand, the avocado didn’t overpower the banana and just left you with a slight tang after each and every gulp.

Besides, who doesn’t love a funky looking green drink?

If you know of any other unusual flavour combinations, please tweet them @FongtasticFood