Bread of Heaven

Bread of Heaven or in my case Bread of Great British Bake Off.  This week The Great British Bake Off made three different types of bread:-

Quick breads

Baguettes

3d Bread Sculpture

My first bake was the 3d sculpture and after looking into a theme I came up with the idea of  a Yin & Yang shape.  My design was made from a batch of white bread and  brown bread.  I wasn’t convinced it was going to turn out as well as it did as the white bread rose a lot more than the brown bread when proving however the final result was an even bake.  I also had some dough left so I made some bread rolls to have with my lunch (yum yum).

1381409176_YinYang        IMG_3588IMG_3595

For my second bake I made baguettes.  A baguette is made from a normal bread dough recipe but the proving time is double and when the baguette is baked a roasting tin of hot water is placed in the bottom of the oven to create steam which gives the baguette a crust.  This bake went a bit wonky as my final shape was a lot larger than a normal baguette but it did taste like a baguette and was delicious straight out of the oven with lashings of butter

IMG_3605

My final bake for this week a quick bread.  A quick bread is a Soda bread and the reason it is called a quick bread is because it has no proving time and the kneading is very minimal.  I used a normal soda bread recipe and I added my own twist by adding some mexican flavours (cumin, chilli, paprika, oregano and coriander).  I always find soda bread doughy so I liked the idea of adding some spices to the bread to take away from the doughy taste.IMG_3598

Arlette Biscuits

For my Third bake from episode 2 of the Great British Bake off I have made Arlette Biscuits.

Arlettes are a French biscuit that are made from puff pastry with sugar and cinnamon rolled through giving you a spiral effect.

The trick with puff pastry is to keep every thing cold. So once the dough has been made and rolled into a square it is then placed in the fridge for an hour.  in the meantime flour and butter are beaten together and chilled in the fridge for half an hour.

The dough is then placed onto the butter mixture and the exposed butter mixture edges are folded over the dough so the dough is completely enclosed in the butter sheet.  The mixture is then rolled out to a rectangle and the top and bottom quarter are folded unto the centre and then folded in half,  this is called a book turn.  The dough is then wrapped in cling film and chilled for 25 minutes.

IMG_3557IMG_3561

The book turn is done again and the dough is cooled in the fridge for another 25 minutes.

The pastry is then rolled out to a rectangle and a mix of  sugar and  cinnamon sprinkled over the dough and another book turn is made before rolling the pastry into a rectangle.  I then rolled the pastry into what looked like a swiss roll and placed the dough into cling film and chilled it for another 25 minutes

Once chilled the dough is then cut up into slices and each slice is then rolled out into very thin sheets before placing in the oven for 8 minutes.

If done properly you should have a thin crisp biscuit that make a nice crisp sound when snapped in half.

I really enjoyed this bake as I got to try lots of new techniques and I also got  some really good comments – YayIMG_3570

Biscuit Box

Bake number 2 from The Great British Bake Off episode 2 – A biscuit box.

I think if I were on The Great British Bake Off, I would be out this week.  This is my second attempt at the biscuit box the first one collapsed.  It was so bad I didn’t even want to take any photographs.  My second attempt is slightly better.  Although both bakes didn’t turn out too well the good bit is I managed to try out some new techniques such as assembling a biscuit box and glazing the windows with a sugar caramel.  I also got to use two different types of biscuit, my first attempt was with a shortbread biscuit and my second was with a gingerbread biscuit this meant I got to experience two different doughs for making biscuit boxes.

I think next time I should do something smaller and more manageable before doing a big telephone box.

But although the boxes didn’t look great the biscuits tasted yummy.

IMG_3555 IMG_3556

Biscotti

IMG_3550Week two of The Great British Bake Off and it’s biscuits with the fist challenge being Biscotti Biscuits.  Biscotti means cooked twice.

A traditional Biscotti is normally made up of pistachios with white chocolate and cranberries but I have decided to go with a hazelnut and chocolate biscotti.

My Biscotti was made by mixing together flour and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl and adding orange zest, hazelnuts and chocolate chips.  In a separate bowl I whisked together eggs and sugar until they were light and fluffy and then folded this into the dry ingredients.  This was then all folded together to make a soft dough.  I then tipped the dough onto a floured surface and shaped it into a ciabatta shaped.

The trick I found with Biscotti was to make sure it is not over cooked and to remember it will be baked twice.

When I had shaped the dough I then baked the Biscotti for ½ an hour and then left it to cool on a cooling rack.  You must wait for the Biscotti to cool before slicing it into 1cm slices if you cut into slices before the cooked dough has cooled it will crumble.  When sliced I then placed back in a cooler oven for 10 minutes.

These are nice crispy biscuits but I would add more chocolate chips next time.  If you’re lucky to have some biscuits left they will store in a tin for unto three weeks.

Black Forest Gateau

Today I have made the Show Stopper Challenge a Black Forest Gateau.

Usually the contestants make a variation on the recipe to show off their talents but I have stuck to a classic Black Forest Gateau recipe.

The cake is made up of a three tiered chocolate sponge that is layered up with cream and tinned deep pitted cherries and cherry jam.  The cake mixture is a chocolate cake mixture with natural yoghurt added to it.  When the cakes have been baked the juice from the cherries is drizzled over the sponge to add moisture.

The cake is then layered up with whipped cream, tinned cherries and cherry jam and then a chocolate cream ganache is spread onto the top of the tiered cake.

For some extra decoration I did a little bit of chocolate work by making up some 2d chocolate trees to put up the side of the cake. This is something I added myself but couldn’t find any instructions or templates on how how to do it so I messed about by piping some melted chocolate onto baking parchment and then letting them set before placing onto the cake.

To finish off the gateau I added some glade cherries to the top of the cake.

This is a yummy chocolate cake but as you can see from the picture it perhaps needs to be stored in the fridge as it is a bit wobbly.IMG_3531

Madeira Cake

So for second bake I made The  first Signature Challenge of The Great British Bake Off 2015  a Madeira cake or Mandarin Cake as I have been incorrectly calling it.

This cake reminded me of the cake I entered into 4th Great Abergavenny Bake off competition as has very similar ingredients such as ground almonds and orange.  The difference between the two cakes was that the one I made earlier in the year had no flour where as this one did.  Unusually the recipe I used for the Madeira Cake contained plain flour with baking powder rather than self raising flour as you often see in cake recipes.

To make the cake it was like making up a simple cake mixture but with ground almonds and orange juice and orange zest added.  The orange juice and drizzle that is added once the cake is made makes it a very moist cake and I had a crack on the top as Mary Berry said I should.

IMG_3519

Frosted Walnut Cake

Yaay! The Great British Bake Off is back.

This is one of my favourite programmes on telly.  I love watching all the different bakers and how they deal with the pressure and I love how they get better and better in each episode. It does make me smile when they mess up as it means they are the same as me.

There are eleven episodes in this series and I thought it would be fun to try and follow all the bakes.  (Hopefully I’ll still be able to do it when I go back to school)

So for my first bake I have gone straight in with the technical challenge and made

Mary’s Frosted Walnut Layer Cake 

First of all I had to cover walnuts with caramel and the amazing thing is I managed to do this without burning myself (which is very unusual for me).

Then came the cake itself which is a classic vanilla sponge with roughly chopped walnuts mixed into the sponge mixture. This was then dived into three cake tins and baked  While the cakes were baking I made up a traditional butter icing that was then spread in-between each of the three layers of cake when they had cooked and cooled down.

The cake is then covered in a frosted icing.  This is like a meringue and is made from egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar all of which are placed in a bowl over a saucepan and is consistently whisked until it has thickened.  Mary Berry said it would take 8 – 10 minutes but I thought it took forever and my arm ached after all the whisking.  The frosted icing then has to be put onto the cake quickly before it crystallises.  I perhaps made the icing a bit too thick as it cooled a little bit too quickly when I spread it on the cake.

I wasn’t keen on baking this cake as I don’t really like walnuts but I loved making the frosting which was a new technique for me.

IMG_5755 IMG_5759

IMG_3504

never tried out before, so baking them has been fun, as I got to try some different techniques, but also got to eat different things. Yummy.

Pizzas

Hello, sorry I haven’t posted for a while but I have been in france lying next tho the pool, heaven.

So for this weeks bake I made pizzas for me and my Mam’s dinner. They where so nice!

Even though this is more cooking  rather than baking, I did make my own dough.

I had so much fun making these. Me and my Mam choose are toppings, and the pizzas where just soooo yummy.

I also made this seriously yummy tomato sauce for the pizza.

I had a bit of dough at the end so I had  ago at making a pizza calzone, which is a pizza that has a folded over dough top. It was nice but for me it was to doughy.

I love pizzas so for me this bake was perfect.

I had so much fun doing this and next time I would liIMG_5588ke to try out some different toppings.

(My toppings was pesto, mozzarella, tomatoes, ham)