It’s time to get baking!!!
We love encouraging people to get creative in the kitchen, and for National Baking Week we want to see you bake! Everyone has a go-to baking recipe whether it’s cakes, pastry, biscuits or bread and if you’re looking to be a little more adventurous, why not try one of our recipes below; if you want some more inspiration, head over to our Pinterest board.
Why not make it a little family-friendly competition? We have set a Heritage Bake-Off challenge which you can read all about on our half-term blog.
Tropical Sponge Cake
Time: 1h 30mins
A Victoria sponge is usually one of the first cakes we learn to bake, and once you have mastered the recipe, it’s so easy to style it up by adding new flavours. This tropical sponge cake uses passionfruit and takes your classic sponge to the next level.
Source: Lifestyle Food
For the orange sponge
- 200g plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 8 eggs
- 130g caster sugar
- 100g butter, melted
- 2 oranges, zested
- 120ml fresh orange juice
For the passionfruit curd
- 125g chilled butter, chopped
- 150g caster sugar
- 180ml passionfruit pulp
- 4 egg yolks
- 500g mascarpone
- 550ml double cream
- 2 oranges, zested
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Sift the flour and baking powder three times and set aside.
Beat the eggs and sugars in a stand mixer (or with an electric whisk) and beat for 8-10 minutes until pale and triple in volume.
Sift in half the flour mixture over the egg mixture and gently fold through. Repeat with the remaining flour then add the butter and fold through. Divide the mixture between two greased and lined 8-inch/20cm cake tins and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the cake tins and cool on wire rack.
For the passionfruit curd, combine the butter, sugar, passionfruit and egg yolks in a medium saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring continuously for 10-15 minutes or until the mixture thickens, place in freezer for 30 minutes to chill.
For the mascarpone cream, slowly beat the cream into the mascarpone cheese, once combined add the zest.
To assemble, lay down a layer of cake, a generous layer of the mascarpone filling, spreading out with a spoon leaving a well in the centre. Spoon in some passionfruit curd and repeat. Top with the remaining mascarpone and passionfruit curd.
Chocolate Raspberry Bars
Time: 50 mins + setting time
I believe that dark chocolate and raspberry are a match made in heaven and this rich and indulgent bars are just divine! They are naturally sweetened, chewy, crumbly, tangy and completely delicious.
Source: Naturally Sweet Kitchen
- 113g butter
- 85g honey
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 125g plain flour
- 350g fresh raspberries
- 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 1/2 tsp Vege-gel or powdered gelatine
- 150g good quality dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 170ºC and lightly grease and line a 20 x 20 cm baking tin with baking paper. Leave an overhang of the paper for easy removal later.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and honey in a large bowl using an electric hand mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy and pale.
Add the vanilla and salt and mix to combine. Sift in the flour and beat until the flour is incorporated.
Pour the batter into the prepared tray, smooth to the edges and bake for 15-18 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Leave the shortbread to cool completely.
Tip the raspberries and maple syrup into a food processor and blitz until smooth.
Pour the sauce into a small saucepan and place over medium heat until it starts to boil. Lower to a simmer and let it bubble away until the sauce reduces by half, about 10 minutes. Stirring occasionally.
Once the sauce has reduced, sprinkle over the Vege-gel or gelatine and whisk vigorously to combine. Layer the raspberry sauce evenly over the cooled shortbread and place in the fridge to set for at least 3 hours.
Once the raspberry layer has set, melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.
Gently pour the chocolate over the jelly and smooth out to the edges. Place the tray back into the fridge for the chocolate to set.
Once the chocolate is solid, remove from the fridge and allow to come up to room temperature. Cut into 12 equal slices and serve.
These bars will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 4 days.
Time: 1 hr
These elegant, buttery biscuits might look extra impressive but they’re surprisingly easy to make. Dip in chocolate for an extra sweet treat.
Source: BBC Good Food
- 200g butter, softened
- 50g icing sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 200g plain flour
- 2 tsp cornflour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
For the filling
- 100g butter, softened
- 170g icing sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 50g strawberry jam
Preheat an oven to 180C and line 2 baking trays with baking paper. Put the butter and icing sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric hand whisk for about 5 mins until pale and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and beat again until fully incorporated.
Sift in the flour, cornflour and baking powder and fold into the mixture using a spatula until combined. Spoon the dough into a piping bag fitted with a star-shaped nozzle.
Pipe swirly circles 5cm diameter onto the lined baking trays making sure to leave around 3cm space in between each one.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, swapping the trays over halfway through cooking, so the biscuits are evenly baked and golden in colour.
Once cooked, leave on a wire rack to cool.
While the biscuits cool, make the filling. Put the softened butter in a large mixing bowl and add the icing sugar. Stir together with a wooden spoon then switch to a whisk to get the buttercream ice and fluffy.
Add the vanilla extract and beat to combine. Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag and snip off the end.
Turn the biscuits over so their flat side is facing up and pipe buttercream over half of the biscuits and spread a little jam on the rest. Sandwich the two halves together and serve.
Homemade Artisan Bread
Time: 2hrs 30mins
Serving: 12 slices
A loaf of delicious Artisan bread with a crispy crust and a soft interior. Easily achieved by using a humble casserole dish.
Source: Kitchen Sanctuary
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 5g caster sugar
- 300ml warm water
- 450g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
Add the yeast, sugar and warm water to the bowl of your stand mixer or to a large bowl. Leave for 5 minutes until the yeast starts to foam.
Add the flour, then the salt. Mix together using a dough hook attachment on your stand mixer or mix together with your hands until fully combined.
Using the dough hook, knead the dough on a medium setting for 10 minutes. If you want to do this with your hands, oil the work surface and your hands with a little olive or vegetable oil, and knead for 10 minutes. It will be a sticky dough – this is fine.
Once kneaded, place the dough in an oiled bowl (wiped with a little olive or vegetable oil). Cover with clingfilm and prove for 1 hour – until doubled in size.
Sprinkle the work surface with 30g flour and tip the dough out. You’ll probably need to use your hands to tease it out of the bowl, as it will still be quite sticky. Sprinkle with a tablespoon of the flour.
We DON’T want to knock the air out of the dough at this point. We simply want to shape the dough by grabbing a piece from the outside and pulling it into the middle.
Continue this, pulling the dough in all the way around until the dough no longer wants to stick in place You may need a little more flour to prevent it sticking.
Then turn the dough over and use your hands just to finish off rounding it out.
Place the dough in a well-floured bowl – Seam-side down.
Cover with clingfilm and prove for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, place a casserole dish (approx 25cm diameter) in the oven and preheat the oven to 230C.
When the dough has finished its second prove, remove the cover, take a long piece of parchment or greaseproof paper and place on top of the bowl.
Gently tip the bowl upside-down the dough ends up on the paper.
Very carefully take the hot casserole dish out of the oven and remove the lid (leave a tea-towel on top of the lid, so you don’t forget it’s hot and grab the lid without thinking).
Use the edge of the baking parchment to carefully lower the bread into the dish. Place the lid on top and carefully place back in the oven.
Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for a further 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a cooling rack before slicing and serving.
Time: 1hr 10mins
This is somewhat like a pizza, but with a few differences. It has a base, tomatoes and toppings, but is easier and quicker to make from scratch, while still just as delicious.
Source: Nadiya Bakes
- 225g plain flour
- 100g butter
- pinch of salt
- 3-4 tbsp cold water
For the filling
- 2 tbsp veg oil
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 3 anchovies or 1/2 tsp salt
- 325g cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp tamarind paste
- 198g tinned sweetcorn, drained
- 4 tbsp hummus
- Small handful of capers
- Small handful of fresh basil
Start by making the pastry. Add the flour and salt to a bowl with the butter and rub the butter in till you have a mix that looks like breadcrumbs.
Add the water a tablespoon at a time and mix and squeeze the mixture until it starts to come together. As soon as you have a mound of pastry, bring it together and wrap in clingfilm, flatten and leave in the fridge while you cook the tomatoes.
Add the oil to a pan and, as soon as the oil is hot, add the garlic and anchovies and, using the back of a spoon, push the anchovies and squeeze till they are broken down. This will add seasoning.
Now add the tomatoes along with the paprika and cook on medium heat for 3–4 minutes until it is just starting to soften slightly. Add the tamarind and sweetcorn and cook through gently for about 10 minutes till the mixture is fairly dry. Take off the heat.
Preheat the oven to 200°C and pop a baking tray in the oven to heat up.
Roll the pastry out to about 5mm thick on a piece of baking paper – this will just make it easier to move onto the tray later. This does not have to be an even round – being a little rough around the edges will add to the texture.
As soon as you have a rough circle, add the hummus in the centre and spread all over, leaving about 5cm around the edges. Now add all your tomato and sweetcorn mixture on top and bring the edges over to create a ‘crust’ as such – you can be as rough as you like. If the pastry breaks up at the edges, just pinch it together. This is quite a brittle dough so you may find it cracks as you fold it over. Pinch it back together and it will be just fine.
Place on the heated tray, pop into the oven and bake for 25–30 minutes.
As soon as it is out, roughly chop the capers and rip up the basil and sprinkle all over. Serve sliced into wedges.