Time to get baking with these festive recipes

Christmas is about coming together, and what better way to do that than by baking some delicious cakes.

Wednesday, 16th December 2020, 9:26 am

Festive spiced latte cake

Preparation time: 25 minutes, plus cooling

Cooking time: 50 minutes

Latte cake. Recipe and image courtesy of Waitrose & Partners

Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes, plus cooling

Serves: 10-12

Ingredients

250g unsalted butter, melted

Drizzle cake. Recipe and image courtesy of Waitrose & Partners

300g self-raising white flour

1 tsp baking powder

250g Billington’s Light Brown Soft Sugar

½ tsp ground nutmeg, plus a pinch more

Hot chocolate sticks. Recipe and image courtesy of Waitrose & Partners

¼ tsp salt

1 tbsp instant coffee powder, plus 1 tsp

75ml whole milk

275g low-fat fresh vanilla custard

3 medium British Blacktail Free Range Eggs, beaten

4 tbsp Billington’s Golden Caster Sugar

2 tbsp dark rum

200ml whipping cream

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C, gas mark 4. Use a little of the butter to grease a 23cm springform tin, then line the base. Sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the light brown soft sugar, a pinch of nutmeg and the salt. Mix well with your hands to smooth any lumps in the sugar, then make a well in the middle.

2. In a cup, mix 1 tbsp coffee with 1 tbsp hot water. Stir into the melted butter with the milk, 175g custard and the eggs; whisk into the dry ingredients until smooth. Pour into the tin and bake for 50 minutes, until risen, golden and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. While the cake bakes, mix 1 tsp coffee with 2 tbsp caster sugar, 1 tbsp water and 1 tbsp rum to make a syrup; set aside.

3. Place the cake, in its tin, on a wire rack to cool. After 30 minutes, poke lots of holes into the top using a cocktail stick and brush with the coffee syrup. Once cooled completely, remove from the tin and put on a plate.

4. Make a frothy topping by whipping the cream with the remaining 2 tbsp caster sugar and 1 tbsp rum until very thick, then fold into the remaining 100g custard. Spoon and spread the topping onto the cake, then use a fine sieve or tea strainer to dust with the remaining ½ tsp nutmeg.

Cook’s tip

Making the cake ahead of time? You can keep the cake in an airtight container for a couple of days. When ready to serve, make and add the topping as per step 4 of the method (above).

Recipe and image courtesy of Waitrose & Partners

Cranberry and orange drizzle cake

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 55 minutes to 60 minutes

Total time: 1 hour 5 minutes to 1 hour 10 minutes

Serves: 10

Ingredients

225g unsalted butter, at warm room temperature

225g golden caster sugar

4 British Blacktail Medium Free Range Eggs

175g self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

50g ground almonds

Finely grated zest and juice of 1 large orange

175g fresh cranberries

50g granulated sugar

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 170ºC gas mark 3 and grease and base-line a 1kg loaf tin.

2. Place the butter, caster sugar and eggs together in a large mixing bowl. Sift in the flour and baking powder and add the ground almonds and orange zest then beat until just thoroughly mixed, taking care not to overbeat. Fold in the cranberries.

3. Spoon into the prepared tin and level the surface. Bake for 50-60 minutes until well risen and a metal skewer emerges clean from the centre of the cake.

4. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven sprinkle the top with the granulated sugar and pour over the orange juice to soak the sugar. Leave to cool in the tin.

Recipe and image courtesy of Waitrose & Partners and Mary Gwynn

Bourbon cinnamon-spiced hot chocolate sticks

Preparation time: 15 minutes + chilling

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Total time: 25 minutes + chilling

Makes: 8

Ingredients

For the dark chocolate

200g dark chocolate, broken into pieces

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp bourbon or dark rum (optional)

1 tsp clear honey

Ground cinnamon, to sprinkle

For the white chocolate

200g white chocolate, broken into pieces

80g white mini marshmallows

Christmas sprinkles, to decorate

You will also need

8 disposable plastic water cups

8 disposable wooden spoons or ice lolly sticks

Cellophane bags, ribbon and gift tags, to wrap

Method

1. Put the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set over a saucepan of simmering water – make sure the bowl does not touch the water. Simmer very gently until the chocolate has melted, then remove from the heat and set aside.

2. Place a second heatproof bowl over the boiling water, this time containing the vanilla extract, bourbon (or rum) and honey. When the honey has melted and the mixture is warm to the touch, remove from the heat and gradually stir it into the melted dark chocolate. Be careful not to over-stir the mixture or the chocolate could seize.

3. As soon as mixture is combined, act quickly and divide it between the 8 cups. Push a wooden spoon or ice lolly stick into each one. Chill for 1 hour or until solid. Once the chocolate has set, sprinkle a pinch of cinnamon over each.

4. Melt the white chocolate in the same way as before. Acting quickly, spoon the chocolate over the cinnamon and dark chocolate layer, then press the marshmallows into the top. Scatter over a pinch of Christmas sprinkles, then chill for 1 hour or until solid.

5. Using scissors, cut the plastic cups away from the chocolate. Wrap each one in a cellophane bag and tie with a ribbon.

Recipe and image courtesy of Waitrose & Partners

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