Let’s Bake 15: New to You Round Up

We had a fab time sharing our ‘new to you’ bakes recently along with lots of baking chat! First up were the breads!

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Dawn brought along two varieties of focaccia, which she had recently learnt to make at a local breadmaking class!

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Sharon shared her cornish saffron bread, and Karen delivered a huge Kanellangd (swedish cinnamon bread) inspired by her swedish friends!

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Fruit and vegetables were incorporated into bakes too – Kirsty’s twist on a carrot cake saw grated parsnips integrated into a loaf cake topped with maple frosting.

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Gwynneth’s Banana Cream Pie featured a huge layer of chocolate!

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Susan made an American classic – red velvet cake…

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and Swenja brought along a Russian Medovik caje which was made up of lots of thinly layered chocolate cake sandwiched with pastry cream!

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To finish, Mairi’s mint chocolate macarons were enjoyed by all!

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Our next meeting will be in March/April, so keep an eye out for details!

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Let’s Bake 13: Pastry Roundup

A small group of six enjoyed a leisurely afternoon of pastry chat and sampling shortcrust, choux and strudel pastry this weekend. We had a mostly sweet turnout, but some savoury was most welcome in the form of Mhairi’s palmiers. Inspired by the Great British Bake Off no less, these two varieties included parma ham, parmesan and mustard.

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Kara also bought along some dainty savoury choux buns, filled with salmon mousse and smoked salmon.

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Onto the sweet and there were two shortcrust tarts!

Kirsty brought along “June’s tart” a recipe which was passed along by a family friend. The filling contains margarine, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and raisins

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Heather brought along a rich chocolate and raspberry tart which is a favourite recipe of hers to make.

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Susan bought along some profiteroles – coated in a gingerbread salted caramel sauce and drizzled with dark chocolate.

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Kara had made some vanilla slices, complete with intricate feathering work on the top. Despite not travelling too well, everyone agreed that the vanilla custard was very tasty!

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Finally, Swenja impressed everyone with a cherry strudel!

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Thanks as usual to Blend for hosting us. We hope to have another event before the end of November so keep an eye on our schedule page for more details.

Let’s Bake 10: Chocolate Round Up

Thanks to Blend Tea and Coffee Merchants for hosting another Let’s Bake Inverness meeting! We enjoyed an intimate group meeting with 5 bakes being shared around the table.

We also had a break from eating to hear Debbie from The Chocolate Place tell us all about the process from cocoa bean to chocolate bar, and the ins and outs of being a chocolatier. Did you know that Inverness has its own Chocolate Tour? Debbie also organises these too!

On to the bakes and we had a good mix of textures and flavours.

Kirsty made a lovely Jaffa Loaf Cake which as well as having the perfect chocolate drizzle topping, also had a clementine syrup glaze.

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Swenja made these ‘Chocolate Overload Bars’ by cleverly making a white chocolate, marshmallow and rice krispie base, making them just a little bit lighter than anticipated!

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Dawn made these excellent fudgy salted caramel brownies – these were a big hit with everyone!

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I (Susan) made chocolate dipped Banana Biscotti.

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Finally Eileen wowed everyone with her delicious white chocolate and pistachio baked cheesecake!

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Thanks to everyone for coming, details about the next event will be publicised shortly. To join our mailing list/ask questions, please email letsbakeinverness@gmail.com!

Let’s Bake 10: Chocolate

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Our next Let’s Bake event (our 10th, can you believe?!) will celebrate all things connected to the humble cocoa bean, which was a suggestion of one of our members  (thanks Dorothy!) considering the meeting is shortly before the Easter holidays.

You may have your own favourite chocolate recipe already in mind, but if not, you may like to check out our very own Kirsty’s recipe index for ideas (there’s a whole chocolate section if you scroll halfway down the page).

Anything goes, as long as there’s some form of chocolate featured in the recipe. Milk or dark, a drizzle for decoration or full on chocolate frenzy – you decide! Honarary brownie points will be given to anyone who can incorporate chocolate into a savoury bake!

As an added bonus for this meeting, there will be a short talk all about chocolate from Debbie who runs local business The Chocolate Place, so be prepared to be educated as well as enjoy some lovely bakes!

Date: Monday 21st March

Time: 7-9pm

Venue: Blend Tea and Coffee Merchants, Drummond Street, Inverness

Theme: Chocolate

To sign up: Email letsbakeinverness@gmail.com to book a place (a comment on this post doesn’t guarantee you a spot, we like to keep all the sign ups in one place for the sake of accuracy!) and we’ll remind you nearer the time to let us know what you are bringing so appropriate labels can be made. If you are bringing something that needs slicing at Blend, please bring your bake pre-sliced or bring your own knife/cake slice.  As usual we’ll provide the plates. Blend will have hot and cold drinks available for purchase.

Let’s Bake 8: Favourite Bakes Round Up

For our final Let’s Bake event of 2015, we had a great time choosing recipes from our favourite books to bake for our gathering at Blend Tea and Coffee Merchants.

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Some of the books may or may not have been added to subsequent Christmas lists!

Grace’s Marmalade Muffins were adapted from Spooning with Rosie.

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Dorothy’s Yoghurt Cake recipe was given to her by a friend (and Dorothy has kindly passed it on so I will add it to the recipes section when I can). Dorothy tried out a marbling technique for her cake, used a lemon yoghurt for flavour, and incorporated a festive element by adding Christmas tree sprinkles!

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I (Susan) had a bit of a nightmare with my first attempt at this Sour Cream Coffee Cake, but my second attempt was much better. I will always remember to use butter and flour or cake release spray when baking in a bundt tin! My book was from the Clandestine Cake Club and the recipe can be found online here. Rather than the cake being coffee flavoured as the name suggests, this american recipe is a nutty cake to be eaten with a cup of coffee.

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Kirsty made some delicious Orange Gingerbread with Cream Cheese Icing from Joy the Baker.

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Swenja bought along a huge batch of Raspberry Blondies from Gordon Ramsey’s Ultimate Cookery Course which were very popular!

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Kara’s bake was adapted from Homemade Memories by Kate Doran. This lemon, pistachio and rose loaf complete with gold glitter was possibly the prettiest bake of the night!

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Mairi brought along possibly the oldest recipe book, which was a scrapbook of handed down recipes, as well as recipes from Jackie magazine! Mairi bought along some delicious shortbread fingers.

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Karen bought along a classic lemon loaf cake from a 90’s recipe book!

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Finally Pauline baked from a Bakewell slice from the Avoca Cafe Cookbook!

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Thanks to all the bakers who came along, and to Blend for staying open for us! Keep your eyes on the Let’s Bake Twitter and Facebook pages for details of the next meet, early next year!

Let’s Bake 8: Favourite Bakes

We’re managing to squeeze in one final Let’s Bake meeting before Christmas, and our thinking is that everyone will be sick of mince pies before too long – so instead of a Christmas theme this year, we are going to ask all bakers to bake a sweet or savoury recipe from their favourite recipe book! 

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There are so many cookbooks around, we’re sure that we’ll have a varied selection of bakes! As well as your bake, please bring along the book you’ve chosen!

Date: Wednesday 2nd December 2015

Time: 7-9pm

Venue: Blend Tea & Coffee Merchants, 9 Drummond Street, Inverness

Theme: Favourite Bakes

To sign up: Email letsbakeinverness@gmail.com to book a place (a comment on this post doesn’t guarantee you a spot, we like to keep all the sign ups in one place for the sake of accuracy!) and we’ll remind you nearer the time to let us know what you are bringing so appropriate labels can be made. If you are bringing something that needs slicing at the cafe, please bring your bake pre-sliced or bring your own knife/cake slice.  As usual we’ll provide reusable plates. Blend will have hot and cold drinks available for purchase.