Last month I was invited to give a live baking demonstration at Culina, a local kitchen showroom that was celebrating its first birthday. Very exciting! My kitchen at home isn’t fancy and the one in the shop is fit for purpose but not luxurious by any stretch of the imagination so it was really nice to go along and bake in such a shiny, modern kitchen.
I wanted to keep things simple; I was aware that, being a live event, there was plenty of opportunity for it to go wrong (with me at the helm? Never!). I decided to go for my basic cupcake recipe, which would give those watching the opportunity to choose which flavours we added. Both lavender and chocolate chip were popular choices on the day, so I decided to mix things up and make chocolate chip and lavender cupcakes – which went down a treat!
The flavour that was chosen for the biscuits was cherry and vanilla – delicious! It’s so easy with these basic recipes to just add whatever else you like to create your own, favourite biscuits. And then it’s up to you whether you share them!
Chocolate and lavender cupcakes – makes 12
8oz self-raising flour
A bar of dark chocolate, chopped
A handful of culinary lavender
Soften the butter and cream together with the sugar. Add the eggs one at a time and mix in. Sift in the flour and mix again, but not for long (you don’t want to beat the air out of the cake mix!). Stir in the chopped chocolate and lavender and then fill cupcake cases. I use an ice-cream scoop to measure out the mixture evenly and fill the cases to the same level.
Bake in the oven (150) for around 20 minutes or until golden. Icing can be added to taste once cooled.
Cherry and vanilla biscuits
A few drops of vanilla essence
8oz plain flour
A handful of glace cherries, chopped
Soften the butter and then cream together with the sugar. Add the egg and vanilla essence and mix well before sifting in the flour and mixing. Add the chopped cherries into the dough before rolling out on a floured surface. Roll the dough flat and use cutters to cut into shapes. Place on a baking tray and cook in the oven (150) for around 12 minutes or until golden. Cool off before lifting from the baking tray so they don’t break. Enjoy with a lovely cup of tea!