Which celebration bake looks the tastiest? LETS VOTE!

Celebration bakes are our very favourite treats as you may already know from some of our recent posts Choco-vanilla birthday cupcakes, Queen Victoria crowns and St David’s Day treats. These bakes don’t just make the kitchen smell divine, they put smiles on the faces of our best friends and mark that occasion that’s special to us all, one way or another.

We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our posts and recipes for celebration bakes just as much as we’ve enjoyed writing them, but now that you’ve seen what the 5 crumby bakers can do, we thought that this week we’d hand our website over to you, so everyone can see what our users and fellow baking enthusiasts have been up to.

So as promised, here are the lovely pictures of your very own celebration bakes that you’ve been emailing us. Whoever is voted the TASTIEST looking celebration bake by this time next week will hand their recipe over, into the (perhaps not so safe) hands of the 5 crumby bakers and we’ll see how our attempt compares to your original.

Wish us luck.

Get voting in our poll below!

1. Kathryn Swarbrick’s Disney princess castle

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2. Chloe O’Neill’s Triple chocolate fudge brownie cake

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3. Fionnula Conway’s Jubilee lemon sponge

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4. Laura Carroll’s Banoffee fudge layer cake

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5. Adam Paul’s Chocolate cake with chocolate cream

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6. Amy Elliot’s Giant chocolate and vanilla cupcake

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7. Alice Currie’s Christmassy spiced gingerbread men (Ok so we know they’re not really a celebration bake but they’re so cute!)

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8. Monica Carroll’s Easter treat chocolate cake

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9. Katie Robinson’s Kit-cat surprise

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10. Ben Smith’s White chocolate and toffee birthday bananza

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 11. Maureen Brown’s Easter chick

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By Niamh Conway

Heysham Village: history, scenery and a slice of Impossible Pie.

Heysham Village: scenic, quaint, historical and quite frankly, beautiful. Not to brag, but my second home. When I’m not in Lancaster, there’s nothing I love more than spending a few days with my dad in Heysham, walking the dog and enjoying the rich scenery that Heysham has to offer. Whether it’s a walk along Half Moon Bay, a stroll down the promenade, a venture around St. Peters Church (founded in the 8th Century and acting as a Saxon Church since 1080) or imagining a life that was when visiting the Viking Graves, it’s safe to say that you can’t fall shy of something to do in this quiet little village.

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Heysham Village sign post

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My Patterdale Terrier Ruby enjoying a dip in the sea.

There are a few cafe’s in Heysham, but we decided to start with the latest edition: Tracy’s Cafe. Formally known as Jim’s Cafe, new management has taken over (in the form of Tracy and her mum) and they have added a selection of homemade cakes to the menu.  I decided to have a slice of Impossible Pie and my dad decided to have a Chocolate & Cinnamon flapjack to go alongside our pot of tea.

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Slice of Impossible Pie and a pot of tea for two

At sight, the Impossible Pie looked less impressive than the actual concept behind it. When I asked Tracy’s mum what made it impossible to make, clearly it wasn’t impossible at all. Though not impossible, impressive all the same.  The method behind making this pie is similar to the all in one method. Mixing all of the ingredients together (4 eggs, 1/2 cup of margarine, 2 cups of milk, 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of coconut and 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract). However, with the impossible pie, once all of the ingredients have been blended until well mixed, the ingredients separate to form each individual layer.

The flour settles to form the crust, the coconut forms the topping and the centre is of course the egg custard filling. This sounded intriguing and fun to make! Although the textures seemed a bit strange together, after a few mouthfuls you truly began to appreciate the taste of all three layers and the marvel behind making it.

Next week, I will attempt to make the Impossible Pie to see if mine actually works. Also, seeing as how an Egg Custard Tart is one of my favourite deserts, my stomach will be glad of the treat.

Are there any recipes that you didn’t think would turn out as scrumptious as they did? Or any recipes that you use again and again because they’re that good? Leave your comments below.

Don’t forget you can follow us on Facebook  and Twitter or email us: 5crumbybakers@gmail.com

By John Elsworth

Peanut M&M Muffin Cake recipe.

Whether it’s the sugar rush we get from them or the elusive feeling of love from our first bite, there’s no denying it; we are a nation obsessed with chocolate. We walk into our corner shop or into our local supermarkets and the first thing that catches our eye is the confectionery aisle. The bright colours, the temptation, the naughtiness of knowing you shouldn’t but you really should, there’s just something about chocolate that we can’t resist.

Not only that, chocolate isn’t only making us happy, it’s making the manufacturers rather happy also. Chocolate is a multi-million pound industry so as long as we’re eating it, we’re keeping the big cats milk bowl full too. I decided to check out the stats of the nations favourite chocolate bars and interpret our Top 10 into household cake recipes. Let’s start from the bottom and work our way to the top. Starting with #10 on the list: M&M’s.

Manufactured by Mars Confectionery, latest figures from foodmanufacturer.co.uk indicate that those colourful little pills of chocolate raked in £66.9m by the end of 2013. Plain milk chocolate M&M’s were first introduced in 1941 by Forrest Mars. Jr, son of the founder of the Mars Company, Frank C. Mars. Not as convenient as they are today, the idea for M&M’s came during the Spanish Civil War (1936 – 1939) when Forrest saw soldiers eating chocolate pellets with a hard outer shell to stop the chocolate melting.

The rest is history. Now we have biscuit M&M’s, peanut M&M’s: America even have pretzel M&M’s! This in mind, I decided to make a classic muffin cake with a twist: I Peanut M&M’d it. Moist muffin, peanut butter cream filling with peanut butter cream icing, sprinkled with Peanut M&M’s. Here’s what you’ll need:

Muffin cake mix

  • 4 heaped tbsp of caster sugar
  • 4 tbsp margarine
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 heaped tbsp of self raising flour
  • A splash of milk

Peanut Butter cream

  • 4 heaped tbsp of icing sugar
  • 4 heaped tbsp of peanut butter
  • 4 heaped tbsp of butter

Topping

  • A big packet of Peanut M&M’s!

1. Preheat your oven to Gas Mark 5 (190°) for half an hour.

2. Grease your cake tins with margarine, just so they’re ready to go straight into the oven once you’ve put your cake mix in them.

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3. Crack your eggs into a mixing bowl and add the margarine, self raising flour and caster sugar. Whisk! This is known as the “All In One” method, so it doesn’t really matter what order you put your ingredients in.  After all of the ingredients are mixed together, add a splash of milk. I go for full fat, but you can use skimmed or semi skimmed if you like. Whisk again for a light and fluffy texture.

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4. Spoon half of the mixture into one cake tin and the other half into the other. Bake for 15 minutes and check to see if the cake is rising. Little tip: stick a tooth pick into one of the layers and if the toothpick comes out clear, that means the cake mix is fully cooked. Don’t take your eye off the cake layers after this: it can burn very easily. Check again after another 5 minutes and they should be ready!

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5. Once your cake is cooked through, place the cake tins on a tea towel on the side and allow a good half an hour to cool before you fill and ice the cake. They should look something like this when done.

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6. Whilst your cake is cooling, it’s time to make the peanut butter cream. To do this, place your peanut butter, icing sugar and butter into a jug and mix! It’s that simple! And tastes like heaven.

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7. Spoon half of the cream onto the bottom layer and proceed to put the top layer on. Make sure you do not push the cream into the cake with the knife, make sure you are spreading it upwards as this makes for a better a effect.

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8. Once you have done this, repeat step 7 but on the top layer of the cake.

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9. After you have done this, get your packet of peanut M&M’s and place them on however you like! I went for an M&M M in the centre and various coloured M&M’s round the edge.

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10. Eat. Eat until it’s all gone. Perfect for pudding or as a tasty little treat. Serves 8 if you’re skimpy with the portion size: it lasted about two minutes in my house!

By John Elsworth

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