Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Easy Chocolate Orange Cake

Birthday Cupcake: 22-Nov-2010

Birthday cupcake for my good friend Adeline..  :-)  Happy Birthday dearie! :-D

Kept the cake for my family... *haha*  :-) Hubby has been enjoying a slice just about every night...  :-D Oooo I just had to have another slice especially after blogging about it... very chocolate orange-y... nice! (although I think frosting a tad bit sweet & then again, when is frosting every NOT sweet! LOL!)

Recipe obtained from the most yummiest looking cook book, "The Golden Book of Chocolate" by McRae Books; pg 502, recipe entitled, "Easy chocolate orange cake". I bought it from the book depository at the Curves Gym I attend in Riversdale...  :-)

Recipe says:
Serves: 8 - 10 pple
Preparation: 25 mins
Cooking: 35-45 mins

2 cups (300g) plain flour
1 1/2 cups (300g) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (75g) unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup (125g) butter, softened
2 tbsp finely grated orange zest (I used a zester then a pair of scissors to cut it smaller... LOL!)
3 large eggs
1/4 cup (60ml) water
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda (bicarb of soda)
1/2 tsp salt
2 - 4 tsp decaf nescafe coffee (optional - my little extra. I dissolved in the 60ml water (I used HOT water) in ingredients above then let it cool, or in my case, put into freezer so it'll cool in less than 5 mins *haha*).

Marbled Frosting:
1/4 cup (60g) butter
1 tbsp finely grated orange zest
2 cups (300g) confectioners' (icing) sugar
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1. Preheat oven to 350oF (180oC/Gas 4).
2. Butter an 11 x 7 inch (28 x 15cm) baking pan (or 20 cm round cake tin & a cupcake)
3. Beat the flour, sugar, cocoa, butter, orange zest and juice, eggs water, baking powder, baking soda & salt in a large bowl with an electric mixer at LOW speed until just  blended.
4. Increase mixer speed to medium and beat until the batter is smooth, about 5 mins.
5. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.
6. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (approx 35 - 45 mins).
7. Cool the cake completely in the pan on a wire rack.

Marbled Frosting:
1. With mixer at high speed, beat the butter and orange zest in a large bowl until creamy.
2. Gradually beat in the confectioners' sugar and milk.
3. Place half the mixture in another bowl.
4. Stir in the cocoa to 1 of the mixtures.
5. Place spoonfuls of orange & chocolate frosting next to each other on top of the cake.
6. Swirl them together with a knife to create a marbled effect.

Note: I found my mixer to big to beat the butter for the frosting so I had to add in at least 1/2 sugar to the butter & beat them together before I added the rest of the sugar & milk & follow on step 2... :-)

Enjoy!!  :-D

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Choc Chip & Walnut Banana Bread

Breakfast: Sat 13-Nov-2010
Firstly, thanks heaps to Anne Leary-Smith for this most yummylicious banana bread!!

This was a superbly scrumptious banana bread... especially nice when its fresh out of the bread machine... after returning from soccer practise with my 3 yr old on a wet spring morning... & feeling rather cold from it... The house smelt awesome too!!  :-)

4 medium large mashed bananas
2 eggs beaten
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup milk
2 1/4 cup plain flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarb soda
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips (optional)

1) Mash bananas & place into the bread pan of the bread maker machine.

2) Put the rest of the ingredients into the provided bread pan of the bread machine in the listed ingredients order.

3) Put to dough setting for approx 5 mins until well mixed (make sure you clean & scrape down sides as machine is mixing)

4) Put to bake only setting & bake until properly cooked. (You may have to increase the time towards the end of the setting, machine will start to beep in the last 5 minutes of the run & this is when you can increase the time of the setting).

Note: You can substitute the choc chips & walnuts for anything, eg. different nuts (raw almonds are really yum!) or sultananas... Also, substitute plain flour & baking powder for self-raising flour if you like & substitute sugar for 1/2 to 3/4 cup honey for a different taste... :-)  Enjoy!

Also, If you do not have a bread machine, you should be able to hand mix the ingredients in a big bowl, then transfer to a loaf tin & bake at approx 180C for about an hour or until cooked. This is approximated as I have not tried baking in an oven instead of the bread machine. Apologies for that... if you do try it, could you please let me know & I can fix up the instructions a little more...  :-)  Thanks!