I am a huge fan of The Hummingbird Bakery and their cookbooks. When their latest book, Home Sweet Home, was released on Valentine’s Day this year I was itching to get a copy. Their cakes and bakes are big and bold and American in style and very doable at home. I bought it with the book shop voucher my brothers-in-law gave me for Christmas.
I have been baking Nigella’s (delicious!) chocolate Malteser cake from Feast for years, I think I could make one in my sleep, so I was interested to try this different chocolate malt cake. There is no malt powder in the sponge and the sponge layers are painted with chocolate fudge sauce. The frosting, over a kilo of it (!), is wonderfully malty. I made it for my Australian namesake’s visit and we all really enjoyed it. I now have two different chocolate malt cake recipes to choose from.
For quite some time now I have had a 2.5kg can of peaches in my store cupboard. My friends and I liberated it from our community centre with a view to eating them the next time we shared a communal meal. Otherwise they would have been there, somewhere in Eastbourne, for all time. I made a peach cobbler (page 164 in Home Sweet Home!), it is an American style recipe and absolutely scrumptious.
I wanted to bake cookies as a gift for friends and I had all the ingredients for these apricot and almond cookies (recipe from another Hummingbird Bakery book, Cake Days). They were just what I wanted as I was looking for quite a sturdy cookie that I could package up and wouldn’t crumble in transit. Very tasty flavours.
My local sugarcraft shop had run out of sugar carrots so I sprinkled this carrot cake with jelly beans. I did buy a bag of gummi alphabet so I could write carrot in the middle but when I opened it up there was only one R and no O!
This summer I had a few of trips to London so I was fortunate enough to visit a couple of branches of The Hummingbird Bakery. One branch is very close to where one of my friends lives.
The jam doughnut cupcake, vanilla sponge filled with strawberry jam, topped with a light cinnamon frosting, coated in cinnamon sugar with a mini doughnut on top. Yum!!!
American brunch cupcake, maple-syrup-soaked sponge studded with bacon pieces, a caramel centre and maple syrup frosting topped with a piece of crispy bacon. My favourite!