Archive for July 2014 | Monthly archive page

Vintage cakes are usually beautifully crafted and refined – and what looks more sophisticated than mini Battenbergs for high tea? Don’t be put off, this recipe may seem complex, but it is all about the construction.

The ‘Battenberg’ is a checkered sponge cake made by cutting and combining sponge cake pieces in a chequered pattern; the pieces are traditionally “cemented” together using jam; and the cake is then enrobed in rolled marzipan.

The origin of the cake seems to be unknown; early recipes use alternative names such as “Domino Cake” (recipe by Agnes Berthe Marshall, 1898), “Neapolitan Roll” (recipe by Robert Wells, 1898), or “Church Window Cake.” The Battenberg name is linked to the town of Battenberg in central Germany; and it is alleged that the cake was created for the marriage of Prince Louis of Battenberg and Princess Victoria, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria in 1884.

Our stylish mini Battenberg cake pieces were constructed with Almond Marzipan filling, and enrobed in rolled White Fondant.

This sponge cake recipe is based on our 1-2-3 cake recipe with some minor modifications.

Cake –

250g Butter 2 cups Brown Sugar, blitzed to a finer crystal 4 Eggs 1 cup Milk 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract 1½ cups Flour 1½ cups Ground Almonds 1½ tsp. Baking Powder Pink Food Colouring

Preheat the oven to 1800C. With an electric beater, beat together the sugar and the butter until the mixture is light in colour and fluffy in texture. Add the eggs one at a time to the mixture, beating the mixture until the eggs are incorporated after each addition.  Add the milk and the vanilla extract to the mixture, beat until well mixed. Add the cake flour, ground almonds and the baking powder and mix well.

Split the mixture in two. Add pink food colouring to one of the batches and mix well. Pour each of the batters into separate cake tins and bake in a warm oven for approx. 40 minutes.

 To Assemble –

Apricot jam, warmed until runny 250g block Almond Marzipan 250g block White Ready to Roll Fondant Icing sugar, for dusting

Our finished Battenbergs were approx. 70mm x 40mm:

Cut each sponge cake into long fingers, the height and width should equal 15mm (like a long square). It doesn’t matter how long the length is as this will be trimmed later. Roll out the marzipan on a lightly dusted surface and cut into lengths of 15mm wide. Brush with apricot jam. Position the marzipan between the sponge fingers and assemble with a pink and white finger at the base and then a white and pink finger on top. Alternate the colours to give a checkerboard effect. Trim the cakes and marzipan to 70mm long. Roll out the white fondant until it is 2mm thick. Trim the fondant so that it is approx. 120mm x 70mm. Brush one side of the fondant with apricot jam and wrap the fondant tightly around the sponge.

You can make the cakes as big or small as you like, just adjust the size of the sponge, marzipan and fondant accordingly. We decorated our mini cakes with Soft Cream Pearls studded on the fondant with a traditional crisscrossed pillow pattern.

Cheesecakes have been made since the time of ancient Greece! And we know why this dessert has thrived over the years (even though it’s made differently all over the world). Cheesecake made with cream cheese is our favourite, and we have a wonderfully quick no-bake cheesecake recipe that we have altered to fit a more Banting-lifestyle.


Base –

20g Cashews 20g Almonds 10g Coconut, desiccated 1 tsp. Butter 5 Dates, dried

Filling –

225g Cream cheese (approx. 1 x Philadelphia Cream Cheese block) – do not use low fat, as the cheesecake may not set ½ cup Cream 60g Xylitol ¼ cup Lemon juice, freshly squeezed 1 tsp. Lemon zest, freshly grated

Soak the dates in boiling water for a minute. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend till crumb consistency is reached. Pour the crumb base into a tray or small springform pan lined with baking paper and press down.

Whip cream until softly whipped; add the xylitol and whip until the crystals are incorporated in the cream. Add the cream cheese (at room temp.) and whip until combined. Add the lemon zest and juice and whip for 1 minute.

Spoon the filling over the prepared base, cover and refrigerate for approx. 6 hours to set. Serves 4.

We aimed for a vintage-inspired look to our cheesecake, by adding a topping of piped smooth cottage cheese and adorning our cheesecake with lemon zest and Metallic “Bling” Balls.

Bundt cakes are so beautiful, and yield a very evenly baked cake! This style of mould was popularized in the 1950s +60s in North America; when a cookware manufacturer trademarked the name “Bundt” and began producing Bundt pans from cast aluminium, which was highly popularised Pillsbury. The origins of the Bundt cake moulds’ distinctive ring shape was apparently inspired by a traditional European fruit cake known as the ‘Bundkuchen’.

For our Bundt cake – we used a traditional apple cake recipe, based on Martha Stewart’s Apple Cinnamon Bundt Cake.


2 ½ cups Flour 1 Tbs. Cinnamon, ground 2 tsp. Baking Powder 1 tsp. Salt ½ tsp. Bicarbonate of Soda 250g Butter 1 ½ cups Brown Sugar 4 Eggs 1 x 385g tin Pie Apples – cut into small pieces

Whisk the butter, brown sugar and eggs until smooth. Mix the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, salt and baking soda together and gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Fold in the apple pieces. Spoon the batter into the mini bunt pans and smooth on top.

Bake at 180°C for approx. 50mins, or until a tester inserted in the cake comes out clean.

We drizzled a warm simple syrup glaze (boiled sugar + water) onto our delightful apple bundts to keep them moist; and decorated the cakes with Pearl Nonpareils and Yellow Blossom Icing Shapes or Gold Twinkle Stars.