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DESSERTS

Dark and Sumptuous Chocolate Cake Recipe

 

A vegan chocolate cake to die for from Nigella Lawson’s Simply Nigella. For this recipe, you will need a leakproof 20cm/8in springform cake tin.

 

Ingredients

For the icing

  • 75g/2½oz coconut butter (this is not the same as oil)
  • 50g/1¾oz soft dark sugar
  • 1½ tsp instant espresso
  • 1½ tbsp cocoa powder
  • 150g/5½oz dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids), finely chopped

For the cake

  • 225g/8oz plain flour
  • 1½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 1½ tsp instant espresso powder
  • 75g/2½oz cocoa powder
  • 300g/10½oz soft dark brown sugar
  • 375ml/13fl oz hot water, from a recently boiled kettle
  • 90ml/3fl oz (or 75g/2½oz if weighed when solid) coconut oil
  • 1½ tsp cider vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp edible rose petals, to decorate
  • 1 tbsp chopped pistachios, to decorate

 

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4 and pop in a baking sheet at the same time.

  2. For the icing, put all of the icing ingredients except the chopped chocolate into a heavy-based saucepan and add 4 tablespoons cold water. Bring to the boil, making sure everything’s dissolved. Then turn off the heat but leave the pan on the hob. Quickly add the finely chopped chocolate and swirl the pan so that it is all underwater, so to speak. Leave for a scant minute, then whisk until you have a darkly glossy icing, and leave to cool. I find this takes exactly the amount of time the cake takes to make, cook and cool. But do give the icing a stir with a spatula every now and again.

  3. Line the bottom of your springform cake tin (you will need a good, leakproof one as this is a very wet batter) with baking parchment.

  4. Put the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt, instant espresso and cocoa powder in a bowl and fork to mix.

  5. Mix together the sugar, water, coconut oil and vinegar until the coconut oil has melted, and stir into the dry ingredients. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 35 minutes. Though do check at the 30-minute mark to see if it is already done. When it’s ready, the cake will be coming away from the edges of the tin and a cake tester will come out clean, apart from a few crumbs. This is a fudgy cake and you don’t want to overdo it.

  6. Once the cake is cooked, transfer the tin to a wire rack and let the cake cool in its tin. Once completely cool remove from the tin.

  7. Turn to your icing, and give it a good stir with a spatula to check it is at the right consistency. It needs to be runny enough to cover the cake, but thick enough to stay (mostly) on the top. So pour over the cake, and use a spatula to ease the icing to the edges, if needed. If you wish to decorate, now is the time to do it. In which case, sprinkle joyously with rose petals and chopped pistachios or anything else that your heart desires; otherwise, leave it gleaming darkly and, indeed, sumptuously. Leave to stand for 30 minutes for the icing to set before slicing into the cake.

 

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DESSERTS

Iced Pumpkin Cookies Recipe

 

Wonderful spicy iced pumpkin cookies that both kids and adults love!

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Additional: 40 mins
Total: 1 hr 20 mins
Servings: 36
Yield: 3 dozen

INGREDIENTS

 

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.

  • In a medium bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup of butter and white sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Mix in dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly.

  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool cookies, then drizzle glaze with fork.

  • To Make Glaze: Combine confectioners’ sugar, milk, 1 tablespoon melted butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add milk as needed, to achieve drizzling consistency.

     

Nutrition Facts

121.5 calories; protein 1.2g 3% DV; carbohydrates 22.4g 7% DV; fat 3.2g 5% DV; cholesterol 12.9mg 4% DV; sodium 120.5mg 5% DV.
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DESSERTS

Chocolate Cappuccino Cheesecake Recipe

 

This recipe becomes a favorite as soon as it is tasted. It was once referred to as ‘sinfully rich and velvety smooth’. Best if made a day before serving.

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 1 hr
Additional: 2 hrs 30 mins
Total: 4 hrs
Servings: 12
Yield: 1 – 9 or 10 inch cake

INGREDIENTS

 

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Butter one 9 or 10 inch springform pan.

  • Combine the chocolate wafer crumbs, softened butter, 2 tablespoons white sugar, and the cinnamon. Mix well and press mixture into the buttered springform pan, set aside.

  • In a medium sized bowl beat the softened cream cheese until smooth. Gradually add 1 cup white sugar mixing until well blended. Add eggs, one at a time. Beat at low speed until very smooth.

  • Melt the 8 ounces semisweet chocolate with 2 tablespoons whipping cream in a pan or bowl set over boiling water, stir until smooth.

  • Add chocolate mixture to cream cheese mixture and blend well. Stir in sour cream, salt, coffee, 1/4 cup coffee liqueur, and vanilla; beat until smooth. Pour mixture into prepared pan.

  • Bake in the center of oven at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 45 minutes. Center will be soft but will firm up when chilled. Do not over bake. Leave cake in oven with the heat turned off and the door ajar for 45 minutes. Remove cake from oven and chill for 12 hours. Just before serving top cake with mounds of flavored whipped cream and garnish with chocolate leaves. Yields 16 servings.

  • To Make Flavored Whipped Cream: Beat whipping cream until soft peaks form, then beat in confectioner’s sugar and 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur.

  • To Make Chocolate Leaves: Melt 1 ounce semisweet chocolate in a pan or bowl set over boiling water, stir until smooth. Brush real non-toxic plant leaves (such as orange leaves) on one side with melted chocolate. Freeze until firm and then peel off leaves. Freeze chocolate leaves until needed.

     

Nutrition Facts

618.7 calories; protein 9g 18% DV; carbohydrates 45.1g 15% DV; fat 45g 69% DV; cholesterol 157.5mg 53% DV; sodium 332.5mg 13% DV.
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DESSERTS

Marbled Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

 

This is a wonderful pumpkin cheesecake with a gingersnap crust. The gingersnap really does make a difference.

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 1 hr 10 mins
Additional: 6 hrs
Total: 7 hrs 40 mins
Servings: 12
Yield: 1 – 9 inch cake

INGREDIENTS

 

 

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a medium bowl, mix together the crushed gingersnap cookies, pecans, and butter. Press into the bottom, and about 1 inch up the sides of a 9 inch springform pan. Bake crust 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Set aside to cool.

  • In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese, 1/2 cup sugar, and vanilla just until smooth. Mix in eggs one at a time, blending well after each. Set aside 1 cup of the mixture. Blend 1/4 cup sugar, pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg into the remaining mixture.

  • Spread the pumpkin flavored batter into the crust, and drop the plain batter by spoonfuls onto the top. Swirl with a knife to create a marbled effect.

  • Bake 55 minutes in the preheated oven, or until filling is set. Run a knife around the edge of the pan. Allow to cool before removing pan rim. Chill for at least 4 hours before serving.

     

Nutrition Facts

350 calories; protein 5.8g 12% DV; carbohydrates 26.8g 9% DV; fat 25.3g 39% DV; cholesterol 101.1mg 34% DV; sodium 220.7mg 9% DV.
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