Make Instagram exciting again with these sweet treats.
Stress-baking is helping people deal with their lockdown induced anxiety, and banana bread has become the ultimate coronavirus comfort food. Mainly because it's inexpensive to make, completely delicious and allows us to eat cake while pretending it's bread.
According to Google Trends, searches for banana bread have gone up 77% in Ireland in the last 30 days, and 54% worldwide. Such is its popularity, one astute person went so far as to ask Twitter: "Is Covid-19 sponsored by banana bread?"
Is Covid-19 sponsored by banana bread?— Angelica Malin (@jellymalin) March 29, 2020
But if, like me, you've mastered the art of baking banana bread – it's time to learn how to bake something new. We're thinking equally as aesthetically pleasing as banana bread (so you can post to your Instagram, duh), easy to make and with ingredients, you already have in the press. Oh, and don't worry if you still want your banana fix, we have a delicious banana muffin recipe for you too.
Keep scrolling for six easy baking recipes to try this weekend.
lemon swiss roll
- 4 large eggs
- 115g caster sugar, plus 2 tablespoons extra
- 1 lemon, rind and juice
- 115g plain flour
- 200g icing sugar
- 150g unsalted butter, very soft
- 250g lemon curd, see recipe
For the lemon curd:
- 3 large lemons, rind and juice
- 4 large egg yolks
100g caster sugar
- 100g unsalted butter
- Preheat the oven 190oC/gas mark 5. Grease and line a swiss roll tin 25cm x 38cm with baking parchment.
- Put the eggs, 115g caster sugar and grated lemon rind into a heatproof bowl. Whisk the mixture over a saucepan of simmering water until it is pale, fluffy and thickened. Then remove it from the heat and continue to whisk until the mixture is cool.
- Sieve the flour. Add in one-third of the flour at a time and very gently fold into the egg mixture. Pour the mixture into the swiss roll tin and bake immediately for about 10-12 minutes. It should feel firm to the touch when it is cooked.
- On the work surface, place a clean tea towel with a piece of baking parchment on top. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of sugar. Once the cake is cooked, quickly turn the cake out onto the parchment paper. Remove the swiss roll tin and peel off the baking parchment paper from the bottom. Score the cake with a knife about 2.5cm along the sponge. This helps when rolling it. Roll the sponge while the cake is still hot away from you. Roll up tightly, then leave on a wire rack to cool.
- To make the curd, grate the rind and juice the lemons. Pour into a heatproof bowl and whisk in the egg yolks and sugar. Place this over a saucepan of simmering water. Make sure the bowl fits snugly into the saucepan and no steam can escape. Continue whisking until the mixture becomes very thick. Remove from the heat, then cut the butter into cubes and stir it into the curd. Allow to cool completely.
- Sieve the icing sugar into a bowl. Add the butter and whip until very light and fluffy. Mix in the lemon juice and 50g of the lemon curd.
- Once the swiss roll sponge is cold, carefully unroll. Don’t try to flatten it or it may break. Spread the lemon buttercream filling over the sponge, then the remaining lemon curd. Gently roll up the swiss roll and trim the edges.
To read the full recipe courtesy of Louise Lennox, click here.
HOT CROSS BUNS
- 500g strong white flour
- 20g fresh or 7g dried yeast
- 5g salt
- 50g caster sugar
- 30g melted, cooled butter
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons mixed spice
- 50g mixed peel
- 125g sultanas
- 275ml lukewarm water or milk
- 1 egg (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 180 fan assisted.
- Start by dissolving the yeast in either 250ml of lukewarm water or milk along with the melted cooled butter.
- Place the flour, spices, salt and sugar into the bowl of a food mixer with the dough hook, mix on a low speed for one minute to incorporate ingredients. Slowly add the yeast liquid, add an egg if using (this will give you a slightly richer dough) until the mix comes together. Then add the fruit and mix on a low speed for 5-8 minutes or until dough is springy to touch (it should hold a thumb indentation for a minute or two).
- If your mixture is sticky, simply add a little extra flour. Once your dough is ready, remove to a floured surface and divide into 10/12 equal size balls, approx. 100g in weight each. Roll each ball into a circle. If your mixture is sticky, simply add a little extra flour. Once your dough is ready, remove to a floured surface and divide into 10-12 equal balls approximately 100g in weight each. Roll each ball into a circle then place onto a parchment-lined baking tray, allowing enough room for reach bun to double in size.
- Make a cross on top of each bun with your thick flour and water paste, you can pipe it on or use a teaspoon to drizzle it across. Allow the buns to rise in a cosy place which will take between 25-45 minutes depending on your kitchen’s temperature. Once they have risen, place in the hot pre-heated oven for 18-22 minutes or until golden and cooked through.
- Remove the buns from the oven and whilst still hot, brush with a little honey or golden syrup.
To read the full recipe courtesy of AVOCA, click here.
ROCKY ROAD CHEESECAKE
For the base:
- 130g digestive biscuits, broken up
- 50g salted peanuts
- 50g mini marshmallows
- 50g butter
- 1 & ½ tbsp golden syrup
- 125g dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa solids
- 50g milk chocolate
For the filling:
- 280g cream cheese
- 50g icing sugar
- 300g milk chocolate, melted
- 500ml cream
- 75g mini marshmallow
- A selection of Rocky Road ingredients – broken biscuits, marshmallows, cherries, chocolate chips, peanuts, sweets, melted chocolate, etc.
- Grease and line a deep 23cm / 9-inch springform tin.
- In a heatproof bowl over slightly simmering water, melt the butter, syrup and dark and milk chocolate, allowing to melt slowly while stirring.
- Remove from the heat and pour over the broken biscuit, marshmallows and peanuts in a larger bowl.
- Stir it all together and put it in the bottom of the tin and press it down well, refrigerate to set.
- Mix the cream cheese and icing sugar together.
- Whipped the cream until stiff.
- Gently fold the cream cheese mixture, cream & melted chocolate together and stir in the mini marshmallows.
- Spoon on top of the biscuit base, smoothing the top with the back of a spoon.
- Chill for at least three hours or even better, overnight.
- Remove the cheesecake from the tin.
- Decorate as desired with additional ingredients.
To read the full recipe courtesy of The Cupcake Bloke, click here.
CHOCOLATE RASPBERRY BROWNIES
- 200g dark chocolate, roughly broken
- 100g milk chocolate, roughly broken
- 250g butter
- 400g soft brown sugar
- 5 eggs
- 140g plain flour
- 50g cocoa powder
- 250g raspberries
- Whipped cream, to serve
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/gas mark 4. Line a 20x30cm shallow baking tray with greaseproof paper.
- Combine the chocolate, butter and sugar in a bowl sitting in a pan of simmering water until melted. Remove from the water. Whisk in the eggs one by one. Sieve the flour and cocoa into the mixture. Gently stir in the raspberries.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes depending on how gooey you like your brownies. Allow to cool and slice into squares.
- Serve with the whipped cream.
To read the full recipe courtesy of Food And Wine, click here.
salted caramel cookies
For the salted caramel:
- 200g granulated sugar
- 90g butter, cubed
- 120ml cream
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the cookies:
- 350g softened butter
- 200g sugar
- 500g plain flour
- Together the butter and sugar in a bowl using the spade attachment of an electric mixer or a wooden spoon.
- Add the flour and mix to a soft dough. Cover the mixing bowl with clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Remove the dough from the fridge and roll into a 30cmx8cm sausage. Wrap tightly in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for at least one hour.
- Remove the dough from the fridge, cut into twelve equal slices and place on a tray lined with baking paper.
- Lightly press your finger into the dough, making 3-4 indents in each. If the caramel has slightly set, warm it gently over a low heat to loosen. Place a teaspoon of caramel into each indent.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 16-18 minutes. The cookies will come out very soft, so don’t worry if you think that they are underdone.
- Cool for five minutes on the baking tray, then transfer to a wire rack. Leftover cookies and caramel can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week.
TIP: You can use tinned caramel and add salt to taste if you don’t want to make the caramel.
To read the full recipe courtesy of The Quinn Brothers, click here.
- Oil, for greasing
- 2 tablespoons milled flaxseeds
- 6 tablespoons water
- 50g porridge oats
- 100g ground almonds
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 1 lemon
- 2 overripe bananas
- 3 tablespoons nut milk
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 250g fresh or frozen blueberries
- 25g whole almonds, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease eight cups of a muffin tray with a little oil or use paper liners.
- Start by combining the milled flaxseeds and water in a small bowl. Let it sit for 15 minutes to bulk up.
- Meanwhile, blend the oats into a flour consistency and tip into a bowl along with the ground almonds, cinnamon, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Mix well.
- Zest the lemon, then juice one half only.
- In a separate bowl, mash the bananas, then stir in the soaked flaxseeds, lemon zest and juice, nut milk, maple syrup and vanilla. Pour the liquid mix into the dry ingredients and stir to combine into a thick, smooth batter. Fold in the blueberries.
- Spoon the mix into the greased or lined muffin cups, then top with the chopped almonds. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes. Leave to cool for 10 minutes before enjoying. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.
To read the full recipe courtesy of Roz Purcell, click here.
Main image by Michelle Tsang