Week One Hundred & Eleven- Mary Berry’s Wholemeal Sultana & Apricot Rock Cakes & Singing Hinnie

Week 111 and another late blog, think this is the theme for 2015! I delved into Mary Berry’s Baking Bible and wanted to find some bakes that were fairly plain and simple and the wholemeal sultana & apricot rock cakes and singing hinnie certainly fitted this brief.

I began with the wholemeal sultana & apricot rock cakes and this was a simple Mary recipe that was a throw every ingredient in together and mix. Then use 2 teaspoons to put rock sized pieces on baking trays, sprinkle with a little sugar and bake.

Mary Berry's wholemeal sultana & apricot rock cakes

Mary suggests as they have wholemeal flour in , that they are eaten fairly quickly as they will dry out but I kept them under my baking dome and they lasted for several days without drying out.

Kim's wholemeal sultana & apricot rock cakes

The second recipe was Mary’s singing hinnie, a northern recipe. It is like a giant drop scone and Mary tells you that it makes a singing noise while it cooks. If it did- I couldn’t hear it!

Mary Berry's singing hinnie

I had read the Rising to the Berry blog and remember it said that this was not one of Anneliese’s favourite recipes. I must admit that it seemed to go well for me- maybe because I divided my mix into two pieces and rolled each one out into a round so it was the thickness Mary suggests and it fitted in my big frying pan as I don’t have a griddle. Mary suggests it is best eaten warm, split and buttered and put back together- she wasn’t wrong, it was delicious and certainly a recipe that I would consider doing again.

Kim's singing hinnie

The Comic Relief Great British Bake Off continues and I watched last week’s with glee. I have missed the GBBO and this certainly has been entertaining. Episode two was very entertaining. If you missed it, you can see it here. Please consider buying the recipe book to help you raise some money for your Comic Relief Bake Off.

The Great Comic Relief Bake Off

Week Ninety – Mary Berry’s Pecan Pie & Walnut & Apricot Sandwich Bars

Week ninety and things had settled a little at home so I settled to this week’s bake with a little less stress than last week. The first bake I chose from Mary Berry’s Baking Bible was Mary’s Pecan Pie. This recipe involved making a shortcrust pastry, allow it to chill in the fridge for a while, roll it out and line a flan tin with it and line the pastry with foil, add beans and blind bake for about 20 minutes, then remove the foil and beans and then bake for another 15 minutes.

Mary Berry's Pecan Pie Recipe

To prepare the topping, lay the pecan nuts in the pastry case and add the other topping ingredients into a saucepan and heat through until mixed, then pour into the pastry case and allow to cool and set. I thought this was a rather yummy pudding but hubby wouldn’t try it as he doesn’t like pecans…..or walnuts…..or most other nuts!

Kim's Pecan Pie

The second recipe was Mary’s walnut and apricot sandwich bars, firstly you need to cut up the apricots and boil them in some water and sugar until soft and squishy (technical baking term!) and then mix together the other ingredients, mainly, butter flour , oats and syrup. Add half the mixture to the square tin and flatten down, add the apricots and again, flatten down and finally the remainder of the mixture and flatten for the last time.

Mary Berry's Apricot & Walnut Sandwich Bars Recipe

Bake in the oven and when ready, cut into bar shapes while cooling. I have eaten various breakfast bars in my life and found these to be quite stodgy, I think it was adding the flour to the mix that did this. They weren’t overly popular in our house and the remainder ended up in the food recycling bin.

Kim's Apricot & Walnut Sandwich Bars

I have been watching the Great British Bake Off with interest and now am showing interest in two or three of the contestants- I like Martha, the young girl who seems to have no fear or nerves, Like Luis the star baker of the week and I Like Nancy….lets see if one of these wins, I liked Frances from the beginning last year-and she won!


Week Seventy Two – Mary Berry’s Apricot & Orange Cheesecake & Lemon Drizzle Tray Bake

I am still on a roll and managing to bake 2 of Mary Berry’s recipes from her Baking Bible. This week my mum came to stay and to celebrate, I decided to try one of the more difficult and lengthy cheesecake recipes. Mary Berry’s Apricot & Orange cheesecake started with melting butter and crushing digestive biscuits. Mix these together and press into a deep circular tin and chill.

Mary Berry's Apricote & Orange Cheesecake

The next part of the cheese cake involved boiling orange juice and the apricots for about five minutes, then blitz in a food processor and add the gelatine, sour cream, cream cheese, honey, and egg yolks and blitz again until smooth. Whip the egg whites with the sugar until stiff and fold into the cheesecake mix. Pour this onto the biscuit base and chill again  overnight. Finally , melt some apricot jam and pour over the top of the cheesecake. Chill again. Mark the cheesecake into 10 slices and decorate each slice with a whipped cream swirl and a ratafia biscuit. This has been the most complicated cheesecake I have ever made but it looked good and tasted even better!

Kim's Apricot & Orange Cheesecake

The second recipe was Mary’s lemon drizzle tray bake. This was one of Mary’s through all the ingredients in a bowl and mix. Line a tray bake tin ( Lakeland…) and bake for about 40 minutes.

Mary Berry's Lemon Drizzle Tray Bake

Once baked and cooled, mix granulated sugar with some lemon juice and drizzle over the top. Cut into squares.

Kim's Lemon Drizzle Tray Bake

I loved watching Mary’s show this week, with the dinner party recipes. I particularly liked the salmon mousse terrine with asparagus. I am looking forward to next week’s roast dinner recipes.