On Sunday I took part in a Great Blogger Bakeoff, a baking workshop with Kenwood & Curry’s…it was a LOT of fun, getting to try some really tasty recipes and meet some great bloggers at the same time. We were at Wilmslow Kitchen Cookery School in the hands of three of their chefs teaching us how to make meringues, swiss roll and chocolate tart. Scroll down for the full recipes and pics of how I got on.
We were all using the Kenwood KMix to help us with our baking. This is one aspect that really attracted me to this event. I’m just a beginner baker and the mixer I have is an old one that smells of burning every time I use it…not good! I’ve been wanting to get a new mixer for a long while but hadn’t known really where to start, so the chance to get shown how to use one was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.
This Kenwood KMix is the gorgeous mixer I used on the day…how cool is that colour?!
I was actually trying to win one of the lovely cream ones on the day with a few pun based tweets…
— Ally // Digital Diva (@AllyDigitalDiva) August 2, 2015
…sadly, I didn’t win (looks like I’ll be using my burnt-smell mixer for a little while yet!) but I was really glad that fab bloggers Donna from Polkadot Pink and Kristina from Mode of Style won. Well deserved! It was great to get to know fellow Leeds blogger Kristina more and to finally meet the lovely Donna (remember Donna from our frock swaps?) in person.
Without further ado, here’s what we baked on the day and how to make them yourself!
150g egg whites
300g castor sugar
Heat the sugar in the oven, when hot, start the egg whites on the mixer, then when white and fluffy pour in the sugar. Brush the inside of the piping bag with colour.
The meringues were maybe the easiest to make. Adding sugar was a doddle with the KMix…
…very handy with the funnel:
The bit you have to watch out for, if you’re clumsy like me, is over-pouring your ingredients! My baking partner Gemma (Dietician Without Borders) was there to keep me on the straight and narrow. I was really pleased to be paired with Gemma actually. I’ve read her blog quite a few times, it’s really informative and when I realised who she was it was great to be able to talk to her about being a dietician and just life in general. She’s a fab person and you should definitely check out her blog.
— Donna @Polkadot Pink (@Polkadot_Pinky) August 2, 2015
Once the KMix had done it’s job, we were ready to get the mixture into the bag (make sure your food colouring is at the bottom first):
…then you’re onto the fun part!
How cool do they look? Into the oven they went, which gave us chance to start the Swiss Roll.
I took a “fyuse” while we were hard at work. It’s basically a moving picture (a bit Harry Potter!). Use your mouse (or finger if on a tablet or mobile) to move the photo. Spot Claire from Sitting Pretty waving at you?
150g self raising flour
150g caster sugar
6 whole eggs
Filling – whipped cream and creme patissiere (cream and custard) and sliced strawberries.
Whisk the sugar and eggs until white and fluffy, then fold in the flour. Pour onto a tray lined with parchment paper and bake at 180c for approx 15 mins.
First, the Head Chef showed us how it was done…
Easy peasy with the Kenwood KMix…
…then onto the trays, ready to be baked:
Ta daaaah! Sponges that smelt ah-may-zin!
Head Chef made some cream patisserie for us (basically cream and custard…what’s not to like there?) to fill the swiss rolls with:
On went the strawberries…
…then came the tricky bit! Rolling!
Success! I must admit, I didn’t cut the ends of mine first time with the right knife (sharp and serrated), so had to cut it a few times. It did mean I got the extra bits to eat though! Yum!
All that was left was to decorate the swiss rolls…
…and use the cooked meringues to decorate.
The spare meringues went into the box with little raspberry tops.
Here’s Gemma and I feeling all smug and clever (well I’m smug that I had managed to make it!)
Last, but definitely not least, came the chocolate tart.
235g plain flour
15g cocoa powder
pinch of salt
Rub the butter, sugar, cocoa, salt and flour together until it resembles breadcrumbs, then add eggs. Bring the ingredients together into a smooth dough.
125g dark chocolate
280ml whipping cream
2 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
Boil the cream and sugar on a stove, take off the heat and then add the chocolate and butter and stir until smooth. Add the eggs slowly (to get the heat out) mixing with a spatula. Bake 15 to 20 minutes 165c. Serve room temp.
As before, Head Chef took us through the recipe. Aren’t we all concentrating?
Gemma boiled the cream and sugar on the stove…
— Ally // Digital Diva (@AllyDigitalDiva) August 2, 2015
…and added the chocolate and butter. We did leave the mixture for a little bit to cool so the eggs didn’t cook too much when added.
This gave us time to start the chocolate pastry. We ‘rubbed’ it in the KMix then rolled it out between two layers of cling film. This made it a bit easier, no sticking.
You can see Head Chef rolling out and placing over the tray with an overhang, which we then chopped off. In the oven went the chocolate pastry and we then added the eggs to the filling mixture.
When the pastry had cooked a little, we poured the filling in to cook some more. When it came out, it was like a slice of heaven. Seriously, make this recipe…you won’t regret it if you love chocolate!
So, not bad for four hours, huh? Meringues, swiss roll and chocolate tart all mastered (well, made…at least!). They all tasted amazing and we had a lot of fun doing it.
I’d definitely like the get a Kenwood KMix after using it for the day, it made everything very quick and easy…and mos importantly, didn’t smell of burning like my cheap mixer does! The optional glass bowls are great too – you can see your ingredients whizzing around.
Head Chef is looking her KMix below with love in her eyes a little like I was… 😀
Fingers crossed I save enough pennies to buy one and can carry on making chocolate tarts to my heart’s content!