Feta and dill savoury muffins
Prep time 15 mins
Cooking time 20-25 mins
175g plain flour
50g wholewheat flour
2½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp fine salt
275ml whole milk
1 medium egg
100g cottage cheese
75g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
50g feta cheese, crumbled
½ tsp wholegrain mustard
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tsp ground black pepper
8 sundried tomatoes, chopped
25g pumpkin seeds
Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C.
Line a 12-hole muffin tin with cases. Put the flours, baking powder and salt in a bowl, and stir everything together. Now add the milk, egg, cottage cheese, melted butter, feta cheese, mustard, dill and black pepper. Mix it all together and spoon into muffin cases. Top each muffin with a little chopped sundried tomato and sprinkle with the pumpkin seeds. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Chocolate and star anise fondants
Prep time 20 mins, plus chilling
Cooking time 15 mins
For the coating:
50g unsalted butter, melted
Cocoa powder, for dusting
For the fondants:
200g dark chocolate (70 per cent cocoa solids), melted
200g cold unsalted butter
200g caster sugar
4 whole medium eggs, plus 4 egg yolks
200g plain flour, sifted
4 tsp star anise, ground with a pestle and mortar and passed through a small, fine sieve
Brush 8 ramekins with melted butter, making upward strokes. Place the ramekins on a baking tray in the freezer for 10 minutes. Take the ramekins out again, brush them once more with melted butter, and put them back in the freezer for 10 minutes. Take them out and dust the insides with cocoa powder, making sure to tap out any excess. To make the fondants, preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C.
Melt chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water, being careful not to allow the bowl to touch the water. Roughly chop butter and add to the chocolate, stirring until it melts in.
Whisk sugar and eggs until they are light and fluffy and doubled in size. This will take about 5 minutes in a stand mixer, or 5-10 minutes with a handheld mixer. Add the butter and chocolate mixture, and mix. Now add flour and star anise, and fold in using a large metal spoon.
Divide the mixture between the ramekins, leaving a 1cm gap at the top of each. Cook for 10-12 minutes. The fondants will start to come away from the sides of the ramekins. Take them out of the oven, and leave in the ramekins for 1 minute only. They will still be hot, but they need to be turned out straightaway and served, otherwise the residual heat will cook them right through.
- You can freeze the fondants before baking, ready for another occasion. If you are cooking from frozen, cook at 200°C/fan 180°C for 17 minutes.
Her Majesty’s cake
Prep time 50 minutes to 1 hour
Cooking time 1¼ to 1¾ hours
For the cake:
700g plain flour, sifted
4 tsp baking powder
500g unsalted butter, softened and diced
500g caster sugar
8 medium eggs
3 tbsp lemon juice
Zest of 3 oranges
For the buttercream:
400g unsalted butter, softened
800g icing sugar, sifted
Zest of 2 oranges
4 tbsp whole milk
For the fondant drizzle:
150g white fondant, grated
Purple food colouring, as required
For the orange drizzle:
Juice of 3 oranges (you need 200–300ml)
150g caster sugar
White sugar paste roses, varying sizes, or real roses
Edible glue or glucose syrup
Edible silver glitter
For the cake, line and grease 2 x 20cm springform tins. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C. Add all the ingredients to a bowl one by one. Then, using a handheld or stand mixer, mix everything together for 3 minutes or until you have a smooth batter. Divide the mixture between two tins and level off the tops. Bake for 1½ hours to 1¾ hours, but check after 1¼ hours as cooking time depends on your oven.
While the cakes are cooking, make the buttercream and orange drizzle. To make the buttercream, add butter to a mixing bowl and mix on high for 2 minutes. Add icing sugar, a little at a time, and mix on a medium speed. Add orange zest and milk and mix on a high speed for 3 minutes until you have a light and fluffy buttercream.
To make the orange drizzle, add orange juice and sugar to a jug and mix well. The sugar will not dissolve completely.
When the cakes are golden brown, with a slight peak at the top, and a skewer inserted comes out clean, they are ready. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes in the tin. Turn out and leave to cool completely on a wire rack. Cut the domed tops off both sponges and level them off. Carefully slice both cakes across into two, giving you four sponges.
Spoon the orange drizzle equally over the 4 sponges. Lay the four sponges out, making sure that one of the two with crusts faces down and one faces up. Then generously cover the top and side of each with the buttercream. Put the crust-side-down slice on a cake base or plate, then carefully place the other layers on top, finishing with the crust-side-up slice. Place the whole cake in the fridge for about 15-20 minutes until the buttercream has crusted over.
For the fondant drizzle, add the fondant and water to a pan and heat on low to medium, stirring continuously, until it has melted and become liquid. Add the food colouring a little at a time until you have a vibrant purple colour. Transfer into a bowl and leave to cool completely. Add a drop or two of cold water to loosen if needed. Pour the cold fondant over the top of the cake, drizzling it gently down the sides.
Finish off by brushing the tips of the sugar roses with edible glue and dipping them in glitter. Arrange them in a crescent shape around one edge of the top of the cake. Or simply decorate it using real white roses.
- Sponges can be frozen before decorating and drizzling.
‘I didn’t ever think I was going to say these words all in one sentence: “I made the Queen’s 90th birthday cake!” says Nadiya. ‘After deliberating for days, I decided to opt for a classic drizzle cake, but flavoured with oranges rather than lemons. Here is a smaller, simpler version for you to try at home.’