I was contacted by Sugar and Crumbs to test, try and review some of their flavoured icing sugars. You can find their fantastic website at http://www.sugarandcrumbs.co.uk/.
I was eager to try the products out, because I had seen so many of the Twitter baking community use Sugar and Crumbs in their bakes. The three flavours I was given was Jaffa Twist, Pink Lemonade and Strawberry Milkshake.
At £3.49 for the bags of icing sugar, and considering both the fantastic service and quality of product, it is definitely worth it but is perhaps an investment for those who are dedicated to their baking. You can get a whole range of flavours that will suit all of your different bakes which can be used to make meringues, macarons and fudge!
As with every review, I do receive the products to review and receive no monetary payment to write these reviews. I have not been told to write falsely positive reviews and everything is my own opinion. I keep products after the review.
Jaffa Twist – http://www.sugarandcrumbs.co.uk/product/jaffa-twist-natural-flavoured-chocolate-icing-sugar/
This icing sugar encapsulates the Jaffa Cake, combining chocolate with orange. The orange flavour is strong yet subtle, making any icing made from this icing sugar pair beautifully with your chocolate bakes.
These Chocolate and Orange Loaves are a fantastic little cake to have in the evening or afternoon. A light and delicate chocolate sponge flavoured with orange is finished with a drizzle of Jaffa Twist icing. I got a set of 4 loaf tins last Christmas and I have really enjoyed baking with them. I have found them really easy to use and they are very reliable.
For really moist and flavourful chocolate cakes, I always add yoghurt and instant coffee. The yoghurt tenderises the crumb, making it softer and lighter, as well as aids the rise due to its acidity. Coffee is not a noticeable flavour however just adding a teaspoon of coffee dissolved into 1 tablespoon of milk helps to make the cake have more depth.
200g granulated sugar – you can use brown sugar if you want
180g self raising flour
40g cocoa powder, plus extra for dusting
½ tsp baking powder
75g Greek yoghurt – you can use sour cream, crème fraîche or natural yoghurt
1 tsp instant coffee granules
1 tbsp whole milk
½ tsp vanilla extract
80g Jaffa Twist icing sugar
2-3 tsp milk
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease three 1lb loaf tins well and dust the insides with cocoa powder, tipping out the excess into your mixing bowl. Place the tins onto a baking tray.
Finish weighing in all of the ingredients into your mixing bowl and then using an electric whisk, whisk together until everything is just combined and even. Take a spatula and scrape down the sides of the bowl and give a final gentle fold.
Divide the batter between the 3 tins, not coming up more than two-thirds up the tin. Give the tins a tap on the surface to expend any large air bubbles which could give an uneven rise.
Bake the loaves for around 35 – 45 minutes until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tins for 15 minutes before taking a palette knife and scraping down the sides of the cake to loosen and tipping out onto a cooling rack to cool fully.
Meanwhile make the icing. Add enough of the milk gradually until you have a chocolate icing which is thick but still fluid. Place into a piping bag and cut off a small hole.
Drizzle the icing around the edge of the sponge so that it drips down the side and then diagonally across the tops of the loaves. Allow to set before slicing up and serving.
Strawberry Milkshake – http://www.sugarandcrumbs.co.uk/product/strawberry-milkshake-natural-flavoured-icing-sugar/
This icing sugar is sweet and rich with that essence of strawberry milkshake. It has a fantastic creaminess that made me think it would fantastic in dairy-based desserts such as an Individual Strawberry Cheesecake or this Strawberry Birthday Cake.
I inaugurated my brand new 4-inch springform tin with this Individual Strawberry Cheesecake. It’s a set cheesecake rather than a baked cheesecake, meaning you don’t have to faff around with bain maries and wobbles and cracks. Fold through some whipped double cream through your cream cheese and set in the fridge for a couple of hours; simple!
I like having a lot of cream cheese filling in my cheesecakes and there is enough filling here to fill the springform tin right to the top. But of course feel free to play around with the ratio of the biscuit base to the filling!
One tip is to drain away any of the liquid from the cream cheese. This liquid can make the filling much more runny so just pour as much as you can away when you open it; this usually isn’t a problem with Philadelphia but using any other non-branded soft cheeses and this is needed.
3 digestive biscuits, crushed up into crumbs
20g margarine or unsalted butter, melted
200g cream cheese – Philadelphia or any other soft cheese
3 tbsp Strawberry Milkshake icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
150ml double cream
2 tbsp strawberry jam
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Prepare the 4 inch springform tin by greasing and lining the base with a round of baking parchment.
For the biscuit base, combine together the digestive biscuit crumbs with the melted margarine or butter and stir until it has the feel and look of damp sand. Pour it into the tin and use the back of a spoon to press the biscuit base down firmly and evenly. Place into the oven to bake for 12 minutes. Leave to cool completely.
For the filling, beat together the cream cheese with the icing sugar and vanilla extract until it is smooth and even. In a separate bowl, whisk the double cream until it forms soft peaks. Using a spatula, fold the whipped cream through the cream cheese filling.
Spoon the cheesecake filling into the tin, using a knife to smooth out the top. Any extra filling can be spooned into any other small tins to make more cheesecakes; make more of the biscuit base and line the tins well with parchment.
Place into the fridge to set for at least 2 hours.
When you are ready to serve, mix together a few drops of boiling water with the jam to make a quick strawberry sauce. Pop the spring on the tin to release the cheesecake. Get a knife under the parchment and transfer the cheesecake to a plate. Spoon over the strawberry sauce.
I also used the Strawberry Milkshake icing sugar to make this cake, celebrating the fantastic haul of strawberries we had over the summer! I made this cake for my mum’s birthday back in May and she (and all of her Facebook friends) loved it! Now here’s your chance to make it yourself.
You can certainly replace the whipped cream with a buttercream, using your favourite recipe.
200g granulated sugar
240g self raising flour
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp natural strawberry extract (optional)
100g Greek yoghurt
400ml double cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp Strawberry Milkshake icing sugar
Pink gel food colouring
200g fresh British strawberries
100g strawberry jam
1 tsp granulated sugar
50g dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease and line the bases of two 23cm sandwich tins.
Place all of the ingredients for the sponge except for the yoghurt into a large mixing bowl and using an electric whisk, beat together to form a smooth and even cake batter, also using a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl halfway through. Add the yoghurt and use the same spatula to fold it through.
Divide the cake batter evenly between the two tins. Use the spatula to create a slight hollow towards the centre of the cake tin to prevent the top rising to form a dome. Bake the sponges in the centre of the oven for around 20 – 25 minutes until the sponges have risen, are golden, have started to come away from the edges of the tin and spring back when touched. Leave to cool in the tins for 15 minutes before inverting to a cooling rack.
Meanwhile prepare the filling. In a clean mixing bowl, whisk the double cream with the vanilla extract and Strawberry Milkshake icing sugar until it forms a soft peak. It will look very soft and creamy, almost as if you were making a meringue! Dip a toothpick into the pink gel food colouring and then into the cream and whisk through until the cream is thick, but not split, and easily spreadable and a baby pink colour.
Spoon about a third of the strawberry cream into a piping bag fitted with a large pointed star nozzle. Place the remaining cream and the piping bag into the fridge while you prepare the strawberries.
Wash the strawberries and then remove the green leafy part. Cut each strawberry into slices – you should aim for around 4 per strawberry. Place into a bowl and mix with the strawberry jam and sugar, being careful not to crush the strawberries up. Take the largest strawberry, remove the curved edges and cut a triangle from the top to give a heart shape, putting it aside for decorating the top.
When you are ready to assemble the cake, spread around half of the remaining cream onto one sponge, creating a small ridge around the edges to contain the strawberries. Arrange the strawberry mixture on top of the cream, reserving the sauce that is created. Top with another quarter of the cream and then drizzle over the strawberry liquid from the bottom of the bowl.
Sandwich the other layer of cake on top and spread the remaining cream on the top of the sponge, starting from the centre and leaving a 1 inch gap from the edge. Then pipe stars of the strawberry milkshake cream on the cake, as in the picture. Pipe a round of 5 stars in the centre of the cake and then a large star in the centre to secure the large strawberry heart.
Melt the dark chocolate in the microwave or over a pan of simmering water. Stir it for about 2 – 3 minutes until it has cooled down slightly and is starting to set; you will find it easier to pipe the chocolate if it is slightly set. Place into a piping bag and cut off the tip. Write ‘Happy Birthday’ on the above and below the cream in the middle of the top sponge and pipe dots of chocolate on each star.
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