Lauren Gemmell

Food, Fitness, and Technology

Tag: cherry

Chocolate and Cherry Christmas Cake

At the end of December I wrote a post about how I had stopped cooking and baking during the stress of planning a wedding. How I had resolved to get myself back into it using a list of techniques and dishes I wanted to create by the end of 2012. Needless to say I can’t strike a single thing off of that list.

My first year as a married woman has not been spent as a domestic goddess, with apron on, baking delicious treats and warming homely dinners. While it is extremely unlikely I will ever be that woman, I can always hope (and pursue) more of a life/work balance for the next year.

However there was one thing that shines out above all others on the list, to bake, marzipan and ice a cake.

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Blackcurrant and Almond Cheesecake

I have put off making cheesecake for years, reading so many recipes but worrying about cracks or soggy bases or that I wouldn’t be able to get it from the tin. But when it came down to it, it was actually super simple.

Blackcurrant and Almond Cheesecake in tin

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Cherry Braided Bread

This week I saw a punnet of British Cherries in the supermarket and it reminded me of this Cherry Bread I made a couple of weeks ago. Unfortunately this was before I could get my hands on the British cherries at all.

Cherry Braided Bread

I love cherries as you can probably tell from all the cherry recipes: cherry mince pies if you were really organised you could start thinking about making your mincemeat now, cherry bakewell cake, cherry and almond bread and a cherry teabread. Not even to mention the other draft posts I have for cherry recipes…

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Cherry and Almond Mince Pies

Christmas isn’t Christmas without the buttery pastry and spicy dried fruit filling of a mince pie.

Mince Pies

Mince pies are one of the best desserts at Christmas time, they are great warmed with cream and ice cream, wonderful with a cup of coffee and amazing for breakfast!

Growing up in my family they were plenty of festive tiffins, tablets and meringues to snack upon which everyone loved, but my favourite was always the mince pie. I loved the spicy flavours and the dried fruit, and the smell! To some people it’s the smell of pine, to others mulled wine, but to me its freshly baked mince pies, that smell like Christmas.

Cherry and Almond Mince Pies


~ should make around 20 (with leftover mince meat).

  • 1 batch of Cherry and Almond Mincemeat
  • 1 package of pre-made shortcrust pastry
  • 100 ml of milk, for brushing the top of the pastry with.
  • Cinnamon sugar, optional
Pre heat the oven to 180 oC and grease a fairy cake tin.

Roll out the pastry till it is about 1cm thick. Using a cookie cutter cut out circles, which will form the base of your mince pie, and stars that will form the top.

Gently press the circles into the tin, filling each with around 2-3 heaped teaspoons into each pie. Top each pie with a pastry star.

After you have completed all the pies, use a pastry brush to lightly cover each star with a little milk. If you have it sprinkle each pie with cinnamon sugar before baking.

Leave the pies in the oven for around 15 minutes, until they have turned golden, leave them to cool on a rack for at least 5 minutes.

Writing this post on a full stomach is one of the hardest things I have had to do, I just absolutely could not eat another mince pie. Still thinking of the smells and the textures is making my mouth water.

Maybe in half an hour I’ll be able to eat one more…

Cherry and Almond Mincemeat

For a couple of weeks now in the office there has been an almost constant supply of mince pies on the sharing food pile, so far I have managed to avoid these with my no mince pies till December rule. However this year I have an added incentive, tucked away in my fridge is a jar of homemade mincemeat.

I have promised myself that the first bite of a mince pie I have this year will not be the sad excuse that the supermarket’s sell. No, I will have a mince pie made entirely by my own hand.

Chocolate and Cherry Dobos Torte: Daring Baker's Challenge

It’s that time of the month again, where I realise that although I did my Daring Bakers Challenge weeks ago, I need to dig out the pictures and dredge the bottom of my memory to make some sort of intelligent comment.

My final torta

The August 2009 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Angela of A Spoonful of Sugar and Lorraine of Not Quite Nigella. They chose the spectacular Dobos Torte based on a recipe from Rick Rodgers’ cookbook Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Caff├ęs of Vienna, Budapest, and Prague.

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Cherry Bakewell Cake

So as you guessed I am in a bit of a cherry kick right now, and when I saw this recipe for raspberry bakewell cake in this months Good Food magazine I knew I had to try it, and that I also had to substitute in cherries for the raspberries.

Thankfully I had reason for baking this cake, not that I wouldn’t have done it anyway, but I have friends over this weekend. So what better than a slice of cherry cake with your coffee?

Cherry Bakewell Cake in the morning sun

Cherry Bakewell Cake in the morning sun

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Cherry and Almond Bread

Cherries are an integral part of the summer for me, and linked with France because of all my childhood holidays there. On one holiday in Paris as I got on the metro, the doors closed! My Mum and I on one side, my Dad and little sister on the other.

I was distraught, in the days before mobile phones, how would we ever find each other again? However due to my Mum’s quick thinking I didn’t worry for long. Because thankfully we had the cherries, and my biggest of memory of the day is sitting on the platform eating cherries!

Fresh cherry bread, yum!

Fresh cherry bread, yum!

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Cherry and Almond Teabread

I bought my first loaf tin the other day and decided to give some other than banana bread a go in it. After spending ages going through my cookbooks I decided to give Cherry and Almond teabread a go from the Good Housekeepings Great Baking recipe book p102. I had bought some dried cherries and was dying to try them in something. The combination of cherry and almond is amazing, and everyone loved it!

Cherry and Almond Teabread

Cherry and Almond Teabread

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