Weekend Feed: Mother's Day Baking By Anneka Manning

Anneka Manning is a cooking teacher, home economist, mother of two and the founder of BakeClub, a cooking school that offers both hands-on and demonstration-style, as well as a website with advice to tackle baking at home.

Her classes are held in Rosebery, Sydney, and she also travels Australia to hold private group baking classes.

Anneka’s latest book, Bake, Eat, Love – Learn to Bake in 3 Simple Steps. is an easy and practical guide to giving home cooks more confidence in the kitchen to tackle baking. She’s kindly shared these recipes for Mother’s Day, which any dad and the kids should feel confident to tackle.

If you’d like to try one of Anneka’s BakeClub cooking classes, contact her on (02) 9399 7645 or [email protected]

Mixed Berry & Coconut Muffins

Good muffins should have substance. They shouldn’t be too light and airy, or overly sweet – they are muffins, after all, not a cake. My favourites are dense with fruit (like this one), include wholemeal flour to add texture (and a little wholesomeness) and are subtly spiced (cinnamon is always good). This recipe is particularly easy to whip up.
Makes 12

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 25-28 minutes
150g (1 cup) plain flour
150g (1 cup) plain wholemeal flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
220g (1 cup) raw caster sugar
50g (2⁄3 cup) shredded coconut
300g frozen mixed berries
185ml (3⁄4 cup) buttermilk
80ml (1⁄3 cup) light olive oil, safflower or sunflower oil
2 eggs, at room temperature
1.5 teaspoons natural vanilla extract or essence

1. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Line 12 x 125ml (1⁄2 cup) muffin tray holes with paper cases.
2. Sift together both the flours, the baking powder and cinnamon into a large mixing bowl, returning any husks to the bowl. Stir in the sugar and coconut. Gently stir in the berries. Make a well in the centre.
3. Use a fork to whisk together the buttermilk, oil, eggs and vanilla in a bowl. Add to the flour mixture and use a spatula or large metal spoon to fold together until just combined. (Don’t overmix – the batter should still be a little lumpy.)
4. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases, dividing evenly. Bake in preheated oven for 25-28 minutes oruntil the muffins are golden and cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool for 3 minutes in the tin, then turn out onto a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Baker’s Tips
• You can replace the raw caster sugar with 200g (1 cup, 
firmly packed) brown sugar if you like.
• There’s no need to thaw the frozen berries before using 
them in this recipe.
• These muffins are best eaten the day they are baked, however 
they freeze well – wrap individually in plastic wrap and then seal in a plastic bag or airtight container. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw

Order a copy of Bake, Eat, Love – Learn to Bake in 3 Simple Steps online.

Flourless Chocolate & Hazelnut Cake

This cake is a favourite of mine – it is rich but light all at the same time. The chocolate, egg yolks and hazelnut meal provide the richness while the egg whites account for the light texture. It is indulgent without being overwhelmingly rich – my sort of chocolate cake. It makes a perfect dessert when served with thick cream or ice cream but don’t underestimate how blissfully suitable a slice with afternoon coffee can be.

Serves 8-10
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 55 minutes

Melted butter, to grease
150g good-quality dark chocolate, chopped
100g butter, cubed
4 eggs, at room temperature, separated
110g (. cup) caster sugar
110g (1 cup) hazelnut meal
2 tablespoons sherry, brandy or Frangelico
Cocoa powder or icing sugar, to dust

1. Preheat the oven to 150°C. Grease a 22cm (base measurement) springform tin with the melted butter, then line the base and side with baking paper.
2. Combine the chocolate and butter in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t allow the bowl to touch the water). Stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter melt and the mixture is smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan.
3. Add the egg yolks, sugar, hazelnut meal and sherry to the chocolate mixture and use a balloon whisk to stir until well combined. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
4. Place the egg whites in a clean, dry medium bowl and use electric beaters with a whisk attachment to whisk until firm peaks form. Add a spoonful of egg white to the chocolate mixture and use a large metal spoon or spatula to fold in – this will ‘loosen’ the mixture. Add the remaining egg white and fold in until just combined.
5. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and use the back of a spoon to smooth the surface. Bake in preheated oven for 55 minutes or until the top of the cake feels set and crumbs cling to a skewer inserted into the centre. Remove the cake from the oven, place on a wire rack and cool completely in the tin.
6. Turn out and serve dusted with cocoa powder or icing sugar.

Baker’s Tip
• This cake will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Bring it to room temperature before serving.

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