Sophie, who runs stationery business Junk & Glitter, previously wrote award-winning blog The Cake Hunter, which was born out of a love for butter and sugar, and still blogs sporadically here at The Dinner Bell.

All posts by Sophie // The Cake Hunter

Chocolate, tahini and coconut granola

It’s all we want in life really: breakfast that’s pretty good for you and gives you chocolate milk in return. I think the idea with granola is that you are supposed to sprinkle a little bit on your yoghurt and fruit but I am partial to a huge bowl of it with enough milk to wet the granola but not swimming in milk. I have milk issues, in that, the very idea of drinking a glass of milk makes me heave. Unless it’s chocolate milk, then I’m fine.

I really love the tahini in this. The finished granola doesn’t taste of tahini but it just brings out the flavour of the other ingredients really well without being overpowering. It goes so perfectly with the cocoa and coconut.

Notes //

  • You can replace the maple syrup any other sugar substitute – check amount equivalents though. I’d like to see how it turns out with a date syrup so if you try it let me know.
  • As with any granola, pretty much everything is interchangeable *thumbs up emoji*

Adapted from What Should I Eat for Breakfast Today

Ingredients

360g oats
75g coconut flakes
75g cashews, roughly chopped
75g whole almonds, roughly chopped
60g cocoa powder
70g coconut oil
130ml maple syrup
2-3 heaped tablespoons light tahini, dependant on preference
100g dark chocolate, chopped into small chunks

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 160 C/ 325 F/ Gas Mark 3. Line two large baking sheets with greaseproof paper. In a large bowl, toss together the oats, coconut and nuts.
  2. In a small pan over a medium heat, melt the coconut oil and mix in the maple syrup and tahini. Finally add the cocoa powder and stir until combined.
  3. Take off the heat and pour over the oats mixture. Stir until the oats are nearly covered in the liquid. I found I had to get in there with my hands really mix it in.
  4. Spread the oats over the baking sheets and bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  5. Stir the oats around and bake for another ten. Make sure you move the oats around every few minutes to make sure they don’t burn.
  6. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before adding the chopped chocolate and pouring into an airtight container.

Super gooey espresso cheesecake brownies

I think there are two categories of brownie, dessert and snack. Dessert brownies are messy and probably need to be eaten with ice cream and a spoon. Snack brownies are the ones you can wrap in foil and sneak into your handbag for emergency brownie situations – these situations arise almost daily for me. I place myself more on the dessert end of the spectrum, I find a dry, cakey brownie just about the most disappointing thing that could happen to me in a world of baked goods. Read More

Rhubarb and rose tea cakes

The problem with these tea cakes is that it’s really easy to keep eating them. There’s no muffin case getting in your way and all these pretty little tea cakes are just lying around whispering ‘ooh [insert name here] why don’t you put the kettle on and eat us all?!’.

What? You mean your cakes don’t talk to you?

I jest of course but cake definitely finds a way to call to me in some way. I know how to be stronger and resist. If I make sure I get more sleep and eat well in the day then I can turn cake down but if I’m tired and hormonal then it’s every cake for himself.

These are the perfect no frills tea cakes. Whipping up the egg whites separately means the batter is much lighter. Rose and rhubarb is a wonderful flavour combination and one of my favourites. Read More

Brown Butter, Chocolate and Hazelnut Muffins

Today I’m beyond excited to have a post from Sophie, who was one of the very first people to welcome me to this food blogging community, as well as being a great inspiration and fellow pumpkin lover. Take it away!

Brown Butter, Chocolate and Hazelnut Muffins {Guest Post from The Cake Hunter} | The Littlest Bakehouse

I’d had this recipe lying around for some time and I knew it would be perfect for anyone baking in limited space.

I love a method born out of sheer laziness. Don’t get me wrong, not all shortcuts in baking are good…it is usually better to sift your flour and ingredients do really need to be at room temperature for a good cake but the method that requires very minimal equipment is a method I can get on board with. I don’t like to make work for myself unless absolutely necessary. This includes washing up, now that we don’t have the luxury of hiding plates in a dishwasher, their constant presence in the sink serves as a reminder that they always need doing! Therefore, if I can get some baking done and only have to wash a spoon, fork, bowl and little saucepan at the end of it then I’m pretty happy.

This method is from the great Dan Lepard and I stumbled across it when hunting for inspiration for making muffins with crème fraiche – I had a tub in the fridge that absolutely needed using for baking, because putting it in regular food just wouldn’t be as much fun. Eating these muffins tastes almost like Nutella deconstructed. If Nutella contained a little bit of banana. It’s the perfect elevenses muffin – chocolate at breakfast still doesn’t feel right but at 11am it becomes much more acceptable. I love the addition of hazelnuts, I feel like it would be too dry a muffin if it were all flour so the ground nuts add a better texture. Plus, brown butter and ground hazelnuts should definitely be best friends.

Brown Butter, Chocolate and Hazelnut Muffins {Guest Post from The Cake Hunter} | The Littlest Bakehouse

Adapted from Dan Lepard/The Guardian

Makes 12

Ingredients

1 medium banana, peeled and sliced
175g caster sugar
2 medium eggs
75g creme fraiche
75g butter, melted
100g ground hazelnuts
200g plain flour
4 tsp baking powder
100g dark chocolate, broken into chunks

Method

1) Heat the oven to 170C/350F and line a muffin tray with cases.
2) Start by browning the butter. Melt the butter on a medium heat, keep it over the heat and stir regularly until the butter starts to turn a golden brown colour and produces an amazing nutty smell. When foam appears on the top, remove from the heat and stir until the foam dies down. Set aside.
3) Put the banana and sugar in a bowl and use the fork to mash them both together until smooth.
4) Add the eggs, whisk in with the fork then mix in the creme fraiche and brown butter.
5) Tip in the ground nuts, flour and baking powder and stir well, making sure all the dry ingredients are mixed in. Add the chocolate and mix until evenly distributed.
6) Spoon into the cases – about 3/4 full – and bake for 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.
7) Let cool in the muffin tray for 10 minutes before removing from the tray and placing on a wire rack.