The Boho Baker’s Bonfire Night Recipes - Bonfire bundt cake, Caramel apple pops, Sticky ginger cookies
- Credit: Archant
November is a month filled with beautiful contrasts. Inky skies are illuminated by the glittering explosions of fireworks and the golden crackle of fire. People dash away from work in darkness, craving the cosy glow of home. This is a month of darkness and light, golden leaves and herringbone clouds. And when you’re seeking warmth and light in the darkness, where better to find it than in the comfort of our kitchens?
It’s during this time of year that I throw open my kitchen door to the world of contrasts that November brings. I want sweet, but I also want spice. Sugar and salt. The luscious scent of toffee over the drifts of wood smoke and dusky sulphur from a nearby chimney. Although we are now down to the hardiest of fruit and vegetables, there are usually plenty of apples left, the sweet, juicy flesh just perfect for the fiery, fragrant gifts of cinnamon and molasses. This is the month when we can throw together our sweet and our spice with utter abandon, embracing the delicious muddle of dark and light, warmth and cold. That’s what November was made for.
Bonfire bundt cake
Chocolate bundt, gooey fudge pieces, and a plume of honeycomb flames. Bonfire displays may be off this year, but there is no reason why you can’t make your own delicious bonfire tribute at home. For an extra special touch, a few cake sparklers topping the honeycomb would be wonderful.
For the bundt:
350g self-raising flour
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2sp baking powder
500g caster sugar
1tbsp vanilla extract
275g unsalted butter
50g vanilla fudge, chopped
For the icing:
100g icing sugar
2-3 tbsp water
Dab of orange food colouring
For the honeycomb:
200g caster sugar
5tbsp golden syrup
2tsp bicarbonate of soda
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C (fan)/gas mark 4. Grease the bundt tin with a little melted butter or oil and dust with flour.
Cream together the butter and caster sugar until pale and fluffy. Stir in the vanilla extract.
In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa, and baking powder. Add the dry ingredients and eggs to the butter mixture, alternating between eggs and dry ingredients to prevent the batter separating. Fold in the fudge pieces.
Transfer the batter to the bundt tin and bake in the oven for 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the sponge comes out clean.
While the cake is cooling, make the honeycomb by heating the caster sugar and syrup over a gentle heat until the mixture turns dark amber in colour. Remove the pan from the heat and quickly stir in the bicarbonate of soda. Pour the mixture over a sheet of greaseproof paper and leave to cool.
Whisk together the icing sugar, water, and orange food colouring, adding a little more water if the icing seems stiff. Pour the icing over the bundt cake.
Break the honeycomb into shards and use to create the flame effect in the centre of the bundt. Enjoy cold or heated up with a scoop of ice cream.
Caramel apple pops
A bonfire night staple, toffee apples invoke happy memories for many. Sharp caramel coated apples dipped in hundreds and thousands, glistening from their cellophane wrappers in the crate in front of the fruit and veg shop, you knew spooky season was on its way when you spotted these little fellows on your way home from school. Using slices of apple rather than the full fruit heightens the caramel to apple ratio (my apologies to dentists everywhere) and makes it far easier to eat. Try and stop at one.
4 eating apples
200g caster sugar
50g golden syrup
1tbsp double cream (at room temperature)
20g dark chocolate, grated
20g white chocolate, grated
20g milk chocolate, grated
2 tbsp coarse sea salt flakes (for the grown ups)
Slice the apples into rounds approximately 15mm thick. Insert a lolly stick or kebab skewer into each one.
Combine the caster sugar, golden syrup, and butter in a saucepan, gently heating until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat slightly, cooking the mixture until it turns amber in colour. Remove the pan from the heat and quickly stir in the double cream. Leave the caramel to cool slightly.
Lay the apple pops out on a sheet of greaseproof paper. Spoon the caramel over the slices and top with the grated chocolate. Grown ups may appreciate a sprinkling of sea salt flakes in lieu of the grated chocolate. Leave the caramel to set for 10 minutes. Enjoy immediately.
Sticky ginger cookies
Ginger biscuits for grown-ups, these cookies really pack a punch. A triple threat of ginger: crystalised, ground, and syrup, these crunchy, sticky little beauties will warm you up on a chilly November morning. For a softer option, a spoonful of white chocolate chips could be a nice addition, but fans of spice and all things nice will no doubt prefer them just as they are.
230g plain flour
100g soft brown sugar
110g golden syrup
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch of salt
2tsp ground ginger
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
80g unsalted butter, softened
40g crystalised ginger, chopped
2tbsp ginger syrup (from the jar of crystalised ginger)
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C (fan)/gas mark 5. Line two baking sheets with baking paper in preparation.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, salt, bicarbonate of soda, ground ginger and cinnamon.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the softened butter, ginger syrup, and golden syrup.
Add the syrup mixture to the dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough starts to come together. Add the crystalised ginger and bring everything together into a slightly sticky dough.
Take a generous tablespoon of dough and roll it into a ball. Place it on the baking tray and repeat with the remaining dough.
Bake the cookies in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Do not worry if they still feel a little soft, they will continue to harden as they set.
Store the cookies in an airtight container and consume within three days.