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Pancakes

Ingredients:

200g plain flour
50g caster sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons Vanilla Mart paste
50g butter
2 eggs
240ml milk
Fresh berries and maple syrup to serve

Method:

  • Sift the flour, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl.
  • Melt the butter in the microwave then add vanilla paste, eggs and milk to your butter mixture and stir to combine.
  • Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and gently fold through until nice and thick.
  • Heat a small frying pan on a medium-low heat and add a little butter to the pan.
  • Pour over three heaped tablespoons of the batter.
  • Heat until golden brown and then flip.
  • Repeat with remaining pancake batter.
  • Serve with maple syrup and fresh raspberries.

Secret Trick for fluffy pancakes:

  • Avoid over-mixing the batter. When you add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stir until just combined, not more. This will guarantee fluffier pancakes.

Mini vic sponge

Ingredients:

150g caster sugar
150g unsalted butter, softened
150g self-raising flour
2 eggs
1 tbsp milk
1 tsp Vanilla Mart paste
125 ml double cream
2 tbsp icing sugar
6 tbsp raspberry jam

Method:

  • Heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan and grease the mini tins with butter.
  • Beat the butter and caster sugar together until pale and fluffy.
  • Whisk in the eggs, one at a time.
  • Add the milk, vanilla paste, flour and a pinch of salt, then beat again until smooth.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the mini tins and level with a teaspoon.
  • Bake for 15 minutes until golden-brown.
  • Leave the mini cakes to cool and meanwhile whip the cream to soft peaks.
  • Cut each cake in half horizontally.
  • Spread the jam on the bottom half of each cake, then the cream. Finish each cake off by lightly sifting icing sugar over the tops.
  • Serve with tea.

Lemon muffins

Ingredients:

2 large eggs
3 unwaxed lemons, zest of all, juice of 1
125g golden caster sugar
75g buttermilk
125ml vegetable oil
1/2 tsp Vanilla Mart paste
225g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp salt
sugar crystals – optional

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 200°C and line a muffin ray with muffin cases.
  • Whisk the eggs, lemon zest and sugar.
  • Combine the buttermilk, oil, lemon juice and vanilla paste, then pour into the egg mixture, whisking continuously.
  • Combine the baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, flour and salt, then sift into the wet mixture.
  • Whisk lightly to make a smooth batter.
  • Divide batter between the muffin cases and sprinkle the top of the muffins with sugar crystals.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden.

Lemon & Vanilla shortbread

Ingredients:

175g unsalted butter, soft
175g plain flour
pinch of salt
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1/2 of the seeds from Madagascan vanilla bean
70g icing sugar
1-2 tablespoons vanilla sugar, for topping

Method:

  • Beat the butter, vanilla seeds, sugar and the lemon zest in a bowl.
  • Mix until smooth.
  • Add the flour and salt slowly until the dough comes together.
  • Place dough onto a piece of parchment paper. Cover with another sheet of parchment and roll out to 1/4-inch thick.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour, or until firm.
  • Preheat oven to 160°C.
  • Use a cookie cutter to cut out rounds and transfer onto the parchment paper.
  • Sprinkle the vanilla sugar on each biscuit and bake for 12-14 minutes, or until the edges are a golden brown.

Hot cross buns

Ingredients for dough:

300ml milk
50g butter
1 Madagascan Vanilla Mart pod
1 tsp salt
500g strong bread flour
75g caster sugar
1 tbsp vegetable oil
7g easy blend yeast
1 egg, beaten
75g sultanas
30g mixed peel
zest of 1 orange
1 apple, finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp mixed spice

Ingredients for topping:

70g plain flour
Water
2 tbsp golden syrup

Method:

  • Bring the milk to the boil, remove from the heat and add butter.
  • Pour flour, salt, caster sugar, seeds from vanilla pods, yeast into a bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in the milk and butter mixture, then the egg.
  • Mix well, until you have a sticky dough.
  • Knead on a lightly floured surface and put dough in a lightly oiled bowl.
  • Cover with oiled cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 hour.
  • Tip in the sultanas, peel, zest, apple and cinnamon and knead into the dough.
  • Cover with oiled cling film and leave to rise for 1 hour.
  • Divide the dough into even balls, roll each into a smooth ball and arrange on baking trays lined with parchment.
  • Cover with a tea towel, then prove again for 1 hour more.
  • Heat oven to 200°C fan.
  • Mix the plain flour with 4-5 tbsp water to make the paste for the cross.
  • Pipe crosses along each row of buns and bake for 20 minutes.
  • Melt the golden syrup in a pan and brush the buns while still warm before setting aside to cool.

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