Mojito Cake

Classic cocktail meets cake. Flavoured with white rum, mint and lots of lime, this mojito cake is light, refreshing and packs a real punch!

I had so much fun developing this recipe, spending an afternoon drinking rum and eating cake. Dreamy. I loved experimenting with the flavours to find the perfect balance between sweet and citrus, and making sure the rum comes through but doesn’t blow your head off!

So what makes this a mojito cake?

Well, first the three layers of sponge are flavoured with lime zest and vanilla. Then whilst the cakes are still warm, a sugar syrup infused with lime juice, fresh mint and white rum is then drizzled over, soaking into the sponge. A simple buttercream with fresh lime juice and white rum is used to sandwich the cakes together, and the final touches are a sprinkle of lime zest and a lime wedge placed on top.

Mojito cake
Mojito cake ingredients
Mojito cake mixture

Ingredients (makes a 3 layer, 8 inch mojito cake / 8 slices)

For the cakes:
300g Stork tub
300g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs, at room temperature
300g self-raising flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons whole milk
3 limes, zest only

For the syrup:
3 limes, juice only
100g caster sugar
Small bunch mint
100ml white rum

For the buttercream:
300g unsalted butter, at room temperature
600g icing sugar
3 tablespoons white rum
1 ½ lime, juice only

For the decoration:
1 lime, zest only
Mint leaves
Lime wedges

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C. Line the base of three 8inch round baking tins with greaseproof paper and lightly grease the sides with a little butter.

Start by making the cake. In a large bowl beat together the butter, caster sugar and vanilla extract until light and creamy.

Mix in the eggs one at a time, adding a tablespoon of the 300g flour with each egg to stop the mixture from curdling.

Add the remaining flour, baking powder, lime zest and milk and fold together until smooth and combined. Be careful not to over-mix. The mixture should drop off the spoon but still hold its shape.

Divide the mixture equally between the cake tins. Lightly tap the baking tins on the side to release any air bubbles. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the cakes are golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Whilst the cakes are baking, make the mojito syrup. Add the lime juice, sugar and mint to a saucepan and heat on medium-low heat until the sugar has dissolved, the liquid is bubbling up and is syrupy. Remove from the heat and stir through the rum. Leave to infuse for 10 mins, then strain into a bowl. 

Take the cakes out of the oven and leave them to cool for 5 minutes. Prick them all over with a toothpick or skewer and spoon over about 3 tablespoons of syrup per cake. Leave to cool completely.

Now make the buttercream. Beat the butter until really soft and pale in colour. Sift in half the icing sugar and beat together until smooth. Sift in the remaining icing sugar, add the rum and lime juice and beat again until smooth. If the buttercream is too soft add a 1-2 tablespoons of icing sugar.

Time to decorate. Put one of the cakes on a pretty plate or cake stand. Spread an even layer of buttercream on top. Top with the second cake and repeat. Put the final cake on top and cover the top with buttercream. Decorate with the lime zest, lime wedges and mint leaves.

White Chocolate and Raspberry No-bake Cheesecake

This white chocolate and raspberry no-bake cheesecake recipe is guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser. It’s light, refreshing and very moreish!

The base is made using digestive biscuits, it’s buttery and crumbly and because this is a no-bake recipe, it can skip the oven and go straight in the fridge to set. The cheesecake filling is smooth, creamy and perfectly sweet. Fresh raspberries are dotted throughout which adds a lovely sharpness and goes so well with the sweet taste of white chocolate. The final touches are a simple drizzle of white chocolate and fresh raspberries placed around the edge.

White chocolate and raspberry cheesecake slice
Top tips for making a no-bake cheesecake

If making a no-bake cheesecake makes you feel a little nervous, trust me you’re not alone! I think it’s the dreaded fear that the cheesecake doesn’t set properly and you’re left with a lovely biscuit base swimming in a puddle of runny cheesecake mixture (eeek). But fear not! This recipe has gone through a lot of trial and error and I promise it won’t let you down. Just follow the steps carefully and have a read of my top tips below to help you make a perfect cheesecake every time.

Tip #1 – Line the base of the baking tin with greaseproof paper

Lining the base will prevent the cheesecake from getting stuck to the bottom of the baking tin, making it so much easier to lift off and transfer to a serving plate.

Tip #2 – Keep the cream cheese in the fridge until you’re ready to start

In the UK our cream cheese isn’t as thick and it can loosen very quickly when mixing it from room temperature. This is why I only take the cream cheese out of the fridge, along with the cream, at the start of the recipe. By the time you need to use it, it will still be cold enough to hold its shape but not too cold that it won’t mix with the icing sugar.

Tip #3 – Add the white chocolate before the double cream

I’ve learnt this tip the hard way. I’ve found that adding the white chocolate before the cream helps prevent it from seizing and making the mixture lumpy. I’m not sure what the science is behind this but its something to do with ingredient temperature differences. Just trust me on this on

Tip #4 – Don’t skimp on the chill time

Although it can be painful having to wait, make sure you chill the cheesecake for at least 4 hours, or even better overnight. This will give the cheesecake enough time to set and firm up.

Tip #5 – Decorate just before you’re ready to serve

If you’re using fruit, in particular berries, decorate your cheesecake just before you’re ready to serve. This will help prevent the fruit juices from bleeding onto your lovely white cheesecake and make sure they keep fresh.

white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake

Ingredients (makes 8-10 slices)

For the biscuit base:
250g digestive biscuits
125g unsalted butter

For the cheesecake layer:
400g full-fat cream cheese
75g icing sugar
300ml double cream
180g white chocolate
200g fresh raspberries

For the decoration:
20g white chocolate
50-100g fresh raspberries

Method

Line the bottom of an 8inch round loose-bottom baking tin.

First melt the 180g white chocolate for the cheesecake in the microwave in 20 second blasts or on the hob until smooth. Set aside to cool.

Now make the biscuit base. In a separate bowl, melt the unsalted butter until it turns to liquid. Use a rolling pin or food processor to crush the digestive biscuits into fine crumbs. Pour in the melted butter and mix together, coating all the biscuits crumbs in butter. Transfer the biscuit mixture to the baking tin and press into an even layer. Place in the fridge to firm up.

Now move on to the cheesecake layer. Sift the cream cheese into a large mixing bowl and add the cream cheese. Use an electric mixer with a whisk attachment to whisk together until smooth and free of any lumps. Pour in the white chocolate and use a spoon or spatula to fold into the mixture. Add the double cream and whisk together for a 1-2 minutes until you have a thick, smooth cheesecake mixture that holds its shape.

Take your biscuit base out of the fridge. Spoon half of the cheesecake mixture on top and spread into an even layer. Scatter the raspberries on top. Spoon the remaining cheesecake mixture on top and spread into an even layer, smoothing out the top.

Place the cheesecake in the fridge to set for a minimum of 4 hours, or overnight for best results.

Decorate just before you’re ready to serve. Melt the 20g white chocolate and drizzle on top. Place the raspberries around the edge of the cheesecake. Slice into 8-10 slices and serve.

Blueberry Dream Cake

Light and airy vanilla sponge with a bottom layer of blueberries, topped with a caramelised oat crumble and served with hot custard or cream. Blueberry Dream Cake literally tastes like a dream!

This recipe is inspired by one of the most traditional and famous Danish cakes Drømmekage, which translates into English as “dream cake”. I’ve kept the sponge ingredients and method the same but added blueberries for a fruity twist. The topping is traditionally made with coconut, but I chose to make it with oats instead (I’ll admit it’s what I had in the cupboard!) and added a teaspoon of cinnamon to compliment the blueberries.

Blueberry dream cake with custard poured on top

The method for a Drømmekage sponge is so different from any other cake I’ve made before. For starters, you whisk the eggs and sugar first, rather than creaming the butter and sugar. I know, I was confused too, but trust me it works! Then you add melted butter, vanilla and milk. At this point, I was thinking this can’t be right but stay with. Finally, you add the dry ingredients and fold everything together.

I put the cake in the oven, crossed my fingers and hoped for the best. Well, the result was amazing! The sponge is moist but light, sweet but not too sweet, and the caramelised topping just takes it to a whole other level. I served mine warm with custard, and after the first bite, I totally understood why it’s called a dream cake.

Blueberry dream cake

Ingredients (makes an 8inch cake / 8 slices)

For the cake:
200g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 large eggs
200g caster sugar
60g unsalted butter
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
130ml whole milk
150g fresh blueberries

For the caramel oat crumble:
90g unsalted butter
30ml whole milk
150g soft brown sugar
100g porridge oats
1 teaspoon cinnamon

To serve:
Custard or cream


Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line the base of an 8inch deep loose-bottom round baking tin and grease the sides with a little butter.

Start by making the cake. Combine the flour and baking powder together in a bowl, stir through and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk the sugar and eggs together for about 5 minutes until pale and frothy.

Melt the butter in the microwave in 20 second blasts or on the hob. Add the melted butter, vanilla extract and milk to the whisked eggs and mix through. Add the dry ingredients and fold the mixture together until you have a smooth mixture (don’t worry if it looks runny, it’s meant to be like that). Finally fold in the blueberries.

Transfer the mixture to the baking tin, spreading it out into an even layer. Bake for 45-50 minutes until golden brown and the middle is firm to the touch.

10 minutes before the cake is ready, make the caramel oat crumble. Add all of the ingredients to a saucepan and stir together on a medium-low heat until the butter and sugar have melted and you have a thick oat mixture.

Once the cake is baked, remove it from the oven and pour the caramel crumble on top. Return to the oven for 8-10 minutes, until the topping has set and has browned around the edge. Leave to completely cool in the baking tin.

Best served warm with either a dollop of custard or a drizzle of cream. Store the cake in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Banoffee cupcakes

A delicious twist on a classic dessert, banoffee cupcakes might just be my new favourite cupcake flavour! The recipe combines the two signature flavours of a banoffee dessert, banana and caramel.

You’ll start by making beautifully light and moist cupcakes flavoured with mashed bananas. Make sure the bananas are really ripe, the riper the better as this will only improve the flavour and texture.

The middle of the cupcakes is then scooped out (you can eat the middles!) and filled with a smooth and silky caramel sauce. I love cupcakes with a surprise centre, it just takes the bake to a whole other level. When you bite into them and discover the middle… mind-blown!

The cupcakes are decorated with a swirl of caramel buttercream. To keep things simple, as there’s quite a bit going on with this bake already, I opted for shop-bought caramel. I have made my own in the past, but this time I fancied taking a little shortcut. No judgement, please! If you feel up to making your own, I applaud you and this recipe will show you how, just remember to omit the salt.

A sprinkle of grated dark chocolate and a crunchy banana chip are the final touches to complete the banoffee cupcakes.

Banoffee cupcakes
Caramel filled cupcakes
Caramel buttercream

Ingredients (makes 12 large cupcakes)

For the cupcakes:
150g unsalted butter or Stork
150g caster sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
150g self-raising flour
2 ripe medium-sized bananas
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon milk

For the caramel filling and buttercream:
1 can (397g) of Carnation Caramel
200g unsalted butter
400g icing sugar

To decorate:
A couple of squares of dark chocolate to grate on top
Dried banana chips

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C and line a muffin tray with 12 cases.

Start by making the cupcakes. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Crack in the eggs, add half of the flour and mix until combined. Add the remaining flour and baking powder and fold everything together until you have a smooth mixture.

In a separate bowl mash the bananas until no lumps remain. Add to the cake mixture, along with the milk and fold together.

Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden on top and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack and leave to cool.

Once the cakes are cool, make the caramel buttercream. Beat the butter until really soft and pale in colour. Sift in half of the icing sugar and beat until smooth. Sift in the remaining icing sugar and four tablespoons of caramel and mix together until smooth and fluffy.

Time to decorate. Make a hole in the middle of each cupcake (you can do this using a cupcake corer, apple corer, piping nozzle or teaspoon). Fill each hole with a teaspoon of caramel sauce. Spread or pipe the caramel buttercream on top. I used an 11mm open star piping nozzle to get that lovely swirl effect. Grate the dark chocolate on top of each cupcake and push a banana chip into the buttercream.

Classic Victoria Sponge

It’s back to basics with this bake. Classic Victoria sponge cake, so simple but so delicious!

There are so many variations of a classic Victoria sponge. Buttercream or fresh cream? Raspberry or strawberry jam? Decorate or leave plain?

I started going down a rabbit hole when researching this one, only to realise that there isn’t really a “right” way and that, to be honest, it doesn’t really matter! It’s one of those cakes that I think you can decide what your classic take on Victoria sponge will be, and let’s face it, it’s always going to taste amazing.

So here’s my take on it. Beautifully baked vanilla sponge cakes sandwiched together with strawberry jam and fresh whipped cream flavoured with vanilla essence. For the decoration, I chose a simple dusting of icing sugar. As you know I’m all about simplicity!

Ingredients (makes a two-layer 8inch Victoria sponge cake)

For the cake:
250g Stork tub
250g white or golden caster sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
250g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon milk

For the filling:
3-4 tablespoons strawberry jam
150ml double cream
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
4-5 fresh strawberries (optional)

For the decoration:
Icing sugar for dusting

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C. Line the base of two 8inch/20cm round baking tins with greaseproof paper and lightly grease the sides with a little butter.

Start by making the cake. In a large bowl beat together the butter, caster sugar and vanilla extract until light and creamy.

Mix in the eggs one at a time, adding a tablespoon of the 250g flour with each egg to stop the mixture from curdling.

Add the remaining flour and baking powder, and fold the mixture together until smooth and combined. Be careful not to over-mix. The mixture should drop off the spoon but still hold its shape. If it’s too thick then add a tablespoon of milk and mix through.

Divide the mixture equally between the cake tins. Lightly tap the baking tins on the side to release any air bubbles. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the cakes are golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove them from the oven and leave in the baking tins for 5 minutes to cool. Run a knife around the edge of the tins and carefully turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack.

Now make the filling. Whip the double cream and vanilla extract with a whisk or electric mixer until the cream starts to thicken, can hold its shape but is still soft. Be really careful not to over whip as this can make the cream hard and grainy. If you’re unsure, I found watching BBC’s video tutorial really helpful.

Time to decorate. Choose a cake layer for the base and place it on a pretty plate or cake stand. Spread the jam on top into an even layer. Make sure the jam doesn’t go right up to the edge of the cake, you’ll want to leave about a 1cm gap. Spoon the whipped cream on top and spread out into an even layer, again leaving space. Cut the strawberries lengthways and dot around the outer edge of the cake. Carefully place the other cake layer on top and lightly press down so that the jam and cream spread out to the edge underneath. Finish with a dusting of icing sugar.