Pecan squares

As I mentioned is a previous post, my grandson has decided he'd like to bake, so I was looking through some old chiIdren's cookery books and found this recipe . I think it's a strange way to make a cake, but decided to try it anyway.
It make 12 squares.

For the bottom of the squares:

175g butter
75g icing sugar
225g plain flour


75g butter
2 tbspns golden syrup [or maple syrup]
2 tbspns milk
1 tspn vanilla essence
50g soft brown sugar
2 eggs
100g pecan nuts

Grease and line a tin 18x27 cm.
Preheat oven 180C/350F/gas4

To make the base:

Put the butter into a bowl, add the sugar and beat till fluffy. Fold in the flour. Bring the mixture into a ball.
Flour the worktop and knead the ball a few times to make it smooth. Then press the dough into the tin - using the back of a spoon helps. Bake this for about 15 mins till it's golden. Let the base cool.
Put the butter in a pan and melt over a low heat, then stir in the sugar, syrup and vanilla essence.
Beat the eggs in a small bowl, take the pan off the heat then stir in the eggs.
Pour this mixture over the cooled base and sprinkle the pecans over the topping.
Bake for about 25 mins till a dark golden colour - it should still be a little gooey in the centre.
Let it cool in the tin, then cut into 12 squares.

We all enjoyed eating them.


Chunky apple and raisin cake

I'm a great fan of apple cakes and have posted several recipes on here. This one sounded good, especially as I had some raisins to use up, and a few apples getting soft in the fruit bowl. It comes from my collection of magazine recipes, which one day I WILL organise!
The recipe added peel [which I dislike] and the grated rind of an orange, but I didn't add these as I wanted the spices to come through. I used more spice than the recipe stated as I love them!
A nice, easy cake which we ate warm, as a pudding, last night, with some creme fraiche. The cooking smell was MMMMMMMM!

75g butter or margarine
175g soft brown sugar
110g plain flour
110g wholemeal flour
2 tspns baking powder
1 tspn mixed spice
1 tspn cinnamon
2 eggs
3 or 4 apples - cooking or eating - about 550g
120g raisins

Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin.
Preheat oven to 180C/350F/gas4

In a bowl, mix together the flours, spices and baking powder.
Peel, core and chop the apples into little cubes, put them in a bowl and add 1 tbspn of the flour mixture and roll them in it.
In another bowl beat the sugar and butter/margarine together till it's fluffy. Beat in the eggs and gently fold in the flour mixture.
Lastly add the chopped apple and mix in. If the mixture is too dry, you can add a little milk.

Put the mixture into the tin and bake for about 40 , depending on your oven. The original recipe said to bake for an hour, but I found that mine was ready after 40 mins.
Dust the top with icing sugar.

I like the chunky texture of this cake, but OH didn't like the wholemeal flour addition.


Iced ginger and banana slices

This was going to be my offering to the 1st birthday challenge, but in my hurry to bake something, I left out the chocolate!

Having arrived back from our French holiday last night, I went over to see my grandsons this morning. Tom, who's 10, and I have started baking together, and I'd promised we could make something. We hunted through his children's baking book and found these. He loves ginger and bananas so they seemed perfect.

Here's the recipe.

125g butter
150g golden syrup
100g light muscovado sugar
2 bananas
2 eggs
2 tbspns milk
250g sr flour
2 tspns ground ginger
1/2 tspn bicarb. of soda

200g icing sugar
5-6 tspns water
hundreds and thousands/sugar strands [or anything else you fancy] to sprinkle on top

Grease and line a 18x28cm roasting tin.
Preheat oven 180C/350F/gas4

Put the butter, syrup and sugar in a saucepan and heat gently till melted. Take off the heat.
Peel and mash the bananas with a fork.
Beat the eggs and milk together.
Mix the flour, ginger and bicarb together in a bowl, then add to the butter mixture with the bananas and beat till smooth.
Add the egg and milk and mix again.
Pour into the tin.
Bake for 20-25 mins till it's golden and risen. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 mins then put onto a wire rack.

Make the icing - mix the water and sieved icing sugar to make a good, spreadable icing. Pour it over the cooled cake and smooth it flat. Sprinkle over the sugar strands and leave the icing to set.
When set, cut the cake into 16 slices.

It was great fun to make, especially the icing and sprinkles - mess everywhere, but a very happy grandson!
The other boys enjoyed eating them .

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