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Jam thumbprint biscuits

As-Salaamu Alaykum,

As a small child I would love to stay with my grandparents on weekends consuming these biscuits from a local bakery after or sometimes even before a delicious salad sandwich.
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Top Tip Tuesday - Shortcrust Pastry Rules

  • Always ensure at least your butter is chilled when starting to make shortcrust pastry, butter makes the pastry short i.e. crumbly. However, if the butter is warm then it will combine with the gluten of the flour and make your pastry tough! Work fast yet with a gentle touch.

  • To roll your pastry, i find it easier and have more control when it's between two sheets of plastic wrap, i find i can get a thinner pastry using this method. Roll up onto a floured rolling pin before laying over your case/pie dish

  • Trim excess pastry from the sides (you can do this after baking but easier and less crumbs see pic if you do it now). Use a piece of the overhang to gently push the pastry into the creases/edges of your case if any tears occur patch work is necessary, don't worry no-one will see it once your tart/pie has it's filling.

  • Chill your pastry case in the fridge or blast in the freezer (cover with plastic wrap) this will give the gluten time to relax resulting in a more delicate pastry than if you were to skip this step and reduce the chance of shrinkage when you come to bake it!

  • Don't forget to line your case with baking paper then baking beans/beads/pie weights before blind baking. Always remove paper and beans after 10-12 mins and cook for a few more mins for the base to colour.

Now after all that talk of chilling and relaxing, i have housework to do, must dash!

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Lemon Meringue Pie/Tart

lemon meringue pie recipe
Salam Alaikum / Hi


Food historians tell us the precursor for meringue was an Elizabethan-era
dish called
 "Snow". (aka snow eggs). What
exactly is meringue and who is credited for the discovery?

"Meringue...an airy, crisp confection of beaten egg white and sugar. The word
probably entered French from German, as did many other French words ending in
-ingue. It first appeared in print in Massailot [1691], although earlier recipes
for the same thing but without the name had been published. The name travelled
to England almost at once and first appeared in print there in 1706....It seems
to have been only in the 16th century that European cooks discovered that
beating egg whites, e.g. with a whisk of birch twigs (in the absense of any
better implement), produced an attractive foam. At first the technique was used
to make a simple, uncooked dish called snow, made from egg white and cream.
However, cooking such a foam would not have resulted in meringue, for any fat in
the mixture, as represented by the cream, prevents the egg whites from taking on
the proper texture...When true meringue made its appearance in the 17th century,
it still lacked its name and was often called "sugar puff.""

Companion to Food
, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p.

A dear friend 'Sugar' gave me the recipe for this delicious lip smacking pie/tart the other week, without my weighing scales i had no option but to wait and it was totally worth it.

I finally set my mind to bake it this morning. After around an hour and half it was finished,  ready and waiting for when dh woke from his slumber.

Note: In future Asmaa, don't think about pastry baking when in england a heat wave is in progress!

My version became more a tart than pie, as the layers were skinnier than normal. This is in no way a fault in the original recipe but to myself by not using a 19cm flan/tart/pie tin, i used my one and only 23cm petal shaped loose based tart tin.

The on-going problem i have with baking in my pretty petal tin is the tart always sticks and never will come out in 1 piece (the tin is supposed to be non stick and i still butter it very well)  Any tips/help would be greatly appreciated.



225g plain flour

25g sugar

100g butter

¼ tsp salt

1 egg

*Note this is probably Enough for two 19cm flan cases or 1 23cm tart tin with a but left over, it can be frozen.


Juice of 3 lemons

Finely grated zest of 2 lemons

3 tbsp corn flour

150ml water

75g sugar

2 egg yolks

15g butter


2 egg whites

115g sugar

  1. In a food pprocessorpulse flour, sugar and butter to fine bread crumb consistency add in beaten egg and pulse until you have a dough, may need little water. Chill for at least ½ hour. Do prep work i.e. zest lemons,weigh sugars and butter etc for filling/meringue.

  2. Preheat oven to 180deg C Fan/ 200deg C/400 deg F/gas 6. Roll out dough to line your chosen tin, best if quite thin but it is fragile to work with especially in the heat of the morning sun! Patch where necessary. Prick pastry and line with paper and baking beans, bake for around 12 mins and then take out paper and beans and bake for further 5 mins, maybe longer depending on how well done you like pastry.

  3. Reduce oven to 130deg C/ 150deg C / 300deg F/ gas 2, For filling put lemon juice and zest in pan, mix water and corn flour together and add, slowly bring to boil and stir until thickened, remove from heat, add sugar, let cool so you don’t scramble egg then mix in egg yolks. Stir in the butter, spoon into pastry case.

  4. For meringue, whisk egg whites until stiff then gradually whisk in the sugar, until thick and glossy. Spoon it over the lemon, spreading with spoon and then swirling it with a skewer / cocktail stick. Bake for 15 mins( 23cm tin) or 30-35 mins (19cm) OR until meringue is golden and crisp
Thank you sugar for the recipe.

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Pancakes (Heart Shape)

Salam Alaikum / Hi readers,

I'm still waiting for my new weighing scales to arrive in the post.

I found an excuse to fry up some of these delicious and comforting pancakes for Breakfast.
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Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

Chocolate Orange has to be one of my favourite flavour combinations but ssshhhh don't tell chocolate mint i said that!

Mint Choc Ice cream vs. Chocolate Orange Chocolate, which would you choose?

Here is the recipe:-

Makes: 16
Baking Time: 15-20mins


250g lightly salted butter, softened
250g caster sugar
4 eggs
250g self-raising flour
50g cocoa powder(unsweetened)
3/4tsp baking powder
finely grated rind of 2 oranges

Buttercream Icing
180g unsalted butter, softened
500g icing sugar
3-4 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice
1-2 teaspoon buttermilk or regular milk
Orange food colouring (optional)

Sprinkles of your choice to decorate (optional)

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 160 C Fan/ 180 C/ 350 F / Gas Mark 4, Line your cupcake tin(s) with paper cases (greaseproof ones ideally)
  2. Weigh all ingredients, make sure everything is room temperature, zest your oranges and then put all ingredients in bowl and beat starting slowly and then cranking up the speed for 1minute maximum until light and creamy.
  3. Divide the cake mixture between the paper cases, i find using a ice cream scoop works best for this but regular tablespoons will work too. Bake in middle of oven for 15-20mins, resisting the temptation to open the door until your timer beeps. To check for doneness insert toothpick and if it comes out with a few dry crumbs clinging to it, your cupcakes are ready.
  4. Leave to cool for no longer than 1minute inside tins and then carefully remove and leave to cool completely on a wire rack
  5. Buttercream icing - cream butter, gradually add your icing sugar, add orange juice, buttermilk, food colouring (a few drops at a time until a pale orange colour is achieved) and beat at medium speed for a few mins. Once cupcakes are completely cool, using a palette knife generously spread with icing and decorate with chosen sprinkles
If you feel overly citrus you could add the zest of another orange in your buttercream to give an extra zing!

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Top Tip Tuesday - Volume vs. Weight

Asalam Alaikum / Hi everyone,

For best baking results, it is always better to weigh ingredients rather than go by volume of cups etc because each time you measure the same ingredient by volume, there will be a difference in weight by a few grams.

It's not such a problem on a home baking scale as there is a bigger margin of error however, if you are batch baking at home then i do suggest you weigh your ingredients as those few grams of error will be even more grams! affecting the quality and consistancy of your bake.

This post comes at just the right time, as my second lot of scales in a year have just broken! Time to invest in a decent set me thinks.




Asalamu Alaikum,

I saw this recipe yesterday morning on TV and thought i must have a go at making these, sure enough in the afternoon i set to it and like most breads i make they were all gone by the end of the day!

Today's little twist on things is that I sprinkled Za'atar over a few of the breadsticks before baking.
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Free From Friday - Gluten, Dairy & Egg Free Gingerbread Biscuits

Salam Alaikum / Hi Everyone,

The motivation behind these biscuits is my 1 year old daughter that has food allergies (Dairy, Eggs, Wheat) so my recipes will mainly be focused around the removal of those food products, although they may include more e,g, soya free.
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Top Tip Tuesday - Baking Powder Test

Salam Alaikum / Hi readers,
So you finally found that baking powder lurking at the back of your cupboard, want to know if it's still up to the job?
Simple pour some hot tap water into a small cup or bowl and add a teaspoon of baking powder, if the baking powder doesn't begin to fizz intensely immediately it's probably no good and won't cause your bake to rise, get yourself to the shop and buy some more.



Pineapple Cake

This cake is for those times when your not in the mood for fancy pants cake decorating (yes that was me this morning) but still need something nice to serve your family.

I feel this cake certainly doesn't need buttercream icing has it is beautifully moist from being packed full of pineapple and let me tell you, it packs a punch on the taste buds.

Recipe adapted from The Pink Whisk's Pineapple and Raspberry Cupcakes


200g butter, softened

100g soft brown sugar

75g caster sugar

4 eggs

200g plain flour

2tsp baking powder

220g fresh chopped pineapple (roughly about 3/4 of a pineapple)


Preheat oven to 160C (fan)/180C/Gas Mark 4.

Weigh all ingredients, chop the pineapple, butter and line with baking paper a 20cm loose based round cake tin.

Sieve together the flour & baking powder, set aside.

Beat together the softened butter and sugars until well combined, about 3-5mins.

Carefully add the eggs, alternating with a tbsp of the flour to stop the mixture from curdling.

Scrape down the sides of your bowl with a rubber spatula and then with a large metal spoon (a tbsp or wooden one will do) fold in the flour and then the chopped pineapple, do not overmix.

Fill your cake tin with the cake batter and then level using the back of a spoon, place your cake tin on a baking tray and then into the oven for around 50-60mins (all depends on the juiceness of your pineapple)

Let the cake cool a while before loosening the base and turning out.

Remember to turn the cake upside down onto a serving plate so that the bottom is now the top and is level, dust with icing sugar before serving.

Enjoy and don't forget to say Bismillah.

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Lemon & Raspberry Cupcakes

These days lemons are widely available on every continent however, lemons were once so rare that kings presented them as gifts to one another!
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Top Tip Tuesday

Salam Alaikum / Hi readers,

Every week, or so i plan to post a baking top tip, inshAllah it will benefit the beginner and remind you pro's out there too.

Oven Tip

To test for doneness in cupcakes, cakes, quick breads, tray bakes, use a toothpick/cocktail stick insert in the center. If the toothpick comes out virtually crumb free, they are done yipeeeeeee

* visual/sensory signs for doneness of cakes*

touch -  cake springs back when lightly pressed in the center

see - cake is coming away from the edges of tin