Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Biscuit Barrel April 14 Round Up

Another month and another Biscuit Barrel challenge, this time packed with fun filled bakes. 

As the exam, poster presentation and major hand-in date draws closer (May 13th, yes, all on the same day - tea will be required) things are getting more than stressy but I've still enjoyed seeing all your fantastic baking projects. It cheered me up that little bit every time I saw a new one pop up on the list and I hope you all enjoy reading about them too.

First up is Helen at Family Friends Food with these Spring Flower Thumbprint Cookies. I hadn't even read the title when I saw the picture and thought how pretty and Spring like they looked - as well as delicious. Making use of some unable-to-resist bargain snowflake cutters, these biscuits are ideal to make with children or even for making into cookie pops.

Next is Ros from The More Than Occasional Baker with these Blueberry and Peach Maple Syrup Muffins. Doesn't that sound like such a yummy combination to you? Also, these are another bake which I'm sure many would feel a little less guilty about eating because of the fruit content - I know I'm not the only one who likes bakes that are almost one of your five (or seven!) a day. They wouldn't require me to be persuaded to eat them - they look far too inviting already.

Ros has certainly been having a lot of fun this month so I've decided to group all her entries together - I know I would certainly have fun eating them! Not least these Mini Peanut Butter and Chocolate Croissants. I can't give you too much detail because that would spoil the delicious surprise and that is all part of the fun!

If I can ever stop myself eating leftover buttercream long enough to do something with it, I'm definitely going to give these Chocolate Chip Cookies a whirl. Ros has made similar lemon ones before but chocolate ones...enough said.

Ros' next entry are these Chorizo and Manchego Cheese Hot Cross Buns. I bet most people have never had a savoury hot cross bun but what a wonderful variation these are. 

These Chocolate Easter Egg Nests from Ros are a fine example of a classic Easter treat. What is it about making and eating cereal coated in chocolate that is so addictive to all ages???

I would be very happy to eat any of Ros' entries this month but these Chocolate Easter Eggs with a Twist have to be my favourite. The twist? Chocolate cake baked into egg shells! So clever and open to using your favourite cake recipe in a new, fun way.
Something a little different now from Stuart at Cakeyboi with these Bunny Lollichops. Made from marshmallows, sweeties and almonds held together with white chocolate these would be fun for children and adults. I know my nephews would love them but if they really are only suitable for children then I'd quite like to be eight again please.

Kate from The Gluten Free Alchemist made these gluten free Easter Egg Pops and I'm sure you'll agree that this is another goodie that adults will be pretending that they have no idea why one disappears from the basket each time they pass! Originally as part of a homework project, deeply flavoured with a wonderful texture, these egg pops bring so much Easter cheer into the room by their bright colours alone. 

Sue from A Palatable Pastime made these Amazing Apricot Bars to recreate and improve on a treat she had seen in the shops.I was hooked as soon as I read the words 'ooey gooey' and the caramel just tops it off for me. They come with the warning to let them cool and set in the pan before eating but I'm not sure I could wait that long.

This month I made Monster Cookies for my entry. Containing all the cookie favourites of peanut butter, oats, chocolate chips and sweeties, I think it might be worth renaming these as 'Monsterly Addictive Cookies' and that doesn't even begin to describe the cookie dough itself.

I think it is easy to see why Janine from Cake of the Week thought these Rainbow Dinosaur Pinata Cookies fit the theme this month and I completely agree. Admitting that they took a while to make, the proof of their popularity came from the disappearance of several soon after they were finished. If I'd been Janine's flatmate at the time, I think I would have been hnging around during the construction so I could whip off with one ASAP too.

Caroline from Caroline Makes shows some fantastic sugarcraft skills and ingenuity in these Spring Cake Pops. Looking real enough to fool people into thinking they were real flowers they taste lovely too. It seems a shame to bite into them with then again a shame not to enjoy the taste.

In trying to recreate one thing, Alexadra from The Lass in the Apron managed to nail another favourite treat of hers in these Chocolate Sandwich Cookies with Rice Crispie Ganache. The addition of the cereal adds a malty flavour which Alexandra is keen on and adds another diension to a classic smooth and creamy filling.

Jill from Lapin d'Or and More has come up with a fabulous combination in these Animal Biscuits for Easter. A sugar biscuit base with a thin layer of marzipan and the whole thing carefully dipped in chocolate to coat the base and edges. I wouldn't be brave enough to tackle the chocolate dipping myself but I'd welcome a plate of these to help my revision.

Louisa at Eat Your Veg is promoting the virtues of making your own biscuits in these Easter Biscuits which are spiced and fruited, containing less sugar than normal with the added benefits of wholemeal flour. When there is all that goodness to consider, there is no need to feel any guilt at eating more than one I reckon.

Strawberries and bananas are a brilliant combination in many things and Tina from The Worktop gives us another example in these Strawberry Banana Mini Pie Bites. In exploring the new products available in the UK compared to those in America, Tina has found that ready to roll shortcrust pastry is perfect for dinky little goodies such as these. They are just the right size to sneak one or three when left unguarded for a second

Grace from Life Can Be Simple made these Coconut Butter Cookies after learning quite a bit about coconut and especially coconut cream. These cookies use coconut cream powder which Grace says gives the most amazing scent to the air while baking and the cookies themselves are lovely too, coconutty and buttery at the same time. 

These Jammy Flapjacks are our last entry this month from Choclette at Chocolate Log Blog. Cleverly using a pot of homemade strawberry jam to replace the sugar and syrup in a normal flapjack recipe, these turned out to be very popular. I am definitely trying this for myself come summer when I'm making jams.

Wow! What a bumper month it has been this time. Once agan I' incredibly grateful for all those who have took the time to enter bakes - I wouldn't have this challenge without you. Check back in a few days time on May 1st to see what the next theme is and if you have any ideas for future themes or ingredients then please let me know. I'm always interested to here your thoughts. See you soon!


  1. Great bunch of tasty treats....... Looks like everyone has had a very creative month. Thanks for a great challenge and round up Laura!

  2. Great round up, and an impressive number of entries! I'm intrigued by those apricot bars...

    1. Me too, though I'd be tempted to try them still warm and ignore the warning!

  3. Fabulous round up for a great theme - looks like everyone definitely had fun. Can't wait to see what the challenge is for May. Thanks for indulging my baking madness and including all my entries :)

    1. It's not madness, it's enthusiasm! And they were all such good entries - the fun clearly showed =)

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