The Food Bloggers Breakfast and my home baked Granola

The Food Bloggers Breakfast ?

The Food Bloggers Breakfast

The food bloggers breakfast must be a thing of wonder. Cold soaked oats, Manuka honey, and exotic berries topped off with superfoods smoothie packed with vitamins. Alas as a working dad heading off on the school run it’s lucky to be a piece of toast with too much butter* and some homemade jam. Now there is nothing wrong at all with toast and at the weekend it is a great start to your day. Sourdough with some smoked salmon and creamy scrambled eggs or with crushed avocado, eggs poached or boiled and a little chilli kick.

The Food Bloggers Breakfast Aims

Now I will be honest my breakfast aims do tend to aim towards a sky-high pile of bacon, well a full fry up to be honest or a tower of pancakes. I do however like porridge made with milk ( sorry true Scots ) with a little brown sugar sprinkled on top and another favourite made from oats, home baked granola. Granola is a very popular breakfast cereal made from the aforementioned oats with oil and honey or sugar.

So, if you ’ve not already noticed a theme not particularly healthy but very tasty. Factory manufactured granola can be quite expensive and yet it is so very easy to make at home. It is delicious mixed with dried fruits and nuts such as flaked almonds, apricots, raisins, and sultanas or eaten with creamy, natural yoghurt, sliced banana and sprinkled with blueberries.

Home Baked Granola

A bit about Home baked Granola

Granola was invented and trademarked in America by a contemporary of John Harvey Kellogg as a baked breakfast cereal at a similar time to muesli, which is also made from oats although neither sweetened or cooked. With the addition of nuts and dried fruits, granola is often marketed as a ‘healthy option’ however it does contain a lot of sugar. Granola or pressed granola bars ( similar to Flapjack ) are a good source of energy and is often carried by long-distance hikers. Granola can also be used in making and garnishing desserts such as my recipe for Cranachan or served with iced lemon parfait and lemon curd.

*I love butter that much we are almost having a relationship.

Oats are gluten free but can cause a similar reaction and may be processed in factories that process wheat and barley.
Chocolate Cupcakes

The only Chocolate Cupcake Recipe you will ever need for National Cupcake Week

My mum makes the best Butterfly cakes ( or Fairy Cakes ) in the world. Classic Victoria sponge in a little paper case, a small amount of sponge scooped out, a blob of thick buttercream, pop the sponge back, a sprinkle of icing sugar and eh voila. We still have them when my family goes to visit Grandma and Grandad. But Butterfly cakes seem to have taken a step back with the relentless rise of cupcakes which are everywhere and what exactly is the difference?

Chocolate Cupcakes
The best Chocolate and Coffee Cupcakes

As far as I can find out the cupcake is basically the bigger American cousin of the Butterfly cake, the sponge is bigger, and it is loaded with larger amounts of icing or frosting. As it is National Cupcake Week. here is a chance for you to haul in some industrial amounts of butter and sugar and make my second favourite cupcake recipe ever for Chocolate Cupcakes and most definitely the only Chocolate Cupcakes recipe you will ever need. Why is this my second favourite cupcake recipe well I have already posted the number one  Strawberry Milkshake and White Chocolate Cupcakes recipe here.

Chocolate and Coffee Buttercream Cupcakes    makes 18

For the Cupcakes

210 ml Full fat Milk

210 gr Plain Flour

220 gr Caster Sugar

120 gr good quality Cocoa Powder

80 gr Milk Chocolate Buttons

70g soft Unsalted Butter

2 large free-range Eggs

1 scant tablespoon of Baking Powder

A good pinch of Salt

 For the Icing

500 gr Icing Sugar

160 gr soft Unsalted Butter

2 tablespoons Instant Coffee

50 ml Full Fat Milk

Chocolate or Fudge Cake Decorations

Cupcake or deep Muffin Tins

 Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 3 / 170°C / 330 °F and line the baking trays with large paper cases. Using an electric mixer or food processor mix the butter, flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt together until they form a sandy, crumb-like texture. In a bowl, whisk the milk and eggs together. With the mixer on a slow speed, gradually pour half of the liquid into the crumb mixture and mix thoroughly until combined and the batter is smooth and thick.

Chocolate Cupcake Batter
Cupcake Batter

Once all the lumps are gone gradually pour in the remaining liquid and mix until thoroughly combined. Stir in the milk chocolate buttons. Evenly divide the cake batter between the prepared cases and bake in the oven for twenty to twenty-five minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly before removing them from the tin and placing on a wire rack to cool.

Sift the icing sugar into a large bowl and add the butter, beat together with a wooden spoon or electric mixer. Heat the milk until scalding in a microwave and in a jug, mix in the instant coffee and stir until it is all dissolved and allow to cool. Gradually pour the cold coffee into the icing while mixing on a slow speed, then turn the mixer up to a high speed and beat the icing until light and fluffy. Scoop the whipped-up icing into a piping bag with a star nozzle, ready to ice the completely cool cupcakes. Decorate with the chocolate or fudge decorations.