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Christmas Baking Ideas for the Festive Season | Home Looks

Christmas Baking Ideas for the Festive Season

Christmas is all about gathering with friends and family, celebrating the years' successes and enjoying plenty of  indulgence. So, to get you ready for the most wonderful time of the year, we thought we'd share some yummy Christmas baking recipes with you, so you can start planning your yuletide menu. Get the kids involved, invite your friends over for a festive treat, or just enjoy your own handy work! Happy feasting!

Mince Pie Brownies

Who doesn't look a mince pie? Well, this recipe is a modern spin on a classic Christmas staple. These sweet treats will prove a big hit throughout the festive season, we have no doubt! Thank Lulu Grimes and BBC Good Food for your new annual favourite!

Ingredients

185g unsalted butter, cubed
185g high-quality dark chocolate, chopped
85g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
3 large eggs
275g golden caster sugar
6 mince pies or 9-12 mini mince pies
Icing sugar, for dusting

Method

  • Melt the butter and chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water, then leave to cool. Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Line the base of a shallow 20cm square tin with baking parchment. Sieve the flour and cocoa into a bowl. Whisk the eggs and sugar until thick and creamy, or until the mixture runs off the beaters and leaves a trail for a second or two.
  • Pour in the cooled chocolate mixture, then fold together in a figure of eight, moving the bowl round until the mixture is a mottled dark brown. Be gentle so you don’t knock out the air. Sift in the cocoa and flour and gently fold. The mixture will look dry and dusty, then fudgy. Stop just before you feel you should, as you don’t want to over mix it.

Get the full method here and enjoy!

Christmas Rocky Road

British celebrity chef, Nigella Lawson, knows her sweet treats, so it's no wonder she's come up with this absolute gem! A festive take on her classic Rocky Road recipe, this one includes Amaretti biscuits, Brazil nuts and glacé cherries. To make them, you'll need:

Ingredients

250 grams dark chocolate
150 grams milk chocolate
175 grams soft butter
4 tablespoons golden syrup
200 grams Amaretti biscuits
150 grams Brazil nuts
150 grams red glace cherries
125 grams mini marshmallows
1 tablespoon icing sugar
Edible glitter (optional)

Method

  • Chop the chocolate, then put into a heavy-based pan to melt with the butter and syrup over a gentle heat. Bash the biscuits and Brazil nuts with a rolling pin to get different sized crumbs.
  • Take the pan off the heat and add the crushed biscuits and nuts, whole glacé cherries and mini-marshmallows. Turn carefully to coat everything with syrupy chocolate. Tip into a 9¼ x 12 inch tray, smoothing the top. Refrigerate until firm enough to cut.

Get the full method here and enjoy!

Cheese, Cranberry & Thyme Fondue Star

Those who prefer savoury to sweet will adore this indulgent recipe. Fun and festive, this comforting and delicious treat is perfect for a Christmas gathering. Head over to Delicious Magazine for more inspiring recipes.

Ingredients

7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
1 tsp caster sugar
275ml whole milk, warmed slightly, plus extra cold milk to glaze
500g strong white bread flour, plus extra to dust
1 tsp fine sea salt
2 medium free-range eggs, beaten separately
50g unsalted butter, softened
3 tbsp cranberry sauce, plus extra to serve
5 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan 
A few fresh thyme sprigs
1 whole Camembert

Method

  • Dissolve the yeast and sugar in a little bit of the warmed milk. Put the flour, yeast/sugar mixture and salt in a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or large mixing bowl. Add 1 beaten egg, the remaining warmed milk and the butter. Mix on a low speed until combined, then turn up the speed to medium and mix for another 5 minutes until you have a smooth, elastic dough. If mixing by hand, use a round-bladed dinner knife to mix the ingredients together to form a dough, then tip out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
  • Leave the dough in the bowl, cover with a clean tea towel and leave in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until doubled in size. Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Gently knead once or twice to remove any large air pockets, then divide and shape into 4 equal balls of dough. Roll out each piece into a circle, as if making a pizza base. The dough may spring back a little at first, but persist until each piece is 28cm across.

Get the full method here and enjoy!

Black Forest Pavlova

Impress friends and family this Christmas, with this stunning black forest meringue tower from Olive Magazine. The ultimate festive dessert centre piece, it's filled with dark chocolate ganache, boozy cherries and mascarpone cream. You're welcome...

Ingredients

8 large egg whites 8 large
500g caster sugar
1 tbsp cocoa powder
500g fresh or frozen dark cherries, pitted
100g caster sugar
½ Orange, juiced
75ml Kirsch
150f Dark chocolate, chips or chopped
600ml Double cream
200g Mascarpone
Dark chocolate bar, to decorate (optional)

Method

  • Line two large baking trays with baking paper. On the back of one of the sheets of paper draw a 23cm circle and a 10cm circle. On the second sheet draw a 18cm circle and a 15cm circle. Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6.
  • To make the meringue, put the egg whites into a large bowl with a pinch of salt and whisk until foamy. Add the sugar 1 tbsp at a time, as you continue to whisk, until the mixture holds stiff peaks. Add 1/3 of the cocoa powder and fold gently, then repeat twice more with the remaining cocoa powder, so that the cocoa stays rippled but not fully incorporated into the mixture.

Get the full method here and enjoy!

 

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