7 treats to make with children if eggs aren’t your thing

Seriously Loaded
Chocolate Bark

200g white chocolate
200g milk chocolate
2 handfuls mini eggs
2 Crème Eggs
1 handful of mini crème-
or caramel-filled eggs

Melt the white chocolate in the microwave and pour on to a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. Spread into a flat layer using the back of a spoon. You can dot a little of the chocolate under the paper to keep it from slipping around. Melt the milk chocolate and spoon that on top of the white layer. Swirl the milk chocolate around gently with the handle end of a spoon to level off.

Place the mini eggs in a small bag and bash with the end of a rolling pin so that they break up into pieces. Sprinkle the mini egg pieces all over the melted chocolate “bark”. Using a knife, halve the smaller crème eggs and roughly chop the larger ones. Dot the crème and caramel egg pieces all over the bark. Place the tray in the freezer for 10 minutes to set. When you are ready to share the bark, you can break it into pieces. It is so quick to create, and make a wonderful Easter gift.

Recipe by ao.com/athome/aoeats

Chocolate Chunk Cookies
(Makes 10 cookies)

300g plain flour
½tsp bicarbonate of soda
120g salted butter, melted
225g light brown soft sugar
1 egg
20 squares milk chocolate (you will need to buy a large bar)

Preheat your oven to 160°C/320°F/Gas mark 3. In the mixing bowl, combine the flour and bicarbonate. Set to one side. In another bowl, melt the butter in the microwave and mix in the sugar before adding the egg. Add this wet mix to the dry flour mix and bring together with a wooden spoon to form a dough. Divide the dough into 60g balls and place on a lined baking tray, room to spread between each one leaving. Push each ball down slightly then place in the oven for six minutes.

After the six minutes, take the cookies out of the oven, press two squares of chocolate into each one, rotate the tray then bake for a further six minutes. Allow to cool slightly on the tray before serving. You can prepare the dough balls ahead of time and keep in the freezer. When ready to make them, bake for 12 to 14 minutes until golden brown.

Recipe from the Easy Peasy Baking campaign, launched by UK Flour Millers (fabflour.co.uk/easy-peasy-baking)

Super Easy Chocolate
Oreo Torte

(Makes 16-18 servings)

30 Oreo cookies
85g vegan butter/spread, melted

For the ganache filling
170g vegan dark chocolate, chopped (plus a little extra for topping)
170g vegan milk chocolate, chopped
250ml vegan double cream
55g vegan butter/spread

Pulse the Oreo cookies in a food processor until finely ground, or alternatively place in a sandwich bag and crush using a rolling pin. Transfer the crumbs to a medium-sized bowl, add the melted butter then mix thoroughly until combined and moistened. Press the mixture onto the bottom of a 9in (23cm) round cake tin. A cake tin with a detachable base works best for this recipe. Place the tin in the fridge for 30 minutes. While the base is chilling, make the filling.

In a medium-sized, heatproof bowl, place the chopped dark and milk chocolate and set aside. In a small saucepan, heat the cream and vegan butter to a low boil. Remove from the heat and pour the mixture over the chocolate. Let it stand for one minute then stir until melted, combined and smooth. Pour the filling mixture over the chilled Oreo crust and refrigerate until set, for a minimum of four hours or overnight. Using a grater or vegetable peeler, grate the remaining chocolate over the top of the finished torte for decoration.

Recipe by Maryanne Hall of Viva!’s Vegan Recipe Club (veganrecipeclub.org.uk)

Easter cupcakes with a maple syrup (and maple sugar) twist

Double chocolate pleeseshake
(Makes 2 shakes)

If you’re not in the mood for making a full cheesecake and have only five minutes to come up with a dessert, this is the recipe for you.

For the base
80g double chocolate milk biscuits
10g milk chocolate chips
10g dark chocolate chips

For the filling
100ml double cream
100ml whole milk
100g chocolate or chocolate hazelnut spread
300g chocolate ice cream
120g chocolate brownie
180g cream cheese

For the topping (suggested)
Chocolate sauce
120g chocolate brownie double choc chip cookies
20g milk chocolate chips
20g dark chocolate chips

For the base, whizz up the biscuits to a coarse crumb in a food processor (stick them in a sandwich bag and bash with a rolling pin if you don’t have a processor). Divide evenly between two serving glasses, along with the chocolate chips.

Blend all the filling ingredients for two minutes and pour into on top.
Topping-wise, swirl on a drizzle of chocolate sauce for 10 seconds. If using the cookies, blitz to a fine crumb in the processor and sprinkle over the top of the shake. Add some more chocolate chips, if you like.

From ‘Pleesecakes’ by Joe Moruzzi and Brendon Parry (Quadrille, £15)

Decadent chocolate cake
(Serves 8)

For the cake
200g plain flour
200g caster sugar
150g whole milk
1tsp baking powder
175g soft unsalted butter
40g cocoa powder
2 eggs
2tsp vanilla essence
½tsp bicarbonate of soda

For the icing
230g soft unsalted butter
420g icing sugar
40g cocoa powder
45ml whole milk
2tsp vanilla essence
Pinch of salt

For the cake, put all the ingredients into a mixing bowl and mix on a medium speed with an electric whisk until smooth. Fill two oiled and lined 8in cake tins with about an inch of cake batter and bake at 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 4 for 25 to 35 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. For the icing, add all the ingredients into a bowl and use a food processor to mix on a medium speed until soft and smooth.

Wait for the cake to cool and spread or pipe the icing over one sponge and then place the other sponge on top. Level with a palette knife, then
pipe or cover the sides of the cake with the remaining icing. Top with strawberries or any decoration you would like.

Recipe by Humdingers Catering (humdingers.org.uk)

Chocolate cheesecake brownies
(Serves 16-18)

100g unsalted butter, softened
140g caster sugar
40g self-raising flour
25g cocoa powder
2 medium eggs, beaten
40g dark chocolate chips

For the cheesecake mix
200g full-fat cream cheese
2 medium egg yolks
60g caster sugar

For the chocolate topping
25g unsalted butter
35ml milk
100g dark chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 4. Grease a 20cm square baking tin with a little butter and line with a sheet of baking paper. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the flour, cocoa powder and eggs and mix. Add the dark chocolate chips and mix again until everything is well combined. Transfer this brownie mixture to the tin and spread evenly over the base.

Bake for 25 minutes, until it is set around the edges but still has a slight wobble in the centre. Remove from the oven (leave the oven on) and set the tin on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Use the back of a spoon or a spatula to gently press down on the brownie to flatten it in the tin, starting from the edges and moving towards the centre. Leave to cool for another 10 to 15 minutes. In a clean bowl, beat together the cream cheese, egg yolks and sugar until the mixture is smooth. If it looks a little lumpy, use a whisk or fork to beat it for another minute.

Pour this cheesecake mixture over your brownie base. Smooth to the edges with the back of a spoon and give the tin a few sharp taps on the work surface to flatten it. Return to the oven for 25 minutes, or until the cream cheese layer is set and slightly golden around the edges. Initially it will seem a little wobbly, but it will firm up as it cools. When the cream cheese layer is completely cool, start making the chocolate topping. Heat the butter and milk in a pan until the butter has melted. Take the pan off the heat, add the chocolate chips and stir until melted and smooth.

Pour the chocolate over the cooled cream cheese layer, making sure the top is completely covered with chocolate, but spreading very gently, as you do not want to mix the chocolate with the cream cheese. Give the tin another gentle tap, then leave to cool for at least three hours in the fridge before cutting.

Recipe from Baked In’s The Baking Club recipe book, £15, bakedin.co.uk

Crumbs – making a chocolate Oreo torte is easier than you might imagine

Maple Easter Cupcakes
(Makes 12)

For the cupcakes
150g self-raising flour
50g cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
200g maple sugar
100g unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg
100ml whole milk
½tsp vanilla extract

For the topping
200g cream cheese, softened
100g butter, softened
½tsp pure vanilla extract
50ml maple syrup
Mini eggs, for optional decoration

Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with muffin cases. Combine the flour, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. In another large bowl, use an electric hand mixer to beat together the maple sugar and butter until pale and fluffy. In a jug, whisk together the egg, milk and vanilla. Add half the flour and half the milk/egg mixture to the creamed butter and maple sugar, then beat together. Add the rest of the flour and milk/egg mixtures and beat again to make a smooth batter.

Divide between the muffin cases, then bake for 20 minutes or until risen and a skewer inserted into a cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for a couple of minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely. For the topping, beat together the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Then add the vanilla and maple syrup. Pipe on top of each cupcake and decorate with mini eggs.

Recipe by maplefromcanada.co.uk

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