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Bakernaut would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas with this lovely Bear Cake! 

It’s a very simple, lightly spiced cake that tastes like all things Christmas to me (it tastes particularly great with a glass of mulled wine). The recipe is my grandmother’s and makes a really fluffy but moist cake. 

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This gluten free chocolate and hazelnut torte with peanut butter frosting was baked out of necessity and desperation the other day!

I have recently become a bit suspicious that I might have some sort of bad reaction to gluten or wheat – extreme tiredness after meals has rendered me unable to function normally and it has been a really frustrating time. Not knowing the reason why I felt this way, I decided to give diet change a go and gave up sugar and gluten for a week.

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In yesterday’s post I talked about my new-found interest in fruit-cakes and well, it extends to fruit bread as well. This Rye and Raisin loaf did not get a great reception in my house as it’s just my 3-year old, and more recently me, that will eat raisins voluntarily. But while the others wouldn’t even entertain the thought of giving it a try, the two of us have had a feast!

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These fantastically delicious Chocolate Sablés also comes from Edd Kimber’s “Patisserie Made Simple” book that I wrote about here last week. They are melt-in-the-mouth heavenly with a very rich chocolate flavour thanks to a fairly substantial amount of chopped 70% dark chocolate added to the mix!

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These spicy gingerbreads thins are fantastic. Cut thinly and baked to the perfect snap, with lots of warming spices, almonds and citrus peel they are incredibly moreish and perfect for autumn. I don’t think there is any reason to hold gingerbread back until Christmas!

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This Neapolitan cake with piped chocolate names was made for my oldest daughter and 5 of her friends who all celebrate their birthday within a month of each other. A little gathering was had and this four layer cake with the classic Neapolitan flavours of chocolate, strawberry and vanilla was devoured. 

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This was a test of Ikea’s Multigrain Rye Breadmix that I tried recently.  I love really dark rye bread and keep threatening to start making it regularly myself. However, the cracked rye is still sitting in the cupboard unopened and that sourdough starter, well, it hasn’t got started. Yet.

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Congratulations to Nancy Birthwistle – this year’s winner of the Great British Bake Off! A well deserved winner with her cool determination, great baking knowledge and skills and hilariously dry witty comments throughout – I was really pleased to see her win! 

As always the show spawned some great TV moments, baking innuendos, fantastic creations and inspiring bakes. Catch up with missed episodes (or just relive them if you so wish), get the recipes from the show and of course, download the application for the 2015 GBBO here!