Rustle up baked goods the family with love during lockdown with Mrs Crunch's tasty recipes

IN the spring the nation went bananas for baking as lockdown kicked in. People made cakes, muffins, desserts and biscuits.

So here are some fantastic new recipes to try, including cake recipes that use vegetables for added moisture. Meanwhile, a classic banana loaf recipe is sure to hit the sweet spot.


Carrot cake muffins

(Makes 6 muffins – 68p each)

Preparation time: 25 minutes.

Cooking time: 25 minutes.

YOU NEED:

  • 100g carrots, grated
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 100ml vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 125g soft brown sugar
  • 60g buckwheat flour
  • 60g self-raising flour
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • 50g coconut oil
  • 100g icing sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice

METHOD: Preheat the oven to 170C fan/190C/gas mark 5. Place the grated carrots, eggs, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and soft brown sugar in a mixing bowl and whisk until smooth. Sift the buckwheat flour, self-raising flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon and mixed spice into the carrot mix and stir, ensuring all of the ingredients are evenly combined.

Line a six-hole muffin tin with six muffin cases and evenly divide the mix between them. Bake in a pre-heated oven for 20-25 minutes. Place on a cooling rack and allow to cool completely. For the frosting, place the coconut oil in a stand mixer fitted with a beater attachment.

Alternatively, use a wooden spoon and mixing bowl. Beat for a few minutes to soften. Sift the icing sugar into the bowl and add the vanilla extract and lemon juice. Beat until smooth, scraping the bowl down if needed.

If the icing is too stiff, add 1-2 tbsp of boiling water. Evenly spread the frosting on top of the muffins. To help spread the frosting, you can heat a teaspoon in a cup of boiling water.

Spiced parsnip cake

(Serves 10 – 34p per portion)

Preparation time: 25 minutes.

Cooking time: 30 minutes

YOU NEED:

For the sponge:

  • 230g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 100g pecans nuts, chopped, plus extra for topping
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 150ml sunflower oil
  • 500g parsnips, peeled, ends trimmed and coarsely grated
  • 2 oranges, zest, plus extra for decoration

For the frosting:

  • 200g full-fat cream cheese
  • 50g unsalted butter, softened
  • 150g icing sugar
  • 1 orange, zest

METHOD: Preheat oven to 180C/fan 160C. Grease and line base of two 8in sandwich tins with baking paper. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, mixed spice.

Add caster sugar and pecans, mix well. Put eggs and sunflower oil in a bowl and beat for a few minutes. Mix the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, along with the grated parsnips and orange zest, until a thick batter forms. Divide mixture between the tins. Bake for 25–30 minutes.

You should be able to put a knife into the centre and it come out clean. Turn out onto a wire rack, peel off the baking paper. Leave to cool completely. Meanwhile, make frosting. In a bowl, beat the butter with a wooden spoon, add cream cheese and icing sugar. Beat until it all comes together.

Leave in fridge until needed. Take your cooled cakes and sandwich them together using the frosting. Top the cake with more frosting and sprinkle with pecans.

Banana loaf with a crunch topping

(Serves 10 – 21p per portion)

Preparation Time: 10 minutes.

Cooking Time: 35 minutes.

YOU NEED:

  • 125g butter
  • 2 tbsp runny honey
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 190g self- raising flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 60ml semi-skimmed milk
  • 1 tbsp demerara sugar

METHOD: Grease and line a 2lb loaf tin. Melt the butter, sugar, honey and vanilla in a pan over a medium heat.

Remove from heat and add the mashed bananas, mix well. Add the egg, mix well. Stir in the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and milk. Pour into the prepared tin.

Sprinkle with the demerara sugar. Bake at 170C/fan 150C/ gas mark 3 for 35 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool.

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