Sunday, 18 August 2013

Recipes by John Whaite

I'm sure many of you are just as excited as I am! Yes The Great British Bake Off  is back on our screens on 20th August!

Since the show last year, I have been a little addicted to John Whaite's recipes, my favourite and well deserved bake off winner! John won over the audience with his down to earth personality, his passion and his amazing talent for baking. I think it was the second episode when John won star baker on bread week that I thought what a great baker John truly is! I started following him on twitter and when he tweeted a recipe for his wholemeal loaf, I really wanted to try out the recipe. I've only tried bread making once and it turned out in such a disaster that I never attempted it again but after bread week on the bake off, I was inspired by John and the show to give it another go. So when I attempted the recipe and seeing my dough double in size I was clapping with joy! I was thinking, I must be doing it right this time! (The first time I tried making Chinese bread rolls, they actually turned out like rocks!)

Yes! My first successful homemade bread! The loaf turned out beautiful, lovely and light. Bread making didn't seem that scary after all following this easy and simple recipe. Recipe can be found HERE 

Second recipe I tried from Johns blog, Lemon Drizzle Loaf. A very moist, zesty and fluffy loaf. Recipe HERE 
From here on I always trust Johns recipes as I know they will turn out great, they do just get better and better each time!

These Blueberry and White Chocolate Bagels are the ones John made on the bake off. I've not made bagels before but the contestants on the bake off looked like they were having so much fun and after making my first successful loaf I was a little bit more confident playing with dough this time. I loved the recipe, these turned out great! Sweet, chewy and yummy! Recipe HERE 

Johns Gateau Saint-Honore a la passion is one of the most advanced recipes that i've tried. So much works goes into this famous French patisserie and its a real test of skill and I certainly didn't have it! Its the first time I made choux and rough puff pastry. The choux pastry was quite straight forward to make but the puff pastry I found very difficult! After wasting two blocks of butter, I still failed miserably and i've never been brave enough to attempt puff pastry till this day. This would have been a lovely dessert if I didn't mess up my puff pastry but the flavours was beautiful, the choux was lovely filled with chantilly cream and the caramel but I wished I did a better job with the presentation. What's special about this recipe is that it has a lovely passionfruit curd filling, absolutely gorgeous. Recipe HERE

Johns Arabian Night Tart is one of my favourites bakes from last years bake off! A rich and buttery pastry case filled with pistachio frangipane, creme patissiere and decorated with exotic fruits.

I was so please how this turned out as I don't make tarts that often. The pastry turned out lovely, not too thick or too thin, crisp with no soggy bottom, soft pistachio frangipane and a lovely smooth creme patissiere. A perfect, stunning recipe! A recipe I highly recommend. Recipe can be found HERE 

Soon after John was crowned the winner of The Great British Bake Off, he started to write his first baking book but he still continued posting recipes on his blog and this time I decided to make my first ever Christmas cake using his recipe. As I didn't want to use alcohol, I asked John what juice he would recommend and he suggested pomegranate juice would be nice. I was really looking forward to making this cake as i've not made a Xmas cake before, while the cake was in the oven my house smelt absolutely beautiful! Recipe HERE 

My first Christmas Cake

Johns chocolate chiffon recipe has got to be my all time favourite cake! I've lost count how many times i've made it now. A very light and chocolatey sponge and it's even better with his salted caramel icing, indulgent experience! Trust me, I can eat a lot of this cake! Recipe HERE

Finally in April 2013, John released his first book JOHN WHAITE BAKES, Recipes for everyday and every mood. I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book and I knew I wouldn't be disappointed! The book have a wide variety of recipes and for people of all skill levels. There are many delicious savoury recipes in the the book that I would like to try including, a caramelized onion and rosemary fougasse, pizza puttanesca but I do have a very sweet tooth and everytime I pick up the book I can't help but make something sweet again! Here are a few of the recipes i've tried so far from the book.

Here are some apricot and white chocolate flapjacks, a white chocolate and raspberry melting cake, rose madeleines and spiced apple and cranberry muffins. What I love about the book is that it includes many quick, easy and mouth-watering recipes, a lot of ingredients you will already have in your cupboard and also many fancy recipes for dinner parties or those special occasions. 

These salted peanut and chocolate florentines are absolutely addictive! I used sultanas instead of apricot as I didn't have any apricot in the house but they still were very good. Perfect for my sweet tooth, sweet, chewy and chocolatey.

These Rose Lychee Meringue Hearts are so adorable! I was so looking forward to making these as i've never made meringues before and I was so pleased that they turned out lovely! The meringues were light and airy, crisp on the outside and soft in the inside just like a meringue should be and with the lychee topping its just perfect.

Definitely one of my favourite recipes from the book so far! Deliciously sweet, pretty and such a chic dessert. John has definitely created the most indulgent and delicious recipes for everyday and every mood...

A must try recipe, heaven on a plate! 

Hope you like my attempts of Johns recipes, do try them out as they are all beautiful recipes. You can order Johns book HERE John is already writing his second book and i'm really looking forward to when it comes out as he's been studying at Le Cordon Bleu for a pastry diploma to become a patissier and i'm sure there will be some great recipes and hoping some baking techniques too. I'm so happy that he is doing so well after the Great British Bake Off and i'm sure he's going to continue to do great in the future.