What would holidays be without desserts? But the crucial thing is to choose the right ingredients. Here are 5 simple and quick but really special dessert recipes.
There is nothing to say: when the cold starts to take its toll, the days get shorter and the twilight comes early, cloaked in mist, no one can resist the desire for a slice of cake, perhaps accompanied by a nice cup of hot tea. Then we bring the holidays, which have always been an opportunity to enjoy together with our dear savoury and elaborate foods, and all the traditional desserts. And we will not pretend to believe that it is only children who suffer the irresistible appeal of the latter!
However, when preparing desserts at home it is always advisable to pay attention to the ingredients that are chosen. At Holyart, we have always been great supporters of the genuineness and high quality of products of all kinds. It is no coincidence that for our store we only turn to small local products, often made inside monasteries, where ancient recipes handed down by monks and nuns over the centuries are still used. We think in particular of the products of the monasteries such as honey, jams and fruit compotes, but also artisan chocolate and liqueurs often used in pastry.
In this article, we want to suggest 5 simple and quick dessert recipes perfect for the holidays, but also for any moment in which the desire for sweetness takes you. They are simple desserts, but all characterised by the presence of a special ingredient, the poor quality of which can make the difference. Thus, if flour, butter and eggs, which are the basis of more or less every dessert, can be chosen with less attention, we recommend that you prefer high-quality products for the special ingredient: a good chocolate, a type of honey produced with processing artisanal, a liqueur distilled in a monastic company, will give your dessert a unique and truly surprising taste.
A very simple cake to prepare with a very special flavour is the Honey Cake. Of course, a lot depends on the choice of the most suitable honey for this dessert. Each honey has different characteristics, some are sweeter, others have a bitter aftertaste, still, others are slightly flavoured. Choose the one that best suits your taste, the important thing is that your choice falls on a quality artisan honey.
In addition to honey (150g) you will need:
300g plain flour
150ml milk or fresh liquid cream
120ml sunflower oil
1 sachet baking powder
Whip the whole eggs and sugar with an electric mixer until the mixture is frothy. Slowly add the milk at room temperature, continuing to beat, then the honey and finally the oil. At this point, just add the sifted flour and baking powder while continuing to use the electric whisk. Meanwhile, turn on the oven possibly ventilated at 160°.
When the dough is smooth and without lumps, bake it in a pan that you have buttered and sprinkled with flour. Bake for 55 minutes. Use a toothpick to make sure the cake is cooked inside as well. Remove from the oven your fragrant honey cake and be patient until it has cooled down. Sprinkle it with icing sugar and enjoy a nice slice, perhaps accompanied by your favourite tea.
Creamy dark chocolate cake
Choosing good chocolate as a base ingredient for a cake is also important. We offer you a rich choice of chocolate produced by the Trappist monks in the Frattocchie Monastery in Rome since 1880, in an artisanal way and with selected raw materials from the best, processed to obtain an excellent result.
The chocolate cake is the comfort food par excellence, especially during the winter, but not only. We offer you one with hazelnuts and chocolate, without flour or yeast, therefore also perfect for those with gluten intolerance problems. The result will surprise you: crunchy on the outside, super soft and melt-in-your-mouth!
200g of dark chocolate
200g of soft butter
200g of powdered roasted hazelnuts
30g of unsweetened cocoa
200g of sugar
4 eggs at room temperature
1 pinch of salt
You will then enrich your chocolate cake with an exquisite hazelnut cream icing obtained by mixing 80g of melted dark chocolate with 2 tablespoons of hazelnut spread. Garnish with hazelnuts or chopped hazelnuts.
First, melt the chocolate, preferably bain-marie to avoid searing. As it cools, separate the egg yolks from the whites and whip the latter with 50g of the prepared sugar. You will put the rest of the sugar in a planetary mixer with the K hook and whip it with the butter until you get a cream. Meanwhile, reduce the hazelnuts into a fine flour-like powder, and mix them with the cocoa. At this point, combine the egg yolks one at a time with the butter and the hazelnut and cocoa powder, continuing to mix. Finally, add the melted chocolate, keep stirring, and finally the whipped egg whites until stiff, mixing them gently with a spatula so as not to dismantle them. The cake will have to bake in a preheated oven at 170° for 40-45 minutes, in a 22cm mould, greased and lined with parchment paper. Before taking out the chocolate cake, leave it in the oven off with the door ajar for at least 10 minutes. Once the cake is taken out of the oven, turn it upside down on a plate and let it cool.
Cake with chocolate bars
Another chocolate cake, this time high and fluffy and soft, ideal for breakfast and a snack. Also, in this case, we advise you to choose top quality chocolate, to guarantee you an excellent result.
In addition to a 100g dark chocolate bar, get:
190g granulated sugar
3 eggs grated
The zest of 1 lemon
100g whole milk
100g sunflower oil
350g plain flour
16g baking powder
1 pinch of salt
You will then need a doughnut mould with a diameter of 26cm. Heat oven to 180°C.
This recipe is also quick and easy. This time you won’t have to melt the chocolate. After having whipped together the eggs, sugar and lemon zest, to which you will then add the milk and oil slowly, you will add the sifted flour together with the yeast. Pour half of the mixture into the greased and floured mould and spread over it half of the coarsely chopped chocolate bar, then cover with the rest of the dough and other pieces of chocolate. Bake in a preheated oven for 35-40 minutes. Before devouring it, let it cool down a bit.
A saffron cake? Unusual, this is certain but very fragrant, its unmistakable aroma will be enough to make your mouth water. Obviously, it will be necessary to choose top-quality saffron. We suggest the purest Saffron of Maremma grown by the monks of the Monastery of Siloe who patiently collect it by hand, flower by flower.
Prepare a cake pan with a diameter of 22cm, greased and lined with parchment paper and turn the oven on at 180°.
Here are the ingredients:
Hazelnut flour 120g
plain flour 100g
Potato starch 60g
Saffron pistils 0.15g, or if you prefer 1 sachet of powdered saffron
Yeast for cakes 10g
Beat the eggs in the mixer or with an electric mixer with half the sugar. Mix the saffron with the rest of the sugar, then add it to the beaten eggs and continue to whip the mixture. Melt the butter and while it cools, sift the flour, starch and yeast. Lastly, add the hazelnut flour. Pour the flour mixture one tablespoon at a time into the egg and sugar mixture. Mix well and finally add the melted butter. Bake for 30 minutes and enjoy the scent! Let the saffron cake cool before dusting it with icing sugar.
Orange liqueur cake
A liqueur cake can be a simple but also refined dessert, suitable for the palates of adults and children. Especially if we use a superior quality orange liqueur, like our Orange Elixir, sweet and lovable, made only with hydrated alcohol, sugar and orange peel infusion. It is so good that you will not be able to resist enjoying it on its own, after using it for your cake, perhaps at the end of a meal, also because, in addition to being very aromatic, it has strong digestive power.
The orange liqueur cake is actually a light, fluffy and very fragrant doughnut. In addition to the liqueur, it also contains the zest and juice of oranges and lemons, for a very fresh result.
Prepare a mould for doughnuts measuring 22-24cm in diameter, greased or buttered and then:
200 g of granulated sugar
350g of plain flour
juice and grated rind of 2 oranges
grated zest of 1 lemon
70ml of sunflower oil
16g of baking powder
2 tablespoons of orange liqueur
For the glaze:
4 tablespoons of orange jam
2 tablespoons of water
Beat the eggs together with the sugar, then add the seed oil, the grated orange and lemon zest, the juices and the orange liqueur. Once the liquid ingredients have been blended, add the sifted flour with the baking powder, and bake for 40 minutes in the preheated oven at 170°.
While the cake is cooking, prepare the orange glaze by heating the jam in a saucepan with 2 tablespoons of water, over very low heat, for about 3 minutes. Never stop mixing, you must obtain a fluid and smooth cream, which you will then filter through a sieve. This very fragrant liquid will be used to sprinkle the orange cake over and over again, for a very sweet and fragrant result. Enjoy your meal!