The Royal’s Chocolate Biscuit Cake – Prince Harry’s Grooms Cake?

 

Biscuits shaped into a cake, brilliant

When the Royals are in the spotlight, you can’t help but wonder what they are eating. To the rescue is  Eating RoyallyRecipes and Remembrances from a Palace Kitchen.

Written by Darren McGrady in 2007, he was a Chef to the Royal Family during the Diana years, starting shortly after her marriage to Prince Charles, and served as her personal chef until her untimely death.

This simple chocolate biscuit cake served as Prince William’s Groom’s Cake for his wedding to Kate in 2011. You can easily make it to celebrate Harry’s wedding to Meghan on May 19.

As you can see there is no flour or leavening, so think chocolate covered tea biscuits shaped into a cake if you eat is right away.  Leave it for a few days and the cookies soften to give it more of a lovely cake texture.  The recipe calls for a 6 inch spring form pan so to get the same volume if you want to use a standard 9 or 10 inch spring form pan, you will need to double the recipe.  This “cake” will freeze well for your next garden or tea party

The Royals Chocolate Biscuit Cake
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
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This particular cake is a favorite of palace guests. As you can see there is no flour or leavening, so think chocolate covered tea biscuits shaped into a cake if you eat is right away. Leave it for a few days and the cookies soften to give it more of a lovely cake texture.
The Royals Chocolate Biscuit Cake
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
This particular cake is a favorite of palace guests. As you can see there is no flour or leavening, so think chocolate covered tea biscuits shaped into a cake if you eat is right away. Leave it for a few days and the cookies soften to give it more of a lovely cake texture.
Servings Passive Time
6people 3hours
Servings
6people
Passive Time
3hours
Ingredients
Servings: people
Units:
Ingredients
Servings: people
Units:
Instructions
  1. Lightly grease a small (6 x 2½-inch) spring form pan with ½ teaspoon butter or cooking spray.
  2. Break each of the biscuits into almond-size pieces by hand and set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl until the mixture is a light color.
  4. Melt the 4 ounces of dark chocolate in a double boiler.
  5. Add the butter and sugar mixture to the chocolate, stirring constantly.
  6. Add the egg and continue stirring. Fold in the biscuit pieces until they are all coated with the chocolate mixture.
  7. Carefully spoon the chocolate biscuit mixture into the prepared spring form pan, working to ensure you get the mixture into the nocks and crannies as best as you can. Even out the top as it will be the bottom of the cake when you finish.
  8. Chill the cake in the refrigerator for at least three hours.
  9. Remove the cake from the refrigerator, and let it stand while you melt the 8 ounces of dark chocolate for icing.
  10. Slide the ring off the cake and turn the cake upside down.
  11. Melt the extra dark chocolate and dairy product in a metal bowl set over simmering water on the stove. Take off the heat and let thicken to spreading consistency. You can now camouflage any gaps and the ganache will harden when it sets
  12. The longer you let the cake rest, the softer the biscuits will become.
Recipe Notes

The recipe calls for a 6 inch spring form pan so to get the same volume if you want to use a standard 9 or 10 inch spring form pan, you will need to double the recipe.  This "cake" will freeze well for your next garden or tea party.

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Downton S6E8: Downton Abbey Has Gone Completely Bananas

S6BE8Bananas
Bananas was a great word to describe this episode: that Spratt!

Wow, there was quite a bit of drama to absorb this week on Downton; I am sorry to have to spoil the fun, but there is only one episode left of Downton Abbey. It is the traditional extended Christmas Special that we have come to love over the years, but this one will be bittersweet. Mark your calendars (or keep tabs on the countdown clock at right) and bring out the good silverware, the finale is March 6, 2016. It also happens to be a couple days after my birthday, so thanks PBS for making my year. Be sure use my handy index to help plan your own fabulous finale party.

In keeping with tradition, I will continue to share one recipe from each episode as my love letter to the Downton kitchen staff and to those fans who love the food on the show. This week’s recipe is a mashup of two story lines. The Crawleys saved Mrs. Patmore’s Bed & Breakfast with Afternoon tea, so I knew we would be baking something for tea.  We already have a delicious scone recipe, so I thought traditional Cornish Banana Cake would be appropriate, considering “banana” was used as a code word at the magazine. If you are looking for a more health conscious banana recipe, there is always my fabulous banana breads.

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Downton S6E6: Smoked Salmon and Other Romantic Gestures

S6E6Openhouse (2)
Downton opens their doors for charity. Grand homes now open their doors for survival.

We have reached another milestone in the final season of Downton Abbey. Last night was our final standoff against the Super Bowl. Regardless of the ratings, it is sad to think that we won’t have the same battle for the best screen in the house next year. How are your Valentine’s Day plans coming? Perhaps you and your loved one will be cuddled up watching Downton together. I know Lord D and I will be.
In keeping with tradition, I will continue to share one recipe mentioned on each episode as my love letter to the Downton kitchen staff and to those fans who love the food on the show. We continue to see how food plays a role in adjusting to married life. We have recently prepared a lovely duck dish which Elsie prepares for dinner, so we will focus on her first course of smoked salmon, one of my favorites. Continue reading Downton S6E6: Smoked Salmon and Other Romantic Gestures

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Downton Abbey Season 6: The Season of Resolution

S6Troublesasus
A burning question for S06: Will Anna and Bates  ever find happiness?

Each new year promises a fresh start, and yet this year is bittersweet for Downton Abbey fans; this is the sixth and final season for our beloved show. We were all excited that Season 06E1 finally debuted on PBS last night, and yet we know that we only have eight more precious episodes to watch before we have to say goodbye to the Crawley family and their servants.

We must be resolved to gracefully let these beloved characters live out their lives without us watching. It is going to be tough, but the UK fans who have already seen the final episode seem to be holding up so far, but then again American audiences are far more passionate about Downton Abbey. Who knows if a movie will ever be made (their a rumours of discussions), but we shall be comforted that we can watch it all again from the beginning.  Just like our favorite meal, we can enjoy just much as the first time we experienced it.

In keeping with tradition, I will continue to share one recipe mentioned on camera from each episode as my love letter to the Downton kitchen staff and to those fans who love the food on the show. Today’s recipe is Coconut Ice, an easy to make sweet which you can proudly serve at your next Afternoon Tea, or share with loved ones while watching Downton.

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Valentine’s Day Love at Downton Abbey is Served with Victoria Sandwich

RoseandAtticus
Downton’s latest couple: Rose and Atticus (ITV)

Love is in the air as we count down the days until Valentine’s Day. This season of Downton Abbey is certainly filled with love connections, some in the most unexpected places. While we see sparks fly between Rose and Atticus, it is lovely to see Isobel and Lord Merton find new love in their golden years.  And who knew that the prim and proper Violet had a secret past with a dashing Russian Prince?  While she might be tempted to run off with Prince Kuragin, she does make a good point that there is no one run from. Mabel Lane Fox is certainly trying to rekindle her love with Tony with Charles’ help. And Mary is just happy being Mary.

Sadly there is no dish which gets on-air mention in this week’s episode (unless you count ice cream, but it is not really the season for it), but we do see Daisy putting the finishing touches on a Victoria Sandwich.  If you notice this season (see below) it is the favorite tea cake of choice at Downton, a regular cast member often sitting demurely on camera. So for the love of a good cake…

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Downton Abbey Season 5: As Satisfying as a Good Pudding…or Golden Globe

joanne_froggatt_3161609c
A well deserved win for Joanne Froggatt who plays Anna

It was a great night for American Downton Abbey fans. We had prepared ourselves to watch another great episode of Season 5, but were so thrilled to share in the joy of Joanne Froggatt’s win at the Golden Globes. She won for best supporting actress in a TV series. In her powerful acceptance speech she addressed her controversial storyline in Season 4.  “After this storyline aired I received a small number of letters from survivors of rape and one woman summed up the thoughts of many by saying she wasn’t sure why she’d written, but she just felt in some way she wanted to be heard,” she said. Her acceptance speech can be viewed here.

This week’s Downton Dish is pudding. In this week’s episode, the Downton kitchen prepared a Charlotte Russe for the Crawley family, so we will be making a Chocolate Charlotte Russe. A french dessert, it is my small act of solidarity with the French people in light of the terrorist attacks in Paris last week. On a lighter note, why not serve this dish to your Valentine this year.  Lord D loves anything chocolate.

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Your Online Guide to Hosting A Downton Abbey Themed Party

DiningatDownton
Here’s a fun party game: who in this picture is no longer with us? (photo ITV)

Downton Abbey fans love to share the show with their friends and family.  The fabulous food lends itself to themed parties.  In this post, I include a few specific ideas for planning a Downton party.  Whether you are serving 2 or 200 there are plenty of recipe ideas to make in your own Abbey.

In 200 posts over three years, I have posted over 250 recipes for foods which would have been served upstairs and down at Downton Abbey and other great English country houses from the Edwardian era through to the early 1920s. All for the love of Downton and those who love the show.  For a full list of dishes by meal or occasion, check out my Recipe Index.

Entertaining is Much Simpler in Season 5

We are now in the 1920s and if you are planning to host a Downton Dinner, you will be relieved to know that family dinners during this period are now only 3 courses…unless of course you are entertaining your fellow aristocrats.  And the cocktail party finally comes to Downton. Carson finally gets with the times!

Check my Press Clippings

Don’t just take my word for It:  I have given a number of interviews in the national press,and my recipes have been posted in papers around the world.  I even prepared Afternoon Tea for national TV. Check out my Press Page.

Why not buy the Book?

Want it all and more in a pretty package?  My ebook, Abbey Cooks Entertain, is available for download here (click on the image in the right column), or you can order from Amazon. I also include a cocktail section with authentic cocktails from the era. My 2nd Edition is now available with recipes from Season 1 – 5 with both imperial and metric measurements.

I hope to provide inspiration for fans of all cooking ability who want to take a Downton twist on casual or formal gatherings.  It is pretty rare to get rich selling books, but every penny helps offset my food costs so I can continue to share new recipes with you throughout the year.

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Soul Cakes, the Original Halloween Treat

Turnips were the original lit jack-o-lanterns
Turnips were the original lit jack-o-lanterns

Summer is over and harvest celebrations are coming to a close.  Winter is not far behind. I love tracing traditions, and the foods that are an important part of the celebrations.

Did you know that Halloween has ancient origins in Ireland? It was originally called Samhain, and the day marked the end of the harvest season for Celtic farmers. As immigrants brought their traditions to America and adapted to their new surroundings. Originally, turnips served as Jack o Lanterns, but pumpkins are so much easier to carve.

Halloween also has religious connections.  The root word of Halloween – ”hallow” – means ”holy.” The suffix “een” is an abbreviation of “evening.” It refers to the Eve of All Hallows, the night before the Christian holy day that honors saintly people of the past.All Saints’ Day on Nov. 1, which is followed by All Souls’ day on Nov. 2.   “Souling” was the original trick-or-treat activity held around the same time.

This week’s dish are Soul Cakes, the original “treat” traditionally made for All Soul’s Day, celebrated on Nov. 2nd.

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Mother’s Day Tea is Always a Great Last Minute Idea

A simple cream tea
A simple cream tea makes a great gift.

Mother’s Day is tomorrow in the US and Canada.  Are you ready?  My mom lives across the country so I have my card in the post, with  a gift card for her favorite local restaurant, and a promise to Skype tomorrow.

For those of you blessed to have your Mother living within driving distance, it can be a struggle to decide how to celebrate the day with her.  If you missed out on brunch reservations, might I suggest that you try a tea party.  Your heritage might be linked to the British Empire, but I think I am safe in saying that Moms generally appreciate any meal they don’t have to cook, particularly if sweets are involved.  If you have siblings with little girls, you can gather the whole troop together, and let the kids experience a fun version of tea.

Today we recap tea ideas and continue our series on rhubarb with rhubarb ginger jam, a lovely mix of flavours.

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Final Countdown to Hogmanay and Downton Season 4

Hogmanay
Count down to Hogmanay

North Americans revel in Christmas celebrations and for us New Years is more of an after thought, one last party before getting back to business.  In Scotland however, Christmas is a low key celebration with a build up to New Years, called Hogmanay, the biggest party of the year.  This year’s Edinburgh celebration will attract 1 billion viewers, just as many as Americans who will watch the ball drop in Times Square. Chalk one up for Cousin Shrimpie.

Our final dish of the year is Lovely Little Mince Pies, a traditional dish served at Hogmanay a recipe from my book, Abbey Cooks Entertain.  Next week we will be diving into S4E1 as we move from darkness into light with the Crawleys.

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