Category Archives: Winter Recipes

Pear and mincemeat crumble cake


Use up any mincemeat you have over from Christmas for this tasty cake.


4 pears
3 tbsp. golden caster sugar
1 tsp. mixed spice
250g softened butter
250g golden caster sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
5 large eggs
200g self raising flour
100g ground almonds
7 tbsp. plain flour
6 tbsp. mincemeat


Peel and core the pears. Cut into thumb-size pieces.

Put the pears, 2 tbsp. of caster sugar and 2 tbsp. of water in a saucepan and cook over a medium heat for 10 minutes to tenderise.

Add the spice and leave to cool.

Heat the oven to 160C(140C fan)/Gas 3.

Grease and line the base and sides of a round, deep 20cm cake tin.

Cream the butter, sugar, vanilla and a little salt together.

Beat in the eggs and self raising flour. Then fold in the ground almonds.

Remove 85g of the batter into a small bowl and mix in the plain flour to make a crumbly looking mix.

Spoon half the cake batter into the cake tin. Top with half the pears and dot over half the mincemeat. Add the remaining batter, top with the rest of the pears and mincemeat and then the crumble mix. Sprinkle over the last tablespoon of sugar.

Bake for 1½ hours. Cover with foil after one hour.

Cool in the tin for ten minutes then cool on a rack.

Chocolate and Beetroot Cake

We enjoyed this one at the 2015 Harvest Festival.


50 g cocoa powder
180g plain flour
1.25 teaspoons baking powder
250g castor sugar
300g fresh cooked beetroot (cook whole with skin on and then remove skin)
3 eggs
200 ml corn oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Prepare a 7” cake tin – line the bottom with greaseproof paper and tie 2 layers of newspaper round the outside.

Sift cocoa, flour and baking powder together. Stir in the sugar and leave on one side.

Puree or liquidise the beetroot, put in a clean bowl and then stir in the eggs, corn oil and vanilla.

Make a well in the dry ingredients and stir in the beetroot mixture. Mix gently and then pour into the tin.

Bake at Gas Mark 4 / 160 degrees C for approx 40 minutes.

It will be done when a skewer comes out clean and surface is cracked. Dust with icing sugar. If you like, split it open and fill with a chocolate icing.

Chocolate icing – mix together 100 g icing sugar, 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder, 30 g margarine and 1.5 tablespoons of hot milk. Beat well until smooth. Use to ice a cake or fill the middle.