Tea Blog: Baking Bonanza

Hello everyone,

Since i have returned home there has been a little bit a Baking Bonanza in my family home! I have returned home for the majority of my third semester to complete my dissertation – a situation i never thought i would voluntarily put myself in after completing my first dissertation during my BA. But there has been a hormonal/celebratory bout of baking going on in my house during my first week home.

Mum also made Ida Garten’s German Chocolate cupcakes which you can click on the link on her name to check out but they are far too difficult for me to try and explain. 🙂 But they are incredibly delicious and i had alot of fun sneaking as many of them out of the fridge as possible.

And this is just a week before my birthday which resulted in an amazing Doogies Goodies cake. This is the best bakery ever in my opinion and i wont get my birthday cake from anywhere else. Its a bright pink bakery in Ballymena – really close to my old secondary school so i promise this has been a long term love affair with their everything. 🙂

Now back to baking

The Fifteens

The first treat in my baking bonanza  (although there really isnt any cooking involved for these magical buns) I discovered as part of my Masters in Edinburgh is a phenomenon from Northern Ireland.  I didn’t realise until during The business of Magazine lecture, a fellow Northern Irish student ran up to me in a state of shock informing me that nobody else in our class knew what a fifteen was. It is a bun/biscuit which defines my years as high school called a Fifteen. They are called fifteens and I was taught how to make these in Home Economics class and they are incredibly easy. They have 5 ingredients and you are supposed to use 15 of the each of the 3 main ingredients – so Dead Easy :). And therefore resulted in an emergency run to Tesco’s to buy baking baking supplies to make these  for my next magazine lecture. They were well received and i hope if anyone decides to give them a try i would love a photo etc and hear what you think :):

Now some instructions for if you want to give these a go yourself:

Step One.

Take your fifteen digestive biscuits and out them in a bowl or giants resealable bag and break them into crumbs – i used a rolling pin but just whatever your method just make sure there are no huge lumps of biscuit left at the end.

Before:
 
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After:
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Step Two.

Add your marshmallows and glazed cherries – again 15 of each but this is really up to you. You can use as many or as few as you like and if your not a cherry fan you can replace them with another fruit of your choose but these ingredients are for a ‘classic’ fifteen. If you have large marshmallows you have to cut them into quarters or as you can see from mine i bought mini marshmallows and through them all in. The cherries are also best if they are cut in half this means they can be better distributed through out the mixture.

When it comes to quanties – just remember there needs to be, maybe a third, more digustive crumbs than marshmallows/cherries.

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Step Three.

Time to add a tin of condensed milk. In this case I buy a standard tin but as with all my baking method, I eye ball the measurements. Add most of the tin and you want to mixture to combine to form a solid consistency. As we are wanting to form a roll with the contents. so mix until you are happy and its becomes lift-able but still soft and not crumbly.
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Step Four.

Final stage – When you are happy with your consistency like below roughly.
Take a sheet of clingfilm or tinfoil (I did both because my cling was a little narrow but you don’t half to). Layout on a flat surface and shake out a layer of unsweetened coconut flakes and layout on top your fifteen mixture, sprinkle more on top to cover them entire roll (this is easier if your mixture is a little damp).
Now wrap the roll with your wrap of choice and place in the fridge overnight to firm up.
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Finally.

These are the finished fifteens – I planned a photo of the finished buns but my mum got in there first! Biscuit thief! But they didn’t last long after this so you are lucky to see them at all. Just slice up the firmed up roll to your desired thickness with a cuppa tea.

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Please share with we me if you give these a try and let me know what you think:
Twitter: @NeverWhere2306 Instagram: @Neverwhere2306

Also i want to know if anyone else recognises these buns or is it a northern irish thing?

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2 thoughts on “Tea Blog: Baking Bonanza

  1. I’ve never heard of Fifteens before either, but they look very yummy! As much as I love baking and trying out new recipes I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not particularly good at it, but this looks like the type of thing that I can just about manage, haha 🙂
    Looking forward to more of your baking posts, lovely! xx

    • I think they must be an Irish thing 🙂 They really are very easy to make I especially love not have to actually cook anything. If you give them a try you will have to let me know how they go. But thank you- i hope to bake more not that I have finished university. xx

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