Remote Support Remote Support Baking Our Way Through Lockdown A lot of people find baking (and eating) cakes and biscuits very relaxing and it’s a great activity to do with children too, so it’s understandable that so many people are turning their attention to the mixing bowl during lockdown. Banana bread seems to be a firm favourite in the UK, with Google Trends research showing that the number of people searching for banana bread recipes online increased by 84% in March! I’m very much a ‘beginner baker’ and my favourite banana bread is from the Good Food website. It’s really easy to make and seems to turn out well every time! Brilliant Banana Loaf Ingredients 140g butter, softened, plus extra for the tin 140g caster sugar 2 large eggs, beaten 140g self-raising flour 1 tsp baking powder 2 very ripe bananas, mashed 50g icing sugar handful dried banana chips, for decoration Method Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Butter a 2lb loaf tin and line the base and sides with baking parchment. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then slowly add the eggs with a little flour. Fold in the remaining flour, baking powder and bananas. Pour into the tin and bake for about 30 mins until a skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 10 mins, then remove to a wire rack. Mix the icing sugar with 2-3 tsp water to make a runny icing. Drizzle the icing across the top of the cake and decorate with banana chips. Source: www.bbcgoodfood.com Or if you’re finding your local supermarket is still short on flour, how about trying Jamie Oliver’s delicious flourless chocolate cake. Flourless Chocolate Cake Ingredients 200g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing 200g dark chocolate (70%) 1 tablespoon strong coffee 6 large free-range eggs 250g golden caster sugar 70g cocoa powder, plus extra for dusting Method Preheat the oven to 160ºC/320ºF/gas 3. Grease a 20cm spring-form cake tin with a little butter and line with greaseproof paper. Rest a medium heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water on a medium-low heat. Break in the chocolate, roughly chop and add the butter, then allow to melt, stirring occasionally until smooth and glossy. Carefully remove the bowl from the heat, stir in the coffee and set aside to cool slightly. Separate the egg yolks and whites between two large bowls. Whisk the egg whites for 1 to 2 minutes, or until soft peaks form. Add the sugar to the yolks and beat for 7 minutes, or until pale. Sift in the cocoa powder and 1 pinch of sea salt, then gently fold through to combine. Stir in the melted chocolate mixture, then gently fold through the egg whites until smooth. Transfer to the prepared tin and place in the hot oven for around 1 hour, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Allow to cool completely on a wire cooling rack, then serve with a dusting of cocoa powder and fresh berries. Source: www.jamieoliver.com If you’re baking with children, the emphasis is often more on the decorating than on the baking itself, so cupcakes or biscuits can provide the perfect canvas on which to get creative!