Fairy Tale Baking by Ramla Khan (book review) & The Three Bears Caramel Porridge Flapjacks

As a self taught baker I have seen so many different baking books. It is how I taught myself to bake by reading book after book after book! I had two thoughts when I first glanced at this book, Fairy Tale Baking: first was “Bakes based on fairy tales, cool!” secondly I thought “I hope it’s not just cake decorating, I am not all that good with fondant.”

My first thought was correct and my second a fear that dissipated as soon as I started to read it. Not that we don’t see fondant in the book, it’s just not all fondant if you know what I mean.

Each fairy tale or classic tale picked by the author, Ramla Khan, has 4 different bakes or treats to accompany the chosen tale. Making it perfect for party planning. As she says in the introduction a few of the recipes could be adapted for other stories. All it takes is a bit of your creative thought!

The introduction gives the basic skills and techniques you will need for the recipes in the book and Ramla Khan gives us basic recipes for cake, cookies, and the different icings or frostings.  Each chapter is a tale and before we get to the tasty treats we get an expert or a shortened version of said fairy tale or classic story.

The Fairy Tales you’ll see in this book are:

Sleeping Beauty
Goldilocks and the Three Bears
Jack and the Beanstalk
Hansel and Gretel
Little Red Riding Hood
Snow White
Princess and the Pea
The Snow Queen
Peter Pan
Alice in Wonderland
Beauty and the Beast

For example for Sleeping Beauty she gives us recipes for a Sleeping Beauty in a Bed Cake, Spindle Churros, Bramble Tartlets with chocolate thorns, and Meringue Kisses. That’s just a teaser of the creative and gorgeous looking recipes in this book. Each recipe is accompanied by pictures of the finished product and where needed some of the techniques.

I was quite taken with Goldilocks and the Three Bears. There is a Bear Cake, Caramel Porridge Flapjack (recipe below), Chocolate Chair Cupcakes, and a Gingerbread Bed.

The flapjack are technically a no-bake recipe that is super easy and produces a sugary treat that is just right. My only niggle was that the recipe called for a 6inch or 15cm square cake tin. It’s not a size I have ever used. An 8 inch square was way too big and my circle 7 inch was just not the right size, but my 2 lb loaf tin was just right for the job!

Caramel Porridge Flapjack

115g unsalted butter
125g dark brown/muscovado sugar
3 tablespoons golden syrup
300g rolled oats

Line your 15cm/6in square baking tin or like me your 2 lb loaf tin or two 1 lb loaf tins with grease proof paper. 
Melt the butter, sugar, and golden syrup until the sugar has dissolved, it should be smooth and shouldn’t feel grainy. I would watch it closely as sugar can easily burn if it gets too hot, keep it on a low heat. Pour in the oats and stir to coat. Pour into prepared tin and smooth it out with a spatula. Leave to cool in the fridge while you make the Caramel Chocolate topping.

Caramel Topping

400g tin of dulce de leche or ready made caramel
200g white chocolate, broken up
150g icing sugar, sifted

Mix the caramel and chocolate together in a medium sized sauce pan over a low heat and stir until smooth and combined. Add the sifted icing sugar, if it’s not sifted it may cause clumps. Be sure to stir it in well before pouring it on top of the oaty flapjack base. It should smooth out pretty much on it’s own, but use a spatula or icing palette knife to make the top nice and smooth. 
Keep in the refrigerator for a minimum of 2-3 hours or over night before slicing into squares.

As these are so rich you could cut them into three different sizes one that’s bigger for Papa Bears, one that’s just a bit on the smaller side for the Mama Bear who’s sweet tooth isn’t that sweet, and one size that is just right for Baby Bears!

notes: Fairy Tale Baking by Ramla Khan published by Apple Press, Quarto UK was released late October (SRP -£12.99) It was given to me to review, no other compensation was given please see my contact/policy page (tab above) for further information.

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