25 Oct 2016

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along
It seems my Bake Off favourites are just dropping like flies. First Benjamina, then Selasi, I just hope Andrew isn’t next! So sad to see the uber chilled Selasi go home this week. He was such a refreshing change from the regular stressed out bakers.

I’ll never understand how he managed to stay just so chilled during most of the tasks. I would be a wreck and probably run out of time. Or drop something.

Baking along with Bake Off has been a bit challenging at times, but this week tested me. Give me a big cake to frost and I can do it, but give me a tiny fondant fancy to frost and everything falls apart. 

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along
I’m usually a patient person, but I will tell you that frosting a tiny square ruined my patience. Especially when that tiny square of sponge with its neat straight lines starts to crumble, even when it’s been frozen. How on earth did the bakers manage to keep theirs together?!

And the amount of fondant used to cover them, I think I went through about 1 kg of fondant with just these. And they still didn't dry properly.

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along
Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along
On a positive note, I have an even bigger appreciation for Mr Kipling and his lovely factory made fondant fancies than I ever did before. Because, boy are they little squares of goodness.

That being said, I did enjoy Patisserie week. The best part of Bake Off is that you're challenged to bake things that you wouldn't normally and fondant fancies definitely fall under that category.

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along
Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along

I chose to do lemon fondant fancies with a surprise centre. Instead of the usually creamy buttercream Mr Kipling are known for, I added a slight sharpness with some lemon curd. Topped with fondant, lemon buttercream and a citrus jelly, they turned out exactly how I thought they would and boy, do they taste good.

Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake AlongFondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along

I had done a second batch of fondant fancies, which were going to be chocolate with a Nutella surprise in the middle. Unfortunately, I ran out of time because frosting the tiny squares took so long and then our kitchen had to be cleared out for the refurb which started on Monday and well... I just focused on getting at least one batch out.

RIP kitchen, I'm going to miss you for the next month.

These little "naked" chocolate fancies have since been frozen in individual portions, for those days when you just need a small chocolate fix and what a brilliant idea it was. They keep super well in the freezer and defrost pretty quickly too!

So if you've got a lot of patience and love fondant fancies, give 'em a go and whip up a batch of the little squares or the naked kind if you can't be bothered with all that fondant. They taste good, so they must be worth it, right?

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along
Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies | Bake Off Bake Along

Lemon Surprise Fondant Fancies

Makes: 16

Ingredients:

Sponge:
75g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
5 medium eggs
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp lime juice
2 unwazed lemons, finely grated zest
1 unwaxed lime, finely grated zest
150g caster sugar
150g plain flour

Lemon Buttercream
150g unsalted butter, room temperature
250g-300g icing sugar
1tsp lemon juice
Yellow food colouring

Fondant
1kg ready made white fondant block
Juice of one lemon
Yellow food colouring

Filling:
Lemon curd (around 5 tbsp)

Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4/180C and prepare a 9 inch square baking tin, with butter and greaseproof paper. In one large bowl, whisk together the eggs, lemon and lime juice, lemon and lime zest, and sugar. On a high setting, beat for around 10 minutes, or until the mixture turns thick and smooth, and has more than doubled in size. 
  2. Sift a third of the flour into the mixture and fold together gently, being careful not to disturb the air that has been whisked in. Sift another third of the flour into the mixture, before pouring the cooled and melted butter down the side of the bowl and fold. Then fold in the remaining flour. 
  3. Make sure you run the metal spoon or spatula around the base of the bowl to ensure all the flour has been folded in. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and pop in the oven for about 25 minutes or until golden brown. 
  4. Remove from the oven to cool, before wrapping in cling film and placing in the freezer. 
  5. For the buttercream, beat the butter until pale and fluffy (around 5 minutes). Slowly sift in the icing sugar and beat until combined. Add the lemon juice to the buttercream and continue to beat until smooth. 
  6. Remove the sponge from the freezer and cut in half, so you get two rectangles, then cut those strips in half, repeating the process until you have 16 squares. With a round piping nozzle, press the smaller circle into the top of the squares halfway and then remove, coring out the centre. In the hole, place a spoonful of lemon curd in each before placing back in the freezer to chill. 
  7. Optional: you can let buttercream consume all your time and attempt to individually frost each sponge. I didn't and they tasted just the same. (If you do decide to frost each sponge - go you! - remember to reserve a few tablespoons to swirl on top)
  8. To prepare the fondant, in a large bowl, tear up small chunks of the white fondant and then add the lemon juice and add 100ml of water gradully, while mixing on a slow-medium speed. As the mixture comes together, add the yellow food colouring to the mixture. If your fondant is still too thick to pour over the sponges, then add a little bit of water at a time. Make sure all the chunks of white fondant are combined and the mixture is smooth!
  9. In groups of 4, remove from the sponges freezer and place on a wire rack over a tray or greaseproof paper to catch the dripping fondant. With a large serving spoon/cooking ladel, pour the fondant over each individual sponge, making sure to cover the sides. I found dipping a small spatula in hot water and then spreading over the top and sides, helped evenly distribute the fondant so it wasn't too thick. But you'll always miss one patch! Once you've covered all 16 squares, give yourself a pat on the back and place them in the fridge to set a little bit. 
  10. Get a piping bag with a small star nozzle and fill with the lemon buttercream. Swirl the buttercream on top of each fancy and top with a citrus jelly!
Did you attempt fondant fancies for this weeks Bake Off Bake Along? Well done if you survived them!
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