Recipes from Love, Aimee

Love, Aimee x

by Aimee Twigger

Recipes for stunning baked gifts in a very gifty format

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Makes 6 cakes
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Decorating time: 30 minutes

For the cakes
125 g (41/2 oz) butter
110 g (33/4 oz/1/2 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
2 eggs
Finely grated zest of 1/2 orange plus a little juice
1 teaspoon almond extract
75 g (23/4 oz/1/2 cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
35 g (1¼ oz/1/3 cup) almond meal
1 teaspoon baking powder

For the icing
185 g (61/2 oz/3/4 cup) mascarpone cheese
90 g (3¼ oz/3/4 cup) icing (confectioners’) sugar
100 g (31/2 oz/1 cup) flaked almonds, to decorate

6 dariole cake moulds
Apple corer

For the cakes
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease the dariole or similar cake moulds and line the bottom with baking paper.

Cream the butter and caster sugar together in a bowl until pale and creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the orange zest, juice and almond extract. Sift in the flour, almond meal and baking powder and fold into the mixture.

Spoon the batter into the moulds, about three-quarters full, bake for 25 minutes and then allow to cool.

For the icing
Mix the mascarpone and icing sugar together until smooth (see figure 1).


Trim off the top of the sponge cakes. Using the apple corer, remove the centre from each cake and set aside (see figure 2).


Put a spoonful of mascarpone icing into each cake (see figure 3) and then push the trimmed piece of sponge cake back in place.


Spread more mascarpone icing onto the outside of the sponge cake and decorate with flaked almonds (see figure 4).


Download printable recipe (PDF)



Serves 6 to 8
Prep time: ice cream 20 minutes, plus churning time; cake 10 minutes; meringue 20 minutes
Freezing time: 2-4 hours
Baking time: 25 minutes
Decorating time: 10 minutes

For the ice cream
350 ml (12 fl oz/11/3 cups) double (thick) cream
250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) milk
1 vanilla pod
2 chamomile tea bags
165 g (53/4 oz/3/4 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
6 egg yolks
21/4 tablespoons honey

For the cake
60 g (21/4 oz) butter
55 g (2 oz/1/4 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
1 egg
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
75 g (21/2 oz/1/2 cup) self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
3 teaspoons milk

For the meringue
125 g (4 oz) egg white (about
3 egg whites)
220 g (73/4 oz/1 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
90 ml (3 fl oz/1/3 cup) water

To decorate
Fresh flowers, such as chamomile or daisies (washed and dried)

Ice-cream maker
Round, deep container, the same diameter as your cake tin
Round cake tin (the tin I used was 20 cm in diameter)
Standmixer fitted with the balloon whisk attachment
Pastry brush
Sugar thermometer
Kitchen blowtorch

For the ice cream
To make the ice cream, put the cream, milk, vanilla pod and tea bags into a saucepan. Bring to a slow boil, then remove from the heat and leave with the lid on for 10 minutes to infuse the flavours. Remove the vanilla pod and tea bags and bring back to the boil. Mix the sugar and egg yolks together in a bowl. Pour a quarter of the infused liquid into the bowl, whisking constantly, to temper the egg yolks (see fig 1). Pour the tempered eggs into the saucepan and return to the heat, stirring until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon.

Temper your eggs by pouring a little of the infused liquid and mixing constantly.

Pour into an ice-cream maker, add the honey and churn according to the maker’s instructions. Transfer to a round, deep container of about the same diameter as your cake tin (I used a jug) and freeze for 2–4 hours (see fig 2). I find lining the container with plastic wrap before pouring in the ice cream is helpful when removing the ice cream from the container after it has frozen.

Ensure the container you are freezing your ice cream in and your cake tin are roughly the same diameter.

For the cake
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease and line the bottom of the cake tin. Cream the butter and sugar together in a bowl until pale and creamy. Beat in the egg, then stir in the lemon zest and juice. Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt and fold into the mixture. Stir in the milk to loosen the batter a little. Spoon into the cake tin, bake for 20 minutes and then allow to cool.

Remove the ice cream from its container – I usually dip the container in hot water to help release it (see figure 3).

When removing the frozen ice cream, dip the container in hot water to help release it.

Place the ice cream on top of the cooled sponge cake (see figure 4) and return to the freezer until the meringue is ready.

Place the set ice cream on top of the cake and return to the freezer.

For the meringue
Put the egg whites into the bowl of the standmixer fitted with the balloon whisk attachment, but don’t turn on the machine yet. Heat the sugar and water in a heavy-based saucepan, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Use a pastry brush dipped in cold water to wash any sugar crystals from the sides of the pan down into the syrup. Attach a sugar thermometer to the pan. When the syrup reaches 110°C/230°F, turn on the mixer and whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks start to form (see figure 5).

Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks begin to form.

When the syrup reaches 120°C/248°F, pour it into the egg whites in a slow steady stream while whisking at high speed. Continue for 6–8 minutes until the mixture is thick and glossy. Adding the hot syrup cooks the egg whites, so there is no need for further baking.

To assemble
As in figure 6, spoon the meringue over the ice-cream covered cake (don't be too neat as any ridges and swirls will colour nicely) and glaze with a kitchen blowtorch (see figure 7). Press in the flowers to decorate.

Cover the cake with meringue.

Glaze the meringue with a kitchen blowtorch.

Decorate the cake with the flowers. When you cut open the cake you will see the different layers.


Download printable recipe (PDF)




Serves 8 to 10
Prep time: 10 minutes
Freezing time: 25-30 minutes
Decorating time: 10 minutes

For the sponge
250 g (9 oz) butter
220 g (73/4 oz/1 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
220 g (73/4 oz/12/3 cups) buckwheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons milk

For the berry compote
10 blackberries
10 raspberries
5 strawberries chopped
1/4 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon water

To decorate
200 ml (7 fl oz/3/4 cup)
whipping cream
11/2 tablespoons icing (confectioners’) sugar, plus extra for dusting
Fresh berries, to decorate
Fresh flowers, to decorate

2 x 12 cm (41/2 in) round cake tins

For the sponge
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F, and grease the two cake tins.

In a mixing bowl beat the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Then add the eggs one at a time, making sure each one is properly combined before adding the next. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, sift in the flour and baking powder and fold into the mixture. Add the milk to loosen the batter a little.

Split the mixture equally between the two tins. Put the tins in the oven and bake on the same shelf for approximately 25–30 minutes. Allow to cool completely.

For the berry compote
Heat all the ingredients over a medium heat until the berries have broken down and the liquid has reduced a little (the consistency should be like jam), approximately 10 minutes. Allow to cool.
To decorate
Whisk the whipping cream with the sugar until the cream forms stiff peaks. Place the bottom layer of your cake on to your chosen cake stand or plate. Spread half of the whipped cream over the bottom layer, and then spread on the cooled compote. Place the next layer of sponge cake on top, and spread over the rest of the cream. Decorate with berries and any flowers (I added a rose), and finally dust with icing sugar.


Download printable recipe (PDF)




Makes 12 cupcakes
Prep time: 10 minutes
Baking time: 18-20 minutes
Decorating time: 10 minutes

For the cupcakes
2 duck eggs or 3 large chicken eggs
90 ml (3 fl oz/1/3 cup) buttermilk
185 g (61/2 oz) butter
Zest of 1 orange
185 g (61/2 oz/11/4 cups) self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
70 g (21/2 oz/2/3 cup) almond meal
185 g (61/2 oz/1 cup) light brown sugar, lightly packed
2 teaspoons mixed spice
120 g (41/4 oz/2/3 cup) sultanas
1 tablespoon apricot jam or marmalade

For the icing
60 g (21/4 oz/1/4 cup) cream cheese
40 g (11/2 oz/3 tablespoons) butter
60 g (21/4 oz/1/2 cup) icing (confectioners’) sugar
Zest of 1/2 orange

Cupcake tin
12 cupcake cases
Piping bag
Plain nozzle

For the cupcakes
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.

Beat the eggs in a bowl and then add the buttermilk. Melt the butter, add it to the bowl and mix well. Stir in the orange zest.

In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, almond meal, sugar and mixed spice, then fold these into the wet mixture. Stir in the sultanas.

Spoon the cake batter into the cake cases, about three-quarters full, and bake for 18-20 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.

Heat the apricot jam or marmalade in a saucepan with a dash of water until it becomes liquid. Using a pastry brush, glaze the cakes while they are still warm and then allow to cool.

For the icing
Mix all the icing ingredients together. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag with a small plain nozzle and pipe a cross onto the top of each cake.


Download printable recipe (PDF)