I have moved to London. Yep, that's right. I picked up my crazy life in Melbourne, shoved it all into one (or two) oversized suitcases and jumped on a plane to come and explore another city. And how much fun it has been. 

You can follow all of my adventures over on my Instagram. And once I've managed to eat my way through the amazing cakes here, I'll do a dedicated blog post to the sweet wonders of London. 

In the meantime, I thought I would write a post about some delicious goodies you can bake when you don't have a set of electric beaters / a mix master. 

My KitchenAid back home was my baby - but it wasn't something I could bring over here. I do plan to buy an electric beater at some point, but at the moment, I'm going back to basics. The ole hand whisk can work charms.

I've got two recipes for you to add to your Pinterest board. I would encourage you to title that board 'No electricity bills / oLd $k00l bAkinG'. But you know, whatever floats your boat.

Recipe number one - the worlds fudgiest / best chocolate cake in the entire universe. Big claim I know, but I stand by it. Believe it or not, this is typically my go-to chocolate cake. And no electric beaters required! You can also add some raspberries to the batter right at the end, for that classic raspberry / dark chocolate love match made in heaven. 

You'll need -
Cake - 
250g unsalted butter
200g quality dark chocolate
375ml strong coffee
450g caster sugar
175g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons dutch cocoa powder
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Frosting -
2 cups pure icing sugar
1/2 cup dutch cocoa powder
50g melted butter
4 tablespoons thickened cream
1/4 cup Nutella

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees (160, fan forced) and grease and line 4 x 15cm cake tins. I only had two, so I just baked in batches.
2. Place the butter, chocolate and hot coffee into a saucepan over medium heat and whisk until melted and combined. Add sugar and mix to dissolve. Allow to cool for ten minutes.
3. Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa over the melted chocolate mixture and whisk through. Whisk in the eggs and vanilla until all combined.
4. Split the batter evenly between your tins and place in the oven to bake for about 35 mins. 
5. Meanwhile, whilst your cakes are cooking, sift icing sugar, cocoa powder in a bowl and whisk melted butter through. Add your cream and continue to whisk through. Add additional cream if you want the icing runnier. 
6. Mix through Nutella and set aside. 
7. Once the cakes are cooked, allow to cool in the tins for 15 mins. These cakes are exceptionally moist and if you turn them out immediately or when they are too hot, they are likely to split. So be patient!! I've learnt the hard way!
8. To assemble, place one cooled cake onto a cake board or plate and lather with Nutella frosting. Place the next cake on top and repeat process. You may wished to add sliced strawberries in between the layers to cut through the richness of the cake. 
9. Decorate as you wish! For this one, I used popcorn, meringues, strawberries, Maltesers and white Kinder Bueno. 

Recipe number two - banana bread peanut butter cookies. A new one that I recently whipped up in my new London kitchen. Super soft cookies, they are literally like little servings of banana bread. With the addition of my favourite thing in the world, peanut butter. Honestly I live for the stuff. 

You'll need - 
1 ripe banana, mashed
130g peanut butter (I used crunchy)
70g dark brown sugar
100g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
180g plain flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
2 pinches of salt
50g dark chocolate, roughly chopped into chunks

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees (160, fan forced) and line three baking trays with greaseproof paper.
2. In a bowl, mash together the banana and the peanut butter. Stir through both sugars and vanilla extract.
3. Sift flour, baking powder and salt over banana mixture and stir through. Fold through chocolate chunks.
4. Taking tablespoons of the batter (don't fret, it will be quite wet. More batter like, than dough like) drop tablespoons onto the try about 5cm apart. Refrigerate for one hour.
5. After refrigeration, bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Allow to cool on trays before moving to a cooling rack. Store in an air tight container. 

Happy 0Ld sKooL baking cake lovers!