I know, sounds weird (super weird), but I promise it isn’t as weird as it sounds! I wanted to make an effort to do some Christmas baking this year. Of course gingerbread men & mince pies are next on my list, but I fancied making a cake. But not just any cake. A festive, gluten-free, kidney bean cake, with raspberry & white chocolate. What could go wrong?
So I originally wanted to post the method as an IGTV, but sadly Instagram won’t let me… But instead I’ve uploaded the video clips to my stories & I will save them in my highlights. Head over to my Instagram page to have a watch!
Kidney Bean Cake – The Ingredients
You will need…
1 tin of kidney beans (400g)
100g of gluten free plain flour
50g of cocoa powder
75g of coconut oil (if you aren’t a fan, butter is fine)
125g of brown sugar
1.5 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
250g of raspberries
1 bar of white chocolate
Icing sugar & other items to decorate
Kidney Bean Cake – The Method
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and line a 20″ baking tin.
Use a blender to blend the kidney beans into a smooth paste-like texture. Then, measure out the rest of your ingredients (apart from the chocolate & raspberries) and add it all into a mixing bowl.
Mix well until all the ingredients have combined, then add the raspberries. Gently stir the raspberries into the mixture, and add around 3/4s of the white chocolate (breaking it into small chunks as you add).
Pour the ingredients into your baking tin and bake for 25 minutes.
Leave the cake to cool for 10-15 minutes. In the meantime, melt the rest of the white chocolate.
Roughly coat the top of the cake with the chocolate (I found a teaspoon the easiest way to do this), and add your decoration!
For my cake I used edible sugar holly leaves & berries and lightly dusted the top with icing sugar. But you can be even more creative, or just leave it with the melted chocolate!
Of course, this cake will work just as well with ordinary plain flower. You can also use butter instead of coconut oil, and milk-free chocolate if you want it to be dairy free too! Why not get creative and try different berries, or even dark chocolate?
Are you doing any Christmas baking this year? Tempted to try this cake? Let me know!
Okay, so who doesn’t love a Christmas film? I am alllll about snuggling up with a feel good film, especially at this time of year. Everyone’s festive film favourites will be different, but I thought I’d run through mine. You never know, there may be one or two you forgot even existed!
Not sure if this is slightly unconventional or not, but I absolutely adore this film. The cast is amazing to start with (yes – Eva Longoria is in this, thank you very much). But I genuinely love the take on the whole ‘Father Christmas’ story; they make it so legit, to the point where I genuinely could believe such an operation exists…! And who doesn’t love a cheeky cartoon at Christmas?
Home Alone #2
I also love #1, but I have to say Home Alone #2 is one of my festive film favourites. Not sure why, but it’s an absolute must-watch of mine at Christmas! I haven’t actually watched 3 or 4, and I think there might even be a fifth one?! Anyway, love this one. And every time I watch it, it makes me sooo desperate to visit New York!
The Snowman & Father Christmas
Another animation (I think I’m secretly still 6 years old) but I think this film is soooo cute. And I feel like it’s also seriously underrated?! It’s an easy watch, and the music is just gorgeous. I happen to have the double DVD which includes Father Christmas – not complaining! Another super cute silent film. Gosh, all this film talk is making me want to grab a hot chocolate and snuggle in!
So, maybe I’m just a sucker for a big cast… But I can’t get through the festive season without watching The Holiday. Fun fact! They filmed it in a village near where I grew up, and one day we actually went to the set & watched them filming. My mum loves Jude Law, and we stood at the front of a crowd of people and watched them film him crossing a road about 145 times. In the end they actually cut that scene from the film – gutting! They also covered the church in fake snow but it looked so magical. And, Kate Winslet’s house was actually only ‘built’ for the show (obviously not properly) so isn’t a real house at all. Sorry for the spoilers….!
Saving the best until last… This is my all time favourite Christmas film, and I’d almost go as far as saying it’s my favourite film full stop (it’s definitely in my top 5 anyway!). The cast is obvs second-to-none and I love the way they make the storylines in this film. The music is sensational throughout and the opening scene honestly makes me cry (let alone the rest of it). If someone said I had to choose between never being able to watch Love Actually again, or it being the only film I’m ever allowed to watch for the rest of my life… You bet yo’ bottom dollar that I’d drop all other films in a heartbeat!
To Conclude Festive Film Favourites
What are your film favourites at Christmas? Do you love an all-star cast like me, or prefer the more traditional films? Let me know – I’m always up for discovering new Christmas films!