Award Winning Lantern Tray Bake


What is Lantern Tray bake in case you wondering? Well, the only answer is that it’s the nectar of the gods that’s what it is. It has digestives, glace cherries, raisins, butter, condensed milk and lots and lots of chocolate in it and over it. What more do you need in a tray bake?

Why is it called Lantern? I’m not too sure. It one of the life’s mysteries. However, if someone does know why it’s called this I would love to know.

Award Winning?  Well, maybe not award winning, but it did get a Highly commended after I entered it into the ‘No Bake Tray Bake’ Class at my Local Agricultural Show! Given that I received this not long after having really taken up baking and cooking with enthusiasm I was very chuffed. Not bad for a newbie.

In fact, the Agri Show is really how I ended up with this recipe as I had been looking for a No Bake Tray Bake recipe that was slightly different. I kinda though a lot of people would enter the usual, Rocky Road and I didn’t want to go down that road ( See what I did??) A friends mum recommended this and provided me with the recipe from her recipe book (which I’m pretty sure it holds all the world secrets). Thanks Mary.

Here is the Proof!


The ingredients I needed were already in my store cupboard so by making this recipe it actually helped me to get the door closed for once! ( well until the next trip to the shops, I may have a slight problem with buying lots of baking goods).

I remembered to include butter in the pic!



8oz chocolate ( now I use milk chocolate but I bet it would taste fab with dark chocolate too!)

6oz Butter

I can only get condensed milk in 397 gram tins, however you will only need half of this. The original recipe stated “a small tin of condensed milk” but in the Supermarket I could only see the 397g tin and initially thought this was the small tin. Well, let just say when I made this for the very first time the mixture was very wet and needed to be kept in the fridge all the time in order for it to be solid enough to eat a piece. It was still yummy, but yeah don’t use the whole tin! You will only need half the tin of condensed milk which will be about 198g

You will also need 16oz digestives , 8oz Raisins, 4oz glace cherries (chopped).

And Yes, some more chocolate about 10 oz . “If you like a lot chocolate on your biscuit join our clubRemember that advert for Club biscuits, well this is my mantra for this recipe!

So in a reasonable size pan, melt the 8oz of chocolate and 6oz of butter over a low heat. Whilst this is melting, use a rolling pin and bash the digestives into some fine crumbs but rein in the aggression a bit as you should also leave some larger bits of biscuit too.

Once the chocolate and butter mix is melted, add the digestives then the raisins, chopped cherries and finally the condensed milk and mix them all together.

I then pressed the mixture into a 9x13x2 baking tray and melted the remaining 10oz chocolate over a bain-maire or simply put, in a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water. I then poured the melted chocolate over the top of the mixture in the tray. Now you don’t need to use all the chocolate ( or you could use more if you have a deeper tin), I love a lot of chocolate so I like the chocolate to not only cover the mixture but to have some depth to it, however I’m some what restricted as my tray isn’t that deep.

This will need to go into the refrigerator overnight until the chocolate is set. Then simply cut into squares, make yourself a cuppa tea  and enjoy.


Afterwards I got some help with “cleaning” the pans from my hubbie. He is really good at “washing up”!!

Eating the remaining mixture from the pan.

The New and Less Talented Mary Berry

I received ‘The Great British Bake Off Celebrations’ cookbook for my Christmas from one of my very good friends, Rosie. Although,  I must admit I have never actually watched the programme….. sorry I feel really un-British saying that, haters don’t hate please! Anyway I decided to give some of the recipes a go and given that in my store cupboard I had Whisky, dried fruit, whisky, nuts, whisky and eggs I settled on the  Whisky, Fruit and Nut Cake.

I’m a messy baker so to prevent any more of my cookbooks getting covered with flour, sugar and egg gunk I use this lovely vintage style recipe holder. It also serves to pretty up the kitchen.


Here are the ingredients, minus the butter as that is currently sat softening on the window ledge (I always forget to take this out the fridge in advance!). The recipe called for caster sugar, however I only had granulated sugar. The nuts I used were pecans and walnuts and I used raisins, sultanas and craisins ( cranberries and raisins mix.) I used cinnamon in this however the recipe called for Mace but ISAM_5551.JPG had none available.

I raided our alcohol cupboard (also the laundry room) and decided to use Balvenie Caribbean Cask Whisky …. But Shhhh DO NOT TELL my husband, as last time I used this whisky in my BBQ sauce he went “ off his nut” ( as he would say) and rambled about how it’s his good whisky, not for cooking with and it tastes better from a glass than in food. Hence, why I also used Yamazaki Japanese whisky.

Preheat your oven to 180°C/ 350°F.

I put the 225g of butter ( once it was kinda of softened, I should probably have waited longer but I was impatient) into my wee blue mixer and mixed until creamy. Then I added 225g sugar until the mixture of light and fluffy. Then I beat 4 eggs along with 1 tablespoon of Balvenie Whisky and 2 tablespoons of Yamazaki Whisky in a separate bowl/jug   I then added this slowly to the butter mixture, beating well.  Mary Berry advises to keep 2 tablespoons of flour (out of the total amount of 225g self-raising) and add these two tablespoons with the last two tablespoons of egg to prevent curdling.

Well Mary……. This doesn’t look like it didn’t curdle… does it?



Anyhow forging on, in a separate bowl I combined the dried fruit (total of about 95g of raisins, craisins and sultanas depending on how heavy handed you are whilst measuring) with the chopped walnuts and pecans (about total of 100g) and I covered with a tablespoon of flour ( again from the total flour measured out).

I sifted the remaining flour with a ¼ teaspoon of Nutmeg and ¼ teaspoon of Cinnamon, then folded this into the butter/egg mixture. I then added the fruit and nuts, combined and then poured into a silicone loaf tin (2lb) and popped into the oven.

Now the recipe stated to cook for between 40 to 45 minutes, however when I looked at it at the 40 min mark, it wasn’t ready. I left it for another 5 minutes, however it still wasn’t ready so I put this in for another 5 minutes then my husband came in for this lunch and then I gave it another 5 mins. In my oven it took 55 minutes (although I am not convinced my oven is working properly)

I didn’t manage to cool this cake down before serving as about 5 minutes after it came out the Oven my husband wanted a bit with his cuppa tea. Hence the photo with the chunk out of the end!