Summer Nights …. had me a blast

Lets talk about the English summer.

There are rainy days and sunny days and I don’t want to move from the sofa days.

There are dance around a field in your bare feet days and best of all there are long days!  Continue reading

Baking Tips #2 Recipes

#2 Following a recipe – the most important parts!

For those of you who are just learning / starting to bake I thought I would share some advice with you about some of the things I have learnt along the way, not that I’m a professional or anything just that these tips will help you get consistent results!

It may seem obvious but when following a recipe in baking you must follow it as closely as you can!

This is because when a recipe tells you to cream butter and sugar for 5 minutes there is a reason – not just to make the process a little longer, or to make your arm tired – these are the most important stages in a recipe.

Here is what my cookbook looks like!

Heavily annotated!

When I first started using Cook Books other than my Mum’s and Grandma’s I was baffled by the need to ‘whisk eggs for no more than 2 minutes’ or ‘cream butter and sugar until it looks like sand.’  These things confused me and I immediately turned to my mum for help!
“I don’t understand what the recipe is telling me – it doesn’t look like the kind of batter I am used to?”

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Oreo Cuppies {If you like it then you should have put a cookie on it }

Everywhere I go these days people are putting cookies in cupcakes and sandwiching things in cookies and making sandwiches out of cookies and  generally using cookies in awesome new ways that you never thought would work (or wanted to do but didn’t want to look like a food junkie) so I thought I would join the fad!

And that is the great thing about this blog – I can show you all the food junkie things I do and no-one is there to tell me not to, or ask me how many calories are in that!

I just show you and you (who are you by the way – is anyone reading?), you fabulous web-world people, read and hopefully enjoy and maybe, if I am super lucky, go on to make it share it with your friends and family and share the joy of cooking.  That’s all I want really!

So for this recipe that I have been bigging up in my mind I made my standard cupcake recipe from the Hummmingbird Bakery cookbook aka my bible and popped a cookie in the bottom (but only on half – just to be safe!)

I have to say most of my baking is done at night – being a night owl and also its better than watching tv (anyone else addicted to the vampire diaries? I have a secret thing for Damon

– don’t tell anyone but I so think Elena should be with him) and so here I am at 10pm writing up the recipe as the little cuppies grow and prosper in the oven.

So here you have it one recipe, two cupcakes (well 18 really), two icings (frostings if you will) and a very simple way to show someone you love them.  As I am trying to be super good and not eat tons and tons of junk food, at least half of these will probably be given away to my seminar group and friends.  I love giving cuppies away!

These cupcakes are the simplest and most effective ones I have ever made – dry ingredients wizzed up with butter to look like sand, then slowly add the liquid ingredients and BAM excellent cupcakes every time.  They are moist, and rich, light yet with a dense chocolate flavor.  Couple this with light creamy chocolate frosting or a thick cookie frosting and you are on for a winner!

These cupcakes are my fail-safe, go-to, ready in no time, absolute fave!

These are the cupcakes that prompted my lecturer to open up and tell our class why his nephew called him marshmallow man (and a weird seminar was had by all).

This time when shared again the lecturer told us why he thought he should go hunting (another strange Tuesday night!)

Have I bigged them up enough? Do you want the recipe now?

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Ode to Mothers (Especially Mine)

It is Mothers Day today and I am feeling like the worst daughter in the world.

Because of the timing of this holiday I hardly ever get to spend it with my mum anymore – you see her birthday is on the 10th of March and so (that being last weekend) since being at university and living the other side of the country, it isn’t so easy to just pop home anymore – especially two weekends in a row (if only money did grow on trees!).

Last weekend it was really lovely to be home and spend time with the family.  Mum and I had a great weekend doing girly things (mostly cake related) and we went to the Squires Kitchen exhibition on her actual birthday.  It was aces! (and yes we probably spent too much money!)

Here is the birthday cake I made her

Plain Sponge with Lemon Butter Cream and Homemade Strawberry Jam Filling

And also there were chocolate cuppies involved!

Chocolate Cupcake with Rich Chocolate Buttercream

{please excuse the hand – I have old lady hands – but I was about to eat it and thought you might want to see! recipes to come soon}

This time of year is really brilliant for my mum to have a birthday.  This is because, not only are there loads of mum-themed gifts around but also its spring time and the brilliant colours and flowers of spring are my mum’s fave too! Win Win!

So why you ask am I feeling like a bad daughter?

Maybe it my own guilt about things in general but mostly because I forgot to post her card until yesterday 😦 boo me!

So in an attempt to make up for it a bit,

Here is just a few of the reasons why my mum is so very awesome:

  • She taught me to cook/bake
  • She does jager bombs with us
  • She always knows when im upset and just what to say
  • She is the nicest person I know
  • She is adorable when she swears
  • She plays ring of fire with us
  • She has a huge heart
  • She is never mean (even if someone deserves it)
  • She is the person you can always count on no matter what

While the list is practically infinite this will suffice for today!

This is my Wonderful Mum and I

(I am the Bungle from rainbow – I was fundraising!)

Take some time today to tell your mum just how much you love her and how brilliant she is

Mum you are a superstar, my inspiration and the best mum a daughter could ever ask for

Valentines Day – friend or foe?

Every year around the beginning of February my friends start discussing Valentines plans with their boyfriends and how magical it will be, however, there is always one or several disappointed faces! I used to be one of the haters of Valentines day – you could … Continue reading

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