January 29, 2013

cranberry and hazelnut cinnamon buns

perfect for a midweek morning, the smell of freshly baked cinnamon buns will not only make mouths water, but no doubt tickle the taste buds too. For a little swing on the original, I've added dried cranberries and a generous sprinkling of chopped, roasted hazelnuts to liven the flavours. 

Wakey wakey, rise and shine! 


lemon traybake

what could be a better way than to start the day with some homemade lemon traybake?! Drizzled icing and lovely light sponge...only sent First Class by Royal Mail to my wonderful sister (and the occupants of Hessle Towers)! I used Mary Berry's classic reipe from her most beautiful book the Baking Bible.

See how her baking bible hands work here:


January 27, 2013

  apple and four berry crumble

classic desserts always go down a treat and a good crumble cannot go a-miss. Use frozen berries and sliced apple, then layer your favourite crumble topping over the juicy fruits, baking until golden. I love Delia Smith's traditional crumble recipe and served this straight up with some homemade custard. The best way to finish off a Sunday roast!


baby galettes

what should you make with left over puff pastry? More Galettes des Rois! This time only smaller and even more delicate than before. Someone from my household had three (yes, three...though I shall not name names) slices of the large one and so I therefore felt it appropriate to satisfy their need with even more yumminess...

Tuck in!


January 21, 2013

marmalade and almond loaf

sundays are for lazing around and enjoying a good breakfast with a mug of Earl Grey tea. Baking may just about come second to that (almost!) but here I have combined my love of yummy breakfast marmalade with that of a deliciously moist almond loaf.

Bake it gently and serve it with your finest cuppa. The perfect excuse to get out of bed! 


January 06, 2013

galette des rois

seeing as i adore the French culture, I decided to embark on my first ever puff pastry making experiment by celebrating the feast of Epiphany, which is a special day in France on the 6th January every year. Named after the three kings, Galette des Rois literally means "King's Cake" (not so exciting en anglais..) 

Using a simple frangipane almond paste sandwiched between two round layers of beautiful puff pastry, a dried or ceramic bean is usually hidden within the frangipane for someone to find later on. Whoever gets the slice with the bean in it is named King (or Queen) for the day. 

In France, you can now buy all sorts of decorative figurines to place inside this delicate galette. Just make sure you warn everyone to watch out for something hard, otherwise you may spend Sunday afternoon in A&E or at the dentist. 

I made my own puff pastry for this, though you can use a good-quality shop bought ready-made puff instead. 

Find the recipe in Richard Bertinet's book Pastry.


christmas rocky road

christmas is the ideal season to make an indulgent rocky road, either to give away as a gift to those you love or as a small chocolatey treat on those cold winter evenings. This recipe is from our one and only domestic goddess Nigella Lawson. Just make sure you don't let anyone allergic to nuts near these (or omit the nuts and replace with something else!). 

See how Nigella works her magic here (with a few personal alterations of my own!), then cut into perfect bite-size squares...


lemon & poppy seed loaf

a very popular request from my favourite Belgian, I decided to add poppy seeds to this loaf to change things up a bit! Easy to bake, I used a loaf tin rather than a bundt tin (which is what the recipe calls for). Choose whichever method you desire below.


traditional gingerbread men

gingerbread men seem to be a popular choice around the months of October and December. These cuties are made with a standard gingerbread recipe. A few tubes of Smarties and some icing adds character and yumminess! Use a fine paintbrush and some black food colouring to dot the eyes.


halloween gingerbread men

what could be more deliciously scary than a gingerbread man covered in iced bones....the perfect treat for little ones, this will make trick-or-treating that extra bit special. Use your favourite gingerbread recipe and then pipe the icing on once cooled.