Monday, 23 January 2012

Lemon & ginger biscuits

So the weather's been a bit rubbish lately (this is England after all), and January is just depressing and I really can't wait for February (a certain person's birthday, ahem!) aswell as my sisters', on the same day I should add!! I digress.. but basically I just want it to be spring.

I've also had a bit of a horrid week, so as the saying goes, when life gives you lemons, just bypass the tequila and buy some lemons down the market and get baking! Oh and while you're there, get some daffodils too!

This recipe really appealed to me and lemon and ginger are supposed to be calming, or is that just the tea? Either way, these didn't disappoint.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Rum 'n raisin fudge pressies

My mum lives a fair way off from me so she's not always around to taste the delectables I make from time to time so I thought I'd make something special for her for Christmas... some fudge. My mum and I went to Bath last year and watched someone making fudge, their technique of pushing the fudge around with a paddle on a marble table and by someone so young aswell. Nonetheless the beating process is what makes the fudge all smooth and not at all crumbly or crystallised.

Fudge I find, isn't the easiest thing to make, it depends on which recipe version you use, I've seen recipes with glucose syrup, condensed milk, marshmallows and others where you need to use a sugar thermometer. I can't be fussed with that, so I just used an old trusted recipe with condensed milk. But because it takes a while to cook, next time I might just boil the tin of condensed milk in a pan of water for a few hours to caramelise (or you can just buy the caramel in a tin). That might speed up the process a bit I reckon. Oh and next time, I might use more rum....way more rum!!

Festive flapjacks with candied fruit and cherries and some brandy!

I absolutely adore flapjacks, or 'jackflaps' as my friends call them and I do tend to make them quite frequently. They are ever so quick and easy to make and are ideal for snacking on. The great thing about this recipe is you can always add different variations. I find that sometimes with all the fruit and syrup it can be a bit 'too sweet' for some or I'm rather conscious of the amount of sugar used so I use honey instead of syrup to try to convince myself its a bit healthier...

Thursday, 5 January 2012

My first ever gingerbread house!

Working in central London sure has its bonus points, being a stone throw's from Fortnum & Mason is an example. I simply love their Christmas decorations this year, they've gone all Moulin Rouge with their corsets and costumes and irresistable chocolate thrown in around the scene.. So I went and had a proper look at all the food and gift sets you can buy. Bearing in mind, this is way out of my league budget wise, I still like a nosey around.

..and they had gingerbread houses, but small ones (!) - so I decided I was gonna do one better than them, lol. We shall see..

I wanted to make this with my nieces but it ended up being myself and my big sister on Christmas eve ... and we had so much fun with this, with a glass of wine or two I might add.

A Penguin's Christmas Cake

So, I've never actually really made a proper Christmas cake from start to finish, I've done in between bits 'n pieces, but never the whole shebang! So this year, I'm going to do the best one ever.... haha!  And to decorate it, well my sister and my nieces have a thing about penguins... something about that movie Happy Feet perhaps. Well I decided to combine the two.

Having never actually made a fruit cake from scratch before, I decided to consult the oldest and best recipe (apparently) from the one and only Delia -  its only fair! So this is my take on her classic Christmas cake.