Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Grrrrr Tiger Bread: It's Puurrrfect!


I recently saw a blog post over on Mary Anne's blog about Tiger Bread. I absolutely love Tiger Bread from the supermarket but had never really given much thought to how it was made. When I read Mary Anne's post I was intrigued and really wanted to give it a go myself...

Monday, 30 January 2012

Meal Planning Monday


I have submitted my post to the linky over at Mrs M's Blog

Like a lot of people nowadays money is getting pretty tight and we are searching for ways to cut costs and save a few pennies. I have noticed a few people doing "Meal Planning Monday" on their blogs and it made me stop and assess how I do my food shopping and cooking.
I am a little ashamed of just how much food gets wasted in my house through lack of planning and probably a healthy dose of laziness. This has got to stop.

So I am giving this meal planning schtick a go to see if it helps reduce my costs and stops the "whats for dinner?" questions filling me with dread.

Now I don't have any children so I am just cooking for two;

Monday
Leftover pie with boiled potatoes and sweetcorn
Tuesday
Breaded fish with homemade chunky chips
Wednesday
Quorn chilli with brown rice
Thursday
Tuna Pasta Bake
Friday
Lamb chops with garlic mash and greens

Weekend Baking
Valentines cupcakes and cookie pops

Luckily I have all of the ingredients already in the house so no shopping required this week. Will need to get planning next week to get an online shop sorted in time.

Do you meal plan? How do you stay organised and stop food waste?

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Sunday Lunch - Homemade Pizza


Due to the fantastic response to my last Sunday Lunch post I have decided to try and include a regular savoury post on the blog. I am not as confident at savoury cooking but I do hope you enjoy the posts.

Now, I understand that pizza may not be considered a traditional "Sunday Lunch" but when we decided to have a Sunday night movie night it seemed like the perfect accompaniment. Also, I am slightly obsessed with Dan Lepard's super easy pizza dough recipe!

Just to veer off topic for a second, if you haven't bought a copy of Dan Lepard's Short and Sweet yet you are seriously missing out. Hands down THE best food-related book I have ever read, such a wonderful resource and jam packed full of delicious recipes.

Back to the topic at hand; pizza...

Friday, 27 January 2012

Hummingbird Bakery - South Kensington

Continuing with my review series, next on the list was the Hummingbird Bakery in South Kensington. I have been wanting to visit Hummingbird for a long time now, I have their Cake Days book and love the results of the recipes I have tried at home.

I actually arranged to meet some twitter friends at Hummingbird when I was down in London. It was fabulous to finally meet the lovely Laura, Beckie and Steph face-to-face.


Upon arriving at South Kensington tube I consulted my google map app to see which direction I should head to find the Hummingbird Bakery. After a couple of wrong turns I headed in the right direction but have to say I didn't immediately spot it. The exterior is quite subtle and if it wasn't for my observant sister I might have walked straight passed...

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Being resourceful with leftovers...


When I was preparing and experimenting with recipes for my TV appearance I had an awful lot of leftovers floating around so had to get pretty creative if I didn't want it all to go to waste.

Firstly I had a mountain of lemon and lime curd sitting in a tupperware pot in my fridge. It was super tasty so didn't want it to just sit there unused and I wanted to do a bit more than simply spread it on toast. So I decided to try making some cupcakes. I mixed up my usual batter recipe and simply folded the curd into the batter before dividing it into cases. I wasn't really sure if it would work but was in an experimental mood.

The result was actually a HUGE success...

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Low Calorie Blueberry Butterfly Cakes.


The lovely folks over at Bakingmad.com recently advertised for bloggers to take part in their January healthy baking challenge. I was keen to try some less fattening cakes so jumped at the chance to take part.

I had a choice of a few different recipes to try but really liked the look of these Low Calorie Blueberry Butterfly Cakes. Butterfly cakes remind me of baking as a child and fill me with this great sense of nostalgia and warmth. So without further ado, here is the recipe;

Monday, 23 January 2012

Victory Tea: flying the flag for superior tea. (Giveaway)


I recently discovered a new and local tea company on twitter called Victory Tea. The fact that they are based just down the road from me in Heaton, Newcastle really caught my attention as I love to use local companies if I can, better for the environment and better for the local economy etc...

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Sunday Lunch - Toad in the Hole.


Toad in the hole is a HUGE favourite in my house, I don't make it too often as it is probably not the most healthy of meals and I seem incapable of small portions. This recipe has never failed me, it always rises beautifully and taste light and fluffy with a crisp edge...

Friday, 20 January 2012

Primrose Bakery - Covent Garden.

While I was down in London filming I decided to check out a few well known bakeries to see what all the fuss was about. The two I was looking forward to the most were The Primrose Bakery and The Hummingbird Bakery. I have both of their recipe books and hear nothing but great things from my London based spies.

So, I have decided to do a bit of a review/comparison of the two big bakeries. I will start of by reviewing the bakeries themselves, looking at atmosphere, price, staff and of course the crucial taste test.
Then I will review their respective books, baking a few recipes from each and comparing them based on how easy they are to follow, and of course how they compare not only to each other but to the "real thing" instore. It will probably span a few posts and a good few weeks, so stay tuned!

I am in no way being paid or sponsored to write this post, they are simply my opinions.


I headed for The Primrose Bakery in Covent Garden after a reccomendation from Katiecakes on twitter. I of course had heard of the bakery as I received one of their recipe books for Christmas but as soon as I saw on the map that it was just around the corner from where I was, I had to stop by for a cake-fix...

Thursday, 19 January 2012

What is in my Fridge?

Inspired by Helen from Casa Costello I decided to do a fun little post showing you the inside of my fridge. They always seem to do it on MTV cribs so here I go;


Considering I had just done a food shop, my fridge is decidedly empty. Although I suppose there are only two of us in the house so its probably alright. It sure beats the two cans of diet coke, 3 bottles of water and a tub of moldy coronation chicken that was in there yesterday! So we have;

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Cranberry and Dark Chocolate Muffins

Finally! An actual recipe post! Enjoy x

Before I left for London I wanted to squeeze in some baking as I knew I wouldn't have time when I got back and as I was going to be spending 7 hours trapped on a megabus coach I knew I would need some form of baked treat to cheer me up and keep me going.

I decided to go with muffins as I figured cupcakes with frosting wouldn't travel well and also I had some fresh cranberries that needed using up.
I had never baked with fresh cranberries before and I was worried they might be bitter or too tart. After seeking advice on twitter I decided to cook them up in a little sugar before adding them to the muffin mix, here is the recipe;

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Baking Mad TV Adventure - Filming.


So, as most of you may be aware I went down to London last week to film my episode for Channel 4's Baking Mad with Eric Lanlard. Unfortunately I am not allowed to give too much away so cannot tell you all about it, but what I will say is that it was awesome! Some might even say "phenomenal", but that is a story for another time.

I was surprisingly calm on Thursday morning, I arrived at Cakeboy early and sat enjoying a lovely cup of tea. However, the second I clapped eyes on Eric Lanlard a weird sweaty panic came over me. What was I doing? Who was I to be baking for this guy? What if he laughed at my feeble creation? All of these questions and more started swimming about in my head. Luckily the lovely crew soon had me at ease and the day went smoothly.


The Cakeboy cafe itself is gorgeous, so many delicious sights and smells and the staff were so friendly even though we were making their jobs a thousand times more difficult and getting under their feet all day. I highly recommend a visit if you are in London!

I don't know when it will be aired yet, but the second I find out I will be shouting it from the rooftops.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Happy New Year - Baking Mad Update.

Happy New Year everyone! Only about two weeks overdue but the sentiment is still the same. I have pretty much spent the majority of the festive period in a state of hibernation. Just me, my pajamas and my lovely new apple green kitchenaid; what more could a girl ask for?

Also, over Christmas I heard back from the lovely people at Baking Mad with Eric Lanlard! I am heading off to London on Wednesday to film my episode! Which has pretty much turned me into a complete nervous/excited wreck. So, the past two weeks have been spent baking and planning (read as crying and panicking) in preparation for my 15 minutes of fame.

I am not really sure what the rules are in terms of revealing my recipe or plans but here is a little sneak peak for my lovely readers...


I am sure I will be tweeting my big city TV adventure all this week, so follow me on twitter here to see what I am up to. I should probably get back to panicking preparing now... Ta ta! x

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Ginger and Banana Loaf.

It is getting harder and harder to get out of bed in the mornings these days. It is so dark when I leave the house it just doesn't seem natural. I am never one for getting up early at the best of times but on these dark and cold mornings the snooze button is groaning with overuse.

The one thing that has had me getting out of bed this week has been the promise of a fancy coffee and a slice of Ginger and Banana loaf for breakfast. We just treated ourselves to a Dolce Gusto machine, we are big fans of fancy coffee in my house so being able to make our own lattes and cappuccinos is pretty bloody exciting! We are getting through quite a few of the little capsules but in my book they are totally worth it!

Now onto the sticky wintery deliciousness I have been sneakily eating for breakfast...
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