Friday, 31 August 2012

Peach Melba and Pistachio Mini Upside Down Cakes.

As expected I have been completely inspired by The Great British Bake Off. The same thing happened last year, as soon as the first episode hit my tellybox I head for the kitchen to recreate some of their best recipes in my own special way.

The first episode the contestants made an upside down cake, rum babas and a hidden design cake. I personally thought this episode was a toughie and huge round of applause to the lovely contestants for making some lovely cakes! Although non of their hidden designs were as cool as this Damien Hirst creation by Jules over at Butcher, Baker.

Being a bit rusty in the kitchen I decided to opt for the slightly easier upside down cake, although rum babas are now firmly on my to-bake list. Alongside my bake-off obsession I am also having a slight love affair with the gloriously juicy peaches around at the moment. I was recently introduced to the wonderful Doughnut Peach (sometimes know as a flat peach or a Saturn peach). These weird looking bad boys are simply amazing, so juicy and flavourful. Unlike your standard peach, these squished-looking cousins are a lot sweeter, the skin is a little thinner and less fuzzy, and the stone is teeny tiny and much easier to cut out. They also have a wonderful almondy/nutty flavour about them which is simply divine!...

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Macmillan Cancer Support - Little Local Hero Awards‏

On the 28th of September this year the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning is going to be taking place. This is a fantastic one day fundraising event hosted by Macmillan Cancer Support to raise money for people with lives affected by cancer.

Everyone has their own story or experience with Cancer and the work that Macmillan do is so important. I held my own coffee morning a few years back when I was a student, I only raised about £80 but every little helps!

Silver Spoon are the official sugar sponsor for the event, and this year have decided to launch a fantastic competition as part of their activity. On the 24th August 2012 Silver Spoon and Macmillan are launching Silver Spoons Little Local Hero Awards. They are scouring the country for local heroes under the age of 18 who have done something truly special. Your local little hero could have looked after their little sister when they were ill, gone to great lengths to make Mother’s Day very special, or done something fantastic to raise money for charity.

If you know someone under 18 in your local area who you think would be a worthy winner, just follow this link and explain in less than 100 words who you are nominating, why, and what you would bake them to say thank you

www.macmillan.org.uk/littlehero

Master P√Ętissier Eric Lanlard, star of Channel 4’s Baking Mad with Eric Lanlard, will choose a Silver Spoon National Little Hero and to celebrate he will bake them a special cake of their choice! 10 runners up will also receive a Silver Spoon Baking Hamper packed full of exciting treats.

Gratuitus picture of me and Eric!

There are sure to be some amazing stories from our local little heroes all over the country, but in the meantime don’t forget to register to hold your own coffee morning on the 28th September, just follow this link and you can help to raise money for people with lives affected by cancer. http://coffeeregister.macmillan.org.uk/2012/register.asp

I will be trying my best to organise my very own event in my new office, so keep your eyes peeled for some of my coffee morning recipes! And if you have any reccomendations for coffee morning favourites, throw them my way!

Monday, 27 August 2012

Homemade Marshmallows

I got a lovely sugar thermometer for Christmas, I had such great plans of making jams and caramel and other delights which require boiling sugar to a specific temperature. So of course I popped it in my baking cupboard and promptly forgot I had it!

I would see recipes which required a thermometer and disregard them thinking I couldn't possibly make it without a thermometer! What a scatter-brain baker I am.

So the other day I was rummaging deep into my baking cupboard looking for Tupperware lids (I always end up with lots of boxes and no lids! How?) I came across this bizarre metal device... MY THERMOMETER!

This little find came at such a great time as I was just in the mood to do something new and exciting! I had seen Helen from Fuss Free Flavours talking about marshmallows on twitter and really wanted to give them a go, then I spied Niamh from Eat Like A Girl had blogged a really great recipe which explained exactly what each part did and how they worked (I love a bit of recipe science)...

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