Rich Christmas Fruitcake

Rich Christmas fruitcake packed full of rum soaked fruit. Make in advance and feed regularly with rum, whiskey, brandy or sherry

So it is somehow December already and I have done no Christmas shopping or planning whatsoever; I wont be hosting Christmas lunch (my house is essentially a building site at the moment) but I do need to make dessert and some Christmassy nibbles. I did manage to be organised enough to bake a rich Christmas fruitcake last week though; I haven’t yet decided how I want to decorate it but I’ve got a few weeks left to come up with something. (more…)

HomeSense Blogger Christmas Party

Homesense cocktail shakers

Last week I was lucky enough to be invited along to a blogger Christmas party hosted by HomeSense, who sell the most gorgeous and eclectic homeware. It was hosted in The Lost and Found cocktail bar in Birmingham (my home town), in “The Bar Behind The Bookcase” – a lovely little private bar and function room hidden away behind, you guessed it, a bookcase. The event was a chance for Homesense to show off a few key pieces from their fantastic Christmas range, and for the bloggers to mingle and get to know each other a bit better. (more…)

Mini Cardamom Apple Pies

Mini apple hand pies baked in a muffin tin spiced with cardamom and cinnamon

It feels like the run up to Christmas is already in full swing and I am lagging behind a bit; I have done no Christmas shopping, haven’t planned any recipes, completely missed stir up Sunday and don’t even know where I am spending Christmas day yet…. I think I need to work on being more organised but the miserable weather and the fact that it gets dark so early now really aren’t helping with my motivation levels. The dark gloomy days are perfect for staying home and baking however (though not great for photographing the results), and making these mini cardamom apples pies did go some way towards increasing my Christmas spirit. (more…)

Pear And Ginger Jam (Small Batch)

Small batch, no added pectin pear and ginger jam; a lovely gift for Christmas!

Owning your own fruit trees has both positives and negatives, of course it is lovely to have an abundance of food which you have grown yourself, but you can also end up with more fruit than you know what to do with. I gave some away of course, but still managed to end up with a bowl-full of slightly mushy pears; still fine to eat but past the point where you would want to eat them as they are. The best possible use for them I figured was jam; which is also great to give away (not long till Christmas!) if you happen to end up with too much of it but it keeps a good deal longer than fresh fruit. (more…)

Double Pumpkin Goats Cheese Pizza

Double pumpkin goats cheese pizza - pumpkin puree in the pizza bread dough, topped with roasted pumpkin and red onion, tomato sauce, mozzarella and goats cheese

As I stated in my last post, I’m not quite done with pumpkin yet. Today I’ve got this colourful double pumpkin goats cheese pizza for you; what makes it double pumpkin you ask? Well, not only did I top the pizza with chunks of roasted pumpkin, but much like the chocolate ginger pumpkin bread wreath that I posted last week, I made the pizza dough using pumpkin puree. This not only gives it a lovely orange colour, but is also a great way to pack in a bit of extra veg. (more…)

Chocolate Ginger Pumpkin Bread Wreath & September & October Degustabox Review

Chocolate and ginger filled yeasted pumpkin bread twisted wreath

Are we over pumpkin yet or do I still have time to share a couple more recipes? Given than tinned pumpkin will keep for years and butternut squash is available year round there’s really no reason why we should be limited to a short ‘pumpkin season’, and yet I feel like if I were to share pumpkin recipes in the Summer they would just sink without a trace. I’ve got a couple more to share before everyone loses interest, starting with this chocolate ginger pumpkin bread wreath. (more…)

Chocolate Glazed Black Cat Doughnuts

chocolate glazed black cat doughnuts - delicious, soft, chocolate glazed fried yeasted doughnuts with super cute cat face designs

I made these super cute chocolate glazed black cat doughnuts to take to a Halloween party on Saturday, but really their appeal is not just limited to Halloween; omit the black food colouring and you have a brown cat doughnut; omit the cat design altogether and you are left with a delicious, soft, chocolate glazed ring doughnut. (more…)

Mini Bleeding Heart Halloween Cakes

Mini red velvet layer cakes with ermine frosting topped with a bleeding heart and ganache 'blood'; perfect for Halloween

I haven’t had as much fun in the kitchen in a long time as I had making these mini bleeding heart Halloween cakes; yes I am still trying to clean the food colouring off my hands and worktops but it was a fun and almost therapeutic craft project. The hearts are the brainchild of Lily Vanilli, an incredibly talented baker and author who originally designed the hearts as an anti-valentines cake. I thought they would be great for Halloween and would look even more impressive placed on top of mini red velvet layer cakes with a cascade of ganache ‘blood’ down the side. (more…)

A Christmas Wishlist With The Works

the works collage

So it may seem a little early for a post about Christmas, but actually there are just eight weekends left before the big day(!) and I always like to start my Christmas present shopping early to spread out the cost a little. Today I’ve teamed up with The Works to create a helpful Christmas gift wishlist; I’ve picked out things that I would like to receive for Christmas (hint hint), but even if nothing here catches your eye, Christmas at The Works is such a big affair that there is sure to be something for everyone. (more…)

Crumble Topped Pumpkin Spice Cake

Crumble topped pumpkin spice cake - super moist, soft, spiced pumpkin cake with a crunchy crumble topping; easy to make and so delicious!

I was initially dreading the end of Summer but it has to be said that there are some appealing aspects to Autumn – the pretty coloured leaves, big jumpers, Halloween, hot (alcoholic) drinks, soup, but most of all the warmly spiced baked goods. I love using spices in baking, and while I do use them year round, it feels so much more appropriate to be heavy handed with them in Autumn and Winter. Lately the internet has exploded with all things pumpkin, and not wanting to be left out I jumped on the bandwagon and baked this crumble topped pumpkin spice cake. (more…)

1 2 3 19