Toffee apple muffins.

I’m always a little giddy at this time of year, fairy lights, present wrapping, christmas music, mulled wine… Lots of mulled wine – Maybe i’m more than a little giddy. Today, i’m making up the perfect side to a glass of Christmas juice, Toffee apple muffins. lovely soft muffin scattered with chunks of soft apple and melted fudge, all topped with a swirl of luxurious salted caramel sauce. YES! These are incredible!

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 290g Self raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 2 tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 250ml full fat milk
  • 50ml oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 eating apples (I’ve gone with golden delicious, they’re not too bitter, not too sweet.)
  • 100g fudge chunks
  • small jar of caramel sauce ( I like this one from Asda.)

 

Now, here’s what you’ll need to do. 

First, put all of your dry ingredients in a bowl. So the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg & brown sugar. Give it all a stir, the scent of Christmas should start whirling round you immediately.

Next, pour your milk, oil and egg into a jug and give it a quick stir.

Pop your wet ingredients into the bowl with your flour and give it all a good whisk up.

If you have a freehand mixer, you can use this time to prepare your apples (If you don’t, you can just prepare them up once you’ve finished mixing.) Peel your apples, cut into quarters and slice out the pips. Dice into smallish chunks, about 2cm thick is perfect.

Now toss your apple chunks in a light sprinkling of flour – this will prevent your apples from just sinking to the bottom of the muffins whilst they’re baking.

Then pour your Fudge chunks and apples into your muffin mixture, giving it all another good mix up.

Now its time to prep your oven, pop it on 200 / 180 (fan assisted), and pop your cake cases into a deep muffin tray.

And using a spoon or an ice-cream scoop (I prefer the latter) spoon your mixture into your muffin cases. Pop into the oven, middle shelf for around 20 minutes – or until golden and cooked through.

Once baked, put to the side and leave to cool (although they are incredible warm!).

Now comes the most delicious part – Caramel Sauce! I love this Salted Caramel version from ASDA.

I also found the most amazing piping bag for this next part, its silicone, pops in the dishwasher after use and is just so easy to use! So if like me you really struggle with piping, i’d definitely recommend I can’t find them online to share the link, but they’re £2.50 from ASDA, so keep an eye out. Anyway, yes back to the caramel sauce, simply fill your bag with Caramel and swirls away!

Your festive Toffee apple muffins are now ready to serve.

Don’t forget your side of mulled wine!

Now, eat, drink and most importantly… be merry!

Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

Childhood nostalgia: Chocolate cake with mint custard.

Anyone who’s anyone will remember this dessert from school! It was loved by everyone, well almost everyone.. you always got those fussy kids that didn’t like ‘green custard’ like its not the best bit.

Making up the chocolate cake was easy, making up the custard however wasn’t. No matter what I did, I just couldn’t get it to taste right, it was never like they used to make it at school. Well, that was until I spoke to a dinner lady who gave me the big secret. It isn’t actually custard, more of a sweet white sauce flavoured with peppermint!! Three trials later and I have it perfected.

So, here’s what you need:

For the cake. 

-175g softened butter

-175g caster sugar

-125g self raising flour

-75g cocoa powder

-3 eggs

-1 teaspoon baking powder

-1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the custard.

-300ml whole fat milk

-1 tablespoon of plain flour/cornflour

-2 heaped teaspoons of caster sugar

-Roughly 2/3 drops of peppermint extract (stick to two, add more if needed.)

-Roughly 3/4 drops of green food colouring (again, stick to a little, add more if needed.)

 

And here’s what you need to do:

First, we need to make up the cake. This is the very basic of chocolate cakes, you have to remember schools in the 90’s (as they are now) have limited funding for school meals, so for authentic tastes, we’re keeping it fancy free.

For most cakes, I tend to mix wet ingredients then add dry, but for some reason, this chocolate cake benefits from just having all ingredients thrown in a bowl and whizzed up. I told you we’re keeping it fancy free.

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Once your cake mixture has been mixed, pop your oven on, preheat to 180 (fan). And grab a rectangle baking tray. Butter your tray and line the bottom with baking paper.

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Now pour in your cake mixture and pop in the oven, middle shelf, turning your temperature down to 160 (fan) for around 15 minutes.

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Once your cake is fully cooked (use the skewer in the centre method to test) take out of the oven and put aside.

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Now its time to make up the mint custard. This method is very simple, however it is very easy to get it wrong. So here’s what you do. Pour about 50ml of your milk into a saucepan, on a medium heat until it starts to bubble. Very quickly put your table spoon of flour in and whisk it all together. You want it to create a clumpy milk/flour mix.

Very slowly, trickle the rest of your milk into the saucepan, whisking the entire time until you’ve used all of your milk. Tip in your sugar and continue to stir.

Very quickly, your sauce will thicken, you’ll notice straight away, so take the pan of the heat and continue to whisk. The hard part is done.

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Now, add your peppermint extract and your green food colouring, again giving it all a good whisk. If your custard gets too thick, simply pour in a little more milk to thin out.

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Your favourite childhood dessert is ready to serve…

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…And devour. Relishing in the memories each mouthful brings back.

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Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

 

Autumn staple: Jam roly poly

You all know by now I’m a sucker for dessert, extra points if its nostalgic. So obviously a recipe for Autumn staple: Jam roly poly, just HAD to be put up on here. I can’t believe it took me so long to be honest. Its a firm favourite in our house, though I have to admit I have been known to just pull one of Aunt bessies finest out of the freezer. *Shame on me!* I think it was the suet that always stopped me from just making up my own, its never something I just have in.. Well for a while now, its something I make sure to always have in, if its not making up steamed puddings, its going in dumplings! it is stew season after all. Anyway, less about stew. Jam poly poly is SO simple to make, its a ‘shove all your ingredients in a bowl’ recipe. The longest part is the cooking, but even then you just leave it to do its thing. so no real effort. And at the end you get to smother a deliciously sweet dessert in warm, creamy custard. The whole thing is best devoured by candlelight, whilst the rain batters against your windows. Oooh Autumn. I do love you.

Anyway, heres how you can make it too.

 

Here’s what you need:

-250g self raising flour.

– 50g cold butter

– 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

– 50g suet (contrary to what you’d think, shredded beef suet from the supermarket is fine.)

-150ml full fat milk,

-1/2 jar of jam, flavour of your choice. I’ve gone classic with raspberry.

-Custard/ice cream to serve with.

 

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And here’s how you can make it. 

First, put your flour, cold butter, and vanilla into a blender and pulse together until there is no more solid pieces of butter remaining.

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Next, pour your flour mixture into a mixing bowl, adding your shredded suet and milk.

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Use a knife to combine everything together. You want it to be quite a sticky dough.

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Now its time to prep for putting your roll poly in the oven. First, place two racks into your oven, on the bottom place a large baking tin half filled with boiling kettle water. Put your oven on 180 (fan) and close the door.

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Next, lay out two pieces of tin foil. You can do this with them side by side, or just crossed over like I have. then place over a piece of baking parchment.

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Sprinkle a dusting of flour over your parchment, before dropping your dough down. Give it all a good roll out until it’s roughly the thickness of a £1 coin, maybe a tiny bit thinner.

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Now, slather over your jam, using the back of a spoon to spread. The key to getting this pudding right, is jam, lots of jam. The dough is quite a heavy suet pudding dough, so it needs lots of fruity -sweetness to balance that out. If in doubt wether you’ve put enough on, always put more on.

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Once you’ve finished the last step, you can now roll your pudding up. Because you rolled your dough out on greaseproof paper, you’ll find this fairly simple. But to be safe just roll it slowly. Giving all the ends a good pinch together when you’ve finished.

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Next, fold your paper/tinfoil up, scrunching the edges together to seal. You don’t want to ‘wrap’ the roll poly up. It will expand when cooking. So just loosely pull the pieces together, leaving lots of room inside the foil. Also it helps to make sure all the edges of your foil are sealed, this will keep the steam in and help your pudding rise better.

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Now, pop it in the oven, on the shelf above the tray of water, for roughly an hour. Its not something that will need to come out of the oven straight away, so if you like, once your hours up, you can simply turn off your oven and leave until your ready to serve.

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Serve when you’re ready.

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Slather in custard, and enjoy.

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The perfect pudding for any cosy Autumn night.

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Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

Death by chocolate Halloween Doughnuts.

Its here. Our Halloween weekend has started! and i’m not even ashamed to say I’ve been planning this years halloween party since the beginning of September. Costumes have been sorted (i’ll have more about that on Monday.) decorations have been arriving on a staggered basis for nearly two months (I bought a led light fog machine. *EEEKS*) The last thing to figure out has been the food! I’ll be honest, I still haven’t actually decided what i’ll be serving. Last year it was am mountain of hotdogs sliced to look like fingers. I’m thinking of maybe making a giant cheese topped chilli &  side bowl of nachos?

Anyway, less of what I haven’t figured out yet and more of what I have. One thing I’ll definitely be making this year are doughnuts, if you read this post, you’ll know how much I love my doughnut tray, and whats better than themed doughnuts?! Nothing, is better than themed doughnuts!!

So, I will of course be showing you how to make up these Triple Chocolate chip doughnuts with a spooky twist.

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

175g self raising flour,

175g caster sugar,

175g softened butter,

50g cocoa powder,

1/2 teaspoon of baking powder,

3 eggs,

100g chocolate chips,

200g white chocolate,

Food colouring of your choice – I’ve gone with Green, purple and orange.

Sprinkles of your choice. I’ve stuck with halloween themed colours.

 

 

And here’s what you’ll need to do:

First, its time to make up the chocolate chip sponge cake. To do this, simply tip your butter and sugar into a bowl, giving it a good whisk up, you want to end up with a lovely fluffy creamy consistency.

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Next up add in your eggs, and give another good whisk up.

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Now its time to add your dry ingredients. So, your flour, baking powder and cocoa powder.

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And finally, its time to add some double chocolate goodness, in the form of chocolate chips. Pour ’em in and give it all a good stir with a spoon.

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Now you can spoon your chocolatey cake mixture into your pre-buttered donut tray, if your fancy you can pipe your cake mixture in, it is neater… but I, for some reason find it ridiculously difficult to use a piping bag.

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Cook at 180, 160 (fan) or gas mark 4,  for 10- 15 minutes, or until firm. Once you’ve taken them out of the oven, you must set them aside and just leave them to sit and cool for at least five minutes. When it comes to taking them out you’ll see that they then will tip out easily and whole.

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Once your donuts have cooled, you can decorate. To do this, i’ve simply snapped up white chocolate into three separate bowls, I microwaved each bowl for 60 seconds, before giving it a through stir. I then added a couple of drops of food colouring to each one (Orange, green and purple. ) before dunking in those doughnuts.

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Now its time for the fun bit. Getting those sprinkles out!

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Finally, you can serve up your spooky halloween treats.

Halloween really is an amazing time of year, I think its because it marks the start of the holiday season, and because every year our halloween party gets more over the top. These really are the perfect sweet treat to add to your spooky table.

Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

Autumn pie.

Autumn Pie. Leftover roast chicken, smoky bacon, and an assortment of seasonal vegetables in a creamy sauce, all packed into a buttery homemade pastry. Do I even need to go on or should I just skip to the instructions?! It is an absolutely delicious dinner, its cosy, tummy warming comfort food at its best, and you’ll even get to see just how easy it is to make your own shortcrust pastry. Which I very excitedly used my new autumn leaf shaped cookie cutters to make the crust. You can buy these on Amazon. I will be honest, it is quite a faff to make. But, if your organised, its no problems. I’d recommend making up your pie filling during the day, popping it in the fridge until its needed. Then its just a case of popping it all together just before dinner. Anyway, I’ll jut get on and tell you how you can make it up too.

 

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

For the pastry – 

550g plain flour,

200g cold salted butter,

pinch of salt,

roughly two tablespoons of cold water.

For the filling-

Plug of olive oil,

Roughly 250g cooked chicken. I used a little bit under that in leftover roast chicken.

2 leeks,

1/3 Peeled & cubed Butternut squash,

3 sticks of celery,

3 slices of smoky bacon, diced.

300ml chicken stock,

150ml creme fraische,

salt and pepper to taste.

 

You’ll also need:

Food processor

Cookie cutters (leaf shapes) or a sharp knife and leaf template cutouts.

 

And here’s what you need to do:

First we’re going to make up your pie filling, we’re doing this first because it will need to cool completely before being put into your pastry pie case.

So, to do this, first pop a little oil into a pan and fry up your smoky bacon pieces. once they’ve started to golden, take them out and put to the side.

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Next, police up your vegetables into chunks, before popping into your pan and cooking for a good 10-15 minutes, stirring regularly.

Once your vegetables have started to soften, trip in your cooked bacon, your chicken stock and cook on a high heat for another 10/15 minutes. Or until the liquid has started to reduce. Before pouring in your cremes friasch, turning the heat down and simmering for another 10 minutes.

You’ll notice, that the liquid you poured over your vegetables, by now has thickened into a sauce – a very delicious sauce. Take your pie filling of the heat, pour into a bowl and set aside to cool, staring it over after about 5 minutes.

Now, its time to start on your pastry, i’m making up a classic shortcrust pastry. This is so easy to make up. The key is, not to over handle it. you can make it using just your hands, but I find it can become a bit tough, because of being over handled. So I like to use a blender. Simple pour your flour, butter and salt into your blender and pulse, until your flour has turned into golden crumbs. it will take 3 or four minutes, but be patient.

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Now, pour in one tablespoon of water and using a knife push the shortcrust crumbs together, then add the rest of your water before tipping the whole thing out onto a floured surface. At this point you will need to handle it, push all of your pastry together, giving it a good roll between your palms to create a solid ball of pastry.

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Wrap in clingfilm and pop in the fridge for 20 minutes/ half an hour.

By now, your pastry will be firm and your filling cooled. So you can put your pie together. Start by halving your pastry ball. If you find your pastry is too firm, too cold. You can pop it into the microwave for 5/10 seconds. this will make it more easy to work without having to handle it. Once its softened and ready to work with, simply roll your half out on a floured surface, making sure its big enough for your pie dish. Then simply lay it in your pie dish, pinching the edges of the pastry to the edges of your pie dish.

Just before you make the rest of the pie up, you’ll need to complete the filling, you can do this by throwing in all that cooked chicken. I used a half a roast chicken I had left over from Sunday dinner, its perfect for using up leftovers.

Next, pour your filling into your pastry bottom, spreading it all out evenly.

And now comes the fun bit. Well… fun for me. I get to use my new pastry cutters. Roll out your remaining pastry half and using your leaf cutters (if you have them) or using a sharp knife and freehand cutting out. And lay your pastry autumn leaves out over your filling.

Before long you should have a full crust of leaf loveliness.

Finally, wash over the top of your pie with a mix of egg & milk.

Now you can bake, place it on a shelf close to the top of your over (but not at the top) on 180 (fan) for around 35 minutes. or until your pie crust is a lovely golden shade.

Its the perfect cosy dinner on any chilly Autumn evening.

Enjoy!

Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

 

 

 

Peanut butter & chocolate criss-cross cookies.

Peanut butter is one of my all time favourite foods. And if i’m answering the big ‘ol debate crunchy OR smooth, I’d say CRUNCHY all the way. Wether it’s a simple Peanut butter on seeded toast supper. Or my new favourite snack, Peanut butter cookies. There is always a time for Peanut butter. A few weeks ago, I discovered M&S did a Peanut butter cookie, needless to say I snacked my way through a full pack in 24 hours #Sorrynotsorry BUT then disaster struck (Not an actual disaster, Just one for me, who places Snacks and binge watchable TV shows very high on my list of priorities) They just stopped stocking them. Three weekends in a row i’ve been in hoping for them, but nope. They are no longer.

So, I took matters into my own hands and made up my own. Which are actually way better, because mine are topped with chocolate. This recipe is ridiculously easy, seriously making the dough takes about 3 minutes. My recipe will make you 24 cookies.

Here’s what you need to make them. 

  • 140g Peanut butter – Smooth or crunchy, its entirely up to your tastes what you use.
  • 100g softened butter.
  • 100g granulated sugar
  • 100g soft brown sugar (I like dark brown, it gives a much deeper taste.)
  • 150g plain flour.
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  • 50g Chocolate (milk, dark or white. Whatever you want, though I’ve gone with Milk)

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And here’s how you make them.

First, pour both butters, both sugars and your one egg, into a bowl and mix thoroughly.

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Then, pour in your dry ingredients. (Flour, baking powder, salt.)

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Next, lay a sheet of either baking parchment OR cling film (not tin foil, you’ll end up having to peel tiny bits of foil of your cookie dough) down on a flat surface and tip your cookie mixture out. Use a spoon to spread your mix into a roll.

Like in my original Chocolate chip cookie recipe, we’re going to be freezing this dough for a little while. So the entire length of dough needs wrapping up. twist at the ends before giving it a good roll, making sure its pretty much an even depth the entire way through.

Now pop it into the freezer.

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Your dough will need to be frozen for a minimum of one and a half hours. Ideally for around 2/3. But If you want to be prepared, you can make this up the night before and leave it in overnight.

Once your roll of dough has chilled for long enough, take it out of the freezer, line a baking tray with baking paper and pre-heat your oven to 170dg (fan assisted.)

Now, simply slice your cookies off the end of your roll and place in your tray.

 

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Ideally, you need to keep some space around your cookies, not too much, but enough so that when they start to bake and spread a little they don’t all melt into one. I’m using quite a big tray and have managed to fit 12 on comfortably.

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You’ll want to bake your cookies for around 15-20 minutes, but if like me you’re prone to forgetting exactly when you put them in, you can just pop oven the oven door and have a look. You want them to be lovely and golden. Once they’ve finished, pop them to the side and leave to cool. don’t pick them up at this point, they will literally just squish in your hands (not to mention scald you), they only harden whilst they cool.

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After about 20 minutes, your cookies will be ready to finish. To do this melt down 50g of chocolate and grab a spoon.

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If you’re a little bit fancy pants and have a piping bag you can use that for this part, but just using a spoon is fine. Scoop up some of your melted chocolate and drizzle it over all of your cookies length ways, back and forth a few times.

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Now, do the same again the other way. Up and down, until you reach the end. This will give your lovely chocolate criss-cross drizzle. Don’t worry about clumps of chocolate, it is never a bad thing to have too much chocolate on your cookie. If you do want them really tidy and uniform though, I would advise using a piping bag.

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Now, just leave them to set for half an hour or so – If you can, and only if you want to stack them. If not, just share and scoff.

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They really are the loveliest of cookies. I’ve actually eaten 5 of them today, they’re just so moreish! Maybe something that should only be kept as a treat. Or maybe just make up the roll and keep it in the freezer, slicing off a couple of cookies overtime you fancy something sweet. Pour a cuppa’ and enjoy.

 

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Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

Pear & chocolate crumble.

My first food post of the Autumn. Pear & chocolate crumble. You all know by now, I’m all about the comfort foods, especially desserts. And this one is no different. Sweet, ripe pears baked in a brown sugar syrup alongside thick, indulgent chunks of melted chocolate, topped with a golden, buttery crumble and smothered in custard. Yes. Autumn is back, and my comfort food appetite is back with it.

Below you’ll find out exactly how to make it.

Here’s what you’ll need:

6 pears. roughly, less if you have a smaller dish, more if you have a larger one.

100g chocolate chunks.

200g plain flour,

60g + 2 rough teaspoons of soft brown sugar.

60g  butter.

Custard or ice cream to serve with.

 

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And here’s what you need to do:

First, we’ll start with the pears. Well actually first i’m going to point out a mistake in my blog post. I knew today’s shoot crumble tasted different to the trial one, I just couldn’t figure out what I had done differently. Turns out I had forgotten to peel the pears. So, if you’re making up this very delicious crumble, first peel your pears.

Next, its time to slice and lay half of your pear slices down into your baking dish. I picked up this very pretty grey one from TKMaxx last week (£4.99)

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Then, sprinkle over 1 teaspoon of your soft brown sugar & half of your chocolate chunks (As you can tell, i’ve made my chunks pretty big.)

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Now, layer the rest of your pears and the other teaspoon of brown sugar, plus the rest of the chocolate chunks.

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Now your crumble, is ready for its crumble topping. If you haven’t made it before, its SO easy. Three ingredients. Flour, butter, sprinkle of sugar. All in a bowl. Use your fingertips to grind the butter and flour together, until it is all combined. You’ll end up with a golden, crumb texture.

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Thats really all you have to do to make crumble topping! Anyway, now its made up, its time to pop your oven on (180 fan) before sprinkling your crumble topping all over your pear & chocolate filled dish.

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Now, pop it in the oven, middle shelf for approximately 35-40 minutes.

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Now simply spoon out (though I would advise waiting ten minutes or so first, the filling will be SO hot!) and serve.

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As with most crumbles, I like mine with lashings of custard.

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Delicious, on any cold Autumn day. (Just remember to peel your pears.)

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Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

Honey cake with a blackberry drizzle.

I’ve noticed recently, that my blog, and my photos in particular are very… um, Autumn-ish. Let me explain that a little better. I’m a lover of all things cosy ( see my last post for more on that), the colours of Autumn, the smells, the sounds, rushing home out of the cold. The food. All of it. Actually I’m a lover of all seasons for one reason or another, but Autumn is my favourite. And ever since I was given my new camera I’ve noticed my inspiration seems to be Autumn. Some of my favourite Photos, could be taken in the middle of October. Now, I’ve realised this, I’m also not wanting to peak to early… you know like when you’re so excited for Christmas you end up putting your decorations up at the beginning of November… then by the time christmas comes around, you’re sick of the sight of it all. Well that, but with Autumn. So, I’m going to make a conscious effort to appreciate and live within each Season. Realistically I live in the north of England, its pretty much winter all year round, but. We have been blessed with a little nice weather recently, and I want my blog to flow smoothly from Season to season.

With that in mind, I had to think extra hard about this weeks bake, technically its still Summer, but its september, so we’re all geared up for Autumn. I wanted to find something that would reflect this little limbo of seasons. Which brings me to what i’m making today. Honest cake, with a Blackberry drizzle and a side of vanilla cream.

 

So, here’s what you need:

– 170g Honey

-140g softened butter

-85g light brown sugar

-2 eggs

– 200g Self raising sugar

For Blackberry Drizzle:

-Pot of Blackberries

-1 teaspoon of granulated sugar

-1 teaspoon of water

– squeeze of lemon juice

For Vanilla cream:

-Pot of double cream

-vanilla pod/essence/paste.

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And, here’s what you’ll need to do:

First, combine your butter and brown sugar in a bowl, before adding in your honey.

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After giving another good mix, add your eggs.

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Finally, add your Self raising flour. before mixing up one final time. If like me you’re using an electric whisk, you can leave your mixer to do its thing for a couple of minutes, whilst you butter up your cake tin.

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Once your cake batter is all lovely and fluffy, our into your tin and pop in the oven at 160dg, middle shelf for around 20 minutes, or until golden on the top and firm throughout.

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Once your cake has fully baked, put it to the side and just leave it to cool, it’ll take a good 20-30 minutes before you should try tipping it out of your tin.

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Whilst waiting for your cake to cool, you can get on with making up your Blackberry drizzle & vanilla cream. Both of these accompanies are SO easy.

To make up your Blackberry drizzle, simply pop your blackberries, water, sugar and lemon juice in a pan and simmer. I want mine to be nearly whole blackberries with juice, but if you’d rather mush down your blackberries and sieve to a syrup thats fine too.

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And for your vanilla cream, simply pour your double cream & vanilla into a bowl, and whisk until its thickened.

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That’s really all you have to do for these.

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By now, your cake should have cooled enough to tip out. Decorate however you fancy (i’ve kept mine naked, apart from  a few fresh lavender springs from the garden. It has the perfect ‘end of Summer’ vibe) pot up your cream & drizzle. Slice, serve and Enjoy.

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The perfect recipe to round off Summer with.

Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

 

#acosyhome

It was a month or so ago now I first decided to start my own hashtag. Anyone that knows me, reads my blog, follows my Insta or Facebook, knows i’m all about creating a comfortable, well presented, well fed household. I’m a homemaker through and through with the main goal being to create #acosyhome So it all kind of made sense really. I haven’t been overly active with it, but we are now in September, as of next week its officially Autumn, which everyone knows is all about the cosiness.

#acosyhome is for anything and everything that gives you that little buzz off contentment. Your favourite smelly candle, a pretty little corner of your house, your kids being bundled up under a blanket on a rainy Saturday afternoon and of course those delicious comfort foods.

Joining in with this hashtag is really simple, its all hosted on Instagram, you can follow me over on here to keep updated on my examples. #acosyhome revolves around three main subjects: Interiors, Food & Family life. I’ve popped some of my favourite examples so far below.

 

Interiors:

Photo 06-09-2016, 09 55 20Photo 03-09-2016, 19 46 24 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 55 10 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 17 26 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 56 47

 

Food:

Photo 06-09-2016, 09 56 16 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 56 23 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 56 59 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 57 11

 

Family life:Photo 06-09-2016, 09 57 07 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 58 48 Photo 06-09-2016, 09 59 27

And thats really it. Its as simple as that. And following on from from the hoards of beautiful insta hashtags around, I’ll be creating a cosy photo grid and tagging my favourites fortnightly.

So get tagging, #acosyhome

Let the cosiness of Autumn commence.

Robyn,

The little woman pretends.

 

 

 

Vanilla baked doughnuts.

Tonight marks the biggest night in food TV, The Great british bake off starts again! (Hooray!) To mark this spectacular occasion, I’ve whipped up something a little bit party-esque. Doughnuts, but not ordinary doughnuts. These are sponge cake doughnuts… way better than their fried sisters, a fab alternative to cupcakes (especially if you’re useless with a piping bag.) or even if you just need to keep the kids occupied for half an hour, these are quick and easy enough to do that. As well as being completely delicious. Anyway, lets get started.

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

150g Butter

150g caster sugar

150g self raising flour

teaspoon of vanilla extract

3 eggs

2 tablespoons milk.

1 150g bar of white chocolate

1 normal size bar of milk chocolate.

Food colourings of your choice.

Sprinkles for decoration.

 

 

And here’s what you’ll need to do:

First, place your butter and sugar in a bowl. Give it a good whisk up.

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Next add one egg and whisk. Repeat this until all of your eggs are combined into your creamed butter and sugar.

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Now add all of your dry ingredients, giving it a good mix up.

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Thats really it, a simple vanilla sponge batter ready to be made into doughnuts. So, now we need our doughnut tray. I found this one on Amazon. Before you pipe in your cake batter, give each ring a good rub with butter. This will make it super easy to tip out your doughnuts.

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So, I used a piping bag to pipe the cake batter evenly into my doughnut ring tray. However, if you don’t have on, two teaspoons will work fine. don’t fill your trays up completely, around 3/4 full will be just right.

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Now, pop them in the oven on 180 (fan) for roughly 10-15 minutes. Or until golden brown and baked through.

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Leave your tray for five minute for so, your doughnuts can cool a little then, before you tip them out to be decorated.

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Whilst waiting for your doughnuts to cool down, you can move on to prepping your decorations. For these I’ve kept it very simple, topping them with melted chocolate. I snapped up the chocolate and popped it in the microwave for 30 seconds. It may still look unmelted but give it all a good stir and it’ll be melted in no time.

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Now simply hold your doughnut and dip into the melted chocolate.

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As well as milk chocolate I decided to make up some coloured toppings too. This was really easy, melting down white chocolate and simply adding a drop of food colouring into each bowl before stirring. I went for pastel shades as well as a plain white chocolate.

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It may get a little messy whilst you finish topping the rest of your doughnuts. But they do look adorable.

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Now comes the fun part! Decorating! I used a combination of different ones, all bought at Asda.

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And thats it! You can either wait for your chocolate to cool and set, or just tuck in! They are delicious and a fab alternative to the fried version.

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Perfect.

Don’t forget The great British bake off, starts tonight, BBC 1 at 8pm.

Robyn,

The little woman pretends.