Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Purple velvet cupcakes

Last week everyone was very helpful in the lab and got me through a rather important experiment. So I made them some of these scrummy cupcakes from the good food mag. We picked blackberries from opposite the house too, so a local treat!
Take 150g blackberries and crush them with a fork. Melt 100g butter and 100g dark chocolate (mine was a supermarket brand at about 40% so not that dark) gently together. Mix 225g self raining flour, 175g caster sugar and two tablespoons of cocoa powder (I used green and blacks) in a large bowl. Beat two eggs with a teaspoon of chocolate extract (this was an extra addition I made to the original recipe). Then add the melted butter and chocolate and eggs and blackberries to the dry ingredients with a little red/purple food colouring. Mix everything together into a smooth batter and apportion to 12 cupcake cases. Bake at 180C (160C fan) for 15mins or until a skewer comes out clean. 
(The recipe recommended the following for the icing. I think it's a bit much and could easily be halved but then it depends on how much icing you like!) Press 150g blackberries through a sieve to extract the juice. Beat together 100g soft butter and 400g icing sugar with 1tsp vanilla essence. This is very very stuff. Mix in enough of the juice to make it pipable. I made the mistake of mixing it all in at once and it was a bit runny so take your time! If you have any spare blackberries put one on the top before serving. 

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Brindley Place gingko leaves

On Sunday we went to the Sealife Centre to see the new penguins - what a treat it was!

While we picnicked in Brindley
Place I noticed no less than 6 gingko trees! I managed to find a selection of fallen leaves which I squirrelled away and brought home. Yesterday I took the day off and used the leaves to impress into some lovely flax clay. They're looking good just now - I hope they make it throught the firings!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Made up Cheesecake

After pottering round the supermarket just before closing time last night and finding a lack of rhubarb, N and I decided we'd make a cheesecake rather than the planned rhubarb and custard cake for dessert tonight. So we bought some cream cheese and frozen berries, thinking we'd have sufficient ingredients for the rest back at home. And we did, though I did have to amalgamate several recipes to accommodate the half a pot of cream and some marscapone, a leaf of gelatine and some squeezey lemon juice. Tasted good though!!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Birthday cake!

At the weekend I went down to Kew Bridge for the last of Anna's Romantic Disease workshops http://annadumitriu.tumblr.com/RomanticDisease at Waterman's gallery. I stopped in at Peyton and Byrne for a little yoghurt and berries breakfast with some Lapsang Souchan. The server then brought over a complimentary cupcake! How very lovely!!

Cakes, cakes everywhere!

It was the last day of one of my post docs today - he'd been working on miniature schnauzers and so I found a schnauzer cookie cutter and made some sugar cookies and gingerbread cookies with royal icing.


Last week it was Katherine's last day too and we had a cake festival - I made lemon macaroons, egg yolk cookies and friands!


For the friands:
I mixed together 175g unsalted butter with 210g icing sugar until light and fluffy. Then I mixed in 5egg whites, a teaspoon of pistachio essence, 60g plain flour, 150g ground almonds, 200g chopped milk chocolate (some of which were Lindor chocolate balls!). I put the mix into greased and floured muffin tin and cooked them at 200C for 25min when the sides were coming away from the sides. I let them cool in the tin and then popped them out and dusted them in icing sugar. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Blue Piano

We tried out the Blue Piano, a Singaporean restaurant, as a late Valentine's treat - deliscioius! 

Saturday, February 08, 2014

Tasty treats

Last weekend I had a lovely time making some tasty treats. Above are marshmallow crispies. I took 50g butter and 250g mini marshmallows and melted them in the microwave, about 1min did it. I then mixed in a whole packet of Froot Loops (350g I think). Then spread them out into a silicone lined baking tray, I had to squash them down with another silicone liner on top, they were very sticky but once they were cold it was fine. Yummy! 

And to balance the sweetness I made some cheesy courgette muffins from Gourmet Mum  I think next time I'll add some of the optional salt but they were delicious and very light!
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