Jamie’s Birthday Cake

Looking good………..

Cosy Cakes

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It’s my friend’s birthday today, and I had the day off work yesterday, so this was the perfect time to bake a cake! I’ve gone for a plain and simple vanilla sponge, smothered in chocolate spread, and decorated with the buttercream logo of Leicester Tigers to give it a personal touch. Initially I was going to decorate this was fondant icing instead of nutella, but after three tubes of food colouring had run out and I still hadn’t achieved the dark forest green shade I was looking for, I had to come up with a new plan. Eventually though I was happy with the outcome. As an extra plus, Tigers saw the photo and gave Jamie a birthday shout out so it worked as two presents in one! Happy Birthday Jamie!

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

250g Butter

250g Caster Sugar

250g Self-Raising Flour

4 Eggs

For the Filling/Decorating:

2…

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Knitted Iphone cover…….

Knitted Iphone cover.......

Ok, so I know it’s might sound a bit weird but it was more of an experiment than anything else and I’m rather pleased with it. It has a lovely, hand knitted, homemade wonkiness to it!!!!! And it kept me busy over two evenings!!!

Sticky Toffee Pudding

This looks really yummmmmy

Cosy Cakes

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I’m so ill! Yes, part of it may be self-inflicted, but I also have a cold and a headache and a sore throat and I’m generally just not loving life right now! So I took today to bake one of my all-time favourite recipes – I’m never too ill to bake – which will guarantee to cheer me up for at least a few minutes before I go back to feeling sorry for myself. Sticky Toffee Pudding is just perfection to me! The hot, sweet sauce, combined with the moist fluffy sponge with the pops of sharp raisin all cuddled together by a crunchy outer shell never fails to put a smile on my face. This recipe is adapted from the goddess that is Nigella Lawson’s website, with my own twist.

 

 Ingredients:

 

100g Soft Dark Brown Sugar

 

200g Soft Dark Brown Sugar

 

175g Self-Raising Flour

 

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After the pleasure…….

 

of last nights chocolate mousse I felt it was time to go back to the gym after several weeks (well months actually) off. Not just because of the vast amount of chocolate mousse I ate last night but there is a rumour of a re-run of the charity bike ride that I completed last year and I will need to be fitter just to be able to think about it.

Its the pleasure/pain (first the pleasure, then the pain) principle followed by the ‘no pain, no gain’ principle. So, down to the gym for a half hour session (always start slow, you can always do more another time!!) and then home to bake and knit!!

Baking

I wanted to make mini cupcakes but had no mini cupcake cases so had to make big ones! Thinking along the lines of Black Forest Gateau I’ve made dark chocolate sponge cupcakes with a cherry popped inside. I’ve not topped them yet but I’m thinking either a simple piped whipped cream with a sprinkle of chocolate on the top or a piped cream cheese frosting…….will decide on this tomorrow.

This is them before the oven.

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RECIPE

250g unsalted butter (room temperature)

250g caster sugar

250g self raising flour

5 eggs

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking powder

glace cherries

 

Whisk together the butter and sugar

Add 2 eggs and mix again

Add half the flour and mix again

Add 2 more eggs and beat well together (electric whisk used for all of this)

Add the rest of the flour and mix well again

Mix the cocoa powder with a few desert spoons of water to create a paste-add water until you have a smooth paste

Add the chocolate paste to the cake batter and add the final egg

Pipe the mix into cup cake/muffin cases but only fill to about one third

Cut glacé cherries in half and pop on the top and gently push halfway into the mix

Fan oven: 160-cupcakes 12 minutes, muffins 15 minutes

Remove from oven, cool and top  (see above for topping comments!)

 

KNITTING

Well, I’ve now made 3 knitted beanie hats for the man who keeps complaining that he cant find a hat big enough in the shops, so he has NO excuse for a cold head!!

So, what to knit next…….

Having had a glass or two of wine last night (another reason for the gym) I decided to K.I.S.S (Keep It Simple Stupid) so, after some internet search decided on egg cosies. Well, how difficult can this be????

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Ok, so it’s only one so far but I reckon by the end of the week I will have a family of egg cosies……if only I ate boiled eggs!!!!

For those who want to knit; it was a cast on of 15 stitches, very simple garter (knit) stitch, knit for about 18 cm (sorry, I lost count of the rows). Cast off and stitch up 2 sides, and there you have it; an egg cozy! Very simple and strangely satisfying.