The perfect flapjack

Greetings chums and how are you this fine day? Before I launch into the actual how to of this recipe I should probably let you in on a little secret…I’ve never made flapjacks before (despite the fact I adore it and think that it’s legitimately allowed as a breakfast food – it’s the oats). ‘Why?’ I hear you cry? Well I’m ridiculously worried I’ll suck at it. The consistency of a flapjack is so vitally important that I fear I’ll never be able to achieve the perfect chewy yet soft consistency that I favour. And I’d be devastated (and not to mention severely pissed off) if I spent all that time making them only to realise as I took that first bite that they actually tasted a bit shit really. So with that concern in mind I’ve always stayed clear of them. Recently I made flapjacks for the first time ever so I thought I’d share the brilliant recipe with you!

IMG_3151

They were piping hot but I still nibbled at them!

At the weekend I had a massive flapjack craving and thankfully the ingredients were in the cupboard so I thought I’d give it a whirl…and they were magnificent! Just the perfect consistency, thank goodness. They were chewy and soft and golden and just delicious. There’s a chance I might have eaten five in one go…they were that good it would have been rude not to! The recipe’s below in case you fancy giving them a whirl – you won’t regret it I promise! Flapjacks rule!

IMG_3174A half eaten flapjack

The all important ingredients:

  • 350g butter
  • 1tbsp/15ml golden syrup
  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 450g jumbo oats

And the super-simple recipe:

  • Melt the butter
  • Add the sugar and golden syrup and bring the mixture to the boil
  • Remove from the heat and add the oats. Stir together well
  • Pour into a lined baking tray and spread out evenly
  • Bake for 25 minutes on 180oC (until the top turns golden)
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 1 minute before cutting into squares
  • Then leave the flapjacks in the pan for another 15 minutes before separating them and moving them to a wire rack to cool
  • Eat and eat and eat until they’re all gone – hooray!

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Ready and waiting to be eaten!

Have you ever made flapjacks and were you successful with the consistency?

– Fi x

This recipe was originally posted on The Adventures of Fi.

Coffee and Walnut Cake

It’s time for another cake recipe. Yep, it’s been all about the sweet stuff recently! I’ve been talking about making a coffee and walnut cake for ages and ages, mainly because it’s my youngest sister’s favourite cake ever.  Plus I now like coffee which means it’s a cake that I want to actually make (and then eat now), whereas previously I just wasn’t bothered! So with Easter upon us, and knowing that Becca would be home with us for the celebrations, the four day weekend seemed like the perfect time to get baking. Trust me guys this is a good recipe that you can make with your basic store cupboard ingredients. It’s super easy with as it’s just a slightly amended Victoria sponge cake, but it looks gorgeous and tastes so good.

Ingredients – 

For the cake
175g softened butter
175g brown sugar
175g self-raising flour
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp strong coffee powder (i used espresso granules) mixed with 2 tbsp boiling water and then cooled

For the Icing
100g softened butter
200g icing sugar
9 walnuts

1. Preheat the oven to 180C and grease two circular baking tins
2. Cream together the butter and sugar

3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well in between. Add the vanilla and whisk again

4. Sift in the flour and baking powder and then gently fold into the mixture

5. Add half of the coffee mixture and fold in again
6. Now divide the mixture between the two tins and bake for 20-25 mins

Once the cakes are cooled it’s time to make the icing.

cooling cakes

7. Beat together the butter and icing sugar into a smooth icing
8. Add in the remaining coffee and mix well. Have a taste of the icing and add more coffee as needed – we added about half the same again as we like the taste of coffee a lot!

coffee buttercream
9. Use half the icing to sandwich the cakes together and then spread the remaining half on the top. Now top with your walnut halves.

cofefe and walnut cake

Happy Baking. Lau xxx

This recipe originates from The Baking Book by Dorling Kindersley.

Peanut Butter Brownies

Happy Easter everyone! I hope you’re all having a fabulous Sunday morning and that the Easter bunny was super kind to you. I’m rather happy to be tucking into an absurd amount of mini eggs this morning – whilst still in my pajamas of course. Lucky me!

As it’s Easter, and that’s a LOT to do with family and chocolate – at least if you’re not religious and me, I thought I’d share a chocolatey recipe that is one of our family’s favourites – the humble peanut butter brownie. I made these yesterday for a barbecue and surprise surprise we’ve got only a couple left – they’re that good. We’ve mentioned these in the past but never shared our slightly amended version of the Life is Peachy recipe. So we thought it was high time we did – enjoy this Easter gift!

Ingredients

  • 150g Dairy Milk chocolate
  • 100g smooth peanut butter
  • 175g margarine
  • 325 caster sugar
  • 120g self-raising flour
  • 3 eggs

photo 1

Melt the chocolate and margarine and then stir in the peanut butter until the mixture is smooth

photo 2

Add the caster sugar and combine
photo 3

Now add the self-raising flour and mix thoroughly

photo 4

Crack the eggs in and combine until smooth

ready for the oven

Pour into a greased brownie tin and bake on 160 degrees for 40 minutes. Then EAT them all at once (go on you know you want to!)

Baking for Easter

Easter is quite possibly my favourite time of the year as it seems to signal the start of the summer and outside dining. I love the opportunity to get together with all the family and chill out in the garden, plus it brings with it the possibility of a barbecue as well as a fabulous roast dinner on Easter Sunday. Never mind the easter egg fun.

This Easter my sisters and I have decided to cook out amazing pulled pork at some point over the four days for the parental units to enjoy. Plus I’m planning on trying out a coffee and walnut cake as I’ve never made one. But before that point we get to make all the yummy sweet stuff that contains easter treats. You know what I mean, all the creme eggs and mini eggs that appear in the shops as soon as Christmas is over. Well it would be rude not to include those in some sort of baking wouldn’t it. So that’s what this post is all about – Baking with Easter sweets!

Hopefully you are all well aware of the awesome mini egg blondies that we made last year. If not then what are you waiting for? Check them out right here, right now. So these have been made again because they are just totally awesome and Fi has an actual real life obsession with mini eggs.

So yes, we made mini egg blondies, but we also decided to try making creme egg brownies. Now different versions of these have been all over the internet and on twitter, so it really was high time we had a go ourselves. They honestly couldn’t be easier – mostly because I used a packet brownie mix – sometimes you just have to cheat!

Here’s what you do –
1. Create your normal brownie batter – I used the Ghiardelli brownie mix because it’s totally awesome.
2. Throw in 10 mini creme eggs to the mix.
3. Pour the whole lot into the brownie tin.
4. Chop another 8 mini creme eggs in half and lay these gooey side up on the top of your batter.
5. Bake as per normal brownie instructions.

Creme Egg Brownies Creme Egg Brownies

Creme Egg Brownies

See, easy peasy and don’t they look amazing? I promise you guys, these actually taste like heaven. Seriously the gooey levels are epic in this. These beauties ended up at work and they all disappeared in record time. I think that’s a good sign, right?!

Now you give them ago and let me know what you think.

Lau xxx

January 2014 Eats

Hello lovely people and welcome to our little update on what foody delights have been occurring with us this month. Wow January has been a long month, but as you can see we’ve mainly managed to survive it by eating lots of yummy things! Yay to us right.

January Eats

Cooked
Kedegree
RSC#5 – Cod with bacon and a tomato sauce
Butternut squash pasta
Butternut squash risotto
Steak and potato wedges – the stuff of dreams!

Baked
Apple and Blackberry Crumble
Bourbon Biscuit brownies (as see on this rambling corner)
Avocado brownies
Bread & Rolls
Granola (coming soon I promise!)

Eaten
Dinner at Five Guys
Pizza and quiz fun at the Elephant on the Hill
Brunch at Tom’s Kitchen. Look out for a post about this soon.
Drinks at the Tinder Yard
Dinner at The Seahorse Pub (One of our favourite places ever – their sticky toffee pudding is to die for)
Lunch at Denbies Vineyard

What about you lovely people? What have been your food highlights this month?

Lau xxx

Fabulous Fudge

So let’s talk about fudge, lovely creamy, crumbly, delicious fudge. I’m a big fan of this stuff, and like to ignore that fact that I’m essentially eating a vat of butter with each mouthful as it’s just so darn delicious. The taste alone is reminiscent of childhood day trips when you’d be rewarded with the crinkling sound of the paper bag as it was unfurled and your Mum proffered you the bag to choose your very own piece. What dreams are made of I’d say.

As much as I love fudge (all flavours, I’m not picky) I’d never considered making it myself. I assumed it was so super-duper hard and complicated that it would involve some form of life endangering sugar boiling. Apparently that’s not the case, who knew?! Certainly not me, but thankfully the Domestic Sluts sorted me out, and when I finally got round to making fudge just before Christmas it was a revelation. Honestly one of the simplest things to make, and not only is it delicious but people also think you’re some sort of domestic marvel – when in reality all you’ve done is melted and stirred some ingredients. Bonus!

I made two types of fudge for Christmas, a plain fudge (recipe below) and this mince-pie fudge and both were marvellous, although possibly sweet enough to send you into a sugar coma after a couple of crumbs – so you’ve been warned. One thing I would say is that you should stir the fudge until you get a really golden colour as I stopped a little too soon on the plain fudge recipe and it didn’t quite set properly.

You can check out the plain fudge recipe I used below or read the original recipe that Domestic Sluttery posted here.

  • 230g slightly salted butter
  • 453g caster sugar
  • A tin of condensed milk
  • Melt the butter
  • Add the sugar and mix together.
  • Add the condensed milk and stir continuously for 10 minutes whilst bringing to the boil. Once its bubbling, turn the heat down and stir for another 10 minutes
  • Pour into a greased brownie tin and leave to cool.
  • Cut into squares and EAT!

See easy peasy – right! I bet you can’t wait to give it a whirl. I enjoyed making eating the fudge so much that I’m now trying to decide on what flavours to make next. Currently I’m torn between this layered mint chocolate fudge or this Peanut Butter Fudge one. I also saw someone tweet about a Malteaser fudge recently, which sounds intriguing I just can’t remember who it was! What do you think, any thoughts on what flavour I should try next?

– Fi xx

p.s. I’m a bad food blogger and failed to take ANY pictures of said fudge. What a fool I am!

Apple and Blackberry Crumble

The other day when I was stood in the fruit section of Sainsbury’s I had the sudden desire to make a crumble, I have no idea where this desire came from as it’s been years since I’ve had a crumble and it’s always apple crumble that I choose. Anyway with the dreadful weather outside I decided to embrace the comforting thought of crumble and I set about making one. After trawling the internet for a delicious (and easy) sounding crumble I came across one that’s meant to be healthy – although at 450 calories a serving (according to My Fitness Pal) I’m not wholly convince on its health merits.

The original recipe can be found here, and below is my version (my version generates enough crumble for four people).

Ingredients:

  • For the filling:
  • 1 large Bramley apple
  • 1 punnet of blackberries (150g)
  • 85g Demerara sugar
  • a squeeze of lemon juice

For the topping:

  • 115g plain flour
  • 85g butter
  • 25 g Demerara sugar
  • 40g porridge oats
  • 10g mixed nuts and seeds (I used walnuts, pumpkin seeds and almonds)

And to make this lovely winter warmer, simply do the following:

  • Peel, core and chop the apple up into chunks and then mix with a couple of drops of lemon juice
  • Throw the blackberries and apple and sugar mixture into your baking dish and mix up so the ingredients are spread out evenly.
  • Rub the butter and sugar together until you have breadcrumbs.
  • Add the rest of the topping ingredients to the breadcrumbs and stir together
  • Sprinkle over the fruit filling so there are no gaps
  • Place in the oven for 45 minutes on 200 ̊C until the fruit is cooked and the juices bubble through the crumble topping
  • Leave to cool for a couple of minutes before serving with a massive dollop of COLD custard or ice cream. Hot custard is wrong and therefore not allowed.

So there we have it, the crumble recipe that is *healthy* and the only thing that got me through the first few days of January 2014. What a lifesaver!

– Fi xx