Thursday, 15 November 2012

a spot of baking .........

I love nothing more than having a quiet day in the kitchen and losing myself in my baking. I am always amazed at what can be achieved by mixing a few simple ingredients together. The satisfaction of taking lovely well risen fairy cakes out of the oven, the sweet vanilla aroma of hot sponge cakes cooling, waiting for sweet sugary toppings or melted chocolate drizzled over their tops.

Yesterday I made some simple vanilla sponge cupcakes. When they were cool I poured melted milk chocolate over them and then decorated the tops with chocolate chips, strawberry flavoured buttons and some grated white chocolate (so just a few added calories)

I also made a tray bake, using a Victoria sponge recipe and then added cherries, dried fruit and a sprinkle of demerara sugar on the top, to give it crunch. Lastly I made some of my favourite muffins, Christmas breakfast muffins. The muffins are made with wonderful festive ingredients, cranberries, cinnamon, grated fresh nutmeg and the zest of clementines, they smell amazing the whole kitchen had a Christmas fragrance for hours. The recipe suggests you use a large muffin tin but as these are one of the things I know I will be tempted to eat I make 24 small buns instead and they work really well. Another advantage is that they freeze perfectly, you can defrost a few at a time and warm them up for a few minutes in the oven and have them with a big mug of coffee as a special treat.

One of my favourite things about baking is seeing my cakes and biscuits all cooling on trays it gives me such a feeling of fulfilment. So many aspects of our lives seem to take lots of time before we get a result, or positive outcome. With baking you start with your ingredients, a bit of mixing, into the oven and then what comes out is usually the finished article, ok it might need a bit of decoration and artistry but more often than not the job is done. Then you have the lovely task of filling your cake tins, your cakes can be given to family and friends or even taken into work for a special treat. For me baking is all about sharing, maybe a little vanity comes into it as well as nothing is nicer than seeing someone enjoying my baking.

my favourite cake tin ................

yummy chocolate treats ............

Christmas breakfast muffins ........
simple fruit cake ..........
Now I need to think what to cook for supper - strangely that doesn't fill me with joy!

talk soon x

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