Lovely Lemon Biscuits
As today is the last day of primary school for 9 whole weeks, classes are allowed to take treats into school. Sweets and chocolate are, as a rule, not allowed in school due to a healthy eating policy. For today though, as it’s a half day, the 6 year old was allowed to choose what treats he wanted to bring in. When I asked him what he’d like for his treat I expected that he’d ask to go to the local shop to pick up some goodies. I was wrong. Yesterday I got my instructions. He required vanilla biscuits with icing. Except when I went to make the vanilla biscuits…
Apparently simnel cake is traditionally eaten on Mothering Sunday. I have to say I never remember eating simnel cake then, but it always featured on our Easter table as I was growing up. Technically simnel cake is a similar mixture to a Christmas cake, and has some of the same flavours. However unlike Christmas cake, you won’t find any sickly sweet white icing (be it fondant or royal), and the almond paste is baked into the cake, with a thin layer on top that’s caramelised under the grill before serving. The thing is though, simnel cake is beautiful but a flipping heavy cake to make. It is prone to collapsing…
I’ve come over a bit romantic and have been revisiting my favourite recipes just in time for Valentine’s Day. This is not sugar-free, gluten-free or fat-free. This is a whole sugar, fat, wheat in your face kind of dessert that is perfect with a spoon of whipped cream or even eaten warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. I don’t want to be virtuous all the time, everything is okay in moderation. Of course the raspberries are frozen as they’re out of season, but that’s okay!
Honey, Ginger And Apple Cake
This morning a mist rolled down from the Mourne Mountains to the sea and enveloped our town in swirls of myth. I was half expecting to see Queen Maeve and her warriors charge past the front door as we piled into the car to get to school. It was the kind of mist that deadens the sound of engines, it made me feel like we were the only 2 people in the world walking home today. Just the small boy and I, wrapped against the frost and fog, racing back to get a hot mug of tea.
Sugar Free Brownies
In my last blogpost I shared a vlog of my own journey of getting fitter and losing weight. I am depending on nobody else to lose weight for me, or to help me get fit. It does help though that there is somebody else working alongside me, towards a similar goal. My husband and I are extremely competitive with one another so when he suggested he could do with getting more active himself it made it far easier. This morning he got a major boost where he lost enough weight to say he was the lightest he had been in over 15 years. So far he’s lost a total of…
Tea Biscotti & Teaology
A couple of weeks ago I was invited to a tasting with Barry’s Tea and their master blender Denis Daly. I didn’t need to be asked twice. If there’s tea involved, I’m there with bells on. We were treated to tea based cocktails, iced tea and got to see some vintage stamps, order books and other items inside. I was particularly taken with these: We ventured into the main room and Mr Daly turned into a tea tasting and teaology machine. It was a lovely evening and I went home with a bag of specially blended tea from the master himself.What do you do with a bag of specially blended…
The 5 year old had his first ever school tour last week. So I made him some lemon muffins for his lunchbox as an extra special treat. Chocolate and nuts are banned in his school so I often make him treats based on fruit flavours instead. To be honest I think he prefers them. I’ve moved my desk upstairs in the house now that the two boys are sharing a room. It means that I don’t use the computer in our living space in the evening and that there’s a clear separation between home and work life. Having an office space is brilliant. The only thing is that I’m less…
Have you ever wondered by Mother’s Day falls on a different day each year? There’s a very good reason for that and believe it or not Mother’s Day never started out as a holiday to celebrate your mother at all.
I baked this crumble tart for St Patrick’s Day. I’m not a gourmet kind of a cook but I know how to weave a bit of magic with some ingredients with minimal fuss. The town I live in now is not the town I grew up in but over the years we have become so embedded in the area I can’t imagine living anywhere else. On St Patrick’s Day we get to walk a mere 10 minutes down the road to enjoy everything that a country parade has to offer. There were tractors galore which the kids loved.
Today, Sunday, is a dampy rainy kind of a day. The sort of a day that makes me want to pull the duvet back over my head and pretend it never started. Today calls for comfort food. This is a traditional, old style, stick-to-your-ribs semolina pudding, it’s frugal and easy to make with just 3 core ingredients.
As today is an important day to me, I figured it was time to celebrate. The thing is though I’m a bit “caked out” at the moment for reasons that will become apparent in the future. I’ve made some coconut cookies instead, as a favour to myself.
I mentioned on Saturday that I was making gur cake. I really didn’t expect the response I would get on all my social media channels from Dubs (people from Dublin), Corkonians (who call it chester cake) and Deise natives (from Waterford, who call it donkey gudge cake apparently). This is a cake that has huge heritage, and yet comes from a very humble beginning.