We are all off to visit my elderly Dad tomorrow for Father’s Day. I usually take a cake, but this time he has made a special request. On midsummer’s day he has decided he fancies some mince pies! This sent me searching through the kitchen cupboards, and thankfully yes, I still had a jar of mincemeat in stock. So here are Dad’s mince pies, fresh from the oven. Enjoy them, Dad and Happy Father’s Day!
PS In case you were wondering … I amstill knitting. More knitty news soon!
In a welcome and delightful twist on the theme of bringing an apple for teacher, one of my lovely students brought me a box of home laid eggs this week. What a beautiful gift. Just need to decide now what type of cake to bake with them.
Members of the Fenton Knitting Group will be enjoying a slice of the past this evening as they nibble delicious home-made bakewell tart alongside their knitting, sewing and crochet. The recipe may be a blast from the past, but the tart was freshly made this morning!
The recipe comes from the Hamlyn New All Colour Cookbook, known by handmadebysoo and all the family as ‘the big red book’. The book was a wedding gift from my husband’s aunt a very long time ago and has stood us in good stead over the years. Our kitchen shelves are heaving with Jamies and Delias and even the odd Hummingbird, but the big red book is still our first ‘go-to’ recipe book when we want something hearty, warming and tasty or, like this evening, we fancy a truly vintage treat.
Both our children have their own copies – very useful for young people fending for themselves for the first time, off to uni or setting up their own home. There’s a veggie version, too.
Yet another week has simply flown by and we are almost into February already. My days are very busy, planning lessons and teaching, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. My Friday smile this week came as I reflected on the week gone by, the knitting project I have finally finished and the next piece of sewing I am itching to start and my thoughts turned to my little knitting group. On Tuesday evenings everything stops for just an hour and a half and my ‘knitting ladies’ arrive. I started the Fenton Knitting Group soon after we relocated to Lincolnshire. We are only a very small band at present but hope to grow as the word gets round. We are not all knitters, but all needle crafters are welcome and what a laugh we have. My poor, long suffering husband can hear us from his ‘office’ and is convinced we are fuelled by something stronger than tea and cake. But no, it is simply the pleasure of sharing our ups and downs, not always craft-related, with like-minded people. I make the cakes, though I am most definitely not the best baker and certainly not very good at decorating them, but years of whipping up sponges to feed hungry children coming home from school means that I can manage a Victoria sandwich. Occasionally I become a little more adventurous and bake a Black Forest Gateau and this week it was my personal favourite, Flapplejacks.
Thank you for your company, ladies and Happy Friday!
The Fenton Knitting Group will be meeting tonight at The Barn in Fenton from 6pm till 7pm. Bring along your Christmas knitting or sewing projects, share your hopes and dreams for 2015 and knit the post-Christmas blues away. And if all that doesn’t whet your appetite – tonight’s cake is Blackforest Gateau, handmadebysoo of course!
My current knitting project is an aran cable throw. I’m knitting it in rows on 2 circular needles because of the huge number of stitches. I soon won’t be able to lift it so you may find me marooned on the sofa at some point, cocooned in aran wool. How lovely!
So far at the Fenton Knitting Group there has been some heavy-duty cable knitting, a lot of hand sewing and a bit of crochet, and a great deal of nattering! The cakes we have enjoyed to date have included Victoria sponge, apple cake and raspberry and white chocolate brownie. If this sounds like a great way to spend a Tuesday evening, why not join us? Everyone welcome. You might even get to meet the knitted imp!
Despite the risk of that fateful combination of sticky fingers and knitting, we, the bold and brave Aylesford Knitting Group, have eaten cake whilst knitting and nattering this evening. The cake was, of course, a handmadebysoo production and my lovely ladies were kind enough to pay me compliments and suggest I post the recipe.
That’s easier said than done, really, since my method of cake baking is best described as ‘bung in whatever you have in the store cupboard and see what happens’. I have to say this is a fool proof method and there is always someone around who will eat the result. My lovely son is largely fuelled on mummy’s homemade cake!
So what’s the recipe? Simple. Just decide how many eggs you want to use. I usually go for 3 if it’s a small cake and 5 if it’s a family occasion. Weigh your eggs and whatever they weigh add the same weight in SR flour, butter and, preferably brown, sugar. Then you add your store cupboard flavourings. For today’s cake I used coconut, coffee essence and Ovaltine (well, I had no cocoa in stock!). I topped the cake off with a simple icing made from icing sugar and natural yoghurt. And, luckily for me, it worked! Here’s what’s left!