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Hello Ive moved my blog to a new domain and word press are not playing ball with migrating all you lovely people so if you have received this email then Please sign up to my new blog and subscribe to receive my posts via that new page as this one will be deleted at the end of July 2014

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Thank you Claire x

Soda Bread

I love Soda Bread its so quick and easy to make and great if your in a hurry and need something for lunch. I’ve seen lots of different ways to make this soda bread.

This is the way I make mine,

To begin with

450g strong white bread flour

1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 level tsp of salt

300ml buttermilk or 150ml (1/4 pint) and 150ml (1/4 pint) natural yoghurt mixed

6 tbsp of tepid water

Pre heat the oven to 200’c/180’c fan gas 6

Start with lightly greasing a baking tray, then place all the dry ingredients into a bowl and stir altogether then add the buttermilk or milk/yoghurt mixture and enough tepid water to form a very soft dough.

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured work top or table and shape into a round circle then place it onto your prepared baking tray, using a sharp knife make a cross on the top.

then your ready to bake in the oven for around 30 mins once the bread is cooked and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

cool on a wire rack.

if you would like a more texture feel to your soda bread replace your 50g flour with the same amount of oats and add a few to the top before baking.

This recipe will also make rolls if you would prefer too just divide into round balls and bake in the oven for about 20 mins but may take longer.

Enjoy x





This is the recipe i use every time and it never lets me down its one of my favourite recipes out of the Mary Berry Baking Bible.

to begin with you need

450g self raising flour

2 rounded teaspoons of baking powder

3’oz butter soft

2’oz caster sugar

2 large eggs

8 fl oz milk


pre heat the oven to 220’c Fan 200’c gas 7

measure out into a bowl the flour, baking powder and mix gently then rub in the butter with your fingers until it forms breadcrumbs then stir in the sugar.

beat your eggs into a jug and then add enough milk to make up to 300ml give this a good beat, leave about 2 tbsp of this to one side for glazing.

add the remaining milk mixture too your dry ingredients then with a knife stir till it all comes together should be fairly wet to handle once it has all combined and is a sticky dough tip onto a floured work surface and gently bring the dough together and begin rounding it off with your hands and patting it down to form a soft ball shape flatten.

cut out your scones using a 5 cm / 2inch cutter keep bringing the left over dough together until you have used it all I always end up with a little bit like a walnut size i shape that to a rough circle shape a bake with the others and place your scones onto a tray brush with the leftover glaze of milk and eggs.

Bake in the oven for around 10-15 mins till golden

once they are ready they will sound hollow once tapped underneath too and that little one you cooked can be your taster cooks perks :) cool on a wire rack and then serve with cream and jam yummy X


Lemon loaf


I love this recipe its so quick and very tasty perfect if your looking for something to pop in the kids lunch boxes.

Start by selecting all your ingredients

4oz soft butter
6oz self raising flour
1 level tsp baking powder
6oz caster sugar
2 large eggs
4 tbsp milk
1 lemon grated

Crunchy Topping 

Juice of 1 whole lemon

100g granulated sugar

Start by pre heating the oven to 180’c, and line and grease a 2 lb loaf tin
measure out all your ingredients into a bowl and mix altogether until you have a smooth cake batter then pour into your prepared tin and bake in the oven for around 30 mins or until the cake is done if it starts to catch on top place some foil on top to prevent it burning.
whilst the loaf is cooking make up the lemon crunch topping by adding the lemon juice and sugar together and mix well.

when your loaf is cooked leave in the tin and using a folk make holes in the top of and pour over your lemon crunch mixture and make sure you et all areas leave in the tin till completely cold then take out and enjoy with a cup of tea :)


Butterscotch Cake with caramel hazelnut whisps

Another birthday in the house and The Birthday book by Fiona Cairns comes out to play again this time chosen by charlie is a Butterscotch cake with caramel whisps looks so elegant but scary as well with the tall spikes of caramel. The mascapone frosting is really good and would also go great on a cupcake.

175g unsalted butter
175g self raising flour
1tsp baking powder
3 eggs
100g golden caster sugar
75g light muscovado sugar
1tsp vanilla extract

500g mascarpone
1 tbsp black treacle
1 tbsp golden syrup
2 tbsp light muscovado

Caramel Whisps
30 blanched hazelnuts
Wooden skewers
110g caster sugar

Pre heat your oven to 180c/170c fan/gas 4 and prepare two 20cm sandwich tins by buttering the sides and lining the bottom. The cake is then easy to make, Add the flour and baking powder together before adding the remaining ingredients. Mix well then divide between the tins and cook for 20-25 minutes before cooling on a wire rack.

To make the frosting all you need to do is beat all the ingredients together. Mr yummy bakes was not too keen on this buttercream 

For the wisps, put the sugar and water into a heavy based saucepan and then put over a low heat, stir with a metal spoon until all the sugar crystals have dissolved and then turn up the heat so the sugar mixture is boiling, at this stage who should not stir it at all. Leave to boil until the caramel turns a deep amber colour. During this process just pop your hazelnuts onto a baking tray and put them in the oven for 5 minutes on 170c.

When cooled, insert a skewer into each hazelnut. Make sure to cover the floor with some newspaper as you don’t want to be scrapping caramel off the floor for the next week :) When the caramel is ready you can then dip each one in and ensure all the Hazelnut is covered. Place the end of the skewer under a heavy board and a long whisp should form which will take about 5 minutes to harden. I had a nice row of them in the kitchen under chopping boards. i did personalise this with melted white chocolate writing charlie’s name on the cake and his age.

I found the cake really straight forward and would make a great tea time treat on a sunday afternoon without the caramel hazelnuts. would definitely make this one again.



Back to school

I love having the kids off school but its always nice to have them back to school too they get so bored at home I have Charlie off till next monday though still as they are moving into the new building so Ellie is a little upset that he gets an extra week off.

Easter has come and gone one birthday down one to go charlie had a lovely birthday even if it was bank holiday monday I made him a butterscotch cake with butterscotch topping with caramel hazelnut whisps (his choice) it went down really well first time for me making the caramel hazelnut whisps so was a little nervous to say the least.


Just Ellies Birthday cake to plan now for next week she’s not a keen fan of buttercream so the thinking hats will be on. so watch this space to see what she comes up with. :)

I did a big food shop today and a meal planner I left it an extra week as I like to run the freezer and cupboards down as they can get back logged with left over meals that you put by for another day its quiet hard trying to come up with simple meals that are different and  not the norm. its funny how cold months we eat stews and gravy dinners and hot months its salads and pastas, I’m always looking for cheap meals and cooking them from scratch is so much nicer just means I’ve got to be a little more prepared.


Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns  love these traditional little buns of delight it does not matter how they come toasted with butter or cold with jam they are yummy.

I love Mary Berry and Ive used her recipe for a few years now and its a win win every time.

This makes around 12 buns




450g strong white flour

1 level tsp salt

1 level tsp mixed spice

1level tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg

7g yeast sachet

50g caster sugar

50g butter melted and cooled

150ml tepid milk

1 large egg beaten

75g currants

50g candied peel

For the glaze

2 tbsp granulated sugar

2 tbsp water

For the crosses

25g stork butter

55g plain flour

4 tbsp water

To begin lightly grease to baking sheets and put to one side.

Measure the flour, salt, spices, yeast and sugar into a large bowl, give it a stir then make a well in the middle and pour in the melted cooled butter, milk, water and egg, and last but not least add the currants and chopped candied peel.

mix to a soft dough i do mine in Ruby (my kitchen aid) with the dough attachment, Mix for around 10 miniutes until smooth and elastic. transfer to an oiled bowl, cover with my shower cap or normal people use cling film :D. Leave to rise till it has doubled in size will take around an hour and half in a warm room, (this will take longer to rise as it is an enriched dough and not a plain dough so have this in mind before making and give yourself time.

Once you have a nicely risen dough turn out on to a lightly floured surface and knead for around 2-3 mins.

Divide the dough into 3 equal pieces and shape each one into a round bun. For the crosses mix together the flour,stork and water then pop in a pipping bag and Pipe your crosses on each bun and then place on the prepared baking trays and allow to rise once more covering with a plastic bag or cling film for around 30 mins enough to double in size.

Pre heat the oven to 220’c fan 200’c Gas 7

bake the buns for around 15 mins until brown and hollow sounding when tapped on the bottom, whilst the buns are baking make the glaze by dissolving the sugar and water over a gentle heat, once the buns come out of the oven glaze straight away so they shine up and allow to cool on a wire rack.

There you have it yummy Hot cross Buns for the family.



Easter Biscuits

Its a tradition in my house that I make these on Good friday they are so yummy they never last long

This recipe makes about 24 biscuits


100g softened butter

75g caster sugar

1 large egg seperated

200g plain flour

1/2 level tsp mixed spice

1/2 level tsp cinnamon

50g currants

25g chopped candied peel

1-2 tbsp milk

and some caster sugar for sprinkling on at the end.

Now you have what you need ready pre heat the oven to 200’c fan 180′ Gas 6

lightly grease a few trays ready.

measure the butter and sugar into a bowl and beat together till light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolk.

sieve in the flour and spices and mix well, add the currants and candied peel and enough milk to give a nice soft dough.

Knead the mixture lightly on a lightly floured surface and roll out to a thickness of 5mm (1/4 inch) cut into which ever shapes you like and place on the pre pared trays.

Bake in the oven for 8 – 10 mins mean while lightly beat the egg white remove the biscuits from the oven and brush with the beaten egg whites and sprinkle with a little caster sugar and return to the oven for a further 4-5 mins or until pale golden brown lift off on to a cooling rack till nice and cool and keep in an airtight container.

and most of all enjoy :)



Lemon Cupcakes

I love Lemon cupcakes and when I saw this recipe in my little humming bird bakery book I knew I had to try it :) My lovely friend well i say friend she’s like a mum to me it so happens to be her birthday and I know she loves lemon cake so I thought they would fit the bill perfectly.

So here goes :)

Makes 12

120g Plain flour

150g caster sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp grated lemon zest

40g unsalted butter ( I use stork)

120ml Milk

1 Egg

For the Icing

250g Icing sugar

80g Unsalted butter (I find Lurpak is really good for icing)

2 tbsp milk

2tbsp lemon zest

Now you have your ingredients at the ready lets begin by putting the oven on to 170′ 350f Gas 3

Place your flour, sugar, baking powder, lemon zest and butter in a free standing mixer or if using a hand held mixer will do the job.

Using the paddle attachment beat on slow speed until you get a nice sandy mixture (looks like bread crumbs) make sure to scrape down the sides using a rubber spatula. then add the milk and mix for a few more seconds then add the egg and continue to beat until nice and smooth.

Spoon into your baking cups  and then pop in the oven for about 20 -25 minutes Once done leave to cool on a wire rack.

For the Icing beat together the Icing sugar, butter, lemon zest and then the milk start mixing slowly then raise the speed and mix for about 5 mins and it should turn out lovely then you can pipe onto your cupcakes and decorate as you wish.

and most of enjoy them :)

Happy Baking


Banana Milkshake Cupcakes

Makes 12-16 cupcakes

For the cupcake
70g butter
210g plain flour
250g caster sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
210ml milk
2 large eggs
40g banana milkshake powder

For the frosting
500g icing sugar
160g unsalted butter
50ml milk
100g bannan milkshake powder

For the decoration I used paper straws and baking cups from Iced Jems

Preheat the oven to 170′ (325f)

Using your free standing mixer with the paddle attachment, place the butter,flour,sugar,baking powder and salt into the mixing bowl and mix together sill a nice sandy crumbly mixture, Then in a jug add your eggs, milk and banana milkshake powder using folk whisk together.
place the mixer on slowly and gradually pour the liquid from the jug into the dry mix, then turn the speed up and scrape the sides and mix till the batter is smooth. Then scoop into your baking cups and place in the oven for 20 – 25 mins until golden.
Make your frosting by placing all the ingredients into your free standing mixer and mix till all combined and soft this should take 10-15 mins.
Then decorate as you wish.