Sunday, 25 August 2013

Dough Days : Bread and Chelsea Buns

I'm a weird woman at times. When I'm making something new, I will either cook it to death until I think I've perfected it or give it a wide berth and purge all photographic evidence.

A few weeks ago I made my first ever loaf of bread (yup, one item ticked off the ol' bucket list). My grandma randomly mentioned wanting to make bread and whilst I thought it would be fun I wasn't going to savour a crumb.

I'm not sure why but for my whole childhood I thought I hated homemade bread, I can't think of a moment that it started but I always remember avoiding it like sprouts!

I found a recipe on the back of my Allinson Easy Bake yeast and made up some loaves.

For a first attempt, I was overjoyed that my offerings even resembled bread.

On reflection, as tasty as they were, they were quite stubby looking loaves (i didn't use a loaf tin).

A week later, a flour coated me rescued these from the oven.

I'll be honest, smug wasn't the word. My bread looked like the artisan loaves you get in farmers markets. I'd have happily paid £3 quid for them.

This weekend I made loaves of bread, rolls and I worked on my Chelsea buns. Past attempts had left me disappointed (tasty but not half as pretty as all the offerings I had viewed online). I really wanted to present a pretty trayfull to my pregnant sister, so this time round, I took to Google for tips.

I came across Linday's blog Baking, Making and Crafting where she recalled that the recipe omitted caster sugar that Paul had used on The Great British Bake Off. 

With that in mind, I made a batch up (with sugar added) and made sure I left the buns have a good 30 minutes second proving before baking. The only other changes i made to the recipe was add a handful of mixed peel and omitting the zest from the icing.The results are below (straight from the oven, with apricot glaze and finally with icing)

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Vanilla Rainbow Cake

I can't believe it's been so long since i posted (must do better!)

My sister requested a 21st birthday cake for her friend and i took to google for ideas.

I've always loved the simple beauty of a rainbow cake, they are perfect unisex cake and because the suprise is inside, you can keep the outside fairly simple.

I must profess, i am a messy cook, i had multi coloured finger prints everywhere but it actually found it really relaxing to make, despite only have 2 sandwich tins.

The sponge and buttercream are both vanilla and it turned out mighty tall but tasty.