Bread Rolls, bacon & passata

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My son is fussy about sandwiches but loves these bread rolls so since he is off on a school trip tomorrow and I have a packed lunch to sort out these were the obvious choice. 

This is a Paul Hollywood recipe called Breakfast Rolls. 
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Recipe ingredients

500g strong bread flour
10g salt
20g Caster Sugar
10g Instant Yeast
30g Unsalted Butter softened
2 eggs
250 ml cool water

Method

Place all ingredients in bowl ensuring salt and yeast are separate. Use a fork to mix then fingers to pick up all the flour.  It’s best to add the water bit by bit and you might not need all of it.  You want a soft dough not a soggy one. 

Use olive oil on your surface for kneading or use your mixer and a dough hook. Ideally you want to knead for about 10 minutes.  The dough does start out wet but will eventually form a lovely soft dough. 

When the dough feels smooth place it in a lightly oiled bowl covered with oiled cling film until it doubles in size.  1 to 3 hrs. 
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Once the dough is ready roll it out on a lightly floured surface without knocking the air out.  Spread the surface with passata and lightly cooked bacon or even ham. 
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Roll up and stick down edges before slicing into pieces about 2 to 3 inches thick. 
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Place these on a tray and cover with a large bag.  I use a large recycling bag he he. 
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Let the rolls prove again for about 30 minutes. 

The oven should be 220 oc Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.  You can glaze them with egg before baking if you want.


Birthday Baking

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It’s my birthday tomorrow so tonight I plan to sew for me.  Today I baked and I baked my favourites.  Because they are for me lol. First bake was a ginger cake.  Instead of my usual ginger loaf I opted to try a new recipe and wow am I glad I did it’s yummy.
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Mary Berry Ginger and Treacle Spiced Traybake

ingredients
225g softened butter or spread
175g light brown muscovado sugar. This is not demerara it’s more sticky.
200g black treacle
300g self raising flour
2 level tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground mixed spice
1 tsp ground allspice
4 large eggs or 5 medium
4 tbl sp milk
1.5 to 3 chopped bulbs of stem ginger from jar

my own tips

I didn’t have allspice and mixed spice. What’s the difference? So I used 1tsp mixed spice and 1 small tsp ginger 1 small tsp cinnamon.
I didn’t use 3 bulbs of ginger I used 1.5 it felt like lots anyway.
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Treacle can be difficult to weigh as it sticks to your scale pan or bowl so measure it on top of the sugar. Zero the scales in between.
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Because Mary recipes are all in ones. I measure everything into the mixer bowl using a digital scale that I zero between ingredients.
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Method
Once all ingredients are measured into the bowl mix until combined. I used my hand electric mixer.
oven temperature 160oc
Pour into your prepared tin and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. I have a silicon tray bake pan. I use these ready made cake liners.
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Allow to cool before icing. The recipe says mix 200g icing sugar with 3 tbl spoons syrup from the ginger jar m I used less than 1tbl sp and a little water to make a nice thick icing. A spatula spread this nicely over the top of the cake which I then sprinkled with crystalline ginger.
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This cake is my new favourite ginger cake recipe. It is scrummy.

lemon drizzle
The recipe is on an earlier post. Click here for the full post. This cake is an all time favourite of mine and an obvious choice for my birthday.


Easy Swiss Roll

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Love this cake. So easy and just super yummy.
easy lemon curd swiss roll

Recipe

4 large eggs
100g caster sugar
100g self raising flour

You need a Swiss roll tin.  I use lakeland baking flexi sheet.  It’s 37 x 27cm. I also use lakeland cake release to grease the sheet.

Preheat oven to 220oc or 200 fan oven.

Step 1

Whisk eggs and sugar together until mixture is light and frothy and leaves a trail when you lift the whisk out.

Step 2

Sift the flour into the mixture carefully folding it in.

Step 3

Turn the mixture into your tin or tray and shake to allow the mix to find its own level. Bake for approximately 10 minutes until golden brown and shrinking from the edges.
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Step 4

While the cake cools a little lay a sheet of baking paper slightly bigger than your tray onto a table and sprinkle with caster sugar. Turn your cake onto this upside down. So the top is face down on the table. While still warm trim the edges to neaten your cake. About 3cm in from the bottom score a line in the cake. This will be where you start to roll. Roll your sponge and leave to cool rolled up.
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Step 5

Once the cake is cool you can unroll and fill. Take your pick and choose a filling you love. It could be your favourite jam or you could add some cream too. Cream with fruit is nice but don’t put fruit more than half way down or it will overfill. Coffee buttercream for those coffee lovers out there. Don’t worry if it cracks slightly as you roll it as this is a feature of this type of cake.
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Dust your cake with icing sugar for a finishing touch. I chose lemon curd that’s my favourite.
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Totally yummy I think this might be my new favourite bake.


Baking and family dinners. Perfect winters days.

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The weather has turned super cold. The forecasters have been telling us to expect snow so we know it’s super cold.  That said this week we have had some perfect winters days.  Blue skies and bright winter sun.  Great for showing off all those amazing winter colours.  This morning I took a moment to photograph the berry bush at the back of my house.  Pj’s and ugg boots with a big thick cardigan lol.
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It’s also that time of year for planning Xmas baking and this year as well as the usual mince pies I plan to try meringue kisses and marshmallows in different flavours. 
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I spent a wonderful hour on my sofa the other evening browsing the lakeland catalogue. In my imagination I spent a fortune. I had no idea there were so many things I really wanted in my kitchen until I saw them lol. Made deciding what to ask for Xmas really easy. Lakeland vouchers please lol. Once I had browsed I then hit Amazon. Ii was ordering Xmas presents anyway so added in a couple of books for me. Right now all the cookery books seem to be on offer too for ridiculous prices like £4 or £5.

I had both kids at home today as my son had this awful cough. I still baked for his school cake bake but my Mum had to pop up to deliver the bake into school.
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They aren’t my perfect cake I personally prefer cream or buttercream but perfect for school. Mind you we also had some fun with multi coloured cupcakes.
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Must confess I smothered mine in buttercream lol.


Bake or iron? Brioche and playtime.

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Today is one of those days where I plan sewing projects, tidy house while eldest kid plays at Grandma and Grandpa’s for the day and perhaps bake too. 
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Well I must be honest if it’s a choice between tackling the ironing pile and a baking project baking wins every time.  Especially on cold winter days.

My grandmother on my mum’s side would always put her ironing to one side in favour of playing with the kids or having a chat with you. Why do the housework when there are buns to be made or fun to be had. I think that’s such a lovely sentiment for life. I like to combine the two sometimes so regularly have a helper or two in my kitchen.
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So while our potato wedges which we will have with cheese and ham cook I will sort through the ironing and play at jigsaws too then turn to baking
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The only reason and I stress only reason I am even sorting the ironing is to give the eggs and butter chance to come to room temperature.

Today’s baking will be from Paul Hollywood’s How To Bake book and will be Brioche. Enriched dough will be a first for me so fingers crossed.
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One of the things I remember my mum teaching me about baking was to organise myself. To weigh everything out into little bowls so that it’s all ready and to clean up as I go along. She also taught me that baking is like science. You break the recipe into steps and simply follow the instructions.
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I am a Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood fan and love the Great British bakeoff. So today not content with preparing the Brioche dough I will also be diving into one of Mary Berry’s books for shortbread.

Recipe for Brioche:
500g strong white bread flour
7g salt
50g caster sugar
10g instant yeast
140ml warm milk
5 medium eggs or 4 large
250g unsalted butter

This dough seems super easy.

Step 1
I measure the dry ingredients into the mixing bowl careful to keep the yeast and salt separate. So that’s flour, salt, sugar and yeast. Make sure you use your dough hook in your mixer.
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Step 2
Add the milk and eggs to the dry mix. Mix the flour, salt, sugar eggs, milk and yeast for about 2 minutes on slow then 6 to 8 on medium.

Step 3
Add butter bit by bit and keep mixing for another 5 or 6 minutes until the butter is all combined. Keep scraping down the sides to make sure all the butter is mixed in.

Step 4
Now the boring bit. The dough has to chill for minimum 7 hrs? Wow should have done this before bed and left it overnight. So I suggest making this in the evening and leaving it overnight
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Once I had finished the brioche dough and placed it in the fridge to chill I whipped up some shortbread dough too.

Step 5
When you are ready to prepare your dough tip it onto a lightly floured surface and fold it in on itself a few times to knock the air out. I stuck to the instructions and cut 8 pieces forming balls which I arranged into a ring with one piece in the middle.
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If I did this again I might make smaller pieces. I did add some chocolate chips to mine.

Step 6
This needs to go on its tray or tin into a clean bag to prove for another 2 to 3 hrs.

Step 7
Heat your oven to 190oc or 170oc fan oven. Bake your brioche for 30 to 35 minutes.
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Mary Berry Shortbread
I will add this recipe or a link to it another day.
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Meanwhile our potato wedges with ham, cheese and mushrooms for lunch was yummy.
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You can’t beat comfort food at the end of a busy week and on a cold winters day it’s even more perfect.
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Chewy Golden Oat biscuits

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I made these delicious oat biscuits a couple of days ago and figured I would write the recipe up. They were a bit hit especially with my youngest who is 20 months old. We will definitely be baking more very soon.
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Ingredients

175g butter or marg
250g soft light brown sugar
350g golden syrup
3 egg whites
250g oats
280g plain flour
Pinch salt
1 tsp baking powder

Oven heated to 180oc or 160oc fan oven.

Step 1

Mix butter, sugar, syrup and egg whites in a bowl.
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Step 2

Gradually add the flour, oats, salt and baking powder .
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Combine until completely mixed together.
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Step 3

Drop round spoon fulls spaced well apart on baking sheets. The larger the blob the bigger the biscuits.
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Step 4

Bake for approximately 12 minutes until golden.

Drizzle with icing sugar. Yummm

I split my mixture into separate bowls and mixed one bowl with raisins.
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When life gives you lemons make …. lemon cake

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There are just some days that seem destined to be dull and dreary.  My car won’t start so we can’t go anywhere and we do live on the very outside of a rural town so it’s too far for walking.  It just so happens to be a wet cold cloudy day anyway so we aren’t too bothered about being indoors but car trouble is always a nuisance.  There is a saying. When life gives you lemons make lemonade. It’s really about turning negatives into positives which is a terrific saying.  For me there is only one answer to a wet dull day and it isn’t make lemonade.  Get the oven on and bake something delicious.  Since lemons are on my mind the answer is easy.  My favourite lemon drizzle cake.

lemon drizzle

The recipe for the lemon drizzle is on an earlier baking post here. I also have a recipe for golden syrup oat crunch biscuits which seem yummy.  Bet the kids will love them.
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Here is the recipe for the chewy oat cookies.


Home made caramel sauce

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Home made caramel sauce is super easy,  super cheap,  and will last for ages in the fridge.

home made caramel sauce recipe and tutorial

1 cup white sugar – 225g
4 tbsp water
1/2 cup cream – 120 ml
1/3 cup butter – 80g

Step 1

Melt and boil sugar and water in a pan.  This will bubble and boil for about 10 minutes.  You need to watch this until it starts to turn golden and brown.  No stirring.

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Have your butter and cream ready in the fridge.

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Step 2

When it starts to turn golden and brown add your butter and whisk.

Step 3

Add the cream and continue to whisk.

Step 4

Once the butter and cream are whisked into your pan your caramel is ready to pour into a nice jar or pot. Let it cool a little before you put it in the fridge.

That’s it 4 easy steps.
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Hey presto quick easy home made caramel sauce.  I keep one in my fridge.  I use it for pavlova or cheesecake or biscuits.  You can warm it if you need it runny but it will harden a little when cooled.

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Later on I just couldn’t resist an afternoon snack with some of the fresh still runny caramel sauce. Yum yum
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Jamming and baking days. Apple and raspberry jam.

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Today I needed to get my creative powers going but it’s tough getting the sewing machine out with the kids around so culinary creativity is the best option.  I had apples left over from our trip to Brockhampton Estate which seriously needed using and a huge tub of fresh raspberries so the answer was easy.  Jam!

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Apple is high in pectin as are most berries including raspberries so they are perfect for jam.  The recipe was basically : –
500g apples peeled, cored, diced
250g raspberries
750g jamming sugar
Juice 1 lemon
75ml water

Soften the apples and raspberries in a large pan with the lemon and water for about 10 to 15 minutes.  Add the sugar and continue to boil until the sugar is melted then rapidly for approximately 5 minutes.

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You can test for setting by putting a spoon of jam on to a small plate cooling in the fridge.  If after a minute or two it starts to skin and wrinkle when you push it then it’s right.  If not continue to boil for another minute or so and test again.

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Your jam jars have to be sterilised and heated.  I wash mine in the dishwasher on high then stick them in the oven in a tray to warm.

Once your jam is ready use a large spoon or ladle to fill your jars then seal them tightly.  You are supposed to put a ring of paper on top but mine gets used so quickly I don’t bother. 

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I also baked my favourite ginger loaf cake today too. My best mate is coming to stay tomorrow and it’s her favourite cake too. I love this recipe.  So easy and yet a wonderful cake.  I will add the recipe another day.

Update following morning toast with yummy jam xxx
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Relaxing Sundays and home made Vegetable Soup

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Today we have opted for relaxing.  It’s been a week of rushing about so sometimes having a relaxing day is lovely. Seren-Grace and I have been reading books and playing with the Ikea drawing easel. 
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Meanwhile I realised my fridge needed a good clean and while I was emptying it found lots of rather sad vegetables so decided to make a vegetable soup.
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Vegetable soup is one of those easy things to cook no recipe required just use what you have. It will always remind me of my Grandma. She made hugs pots of it all year round and it probably was to use up vegetable bits rather than throw them out. She over salted it more often than not but still I hold memories of warm bowls of soup so thick your spoon would stand up quite fondly. Mine is not as salted lol. I started with that good old base of onion and celery. A potato has been added to help thicken the soup then basically I added what I had in my fridge that needed using up. It’s all bubbling away nicely now.
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Yummmm can’t wait till its ready later. I let it boil then added it to the slow cooker to continue to slow cook the rest of the afternoon. Ready for some lovely fresh baked bread at supper time.
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I also finished the bottom half of the Halloween costume. More about that later.
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This afternoon I might actually sit and watch a movie. No baking no sewing no computer work. That’s a rare thing for me it really is a lazy day lol.

Added note 6pm. Watched Mirror Mirror and it’s now my favourite Sunday afternoon movie. The soup is gorgeous. I made some dumplings to make the meal feel fuller. Must admit it’s better than my Nana’s was. Sorry Nana.
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