04 August 2013

Yummy Lemon Drizzle Cake

Dare I say it, but there's an autumn chill in the air. Which can only mean one thing...time to get my bake on! In the summer its all about Pimm's and Jelly. Now it's the turn for cake and all things sweet.

I haven't shared my Yummy Lemon Drizzle Cake recipe on Country Bumpkin Chic yet. It was a recipe one of my old (not that she's old, she just doesn't live there now) neighbour's Polly shared after bringing round some Yummy Lemon Drizzle to one of my Christmas shopping evenings and it was a hit. It's also a hit with the folks, so it would be rude not to share.

Ingredients:

Cake:
  • 225g unsalted butter
  • 225g caster sugar (I used brown sugar, as I'd run out of caster!)
  • 225g self raising flour
  • 4 eggs
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
Topping:
  • Juice of 1-2 lemons (depending how tangy you like it!)
  • 85g caster sugar (although you can use icing sugar to make a better glaze)
Method:
  1. Heat the oven to 180 or Gas Mark 4
  2. Beat together the butter and sugar until pale and creamy
  3. Add the eggs, one at a time (obvs!) and mix through slowly
  4. Sift in flour
  5. Add the lemon zest
  6. Mix until well combined
  7. Line a loaf tin with greaseproof paper
  8. Spoon in the mixture and level off at the top
  9. Bake for 40-45 mins - if the mixture doesn't wobble in the middle or if a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean, then it's done!
  10. Whilst the cake is cooling, mix the lemon juice with sugar.
  11. Prick the cake all over with a fork and drizzle the mix over allowing it to soak in and form a topping.
  12. Leave until completely cool before removing or serving.
  13. Keeps for about 4 days, or you can freeze - happy days.
Lemon drizzle a cooking
Top tip: pop the used lemons in the oven & it will smell fresh!
Lemon icing sugar ready to glaze
Lemon Drizzle Cake all shiny & glazed
Yummy Lemon Drizzle Cake cooling down...almost ready to eat!
 
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28 July 2013

My obsession with TOMS

My obsession with TOMS started last autumn when a friend recommended that ‘I must’ get a pair to walk round New York City and I haven’t looked back since my first pair of wine coloured canvas classics. Not only were they super comfy keeping my feet in one piece whilst pounding the streets of NYC and racking up my credit card, but they’re really stylish and the TOMS collections have a huge range of canvas shoes in a variety of colours and styles to suit everyone's tastes.  I recently bought a faded floral pair for summer which have already received a few admirers.
 

My obsession with the TOMS story doesn’t stop there with them just producing great comfy canvas shoes, it goes deeper than that – they’re doing something totally radical in the world of corporate responsibility. Their whole ethos is based around founder Blake Mycoskie goal 'to show how together, we can create a better tomorrow by taking compassionate action today'. Following his trip to Argentina in 2006 whilst taking a break from playing polo to volunteer he noticed the kids walking around barefoot damaging the soles of their feet, so he decided to take back to the US the new shoe everyone was wearing in the cities - the Argentinian alpargata shoe.
Blake also made a commitment to match every pair of TOMS (which means ‘shoes for tomorrow’) purchased with a new pair given to a child in need – One for One. Since launching TOMS in 2006 they've given over 10 million shoes back to children, and now give shoes in 50+ countries as well as helping sight in 12+. It’s all pretty remarkable especially as they’ve only been going since 2006. Check out the TOMS website here – there is so much amazing good stuff they do… their videos are really inspirational and I’ve just spent the last hour watching them!
They also have some fun ideas and this current one is bonkers - but really works ‘The World’s first Human Powered Customizer’.  Through Google Hang Out you can watch artist Tyler Ramsey living in a box and customising TOMS live. Check out the video below or follow them on Instagram here.
 
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20 January 2013

Pink Grapefruit Muffins

What better way to spend a snowy afternoon than baking.


After my January 'must eat more fruit' stint, I had a left over pink grapefruit and wondered by googling 'grapefruit muffins' what it would come up with, low and behold there was one courtesy of Jen of My Tiny Oven. It was really easy to make and zesty / refreshing to eat.  So here it goes.

Ingredients:

For the muffins:
  • 1/2 cup butter - I used the new Stork in a bottle which was fab
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar - I only had caster sugar
  • 1 whole egg - courtesy of the hens in Bradford Peverell
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoot grapefruit zest - I grated half the grapefruit straight in to the bowl
For the glaze:
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grapefruit zest - or half the grapefruit
  • 2 tablespoons grapefruit juice
Method:

For the muffins:
1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a muffin tin with paper liners (or use cup cake ones to make more!)
2. In a bowl cream the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy.  Add the egg and mix well.  Add the milk and vanilla and mix to combine.
3. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt and grapefruit zest.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined.
4. Spoon the batter into the cases.
5. Bake for 15 minutes until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
6. Once cooled add the glaze.
For the glaze:
1. Mix the icing sugar, grapefruit zest and grapefruit juice until completely combined. Pour over each muffin and let it set.

And voila!



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