Sunday, 28 August 2011

Chocolate Caramel Hershey Kisses Fairy Cake Recipe

I got the inspiration to make these cakes from a packet of Hersheys Chocolate Caramel Kisses I won on Twitter last week from @TheCandyCanCo 
Hershey Kisses Cakes
Chocolate Caramel Kisses Fairy Cake Recipe
Cake Ingredients
4 oz Caster Sugar
4 oz Butter/Margarine
4 oz Self Raising Flour
2 Eggs
Hersheys Chocolate Caramel Kisses


Butter Cream Topping
2oz Butter
1oz Icing Sugar
1oz Cocoa Powder


Pre-heated oven 185 degrees (fan assisted)
Add all the cake ingredients into a a bowl and whisk for 1-2 minutes with an electric whisk.
Divide the mixture evenly into cake cases, should make 12 cakes using fairy cake size cases.  Place a Caramel Kiss in the middle of each cake.  Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes, you may need longer if you use muffin size cases.  Remove from the oven once the cakes are firm to the touch and place on a cooling rack.
Fairy Cake Recipe
To make the buttercream place the butter in a bowl ensuring this is soft, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder and mix.


Top each cake with a little or a lot of buttercream depending how indulgent your feeling, you could also pipe this if you want a fancier looking cake. Any left over buttercream can be popped in the freezer. Then top with a Hersheys Chocolate Caramel Kiss.
Hershey Kisses Cake Recipe
I have been thinking about other goodies you could put inside a fairy cake, how about a blob of peanut butter although this could make the cake very greasy or what about one or two Aero Peppermint Chocolate Bubbles. Right I'm off to eat my fill of cakes!



Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Tile Museum and Carrots

Ok so this post has a real loose connection to the garden, but bare with me all will become clear, or at least less murky!  Its the school holidays a great time to have afternoon out with my niece Ava who's 5 years old. So along with my eldest sister Julie and our Aunt Sue we spent a lovely afternoon in a Tile Workshop at the Ironbridge Gorge Museums - Jackfield Tile Museum. I've previously visited the Tile Museum so today we were just popping in for the Make your Own Tile Workshop, so did not need to pay the museum admission.


These workshops are run during the school holidays and they are not aimed at just children, like us there were other adults having a go. It was very well organised with a lovely lady helping us to decide what size tiles to choose from, both my Aunt Sue and I chose a round coaster and Ava decided it was best if she had two tiles one a round coaster and the other a square one.  There were lots to choose from including large squares, oblongs or even a teapot stand tile.


Now for the difficult part thinking what design to put on our tiles, for inspiration there were lots of lovely examples on the walls of the workshop and also pattern books to flick through. But we went with the intention of creating our own personal designs. There was no need to worry about being artistic as you can draw your design first on paper and then trace it onto your tile.  We were given a small pouch with a nozzle which is filled with slip (liquid clay) which you hold like a pen but squeeze the pouch which you then trace over your design (this was a little tricky).  Once we had decided on which colour glaze's we wanted we got down to painting. You have to remember that this stage the glazes all look like different shades of murky grey and pink.
So do you want to see our designs.
BEFORE FIRING
I chose three carrots to immortalise my 1st place for my carrots at the local garden show last year.  My Aunt Sue decided to draw a cartoon version of herself.
You have to allow a few days for the museum to fire the tiles in the kiln before you collect them (or they will post them to you).
AFTER FIRING





We were all delighted with our tiles and at only £4 for each tile it was excellent value.  It was only after we had finished and had left the workshop we all realised we should of taken some photos, so a quick dash back to the workshop before the tiles were packed for firing to capture the before photos.I understand that the Tile workshops are just some of the events run by Ironbridge Gorge Museums during the school holidays.So there you go a very loose posting associated to the garden, but my carrots are now captured in china!  Oh and just to show you the real thing.




Saturday, 20 August 2011

Easy Plum Jam Recipe using my own fruit


Fresh plums from the garden and a very Easy Plum Jam recipe. Its been another good year for fruit in the garden, Blueberries, Strawberries, Raspberries, Plums and Apples have all done well.  I guess the only exception being the Gooseberry bush which produced just the one lonesome Gooseberry!  This week has been a busy week for picking plums the tree has been heavily laden with fruit again this year, only had one part of a branch break off with the weight of fruit, unlike last year when a rather large branch snapped.
Plum Jam Recipe
Fortunately the tree does not seem to be susceptible to plum moth and rarely will you find a grub in the plums. So with all this fruit there is only one choice of action and that's to make jam.  

Easy Plum Jam
550gr of Plums (whole)
450gr Jam Sugar
3-5 tablespoons water
Knob of butter (optional)


Using a rather lazy recipe I wash and weigh the plums, put them whole into a large pot with water.  That's right I don't bother cutting them in half and de-stoning them, as long as they are in good condition and of course grub free.   Leave them to soften and stew on a low heat for quite some time, until they have softened and gone mushy, then add the sugar.  Turn the heat up and keep stirring, you should notice the stones should float to the top for scooping out.  Let the jam continue on rolling boil,  I test to see if its is near to setting by placing a small amount on a cold plate and see if the jam wrinkles when you push your finger through it.   Then its just a case of ladling it into the sterilised jam jars.  If you think the jam has a lot of scum or froth on the top you can add a knob of butter and this will help disperse it
Making use of the free lid and
sticker handed out at last
year's Good Food Show
If I'm going to pass the jam on as a gift I like to go to the effort adding a nice label and a fabric cover to the top.  Now what to make with the rest of those plums.
Other favourite recipes are plum sponge pudding, plum cordial, a sponge tray bake made with stewed plums this cake freezes well and of course there is plain old stewed plums.  Would love to know any recipes ideas you may have for plums.
I couldn't resist showing you a couple of odd shaped plums found on the tree this year.
Some odd shaped plums

Friday, 19 August 2011

My First Post


Talked and thought about it a lot, now pleased to say I have at last created my very own blog.   Now when it comes to spelling and grammar I'm no journalist, thankfully there is of course spell checker and as for grammar well your just going to have to forgive me on that one.
Now what to blog about, well the clue is in the name of my blog and just in case you are still confused read more on the About Me page and all will be explained.  I'm not making any promises or predictions on how often I will be publish new posts, that way I can't disappoint.   I'm thinking my first real post will be something to do with the garden after all there's lots going on out there at the moment.


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Would welcome any tips on blogging.