Saturday, 4 February 2012

recent projects

A needle felted fairy-toadstool and a hand sewn bunny made from an old mohair jumper for my daughter's birthday....

A pair of "minions" for a friend's twins....

A needle felted hare made for the sake of it....
(now less ghostly with a brown coat; need to take pics!)

And a baby-sized tutu as a birthday present for a friend's gorgeous one-year old, modelled by my ever so glam son!

I thought I hadn't made much over the past month but it seems I underestimated myself! I'm now itching to play with the Fimo my sister bought me for my birthday but am working long nights for the next couple of days so will be unable to create anything else until Tuesday....

Friday, 3 February 2012

Nutty Rocky Road

There's something ever so moreish about the combination of salty peanut butter and sweet chocolate. This recipe is ridiculously quick and simple to make and satisfies that naughty treat craving for a bit. Why, yes, it IS rather naughty but you won't be making it every day will you... If you have a nut allergy obviously don't use the peanut butter; you can replace it with tahini paste if you are not allergic to sesame seeds, otherwise just add a bit more chocolate and it will be plain old non-nutty Rocky Road!


150g chocolate - approximately half dark half milk
25g butter
Generous heaped tblsp of golden syrup
Generous heaped tblsp of crunchy peanut butter
6 or 7 crushed digestive biscuits
Generous handful of chopped dried fruit
Generous handful of either mini marshmallows or chopped up big ones

Pop the chocolate, butter, syrup and peanut butter in a microwavable bowl and microwave on full for 1 minute. Stir. If it isn't fully melted then put it back in the microwave for another 30 seconds; this should be enough.

Add the dried fruit, crushed biscuits and the mini marshmalloows to the bowl and mix together thoroughly.

Pour the whole lot into a cake tin and refrigerate until firm.

To remove from the tin; hold it upside down & run warm water over the underside of the cake tin until the Rocky Road will rotate in the tin. Turn it out onto a plate, chop into bits & enjoy!

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

The Ultimate Cookie Recipe

I don't think anybody could dislike this cookie recipe; it makes fantastic, coffe-shop-sized cookies that are crisp on the outside yet soft and slightly squidgey on the inside. It was passed to me by a friend who got it from one of her friends and I have made it so often that it is now second nature. Be warned, though, the cookies will magically disappear! It is perfectly acceptable to make the dough as below and freeze half before cooking...

Ingredients (makes 24 great big squidgey cookies.....)

6oz softened butter or margerine
6oz caster sugar
6oz soft brown sugar
2 eggs
1tsp vanilla extract
12oz SR flour
a 200g bar of chocolate chopped into chunks. I usually use 250g for luck **

**NB you could replace some of the chocolate with dried fruit, fudge or similar. The fudge will melt & spread but I think we can live with slightly messy looking cookies can't we. You could use chocolate chips but they seem a bit on the small side to me; I like my chocolate chunky! When I'm chopping my chocolate I find it easiest to leave the bar whole, lie it on a chopping board and cut the bar lengthways then widthways like this;

1. Pre-heat the oven to 175 *C, grease and line your baking trays

2. Beat butter/ marge & sugar together until creamy;

3. Beat in the egg and vanilla thoroughtly;


4. Sift in flour & fold in until combined;

5. Stir in the chocolate chunks (I used white chocolate & strawberry and milk chocolate this time around!);

6. Bake heaped dessertspoonfuls 6 to a tray for 10-12 minutes (they spread out quite a bit and should be only very slightly golden when they are done. they will sink down & go flat but that's the plan;

7. Leave the cookies to cool a little bit before lifting them onto a cooling rack or they will break apart.

8. Try not to eat them all at once.... OK just ONE more then....