Weaponised Baking

It’s been a while. Too long. But fear not. Baking is back. As Spock would say, it’s baking Jim but not as we know it…. I like to call it Weaponised Baking.

I know so many of you wait for those Michelin Standard baking tips. 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

So here goes.

I was about to bake a loaf of bread but I wanted to spice it up a tad. Maybe add some cheese, or a few Mediterranean herbs. But it just didn’t go far enough. What could I find in the fridge or cupboards which was game changing..

A few hours later we have……

I give you gluten and dairy free, no added sugar – BLACK FOREST FRUIT BREAD.

The end result, just a bit different from cheesy bread. The taste, well it’s different. As Hawklad described it

Well it doesn’t taste poisonous, it’s a unique sensation. Its like my taste buds are being assaulted…..”

True weaponised baking…..

Added

Another dusting of the white stuff. It’s such a wonderful world filled with the best dreams and breathtaking beauty.

It’s bizarre how tiredness works out in practice. Yesterday on a few hours sleep I was a walking single parent zombie disaster zone. Bogged down in the minutiae of life. I couldn’t even make bread……

That was my bread after 3 hours in the poor bread making machine. Not sure if I should butter it or use it as a facial exfoliating rub…..Yet today on even less sleep I feel fine. Feeling like I’m almost competent at this parenting gig. I could even explain Calculus and Ionic Bonds this morning. Definitely NOT at home to Mr Zombie Head today.

So is even less sleep good for me? No not really. What is good for me is focusing on what is truly important to me. Doing that makes me realise just how beautiful this world is, just how wonderful life can still be. All the ingredients to happiness and fulfilment are there, just need to remember to us them.

It’s makes such a difference when you use all the ingredients in gluten free bread making 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 Same bread just with added water……

Tired bread

The snow has gone but it’s still cold. It’s rush hour again here…..

In the Black Friday sales I bought a bread maker. I had just been looking for a couple of new loaf tins. It was a rush of blood. Thankfully a much cheaper rush of blood than it could have been. So far so good. Much easier and much much easier. Almost fool proof…….

It’s been a tired day today. Hawklad is tired of school, I’m just tired today. Shall I show you just how tired, tired is. I present to you Exhibit A. It’s a delicious and wholesome traditional French herbal loaf…..

That’s what a traditional loaf looks like when you don’t add any WATER. As the faint sweet slightly burnt smell filled the house my brain pondered what that could mean. My bread never messes up these days, certainly not with my bullet proof machine. Maybe it just means a slightly more crusty loaf. Maybe it’s just the herbs infusing the dough. At no stage did the tired brain think ‘Huston we might have a problem here…..’. At no stage did the brain encourage this Muppet to get up and check upon the baking disaster unfolding in the bread maker……

That’s tired or it’s just me……

It’s Cold on page 264

Poor Hawklad was trying to do his school at home lessons. A teacher had uploaded work to be done online. That’s always a good thing and most welcome, unless you are Hawklad. The work kept referring to ‘review the key information on page 264 of your text book’. What text book….. Apparently the text book those in class use each lesson as a key part of the teaching programme. The class share copies so there isn’t one available to be sent home, so Hawklad did know that one even existed. At least we know now.

It’s cold. Not as cold as some countries but it’s cold for us. It’s definitely a two wooly jumper day.

It’s the kinda day for hot chocolate, soups and stews. It’s been a bit of a STEW fest recently. I can obliterate baking but I can do a might fine stew. What’s the secret to my STEWPENDOUS creations. Well I discovered that last night. Out of date herbs. Seriously out of date. We are taking Best Before A Very Long Time Ago. Best before ran out during Obama’s presidency (and not his second stint….). Oops….

The ageing adds to the flavour. As my parents would say when food hit the ground when I was a kid. Days when the food was quickly wiped on a sleeve and handed back for consumption.

“It will put hairs on your back son”.

Now a few millennial later and it certainly has done that….. If only my parents had put all this useful information and knowledge into a parenting textbook. I’m sure it would provide much reassurance on the use of out of date food items. It might even enlighten us to what key information can be found on page 264….

Brave New World

Empty shelves in the shops, no petrol anywhere across the area, limited availability of blood test container tubes for Doctors resulting in the rationing of patient tests……..Another day in the Brave New World after Brexit.

As Hawklad rather adroitly put it this afternoon “this is what happens when a country needs leaders but votes in CLOWNS. Really nasty clowns.” As one commentator put it – the kinda clown who would happily pull out the plug on your life support machine so they could charge up their mobile phone.

It’s all going very dystopian here in Britain. To make the Huxley story link then we need a bit of genetically engineered trickery. What follows is the lamest link ever. Genetical engineering in the form of baking. My baking. Yes that is my latest bread loaf. Cheese topped Gluten Free, Dairy Free Honey and Sunflower Seed Bread. Huxley would be proud of me – it tastes rather fine. BUT…

“Dad that’s all very well but weren’t you supposed to be baking a sponge cake .”

Oh yes, I wondered why I was making bread when I already had a full homemade loaf still to eat. I must have got confused.

“That’s what happens when a kitchen needs a parent who knows what he’s doing and ends up with a MUPPET. Admittedly a muppet who can now bake bread.”

Stars

It’s been a few weeks since the Great Bloggers Bake off happened. It was wonderful and so much fun. Along with all the great baking bloggers, two people need a real shout out for all the work they put into this. Mel (CrushedCaramel) for putting this all together and Jeanne (A Jeanne in the Kitchen) for judging the entries.

You can check out all the fabulous entries on Mel’s site. So many fabulous entries and a few other rogue ones……

Sometimes going rogue works….

The Bake-Offs awesome judge Jeanne has awarded me an effort star. That feels like a Michelin Star to a baker like me. I am on the United Nations Baking Crimes list. So a star is a huge win for me even though it might technically not have been awarded on baking talent in my case. 😂😂😂😂😂 You can check out all the true baking stars here.

The next star I need is in POETRY. Again I am on the International Poetry Crimes list. I am Bad at poems, real BARD. I have been asked by the authorities to Cease and Desist on rhyming. Who am I to argue. I have tried to stop but as a one off, Mel asked if I would write a poem with her for the Bake-Off.

So can you spot the lines that someone with talent wrote (Mel) and the ones that a truly appalling poet like I did’eth pen.

No Carrots hurt during baking

We would love you to still take part in the Great Bloggers Bake Off Festival of Love. Please send your baking photos and baking ideas into:

CRUSHEDCARAMEL@GMAIL.COM

Already Mel has received so many fantastic submissions and the occasional disaster 😂😂😂😂.

Ok time for Sunday Blogger Bake Off Entry . A heart shaped Carrot Cake. First problem… No carrots…. I foolishly used them all up while making Sunday Lunch. The garden ones are out of bounds as Captain Chaos has been wee’ing on them. I’m not driving today so just have to make do again. But no viable alternatives. No pumpkin, no zucchini, no pineapple, no coconut. Then the madness set in. Carrot is ORANGE. Cheese is also Orange and can be shredded. Lactose free cheese was added…..

So now it’s a heart shaped cheese cake.

Then the shaping issues. The carefully moulded HEART shaped cake fell to bits.

So I give you a bit of a disaster cake. Presentation needs a bit of refinement. The actual cheese tasting cheese cake is interesting. Think sweet spice. Think cheddar cheese. It kinda works. But do I serve it with custard or with butter.

Ice Cream

It’s time to dream. Dream big.

As I dream then what better time can there be to try to make some homemade ICE CREAM. So after a hunt I located one of those random impulse purchases that never made it out of the box. An Ice Cream Maker. Then the panic. How on earth am I going to fit that big bowl which needs freezing for 8 hours into a rammed freezer. I can’t remember that bit on the glossy advert. It just said make delicious ice cream easily at home….. So an hour later the freezer is bursting at the seems. The lid is weighted partly down with my heaviest kettlebell.

Wait patiently for 6 hours….. I’m sure two hours won’t make that much difference.

So in went the dairy and gluten free ingredients. Lots of tinned coconut milk, vanilla, decaf coffee and maple syrup. That kinda thing. Plus cookie dough….. why does my attempt at cookie dough look like rabbit droppings 😳😳😳😳😳

Then the press the machine button and it stirs…..why didn’t I just use my food mixer and save the money.

The end result…..

Not sure the famous ice cream brand will be too happy being associated with my attempt. But it is recycling….

Whisper it. It was nice……. WOW.

We would love you to take part in the Great Bloggers Bake Off Festival of Love. Please send your baking photos and baking ideas into:

CRUSHEDCARAMEL@GMAIL.COM

Already Mel is receiving so many fantastic submissions and the occasional disaster 😂😂😂😂.

Bananas

It’s almost upon us. Time to show that baking love.

But first. Time to dive into those panic rooms. I’m baking. I’m baking something new. Banana Bread. How difficult can this be. Even for me. So I carefully measured out the gluten and dairy free ingredients. I had everything accept Bananas. Unbelievable.

So a rapid tour of the local stores yielded NOT ONE single yellow fruit. Have bananas been banned from Yorkshire. How can bananas be so difficult to get round here. But undaunted, I wasn’t going to let the lack of bananas spoil my banana bread. Didn’t some big bloke once say ‘I am inevitable’. 😂😂😂😂😂

The only alternative to the funny shaped yellow fruit I could find were a few mini satchels of a banana recovery protein gel. The stuff long distance cyclists use. Needs must. The evil smelling gel was squeezed into the dough. The gel was also out of date……

The end result was…..

And the smell. Not so much bananas. More I guess akin to something being stuck in a cyclists lycra for several months. The taste – challenging…..

Which self respecting cyclist will reach for a plastic covered recovery gel when they can have recovery cake like this….

We would love you to take part in the Great Bloggers Bake Off Festival of Love. Please send your baking photos and baking ideas into:

CRUSHEDCARAMEL@GMAIL.COM

Already Mel is receiving so many fantastic submissions and the occasional disaster 😂😂😂😂.

Bread love

Time for more baking. Yes time to play some ominous Hammer Horror music. It started off as just a standard gluten and dairy free loaf of bread. Then I remembered, it’s all about LOVE.

What could I add to the bread dough.

Without enough thinking time I went for it. Sunflower seeds. Ok that’s sensible. Dairy free cream and Strawberry Jam. Not so sensible.

So I give you Strawberry Jam Bread….. Looks ok. Tastes different but not unpleasant. That almost worked and I do love a Cream Jam Scone. So yes bread love.

Do you feel the baking love.

We would love you to take part in the Great Bloggers Bake Off Festival of Love. Please send your baking photos and baking ideas into:

CRUSHEDCARAMEL@GMAIL.COM

Already Mel is receiving so many fantastic submissions and the occasional disaster 😂😂😂😂.