Baking Disaster

After a recent run of relative baking success, normal service has returned. A mad idea to produce a bread bun. Here we would call it a Stottie Cake. But no ordinary Stottie. This one has to tick a few boxes.

  • Vegan so dairy and egg free,
  • Gluten Free,
  • Baking Agent Free,
  • Microwaved.

Well that was the plan. The end result 5 minutes later was interesting.

Well it kinda tasted of bread. But it’s texture was anything other than bread like. Imaging cutting into rubber. Only one thing for it. When I chucked it against the wall, it bounced back and I caught it. I had baked a bouncy ball. Most useful for a summer picnic.

The Great Bloggers Bake-off is fast approaching on the 18th-19th July. Why don’t you join in the fun. Whether you can bake or not. Let’s have fun.

Remember to send in your creations (you can start early) to Mel (CrushedCaramel). Maybe your entry is not baking just something for a picnic like a sandwich, drink or salad….

crushedcaramel@gmail.com

Let’s see if we can literally blow Mel’s and our wonderful judge Jeanne’s (A Jeanne in the kitchen) socks off with our creations and monstrosities.

Baking

Comfort food was definitely required. So here’s my gluten free apple crumble. Whisper it quietly – it wasn’t too bad at all. Having said that my judgement is clouded. I’m still trying to recover from not eating for over 24 hours during our midweek crisis. I would even find Rhubard nice currently….

This will be another submission for this months Great Bloggers Bake-off which is happening on the 18th and 19th. If I can do it why don’t you have a crack.

Remember to send in your creations (you can start early) to Mel (CrushedCaramel). Maybe your entry is not baking just something for a picnic like a sandwich, drink or salad….

crushedcaramel@gmail.com

Let’s see if we can literally blow Mel’s and our wonderful judge Jeanne’s (A Jeanne in the kitchen) socks off with our creations and monstrosities.

Donuts – Really

July will see the second Great Bloggers Bake-off (18/19th). This year it’s a massive picnic. So in the spirit of things here is this weeks baking submission from Yorkshire. Oh it’s a doozie….

These are supposed to be donuts.

As son rather harshly pointed out.

Looks nothing like any donut I’ve ever seen…”

“More life a UFO”

“Your not going to get much Jam in that one…”

Well I think I’ve set the bar very high on the donut front.

Remember the Bake-off is for everyone, including those like me who can’t bake. It’s not often we get a chance to show off our complete incompetence in the kitchen. Lets embrace our inner baking muppet. Let’s have a laugh and give everyone a giggle as well. You know it makes sense.

So from now until the big weekend I am going to do at least one bit of baking each week. No practice runs. Photograph the disaster.

Remember to send in your baking creations (you can start early) to Mel so that they can be featured in the Great Bake-off.

crushedcaramel@gmail.com

On the edge baking

The apples are starting to form. It’s so wonderful having a little Apple tree in the garden. But wow does it produce fruit with a kick. I think the word I am looking for is – sharp. They definitely benefit from a heap load of sugar.

It’s all about patience. These apples won’t be ready for picking until October. Any sooner and even sugar can’t make them edible. Somethings are even beyond sugar.

Last night I tried to make myself a Moroccan stew from one of my cookbooks. Cooking when your beyond tired is always a tad risky. Especially as I produce weapons grade food at the best of times…. I tried to carefully follow the ingredients. Second last ingredient rather surprised me. 200g of sugar. In a stew …. OK….. the chef will know what he is talking about. And the final ingredient vanilla essence. Clearly chef knows best but really. Don’t need to read the preparation details. Bung it all in the slow cooker, stir and leave it.

Well 6 hours later and the stew was ready. It just tasted so odd. Basically a very sweet, strange tasting stew. This can’t be right. So I got the recipe book out and looked to see what I could have done so wrong. How can this be. No mention of sugar or vanilla. I surely didn’t imagine those things. All I can think of is that when my back was turned the recipe book page flipped over and shifted to something like a cake recipe. So I basically tried to cook a Moroccan Stew and Cake combo. Maybe it’s the future of cooking.

Maybe that’s a game changing idea for the upcoming Great Bloggers Bake-off. Start baking a cake recipe and then half way through the preparation stage I randomly change the recipe page. That’s on the edge baking…

The Great Bloggers Bake-off takes place in July (18th & 19th). But if you fancy it, please start baking as soon as you feel the urge. Clearly I have….

Remember to send in your creations (you can start early) to Mel so that they can be featured in the Great Bake-off.

crushedcaramel@gmail.com

Let’s see if we can literally blow Mel’s socks off with our creations and monstrosities.

Summer!!!

This is what a summer midday looks like in Yorkshire. Quite majestic. Just trying to work out where to put the deckchair. Facing the jet blast cold rain or against it. That’s assuming the deck chair has not been sent hurtling across the farmland. Must remember to apply damp proofing to my legs again.

Today we managed to get a home food delivery. That’s two in just over two weeks. I know I poke fun at the process but actually I am so thankful to get anything. The deliveries have been just enough to keep us going over the last three months. Not sure what we would have done without them. Sometimes single parenting really does limit your options. Especially when your son is so tied to the house at present.

Anyway some provisions have arrived. Not everything we hoped for but it’s plenty in the great scheme of things. The main thing is that son got more of the foods he eats this time. Can just about serve up his usual 7 day menu. I will be eating some interesting options thanks to the increasingly creative substitutions.

  • My gluten free pasta has been replaced with kiddies dinosaur shaped pasta. Looking forward to that one.
  • Almond milk for cereal has been replaced with Coffee flavour soya drink. Not sure that will work so well with cornflakes.
  • 6 large free range eggs replaced with 4 Scotch Eggs. Not sure how you make an omelet with those. Also not sure they are much use for my planned Lemon Meringue.
  • 4 lemons replaced by 4 limes. Again not great for a Lemon Meringue.
  • Dairy free cherry yogurt replaced with rhubarb yogurt. Ok I know I’m from Yorkshire and we are supposed to love Rhubard but I’m the only one who doesn’t like the local delicacy.
  • And the best one – 500g of Chia Seeds for me to snack on replaced with 2kg of bird seed. The garden birds will eat well.

But we smile. Avoiding another week of visiting a supermarket is just fine with me. Almost worth eating bird seed to avoid that modern nightmare.

******

On the subject of Summer and Baking, don’t forget the Great Blogger Bake-off happening 18/19th July. It will be great fun.

Mood baking

Apparently that is a cake…. Cake or Richter Scale 9 earthquake. The feeling of baking success….

Thank you Sadje for asking about my 10 favourite life feelings.

So here goes

  1. That feeling of holding your child for the first time. That moment of bliss as the little 6lb bundle of joy screams the place down,
  2. Feeling love,
  3. The feeling of warmth when you hold someone special,
  4. The feeling of waking up after a long and pleasant dream …. forgotten what that feels like but it sounds so cool,
  5. That feeling of joy when you realise it’s not Monday and it’s still the weekend,
  6. Those few moments of release when you get time to read a book or listen to your favourite cd,
  7. Finding that the empty box of chocolates has a hidden, untouched second layer,
  8. That moment of connection when you get an unexpected smile from someone,
  9. Sitting down for a bowl of your mums wonderful Apple Crumble and Custard,
  10. The feeling of elation when your favourite team wins a major trophy …. I picked the team which can’t even win the best match day pasty contest. No idea what this feels like but it does sound wonderful.

I was tempted to add finding bathroom paper (toilet paper) in the shops these days….

I guess the feeling of baking joy when you produce a wonderful culinary creation must be in there. One day I might be able to confirm that. Maybe it will happen this week, maybe in July when the Great Bloggers Bake-off happens. 18/19th July.

Remember the Bake-off is for everyone, including those like me who can’t bake. It’s not often we get a chance to show off our complete incompetence in the kitchen. Lets embrace our inner baking muppet. Let’s have a laugh and give everyone a giggle as well. You know it makes sense.

So from now until the big weekend I am going to do at least one bit of baking each week. No practice runs. Photograph the disaster. This week I might just have a go at a Meringue….

Remember to send in your baking creations (you can start early) to Mel so that they can be featured in the Great Bake-off.

crushedcaramel@gmail.com

Garden photobomb

Somebody likes to photobomb any picture. This one is quite apt as he spends most of his time here. Digging stuff up, burying things and helping himself to any unfortunate vegetables which decide to grow here.

Yes I know it’s hardly Kew Gardens. I bet Kew doesn’t have as fine a collection of weed samples that we have… Maybe that could be our specialty. Our route to fame and fortune. Time to hug those weeds (all except those pesky nettles). And I bet Kew hasn’t had a banging crop like we have had so far this year. I don’t want to brag but so far we have had 2 radishes, 3 tiny leaves of spinach and one deformed spring onion. Eat your heart our Kew….

“Dad I’ve not a new school project to do. Take some photos of things your mum or dad or family are good at. Mum was good at so many things. Where do we start with you…”

I take that cheeky grin and that knowing look as an indication that either you are so impressed with the range of my talents or in fact you think that I am a complete muppet at everything.

“Ok Miss Piggy any ideas what I could use as examples of your talent?”

The garden

Really. Our neighbours have perfect gardens and we have lots of weeds.”

What about cooking

Dad your shortcrust pie last night was stronger and tougher than Captain America’s Shield. “

Hairdressing

Have you seen my hair…”

Ok my sewing, remember that knee patch I put on your trousers

“At one stage you sewed your finger onto the trousers. When you got the patch finally on you managed to sew through to the back of the leg as well. You suddenly made the trouser leg only one foot long.”

That was a classic. I’m good at DIY. I put your shelf up.

It fell off the wall two hours later.”

But while it was on the wall it was perfectly level.

You know what Dad I have thought of a family talent. I’m off to photograph the gerbils shred a cardboard box.”

So with another humiliation to add to my growing repertoire let’s get back to the photo. The pink rose next to the wall is so special to us. It came from a small cutting which came from my partners childhood garden. It’s a precious link with the past. Yes it’s getting on quite a bit now. Aren’t we all. I only wish I was still looking as good as this rose. To look that good after all those years is some talent.

Scratches and baking

Can’t really claim this one. I cut the grass for one of my elderly neighbours. Yes it’s a beauty but wow has it left some scratches on my arm over the years.

I guess this bush proves the theory that some successes have to be earned. Or maybe it’s just – don’t wear T-shirt’s and shorts when your gardening near anything with thorns. It’s all about on the edge gardening.

Why don’t we apply this theory to baking. Dangerous baking.

Soon it’s going to be this years Bloggers Bake-off (July 18/19th). Last years was so much fun. So many wonderful creations and some interesting ones. Guess which pile mine fell in to. I played it safe and just went for a chocolate kinda cake. And it almost went horribly wrong.

Well this year let’s up the anti. Let’s wear our horrible baker badge with honour. No more hiding. Let’s be bad and proud. So this year I need your help. Here’s the plan.

I want to try and bake the hardest thing possible. Yes something I can get the ingredients for (or substitute them). But I want an epic challenge. No practices. No safety net. One attempt on the day. Photograph what ever abomination is created. What could possibly go wrong.

So I am looking for suggestions. What nightmare baking creation can I have a go at. Hopefully something which is so beyond my abilities that it threatens the space-time continuum.

So hope you will join in the fun.

July is not that far away.

It will be July all too soon and it’s time for another message from Mel.

Break, Eat, Picnic, Nature, RecoveryWordPress bloggers have been a tremendous force for good in recent months encouraging another to STAY AT HOME, STAY SAFE, STAY ALERT and FOLLOW THE DIRECTION FOR EVERYONE’S PROTECTION.

It is a joy to see the blogging community have all been doing their bit in helping each other through these hard times. We are very excited about an event ahead that we hope will help you to build more bonds with fantastic bloggers who make a great contribution to the delightful WordPress blogging community.

2020 flyer

In the last BAKE-OFF post, we told you about the BAKING CONTEST. But the second feature of THE GREAT BLOGGERS’ BAKE-OFF 2020 is:

THE SUMMER PICNIC

Many of us are still having difficulties finding baking essentials at our supermarkets. We don’t want to leave anybody out of THE GREAT BLOGGERS’ BAKE-OFF, which is why we are all hosting a virtual picnic to coincide with the BAKING CONTEST.

If baking is not an option for you at the moment…or else you are not that keen on baking at all, could you bring along something else to our SUMMER PICNIC. It could be your homemade lemonade or sangria, it could be a dip like hummus or guacamole. Perhaps you make a fabulous coleslaw or potato salad. Indeed salads of every variety would be welcome because it is summer and we are all trying to be healthy.

We would love an international flavour to the SUMMER PICNIC. Do you make spring rolls? Tacos or fajitas? How about pakoras or bhajis? We would love any type of tapas, mezes or canapes. Pickles, chutneys, jams, curds or any other preserve are all welcome.

Undeniably all three of us have a sweet tooth, so we welcome sweet contributions. Do you make trifle or ice-cream or any other sweet treats?

Authentic, Food, Vegetables, Fruits

 

What do we need you to do?

Please send a photo of your bakes so it can be featured in The Great Bloggers’ Bake-Off 2020 to:

crushedcaramel@gmail.com

It would be great if you could start making picnic treats now and send the photos in as soon as possible! But the BAKE-OFF and the SUMMER PICNIC will be held in just over seven weeks time. If you want to send us the recipe you followed or a story about what you chose to make, we love all of that. We want to share you as a blogger as well as your bake to the whole of WordPress!

Of course if you would like to create your own post about your picnic creation – please do so, and please mention THE GREAT BLOGGERS’ BAKE-OFF 2020 SUMMER PICNIC and invite your blogging buddies and followers to get involved.

(If you have any questions at all – please feel free to post your questions in the comments of any of our posts and we will try to get back to you as quickly as possible.)

It’s almost time….

The wonderful Mel has come up with this flyer for something you won’t want to miss which is happening in July.. Soon the fun will start all over again…..

You are invited!

18/19th July 2020

Last year Gary the creator of A Dad trying to cope with the loss of his Partner and becoming a single parent, had an amazing idea. Gary said, “Why don’t we have a bloggers’ bake-off?” Melody the creator of Caramel (Learner at love), thought that was a fantastic idea so started planning with Gary. We asked the spectacular kitchen guru and baking legend Jeanne, the creator of A Jeanne in the Kitchen, to be our celebrity judge…and voila!

The 2019 GREAT BLOGGERS’ BAKE-OFF was an amazing blogging event. We loved every moment of it and were thrilled with the response from other bloggers. We have been looking forward to the 2020 BLOGGERS’ BAKE-OFF ever since.

However…this year many bloggers have reported challenges in obtaining baking essentials such as flour, eggs and baking powder. Do not despair! You will be delighted to hear that as well as the BAKE-OFF for all who are able to bake this year, we are also hosting a virtual summer picnic on WordPress.

That means that as well as the baking contest, there will be an international virtual picnic and we are asking all of you to bring something along! More details to come!!! Oh we are so excited!

Cue the annoying picnic song!!!

https://youtu.be/jrliJnmYomI