Monday, 17 March 2014

Chewy Ginger Biscuits

Ginger is a firm favourite around here - whether its pickled, ground, fresh or crystallised there's bound to be a large supply in the store cupboard. 

The spicy aroma of ginger biscuits cooking is impossible hard to resist. 
With this in mind, I whipped up a quick batch of gingery, cinnamony soft sugar cookies.

To make a fresh batch, turn the oven to 175ºC and gather the following ingredients together:
1 & 1/4 C flour,
1/2t bicarbonate of soda,
1t ginger,
3/4t cinnamon,
pinch of nutmeg,
pinch salt,
3/8C butter,
1/2 C sugar,
1 egg,
1/8C honey
1/2 T water,
4T sugar and 1t cinnamon for dusting.

 Sieve the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt) together and set aside.

Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Beat in the egg.

Stir in the water and honey.
Add the dry ingredients and mix well.

Scoop tablespoon sized portions into your palm and roll them gently.
Dip in the sugar and cinnamon mix.
Place onto baking paper on a baking tray, press down slightly and bake for 8-12 minutes.

Let them cool on the tray for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack.
Wrap them up in wax paper, tie them with baker's twine and finish off with a cheerful gingerbread man button. A cute and tasty homemade gift to take along for your next tea date.

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Softy Giraffe

This softy giraffe is a quick and easy toy to create to take along to a baby shower as a sweet gift.

You can create your own giraffe using the template above (Note: seam allowance not included).
You'll need fabric, various coloured ribbons, stuffing, sewing machine and thread.

Cut 2 giraffes from complementary fabrics. Turn the template over for the second piece.
Pin various lengths of ribbon loops facing inwards on the right side of the fabric along his neck for the mane and 1 piece for the tail.

Place the fabric right sides together and sew together (I double back over the ribbons to secure them firmly into place) leaving a large enough gap to turn right side out and stuff.
Fill the giraffe with stuffing and hand stitch the opening closed.

If you can't bear to part with him, whip up another one or two.
Wrap in tissue paper with a big ribbon and an Incomparable heart pendant - the perfect finishing touch.

Optional: You can sew a patch of minky fabric or corduroy onto the body pieces before stitching together to add an extra tactile element for baby.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Shrove Tuesday - Mini Fold-Up Pancakes

Its Shrove Tuesday…which means pancakes, crepes, flapjacks, and these funny little folded up pocket pancakes.

These are much less time consuming than regular pancakes - you just scoop the batter into buttered muffin pans, pop them in the oven and watch with your nose pressed to the oven door while the batter morphs into strange and wonderful shapes forget all about them for 15 minutes.

To make 24:
Turn the oven to 200ºC.
Beat together:
6 eggs,
1 C milk,
1 C flour,
pinch salt,
1 t vanilla. 
Smooth out the lumps..then blend in 1/4C melted butter a little at a time.

Scoop into buttered muffin tins about halfway and bake for 15 minutes until puffy, golden and buttery.
The tray I put lower down in the oven didn't co-operate as well as the top tray in folding over and creating these pockets so next time I'll position both higher up.

These really lend themselves to be eaten like scones with whipped cream, jam and grated cheese.

A lovely new take on pancakes…I'm a bit of a traditionalist though, so I have a fresh batch of paper thin crepes ready to be served piping hot with a generous squeeze of lemon juice and a sprinkling of cinnamon…all in a day's eating work. 

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