Monday, 21 November 2011
115g butter or margarine softened
100g medium fat soft cheese
140g plain flour
25g butter or margarine
175g light soft brown sugar
1tsp vanilla essence
115g pecans chopped
Icing sugar (for dusting, optional)
I managed to remember to take some pics of the process this time, don't know if this helps!
Preheat the oven to 180C . For the mini cases, beat butter and soft cheese in a bowl until smooth. Add flour and mix to form a soft dough. This can take some upper arm strength (I have none) but does get there eventually!
Shape the dough into small balls about the size of a malteser. Place balls of the dough into a mini muffin pan.
Using your finger, press dough in the middle and push up the sides to make little cases.
For the filling, microwave the butter for a few seconds until melted. Stir in the brown sugar, egg and vanilla essence to create deliciousness!
Add the chopped pecans and stir.
Spoon the filling into each of the mini pie cases.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until light golden brown. Leave to cool in the pan for about 3 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.
The filling turns a bit of a strange colour so you might want to dust them with icing sugar. We were too keen to try these bad boys, so didn't hang around! They were pretty damn awesome and the best thing was the minimal amount of effort and time for something so tasty!
Friday, 18 November 2011
Personally, I far prefer them in the colder weather. Give me an icy cold, sunny day and I'm there, wrapped up in abundance :)
Here are a few photos on the old Instagram from a recent walk along the Meon Valley. Very pretty, we had woodland, river, beach, pumpkin patch and even a carnvial when we got back to the village...blissful.
Thursday, 17 November 2011
This year was a fairly easy costume and it still took me several hours to sew and finish. It was probably one of my favourites though; a voodoo doll.
I'd seen several on Pinterest so I knew basically how I wanted it to look, but the original dress I found, I just wasn't comfortable in. I ended up buying a white broderie anglais dress in the sales for £10 - bargain! But I needed sleeves on the dress. Luckily, I had an old broderie anglais top I was getting rid of, so i fashioned myself some sleeves! I also added lace to the bottom to add a bit of length to the dress. It turned out quite pretty and is something I could wear again :)
For the pin stabbed heart, I first cut out a heart from red felt. The second step was to make the pins. Other costumes I'd seen had used knitting needles, but I didn't want my pins to be quite so lenthy, for fear of stabbing! Instead, I used silver garden wire. I coiled each end after I had poked it through the felt heart. This mean they were able to lie flat against the fabric and I could sew them on. the tops were then covered with silver foil for the pin head effect.
All I had to do then was sew the heart to the dress, cut bits of black tape to stick on as seams and draw a big stiched grin on my face!
The night was lots of fun, with some fab costumes. We had The Joker and Two Face, an evil mermaid, Coraline's Other Mother, Black Swan and various other ghoulish outfits!
Already having to start thinking about my Heroes and Villains costume for New Years..yikes!
Wednesday, 16 November 2011
Well I'm hoping it gets cold anyway,because I'm getting fed up of carrying around a hundered layers only to find myself in just a cardi and lugging everything about!
After a whole lot of umming and ahhing, I have decided to purchase a faux fur coat. It's getting ridiculous how much I want one.
Things that have put me off are:
~Looking like a bear
~My friends dubious faces
But sod it! It's fashion, it's fun! I'm forgoing the proper winter coat this year as I can't find one I like for under £90 and the one I have is rather nice. So I'm going to save pennies by buying a cheaper fur coat and run around pretending I'm glamorous :P
Here are some rather nice pictures of pretty ladies wrapped in fur...
Picture links: 1/2/3/4/5
Tuesday, 15 November 2011
The story is not without it's moments of extreme sadness. I found myself in tears at one or two points. But it is also filled with a fair few moments of that old heart warming stuff! I really don't want to give any of it away but some of the maids had surprising stories of kindness from their white families, amongst the bleak ignorance.
I recently went to see the film version and it was incredible! I was worried it jjust wouldn't be able to live up to how good the book was (One Day anyone?) but I left with a sigh of relief!
The actresses that play Aibileen, Minny and Skeeter (Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer and Emma Stone) were so true to how I thought they would be. I find this rarely happens in a book to film adaptation.
I urge you to both read the book and watch the film. Revel in on of the few occasions the book to film craze gets it right!
Wednesday, 9 November 2011
125g caster sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tin bramley apple filling
1 tin Carnation Caramel (Dulce de Leche)
1 packet of crumble topping
There are lots of shortcuts in the recipe, such as the cumble topping and the caramel, where things could be made from scratch. But I was feeling lazy and this was cheap and worked rather well!
1. Cream together the butter and sugar
2. Whisk in the flour and eggs
3. Add the cinnamon
4. Add the apple filling and stir in
5. Dollop into cupcake cases until they're 2/3 full
6. Bake at 180C for 15-10mins until golden brown. You should be able to poke them with a knife/fork and for it to come out clean
7. Leave to cool on a baking rack
The topping is even easier!
1. Sprinkle half of the packet of the crumble topping onto a baking tray
2. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180C for a couple of minutes - KEEP AN EYE ON IT! It can be quick to burn!Should come out looking golden :)
3. Spoon a dollop of caramel onto each cupcake
4. Add a sprinkle of crumble
The result should be a ridiculously moist cinnamon sponge and a crunchy caramel topping :) Enjoy with a pot of tea!