I just thought I’d share what fun Holly and I have been getting up to recently. The older she grows and as her mind expands, I’m having to constantly think of what activities I can do with her (I’m a first time mum and learning as I go along). She loves to spend time with me in the kitchen while I cook, so I decided that it was time she joined in. As she’s only 14 months old, I wanted to do something very simple that would hold her attention, but that was also fun. So we baked. I have very fond memories from my childhood of baking with my mum and sisters and I was really looking forward to this being a part of Holly’s childhood.
I did a little cheat, I bought a kit in which you literally add water to make cookie dough (these kits are priced from 60p – £1.20 in most supermarkets). From start to finish, it took about 20 minutes. Holly loved it, she was so good and concentrated on what we were doing. I don’t think she would have tolerated me weighing out and combining lots of ingredients at this age.
It was a lovely activity on a miserable afternoon, a brilliant way of spending quality time with my Holly Hula.
Posted in Eating, Family
Recently, I have not managed to see my friend as often as I would like to. Some of you may know this friend as the TheGoodDr. On Tuesday I went over to her house for a coffee and a chat. (usually about anything and everything, she is one of the few people who listens to my nonsense and gives sound advice) She’d asked me on Sunday, over dinner which her husband had kindly made, what little treat I would like her to bake. I replied Lavender cupcakes! She said, why am I not surprised.
TheGoodDr is a cupcake fanatic, and on two occasions I have missed out on trying her lavender ones. Firstly at her daughter’s garden party. I took two home and then stayed with my mum for a week following her having surgery, forgetting that they were in our cake tin. Secondly at my daughter’s baptism. They all went in about 10 minutes.
I was determined to try some. I think the thing that intrigued me, is that lavender is not commonly used as an ingredient. You wouldn’t see it with the other live herbs in the vegetable section at the supermarket. I grow lots of different varieties in my garden and harvest it at the end of the summer to make bath salts. I love that this plant is so versatile. It is used in the perfume industry, aromatherapy, wound care and the home as it works as an effective and safe antibacterial.
Mr Bumblebee on my lavender plant
Before trying them she made me aware that these were a variation on a recipe that she had tried several times. I’d tried lavender ice-cream before so I had an idea of what to expect. However, I’ve never really been a fan of cupcakes as I’ve often found them to be a little bit dry or undercooked. This was very different. It was baked to perfection. It consisted of a vanilla cupcake with lavender frosting. The light and fluffy vanilla was perfectly balanced with the gently infused lavender frosting. Not easy to pull off with two very fragrant flavours but it was a triumph. An English summer in a cupcake. It was worth the wait and I’m looking forward to my next cupcake fix!
Lavender cupcake minus small bit of frosting that I licked!