Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Tea and Cake and Other Not So Good Goodies

Sorry I've not posted in a while, I got a little tiny bit obsessed with Pinterest last week and sort of forgot to blog...oops! Must keep the balance better!
But I have been enjoying my time off from work and doing some baking and rather a lot of eating said baking, and other non baked goodies. Like these little millionaire shortbreads which are from Weight Watchers, which means of course, you can have two at a time! 

I've been enjoying this Jasmine Green Tea from M&S, its really light and fragrant, and if you are not a huge fan of plain green tea I think this is much nicer and easier to drink. The packaging is also rather pretty I thought. See now that I have all this utility china I have been making sure to get it out and use it, especially the tea pot, which is not only saving on tea bags but just makes everything so much more "proper" I think. Sipping tea from a little tea cup is also rather dainty unlike a big mug - which I do still like to use, just not in the afternoon! I'm sure this all makes sense to you... 

Also, the fact that its green tea makes up for the fact I'm having two shortbreads :) yeah, it does, I looked it up and everything.

I made a Victoria Sponge for my sister who has just come back from a holiday, and she loves cake, so I made her this classic. I also used my home made strawberry jam for the centre which was lovely, although it was a little bit runny.

Within five minutes of taking this photo most of the jam had dripped down the side all the way around the cake! But thats home made for you! It was still rather nice, if I do say so myself.

The next thing I tried my hand at baking was some brownies. I never make brownies at home, I never make anything that involves using a bar of chocolate, because lets face it, the chocolate disappears before I have a chance to make anything with it. If I left a bar of chocolate in my baking cupboard for spontaneous brownies, there would be no chance! So to make these brownies I had to go shopping, and I also bought some extras to add to the mix...

Fudge chunks and walnut halves. The fudge turned out to be a very big mistake as I'll explain further on...

I chose a recipe from an M&S chocolate baking book, it seems simple enough and I have all the ingredients needed for it now.

and some ingredients that I definately don't need..

By the way, how cute are these little bowls, they are such a sweet size for snacks or weighing my baking things out. They are from Dunelm Mill if you were wondering.

I love the colours, naturally.

Ok, so I made my brownies...I added the fudge chunks despite them not being in the recipe itself I thought I could just throw them in. Well no. What happened was they somehow destroyed the mix and produced rock hard brownies that were almost impossible to cut let alone eat. I think when they melted they must have formed some sort of hard shell around the tin. Disaster.

So I managed to cut a piece, plonk it on the plate for this photo, and well, lets just say I had to microwave it to soften it to actually be able to eat it. And it wasn't even that nice inside either :( so I am appealing to all my fellow bloggers for a simple, easy and fail safe chocolate brownie recipe. Please help me, or I think I will be put off for life!


  1. Oooooh I love that brownie book! It is well worn in my house! Love all your baking! I havn't done any proper baking in my house for a few weeks, I just end up eatng too much and the diet has to start again now the boys are back at school. no excuses!

    You china collection is HUGE now!


    p.s gosh I could REALLY do with a bit of that brownie!

  2. I do feel all mouth watery when i visit your beautiful blog- not only does the vintage tea cups and plates frill me the food is simply eye candy!!
    that victoria sponge looks yummy ;0)
    i was eyeing up the M&S teas yesterday- love the packaging x

  3. Oh this has made me so hungry (: The brownies look delicious!

    To be honest, I'd buy the tea just for the packaging, hehe xxx

  4. oh its all so lovely! And not to mention yummy :o) Scarlett x

  5. Can I have a piece of that Victoria Sponge? ;)
    I make brownies from a recipe of Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall. It is a quite different but "oh so delicious", because it has beetroot in it. If you are interested: http://www.channel4.com/4food/recipes/chefs/hugh-fearnley-whittingstall/chocolate-and-beetroot-brownies-recipe.

    I suppose you can leave the beetroot out if you don't fancy it. But I can assure you, you won't even notice it. ;)

  6. Your baking looks lovely! I know what you mean about the fudge, I put some fudge in some cookies once and they were like concrete!

    For brownies this is my favourite recipe. http://frills-n-spills.blogspot.com/2011/06/chocolate-cheesecake-brownie-slice.html

    I've made it 3 times now, it's so gorgeous!! I do find the cheesecake layer needs double the amount of flour though, and I don't swirl, just flop random spoonfuls of it into the tin. The brown layer on it's own still makes good brownies.

  7. Nigella's everyday brownie recipe, it was on the Nigella Express app I downloaded for my iPhone. It is amazing, so rich and foolproof. You don't use chocolate, you can use cocoa powder and you wouldn't know it. Easily the best brownie recipe I have tried (i have tried a lot!). I usually undercook it slightly too as it's really gooey in the middle and serve it warm with ice cream xx

  8. Love your china and your recipe!! look deliicous and beauty! gloria

  9. Your baking always looks so gorgeous. I love your china displays too. I have seen the teas in Marks and Spencers and I often want to buy it, just for the packaging! x

  10. I agree with Jessica,that is a great brownie recipe.Loving your pretty china. ;0)

  11. i have just watched the great british bake off now looked at your post need goodies now xx

  12. I don't like green tea, might have to buy it for the box :)
    Have a look on www.bakingmad.com they have loads of brownie recipes, wouldn't mind a slice of cake looks lively
    cate x

  13. HA-HA, very funny about brownies. They might be rock hard but they look good :))

  14. Oh no! So sorry to hear about the brownie disaster. The best brownie recipe I've tried so far is the "frosted brownie" recipe from the first Hummingbird Bakery book. It was so good I didn't bother with the icing. It did contain rather a lot of butter and eggs though!

    Your cake looks beautiful, I like that the homemade jams oozes down the sides.

  15. Oooh those browinies look lovely and to be honest a quick warm up in the microwave just makes them more gooey and scrummy!! Well done you, my baking skills are very basic, however I've just bought a nice looking cook book from Amazon and am looking forward to having ago at some baking when it arrives :)
    Your teapots, cups and little bowls are just devine by the way....!! I will be glued to your blog from now on...!!

    Happy baking :)

    Louise xx

  16. your pictures are so pretty and your blog, i love all your china too , the colours are scrummy as are your cake and brownies , its making me crave sonething sweet x

  17. ooo yummy!!!!

    cakes look fab and those little bowls are gorgeous - i see loads i like from dunelm mill, but there isn't one that near to us. Now both boys are at school i'll have to take a trip to one xx


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