Thursday, 22 December 2011

Yuletide Blessing

Yule or Winter Solstice is the shortest day and longest night of the year. the wheel is turning and with it, it will bring the warmth of the Sun to which life will awaken once more.

To Celebrate Yule its custom to burn a log "Yule Log", but i prefer the chocolaty form, this was my 1st ever attempt at a making a yule log, which i made last year. i'm not sure if i'll get the chance to make one this year as i'm off out for another festive gathering, but if you have some free time heres the recipe.

I know mine looks nothing like the one on the link. but heyho its home made and it was heaven.
Wishing you all a very blessed Yule!!!

Monday, 19 December 2011

Sloe Gin!

As some of you may remember, back in early September I went Sloe Berry picking and started the slow process that is sloe gin, but after 3 in abit months, Its finally done! and what better week to bottle them up. I have a busy week this week, lots of festive fun going on, so i shall most definitely be taking some bottles with me.After all it is the season of giving.

Its so fruity, a little dangerous as it doesn't taste that alcoholic. I love the Ruby Red, just perfect for Yule/Christmas.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

A night of festive indulgence

The Wind was howling and the rain was beating against the windows, the chill was being kept at bay by the warmth of the heating. And i was in the kitchen thinking of what to make. something to warm the cockles of my soul and something festive would be fitting. 1st on my list was to try the Mulled Wine me and the Mr got given at the weekend. Its proper German Mulled Wine. Only wanted to try a little bit, it seemed a waste to pour a load in a pan incase we didn't like it. So i poured a bit into a glass and lit a  tea light under it and sat warming it, the smell was Divine! so fruity, Rich and delightfully aromatic. It was good! I only had the one glass its quite strong!
2nd on my list was my ever favourite, Gingerbread. i really do love gingerbread its just perfect. 3rd I made a gingerbread triffle. Perfect! I'm a big fan of triffle so these two made sense, and I'd seen a recipe for gingerbread triffle on Sainsburys! really simple and tastes soooo good! and 4th on my list.. was a Hot Chocolate with a dash of Disaronno (an Amaretto Liqueur),

 All a girls needs
The Mulled Wine gift from Germany

As normal with me i changed a few things around, i used disaronno instead of sherry and i broke up a few of my gingerbread instead of the packet dough. But the Recipie is here if you want to follow it to the tea

Mmmm so yummy!

It was perfect comfort evening, so happy i go running, i think i would be the size of a house if i didn't!
So next week is the real countdown for Yule/Christmas, the camera will be out in force as I've got a whole load of parties to go to! Perfect!

Till next time

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Oh Yule tree!

Our tree is up! yay!!!

Its got candy canes and chocolate coins. Red, Purple and Silver Ball balls too. we've got alot of red in our living room any way so those items add warmth to the space. I love it already and i really can't wait for Yule/Christmas. Me and the Mr our doing our festive food shop tomorrow, which actually I'm really excited about. Looking at our list, i think we'll have quite the feast!

The Yankee scents that are filling my home this wintertime,  

Jack Frost (i believe this is going into retirement), soft mellow notes of mint and white chocolate.
Cinnamon:  Warm, Rich and perfect for this time of year
Christmad Cupcake: Quite Sweet, but aromatic. 

I've seen a recipe that i HAVE to make! hopefully I'll be able to pick up the ingredients tomorrow!!
a little hint. its involves ginger!,I love ginger!!! especially gingerbread!... which reminds me, i bought gingerbread syrup! its used for coffees but i have another use in mind for it! tehehehehe

Monday, 5 December 2011

Nigellas Chocolate Cookies

These Cookies are just so moreish and so easy to make, also a lovely idea for a gift, homemade has a lovely touch to it something that someone has made gifted you if very thoughtful, I'm tempted to get a few gift boxes and give them to friends. I will defo be making these again, the mixture is pretty big and as theres only two of us i didn't want to throw it away, so i wrapped the dough and popped it in the freezer ready for my next chocolate cookie fix.
So if you'd like to give these a go heres the recipe.

  • 2 1/4 sticks (18 Tbsp.) soft butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 cup boiling water , from a kettle
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Christmas sprinkles

Preheat the oven to 325° and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl and, when you have a light, soft whipped mixture, beat in the 1/3 cup cocoa powder (sifting if it is lumpy) and, when that's mixed in, beat in the flour with the baking soda and baking powder. Or just put everything in the processor and blitz, if you prefer.

This mixture is very soft and sticky and I find it easiest to form the cookies wearing my disposable vinyl gloves, so pinch off pieces about 1 tablespoon in size, roll them into balls, then slightly flatten into fat discs as you place them, well spaced, on your cookies sheet. You should get about 12 on at a time.

Bake each batch for 15 minutes; even though the cookies won't feel as if they've had enough time, they will continue to cook as they cool. They will look slightly cracked on top, and it's this cozy, homespun look I love.

Move the cookie sheet to a cold surface and let it sit for 15 minutes before transferring the cookies to a wire rack, with a sheet of newspaper under it (to catch drips while topping them).

To make the topping, put the cocoa powder, confectioners' sugar, water and vanilla extract into a small saucepan and whisk over a low heat until everything is smoothly combined. Take off the heat for 10 minutes.

When the cookies are cool, drizzle each one with a tablespoonful of chocolate glaze—it will help "glue" the sprinkles on in a minute. Use the back of the spoon to help spread the mixture, though an uneven dribbled look is part of their charm. After you've iced 6 cookies, scatter with some of the Christmas sprinkles and continue until all the cookies are topped. If you ice them all before sprinkling, you will find the cocoa "glue" has dried and the sprinkles won't stick on.

I hope you love these just as much as i do!!!!

Saturday, 3 December 2011

So December heres!

Hello!!!! i hope you're all well,
So were finally in December! Can't believe that this time last year, most of the UK had come to a complete stand and here i am walking to work, without my gloves or raising my coat so i bury my head away from the chill. Nope its been pretty mild, not that I'm complaing but i do like the sparkly white stuff, it just makes everything look so much prettier. So as its December i can finally start listing and doing things that are festive. Friday i ordered some ball balls and candy canes from John Lewis for our tree. I'm going for Reds this year, never normally been a fan of red but my thoughts have changed.

Also as the yuletide season really sets in, i decided to listen to my new Christmas album, by Micheal Buble. Oh i do like his voice, have been a fan of him since i was 16, so tonight while listing to him sing his version of the "Christmas Song" i made some cookies,  Not just any old cookies but chocolate cookies from Nigella Lawsons "Christmas" i love this lady maybe more thans normal. but hey she likes her food and she makes it with gusto.

Will type up the recipe for you all tomorrow.