Butterfly Cookies

The sun (including some warmth) is finally out in London. It has only taken until the end of April and I still cannot believe it was snowing only 4 weeks ago. Snow. In April. Mental.

It has been a hectic start to the year and with May approaching I realised I am way behind in my blog updates, only two this month…eek! I have had a nice flow of orders to keep my busy, which is fantastic, however that does mean I have less time to try out new recipes for myself. I attempt to balance this out by baking for my friend’s birthdays and try out recipes mainly for my own curiosity… and because my friends are awesome and deserve cake!

Just recently, I baked the Brooklyn Blackout Cake from the first Hummingbird Bakery cookbook for my friend LK’s birthday. As LK loves cakes, I added a few bits to make it look like a cat and the fact she was wearing a matching shirt was merely a coincidence.

But back to the cookies. A few months ago, I subscribed to the Cake Decorating magazines to expand my baking skills. So far, I have received about 14 issues and have only just finished reading/trialling issue 1. The first thing in the book is these butterfly cookies, which are perfect for spring and great for beginners  learning about flooding cookies with royal icing.

Not a bad for my first at home attempt.

Happy Baking x

Apricot and Almond Cookies

I do not believe in superstitions, however after saying to my best friend over the weekend how I had not been sick all winter (or spring, if we can call it that), I was clearly asking for it. Maybe I should have thrown a black cat over my shoulder or put salt under a ladder whilst carrying an open umbrella inside? 

On day three of quarantine with Pete (who also managed to forget to do all the above things), I finally had some energy to get off the couch and bake something. After a quick look through the baking cupboard, surprisingly I managed to find a recipe with what I had in stock. 

I'm not quite back to 100%, but these cookies helped us both in meantime.

Apricot and Almond Cookies

makes 16 -18 cookies 

135g unsalted butter
80g caster sugar
80g light brown soft sugar
1 large free-range egg
½ tsp vanilla extract
190g plain flour
½ tsp salt
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
100g dried apricots, roughly chopped
60g ground almonds
20g flaked almonds

To roast the flaked almonds, put them in a non-stick frying pan and roast for 2-3 minutes on a medium heat. Ensure to keep an eye on them as they can brown quickly.   

Preheat the oven to 170C. Line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper. 

With an electric mixer cream together the butter and both sugars until pale and fluffy. Mix in the egg, then the vanilla essence. 

Sift the flour, salt, cinnamon and bicarb soda together and add to the butter mixture in 2 batches, folding together until combined. Stir in the apricots and ground almonds.

Drop heaped tablespoons of the mixture onto the prepared trays. Leave a good  3 inches between each cookie to allow spreading in the oven. Sprinkle some flaked almonds over each cookie and press in slightly.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool for around 10 minutes on the trays then cool completely on a wire rack.

Happy Baking x

My week of baking orders

Just a quick update today to share the baking orders I have had over that last week that has kept me busy in the kitchen. 

For Ben: he requested some cupcakes for the office on his birthday. He finally decided on a dozen choc-mint cupcakes and a dozen raspberry ripple.

For Emma: she requested a chocolate cake with mini eggs (she cannot get enough of them apparently). I think I went a bit overboard with the piped icing and it weighs a ton! 

For Lulu, she surprisingly requested a carrot cake...

 For myself: hot cross buns. I had full intentions to have these ready for Easter, however time slipped away, however they have still be thoroughly enjoyed post-Easter.  

Happy Baking x