Merry Christmas! Happy New Year!
I finally got to do some baking the other day, after weeks of work stress, my first choice was to spend some time making red and green velvet cupcakes. Normally you just get red velvet cupcakes, but I’ve been thinking about doing green ones as well for a while because, well, it seemed more festive. My downfall was not having the foresight to realise that when you mix green food colouring and cocoa powder you get… khaki. Don’t get me wrong, it hasn’t affected the taste, but they are slightly less exciting looking than the bright deep green I had envisioned, as can be seen here:
The recipe came from the Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook and can be found here (but a word of advice, you might not want to make as much icing as it says – all Hummingbird recipes have far too much icing…unless you want more icing than cake)
The lovely display stand the cupcakes are on was given to me by my friend Ffi. The result of me displaying the cakes in this way was that my Dad didn’t want to eat them because they looked too pretty. I have made a mental note to set anything I make for anyone else out this way to stop him eating it – honestly, it’s the only way.
One of the more exciting results of Christmas was that I received many many new cookery books. I sat on Christmas morning looking through them all thinking “I don’t want to go back to work…I want to stay at home and bake”.
My favourite book so far is the Peyton & Byrne, which is the best British baking cookbook ever, and everything just looks beautiful – I think it’s something you really need to own Jordi. I always choose cookery books by the way they look – there have to be plenty of photos and the food has to look reaaally good – which is at least partly why I love Nigel Slater so much, because Jonathan Lovekin, who does all his food photography, is brilliantly talented.
On New Year’s Eve I made Nigel’s potato and mushroom pie, and chocolate truffles for my friends. Unfortunately I don’t have any photos of those, and the truffles didn’t really set enough because we wanted to eat them, which ended in us consuming very squishy truffle mixture (which is melted chocolate and cream mixed together in case you’re wondering).
Incidentally it is one of my new year’s resolutions to bake more – which is starting this evening, as I am going to bake lots of exciting things (salted caramel tart included) with my friends, so there will be more to follow this in the next few days…