Sticky gingerbread

I’ve seen lots of websites promising ‘if you haven’t made a Christmas cake yet, there’s still time!’ Well, it’s Christmas Eve, and if you haven’t made a Christmas cake yet, there isn’t still time. Better to go for a festive alternative, with all the feel of Christmas and none of the loooooong maturing. (Though if…

A newbie’s guide to the mysteries of Mastodon

Not my usual cooking/crocheting/gardening/travel post, but some things I’ve been chatting to a lot of people about which felt timely to get down in one place. With Twitter poised on the edge of the cliff and becoming more toxic by the moment, many Twitter users have opened Mastodon accounts, either to use as their main…

Clementine and Aperol marmalade

My friend Sarah, the Artist Formerly Known As The Jam Lady, hates making marmalade. Nevertheless, she would heroically get the citrus boiling in the jam pan and season it with her angry tears, even while being glued to the floor by sticky splatters, inventing new and creative swearwords, and still come out the other side…

Pumpkin sourdough bread

I hate food waste, and it feels especially wrong at the moment when people are struggling to put food on their tables. So, every October, I go on the look out for ways to use the scrapings from the grandkids’ Halloween pumpkins. I’ve already posted a recipe for a quick pumpkin soda bread. This is…

Tales from the microwave

Like every other adult billpayer in the UK, I’ve been much more conscious of my energy use lately. I’m batch-cooking, trying to fill the oven when I have to heat it up, and making more use of stove-top cooking. I’m looking at slow cookers and air fryers and considering the kitchen-space-to-benefit ratio. But one thing…

Ava’s lunchbox rolls

As previous readers may have guessed, I am a feeder. There is a problem with this: my nearest and most-often-fed grandkids are not eaters. Both have sensory issues which limit the range of foods they eat. So when I find a food that they will eat, you’d better believe I’m going to make the best…

Spinach and cheese pie

This recipe was inspired by my difficult relationship with filo pastry. Here’s the thing: you never use a full packet, and the other half ends up drying out in the fridge or worse still in the freezer. I hate food waste so this irks me. But anyway, I don’t really enjoy eating filo – too…

Super-quick fruit bread, without yeast

This recipe adapts Recipe Tin Eats’ plain Sandwich bread without yeast to make a super-quick fruit bread that’s perfect for slathering with butter and cheese, or toasting. The original recipe is a great one to have in the bank for times when there’s suddenly no bread for tomorrow’s breakfast, as it slices better the next…

Making stone soup

I used to read my daughters a story about a cunning traveller who persuades villagers into each contributing simple ingredients to his ‘delicious’ soup, made of a stone covered with hot water, until finally he has a truly delicious broth that he shares. This soup is a bit like that – an impromptu mixture of…

Flowery Insults

I’ve been really chuffed by the response to my Smut and Tut cross stitch kits: not just that they’ve sold so well (though that’s always nice) but how much people like them. Reviews that mention how pleased the crafter was with the easiness of the pattern and the quality of the kit materials are very…

Brown shrimps, and what to do with them

I promised you easy in this blog. This might not look like I’m making good on that promise. Admittedly it’s a bit of a palaver to peel the shrimps, but what you do then is dead easy and you end up with two delicious dishes for the price of one. In fact the first palaver…

Cheesy garlic sourdough pizzabread

This is a bit of a cheat post really – a quick addendum to the last recipe for sourdough discard pizza – but so ridiculously delicious it deserved its own post. Cheesy garlic sourdough pizzabread Makes 2 pizzabreads Quantity of sourdough discard pizza dough at room temperature (see Sourdough discard pizza recipe) 50g butter, softened…