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Thursday, 31 January 2013

Baker Days Valentines Day Cake Review...


Last week I received this lovely Valentine cake from Baker Days .

I was asked if I would like to try out their service and have one of there personalised cakes delivered. If you read my blog you will know I'm a big cake fan so I was really looking forward to trying out a cake from them.

A cake delivered by mail, seems strange at first. Would it break up? Would it be fresh etc.

I need not have worried as it arrived a few days later personalised and fresh, and in one piece!!


As you can see from the picture it arrived perfectly, the drop through the letterbox did not disturb the cake one little bit. Packaged inside a lovely tin to keep it safe ,the tin was posted in a cardboard box so plenty of padding to keep it from breaking. Also in the box was a little card and some love heart sweets, little touches like this make it all the more special.


This Letterbox Gift Cake is £14.99 for 4-5 portions and comes with a sponge cake filling also they do a Small Party Cake £26.99, (8-12 portions) Just right for a small party  and a Large Party Cake £45.00, (50-60 portions) .

You can also add different filling for an additional option if you like such as Carrot Cake, Fruit Cake, Gluten and Wheat Free Cake and Double Chocolate Chip Cake extras cost from £1.20 to £2-00 for letterbox cake £2-20 -£3-20 for the small and £5-00 -£7-00 for the large party cake also for the small and large party cake you can choose fruit cake fillings.

Once you have picked your cake size and filling you can change your message at the bottom of the page by pressing the 'Personalise cake' button ' to change these words.


About Baker Days in their own words

It’s taken nearly a year to get this baby flying, and finally we are in the air, so to speak. Every business starts with a premise or a vision, ours was two fold.

Firstly, to show the world you didn’t need to spend a fortune to have a totally unique party cake. Secondly, wouldn’t it be great to have a cake small enough for 1 or 2 people but with all the pizzazz of a larger party cake one that you could even post through a letterbox.

The world of baking has just caught up with the world of computers. A masterpiece of a cake that’s completely unique and personalised by you and won’t cost the earth. Also new is our "letterbox cake" (r) , the world smallest personalised cake in a tin , It’s the perfect gift for friends near and far. Petite, personalised and postable .

The team have a wealth of experience, Ben is a third generation family master baker, Andrea whose organisational and computer experience knits the whole business together and Alan whose business and design experience go back some years.

Personalised Cakes

Letterbox Gift Cakes... Party cakes and Cup Cakes . 400 designs that taste as good as they look, it’s easy and fun to find just the right cake. Personalise with your special message and photo, and order by 1pm and we can safely deliver next day ( next day will cost more).

If you want a specially designed cake , we can design it from scratch ,
If takes less than one hour its free, If its more then we charge our designers time at 25.00 per hour..

What I think of Bakerdays

I think this is a wonderful website looking for a special gift that is a little bit different. They have  personalised cakes for every given occasion, and even if you don't have an occasion on their endless list you can make your own message with their designer team. Usually I find plain sponge cakes a little boring but not this one, it tasted wonderfully yummy. Inside the cake the sponge was light and it had a lovely sweet vanilla butter cream on the bottom. It also comes in this sweet keep safe tin,that keeps it fresh for longer.

 I think the cakes are priced reasonably when you take into account they offer free delivery (which cost them £2-36  just for the postage, and that is not counting the tin and packaging) the personalised cake itself is a wonderful surprise to receive from a love one or friend. What a lovely surprise it would be opening a personalised letterbox cake.

I would be very happy in receiving another one as a gift!!

Hint hint husband!!

Maybe on to eat myself next time instead of sharing Mwahhh....

About this post - I received a Bakerday's cake for the purpose of this review and was not paid for the post. All thoughts on the cake I received are my own honest option...

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Charity Shopping and Runstreak latest....


Yeh the snow has gone but boo it's been replaced with cold and wind! Not feeling the love for running yesterday I woke up with a headache and felt poorly. I decided to swap my run for a shopping trip ( but still ran later). Boy did I feel loads better afterwards.

 Not that I brought to much 2 lovely jackets from the charity shop, some bun cases, baking bit, heart trays, bake wear and a heart plate from my favourite bargain shop. Think I'm addicted to buying baking things more than shoes now. 


Cardi - Sports world
Top - Kiss collection
Jeans - Primark
Boots - F& F Tesco


My jackets I got from the charity shops, thinking of changing the buttons on the polka dot on and fancying it up somehow...

Been feeling tired, run down and lack of inspiration for running over the last few days. Think it the cold, wind and start of a cold. I didn't manage my long run this weekend, I have still been running ever day!!

Monday, 28 January 2013

28/01 Creative Mondays Blog Hop ..

Hello and welcome to Creative Mondays, hosted by Clairejustineoxox and Judy-H-JS Thought where you can link up all your creative post each week.

Thank you for linking up last week, some great posts-

This weeks features-




The Moody Fashionista

Jenns Random Scraps

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Ruby Fruit Refresher...



Serves 4

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 225 g (8 oz) strawberries
  • 175 g (6 oz) raspberries
  • 225 g (8 oz) blueberries
  • Grated rind and juice of 1 lime
  • 4 teaspoons runny honey
  • 250 g (9 oz) natural yogurt
  • Small bunch of fresh mint


Method

  • Slice or quarter the strawberries depending on their size then put them into a serving bowl with the other berries.
  • Add the lime rind and juice and 2 teaspoons of the honey then gently mix together with a spoon.
  • Put the yogurt into a smaller bowl then stir in the rest of the honey.
  • Snip some of the mint into pieces with scissors to give about 3 tablespoons, add to the yogurt and mix together.
  • Sprinkle the berries with a few tiny mint leaves and serve topped with spoonfuls of the minted yogurt.

Tip

  • For a refreshing smoothie, put the berries into a liquidiser goblet with the yogurt, honey and mint, blitz until smooth then adjust the consistency with apple juice to taste.

About this post -

Recipe and photo credit by Seasonal Berries


Roasted Orchard Fruits...

This has to be one of the simplest and most impressive puds when you have large groups of friends or family to entertain.


Serves 6

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25-30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 pears, about 550 g in total, halved, cores scooped out with a teaspoon
  • 6 plums, about 350 g (12 oz.) in total, halved, stoned
  • 225 g (8 oz.) blackberries
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken into large pieces
  • 8 cloves
  • 2-3 star anise, depending on size
  • 1 orange, juice only
  • 50 g (2 oz.) butter, diced
  • 50g (2 oz.) light muscovado sugar


Method

  • Arrange the pears, plums and blackberries in a roasting tin.
  • Sprinkle with the cinnamon, cloves and star anise.
  • Spoon the orange juice over, dot with the butter then sprinkle with the sugar.
  • Bake in a preheated oven 190°C (375°F) Gas Mark 5 for 20-25 minutes until lightly browned.
  • Serve hot spooned into bowls and topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or spoonful of crème fraiche, if liked.

Tip

  • Experiment with different fruits such as peaches and nectarines.

About this post -

Recipe and photo credit by Seasonal Berries

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Octopays Game over At Ladbrokes ...

The very kind people over at Ladbrokes sent us a family day out voucher to visit a Sea Life Centre, Theme park or a Zoo for a fun adventure as part of their new Promotions. As well as the family day out, we also received a Blue Planet DVD and seafood cookbook.


 Family day out

They were looking for family/parent bloggers who would like to head out for a great Sea Life day out with the whole family. We were hoping to head out this weekend as my husband does not usually get a Saturday off work,with the snow arriving over course of this week plans for travelling anywhere have gone out the window. We will be heading off for a day out in a few weeks once the snow has all gone!! Look out I will post pictures once we have had chance to visit somewhere.

Cookbook

I keep saying we need to eat more fish and seafood as part of a more healthier diet and especially with fish being good for the brain!!. The book I received is called Seafood by Rick Stein has everything you need to know about cooking and serving fish from filleting small fish to preparing flat fish. This book also has a selection of 200 recipes so once I have read and taken in how to remove the bones I will try out some of these delicious looking recipes.

Dvd

We love watching any of the nature programs, March of the Penguins being a particular favourite. One of the DVDs missing from our collection for some reason was The Blue Planet narrated by the legendary David Attenborough. I was very pleased and surprised to receive this classic, comprehensive series of the world's oceans. These DVDs are simply amazing and very educational to watch each of the eight 50-minute episodes examines a different aspect of marine life. The underwater photography included creatures and behaviour that have previously never been filmed. If you have never seen this series it is highly recommended.

The reason for sending this gift is that Ladbrokes Casino is celebrating its range of online slot games, including the new Sea Life themed Octopays game and the theme for this project is, all about sea life. We will have fun learning all about the sea life over the next few weeks...

About this post- I received a family day out pass, Cook book and dvd as post of a promotion with Ladbrokes and was not paid for this post. All thoughts are my own honest opinion

Vitamin C Smoothie...



Yeah I love smoothies...

A quick and easy way to get onto track of having some of your 5 a day!

Today I have a yummy looking guest post to share, full of vitamin C!!

This one serves 3


Ingredients

  • 200g or 2 large handfuls of fresh blackberries or a mix of blackberries and blueberries
  • 600 ml or a 1pt beer glass of sweetened soya milk
  • A pinch of ground cinnamon
  • A tsps of runny honey

Method

  • Blitz all the ingredients together in a liquidiser or food processor until smooth and frothy.
  • Serve straight away.


About this post -

Recipe and photo credit by Seasonal Berries


Blueberry Valentine Hearts : Easy To Make...

Easy to make yourself Valentine chocolates.

These were so easy to make and looks like they've come from the shops!!

 My two oldest sons both said "they look good have your brought them?!!"

 My husband said "wow did you make the chocolate too, " 

"Hold on a minute" I said, "I'm not that good" ...

These are so much fun and the blueberries pop when you bite them against the chocolate.

Now off to see how to make some chocolate to really impress him ...



Makes 14

You will need a 14 holed small silicon ice cube tray

Ingredients
  • 42 Blueberries
  • 50g Good quality white cooking chocolate
  • 150g Good quality milk cooking chocolate


Method
  • Wash and dry the blueberries and place 3 in each of the holes in the ice cube tray.
  • In a heat proof bowl melt the white chocolate according to packet instructions in a microwave.
  • With a teaspoon pour a little over each set of blueberries trying to drip a little chocolate under them to hold them in place once set.
  • Leave to cool.
  • Melt the milk chocolate according to packet instructions.
  • With a tablespoon pour into each well covering all the blueberries.
  • Use the back of a knife to make sure all the chocolate is flat.
  • Leave to cool.
  • Once cool place in a fridge to set.
  • Turn out the chocolates.
  • Enjoy!




Friday, 25 January 2013

25/01 Link Up Your Favourite Posts This Week : Welcome To The Weekend Hop ...

Welcome to the weekend blog hop where you can link up some of your favourite posts of the week. Simply link up to 3 different post or just your main blog....

I am looking to build the blog hop up so its lots more fun for hopping around and from next week I will be featuring some of the blogs that link up. If you want to co host the blog hop next week and be featured simply leave a comment on this post and I will feature your blog next week.

 
 
Thanks for stopping by and linking up to the weekend blog hop, we are happy you are here and hope you have fun hopping around and finding new blogs to read, follow and comment on.

The blog hop is hosted me clairejustineoxox in number 1 and my co host is Nekky from Reflexions in number 2 spot, would be great if you would follow us in GFC if possible and we will follow back ( don't forget to let us know your a new follower :))

Blueberries And Strawberries Thick Milkshake...


Created this smoothies/milkshake the other day and it tastes great...

Made it with some big juicy strawberries and lots of yummy blueberries...

Not sure what exercise I will manage to fit in today as the 2 youngest children are of for an inset day, or as my daughter calls it a "ladybird day" as she thinks its an insect day.

Hope the snow's stays away as it has been on the weather forecast 5 inch's today, best not as the children want to go swimming!!


Serves 1

Ingredients

  • 100g Strawberries
  • 100g Blueberries
  • 200ml Semi skimmed milk

Method

  • Wash the fruit and if big strawberries chop in half
  • Place all ingredients in a smoothie maker or blender
  • Place settings on mix for 30 seconds and smooth for 30 seconds
  • Serve straight away


Enjoy!!


Thursday, 24 January 2013

Lemon Tea : Day 24 #runstreak ...

Serves 4 mugs 6 cups


Ingredients

2 Teabags

2 Lemons

2 Pints of Boiling water

Method

Pre heat the teapot with boiling water

Wash and slice 2 lemons, discard the ends and take the pips out

Empty out the water that's been keeping the tea pot warm

Place the tea bags and lemon in the pot and add 2 pints of boiling water

Leave to stand for 10 minutes

Stir and serve

Healthier tea option with no milk and the taste of lemon = no biscuits,,, good result?

Oven Cooked Eggs And Sausage...


Made these sweet looking muffin tray cooked eggs for breakfast last week and they taste great. Sausage, slice of mushroom eggs topped with grated cheese, salt and pepper.

Serve the with warm toast and butter, yum yum think I'm going to make them again today after my run !!


Serves 1-12

1 x 12 hole muffin tin

Per egg

  • 1 spray cooking spray
  • 1 Frozen cocktail sausage
  • 1 Slice of mushroom
  • 1 egg
  • Grated cheese
  • Salt and pepper



Method

  • Pre heat oven to 190c /Gas mark 5 / 375f ( total cooking time 24-26 minutes)
  • Spray each muffin hole you will be using with cooking spray
  • Add 1 cocktail sausage and 1 slice of mushroom to each hole
  • Cook in the pre heated oven for 10 minutes
  • Remove the tray and place one egg in each hole, sprinkle with grated cheese, salt and pepper
  • Cook for around 14-16 minutes depending on how you like your egg
  • Serve with warm toast and butter



Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop...

Welcome to Wordless Wednesday hosted by Clairejustineoxox and Judyh-jsThoughts where you can link up your Wordless / not so Wordless Wednesday photo posts each week...


 

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Chocolate Chips And Raisin Flapjacks....


I made some flapjack for the children's pack lunches when we were snowed in...

Chocolate chips to make the children want to eat them with hidden raisins. Trouble is once they got made and seen, everybody grabbed them and they disappeared!!

 What to make for tomorrows lunch time treat now?

Serves 9-12 depending on the size you want..



Ingredients

  • Little margarine for greasing tray
  • 100g Margarine
  • 200g Rolled oats
  • 100g Milk chocolate chips
  • 50g Raisins
  • 50g Plain flour
  • 3 Tablespoons of golden syrup
  • 50g Golden caster sugar
  • 1 tsp Honey

20x20cm square tray grease and lined

Method

  • Pre heat the oven to 180c gas mark 4.
  • Place the margarine, golden syrup, caster sugar and honey in a pan and melt over a low heat until all melted.
  • In a bowl mix the oats, chocolate chips, raisins and flour together.
  • When the butter mix has melted pout over the dry ingredients a little at a time until all mixed in.
  • Mix well.
  • Grease the tin.
  • Pour all the mixture into the tin and level off the top of the mixture with the back of a wooden spoon.
  • Cook for around 20-25 minutes until golden.
  • Cut into 9 or 12 pieces and leave in the tin to cool and set.




What I Wore : Snow Week!!....

Trying to do more outfit posts again as I've not manged any for a while and so got out of doing them. This week we have had loads of snow so I'm trying to get away from throwing my jogging pant on. With going to the gym more since the children are back at school its hard work getting away from the gym wear. It's so much warmer wearing jogging pants and sweat shirts especially when its cold icy and snowing outside!!

I love this Jacket I got a few months ago from Primark it looks so stylish, really good quality and keeps you toasty and warm. First time I've brought a navy coat and it goes with more thing than I first expected ...



Jacket-Primark
T-shirt - Primark few years ago
Jeans- Matalan
Boots - Barratts

One thing that as been keeping me warm at night before bed time is my onsie. I have gave a few people a laugh and a few people a frown posting my picture in  the Rock up in red for the British Heart Foundation competition. So though I would share my picture here, for the fun and hopefully make you all laugh  :)



Onesie- Primark



Meanwhile there has been lots of snow here, so snow boots a must...


 Lots of sledging...

And lots of snowballing...


Yesterday was hard work finding time for exercise as the children had a snow day off school. I manage a run to the gym and back 3 miles in the morning, half hour spinning class and a 3 miles run on the treadmill in the evening. Today they were all back to school so I did a hours spinning and a 3 miles run on the treadmill, hoping to snow don't hang around to long as I've got a marathon to train up for...

Monday, 21 January 2013

21/1 Creative Mondays Blog Hop...

Hello and welcome to Creative Mondays hosted by Clairejustineoxox and Judy-H-JS Thought where you can link up all your creative post each week.

Thank you for linking up last week, some great posts- this weeks features-

Sunday, 20 January 2013

The Ben & Jerry’s Capture Euphoria Challenge Day 7 And #Runstreak Day 20 !!

Last day of the Ben And Jerry's #captureeuphoria challenge and we have had so much fun in the snow. After educating my kids never to make snowballs or snow angels in yellow snow we have lots of fun pictures to share. For me this one is priceless my 2 youngest having lots of fun sledging !! The smiles on there faces says it all....


Saturday, 19 January 2013

The Ben & Jerry’s Capture Euphoria Challenge Day 6 ...


Today's #captureeuphoria picture is fresh snow, don't you just love to be the first one to walk through snow no one else has stood on? with plenty more heading this way I'm sure we will get fed up of it very soon. I'm hoping the snow don't get to deep so I can still get out to run and hopefully this time next week it has disappeared for another year!!

Food Thoughts Cocoa Review...

A few weeks ago I was asked if I would like to review some Food Thoughts 100% Fairtrade Cocoa powder. What better time for staying inside and making hot cocoa drinks and baking yummy buns than when its snowing? Great timing!!


We have had a very cold and snowy start to the week, slipping and sliding all the way to school. I am now pleased the weekend has arrived and I can lock the front door keeping nice and warm. I still will have to go out running for my marathon training though with 14 miles planned tomorrow eek.

So first things first a quick recipe for the kids, when they arrived in from school. At least that was my excuse. Pan, milk, cream, marshmallows and the cocoa all ready to go. We could have a mug full, warming us all up nicely. It tasted delicious with the strong taste of cocoa, a sweet taste of marshmallows and nice and creamy just a little spoonful of the powder makes one hot drink.

About Food Thoughts Cocoa

Food Thoughts Cocoa is a luxurious baking and drinking cocoa, made with the finest cocoa beans. It is rich and smooth in texture and has a deep and rounded flavour preferred by bakers for its high cocoa fat content. Food Thoughts 100% Fairtrade Organic Cocoa is produced in the Dominican Republic by an accredited Fairtrade consortium, so every teaspoon of this delightfully delicious powder will make you feel good!

I think the cocoa tastes great. I prefer it in baking. Brownies and cakes are amongst my favourite things although adding to hot cookies it also tastes divine. Whilst the children are out playing in the snow tomorrow, after I have done my run, I think I will make some chocolate muffins with cocoa butter butter cream yummy. I will have hopefully earned them,that's if the snow doesn't stop my training!!

I will be looking out for it in the shops as it tastes delish and is very reasonably priced at £2-20. The way I have been using it I will be buying some very soon....

Food Thoughts is available in Sainsbury’s, retailing at £2.20.

Catch chocolaty recipes and add your own to their recently launched Facebook page-

 Facebook

 Twitter

Or visit their new website Food Thought

About this post- I was sent some Food Thoughts Cocoa as part of this review. I was not paid for this post and all options are my own.


Rainbow Rocky Road Cupcakes...


I made these rainbow rocky road cupcakes as something to keep the children's energy levels up when running around in the snow this weekend. This recipe made 34 cupcake sized bun so you could half the recipe or make a big batch up for children's party's. Found some rainbow drops in a shop a few weeks back, not seen these in ages so had to try something with them!!you can replace the rainbow drops for rice krispies.

Ingredients

75g Dried cranberries

25g Chopped dried apricots

25g raisins

100g Mini marshmallows

80g Packet of rainbow drop sugar coated rice

100g Cornflakes

600g white cooking chocolate

Approx 34 cup cases


Method

In a large bowl mix all the ingredients together apart from the cooking chocolate

Place the cup cases in a oven cup cake tray so they will keep there shape when you add the mixture

In a heat proof bowl break the cooking chocolate into pieces and place the bowl over a pan of pre boiled water simmering to melt the chocolate

When the chocolate has melted pour into the dried ingredients a little at a time so it all mixes in well

Spoon the mixture into the bun cases and leave to set


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