Monday, December 15, 2008

gems, scrolls and blooms


this was the challenge on the cbc forum as part of Sue's Countdown to Christmas - so I used my new stamps (the scribble flowers), I bought them when I met up for lunch with Sue and Clare last week at Scrap Revolution.....they were reduced :) and a bit different for me. I was wandering around the internet last night and spotted Sharon's (Willow Designs) template challenge - which was wayyyy different for me too - so decided to combine them both - the template is here.

So I still have loads of challenges to do 4 tags, a Christmas dec (I have no idea what to do for this), something with a photo, and a gift bag.....wow! Not sure if I will manage them all tbh - but will continue trying!

Almost finished my shopping - it was amazingly quiet around MK this lunchtime

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas cakes



I used Net fab idea on the Cooks Journal - to use steamed pud tins to make little cakes - and these two are about 4 inches. I am giving them as a gift to parents, I know they won;t buy a cake but I hope they will appreciate the handmade gesture. I still can't decide whether to add stars in the middle of the cake or not - I think we will have to a vote on it tonight.

Still have some gifts to make - so will have to get on and will write my cards tonight as they ought to be in the post pretty soon.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

CBC forum


Well it is busy over on the cbc forum, Sue has been setting us a daily challenge - I have to admit to be lagging behind - although I have planned a few just not done them...this is one I did do which was a recipe - I used my new stamp - and made it into a robin...although once I finished the card I realised it didn't fit into all of the criteria.....

I have managed a couple of others - the one below, sadly the photo is not the best quality - it had to have red, green and gold on this one - and I managed that!

I have also been setting a daily teaser challenge - which is proving good fun.

I guess you are all preparing for Christmas...or maybe preparing in your head like me....!

For anyone from Ampthill visiting Paul has set a great picture quiz on the Around Ampthill Forum - even I don't know the answers, he went out Sunday morning and took the pics - I went to the Christmas Tree Festival at the Church, I have added some pics to the gallery on the site.

Catching up as usual



Firstly I will start with a recipe - I wanted to have a go at making coconut ice, really to make for presents. So I searched around for recipes and there seemed to be two main types, boiling sugar and water/milk, or just making it cold with condensed milk...so after a lot of searching I found a recipe on believe it or not it was on cbc forum and had been posted by Jake. So here is her recipe:

Coconut Ice

Makes about 50

2 1/2 floz milk
2 1/2 floz water
1lb granulated sugar
4oz dessicated coconut
1/2oz butter
1/2 teasp vanilla essence
pink food colouring

Pour milk and water into a pan and bring to the boil
Add sugar and butter, heat slowly, stirring until sugar dissolves and butter melts
Bring to the boil. Cover pan and boil gently for 2 mins.
Uncover and continue to boil, stirring occasionally for 7-10 mins or until a little of the mixture, dropped into a cup of cold water forms a soft ball when rolled gently between thumb and finger. Temp on a sugar thermometer should read 116C or 240F
Remove from heat, add coconut and vanilla.
Beat briskly until mixture is thick and glossy.
Pour half into an 18cm (7inch) square tin lined with greaseproof paper.
Quickly colour the remainder pale pink and spread over white layer.
Leave to cool until firm and cut into squares

I have to say I only made 20 squares so not sure why that was - Owen tested it and he said it was nice. It was a bit crumbly on the edges, and I did have to work quite quickly with it...I have wrapped it up and am going to see if it sells on the Ampthill Country Market stall tomorrow.

Talking of the Country Market I have done a little web site for them - to try and raise our profile as we really need some new members....Ampthill Country Market


I made some flapjacks last week and decided to package them differently as flapjack bites - well if M&S can do it....anyway they seemed quite popular. I could do with finding a supplier for good price 'sweet bags'.

I will start a new post for the rest of my catch up.....

Sunday, November 23, 2008

More wool stuff


I have been making cards, and entering the challenges on the forum...but this weekend I made egg cosies. It was a pattern in Quick and Crafty earlier on the year - I stumbled across it Friday night and have been busy whilst travelling to and from Taunton this weekend, and also whilst I was there!

I wonder if they will be the sort of thing people will like? I thoguht I would put them on Ampthill Country Market Stall for Christmas 'stocking fillers'

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fingerless Gloves/Wrist Warmers



A friend of mine has been making these so I searched around the internet to see what was about - every pattern I looked at seemed to be knitted in the round - which I have not ventured into! So after visiting lots of places I decided to cast on 32 stitches on 5mm needles using odd bits of double knitting wool I had lying around, as you can see I didn;t have much of anything. Well apart from loads of navy blue - which was very dark. I livened it up with a bit of cable on the backs - the thumb holes are just a gap in the seam.



I see that the fluffy wools etc seem to have lost their popularity this year - I love some of the multi coloured wools that are around. I have since found a ball of oatmeal type of colour, so will make another pair!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Hopeless


What am I like I just seem to do so many other things I forget to up date my blog. So much has happened - half term came and went...we popped down to Bognor for a few days and had a lovely day out in London - did the Science Museum, Covent Garden and had a Pizza. I also left the boys in the Museum and nipped around the V & A - it was a bit of a whistle stop tour, but worth it while I was there, as they def wouldn't have enjoyed it.

We had a lovely firework party on Saturday - although it did finish rather promptly as it started chucking it down - but we had done everything by then so was OK.

This week over at cbc forum H has been hosting a BIG challenge - and it has been great fun - I have been busy making loads.



One thing I made which I forgot all about including paper was this coaster. I bought a jigsaw puzzle from the Hospice stall on Ampthill Market and so turned a piece into coaster. I did back it with some green felt I had in the cupboard.

The other thing that was fun to make and would be great to make with kids was this peg fairy - Maddy has put all of the instructions on how to make this on the forum. So give it a try. Ubfortunately I didn't realise there was a mark in the wood of mine until I dressed her - so she has a big scar down the middle of her face!!!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Card for Dew Drop Craftz


There is a challenge over on Nikki's blog so as I was in a playing mood today I made this card.

As usual quite a simple card from me - I inked the backgrounds with distress inks, and used one of Nikki's stamps as he went nicely with the colours. I thought it would be a good 'man' card. Cute but 'manly'!

Apparently this is my 300th post....although maybe not a regular poster...sticking with it!

Owen got off on his holiday today with the school - so it is very quiet here today - I guess we will be lost without him this week! Although, if I turned on his Xbox and shut his bedroom door I could pretend he was still here!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Autumn Saturday


Well I am not sure what it is like your way - but Autumn has taken hold here - and we are knee deep in leaves. Hopefully we will have a few windy days and they will blow to the end of the road! Such beautiful colours - it is a really pretty time of the year. This card is for the tag it challenge that is running over at the cbc forum and has a nice autumn colour feel to it.

We had a small crisis this week - Owen got stung by what we think is a hornet (or is maybe a bee)...the pesky thing popped into his shoe when he was doing PE and he reached in to get his sock out and it stung him on the hand. It was apparently a huge sting - Owen said he thought it was a thorn at first. It cam up nice and puffy and red. so I had to get him from school on Wednesday. Then on Thursday I decided I ought to take him to the doctors as his gland under his arm started hurting....after a major episode with him ending up in hospital after chicken pox and the same symptons I though I had better not take any chances....!

But he was OK we have just continued with the anti-histamines and it is finally down this morning.....just as well as he is away with the school tomorrow.

So that was my drama....

However my friend Jane still came round as planned on Thursday and she had an afternoon learning to stamp...I made her some butternut squash soup and cake as well, and she went home with 3 birthday cards.

I am now the proud owner of a set of Stitchel stamps from Jennie over at The Artistic Stamper as I was drawn for a prize for my PGTips box - if you have not seen Maddy's project - you need to go and check it out - it is fab. I am just about to put it on the web site - but you can see it on the forum.

There are loads of challenges on the forum at the moment - so I hope you can find some time to pop by and join in with a couple.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Toffee Cookies


These were suppose to be toffee apple cookies - but I didn't have any dried apple, I have included the quantity they suggested.

Makes 18 - heat oven to 180c/350f/gas mark 4

Cream together
150g butter
180g soft light brown sugar
90g caster sugar

then add
1 egg

then sift and stir in
75g Plain flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarb of soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

stir in the following
250g oats
50g raisins
50g dried apple chopped
50g chewy toffees chopped (I wouldn't increase this quantity)

Put little heaps onto a baking tray and cook for 12 minutes. I increased the toffee and raisins to cover the lack of apples - but there was too much toffee really.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Saturday


So I have woken up to alovely sunny day again - isn't that lovely? DH is in Taunton as MiL was burgled earlier on in the week, so it is just me and Owen. That means I am on football duty tomorrow.....he did wake me up with a cup of tea in bed - that is the first time he has ever done that! We have got to book a badminton court and play this afternoon - so I should be worn out by the end of the day!

I have not put any cards on here for a while - as I tend to put them on the site or do them for challenges, but I guess I should show them on here as well...so this is kind of a catch up post! I will have to do some more

The first card is made using the CB embossing folder - but turned over and then traced with a black pen. I did this partly for the Cuttlebug page on the CBC site, and also for the 5 Olympic rings challenge on the forum. I hope that you make use of the information on the site - there is certainly a lot there - and I have more to do, with a special thanks to those people that send me things to put on there. I keep a list of the items that are added so that you can see what is new - just check the "what's new".


The next one I did as I was playing with punches and wanted to do a few samples for the page on the site earlier on the year - I have always had punches - I had them for many years before I had a die cutter. And they can be so useful and so quick. So I thought I would put together a pageful of simple ideas on the site back in May....today I thought it would make a good basis to set a challenge. I bet loads of you have punches - and maybe now that you have die cutting machines they don't always see the light of day. So get them out and get making...

to see the page follow this link - but click on the 'home' button afterwards - to get a click on my counter!

I will put up a post on the forum tomorrow - so that you can show me you creations on there.

My final card I made at the beginning of the summer - I thought I would say goodbye to the summer by putting it on here. I did make it for a competition but alas it wasn't worthy :) I guess I need to brush up my skills...but I did have fun making it and it has already gone from my box of cards - so someone liked it

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Never know what to say

...well these days I seem to have run out of things to put on here that I haven't already added to the cbc forum - and I know for those of you that visit the forum that is quite boring!

However if you have not visited the forum in a while - you really should! It has been quite lively with a few great projects on the go - in particular Maddy has done a fabulous project to cover a PG Tips box into a great gift idea.

I am doing a bookmark swap and the bookmarks I have received so far are fabulous - I will have to get them scanned and show them on here. There are ATC swaps as well.

Chocolate Chip Crumble Muffins



I made these the other days. They looked really nice with the topping on - but the topping didn't add much to the flavour if you know what I mean. They were very yummy though!

It makes 12 muffins - set oven at 200c/400f/ gas mark 6

Make the topping first
Rub togther the following
50g plain flour
1 tablespoon of cocoa
40g cold butter chopped
then stir in:
2 tablespoons of caster sugar

Now to make the muffins....
rub together the following:
250g Self Raising Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
50g cold butter cut into small pieces

stir in
100g soft light brown sugar
150g chocolate chips (I mixed plain and milk)

In a jug measure
225ml milk
then add
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
...mix together

Now add this to your dry ingredients and stir until just combined, do not over mix.
Divide the mix between your muffin cases and sprinkle on the topping.

Cook for 18 - 20 minutes...delicious whilst still warm...mmmm

Friday, September 26, 2008

Sponsors

I am just about to start another 6 months of sponsorship for the forum, if it is something that is of interest let me know and I can send you full details.

We have one new sponsor starting, and most of the others are continuing, we have some lovely prizes offered by them, and some great competitions.

The current list of sponsors are here:

Sponsors

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Chocolate Chip Cookies


As promosed here are the chocolate chip coolies that I made the other day. They seem popular with my son, I like to ring the changes and try different recipes.

I make 18 from the recipe - it does say make 36 - but they would be pretty tiny.

Set your oven at 190c/350f/ gas mark 5

Weigh out
175g/6oz Plain Flour
pinch of salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp bicarb soda
75g/3oz butter or marg

...rub together to form fine crumbs

stir in
50g/2oz soft light brown sugar
125g/4oz choc chips

3 tbspn of golden syrup (I make this just over 3 ozs)

This should now bind together to form a soft dough.

Divide into balls and flatten slightly.

Pop in the oven for 12 - 15 minutes

I have been busy making cards over the weekend - so will get showing some of those. There is a fairy challenge on the forum launched today - it would be lovely to see you join in. AND Maddy has launched a fabulous decorated box - with fantastic step by step instructions on the forum.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Savoury Turnovers


We sell quite a few savoury items on the Country Markets in Ampthill, and a lot of people are looking for something for their lunch, or even to nibble there and then.

I have a glut of courgettes so I decided to knock together these turnovers. I rolled out a pack of puff pastry (half at a time), and cut into 12 squares in total.

I chopped an onion and fried it gently and added a diced courgette. I then put this mixture from corner to corner, and then added some diced feta and some sliced tiny toms. Folded over the two corners, and sealed with milk. I brushed with milk - maybe egg mixture might be more interesting - I will have to have a go. Then I cooked them for 15 mins in a fairly hot oven. They all sold - although I did keep a few back for us to try first and they were very nice.

I wonder what else I can put in these? I wonder about dicing a butternut squash - I would love to hear you comments. Pop along to my foodie forum and add some suggestions. The Cooks Journal

I have loads of bananas - so if you have any fav recipes....lmk!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Update

I have just sent out the newsletter for the latest updates to the Crafts by Carolyn Site. I hope that you have got yours if not pop along and check out all of the new competitions and new pages.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Summer Pudding



During the school holidays Owen and I went and met my friend Gill in Takeley. We had a lovely day swimming, lunching out, visiting friends and also visiting the local PYO farm. We picked blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. The strawberries were particularly easy to pick and we managed to pick quite a lot! So we eat some, froze some and then I made two things. Firstly, I made this summer pudding.

I put all the fruit into a saucepan with some sugar, and a tiny drop of water. I heated it up until some of the juices came out, not too much as you want the fruit to keep its shape. I took nearly all of the fruit out of the saucepan and left a bit in the saucepan, I mashed these up and made more sauce. I then roughly lined a pudding bowl with cling film leaving the edges out.

Then it was a case of using sliced white bread to line the basin. I found a saucer than fitted on to of the basin so that it would squash the contents down. Leaving the slices as complete as possible and just filling in the gaps. The outside of each of the pieces was dunked into the sauce and put back into the basin. Then pile the fruit into the basin so it is full. Then make a sliced bread lid - again dunking the outside in the sauce.

Then pop the plate or saucer on top so that it squahes it down, and put a tin of something on tap to weigh it down.

leave over night.

The pic is a slice with some clotted cream icecream (not homemade!)


I also made my first ever jar of jam. i just did it in the microwave using a recipe for the internet. I amde just under 2 jars and it is delicious. I stll have not made homemade scones to go with it!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Back


I had the summer off as I was busy doing all sorts that I never got around to posting. so now I don't know where to start.....

We had a lovely holiday in Cornwall - the sun shone for most of it too - so that was good! We also went to Bognor for a few days and the sun shone again :)

As for making and baking...I didn't do much on the card making front during the summer but did do lots of watercolouring stamped images on holiday and have just started making them into cards now. I went to Stamperama in August too - and had a lovely time with Carole.

Baking I did make some lovely choc chip cookies and will have to pop the recipe up, and today made some savoury turnovers for Ampthill Market - so will have to pop the pics up later.

We have a new challenge going up later today and Jennie from Artistic Stamper has luanched a new competition for September - so check out the forum for details. Basically you can't use patterned paper in your creation - just stamping and inks. My sample is on this post!

so I will pop some pictures up later...and will try and be a more frequent blogger

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Craftability craft week



I popped over to Craftability this week - twice in fact. I nipped in earlier on in the weeky as I wasn't expecting to be around today, but as I was unexpectedly available I went down there for an hour and it was realy enjoyable. If you live nearby it is well worth popping over. I have now managed buy two new stamps, an embossing folder and some brads...oh dear and I was determined not to buy anything else....

Jane had rang so I met her there, and we sat and watched Anna Davenport cover some fab chipboard albums. She is into a bit of cooking so I have suggested that she stops by and tries some of the recipes. Another lady (sorry I forgot her name) was showing her stamps from Willow crafts, and Jane had a go at stamping and painting Wilfred Rabbit...who I just happen to buy....

There was jewellery and Trimcrafts products being demo'd as well.

Great afternoon - and a great way to see some new products being used.

In the meantime I have made some cards - I caught up on some of the challenges on the forum. two simple ones...the first was to use an image from clip art or similar, so this cute baby pics was from Karen's Whimsy - thre are some really fantastic images on there.

The other is for a sport at the Olympics and as I had this sailing stamp it seemed the obvious choice. Then I found the Chinese character stamp that I have had for years and means wind - so I thought a perfect match.

Both are fairly simple cards - but suitable for the occasions.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Shopping


Today I didn't work as I worked yesterday.....I went in for a special meeting that was cancelled when I got in.....tee hee

But it worked out well in the end as Sue was free and we went off to Stamp Addicts ....now I know this will surprise you all but I spent more than Sue...although I think she may have spent more than me in the previous week or so! So I treated myself to two new stamps and the new look Craft Stamper mag and a couple of other bits. We then had a nice Lunch at the Chequers just outside Ampthill, on the road to Bedford.

Not had time to play with anything yet and one was a Christmas stamp.

I have finally finished all of the updates to Crafts by Carolyn for this month and I hope that you like all of the new stuff and all of the changes - if you aren't on my mailing lists here is the newsletter. I am off for a lie down now....

So I have not had much of a chance to make many new cards, although have sold a few over the last few weeks...so I have just this one to show you - this is using the FREE download paper on the site.

BTW MikeH is now running the AroundAmpthill.org site and I am still in the forum, but not in charge :) So if you live in or around Ampthill pop across and see what is going on.

Bread Pudding


after loads of trawling around the internet and asking on my forum I managed to work out a recipe that works for a traybake. I have now made it a couple of times and use mainly the crusts from our loaves.

Bread Pudding
Bake 1 hour in a traybake at 170c
15 oz Bread soaked in
14 fl oz of Milk (can do some water)
3oz Sugar
10oz Dried fruit
2oz or 3 oz margarine - melted
1 egg
I add some Mixed Spice and some nutmeg

Basically soak the bread for at least half an hour, mash completely – I use a use mixer to get it smooth
Add everything else and bake
Line the tin with silicone paper not greaseproof it sticks!

And you should have some nice Bread pudding. I sprinkle with sugar on top. This quantities are very 'loose'!

I cut it into 15 as I have laminated card marked out for this as standard - these are nice sizes.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Tuesday sun


Today was a lovely sunny day - sadly as we have now moved offices we don't see the sun much, as we are in a sort of basement. However I did go for a wander at lucnhtime and get some sun. The garden is growing nicely and my 'food' is growing. I have been picking loganberries - not many but there are loads on their way.

Crafting has taken a bit of a back seat as I have been updating the site, I will send out a newsletter soon...I have also been doing other things - although I did have a play and make some cards with charms for someone at work. Such a shame she wanted 18th birthday card and not 21st! Never mind I can change the it in time!


I also made a card for the challenge - there are loads of great challenges on the site - some fantastic ideas - pop along to the forum and join in it would be lovely.

Around Ampthill

You will be pleased to know that MikeH has taken on the forum and you can now pop by for a gossip....

Friday, June 20, 2008

Ampthill Forum - quick update

Paul decided that he didn't want to continue running the forum - but sadly didn't actually check when it was due to expire properly and it went.....HOWEVER it looks like there maybe a couple of people that are willing to take it on and it maybe up and running again. If you want to help or just offer some support then you can email me on ampthill@craftsbycarolyn.co.uk and I will pass on your emails.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Chocolate Fudge Cup Cakes



I made these for Owen's birthday cake - we chose 13 out of the 20 and put candles in them - he loved them. I really needed a flat surace to put them on - next time I would put them on a cake board as the candles weren't easy to deal with on the outside slanting ones! You can see some are in the new tin and some in the old tins!

This recipe makes 20 cupcakes

preheat the oven 180c / 350f / gas mark 4

Put in a saucepan, heat gently - then bring to the boil and simmer for 5 mins:
200ml/ 7fl oz water
85g/ 3oz Butter
85g/ 3ox Caster sugar
1 tbsp golden syrup
...set aside

Put
3 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp bicarb of soda
...into a small bowl and mix together

in a big bowl put
225g/ 8oz Plain white flour
2 tbsp cocoa
...mix together

Now add the syrup mixture to the flour and then stir in the milk mix and beat until smooth.

Now you need to divide between 20 cases - about 2/3 full.

Bake for 20 mins


Allow to cool and make the topping.
This is as the recipe stated but I had loads left, it also recommends you use white and plain choc, but I didn't have any white so used milk and dark:

This is the total quantity if you want to do two different batches half it and make one of each.
100g / 3 and half oz of chocolate
4 tbsp water
50g/ 1 3/4 butter
350g/ 12 oz icing sugar

Melt the chocolate and water and butter in a bowl over boiling water, stir until smooth then mix in the icing sugar. The chocolate curl were made with chocolate and a veg peeler and I got in a right mess with it!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Cup Cake Tins


I finally found some more 'upright' small cake tins so that they are more like cupcakes. I found them in Matalans made by Pyrex...they are tins though not Pyrex...a 6 hole one was £3. I only bought one as I wasn't sure if it would work. But was most impressed by the results, so I need to pop back and get another. I hope you can see the difference with these two cranberry cupcakes - which do you prefer?

I have some recipes to put up so will do one later.....

This week were are moving offices on Friday so I have been designated a co-ordinator and so am working 4 days this week...although that means only 2 next week! Tomorrow I am off to Hanslope Craft group to make cards for the group - first time I have done this in ages so I hope they like it. I am just off to get all of my things together now.

I have now added a search to the craft site and I hope that people will be able to find their way around easier with that and the new menus.

AWOL again


Time has been flying by again and I have been busy doing this and that! Owen was 13 last weekend I made choc fudge cupcakes I will add a recipe later.

The big news is I have revamped the site and it has brand new menus - hopefully it will be easier to get around and find things - it now looks a bit empty, and could do with some new pages now! Tee hee - please let me know what you think Crafts by Carolyn - and let me hav eyour ideas for some new things.....

I promise to do some new posts soon - in the mean time here is a card I made for a challenge on Sassy Crafts - I saw it posted on a forum and not many people had entered :( - so my 3 Dovecraft products are the stamp, the paper and the brad

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Just like buses eh?



Ok so I don't make a post for ages and now I have added two. I have been busy as Sue launched a weekend challenge last weekend...although we have had all week to finish...so today I finished my Matchbook Album. Sue has given step by step instructions on how to make it on the forum, and I had never made something like this. It took me ages to decide on some photos - but anyway here is the end result, I hope you like it. Sadly, I am not as skilled on this 'scrapbooking' stuff, but these little albums are more my style.


















I have also made some cards for some of the challenges - but I think we have enough pics on this posts before you all drift off!

On a completely different subject - as some of you know I have started constructing a family tree. Following the census records is easy these days as it is all on the net. Well yet another coincidence has occurred we are staying on a farm for our summer holidays that used to be owned by a relative - a little distant I must admit - but still a relative. I couldn't believe the coincidence! The family name in this instance is 'Heard', working along my grandmother's tree, through all of the ladies...so a name change each generations...Dayman, Hobbs, then Heard.

On the card making front - I am enjoying the videos on the Hero Arts blog - have you seen them?

Sticky Orange Traybake




After wandering around the internet for hours I found this recipe for a lemon traybake. It is really a standard recipe, but they said it could work as a traybake, so I decided to give it a go with an orange rather than a lemon, as oranges are far cheaper at the moment than lemons! And I like eating them too!

Sticky Orange Traybake
175g/6oz margarine
175g/6oz sugar
2 large eggs
225g/8 oz self-raising flour
1 - 2 tablespoons milk
grated rind of 1 Orange

It is a basic method of cream fat and sugar, then add the eggs, and fold in the flour. I added a tablespoon of orange juice and then checked how stiff the mix was and decided it needed a little more so added a drop of milk.

I thought maybe it wasn't quite enough for my traybake tin (around 11 X 7 inch) - but as you can see it was fine. Bake for around 30 - 35 minutes at 180c

I drizzled mine with sugar and juice melted together, as soon as it was out of the oven. But thought it looked really plain so decided to quickly ice it as I iced my ginger cake and had some left over.

I cut it into 15 pieces, 5 X 3 if that makes sense. I have made myself a marker and lamintaed it so that I can cut my cakes nice and easy for the Ampthill Country Market!

Sadly I am not sure where I saw the recipe after all of the searching - but I do know there were a few very similar.

Don't forget if you are into cooking or eating, or even growing your own I have a forum the Cooks Journal to share recipes, hints and tips. And even to be challenged - it would be lovely to see you over there.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

I forgot...

....to update ny blog - I am not really sure why not - maybe I just don;t have that much to talk about! I read in the Telegraph last week about some really amazing bloggers that had now written books - so it made me feel quite humble :) Here is one Wife in the North

here is the article story: Saturday Telegraph

So back to my life....Pretty much the same old thing - still desperately looking for new baking recipes to try - my cakes have been selling well back on the market. I like to try one new recipeon a Wednesday - but have not seen anything I fancied the last couple of weeks. Although was distracted this week as I had a builder round to chat about a side extension. Having spent years dithering (and I mean years) I have (well and Paul tee hee) decided that we could do a ground floor extension to make the lounge bigger and lighter, and add a study...and now also a 'garden room' on the back with doors that slide back. So now I need to get an architect to draw up the plans.

THIS WEEKEND on the Crafts by Carolyn forum it is the BIG CHALLENGE - organised by Sue - so get on over there and check it out - I can assure you it is worth a visit - there is even a project included.

I promise to post some pics in the next few days - I am just off now to make some things.

I went out with Jane this week and she told me all about her felting course she did at the Purple Poppy Gallery in Ampthill, and I told her all about my cards that I made at LBCrafts in Olney - I have put the om the forum - and had a really lovely time. Jane has got her eye on my potential new Garden room to offer some courses!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Chocolate rock cakes



Just a quick update, I have been baking this morning, and made choc muffins with mini marshmallows - and will add that soon. I did these last week, and am catching up! I am off out to lunch today with Ann - we are just popping over to a garden centre and a local pub - this is not a crafty or a cooking friend so just gossip today! Went out with Jane and did some crafty shopping a couple of weeks back...so am catching up on my status of a lady who lunches! Next week Clare is coming round.

I saw this recipe in a book and decided to just use my normal rock cake recipe
But instead of currants I used a combination of chopped glace cherries and apricots, and I added 1 oz of cocoa, using lightly less flour and I guess a little more milk to make it the right consistency.

I sprinkled with brown sugar as well before popping themin the oven. They tasted nice but wasn't too sure if they looked that nice. So I dusted with a little icing suagr to take away the browness! My son liked them - but still prefers the peanut butter choc chip cookies - which just do not seem to sell on Ampthill Country Market sadly.

Interestingly I slightly singed my ginger cake and so cut the top of it and iced it - and they all sold - so this week I have decided to ice the ginger cake as standard - and see if it sells quicker!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

What's new on CBC


I sent out a newsletter to everyone that had registered on the guest book last week - which now amounts to more than 1000 of you, and as you will see I have been busy on the site. If you want to get and email - you just need to go to the site and click registerfor updates.

I have added new downloads, a new project on making your own mini bags, plus Joanne has added some great advice on the different inks, I am now keeping a list of the pages I add on a web page - so that you can see easily what is new on the site.

The Tanda Stamp competition closes this week - so I hope you have your entry in. I have entered - there are some fantastic entries on there.

I can reveal that there will be a big challenge in May - Sue has been busy organising it - and I can reveal it is fab!

Cranberry Cupcakes


Well I have had these cranberries in the freezer since Christmas - so I decided to make some cupcakes with them...I started doing the recipe and was confused by 5 and half tbsp of butter so did the same as the sugar and flourinstead...the recipe said makes 14 but I did 12.

so here is the recipe and they tasted delicious

3½ oz Butter or marg
3½ oz caster sugar
1 large egg
2 tbsp milk - I just added anough to make it the right consistency
3½ oz self raising flour
1 tbsp baking powder
just under 3 oz of frozen cranberries

cream butter and sugar together add egg, I then added the flour (sifted) and fruit and then the milk as I like to feel in control of the liquid side and added just enough to make the right consistency. Now I am failry certain I forgot to put in the baking powder and they were just fine, as it was SR flour.

bake at 180c/350f for 15 to 20 minutes until risen and golden brown...I tested one while it was still warm and it was delicious.

I iced the remainder and sold them on Ampthill Country Market stall

Sunday, April 13, 2008

More

So to catch up on the last week or so.


Thursday we went to Woburn Safari Park - the weather could have been much better but we had a nice time - it is so easy as it only take 10 mins to get there. We saw the baby giraffe that was born in March, and we also saw 25 pregnant Wallabies - with their little Joeys keep popping out!






Friday we had a mooch about and I promised Owen a KFC - when we got there - there was no power at the interchange retail park - so we had to come home and have a sandwich! We did pop over to my friends to collect my unsold items from the market, Owen had a nice time playing with Dora their dog...although she seemed very tired!

Owen is back to school now...and I am back to work!

Lynda - Grumpy Old Food won the challenge on Cooks Journal and she has now set a new challenge - I still have not posted her prize - sorry :(

There have been some great challenges on the cbc forum and also a competition to win 3 lots of Tanda Stamps - it is open to everyone - just join the forum and add your pic to the thread.

On the cake making front I did follow a new lemon cake recipe last week that turn out great - a square cake that I cut into 4 pieces to sell - sadly no pic - so will do one next time and put the recipe up.

I am still on a quest to find a bread pudding recipe (not bread and butter pudding)

I (and Owen a bit) have been clearing out his bedroom and getting loads of his old stuff sold. We took 8 boxes to the Maulden Nearly New sale yesterday and came back with 3 and a half! so he must have some money to come. I did wonder if I had priced thinsg too low - but it was nice to see them go to a new home rather than in the rubbish bin.

I am just about to update www.Craftsbycarolyn.co.uk with some new pages, we have had some extra visitors this week, someone posted on the www.MoneyExpert.com - Martin Lewis site - thank you - whoever you are.