Gluten and Dairy Free Recipe – Sweet Potato Brownies

A few months ago I started going to a local Cake Club, run by the friend of a friend. The idea is once a month we all get together to eat cake and natter. It’s that simple really. Everyone who comes must bring some form (any form) of cake and each month we have a loose theme to inspire us to try a new recipe. I love that part of it. I mean I love making cake, but how easy is it to just fall back on one or two tried and trusted recipes? Having a theme gently guides you to consider bakes you perhaps wouldn’t have done otherwise. This benefits not only the baker, but also the rest of the group. It’s made for some really interesting evenings, and even more delicious cakes to try!

This month’s theme was Vegetables (and Fruit), a cheeky nod to the healthy eating that tends to go on in January. We also welcomed, for the first time, a member who cannot eat gluten. As soon as I heard these two things I knew I had to make my friend Bethany’s Sweet Potato Brownies. Gluten and Dairy Free, I’ve made them once before, when Oscar was eating a GF diet. This time I have tinkered with the recipe ever so slightly and boy do they make the most moist and intensely chocolately morsels. I urge you to give them a go, whether you need a GF recipe or not.

On a side note, I have found these to bake much more evenly than traditional brownies, which I always manage to over or under cook. Always a plus!

Although you can microwave sweet potatoes (like you do jacket potatoes), I have found that baking them from raw, gives a much sweeter result. Prick the potato all over and bake on a foil covered tray at 230/ Gas Mark 8 for an hour, turning half way through. When done, peel, mash and cool before using.

Sweet Potato Brownies

Makes 16

Ingredients
  • 1 large baked sweet potato (approx 180g)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 55g coconut oil. Often bought in it’s solid state, I’ve found it’s easiest to melt in the microwave on short bursts.
  • 110g soft brown sugar
  • 45g cocoa powder
  • 60g ground almonds
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 50g good quality dark chocolate chopped into chucks (or chips)
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C /Gas Mark 5 and line a square (9 x 9) cake tin with grease proof/baking paper
  2. Mix sweet potato, eggs, vanilla and coconut oil in a bowl
  3. Mix sugar, cocoa, ground almonds, baking powder and salt in another bowl
  4. Sieve dry mixture to wet ingredients a third at a time. Mix well after adding each third
  5. When the two mixtures are combined, add the chocolate chunks/chips and stir
  6. Pour batter into lined tin
  7. Bake for 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean from the middle
  8. Cool in tin for 10 minutes before removing, in greaseproof paper, to cooling rack.
  9. Let cool completely before cutting

These brownies are delicious with a cup of coffee and a sense of smug satisfaction that you’re practically eating one of your five a day.

Sort of 😉

Sweet Potato Brownies – practically a health food 😉

 

The 70’s catered my child’s party!

I’ve never thrown Oscar a party at home. Mostly because our house is just too small to comfortably accommodate many people and so Oscar’s previous birthday parties have been hosted, and catered, by other venues. This year we decided to have a family party for him at our favourite holiday apartment in Plymouth. And as we were hosting it also meant I could go to town on the catering. I don’t know what it is, but I love making (and eating) party food. It must have something to do with all the happy party memories from my childhood. And thanks to the advent of Pinterest, I got plenty of inspiration to add to my own memories.

I decided, as his party was being held on Easter Sunday, to go with a loose Easter theme. Think bunnies and eggs and you get the picture. I really enjoyed preparing the food and wanted to say a huge thank you to Ben for keeping the boy occupied while I did. It meant I could whack on a party play list, sing out and get creating. What I didn’t realise until I started making it, was how inspired by the 70’s my party food would be! But do you know, everyone loved it, whether it was nostalgic love or not. I was extremely proud of how the food turned out so have decided to devote a whole post to my favourite bits!

Cheese and Pineapple

My first creation was less ‘made’ and more ‘put together’, the perennial party favourite Cheese and Pineapple. Now I’ll let you in on a secret, I don’t actually like Cheese and Pineapple. I mean I like the ingredients separately, but I just don’t get them together (and before you ask, no I don’t like Hawaiian Pizza either)! Many years ago, we were going to a ‘Bad Taste’ fancy dress party and in keeping with the theme I made one of these to take along. You know, as a joke. Only everyone went nuts for it! So I’ve made one for every party I’ve had since and it’s always been devoured!

There’s no real recipe as such, only I would recommend using Mild Cheddar (Mature is too crumbly and wont stay on the stick) and tinned Pineapple chunks in juice. For the true Fanny Craddock vibe, I always use a grapefruit covered in foil to hold the sticks. It wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t 🙂

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Who doesn’t love cheese and pineapple (well me, but I’m a minority!)

Devilled Eggs

Staying firmly with the 70’s vibe, I chose Devilled Eggs, as they fitted the theme and are delicious. I did think about dying the eggs pretty pastel colours as my friend Shannon over at Shannonagains suggested, but I decided to go au naturel in the end, using the same recipe as I did for my Halloween Spider eggs. I boiled 5 eggs for 8 minutes, then plunged them into cold water. Once peeled, I then cut them in half and removed the yellows to a bowl, which I mixed with a couple of tbsps of light Mayonnaise, a tsp of mustard powder and salt and pepper to taste. I then spooned the mixture back into the whites (if I’d been really fancy I could have piped them, but I don’t actually own a piping bag or nozzle!) and placed them on a plate covered in round lettuce.

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Devilishly delicious Devilled Eggs

Sandwiches

One of the challenges when catering for both children and adults is finding food that’s accessible for all. Sandwiches are usually a safe bet and although I thought about making some interesting fillings, I knew in my heart this would be a good place to provide something a more familiar for those who were a little anxious in their tastes (fussy eaters sound so negative!) Anyway I chose plain ham and plain cheese and kept them on theme by investing in some bunny cookie cutters. How cute are they? And I love the contrast between the white and brown bread. I’d apologise for the ‘cress as grass garnish’, but I’m not going to – I love it!

These sandwiches were all made with standard bread as Oscar isn’t the biggest sandwich fan. I made him his own Gluten Free peanut butter bunny sandwiches, which went uneaten! Sigh!

FYI, I didn’t make these Hot Cross Buns, who do you think I am, Mary Berry!

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Bunny Sandwiches. I will not apologise for the cress as grass garnish!

Mozzarella Onion Pull Apart Bread

This was a variation on a recipe I found on Pinterest. It sounded decadent and yet simple to do. And I was right. The original recipe called for Monterey Jack cheese, but I decided to use mozzarella instead. To be honest, while mozzarella provided the requisite meltyness (what? that’s a word right?) I personally thought it could have done with a bit more flavour, so would maybe consider using something like Havarti or Emmental next time.

  • 1 400g unsliced Bloomer
  • 1 large mozzarella, thinly sliced
  • 200g butter, melted
  • A bunch of finely sliced spring onions
  • 2 tsp poppy seeds
  • Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 180c, Gas Mark 5. Cut the bread length ways and width ways without cutting through the bottom crust. Place on a large sheet of foil. Insert cheese between cuts. Combine melted butter, onion, poppy seeds and seasoning. Drizzle over bread. Wrap the foil up and over bread until covered. Place on a baking sheet and bake at 180c for 15 minutes. Unwrap the bread and bake for 10 more minutes. Serve whole and let everyone help themselves!

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Mozzarella Onion Pull Apart Bread. So good to share

Dip Bunny

This really was my piece de resistance. Another Pinterest recipe I found and fell in love with. It was actually incredibly easy (and my version was even easier than the original – and better looking if you ask me 😉 ). The bread came from The Royal William Bakery, next door to the apartment. It was so fresh out of the oven, I had to leave it for a couple for hours just to cool down! And boy did it smell good. Obviously you don’t need to use such amazing bread (although of course if you can, do!). The original recipe also gave instructions to make the dip, but I was doing so much else I chose to buy one. I have no problem with that. If you have time and inclination to make the dip then more power to you.

  • 1 medium Sourdough Loaf (I got a whole grain one, but white would work as well)
  • 2 part baked baguettes
  • Raisins
  • Cocktail sticks
  • 2 pots of your favourite dip
  • Your favourite dipping vegetables. I used, pepper, carrot and celery

Bake the part baked baguettes as per the instructions and let cool. Place the sourdough on the tray you want to present it on. Carve a hollow out of the sourdough at a slight angle, keeping the bread you remove for the bunny’s face. Place the ‘face’ above the body of the sourdough and make three small indents in it for the eyes and nose. Press a raisin into each hollow. Use cocktail sticks pushed in either side of the ‘face’ as whiskers. Cut one of the baguettes in half and use each half as an ear, securing to the head with a cocktail stick. Use a round of the other baguette as a tail, placed at the base of the sour dough. Cut up the vegetables and surround the bunny (I also used left over round lettuce as grass!) and when ready to serve tip the dip into the bunny’s body.

He went down a blooming treat! We had friends over after the party too and no a scrap of him was left. That’s what I like, no waste and no washing up!

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My beautiful Dip Bunny. I was so proud of him!

Cake

And of course no birthday party would be complete without cake. I didn’t make this myself, but it couldn’t not be included here. Oscar’s Grandma really stepped up to the plate, making him a delicious, gluten free rainbow cake. A rainbow, you know, like a spectrum 😉 . It was beautiful! Thank you so much to Catherine for making such an amazing cake. And then making a second chocolate one, just in case! They were both divine!

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Grandma’s superb Rainbow Cake

We all had a wonderful day. Oscar played with his cousins brilliantly (involving collaborative art, roaring competitions and chasing each other round the apartment) and the adults got to relax and catch up. Oh and drink prosecco. Seriously it was what every children’s party should be. With a side order of 70’s style bunny themed party food. What’s not to love?

Happy Birthday Oscar!

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Happy Birthday Oscar!

 

My Wedding Story

Recently, my husband Ben and I celebrated being together as a couple for the grand total of sevenTEEN years. Yup 17! For a couple who are both only 36, that tells you just how much of our lives we’ve spent together. I’ve written about how we met before, here in fact. But I’ve never written about our wedding. And in recognition that we just celebrated our 7 year wedding anniversary and I thought it was about time I did.

Ben and I got engaged in 2007. There was no ring, there was no beautifully planned set up. There was no anticipation, there wasn’t even a man on a knee. There was Ben. And there was me. Both in our pyjamas, stood in the doorway of the lounge in our flat in Surbiton. And it couldn’t have felt more perfect.

We both knew we wanted to get married close to our families and back in our home county, but I’ll tell you now planning a wedding long distance isn’t easy. Thank god for email, but we still had to make several trips down to Devon from our home in London to visit suppliers and venues. We pretty much knew our priorities for the day were good food (mine) and a good bar (Ben’s) and the venue we chose ticked all our boxes and more.

The Great Barn, was the most stunning wedding venue I had ever seen (and to be fair, nothing’s ever topped it ?) We went to look at it with my sister and when the three of us walked up the steps and into the barn our jaw’s all dropped. WOW was the only word any of us could manage.

The Great Barn, Higher Ashton, Devon

The Great Barn, Higher Ashton, Devon

First view of the inside of the barn. Yup, I still think WOW every time I see it.

First view of the inside of the barn. Yup, I still think WOW every time I see it.

We hired our own outside caterers. We knew from the start we wanted an elegant but relaxed affair and so we were looking for someone to do us a tip top BBQ or similar. We went with The Dartmoor Kitchen, headed up by (the now nationally recognised) Tom of Toms Pies and his amazing team, when we realised they could do us a locally sourced hog roast with all the sides. And boy did they do us proud! And to fulfil Ben’s request we decided to budget for stocking the bar ourselves, meaning people could just relax and enjoy. We even found a local brewery to deliver and tap us a barrel of ale just for Ben (well not quite, but he was determined to have a crack at finishing it!)

Thats a whole pig, locally sourced and organic. Yes this was a happy pig. Oh and bloody gorgeous

Thats a whole pig, locally sourced and organic. Yes this was a happy pig. Oh and it was bloody gorgeous!

A whole barrel of local ale, just for Ben ?

A whole barrel of local ale, just for Ben ?

Add to this a dress I’m still in love with (look out for a post about this on www.todreamofdresses.com soon!), some handsome suits, a bridesmaid dress fiasco that turned out better than I ever imagined, flowers from the florist all my friends used, two pairs of wedding shoes, a dodgy DJ, God knows how many metres of greenyblue ribbon (don’t get Ben started on how many different shades of greenyblue he had to look at that year!), a mountain of cupcakes from Cakeadoodledo and a last minute 90 Swarovski Crystal handbag and we my friends had a wedding to be proud of.

We got married in June 2008. It’d been a pretty crappy summer so far and it rained heavily the day before. I was so convinced it would rain on the day that I even bought white golf umbrellas just in case. As the day dawned I woke in my bed at the cottage next to the barn, sat for a minute looking at my dress hanging on the wardrobe and steeled myself to look out the window. I opened the curtains to blinding sunshine. And bawled my eyes out. Wayne and Colleen Rooney got married the month before us, spending a reported 5 million but even they couldn’t buy the weather, getting married in torrential downpours in Italy. The one thing none of us could control, regardless of the budget or the planning or the spreadsheets and it went right for us. Ha! Take that Mr and Mrs R!

My view when I woke up on my wedding day. Swiftly followed by tears at the sunshine!

My view when I woke up on my wedding day. Swiftly followed by tears at the sunshine!

My bridesmaids, my sister Laura and Ben’s step sister Leanne, had stayed in the cottage with me the night before. We were up til the wee small hours making paper cones to hold the petal confetti as I recall! One of my favourite memories of my wedding morning was sitting with them, in the cottage garden, drinking champagne and eating croissant in the sun. We were so relaxed we suddenly realised how late it was getting and in good girly fashion screamed and ran in the house to get ready.

I wanted that morning to be as peaceful as possible. I didn’t want to see anyone which is why I asked no one other than the few people I needed come to the cottage. Thankfully most people respected this although one or two didn’t and rather than flying into a rage I remember sort of curling up in a chair and staring at the floor. I may or may not have started rocking. My sister came over and asked if I’d like her to ‘sort it out’ and thus started my sister’s day of being the most awesome head bridesmaid I could ever have asked for.

My hairdresser (also my sister in law Nicky) arrived with her colleague to do my hair and make up. Then my friend Helen arrived with her 8 month old daughter Chloe, who was to be my baby bridesmaid. I’d seen someone else have a baby as a bridesmaid earlier in the year and just loved the idea. Chloe wore a beautiful white cotton broderie anglaise dress from Gap with a ribbon sash (greenyblue of course 😉 ) Helen was the first to see me as as I came down the stairs in my dress. And then promptly asked an already emotional bride in full make up if she would be her daughter’s god mother! How I kept from blubbing I’ll never know, but I may have called her a cow for pushing me to the edge – yeah sorry about that Hels!

Once we were ready and the house started to quiet, we moved into the cottage garden for photos, all the time laughing like drains. I have so many pictures of me just roaring with laughter before the wedding. I think it was part nerves but I was never going to make the shy demure bride really was I? I love these pictures and made sure they were included in the album our amazing photographers, Andrew and Agnieszka Younger did for us.

A candid shot from the garden.

A candid shot from the garden.

When the time came, and after the photographer made sure the coast was clear, we giggled all the way over to the barn. The wind suddenly picked up and blew my full length veil and my bridesmaids hair about. We went to the side entrance of the barn, rather than the main door as this gave me a straight, long walk down the aisle. I had already decided my bridesmaids would walk out in front of me, US style and we stood behind a partition giggling and waiting. The music I chose was the instrumental Album version of True Love’s First Kiss by Harry Gregson-Williams and John Powell. From the film Shrek. Yeah yeah laugh all you want but I found no other piece that had the drama the barn deserved. I loved this piece and had spent months listening to it while walking to get the feel of the music but more importantly to desensitise myself to it. When I first chose it I couldn’t hear it without crying and I didn’t want my make up to run!

The music started and I listened. I sent each bridesmaid out on the beat I had planned. This wasn’t a walk down the aisle, it was a choreographed masterpiece. As my sister’s turn came, as the last bridesmaid to go, she turned, kissed me and told me she loved me. It took me aback and I’ll never forget it. Then she was gone and I was alone. I waited. Listening for the music to change to a quieter, softer tone. And when it did, I emerged, alone, but not in the least bit scared. The lighting had been set up the previous day to hit me perfectly as I walked and the effect was dramatic and beautiful. I remember checking I was holding my bouquet nice and low, I remember smiling more than I ever have, I remember looking straight ahead and seeing nothing but Ben in the golden light. I remember thinking “I’m doing it, I’m doing it” then thinking how I was never going to get to do this again, so to slow down. And I did. I realised how fast I’d been walking and slowed right down. To savour this moment.1910442_17086676663_3660_n

And suddenly the months of planning melted away. Nothing mattered any more. Who the hell cared what colour the dresses were? Not me. All that mattered was here. And now. We started the ceremony with the poem “Aedh Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven” by W.B. Yates read by Ben’s maternal grandmother Betty. A beautiful, brief statement of intent, it speaks of a vulnerability and a love that would do anything. Well it does to me anyway.

Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

We wrote our own vows and spoke them to one another. Clearly and sincerely. Ben promised to always make me coffee on the weekends and I promised to make him sausage sandwiches when he was blue. But most of all we promised to love each other no matter what. We kissed to a round of applause ??

We finished the ceremony with our friend Dom reading a story. This one in fact

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We signed the register to The Ramones, “Baby I Love You”, completed the formalities and walked out to Jackie Wilson’s “Your Love Keeps Lifting Me (Higher and Higher)”. We walked to the back of the barn and were given champagne by the wonderful barn owner, John. And just stood there giggling. It was done. 18 months of planning and the most important thing was just being together.

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When the barn had emptied we walked back through the space and out of the large main doors, to be met with a shower of confetti. It was fabulous. My friend’s mum even tipped her cone down my cleavage and I didn’t mind. I just don’t ever remember feeling so at peace, so sure that nothing else in the world mattered, as I did in those few moments.

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Our wonderful confetti moment

Our reception was the elegant relaxed affair we hoped for. Every guest, at some point or another, has told us just how much they enjoyed the bubbles and nibbles in the garden, while we had our photos taken. The sun was out, the champagne was flowing and we made the most of the beautiful surroundings. Once we rejoined the party, we gathered everyone under the walnut tree, as we had decided to do the speeches before the meal and outside. We totally made the right choice. In line with tradition Ben and his best man made a speech and then so did I. There was no way I wasn’t speaking at my own wedding! I thanked people, we gave gifts and then I talked about Ben and made everyone cry. As a good wedding speech should 😉 !

A great orator!

A wonderful orator!

Then Ben gave me a gift. No one has ever seen anyone get as excited about a kitchen gadget before or probably since!

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But it was a Kitchen Aid people!!!!!

When the tears were dried and the speeches all spoken, we returned to the barn, transformed into an elegant dining room, with round tables, escort cards, tall sprigs of cherry blossom (artificial, but hey what do you expect, it was June not April) and tables named after CSI Characters (Grissom being reserved from the wedding party. Obviously). We ate hog roast (except my sister who had a chicken roasted just for her!), roasted potatoes, several different salads and a beautiful vegetable tart, all accompanied by my own chutney. I may have to do a post about, what we affectionately call in our house, “Brides Chutney”, but it was based on Nigella’s Spiced Apple Chutney from How to be a Domestic Goddess. And the drinking relaxing began in earnest.

Our beautiful table setting, biscuit favours by Ben's Mum and Grandma!

Our beautiful table setting, biscuit favours by Ben’s Mum and Grandma!

Sitting down to dinner

Sitting down to dinner

A tower of chocolate cupcakes? Yes please!

A tower of chocolate cupcakes? Yes please!

Taking to the dance floor for our first dance to the beautiful  "Come Away With Me" by Norah Jones

Taking to the dance floor for our first dance to the beautiful “Come Away With Me” by Norah Jones

Party Time

Party Time!

We waited such a long time to get married for several reasons. a) We felt we were too young to get married for the longest time, b) we didn’t really have a need to or c) if you believe my husbands speech he wasn’t sure he liked me! But really the reason was we didn’t want to compromise on the day. We knew the kind of wedding we wanted waaaay before we got engaged and knew we didn’t want anything else. We waited until we were in a position to give ourselves and our nearest and dearest the day we had in our heads. And by jingo we did. Would I do anything differently if we got married now. Absolutely. I’d run off to Vegas or something similar. I definitely wouldn’t spend 18 months stressing over every single tiny detail. Who has time for that? But then I’m not the girl I was in 2008. Would she do anything differently? Probably hire a different DJ and have her hair redone half way through the day. Because the stressing and planning and obsessing meant it was pretty damn perfect.

Thank you Ben for such a wonderful day. But mostly thank you for a wonderful life.

Mr & Mrs S 2008

Mr & Mrs S 2008

Mr & Mrs S 2015

Mr & Mrs S 2015

 

 

Diary of an Imperfect Mum
Mama-andmore

The Boy Makes…The Best GF Banana Bread Ever!

I’ve not had much luck with gluten free cakes so far. They’ve been OK, pleasant enough I suppose and Oscar’s been happy enough to wolf them all down, so they can’t have been that bad. But I don’t know, they just didn’t taste quite right, if you know what I mean. So I decided to give our family favourite a gluten free make over and see if I couldn’t make a really good gf cake.

Ben’s absolute favourite cake is Chocolate Banana Bread. It’s a slightly tinkered with version of this Nigella staple and I’ve made it many times. It’s great fun to make, primarily because I love squishing the bananas, and so I thought Oscar would enjoy it too. We gave it a go two weeks ago and it was such a roaring success, with everyone who tried it, that we’ve made three more since. And not one has hung around for long! It has a moist quality I’ve not found in other gf cakes and using good size overly ripe fruit gives it a wonderful banana sweetness.

So just for you this is our gf version of the best banana bread you’ll ever taste.

As in previous recipes we used my Kitchen Aid, but you could also do this by hand.

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  • 175 grams plain gluten free flour (we use Doves Farm)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Xanthan Gum
  • 2 teaspoons gluten free baking powder (we use Waitrose Cooks Ingredient Baking Powder)
  • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 125 grams unsalted butter
  • 150 grams caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 good size ripe bananas (the riper the better!)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Line tin with baking parchment

Line tin with baking parchment

  1. Preheat the oven to 170 C/gas mark 3/325 F.
  2. Mash the bananas with a fork until a smooth puree and leave to one side.
  3. Put the GF flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, bicarb and salt in a bow and mix well.
  4. Melt the butter. I do this by microwaving in short bursts.
  5. Add the melted butter and sugar to the mixer bowl and beat until blended. Beat in one egg at a time, then add the mashed bananas and vanilla extract.
  6. With the mixer on slow, add a third of the flour mixture at a time, mixing well each time.
  7. Pour the mixture into a lined loaf tin and bake for 1-11/4 hours.
  8. Leave in the tin to cool for half an hour before inverting cake onto cooling rack and peeling off the paper.
Reminds me of weaning!

Reminds me of weaning!

 

Mix the dry ingredients together

Mix the dry ingredients together

 

Beat wet ingredients, then add flour mix a third at a time

Beat wet ingredients, then add flour mix a third at a time

 

Have a toddler that gets bored half way through and leaves you too it. Hey what? Hang on this is supposed to be The Boy Makes... not leave poor mama to it!

Have a toddler that gets bored half way through and leaves you too it. Hey what? Hang on this is supposed to be ‘The Boy Makes…’ not ‘Leave poor mama to it…’!

 

Leaving to cool is the hardest part!

Leaving to cool is the hardest part!

 

Inverted cake, now ready to cut.

Inverted cake, now ready to cut.

We assume it lasts well for a few days in an airtight container blah blah blah….. It’s only lasted a few days wrapped in foil in our house. Absolutely delicious when the boy’s gone to bed, sliced thickly, warmed in the microwave and severed with Vanilla Ice Cream!

Oh there he is!

Oh there he is! My little grubby chops!

 

BakedPotato Mummy
Free From Farmhouse

Slimming World Update – Week 61

Hiya! How ya’ been?

I’ve not been too bad as it goes. Nothing as exciting as jaunts up to London to report this week, more of a standard mummy week. Some difficult, some lovely times with my boy. That sort of thing.

Can I ask a question? If you’re on any sort of weight loss journey, do you weigh yourself in between weigh ins? I do. I try and try not to. My scales aren’t professionally calibrated and I know my weight fluctuates throughout the week, everyones does. But I just can’t help myself. And it’s a mug’s game I can tell you. Some weeks it can give false hope for a great result, and other times it gives you an unnecessarily negative view of the week’s progress. What it rarely does is give you the true picture. So why do I do it? Like this week. I weighed myself at home and my scales told me I’d gained 1.5lb. This didn’t come as a massive shock Perhaps it was London catching up with me or maybe it was the way I’d been guesstimating my syns a little bit too much. Either way I was not surprised, but I was downhearted. Particularly, as I’d had a really stressful week with the boy and not once had I given in to chocolate’s silky siren song. No matter how much I wanted it. No matter how hard I’d fought my internal demons (to the point of rooting me to the spot – I physically couldn’t move I was raging so much inside). To see I’d gained anyway was just so annoying. So when I took the boy to the Hen House on Tuesday I decided if I was going to have gained anyway, I wanted it to be because of something worth talking about. So I had a piece of Carrot Cake. The most delicious Carrot Cake I think I’ve ever had. And I thoroughly enjoyed it. In a devil may care, renegade kind of way.

Worth gaining for?

Worth gaining for?

I went to weigh in thoroughly expecting at least a 1.5lb gain (if not more!) and I’d lost 2lb! Taking my total lost to 6 Stone 4lb. And I was thrilled. But I know the false vision my scales at home gave me did me no real favours. Maybe that 2lb could have been 2.5lb if I’d not had the cake (as I wouldn’t normally). Don’t get me wrong I’m really happy with a 2lb loss, but I know I need to stop weighing myself midweek. It’s doing no one any favours. Except perhaps the purveyors of fine cakes 😉

So this week I’m setting myself two goals. The first is to lose 1lb. I’m still on track to get to 7 Stone by losing 10lb before Christmas in 14 weigh ins. The next is to NOT weigh myself at home, even once, in the coming week. I’m going scales cold turkey, as it were. Can you hold me to that? Thanks. I’ll let you know how I get on.

And this week I’m hoping any craving for chocolate can be dealt with using the new SW Double Choc Crisp Hi-Fi bars. Have you tried them yet? 3 syns each or 2 bars for a HEB. I don’t know about you, but the name didn’t really inspire me that much, I have to say. But the taste? Wow. They’re properly delicious and I can see the really chocolatey flavour dealing with any cravings. Although in the interest of conducting a full and thorough experiment, I did have to buy two boxes worth. Just to be on the safe side you understand 😉 . If you’re a Slimming World member they should be in your group now. I heartily recommend giving them a try and if you like them, tell SW! These are currently a Limited Edition bar, but if enough people like them they might make them standard stock. And that would be just super!

Double Choc Crisp Hi-Fi Light - 3 syns each or 2 bars for a HEB

Double Choc Crisp Hi-Fi Light – 3 syns each or 2 bars for a HEB

Have a great week, not weighing yourself!

xxx