Caramelized pineapple, ginger + sour cream cupcakes

Caramelized pineapple + ginger cupcakes

On Wednesday, I turn thirty. Being a summer baby is wonderful in many ways, but with weddings and holidays it’s always been tricky to get everyone in one place at one time to celebrate. This year – the one so many of my friends have been hitting their third decade, deciding to get married or embarking on exciting adventures abroad – is no exception and my thirtieth celebrations seem to have extended to about six weeks worth of dinners, parties and weekends away. I’m definitely not complaining. Continue reading

Lately . . .

Homemade milky way

. . . I’ve been working on the first round of edits for my book. Most of my spare baking time has been spent in front of the computer or scribbling myself notes and any time spent in the kitchen (beyond what we eat on a day to day basis) has mostly focused on re-testing any recipes then testing again. It might be a couple of weeks before I post anything new, so in the meantime here are some more iPhone snaps of what I’ve been working on.

There was also a nice little feature on the little loaf from Sorted Food last week. If you’re new to this space it offers a lovely little recap of my last few years blogging. Just don’t look too closely at those early posts please: they’re a little like a disastrous past haircut in terms of cringe factor.

Eton mess

Honeycomb

Banoffee eclairs

Upside down cake

Gooseberries

the Little Loaf cookbook recipe testing

raisin scones My first book deadline is just a couple of weeks away and my fridge and freezer are groaning with food, my recipes are out with an army of testers and I’m finalising the ingredients and anecdotes in every spare moment. For those of you who don’t follow me on Instagram, here’s a sneak preview of some of what I’ve been working on.   Continue reading

Three Years Blogging + Cake

chocolate_caramel_cake-053Last week, reading this post, I realised that I’d managed completely miss my blog birthday. Again.

On 23rd February 2011, I published my very first post.  Three years later, although there’s so much more I want to learn about photography and recipe writing (and life), I’m extremely proud of how far I’ve come. Those original photos make me cringe just a little (look them up, you will laugh), my enthusiasm for what is clearly not the lightest of loaves is unbounded, but it’s a record of where I was, a marker for where I am now, and for what, in three years’ time or more, I could be.   Continue reading

Five New Recipes & An Update

madeleines

Things have been a little hectic round here of late.

There’s the possibility we might be moving house. I’ve been working on a food-related project for a while (details of which I’m hoping to share with you soon). And on top of all that, the dial on our oven is irretrievably broken. That’s not to say I haven’t been baking – if you follow me on Instagram you’ll have seen the usual sort of snaps – but I don’t trust its accuracy enough to write up a blog-worthy recipe this week. Continue reading

Frangipane Mince Pies (+ Mincemeat-Free Alternative)

Frangipane Mince Pies

The first time I saw a frangipane mince pie, I fell a little bit in love.

To put this in context, I’m not much of a mince pie eater. If you read this blog regularly you’ll know that I’d take chocolate, caramel or creamy desserts over boozy dried fruit any day of the week: an indifference to festive desserts that extends to both Christmas pudding and cake. If a mince pie is all that’s on offer, I’ll probably end up eating it (top removed, filled with copious amounts of brandy butter then replaced) and I do enjoy the ritual of baking them at this time of year, but getting excited about a recipe? It doesn’t tend to happen. Continue reading

Festive Fig Rolls with Orange, Honey & Cinnamon

Festive Fig Rolls

They say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. If my husband happened to be said man, you could pretty much guarantee his affection for life with a humble packet of fig rolls.

When he was little, Carnivorous Husband’s mum would always buy two packets of fig rolls at the supermarket: one to keep in the cupboard and one for my hungry husband-to-be to consume in one sitting. A couple of hundred miles away, at a similar age and unaware at this point that he even existed, I took a similar approach to a freshly baked loaf of bread. Some treats, it seems, are made to be savoured, others to be eaten in enormous quantities. Continue reading

Triple Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies: A Guest Post from London Bakes

Triple Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

As you read this I’m on my way to Bali on honeymoon with my favourite person in the world. In my absence, two of my favourite bloggers have stepped in with a wonderful recipe all of their own. First up is the amazing Kathryn from London Bakes. I’d quite like to set up camp in her kitchen so I could eat all the amazing food that comes out of it, but as that might be a little odd (and I imagine my brand new husband might miss me), the recipe for these cookies is the next best thing. Enjoy!

I’m so thrilled to be here today filling in for Kate while she and her new husband enjoy their first few days of married life. My blog and The Little Loaf were started on almost exactly the same day 2 ½ years ago and I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Kate over the last few years and watching her blog develop into something really quite special.

I know that we share a very similar outlook on food (right down to our mutual hatred of wet, gravy-logged food) and that we both love baking treats using wholesome and feel-good ingredients. Both of us are big fans of using coconut oil and coconut sugar in baking and I think these cookies show just how wonderful these ingredients can be. Continue reading