Orange Drizzle Cupcakes


I’ve been neglecting the food side of things for a while but fear not, I am back, with more drizzle cakes!
We’ve recently started getting a fruit and veg box from the lovely people at Abel and Cole , in an effort to eat more veg and also maybe because they have a little special offer on 🙂


I’m not a big orange eater, so I was a bit disappointed when we received 4 big oranges in our box (something I forgot to add into my dislikes list) this week, but then my thoughts turned to cake and all was well!

I make lemon drizzle cake a lot, its easy and tasty and I generally have the ingredients in the cupboard/fridge. I’ve been meaning to try orange drizzle cake for a while, its just as easy and just as tasty.

Orange Drizzle Cupcakes
makes about 20 – 22 cupcakes

for the cake:
200g self raising flour (or plain flour with 2 tsp of baking powder mixed in)
200g butter, softened
200g brown or caster sugar
2 medium eggs
zest of 2 large oranges
1 tsp cinnamon

juice of 1/2 orange

for the icing:
juice of 1 1/2 oranges
juice of 1/2 lemon
icing sugar – approx 4 tbsp

Cream butter and sugar, add the eggs. Zest the orange and mix into bowl with juice of orange. Stir in flour and cinamonn until all combined.

Spoon into a cupcake tray lined with cases. Bake on middle shelf at gas mark 5 for about 10 – 15mins until golden and cooked through.

Normally lemon drizzle cakes require you to wait til the cakes are completely cool to ice them, but I find that you don’t need to so much with cupcakes. Allow them to cool slightly for a few minutes.

Mix the sugar in slow with the orange, sifting through a tea strainer to make it nice and fine. I normally use a fork or a whisk so the icing isn’t lumpy. You may need more or less icing sugar than I have said above, depending on the juiceness of your oranges and lemon! Mix until it has a consistency like double cream.

Prick the cupcakes lightly with a fork or small knife. Brush or spoon the icing over the cakes generously.

Eat!

I was really pleased with how these came out, I may add a little more lemon next time to counter the sweetness and give it a slightly more citrus flavour. This is not very cheffy or even food blogger-y but you could use a tiny bit of from concentrate orange juice to up the orange flavour a little.

xx

Damson Vodka


I’ve been innocently making jam from our garden plums lately but I had something altogether more interesting for our Damsons. My neighbour mentioned that they make a wickedly good damson gin and I’ve had it in my thoughts since the spring blossom!

They finally ripened a couple of weeks ago (yes I have been lax in my food blogging ;)) and I rushed almost immediately out and bought a nice bottle of vodka for them. We aren’t big gin drinkers so we went for the more neutral option of vodka, hoping for more of a fruity taste than a gin taste.

This is a very very easy recipe, the work of moments, really. I used the recipe on Cottage Smallholder (one of my favourite small holding type blogs).

All you do is prick the fruit, add it to a kilner jar, pour on some sugar and then the spirit. Seal up the jar and shake well. Keep the jar in a dark cool place, shake the jar every day until the sugar dissolves (usually about 3-4days). Taste a nip after a week to see if the sugar is right, add a little more if its too sharp and redo the shaking thing.

We are going to drain out the fruit and bottle it to have at Christmas time, although the recipe does recommend you strain the fruit after 3 months and mature for upto a year. Not sure we can wait that long!

I can’t wait to try this, its going to be perfect on a cold Christmassy evening.

UPDATE : We bottled the Vodka just before Christmas and took it down to test it out on our relatives! The resultant vodka was just as a expected, fruity and far too easy to drink. I’ll definitely be making this next year!
xx

Peach cupcakes

I’ve been craving peaches for a while now and I really did fall hard for this recipe on Smitten Kitchen. So naturally I had to make them.

You don’t see English peaches very often, I don’t think they grow well here so I expect anyone with a healthy peach tree in England keeps the peaches to themselves! So I went for the food miled Spanish peaches at my local farm shop. I consoled myself that at least from the farm shop they’d be a bit better than the watery offerings from the supermarkets.

The peaches were lovely and sweet and they work so well in cupcakes. The cake was very moist and with a lovely sweetness, but not too sweet. I can’t pretend I am good at icing cakes, my effort was very much less neat than the ones exhibted by Deb on Smitten Kitchen, but the frosting tasted as good as I’d hoped it would, which is the main thing!

I think I’ll try these again soon, this time with more of a breakfast muffin approach as suggested by Deb too. I think I’ll swap out a little bit of the flour for oats and add an extra peach into the mix too.

xx

jam!


yay!

After last years harvest of two plums (because it basically rained throughout Spring and Summer) I was so pleased to see the trees heaving with plums once again. So last weekend, I made jam!


Looks like we have plenty to see us through the winter, I am waiting the weather to get cold now so I can have it on my porridge as soon as possible 😉

xx

rhubarb!

We picked our first lot yesterday, two lovely sticks which shall be cooked down for a rhubarb fool.

Stop by tomorrow for the recipe and yummy pictures (without the cat).

xx

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