In an exciting new venture, I am now baking some cakes for a local business The Earl Grey Tearoom, in Southborough.
So far, I have made them a carrot cake with mascarpone icing (left) and two Victoria sponges with butter cream icing and jam. I have also supplied them with some spiced almond and pistachio biscotti – great for dunking in your coffee or tea!
I hope this venture will continue for a long time – it is great for Southborough to have an independent tearoom and I love the fact I can make a cake and deliver it on foot! I must also admit, I have missed not baking cakes regularly. There is something I find relaxing about mixing together ingredients to produce a (hopefully!) light sponge cake and then decorating it. The very hot weather has made the mixing quite problematic but hopefully by the end of the week, as temperatures return to near normal, cake mixes will go back to the right consistency. Since my youngest went off to University, I can’t justify baking anything for just me. My neighbours have become my testing ground so if you see me crossing Prospect Road with plates of cake or biscuit, you know I am experimenting again.
Last week, just before a very wet and windy day, I picked elderflowers so I could make cordial. I love the scent of the flowers!
As well as making a refreshing drink for the summer, I use the cordial in recipes with gooseberries as the two flavours go together so well. Our family favourite is gooseberry cobbler.
The flowers are soaked in a sugar syrup with lemons and citric acid before being strained and bottled. The cordial keeps well in the fridge once opened and lasts longer than most recipes say it will – I have tried it after 2 years and it still tastes of elderflower!
I am selling 500ml bottles for £4 each – please contact me via this post of you are interested as numbers are limited.
Finally, I have made three flavours of my savoury muffins – pancetta and olive, goats cheese and sundried tomato and onion and pepper. These freeze excellently and can be added to packed lunches. They also go well with soup in the winter.
These muffins have been made for selling at the Penshurst Farmers’ Market on 3 June. If you are in the area, come along and taste before you buy!
The last batch of biscuits have been baked for Penshurst Farmers Market on Saturday 3 June – now they just need to be packaged. These are ginger biscuits, topped with stem ginger and would be delicious with ice cream, fruit, a cup of tea or even with a crumbly white cheese!
I have lost count of how many biscuits that is in total, but I think it is somewhere in the region of 1,000.
I will have tasters available for most of the biscuits so if you are near Penshurst tomorrow morning between 9:30 and 12:00, why not come along and try before you buy.
This evening, I have made savoury seeded biscuits and cheesy biscuits – all are made with buckwheat flour so are suitable for gluten free diets.
These are being packaged up ready for selling at Penshurst Farmers Market on Saturday 3 June.
Tomorrow will be my last day in the kitchen for this event – more biscuits and maybe something different!
This afternoon, the kitchen has been filled with the aroma of chocolate biscuits baking in the Rayburn. Rather tempting! Luckily for my waistline, these will be packaged up ready for Penshurst Farmers Market this Saturday 3 June.
All my biscuits are made with organic flour and eggs. I use butter in most of them, as I think it improves the flavour.
Back to baking …… next batch is a savoury one. Watch this space!