So, week 2 of the Great British Bake Off was BISCUIT WEEK (remember I said I’m attempting to bake along with them?). The basic challenge called for 24 identical biscuits of your choice. Well, seeing as I’d made cookies not that long ago on here, I decided to skip this one (I have the right to pick and choose!)
The technical task however, called for something I’d never made and wasn’t even sure I liked: Viennese Whirls. When I think of them, I’m reminded of biscuit boxes you get at Christmas – not the good ones with a nice, solid chocolate digestive inside. No, Viennese Whirls to me are prissy biscuits, that come sitting in their own little doilies, coated in far too much sugar. I’m not even sure these fussy creations were VWs but the image has stuck.
But… I’ve committed myself to this ridiculousness and so bake them I did. Kind of…
Hello everyone! Well, here I am back with a Monday Munchies post (albeit late – work was a ‘mare!) and as I said yesterday, I’ve decided to attempt the challenges set this year in the Great British Bake Off. Why? It’s the closest I can get to being in the tent…
If you’re not familiar with the show that is (now) a British institution (even if that other institution, the BBC, has now lost the rights to it), 10-12 amateur bakers are put through their paces each week, with three challenges set around a theme. Under the watchful eyes of professionals Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry, contestants show off their baking prowess, whist trying to get to the final to win…erm… a golden whisk? (I actually don’t know what they win!)
Paul is hard to please (I can’t decide if he’s quite dishy…nice eyes, beard a little too perfect for my liking), but once you’ve impressed him, he seems to stay on your side. Mary…well, just infuse your creations with any alcohol and you’re in with a chance!
Oh and don’t forget the minefield of innuendos, thrown about by the presenters, Mel and Sue. I’m sure, back when it first aired, the mention of ‘soggy bottoms’ and ‘teasing it until it stiffens’ were quite innocent remarks but it seems this is now part of the game and if you’ve not uttered at least one during the hour, you should hang your apron up in shame.
A small army at least.
But I’ve no idea who Dan is.
Okay, it was a terrible play on words. Shall we move on?
So, remember when I made my own toffee chunk ice-cream? Well, I had (and still have) plenty of the toffee left so decided to put some to use in a batch of cookies.
The basic recipe is a tried and tested favourite that produces soft, ever-so-slightly chewy cookies. None of that brittle nonsense.
Adding the toffee gave an extra dimension of gooey loveliness – the chunks melt in the dough as it’s cooked and ooze with wanton abandon. Plus, using brown sugar helps to enhance the caramel flavours.
However, as yummy as these cookies are, I didn’t want to bake an entire batch (that should yield approx 18) at once. So I decided to investigate the ‘frozen cookie sausage’.
If there’s one treat that immediately says ‘summer is here’ it’s ice-cream. Everyone loves a scoop or two, whether it’s waffled coned, in a dish or a good old ’99’ with a flake in it. Don’t they?
Well, I’m one of those who isn’t that fussed by its sweet creamy goodness – maybe I just have over sensitive gnashers! For me, it’s more of an accompaniment to a pudding, rather than a stand-alone dessert. But when the sun finally puts its hat on, I do indulge now and again.
So when we went wandering in York over the weekend, ice-cream was on the agenda. But I came over all pretentious, wanting something more artisan than a typical Mr. Whippy, and ended up getting none. Probably serves me right…
‘Make some, that what I’ll do!’ I thought. And that’s what I’ve done for Monday Munchies this week. I’ve seen loads of recipes for No-Churn varieties and they looked super easy and didn’t need an ice-cream maker. Which is handy as I don’t have one.
Seeing as it’s the start of Wimbledon (and I’ve gained quite a few new followers recently, thank you!) I thought I’d re-share the recipe that still makes me feel the most accomplished for this week’s Monday Munchies: As an added bonus, you get to see me with a strawberry for a nose!
I’m terrible for having sudden whims and fancies that I like to put into immediate action, usually much to the annoyance of S. Friday saw such an event as we were on a drive to a sporting final out in the country and I suddenly spotted a ‘Pick Your Own‘ strawberry patch.
‘Ooh, can we go there?’
‘Where, that field? Now?’
A big grin signalled that yes, I would like to detour into said field right this minute! Despite the audible sigh, S obliged and abruptly turned into the parking area. Of course, it couldn’t be that simple could it? We had no change on us (I’m also awful for only ever carrying plastic) and this field was clearly living in the Dark Ages and had no power supply for a cash machine 😉 However, after a bit of back and forth to a local garage, we had money and a basket and off we went.
I was loving it! Just the smell alone was wonderful, but there’s something very calming about pottering around a field and foraging. After about 40 minutes, we had around a kilo of strawberries (some right hefty specimens too!) of differing varieties for a bargain price.
I do like strawberries but they’re not something I buy generally as they usually get wasted. So having a kilo to use up because of my impromptu madness meant I needed to find some suitable recipes. I’ve been seeing a lot of Eton Mess recipes recently (they always seem to be rolled out as a summer staple) and a few for a cheesecake variation were looking enticing! Cheesecake at one point was my ‘go to’ dessert when out for a meal, though I think I over did the consumption and my appetite for it was lost. However, I’ve recently become reacquainted with its creamy loveliness, so announced to S that this is what he could expect as dessert when he got home…