Gooseberry crumble cake

SONY DSC

There’s a war being fought in our garden that happens every summer. Caterpillars. Every summer they decided to invade and decimate my gooseberry bushes. I’m not sure what they love about them so much but they’ve had every single leaf off the three bushes we have and then even came back for more when they tried to grow again. They’ve now decided to attack the redcurrant bush. Despite the odds, we did manage to pick a few gooseberries (although not enough to make anything – luckily I had some in the freezer too). Now it’s not really crumble weather so I decided to look for a cake recipe instead. A couple of years ago I made this Victoria sponge with creme patissiere and gooseberry compote but this time I decided to go for something a bit easier. I found this recipe via Pinterest. It’s a Nigel Slater recipe from Red Magazine.
Continue Reading…

Bramley Apple Cake with Custard Icing

img_20161009_212313_hdr

It seems every day is now some sort of named day. Chocolate Day, Carrot Day and Egg Day are all ones I have seen recently. Well, today is no exception and it is Apple Day. Following a bit of research I discovered Apple Day was launched in 1990 by Common Ground and was intended to be both ‘a celebration and a demonstration of the variety we are in danger of losing, not simply in apples, but in the richness and diversity of landscape, ecology and culture too.’ I made this cake a couple of weeks ago and decided that as it featured apples today would be a good day to finally get round to posting it!
Continue Reading…

Deep rhubarb streusel cake

SONY DSC

I love rhubarb and have made quite a few rhubarb recipes before ranging from this very successful rhubarb and custard cake to this not so successful rhubarb cheesecake. As I’d picked up some in cheap in Tesco it was time to put it to use. I’d seen this recipe on the Sainsbury’s magazine website and decided to give it a go (especially as I also had some apples that needed using).
Continue Reading…

Blueberry crumble loaf

SONY DSC

Recently Mr Birdie declared that somebody at his work had made a cake that was far better than anything I had made recently. You can probably guess that this did not go down well with me! The recipe in question is from The Hummingbird Bakery’s Cake Day book. Whilst looking at the recipe for this supposedly amazing cake, I spotted this recipe for a blueberry crumble loaf. I had bought some blueberries thinking I would make these blueberry and pretzel cookies but changed my mind after seeing this recipe. I had a slight issue in that I didn’t have a loaf tin which was the right size. I ignored this and used my 2lb load tin and did have some issues with it overflowing the top of the tin which then made it very difficult to get it out at the end. The recipe also only said to grease the tin and dust with flour. With hindsight, I would definitely line the tin with baking parchment.
Continue Reading…

Blackberry jam crumble shortbreads

SONY DSC

I received John Whaite’s ‘John Whaite Bakes At Home’ for my birthday in August and until recently had not had the chance to try out any of the recipes. One of the recipes that had caught my eye was this blackberry jam crumble shortbread recipe. I love blackberry recipes and have been disappointed that I’ve been so busy that I’ve not been able to try anymore recipes other than this recipe and the autumn traybake I made back in August.
Continue Reading…

Autumn Traybake

SONY DSC

I made this a few weeks ago back in August when it was feeling decidely autumnal as there was a chill in the air and the sun seemed to have disappeared. This is one of my favourite times of year as it’s blackberry season. Last year I made blackberry and apple crumble muffins, a blackberry and apple crumble and a mixed berry plaited pie using blackberries and I intend on making quite a few blackberry based recipes again this year. A really good tip I read recently for when you’re out and about collecting blackberries is to take an empty milk bottle with you to collect them as this has a handle which is useful for carrying if you’re picking when you’re on a walk. I’ll definitely be trying this out this weekend!
Continue Reading…

Apple Crumble Cupcakes

DSC09533

It’ has been ages since I made cupcakes. I have mentioned before that Mr Birdie likes to joke that cupcakes are all I make – well hopefully this blog has proved him wrong! I made these once before and Mr Birdie declared them ‘the best cupcakes I’d ever made’! I decided to make these as I had a couple of Bramley apples that needed using up.

These cupcakes are a combination of recipes – the cupcake recipe is from Eric Lanlard’s Cox, Cookies & Cake book and the cream cheese frosting and crumble topping come from the Cup O’ Sugar blog. If I had had lots of time I would have filled them with custard as my Dad gave me a cupcake filler gadget for Christmas that I am still waiting to try out but sadly time flew by today. I made 18 cupcakes from the mixture but this will probably depend on how much apple mixture you make.

Continue Reading…

Blackberry and apple crumble

DSC08828


Autumn has well and truly arrived. The weather on Sunday was horrible and it was decided in the Little Birdie household that it was most definitely crumble weather.

It was a proud day as it was the first time we picked apples from our apple tree to use in the crumble. It has been in the garden for just over a year and was only a cheap tree from Aldi so we have been impressed that anything has grown. The blackberries were also freshly picked from just behind our house so the filling came from less than 20 metres from our kitchen – an impressive feat!  We are disappointed that we will have to leave it when we move house this week.

This is a Jamie Oliver recipe from his ‘The Naked Chef’ book. It is my go to crumble recipe that always goes down well. You can use any fruit or combination of fruit that you want. Apples, pears, berries, plums, peaches, rhubarb – the possibilities are endless.
Continue Reading…

Blackberry and apple crumble muffins

DSC08711


The end of summer is fast approaching and autumn is in sight. The days are getting shorter, the summer holidays are nearly over (to the delight of parents and the despair of teachers) and blackberries are appearing. I spent Sunday afternoon wondering around the local area picking blackberries to use in my latest baking adventure. After trawling the Internet I found many options: blackberry and almond meringue cakeblackberry sourdough sconesblackberry and apple muffins and even bramble marshmallows. In the end I opted for a recipe from the Delicious Magazine website for blackberry and apple crumble muffins which you can find here.

The recipe works well and produces muffins that are moist. I particularly like the bursts of bright purple created by the blackberries. If I was to make these again I would cut the chunks of apple a little smaller and possibly use a dessert apple instead to add a little more sweetness.

The recipe makes 12 muffins and you will need a 12-hole muffin tin lined with paper cases.
Continue Reading…