Tag Archives: baby

Baby bakes – easy snack bars

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When I find time, little snippets here and there, I bake something baby-friendly for C.

I feel less guilty when we are out and about if he has a snack, as anyone who knows me well will confirm I am grouchy if I don’t eat often enough. There’s always something in my bag to keep me going , so it’s only fair for C to have the same, although there are always boobies…

This morning I threw these “snack bars” together pretty quickly with whatever I found in the cupboard – nothing fancy or complex.

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Baby bakes
makes approximately 9 bars

2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1 banana, mashed
1/2 teaspoon four spice (or cinnamon, ginger…)
1 cup shredded coconut
handful oats, blended a little if very large
handful sultanas, diced
handful dates, diced
1 teaspoon agave/maple/honey(if older than one) if desired. Still tasty without!

Mix ingredients together, spoon into muffin pan or loaf tin and bake for approximately 15 minutes at 170degC.

If made in a loaf tin, leave to cool before cutting into bars.

They smell really great, but I manage to save them for C (we have home-made doughnuts, shhh!).

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Favourite posts this week

:: Cashew cream and its uses – really not nut fans (except pistachios!) but we are trying.

:: Sweet shirt for a sweet girl. More inspiration for me to sort my sewing out…

:: I’m pretty happy with my current go-to brownie recipe, but olive oil brownies? I need to try this out!

:: We make lentil burgers to have with baby (maybe I’ll share the recipe one day) but mushroom and lentil sounds yummy too.

:: Forget Heinz, think white beans with sausage. Perfect for Autumn/Winter.

:: Cute camping pics coupled with a beautifully honest reflection on marriage. Wow.

:: George and fish – I like the Guardian but he makes a very valid point, let’s hope someone listens. Just ignore the majority of the comments though, urgh. 

:: Aaargh this really upset me  - what are these people thinking? Shameful.

:: Seeing as someone is crawling, standing and doing lots of falling these days (8 months old today!!) we really need this baby-proofing advice!

:: Brussel sprout salad? Worth a try :)

:: Lagom. Cool word, even cooler meaning.

:: 100 Wild Huts – what a fun challenge!

:: Lastly, some dubstep.

Wishing you an awesome weekend!!

Bake

xoxo

Favourite posts this week

Afternoon walk companion

:: My sister-in-law makes the best cinnamon rolls. I want to make her these ones.

:: Luisa just had a baby, released a book and went on a book tour. She still has time to make awesome cookies. I don’t know how she does it!

:: I love to hear how people manage work/life/children etc. “Daddy day” sounds great to me!

:: We don’t have a microwave, but if we did we would probably eat chocolate fondants every day (recipe in french).

:: What an incredible place for kids to spend time – love, love love.

:: The photos! The meringues! The lifestyle! I’m not saying I wish I could be someone else..but if I could… ;)

:: A Superhealth Community – so many important points here.

:: Three very good things indeed – but I’d go for the pistachio honey.

:: Please, please, please someone come and make me these scones. Thanks!

:: Geometric Food Art – how creative!

:: Fascinating to read what these foodies eat during the day.

:: For those of you in the UK with Sky, have you seen Girls? We watched the whole series in 2 days – watch it!!

Wishing you a wonderful weekend

Bake

xoxo

 

One year

Dome ring love :)

Today is a special day.

One year ago we were married and spent the best weekend with our closest family here. If you ever get the chance, GO THERE!

Wedding cake

I can’t believe how much has changed since then, but I do know I am the luckiest wife and mummy ever!

I wish we had been blogging this time last year. It was such an amazing and different wedding and I’m sure there are elements that I have forgotten already.

I do remember campfires, wellington boots, sunshine (even in October), cake galore, a lovely chef, chickens, children, simple pleasures…

We are off to have a special lunch (baby included) and spend the day together as a little family.

Chocolate, spiced apple and carrot layered wedding cake.

Sending you all much love

Bake
xoxo

 

October

I can’t believe it’s October, already.

Sorry for being a little quiet around here, but to be honest there hasn’t been anything exciting going on!

There has been plenty on my mind, but this isn’t the place (or time) to talk about it. Let’s just say that this article helped me a lot. I am taking things far too personally (hard not to?) and dwelling on the thoughts of other people when it comes to raising our boy.

I can’t even remember what we have been cooking, but it probably isn’t blog-worthy.

There have been lots of figs, picked from down the road, but all we are doing is making compotes with lemon juice, honey or sugar.

No recipe, just warm in a pan and sweeten to taste – boring! But delicious with our morning granola.

We have a guest for the week, which means we will be out and about and hopefully sharing some of our adventures soon.

I hope you are all having a great week and that the sun is shining for you, as it is here.

Bake

xoxo

Chocolate mousse

Can you guess what we’re making?

It’s time to use up those egg whites!

Chocolate mousse is something I remember my mum making when I was very little, whenever my parents had dinner parties (80s-tastic!). I was allowed to lick the bowl :)

I made up my own recipe after reading a few from my favourite people (David/Julia, Raymond, Molly, Deb), so feel free to modify as you like.

I recommend using a good quality chocolate (70% plus) as it will make a difference to the overall taste.

Chocolate mousse
- serves 2 greedy people

Ingredients

100g  dark chocolate
glug of double cream
tablespoon vanilla extract (mine still tastes of rum, which was a good thing here)
a shot of strong coffee (I used what was left in our cafetière that morning)
2 eggs whites
6 teaspoons caster sugar

Method

Combine the chocolate, double cream, vanilla and coffee in a heatproof bowl.

Melting for the mousse – mmmm chocolate soup

Melt the chocolate and above ingredients over a pan of simmering water. The water shouldn’t touch the bottom of the bowl – you don’t want the chocolate to overheat.

Meanwhile, start whisking the egg whites in a large clean bowl. This won’t take too long if you have an electric whisk, but it took me about 7 minutes to get them just right by hand.

The whisking begins…

When your whites have formed stiff peaks start to incorporate the sugar, one teaspoon at a time, whisking between each addition.

Whisking continued

When the chocolate has cooled slightly and the egg whites are ready, it’s time to start combining the mousse.

Using a metal spoon (so you don’t loose all those lovely bubbles) place 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate bowl and stir through in a figure of eight.

Mixing mousse

Once this third has been combined, stir through a tablespoon at a time until all the egg whites have been used. Try not to over-mix.

Pour into serving dishes and refrigerate for at least two hours before serving.

Use your finger to tidy (and eat) your mess…

Optional: serve at 10pm after your husband has rocked your teething baby to sleep.

Chocolate mousse helps (parents) with teething – FACT.

How do you use your egg whites? Feel free to leave a comment below :)

Enjoy!

Bake

xoxo

 

 

 

A few things I have learnt since moving to France

A neighbour…

:: The first things people ask when they meet baby and I:

  • Are you breastfeeding? (yes)
  • Does he sleep through the night? (not yet…)

:: Having visitors is lovely. Make the most of it.

:: There are some things you will miss (family & friends, baby groups, baking powder) and some things you won’t (tv, traffic, miserable weather)

:: The accent down here makes you feel like you are learning two languages. What little French you thought you knew sounds completely bizarre!

:: Babies make people smile.

:: WalkieTalkies in French is TalkieWalkies ;)

:: If you don’t close your shutters properly before you go to bed they will probably bang during the night, wake up your baby and you’ll need to get up to close them…

:: People think you are strange if you try and get your baby to sleep before 9pm.

:: You can always talk about the weather

:: French websites are ugly.

I didn’t make you truffles…

Not truffles

I am one of those people who gets grumpy if I don’t have a snack around.

It doesn’t have to be naughty, there are no chocolate bars or crisps around here, but sometimes I need something to perk me up.

When looking around one of our new supermarkets, we found “date pâté ” on sale (and ridiculously cheap too). Having used many dates that needed pitting for Shake’s birthday cake recently I could see the benefit of buying them already blended and in bulk.

I’ve seen so many recipes online where dates are used to sweeten treats and decided to just make something up that sounded good to me and wouldn’t take long to make (i.e. during nap time!).

Oh, just in case you wondered about the title, my step-father thought these were truffles and was pretty disappointed that they weren’t (until he tried them!).

Raw treat sweets – makes about 20

I haven’t been more specific with the name above as you can really change them up depending on what you have at home and what you like!

Ingredients

4 heaped tablespoons date pâté (or 2 cups pitted dates)
2 tablespoons shredded coconut
1/2 teaspoon cacao powder
2 tablespoons rolled oats

Method

Put all ingredients in hand blender or food processor and blitz until smooth and combined.

Taking teapoon-sized amounts, roll into truffle shapes.

Enjoy with a cup of coffee (optional) :)

Store somewhere cool and dry.

Other flavour suggestions: cacao nibs, cinnamon, vanilla, dried apricots, dried figs, walnuts…

Enjoy!

Bake

xoxo

Vanilla extract

Vanilla beans from Uganda

Bonjour!

So we made it safe and sound and baby was a superstar as usual. He is now in his own room and sleeping just as well as before. Phew!

Before we left, I was very lucky to have crossed paths with one of my closest friends who now lives in Uganda. She knows how much I love to bake and brought us an amazing stash of vanilla beans.

I usually use the seeds of the beans when making custard, using the remaining pods to make vanilla sugar (sugar + beans + sealable jar = vanilla sugar), but I wanted to try something else given that I have so many.

Making vanilla extract

Vanilla extract

There are so, so many different ways to make vanilla extract. I decided to use rum because I like it :)

I won’t even bother listing ingredients for you, there are only two!

Method

Obtain a dark coloured glass bottle (or jar).

Split 4 vanilla pods, scrape seeds into bottle and then add the pods.

Pour 750cl of rum into bottle. Seal.

Shake bottle once a day for at least 3 weeks.

Store away from direct sunlight.

Enjoy!

Bake

xoxo

 

 

Right now

:: chuckling at these adorable apricots. Too cute!

:: reading The Paris Wife by Paula McLain. This novel tells the story of Hadley Hemingway, wife of Ernest, and their life together in Paris. I’ve only just started but am really enjoying it so far.

:: counting down the days until we depart. 11 days of work for Shake, 19 until we go!

:: drinking lots of hot water with honey and lemon. This has been a poorly mummy week, so glad to be getting better.

:: thinking about my friends having babies. I can’t wait for our little man to have lovely friends to play with. It’s also a great way to distribute his newborn clothes!

:: wishing baby would stop growing, that time would stand still a little while and for my mind to focus on the priceless moments I have with my boy.

:: writing letters to my boy so that I remember this time. I have a terrible memory and there are some things I really don’t want to forget. Birth story?

:: researching lots of fun trips and activities to entertain our guests in France, we have visitors for the first 3 weeks already and more coming in August :)

Bake
xoxo