Summer Baking Update

White Chocolate Twix Cheesecake

Hello everyone! I’m getting back onto my blog after a couple of month’s break. Blogging seems to have fallen by the wayside again. I just wanted to enjoy my summer without being tied to the computer. Now as I type, it is the first week of September and I am back to work in school.

I’ve not baked as much as I usually do over the summer holidays. I think there’s a number of reasons why. I love doing it but since I started HRT two years ago, I’ve found that eating too much of the unhealthy stuff makes me feel ill and makes my menopausal symptoms worse. If there is anything sweet or baked in the house, that’s it! I eat it! Also, the spiralling increasing costs of baking ingredients have put me off. Having said that, I’ve been trying my hardest to scratch off a few more challenges from my #100bakeschallengeposter which was a Christmas present to me from my friend.

So this post is basically a round up of all the things I did get to bake during the summer. There were a few cookies and brownies which went out to customers but when you make loads of the same things, you don’t tend to take photos of everything!

At the beginning of the summer holidays, I attempted to make Jaffa Cakes for the #100bakeschallenge. These were a bitter disappointment and a total waste of time. They were so fiddly and time consuming to make. Never again will I waste time making these: first the orange jelly, then a sponge base, followed by drizzling it with melted chocolate. Next time anyone at home fancies Jaffa Cakes, I’m off down to get a pack from the Co-op! They tasted fine, but I found the orange jelly was far too sweet and sickly!

At the end of July, I was asked to make a 21st birthday cake and a White Chocolate and Twix Cheesecake for my son’s old school friend. The brief was to cover a plain sponge in buttercream and lots of Haribo Golden Bears. I loved making the cake, even though it was incredibly hot in my kitchen and I struggled with getting the consistency of the buttercream right with the kitchen being so hot. Both this and the cheesecake went down really well and they were a pleasure to make.

I donated some bakes to our village Coffee Morning which always go down well. Even though it was the summer holidays, I had been busy with other jobs so I made things which wouldn’t be time consuming, yet they would be popular. I made some more Percy Pig and Colin Caterpillar Cupcakes as they went down so well last time, an M&M Rocky Road and some Chocolate Orange Malteser Traybake. The Malteser Traybake also used Malteser spread in the icing.

One Sunday over the summer holidays, Mr S was out all day at a motor racing event so I was at home. I decided to bake a Cinnamon Roll Bundt in my Nordicware Cinnamon Roll Bundt Pan and using Dollybakes’ recipe. These pull apart Cinnamon Rolls were absolute heaven. I forced myself to only eat one, but it was very hard. They are a reminder of the lovely Cinnamon Rolls I’ve had in Canada when over there visiting my family.

I treated myself to the new Jane’s Patisserie book which came out in August and wanted to test out one of her recipes. Another #100bakeschallenge recipe was for Baked Cheesecake so I made Jane’s Blueberry and Lemon Cheesecake Bars for a Sunday lunch pudding. They were delicious, even though I’m not really a fan of baked cheesecake. Definitely not a cheap recipe to make, as the cost of high quality full fat cream cheese is so huge now!

On a colder, wetter day in August my Mum arrived to stay for a few days so I baked another Mary Berry recipe from her Baking Bible Book: her Cheese Scone Round. This was another #100bakeschallenge recipe and was so delicious with a bowl of vegetable soup.

One of the batches of cookies baked over the summer holidays.

A couple of days later, I had another day at home and needed to use some lemons up so I made a Lemon Madeira Cake. This was Mary Berry’s version from one of the earlier Great British Bake Of Series. I like to make Madeira sponges for when I bake celebration cakes which need carving or shaping. This one was delicious with a cup of tea on an afternoon.

Lemon Madeira Cake
It was my 50th birthday back in May but it was my celebration with three of my friends at the end of August. I baked a cake with a NYC theme as that’s where I was on my actual birthday!

At the end of the holidays, I was preparing to go back to school and I baked some treats for the staff room. We had some Aero Mint and M&M Brownies using the remainder of some Mint M&Ms I brought back from New York with me. As well as those, we had some Cranberry and White Chocolate Cookies and some Choc Chip Cookies.

So back to work at the beginning of September and what a busy time it has been!

EDIT: This post was meant to be originally published on Friday 9th September but in view of recent events and out of respect for Her Majesty The Queen, I have waited to post on my blog until after her funeral.

Rest In Peace, Your Majesty.

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