Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Wegen Urlaub geschlossen!

Hello There Cupcakes will be on a cake-eating tour of southern
Germany for 3 weeks, from 30 July until 22 August.

In that time I won’t be checking my email regularly, but I look forward to hearing from you on my return.

Guten Appetit!

Sunday, 17 July 2011

British Summertime

My daughter begged for (and got) a punnet of blackberries at the greengrocers this week.

She then refused to eat them, and since the weather is so un-summery (despite all the beach specials, summery fashion shoots and talk of 'high summer' that I keep reading about in the weekend papers), my thoughts turned to pie.

I love Jamie Oliver's pastry recipe, as it's made with a whole load of lemon zest, which just adds a kick to the traditional flavours of apple, blackberry, sugar and cinnamon. My only change was to make it with Trex (vegetable shortening; always referred to as T-Rex in this household) so that I could keep going with my dairy-free pledge for just a little bit longer.

Yes, it's July, and I wish I was complaining about the heat while eating ice cream, but if the terrible weather means that I can bring the flavours of autumn forward by a few months, then I'm not too heartbroken.

Got to love those glorious Manchester summer days.

The only answer is pie - apple and blackberry pie

...with an apple motif

yum, it's like autumn on a plate... hang on, it's July.

Love the colour of those blushing apples though.

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Summertime, and the living is dairy-free

I've gone dairy-free for a month (trying to solve the problem of having asthma), which means a month of no cupcakes for me: boo.

In the meantime, it being summer and all that, I'm eating lots of fruit which is healthy, and lots of home made ice 'cream', which is not quite so healthy, loaded as it is with coconut milk and sugar and mmmmm, yum!

Summer in a breakfast bowl: homemade granola, nectarines, banana and home-grown strawberries.

Home-grown peas: Super-tasty, but we're only getting about this many a day. More of a taster than a proper portion.

One day's crop of strawberries...

...and the next (we're getting a bowl-full like this each day, and we can't eat them fast enough!)

With all those strawberries, I made some dairy-free ice cream:

Strawberries, coconut milk, sugar and a dash of balsamic vinegar.

It's really tasty, but a bit icy. I need an ice cream maker! Remembering to whip it by hand every 30minutes is ok, but doesn't give very smooth results.

Much more successful is the mango ice cream:

Our fruit bowl which was looking very exotic with a mango, some limes and some coconuts (left over from the school fair's coconut shy), so I decided that the only way to use all of these fruits up was to make ice 'cream'.

The coconuts weren't the best, so I used the mango, a tin of sweetened Alphonso mango pulp, some brown sugar, lime juice and 2 tins of coconut milk.

YUM! I could have drunk the whole mixture as a smoothie, it was so delicious. The ice cream is delicious too though, and even though I still used the stir-it-by-hand-every-30-m​inutes method, it wasn't half as icy as the strawberry ice cream.