Monthly Archives: December 2014

Fruit Loaf


Christmas is now imminent, and this year for the first time I will be spending Christmas day with my boyfriend’s family. They, like many families (including mine in years past!) have croissants for breakfast. Clearly for me this is not an option – although if anyone knows of any good dairy free croissants please do give me a shout! – So I was tasked to think of what I would like to eat for breakfast on Christmas day.

It is safe to say I overthink anything when it comes to Christmas, and I must have gone through every option of breakfast food possible. The key things were it needs to be quick, fuss free and involve little cooking in the morning. After a lot of searching, I remembered Fruit Loaves, something that brings back wonderful childhood memories of breakfasts with my grandparents in Belgium. Their local bakery had the best raisin bread I have ever tasted and kindly my grandparents would always have some in the house for when we visited.

I’ve given the fruit loaf a Christmas-sy twist for the big day by including clementine zest, cinnamon and ginger, ready to be slathered in marmalade. However, if the Christmas flavours are not up your street, or you’re one of those people who thinks Christmas food should be confined to December only, I have made it clear in the recipe below how you can avoid this!


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Filed under Bread, Christmas, Fruit

Hazelnut Mocha Cupcakes


These cupcakes combine three of my favourite flavours… coffee, chocolate and hazelnuts! They look very impressive, but with the right kit and a bit of know how really are quite simple. That’s the beauty of baking 🙂 These hit the spot on a rainy Saturday and were great with a cup of nice coffee on the side.

This post shows one of my favourite ways to pipe buttercream. It looks difficult, but, truth be told, it is all in using a particular piping nozzle (a wilton 2d – there are pictures further down). The two tone effect is created using two contrasting colours of icing – one colour goes in your piping bag first so the outside edge of your bag is covered, and then you add the second colour into the middle of the piping bag. As I said, much more simple than it looks! On these cupcakes I created the effect using a dairy free chocolate spread and coffee buttercream.


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Christmas Chelsea Buns


Christmas for me normally kicks in around the 1st of November, but this year I’m still waiting for the feeling to hit – and we’re only two and a half weeks away!

So to try and tempt the Christmas spirit, I created dairy free Christmas Chelsea Buns. Lovely soft dough flavoured with clementines, filled with mincemeat and nuts – what’s not to like! These were not as hard as they look, especially if you have made bread before. Don’t be put off by the amount of time stated for the recipe. A lot of that time is proving and baking when you can be doing other things.

I took the inspiration from Paul Hollywood’s book ‘How To Bake’. Rather than using just dried fruits as in the book, I have used ready made mincemeat for added flavour and Christmassy-ness.

These make a great afternoon treat, dessert or even breakfast if you have a particularly sweet tooth!


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Filed under Bread, Christmas, Fruit, Sweet treats