Make Eat Get Read Go – May 2018

May heralds the start of a super busy couple of months. Think birthdays, anniversaries, hen do and other fun. As I write this on the 4th June I’ve realised that after this weekend we haven’t got an empty weekend until August.

Make – 70th birthday birthday cake

Making chocolate honeycomb biscuit cake from Homemade Memories

May saw both my parents turn 70 and we went as a family to Center Parcs to celebrate. All celebrations need cake.

The week before going time had been tight, the glorious sunny weather made our kitchen rather warm in the afternoon/evening and I hadn’t been feeling top form so we needed something simple. It needed to transport easily too.

It’s become a tradition that when my family meet up we make rocky road/tiffin. Our favourite recipe is the one in The Little Loaf – Homemade Memories cookbook. A recipe that features lots of dark chocolate, pecans, honeycomb and crushed biscuits. Rich but absolutely delicious.

Usually it’s made in a loaf tin but a quick bit of maths made me realise that the quantity would fit perfectly in my Mermaid savarin mould. The centre was filled with lots of fresh berries and a few flickering candles to balance out the chocolaty goodness.


Eat – Sourdough made with Cotswold Flour T55 French

Sourdough crust

It’s pretty obvious we love our bread. I’ve got on the bread wagon so much I haven’t bought a loaf in about two months. Bread making is always a learning journey. A very tasty, edible learning journey.

Last week’s loaves are the best yet. I tried a shaping technique using no flour, just water that I picked up from Andy Tyrrell at work plus these are the first loaves using Matthews Cotswold French T55 flour from Aldi. I’m wishing I’d stock up on more of it now.


Get – Aldi Smoker BBQ



Hubs is certainly a boy who loves his toys. Not content with building a pizza oven in the garden the lure of a smoker BBQ as a Aldi special buy was too much. At £60 it’s really good value. So far we’ve smoked a set of ribs on it, but Hubs has grander plans.


Read – Baby-led Weaning – Gill Rapely

Banana Muffins from Baby Led Weaning by Gill Rapley

Although L is nearly four we still use my copy of Baby-led Weaning Cookbook. The recipes are good, easy to rustle up, tasty and usually have a few more nutritional plus points than other baby cookbooks.

In the book is a recipe for banana muffins. A simple recipe with just bananas, self raising flour (we did 1/2 white, 1/2 wholemeal), tiny amount of butter, mixed spice and sultanas. They produce a muffin that is on the wholesome side but still perfectly good at kicking that 3pm sugar craving in to touch. Due to the nature of them they are best eaten fresh.


Go – Bluebells at Serpent Wood, Calke Abbey

Calke Abbey Bluebells at Serpent Woods

We’re at Calke Abbey most months but May is always a special time to visit. The Serpent Wood, that snakes above the estate, has the most stunning carpet of bluebells during May. For the last 7+ years it has been tradition that we visit for a walk in the woods. Previous years we’ve usually had the wood to ourselves with maybe the odd dog walker for company but this year everyone else seems to have discovered our springtime secret.


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