Monday, 2 April 2012

Fruity cakes and more bunting.

I've always been more into veggies than fruit, but when I do my twice weekly (ish) grocery shop down the high street, I do try and buy a few bits of fruit in an attempt to nudge le Boof and I closer to our 5-a-day. However more often than not, said fruit will sit for a little while in the fruit bowl, full of potential, then start to go a bit past it's best, and of course then there's an excuse not to eat it. This week though I decided enough was enough. I rescued the three apples and one banana from certain bin-based doom.

And put them in cakes.

Well, we're still eating them, just maybe in a slightly less healthy fashion than I had first intended.

So for me, a humongous apple cake, and for BF some banana muffins (actually a banana loaf recipe that I was too lazy to bother with the loaf tin for so they went into muffin cases).

The banana loaf recipe was from my wonderful Hummingbird bakery cook book, the one I always seem to turn to when I'm at a loss for what to bake. As for the apple cake...

450g cooking apples (although I used half eating, half cooking this time and it came out fine)
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
225g butter
280g caster sugar
4 eggs
2tsp vanilla essence
350g self raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
A little Demerara sugar (or similar) for sprinkling on top

1. Set the oven to 180°c
2. Peel, core, then thinly slice the apples
3. Squeeze the lemon juice over the apple slices
4. Beat the butter and caster sugar together, then add the eggs one at a time.
5. Stir in the vanilla essence then sieve in the flour and baking powder.
6. Line a large, deep baking tray with greaseproof paper, or grease one well with oil or butter.
7. Spread half the cake mixture evenly across the base of the tin, then layer half the apple slices on top.
8. Carefully cover that with the rest of the cake mix and finally arrange the last of the apple on top, and to finish, sprinkle with (lots) more sugar.
9. Bake for 40-45 minutes, leave in the tin for 10 minutes to cool once it's out of the oven.

When I was not eating cake (as part of my 5-a-day), I managed to finish this; bunting for the university's knitting society which I am part of.

I used this pattern for knitted bunting triangles I found on Ravelry ♥, but changed the amount of cast on stitches to fit the embroidered pattern... which was a cross stitch pattern for the Times New Roman font, that just so happened to translate nicely to knitting embroidery. I did try knitting the letters in as I went, but it ended up being more trouble than it was worth. I'm still new to colourwork with knitting. Someone with more experience (or not, who knows) might have had more luck, but for me it came out looking sloppy. The embroidering however came out rather nicely, even if I say so myself. I used a duplicate stitch, which took a bit of getting used to, getting the embroidery yarn to sit directly on top of the stitches, but I got it in the end! Very pleased with this, it shall be adorning all future KnitSoc tables for various events.

In other news, I have recently become obsessed with Pinterest. It's kind of social networking, but more than that. You set up "boards", collections of things that you like the idea of or that inspire you, or that you just plain like the look of, then whenever you come across something on the internet that falls into one of these categories you can "Pin" it, and add it to one of your boards. You can also follow other people's boards, and they can follow yours. There's lots of pictures of things people want for their weddings, and cute puppies, and pictures of attractive/famous young men and women, but personally I have found it incredibly inspiring. In the last week I have been more productive, arts and crafts wise, than I have been since we moved up here. All the things I have made need an entire blog post of their own, so I'll leave that until next time, but for now, here's my collection of boards, enjoy!

Just watched Fight Club for the first time (yes yes, I know) so song for this post is
Pixies - Where is My Mind

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