Thursday, 18 April 2013

Butter and sugar & jam, oh my!

I had a bit of a fridge clear out the other week & discovered that I have 4 open jars of jam in the fridge (2 of these are raspberry, not sure why I have 2 open jars of the same variety...). To resolve this jam surplus, I decided to make some little "Jammy Splodgers" from Kate Shirazi's "Cookie Magic". I've made these quite a few times before - they are super easy & taste amazing.


250g unsalted butter, at room temperature (i.e. soft, but not greasy)
140g icing sugar
1sp vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk
375g plain flour
About half a jar of jam, depending on how jammy you prefer your cookies to be (I have been known to use dulce de leche instead, but honestly prefer jam. Use whatever moves you!)

Note: As this is such a simple recipe, it really is worth while using good quality butter & vanilla - you can really taste the difference.

  1. Sift the icing sugar into a large bowl. 
  2. Add the butter.
  3. Cream together until pale and fluffy.
  4. Add the vanilla and egg yolk and mix well.
  5. Sieve the flour into the bowl and combine together on low speed (or by hand).
  6. When the mixture starts to lump together, use your fingers to draw it together into a very soft dough.
  7. Wrap your dough in clingfilm and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  8. When you're ready, preheat your oven to 190C (170C for fan assisted).
  9. Line a few cookie trays with grease proof paper.
  10. Knead the dough briefly on a lightly floured surface (I always find it easier to deal with it in two batches.) 
  11. Roll out the dough to about 3mm thick.
  12. Cut out your chosen shapes and place them on the cookie trays.

  13. Bake the cookies for about 11 minutes (9 if you've cut holes out of their middles) until they are starting to brown.
  14. Leave the cookies on the tray for a few minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack.

  15. Once cool, sandwich them together with some jam - I tend towards the generous side on the basis that no-one ever said "this cookie has too much jam".
Et voilĂ ! Yummy, jammy cookies!

Saturday, 13 April 2013

This isn't going quite to plan

So, our bedroom curtains are quite pretty rustic cotton ones from IKEA. They do the job of looking, well, rustic, but fail miserably at the job of keeping light out.

On a random whim, I decided to buy some black-out fabric & sew it onto the curtains in the hope that we'll get at least a bit of sleep come Summer.

It sound stupid, but I had totally underestimated the sheer size of a curtain. I'm halfway through pinning the first one & I think this may take some time...

Monday, 8 April 2013

Voodoo rabbit...

My latest rabbit creation is looking decidedly creepy at the moment... Some friends & I are doing a "craft it forward" activity where we make something for 5 people & those 5 people each make for 5 more & so on. It felt like a great idea in January, but 4 months later, I'm beginning to feel that I'm running out of time! This little dude, unpinned, will be one of my makes to "craft forward".

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Quilting and cats...

Dual purpose post - firstly, to test out mobile blogging (so far, so good); secondly to share how my cat, Sneaky, has been "helping" me with my first log cabin quilt...

First post - finally!

As of 19 January 2013, it was the first time in 15 years that I hadn't had a website. Although I had largely ignored my site for the last several years anyway, it still felt peculiar to have no web presence. With the amount of things I was making on the increase, and my Facebook friends' tolerance for sharing in my every crafty activity possibly on the wane, I decided to start another blog. The last blog I had was back in the heyday of LiveJournal, so it's been a few years! My plan is to use this to share my current works in progress, inspirations, finished items & any other creative doohickies that spark my interest.

It seems fitting that my first blog post should also contain another first - the result of my very first pattern! These little guys are Easter bunnies that I made for my friends' little girls. I've made soft toys before, but always based on other people's patterns. I know they're not perfect, but I'm very proud of these two!