Christmas Celebration Sampler – Row 3 Complete!

Full

My Christmas sampler is really coming on, I’ve finished row 3!

Row 3

M is for Mrs Claus

A is forA is for Angel

S is forS just had to be for Santa

Just the border to go and it’ll be finished!

Happy 1st Birthday Louie!

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Our little pup turned 1 today! I’m not entirely sure where this year gone! Its also hard to think that he was not in our lives a year ago.

Today we celebrated with a lovely birthday cake just for dogs (not made be me but by these lovely folk here), some new toys and his little cousin Chewie came over for cake and play followed by some roast chicken for dinner. He’s now collapsed in a heap having happy dreams.

Happy Birthday Louie, lots of love!

xx

 

Mincemeat Crumble Squares

If you fancy something a little different to a mince pie but still want a little Christmassy treat, then these are perfect. I adapted the recipe from my raspberry crumble square recipe. This is such a super simple treat to make all the taste of a mince pie with no pastry making in sight!

mincemeat crumble squares 2

mincemeat crumble squares

You will need:

1 cup of plain flour

1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 cup of oats

1/2 cup of light brown soft sugar

1/2 cup of butter

1/4 tsp of cinnamon

1/4 cup chopped hazlenuts

1 jar of good quality mincemeat

1 8 inch square baking tin

Method:

* Preheat oven to 180C/ 350F/ Gas 4, grease and line your tin.

*  Place the flour, bicarb and cinnamon into a large bowl. Add the sugar, hazelnuts and oats, mix together with your fingers to break up an lumps of sugar.

* Add the butter and rub together until evenly combined.

* Place 2 cups of the oaty mix into the tin and press down firmly until it’s packed in and even.

* Spread a generous layer of mincemeat, you may find the mincemeat won’t spread so just dollop little spoonfuls until the base is covered.

* Press the remaining oats over the top

* Bake for 40- 45 minutes until golden brown

* Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.

 

German Stollen Bread

stollen2

I love Stollen but have always bought it in the past, so this year I thought I would have a go at making my own! I do love making bread but it can be so time consuming to make and normally I decide too late in the day to make it and have to resolve to make it the next day which quite often doesn’t happen. So this time I made sure I put a day aside to make it and it was so worth it.

There is something so satisfying about eating bread that you have made, especially when its filled with fruit, almonds and marzipan!

stollen

The recipe I used left the dough very wet so I ended up adding some flour as it seemed too wet, the first prove didn’t really amount to much and I was worried but the second was better I ended up cutting the dough in half to make 2 loaves as it struggled to fit on the tray and would have taken forever to bake. I also wonder if my marzipan should have been rolled thinner? But the weight and dimensions were right so maybe it was ok?

 

Here is the recipe;

You will need:

2 tsp Dried yeast

230g Plain flour

100ml Warm milk

Pinch of salt

1 tsp Caster Sugar

1tsp Ground mixed spice

200g Dried mixed fruit

50g Glace cherries, chopped

25g Flaked almonds

50g butter

1 Egg

250g Marzipan

To finish:

25g Melted butter

50g Icing sugar

Method:

*Place the warm milk and yeast in a bowl and set aside for about 6-8 minutes. Meanwhile, sift together the flour, salt and mixed spice into a large bowl.

* Add the dried fruit, cherries, almonds and butter and mix well to combine. Add the yeast mixture together with the egg and mix well to combine all the ingredients to form a dough.

* Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 4-5 minutes, place the dough in a bowl, cover with cling film and set aside in a warm place to prove for 25 minutes.

* Uncover the dough and turn out onto a lightly dusted surface. Knock back to reduce the volume then once again knead the dough for a further 5 minutes.

* Push and roll out the dough by hand into a flat oval shape about 9x7inch. Roll out the marzipan into a piece about 7x2inch.

* Place the marzipan in the centre of the dough, then fold over the sides of the dough to seal in the marzipan. Place the dough seal side down onto a greased baking tray lined with parchment, cover and set aside somewhere warm to prove for an hour. Preheat the over to 180C/350F/Gas 4.

* Bake for 40-45 minutes or if you have split the dough into 2 like I did bake for about 25-30 minutes.

Remove from the oven, brush with the melted butter and dust liberally with the sifted icing sugar.

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Christmas Celebration Sampler Catch-Up

In between the madness of preparing for the coffee morning I did have time to sit and relax with my cross stitch. I’m really enjoying this project it’s really getting me in festive spirit. Row 2 did not disappoint, it was just as cute as Row 1..

I is forI is for Icicles and Ice skating

S and T

S is for Snowmen in Scarves, and T is for Toys!

Row 2

Sadly a lot of my white is not showing up, I wish I had used a darker aida, although I do love the fact it has glitter in it! I’ve just started row 3 and this Friday will be the last email with the pattern of the border. I need to start looking for a pretty frame to put it when I’ve finished.

Charity Coffee and Craft Day

I can’t believe it has been over a week since my last post! Where has the time gone!? December already! Anyway… In my blogging absence I have been busy preparing – baking and sewing for a charity coffee morning for a charity very close to my heart Myeloma UK. It is the only craft event I will be doing this season and so I thought I’d share some pictures of my stall.

Craft fair table

Craft fair tableChristmas decorationsCraft fair table

Craft fair tablecraft fair table

Sorry the quality is not the best, they were taken on my phone. We also had a huge cake table filled with lots of yummy baked goods and a raffle and we raised almost £14oo. So all in all a very good day!

 

R is for… and Row 1 Completed

R is for

R is for Reindeer flying high up above the rooftops.

Row 1 completed

So one week on and row 1 is completed. I’m thoroughly enjoying this project to the point where other jobs are falling by the wayside. Tonight see’s the release of row 2 (8pm GMT) and I am looking forward to seeing what cuteness this week will bring! I will of course keep sharing my progress.

It’s not too late to join in simply click here to get the pattern.

Anzac Biscuits

Anzac Biscuits

I have very early memories of these biscuits, my Grandma used to make them for me as child and they were one of my favourites. Sadly I was never able to get a copy of the recipe before she passed, and I have spent many years trying to recreate them with not a lot of success. Until I came across blogger A Spoonful of Sugar’s recipe on her blog, and they looked so good I had to try.

Anzac Cookies

I won’t share the recipe here as you must check her blog out, but I will say this recipe was the best I’ve ever tried and the results were yummy, it took me straight back to my childhood in my Grandma’s kitchen.

Do you have any childhood favourites you wish you wish you had the recipe for now?

Anzac Biscuits

C is for…

C is for

 Christmas Carollers singing their favourite songs!

So Friday (14th) was the day when The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery released their Christmas sew-along sampler, I had been eagerly waiting for it for a couple of weeks and when it arrived I wasn’t disappointed. For the next 3 weeks a row of patterns arrive until the word Christmas is spelt out. So this week it is C,H,R… etc

So far I’ve enjoyed the stitching although I do wish I had used a slightly darker fabric as some of the colours are not popping out like they should. It wasn’t the colour that was recommended (as far as I know that’s only available in the US) but I thought it would be ok, I do love the glitter in it though! If you fancy a go yourself you can buy the pattern here

For those who follow me on Instagram will already know that my Woodland Sampler  faced an unfortunate end when I realised I had made a huge uh oh. Rather stupidly I had got the centre of the chart wrong meaning that I would run out of space at the top even though I always use a larger piece of fabric than I need. Anyway I’ve decided as I cant face doing October and November all over again to start a fresh in the new year and work from January, and of course make sure that I get it centred right this time!