Friday, 6 July 2012

Hooking and baking

I cannot believe it is Friday already!

I have been busy replenishing my stocks for the stall to replace the bits and pieces I sold last Friday.

I sold several hair clips and bands, earrings and broaches.

My Mum, who was manning the stall, said that it was mostly locals coming for a nosey, who wanted to support the craft fair but didn't have much money to spend.

I am really hoping it will pick up a bit as the season progresses.

My Mum sold a few books and was pretty pleased.

Then, as I was about to post about my making we were struck with two kinds of lurgy and the Smalls were off school. I really hate it when they are poorly. Firstly because it is not nice for them, but also because my carefully worked out logistics go awry. I can only seem to keep on top of everything if I plan plan plan, (I do like a plan) and if the best laid plans are turned upside down, something gets lost or forgotten. This time we lost my camera, found, at last, in the bottom of my crochet bag, and Tiny Boy's school folder, still missing, and the blog got forgotten, or at least not blogged upon, partly due to the lostness of the camera.

I stole J's camera to take a wee snap of these while there was a moment of sunshine. They are to embellish a present for someone. You might get to see the finished article next week.

Today it was my turn to host Friday coffee. Always a pleasure, but I do feel the need to tidy up a bit and put the hoover round. I wouldn't want even my lovely ladies to experience the everyday standard of my housekeeping! I whipped up some raspberry and white chocolate muffins and some coffee cake with mocha icing. The company was excellent and we had a lovely natter as usual, in between retrieving Smalls who all seem to want to escape up the stairs.

I used a really simple sponge cake recipe for the coffee cake and it was much more successful than the last time I tried a Nigella recipe that was very complicated and had loads of specialist ingredients in it. I like simple.

Look, there is plenty of cake left. Would you like some? Or you could make your own...


Coffee cake

8oz butter or marg
8oz caster sugar (I used golden because that's what I had - it's not critical)
4 eggs
8oz self raising flour
4tsp instant coffee stirred into 2 tbsp boiling water.

Cream the butter and sugar. Stir in the eggs, flour and coffee gloop to make a thickish batter. Take a large fingerful to taste (just to make sure). Scrape into two greased sponge tins. Bake at 200 deg/Gas 6 for about 25 mins but check after 20. The top of the cake should have lost its wobble and feel, well, spongy and a skewer or knife poked in should come out clean.  Remove from tins and leave to cool. Share the licking out of the bowl with a Small or not as you choose - we all know this is the best bit!

Mocha icing

2 biggish dessert spoons of butter or marg
1 tsp coffee mixed with 1 tbsp boiling water
1 tbsp cocoa powder
about 6 oz icing sugar

I have to confess I never measure anything for icing.

Pour the warm coffee over the cold butter to soften it. Add the cocoa and icing sugar and mix with a fork.If the result looks too runny, add more icing sugar. Taste and add more cocoa if you like. Turn one of the cakes upside down and spread with icing. Squoodge the other cake on top. Dust with icing sugar through a tea strainer if you like. Share with fun people.


  1. Hi Eleanor, your blog is lovely! I so desperately want to learn to crochet but I'm afraid have 2 left hands- so it's not proving easy! Those flowers are great, looks like we have a lot in common so I will pop over again soon, have a lovely weekend Ada :) p.s. I will also follow you!

  2. Hi Eleanor,
    made your recipe for coffee cake, after deciding it didn't look too complicated for my baking standards - yum! Definitely a winner :)
    Love Sarah G

    1. Glad yoou liked it. Coffee cake always feels a bit more grown up than regular cake. x