Autumn Panini

This is a fast recipe for a lovely gooey sandwich. Take a bun or two slices of bread. Add a slice of ham, thin slices of apple, and some Camembert. 

Spread some chili pepper jam on the top slice and pop in a panini press until the cheese is escaping. 

Sit outside and enjoy. 

We make our own chili pepper jam using our own peppers and a recipe from David Rocco


Cheryl and Becky

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Tea Time!

According to Paul Hollywood in his book “British Baking”, these are Shrewsbury Biscuits, and we chose them for our latest Bake Off challenge. 

Cream 100g/ 1/3cup butter with 100g/ 1/2 cup sugar and lemon zest, which we didn’t use, until pale and fluffy. Add 1 egg and beat. Add 200g/ 1 1/2 cups plain/ all-purpose flour and 50g/ 1/4 cup currants and mix until combined. 

Knead with some extra flour until smooth. Cover and chill for an hour. I couldn’t find currants here so I bought Thompson raisins and cut them in half. 

It says to line baking trays with parchment paper, but we didn’t and they were fine. 

Roll out the dough on a floured surface to 5mm thickness. Cut out using a 6.5 cm cutter. Knead leftovers together, roll out and cut.  Place on baking trays. Sprinkle with sugar and bake at 180C/350F for 10-12 minutes and starting to brown. The recipe says you should have 30 biscuits. We only had 18. I suspect they should be thinner or smaller, but we liked them just the way they are. 

Crunchy and buttery, perfect with a cup of tea on a rainy afternoon…

Happy baking!

Cheryl and Becky 

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Trip and Fall

The weather is gorgeous this time of year, so Becky and I have decided to take a couple of day trips. This one was supposed to be apple picking, but the crops were very poor this year due to the drought. No matter, the same area has several wineries. First we stopped at Thirty Bench Winery in Beamsville. It had a lovely view over Lake Ontario and was totally accessible. 

Becky picked out a Riesling for Thanksgiving and off we went to the next stop, which was half a kilometre up the road. Angels Gate Winery was beautiful!

It was also accessible. The wines were a little pricey for us, but they had a couple of blends that were affordable and had lots of locally made goodies. We picked out some Asiago crackers. 

We were hungry by this point and started to look for somewhere to eat. Not too far away was Redstone Restaurant which is attached to Tawse Winery. 

I’m not sure the photo does it justice, but this view was amazing. We both ordered pizza and a glass of wine and relaxed. 

The food was good. The prices were reasonable. Everything seemed to be made from scratch with local ingredients, including the wine. Becky finished off with a Berry crumble and ice cream served in a cast iron skillet. This was a wonderful restaurant which we would definitely go back to. The food, wine, and view are a winning combination. 

Hope you are enjoying Fall as much as us. 

Cheryl and Becky 

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Apple Muffins

Bake Off challenge number 19. This wasn’t really a challenge for us as we make muffins on a regular basis, but we thought we’d put an easier recipe in for a change. Apple and Oat Muffins are in “Great British Bake Off Everyday” cook book. We tweaked it to our tastes. 

They make a crumble topping of 50g each porridge oats, sugar, plain flour, and butter. You mix the dry ingredients and then cut in the butter until you have crumbs. We already had a cinnamon crunch topping leftover from another muffin recipe so we used that. 

Mix 250g/2 cups plain/all purpose flour with 25g/1/4 cup porridge oats(we used wheat germ) 175g sugar (we used 1/2 cup) 2 tsp baking powder and zest of a lemon. We didn’t add the lemon zest but we did add 1/2 tsp cinnamon. Hello, it’s apple muffins! Melt 150g/ 1/2 cup butter and let it cool. We used 1/3 cup of oil. Mix 2 eggs with 100ml milk and add to the flour with the melted butter. Stir until just mixed. Add a little water if it’s dry. Unfortunately, we had a cat emergency at this point. 

Our fearless feline had gone head to head with a much bigger and nastier cat. By the time I had seen the moggy off, Becky had over beaten the batter, a little. Oh well. We added 1 1/2 chopped apples to the batter. Spoon the mixture into prepared muffin tin. The recipe suggests you press chopped pieces of 1 apple into the top of the batter once it is in the muffin tin and doesn’t add apple to the batter in the mixing bowl. Then add your oat or cinnamon topping. Bake at 190C/375F for 30-35 minutes! Don’t think so. Ours took 20 minutes. 

Cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning the muffins onto a wire rack to cool. 

We freeze ours and Becky heats them for in the microwave 30 secs for breakfast. You can pop frozen muffins in your lunch bag. They will be defrosted by lunchtime and help keep the rest of lunch cool. Or you can have them warm out of the oven with a little butter. 

Happy Baking 

Cheryl and Becky 

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Apple StrudelĀ 

We’re back to Bake Off challenges! This is number 18 of 31 and is from GBBO “How To Turn Everyday Bakes Into Showstoppers”. We have not used Filo pastry before and don’t have much experience eating it either. I may have had strudel, but I don’t remember it and Becky has never had it. 

First you soak 100g raisins in 1 tbsp of rum or lemon juice for 1 hour. Add 75g/1/4 cup butter to a frying pan and lightly brown 100g fresh breadcrumbs. Add 1 tbsp sugar and cook for a minute. Cool. Peel, core and slice 1 kg/2 lbs apples (we used 8 macintosh). We added some lemon juice to stop the apple browning. Stir in 4 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon. Add the raisins. 

It says to make a pastry square 80cm/ 32″ long on top of a piece of cloth. Hmm. That’s huge! We made it about 20″ square with 8 filo pieces. Brush with melted butter.  Spread the breadcrumbs ever the dough. Spread 100g ground almonds in a 8 cm/3″ band 8cm/3″ from the edge. Spread the apples on top of the almonds. I misunderstood this and we spread the almonds and apples all over. 

If you left a wide band then fold that over the apples and start rolling. 

Use the cloth to pull the pastry up to roll tucking the ends as you go. Shape to fit the baking sheet.  Brush with melted butter and bake at 190C/375F for 30-35 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Ours was in for 45 minutes. As you can see, the pastry ripped in several places and looked terrible. I think it was too dry and needed some moisture plus it needed the wide bands without any filling. Anyway, we dusted with icing sugar and tucked in. 

It certainly passed the taste test. Delish! This was definitely a challenge for us and we learnt a lot along the way. There was lots of pastry left over and there was very little clean up afterwards. Both are good reasons to try filo pastry again. 

By the way, the fried breadcrumbs are great. Buttery, crunchy and sweet. We’ll definitely add those to some recipes or maybe just some ice creamšŸ™‚
Happy Baking 

Cheryl and Becky 

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Two For One RecipeĀ 

This recipe was from my dear friend Liz, who was lost to cancer 6 years ago. I think of her every time I make it, and can hear her voice saying, “it’s easy”.

Grate one carrot, one onion, one head of broccoli and place in a pot with approximately 1L stock. Bring to boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Blend the soup and put it back in the pot. You can add some milk, cream or cheese if you like. Taste to see if it needs salt and pepper and you’re done. 

We added a handful of minute rice this time, but it’s good without. We usually end up with leftovers that aren’t enough for another meal, so thanks to an idea from Ikea, we used the soup as a sauce for pasta. Add some local grilled veggies and a bit of Parmesan to the soup and pour over hot cooked pasta. Yum!


Cheryl and Becky

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Easiest Brownies, Ever…


To mark the one year anniversary of my ankle trauma and surgery, and celebrate that I am still standing, walking, running, and dancing, we decided we needed chocolate! This is a two ingredient Nigella Lawson recipe, and it happens to be gluten free.

Crack 4 eggs into a bowl and whisk for about 5 minutes until they have doubled in size and look “mousse like”. Meanwhile, put 1 cup/250 ml of Nutella in a microwave bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Add a pinch of salt to the eggs if you like, then slowly pour the Nutella into the eggs while you are whisking. Pour the mixture into a 8″ x 8″ tin and bake at 350F/180C for 17-20 minutes. Ours was ready at 17 minutes. Brownies should be a little cracked around the edges and soft in the middle. Ā The cake test does not work on them. Cool completely before cutting into squares and eating.


Of course, to make them better, you can add ice cream and chocolate syrup…



…which we did, because it was a celebrationšŸ™‚

Happy Baking!

Cheryl and Becky


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