Crafty Creatives May Subscription Box…. Hama Time!

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I am a massive fan of subscription boxes. I find every aspect of them exciting: the email saying they have been dispatched, the anticipation waiting for them to arrive, wondering what could be inside this time, and then the wonderful surprise when you open them and can finally reveal what treats you have.

Crafty Creatives is the perfect subscription box for craft lovers of all abilities and skill levels. You can find out more about them in last month’s review HERE or click on their name at the start of this sentence to go directly to their website.

I was very excited when I opened the May box to discover a kit to make coasters using Hama beads. I have seen these beads in toy shops and Hobbycraft but had never used them before. My son had never wanted them as all the kits for children looked quite childish and he just didn’t want to make those. Neither of us had realised that Hama beads actually come in 3 sizes: maxi beads are 10mm in size and recommended for pre-school children, midi beads are the best sellers at 5mm in size and suitable for children and adults, and mini beads are a tiny 2.5mm in size and best for very detailed intricate designs.

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This Crafty Creatives kit came with 3,500 midi beads of various colours, 3 pegboards, instructions, ironing paper and 14 designs for you to try. I copied one of the designs (the round one in the picture at the start of this post) but changed the colours used, and then did a couple of my own designs too. Unfortunately for me, my son saw them and saw how easy they were to make and was desperate to try them for himself. That was the last I saw of the beads. He sat at the table making one design after another and absolutely loved them. I’m all for encouraging creativity in children so, as sad as I was that my Hama fun was over, I was thrilled to see him so engaged in making things with them. Here are a few of his designs…

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I’ve had to buy more beads for him but I will be making sure I get to use them too. In case you don’t know what they are, they are small cylindrical beads which you position on a pegboard, and when you are happy with the design you have made, you lay a sheet of ironing paper on top and gently iron for a few seconds. This causes the beads to melt slightly and fuse together, so you can remove the design from the pegboard and you are left with one complete product. If you iron them too much, as I did in the bottom right one in the above picture, the beads melt slightly too much. Oops! They still look good though.

The aim of Crafty Creatives is to help you discover new crafts you might not have tried before, without having to spend lots of money buying all the equipment. This is a craft I will definitely be continuing with. Everyone used to say colouring in was just for children, but now adults have discovered its therapeutic calming effects and there is a huge craze for adult colouring books. I honestly think Hama bead craft is another such activity. I felt so relaxed making my designs, and so peaceful in myself. I would highly recommend them to everyone, young and old. I am going to buy some big pegboards so I can make some beautiful pictures using them, as well as small designs. When I was copying the design for the circle board, it reminded me so much of another craft I love. I adore cross stitch and have some stunning charts to use for that. Each little symbol square on a cross stitch chart represents a colour, and it dawned on me that it would be so easy to use such a chart and copy the design using beads on pegboards. Now, if Hama can make kits like cross stitch kits but the Hama bead version with all beads included and a beautiful chart to work from, I will be one even happier crafter!!!

I can’t wait to see what June’s Crafty Creatives box will contain! Whatever it will be, I know it will be a new exciting crafty adventure.

DISCLAIMER: I pay for my Crafty Creatives subscription, and this review is my honest opinion of it. I receive no endorsement of any kind for writing these reviews. I just like to share wonderful discoveries with you all 🙂

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Croissant Cinnamon French Toast

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I absolutely adore French Toast, or eggy bread as some people prefer to call it. For this recipe though you have to call it French Toast as I used croissants instead of bread. It is super quick and easy and a cheap recipe to make, and your tasty treat will be on it’s way to your mouth just a few minutes after opening the croissant packet!

I received a pack of 8 croissants from Brioche Pasquier as part of the May Degustabox (review of that coming very soon).

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I do love croissants but wanted to try something different with these. I wasn’t sure if they would work as French Toast but I can definitely now say they do! The addition of cinnamon sugar after they have cooked just takes them to another level and you can then top them however you want, or just eat them as they are. I topped one half with strawberries and the other I left with just the cinnamon sugar. Both were sooooooo good. They’d also be amazing with ice cream on top. And chocolate sauce drizzled over. And…… I’m getting carried away! Eat them as a tasty elevenses treat, or a delicious dessert. However you eat yours, I am sure you’ll love them.

The recipe is enough for 3 croissants, so just double it if you want to make more.

CROISSANT CINNAMON FRENCH TOAST

3 Croissants

1 egg

2 tbsp milk

1 tbsp vanilla extract

knob of butter

50g caster sugar

Half tsp ground cinnamon

  • Split the croissants in half horizontally.
  • Beat the egg, milk and vanilla extract together and then pour on to a large plate.
  • Arrange the croissant halves on the egg mixture with the cut side facing down. Leave for a couple of minutes to soak up some of the mixture. Carefully turn the croissant halves over so the top and bottom gets covered in the mixture too.
  • Gently melt the butter in a frying pan. Fry the croissants cut side facing down, gently pressing with a spatula or fish slice, until golden. Flip them over and fry for a minute or so more until this side is also golden.
  • Mix the caster sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl then spread this cinnamon sugar on to a plate. Place a croissant half on to the sugar to coat one side, turn it over to coat the other side, then repeat with the other croissants.
  • Serve warm as they are, or add any toppings of your choice. I used sliced strawberries mixed with a spoon of strawberry syrup for one half.

This is a lovely sweet recipe and I found it to be very moreish so make sure you have plenty of croissants to go round!

Ferrero Rocher Chocolate and Hazelnut Bundt

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My Nordic Ware bundt pan addiction reached new levels of crazy in March when I went on holiday to Florida. It was my first time in the US and my son and my partner were both ridiculously excited about Disney World, Universal Studios, and all those types of places. What were my thoughts? They were along the lines of… “Yaaaaaaaayyyy America! The home of Nordic Ware! Bundt pans!!!!”

Nordic Ware are celebrating their 70th Anniversary and to mark the occasion brought out 3 new stunning gold pans. I really really really wanted these, especially the Crown pan, which I used for the big bundt in the picture. An afternoon going round shops in Florida proved fruitless. The only bundt pans I saw were ones I already had at home. I couldn’t bear the thought of coming home with no pans so in desperation I contacted the lovely people at Nordic Ware in America. To cut a long story short, they went to so much trouble to make sure I received the Crown and they displayed levels of customer service not often seen in companies in the UK. They also made sure there was one for my Bundt Twin Rob, who has a great blog you can find HERE.

As well as loving Nordic Ware so much, I also love Ferrero Rocher chocolates (who doesn’t!?) and Monin Syrups. I love using these syrups in baking and used them in  this No-Bake Rose and Pistachio Cheesecake and  this Black Forest Hot Chocolate Bundt Cake previously. I had a little bottle of their Hazelnut Syrup so decided to use that in this bundt.

This bundt is a chocolate and hazelnut cake with Ferrero Rochers baked in to it. It is covered with a delicious chocolate ganache and then finally sprinkled with chopped toasted hazelnuts. I used chopped hazelnuts to just decorate the bottom curves, then sprinkled ground hazelnuts all over the rest of the bundt, but you can decorate it as you please. When baking with Ferrero Rochers, they have a tendency to shrink as the outer coating melts into the cake. If you are making small quickly baked cakes such as cupcakes, freezing the chocolates before use prevents this and leaves a runny chocolate centre. However, as bundt cakes take much longer to bake the chocolates will shrink. They will still be visible when you cut the cake and most imortantly, they still taste exactly as they should. This recipe made enough cake mix to fill a 10 cup pan and then to make some Geo Bundlettes. You can use the remaining batter to make cupcakes if you want, or bundlettes.

FERRERO ROCHER CHOCOLATE AND HAZELNUT BUNDT CAKE

250 g unsalted butter, at room temperature

190 g soft light brown sugar

190 g golden caster sugar

340 g plain flour

half level tsp bicarbonate of soda

half level tsp salt

1 level tsp baking powder

25 g cocoa powder

25 g ground hazelnuts

200 g milk or dark chocolate, or a combination of both, broken into pieces

4 large eggs, beaten

200 ml buttermilk

100 ml Monin Hazelnut Syrup

at least 10 Ferrero Rocher chocolates, frozen

FOR THE GANACHE:

300 ml double cream

250 g dark chocolate, or a combination of dark and milk chocolate, chopped into pieces

chopped or ground toasted hazelnuts, to decorate

  • Preheat the oven to 170C/fan oven 150C. Grease a 10-12 cup bundt pan using your preferred method. (See extra information at the end of the recipe).
  • In a large bowl, or using a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugars until pale and fluffy. This will take 5-10 minutes.
  • In another bowl, sieve together the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt, baking powder, cocoa and ground hazelnuts, and mix well to thoroughly combine all the ingredients.
  • Place the chocolate into a heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Stir occasionally, and remove from the heat when it is nearly all melted. Continue stirring until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Leave to cool slightly.
  • Mix the eggs, buttermilk and hazelnut syrup together in a large jug, then slowly add the cooled chocolate, stirring continuously.
  • Pour half of the eggy chocolate mixture into the bowl with the butter and sugar and beat well until combined. Add half of the flour mixture, and again beat well. Pour the remaining half of the wet mixture into the bowl and continue beating until smooth, then use a large spoon or spatula to fold the remaining flour mixture in, until completely combined.
  • Spoon the mix into the prepared bundt pan until the pan is half full. Arrange the Ferrero Rocher chocolates on the mixture, leaving a gap between each so the cake can rise around them.
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  • Cover the chocolates with more cake batter until the pan is no higher than three quarters full. Place in the centre of the preheated oven and bake for 50-60 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean. Make sure you don’t push the skewer through a Ferrero Rocher!!! You’ll be able to feel where they are with the skewer.
  • Remove from the oven and leave in the pan to cool for 10-15 minutes. Turn out on to a wire cooling rack and leave to cool completely.
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  • To make the ganache, pour the double cream into a saucepan and heat gently until just starting to boil. Remove from the heat. Place the chocolate in a bowl, then pour the cream over it. Leave for a few minutes, then mix well until all the chocolate has melted and is smooth.
  • Place a large tray or a piece of greaseproof paper under your cooling rack. Slowly pour the ganache all over the cooled bundt cake, making sure every part is covered. The tray underneath will catch the dripping ganache. Sprinkle with chopped or ground toasted hazelnuts and leave on the rack for a while to make sure it has finished dripping. Transfer to a serving plate or cake stand and enjoy!

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EXTRA NOTES ABOUT BUNDTS

Two things have been causing quite a bit of conversation and debate regarding bundts. First is how to prepare the tin. I know of people who use melted butter and flour or cocoa to grease their pans with success, but my method of choice has to be to use Wilton Cake Release. You just shake the bottle well and use a pastry brush to brush it into all the details and every part of your pan. I have never known anyone to have a stuck bundt using this method.

The second thing I have been asked about is how to wash the pans. A few people are advising against using Fairy Platinum washing liquid, saying it strips the non-stick coating. I can honestly say I have only used that washing up liquid on all my pans and I have no problems. I think as long as you don’t leave them to soak (and if you use Cake Release you won’t need to) then in my personal experience there won’t be a problem. To wash pans, I put them in hot soapy water, then use a pastry brush to wipe every nook and cranny over. This removes any last traces of Cake Release and any little crumbs, so your pan is good as new again. Rinse well under hot running water and leave to dry.

The Nordic Ware Crown Bundt pan is available here from Kitchens Cookshop.

Monin Syrups are available from Udal Supplies Ltd. or Next Day Coffee.

Wilton Cake Release is available from Lakeland, or Amazon, or most cake supplies shops.

Crafty Creatives…. Surprise Craft Subscription Boxes

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As well as baking and cooking, I absolutely love all things crafty. Not sly crafty, I mean creative crafty. The trouble is there are so many amazing crafts I want to try, but buying new tools and equipment needed to try them can work out expensive, especially if you then decide that particular craft isn’t for you after all.

I was going through my Twitter feed a while ago and saw mention of Crafty Creatives. It is a fantastic subscription box run by the lovely Claire, who must really be Superwoman as she’s a busy mum with another baby on the way! While looking after her bundles of joy, she still manages to organise and send out boxes of joy every month to subscribers.

There are 3 boxes to choose from, or you can have all three!

Paperhaul is a box for stationery addicts. Every month you will receive a surprise box of high quality paper goods, including cards, stickers, notebooks, washi tape (and who doesn’t love washi tape!!!), notecards, envelopes etc etc. Each month features a different illustrator and all the items in the box will be co-ordinated. This box is £10 a month, plus £2 postage if in the UK. EU postage is £5, and the rest of the world is £6.

Beadhaul is a box for jewellery makers. This one is sent out every 2 months. Each box is themed, with beads, charms, and pendants for all skill levels. There are online tutorials to correspond with each box so you can have fun completing beautiful projects. Tools aren’t included in the box but you can buy those from the Crafty Creatives online shop if you don’t already have them. This box is £12.50 every 2 months, plus UK postage at £2.50, EU at £5.50, or rest of the world at £6.50.

Crafty Creatives is a box for general crafters. This is the box that started it all, and the box that I have subscribed to. This one is sent each month and includes everything you need to complete a whole craft project. (Occasionally you might need to provide your own basic items such as scissors and glue). It is a perfect way to discover new crafts, which is the main reason I chose it. You don’t know what craft will be in the box so it is a lovely surprise to open it and discover what you can make that month. They are suitable for all skill levels, so no need to worry if you’ve never tried the particular craft before. This box is £15 per month, plus £2.95 UK postage, and £5.95 EU postage. This one does not ship to the rest of the world.

The April Crafty Creatives box scared me when I first opened it, if I’m honest. It was a kit to make a fascinator headband from Hats on Heads and the picture looked so stunning I thought there was no way I’d be able to make it out of the things I could see in the pack!

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I finally plucked up the courage to try it yesterday. After all, this is what I wanted to do…. to try new crafts!

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It came with everything I needed to make the fascinator except for a needle and thread. I had both of those already so that wasn’t a problem. I had a great time making it, even though I made a very basic but big mistake! I didn’t read the very clear instructions properly. Completely my fault. It made me realise I’m a visual learner. I was meant to use the black sinamay fabric to cover the actual headband, but the instructions had photos in which they used the cream, so that’s what I did. That meant I had the wrong length of fabric left to make the bow loops so I had to improvise and use what was leftover from covering the headband too. My own silly mistake, but I think it still worked out well and looked beautiful when it was finished.

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The kit included pearls, feathers and veiling to use if you wanted to, but it said that was optional. I decided to use the pearls but not the feathers or veiling. I’ve kept those in my craft supplies box 🙂

I never in a million years would have ever imagined I would have made a fascinator, but I did thanks to Crafty Creatives, and even though I did it wrong, I am incredibly proud of it. Hopefully one day I will go to an event suitable for me to wear it. I can’t wait to see what is in this month’s box!! All I know is it will be a completely different craft to try, and that is an exciting thought for me!

If you want to try any of the 3 Crafty Creatives boxes click HERE to go to their website. Happy crafting!! 🙂

DISCLAIMER: I pay for my subscription to Crafty Creatives and have not been asked to write a review and receive no endorsement for doing so. I just love it so much I wanted to tell you all about it. All opinions and views expressed are entirely my own.

Degustabox Review…. The April Box

I love receiving Degustabox each month. The excitement of a box packed full of mystery food and drink goodies is just crazy! I am very lucky that my DPD delivery driver doesn’t tend to arrive with it until around 2.30pm, as my son Luke loves to be the one who opens it first, and we take it in turns reaching our hands inside to bring out an item. If it arrived earlier I would find it REALLY hard to not give into temptation and sneak a peek inside!

The April box had something for everyone. Luke was very happy with the treats he had from it! I used 2 of the products in baking too so that was a bonus.

Here is what was in this month’s box:

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  • CANDEREL SUGARLY… This is a new granulated sweetener that looks and tastes just like normal sugar, but it has zero calories! If I’m honest I didn’t really believe that it would taste like sugar. Sorry Canderel! By my past experiences with other sweeteners, they taste nothing like sugar, so the first thing I did was take a bit on a spoon and try it. Well, I was very pleasantly surprised to find this one does taste exactly like sugar. You can use it in all the same ways as you would use regular sugar… on cereal, in drinks, in baking, the list goes on. I used mine to make this fruit cake. If you read my fruit cake post, you will read how I learnt the hard way that you only need to use half the amount of Canderel Sugarly compared to normal sugar. A little goes a long way with this! I would definitely buy this in the future. RRP is £3.00

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  • PIMM’S CIDER CUP… There are a few different flavours of this drink, and I received the Strawberry and Cucumber variety. My partner Del drank this but I did try a bit before he gulped the rest down. It was a very refreshing Summery drink with a nice light fruity taste. It actually tastes more like Pimm’s than cider, so perfect for long Summer nights (if they arrive!!!!!) RRP is £2.29

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  • LEVI ROOTS COAT’N’COOK SAUCE… This easy cooking sauce is available in 3 yummy Caribbean flavours. I received the Jerk variety but you can also have Ginger Beer or Smokey BBQ. It is ideal for people with limited time to prepare tasty meals, as literally all you do is pour it over meat, make sure it has covered it all evenly, and then cook! No waiting 2 hours while it marinates. This is an instant marinade. I tried it on chicken. It was too spicy for my son but my partner and I really enjoyed it. I will be looking out for the other 2 flavours as they sound delicious too! Perfect for BBQs. RRP is £1.00

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  • POPCHIPS… There are lots of varieties of Popchips to try already, but they have now added 2 limited edition flavours to their range. I received Sea Salt, Garlic and Rosemary, and the other limited edition flavour is Sea Salt, Caramelised Onion and Thyme. I have had Popchips before and absolutely love them. They are a gorgeous flavoursome crunchy snack with half the fat of normal crisps. I have to be honest, I wasn’t a fan of this flavour. I feel bad saying that but I believe in giving honest opinions, and we can’t all like everything, can we? I do think I’d have liked the other flavour though, so this won’t put me off them. And I already know I love their regular flavours. RRP is £1.99

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  • REJUVENATION WATER… This was completely new to me. It is a flavoured spring water enriched with amino acids, which has been shown to help to build up your immune system and to build a natural resilience to stress, depression and anxiety. It is also a brilliant drink to have before and after going out for a few alcoholic drinks. It is available in 3 flavours… Ginger and Lime, Spanish Orange, and Apple and Mint. I received the Apple and Mint and really enjoyed it. It is probably one of the most refreshing flavoured water drinks I have ever tried. I will definitely be looking out for the other flavours. RRP is £1.99

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  • VEETEE… I received 2 trays of microwaveable precooked rice. One was Basmati Rice and the other was a Wholegrain Brown Rice and Quinoa blend. There are lots more flavours available, too many to list here. They are very quick and easy to prepare. Just 2 minutes in the microwave and they are ready. I ate the Wholegrain one with some fish and it was delicious. I used the Basmati one to make this coconut rice pudding. These are perfect for people with little time to cook, and a great way to cut down on washing up starchy pans! The Wholegrain Rice is £1.49 and the Basmati is £1.29

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  • NESTLE… Luke was very very happy as I received a sharing block of Smarties chocolate and 4 little bars of new Milkybar Milk and Crunchy. The Smarties one had little mini Smarties in the chocolate which was delicious. I was pleased to see Nestle have included the size of one serving on the pack, saying it is 3 pieces. Without that I think Luke would have ate the lot in one!!! The Milkybars were lovely and creamy with an added crunch. The individual bars are just the right size and perfect to take on trips out. I will be buying both of these again. The Smarties block is £1.29 and the Milkybars are £1.00

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  • BEBETO… These Mini Fruit Strings are wonderful! They have been awarded Product of the Year for their innovative use of fruit juice and for reducing processed sugars. They contain 85% fruit juice and are a source of vitamins A,C and E. They are also suitable for vegetarians. There are 7 packets in the bag, each with a day of the week printed on so children can have fun finding which pack they need each day. There are 4 flavours included… apple, raspberry, blackcurrant and strawberry. We all thought they were delicious. The strawberry ones taste just like the strawberry laces sweets you can buy, but these are obviously a lot healthier. I will definitely be buying these in future. RRP is £1.99

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  • PARLE… I received 2 products from this brand, Parle Rusk and Parle-G biscuits. The Parle-G biscuits reminded me very much of malted milk biscuits, and I really enjoyed them. They are filled with the goodness of milk and wheat, and they taste scrummy! I had no idea what to expect with the Parle Rusk. The packet said they were toast flavoured with cardamom, so I was looking forward to trying them. They suggest dipping them into a hot drink to eat them. I tried them as they were, and then dipped in coffee. I’ll be honest, at first bite I wasn’t sure if I liked them, but the more I ate, the yummier they became. They are incredibly hard and crunchy to bite, so if you have any loose teeth I would definitely advise dunking them in a cuppa first to soften them! They are really good value too. The biscuits are just 25p and the rusks are 89p. Bargains!

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  • GREEN LADY… This is a sparkling green tea infused with carob fruit, nutmeg and rose oil. I loved this! It tasted like rice pudding with a slight aftertaste of rose. And we all know how much I love rose! What’s not to like!? It was extremely light and refreshing and I will definitely be looking for some of this for the Summer. The RRP is £1.99

So that was April’s Degustabox. There really was something for everyone in there. If you would like to try a Degustabox for yourself, the normal cost is £12.99 per month including DPD delivery, which is amazing value especially as each box is worth approximately double that price.

However if you enter the code BLDEG15 at checkout you will receive your first box for just £6.99!!!! To go to the Degustabox website just click HERE 🙂 I’m already looking forward to seeing what’s in the next box!

 

DISCLAIMER: I received Degustabox at no cost in exchange for an honest review. The fact it was free does not in any way affect my review. I believe in honesty at all times, so all views and opinions expressed are truthful and unbiased.

 

2 in 1 Coconut Rice Pudding using Veetee Basmati Rice

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In April’s Degustabox there was a tray of Veetee Basmati Rice amongst all the other goodies. The easy and obvious way to have used this precooked rice would have been to just heat it up in the microwave and eat it as part of a main meal. I decided to be different and use it in a pudding. I have called it a 2 in 1 pudding as you can eat it hot as you would a normal rice pudding, or let it cool until it sets so you can slice it up and eat it like a traybake, on it’s own or with cream poured on. I actually preferred it sliced up cold. It sets so well you can pick it up to eat it, but as I had cream on mine I was civilised and used a spoon!!

It is a very easy recipe to make, and you can adjust the amount of rice you use to suit your preference. I used the whole tray, which is 280 grams. If you prefer a creamier pudding, use less rice… although I’m not sure how well it will slice up if you decide to eat it cold then.

2 IN 1 COCONUT RICE PUDDING 

1 x 280 g tray Veetee Basmati Rice

400 ml coconut milk

100 ml milk

3 eggs, beaten

60 g seedless raisins or sultanas

160 g caster sugar

1.5 tsp mixed spice

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/ 160C fan/ gas mark 4. Butter an ovenproof dish (I used a lasagne dish).
  • Place all of the ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix well until completely combined. Pour into your buttered dish.
  • Place the dish into a larger roasting pan and fill the pan with water so it comes up the sides of your dish of rice pudding. Do not let the water go into your pudding though!
  • Bake in the centre of the oven for 40-45 minutes. It will be golden on top, and a knife inserted into the middle should come out clean when removed.
  • If you want it as a normal rice pudding, serve straight away while still hot. If you want it as a cold slice, leave to cool completely and then place the dish in the fridge for at least half an hour to firm up. (It is actually even nicer if left until the next day). Cut into desired sized slices and eat on its own or with cream. Enjoy! 🙂

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Easy Fruit Cake Recipe using Canderel Sugarly

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I received a jar of New Canderel Sugarly as part of the April Degustabox (review of that to follow). Canderel Sugarly is a zero calorie sweetener that looks and tastes just like granulated sugar. I’ll be honest, I was a bit dubious about this at first, as I have tried sweeteners in the past and found they have a rather unpleasant aftertaste. Thankfully, this one doesn’t! Phew!

I decided I wanted to use this in baking, but silly old me didn’t read the information on the jar. If I had read it first time I would have known that you only need to use half the amount you would normally use if you were using normal sugar. As I didn’t read that initially, my first fruit cake was ridiculously sweet and not very nice at all! Luckily there was enough Canderel Sugarly left to make another one, this time with considerably less sugar! I will definitely use Canderel products again in baking now I have tried this. It is good too as it is suitable for diabetics when used as part of a balanced diet, and the fact it has zero calories makes it a healthier version for people trying to cut back on sugar or on low-calorie diets.

This cake uses an easy boil on the hob recipe before it is baked. This makes it extra moist and the fruit extra plump and juicy. I normally use light soft brown sugar for this cake but substituted it for Canderel Sugarly this time. You can use any dried fruit you like. I used raisins, sultanas and glace cherries, but I have used dried cranberries and apricots too before. Whatever fruit you use, it is a delicious tea time treat.

FRUIT CAKE WITH CANDEREL SUGARLY

115 g unsalted butter or margarine

160 g dried fruit

25 g chopped nuts (optional)

60 g Canderel Sugarly

250 ml milk

300 g Self raising flour

1 egg, beaten

1 tbsp mixed spice

0.25 tsp bicarbonate of soda

Demerara sugar to sprinkle on top

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas mark 4. Grease and line a small/medium loaf tin.
  • Place the butter, fruit, nuts (if using), Canderel Sugarly, and milk into a large saucepan. Bring to the boil, stirring regularly. When the butter has melted and the Sugarly has dissolved, remove from the heat and leave to cool.
  • Sieve the flour, spice and bicarbonate of soda together. When the fruity mixture has cooled, add the flour mix and the egg to the pan and mix thoroughly until well combined.
  • Spoon into the loaf tin and sprinkle a thin layer of demerara sugar on top to add a tasty crunch. Bake in the centre of the oven for 40-50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.
  • Leave in tin for 10 minutes then place on a wire cooling rack to cool.

This fruit cake is delicious served slightly warm with a dash of cream on it, or cold with a nice cup of tea.

 

DISCLAIMER: I received the Canderel Sugarly free of charge as part of Degustabox, but my opinions of it are by no means influenced by this fact. All views expressed are my honest opinions.