Friday, 5 June 2015

Take 5

1) We were seduced, by this photo of 'mug cakes', into trying some!

Find the recipes here
I have to say, none of ours looked anything like as pretty, but they have tasted good! And the children have loved the simplicity and speed of the making. We've now started experimenting with the recipes a bit ourselves, 2 current favourites are 'Apricot and almond', and 'Hot chocolate cake'.

Apricot and almond
30g butter (melted)
1 egg
2tbsp sugar
1tbsp cream
4 tbsp ground almonds
2 tbsp plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 apricots chopped (we used fresh, but I think dried would work if chopped into small pieces) and combined with 3 tsp apricot jam

Put the first 7 ingredients into your mug (it does need a good size mug) and mix carefully, then push in the apricot mixture. We found it needed a good 2 mins cooking in the microwave.

Hot Chocolate Cake
30g butter, melted
1 egg
2 tbsp sugar
1tbsp milk
3 tbsp ground almonds
3 tbsp plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp hot chocolate powder
4 squares dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces (chocolate chips would work if you had them!)

Mix up all but the chocolate pieces in your mug, then we put the chocolate pieces on the top and cooked it for 2 minutes again.

This kind of worked, but all the chocolate 'sauce' (from the melted chocolate) was on the top obviously, I think it might work better to poke some of your chocolate pieces down into the mixture as well as having some on top.

Three things we have learned about mug cake making:

  1. They are much better eaten hot and fresh.
  2. They always seem to overflow the mug.
  3. If you don't want to feel unpleasantly full then they are best shared!

2) Since I started this blog, Fridays have always been 'This Moment', inspired by Soulemama's weekly posts (though sometimes I've been a little late!). Now she's stopped these posts, it sort of feels wrong to carry on with them myself, just as they were. But, as much as I try and keep this place mainly a 'making' place, it does also feel, to me, very family oriented; the two, so often, seem to go hand in hand. And I have enjoyed having one day a week which was, in practice, all about capturing photos of the children. It's definitely encouraged me to take my camera out and about with me much more and capture those 'moments', and it's great, for me, to be able to look back on them in one place here. So, I know I want to continue this photo element in some way. There are various lovely photo link ups around blogland, but I'm not sure any of them work perfectly for me - I don't want to try and commit to taking a photo of each of my children every single week for example. A lot of the time that would be fine, but, particularly during school time, I think I would frequently end up having to 'manufacture' the photo opportunities, especially for the boys. They're now of an age when they don't have to be close by all the time; when we're out and about they can be relatively independent and I don't want to intrude on this by chasing after them with a camera! So basically, I haven't really decided what I'll do yet! I know I'd like to have one day a week as a photo type day of some sort, but that's about it. So while I get round to deciding, I'll include a couple of rare photos of all 4 of the children together from last week.

I find that trying to get all 4 children to pose in one shot rarely works, there always seems to be one of them with a terrible expression. And the longer they're asked to sit and pose while I try and get that elusive photo, the less natural it becomes, the sillier or grumpier they become and the rattier I become! At which point I realise it just wasn't worth forcing the photo. But last week, as I was snapping random photos, I happened to catch them all in this frame... 

And, despite the fact that it's not a good photo of any one of them, it all seemed too nearly the perfect photo opportunity to not give it a go. So Sam was called back, they all looked my way and I clicked like mad. There were some rubbish ones, there was some silliness, but it was all over very fast and I quit before I got to the ratty point and just accepted they were the best photos I was going to get.

3) Depending upon your opinion of the amount of fabric in this house, you might call this a happy coincidence, or you might not! After cutting into 2 of my vintage sheets for the circle skirts earlier in the week, and thereby using up largeish chunks of them, I stumbled across 2 new vintage sheets in a charity shop!

 4) One more block for Maria's quilt finished. I know, this is not very speedy progress! There is another nearly done, but just waiting for an accessory.

This one is another 'pocket' block, and with a little butterfly finger puppet inside the pocket.

5) Fish haven't been reproducing particularly fast either. What can I say? It was half term all last week, we have had a good smattering of sunshine to tempt us outside lots, and life has just been busy, busy, busy. But I did get some slightly scary looking lantern fish done this week.

 These are all on fairly dark pieces of fabric, since they'll be lurking in the darker, depths of the ocean.

And it was great to sit down and just sew something small and easy in amongst all the busyness.

Have a wonderful weekend,



  1. So much fun making again. ha! My daughter's preschool tried having the kids make mug cakes and my daughter disliked them so much. I have a feeling I'd like it cause any half-baked dessert if good with me.

    BTW : Have I mentioned in the last 3 seconds that you have gorgeous children? You are truly blessed dear Sally. xox

  2. oh your lantern fish are so cute. there was an question about them in the GCSE biology paper (they called them angler fish) yesterday, K and I were chatting about them at dinner x

  3. I have seen books and images of mug cakes too, but have had 51 years of eating cake from plates, and just don't think I could make the mental leap to eating cake from a mug! But yours look like fun. How about 'Photo Friday', just posting a photo from your week that you love. I have been thinking I'd like to do a small weekly post, so would be happy to join you. X

  4. Ok, firstly now I want cake .. and its 11.30pm at night - humpfff. Thats what I get for faffing about blog hopping around when I should be sleeping!
    LOVE that top vintage sheet - its completely beautiful!
    I know what you mean about Fridays losing 'this moment' - i'm using friday to do a 'this week' post from now on - just random pics from the week that capture little happenings or those randoms shots that I don't want to delete but don't need a post of their own - its utterly random as this post shows hehe Feel free to join me in random photographic assortments on a friday

    Ps your lantern fish slightly freak me out :-o

  5. Those mug cakes look so delicious... yum! Do you think one of the new vintage sheets might turn into a skirt for you??

  6. I love the little lantern fish, they're so cute!

  7. I've never heard of a 'cake in a mug'. It looks like it would take a bit of practice, but fun!

  8. Ooh the cakes look good!! And I love the pictures of the children, it's great to see all four at once and it looks like they were making the best of all this lovely Devon sunshine!

  9. Okay those mug cakes look all kinds of wrong, but so very delicious :) Love the photo of your kiddos. And as always, so much wonderful making in your world.

  10. Oh, those mug cakes look so good! I would love a dollop of whipped cream on the hot chocolate.
    How lovely to get photos of all your children together - a wonderful keepsake.

  11. I know what you mean about This Moment... I'm going to keep going anyway, as I've got into the habit and I think it's a nice short visual post for friends who follow my blog.


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