Sweets For My Sweet

So for Sarah’s birthday, I tried to think of what to give her as a present. Actually, she had already had her present from me, Amy and Sarah (aka Team MASH) which was her birthday crown, but I wanted to give her a little something extra for inviting me, and letting me stay at her house. I know she’s a huge fan of salted caramel anything so I thought I would attempt to make some for her, and thought I would share the recipe here – it was much easier than I thought! (Please forgive the photos – I made this after work and took the photos as an afterthought on my little point and shoot)

So, to make salted caramel sauce, you will need:

  • 75g unsalted butter
  • 50g soft light brown sugar
  • 50g golden caster sugar
  • 50g golden syrup
  • 125ml double cream
  • 1tsp salt crystals (not table salt, but more like the stuff you put in a salt mill)

Melt the butter, sugars and golden syrup in a small pan, and let it simmer for a few minutes, giving it a stir every so often.

Add in the cream and stir together, adding in the salt as you stir.

Done! I sprinkled a bit more salt on top which made that extra salty, but it was still good!

One jar didn’t seem like enough, so I thought I’d make my favourite ice cream sauce. I didn’t realise that I’d made this before, but dulce de leche is one of the yummiest and easiest things to make.

Take a can of condensed milk, take the label off (if you can!) and stab two holes opposite each other on the top.

Put the can in a small pan, with water coming up to about halfway up the can. (Any further, and it could go in the can). I put a cloth in the pan to stop it rattling about (because from previous experience, its REALLY annoying to have the can rattling about in a metal pan) Put the pan on a medium heat to bring the water to a simmer, then turn down the heat to keep it simmering. Keep the water topped up, as the can needs to be in the pan simmering for at least 3 hours. (I kept this on the heat for about 3 and a half hours. I think it could have done with a bit longer actually)

After the can has cooled down, open the can. It looks…crap.

But then give it a bit of a stir…


So I tipped it into a bowl…

Gave it a bit of a whisk…

And done!

The jars were just £1 from Ikea, and double quantities of both of these recipes filled them. The dulce de leche can also be used to make things like banoffee pies – just pour it into a pastry case lined with banana slices and pop more banana on top.

Easy Peasy Cinnamon Rolls

I feel a bit embarrassed calling this a recipe. Its honestly the easiest thing to make, I actually had all these things in my cupboards (which considering how bare they were, was amazing)
Since seeing this recipe for cinnamon sugar pull-apart bread, I’ve been wanting to make something like this, but recipes with huge ingredient lists scare me off. I know, I know.

When I need something sweet, I usually whip up a half batch of Nigellas Ultimate Fairy Cakes because they’re so easy. Weigh out everything, throw it in the food processor, turn on and make a cup of tea. Pour into cases and throw into oven. Tea is ready for drinking when cakes are ready for eating. Thats good timing. This recipe may beat it.

I found the recipe on thekitchn.com which mentioned Ikea for some reason. Here’s my version of that recipe:


  • 1 pack of pizza dough mix (this is so cheap, I try to have a few packs in the cupboard. I’m so obsessed with making my own pizza after going round to Michaela’s house and having one made for me. YUM)
  • 70g sugar. Nothing fancy here, just the usual white granulated stuff you put in tea.
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted


  • Preheat the oven – I’m really lazy, and I just put everything on 200C.
  • Make up the pizza dough mix as instructed on the packet. I know, I’m really taxing you here. Roll it out into a rectangle.
  • Spread melted butter all over the pizza dough, leaving a centimetre around the edges (otherwise you end up with a huge mess. Trust me.)
  • Mix the cinnamon with the sugar. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mix onto the buttered area (don’t try to be clever and use the sieve, because thats just going to dump it all in the middle of the dough. Do about half at a time)
  • Roll it up. If the dough is  a rectangle shape, roll the shortest side, so you get a nice fat sausage. Mmm. Sausages. Pinch the edges to seal up the sausage.
  • Slice it up, and arrange the slices in a greased pan. If the pan is too big, you’ll end up with the sugar melting into that space and then cooling to form a super human coating.
  • Pop in the oven for about 15-20 mins. Make a cup of tea.
  • They’re done when they’re nice and brown – you’ll just know when they’re ready. Its also known as “I’m so hungry from the yummy smells coming out of the oven”
  • Drizzle a icing sugar and water glaze over the top – you could make proper butter cream icing to drizzle, but lets be honest, that involves way more work than you can be bothered with.
  • In the photo above, I split each roll into individual cake cases, it just makes it easier to hold and if you’re that way inclined, easier to share.

Serves – er, lets say one, I really liked these. My method might sound like its really difficult, but heres the easy version: make dough, butter, sprinkle, roll, slice, bake.

As a convenient segway (oh would you look at that), this is also a good time to tell you about my new blog, Burnt Tips. Alex challenged me to start making more home cooked meals, rather than the usual ready meals and packet mixes that we were living off. I thought keeping a blog would help motivate me into making meals, and also as a useful way to keep track of what I’ve made before, and what to change next time! Its very much in the beginning stages, but hopefully I’ll be able to share more successful meals!

Let me know if you try these, I’d love to hear what you think! I’d also love any recipes or favourite food blog links as well!

Flipping Yummy!

Good ol’Shrove Tuesday*. Every year, I used to have to phone my mum on this Tuesday night, get her to tell me how to make pancakes, and then somehow I’d manage to cock them up, but still end up with something edible. There was the year in halls where I didn’t even have a mixing bowl, so ended up mixing it up in a saucepan, the time I ended up accidentally deep frying my pancakes until they were crispy (I remember them as being surprisingly good, but that might be just my terrible memory) and the time when I even managed to make a packet mix taste awful. (When I mess up a recipe, I mess it up gooood – the perfect example being when I made fruit salad for my GCSE cooking class taste burnt! Still slightly proud of that actually)

The past few years, I’ve used packet mixes, or my old housemate would make the pancakes, but this year I thought I’d have a go at actually making them myself, and of course I took some photos. I used Delia Smiths recipe from Waitrose’s website because it seemed to be the most similar to the one I remember my mum making.

So! A photo heavy version of the recipe follows. You’ll need:

  • 110g plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 large or medium eggs
  • 200ml milk mixed with 75ml water
  • 50g butter

Sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Make a well in the middle and break the eggs into it.

Whisk the eggs up, incorporating flour around the edges (first photo, I didn’t read the recipe properly and just got whisk happy.) Gradually add in small quantities of the milk and water mixture (slosh it in), still whisking. Whisk until the batter is smooth, with the consistency of thin cream.

Melt the butter (and think, thats a lot of butter just to grease a pan. It really isn’t. Or my pancakes are just especially unhealthy) Spoon 2 tablespoons of it into the batter and whisk it in, then pour the rest into a bowl to lubricate the pan as needed.

Delia (first name terms, we’re totes bff’s) suggests a 50ml ladle is perfect for the amount of batter you need. I don’t have a ladle with measurements, but I do have bar spirit measures. (Thanks Dad, I nicked these out of one of the pubs you had 3 years ago, along with a few of the Stella Artois chalices and some pourers. Having parents who own a pub is bloody handy sometimes.) I used this to do my first pancake with the same sized pan she suggests in the recipe.

50ml is not enough batter. Silly Delia. However her suggestion of a palette knife to flip the pancake was brilliant, and was bendy enough to lift the pancake at the edges.

I did of course have a go at flipping the pancake. It worked out quite well, I didn’t drop any…

…but trying to take a photo of a pancake in the air with a remote in one hand and the frying pan in the other is unsurprisingly difficult!

I eventually used up all of my batter, and popped the last pancake on my plate.

Sprinkled sugar on top…

Squirted some lemon juice on top (it has to be Jif lemon, its just wrong to have any other lemon juice!)

Folded the pancake into a quarter…

And finally took a bite out of it quickly, dribbling lemon juice down my chin. Yummy!

Why do we only seem to have pancakes once a year? They’re so quick, cheap and easy to make!

* Anyone else a bit annoyed the supermarkets call it “Pancake Day” in their advertising?

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