Street Thai – Brighton.

When I’m in a new place I absolutely love trying the local restaurant scene or sampling the best rated places that I may not be able to get at home. I love trying new foods and well eating in general really so during my few days away in Brighton my friend and I wanted to be able to say we had some great fun, great memories and great food too. We spent our first evening wandering the streets, not in a lonely Oliver Twist type of way but in a neither of us could make up our silly minds where we wanted to eat we instead sat on the promenade googling nearby suggestions. We would pass somewhere that I liked the look of but Jimmy did not and vice versa until we both just got too hungry we agreed the next place we saw we would go into. Finding our bearings a bit we realized we were not too far from where Choccywoccydoodah was in one of the Lanes and there before us like a glowing light, to which we were two starving little moths, was Street Thai. Lit up like the empire state and will it’s kitchen aroma filling the streets we were in, almost like in a cartoon we followed the piquant smell, and the sign for the 3 course dinner for £12.99 special.

Street Thai specialises in staple Thai dinners and traditional Thai street foods and I was really keen to try something a little bit different or something traditionally Thai. As long as it wasn’t crickets on sticks, I draw the line there. Perusing the special three course offer we both opted for that as it was really good value and also need I mention again how starving we were?!?

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I ordered the spicy green papaya salad for a starter. Which was hot. Like a lot hotter than I anticipated. Over the years I’ve grown a lot better with spicy foods although I much prefer foods with plenty of flavours over a lot of heat, you will never catch me chomping down on a vindaloo is what I’m saying. Nevertheless this was enjoyable once I got myself over the initial heat of the dish. It was crunchy, flavourful and tangy. Plus I really like added nuts in any food really. From chocolate to curries and stir frys I like the added texture it adds to something and it didn’t disappoint. Within seconds of finishing our first course, our main meal came whizzing out. I ordered a red curry with pumpkin and mixed vegetables and a side of jasmine rice. It was warming, fragrant and just plain lush to be honest.

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However I was most looking forward to the final course, the best course in my opinion, the dessert course. Jimmy went with a green tea cheesecake and I opted for banana and coconut fritters. Which unfortunately I think they forgot about as it was getting late and they took off the bill. It was annoying but at least we didn’t have to pay for something we didn’t get. As this was my first experience of traditional thai foods outside of my local thai takeaway, Koh Thai Tapas and Giggling Squid restaurant chains. I really liked the food we had. If I were to go back I think I’d quite like to jump outside of my comfort zone a little bit more and try something a bit different.

Burgers & Cocktails – Brighton.

Funnily enough that is what I had. I had amaretto sours and a cauli burger. Lives up to it’s name very well indeed. Welcome to the final stop of the Brighton food tour huns we made it!!! We originally just popped in here for a drink or two as it looked nice, quiet and more importantly air conditioned. I had a fresh and lemony amaretto sour as we played board games in a near on empty Burgers & Cocktails restaurant.

I wasn’t actually aware beforehand that Burgers & Cocktails are actually owned by the same chain that are Giraffe. It’s stylish, quirky and preeeeeetty peachy and their menus totally match that as well. The menu has a good variety of things for meat eaters as well as accommodating to those that may be vegetarians or those whom have intolerances too. After copious amounts of cocktails and there’s only so much scrabble with your pal you can take we got a bit hungry and both decided to try the cauli wobble burger and share some skin on fries.  I also had a lotus biscuit milkshake, cos yknow calories don’t really count when you’re on holiday do they?!

burgers and cocktails fries

These rustic skin on fries were a dream. Salty, hot and sprinkled with herbs and spices. I’m 23 and am still yet to find a carb I don’t like.

cauli burger

This was the cauli wobble burg and not going to lie I pictured it a little differently. It contains some deep fried chunks of cauliflower, halloumi, red peppers and greens all on a layer of sriracha mayonnaise. I for some reason thought it would be like two cauli steaks acting as the buns and the halloumi, peppers and greens sandwiched in between. It was quite difficult to eat as I kept losing cauli bits, I mean I’m not the most dignified at the best of times with messy foods. The sriracha mayo added that extra kick which I think the burg really needed as some find that cauli can be quite bland.

lotus milkshake

This milkshake was insanely gorgeous. Lotus biscuits are so moreish and this was just fab. Top marks Burgers & Cocktails people.

The staff were attentive and lovely to us during our visit, even though they couldn’t help with my scrabble pieces; I HAD NO VOWELS.

The BEST Biscuit Barrel Recipes.

My name is Abbie and I am a self confessed biscuit addict. I LOOOOOVE them and in Britain we are blessed to have so many different types that I could easily put on an extra 3 stone just with a cup of tea and 47 packets of biscuits. Everyone has a different favourite from jammy ones, to chocolatey ones, to little ones with dried fruit your nan will always have in stock to the plain hobnobs that are pillars of the biscuit world. I could ramble on for hours about the little treats, SO much so I thought I’d save myself from growing another thigh and try my hand making some of my own. I found these biscuit cutters on Amazon here or you could get them direct through the Dexam website. I got these quite a while ago actually and may have forgotten about them a little bit until I rediscovered I had them lurking at the back of a cupboard. With these biscuit cutters you can make your very own homemade bourbon biscuits, custard creams, iced party rings and jammie dodger style treats. Perfect for being dead showy offy if you have pals over, if you want to impress at a tea party or if you just want to treat yourself, cos why ever not!?

biscuit flatlay

I was dead chuffed at how easy these all actually were to do and make. Not just making the biscuit dough but also the cookie cutters were so easy to use too. Something you could easily do with children I’d say as they could decorate, personalise and make their fav snack. I’ll share with you the recipe and ingredients beneath for each one so you if you want to replicate them this step-by-step guide will walk you through it.

party rings picture

Starting off with these iced ring biscuits as seen above look just like Party Rings and don’t taste too dissimilar to them either! This one makes a ton of biscuits; easily about 25 or so. For this you will need:

  • 100g of butter cut into cubes.
  • 100g caster sugar.
  • 1 egg.
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract.
  • 200g plain flour.

Start by putting the butter, flour and sugar into a bowl and rubbing it together until it resembles breadcrumb or wet sand looking consistency. I did this with my hands even though I really dislike how it feels in my hands and how it gets under my nails. You could also use a blender or a food processor and pulse it until it’s at the consistency you need.

Once you’ve reached that stage, mix in the egg and the vanilla extract and mix together until it starts to bind and forms a dough. If it doesn’t bind as well add in a small spoonful of milk until it all comes together. Wrap in clingfilm and let it rest in the fridge for about half an hour. Once chilled, roll it out until it’s about 5-6mm thick evenly all over and cut out as many as possible or you want. Bake in an oven (preheated at 180 degrees) for about 10 minutes until they are golden in colour.

Remove from the oven and let cool fully before icing. I used a mix of icing sugar and water for the topping mixing it into a few separate bowls and adding a few different pastel to colours. To make them more your own style you could add different flavourings to the icing too.

biscuit baby

Custard Creams. 

Ok so possibly one of my favourite teatime treats. These little bitesized snacks taste all the more better knowing it took me a decent amount of effort to get to the finished thing too.

You will need:

  • 175g plain white flour.
  • 3 tbsp custard powder.
  • 1 tsp baking powder.
  • 3 tbsp white caster sugar.
  • 100g butter cut into cubes.
  • 1 egg.
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract.

Similar to the iced ring biscuits, start this by sifting the flour, baking powder and custard powder into a bowl. Add in the sugar and the cubes of butter and rub it all together with your hands until you’ve got that breadcrumby/sand consistency. Add the egg and vanilla extract and mix together until to starts to form as one. If it doesn’t and is still crumby add in a splash of milk until it forms a ball. Wrap in some cling film and rest in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes.

Once set up roll out to about 1cm thickness all over use your cutter to stamp out an even number of biscuits. They have to be sandwiched together after all! Place in the oven at 180 degrees and bake off for about 8-12 minutes until golden and cooked through. Let cool thoroughly and then sandwich together with some custard powder flavoured buttercream.

Make the butter cream by mixing 100g of butter with 200g icing sugar and 3 or 4 heaped tbsp of custard powder. Mix through and then sandwich the biscuits together.

Bourbon Biscuits.

These are actually so delish I’m both equally as impressed with myself as I am with these little slices of heaven. To make these ultra gorgeous little treats you will need:

  • 50g butter.
  • 50g soft light brown sugar.
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup (if you can’t get hold of that corn syrup is very similar)
  • 110g plain flour.
  • 20g cocoa powder.
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line a baking tray. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and then add in a spoonful of golden syrup. Sift in the dry ingredients until it forms a ball. Rest it in the fridge for about 30 minutes then roll out and cut out biscuits. Bake in the oven for about 8-12 minutes or the edges have browned. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

To make the cream between them simply mix 75g of icing sugar, 50g of butter with 25g of cocoa powder. Once this has formed, spread an even amount across one biscuit and then sandwich another one on top. Et voila!

biscuit close ups

Jammie Dodgers.

These looked absolutely fab. I was well impressed with how these turned out. 10/10 would do again.

To make you will need to preheat your oven to 180 degrees and line a baking tray (or two depending on how much you’ve made)

  • 250g butter.
  • 140g icing sugar.
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract.
  • 1 egg yolk.
  • 375g plain flour.

Firstly, beat the sugar and butter together, careful not to choke in the icing sugar powder clouds, until creamed and fluffaaaaay. Mix in the vanilla and the egg yolk. Then sift in the flour and fold together until it forms a doughy ball. Set up in the fridge for 20-30 minutes and then when it’s fully chilled roll out into about 1cm thickness. Cut an even number of biscuits (cos sandwich biscuit after all) in every other one of the biscuits press the heart stamp through the centre ybake in the oven for about 10-12 minutes or until have that lush golden colour. Once cooled sandwich together with some jam, I used seedless raspberry jam mainly cos it’s red and it’s my favourite. And it’s the only one we had too.

I can’t even begin to brag about just how impressed I was with these. The stampers were super easy to use. some places said you needed to oil them, flour them or put them in the fridge to make them easier to stamp but I didn’t have ant problems with it whatsoever. I love how easy they were and they looked just like the real things. I think they’re perfect if you have allergens or intolerances so you could make your favourite teatime treat even if you’re dairy intolerant or gluten intolerant so you could use a speciality flour or a butter replacement.

You could even mix it up with the recipes and try different flavours. A couple years ago they did a Toffee dodger which I looooved so I might try doing that next with a salted caramel inside. Or you could use a different type of jam like plum or apricot. These really went down a treat with my family and my mum’s colleagues have already put in an order for some at her work. If you try these, I hope you enjoy making them as much as I did. I also drowned in washing up afterwards, what was I thinking making four different types of biscuits in one afternoon.

LOTS OF LOVE. X

Frome Independent Market.

bumble and wildHello again and HAPPY EASTER! I hope you all had a lovely day whatever you got up to and ate, drank and got merry with your loved ones celebrating all things Easter, Spring and chocolate. My family and I went to Frome Independent market today which is a town about 30 minutes away from where I live. Frome is a town in lovely Somerset which has a lovely mix of both highstreet retailers and a lot of cute independent shops. I’m a big fan of any town or high street that isn’t like no other and quite often in the UK you could walk down any high street or shopping town centre and be greeted with the exact same shops, the exact same closed down shops and end up in the same chain coffee shop drinking the same skinny vanilla latte. Eurgh. Not for me. Don’t get me wrong I do shop in these places and photograph the life out of my seasonal hot chocolates on the ‘Gram but I do like to support local and support smaller businesses more. See pic above of the very pretty florist’s shop Bramble and Wild. Their window display’s truly are wonderful. Continue reading “Frome Independent Market.”

I MADE A GIANT JAFFA CAKE.

I’ve conjured up a sure fire way to put end to the age old debate as to whether the humble Jaffa cake is a biscuit or a cake, by making my own version larger than my own blimmin’ face! No seriously this is huge and delicious. Just like me amirite? I found this recipe through UniLad would you actually believe it. No offence you absolute lads buuuuut I never had this site synonymous with baking cakes especially chuffing good caked bakes at that! Not only is a gigantic Jaffa Cake totally heavenly to gorge on but it’s also super pretty to look at too PLUS the recipe and method is really easy to follow too! win win eh!

I haven’t done any fun bakes in a while and as soon as I found this I couldn’t wait to put it into practice and share it with you all! I’ve tweaked it a little bit here and there to make it more suitable for how I wanted it but as you can see on the link above you can follow that straight through to the UniLad version.

giant jaffa cake

So, before I get too into this recipe post, a word to the wise this cake can take a little while to fully create so if you’re hoping for a quick and easy bake to show off to your friends, frenemies and exes on IG maybe give yourself a a good few hours!

You will need:

  • A frying pan lined with baking paper.
  • A round cake tin smaller than your saucepan lined with cling film.
  • 135g packet of orange jelly cubes.
  • 250ml boiling water.
  • 200g unsalted butter.
  • 200g caster sugar.
  • 3 medium eggs.
  • 200g self raising flour.
  • 1 tsp baking powder.
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract.
  • Zest and juice of half an orange.
  • 200g dark chocolate.

Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.

To give the sponge that bouncy, half spherical shape a lot of websites/recipes suggest baking the cake itself in a frying pan. Sounds weird I know but it works so go with me on that.  I covered the base of the pan with a circle of baking parchment and sprayed the sides with some coconut oil frylite spray to make it easier to get out of the pan.

Cutting the jelly into cubes (who else used to just eat the cubes as a kid??No me neither that would be weird…) I line a round cake tin with some cling film at the same time putting the kettle on to boil. Multitasking check me out eh!? Pouring the boiling water over the top of the jelly cubes and stirring til all the jelly lumps have melted away. I add the zest and the juice of half an orange into the jelly giving it a super orangey kick. One of your five a day right??? I then pour into the cake tin to set up and chill in the fridge for a few hours.

THE SPONGE

This recipe was a standard sponge. Cream the butter and the sugar together til light and smooth. Slowly add the eggs and the vanilla extract. Fold in the flour and baking powder and once its all delightfully mixed to perfection pour into the frying pan. Sounds proper mental and to be honest I was a bit nervous I was going to catch fire to my Mum’s fancy pants frying pan but all is well in team What Abbie Says camp. They recommended the baking time of about 30-40 minutes. I’d keep checking on it from that time onwards, as mine actually took somewhere up to 45 minutes altogether as it was still uncooked in the centre.

Once done, transfer the cake on to a wire, cooling rack and leave til its cooled completely. Making sure the jelly is chilled like Snoop Dogg on a day between the 19th and 21st April I melted the dark chocolate over a pan of water. Also known as a bain marie if you will. Wait til the chocolate has fully melted and leave to cool; if it’s too warm it’ll melt the jelly when you pour it over and you’ll either have to eat it on your own VERY QUICKLY or serve a sad jaffa pud. Placing the jelly circle in the middle on top of the cake I poured the melted chocolate over the top, making sure the entirety of the top was covered and that it didn’t drip down onto the edge. Dipping the knife into the top  drawing lines both horizontally and vertically. Quickly putting back into the fridge to set up for the fiiiiiinal time and once it’s cool you can serve it. YOU’RE WELCOME. Jaffa cakes are fab, bigger jaffa cakes are extra fabulous.

If you fancy making this recipe, I would totally recommend. It was super fun, totally easy to do and looks really impressive as well. To give this recipe a little twist how about using a dark chocolate and lime jelly or even raspberry. Equally you could use something like a tropical or pineapple flavour jelly with a white chocolate coating and coconut sponge like a pina colada without the hangover!