Caramel Buttercream

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Happy New Year! Welcome to my first recipe post of 2017 (although I did share Josh’s cars and lorries birthday cake in my gallery a few days ago).

Everywhere I look so far this year I’m seeing super healthy recipes for all those people who’ve made resolutions to eat a bit better this year (including me, although you wouldn’t know it from this!). I’m staging a little rebellion on here and sharing my caramel buttercream recipe because…

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The Cake Gallery

I love making decorated celebration cakes for my family so I thought I’d create a place to share them with you all. For the most part I make them up as I go along, but for the odd occasion that I think I could explain how to recreate them, I’ve also created a few cake decorating tutorials and useful recipes and I will be continuing to add more in future.

A couple of weeks ago we celebrated Daniel’s 6th birthday and he requested a construction site cake. Not just any construction site cake though, it had to be based on the toy construction site in his school. When he asked for it I had absolutely no idea what it looked like, but fortunately I know the teachers in the school quite well (as I volunteer to read with some of the children once a week) so they didn’t look at me too strangely when I asked if I could see it and take a few pictures. I was a little shocked to discover that it had a 1m high crane, but fortunately I managed to convince him that this wasn’t essential 🙂

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Building My Blog – November 2016

Welcome to my 29th monthly blog update, all about what I got up to behind the scenes of Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen in November 2016.

This month I’m going to be giving an update on the ads after introducing them in October and sharing our thoughts on Board Booster, as well as sharing all the usual numbers…

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Mince Pie Cupcakes with Brandy Buttercream

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Christmas seems to be coming up very fast now (far too fast, I’ve still got so many Christmas recipe ideas and no time to share them all!). I’m pleased to say that I’ve finally finished my Christmas shopping which is a huge relief. Thank goodness for next-day delivery otherwise I’d have a few empty-handed relatives on Christmas morning…

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Orange Liqueur Truffles

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Two things I love about Christmas are Chocolate Orange and liqueur chocolates, so I thought I combine the two together to make a truly indulgent festive treat – Orange Liqueur Truffles. They’re an adaptation of my super popular Baileys Truffles, and I hope you all love them just as much as you seem to love those…

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A Festive Snowball Cocktail

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Sponsored by Warninks Advocaat

One of the things I love about Christmas is the build-up, all the little things you do to get yourself into the festive spirit. For us Christmas actually starts in October (a bit too early I know!) when we help the boys write their lists for Father Christmas. We used to do it a lot nearer to Christmas, but we quickly realised that if you don’t pin little ones down to a finalised list, it’ll keep changing right up until the last minute. Using October half-term to browse round the toy shops and write our lists ensures that Father Christmas has plenty of time to organise and wrap the presents.

When the time comes to wrap up our presents, we try to make it as festive as possible (because it’s not the most exciting job otherwise!). We watch one of our favourite Christmas films (Love Actually or The Holiday), or something equally as seasonal like SPOTY or the X-Factor final, with some Christmassy popcorn and a little festive tipple. I’ve usually opted for a warm glass of mulled wine or cider, but this year my festive drink of choice is something a little different…the Snowball…

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Cranberry & Port Sauce (and a Giveaway!)

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I’m going to admit that in the past I’ve usually bought my cranberry sauce to serve alongside my Christmas turkey, but this year I decided that it was high time I got on and made my own.

I’m in charge of dinner this Christmas and I’m planning to make it as low effort as possible whilst still trying to make a few things from scratch. I love cooking and could happily while away a few hours in the kitchen cooking a roast, but that’s not what I’m planning on doing on the big day. I want to be in the lounge with my family and a glass of something delicious, opening presents and listening to cheesy Christmas music…

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Za’atar Lamb Pittas

Sponsored by Lamb. Tasty Easy Fun.

I’m a big fan of lamb, I absolutely love the flavour. I don’t though eat it as often as I’d like, so when I was contacted by Lamb. Tasty Easy Fun, an EU campaign aimed at getting people eating more lamb, to create a twist on one of their delicious lamb recipes I jumped at the chance. It was the perfect excuse to get myself cooking it more.

Apparently many people think that lamb is difficult to cook (it’s no trickier than beef), too expensive (it’s cheaper than beef) or only really for Sunday roasts served with a decent dollop of mint sauce (The Lamb. Tasty Easy Fun recipes page will show that’s simply not true!).

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