Get your Bake On: Baked Blueberry Breakfast Oats

In a futile bid to stop the summer belly bulge, I have tried to eat a bit better this week (if you don’t include the fish and chip supper Wednesday and the copious amount of cake I ate Sunday. Ahem). Why does stuff that’s bad for you have to taste so good?!

Since I was little, breakfast has been my nemesis. I’ve always struggled to eat too early in the morning (unless it’s a Bacon Sarnie/fry up obvs) and so I figured that if I make something ahead of time, I then have to eat it so it doesn’t go to waste. I have tried overnight oats and bircher muesli which are quite nice but when I saw a recipe similar to this one I’m sharing with you all over on Pinterest the other day, I had to have a tinker with it and see what I could come up with.

Despite the fact it might look a bit like a crumble, these baked blueberry breakfast oats are in fact not very sweet at all. Served warm with some cool and creamy vanilla yoghurt (or whatever you fancy) this is the perfect for fuelling you up until lunchtime.

Why not try this recipe with some different fruit of your choice? Some raspberries would work equally well, as would stewed apples or pears.

 Baked Blueberry breakfast oats recipe

Baked Blueberry Breakfast Oats

Get Your Bake On: Baileys Fudge Sauce

I am a massive fan of Baileys.

It’s indulgent, warming, creamy and a real treat of a drink.

I have to admit I do tend to over-indulge on it at Christmas in the form of Baileys over ice, more Baileys over ice, Baileys cream slathered on a Christmas pudding, more Baileys over Ice and then maybe a Baileys coffee or five, but that hasn’t hindered my appreciation for this unique tipple.

I made some of my Gin Syrup for a lovely friend who has had a particularly tough time over the last few years (you’re welcome Tamsin!) this week and a friend of hers mentioned she didn’t care for Gin and she would enjoy a Baileys sauce recipe. So, I headed into the kitchen to see what I could come up with.

I had a recipe for fudge sauce made with cream, so I figured I could try replacing the cream with Baileys (essentially similar, just alcoholic and more tasty!) It worked really well and I would absolutely love some of this warmed up and drizzled over pancakes or ice cream! I also think it would make a lovely topping to Profiteroles or a Chocolate Fudge Cake. Endless possibilities!


 Baileys Fudge sauce recipe

baileys Fudge sauce recipe

Get your Bake On: Homemade Pork & Apple Sausage Rolls

I am rather partial to a bit of sausage.


No, no, minds out the gutter you guys, I genuinely am a fan of the meaty snack.

This isn’t getting any better is it.

Bloody hell.

Sausages. They’re good. Yum.

I decided this week to embrace my love of all things sausage (oh er missus!) and make some homemade sausage rolls. I love sausage rolls but they are often, when bought ready made, a bit gristly and somewhat questionable on the meat front. Is it even meat?!

These bad boys are pork and apple and you can tinker with the filling as you see fit, leave the apple out for a more traditional one or add in some chilli for a spicy kick!

This recipe is super quick, it uses ready made and rolled puff pastry so they can be knocked up in a flash for a picnic, last minute dinner party snack or lunchbox filler.

Embrace the sausage!

 Homemade pork and apple sausage roll recipe

Get your Bake On: Chocolate Chunk Shortbread Rounds

I love shortbread.

My nan used to make the best stuff I’ve ever tasted and, despite being in possession of her handwritten recipe for it, I cannot get it to taste the same. I even use a butter knife and my hands to combine it like she did, not the KitchenAid (my nan would never have used a KitchenAid…though I do love mine) and it still isn’t right.

More. Practice. Required.

That said, my kids weren’t lucky enough to taste my Nan’s so they know no better (the poor devils) – ignorance is bliss as they say – and so when they badgered me to make some the other day, I threw on my apron and tried my best. And do you know what, they weren’t too shabby. Not perfect, but pretty good even if I say so myself.

These shortbread rounds have chocolate chunks in. Slightly more indulgent than your regular shortbread but truly scrumptious with a cuppa to wash it down.


Say Fromage! (Recipe ideas using Le Rustique Camembert and English Honey)

I love cheese almost as much as I love Gin…and that’s a lot!

I know the stuff isn’t particularly brilliant for the old waistline but I truly believe a little of what you fancy does you good – everything in moderation.

The other week I was kindly sent a few samples of delicious Camembert and Brie cheese by French brand, Le Rustique, to try, and I’m never one to turn down food, let alone cheese! A very talented fellow blogger, Karen Burns-Booth who writes Lavender and Lovage (a travel and food writer) has come up with 3 delicious recipes marrying Le Rustique together with English Honey – not a combination some might think of but trust me, it really works and cheese with honey is actually a very traditional accompaniment for cheese. You learn something new every day!

A bit about Le Rustique…

You have probably seen and heard of this brand of cheese before if you’re a fromage fan like me. I said Fromage, not Farage, don’t go all political on me now folks…

You can find Le Rustique in most supermarkets these days, sat upon the shelf in its distinctive little red and white gingham lined wooden box. The box makes the perfect vestle in which to bake one of their whole camemberts and they also look delightful in a homemade cheese and wine hamper. Hint, hint, hubster. It’s my birthday soon…

You can adapt the taste of the cheese to your own personal taste, from “young” to “mature”.  Because the cheese is wrapped in a breathable waxed paper, if you leave it anywhere between 35 days and 20 days before the “use by date”, it’ll change the intensity of the flavour depending on how you like it.

Le Rustique cheese came about due to one man’s passion for authentic French recipes and flavours, combined with his love for cheese. In 1975, a Normandy dairy farmer called, Jean Verrier, developed the traditional recipe for his now famous, creamy textured Camembert. Since then, Le Rustique cheese-makers have maintained the same age-old artisan techniques and recipes to deliver these creamy cheeses, becoming the recognised brand that is seen in supermarkets across the land today.

The Normandy farmers Le Rustique work with mainly run family farms, with around 50 to 70 cows per herd.

The farmers lives revolve around the cows’ routine: milking times, moving fields, it’s all about the well-being of the cows. The well-being of the animals also plays a role in preserving the rich resources of Normandy.

The Le Rustique farmers monitor energy and water use to reduce the environmental impact. This respect for nature means that Normandy produces cheeses with a worldwide reputation, like Le Rustique Camembert.

Le Rustique Cheeses are in constant evolution, and each stage has its own distinct taste; the maturing process can be divided into three stages:

YOUNG: 35 days before the “use by date” – Firm texture and a light, fresh flavour (my personal favourite)

RIPE: 20 to 35 days before the “use by date” – Soft “melt-in-the-mouth texture with a distinctive almost mushroom flavour

MATURE: 20 days before the “use by date” – a creamy, runny and soft texture with a very pronounced and complex flavour.

Image from Lavender and Lovage Blog

The 3 recipes Karen has devised using Le Rustique and Honey are;

Le Rustique Camembert and Apple Scones with Honey Butter

Le Rustique Camembert and Hazelnut Parcels with Quick Fruit and Honey Chutney

Le Rustique Brie Tartlets with Honey Onion Relish

Head on over to Lavender and Lovage’s beautiful blog to see her recipes using French Cheese and English Honey, using Le Rustique.

They all sound utterly delicious (my tummy is rumbling just reading the recipes) and I have bought the ingredients to make scones this bank holiday weekend. Hopefully I will do Karen’s recipe justice!

Image from Lavender and Lovage Blog

What did I do with my Le Rustique samples?

I scoffed them all, that’s what.

No, on a serious note, I really enjoyed this cheese. I often buy it anyway, I like the flavour of it a lot, and I did a couple of different things with my samples.

The Brie I used in a Brie and Cranberry toastie, a very indulgent lunch but it was a rare treat for us, normally only reserved for Christmas time in our household. A bit like pairing the cheese with the honey, the sweet and savoury combination of a Brie and Cranberry sandwich is a real delight.

With the whole Camembert, we had another cheeky treat and I made breaded baked camembert with it.

I simply unpackaged the camembert straight from the fridge, dipped it in some beaten egg to coat the outside and then coated the Camembert in some breadcrumbs and fried it for a couple of minutes each side in a little butter. Once golden on both sides, transfer the breadcrumbed camembert to a baking dish and bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 180’c (fan).

I served the cheese with a little rocket salad, toasted fresh bread, some honey butter and some cranberry sauce.

Indulgent but truly scrummy.

For more information on the cheese, visit the Le Rustique website and for more recipes and inspiration, visit Lavender and Lovage’s wonderful blog!

 Disclosure: I was sent some free samples of Le Rustique cheese in return for this review. All words, thoughts and opinions are my own.