Foody Friday: Great British (Mancunian)Halloween Bake Off!

Firstly – I apologise.. as you can see I’m running late with this post… It’s now 23:00 hours on Friday here in Manchester, so strictly speaking it’s still ‘foody Friday’ however, for many of you reading this I suspect it may be Saturday where you are! My excuse… simply that I’ve had a week full of ups and downs, laughter and tears and plenty of hugs….

Furthermore, having had my granddaughters with me all week, my house looks like a bomb has exploded and I had to do a bit more ‘cropping’ of the photo’s to cut out some of the horrific mess.. haha!

Looking after my granddaughters during half term, while mum has been in hospital, had to include a fun baking day and of course we are heading toward Halloween, so it was a perfect opportunity to hold a Halloween biscuit decorating competition, to create some Halloween feasts… Not good for my ‘diabetes healthy eating’!!! Yikes… needless to say I fell off the waggon and my granddaughters definitely won the ‘inspiration’ prize for ‘best decorated biscuits’!

Who couldn’t resist pinching some of these shortbread teddy’s and gingerbread pumpkins?

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I admit it – the gingerbread pumpkins were ‘purchased’ and then expertly decorated by my granddaughters….

However, the shortbread recipe is a classic handed down from my mum and is a recipe that our family always produce as part of our Xmas Tradition. It’s perfect anytime for some baking with the kids…

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Shortbread Recipe:

  • 125g butter (soft – room temperature)
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 100g plain flour
  • 50g cornflour

 

You can use cornflour or ground semolina as these add the extra ‘shortness’ to the biscuit.. I used cornflour today..

Method:

  • Pre heat oven to Gas Mark 3/4 or 160 degree celsius
  • Lightly grease a baking tray
  • Rub together the flour, cornflour and butter to breadcrumb texture
  • Add the caster sugar and lightly stir in
  • Gather the mixture together to form a dough ball
  • Roll out to approx. 0.5 – 1 cm thickness. (For today with the children I left it slightly thicker to avoid breakages.. If I was doing some ‘adult’ baking then I would roll out thinner for melt in mouth ‘short’ biscuits)
  • Use cutters to create required shapes
  • Place on baking tray and prick each biscuit several times with a fork.
  • Cook in the middle of the oven for approximately 20 minutes until the biscuits look golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven – leave on the baking tray to cool for a few minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling before decorating..

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Obviously we never ‘taste’ any of the toppings or mixture as we go along… NEVER – HONESTLY…. You can see that there’s definitely no chocolate round this gorgeous mouth I there!!!

Toppings today:

  • Melted chocolate with a drop of peppermint essence
  • White icing made with Icing sugar and a drop of water and peppermint essence
  • Tubes of ready made decorating icing that comes in little tubes in various colours.. These came free with the gingerbread pumpkins…

 I love glitz (as you can probably tell from my ‘bathroom makeover’ video How to create a glitzy bathroom..) and baking is no different. We sprinkled the biscuits with some fabulous edible glitter which doesn’t come out in the photo’s but looked brilliant – very sparkly!

 

 

 

 

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40 Comments

  1. November 10, 2016 / 6:47 am

    Wendy your granddaughter’s are gorgeous. It’s great baking with kids. Hope you had a great time!

    • November 11, 2016 / 1:48 am

      They are aren’t they – I can’t deny it! We have great fun at weekends and baking is always a favourite! x

    • November 4, 2016 / 2:31 pm

      They are – we’re lucky! x

  2. October 30, 2016 / 8:22 am

    Aren’t they jus Miriam and you’re right an occasional treat has to be tasted! xx

  3. October 30, 2016 / 4:12 am

    Aren’t they a couple of cuties! Looks like you had a lot of fun Wendy, what a treat for you … shortbread included! Life’s too short not to indulge in a bit of sweet stuff and messy times. Enjoy it all. xo 🍧

  4. October 29, 2016 / 1:33 pm

    I’m so glad you have had fun whilst mummy has been cared for in hospital. Those littlies look so happy and that is the best medicine you can give your daughter-in-law. The biccies look pretty fab too – glitzy, ritzy and delitzy xx

    • October 29, 2016 / 11:27 pm

      Ahh thanks Osyth… Jen’s back home and recovering nicely – so far so good! Hey I love that ‘Glitzy, Ritzy and Delitzy’ … that’s got to be the title of a future post…Fab! xx
      I hope you are ok…?

      • October 30, 2016 / 1:57 am

        Feel free! I rather think it should be emblazoned on a T-shirt at some point too! I’m very good – husband just back from the Far East which makes me smile! Xx

        • October 30, 2016 / 4:47 pm

          Fabulous!! I just need to come up with a ‘post’ that matches the spectacular phrase… How lovely to have hubby home and I’m not surprised your smiling!! Fab.. xx

  5. October 29, 2016 / 8:39 am

    Your grandkids are beautiful and they look all happy! Bet you have loads of fun!

    • October 29, 2016 / 10:32 am

      They are such happy kids.. our youngest just sings constantly ..just to listen makes me smile and you’re right – we do have loads of fun.. We’re off to the pictures to see the Troll movie this afternoon… I mean I’d look pretty stupid sitting there at my age if I didn’t have grandchildren to drag along to watch it with me! haha xx

      • October 29, 2016 / 1:42 pm

        Excuses excuses… 😜

        • October 29, 2016 / 11:25 pm

          2 of the BEST excuses!! Great kids movie… of course I didn’t enjoy it one bit and I definitely wasn’t dancing to the music throughout! xx

          • October 29, 2016 / 11:29 pm

            Lol! Good that your grand kids enjoyed the flick! 👍🏻

          • October 29, 2016 / 11:40 pm

            It is Mr PPP! Have a great Sunday! x

          • October 30, 2016 / 12:07 am

            Ta, you too Wendy!

          • October 30, 2016 / 4:48 pm

            Thanks Mr PPP! xx

  6. October 29, 2016 / 6:30 am

    Adorable girls! Looks like fun😊

    • October 29, 2016 / 10:36 am

      Thanks Jenny – they really are very precious and you’re right LOTS of fun (oh and mess but who cares..) xx

      • October 29, 2016 / 4:16 pm

        That’s right… the mess can be cleaned up. It just means they had a lot of fun! 🤗

        • October 29, 2016 / 11:22 pm

          They have Jenny – thanks so much! xx

    • October 29, 2016 / 12:50 am

      Thanks – So do I… and I’m not biased just because I’m there Nanna.. Honestly!! xx

  7. October 29, 2016 / 12:09 am

    This is COMPLETELY adorable! I’m so glad that I read this post. Thank you so much. Your granddaughters are adorable, and the glitz on the cookies is a requirement from my point of view.

    Have a wonderful weekend, and blessings to you and your entire family,
    Debbie

    • October 29, 2016 / 12:58 am

      Thanks Debbie – that’s a lovely comment! Yep – you can’t beat a bit of bling… and 2 adorable granddaughters of course! xx

  8. October 29, 2016 / 12:08 am

    What mess? I don’t see any of it… except fond memories. 🙂

    • October 29, 2016 / 1:01 am

      Haha – that’s because I ‘cropped’ it out! The house looks like a bomb has gone off in it.. you’re absolutely right though – Who Cares – Happy Days creating lasting memories… That’s what life’s about! xx

  9. October 28, 2016 / 11:35 pm

    I love shortbread cookies and your toppings are awesome.

    • October 29, 2016 / 12:53 am

      Thanks so much – I know they are yummy aren’t they which is unfortunate for my ‘health kick’ … irresistible comfort eating as they remind me of Xmas as a child… Oops.. Where did that teddy’s head go? It wasn’t me – HONEST!!!!

  10. October 28, 2016 / 11:18 pm

    Very good look great, and good luck and have fun with the children (little angel)

    • October 29, 2016 / 12:55 am

      Thanks so much – Yes they are little angels and bring light even to a very dull day! xx

    • October 29, 2016 / 12:55 am

      We did – just what the Doctor ordered (hmmm well maybe he didn’t order me to eat the shortbread!).. xx

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