Happy H*OWL* oween

I love Halloween. My Facebook photos over the years stand as testament to this : a Mummy in heels, a Luche Libre in spandex , a Scooby Doo character in a red wig. You name it, l have worn it. This year, however, The Boy is too young to celebrate with me and The Husband will be enjoying some man-time in a pub. So l  have swapped lycra for an apron and baked these owl-ish cupcakes instead. Happy H*OWL*oween!

The Owl and the Witch's Pussycat

The Owl and the Witch’s Pussycat

-This is an adapted version of the Red Velvet cupcake recipe from The Hummingbird Bakery, and inspired by ideas from Pinterest. I made double the quantities for 24 cupcakes-

H*owl*oween Cupcakes


60g unsalted butter at room temperature
150g caster sugar
1 egg
20g cocoa powder
20ml orange and green colouring
½ tsp vanilla extract
120ml milk
150g plain flour
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1½ tsp white vinegar

For the decoration:

20g cocoa powder
300g icing sugar, sifted
50g unsalted butter
40ml black food colouring
20 ml of milk
1 packs of Oreos
1 packs of M&Ms


1.) Put the butter and the sugar in a bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Slowly add the egg and cocoa powder until well mixed.IMG_5415

.2.) Add half the milk and beat until well mixed.IMG_5419

3.) Add half the flour and beat until everything is well incorporated. Repeat this process until all the milk and flour have been added and you have a smooth, even mixture.IMG_5424

4.) Mix together bicarbonate of soda, vanilla extract and vinegar (it fizzes!) and beat thoroughly into the mixture.


5.) Divide the mixture in half and colour one half in orange and the other in green. Not particularly appetising, but very spooky. Fill a cupcake tin, mixing the two colours. Bake for 20 minutes at 170 Celsius.IMG_5442

6.) While the cakes cool, beat icing sugar, cocoa powder and butter together.IMG_5443

7.) Add milk and beat until the mixture is smooth.IMG_5450

8.) Add the  black food colouring and smooth on top of the cooled cupcakes.IMG_5461

9.) Open the pack of Oreos (trying not to eat them!)


10.) Split the Oreos in half and spread out your M&Ms so you can see the colours (trying not to let anyone else eat them!).IMG_5469

11.) Cut the Oreos in half for the eyes and use the M&Ms for the pupils and the beak. The ears are created by breaking an Oreo into quarters.


 I shall be eating these whilst watching a (not too) scary film by myself this evening. Spooky!

Fresh Strawberry Scones

Having bought a small pot of strawberries for The Boy to sample (his face was one of utter disgust when he put them in his mouth this morning), l fancied making a fruity treat for our Saturday breakfast. I found a lovely little recipe for Strawberry Scones in a book entitled “Bread” by Anne Sheasby. She suggests adding cinnamon, which is inspired. These were so tasty with a smattering of cream cheese and a mug of Yorkshire tea this morning. Even whilst being covered in half masticated strawberry by my beloved offspring.


225g self raising flour

25g caster sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

a pinch of salt

100g fresh strawberries, chopped

55g butter

125ml milk (plus extra for glazing)


1) Add flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl and mix lightly.


2.) Dice butter and rub into the flour mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs.


3.) Stir in sugar and chopped strawberries.


4.) Add enough milk to mix a soft dough, and turn it out onto a floured surface.IMG_5400

5.) Pat out the dough until it is about 2cm thick, and cut out 12 rounds (l used a glass!).

Brush the tops of the scones with milk.

IMG_54026.) Bake at 220 degrees C for about 8-10 minutes until they are golden brown on top.