Friday, 23 May 2008

Sweet Offerings!

After my last post I've been asked by a few people to divulge my Banana Muffin recipe, so here it is, hope you enjoy! The original recipe is for banana loaf from the Dinner Lady book, she gives an ingredient list for servings for 4 people and servings for 96 people!! You just have to make sure you get the right list!!

2 ripe bananas
175g (6oz) butter or margarine
175g (6oz) caster sugar
3 eggs
225g (8oz) SR flour
Half tsp baking powder
Half tsp vanilla essence
Half tsp ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4

Peel the bananas then crush with a fork. Beat together the butter or margarine and sugar, then add the eggs alternately with the flour and baking powder. Fold in the crushed banana, vanilla essence and cinnamon. Spoon the mixture into muffin cases (makes 12) or pour the mixture into a greased 450g (1lb) loaf tin. Bake in the preheated oven for about 30-40 mins. Cool on a wire cooling tray.

As an added treat I sometimes add a handful of chocolate drops to make banana/choc muffins - yummy.

I've actually managed to make a few pieces of seasonal jewellery over the last couple of weeks. I picked up some of these shell beads from a card making shop and the others from a garden centre - just shows you, you can pick up components from lots of different places, not just bead shops.

I'm afraid I've been a little distracted this week and the little fellows below are to blame! Aren't they gorgeous?

My youngest son made the bird box about 18mths ago at cubs. I noticed a few weeks ago that a bird was visiting every now and then. Earlier this week I noticed the pair were back and forth nearly all day. We can't see inside the box (lid firmly nailed down!) but I was able to get close enough yesterday to hear little chirping noises - we're just keeping our fingers crossed that the chicks survive and don't get pounced on by the local cats!! I noticed a big tabby this morning on the other side of the trellis trying to paw at the box, I don't think they've got a chance of getting inside. I think the problems will begin when they start to fledge. I can't go outside into the garden (or into the conservatory for that matter) without standing for about 10mins (minimum) to watch the parents flying to and fro with their tasty morsels.

We took a trip into Derbyshire last Sunday to visit a Well Dressing at the village of Etwall. For those unfamiliar with the art of well dressing, you can find out about the history and this years timetable here. We've not visited this particular village before and we had a lovely time walking up and down searching out the wells.

At the above event was an owl rescue group called Majestic Owls. They had some of their owls in an enclosure and you could get really close to them. When the owls have been rescued they can't unfortunately be released back to the wild so the rescue people care for them and take them round to groups/schools etc to talk about them and their protection etc. I think you will agree with me that they are stunning specimens. They had lovely names too, one was called TeaBag, which amused my youngest!

I think that's about it for this time. I hope everyone has a lovely bank holiday weekend. Hubby, eldest son and nephew are off to Wembley tomorrow to see Hull City in the Championship Playoffs against Bristol City - I just so hope they win otherwise it will be unbearable, mind you it will be equally unbearable with all the celebrations - come on Tigers!!! We're off into Derbyshire again on Monday to visit a few galleries who are taking part in the Derbyshire Open Arts. I will report back later.


Kerrie said...

Another varied and interesting blog Alison - lots of lovely stuff to look at and drool over.

I just love that little chap peeking out of the bird-box too!

Kerrie x

Crafted Gems said...

mmmmmmmmmmmm just made banana muffins, there in the oven now

Nia said...

Just copied out the recipe - I'll blame you if I put on (yet more) weight! Love the well-dressing pics, what great detail in the work. Great to see you again on Sunday, looking forward to your next post which I assume will have pics of your creations with your purchases??? (No pressure of course - lol!)

Kiamyka said...

What an enjoyable read this was - it's lovely to get an insight into daily lives. I'm looking foward to meeting you again on Sunday at Jencels
x chris

Chloe's Designs said...

Hi Alison, love the birdie pics. Arn't they just gorgeous. Your shell necklaces are beautiful : - )