For those of you that love fine chocolate, I have the pleasure of presenting a guest post from the award winning Highland Chocolatier. Founder and director Iain Burnett is on the board of the Academy of Chocolate and so only uses ethical and fairly traded chocolate in his creations. As you’d expect from the name, the Highland Chocolatier is based in Scotland at Grandtully, Perthshire. You can visit in person of course, but for those of us who can’t quite make it, the chocolates are also available online. I am very much looking forward to trying some of them.
You may have noticed it’s been a bit quiet around here. You may also have noticed a number of photos from Hampshire and Sussex popping up in my sidebar. It doesn’t happen often, but yes we’ve been on holiday. Now I’ve had a few days off, I’m raring to go again and eager to share some of the highlights of our travels. Don’t worry, they’re not too extensive.
Before ever I made vegan salted caramel sauce, I made this salted caramel chocolate milkshake. It’s delicious and completely satisfies any sweet cravings I have. Yet it’s made with raw ingredients, is refined sugar-free and is loaded with various superfoods. It puts a real spring in my step along with a self-satisfied milky smirk.
There’s nothing like a good day out to revitalise the spirits. And when a day out includes a trip to an organic farm with lunch thrown in for good measure, who am I to resist? On Tuesday I boarded a train and crossed the Tamar once again. I was heading to Yeo Valley to find out from the Soil Association what this year’s Organic September is all about. I had a brilliant day which included a tour of the farm, a cookery demonstration and a reminder of just why I’m so passionate about organic.
Our local cafe, Olive & Co, does a mean coffee cardamom chocolate cake. It’s more of a torte really as it contains no flour. I’ve been wanting to try making something similar for ages and with the arrival of the new Divine chocolate baking bars, the time seemed right to give it a go. I give you my coffee cardamom chocolate mousse cake.
It’s Afternoon Tea Week and you can’t have afternoon tea without scones, preferably with jam and cream, in that order. It also happens to be International Scone Week, which was started by Celia from Fig Jam & Lime Cordial in Australia a few years ago. It’s now ably hosted by Tandy from Lavender and Lime in South Africa. I don’t always manage to participate, but this double whammy was too important an occasion to miss. These emmer scones are the result.
Last week, I made some smoked salted caramel sauce. It was just amazing and I will be bringing you the recipe sometime soon. Sugar and cream, however, are not the healthiest of ingredients, so when I was sent some maca powder recently, I thought I’d try a healthier alternative. This vegan salted caramel sauce is both dairy-free and sugar-free and it’s positively good for you.
We may not be having the best summer ever here in Cornwall, but we have had a few warm and sunny days. We even had a whole week where it was actually way too hot. When it’s that hot, all I want to eat is cool foods and ices. I headed for the freezer, but when I got there, the freezer was bare – of ice cream anyway. To avoid another Mother Hubbard moment, I converted a large bag of cheap seasonal plums into these rose plum yoghurt ice lollies.
Christmas in July? What a strange concept. But it’s a real thing for brands, who need to showcase their Christmas products to the media. Every year London is alive with Christmas in July events and this year I got to go to a couple of them. The main event for me was the Fairtrade Foundation’s press day which not only highlighted some of the Fairtrade products available, but had a cookery demonstration too.