Tag Archives: party food

Bonne Fete Maman! – Happy Mother’s Day!

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I have seen it said that the French traditionally honour Mother’s Day by presenting their Mamans with cake that looks like a bouquet of flowers – and indeed, why not. So this year, I encourage you to add a little Gallic charm to your Mother’s Day offerings with these florally inspired Mook and Lulu’s Lemon and Blueberry Cupcakes. Of course, the little tulip cupcakes cases go a long way in making your ‘Cake Bouquet’ – but what better reason for the extravagance of some charming cupcake cases than to spoil your Mum.

I first showcased these delightful little cakes in 2014, but I needed very little reason to share these light lemony wisps, complete with zesty buttercream icing with you again…

Bonne Fete Maman!

The full recipe can be found here

Happy Halloween!

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Ignoring the historical significance, it’s not hard to see the appeal of Halloween for kids. Dressing up in a crazy costume, calling on your neighbours so that they can give you sweet treats, and eating so many sweets that you’re bouncing off the walls – what’s not to love! Last year Lulu declared Halloween as the ‘Best Day Ever’ – for me that title will always be held by Christmas, but Halloween does provide the best opportunity to practice some kitchen alchemy and explore the darker side of your creativity to create some gruesome party food.

Here are some of the Mook and Lulu Halloween offerings for this year.

Mook’s Bicycle & Scooter Party

 

Mook's Bicycle & Scooter Party

Mook’s Bicycle & Scooter Party

Birthday Parties can be an expensive business. So this year, when Mook wanted (needed) a new bike, we talked about ways that we could scale back on a birthday party as she was having such an expensive present.

She was very gracious, possibly helped by the fact that we bought the new bike two weeks early, and we all sat down and talked about possible party ideas. Lulu hit on the great idea of having a ‘Bicycle and Scooter Party’ – which went down well with everyone, and so, this year Mook’s Party was a fantastic reminder that simple pleasures can be an absolute delight – and don’t need to cost the earth (literally!).

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Nanny Mook & Lulu’s Easter Afternoon Tea

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Nanny Mook & Lulu’s Easter Afternoon Tea

‘Ooh, I didn’t expect you to go to all this trouble!” said Nanny M&L, when she arrived for her Easter afternoon tea, but there is something special about showing how much someone is appreciated with homemade gifts.

Lulu helped make the cakes, and as she proudly presented her sticky gingerbread to Nanny (for once heeding the plea not to bound in), it was lovely to see that she also understood the joy of taking the time to make something yourself.

I love that my kids are now old enough to help in the kitchen. There have been several occasions where I’ve lost Mook and Lulu’s help in the kitchen once the cake mixture has been made, as they disappear off, spoons in hand, to ‘clean’ the mixing bowl.  Lulu and I enjoyed making our Easter cakes together, but I would advise using a sprinkling of patience, and a serious adjustment to your schedule – little hands and lots of questions do make the process last a little longer than usual!

We made Nanny….

The Writing Process Blog Tour

My dear friend Becky recently contacted me to ask me to join the Writing Process Blog Tour. Becky’s blog http://pagetoplate.blogspot.co.uk reveals her exploration and recreation of food in literature.  Having been fortunate enough to sample some of Becky’s fabulous cooking, and being aware of her great knowledge of literature, I can think of no finer person to enlighten readers of the wonderful relationship between food and literature.  Do pop across and have a look at her blog.

As part of the Writing Process Blog Tour bloggers answer four questions about how they write, and then introduce fellow bloggers, who will continue the process.  Here are my thoughts about my writing process.

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Afternoon Tea for Granny Mook & Lulu for Mother’s Day

Afternoon Tea for Granny Mook & Lulu for Mother's Day

Afternoon Tea for Granny Mook & Lulu for Mother’s Day

When everyone is so busy it can be all to easy to pass ‘like ships’ post childcare arrangements, but today we’ve had a wonderful day spending time with Granny Mook & Lulu for Mother’s Day.

We started the day, bright and early, at The Big Cake Show in Westpoint, Exeter. There were some fabulous stands from local producers, and an event like this is a great way to meet small artisan producers of innovative and creative local food and drink. I came away with some fantastically priced vintage teacups, a jug and sugar bowl – all perfect for Granny M&L’s afternoon tea. I would also recommend a visit to The Big Cake Show for the competition cakes alone – themed for the South West. Amazing!

We then popped down the road to see the other creative half of Mookandlulusblog.com, Claire, at her friends farm.  Mook and Lulu could not have been happier to count eggs, stroke chickens, meet horses and whoop at puppies!  Thank you Cathy!

We rounded our lovely day off with afternoon tea at Mook & Lulu Towers (Granny helpfully took Mook & Lulu to the park while we set up).

Granny Mook & Lulu was treated to iced shoe-shaped cookies (Granny loves shoes!), lemon & blueberry cupcakes, finger sandwiches, cheese, bacon and sundried tomato scones (fresh from the oven), granny’s favourites – sugar almonds, and tea from a tea pot in one of the vintage teacups. Perfect!

Happy Mother’s Day Granny Mook & Lulu!

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Nanny Mook & Lulu’s turn next!

 

Iced cookies

Iced cookies

Cheese, Bacon & Sundried Tomato Scones

Cheese, Bacon & Sundried Tomato Scones

Afternoon Tea for Granny Mook & Lulu

Afternoon Tea for Granny Mook & Lulu

Mook & Lulu’s Lemon and Blueberry Cupcakes for Mother’s Day

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Looking for last-minute-inspiration for a baked treat for Mother’s Day?

Why not give these fruity Mook & Lulu Lemon & Blueberry Cupcakes a try?  There’s still time to nip out and pick up the ingredients and you can whip them up in no time at all.

You will need:

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Last Minute Valentine’s Gift – Cherry Truffles

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Valentine’s Cherry Truffles

Valentine’s Cherry Truffles – A Remedy for ‘Oops!’

Surely, we’ve all done it?  Valentine gifts often start appearing in our shops while we’re still recovering from the excess of our New Year’s celebrations. The roses, chocolates, pink champagne and cute teddy bears fill the shelves of the ‘seasonal’ aisle so far in advance of the ‘big day of love’ that we walk past them for weeks. They serve as a vague prompt to St Valentine, but cease to be a timely reminder of the need to purchase a pink, or red, love token for our nearest and dearest in the crucial few days before the 14th February.

I’ve walked passed the garish pink display many times with the promise of ‘I’ll get something next week’, only to experience that ‘oops’ moment on the eve of Valentine’s Day.

If that happens to be you this year, then here is the perfect solution – a homemade gift, using a few store cupboard items.  Of course, if you don’t have white chocolate, biscuits, cheese, or more importantly, cherries, in your cupboard, then nip and get them and feel virtuous that you didn’t just buy that withering bunch of roses. Valentine’s Cherry Truffles!

You Will Need:

Christmas Party – Winter Wonderland!

Mook & Lulu's Winter Wonderland Party

Mook & Lulu’s Winter Wonderland Party

In case you hadn’t noticed… Christmas is almost here!

And yes, a ‘First World’ Christmas can mean an exponential rise in road rage incidents as the big day gets nearer, the horrific spectacle that is parents trampling the seated small children of the choir in a race to photograph their little darling on the stage, and the utter madness that is Christmas food shopping, but, despite all of this, I LOVE Christmas!

I’ve always loved Christmas.  From the golden years of my childhood, through the feigned nonchalance of my teenage years, to the much quieter times before we were a family of four.  But since Mook & Lulu have been old enough to get excited about Christmas, the magic is back!

So, as I dutifully hike backwards and forwards to the school to attend a flurry of school Christmas activities, plan for Christmas parties, and join endless queues for car parks, I will always fall happily into my bed at the end of the day in the run up to Christmas. *Cheese alert* It really IS the most wonderful time of the year!

If you’re flagging a little in the run up to Christmas Day, here are a few photos from our recent Winter Wonderland Christmas Party to liven you up! Enjoy!

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Breadstick turns into Lightsaber – Jedi mind trick?

ImageWell, my lightsabers do not have the menacing hum, impressive glow and, thankfully, the power to shear someone in half, but the ooh’s, awesome’s and cool’s they received suggested that the white chocolate and glittery sugar had worked some kind of magic at our Star Wars themed party.

If you would like to try making breadstick lightsabers, here’s how I did it.

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