Friday, February 28, 2014

Welsh Honey Cakes, Tiessennau Mel, for St. David's Day March 1st

The simplicity of the look and recipe for these little Welsh Honey Cakes, Tiessennau Mel in Welsh, belies their deliciousness - they are absolutely wonderful and quite unique in a very subtle way. You'll have to bake them to see what I mean. I made them in honour of Saint David's Day - the feast day of Wales. I found this recipe, which I have adapted slightly, by

INGREDIENTS for 6 little muffin cakes:
recipes doubles perfectly

2 ounces/ 3/8 cup honey - a really flavourful honey is best,

or maple syrup if you'd like

 1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

2 ounces/ 1/2 stick butter ( I always use salted because I like that flavour in my baked goods and still I add a little more salt to brighten the flavour - goes well with honey!)

2 ounces/ 1/3 cup sugar

1 egg separated

1 tablespoons milk

4oz/ 1 cup flour

a pinch of salt

1. Preheat oven to 375F/190C

2. Grease and flour a muffin tin

3. Sieve together flour, cinnamon and bicarbonate of soda.

4. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. 

5. Separate the egg yolk from the white.

6. Beat the yolk into sugar and butter, then add the honey in three goes beating well in between.
7. Stir in the flour with a little milk as required to make the batter a little softer and mix all together gently. 

8. Whisk the egg white until stiff and fold into mixture in three goes - the mix is quite stiff so do this part very gently so as to not pop all your hard earned bubbles.

9. Half fill the 6 cups of the muffin tin and smooth the tops with the back of a wet teaspoon to stop them from crowning too much then sprinkle each with a teaspoon or so of sugar.
10. Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 20 minutes. These do brown quickly and are actually browner than a similar cupcake or muffin would be but do keep your eyes on them so they don't get too brown or burnt.

11. Leave the cakes in the tin for a few minutes before turning out to cool
And there you have your little Welsh Honey Cakes or Tiessennau Mel. You could if you liked break them in two and butter but I really didn't feel like mine needed that but it wouldn't hurt to try them that way! I do hope you make these, please let me know if you do and feel free to post your pictures on my FACEBOOK PAGE. Thanks!!
Some more pictures of the yumminess:

If you are interested in my "Blue Rhapsody" design, featured as the background of these pictures, you can find it at my Spoonflower shop HERE and my CafePress shop HERE

Wales/Cymru is a spectacular country, I visited there often as a child - it is well worth the visit if you ever get the chance. Home of stunning Snowdonia:
 The Welsh flag:
The daffodil is the Welsh National flower:
My Daffodil painting available over at my Etsy shop HERE
and LEEKS are the National emblem :) Here's a LINK to some of the Welsh celebrations for their National Day.

"Dydd Gwyl Dewi hapus!" 

Other Saint David's Day recipes I have done for my blog:

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Friday, February 21, 2014

New Ticker Tape Parade Design and more free worldwide shipping

Welcome to my latest design "Ticker Tape Parade", so cleverly named by my Facebook friend Beryl! After asking for help naming this design Beryl came up with "Ticker Tape" which so perfectly captures not only the ebullient and festive New Year's Eve/somewhat retro spirit of the design but also the sense of traffic lights and busy sidewalks that also spring to my mind.

I originally created this in design in gouache on paper before scanning, cleaning in Photoshop and then sizing and formatting for the items you see pictured here. I also made it into an allover repeating pattern for wallpaper and fabric too - doing the repeat is always fun for me as it has the aspect of puzzle piecing to fit the design side to side and top to bottom so there are no breaks or obvious joins in a length of fabric.

I love creating geometric designs like this as they are very meditative in their execution, I plan out the design in pencil line first and then enjoy the process of 'colouring in' the shapes just like a paint by numbers canvas - my illustration paintings/designs created in watercolour require constant mindfulness, and as such they can be quite satisfyingly tiring and time consuming to paint.

I have populated my online shops with Ticker Tape on all manner of items including, but certainly not limited to:
At my Society6 shop
where there is free worldwide shipping until Sunday February 23rd
As you can see I now have wall clocks available at my Society6 shop too

and from my CafePress shop:

"Ticker Tape Parade" is also available as fabric, wallpaper, wrapping paper and wall decals from my a print on wood from my PRINTS ON WOOD SHOP

...and as signed archival prints from my ETSY SHOP

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Next on the blog in terms of CAKE - my favourite thing - will be Honey Cakes for Saint David's Day March 1st and then Irish Marmalade Cake for Saint Patrick's Day - stay tuned!