Our Engagement!

Just wanted to stop by and share the news with you all!

Dave popped the question on Saturday and I said YES! 🙂 It was all very romantic and took place in Roundhay park! We drank champagne in the rain and unbeknown to me, our lovely friend Matt was taking pictures of our happy little occasion! Haven’t seen them yet but they should be interesting! ha! 🙂

Very very excited! 🙂

Engagement

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Fun Decorating Biscuits!

Had a go at decorating some biscuits last night! 🙂

These are a mix of fondant iced biscuits and royal iced biscuits. The fondant decorating was a little easier than using the royal icing but I really enjoyed playing around with both!

Not bad for a first attempt?! 🙂

Love S & P ♡ x

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Homemade Vanilla Extract!

IMG_4833Happy Sunday! I hope you have all had a lovely week? Unfortunately I have not been so lucky as I have been struck down with the lurgy and am spending my days battling tonsillitis! Yuk!

Luckily for you lovely lot, ‘here’s one I made earlier’!

I don’t know about you, but I spend a fortune on vanilla extract from the supermarket or at online stores – a bit of a perfectionist, I always look for quality and choose extract over ‘Vanilla Flavourings’ as these lack a full flavour and aroma.

Besides, the more natural the better, right?

One off my ‘To Do’ list (the one I’m clearly ignoring when I think of new things to do or bake!) I’m happy to get another item ticked off the list and this recipe couldn’t be simpler!

Just two ingredients – Vodka & Vanilla Beans! Perfection in a bottle!……With a little patience 😉

Enjoy! x

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Ingredients:

  • Bottle – I used a 1ltr Kilner bottle
  • Vanilla Beans – (rule of thumb is 4-5 beans per 8 ounces of alcohol)
  • Vodka – (at least 80 proof)

Recipe:

1. Split the vanilla beans. Slice each vanilla bean in half lengthwise. I used these Madagascan Vanilla Beans

IMG_4828IMG_48342. Place the sliced vanilla beans in a clean jar or bottle. Cover them with the Vodka. I used 17 Vanilla Pods for the full 1ltr bottle

Tip: Make sure that your vanilla beans are completely submerged

3. Close the lid tightly and give the jar or bottle a good shake
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4. Store your newly created vanilla extract in a dark place for at least 2 months, shaking it from time to time. After a few days the mixture will start to darken as the vanilla infuses with the vodka. Taste the extract and let it infuse longer if you prefer a stronger flavour

Tip: You may wish to use the vanilla extract as a gift and decant some of the extract into  pretty bottles. The seeds can add more of a homemade touch, but if you want a clear extract you can strain the extract using a coffee filter or some cheese cloth

You can keep the vanilla beans in the bottle and top up as and when required, ensuring that you periodically refresh the vanilla beans to keep the flavour strong.

It really is that simple!
Why not play around with flavours? You don’t have to use vodka, you can use Rum, Bourbon or Brandy! As well as all sorts of different varieties of Vanilla Beans. I went for a classic combination this time but I’m super excited to try a Rum based Vanilla Extract with Mexican Vanilla Beans that should compliment each other perfectly! 🙂

Bon Appétit!

Love Steph ♡ x
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