Sunday, 29 April 2012

No.104 A Jubilee Bento


At the beginning of June there will be events throughout the UK to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Like with the recent royal wedding, there will be street parties and parades and in the case of myself and a few friends, a jubilee themed picnic! With the Diamond Jubilee just around the corner, royal emblems and British flag themed colour schemes and designs are popping up everywhere in shop windows, merchandise and even clothing ranges. Most of the associated merchandise and paraphernalia is not in my taste, but I am well known for having crown shapes in my jewellery. I even have what I refer to as my 'birthday tiara' which is a sparkly little item I pop on my head to wear only on my birthday. So, since crowns are somehting I'm very fond of, I was pleased to re-discover this purple crown food pick in my collection and use it to create a bit Jubilee-ness in little t's bento for tomorrow!


Little t has noodles cooked in a home made broth of vegetable stock and chili, some raw pepper 'frills' and some black pepper fried crispy tofu. In his dessert layer he has a piece of vegan ginger cake I baked yesterday, some satsuma pieces and some juicy blueberries. There in his ginger cake is the crown tooth pick, as placed by the little hands of little t himself.

Below is a picture of another recent bento that was particularly tasty. It has roasted vegetable couscous, grilled vegan burger slices, and a cherry tomato. In the fruit layer there was some pieces of 'Welsh cake' which is like a flat, fried scone, some kiwi and satsuma. Delicious.


If you have any Jubilee celebration plans of your own, leave me a comment and let me know. I'd love to hear what's going on.

My bento article in the WTKF online newsletter


In April I wrote an article to highlight my bento creations, and the making of bento in Western society, to be entered in "Shomen" The Welsh Traditional Karate Federation newsletter.  I've attached a link on the previous text. Take a look. I think it turned out quite well!

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Vegan Simnel Cake


Happy Easter! I'd like to share my vegan friendly Simnel cake recipe with you. It makes a deliciously moist, light fruit cake with a lemon and cinnamon flavour.

To make a round, two layered cake and have enough mixture left over for approximately 9-12 Simnel muffins, use the following quantities:

550g of self raising flour 
300 g of caster sugar
300g of dairy free spread (I use Pure spread)
300g of raisins
300g of chopped glace' cherries
2 tbsp of cinnamon
5 generous tbsp of lemon juice
1 tbsp of mixed spice.
Rice milk or water to soften.

Allow the raisins to soak in the lemon juice overnight. Mix the dried ingredients first, along with the spices then blend into a thick paste with the spread. You'll need to add a little rice milk or water as you mix it up to loosen the paste, but don't make it as sloppy as you would for a cake that includes a raising agent such as baking powder. This cake won't do very much rising since it is meant to be a denser, fruitier cake, more like a loaf. Separate into two tins with enough mixture to just about fill to the brim. Any excess mixture can then be baked at the same time in cupcake cases.

It will take approximately 25 minutes to cook in an oven set at 160 degrees. Check often and take the cupcakes out as soon as the tops have started to brown slightly. 

Before the two sponge halves of the cake have properly cooled, place a layer of marzipan between them. It will melt slightly into the cake and form a nice filling. Once cooled completely decorate the top with a further layer of marzipan and add the traditional marzipan balls if you like. 

Enjoy! 


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