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Elderberry Liqueur

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So it’s that time of year where you start thinking about Christmas presents. More specifically, what can you make for presents this year?! A friend at work brought in some elderberries from his garden, and after a quick google search I found this recipe for some elderberry liqueur. I don’t really drink (except for the odd amaretto and cranberry, or a splash of amaretto in hot chocolate) but really fancied having a go at this, and thought it might be a good Christmas gift idea. Not that I’ve ever had an elderberry, so I don’t know what they taste like! According to the recipe I found on Hunter Gardener Angler Cook, it should be a bit like port wine. You need to make sure that when you pick the berries you don’t include any of the storks, as they are slightly toxic apparently. Here goes…

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DIY Spice Rack

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We bought a spice rack several months ago with the intention of finding some little jars and making our own labels for them. As is often the case, we start off with good intentions but then life gets in the way and more important tasks come along! It was also delayed because we found some jars but then made the mistake of not buying the at the time (I think we weren’t in a position to carry them home safely), and then typically they weren’t there when we went back! Making these labels for the jars is a nice and easy craft project that you could easily complete on a week night. I decided to use the stamps that I used for our wedding invitations, which came from Pretty M on Etsy. I think this would make a lovely Christmas gift, or perhaps a wedding gift (we did something similar a couple of years ago and our friends were really pleased with it!). Continue reading…

Lined wooden drawers

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I bought these wooden drawers months ago, and did a little blog post about them at the time with my idea to do them up. This year really has flown by – when I looked for the original post, I was really surprised to find that it was in January! So, it’s October and I’ve finally got around to doing it! The insides of the drawers had been painted but they were a bit dusty (maybe done with chalk paint?), and because I want to use them to store haberdashery bits and pieces I thought that I’d be able to line them. Continue reading…

Guinness Parkin

Parkin is a real taste of Autumn, and I absolutely love it! Last year I made a traditional Yorkshire Parkin, but recently I spotted a less traditional recipe in Edd Kimber’s ‘The Boy Who Bakes‘ and just had to give it a go! I made two (one for a friend, who bought the Guinness – thanks Paula!) and the first was a disaster to look at because I put a little too much mixture in the loaf tin…oops! But the second one turned out lovely, and that’s the one I gave away! I remembered that I’d got some leftover frosting in the freezer and decided to use it to cover up the explosion – it tastes so good, and the white frosting and the dark Parkin makes it look just like a pint of Guinness! Parkin isn’t traditionally iced in any way, but for this non-traditional recipe it’s worth making an exception. Continue reading…