Wednesday, 26 August 2015

#BloggersBakeAlong: 3D Bread Sculpture

Hey Guys!

Of all the weeks I think I'd ace in the Great British Bake Off, bread week is not one of them. I'm a baker of cakes and even though a loaf don't seem too different to a gateaux, I am a horrific baker of bread! Let's all take this post as a light hearted read... Something to entertain ourselves over our lunch break during a busy day in the office, a bit of light relief from a tough day of studying, a post where you'll be laughing with me and hopefully not at me!

This week I decided to attempt to rival Paul's bread Lion Face from the third instalment in the bake off tent. His piece looked so #totesamazeballs I thought I could defo put together something up to that standard. I chose to use soda bread in 3 different flavours to create a cute bow shape,since I am Row Bow, y'know!


After scrolling though the internet and flicking through many a cook book, I decided it would be easiest to make one super batch of soda bread and split it into 3 types. I used 500g plain flour, 500g wholemeal flour, a little salt, 1 tsp bicarb, 3 cups milk and 3 tsp cream of tartar. But there's no point me telling you this because it TOTALLY DID NOT work.

The first part was a plain soda bread. This became the knot of my bow.


I wanted to construct a perfectly pretty, pink bow, so I added chopped cherries and a little cherry juice to 2/5 of the mixture. I added about half of the 200g pack of cherries and had my delightful assistant chop them into eighths. Along with a splash of cherry juice, these were mixed into the portion of bread mixture. It was such a slimy messy because the mixture really didn't need any more liquid before the juice. I thought the cherry juice would change the colour of the dough more, but it kept it a very light pastel pink.


The loops of my bow were going to be made from the pinkest of pink bread that most people will have ever seen in their lifetimes! I pulverised about 150g beetroot, but that was way too much because it made the dough super wet. But it did give a lovely rosy hue to the dough. I used gloves to kneed the mixture together because I did NOT want to get rosy red hands!


And below is my dough ready to go into the oven. I have no idea what happened because the suggested 25 minutes turned into well over at hour at Gas Mark 6, and Row's Bow came out looking like the exact same piece that went in. Just less shiny and more dry. Safe to say it did not taste good! Bleugh!


Oh well! There's always next week right?...

Have you had any baking disasters when trying to bake along with bake off?


Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Super Cute Sun Dress

Hey Guys!

I'm glad those sunny beams ol' are shining from the sky again. I was getting a little sad at the though summer was over with the drab weather! This #OOTD was from one of the hottest days I had working at my local primary school. I normally feel like I'm melting when it gets hot, but this day it was everyone else who began to melt while Row Bow felt pretty fresh!

A cute little summer dress is something every stylish munchkin should have in their wardrobe. They may not look the most impressive, but in the summer heat do you really want lots of glitzy fabrics draped over you? A lovely summer dress with a classy belt, relaxed denim jacket and some dazzling sunnies and you have got yourself a super cute summer look (without putting a whole lot of effort in, really. Win!).









Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

#BloggersBakeAlong: Biscuit Box Building

Hey Guys!

As the second #GBBO week swung around, we all saw the 'amateur' bakers *cough* Marie *cough* push their architectural skills with mighty biscuit builds. Weren't those fortune cookies, like, the best idea ever? Since I'm taking part in #BloggersBakeAlong I had a go at constructing my own masterpiece out of Gingerbread and Shortbread. I am on my holibobs this week, so say hello to another kitchen I've been baking in. This one is complete with scales and everything! Since I am in Scotland, it was an obvious choice to make Shortbread pieces. Yum!

I'm not gonna lie, I did use a recipe from the side of my Plain Flour packed for the Gingerbread. It was just in the most convenient at the time! Firstly, to make a Gingerbread batter I sifted 350g plain flour, 1 tbsp Ground Ginger, 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon and I am now thinking instead of the suggested 1 tsp of Bicarbonate of Soda I'm pretty sure I actually used 1 tbsp. Whoopsie!


I rubbed in 125g of butter to make breadcrumbs then sprinkled in 175g of Light Brown Sugar. I mixed my wet ingredients in a spare bowl, which included 1 egg and 4 tbsp of Golden Sugar, and placed them into my breadcrumb-esque mixture once blended together. 

Then it's time to get your hands messy and make a dough out of the combined ingredients. I must admit it was a little wet so I happily added more plain flour to combat this. Wrap up the dough an place in the fridge to chill for 15 minutes, but I left it as long as it took to make the shortbread batter.


A super simple way to make is to mix 300g butter, 140g sugar, 300g plain flour and 140g rice flour. Then spread it into a greased tin and leave to chill for at least 30 minutes. Easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy! 


I baked the Gingerbread for 20 minutes or so at 180 degrees in a  fan oven. As this was cooking (enough to make 5 parts for a box), I attacked the chilled shortbread with the prongs of a fork and also scored out where I planned to cut up the shortbread pieces. This baked for around 20 minutes again at the same temperature.



After cutting the Gingerbread slabs into dainty box walls, I used my creative little hands to pipe a decorative design onto my lid. I kept the icing sugar to water ratio really high so it was a thick, solid paste. It was like a beautiful sugary, sweet mortar to my gingery, bready bricks. Once I'd filled my Gingerbread box with my Shortbread pieces, I think I'd made something Paul and Mary would be very impressed with. HeHe (Along as they were NOT looking at my construction skills...)!



Whey-heeyyy!


Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Monday, 17 August 2015

Sweet Summer Colours

Hey Guys!

One of the little kids at school said to me today, 'Row, I don't think I've ever seen you in the same outfit twice. You must have so many clothes!' Success! Someone finally noticed I hate wearing the same thing twice to the same place. But if I'm with different people then it's a completely different story, Ha!

I love the colourings of this look because they just seem so summery. They remind me of pastel coloured sweet treats. Mmmmm! I had to wear a top underneath the green sheer print shirt, because working in a school means see through tops are not ok. Obvz! Because of the bright colourings, I wore my bold, orange crop top underneath. It didn't look like a crop top though, since I'd worn my skirt so high waisted. Win!









Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Chill Babez

Hey Guys!

Woah! Did the glamorous Row Bow really wear slouchy trousers to school?

Uh, yep. That kinda happened! But I think they look pretty darn cool, actually. I was off doing my own thing in the morning, but went into the school I was helping at for the afternoon. I bought these trouser from Primark at the beginning of summer, thinking they looked effortlessly cool. I showed my housemates my new buy and then one of them went out and bought the EXACT same pair as me. If that doesn't paint me as a fashion guru extraordinaire, I don't know what does. Hehe!

I spent my afternoon 'painting the roses red, yes, painting the roses red, not pink, not green, not aquamarine, I was painting the roses red!' I do love that song! This was for the class production of Alice in Wonderland. This outfit might look chilled enough for painting, but I did not want to get my fresh threads dirty with poster paint! Some messy jobs, I'm happy to let the kids take the wrap for...

Imma put it out there, my hair is looking 'on fleek' here!









Do you like my eyeliner? Why had nobody enlightened my life with gel eyeliner before?! This is the gel eyeliner pot from NYX. Cute, huh?


Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Rainy Summer Days

Hey Guys!

Some summer days I just can't bear to admit it that it is actually going to be rainy. I'll dress for the sunny weather and pop a pair of tights on, because I still want to hold onto the sunny summer feeling. This look demonstrates one of those kind of days perfectly. In fact it was actually raining as I took the latter half of these pictures (that's dedication!). I really like the combination of the dress and kimono because they are similar lengths, so the kimono just covers the dress. Pulling my hair back into a messy bun, meant I could show of the pretty pearl headband. I didn't wear any other accessories because there is a lot going on with the different patterns, textures and finishings to the look.









Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

#BloggersBakeAlong: Black Forest Gateau Showstopper

Hey Guys!

I was a little late catching up with the first episode of #GBBO, but that didn't stop me fitting a quick bake in. I'm still chilling in my student pad with no cooking utensils... I don't make it easy for myself! Want to catch up on last week's Bake Off post? Find that here, which a little more info about #BloggersBakeAlong. But for now, lets get on with this weeks bake!

Out of the three bakes the brand new, shiny contestants made, I decided to make my own Black Forest Gateau cake. I'm not gonna lie, I have done a bit of a 'Stu' and taken on my own twist. I made little cupcakes instead of the real deal cake. I still put real cherries on though, so there's none of his beetroot madness in sight!


First I melted 60g of dark chocolate in a bowl. A good chocolate sponge ALWAYS has real chocolate in!


Then I creamed my 175g of butter and 175g of sugar. Obviously totally guesstimated since I don't have any sort of scales in my uni crib! Then I folded in my roughly 175g Self raising flour, hopefully 1 tsp Baking Powder and near enough 60g coco powder. And finally poured in the melted chocolate. Yum!

Into the cases at 200 degrees they went. S-I-M-P-L-E!


I baked them for about 20 minutes and then left them to cool. 

In the mean time I made my icing with like 100g butter and however much icing sugar I thought was necessary. I felt so much free-er baking without scales, I could almost feel the wind through my hair, hehe! I also added a dribble of vanilla essence because that makes EVERYTHING taste better!


I sliced off some of the pointier tops, so I could take part in a highly efficient taste test you understand, right?! A scoop of icing and a cherry on top and the bad boys were ready to eat. Delish!



I took these into work and they went down a really treat. I think butter icing always looks a little fancier, so everybody is super impressed and wants bite!


Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

Monday, 10 August 2015

Red Dress On Me

Hey Guys!

Sometimes you can overthink a look. But you can put on a pretty dress and let it do all the talking, without heaps of accessories. Your hair and make-up don't even have to be that great, since everybody is looking at the dress. That was exactly my thinking when I wore this dress. I added summery features like the cropped denim jacket (which is from the little kiddies section obviously!) and jelly shoes. I always forget how pretty this dress looks when it's just chillin' on it's own.










I am soon excited for the second album to come from Rita Ora. I Will Never Let You down was totes amaze, and Poison was uber cool and now Body On Me is a super sexy, slick tune. Gimme that album asap!



Soooo, just after posting this the ACTUAL Rita Ora tweeted me. We have the sort of relationship where she only has to say 'heart emjoi', but totally get what sh'ed saying. HeHe!





Oodles and Toodles
Row Bow
x

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