Custard and vanilla bean sandwich cookies

 

For better or for worse we are living in very interesting times, and the world will never be the same again (let’s hope for the better!). At the beginning of the year I couldn’t possibly have imagined what was ahead, and that my family would be living in lockdown at home for several months. There have been highs and lows, tears and laughter, losses and silver linings. And there’s been baking. A LOT of baking.

 

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Cranberry cookies

 

I’ve been on the cookie train since lockdown started in March, and this is just one of the many recipes I’ve been playing around with recently. It’s been a while since I last posted a  recipe – the last few weeks have been a blur of school work and moving house (I know, superb timing) whilst keeping on top of my freelance projects. I’m sure many of you are also still finding your way in this new and strange reality. One thing we’ve all been reminded of though is that life is uncertain, so bake cookies with reckless abandon I say!

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Mexican hot chocolate cookies

 

Lockdown baking is my jam right now. When I’m feeling overwhelmed or stressed because of our current lockdown situation I know that I can head into the kitchen, grab a handful of ingredients and simply whip, stir and bake my stress away – for a little while at least! For instant baking gratification you can’t beat a batch of cookies and they are my go-to treats at the moment. (If you see a lot of cookie recipes popping up on the blog over the next few months you’ll know why!)

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Lockdown recipe ideas and my top 8 stay at home tips

 

It’s week three of self isolation for my family not to mention one week into South Africa’s lockdown, and it felt wrong to just put out another recipe without acknowledging the strange and unsettling situation that we all find ourselves in right now. So for this post I’m doing something a little different and sharing not only some recipe inspiration but some thoughts on how we’re managing at home, and our new routine. Please feel free to add your own thoughts in the comments, I’d love to hear how you’re doing!

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Chocolate and peanut butter ganache cupcakes

 

I’ve been baking up a storm this past week. We celebrated my daughter’s birthday over the weekend (which meant party cake and treats as well as cupcakes for school and home) and today Cupcakes and Couscous turns 7! Last year we celebrated with this caramel choc chip ice cream and this year I decided that some decadent chocolate ganache cupcakes were the perfect treat to celebrate this milestone.

 

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Almond and blueberry brownies

 

If I had to choose my ultimate treat I think brownies may just be it! And when it comes to brownies I’m quite particular about what I like – rich, dark, fudgy brownies are where it’s at. I’ve also tried a number of “health” brownie recipes over the years and while the results have been okay they have never really hit the spot in terms of chocolatey-ness and that dense texture. So I was very excited to discover this recipe for brownies with dark chocolate chunks and blueberries which marries the two perfectly, I may just have found my new favourite brownie recipe.

 

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Chocolate coated raw cookies with raspberry and coconut filling

 

I love a healthy treat and this recipe requires a little bit of effort but is so worth it if you’re looking for a sweet fix with a bit of added goodness. I’m talking about these dark chocolate coated raw oat cookie sandwiches filled with coconut and raspberry centres. They are heavenly!

 

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Spiced apple crumble cheesecake with salted caramel sauce + GIVEAWAY

 

Your week is about to get better, thanks to this showstopper dessert! As I mentioned in my last post I will be sharing a few recipes from some of the newest additions to my cookbook collection over the coming weeks. Today’s drool-worthy recipe for spiced apple crumble cheesecake with salted caramel sauce is by my friend Astrid Field of The Sweet Rebellion and comes from her first recipe book “High Tea at Home”.

 

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