Once a regular feature of the British tea time, English Madeleines have gone out of favour in recent decades. They are however absolutely delicious and the make the perfect nostalgic treat, as part of a vintage afternoon tea. My grandma used to bake these regularly for her family and I’ve been enjoying making them myself and continuing the family tradition. 

They are quite straightforward to make and the only specialist equipment that you need is dariole moulds, which you can buy in most baking supply shops. I’ve found quite a few different versions of this recipe in various vintage cookbooks, but this one is by far my favourite.

How to Make

Makes 8 Madeleines

Ingredients: 

230g Butter plus extra for greasing.

230g Caster Sugar

4 Eggs

230g Self Raising Flour

To Decorate:

Apricot Jam

Desiccated Coconut

Glace Cherries

Equipment: 

8 Dariole Moulds

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 190ºc

Brush the insides of the moulds with melted butter.

Cream the butter and sugar together until pale.

Add one egg at a time and beat into the mixture thoroughly.

Sift the flour into the mixture and fold in.

Divide the mixture between the moulds.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes.

Turn out and cool on a wire rack.

Cut a little off the bottom so that they sit flat on a plate.

Spread the sides and top with warm jam.

Roll in the coconut and place a cherry on the top.

As always, please let me know if you try any of my recipes and tag me in pictures! I always love to see what you’ve been baking.

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It feels like ages since I shared a recipe on the blog. I’ve still been doing a lot of baking, but mostly for other projects and articles. I thought it was high time I shared some vintage inspired baked treats on here again. Todays recipe is adapted from one I found in a vintage 50s recipe book. These are easy to whip up and quick to bake.

The recipe makes a very thin cake, which is then iced and cut into squares for a delicious snack. These would be great as part of a party or afternoon tea.

Ingredients:

85g Butter

85g Caster sugar

½ tsp Baking powder

15 g cocoa powder

85g Flour

2 Eggs

Milk

Chocolate Icing to Decorate (I make a basic icing by mixing icing sugar and coco powder with water)

Flaked almonds to decorate

Directions:

Preheat oven to 220ºc Grease a baking tray (I used a 9×9″ tin)

Sift the flour and baking powder together in a mixing bowl

In a separate bowl cream the butter and sugar until pale.

Stir the cocoa into the butter mixture and beat until well mixed.

Add the eggs one at a time and beast each well before adding the next.

Fold in flour mixture and mix lightly.

Add a little milk as required.

Pour the mixture into the tray and spread evenly.

Bake for 8-10 minutes.

Turn out and cool on a wire rack.

Pour the icing onto the flat side of the cake coating it evenly.

Sprinkle with flaked almonds and slice once set.

If you enjoyed this, I’m still writing monthly food articles in Vintage Life Magazine. In the latest issue, I’ve been baking with flowers and have featured recipes for a Rosewater Cake and Lavender Shortbread biscuits.

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As I’m sure you all know, I absolutely love baking. I’ve got the stage now where i feel pretty undaunted by the idea of making different cakes. But when it comes to cake decorating, I’m completely out of my comfort zone. I think baking and decorating are quite different skill sets and I’ve mastered one, but not the other.

tala-christmas-icing-setWhen I was recently invited to try Tala’s Christmas icing kit, I jumped at the chance for two reasons. Firstly as I’ve mentioned before I collect vintage Tala baking equipment and have a few 50s icing sets from them, so using the modern equivalent rally appealed to me. Secondly I love to throw myself in at the deep end and try new skills, nothing ventured, nothing gained and all that.

tala-christmas-icing-set-and-bowlSo armed with my new icing set and a rather lovely festive red icing set I got to work on decorating my Christmas cake. I had a vision of what I wanted in my head, I’ve been making a lot of tiered cakes, so I knew I wanted to try another one. I also knew I wanted to go for a red and white theme, just like I did on my Christmas tree.

tala-christmas-icing-kit-christmas-cakeI’ve only covered a cake in fondant once before, so this was something I was really glad to practice again. It’s actually harder than it looks and I needed to refer to a few Youtube tutorials to make sure I was doing it right! The result isn’t perfect, but I’m just happy that it looks OK!

tala-christmas-cake-train-detailTo create the train on the cake I used my train cookie cutters, for the snowflakes I used the cutter from the Tala kit. I also added some piping using the piping bag from the kit with royal icing to complete the decoration.

tala-piping-bagI found all the products in the tin really easy to use, which made the whole experience much more enjoyable. The heavy duty piping bag was so much easier to use than disposable ones and I was really happy with the choice of nozzles. I know these will be getting lots of use all year round.

tala-snowflake-cutterThe cutters are also really good, as I got used to using them my snow flakes got much neater. Its a really handy little tool for creating something detailed with very little effort.

vintage-tala-icing-setI really enjoyed giving cake decorating a go and it’s definitely something I will try again and try and improve my skills a little. I was really impressed with the kit and I’ll using the piping bits loads and I’m hoping to use my holly cutter for something nice this year too.

tala-snowflake-christmas-cake

See the full baking range on the Tala website.

*Thank you to Tala for sending my the icing set and bowl to make my cake. All opinions are my own. 

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As we all know I love a bit of baking. It’s my number one way to relax. Christmas definitely gives me a good excuse to get my bake on. Not only is it nice to prepare lots of festive treats to eat, but cookies and cakes also make great little gifts for my friends and family.

dot-com-gift-shop-christmas-baking-haulThis week I stocked up on some baking essentials from Dot Com Gift Shop. They have loads of lovely festive baking treats and their prices are fantastic.

dot-com-gift-shop-christmas-cookie-cuttersAt the moment I’m planning to make some festive flavoured muffins and cupcakes and lots of cookies, so I stocked up on cake cases and Christmas themed cookie cutters. I’m also going to use the cutters to make some salt dough decorations for the tree with the kids.

christmas-bauble-cookie-cuttersThese Christmas bauble cookie cutters will be perfect for making ginger bread and salt dough decorations for the tree. I picked up some pretty string to use to hand them as well.

retro-christmas-cup-cake-casesThe cute little cupcake cases and mini loaf cases, have lovely retro designs and will be perfect for some of my vintage bakes.

gingerbread-and-man-and-train-cookie-cuttersYou can’t go wrong with a good old fashioned ginger bread man and the train cookie cutters are just so adorable. I’m really looking forward to making a big batch of gingerbread and decorating these.

dot-com-gift-shop-christmas-cake-tinAll the lovely things I’m planning on baking, need somewhere to live, so I picked up this lovely retro cake tin. It’s a really good size and I can’t wait to fill it up with tasty Christmas goodies.

The whole haul cost me just £30, which I think is fantastic value for money and I’m going to have so much fun using it all!

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Todays recipe is perfect for when you feel like making something nice, but without taking too much time or effort. I absolutely love bread and butter pudding, its such a classic recipe and really quick and cheap to make.

bread-and-butter-pudding-recipeYou will need:

  • 10 slices of white bread
  • Butter
  • 50g sultanas
  • 25 g caster sugar

For the custard:

  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 40g caster sugar
  • a few drops of vanilla essence
  • 400ml milk

bread-and-butter-puddingHow to Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 180ºc
  2. Whisk the egg yolks, sugar and vanilla together.
  3. Continue to whisk while gradually adding the milk.
  4. Butter a pie dish.
  5. Cut the crusts off the bread and spread both sides with butter.
  6. Arrange your bread in an overlapping pattern in the pie dish.
  7. Sprinkle with Sultanas.
  8. Pour over half the custard mixture and allow to fully soak in.
  9. Add the rest of the mixture and sprinkle with sugar.
  10. Bake in the oven for around 45, until the custard has set and the pudding is golden and crisp.

traditional-bread-and-butter-puddingTo make mine look a little prettier, I cut a heart out of one slice of bread with a cookie cutter and placed it in the middle.

If you try this recipe, please send me pictures as I love to see your bakes too. For more recipes check out my baking section. I’m also writing about food and drink for Vintage Life magazine every month, you can pick up the latest issue here.

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