Category Archives: baking

Cookie Class at Coffee @ Camden

Coffee @ Camden, Bath

Last month we surprised my sons with a special Saturday activity, a children’s cookie class at Coffee @ Camden in Bath.  You might remember my blog post from Coffee @ Camden on my day date there last year.  The owner, Sara, specializes in amazing and delicious cupcakes which are perfect for birthdays, weddings, holidays, or those ‘just because’ moments. While we were not having cupcakes on this day, my sweet tooth was not disappointed. Continue reading

Panettone & Yammos in Bath, England

How to Make Panettone

I have to share with you a gem we have found here in Bath.  A Neapolitan restaurant called Yammo!

Having lived in Napoli, Italia as a child and later as a teen I have become a food snob when it comes to Italian food. I resist going to any so-called ‘Italian’ restaurants in the USA and only found one in Malibu, California that came close to the food on which I was brought up. We stumbled upon Yammo one evening for dinner as our stomachs were growling, not knowing what was in store for us.  I was taking by surprise by finding a restaurant owned by a man from Napoli and won over by the amazing food. I have never tasted a pizza that tasted like the pizza from my home in bella Napoli, until I went to Yammo. One taste of the sauce on the pizza margherita and I was transported back home. We have since decided it is our favourite resturant in Bath and have returned to dine in as well as to order pizza delivery to our home.

How to Make Panettone

For my birthday this year all I would have loved to go home to see my friends and ‘family’ in Napoli.  My husband got me the second best thing which was to attend a Panettone demonstration with Ottavia of Ottavia in Cucina at Yammo with a free coffee and tasting session.  I have only ever eaten panettone, never have I made one.  Last year my mum (known as ‘Nonna’) and sister came for Christmas and we were all gutted that we did not get a panettone to share for the holidays.  Needless to say I was very excited to be able to learn all the steps for making this Christmas treat from Italia.

How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone

How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone

I felt I had learned so much more than just how to make panettone from Ottavia at the panettone demonstration at Yammo.  Not only was I enjoying hearing her accent but she was filled with rich information about which ingredients will produce a better panettone and explaining the science behind cooking this yeasted rich bread.  In the photos above she shared tips of how to preserve the aroma from the orange zest by mixing it with your butter first, how to make your own candied fruits, the tools she uses for when she is kneading the dough, and how to hang your panettone upside down after it has finished baking.  How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone How to Make Panettone

How to Make PanettoneThe demonstration was amazing. I only wish we could have made it there as part of the class. I did however get to buy panettone cases so I can try this at home.This was my first time having homemade panettone, having grown up eating the ones from the store for Christmas in Napoli, Italia.  It was really soft and the most delicious panettone I have ever eaten.  I cannot wait to make my own this year too!  Thank you so much to Ottavia and to Yammo for hosting such an amazing afternoon!

66 Walcot Street, Bath, BA1 5BD
For delivery call 01225 938328

Ottavia in Cucina

Q: Have you ever tried Italy’s beloved Panettone or made one at home?  




Dec Sponsors

I would like to give a shout out to all my sponsors on my sidebar for the month of December.  We have Sarah Rose joining us for the first time from Bristol, England and returning to the side bar this month are Tara from Ontario, Canada and Louisa from Abruzzo, Italia. You will also remember Kate, Lix, Kim, and Melanie my sponsors continuing on through this month from November.  Thank you to these lovely ladies for their support to ACR.

25 Days of Christmas

Checking in on the Nutcracker this morning, Prince Ice, who was up last night playing cards with T.Rex for peanut m&ms.  Unfortunately with T.Rex’s limited arm reach and after the Maddox broke the Nutcracker by having him eat a jelly bean, neither of them could enjoy their winnings. So the treats were left for the boys to enjoy with a game of cards after school.


*photography by Bonnie Rose Photography © 2007 – 2013 All Rights Reserved |

Thanksgiving Apple Pie


Happy Thanksgiving! Today we are celebrating with a few other expat families here in England.  It is my families first time to celebrate in three years and I am really looking forward to it! While my husband was in charge of the turkey and stuffing I have been busy making a pie.  What I love most about this apple pie is I use coconut oil to make the crust.  On this day of Thanksgiving I am going to be sharing my recipe so you can enjoy it too!

5 cups of flour
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vinegar
2 cups of coconut oil
1 egg, slightly beaten In a standard measuring cup and filled with water to make one cup liquid.

Directions: Mix flour, salt and sugar. Add in the coconut oil which should be in its liquid consistency. Then combine this mixture with the egg-water and vinegar. This will make a soft dough that is easy to handle and will not break or crumble while rolling. This should be enough dough for 3 double crust pies. However for this pie pictured below I cut halved the recipe and used it to make one double crusted pie with all the details you see below.

Once your crust is mixed wrap up in cling wrap and put in the fridge to chill while you work on the filling.

*Secret Ingredients

To start I peeled the skin from the apples, cored  them, and then sliced them up into a bowl.  I then sprinkled the three listed ingredients over the apples and shook them in the bowl until well mixed.  I will state there are a two things I added for flavour as my secret ingredients that I cannot share.  But feel free to experiment and make this pie your own.

You can then take out the pie dough and start rolling it out with your rolling pin (i used a pint drinking glass before we bought our rolling pin if you need an alternative).  Make sure when you are working on the bottom layer you make it much larger than the circle of the pan to take in account for the sides and a little overhang.  Do not cut off the overhang yet.  Press out any air by pushing the dough into the pie pan.  You can now fill it with your apple mixture.

For the top layer you can simply repeat with just placing the crust on top, sealing it around the sides with a fork, and making a few air holes for the steam in the middle.  Or you can be creative like me.  I decided to make a lattice, add a braided border, add leaves where the plaits met, and a heart in the center.  Then take a little egg and milk mixture, and brush over the top. Sprinkle with some icing sugar and you are set to go!

You will want to have your oven preheated at gas mark 6  and put the pie in for 15 minutes. After the fifteen you can lower the temperature to gas mark 4 for a remaining 25 minutes.





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 Bonnie Rose Photography © 2007 – 2013 All Rights Reserved |

Recipe: Pims & Simple Oat Cookies

Earlier this month we went to the village fete in Monkton Farleigh, this weekend a fete in Batheaston, and in two weeks time we will be at another nearby. Nothing says Summer in Great Britain than a lovely village fete, a jug of Pims, and an array of baked goods. If you find yourself lacking a fete nearby, you can bring the best elements to your home. This blog post includes recipes we have used recently at our home here in England. The first is a recipe for how to make Pims. You pretty much cannot go to any function during the summer without having Pims available. It will also be the cause for a long que and the first thing to run out. 
I mention Pims quite a lot in my blog and tweets during the summer months and have been asked by those in America what it is exactly. Pims in the bottle itself is a gin-based drink containing ‘a secret mixture of herbs and liqueurs’. There are several different recipes for different drink variations but the most common one calls for Pim’s original, ice, lemonade, and the fruit/veggie garnishes. If you are not accustomed to lemonade in England it is not the same as its American variety. Lemonade in England is a lemon flavored carbonated drink. If you do not have any fizzy lemonade on hand we have made it with sparkling water and fresh lemons and it has turned out just perfectly. I have included the print ready recipe from the official Pim’s website. Make sure to check it out for their other drink varieties.


The next recipe I want to share is a really simple oat cookie or biscuit. It is easy because you can make it with just 4-5 ingredients and ones you probably have at home already. They are perfect for those last minute guests that come over for tea and are sure to please the masses. They are also simple enough for kids and makes a great family activity for after school.

170g (6oz) butter
115g (40z) caster sugar*
225g (8oz) self-raising flour
57g (2oz) porridge oats
1 tsp vanilla extract

*I like to substitute with organic set honey.  Just use a little less honey than the amount of sugar needed to make sure you get the right cookie dough consistency.  

Directions:Preheat the oven to 180 degrees or Gas mark 4. 
Greece a cookie sheet with coconut oil.
Cream together the butter and sugar/honey until light and fluffy.
Add vanilla extract.
Sieve in self raising flour.
Set aside one ounce of the porridge oats and mix the remaining oats into the mixture.  
Knead the cookie dough and then roll into twenty small balls.  
Roll each ball in the remaining porridge oats and press down on a greased baking tray.
Bake cookies in the oven for about fifteen minutes or until golden brown. 

These lovely oaty biscuits are small, perfect with tea, and if your family is like mine the biscuits will disappear quickly!  I hope you enjoy both of these recipes and let me know how you get on if you try them out. 

Q: Have you had Pim’s before?


Fall has Begun

Fall is finally here and we are already enjoying the changing colours of the leaves.  So much so we went out and picked a bunch of our favourite leaves from the ground and took them home.  I had seen on Pinterest how you can fold the leaves to make roses and got busy constructing my own.  Since Rose is my middle name (literally), I took photos to show you the Fall coloured roses.  You can see them displayed above and I have included a photo at the end of this blog post. 
My boys at the farmer’s market at the pumpkin patch. 
To celebrate the season we went to a farmer’s market and a Pumpkin patch.   My boys were so excited pick out their own pumpkins and gourds.  It will be fun to decorate this week for the Fall holidays.  With our wagons full, we left and headed over to Arthur, an Amish community.  We picked up a bag full of apples from the orchards and spices to make our own apple pies.  I have never made a pie before so it was a pretty big deal for me to try it this year.  Thanks to one of my friends for a yummy crust recipe, I got busy with slicing apples.  For those of you big on using coconut oil, I will let you in on a little baking secret.  Instead of using crisco in the crust, I substituted with coconut oil.  You just need to make sure it is in its liquid state, and not solid when you mix it with your ingredients.  Otherwise your dough will end up lumpy. Though my pies do not look as beautiful as professional pies, they were the best tasting ones I have ever had.  Proof that homemade is definitely more fun and more tasty! Hope you guys have fun trying your hands out at baking this Fall like we did.

My homemade Apple Pie, the first time making one.
With our left over apples we sliced them thinly and put them on a baking sheet.  After sprinkling them with a little splenda and apple pie spice, we put them into the oven to bake for an hour on each side. The result: Yummy home made apple crisps! Yummy! My son, Ronan, really enjoyed making these and my other son Maddox really loves eating them for a snack. 
My boys trying honey sticks at the Farmer’s market in Champaign, IL.

Ronan in his wagon at the Pumpkin Patch.
My sons had fun checking out all the interesting pumpkins and gourds at the Pumpkin Patch.  
Maddox at the Pumpkin Patch. 
Running through the maze at the pumpkin patch. 
This is one of my favourite photos that I took in Arthur, the Amish community. The breeze was making the laundry on the line dance and the sun was shining through the trees.  Just a very beautiful scene.
Passing a horse and buggy on the road in Arthur.
Fall Roses made from leaves that I constructed from the leaves my sons picked out.