Saturday, 26 April 2014

Center Parcs April Challenge: Easter Egg Nests

We tried to pack in as much Easter craft and cookery as we could this half term, but we were very pleased to be prompted in to making some Easter Egg Nests in order to take part in this month's Center Parcs Challenge.
Taking inspiration from Center Parcs Creative Director Lynne Dixon we decided to use some cereal as the base for our Easter Egg Nests.  We opted for cornflakes.

The great thing about making Easter Egg Nests using cereal is that most of the items needed are store-cupboard items, so there's no need to hunt down that elusive ingredient.

Ingredients needed are simply:
225g Chocolate
50g Butter
2 tbsp Syrup
75g Cornflakes
36 mini chocolate eggs

This is such an easy recipe to do with kids.  Just melt the chocolate, butter and syrup together by putting the ingredients on a plate over a saucepan of hot water.  

 Then for the really fun part....  Mixing the melted chocolate with the cornflakes.
 Then divide the mixture in to paper cases and top with mini eggs.

 And then refrigerate. Of course, some little people have to have a taste first.
 And he gave the big thumbs up!
We also made some Easter Egg Nest cakes too using desiccated coconut and green food colouring - yummy!
This is my entry to the Center Parcs and Tots 100 April Challenge.  If I'm chosen, I would like to visit Longleat Forest.

If you would like to find out more about the challenge then please visit

Monday, 21 April 2014

Breakfast with the Easter Bunny

I'm always keen to create traditions for Easter; I think it's a very special time which allows for creativity and thoughtfulness.  SO when I spotted the 'Breakfast or tea with the Easter Bunny' event I was very excited.  Booking on-line the process was quick and easy, within a few days I noted the event had sold out....

On entering the lovely, warm and welcoming cafe in Swansea Wyevale I was surprised to see that the number of children was no where near as many as I was expecting.  The staff member said they keep the numbers low, so that the experience is less overwhelming for children and the Easter Bunny can spend more quality time with each child.  The amount of children made the environment really relaxing as there was no pushing and shoving trying to get to the Easter bunny.  

On our table there was a goodie bag for my son containing a soft cuddly chick, crayons, mini eggs and  a bag of bird seed.  The toy felt a good quality toy and I think you'll agree he looked rather cute.

A nicely wrapped bag of Mini Eggs

On our table was an activity sheet to keep my son busy and a drink of squash.

Alice in Wonderland visited all of the tables and chatted to the children about their excitement to meet the Easter Bunny.
 We were soon presented with a delicious cooked breakfast.  Bacon, beans, fried potatoes and sausage.  Whilst the grown-ups (extra tickets required) had bacon, egg, mushrooms, tomatoes, black pudding, sausage, fried bread and toast.  Again, quality ingredients that really pleased all of our tastebuds.  It really seems to me that Swansea Wyevale does put quality first.  
 After the children had eaten their breakfast, out came the Easter Bunny.
 There were lots of photo opportunities and the characters seemed to be in no rush if you wanted that perfect photo.
Next, was Easter nest making.  Cups of mini eggs and cornflakes were presented on new tables and then Alice in Wonderland came round to pour the warm chocolate in to our bowls.

This was the finished result!

 Overall, this was definitely an experience I am keen to repeat next year.  We created some lovely memories!  Thank you Garden Centre Group!
Please note this is my own review - I was not sponsored or giving a freebie trip to write this.   I paid and it was well worth every penny!

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Easter Bunny Cake

Easter is my favourite time of the year; chocolate aside, it's the crafting that I love!  From making Easter bonnets, painting eggs and making Easter bakes, there's lots of projects for me to unleash my creativity on...

When it comes to baking, I am no expert, in fact I have had quite a few disasters....  But with each attempt I like to think that I am improving.  So today I attempted my first Easter bake; which was a sponge cake with raspberry jam and buttercream filling and then covered in fondant icing.  I then painted on an Easter bunny illustration using Squires Kitchen Edible Paints.  

Here's the pics:

 I know the fondant icing is a little lumpy as I have no experience in putting it on.  But I am sure I will improve with practice.

This was my first attempt at using edible paints so I was very pleased with my first try.  I feel there's lots of potential for making interesting cakes using them.

Best of all it tasted delicious!

Recipe used:

Sponge cake
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 200g softened butter
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp milk
You then heat the oven to 180c and cream together the sugar and butter, once light and fluffy add the eggs and milk.  Lastly sift the flour and baking powder together and fold in until fully incorporated.  The less mixing the better to keep the cake light.  Divide between two cake tins and cook for around 20-25 minutes.  Cake is cooked when a skewer inserted in to the middle comes out clean.

Once cooled you smother one half in buttercream and the other half in raspberry jam.  Put together and then smother outside in buttercream and then smooth fondant icing over.  Then paint on your required design using Squires Kitchen Edible Paints.

This is my entry in to the wonderful competition being run over at The Pink Whisk.  More details here: