I adore baking. From flicking through my cookery books choosing a recipe, to the methodical measuring and mixing – and then you get to eat what you bake! What could be better?
I don’t really do it as much as I used to because Im cutting down on sugar ever since I tackled my Diet Coke addiction, but a little bit of sugar now and then can’t hurt right? :
Absolutely ages ago, I went to an Aldi press show (an event where they show journalists items they’ll be selling throughout the year) and spotted this beauty.
I’ve had my eye on a famous brand of mixer for a while which costs about £450 but could just never justify the cost. So when I saw this, and then discovered the price I was blown away. Guys – this brilliant mixer – costs just £35 at Aldi.
It comes in blue and red, and has two type of utensils – one for mixing batter, and another for bread. It’s super simple to use too and feels sturdy. You twist the round bit at the back to turn on and change speeds, the button on the side lifts the mixers out and in the bowl, and the button on the top releases the mixers when you need to wash up. The bowl itself swivels and spins if you need it to and comes with a plastic lid if you want to let something sit for a while.
Do you ever have a conversation about a food item, then it stays on the brain till you eat it? Well last week I was in Wales. My dad eats scones for breakfast (which I think is odd, but each to their own I suppose). Anyway, my mum mentioned they were super easy to make. So when I got my hands on this mixer, I wanted to properly review it so thought I’d cook some up for the first time.
Going to be honest with you – I found out pretty quickly that scones are so easy – you really don’t need a mixer! ha. I did give it a mini work out, and it gave me a chance to see how it worked.
I also can imagine a load of you rolling your eyes at a scone recipe, but I’m doing it because I thought they were a faff so never bothered before. Seriously, you could knock these out within half an hour if you wanted to.
Ok, so a basic scone recipe involves (you get six decent sized ones):
- 225g/8oz self raising flour
- pinch of salt
- 55g/2oz butter
- 25g/1oz caster sugar
- 150ml/5fl oz milk
- 1 free-range egg, beaten, to glaze (though a bit of milk will do if you don’t mind them not being super shiny)
Which is all stuff I have hanging around my house (getting dusty in the back of the cupboard).
Stick on your oven at around 220c so its nice and warm and grease a pan (wipe some butter on it so the scones don’t stick to the bottom).
Put the flour in a bowl and put in the butter. With your fingers, kind of pinch the butter into the flour until you get a fine crumble.
Shove in the sugar, salt and milk and mix still you have a dough. It will be quite sticky. Put some flour onto your table to stop the dough sticking and give it a quick knead until it becomes a nice ball of dough. We’re talking 20 seconds of work here.
Lightly roll out to the thickness you’d like your scones (I’d go a little thicker than I did) – around 5cm. If you have a cutter, use that. I didn’t so just used a plastic up which was ok.
Because I went a bit thin, I got seven and a tiny one out of the dough. I’d recommend six.
Crack and egg into a bowl and mix with a fork. Then with a brush (or your fingers) cover the tops of the dough with the egg. This will make them extra shiny. You can use milk which isn’t as good, but will save you an egg.
Because I still had egg left over and didn’t want it to go to waste, I took them out five minutes before the end and put a second layer of egg wash on them which made them super shiny.
Put them in the oven for 15 mins and when done, left them on a rack to cool for a little bit. Now, I never used to bother with a rack, them seemed like a waste of money. But one day, forked out the £10 or whatever it was for one and it’s a proper game changer. If you spot a cheap one somewhere, do pick it up.
There was only raspberry jam in my local Sainsbury’s which I think doesn’t work (who knew I had strong opinions on jam eh?). Now, I’d say get some fancy strawberry as that goes the best with clotted cream and scones. However, at an event with L&C last month, they made up scones with apricot jam. They were so nice and totally worked too.
What is the best jam to go on a scone? Am I right to say raspberry is the worst? (Honestly, such an overrated fruit!)