My birthday fell on Easter Monday this year for the third time in my life so far, the first time being the day I was born.
It was a great day, seeing special friends and family and a delicious meal at 222 Veggie Vegan restaurant in Kensington which is now a new favourite of mine. Other vegetarian restaurant favourites include The Gate in Hammersmith and Food for Friends in Brighton.
Easter Sunday was spent baking Hot Cross Buns, and whipping up chocolate moulds and fridge cake for the young ones in my life. I have two gorgeous nephews, Nico and Luis and a superstar little sister, Mia.
Nico and Mia joined the birthday meal posse on Monday. Mia enjoyed a butternut squash risotto and Nico a tomato and broccoli pasta. Nico thought that it meant he was now a vegan, he said he could feel the change in his body. Awww….
It’s was another snowy day here in Kent…is anyone else getting freaked out by this bizarre weather?!
These Hot Cross buns were lovely and vibrant with a citrus tang that made them really special. I doubled the recipe to make 32 buns as I was giving them as gifts at six a piece. I used 2/3 almond milk to 1/3 water instead of all cows milk; I used soya spread instead of butter in the dough and omitted the fat from the cross paste and just added an extra tablespoon of water; I glazed with almond milk before baking instead of the egg and glazed with melted apricot fruit spread thinned with a little water instead of the sugar syrup after baking so only needed the 125g sugar (per recipe/16 buns).
I intend to bake another batch with my leftover oranges to freeze. Who says Hot Cross Buns are only for Easter? Not me.
The fridge cake was incredibly easy to make and went down a storm with the little ones. I used chocolate chip cookies for the biscuits; subbed soya spread for the butter, omitted the white chocolate (I thought there was enough of a chocolate overload already!), swapped Rice Krispies for cocoa cornflakes and topped with gelatine free jelly mini eggs.
The chocolates were no more than a five minute job. I had these Easter moulds hiding away in a drawer that were just asking to have their dust removed and be filled with chocolate. I obliged, and they served to make the cutest little Easter chocolates.
I simply melted 300g chocolate and spooned into the moulds and left to set in the fridge. Use whatever chocolate you like milk style, dark, white. I think cooking chocolate works best to set with a nice shine without tempering.