Having been left feeling decidedly fragile on account of a few tumultuous weeks filled with deadlines, fun times, devastations and inspirations, there has been little room in life for TPB of late. Thankfully I have managed to occasionally seek refuge in the pleasures of baking, but given the late-night, poor-light nature of these kitchen catharses, you'll have to forgive me when I say that the results have, understandably, been far from photogenic. But to assure you that the oven is being kept warm in anticipation of calmer times, here's a quick and poorly-snapped round-up from the firsts of March, during which time I've discovered that:
(i). Bourke Street Bakery's mixed berry muffins and carrot cake with cream cheese frosting remain the perfect go-to crowd pleasers, especially when paired with Yotam Ottolenghi's decadent chocolate and raspberry tart.
(ii). HFW's energy booster bars (banana version) thankfully live up to their name.
(iii). Honey, semolina and pistachio; and apple, cinnamon and maple are both winning combinations; and not only does Yotam Ottolenghi inspire a captivating chocolate tart, but his brownies are also second to none.
(iv). The inclusion of oatmeal in Dan Lepard's sticky lemon poppy seed cake is sheer genius.
(v). In continuing the chocolate theme, further to those brownies, which were indeed decadent, this chocolate and hazelnut meringue cake is seriously plush deluxe.
(vi). And as for these baby spice and rhubarb butter cakes, well, they're just dandy.