Cakes & Bakes: Fat rascals

Home-made fat rascals and mug of tea | H is for Home

We were in Ilkley today – collecting items from auction and having a mooch around the charity shops.

flour and cubes of butter in a mixing bowl

We wandered passed Betty’s Tea Rooms, but didn’t go in – the breads and cakes in the window certainly looked good though.

Adding milk to fat rascal dough | H is for Home

Fat rascals are a famous offering from this establishment – and I decided to rustle up a batch when we got home. They’re quick and easy, so a perfect bake if you’re pushed for time (which I was if I wanted to get my Thursday recipe made, baked, photographed and written up in a couple of hours before posting in the evening.

fat rascals dough rolled and sliced | H is for Home

I used a traditional fat rascals recipe from Old Yorkshire Recipes by Joan Poulson (which you can get on Amazon for a penny!). It contained very sketchy instructions, so I checked some of my other recipe books. I found the exact recipe, with the exact, same instructions in Mary Hanson Moore’s A Yorkshire Cookbook. Even though Betty’s and Taylors of Harrogate trademarked the name ‘Fat Rascal’ in the 1980s, the pastries have actually been in existence since the 18th century at the latest.

Uncooked fat rascals on a baking sheet | H is for Home

We love this humble little bake – a bit soft biscuit, a bit rock cake, a bit scone. The Betty’s version is bigger and fancier with its cherry and almond decoration. My fat rascals have a simple sprinkle of sugar.

Home-made fat rascals cooling on a wire rack | H is for Home

They’re absolutely perfect with a cup of tea – we found that eating them just very slightly warm with cold butter was our absolute favourite, but all manner of preserves would work well too.

Fat rascals
Yields 24
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Cook Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 300g/10½oz plain flour
  2. 150g/5¼oz butter, chilled
  3. 75g/2⅔oz currants
  4. 37g/1⅓oz brown sugar
  5. pinch of salt
  6. 100ml/3½ fl oz milk
  7.  
  8. Home-made fat rascals ingredients
  9.  
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF/Gas mark 6
  2. In a large mixing bowl, rub the butter into the flour
  3. Add the currants, sugar and salt
  4. Mix in the milk, enough to make a slack dough
  5. Roll out to ½" thick, cut into rounds and dust with icing sugar (I think caster sugar worked better)
  6. Put on to the greased baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until lightly browned
Notes
  1. Gorgeous served still warm with butter and fruit jam!
H is for Home Harbinger http://hisforhomeblog.com/

Miniature woven garden furniture

Toy miniature woven garden chairs | H is for Home

Last week’s quirky item was a vintage miniature organ – this week we’re going even smaller in scale, with this even more miniature woven garden furniture.

Toy miniature woven garden furniture | H is for Home

They’re very 1950s – and very sweet too. The set comprises of a table & four chairs, a bench and two armchairs. To give you some idea of size, each chair stands 9cm or 3½ inches tall.

Toy miniature woven garden table & chairs | H is for Home

We like the lemon yellow and crisp white colourway – and the detail is fabulous. It’s so pretty – we’d happily use it in our own garden if we were 6 inches tall ourselves!

Toy miniature woven garden chairs | H is for Home

Anyone out there with dolls or a dolls house that need garden furniture – or would just like them as a decorative piece in their own right, just drop us a line. There’ll be no expensive furniture removal costs! The eight piece set is priced at £35.00.

Get their look: Double-height hallway

Double-height hallway

We love a proper hallway off the front entrance. Not only does it create a path through to the rest of the house, it’s a place to hang coats, take off muddy wellies & walking boots, deposit house keys and mail. Ours is a bit cramped to say the least. This double-height hallway is the epitome of adult cool. Bright & airy, sophisticated furnishings, clear of clutter and creates an expectation of a great interior ahead. Hopefully, we’ll get a space like this one day.

  1. 50cm x 50cm picture frame
  2. Sector Octo ceiling light, birch
  3. Solange cotton-blend throw
  4. Jojo vase
  5. Fritz Hansen Series 7 chair
  6. Ebbe Gehl for John Lewis Mira sideboard
  7. Odyssey Nestor (Antislip R10) floor tile

Get their look: Double-height hallway | H is for Home

Simple ways to add value to your home

Australian cottage exterior 'Simple ways to add value to your home'credit

Do you want to add value to your home and make it a more comfortable place in which to live? This is the wish of many home owners around the country, but many of these people are not willing to take the necessary steps to achieve this goal. It’s not as difficult as it may seem to add value to your home and the following tips are some of the easiest ways in which to do this.

New doors and windows on a renovated propertycredit

Replace old windows and doors

A large number of older homes still have the same windows and doors that were fitted when the house was originally built. The technologies used to manufacture modern windows and doors have come a long way in recent years. Energy efficient windows and doors ensure that homes are warmer and look more stylish. Attractive and secure garage doors also add value to a home and are provided by suppliers like the Garage Door Company Ltd. You can check out their site to find a solution to suit your type of property.

Woman laying insulation in a loft spacecredit

Install insulation and a new heating system

Every home owner wants to live in a warm, cosy home. However, older heating systems were often not as efficient as modern heating systems. If you feel the cold in your home during the winter, you have a heating problem that needs to be fixed.

In most cases, installing a new boiler, radiators or other types of heating systems will make a huge difference to the temperature inside your home. To ensure that this heat does not escape, it’s important to check how well insulated your property is as well. If it’s not up to the necessary standard, it’s wise to install additional insulation in the wall cavities and in the attic space.

Patio with horizontal cladding wood panelscredit

Landscaping

When you’re attempting to add value to your home, not all changes take place inside the property. Most people enjoy spending time outside in a well-kept garden. However, many gardens leave a lot to be desired and are not inviting places to in which to spend time.

Hiring a professional landscaper to inject some life into your garden has the potential to add thousands of pounds to the value of your home and make it an attractive area for family and friends to relax, especially during the summer.

Dining room with wooden floorboardscredit

Flooring

The floors in a home suffer the most from wear and tear. This is particularly true in high traffic areas of the home such as corridors and entrance ways. Replacing existing flooring products with high quality carpets or wooden flooring will instantly transform each of the rooms in your home.

Painter/decorator carrying tins of paint and paintbrushcredit

Clean and paint

It’s amazing how fresh a home can look by simply cleaning it and giving it a coat or two of paint. Once a home owner sees the difference this can make, it often inspires them to make other changes that will greatly increase the value of their home.

Some people make changes to their home so that it becomes more comfortable to live in, while other home owners want to increase the value of their property so that they can sell it profitably in the future. Either way, making the changes above will ensure that both of these objectives are achieved.

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Home Tones: Hibiscus

Hibiscus pink games roomcredit

Last week, in our Home Tones post, we discovered that my birthday colour is Dry Rose. This week, it’s only fair to talk about Justin’s birthday colour – Hibiscus – which is your colour if you were born on 14th April. If you weren’t born on this day, you can find out what your own colour is in Michele Bernhardt’s book, Colorstrology: What Your Birthday Color Says About You.

Those born on Justin’s birthday are supposed to be, “Determined | Persuasive | Sparkly”. It continues…

Swatch of Pantone's 'Hibiscus'You have a sparkly personality and the room lights up when you are in it. It is important for you to express your ideas with flair and gusto. Staying within the status quo and being average is not for you. Remain detached in regard to material ambitions and you will find that money and financial gain will come more readily to you. Your personal color gives you the staying power to follow through to completion. Wearing, meditating or surrounding yourself with Hibiscus helps you to listen better while improving your timing.

Dressing room with chair upholstered in hibiscus pink fabriccredit

Hibiscus pink, black & white bathroomcredit

Hibiscus pink decorated twin bedroomcredit

Sitting room decorated in hibiscus pink and white with turquoise upholstered armchairscredit

White bathroom with hibiscus pink painted feature wallcredit

White painted four poster bed with hibiscus pink headboard, cushions and blanketcredit

Glossy hibiscus pink and white fitted kitchen cabinetscredit

Price Points: Walking sandals

Walking sandals | H is for Home

After many years of loyal service, my current walking sandals – a pair of Keen Neports – died a death last summer. Despite that, I love them so much that I’ve glued the soles back together, then the laces snapped so I’ve knotted those back together…

Now that the weather’s become warm enough to transition from walking boots back to sandals, I’ve dragged the old faithfuls back out once again. If I’m honest, I’m flogging a dead horse, they’re now really tatty and won’t last until the end of this summer.

The new pair will see daily use, up to 3 dog walks per day… every day, and I’ll need a new pair that can cope with the moorland terrain. I love the look of most Keen sandals, so the orange pair above are my favoured replacements.

  1. Keen Clearwater CNX walking sandals: £72.28, Amazon
  2. Teva Kimtah leather sandals: £80.00, Millets
  3. Merrell All Out Blaze Sieve sandals: £85.00, Cotswold Outdoor