Cakes & Bakes: Sourdough waffles

Cooking home-made sourdough waffles in an old-fashioned cast iron waffle iron | H is for Home #recipe #sourdough #cooking

Just a couple of weeks ago, we featured a round up of waffle irons on Price Points. This week, I’ve made my first ever batch of sourdough waffles; the miracle of internet shopping!

Our new Rome's Original Old Fashioned Waffle Iron | H is for Home

I wanted a cast iron, stove-top waffle iron that I could store away in a drawer when not in use – and this is the one I finally decided to purchase.

Seasoning our new Rome's Original Old Fashioned Waffle Iron in our wood-burning stove | H is for Home

As with all new cast iron pans, it needed to be seasoned well before its maiden voyage. With all the snow and freezing temperatures we’ve had recently, our wood-burner has been chuffing away almost constantly – so that was the ideal place to do it.

Sourdough batter for making sourdough waffles | H is for Home Melted butter and milk mixture for sourdough waffles | H is for Home

This sourdough waffle recipe – as with most that use a starter – needs some forward planning. Ideally, you’d get your starter/flour/sugar/salt combined the night before if you want waffles for breakfast.

Cooking home-made sourdough waffles | H is for Home Cooking home-made sourdough waffles | H is for Home

The iron produced delicious crispy waffles. Justin and I both fancied maple syrup with them, but then we diverged slightly.

Plate of home-made sourdough waffles with bacon & maple syrup | H is for Home

He went for the sweet/salty thing and opted to serve with crispy bacon. I chose sliced bananas. The possibilities are endless of course. The caramelised bananas I made for this series a couple of weeks ago would work a treat. Also, any other fresh fruit, compotes or preserves, yoghurt, honey and cream would be perfect. They’re going to be a regular breakfast/brunch from this day forth!

Plate of home-made sourdough waffles with banana & maple syrup | H is for Home

Click here to save the recipe to Pinterest.

Sourdough waffles
Ingredients
  1. 115g/4oz butter
  2. 225ml/8 fl oz milk
  3. 275g/9¾oz sourdough starter (100% hydration)
  4. 1tsp salt
  5. 1tbsp soft brown sugar
  6. 170g/6oz plain flour
  7. 2 eggs
  8. ½tsp bicarbonate of sodaHome-made sourdough waffles ingredients
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Instructions
  1. Combine the starter, salt, sugar and flour so it forms a thick batter
  2. Cover the bowl with cling film and set aside at room temperature for 8-12 hours. If you do this before going to bed, you can time the batter to be ready for breakfast the following day
  3. In a small saucepan over a low flame, heat the butter and milk until the butter has melted. Put the mixture aside and allow it to cool to room temperature
  4. Preheat your waffle iron for 10-15 minutes.
  5. Uncover the batter and whisk in the eggs
  6. When the waffle iron is ready, add ½tsp bicarbonate of soda to the batter. Do not over mix or you'll beat the air out of it
  7. Carefully pour enough batter onto the hot waffle iron to cover the base. Place the lid of the waffle iron on top
  8. Cook on one side for about 3 minutes before flipping the waffle iron over and cooking the other side
Notes
  1. You can store any uneaten waffles in zip-lock bags in the freezer for up to 3 months.
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Our custom-made roller blind from Contrado

Our downstairs cloakroom with new custom-made roller blind from Contrado | H is for Home

We’ve recently undertaken a programme of home improvements here at H is for Home. These range from quite major jobs like re-pointing gable-end walls and chimney repairs – to smaller scale tasks such as redecoration and general sprucing up of neglected corners.

The old white roller blind in our downstairs cloakroom | H is for Home

One room that needed some attention was our downstairs loo. The window area in particular was very tired – a bit grubby if we’re being honest!

Window sill with rust stains from plant tins | H is for Home

The old blind was dull and way past its best – and the sill had been stained by plant pot bases over the years. We discovered the lovely folk at Contrado on Instagram and they asked us if we wanted to try out one of their roller blinds. Perfect timing!

Vintage 12 Angry Men film poster | H is for Home

London-based Contrado offer a service whereby you can customise & personalise all manner of homewares, fabrics, gifts and clothing.

Pattern on our custom-made roller blind from Contrado | H is for Home

Customisable is a very apt word indeed. We measured the window and recess so the blind fitted perfectly. We chose which side we wanted the chain on, the material the chain was made of… even the pattern (and size of the pattern) printed on the fabric. We looked online and found a copyright-free design that we liked and Photoshopped it to get the exact colours we wanted. The blind was delivered swiftly and exactly as we specified. It’s very well made and the materials used are excellent quality. The large stylised flowers are reminiscent of Marimekko fabric designs we like. There are lots of house plants in our downstairs loo – and the window also looks out onto the garden – so the pattern picks up on all this natural vegetation. We went for a grey & orange colourway on a slightly off-white background. The room has an exposed stone wall with grey tones – also silvery chrome fittings and galvanised metal containers. There were already quite a few orange decorative touches in the room such as the vintage film poster and plant pots. The blind really helps pull it all together.

Our downstairs cloakroom with new custom-made roller blind from Contrado | H is for Home

Installing it was a straightforward 20-minute job. As we were changing the blinds we took the opportunity to touch up all the paintwork. We’re very happy with the results. It’s been a really good return on half a day’s work. It’s overall much brighter and fresher – and the blind really lifts our spirits when we enter the room!

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Check yourselves in for festive fun at Hotel Chocolat

Hotel Chocolat chocolate Christmas tree

We’ve been busy doing lots of Christmas-themed posts in the past couple of weeks. So much so that we need to give our own Christmas plans a little more attention maybe – especially on the Yuletide gift front.

Hotel Chocolat packaging | H is for Home

We’ve just been sent a beautiful chocolate parcel by Hotel Chocolat and it got us thinking… chocolate has to be the best foolproof Christmas present ever. We’re don’t know the exact percentages involved, but surely there aren’t many people who don’t like a bit of chocolate! In fact, in all my years, I’ve only ever met one person that doesn’t like chocolates… and I think they were just in denial! You can be pretty confident that a present involving chocolate will be a big hit with most people.

Christmas Hotel Chocolat

The standard newsagent bar of chocolate is fine for everyday consumption however, at Christmas you want something just a little bit special – whether it be superior quality, creative flavours or festive themes & packaging. Fortunately, Hotel Chocolat has built it’s reputation on fulfilling all three.

Hotel Chocolat Christmas stocking | H is for Home

Chocolate is the perfect gift idea for grown ups and for children. Kids especially like the fun shapes, novelty packaging, exciting flavours and quirky twists on a Christmas theme. The chocolate parcel stocking we received contains some lovely little treats including creamed caramel puddles, a sleigh team and Santa on a stick!

Children's chocolate from Hotel Chocolat | H is for Home

The kids’ section on the Hotel Chocolat website contains a myriad of chocolate-themed Santas, snowmen, robins, penguins, snowflakes, puddings and the like. We’re looking forward to trying our novelty reindeer/ we enjoyed sampling our novelty reindeer, but perhaps most grown ups will be looking towards more sophisticated options.

Hotel Chocolat & Prosecco gift box

The classic champagne & chocolate springs to mind. A variety of choices are available on this front. There are other boozy options too including gin, Prosecco or even beer & chocolate collections. Or how about incorporating the chocolate into the drink itself with delicious salted caramel cocoa vodka?

Hotel Chocolat wreath box

There are things for the whole family to share – such as Christmas crackers, advent calendars and tree decorations. There are hampers too with something for everyone to enjoy. Some of the hampers and boxed collections are so attractive that they’d make a wonderful centrepiece display for those festive get together meals and parties.

Hotel Chocolat subscription box

The Hotel Chocolat website is a joy to browse – full of tempting choices for all occasions. Chocolate is wonderful gift for Christmas, however – Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day and anniversaries provide plenty of other chocolatey opportunities too!

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Caprissimo Coffee is full of beans!

1 kilo bags of Caprissimo coffee beans | H is for Home

What’s the first thing that you do when you wake up in the morning? Check your phone? Turn on the TV? Ours is make two cups of coffee. No, I tell a lie – the dog wouldn’t leave us in peace if we didn’t feed him first!

1 kilo bags of Caprissimo coffee beans: Fragrante and Belgique | H is for Home

So, it was a no-brainer saying yes to The Coffee Mate when they offered us the opportunity to review their Caprissimo Fragrante and Caprissimo Belgique coffee beans.

1 kilo bags of Caprissimo coffee beans: Fragrante and Belgique | H is for Home

Caprissimo ‘Fragrante’ is a medium-dark roasted blend of two kinds of Brazilian beans. “warm aroma with nutty, buttery and chocolate sweetness”. The Coffee Mate website suggests it has an “aftertaste of slightly bitter walnuts” – we’d agree. When we tried it, it was reminiscent of the hint of oak you can get at the end of a sip of red wine. That will simply be a matter of preference for fellow coffee drinkers out there.

Our agreed favourite of the two Caprissimo Coffee types, ‘Belgique’ is a combination of 80% Arabica & 20% Robusta coffee beans. Also medium-dark roasted, it’s described as  having a “syrupy consistency… if made correctly, a hard body & strong aroma – with dark chocolate and sweet caramel finish”. Again, we picked up on these characteristics. In fact we’ve just had a lovely cup served alongside our pancakes with maple syrup!

Cup of freshly brewed coffee, coffee beans and coffee grinder | H is for Home

We prefer to grind our own beans because it makes for a better cup. We use an electric grinder that Justin bought me a few years ago. However, if you like the look of the manual one pictured here, we have vintage examples available in our shop.

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A Grand Hamper from Clearwater Hampers

The Grand Hamper from Clearwater Hampers | H is for Home

We’re well into thinking about Christmas now. Festive decorations have started to go up, we’re pencilling in dates to meet up with friends & family, cards and presents have been bought (well, some of them at least)…and we’ve just started picking up all those special food & drink treats. We buy them gradually in various markets and shops – whatever catches our eye – and display them in baskets on a table next to the tree. It’s a lovely sight – and a tempting one too! We’ve just been given an early boost to our haul with this Grand Hamper sent by the lovely folks at Hampers.com. The attractive wicker basket contains a very nice selection of classic Christmas goodies.

Champagne and chocolates in the Grand Hamper from Clearwater Hampers | H is for Home

For starters, many people’s idea of the ultimate treat – champagne & chocolates. Specifically, Autreau Roualet Brut NV Champagne and Hamlet Gold Box assorted chocolates. Will we have the bubbles at breakfast or for a pre-dinner aperitif… decisions, decisions!

Smoked salmon and Serrano ham in the Grand Hamper from Clearwater Hampers | H is for Home

Or perhaps the champagne will be sipped alongside smoked salmon or cured meat canapés – another delicious option. The hamper contains both traditional Scottish smoked salmon and Spanish Serrano ham.

Cheeses in the Grand Hamper from Clearwater Hampers | H is for Home

Next we have some fabulous extra mature cheddar – Black Bomber from Snowdonia in Wales – great name and a great cheese. And what better to accompany it with than the Tracklements damson cheese? This tangy chutney works well with all manner of cheeses. Perfect with pies or the Christmas ham too.

Crackers and shortbread biscuits in the Grand Hamper from Clearwater Hampers | H is for Home

And of course, your cheeseboard will be needing cheese biscuits too. This luxury selection has a variety of textures, flavours and bakes contained within – they’ll work well with those party dips. And sweet biscuits get a look in also with these luxury chocolate and toffee shortbreads. A cup of tea and a shortbread for those little quiet moments in amongst all the Christmas madness perhaps.

It’s a fabulous selection of items – a perfect present to yourself or a loved one. We’re certainly looking forward to ours!

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Sponsored: Guest bedroom essentials

Guest room basket | H is for Home
In less than a month, you may be amongst the millions around the world who’ll be hosting friends and family members for Christmas festivities.

Guest bedroom welcome basket | H is for Home

How do you go about preparing for the imminent arrivals? Giving the house a top-to-toe deep clean, changing all the bedding and stocking up on extra food & drink will be the first things on our ‘to do’ list.

Guest room basket | H is for Home

Luckily, we have a couple of spare bedrooms where people are accommodated and we like to make our guests’ stay as comfortable as possible.

Guest room basket | H is for Home

A welcome basket filled with guest bedroom essentials is a thoughtful gesture that visitors will always appreciate and remember. Here are a few items you could include:

  • fluffy towels
  • bathrobe / dressing gown
  • bedroom slippers
  • toothbrush & toothpaste
  • soap
  • moisturiser
  • eye mask
  • ear plugs
  • pain killers

This Zeller bamboo basket from Wayfair is the perfect way to attractively hold and display the various items that you’ve chosen for your welcome pack.

You could also consider books, magazines and reading material relating to the house or local area. Place a vase of pretty, fragrant flowers on the windowsill. Leave a glass & carafe of water, box of tissues and a note with your wifi network password on the bedside table.

Wifi password on a notepad

What would you include in your basket of guest bedroom essentials?

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Tasty treats from Webbox

Collection of treats from Webbox from their natural and Christmas ranges | H is for Home

When it comes to most things H is for Home, Fudge shows little or no interest in proceedings. However, the arrival of a box of tasty treats from Webbox, meant that he suddenly wanted to get involved!

Fudge enjoying some of his treats from Webbox | H is for Home

We started by asking for his feedback on their premium fresh chicken with garden vegetables. He was too busy eating to talk, but we got the distinct impression that he approved. It’s made from 100% natural ingredients  – easily digestible protein, vegetables, beneficial herbs, mineral rich seaweed and slow-release carbohydrate energy in the form of brown rice – a complete food that provides just about everything required for a well-balanced diet.

Fudge enjoying some of his treats from Webbox | H is for Home

A sample of the little snacks followed. The flavour combinations are very exciting – for example, the healthy treat bars – chicken with pea & blueberries and chicken with duck & cranberry. Something a bit out of the ordinary for our canine cousins. Delicious was the verdict again!

Collection of treats from Webbox from their Christmas range | H is for Home

We’ve held some of Fudge’s hamper back so he has something to enjoy on Christmas Day. He’s got a three bird roast turkey kibble, pork chipolatas and ‘pigs in blanket’ treats too. A glass of wine and he’ll be sorted!

It never ceases to amaze us the speed at which Fudge can demolish a bowl of food. You’d think we starve him, but we can guarantee that’s far from the case. We always get the, “is there any more please?” look. Thanks to Webbox there’ll indeed be more to follow in the coming days!

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