Mysterious colour cakes with Sheffield Underground Cake Club.

Our instruction today was to “Introduce your cake by holding it up and everyone can guess what the secret ingredient was that gave it, its colour ” We had another Zoom event as Covid #lockdown2 was in force this week. 

I made a crystallised ginger, banana and chocolate cake . I like to use up ingredients so ripe bananas meant no waste, ginger from the store cupboard and the rest of my cocoa and some cacao to get the choccy look. I was pleased with the bake, slightly squishy at the base and tasting like chocolatey Parkin. I will make it again ! 

Anne made Rose and elderflower sponge with a delicious filling of Teignmouth Priory Rose and Elderflower curd in the center plus Rose butter cream on top and layered in the filling. Ann used little icing hearts scattered around the top, that looked like sugar petals. 

Green was the mysterious colour that took at least 4 guesses to uncover. … Vcky had made an Avocado mug cake , mashed avocado plus the usual ingredients … With avocado being an Egg substitute . We then discussed the merits of Spinach for green colouring too.

Carolynn made a compote topped cake. We had to guess the compote .. After 6 guesses because we couldn’t sample it on zoom, someone plumped for plum and it was revealed as a Plum compote and butter cream topped sponge, with roast  chopped plums in the bake. 
We discussed tips for freezing slices of cake for later if we couldn’t scoff a whole one. Tip freeze one slice at a time, or freeze separate cupcakes and bag up when the butter cream has frozen.  And yes , you can freeze butter cream!

Bernie zoomed in with her Swiss roll … With amazing stripes of different colours in the roll. She recommended Morrisons gel food colouring … Lemon and raspberry were the 2 stripes and she said the best way to keep the the integrity of the lines was to use 2 types of cake batter. 
Make stripes with no butter batter, divide it and colour, pipe lines on a baking tray and put in fridge, gently smooth the next batter over with a palate knife . Butter and icing sugar with egg white for coloured ones. 
Clare made lemon icing and lemon butter cream. Bright coloured cake inside Sunshine cake …. Her mystery ingredient was orange food colouring to cheer us up.

We had a lovely chat to take our minds off the perils of Covid and home working. This group has been so supportive through these wierd times. Some inspirations include 
-Bernie said a chequerboard cake was easy. 
-Sian gave us tips for using up flour slightly past date #phew. 
-We learned LIdl coconut flour  … Is naturally gluten free 
-Use up old flour …. Unless it has mites. Tee hee 

-Someone recommended Couch to get fit app… 
– A local on line Adrienne Yoga 
– Breathing for relaxing.  Sian talked about Circular breathing & Square Breathing
We need to be reminded that “Our basic needs are not being met aka Maslow … So it’s ok to not to feel like you should “.  Time to Refocus and be kind to yourself …. All good reasons for sharing and zooming cake !

Our next cakey event is Sat 19th Dec Flavours of India, Festival spices or a freestyle medley 3-5 zoom to follow !! Join us, we have a fab time … Can’t wait to meet up & eat up in real life soon !! Contact me, Karen Perkins for details of how to join .. or LIKE our FB page .Follow me on Twitter and Insta @fabcoach


Tier 3 Walks in Sheffield : 3 Surprise View and Burbage circular with @fabcoach

The whole 6.5 mile walk is in the Sheffield boundary, including the Surprise view carpark, on the Hathersage Road. Walk left along the main road from the cark park to Toads Mouth Bridge, a safer route would be to cross the road & walk up Padley Gorge by the stream, but this is in Derbyshire . After the bridge take the slightly hidden path just to the right of the main Burbage valley track , gates & mobility parking spaces. The path we took rises quickly to a gate & then up to the right hand edge of Burbage Valley.

This is the view down from our rocky edge path, towards Higger Tor . Keep walking up and climbing round the edge of the valley. Massive rocks and cliffs , all in beautiful gingery brown , the rain enhanced the colours.

We spotted a rain squall coming over from Hathersage, so we sheltered under this massive gritstone near the path & set off when the rain had subsided. On, up and around the edge , the path is very clear.

Our path follows the curve of the edge and passes these blocky cliffs just before we reach the head of the valley, and the Burbage Car Park. There is often an ice cream van there in summer. Follow the path across the stream at the base of the road, and take one of the paths, lower or upper that curves back along the lip of the opposite valley side …facing towards the incredibly rocky & photogenic Higger Tor.

Walk along & climb up the Tor, it is steep but with great views over Hathersage one way, and the Burbage Valley the other. To get to the next part of the walk, take the right hand path on top of the Tor to the far right hand corner where you will find a small but gentle path curving down the side … you will see a rectangular Sheep Fold along the path … take the track to the right of this , that curves around … you will see Owler Tor rocks & the rocks of Surprise view. En route you may pass some cows & look over to Hathersage.

Follow the path to the right of the rocks and you will come to Surprise View … the Victorians loved it. The high cliffs of Millstone Edge are loved by climbers, but gated off to protect kids & walkers. Great views down to Hathersage .

Follow the path from Surprise view back down to the car park. There is an obvious well maintained mobility path that leads from the car park up to the view point.

The best map is the Landranger Dark Peak map . There are lots of variations of this walk, in reverse or using the valley path. Hope you enjoyed this walk. You will need proper boots or wellies for this walk & decent rain gear as its exposed but with fabulous views. It’s another undiscovered bit of Sheffield !! Follow me for Walk 4 in the series

Best wishes Karen Follow me on Insta & Twitter @fabcoach Book a free taster session now .

Tier 3 Walks in Sheffield : 2 Langsett to Margery Hill return with @fabcoach

This walk is around 9 miles, entirely in Sheffield and takes you up, up and up across wild moorlands, but all on a clear path. If you are missing the Peak District .. it’s all spread out before you from the summit of Margery Hill (546-metre (1,791 ft) hill on the Howden Moors ) which is still in Sheffield #yay . Its advisable to take a map ( Landranger Dark Peak is good) , full weatherproof gear & thermals at this time of year , as there is little cover. Park at the Yorkshire Water Langsett car park at the Flouch end .

Cross the road & head for the path that crosses the stream at the head of Langsett reservoir , with its weir & fish ladder. Follow the path through a gate to the left that climbs steeply up a cobbled ramp to beyond the treeline. Your distant destination is on the skyline of photo 3.

Follow the path, sandy & cobbled , avoiding left turns. It’s call CutGate and is the old drovers path from Barnsley over to the Derwent Valley . This walk stops at the top of the ridge which looks down to Howden Reservoir & Derbyshire. Good boots recommended as the path can be wet as streams have used it & mountain bikers like the route. The top of Margery Hill is boggy but worth it !!

When you reach this cairn, you turn left for about 200m, along a boggy path, look for the wire fence around an old bronze age burial site. I like my stick for testing the depth of any squishy areas. We walked to the left of the path on the drier bit. Look for the trig point at the top of Margery Hill.You are rewarded by fab views to High Stones, Bleaklow & Howden reservoir. We left quickly as it started to rain, but on other occasions the stones just a little way along give shelter for your tea & treats .

The second trig point photo shows the rain squall that chased us off, however the rest of the walk was sunny . Its great in winter when the ground is frozen if you want to check out the Bronze age area.

We had our #BLT sandwiches & 3 Gingers cake on the way down in a sheltered spot ( see below). Getting down always seems faster . Don’t forget to dress for the weather & make sure people know where you’re walking.

Hope you enjoyed this walk. You will need proper boots or wellies for this walk & decent rain gear as its exposed but with fabulous views. It’s another undiscovered bit of Sheffield !! Follow me for Walk 3 in the series

Best wishes Karen Follow me on Insta & Twitter @fabcoach Book a free taster session now .

Tier 3 Walks in Sheffield : 1 Redmires Circular with @fabcoach

Our 8 mile walk starts from Redmires reservoir. There’s a small car park. Lots of people park by the roadside. Get there early or later after the dogwalkers. Walk to the end of the road, turn right up a steep stony track, continue up till you reach Stanage Pole.

From Stanage Pole follow the track to Stanage Edge turn right and walk along the edge , past the Long Causeway to High Neb . High Neb is in Sheffield. On the Tier 3 walk you can follow the broken stone wall across to High Neb , which on the map is the Sheffield Boundary. High Neb has a shining white trig point & nearby a hut to sit in if it rains !! Fab views from Sheffield across Derbyshire from the Neb.

Trace your steps back along the edge to the stone hut , follow the footpath past the hut towards the direction of Hollow Meadows, the path is a little boggy, but turns into a lush green downhill track . You will see some old mine buildings and a mini reservoir … aim for these . On your right in the distance is the Stanage Lodge & its fishing pond.

It looks like people have been having little raves up here. There is still an old bread oven in one of the cottages. It’s a nice place for a picnic or shelter. Next take the track that follows the left side of the large leat ( watercourse). You will see views of Sheffield & Stannington as you walk along. In about half a mile you have a choice of routes back to Redmires. You can continue along the leat track which brings you back to the reservoir by the plughole drain. V Exciting . Or you can turn right once you have reached a gate across the track and climbed over a stile, and walk up the hill, and back down to Redmires that way. Nice views on the latter .

Hope you enjoyed your walk. You will need proper boots or wellies for this walk & decent rain gear as its exposed but with fabulous views. It’s an undiscovered bit of Sheffield !! Follow me for Walk 2 in the series

Best wishes Karen Follow me on Insta & Twitter @fabcoach Book a free taster session now .

3 Tier cakes with Sheffield Underground Cake Club on Zoom

Because Sheffield went into Tier 3 we moved our October Cake Club onto Zoom .

Annes cakes are Gooseberry and Elderflower cupcakes …normal sponge with elderflower cordial, full of goose berry jam & with butter cream with Elderflower cordial. They looked fab on zoom …we were all licking our lips !!
Carolynn made some sponge with Orange juice mixed in plus orange juice in the icing. The baking time was 20 mins because they were cooked in ramekins… 1 egg between 4 ramekins.

My cakes were coffee and walnut buns , made with decaff coffee. I took them on my first tier 3 walk near Redmires reservoir.

Vicky made an Apple and plum cake . We talked about how to help the fruit not sink ? Cook the cake partially, add fruit as you go along . Or add extra flour to the mix like you might with a cherry madeira recipe. It has extra flour in it . Ann has ordered a Halloween cake treat box . We talked about treat boxes and where to buy the best & supporting local shops .
We talked about Walking books … Anne told us about a walk with history book that included Higger Tor which is in Sheffield.
We talked about what we’d love to do after lockdown. Anne fancies running a coffee truck & wants to be their first employee !! Sheffield Underground Coffee Van is born.
Afternoon tea in a Cafe by the boating lake in Southwold …recommended by Anne.

For the next meeting 21st November the theme is Colours. Pick an ingredient that gives your cake colour … then ask us to guess the colour & the ingredient.
Everyone welcome at our future meetings … we will be on Zoom till its safe & dry enough to meet up in real life again !!

Join our Facebook group & page

Any questions please do contact me
Karen Perkins @fabcoach

Join Sheffield Underground Cake Club … more details from @fabcoach

Cakes from our Childhood Memories

Sheffield Underground Cake Club met socially distanced on Saturday in a sunny , windy garden in Walkley with fabulous views ( Thanks to Clare for hosting & everyone for keeping their distance & to our very careful covid free guidelines. ) Our previous meetings over lockdown were all by Zoom, so you could see the other cakes , but only eat your own. We made up for it this time chomping our way through slices of all the cakes. All collected safely from a distanced table, pre cut ! It was heaven to be able to try all the cake in real life again.

I made a coffee & walnut cake. It had 2 shots of real espresso coffee in the sponge plus walnuts from The Nut Bar in the Moor Market Sheffield. My mum made 3 types of cakes for Sunday high tea, on a rotation. I loved this one best.

Anne made a Cappuccino Brioche Bread & Butter Cake. She sliced and buttered brioche, layered it with dark chocolate. She made a custard of 10 eggs, 3.5 oz sugar, 100ml coffee & 600ml cream. She poured this into the springform tin. She gave us a tip… line the tin or check it wont leak when you pour ( and repour lol ) the custard in. Topped with melted chocolate it was delicious. 

Clare made a Pineapple Upside Down sandwich cake with cherry jam. She said read the recipe as after she’d baked it, she read ” melt the butter ” Yummy !

Carolynn made a cake from her childhood. Her mum used to make a mint chocolate pudding and served it with #gasp Mint Custard. She made a yummy chocolate cake with peppermint and mint aero on the mint buttercream topping. Clare said that at her primary school the school cooks used to add a colour to the custard each day that matched the headmasters tie !!

Raheel told us all about his exploits on Masterchef , we are so proud he only just missed out on the 1/4 finals . He has set up cookalongs instead with dtr Isla every Saturday evening . His cake was a coconut cake from his family, with fillings of creamed coconut, coconut milk & cornflower and topped with desiccated coconut cream. #allgone

Sian made a cake with all ingredients from her house. Like a store cupboard challenge. It was a raspberry & hazlenut dark chocolate sponge ..very dark and chocolaty with the raspberry from the chocolate coming through. A cocoa and white chocolate topping too . More yumminess !

Join us at our next socially distanced cake club in October. Venue and attendees all subject to the latest Covid regulations in force & the weather. Sat 24th Oct 3-5 Venue to be announced … Zoom link provided in case of rain etc .
Join our FB group ,

Like our FB page
or follow me on Twitter @fabcoach

Happy Baking …. please suggest any safe venues and themes, or host us
Best Wishes

Summer Fruits Glut cakes

We had our first very socially distanced outdoor cake club . With Parkland views we noshed our way through real cake . I believe it was the shortest ever time between saying hello, introducing our cakes and actually eating them. What a change from Zoom cakes where you cannot taste them …but you can see them.

My cake was a Victoria Plum and fresh plus powdered ginger cake with lemon drizzle icing on top. The plums were from Knab Farm shop as was the ginger. Local Victoria plums.

Ann’s cake was an Elderflower and mixed berry cake, you can use mixed berries instead of gooseberries. Use Elderflower cordial to soak the fruit which sinks into the cake & makes it deliciously moist.

Dave’s cake was a gooseberry courgette and elderflower cake. An  award winning recipe made with rice flour so gluten free. Lots of eggs and little flax seed were used to make the sponge layers. There were 2 types of filling plus layers of Gooseberry compote made with veg agar, and coconut Chantilly cream. Plus elderflower butter cream on top. #yummy

Next event to follow …. Sat 19th September …. theme to follow all socially distanced outside. Zooming if its raining or Covid arrangements change .

Ginger Cakes Virtually in Sheffield

Sheffield Underground Cake Club meets every month to bake to a theme in a secret location. For the last 4 months we have met virtually by Zoom to be safe. This weekend we were very excited to be able to meet socially distanced in a large garden. Sadly we had to fall back on Zoom as it was chucking it down. Ah well , we had a fab time but everyone missed being able to taste all the cakes. Hopefully we will finally meet again in real life on Sat 22nd August with a new theme …watch out for updates .

Ginger Cakes was the theme because our host Clare has 2 lovely ginger cats. They joined us on Zoom. Here are our cakes !

cake club zoom ginger

My cake was a ginger & lemon sponge. Made with fresh chopped ginger, powdered ginger & lemon zest in the sponge, filled with homemade rhubarb & ginger jam. Topped with lemon icing & organic redcurrants from my @regather fruit box. Chopped ginger makes for a very moist sponge … chop it fine !!

Vicky made a Lemon and ginger cake with crystallised ginger, ginger pwder and mixed spice Topped with lemon water icing.

Carolynn made a ginger sponge with treacle , ginger powder , stem ginger topped with lemon water icing. That’s icing made with icing sugar & fresh lemon juice.

Sian made a cake with any ingredients she had in the house. A sort of ginger tres leches cake . Ginger powder, crystallised ginger , evaporated milk and vanilla cream topping.

Clare made a Mary Berry Sticky Ginger Cake. As usual with MB cakes it was #ginormous and made for sharing. Warm & stodgy made from butter ,treacle, syrup,milk & eggs & 8oz of flour. By the time the Zoom had started she had already given chunks away to a volunteer delivery person & a neighbour…socially distanced of course.

We talked about baking in lock down & how we were finding it, who’s returning to work when. Its been a brilliant support through lockdown & we cant wait to meet up again.

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Best wishes Karen …

karen ginger cake

Cheesecakes in Lockdown Sheffield Underground Cake Club

We met online for a lovely Saturday afternoon virtual cake club. 5 bakers plus one baking via whatsapp ( that was Anne !) met up on zoom, baking to the theme of Cheese cakes … dairy or vegan.  Here are the descriptions of our cakes … all eaten at safe social distancing . Our next meeting will be in real life , actually socially distancing in Clares garden on Sat 18th July on a theme of  “A little bit Ginger ”

Anne made a lemon & raspberry baked cheesecake . #atotalsuccess and kept it at home to eat with her family !!

anne Cheesecake 27.6.20

Dave made a tomato, basil, olive & mozarella cake. Made with his own wholemeal home ground flour. It looked delicious. With cream cheese & olive toppings , its from by Giles. Dave replaced the 2 tomatos with half a can of chopped tomatoes for ease. Everyone thought it looked delicious , look at the smiling faces … we are all missing our live tastings !!

cake club dave and faces Cheesecake

dave mozarella basil tomato olive cake 27 6 20

Carolynn made a No Base Baked Lemon cheesecake, half quantities & in a baking dish , served by the spoonful with fruit coulis on the top . Very virtuous , sour cream, cream cheese, lemon & poppy seeds . There were no poppy seeds in the shop so it was just lemon this time !! Sorry no photo today.

I made chocolate baked individual cheescakes , I meant to do Vanilla lemon ones but had no cornflour in the house so added cocoa as a replacement to thicken. Chocolate & Yorkshire cream cheese is delicious. The base was bashed ginger chocolate rounds with butter . I baked the mix of cream cheese, sugar, egg yolk, vanilla, cocoa, whisked egg white for 35 minutes and left to cool in the oven. Then overnight to cool in the fridge . We all agreed cheesecakes were best made the day before . I used a recipe from the 80’s in the Katie Stewart Times Calendar cookbook… i find it good to cook sustainably as it suggests recipes to use seasonal ingredients.

choc cheesecake 27 6 20

Vicky made a Gloucester Pear & Cheddar cake, with grated cheddar, ground almonds and cooking pears ( hard pears ?). It was from and was sweet even though it had cheese in. I missed the photo many apologies.

Clare made a baked Luscious lemon cheesecake , with raspberries from the garden on top. Very unhealthy but great for your mental health & yummy. Clare recommends you bake the night before so the cheesecake is cool & set . Leave it in the oven to cool before popping in the fridge .

clare cake club 27.6.20

Join our next event 18th July 3-5 , bring your own mug, plate, chair … and pop your cake , presliced in a sealed container so we can safely share them distanced from a central table. No pressure to eat anything but your own . Address will come via the Group to to your private messenger !!

We had a fabulous famous baker like out tweets !!
cherish liked cake club

August 22nd at Daves house …theme to be agreed 3-5
Then Oct 17th, Nov 21st, Dec 12th themes & venues TBC and subject to #stayingsafe & how lockdown progresses. We always have zoom to fall back on !!

Please contact me if you want to join us on our FB group 

Best wishes   Karen

Self Care cakes with Sheffield Underground Cake Club

Our second virtual cake club today …still weird in lockdown but people are keen to bake . Here we are with our cakes. Our next meeting is at Zoom on Sat 27th June 3-4 … Lary Dairy Savoury Cakes .

My cake was a cacao sponge with Creme fraiche Oatly, glucose instead of sugar . Cacao is not cocoa but from the Amazon. Chocolate makes me happy. The organic blueberries from my REGather veg box made it healthy !

Carolynn made a giant butterfly bun to make you happy . It had buttercream and jam in the middle .

Clare made use of her condensed milk to make millionaires short bread . The recipe was from Cadburys Simply Chocolate cook book . Trad recipe … Big treat. Eddie made the caramel . Some had already disappeared by the time we started .

Vicky made dark Choc and raspberry cake made for coffee time , frozen raspberries and chopped chocolates and flaked almonds, dense sunk to bottom . US site Sally’s baking addiction.

Ann made her Uplifting Pear and Yoghurt cake … A pot of natural yoghurt …. Put pot of yoghurt in a bowl and use the pot to measure other ingredients , wholemeal flour, sunflower oil, lots of baking powder , chopped pear ..serve with runny honey. From the French blog

Sian has made lots of cakes and chocolate log … We saw the last vestiges of it … It looked delicious. She gave us some tips on Zoom backgrounds.

Dave would have made Mary Berrys sultana and orange cake …..Clare found the recipe in her book with icing on top.

We then had a lovely chat about how we were finding lockdown. 

1 Where can you get flour ?  Lots of tips

Corner shops and one stop shops have flour. Down to Earth have flour SharrowVale Vale Road plus Saturday morning the Unwrapped shop , plus Just Natural on Crookes . Ranmoor deli selling fresh yeast. Dave made sourdough starter, then froze it . Vickys friend sent her 9 kg of bread flour.Tesco selling bagged up strong flour.Another place M and S have stuff. Loads of choice .

2 Where does Google maps say your most visited place is in the lockdown. Clare’s said Sainsburys !!

3 Where are people doing their shopping ? Dave recommends a Milkman from Manchester …. Splosh sell eco friendly detergents … , they recycle the packaging

4 Can you claim expenses back from work if you work at home ? You should be able to claim additional expenses back. Be careful if home

Use Martyn Lewis … Moneysaving Expert .

Line rental saver. Plusnet.

5 When do I Hoover the house ….

Where do you work ?

6 How do we move forward after lockdown ?

7 What do universities do with their money ? Universities spend most of the money on the course and staff. They are self funding from about 5 years ago when Gvt reduced central funding .

What will happen to students …. Bursaries for students .

What do we actually need to buy in future ?

8 Make a plan for your future food stock cupboard

Our next meeting is at Zoom on Sat 27th June 3-4 … Lary Dairy Savoury Cakes . Contact me Karen Perkins for your Zoom Log in