Superfood Cakes wow in Sheffield

Brilliant Sheffield Clandestine cake club event today, celebrating Superfoods & innovation for the New Year. Hosted by Grace Kitchen Design s Wendy & Rob steam baking pioneers at a brand new kitchen design studio at Banner Cross, Sheffield. Donations from the entry charge will go to Sheffield Alzheimer Society.DSC07379

Banana & Walnut by Anne with Chocolate Banana topping. 3 super-foods in this one. Bananas contain potassium, there were also ground almonds & cinnamon in the cake. That actually makes 4 super-foods.


Chocolate & raspberry Roulade by Clare. Gluten free with 4 super-foods raspberries, strawberries, ground almonds & cocoa.


Gogi Berry & Ginger loaf by Karen P. The dried gogi berries were soaked overnight & drained. The mix was a trad 6 butter, flour, sugar with 3 eggs plus finely chopped fresh ginger . Super-food count was 4,  blueberries, gogi berries, butter & ginger.


Blood Orange cake by Karen W. Tasty ,sharp blood oranges & ground almonds are the 2 super-foods here, topped with a sticky orange caramel glaze which tasted like toffee !


Cocoa Olive Oil chocolate cake by Ruth made from the Nigella recipe. This is dairy free and with no flour is gluten free too. Super-foods are the olive oil, cocoa, ground almonds plus the fresh raspberries. Plus cream !!


Watching the food demo by Rob of Grace Kitchen Design ..sous vide steak, salmon & fresh tomato sauce all cooked fresh for us to sample before we tucked into our cakes . Steam ovens rock ! We all want a steam oven for our next oven. DSC07388 DSC07389

Rob showed how to prepare steak, salmon & cakes in a steam oven. Before & after steak photos below.

DSC07391 DSC07392 DSC07393

After the demo we tucked into the cakes …  Nigellas Olive oil & chocolate cake baked by Ruth served with cream & fresh raspberries.


Karen’s Gogi Berry & Ginger cake


Clares gluten free chocolate roulade.


Annes banana & walnut cake.


Sticky orange topping.


After our tour of the kitchens we were treated to a final mini fresh pasta with sous vide tomato sauce to balance all our cakey nibbling. Once again many thanks to Grace Kitchen Design !


The next cake club is on Sat 25th Feb … Chocolate Passion  and March 25th theme to be announced. If you have any suggestions for a theme or host venue please let me know Join Sheffield Clandestine cake club free at

Contact Karen at



Grab a new Career & CV in 2017 #workshops in S11

Careers & CV Lounge Sessions 2017 with Karen & Rachel

love your job
Book on our fun & info packed 1:1 sessions that will help you

  • Have a great CV & cover letter
  • Find a career or job that suits you
  • Be interview confident
  • Be job ready
  • Ace your jobsearch on & offline

Thursday 26th Jan 11.30 til 2pm  Somewhere Else Coffee Shop Banner Cross S11 8TN

Tuesday 14th Feb 11.30 til 2pm  Somewhere Else Coffee Shop Banner Cross S11 8TN #loveyourjob

Tuesday 7th March 11.30 til 2pm  Somewhere Else Coffee Shop Banner Cross S11 8TN #nationalcareersweek event

Tuesday 25th April 11.30 til 2pm  Somewhere Else Coffee Shop Banner Cross S11 8TN #CV School Holiday Special Booking essential

To book your half hour 1:1 slot please email Karen at stating

Name, email, Tel no  & preferred date/ time , any access requirements & we will book you in.

Cost £5 per person payable in advance by BACS or Paypal   T & C apply Can be redeemed against purchase of Coaching / CV packages by Karen Perkins Coaching before 31.3.17

Karen Perkins is a qualified Life Career & Business Coach

Rachel Vincent is a freelance CV writer, Editor & copywriter & associate of Karen Perkins Coaching

Cake Deer ? Christmas Cakes with Sheffield Clandestine Cake Club

Hosted by the lovely AwayWeGo Cafe Montrose Rd Sheffield s11  We baked to a theme of Deer at Christmas. 4 fab cakes , and selection of teas including Rhubarb supplied by Bird House Teas in Sheffield. We even had a secret Santa.


Lemon Snow Swiss Roll Yule Log by Karen. Mascarpone,butter & icing sugar plus lemon zest snow frosting, with milky bar snow . The swiss roll was from the first CCC book & worked a treat !

Cranberry & Cinnamon with homemade shortbread reindeer by Carolynn. Milk chocolate ganache & cinnamon shortbread.
Festive Black Forest gateau with cherries in Kirsch by Anne. Anthony Worral Thompson recipe , using pitted cherries soaked in kirsh , and the kirsch poured over the sponge to soak in. Icing sugar snow !
Super Sachertorte with Reindeer by Ruth. Mary Berry recipe involving separating eggs, heating cream & melting chocolate.
20161210_152552 20161210_153516 20161210_153526 20161210_153530

Thanks to our welcoming hosts at Away We Go Cafe .


Our next event is Innovative cakes on Jan 21st … get googling fresh new trends in cake ingredients or decor… for the New Year !! Book via

Happy Holidays …best wishes Karen  …all suggestions for themes and venues welcomed for 2017

6 ways to reduce Stress at Christmas

How to have a stress-free Christmas, including avoiding family arguments and sharing the workload.

Christmas is a time for fun and family get-togethers, but can have its pressures too. The family is stuck in the house, the kids are overexcited, there’s the tree to decorate, presents to buy and wrap, and food to cook.


It’s no wonder the festive feeling can fizzle out. There is evidence that Christmas puts a strain on families. Statistics show that January is the busiest month for divorce lawyers.

Make sure this Christmas doesn’t become a day to remember for all the wrong reasons. Follow these tips from a Relate counsellor

  • If there have been any family rows during the year, resolve them. Tell the people you argued with that you’re looking forward to seeing them. Ask if you can get together before Christmas to talk about whatever problem you had.
  • Plan the day and share out the jobs that need to be done. Don’t slave away for hours on your own and feel like people have taken advantage of you.
  • Discuss your plans with others, including any children who will be there, so that you can listen to their ideas and wishes for the day. Then you can come up with a celebration which includes things that please everyone.
  • Have a timetable for Christmas Day so that you don’t all sit around for hours doing nothing. Try to make sure you won’t be spending a lot of time with a difficult person or someone you don’t get along with.
  • Don’t drink too much. Drinking excessively is never a good idea. Find out more on safer drinking.
  • Children can get overexcited, so plan a lovely long walk for a change of scene and some fresh air. Everybody will feel better and pleasantly tired instead of irritably tired. For more ideas, read Get active at Christmas.

Please share these tips with others & take 5 minutes to mindfully think about how you are going to look after yourself this year. Think about when you get that feeling of dread… what could you do differently this year or who could you delegate it to !


Keeping going, not asking for help & then getting frazzled is a typical dilemma people raise when they come to see me for Life Coaching. Its those domestic niggles & blockages that can undermine you moving forward with bigger changes like a career change , downsizing or redundancy . Olympic athletes all have coaches to help them be even better so I am happy to meet you for a free coaching session to see how I can help you. Please contact me on 07971 881251 , leave a message or text .You can see what clients say about my service. Click for Testimonials.

Merry Christmas …please share this post if it would help a friend or relative xx
Best wishes Karen



Walking my way to Relaxation

Fabulous walk today, fuelled by a Farmers breakfast from Hassop Station cafe. A full breakfast helps you walk, and keeps your hunger pangs away!

Breakfast Hassop
Breakfast Hassop

We then started our walk at Cromford Mill, parking is £4 all day. We headed up an old mill path, across the main road & climbed above the houses. We met loads of friendly animals today, thankfully all in fields , safely away from our footpaths.

Horses Cromford derbyshire
Horses Cromford Derbyshire
Bullocks Cromford Derbyshire
Bullocks Cromford Derbyshire


Bullocks 2 cromford derbyshire
Bullocks 2 Cromford Derbyshire

View of the Crich monument ,from our high level walk along the River Derwent Valley. We visited it later in the day!


Crich Quarry &  MERCIAN Regimental War Memorial - Crich
Crich Quarry & MERCIAN Regimental War Memorial – Crich



Tunnel BEST on Cromford Canal
Tunnel BEST on Cromford Canal


Ducks on log Cromford canal derbyshire
Ducks on log Cromford canal Derbyshire





The pump house ,staffed by volunteers, pumps water up from the river below, into the Cromford canal. It runs on coal & steam.



We saw the horsedrawn canal boat ride from Cromford,along the canal to High Peak Junction return. Pulled by Shirehorses, very eco friendly & quiet.


Ducks on log Cromford canal derbyshire
Ducks on one leg on a  log Cromford Canal Derbyshire

Fantastic 6 mile walk followed by tea at W cafe Cromford, then a drive to the top of the hill near Crich to see the memorial. We were so high up we could see the Humber Bridge far away in the distance.

Crich Quarry &  MERCIAN Regimental War Memorial - Crich
Crich Quarry & MERCIAN Regimental War Memorial – Crich

Here is the view from the top of the memorial hill, above .


All in all a brilliant day . Relaxed !! #result


Cakes made with Tea Sheffield Clandestine cake club

This months event nearly ended in disaster when I turned up at the venue 30 minutes before the event to find that the lovely Tea cafe & deli was shut up & the host had been rushed to hospital. Quick thinking … we nipped across the road to Bessies Cafe, & like you do, enquired if they could help us out with 15 minutes notice. Fantastic business nous …the chef said ‘ Yes’ so our bakers trooped in ! They do lovely latte too. Thanks to Chef Charly & to Tom who was looking after the cafe for Bessie who was on honeymoon.

Here are our cakes on a theme of Tea. As usual we had some stunning tastes, each one different !


Charly & Tom from Bessies cafe, 984 Abbeydale Road , Sheffield.


Cherrys Darjeeling Tea cake was gluten free with ground almonds & pear . Darjeeling syrup was infused into the cream filling.


Ruths Earl Grey & Lavender cake had a butter cream filling made with 2 egg whites made into a meringue & then added to butter. She researched Lavender & found that all varieties are edible .


My Bara Brith, was from a recipe a the Hairy Bikers mum. It was deep brown, but not burnt. No fat , just fruit soaked overnight in tea & demarera sugar, added to self raising flour & egg , with mixed spice powder.


Annes Chocolate Chai cake , was made with Vanilla Chai tea, ground almonds & cardamom.


Danni brought her granni Mary , who had a fabulous time & went home laden with cakey treats ! Danni made a London Fog cake based on a Canadian recipe using Earl Gray Latte. It used earl grey, ground to a powder in the cake. She drizzled an earl grey syrup onto the sponge cake which made it very moist. The filling was lemon curd & fresh cream.


Ness made a Masala Chai & Earl grey cake from Fiona Cairns book. Fiona made Will & Kates wedding cake. Earl grey teabags infused with spices, cardamom,ginger & milk made a moist sponge. She used fresh root ginger in the tea infusion, ground ginger in the sponge & chopped stem ginger plus its syrup, in the topping.


Sarah with min helper Violet, made Masala Chai cake from Chetnas book from last years Bakeoff. Ground cloves & chai with whipped cream topping.


Michelle made deep moist Black Tea cake with Honey Buttercream frosting.


Stan made a patisserie standard Assam Tea cake , from an American website. He used buttermilk & 7/8ths flour , a mixture of plain flour & 1/8 cornflour, with a creme custard filling. He lightly sprayed the top with edible gold spray.


Suzy D made a rosewater cake, using melted butter technology & Pollards rose tea, with added edible rose oil for flavour.


dsc06771 dsc06772

Here are some pictures of the interiors of our cakes !

dsc06775 dsc06777 dsc06778 dsc06779 dsc06780 dsc06781 dsc06782 dsc06784

Once again massive thanks to Bessies Cafe

Our next Sheffield CCC meeting is Animal crackers Sat 22nd Oct …then 19th Nov & 10th December .

Please contact Karen Perkins with any enquiries

Baking for fun at Bakewell Baking Festival with Sheffield CCC

Thanks to all the Sheffield bakers who baked to a theme  of Cakes for a Bakewell Picnic . We were honoured to be asked to do a cake demo & cake club . Look we are on the list !

bakewell 2016


5 bakers plus at least 3 guests baked for us .


Here are our cakes: Anne baked a Bakewell Thumbprint cake, based on a biscuit recipe with extra egg, 50% ground almond plus lots of lemon juice. Make holes with your thumb & pour in melted jam.
DSC06608 DSC06624

Jane made a traditional Victoria sponge with a twist. Bramble jelly filling & adding a little icing sugar & gelatin to set the cream to cope with a warm Bakewell day. One sank & one sindged ..but you would never guess it from the picture ..we are clever amateur bakers !!

DSC06609 DSC06625

Lemon, lime & orange drizzle cake from Karen, again designed to be heatproof for a hot picnic day ! Lots of juice squeezed on before icing.

DSC06610 DSC06622

Becky used fresh organic raspberries in her Raspberry Bakewell sponge & the taste was well worth it !

DSC06611 DSC06626

Amy travelled from Barnsley to join us with her Lemon meringue cake with Italian style meringue… sugar syrup & icing sugar, put on with a palette knife , finished off with a blow torch #eek ..delicious !!

DSC06612 DSC06623

DSC06620 DSC06621 DSC06627

Join us on 17th Sept via baking Cakes on a theme of Tea
Oct 22nd Animal Crackers cakes . Contact Karen Perkins with any questions via or via @fabcoach on twitter
See you there ! Best wishes Karen