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9 November 2014

 Life is what happens when you are busy making plans

I don't wish to start another blog post with a complaint about being busy, but I am sorry that I've been a little neglectful. My excuses are boring, although I will say that our long, cold January evenings have a lot to answer for when it comes to the never-ending pipeline of birthdays that I've been celebrating lately.

That said, I know I am not the only person juggling and, without any offspring or animals relying on me, I need to learn to manage my time better. "I have nothing going on at the moment" said no person ever, after all.

I have had the best few weeks and, despite being 23 and evidently barely albe to care for myself, I did manage to hot foot it down to the BBC Bakes and Cakes Show in Angel a few weeks ago. I took my Mum along for the ride, and we had the best time floating from one demo to the next, and spending all our pocket money on gorgeous kitchenware from the likes of Lakeland and Simply Vintage. Thanks so much to the lovely girls at Good Food for inviting us - we had the best time.

This weekend I've finally had a chance to get back in my kitchen, and I couldn't be happier. Grand plans of smugly presenting recipes for Halloween and Bonfire Night proved immaterial, so instead here is a recipe that won't require a special shop, and can be whipped up in less than an hour.

You don't need to make your own jam at all, and of course you can use any flavour that you like.
120g soft butter
25g icing sugar
25g custard powder
100g plain flour
250g rhubarb
250g caster sugar
1 lemon

If you are making your own jam, start this first. Put a small plate in the freezer, then chop up the rhubarb, then add to a saucepan with the sugar and lemon juice. Heat through on a medium temperature until the rhubarb begins to breakdown, then boil for ten minutes. 

If you're using a thermometer, watch for the jam to come to 150C. If not, judge by eye. When you think the jam is ready, spoon a small amount onto the frozen plate and leave it for a minute or so. Push it with your finger, and if the surface wrinkles the jam is ready. Transfer to a sterilized jar, and allow to cool before you use it.  

For the biscuits, preheat your oven to 180C, and line two baking trays with parchment. Beat the softened butter until it's creamy, then add the custard powder and icing sugar and beat until well mixed. Add the flour, and mix for 1-2 minutes. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle, and pipe into small swirls. Bake in your preheated oven for 10 minutes, until the edges are just turning golden. 

Allow the biscuits to cool on the tray for ten minute, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely - take care, as they're delicate little souls. Once the biscuits are cooled through, sandwich two together with a good dollop of jam. 

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