Therapeutic Baking


I love baking, When I was a little girl my mum was always in the kitchen baking pies and cooking dinner and the smell and sight of my mum providing for us in this way brought me so much comfort, and a real sense of 'being home'. I loved helping her but not as much as I enjoyed devouring the fruits of her labour! Baking wasn't something I engaged with myself until my youngest daughter was born, but around this time I made my first Victoria Sponge cake, I remember my Mum and Dad coming round for a slice and I felt so proud to offer this home baked (and slightly ugly looking - it was my first time) sliced of yummyiness. But there was one bake that took me right back to being that little girl watching my Mum in the kitchen, and that was her jam buns.

These jam buns are a cake and biscuit hybrid, incredibly easy to make, need little tools and require you to get your hands dirty. It makes them a fantastic therapeutic bake.

This weekend as I felt overwhelmed I put some time aside to make these jam buns. Over the last couple of years they have become one of my daughters 'go to' bakes so it's been a while since I've got my own hands dirty and made them. Something about working with the ingredients with your fingers, kneading the dough and making them with your own fair hands makes it relaxing and grounding; plus the smell is divine when they're in the oven. Now, if like my son you don't like getting your hands dirty then this is not the bake for you, but if you haven't in a while, or want to engage your child in baking then these are pefect.

Children can make them easily and have a true sense of satisfaction of not needing a grown-ups help! I made these with dairy free butter and milk so they are easily adaptable if you have a dairy allergy you're vegan.

So here we go...I'm sharing a family favourite with you all and I can't wait to see the pictures.

Ingredients

225g (8oz) self raising flour

a pinch of salt

100g (3 1/2 oz) butter or margarine

100g (4oz) caster sugar

45-60ml of milk

Jam

Milk to glaze

Method

Heat the oven to 190c or gas mark 5. Grease a baking sheet or line a tray with baking parchment. Mix together the flour and salt, then rub in the fat. Add the sugar and mix all together thoroughly; add the milk to give a stiff dough.

Turn it out onto a floured board and form into a roll.

Cut off pieces about 2cm thick and place on the baking sheet. Make a small hollow using your thumb in the centre of each and fill with jam.

Glaze with milk and bake for 15 - 20 minutes. they should be crunchy on the outside and soft and doughy in the middle.

Eat and enjoy! You can download this recipe here

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