National Baking Week - I'm mad about baking! The smell of the mixture, the oven heating up and that irresistible smell of cakes as they start to rise and form into tiny, tasty bits of perfection.
So between 14 and 20 October 2013 get out your wooden spoon, your novelty apron, add a sprinkling of flour and a dash of vanilla essence and enjoy National Baking Week. Don't be stingy though ... get others involved. Whether you are baking with children, your grandchildren, sharing recipes or giving out freshly made, bite-sized cakes to all of your loved ones the key is to make it fun.
I cannot get enough of cupcakes. Part of the fun is making a mess and feeling like a child again. My favourite part is getting out the icing and food colourings and creating my very own messages or pictures on top. What a ridiculous mess you can make with hundreds and thousands when you want to!
Try experimenting with quirky ingredients - how about Smarties cupcakes? Or instead of apple or cherry pie try something more exotic ... like passion fruit or kiwi!
The great thing about baking is that it's a great excuse to get your family fully involved in the cooking! Making food together isn't just about filling your bellies but also spending time together and bonding.
I recently met a woman whose fondest memory of her grandmother was getting together with her and baking pies - and I have to say one of my favourite memories of my grandmother is similar, just proving the wonderful impact something as simple as baking can have!
Having a rubbish day? It's also a great way to cheer yourself up! Not only does baking stimulate all the senses but we're left with a sense of achievement too. There's nothing like finally enjoying a delicious cake with a cup of tea after all that hard work!
National Baking Week is all about getting Britain to 'Bake and Share' so make sure you remember to get distributing all your goodies! Even if it doesn't look perfect it will probably taste delicious if it has been cooked with a little bit of love and a whole lot of enthusiasm.
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