Respect the Whirl -GBBO Week 2


Ooooops I did it again ! This weeks Great British Bake Off  was Biscuit week – How hard could a biscuit bake actually be ?  As we watched the contestants tackle iced biscuits – surely a doddle ? Then onto Mary’s Viennese Whirls … followed by a ginger biscuit structure of epic proportions ! We gasped as biscuits tumbled to the floor , as time ran out , as the elusive snap was more of a rip … we held our breath as the whirls disintegrated into smooth velveteen crumbs of buttery deliciousnes … we all  cried with dismay as ginger constructions collapsed and snapped …  I was fair exhausted by the end of the show !!

I had originally intended to make a batch of vanilla cookies and ice them with artistic flair  however  I decided to embrace the technical challenge once again ! I have never attempted a viennese finger so a whirl might just be the ending of me !! I used Mary’s recipe as why tamper with the best ?? And the results … well catastrophic actually !!! The dough was that short that it crumbled beyond recognition – tasted blimmin gorgeous , so silky and buttery and delicious ! But looked an absolute horror … I managed to salvage 2 fully constructed whirls !!  The rest of the biscuits were put in a tub and devoured without an ounce of respect !!!

So I say to you all – never underestimate the humble biccie ! Respect the whirl !!! Its a technical feat which yet again beat this baker !!! Next week  I’m having it – I promise you !!!

I have joined in with Week 2 of The Great Bloggers Bake Off – you can join in too here  with Mummy Mishaps


You can join in more baking fun with Tesco who kindly sponsored my bake this week ! Many thanks … Go visit their baking pages here 


Jaffa Cake- Epic fail !



It’s back … we’ve waited patiently through an amazing Olympics and now we are enjoying the spoils …

The Great British Bake Off – fast becoming a great British institution  as is the fantastic Great Bloggers Bake Off !! Hurrah …

I sat with most of the nation last Wednesday eagerly watching as the new contestants were put through their paces … firstly a drizzle cake .. and I was feeling rather confident at that .. Ha ! Who can’t make a decent drizzle I thought to myself !! turns out quite a few find it a struggle … Next onto Jaffa cakes … Well I sat there giving my armchair advice quite literally shouting at the TV that surely it wasn’t that blummin hard !!! Then onto the showstopper – a mirror glazed cake ! I sat down to digest the first episode and thought well good on you BBC , finally bringing it back to basics ! To good old fashioned baking !!

So  , now it was my turn !! I decided to go with Mary Berry’s Jaffa Cakes  with the naïve idea of showing these so called bakers just how easy it actually was ! Oh boy oh boy oh boy – How wrong was I ? Jaffa Cakes ? Jaffa fail !!!! The sponges were fine , the jelly was fine , the chocolate was fine but on construction of this spongey orange morsel it all went horrifically wrong !! I am an impatient person by nature – the chocolate was still far too warm that it hit the jelly and melted the orangey centre then slid off into the waiting tray …. and this happened time and time again ! Meaning after only 3 successful ish Jaffa cakes  I declared the whole sorry episode an Epic Jaffa Fail and consoled myself with a cup of tea and some sponge mess !!! I now take it all back – sorry GBBO contestants – I apologise profusely for the names I called you all on Wednesday evening , for ever questioning your ability as bakers and your eligibility to grace my screen ! I truly am sorry – Jaffa Cakes are hard !!! I will never ever venture there again …..

I have joined in with Week 1 of The Great Bloggers Bake Off – you can join in too here  with Mummy Mishaps .




Psssst ……

Hello you lovely lot … it appears I’ve been neglecting you all for some time !! For this I hope you will accept my sincerest apologies … the truth of it is , I kind of lost my lust for life in general and everything went a little dark . I wasn’t really in the best place to stun you all with my witty repartee and quite frankly I don’t think I would have had the energy if I’d have tried !!

I even took myself off to Blog On MSI to see if it could lift me from my bloggy doldrums and it just didn’t work – just served to make me feel even more inadequate , out of touch and old !!

To top it off  as you all know I turned 40 this year and since that dreaded number appeared everything seems to have gone a bit BLEURGH !!!! I’ve basically been a Misgog Mildred so it was better for me to take a step back and bore myself with my own melancholy than inflict it on the wider stratosphere !!

But anyway … I’m just here to tell you all I’M BACK and hopefully I’m going to amaze you all with some fantabulous creations of the finest fare !! I hope you don’t mind if I interject the odd story about them boys of mine and the wooftastic Freddie Bear …. I think it’s time A Wannabe Foodie celebrated life , family , love and laughter once more …. don’t you ??




Birthday Bundt for Bill

My eldest son turned 16 yesterday … 16 !! I know …I don’t look old enough …aw shucks …you make me blush …😂

As usual I was so very last minute in making his cake and truth be known I had a bit of a disaster !! I used a recipe for a Victoria Sponge bundt that I saw on …with Rachel being Queen of bundts it seemed rude not to !!! You can find the recipe here
… Now when it says turn out after 10 minutes please do …otherwise you end up w
ith half your cake stuck nay welded by jam into your tin !!

A sense of panic did set in I must admit as I surveyed the half cake covered in jam … until inspiration struck and I pegged it to the supermarket for supplies to turn Billys birthday Bundt into the Victoria Eton Mess Birthday Bundt !! Whipped cream , crushed meringue and some gorgeous fresh fruit …. and here it is folks …. Billys Birthday Extravaganza …. Delish !!! 


A little update #thinkingslimmer

Well … I feel like I changed nothing … I listened to the pod everyday …right up until birthday fever hit !! I mean a gal turning 40 needs to party like she’s 21 …right ???


So I did have a wee slip up week … but hey !! The results are in … In the first month of slimpodding I lost a fantastic 5lbs . Not a mega amount but for saying I still drank the wine …lots of !! I still ate the cake !! I still chomped down a 3 course meal and then some … I think I did pretty well .

Right now I’m experiencing  some technical difficulties so the Gold programme has had to be shelved and in the mean time I’m  listening to The Drop 2 Dress Sizes programme daily instead !!!

The trick is to keep listening … The human mind is an incredible  thing !!

Find out more at where the lovely Sandra will explain all …

I’ll  be back soon with my usual recipes and culinary gaffs …I promise !!!


My 40th birthday meal with mh boys x

A Wannabe “Slim” Foodie !!


The Before Pic

Yeah yeah yeah we’ve all heard it all before … right ?? Every January … February .. March and so on .. I promise myself that this is the month I tackle the issue that makes me the most miserable ! My weight !! You see as a lapsed foodie … yes I admit it I’ve been rather rubbish at “food” of late  … this wannabe foodie has relied an awful lot on the processed easy food that I can just bung in the oven … and been rather too indulgent in the odd takeaway … actually not all that odd  as the takeaway delivery man now stands and has conversations with the husband  ” How’s the kids ? ” … ” We’ve got you a little Christmas present ..!”  I kid you not !!   Anyway I digress …

I’ve recently been presented with an amazing opportunity to sort out my issues with over eating .. under moving .. and over stressing ! For the next 12 weeks I will be using a marvellous little download from – I will be logging my ups and downs and thoughts and feelings in my own personal log but I hope to be able to share some of those logs with you . I have quite a substantial amount of weight to lose so small steps … slowly slowly catchee monkey so they say !!!

I’ve listened to the pods for the last 4 days and I have to say not only are they forcing me to take a break – take some time out of my day – 8 little minutes of solitude (BLISS)  but they are really helping me to start to take the control back for myself ! So as I sailed past the camembert in Aldi this morning without giving the cheeky wee chap a backward glance I couldn’t help but smile to myself – especially as the crisps , despite calling my name , were given short thrift and I escaped from the shop with just exactly what I had gone in to buy !! Small steps … small victories !!

But never fear my faithful friends I am hoping to be able to bring you some wonderful recipes this year – going back to basics and bringing A Wannabe Foodie back to our roots . Food , life , love and laughter …

Happy New Year Lovelies x


Bella Italia , Burton Upon Trent


A new Bella Italia has landed on our doorstep !!! Hurrah !  One Saturday afternoon we bumbled along to Burton to check out this new place … ! I have never eaten in a Bella Italia before so was very excited to find out just what was in store !!

We were greeted by a friendly waitress and shown to our table very promptly . We were introduced to our waitress for the afternoon and given our menu’s , including the children’s menu and crayons for the husband kids . Whilst browsing the extensive and tantalising menu , Maria ( our waitress) bought bread sticks for the twins and olives for the “grown ups”  along with our drinks order ( soft drinks all round – except Mummy who felt it only right to sample a fine Italian wine … Right ? !!)


Being an indecisive bunch it took us forever to choose what to order and so Maria took the boys to look at the ice cream counter telling them all about the Gelato and what they had to look forward to !! Brilliant !

The food I have to say was absolutely fantastic … it was served quickly and piping hot and tasted divine ! I had the Funghi Arrosto  followed by a Mista Carne Pizza . Both were fantastic – the meat on the pizza was thick cut and full of flavour . I didn’t think I’d manage it all but with a helping hand from the teen miraculously the plate was clean !!!  The twins opted for ribs and chips  , the teen had polpette followed by pollo formaggio al forno  and the husband opted for the whitebait to start followed with filetto di spigola ( sea bass)  . The table fell silent as we all got stuck in … the silence quickly replaced by murmurs and sighs  that good food only can induce ! So safe to say the food quality was excellent .

Desserts followed and well … you can imagine !!! The twins loved being taken over to the Gelato counter and choosing their own dessert … Maria again took charge of this and was just a joy to the boys !


We had a fantastic experience at Bella Italia. The décor was fresh and fun , the ambience was comfortable and relaxing,the food was delicious and of a high standard and the staff were brilliant .. Maria gets a 10/10 from all of us  !! Nothing was too much trouble and she was so friendly and good fun ! Bravo Maria !


Teddy , Frankie and our fab waitress Maria !


We will definitely be heading back to this restaurant- there so much else on the menu we want to try !!

Bella Italia can be found nationwide  at

The restaurant we enjoyed was :

Middleway Retail & Leisure Park

Burton Upon Trent

DE14 1NQ

Bella Italia … the perfect family friendly restaurant ! It get a thumbs up from The Englands

Many thanks to Bella Italia for having us x