Tag Archives: baking

Sugar Cookie Fruit Pizza (SO Good!)

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Sugar Cookie Fruit Pizza (SO Good!)

Hello! This past weekend was mine and Johnny’s housewarming/birthaversary party and we had the best time! We worked hard for almost an entire month to get our place into tip top shape for guests and it was so nice to be able to enjoy the fruits of our labor… And also, actual fruit. The evening before the party, Johnny was on a cleaning spree and, myself, a cooking and baking spree.

Rather than ordering pizzas or pre-made dishes, I decided that I wanted to be the one making the food for the party. I spent about five hours in total making cold veggie pizza, pasta salad, spinach artichoke dip, and sugar cookie fruit pizzas. I had made everything but the cookies before and was pleased, as always, with how the dishes turned out. The cookies are definitely what I was most proud of, though:

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I found this recipe from Cooking Classy on Pinterest.

When it comes to baking, I like to leave that to my mom and sister because they are both excellent at it. I much prefer to cook but you can’t have a party without some sweet treats! Prior to the big event, I spent a lot of time scouring Pinterest for party dishes and thought that the sugar cookie fruit pizzas would be perfect for a warm day. Not to mention that any leftover fruit could be used as garnishes for drinks… I am nothing if not economical!

For my take on Cooking Classy’s delicious recipe, I used the Pillsbury pre-made sugar cookie dough to save time. I also have never baked sugar cookies before and didn’t want my first time being an epic fail. That is the only thing I strayed from, however, and used the recipe for frosting that was provided and the recommendations for fruit toppings. And, I hate to toot my own horn BUT it turned out amazing and was, easily, the biggest success from my spread.

I am really not a huge dessert girl and am all for savory treats, instead. I don’t like things that are overly sweet and that wasn’t the case with these cookies at all. The cream cheese frosting used salted butter in it to balance out the powdered sugar. And, as my mom always taught me, I added a lot more vanilla extract!

This not too sweet base was ideal for the variety of fruits that Cooking Classy used as a topping. I went with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, peaches, pineapple, and kiwi and the only thing I left out was grapes. This medley of fruit provided for a sweet/tart sensation thanks to the zippy flavor of pineapples and berries paired with the softer strawberries and peaches. SO. Good.

I would happily make this recipe by Cooking Classy again and her page is full of yummy recipes so do be sure to check it out. I can’t recommend these cookies enough for your next party or event and they are sure to be as big of a hit as they were at mine!

What is your favorite dessert? What is your favorite food to make for a party? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Air Fried Oreos!

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Air Fried Oreos!

Hello! Prior to this week, I have never used Pinterest before and knowing what I know now, I can’t believe I didn’t hop on the bandwagon sooner. I realized that I was bored with everything that I was making for dinner and asked my mom to send me a few recipes, including one for baked ziti. The recipe she sent was from a Pinterest post and I couldn’t view it without making an account.

After viewing the baked ziti recipe, I figured it couldn’t hurt to poke around for a few more minutes in search of vegetarian dinners. A few more minutes turned into an hour and over one hundred saved pins! From pasta and Indian food to sandwiches and soups, I couldn’t stop scrolling and pinning to save my own life. The only reason I stopped was because I had to get ready for bed!

One type of food that I found myself pinning a lot of was desserts. My mom and sister are wonderful bakers and are always making sweet treats like scones, cupcakes, and cookies. Myself, on the other hand, prefers savory and cooking dinners. My husband, however, has never met a dessert that he didn’t like! I found several easy recipes that I wanted to try, one being air fried Oreos.

The recipe I used was from Marianne at Basil & Bubbly and it was SO simple to make and oh so yummy. Make sure to check out her page for the full recipe!

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With three simple ingredients (Pillsbury croissants, Oreos, and powdered sugar) and in under ten minutes, I had a dessert worthy of being served at the fair. I added whipped cream on mine and enjoyed one while Johnny had four lol! I thought it was delicious but Johnny’s complaint was the croissant dough not having enough flavor. Next time I make them, I plan on adding a bit of cinnamon sugar to his for some extra sweetness.

Although this was not a complex recipe in the slightest, it was actually the first dessert that I have made in my own apartment so I was very proud. I will definitely be checking out Basil & Bubbly again for more recipe inspiration and cannot recommend her page enough!

What is your favorite recipe to make? Do you prefer sweet or savory? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

3 Delicious Baking Recipes For The Holiday Season

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3 Delicious Baking Recipes For The Holiday Season

Tis the season of going home for the holidays, staying close to those you hold dearest, and decorating everything with a sprinkle of joy. Most importantly, tis the season to experiment in the kitchen. Yes, most people have enough extra hours at work, renovating with a Renewal by Andersen Windows, or being a full time parent. But, you’ve seen the films of families getting together and baking a splendid dessert. There’s no reason for you to miss out!

This article will teach you baking is for everyone and give you the chance to impress your loved ones. It’s time to get creative, throw on an apron, and decide what type of dessert calls out to you:

Gingerbread Cookies:

Gingerbread cookies are a holiday tradition and for a good reason. They are a taste of holiday possibility best accompanied by hot cocoa with marshmallows. Baking gingerbread cookies is a fantastic activity for young children to participate in and feel included in the festivity preparations.

Ingredients:

  • Brown sugar
  • Egg
  • Molasses
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Ginger
  • Cloves
  • Nutmeg
  • All-purpose flour
  • Butter

Prepare: For this recipe, you will have to whisk the following ingredients together in a bowl: baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt, ginger, and flour. Next, you will beat the dough and add the butter and sugar with a hand mixer. Finally, add the previous flour mixture to the dough and beat until combined.

Then, you must chill the dough, first dividing it into two parts and rolling them into a ball. Next, flatten the ball and wrap it in plastic wrap inside the fridge for close to an hour. Once chilled, unwrap the dough, place it on a floured surface, and use a cookie cutter of your preference.

Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for eight to ten minutes. Finally, take your cookies out of the oven and let them sit for five minutes. Eat them with a glass of milk, coffee, hot chocolate, or start decorating to enjoy at a later time.

^^^ Image By: Jill Wellington on Pixabay

Linzer Cookies:

Nothing like some good Linzer cookies to dip into milk

Ingredients:

  • Flour
  • Almond flour
  • White sugar
  • Butter
  • Salt
  • Cinnamon
  • Vanilla extract
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Powdered sugar
  • Raspberry Jam

Prepare: Like most baking recipes in this article, you’ll prepare the dough. Have the butter, white sugar, and cinnamon ready to beat in a bowl. Carefully add the yolk and vanilla to combine them. Whisk the salt, flour, and almond butter together in another bowl. Combine both of the mixtures.

Just like the gingerbread cookie recipe, repeat the process of dividing and refrigerating the dough. Take out the dough from the fridge and allow it to soften for five minutes. Roll one disk on a floured surface and use the desired cutter to give shape to the cookies.

Bake the cookies for fifteen minutes and then let them cool for a few minutes. Powder your cookies with powdered sugar and add jam to their center. Cut a hole on top of other cookies and place those on the first ones.

Picture By: Devanath on Pixabay

Cinnamon Rolls:

The smell of cinnamon rolls is truly enchanting. Ask anyone within reach of a bakery and they’ll tell you how cinnamon rolls bewitch the heart. 

Ingredients:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Salt
  • Instant yeast
  • Two percent or Whole milk
  • Salted butter
  • 1 Egg
  • Granulated sugar
  • Brown sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • Powdered sugar
  • Vanilla

Prepare: You’ll have the perfect cinnamon rolls to dig into in six easy steps. First, you will add salted butter, yeast, milk, egg, salt, brown sugar, and water in a bowl. When you’re done with the mixture, heat water, butter, and milk together to add it to the butter mixture.

Time to knead the dough! Don’t be afraid to make a mess. With your hands, knead the dough. Let it rest for a couple of minutes and prepare the ingredients for your filling: sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Get your dough, roll it out, spread some butter, add cinnamon, and sprinkle some sugar. Roll the dough and cut it into even pieces. Grease a round pan and place your rolls inside. Allow the rolls to rise for sixty minutes.

Finally, bake the cinnamon rolls until they look golden brown. The only problem left is resisting the temptation to eat them all in one sitting!

Picture By: Monika on Pixabay

Call a friend, bake with family members, or spend this time with whoever makes your day. You will have amazing memories and treats to show for it!

Featured Image By: Jill Wellington on Pixabay

Fun Activities To Get You In The Holiday Spirit

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Fun Activities To Get You In The Holiday Spirit

Hello! Whether snow falls in your neck of the woods or not, there is no denying that the holiday season is approaching quickly. Now is the perfect time to finish up your holiday shopping and do some fun activities to help get yourself and family into the winter spirit. No matter the weather where you are, these ideas will always be a hit:

Have A Holiday Card Drive:

Sadly, many people celebrate the holiday season alone but there are a lot of different ways to include them in the holiday season too. How about organizing a holiday card drive for your local senior living center? An abundance of season’s greetings to open on their celebrated holiday is sure to put a smile on their face. You could also select a family in need to cook a holiday meal for or donate presents to. Don’t forget local homeless and women’s shelters or soup kitchens that you could donate or lend a helping hand to. Part of the holiday season is spreading joy to others and these ideas will help you do just that.

Movie Night:

If holiday movies are your favorite, why not make an event of it? Invite your friends and family over for a Hallmark marathon or a screening of Elf and let the good times roll. You could do a gift swap, decorate cookies, and set up a hot chocolate bar for everyone to enjoy. If you want to make a boozy time of it, you could play the classic holiday game of setting up a Santa hat on the corner of your TV and taking a drink every time an actor ends up “wearing” it. I, myself, have never participated in this but I think it’s hilarious lol.

Holiday Lights Tour:

Grown ups and children alike love seeing holiday lights so take a tour in the evening. Go for a drive and scope out all of the wonderful decorations that different houses have set up. Bring something warm to drink, crank the carols, and experience holiday magic from the comfort of your car. You could even leave a small gift on the doorstep of whichever home was your favorite to commend them for their hard work.

Get Crafty:

I had so much fun participating in a holiday themed paint night with some of my girlfriends a couple of years ago and would love to do something like it again. Have one of your artistically inclined friends walk all of you through how to paint a winter scene or you could find a YouTube video to instruct you how. No matter if you’re the next Picasso or not, it will be a great activity to do all together. Afterwards, you can take a vote and hand out awards for the best creation, honorable mentions, and not so muches!

Bake Off:

Decorating cookies is always a hoot so how about taking it the next step further and hosting a bake off? You and your guests can make an afternoon of baking (and eating) your favorite holiday desserts together. Cakes, pies, chocolate, and an assortment of cookies can be shared and it will give you new recipe inspiration for your own holiday dinner. While the treats are baking, you can decorate a tote or goodie bag to store the sweets in for your ride home.

The holiday season is such an exciting time and the ideas above will provide you with lasting memories for years to come. Happy holidays to all!

How do you celebrate the holiday season? What is your favorite thing about the holidays? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Self Care Hobbies That Can Be Done From Home

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Self Care Hobbies That Can Be Done From Home

Hobbies that can be done from home are so much more likely to be practiced often. And if they are much more likely to happen, then it can be such a good thing for your self care and mental health. Looking after yourself and finding something that you love to do, outside of work or school is important. So with that in mind, here are some hobbies that you can try from home to help you relax. Which are you going to try first?

Knitting:

Knitting is a wonderful hobby to try. The reason being, is that it is not only a mindful and relaxing activity, but it also gives you an end result. Want to create a scarf or make something for your friend’s new baby? Then get knitting. Seeing that you have created something by yourself can be a real confidence boost.

Painting:

Painting is something that can be really relaxing and mindful, and you don’t need very much equipment to get you started. You can go wherever your imagination takes you or take inspiration from your favorite artist or pieces of artwork. You could look here for some inspiration: https://davidhartgalleries.com.au/pro-hart/. You could choose paint, acrylics, watercolors, chalks, or other mediums, it is all about being creative and making it up as you go.

Baking Bread:

Another hobby that is practical, as you get something good to eat at the end of it, but that is calming and relaxing at the same time. Baking bread in a traditional way, such as by kneading the dough by hand and waiting for it to rise can be therapeutic and so, so rewarding. You can get creative with the types of bread and the flavors like sourdough, which will need a starter, as stated here: https://feastingathome.com/sourdough-starter/. So there are a lot of options for you to play around with.

Reading:

If you don’t think that you have much time for reading, then you might not have been putting as much emphasis on it as you have in the past. Reading can be pure escapism, as well as a way to learn new things. If you want to read more, then block out the time in your schedule and it will make sure that it happens.

LEGO:

Building with LEGO is not just for kids! You can get proper sets and kits to create something as it is meant to be or you can use what you have to create anything else that you can imagine. Some kits can take a while to build, so it can be a real labor of love. The perfect solution when you’re looking for something to do to relax at the end of the day.

Everyone needs a hobby to enjoy so why not try some of these ideas? Have fun!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Kitchen Upgrades To Try Today

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Kitchen Upgrades To Try Today

They say that the kitchen is the heart of the home. We tend to spend a lot of time in this space, cooking, chatting, hosting guests. So, why not consider giving your kitchen a little overhaul with some new appliances that will not only look great, but will add to your cooking too? Here are just a few examples you might want to consider:

A Stand Mixer:

Into baking? Throughout the past year and a half, many people have picked up baking as an activity to keep them preoccupied with free time found during the pandemic. We can’t blame them! Baking can be carried out easily from the comfort of your own home – and you get a delicious treat at the end too! Now, if you’ve been practicing and are getting better at your breads, cakes, pastries and other baked goods you may be aware of just how tiring it can be thoroughly mixing ingredients. This is where a stand mixer could help. Stand mixers do the hard work for you, leaving you with a lovely dough or batter, ready to bake.

A Coffee Machine:

If you like a good cup of coffee, you don’t have to go to your local coffee shop to get one. If you have a coffee machine at home, you’ll be able to make delicious brews within your own four walls. A coffee machine can do much more than simply pouring hot water from the kettle into some granules. When choosing your machine, make sure to look for good reviews and recommendations. This will give you an idea of other people’s experience with your chosen machine and whether it’s worth the money. There are different options on the market to suit different budgets but, generally speaking, the better the machine is, the better the coffee will be.

Cookware:

A lot of us settle for budget cookware only to find that food sticks to it or the food burns on it. This is less than ideal, so consider overhauling your cookware and investing in some new versions. There are different types for different cooking devices, such as the best ceramic cookware for oven, stove top, and more. There are also many different designs, allowing you to match your pots, pans and trays to the aesthetic of your kitchen itself.

A Slow Cooker:

Many of us are working from home now and would love to be able to prep a few simple ingredients in the morning to have dinner ready at the end of the day. A slow cooker can achieve this. Leave it plugged in with your ingredients inside and you can have some great casseroles, stews, and curries lined up for your evening meals.

There’s an endless array of other kitchen appliances and equipment out there. The options highlighted above are just a few useful suggestions that could do you and your home a world of good!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Enjoying The Kitchen As A Family

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Enjoying The Kitchen As A Family

The kitchen is often considered the heart of the home so why not get better acquainted with it during your next family night as opposed to the usual movies or games. Kitchens are meant to be used and enjoyed and creating a meal with your family gives you the opportunity to work as a team in a different activity while still spending quality time together. Who knows, you might just have a secret chef in your home! Try the following during your next family night for some good food and good fun:

Agree On A Menu:

If you are going to prepare an entire dinner with your family, then it is best to agree on a menu beforehand so you can pick up all of the necessary ingredients and save you from any surprise trips to the store. Is there going to be a cuisine style that should be adhered to? Is each person going to make their own dish or will tasks be delegated? Will there be enough options for people with dietary needs? All of this should come into consideration while preparing the menu to ensure that everything goes smoothly while cooking your meal.

Don’t forget to read your recipes carefully for instructions that you must complete beforehand or a crazy long cooking time so you can plan accordingly. It also doesn’t hurt to assign stations for everyone to work in so no one gets their toes stepped on and remember to tend to any professional fridge repairs that need done so all of your leftovers can keep!

Baking & Decorating:

If you’d rather move right onto dessert than try your hand at cooking a whole meal as a family, then that’s okay too! Baking and decorating desserts is fun for children and adults alike. You could even incorporate a competition element to the evening by offering a small prize for the best tasting (or decorated) dessert. Classic desserts are sure to please but there are plenty of creative updates on old favorites that you can try like cake pops and hot chocolate bombs. Making your own chocolate is also a great activity for those with a sweet tooth. 😀

Smoothies:

Going out for a hike with the family in the afternoon and returning home to make some smoothies seems like the perfect way to spend a spring day. Encourage everyone to make their own concoctions with a wide assortment of fruits and low fat yogurts to pick from. Smoothies are also great for sneaking in some veggies like spinach, kale, or carrots.

Slime & Play Dough:

Perhaps, you’d rather use your family time in the kitchen to whip up a few batches of slime or play dough together. If so, there are countless recipes online that you can follow for some colorful, creative fun made with ingredients in your own house. Your kids are sure to have a blast!

Retire your living room for family night and head to the kitchen instead for a more hands on, interactive evening. Creating in the kitchen as a family will encourage team work and help introduce children to different concepts in math like fractions and units of measurement. It’s just as educational as it is wholesome fun.

Sweet Treats For Valentine’s Day

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Sweet Treats For Valentine’s Day

Hi! Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and if you are still struggling to come up with some safe ways to celebrate at home, then how about spending an afternoon baking all of the desserts with your SO? Creating confectionery treats together will give you a chance to showcase how well you work as a team and decorating your masterpieces will be a blast. Taste testing them will be even better, though! How about trying your hand at making the following?

Chocolate:

Who needs a heart shaped box of chocolate when you can make your own, instead? Two Christmases ago, I made chocolate with my boyfriend’s mom and not only was it tons of fun but the end results were delicious! You can find all kinds of cute chocolate molds, get creative with your color choices, and add on to your pieces of candy with peanut butter, chopped nuts, or shredded coconut. Don’t forget that you can also make chocolate covered pretzels and fruit too. Hello, chocolate covered strawberries!

Cake Pops:

If you and yours aren’t big chocoholics, you could try your hand at making cake pops, cupcakes, or just a plain old cake for dessert. Investigate over YouTube and Pinterest for some ideas on how to decorate and see who is the Cake Boss in your kitchen! Red Velvet, angel food, and strawberry cakes are ideal for Valentine’s Day and I love a whipped frosting, myself. And, if whatever form of cake you go with is super successful, you can try this idea again on one of your birthdays. Store bought cake, what?

Ice Cream Sundae Bar:

Ice cream sundae bars are ideal for those who have a sweet tooth and aren’t trying to wait around for a cake to bake! Head to the store together and grab what you both need to build the perfect sundae. Fruits, candies, syrups, and whipped cream are all great starters. If you’re looking for a boozy treat, don’t forget that black or blueberry wine is awesome over vanilla bean ice cream! Love the sundae idea but want more of a challenge? You could make your own ice cream! But, it might be good to have a pint of Ben & Jerry’s for back up. 🙂

Lava Cakes:

I am not a huge fan of cake (the texture bothers me) but I do love a chocolate lava cake every once in a blue moon. The rich chocolate and the gooey hot fudge center topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream? Forget about it!! Lots of brands have make your own lava cake kits if making it from scratch seems like a daunting task. Homemade or from a box, you will still experience the joy of baking something delicious with your SO.

Don’t Forget:

To add some atmosphere, whether it be fun or romantic, both of you could create a playlist to listen to while you bake. Be sure to grab champagne or sparkling cider when you are picking up your ingredients too!

What is your favorite dessert? How do you plan on celebrating Valentine’s Day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Equipment You Will Need To Start Your Restaurant

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Equipment You Will Need To Start Your Restaurant

If you’ve dreamed of opening a restaurant, you know it will take lots of preparation. As you work to carve your niche in the local selection of eateries, you want to know what kinds of things you need to have to be successful. Here are some of the most important types of restaurant equipment you will need:

Equipment for cooking:

No matter what you are making, you likely need all kinds of kitchen tools and gadgets to help you whip it all together. You may need an industrial mixer or blender if you are starting a bakery and need a way to mix the ingredients for your dough. If a restaurant is your business venture, you could get away with a light duty mixer for sauces and soups. You will likely need pots, pans, spoons, whisks, bowls, the list goes on. Be sure to get enough so you don’t have to wash your equipment between each batch before you can start the next one in case you are extra busy.

Refrigerator or freezer:

If you are preparing food, you will want to keep many of the raw ingredients cold or frozen until you are ready to prepare them. If you are starting a large establishment, you will want walk-in freezers and fridges. Be certain to look at all of your options, especially if you are purchasing an existing restaurant and making some changes. Adding new and better cooling equipment may be necessary.

Stove or oven:

You may need an industrial stove top, convection ovens, or perhaps a brick oven if you are starting a pizza place. Be sure to think through the kinds of equipment you need to cook your masterpieces properly.

Basic equipment:

You need to have plenty of tables or counters, a dishwasher, and one or more sinks. Don’t forget about storage containers and lids, flatware, and serving ware. The list is nearly endless so be thorough when you’re checking through your equipment for things you may have missed.

Starting a restaurant is going to take work and dedication, but with careful planning, you will soon be serving your signature dish to your favorite customers!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Stay Sane In Quarantine With These Hobby Ideas

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Stay Sane In Quarantine With These Hobby Ideas

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that we are living in scary times. This global pandemic has pushed most of the world into lock down and quarantine, and even when working from home, it’s pretty boring! You’re unable to see friends and family, and you can’t even bounce off of the fun of the office to feel better about things. Instead, you get the chance to sit, twiddle your thumbs, and wait for life to resume in some kind of normality.

The thing is, this is not how it works. It doesn’t work like that because you have to consider your mental health. You need to keep busy, and for that, you need a hobby. This is especially true if you are in quarantine alone. So, let’s take a look at some of the best hobbies you could take up to stay sane through these unprecedented and unnerving times:

Visit National Parks – Virtually:

You may be desperate for a change of scenery, but you cannot leave the house. So, you need to get out virtually, instead. Make the use of your WiFi and get online to national parks and glaciers. You’ll be able to travel the world and view national parks without having to leave the house. Sure, it’s not quite the same, but it’s going to take the mystery out of the world you can’t explore properly!

Enjoy Puzzles:

You need to exercise the mind to keep the brain busy, and that starts with a PennyDell Puzzles crossword puzzle subscription. Puzzles are going to help you to keep your mind sharp and teach you new things. It’s also going to give you the chance to enjoy something in this quarantine that will continue long after.

YouTube Art Classes:

Did you know that there are drawing tutorials on YouTube? Most people aren’t aware of them and yet there they are, ready and waiting for you to learn from them. You may not be much of a drawer, or you may be an artist that requires a brush up on skills. Either way, drawing tutorials on YouTube are going to help you to hone your skills.

Concert Films:

The musicians out there are going to love the chance to enjoy available concert films like these online. You can choose to go through the entire Netflix collection, of course, but consider branching out a little. Concert films and other musical elements are going to be the most fun option for you in quarantine!

Learn To Bake:

While the shops are selling out of basic baking ingredients, you can still learn to bake with any number of online video tutorials. You can also learn how to cook elaborate recipes that you can batch and freeze for later. It’s so important that you choose a course that inspires you, whether that’s lunch or cakes you want to bake.

Hobbies are important to help keep you sane right now so try some of the tips above while you’re stuck at home!

Featured Image By: Pexels