Vintage Baking: Custard Kisses

So as another week of Great British Bake Off comes to our screens I thought it would be an idea to whip up an old school favourite – custard kisses.   This is another one in my vintage recipe box!

So why not give this vintage recipe a go, I can guarantee they will taste delicious.

Ingredients for biscuit:

175g softened butter

50g caster sugar

50g icing sugar

2 egg yolks (or 1 full egg if you want to avoid waste!)

2 tsp vanilla extract

300g plain flour

Ingredients for the custard filling:

100g softened butter

140g icing sugar

2 tbsp of custard powder (I recommend Birds!)


Heat your oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.


Mix the butter, caster sugar and icing sugar, egg yolks (or full egg) and vanilla with a wooden spoon until creamy, then mix in the flour, I recommend you do a bit at a time.

Roll out the dough on a floured surface, then cut, I use a round small scone cutter to ensure they are all the same size.  Once you use up all the dough, transfer to a non stick baking tray or sheet. It will take approximately 10 mins to cook.


Leave the biscuits to cool.

Meanwhile, mix the butter, icing sugar and custard powder. Spread a little icing onto a biscuit, then sandwich with another biscuit. Dust with a little more icing sugar.


Sit down, relax and enjoy.  If you like the vintage tea set I am using or would like to purchase a vintage cake stand then head over to my Etsy shop.


Elf x



A Very Vintage Beauty Product – Olay Review

Olay has been used by women everywhere since it came on to the market in 1952.  The Beauty Fluid was created by South African chemist Graham Wulff, inspired by his wife wanting a lighter brand of moisturiser to use during the day.

Olay has a new fan – me!


I can remember my mum using it but of course it was called Oil of Ulay back then.  It was very much aimed at an older woman but also had a mother/daughter focus.  This name was used in the UK, Oil of Olaz in European Countries and Oil of Ulan in Australia. After the brand was purchased by Procter and Gamble in the mid-80s it reinvented itself in the nineties to become just Olay with an estimated 60 million women a year using the product.

I have been using the Olay Complete Care Day Fluid Moisturiser with Spf 15 for several months now.  Olay suggest it hydrates, nourishes and protects your skin.  It has an award winning  3 in 1 multi layered technology gives your skin everything it needs most during the day in a lightweight fluid texture formula:

1) The SolaSheerTM technology with broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection SPF15 gently protects the surface of your skin from daily incidental UV exposure,

2) Nourishing vitamins (B3, E and Pro V B5) pamper your skin and strengthen its natural moisture barrier,

3) The 24 hour moisture hydrates your skin 7 layers deep to let your inner glow come through.


I have to agree that it does hydrate and nourish my skin. It is absolutely fantastic for protecting the skin against the harmful rays of the sun.  It has a beautiful smell without it being heavily perfumed; it brings me back to when I was young.

I have used it daily and can notice a difference in how soft my skin feels and looks, it also protects it from harmful UVA/UVB rays, it works perfectly under makeup and is lightweight.  At less than a fiver  you can’t go wrong.  It is an absolute pleasure to use.

If you use it already or would like to give it a go, let me know.  I would love to hear from you.


Elf x





Below I tell you how in 4 simple steps you can make vintage pineapple upside down cake.


I am just so excited that the Great British Bake Off 2016 is finally here.  The programme gives me so many great memories such as Brendan from Series 3 and his baking that just looked like something out of the 1950s. What about Howard when Deborah accidentally used his Crème Anglaise?  Who could forget “bingate” when Iain dumped his Baked Alaska?  And finally the heart-warming and passionate winning by Nadiya in season 6.


So, in celebration of the GBBO 2016, I have decided to share my favourite vintage recipes, this week it is Pineapple Upside Down Cake.  You will need to keep coming back each week to see what vintage recipe I will be sharing with you!


I hope they take you back down memory lane and bring back some happy memories, as they do for me.  If you’d like to make some of these recipes head over to my related posts:

Making a Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Making Vintage Carrot Cake


Alternatively if you’d like to order ingredients to make these desserts head over to Tesco Groceries for the items.


What you will need for the topping: 

50g softened butter

50g light brown sugar

Tin of pineapple rings in syrup (drain them and put syrup to one side)

Tub of glace cherries


What you will need for the cake:

100g self-raising flour

100g softened butter

100g caster sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon of baking powder

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 teaspoon of lemon juice (optional)



Heat your oven to 180C / 160C fan / gas 4.

Start with the topping.  Beat the sugar and butter together with a wooden spoon until creamy; spread this on the bottom of the cake tin (I use a 20cm tin).  Take the pineapples and arrange them at the bottom of and place the cherries in to the centre of the rings.  You can also add more cherries to fill the gaps left by the pineapple rings.  Put this to one side.

For the cake, put all the ingredients in a bowl; add about 3 tablespoons of the pineapple syrup together with the lemon juice.  Mix thoroughly.  I use an electric whisk for this as it’s quick but you can use a wooden spoon or hand whisk too.  When all the ingredients are mixed to a soft consistency, spoon it over the pineapples and cherries.

Before putting in the oven I recommend putting the cake tin on a baking tray to catch any of the juice in case it bubbles over.

Bake for 40 minutes and leave to stand for 5 minutes before serving.


I hope you give this recipe a try.  After making this one, I just couldn’t resist the vintage tea cup  and vintage cake stand and sitting down to have a slice of the delicious cake with a lovely cuppa.   Let me know how you get on or what over vintage recipes you like.


Elf x





Tips to Help you Stop Wasting Time and Achieve More

A  wise man once said to me “You either do it, or you don’t!”  This may seem rather simplistic but it is so true.

I can have all the excuses under the sun but when I set my mind to doing something it always gets done. So I thought it would be a good idea to share with you how I cope on a daily basis and get things done while being a wife, a mother, a full time employee and opening a vintage boutique on Etsy.

Let’s face it we all have the exact same 24 hours in a day, no-one has any more or any less.  However, some of us seem to get more accomplished than others.  Don’t get me wrong, there are days when all I want to do is sit in front of the television and zone out but going back to that wise man – I either do something or I don’t!


There are some key ways that I can waste time, recognising that I’m doing it is the first step in sorting it out.  As a mother, I always say “Oh that’s ok, I’ll do it” when someone asks if they can help.  I’m not sure if it is a woman thing, a mother thing, or just a thing but it used to happen a lot.  So I have trained myself to accept an offer of help, no matter how small it is.  This action often leads to household chores being completed quicker, meaning I save time that can be spent on my jewellery making.

Stop Procrastinating

It is so easy to procrastinate.  Everyone does it without a doubt.  There are days when I talk the talk but that’s about it – there’s no action. There are times when tomorrow just doesn’t come.  Again, wise man saying – you either do it or you don’t.  I am still a bit of a procrastinator but I’m getting better at it.  I set myself a specific goal, going on holiday next year with my family and with that picture firmly in my mind procrastination slowly changes to doing.

Another tip I would recommend to you is completing the hardest task you have allocated for the day first.  That way you will feel more relaxed and ready to continue with the rest of your tasks knowing you have already accomplished a great deal.

Being Organised & Have a Plan

I keep a notebook with me at all times so I can jot down ideas, note down my to-do lists and write down my goals.  My plan helps get me through the tasks for the day with efficiency.  It did take me a little while to get organised before the notebook my day was chaotic and I didn’t seem to achieve very much.

It is also helpful to have daily goals as well as weekly, monthly and longer term and work towards them every single day.  With these goals in mind I then write down my to-do list for each day knowing that completing the task will get me one step closer to my goal(s).

Your plan is your road map to achieving your goals and crucial for using your time wisely and effectively.  I hope these tips help you make more of your day but remember while these worked for me you may have to adapt them to your own needs.

Remember, you either do it or you don’t.  The decision is up to you.  Let me know how you make the most of your day or what contributes to you wasting time.

Elf x


My latest Vintage Find: 1950 recipe tin

There are some vintage items I come across that I can’t seem to part with.  This cute little 1950s recipe tin is one of them.  I mean just look at it – it is so cute!  Made of tin, it has some dishes on it that I wouldn’t know how to describe they just look so awful but that’s the charm for me.  Surprisingly,  inside there is a recipe for home-grown children – have a look at the photo to read the full description.

1950 vintage recipe tin

1950 recipe tin 1950 recipe tin

With this latest vintage find I decided to research what food families made in the 1950s.  I was surprised to learn that rationing continued in the early 1950s.  Sugar, butter, cheese, margarine, cooking fat, bacon, meat and tea all still on the ration books which didn’t actually finish until 1954.

It is of no surprise then that the meagre choice of ingredients limited what could be made and how dishes tasted.  Of course on a positive note, all ingredients used were seasonal, fresh and local.  I have a confession to make, while the 1950s was the age of spam, spam has won a place in my heart!  Why not give Spam another go? Have a look at my recipe here for Spanish Omelette – I can highly recommend it.

The staple diet for many families in this period was of course meat and two veg.  Families didn’t eat out that often.  However, things started to change around 1954 with the American influence and the first Wimpy burger fast food outlets opened.

I don’t know about you but there are days when all I want to eat is simple home-made food, the meat and two veg seems like the perfect option.  I do love to cook but maybe that’s because I don’t have to do it all the time but I do feel there is something satisfying about creating a delicious meal with simple ingredients, a no fuss meal just plain home cooking.

There is a good argument to be made that meal times should be family time, I do agree with this and it is the simple cooking and sitting down to a home-made meal that is enjoyable for me.

I would love to know what you do at family meal times?  Also, let me know what your favourite vintage recipe is or if you have decided to give Spam a go!