Phoenix Fights

Fighting the FEAR, depression and BDP on a daily basis AND making my own bread. Bring it on 2016….




Feeling a mite fragile after partying Cuban stylee last night, imbibing huge glasses of Mojito (75% alcohol content) and salsa-ing with some young Latino cafe owners in the most unsuitable fashion….

What frickin’ signals am I sending out to the universe here?  I promise you, it was not my fault, I didn’t initiate it!!

So I don’t have much to say today beyond ‘Ooooh’, ‘Aaaahh’ and ‘Urgh’ other than that I’m praying that no one took any footage of my antics and if they did, I can only hope that they are open to bribery and corruption….

I did however bake yesterday, so have a recipe for yummy sourdough muffins for you 🙂

The reason I know that they are yummy is that I found four muffin papers on the kitchen floor this morning, so unless my cats have developed opposable thumbs overnight, I must have scarfed them when staggering in at some God awful hour, before tottering into the bedroom fully clothed and passing out on top of my bedclothes.

Anyway, here it is, my contribution for today, enjoy x



1 medium sized onion, chopped

1 tblsp olive oil

1 tblsp balsamic vinegar

1 tblsp brown sugar

125g plain flour (or rye if you wish)

6g/3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

2g/1/4 tsp salt

250g of grated mature cheddar plus a bit for sprinkling/decoration

50g pumpkin seeds plus some for sprinkling/decoration

1 tsp powdered mustard (or jar mustard if you have no dried)

300g sourdough culture

60g Carotino oil (or sunflower oil is also fine)


You will need to have some sourdough culture in order to make these.  You can either make your own (Paul Hollywood shows you how to make one here or some nice person can give you some to breed from!

I tend to keep about 100g of mine in a plastic pot with holes in so that it doesn’t explode and cover my kitchen/fridge with smelly, white gunk.

The night before you plan to bake, you need to take out your starter and feed it with equal parts of strong baking flour and tepid water, then leave it somewhere warm overnight.  You always need to have some left to keep, so in this instance you would add 150g strong bread flour and 150g water so that you will have approximately 100g left to put back in the fridge to use another day.

This is how it looks when you take it out of the fridge. Sometimes it will have a layer of brackish looking water floating on top of it, but this is fine, you just mix it in before adding more flour and water.


Mix the bread flour and water in thoroughly cover, then leave somewhere warm overnight. The next day it will have grown in size and have lots of bubbles running though it, and that’s when it’s ready to use.

So it should look something like this:


For the Onions:

  1. Fry the onion in the olive oil very slowly for 15-20 minutes
  2. Add the balsamic and sugar and cook slowly for another 10 minutes to caramelise
  3. Allow to cool


The Muffins

1.  Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 7/220c

2.  Mix together plain flour, bicarb, salt and powdered mustard

3.  Add the cheese, pumpkin seeds and onions.  Make sure the onions don’t clump together and are distributed evenly throughout the mixture.


4.  In a separate bowl mix together the culture, oil and wet mustard if you don’t have any powdered.  The Carotina oil makes it this lovely colour and is good for you to boot.  Bargain!


5.  Add the wet to the dry ingredients, and mix gently until just incorporated.  The mixture will be quite stiff.


6.  Fill paper cases then sprinkle the tops with some grated cheese then a few pumpkin seeds.

7.  Bake for 15-20 mins or until skewer comes out clean


Serve (when you are sober ideally) with a nice cup of tea.  Delicious both warm and cold and you can freeze on the day and defrost them when needed.  Lovely dunked into home made soup.


And there you have it.   A muffin to be proud of. 😉



  1. I feel your pain — I was right there yesterday after a celebratory Friday eve! Sounds like you had some tasty muffins to come home too!

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