Apple Cider Granola

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Apple Cider Granola 1


Cider in granola? Oh yes.

Apple Cider Granola 2

I hate to admit it but I buy store-bough granola nearly every week or so, I just love it. I hate buying it but despite granola being one of the easiest and tastiest things to make yourself I just don’t get around to doing it. Until now that is. From this point on I refuse to buy another packet of moderately tasting granola ever again. I’m not going to settle for the rubbish in the packets, I’m going to concoct yummy and imaginative flavours myself and share them all with you. Starting with my Apple Cider Granola.

Apple Cider Granola 3

Alcohol in a breakfast meal, what is she thinking you may be wondering. You won’t be able to taste any Cider at all in the end product, the alcohol evaporates and instead your left with a sweet apple syrup. Mixed through with honey and rapeseed oil this is your binding agent for the granola. When the mix goes into the oven it will be very damp, but keep on toasting it in the oven and it will eventually crisp up. Patience is key.

Apple Cider Granola 4

Mixed spice gives a lovely warming flavour, pecans are wonderful for crunch and along with dried apple and raisins lending a little sweetness everything works together nicely. This granola is not too sweet whatsoever, it’s fresh and light just like an apple should taste.  If you want to add an extra element of sweetness, then I’d recommend sprinkling over some cinnamon and brown muscovdo sugar once it’s cooled. That’s what so great about making granola at home, you can have it any way you want. What more could you want?

Apple Cider Granola 5

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  • 750 ml (3 cups) Cider
  • 350 grams (4 cups) Oats
  • 2 teaspoons Mixed Spice
  • Large Pinch of Maldon Sea Salt
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) Honey
  • 2 tablespoons Rapeseed Oil
  • 70 grams (1 cup) Pecans, toasted & roughly chopped
  • Hand Full Dried Apple
  • Hand Full Raisins
  • Sprinkling Cinnamon (optional)
  • Sprinkling Brown Sugar (optional)


  1. In a medium saucepan, simmer the cider until it’s reduced down to 250 ml (1 cup) then whisk in the honey and rapeseed oil. Meanwhile in a large bowl mix together the oats, mixed spice and the salt. Pre-heat the oven to 160C (320F) and line a large baking tray with parchment paper.
  2. Pour over the warm mixture and mix together thoroughly. Toast in the oven for 50-60 minutes or until firm, toasted and golden.
  3. Leave to cool slightly before mixing through the apple pieces, pecans and raisins. If you’d like to add some cinnamon and brown sugar.


  •  Store in an air-tight container in a cool, dry place.
  • Use within 2 weeks.

Spiced Beetroot & Orange Chutney

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Spiced Beetroot & Orange Chutney 1

Tomorrow is the first day of October. If you don’t like to think about Christmas just yet then that’s fine, but if your anything like me and as soon as Autumn arrives your thoughts start taking a Christmassy turn then this post is right up your ally. Christmas Cakes, Puddings, Mincemeat, Chutney’s and Pickles are best made weeks and even month’s in advance, so now really is the best time to get planning and to start preparing your festive treats.

Spiced Beetroot & Orange Chutney 2

I made this Spiced Beetroot & Orange Chutney back in August,so if you’d like this to go alongside your bird or ham this holiday season then now is the time to get cracking. By making a few month’s in advance your giving it plenty of time for the flavours to deepen and mature. Beetroot is still in season so this is the perfect opportunity to use it up. I don’t like beetroot, surprising though when I was given some by our neighbours I was actually very excited. I’ve never baked with it before so I started to think about some kind of beetroot brownie or chocolate cake, but then when I saw this recipe I just has to make it. Funnily enough, I like this chutney a lot, so if you not a beetroot lover like me then chances are you’ll enjoy this.

Spiced Beetroot & Orange Chutney 3

It combines some of Autumn’s and Winter’s finest offerings. Bramley apple’s are abundant right now and I just love there sharp, crunchiness in anything baked. I eagerly anticipate clementine oranges in the lead up to Christmas, I know you can more or less buy them all year round but there’s something so incredibly festive about having a large overflowing bowl full of clementine’s sitting alongside bowls of nuts and chocolates. For this recipe I used large naval oranges, alongside this a medley of pungent, warming spices. This chutney will really be a bright and happy addition to the piccalilli and pickles onions already present.

Spiced Beetroot & Orange Chutney 4

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Yields – 2kg (4 1/2 lb)


  • 750 grams (26 1/2 lb) Raw Beetroot – trimmed, peeled and diced
  • 2 Small Onions – peeled and diced
  • 2 Small Bramley Apples – peeled, cored and grated
  • Zest & Juice 2 Navel Oranges
  • 1 tablespoon Yellow Mustard Seeds
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Cloves
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Coriander
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
  • 350 ml (1 1/3 cups + 2 tablespoons) Red Wine Vinegar
  • 350 grams (1 3/4 cups) Golden Caster Sugar


  1. Place all the ingredients into a large saucepan mixing everything together.
  2. Bring to a gently simmer and cook for 30 minutes or until the chutney is thick and the beetroot tender.
  3. When ready leave to settle for 10 minutes then spoon into hot, sterilized jars and seal.


  • Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food.
  • The chutney will keep for up to 6 months
  • Store in a cool, dry, dark place.
  • Ideal for cold cuts of meat and goes very well with goat’s cheese.

Pear & Almond Coffee Cake

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Pear & Almond Coffee Cake 1

I don’t like Pears, but I really wanted to make a cake with pears. So what’s a girl to do? Bake a Pear & Almond Coffee Cake of course. I had wanted to get this recipe out to you sooner but we had visitors over the weekend so time got away from me. I do now though have wonderful storage boxes to put all my baking books in. So sorting my books out distracted me away from the blog too, but this cake is perfect for Monday’s, the cake doesn’t take long at all to bake, it contains nothing fancy, so all the ingredients for it should hopefully be in your pantry and it will be baked and cooled slightly just in time for your afternoon cup of coffee.

Pear & Almond Coffee Cake 2

Like I mentioned above, I really don’t like pears. They are often powdery and lacking in any real kind of flavour, well the ones I’ve tried had all tasted like this. Thing is, I got a really bad craving for some kind of pear cake. Autumn is in full force here in the UK at the minute and I can resist buying seasonal fruits, pears being one of them. I also can’t resist buying cookbooks. Last week I bought a Delia Smith book, perfectly entitled Delia’s Cakes. I flicked through the pages looking for a pear recipe and boom, this recipe sprang forward. It’s a homely, simple coffee cake that tastes amazing!

Pear & Almond Coffee Cake 3

I love my mugs of coffee and I love to nibble on something sweet alongside this. Coffee Cake is just perfect for that, it’s the kind of cake that was meant to drunk with a cup of coffee, hence the name. These kind of cakes come in all shapes and sizes and my version that I’ve got for you today has pears and almond in, along with a thick and very crumbly streusel topping.

Pear & Almond Coffee Cake 4

The streusel topping is very morish indeed. This version is made differently to your regular way where you rub the butter into the flour and sugar, instead the butter is melted them forked through the remaining ingredients. Paired with flour, flaked almonds and brown Demerara sugar, you’ll have a little clusters of sugary streusel with little almond pieces strewn throughout. It almost reminds me of a streusel granola. The cake itself is laced with almond in the form of ground almonds and a dash of almond extract. The pears are soft and juicy, lending a dash of sweetness to the damp cake beneath.

Pear & Almond Coffee Cake 5

If almonds are your thing then this cake is so for you. Thinking out load, this cake would work marvelously with perhaps an Almond Latte, topped perhaps with a swirl of cream. Chilly weather calls for cake and coffee, don’t you think?

Pear & Almond Coffee Cake 6

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Yields – One, 9 inch round cake.



  • 110 grams Self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking powder
  • 50 grams (  Unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 50 grams Golden Caster sugar
  • 50 grams Ground Almonds
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1/4 tsp Pure Almond Extract
  • Pinch of Maldon Sea Salt
  • 3 tablespoons Milk
  • 2 Pears, Peeled, cored and quartered


  • 50 grams Unsalted butter, melted
  • 75 grams Plain flour
  • 50 grams Demerara Sugar
  • 40 grams Flaked Almonds


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180c (380F) and grease a round, 9 inch Springform tin, lining the bottom with parchment paper, set aside.
  2. Sift the flour and baking powder into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment then add the butter, sugar, ground almonds, egg, almond extract, salt and the milk. Mix together until creamy and smooth.
  3. Scrape into the prepared cake tin and smooth the top over.
  4. Place the pears on top of the cake batter and make the streusel.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the flour and sugar and pour over the melted butter. Mix together with a fork then add the flaked almonds. Mix everything together then sprinkle all over the pears and cake batter.
  6. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until golden and a cake tester inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  7. Leave on a wire rack for 15 minutes before removing the outer ring to cool completely.


  • Recipe adapted from Delia’s Cakes – Delia Smith
  • This cake will last for up to 3 days stored in a cake tin with a tight-fitting lid.
  • Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.