Advent Calendar Day 1: Research


Can you believe it’s been two months since I last wrote a blog post? Sorry.

I’m working too hard; long hours, day in, day out… every day. I am enjoying the new job (most of the time), but it leaves me little time to bake or blog. It’s heart breaking because I feel that my life is running away from me.

Anyway… It’s December 1st and for the third year in a row, I’m going to try and bring you my Advent calendar to mark the 24 day run up to Christmas. Who needs chocolate behind a little window when you can have recipes and fun behind every post!


I’ve started flicking through my Christmas cook book collection for ideas and inspiration. I’ve also looked back over last year’s posts to remind myself of some great recipes.

I’d forgotten all about Sharon Hearne-Smith’s No Bake Baking book. Last year I made her flash florentines and substituted some of the fruit and nuts with others, as she suggested.


50g unsalted butter
100g caster sugar
100g soft brown light sugar
50g creme fraiche
1 piece of stem ginger, finely chopped
150g nuts (I used almonds and hazelnuts)
100g cranberries
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
50g chocolate


I melted the butter in a medium pan over a low heat. I added the sugars and turned up the heat, stirring for 5 minutes until smooth and gooey.

Then I carefully stired in the creme fraiche, stirring over a high heat until the sugars dissolved and the mixture thickened.

I removed the mixture from the heat and stired in the fruit, ginger, nuts, bicarb and vanilla.

I dropped the mixture onto a lined baking sheet, flattening into discs and left them to cool in the fridge.


Once the florentines were set, I melted the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of water. I allowed the chocolate to cool before spreading the back of each florentine with chocolate, popping it back on the tray and back in the fridge.


Melissa xx

15 thoughts on “Advent Calendar Day 1: Research

  1. Glad to see you back! Happy Advent! I still need to make my advent calendar while the boys are at cub scouts tonight to have it up in time for them to open the first bag before they go to bed! Never enough hours in the day….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. happy advent – I am also happy that you haven’t posted for 1 month either, or was it too, sounds a lot like my life right now and I miss checking in on blog friends posts but I am just not managing much right now, anyhow happy to see you in the kitchen, getting ready for the festive season :=)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely to see you back Melissa, sometimes a break from blogging is just what we need, even if not by choice. Sounds like life is super busy for you at the moment, hope you’re looking after yourself too!
    Look forward to reading your advent posts, the florentines look delicious, I have Sharon’s book, I must make them πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have missed you, Melissa! Glad to see you back for Advent! I’m savouring your posts – going through them every few days. This is such a fantastic idea – I may need to take inspiration from you – next year!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I also felt a few years ago that life was passing me by in my HR job. It was a fantastic job and I made tons of amazing friends and I did learn a lot but I wasn’t fulfilled. But, when I got the courage to follow my dreams it led me to Korea and now home.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s