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Sunday 29 June 2014

Sunday Post: Spoonie Planning + Bacon, Apple Muffins

IMATS Spoonie Event Clutch Bag Essentials
You guys know I went to IMATS yesterday. Well even for a perfectly healthy person IMATS is a tiring event. It's just so busy (there is a quiet area up at the top so it's not impossible) but it really is busy & load &....difficult. Add to that a 7hr round trip you can imagine that attending involves a LOT of planning. And careful packing.
Following are my top tips for surviving an event like this that will just EAT energy/spoons.
  • Save as many spoons as you can - rest up the day before (at least) & go to bed as early as you can.
  • Plan for a worst case scenario & give yourself an 'escape route'
  • Research, research, research. The more you know about the event, the venue, the weather etc. the more prepared you will be
  • Double check accessibility of the venue etc. especially if you use a wheelchair. If you don't, check that there are places you can sit to rest. If there aren't you may want to take a collapsible chair, seriously.
  • Pack smart, you don't want to waste spoons lugging around a huge amount of stuff so narrow down what you need ahead of time & ONLY bring what you have to have.
  • Rest as much as you can during the day, maybe even take an eye mask & noise cancelling headphones so you can really rest.
  • Know how you can 'borrow' spoons. The best way for me is food & that food has to have protein in it...hence the bacon apple muffins.
Maple Apple Bacon Crumble Muffins
Okay they're not lookers but believe me they taste like nothing else!
I got up at about 3 am on Saturday & left the house at about 4 am, so I needed to have an on the go breakfast & that breakfast needed to contain protein. These muffins were what I came up with & let me tell you they are crazy delicious. I am SO making them again!

Bacon Apple Muffins

recipe based on this recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction & something from this episode of Diners, Drive Ins & Dives

makes about 12 regular sized muffins

200g pancetta/streaky bacon cut into small pieces
1 finely chopped apple
about 2-3tbsps maple syrup
a small amount of butter (about 5g...maybe 10g)

30g butter, melted
60g wholemeal flour
15g caster sugar
15g whole porridge oats
dash cinnamon

115g butter, at room temperature
75g light brown sugar
50g granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup. (120ml) sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. maple extract
220g plain flour
1 tsp. bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 cup. (60ml) milk
1 apple, chopped pretty small

  1. Cook the bacon slowly over a low-medium heat until nearly all the fat has rendered out
  2. Stir in the apple & cook until the apple has softened & browned slightly.
  3. Tip the apple, bacon mixture on paper towels to drain & then transfer into a bowl to cool off.
  4. Whilst the mixture is cooling heat the maple syrup in a pan until it is really bubbling & the bubbles are releasing a steam/smoke as they pop, then stir in just enough butter for the mixture to go a light, creamy caramel colour. Stir this into the bacon, apple mixture & allow to cool completely

  1. Stir together the wholemeal flour, caster sugar & oats until evenly distributed.
  2. Pour in the melted butter & stir through with a fork (instant crumble topping)

  1. Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 7, 220 degrees C or 425 degrees F.
  2. Cream together the butter & sugars
  3. Beat in the eggs, sour cream, the vanilla extract & the maple extract.
  4. Slowly whisk in the spices, flour, bicarbonate of soda & baking powder.
  5. Stir in the milk
  6. Fold in the chopped apple.
  7. Spoon the batter into a lined muffin pan, spoon over a good amount of the bacon apple mixture & then about a tsp. of the crumble mixture.
  8. Bake for 5 mins at gas mark 7 & then for about 20-25 minutes at gas mark 4, 350 F or 180 C.
I used the MOST amazing pancetta from the Port of Lancaster Smokehouse that was already seasoned with rosemary, bay leaves, garlic, pepper & nutmeg. If you're not lucky enough to use pancetta this good you may want to spice/herb up your bacon whilst it's cooking.

Let me know what you think of the muffins & if the post was at all helpful....a lot of the way I plan for surviving events is kind of instinct at this point, I would seriously struggle to remember all the steps.


  1. The muffins look quite interesting, I need to make a new recipe soon, I'm getting too stressed out, so maybe this will be a good start. Now to find bacon in Belgium... they don't sell it, well not the "real bacon". Need to go to the British Store...

    I know what you mean about big event, I'm terrible for burning the candle at both ends, as I like to phrase it. I will just go go go and then crash... it's never a good thing, and I'm super cranky when I get that tired. Good tips though!

    1. I can't imagine a country that doesn't do bacon....that is incredibly surreal to me ^^

      I was always someone who just did things & would rest only during the summer holidays...& not even all the time then ^^ I'm glad you liked the tips.

      Sally x


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