The Bag Lady

With the Easter weekend just a few days away, I thought I’d share a couple of recipes with you from one of my favourite recipe books, Cadbury’s Novelty Cakes and Biscuits by Patricia Dunbar. I must have had this book for about 20 years and still use it regularly, even for the basic sponge recipes, which are always delicious. Ask my family – they’ll tell you!

Crispie Nests


50g butter

1 packet marshmallows

125g Rice Krispies

225g Cadbury’s mini eggs (or any others you can find)

18 paper cases


Melt the butter and marshmallows slowly in quite a large pan. When melted and mixed, stir in the Krispies and coat them completely in the marshmallow mixture. Divided the mixture evenly between the paper cases, pressing it together slightly. Make a hollow in the centre with the back of a spoon, then leave to get cold before filling with mini-eggs. Perfect for children or adults alike and so easy to make.

Bunny Biscuits


75g butter

75g caster sugar

1 egg

Finely grated rind of one orange

225g self-raising flour

2.5ml ground mixed spice

50g currants (optional)

40ml milk

50g dark plain chocolate (or milk if you prefer)

1 large packet of chocolate buttons (I can’t always find these but Woolies sell similar)

Rabbit-shaped cutter

2 baking trays, greased

Paint brush


Cream the butter and sugar together until pale and soft, then beat in the egg and orange rind. Sift in the flour and mixed spice, then mix in the currants (if using). Mix well to make a pliable dough, knead quickly then roll out on a lightly floured surface to just under one centimetre thick.

Cut out shapes with the cutter, rolling the dough trimmings again in between. Arrange biscuits on prepared trays and bake carefully in a moderate oven, 180°C for 10 minutes only.

Brush the biscuits with milk, then return to the oven for a further 10 minutes until crisp and nicely coloured. Be careful the edges are not too brown. Lift off and cool.

Melt the chocolate in a small bowl. With the paint brush, brush all the ears, then the paws of the bunny biscuits with chocolate. Dab a little on the tails and stick on a chocolate button. If you haven’t managed to buy the buttons, don’t worry, just use the chocolate in a blob for the tail.

Good Friday

Can you eat meat on Good Friday? For Catholics observing Good Friday, the answer is no. Good Friday, observed the Friday before Easter Sunday, commemorates the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. The Catholic law of abstinence dictates that Catholics aged 14 and older refrain from meat on Fridays altogether during Lent, including on Good Friday.

I’m not Catholic but funnily enough when I was growing up in England, we only ate fish on Good Friday. This year I’m having a family lunch and will be serving fish as a starter and roast lamb with all the trimmings for the mains. This way there’s something delicious for everyone. Dessert? Still deciding!

All that’s left to be said is: Happy Easter, and enjoy the long weekend. Oh, and shop till you drop, but only if you feel like it!


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Julie Maule
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