Monthly Archives: June 2015

Jun 17

Places to go, things to see..

By Monzie Estate | Blog

If you’re looking for places to go and things to see on days out with the kids, then you’ll be amazed at how much Perthshire has to offer, whatever the weather.  There’s something for everyone with a range of activities to engage with all ages.  Our cottages are just a short drive from all theses attractions because we too are familiar with the kids shouting from the back seats “Are we nearly there?”

10649531_10152236108471644_5047958309839069915_n

 

Come rain or shine Auchingarrich Wildlife Centre offers a full day out with all the elements you could ask for: animals, play areas indoors and outdoors and loads of activities to get stuck into.  The animals are split into the domestic farm and exotic areas, with handling available in the Hatchery and regular feeding sessions.  There’s plenty of lovely picnic spots with benches around the park.  No pressure to prepare a picnic though, the restaurant serves delicious homemade food where you can relax and still enjoy the stunning view over the Perthshire hills.

 

Remake Scotland is a creative reuse organisation which aims to divert potential landfill and encourage grassroots creativity. They encourage everyone to make good stuff from old stuff while learning to use tools with confidence.  They have a popular scrapstore which provides individuals with cheap and alternative art and craft supplies.

 

Crieff Visitor Centre and Caithness Glass

Discover the wonderful art of glass making. Have you got what it takes to be a glass maker? Great fun for the kids, you can spend time working with one of our skilled glass makers and create your own paperweight which you can have inscribed and keep forever. A lovely little memento of your holiday to Crieff!

 

Crieff Ceramics at Bennybeg is very relaxed for families.  A pottery painting studio with a cafe and a small soft play area for younger children makes it an ideal spot for a few hours, while the kids decorate a masterpiece to remind them of their holiday at Monzie!

IMG_6716

 

 

Drive up the The Sma Glen which has stunning scenery.  Head towards Aberfeldy where you’ll find a huge a range of experiences at Highland Safaris.  While you’re in that direction, The Scottish Crannog Centre is a unique and interesting place to take the family to learn all about crannogs, which are a type of ancient loch dwelling found throughout Scotland and Ireland that date from 5,000 years ago! The centre has an amazing reconstruction of an early Iron Age loch dwelling, based on excavation evidence from a 2,600 year old site of ‘Oakbank Crannog’, which is one of the 18 crannogs preserved in Loch Tay!

Jun 12

Rhubarb and Custard Cake

By Monzie Estate | Blog

IMG_7977A perfect weekend at home would not be complete without baking a cake, and with the chance to use some homegrown produce from the garden makes it even more delightful.  Main crop rhubarb, which arrives in Spring has deep red stalks tinged with green, and it’s leaves are a brighter green.  Always be sure to pick the best stalks – the firm, plump, red ones.

Although too sharp to eat raw, baked slowly with a sprinkle of sugar makes it oh so delicious.

I always like to keep the ingredients simple and the method straight-forward, pretty much just because that’s the only way I like to bake. IMG_8029 You know you’ve baked a real winner when it disappears the same day.. Must be quicker next time to get a photograph of the cake itself!

400g Rhubarb
250g pack butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
150g pot ready-made custard (I used Ambrosia)
250g self-raising flour
½ tsp baking powder
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
250g golden caster sugar
Icing sugar, for dusting

Bake the rhubarb first and carefully drain off the juices before it cools. Do the usual buttering and lining of a cake tin – I used a 23cm loose-bottomed one.

Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.

Reserve 3 tbsp of the custard in a bowl. Beat the rest of the custard together with the butter, flour, baking powder, eggs, vanilla and sugar until creamy and smooth. Spoon one-half of the mix into the tin, add some of the rhubarb, then cover with the other half of the cake mix and spread it out as well as you can. Top with the remaining rhubarb, then spoon over the remaining custard.

Bake for 40 mins until risen and golden, then cover with foil and bake for 15-20 mins more. As always, it’s ready when a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool in the tin, then when cool dredge with icing sugar.. and devour..