The Blake & Bull blog

October 23, 2018


Another fruity tip from Blake & Bull community member Barbara!

Waste not want not. My kids go through 'snowman noses' (satsumas) like there is no tomorrow at this time of year! If your household is the same, store up your peel and make firelighters and fruity sprinkles!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
 
Keep larger pieces of citrus peel. Dried on a rack on top of the range or in the simmering oven, they make wonderful natural fire lighters. Or crumbled up satsuma peel washed then dried (in the same way), adds a taste to apple chutney, cakes etc. Keep it in a paper bag in dry place. 🍊🔥
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
Send your fruit storing, drying, and decorating photos to me at katy@blakeandbull.co.uk
October 23, 2018


How will you welcome in the winter and celebrate your extra hour when the tick tock goes back?

Catch some extra ZZZ's, or cosy up & read an extra chapter or two? Make a long luxurious breakfast instead of the usual toast, how about eggs in bread? Or get out a map, and extend your weekend walk, take the path less trodden?

 

Get your slices of doorstop toast, lightly butter on both sides. Or butter the pan! It's an easy going Sunday recipe, go with the flow. Cut out the middle, with a cup or cutter. Pop facedown in a preheated pan and plop an egg in each hole. Cook on a low heat and turn when egg is set enough to do so. I add squeeze of tomato puree at this stage, just to the side of the egg. I think tabasco would work too. serve when both sides have a buttery crispness. YUM!

Or maybe you are more practical and getting winter ready means getting range ready! Here are our top tips that Matt, our engineer, thinks you can get done in your extra hour!

 

1. Replace your lid seals and liners. Or your hob cover springs, door washers and hob caps. Simple fixes that improve usability, efficiency, and appearance respectively. 

 

2. Polish your chrome for a quick hit of shine and sparkle with our new chrome cleaning products

 

Whatever you decide, let us know, and send us in your extra hour pictures to katy@blakeandbull.co.uk

October 23, 2018


Blake & Bulls Great Kitchen Show Off Competition - week 2 winner!

Thank you to all our entires last week! Keep them coming for WEEK 3!

🎉 CONGRATULATIONS 🎉 to our week 2 competition winner, Rachel, who has such a lovely home and a fairly new relationship with her range cooker.

Rachel wrote to us, so excited to receive the voucher..

" My beautiful range cooker came in-situ with the barn we bought in Cornwall. It was a little scary at first but hugely exciting! It felt a bit like getting a new pet, we had to learn to understand each other, but there is always a warm welcome waiting for us when we get home from our travels... During the summer months it’s the focal point of our B&B kitchen/breakfast area and the rest of the time our kitchen is the heart of our busy home, with bakes, roasts and pots of tea for our surfing buddies, or a full table and over worked cooker when my partner’s band come to rehearse (and eat) for a few days! Touring across the world with the band, and travelling to tropical spots with the surf gang means I get to bring back recipes, spices, weird ingredients, colourful reminders, and these stories are told throughout the kitchen. The rug in front of the range cooker is made from our kids childhood duvet covers, when they all flew the nest they left behind a cupboard full of Disney princess and Harry Potter single duvet covers. I hadn’t the heart to throw away these bits of their childhoods so now they are in the very heart of the kitchen and together with the warmth from the oven, they keep my feet warm on the grimmest of cold days. "
Anyone else want to move in or just me?! Home is definitely where your heart is Rachel, and it shows. ♥️

 

October 23, 2018


🐾 Pups give the paw seal of approval to a Full Re-enamel - before and happily ever after pics! 🐾

When we are out and about across the UK, re-enamelling and Refurbishing your beloved cookers, we don't always get to see the final 'look'. It is a privilege to be part of your kitchen adventures and even more so when pictures are sent in of the finished result. Job satisfaction at it's best! Thank you Justine. 

 

 Lid liner and hob top before...

 

..& after! We fitted a newly re-enamelled black hob for the post '74 ‘Deluxe',  including new black enamel and chrome lids with post '95 lids and hinges. Underneath we Installed a cosy new wrap of ceramic fibre insulation. We never undervalue the effect of finishing touches, 4 new hob caps and hob screws were popped in and greased for future easy removal!

 

Probably the most important thing you can do efficiency wise on any cooker is re-insulate your oven, inside, under top and in doors!

 

Exposed to the bare bones, you can see here the original insulation, this is where we deploy the Big Brute and employ our 'work clean' processes. 

The lower oven is insulated as this too improves efficiency. It will raise the lower oven temperature by 10-15 degrees. Simple fixes like replacing the plastic door washers not only make the doors open and close more smoothly they help keep the door cooler and energy in the cooker where it should be!

 

And here is the finished result, after Justine's kitchen redecoration adventures!

We fitted a re-enamelled front. We have 37 colours in the range. The oven door liners and rope seals were replaced, these look great and improve efficiency especially when combined with new super wool insulation packs. They also come in non-stick! 

October 22, 2018


Turn the tumbler off, dress your range in a rack, and dry away! Top tips, and customer pics!

Using a drying rack system on your range cooker can save money and become an invaluable bit of kit for your kitchen.

We asked our community 'what do you dry on your range cooker?' and we had so much fun looking through the results! From drying teddies, mucky sports kit and walking boots, to setting yogurt and balancing a horse rug! 

Get all your teddies in a row! Maddy uses her range top and toast maker to dry her daughter's artwork, her rack to dry her husband's footy kit in record time, and her rail to dry precious cuddly toys. 

 

Janie uses her Blake & Bull rack to help her out of a fix when her son's school books get a watering! Also, dry off the summer plimsolls ready to store for winter.

 

Sue uses her extra rail to dry off her pooch's favourite toys after a good rinse!

 

I had never heard of setting yogurt like this before, but that is what Philip does, using the gentle residual heat. Delicious! We had another tip too, keep your honey jar on the range back or rack to keep it from solidifying. 

 

A top 'tupperware' tip from Alison, who pops her rinsed damp plastic on the mini-rack to air dry, saving sandwiches from getting soggy in the kids packed lunch! 

 

Hats off to Vanessa who despite all odds, managed to lift this horse rug aloft and used her range top successfully to dry this beast! Good work and thank you for the Pic! 

We now have 930  ★★★★★  reviews across our rack and rail system range from toasty, dry, happy, industrious customers. Thank you! 

Here's a snippet, thank you Katie for the ★★★★★ ! 😂

"Why on earth have I waited so long to buy these??? They are a total game changer! I’ve not used my tumble dryer since getting my airers out of the box! BRILLIANT!! (If only they’d put the laundry away too......)" 

 

 

 

October 19, 2018


Adventures in pizza at Blake and Bull HQ!

At Blake and Bull HQ we tested our heavy duty baking trays with pizza, like locusts the Blake and Bull men devoured the results, so I think it was a winner! 

Here is our top tip if you run a busy home, and need to produce a speedy supper after the children's school run, scout pick up, ballet lesson, & piano exam!!

Pop the trays in the roasting oven to pre-heat in advance. Have your pizzas ready for when you and your brood come home. On your return from being a parent taxi you can slide your supper right in and know that it will be done in minutes. 😀

We tested 4 trays. You can easily fit 4 thin crust pizzas in, just allow a few extra mins than if you were doing three or two. Four cooked nicely in 22 mins, I think 3 would be 18, 2 would be 15 and one probably only 10 or so mins.

The cast iron trays sit beautifully on the runners, and they have a lip to the front which made me feel more secure in lifting the tray in and out. Easy to look after, the baking trays need an occasional seasoning with natural flax oil, to keep them at their best.

The trays also retain heat brilliantly, so if like me you struggle to get your kids to the table because they are too busy making their room into a lego encrusted, cuddly toy covered den of disaster, the pizza will not cool quickly! Also great for more sophisticated meals when you want to serve hot and with style at the table!

Let us know how you get on! And please share any pics of your family baking successes or e-mail them to me katy@blakeandbull.co.uk

October 19, 2018


WOW WOW WOW & THANK YOU! Over 5K reviews and over 10K thumbs up!

We love what we do, are obsessive about customer service and have the reviews to prove it! If you have any questions before you order do get in touch, we are always happy to have a chat!

Every member of our online community makes a difference to our business. we are privileged that so many of you use your precious time to tell us how you feel about our service and products. Thank you.

October 19, 2018


'What's it all about Alfie...?'

Carol shared with us these lovely pics of her boy Alfie, the cooker. The now smart lad had a DIY Mini-Refurb this summer ready for the 'big switch on' this winter.

We do offer a mini-refurb service but you may fancy having a go yourself like Carol and Alfie! The Mini Re-Furb Kit includes new chrome lid topshob caps and paint for touching up any enamel chips. You can even then top up the under hob insulation whilst you are in the spruce up mood and save yourself some cash by being more fuel efficient too!

 

Carol then treated Alfie to some new 'threads' by way of these purrfect Chefs Pads in our exclusive Cat design.

October 18, 2018


A Mini Refurb, some new insulation, a scrub up, some new 'clothes' - One happy cooker

Meet Oscar, who also goes by the name 'whathaveyoudone' and 'whyisthishere!'

A great result for our customer Camilla who took on the Mini Refurb of her 14 year old cooker and won! And after treating herself to some new textiles to dress her up, the family pooch is rather impressed with the effect, but not so enamoured with the fact that he can no longer run off with the towel!  

"We've upgraded the insulation, done the DIY Mini Refurb with door and lid liners, cleaned it, sworn at it, then dressed up our 14 year old cooker in brand new clothes and rack. ... My favourite piece is the velcro tea towel as the dog cannot steal it off the rail! Thank you for your great service on all the products we have bought, great instructions and good quality products!" ⭐"

Do send us pictures of your DIY cleaning success and any disgruntled pooches! 

October 17, 2018


Healthy non-stick fried eggs on your Aga range cooker

Fried egg on simmering plate of an Aga range cooker

Who doesn't love a fried egg but with all that oil and grease they often don't feel like a healthy option. By using our pre-cut simmering set on your cooker though you can make the perfect fried egg very quickly and with no oil! 

  • Raise the lid on your simmering (cooler) hotplate.
  • Pop a clean dry simmering circle onto the hotplate.
  • Crack your egg or eggs carefully directly onto the sheet just as you would into a frying pan. 
  • Now close the lid! The heat retained in the lid combined with that reflected back onto the hotplate cooks the egg perfectly from the top in double quick time - no need to flip! 
  • Keep a close eye and when done to your satisfaction use a spatula to pop the eggs onto your toast!
  • To clean the sheet give it a wipe with a soapy sponge and dry naturally (maybe on one of our drying racks?)
  • Enjoy your fried eggs ;)

 

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