Category Archives: recipes

recipes I find interesting and want to try or have tried

Photos Of The Day Things Went Less Than Perfectly

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Following on from my last post here are some picture of the bad day in the kitchen and the end results.

mixing in the flour for the bread

mixing in the flour for the bread

 

kneading

kneading

 

looking good ready for the second rise before I cover it again to keep the pesky fly away

looking good ready for the second rise before I cover it again to keep the pesky fly away

 

unintentional flatbread

unintentional flatbread

 

the cupcakes that escaped from entering the dog's stomach all decorated for giving away

the cupcakes that escaped from entering the dog’s stomach all decorated for giving away

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Bad Day In The Kitchen

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Today is a day when I just shouldn’t have attempted anything in the kitchen.  I woke up feeling less than well and Miss E was also not quite herself.  She wanted lots of cuddles and was quite clingy.  That was fine by be…nothing can be better than 40 minute of cuddles in bed with peaceful silence (minus the sound of the rat who is still very much alive and terrorising us).  When we finally both wanted to go downstairs for snacks, I felt it was a good time to make some cupcakes. It’s my mum’s birthday on Friday and Miss E and I are going up tomorrow to take her out for lunch and I wanted to take some birthday cupcakes.

I whipped them up quickly, popped them in the oven and 20 minutes later they were looking delicious on the cooling rack awaiting decoration this evening.  I covered them with a clean tea towel as there were pesky flies around grrr.  I was on such a roll I decided we could bake some bread too.  I got some spelt flour yesterday as I have been dying to try a spelt loaf recipe.  All was going well, I got the yeasty mix set to the side to do its yeasty frothing, I measured out the flour, and, once the yeast mix was ready, Miss E helped mix it in.  We kneaded and left it to the side in a covered bowl to rise.

After dinner the dough had rise enough to be ready to shape.  The recipe said to braid it, so I did!  First time I’ve ever braided bread; normally it just gets put in a loaf pan.  Then I set it on a cookie sheet to rise again.  I had to cover the dough the second time again due to the pesky flies still being in my kitchen.  And I left it to do its thing.

And this is where things go awry.  While sorting Miss E out K Dog gets into the kitchen and helps herself to four of the cupcakes.  She was NOT a popular dog.  So after shoving her outside with a stern telling off, i go to check the dough…..due to covering it the poor loaf instead of rising up like it should just went out and splayed all over my baking tray and stuck to the cover, obviously.  I baked it anyway, but I knew it would never rise up like it was supposed to, so now I have a flat hard thing that could probably do some damage if lobbed at someone.  Do I dare re-enter the kitchen this evening to decorate the remaining cupcakes?!

Scone Baking

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On Sunday, we had a day of unwinding after our weekend.  It was also a day of unpacking emotionally from the trip we had just been on.  We decided in the afternoon to make scones.  It isn’t often Mr P gets to join in our activities, so it was nice that he could be involved as well.  I got the book Baking Bread With Children by Warren Lee Cohan.  I bought mine from Myriad Online as I was ordering a lot of stuff at once from then.  The above is a link to the book on Amazon (I don’t receive any money if you click and buy).  It’s got some lovely bread recipes in there which we hope to try, but on Sunday we just did the scone one as we had all the ingredients to hand.

Mr P mixing all the ingredients together

Mr P mixing all the ingredients together

 

 

enjoying patting out the dough

enjoying patting out the dough

 

 

helping her daddy out

helping her daddy out

 

trying to cut them out on her own

trying to cut them out on her own

 

 

 

having a play while waiting for the scones to bake-yes, that is flour in her hair :)

having a play while waiting for the scones to bake-yes, that is flour in her hair 🙂

 

our second batch, the fruit scones, worked much better than the first

our second batch, the fruit scones, worked much better than the first

 

It was such a lovely family activity, and both Miss E and I really loved the fact that Mr P was able to be there and get involved with us.  If you’d like to try making some scones, here is the recipe I used from the book mentioned above:

 

Devon Scones (makes 8)

200g plain (soft or pastry) flour

10 ml baking powder

2.5ml sea salt

150ml milk

60 g butter

 

1. Sift together flour, salt and baking powder

2. Cut in softened butter with two knives or a pastry blender

3. Stir in milk until it is thoroughly mixed

4. Knead lightly with hands to form it into a ball

5. Place on a floured surface and flatten dough to 2cm thickness

6. Using a glass, cut out circles and place them on a greased tray

7. Bake for 10-12 minutes in a preheated oven at 220 Celsius/450 Fahrenheit/ Gas Mark 7

 

Variations:

-add 40 g poppy seeds

-add 100g cheddar cheese and chives

-add a handful of currants

-glaze tops with egg yoke for a shiny surface

 

I’m looking forward to trying some more of the bread recipes in this book with Miss E.  She enjoyed helping to get the scones ready for the oven and devoured them once they were cooked as well.  I think it is safe to say they have her stamp of approval. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flash In The Pan Pizza

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Every week with our veg boxes Abel & Cole add in little recipe cards, and we have tried quite a few of them now.  A recent one was for these flash in the pan pizzas.  We decided to try them tonight.  I think the bases are great as they have no yeast in, which is a real bonus for me on my Anti Candida diet.  We just used water instead if wine as well for the base, so I don’t really know what it’d taste like with the wine.  They turned out to be super tasty and so quick to make.  We will definitely be doing these pizzas again and trying some new toppings as well.
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Prep: 15 mins / Cook: 15 mins
4 people
1.
Heat your oven grill to high. If you don’t have a grill, set your oven to 220°C/Gas 8.
2.
Tip flour, baking powder, salt and olive oil into a large mixing bowl.
3.
Warm the wine.
4.
Fold everything together till it starts to come together.
5.
Gently knead till it forms a smooth ball. Dust in a little more flour, if needed.
6.
Get your frying pans (do in batches or be a pro and cook all four in one go – or make two larger pizzas for sharing).
7.
Divide your dough into 4 or 2 pieces. Roll out, dust with flour as needed. Once nice and round and roughly the size of your pans, dust the top with flour and gently fold in half. Dust again and halve again so you have a triangle.
8.
Brush your frying pans with olive oil. Pop the dough in one corner and unfold. Curl sides inward to form the crust. Gloss with oil. Let the base crisp up over medium-low heat while you make the topping.
9.
Mix tinned toms with the garlic, balsamic, fresh rosemary and pepper.
10.
Once the bottoms of the pizzas are nicely browned, take off the heat. Slather the sauce over the top. Top with veggies and cheese.
11.
Pop under the grill and cook till the cheese is golden and bubbly.

*You could use luke warm water instead. The wine adds heaps of flavour but the recipe will work fine with water instead.

GREAT TOPPINGS:

Caramelised red onions, goat’s cheese, broccoli and olives
Buffalo mozzarella, fresh pesto, fresh tomatoes and basil
Courgette ribbons, thinly sliced onions, marjoram, lemon zest and capers
Leftover boiled new potatoes, red pepper slices, rosemary and Cheddar cheese

Mary Berry’s Lemon Cupcakes

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After our eventful day yesterday, when Miss E had gone to bed, and I was waiting for Mr P to get home from work, I decided to make him something nice.  We had a lot of eggs and some lemons, so I wanted a lemon dessert.  I didn’t have enough butter for a lemon drizzle cake, but I found Mary Berry’s lemon cupcake recipe, and they are just divine so I had to share the recipe!

Makes: 12
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes

You will need
125 g soft butter
125 g self-raising flour
125 g caster sugar
2 tbsp milk
2 large eggs
Finely grated zest of 1 small lemon

For the lemon icing:
125 g soft unsalted butter
250 g icing sugar, sifted
Juice of 1 small lemon
Edible silver balls or glitter to decorate
Deep 12-hole muffin tin and 12 paper cases

Method
1. Line the muffin tin with the paper cases. Put all the cake ingredients into a bowl, and beat with an electric whisk until evenly combined and smooth.

2. Divide the mixture among the paper cases. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C/gas mark 4 for 20–25 minutes until well risen and light golden brown. Transfer the cakes in their cases to a wire rack, and leave to cool.

3. Make the icing: put the butter and half of the icing sugar into a bowl, and beat with an electric whisk until evenly combined and smooth. Add the lemon juice and the remaining icing sugar, and beat again until light and fluffy.

4. Spread the icing over the cold cup cakes, and decorate with silver balls or glitter.

 

somebody was standing a bit too close when the icing sugar exploded out of my Kenwood mixer underneath the cover

somebody was standing a bit too close when the icing sugar exploded out of my Kenwood mixer underneath the cover

 

 

cooled and decorated awaiting tasting

cooled and decorated awaiting tasting

 

Random Veg

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When all you have are oddments of vegetables, and you’re waiting on your next veg box delivery what do you do?  make a stir fry, of course!

If you have them on hand,  mash up some garlic, ginger and fresh chillis using a mortar and pestle (the more the merrier).

Chop up all your veg (I like to put mine in two bowls: one for veg that will take slightly longer to stir fry and one for veg that just needs a really quick blitz in the pan)

Get your oil nice and hot then chuck in the paste you made and and swirl in around the pan, putting in bowl one of the veg (minus the bowl) quite quickly after.

Keep it all moving in the pan until things are starting to soften then put in the rest of the veg and cook til you’re happy.

Serve with some egg or rice noodles.

Delicious!

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When The Veg Box Brings You Jerusalem Artichokes…

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A few veg boxes ago now, we got a delivery of Jerusalem Artichokes.  it wasn’t something I had ever heard of or seen before.  A little bit of Googling and I discovered that they could be used just like potatoes.  As we were having roast dinner I decided to roast them.  I scrubbed them really well(they can really hold dirt well in all their little knobbly bits) then sliced them in half lengthways.  Some were really long, so these I cut in half widthways too.  I layed them in a roasting dish with about 6 smashed garlic cloves and I gave the whole lot a good dousing of olive oil and seasoned them with salt and pepper.  I then placed them in the oven at 220 celsius* for about 45 minutes.  They were so delicious.  A nice crispy skin with a sweet, soft, nutty flavoured middle.  Yum!  A word of warning though, these things have been known to cause extreme flatulence in certain people(I kid you not this warning came with them from Abel & Cole!), so if this is something you struggle with it may not be the vegetable for you to try.  Have you ever had a Jersulem Artichoke?  Have you got any other cooking suggestions for this veg?

 

*My oven is not fan assisted and I do need to turn it up anywhere from 10-20 degrees more than a normal oven and sometimes give things longer to cook, so adjust temperature and time for your oven.