Showing posts from January, 2014

Apple, Date and Walnut Pudding

These day, I only make puddings when we have friends or family for a meal - they seem to expect it! I wanted to make something tasty, but not stodgy.  Hunting through my cookery books, I found one I'd bought a few years ago from the famous 'Pudding Club' in 'Three Ways House' in Chipping Camden. If you've nor heard of this club, it was founded in 1985 to save our great British puddings. At the time, puddings were looked on with horror - much too fattening. So the club meets, eat their main course and then 7 different puddings are brought out and devoured. At the end of the evening, they vote for the best one. Looking through the book, many of the pudds are very filling ,but I found one that was marked as 'healthy', and it does contain fruit, nuts and honey and very little fat. I suppose with the latest bad press for sugar, 120g would be classed as a lot, so perhaps it wouldn't be classed as 'healthy'! Many of the puddings are steamed, but

Chocolate Oaties

My husband loves biscuits, so as it was pouring with rain and I felt like baking something, I decided to make some for him. What to make? I had half a tin of Carnation caramel in the fridge left over from a cake recipe my daughter tried, so thought I'd use some of this - not much, as it's so sweet. I like a biscuit with a crunchy outside but a soft centre, so decided to use oats and some plain chocolate to get the sort of biscuit I wanted. A couple of tablespoons of caramel would give it extra flavour, and add to the softish centre. I found plenty of oat biscuit recipes on the net, but couldn't find just what I wanted, so I used a basic oat recipe and added my own tweaks to it. I made 15 chocolate oaties from this recipe. Preheat oven 180C/gas4 100g butter, 100g soft brown sugar and 2 tbspns of Carnation caramel - spoon these into a pan and melt gently till all the sugar and butter have dissolved. 100g sr flour, 100g oats and 1/2 tspn of bicarbonate of soda - put t

Cranberry, Pear and Pecan Cake

This is one of those cake that uses up the leftover Christmas bits and pieces. I had some cranberries, half a bag of pecans and some pears that needed using up. It's based on a recipe I picked up from one of the supermarkets - Sainsbury's I think. It has quite a thick topping, but it's delicious. It does take a bit of effort to make, but I think it's worth it. Pears and cranberries are 2 of our 5 a day! It's an upside down cake, so you need a heavy bottomed pan about 26cms, as it has to go on the hob and in the oven. I used a Le Creuset saute pan, which worked well. Preheat oven 180C/gas4 Make the topping - melt 75g butter and sugar in the pan over a low heat. Peel and core 900g of pears [about 6] and cut them into about 1cm slices then put them in the pan on top of the butter and sugar. Cook over a gentle heat till the pears are just soft; turn the heat up to caramelize them. Sprinkle 140g of cranberries and 75g of pecans over the mixture and gently mi

A French Apple Cake

Our computer has had gremlins, so haven't been able to post. Hopefully this is now sorted! I'm always happy to find a new recipe for an apple cake, and this one comes from a French friend. It's nice and easy to make, is different from the usual apple cake, and is a nice change from the heavy Christmas pudds and cakes. I've translated it from French, hence the odd looking recipe with tbpns and grams! 200g of plain flour 10 tbspns of caster sugar + 100 g 2 eggs + 1 extra 6 tbspns of milk 2 tspns of baking powder 4 tbspns of sunflower or rapeseed oil 4 apples [I used Braeburns] 100g of butter 1 tbspn of vanilla sugar [or 1 packet] Icing sugar for the top Preheat oven 190C/gas5 Grease and bottom line a 23cm springform tin. Beat the 2 eggs with the 10 tbspns of sugar; add the flour, baking powder, milk and oil. Peel and slice the apples thinly, then add to the mixture and mix in. Pour into the tin and bake for about 30 mins. Meanwhile, in a bowl, beat t

Galette de Rois

I wanted to make the traditional Galette de Rois, to celebrate the arrival of the 3 Kings. We ate many of these during our time in France, but only from the boulangerie or the supermarket. My friend who has the teashop, always makes one, and she kindly gave me her recipe. There's a bean or feve in the galette, and the person who finds it in their piece, gets to wear a crown and be king or queen for the day. Preheat oven 180C/gas4 You take a sheet of butter puff pastry and fill it with a delicious almond cream. For the cream - you need to beat 125g of butter till nice and creamy. Put 125g of caster sugar, 130g of ground almonds,1 tbspn of cornflour and a pinch of salt in a bowl and mix together.Add this to the butter and mix till smooth.  Add 1 drop of almond extract then 2 eggs, one at a time. Put the cream in the fridge covered with clingfilm for an hour or overnight, to chill. Roll out a pack of  puff pastry [about 500g] and divide into 2. Roll again and cut out  30cm cir