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Showing posts from November, 2008

Edible Christmas Gifts (5) ~ Cranberry Vodka

It takes two weeks to make so you need to get started pretty soon to have this ready for Crimbo.

Ingredients: 1 litre Vodka 250g Fresh Cranberries 175g Caster Sugar
Method: (makes 2 50cl bottles) Step 1: Sterilise a suitably large bottle (see picture at top) Step 2: Prick the cranberries with a fork and place in bottle, add voddy and sugar Step 3: Leave for two weeks shaking every day Step 4: Strain and decant into smaller 50cl bottles (sterilised) to give away as presents - I may well have to keep a bottle...for emergencies

Edible Christmas Gifts (4) ~ Gold Dust Christmas Cookies

Courtesy of Nigella, an easy festive cookie for you all to try. I bought my edible gold glitter, which is a necessity in this recipe I think, from Jane Ashers online store. I made these for Lowen's little friends at nursery (I've put them in the freezer for now) but I'm half tempted to make another batch and use them for Christmas tree decorations. They have a lovely delicate flavour and my only alteration to the recipe was the addition of some orange zest, which went great with the ginger.
Ingredients: (makes 30ish) 90g Butter, softened 100g Caster Sugar 1 Large Egg 1tsp ground ginger Zest of 1 orange 200g Plain Flour 1/2 tsp baking powder 1/2 tsp fine salt Edible gold glitter
Method: Step 1: Preheat oven to 180c Step 2: Cream butter and sugar, beat in egg followed by ginger and orange zest. Fold in flour, baking powder and salt and continue mixing until it comes together to form a soft dough. Step 3: Form 2 discs, wrap in cling film and put in fridge to rest for 20 minutes Step 4: Flou…

Mediterranean Pasta Bake

The great thing about this pasta bake is that there's no need to pre cook the pasta. All you need to do is mix the ingredients together in a bowl, pour into an ovenproof dish, scatter over the cheese and bake for 1 hour in the oven. It's really tasty too!

MEDITERRANEAN PASTA BAKE| Serves: 6 | Prep Time: 5 Minutes | Cook Time: 1 Hour | Total Time: 1 Hour 5 Minutes |
INGREDIENTS:100g Chorizo, sliced2 tins chopped tomatoes500g Penne150 ml of Double Cream50g Capers6 cloves of garlic, chopped2 TBSP Basil, chopped175ml Boiling Water1/2 TSP SugarSalt, Pepper and 1 tsp sugar80g soft goats cheese75g Parmesan, grated75g Cheddar, gratedINSTRUCTIONS:Step 1: Preheat the oven 180C (160C Fan).Step 2: Mix all of the ingredients together (except the cheeses) in a large bowl.Step 3: Pour into an oven proof dish, top with the cheeses.Step 4: Bake in the oven for 50 minutes to 1 hour. Cover with foil after 20 minutes to stop it browning too much on top.| Author: Beth Sachs | Date:  22nd November 2…

Stroganoff Steaks

I rarely cook steak, mainly down to its expense, but after a few stressful weeks at work hubby and I decided to treat ourselves last Friday. I bought two lovely thin cut sirloin steaks and fried them for 2 minutes a side (we like our steaks on the rare side). It was washed down with a lovely glass of Shiraz.

1 Onion sliced
25g Butter
1 garlic, crushed
200g Chestnut Mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp vegetable oil
2 Sirloin steaks about 200g each
150ml Beef Stock
150ml Soured Cream
Parsley, chopped

Step 1: Fry the onion in the butter until soft, add the garlic and mushroom and fry until mushrooms cooked. Add paprika and fry for 30 secs. Tip out onto plate
Step 2: Heat oil in same pan, cook steaks as you like, then take out of pan and keep warm.
Step 3: Return Mushroom mix to pan, add stock and reduce by 2/3. Take off heat and stir through cream, parsley and season well
Step 4: Serve sauce on top of steaks with whatever you fancy. As I don't like potatoes I se…

Edible Christmas Gifts (3) ~ Apple and Cranberry Chutney

This Chutney tastes fantastic, even straight out of the pan! The original recipe comes from Good Food magazine but I halved the recipe as I only wanted to fill 2 x 500g jars.
Great served with cold meats and cheeses or given as a Christmas present. The Chutney will keep for 6 months.
Ingredients: 500g Cooking apples, peeled and chopped 250g Eating Apples, peeled and chopped 250 onions, sliced 25g Ginger, chopped 1/2 Tsp red peppercorns 250g Granulated Sugar 125ml Cider Vinegar 250g Cranberries
Method: Step 1: Put all ingredients in a large pan except cranberries, bring to the boil then simmer uncovered for 50 minutes. Step 2: Add cranberries for final 10 minutes of cooking. Step 3: Fill 2 500g Sterilised Jars

Apple Crumble Bars

Apple crumble is probably my favourite dessert (with warm custard in the winter and a dollop of clotted cream in the summer), but I wanted to see if I could transform this popular pud into traybake form, making it easily transportable in lunchboxes and picnic baskets. I'm pleased to report it worked and I ended up with a gorgeously fruity tart apple bar with a sweet and crumbly topping. The quantities I give make a huge tray but it freezes really well too so why not freeze half for another day?

If you love apple crumble I promise you'll love these.

APPLE CRUMBLE BARS| Serves: makes 30 bars | Prep Time: 20 Minutes | Cook Time: 55 Minutes | Total Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes |
560g Plain Flour1/2 tsp Salt270g Golden Caster Sugar60g Light Brown Sugar330g Butter, diced.3 Bramley Apples, peeled and dicedJuice half a Lemon1 TSP cinnamon
Step 1. Peel and dice up the apples into small cubes. Squirt with the lemon juice and set aside in a bowl.Step 2. Combine the flou…

Bacon and Pea Linguine in a White Wine and Soured Cream Sauce

This was most definitely a throw it in the pan kind of dish as I'm desperately trying to finish off odds and ends in the cupboards, fridge and freezer to make room for all the Christmas food that will be coming shortly.

As you all know Hubby is not a fan of creamy sauces so it was just my luck that he was out at darts tonight - giving me a great excuse to try this.

Ingredients: serves 2 and a toddler 4 rashers bacon, chopped 1 Onion sliced 1 Garlic clove, sliced Splash of white wine 3 TBSP Soured Cream Seasoning Handful Parmesan, grated Handful Basil, sliced Toasted pine nuts to serve 350g Linguine, cooked according to packet

Method: Step 1: Fry onion, bacon and garlic in a little oil Step 2: Add wine, cream and cheese and simmer for a few minutes then add basil Step 3:Toss in linguine and serve with toasted pine nuts scattered on top.

Chicken Tikka Masala

Another quick one I'm afraid. We are preparing to say to goodbye to hubby's sister and family this weekend as they leave for New Zealand.

I made this last night for dinner and it was a complete hit, very tasty, with minimal effort. Great when time is short.

Ingredients: serves 4 2 Onions, sliced Thumb size piece of ginger, peeled and sliced 2 Red Chilli's, sliced 3 Chicken breasts, chopped 1/2 280g jar of tikka paste 1 can coconut milk 1 tin chopped tomatoes Salt and Pepper

Method: Step 1: Fry onion, ginger and chilli's for 10 minutes until soft Step 2: Turn up heat and add chicken and tikka paste, then add coconut milk and tomatoes and season generously. Bring to the boil then simmer with lid on for 20 minutes Step 4: Serve with rice

A little picture of Lowen in her new winter hat!!