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Fruity Chocolate Crunch Bars


I've been eagerly reading Nigella's new book 'Kitchen' over the last few nights, going through my usual post-it note ritual of marking out all the must try recipes. Nestled right in the middle on page 310, was a fabulous sounding recipe for Sweet and Salty Crunch Nut Bars (I loved the sound of using Cadburys Crunchie Bars) that I thought I would give it a go and take to our village Harvest Tea. Thinking about it some more though I decided that as they were going to be for children, I would omit the salty peanuts and then, after some further rejigging, the recipe now bears no resemblance to the original Nigella one - hence the new name. These really are addictive, so it's probably wise to make a double batch!

I am off to France with the family next week, so it might be a little quiet around here for a few days. See you all when I get back (with copious amounts of wine, cider and cheese)

FRUITY CHOCOLATE CRUNCH BARS

| Serves: makes 16 large squares | Prep Time: 20 Minutes plus chilling | Cook Time: -  | Total Time: -  |


Ingredients: 


  • 150g dark chocolate
  • 150g Milk Chocolate
  • 125g Unsalted Butter
  • 3 x 15ml TBSP Golden Syrup
  • 220g Digestive Biscuits
  • 3 heaped TBSP Raisins
  • 4 x 40g Crunchie Bars

Instructions:


  • Step 1: Line a 20 x 30 cm baking tin with foil.
  • Step 2: Break up the chocolate then place in heavy bottomed pan, with the butter and syrup and melt over a low heat.
  • Step 3: Crush the digestives and crunchie bars (I used rolling pin) then add in the raisins.
  • Step 4: Sir the melted chocolate into the crushed biscuit mix then pour into the prepared tin. Smooth the top and refrigerate for 4 hour before cutting into bars.

 | Author: Beth Sachs | Date: 24th September 2010 |

Beth Sachs
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Two Cheese, Bacon and Pea Risotto



The colder autumn weather is coming (I love Autumn) which makes it the perfect time to resurrect my risotto making skills (although I do enjoy the odd risotto in the summer too).

Everyone in this house loves risotto and I actually find the stirring therapeutic (maybe not on a weeknight though!). I like to keep the flavours simple for the kiddies but if you want to add more herbs or different cheeses (blue?) then go right ahead.


TWO CHEESE, BACON AND PEA RISOTTO



Risotto
Yield: 4Pin it

Two Cheese, Bacon and pea Risotto

A yummy and comforting bacon and cheese risotto
prep time: 5 minscook time: 20 minstotal time: 25 mins

ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp butter and tbsp oil
  • 1 onion
  • 4 rashers bacon, chopped
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 400g Risotto rice
  • 1.2 litres veg stock
  • 75g cheddar, grated
  • 50g Parmesan, grated
  • handful of peas

instructions

  • Step 1: Heat the butter and oil in a large pan then fry off the onion until soft.
  • Step 2: Turn the heat up and add the bacon and thyme and fry until the bacon is cooked.
  • Step 3: Add the risotto rice, stir for a minute then begin adding the stock a ladleful at a time, continuing to stir the risotto at all times. Add the peas when you get to the last couple of ladles of stock.
  • Step 4: Once the rice and peas are cooked and the stock is absorbed, take off the heat and stir through the two cheeses.

Beth Sachs
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Black Bean Chilli


Black Bean Chilli
We are real chilli fiends in this house, even 10-month old Rory loves a good bowlful of hot chilli and rice (I do make his a bit milder by adding creme fraiche!). Thing is, I always make chilli with beef mince and I always use the same old (but very good nevertheless) recipe. Fancying a bit of change, I devised this smokey vegetarian chilli using black beans and kidney beans as the base.

It freezes really well, so I tend to make up a big batch at the weekend and freeze in individual portions, ready to pull out of the freezer for a tasty mid-week meal. Rice is the obvious partner, but cornbread would also be good.

Black Bean Chilli

TOP TIPS FOR MAKING THE BLACK BEAN CHILLI

  • Up the veggies by adding some mushrooms and spinach.
  • The chilli will keep for up to 5 days in the fridge. It can also be frozen.
  • Serve the chilli with rice, grated cheese and sour cream.

OTHER CHILLI RECIPES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Black Bean Chilli

BLACK BEAN CHILLI


Yield: 4Pin it

Black Bean Chilli

prep time: 8 MINScook time: 30 MINStotal time: 38 mins
A smokey vegetarian chilli made with black beans.

ingredients:


  • 1 large Onion, chopped
  • 3 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • 1 TBSP Smoked Paprika
  • 1 TBSP Mild Chilli Powder
  • 3 TBSP Ground Cumin
  • 3 TBSP Cider Vinegar
  • 2 x 400g tins of Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 TSP Brown Sugar
  • 1 x 400g Tin of Black Beans
  • 1 x 400g Tin of Kidney Beans
  • Fresh coriander, grated cheddar and rice to serve.

instructions:


  1. In a large pan, fry the onion and garlic until soft. Add in the paprika, chilli and cumin and cook for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the vinegar, tomatoes and sugar and simmer for 10 minutes before adding the beans.
  3. Simmer for 20 minutes and serve.



PIN ME!

Black Bean Chilli

Beth Sachs
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Byron Bay Cookie Competition


Byron Bay Cookie

Beyond the Bean kindly sent me an assorted box of Byron Bay Cookies to try recently. With flavours like Triple Chocolate Fudge, Sticky Date, Ginger and Walnut, Lemon and Macadamia Nut, White Chocolate and Macadamia Nut (they like their macadamia nuts!) and not forgetting the Strawberry and Clotted Cream variety - I was spoilt for choice.

They use locally sourced ingredients and free range eggs in their cookies, which are incredibly thick, crumbly and have generous helpings of nuts, chocolate and fruit in them. My favourite would have to be the Triple Chocolate Fudge, but I'm a sucker for anything chocolately!

For your chance to win a packet of Byron Bay Cookies all you have to do is tell me what your favourite cookie is.

You can either leave your answer in the comments section below, or on Jam and Clotted Cream Facebook or Twitter pages. If you retweet or share this competition you will get an extra entry (see the handy share button at the bottom of this post). Open to UK residents only, competition closes at 5pm (BST) Friday 17th September 2010.


Beth Sachs
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