The late cake recipe

Christmas cake recipe

Day 7 of my Christmas Countdown is the cake, especially for all you budding cooks, that haven’t we got round to making your Christmas cake yet. This recipe is a little different from the traditional cake recipe, but if you make it this weekend, you will find the recipes for the Marzipan (Day 8) & Fondant icing (Day 9) for covering the cake on the Christmas Countdown, this weekend.

Of course I can hear you cry, “I haven’t got the time for cake making”, Well let me suggest to you. Once you have felt the satisfaction of making your own cake, I very much doubt you will resort to a shop bought one again. Just think of all your friends & family, congratulating you, on your culinary skills. Apart from the feel good factor, you can be sure you are feeding your family an additive & preservative free cake, containing real butter, free range eggs & no nasty palm oils.

Well here we go:

Jan’s late Christmas Cake recipe.

Makes 1. 20cm cake, or 3. 8 cm cakes.  Time taken 45mins + cooking

Equipment: 1. Deep 20cm cake tin, side & based lined & lightly oiled.

Allergens: Dairy, Egg, Nuts

INGREDIENTS

120g Dried Cranberries

120g Dried Cherries

120g Chopped blanced Almonds

120g Dried Apricots chopped

120g Dried Dates

120g Sultanas

250g Spelt Flour

5 level tspns Baking powder

1/2 level tspn Salt

175g Unsalted Butter, not spreadable type.

175g Dark Brown Sugar

Finely grated rind of 1 orange

3 Large Free range eggs

1 tspn Almond essence

3 tbspns Brandy

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 325f, 170c, Gas 3.

Place the dried fruits, orange rind & nuts in a bowl & set aside.

Sift the flour, baking powder & salt together & set aside.

Using a hand mixer, cream the butter & sugar together until very soft & light.

Lightly beat together the eggs & essence & beat into the creamed butter & sugar a little at a time. With the last additions of the egg mix add a couple of tablespoons of the flour.

Fold the remaining flour, alternatley with the brandy & then fold in the fruit & nut mix.

Turn the mix into the prepared tin, lightly level the top & slightly hollow out the centre.

Place in the preheated oven & bake for 1 hour, lower the heat to 300f 150c Gas 2 & bake for a futher 1 1/2 – 2hours. 

Test cake by pushing a warm skewer into the centre,  it should come out clean with no traces of uncooked mixture.

Allow cake to cool in tin. When cold, wrap in foil & store in an air tight tin for a few days, until ready to almond paste.

Its as easy as that. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments box below & I will answer them tomorrow.

Enjoy your evening.

Top those pies with veg

Vegetable topped pie recipes

Day six, of twenty two daily recipes, posted in this, my Christmas Countdown. Don’t forget, if you would like to see any particular recipe or need some advise on your festive cookery, just leave a comment at the bottom of the post & I will be happy to help.

Today, we are talking pies. Not pastry pies, but vegetable topped pies, a cunning  way of getting extra veg into the kids & also a little bit healthier for us all.   You can use a variety of different veg to top your pies & a lot of different fillings, to go under that veggie thatch. See my variations at the bottom of the recipe.

The pie in the photo, (find the recipe below) is topped with an equal mix of white potatoes & celeriac. The sauce is made with the addition of a couple of tablespoons of Pernod, which enhances the flavour of both the fish & celariac, although you can omit the alcohol if you wish. 

potatoes, celariac, sweetcorn, fish, pies
Part of you 5 a day

Haddock & Veggie topped Pie

Time: 40mins + cooking.  Equipment: Oven proof baking dish, 2 saucepans, frying pan. Allergens: Fish, Milk

INGREDIENTS:

225g Smoked Haddock, or fish of your choice

500ml Milk

 2 Stalks Celery, 1 Carrot chopped.

Parsley + 2 Bay leaves

4 Hard boiled eggs, peeled & halved.

150g Frozen sweetcorn or mixed veg.

40ml Olive oil, for the sauce

2 Tbspns Plain Flour.

450g White Potatoes. Peeled & chopped into chunks

400g Celariac, Peeled a chopped into chunks

40ml Olive oil for the topping

Seasoning.

METHOD

Place the potatoes & celariac into a large saucepan, cover with water & salt, bring to the boil & simmer until tender. (About 20mins)

Place the skinned fish in a large frying pan, add the carrot, celery, parsley & bay leaves. Pour over the milk. Bring to the boil, turn off the heat, cover and let stand for 5mins. Add the frozen veg & let stand while you are making the sauce.

In a medium saucepan, place the olive oil & flour, over a medium heat, stir until the mixture binds together & bubbles, lightly, do not brown.

Remove pan from the heat & strain the milk from the fish, into the pan. Bring to the boil, stirring constantly. Stir in the seasoning & Pernod.

Flake the fish into a oven proof baking dish, add the veg & eggs.  Pour the sauce over the top.

Drain the potatoes & celariac, place back on heat, to briefly dry. 

Add remaining olive oil & sesonings & mash well, until smooth

Pile on top of the fish & sauce & make a decorative pattern with a fork.

Place in a preheated oven 180c 350f Gas 4 & bake for 20-30mins until golden brown.

Serve immediately.

Cooking up a feast.

Although not as rich & creamy as butter, olive oil is far better healthy option. Generally speaking, any root vegetables can be used mashed, for the topping, either on their own or mixed with potato.

Variations: Try a mix of potato & beetroot, mashed with a tablespoon of creamed horseradish. Replace the fish with cooked smoked mackerel. Omit the eggs & sweetcorn, replacing with 2 Tbspns Capers.

Cheats way.  Omit the haddock & use 1 tin of Tuna Fish, mixed with 1 can Cambells Condensed Tomato Soup & 2 Tbspns pitted Black Olives. Top with potato & grated parmesan.

If you have been. Thank you for reading.

Until tomorrow.

Do real men eat Quiche?

How to make a man sized quiche

Its a bit of a poser this one, “Do real men eat quiche”? Well, to my mind, plonk a large slice of quiche, containing, bacon, eggs, mushrooms, cheese etc, in front of them & as long as you call it a breakfast quiche & they are not vegetarian, they probably do.  Just look at it this way, the quiche in the header photo is just, breakfast on a pastry plate!

Below, you will find the recipe for a man sized breakfast Quiche. The pastry recipe you will find as a previous   Christmascountdown post, by clicking the link.  At the bottom of the page, you will also find some variations, which may also help you use up your Festive leftovers, when the time comes.

bacon, eggs, cheese, pastry, cream,
Bacon & Eggs. Tempted?

Big Breakfast Quiche  

Time taken 45 mins + cooking & chilling.  Equipment 1. 13cm Deep fill flan tin.

225g Short crust pastry   Follow the link for recipe 

200g Bacon off cuts. (Cheaply bought from your butcher. You get nice chunky bits)  Dry fried.

5, Large Free range eggs

200 ml Milk

200g Chestnut Mushrooms, sauted

2 Fresh Tomatoes, Sliced

150g Grated Cheddar Cheese

1 Tab Olive oil.

Seasoning + (Cayenne pepper, nutmeg & thyme if liked)

METHOD

Make the pastry, according to the recipe, pop in the fridge to chill while you a preparing the filling.

Preheat the oven to 200f 400c Gas 6  With a large tin baking tray inside.

Dry fry the bacon, remove & drain on kitchen paper add, 1tbspn oil to the pan & quickly saute the mushrooms.

Lightly grease flan tin with oil.

Line the tin with pastry, crimp the edges & placed the cooled bacon & mushrooms on the base.

Beat together eggs, milk & seasonings, pour into the tin.

Place the tomato slices on top & spinkle with the grated cheese.

Carefully place on the heated tray, in the oven & bake at the above temprature for 15mins. Reduce the temp to 180c 350f Gas 4 & bake for a futher 25 – 30mins, until puffed up & golden brown.

Serve to your man with a side of baked beans.

Variations:

 Replace the bacon & veg with smoked salmon, chopped dill & blanched fennel.  Use 2 Whole Eggs & yolks of 3. Replace 1/2 the milk with double cream. Omit Cheese.

Use, pitted black olives, sundried tomatoes, garlic, roasted green peppers & Bazil. Top with Grated Parmesan.

Blanch Tenderstem Broccoli Spears, add to pastry shell & top with crumbled Blue Cheese.

Use, chopped left over turkey & veg. Cheat & pour over a can of Cambells Condensed Chicken Soup. Use left over pastry to make a lid. ( Roll trimming to the size of your tin) Place on top ofthe filling, brush with milk & make a small steam hole in the middle of the lid. You now have a turkey & Veg pie. And YES real men do eat these.

Don’t  forget, you can always line a small patty tray to create, individual tartlets. Great with drinks.

If you have any questions, please ask, by leaving a comment in the box below.

Until tomorrow.

Mascapone Pastry

Rough puff pastry

Day 4 of Countdown to Christmas & we are back to pastry.  Rough puff pastry, but to be exact, Mock rough puff pastry. This dough is very easy to make, but care must be taken when mixing the ingredients. There is a long chilling time involved, which makes it easy to make & plonk in the fridge until the next day. Kept chilled & wrapped in cling film, it will last for 1 week, which makes it ideal to whip out & create those little Christmas canapes or impressive afternoon tea pastries.  It is also a very rich mix, which is suitable for both sweet & savoury recipes. You can use french patisserie flour, but I like to use Maize Bite Flour, for a crisp flaky texture & a golden yellow apperance.

Mascapone Rough Puff Pastry   Makes 225g   Time taken 15mins + 8 hrs chilling time.   Allegens: Dairy

175g. Maize Bite Flour or French Patissere (Plain Flour)

175g. Chilled butter

175g. Mascapone Cheese

Pinch of salt.

METHOD

Sift the flour & salt into a bowl.

Chop the butter in with the flour, it must be no bigger than the size of a baked bean. (See video below).

Add the mascapone & bring the mixture together with the blade of a knife.

Do not over mix, it just needs to come together in a ball.

Wrap in cling film & place in the fridge for a minimum of 8 hours.

Chopping butter into flour

When ready to use, roll out on a lightly floured surface 1/2cm thick & use as required.

The header photo shows, parmesan & blue cheese twists, to make these roll out the pastry into an oblong, sprinkle with grated parmesan & blue cheese & fold in half.  Cut into strips, see photo’s above & twist the pastry, sprinke with more parmesan. Place on a baking tray, lined with non-stick paper & bake in a pre-heated oven, 220c 425f Gas 7 for 10-12 mins, until golden.

Variations:  Roll out as above, stamp into small circles & pipe with hummus, pate or herbed cream cheese, for drinks party savouries.

Roll out as above, cut into wide strips spread with harasia & roll around mini chorizo sausages. Bake as above.

Instead of your usual pastry, use to make your mince pies.

Roll out as above, Cut into small oblongs & bake as above, sandwich 3 together with a fruit conserve, whipped cream & fresh or frozen raspberries, Dust with icing sugar before serving.

Now you have the idea, I am sure you can have fun making your own shapes & sweet & savory fillings/toppings.

For me, its a large G&T with some olives & the twists in the photo.

Until tomorrow. Enjoy your evening.

BBC Wiltshire – Rachel Houghton, 27/11/2018

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06qgwjp

BBC Wiltshire – James Thomas, 27/11/2018https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06qgwjp

Hi Foodies, I am feeling very lucky today, the lovely Emma Coleman from BBC Radio Wiltshire visited my little Stable kitchen, last week, to interview me.  That was luck in itself, but just imagine my feeling of elation when my recorded interview appeared not just on one, but both of the above mentioned radio programmes today. If you click the links above, you will be able to hear them.

Now. If you heard the programmes & read my previous blog – link in red below – you may wish to make your own Fondant Icing (Ready rolled). The recipe follows:

FONDANT ICING. Covers 1 x 10cm cake.

1, level dessertspoon powdered gelatine, mixed with 3 dessertspoons of cold water.

100gm Granulated Sugar

6.Tbspns hot water

1.Tbspn Fresh Lemon Juice

2.tspns vanilla essence

25ml Vegetable oil

1/2 – 3/4 kg Sifted Icing Sugar.

METHOD

Place granulated sugar, hot water & lemon juice in a small saucepan & bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve.

Cover & boil for 2mins, uncover & boil for a futher 5mins until a little of the syrup forms a soft ball when dropped into very cold water.

Add the gelatine mix, essence & oil & stir to dissolve. Cool until luke warm.

Put half the icing sugar in a large boil & add the syrup mixture,stir well to combine. Gradually work in the remaining icing sugar, with the fingers, kneading until the mix becomes, smooth & pliable.

Place in a plastic bag & leave at room temperature overnight.

Roll out on a board dusted with sifted icing sugar & use to cover your cake. At this stage you can knead any colourings into the icing. This icing is also suitable for moulding. See the little snow men in the photo above.

You will also find my original blog, regarding the nasties in store bought icing, by clicking the link below:

If you have any questions on your Christmas cookery please feel free to ask.

Just leave your question in the comment box below.

If you have been. Thank you for reading & possibly listenening.

Spiced Potato & Carrot Bahji

Spiced Potato & Carrot Bahji’s

I love a nice spicy, crispy Bahji, served with a nice fresh crunchy salad & a big bowl of chilli & cucumber ratia, for dipping. The only thing I don’t like is the fat content. Traditionally, Bahji’s are deep fried, which gives them that gorgeous, crunchy texture, it also gives them a high fat content. Well foodies after playing around a bit with my ingredients & cooking methods, I have come up with these little low fat, gluten free, dairy free vegan & vegetarian Bahji balls.

Carrots, Potatoes, Bahji's, Oven baked, low fat
Hot from the oven

INGREDIENTS: SERVES 4. GLUTEN FREE, DAIRY FREE, VEGETARIAN, VEGAN, Oven temp 200c 400f Gas MK 6.

500g Potatoes, grated. Put in a tea towel & squeeze to remove excess water.

2 medium red onions, grated ( I find red onions more digestible for lowfodmap diets)

200g Carrots, grated

5cm, Fresh Ginger, peeled & grated

2. Fresh red chillies, finely chopped

1tspn Turmeric powder

3 tspns Cumin Seeds

1 tspn Salt

5 Tbspns Gram Flour

Juice of 1 Fresh Lime

2 tbspns Rapeseed Oil

Fresh chillis & Corriander to serve.

es, bahji's, vegetables, low fat, oven baked
Assembling the spicy Veg mix

METHOD:

Place the drained potatoes, carrots, onions, chillis, ginger, spices and salt in a large bowl, & mix together well. (get you hands in).

Add the gram flour & mix well again.

Add the lime juice & oil & mix well again, adding a little more oil if necessary to produce a sticky mix.

Line a baking tray with non stick parchment, roll the mix into small ball, & place a little apart on the tray.

Bake for 25-30mins, checking half way through & turning if necessary.

Remove from the oven & sprinkle with fresh corriander & finely chopped chilli’s

Serve with a grated carrot, spring onion & red pepper salad, a bowl of corriander & chilli yoghurt & mango chutney.

Enjoy.

Another little tip, for low fat nibbles. 15mins before the Bahji’s are ready, Sprinkle some pumpkin seeds in a single layer on baking parchement. Sprinkle with a little salt & some spice of your liking & bake.  Beats peanuts anytime.

pumkin seeds, low fat, nibbles with drinks, vegetarian, gluten free
Spicy, low fat nibbles

Chocolate & Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter & Chocolate Recipe

It’s been a busy few weeks in my Stable Kitchen. Dreaming about chocolate & peanut butter one night – there are worst dreams -, I have created this decadent dessert, just for you.

I have been developing new recipes for my home made breads, which are now available from my Kitchen. Half-term also means more visitors keen to try my home made Ice Cream.  If you have made any of my recipes over the past few months, it would be great to hear your comments www.truffleicious.org/visitors-book 

The recipe below is great for a summer party. No need to spend hours in the kitchen with this one. You could also utilise the best of our summer fruits, by replacing the bananas with fresh raspberries & for extra decadence serve with extra raspberries & dark chocolate sauce.

Food, Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Raspberries, Recipe
A decadent dessert

CHOCOLATE & PEANUT BUTTER PIE

Serves 12.  V. Contains nuts. Oven 180c/359f/Gas Mk 4. Prep:  15 mins, plus cooling & chilling Cooking 10 mins.  Equipment: 1.23cm Flan Dish.

For the Base:

250g Chocolate Biscuits, finely crushed.

70g Melted Butter

Mix the above ingredients together & press into the base & sides of the flan dish. Cook for  10 mins, until set & leave to cool.

For the filling:

2 Bananas, sliced

170g Cream Cheese

140g. Smooth Peanut Butter

200ml Greek Yoghurt.

Lay the sliced bananas over the base of the cooled base. Beat together the remaining ingredients & spoon over the bananas. Level the surface & chill in the fridge for 30mins.

For the topping:

115g Plain Chocolate, broken into pieces

25g Unsalted Butter

150ml Double Cream.

Melt the butter & chocolate together over a pan of simmering water. Remove from the heat, stir in the cream & beat until the mixture is smooth. Level to cool for 15-20 mins until the mixture thickens. Gently spread over the top of the filling. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.

Free Food Bonanza

Autumn is the time for fruitfulness. The hedgerows are a free food bonanza abounding with different fruits & nuts. So, a foraging I will go & who doesn’t like food for free?

apples, crab apples, foraging, jellies, syrups
Ripe for the picking

I remember – just – as a child, my maternal Grandmother, a country woman born & bred. had a large Japonica bush, growing under a front room window. How I loved the beautiful pink flowers it produced during the summer months. My Grandmother however, didn’t have time for growing things you couldn’t eat, to her, the Japonica bush earned it’s keep in the autumn, by producing its fruits, which she turned into a delicate translucent pink jelly, which was served at tea time, with huge floury scones. I can still taste them today.

Walking my faithful hound the other morning, we passed trees laden with cob nuts, sloes elderberries, cooking apples, tiny crab apples & mulberries.  Wild red currants & white currants dangled in tempting clusters, while brambles were covered in fat juicy blackberries, some white & pale pink, awaiting more sun to ripen them, others the deepest, darkest maroon, just begging to be picked.

Blackberries, foraging, jam, syrups, jellies
“Taking my straw basket I went foraging”

We all know the old favourites Blackberry & Apple Pie/Crumble, Elderberry Wine etc but what about some of the more unusual things you can make with your foraged food?

Below are a couple of recipes you might like to try. Hopefully they may encourage you to get out into the countryside & enjoy the fresh air, knowing that on your return you have that feel good factor from the exercise & the means to produce some delicious, home-made goodies.  They will also make, well received, Christmas presents.

home made,elderberry syrup,foraging, hedgerows, healthy eating
Foraging for juicy elderberries

ELDERBERRY SYRUP.    GF/DF/V/Vegan

INGREDIENTS:

2.25 kg Ripe Elderberries. Weight when stripped from stalks

600 ml  Water

1 small egg white, whipped to a froth. ( For Clarifying)

Preserving Sugar.

Brandy.

METHOD:

Wash the berries, crush lightly.  Place in a large oven proof casserole (Not metal) with the water. Cover & place in a low (160c/180f /Gas 3) oven until the fruit is pulpy.

Strain through a jelly bag. Measure the juice, allowing 325 g sugar per 600 ml.

Place the juice in a saucepan, with the frothy egg white & bring to the boil, whisking occasionally. When boiling, remove all the scum & froth& add sugar. Reboil, skimming frequently, allow to simmer 3-4 mins.

Remove a couple of tablespoons of the syrup, set aside to cool to test the thickness of the syrup. Continue to simmer if necessary.

Pour into sterilised bottles, adding a teaspoon of brandy to each bottle. Seal & store.

Use as a drink, diluted with water or soda ( full of Vit C), or best of all add a small measure to your favourite Gin & top up with tonic. Cheers.


Here is a recipe to use up those windfall apples, or those you have foraged from the hedgerows.

HERB JELLY  GF/DF/V/Vegan

INGREDIENTS:

Washed, unpeeled & uncored apples. Roughly chopped up.

450 g Preserving sugar (warmed) for each pint of juice.

83 ml Water.

124 ml wine vinegar.

Pared rind & juice of one lemon.

Large Bunch of herbs of your choice. Mint, Lemon Thyme, Basil, Lemon Balm, Marjoram etc  Leaves removed from stalks. Tie stalks together, finely chop leaves.

METHOD

Place the apples in a large casserole container (No metallic) & stand in a pan of water, on the hob.  Simmer, until the apples are reduced to a pulp.

Strain the juice through a jelly bag, add the water at the end. (Do not squeeze the bag as you will make the jelly cloudy).

 Boil the strained juice for 20 mins, add the warmed sugar, stirring all the time until dissolved.

Add the herb stalks, lemon rind & juice, and vinegar to the jelly & boil for a further 7 mins. Test for setting.  Add the finely chopped leaves to the jelly.  Pot into sterilised jars.

These jellies are delicious served with hot or cold, meats & pies.  They can also be served as a side to the cheese board & the basil jelly make a particular tasty side to tomato based dishes.

So guys, happy foraging & cooking. In addition to having food for free, you also know your products are preservative, colouring & additive free.

Bon appetite.

Countryside, foraging, walking, recipes, free food,
From Days gone by

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TRUFFLEicious Totally Homemade Food. light lunches, salads, bread, cakes — TRUFFLEicious.org

TRUFFLEicious Stable Kitchen, Great Chalfield, Atworth, Melksham, Wiltshire. SN12 8NJ 07778 15737 https://goo.gl/maps/4FccXTZaXuo

via TRUFFLEicious Totally Homemade Food. light lunches, salads, bread, cakes — TRUFFLEicious.org

Home made bread, Artisan Breads, Organic Bread, Cheese Breads, Sweet potato & walnut bread
The Staff of life

Pop in and see us, we are open until 31st October Tues, Wed, Thurs, 12.30 – 3.30 & Sundays 1-4pm.

We cater for all dietary requirements . You can also pre-order our range of homemade organic, Artisan bread, throughout the year. Fresh local free rage eggs also available.

If you have visited us, please leave a comment or leave a review on Trip Advisor.

Summer Food

We tend to think of Christmas as a time of food & feasting, but for me, Summer will always be the time, when feasting on fresh healthy food comes to the fore.

I can think of nothing nicer than whiling away a hot summer’s day with friends, whilst enjoying a delicious light lunch. Maybe you grow your own herbs & veg to make your own salads & dressings. Serve them with this light summery dish, made the night before. Toss a salad on the day & serve with my Small batch, Artisan, Fennel & Sesame Bread.   Add some fresh strawberries & raspberries for dessert & Voila a tasty, healthy, summer meal.

SMOKED SALMON & CUCUMBER MOUSSE

Gluten Free. Vegetarian.        No Cooking time. Prep time: 20mins. Chill Overnight.

Equipment  1.2Ltr Ring Mould.

Serves 6 as a main Course, 12 as a starter.

INGREDIENTS.

Tspn Olive Oil for greasing

200g Smoked Salmon Slices.

1 Medium Cucumber, finely diced.

225g Cottage Cheese, Sieved,

7g Sachet of Gelatine

150ml Water

150ml Homemade Anchovy Mayonnaise

150ml Greek Yoghurt

METHOD.

Lightly grease the mould with olive oil.

Line the sides of the mould with the smoked salmon slices.

Finely dice the Cucumber.

Put the water into a small saucepan, sprinkle the Gelatine over & allow to soak for 5mins. Place over a very low heat, until dissolved. DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL.  Allow to cool.

Place the cottage cheese, mayonnaise into a bowl & mix well.

Working quickly, add the cooled gelatine mix to the cheese & mayo. Mix well.

Add the diced cucumber & fold in the Greek Yoghurt.

Season with white pepper. Pour into the mould, shake to level to top.

Cover with cling film & allow to set overnight.

Bread, Baking, Small batch, Artisan, Bakery
Bread. The Staff of Life

TO SERVE

Loosen the edges carefully with a palette knife & turn out onto a serving dish.

Decorate the edges with lemon slices & fresh herbs.

Serve with Crunchy Cos Lettuce & herb salad and a lemon Viniagarette dressing and slices of my fresh Fennel & sesame Bread.

Don’t forget the Chardonnay.

Chardonnay, wine, summer eating, summer drinking, food
Half empty. Half full ?