Archive | March, 2012

Chocolate Nutella Tear and Share bread 11/52

24 Mar

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I made this simple recipe for a picnic with our lovely friends, the mother in law and nephew’s. Fortunately I can confirm that this was universally popular 🙂

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Essentially comprised of a sweet dough mix, laced with chocolate chunks and smothered with Nutella and hazelnuts this bake was scrumptious. Most closely resembling a chocolate Chelsea Bun,  I will definitely be making this again.

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Scones 10/52

11 Mar

If you have ever made a homemade scone you will be amazed at how rewarding they are for something that requires so little effort! And you will never enjoy a shop bought one again!

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They take about 5 minutes to make and 10 to bake. Then if you are particularly greedy,  you can eat them hot from the oven dripping with cream and soaked with jam!

Simply rub some self raising flour, extra baking powder, salt and butter together with your finger tips. Once you have an even mix, stir in milk until you get a smooth dough. I use a knife for this part. Like pastry, scones dough is better if you touch it as little as possible.

Flour your surface and pop the dough on it. I don’t roll mine out I just beat it with the edge of my hand until it is about 2cm thick. Dip your cutter in flour between each slice. This helps your scones to rise.  Cut out as many thick rounds as you can, bake and enjoy!

As I have been a real bumpkin in the past few weeks I was able to serve these with homemade jam.

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I took advantage of a ridiculous offer of £4 for 2kg of cherries and made masses of cherry jam and conserve. The conserve benefited from a slug of damson gin and some vanilla.

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Rhubarb and vanilla is my favourite and made with early forced rhubarb its a delightful pink colour!  I have also finally sorted out a custom stamp so my baking creations can now be labelled up!

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Plum Kuchen 9/52

3 Mar

Mr M’s favourite cake. This is a full on plum and almond sensation, this week it was super pretty as we had yellow and red plums.

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Kuchen is a simple cake/tart that has a high impact on your taste buds.  The base is an almond paste, made from sugar, butter, lemon zest and ground almonds. Once rubbed to breadcrumbs a quarter of the mix is set aside for the crumble like topping. And egg is beaten into the remainder to make a paste. The paste is then used to line a fluted loose bottomed tin and refrigerated for half an hour.

Meanwhile a mountain of plums are stoned and chopped. For some reason these are more delicious if homegrown 🙂  I am really keen to try making this with Dittisham plums. Another option is a red, yellow,  green traffic light version using greengages…

To the refrigerated base a thin layer of marzipan is added. Then the plums top this and are sprinkled with the crumble mix.

40 minutes in the oven makes a delightful tart with a mix of textures. Crumbly topping, juicy plums, slightly caramelized marzipan that it’s chewy in contrast to the crisp base.

 

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This is best eaten quickly and is delicious hot or cold.

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