Sunday, 30 October 2011

Curry Night

As a group of friends we met to swap news and share stories from the past few weeks. I made a selection of curries and another friend made the desserts.
What could be better than a warming curry on a damp evening just before Halloween.
I made Cumin-scented chicken curry and vegetable curry for a crowd. Such easy recipes that I wanted to share them with you and to save writing them all out again I have put links to BBC Good Food.
I served them with tumeric rice and naan breads and of course a glass of beer.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Oyster Cakes

Searching through my bookcase I came across a Be-Ro recipe book from 1967.
Be-Ro books were very popular in the 60's and were written by the flour manufactuer Be-Ro.
So many favourites but this one is absolutely delicious.

Oyster Cakes
Shortcrust Pastry

8oz plain flour
4oz margarine
cold water
3oz margarine
3oz caster sugar
1 egg
4oz ground almonds
drop of almond essence
Raspberry Jam
Fresh whipped cream

Pre-heat the oven to Gas5/190C
Make the shortcrust patry by rubbing the fat into the flour and then add enough
cold water to make a dough
Wrap and leave in the fridge to rest whilst you make the filling
Cream together the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy
Add the egg followed by the ground almonds
Roll out the pastry on a floured surface and use a large cutter to cut out 12 circles
Line the patty tin with the circles of pastry.
Put a teaspoon of mixture on the top of each pastry circle
Bake for 15 - 130 mins until risen and golden brown.
Leave to cool on a wire rack
When cold slice off the top and fill with jame and cream
Place the top at an angle to resemble an oyster

Note: I made butter cream instead of fresh cream and piped it on one side of the jam

What could be better with a cup of tea in the afternoon

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Chocolate Christmas Cake

I was looking for something a bit different this year and came across this recipe for:

Chocolate Christmas Cake
200g butter
200g dark brown soft sugar
100g dark chocolate (80%)
75ml Brandy
250g raisins
250 currants
100g dried cranberries
100g dried sour cherries
200g SR flour
100g ground almonds
3tabsp. cocoa
1 tsp mixed spice
3 eggs

Put the butter, sugar, chocolate, brandy and dried fruits into a very large saucepan
HEat gently, stirring occasionally until everything has melted together. Remove from the heat and leave to cool
Heat oven to 150C/Gas 2
Line a deep cake tin (20cm) round or square with a double layer of greaseproof paper(baking parchment). Wrap a few layers of newspaper around the outside and tie with string.
Mix the flour, almonds, cocoa and spice together in a bowl
BEat the eggs with a fork
Once the fruit mixture has cooled, stir in the eggs and then the flour mixture
Mix well together.
Scrape into your prepared tin and level with the back of a spoon
Bake for one and half hours or until a skewer comes out clean.
Cool in the tin.
Leave wrapped in the greaseproof paper until ready to decorate.

Not sure if mine will get to the decorating bit - will let you know.

I am hoping to make several Christmas Cakes using difdferent recipes ready to sell out our school Christmas Fayre on 19th November.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Baking Week

Last week at school it was bake, bake and bake. We love baking and to celebrate National Baking Week we made cakes and cookies to sell to the students for 50p each item. We made £120.00 to donate to children who suffer from malnutrition across the world. We certainly Baked a Difference.
The favourite recipe was for Chocolate Drop Biscuits - well who could resist chocolate.

Chocolate Drop Biscuits (16)

225g butter
140g caster sugar
1 egg yolk
2tsp vanilla essence
225g plain flour
55g cocoa powder
55g choc. chops
4 tabsp. chocolate spread

1. Pre-heat the oven to Gas 5/190C
2. Flour a tray
3. Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and mix together with a wooden spoon,
then beat in the egg yolk and vanilla essence
4. Sift together the flour and cocoa
5. Mix well together and add the choc chips
6. Divide the mixture into 16 balls and place on the baking tray – you may need
2 trays
7. Flatten the biscuits and put a thumb mark on each to make a small dip in the
8. Bake for 12-15 mins.
9. Cool on a wire rack
10. When they are cold put a tsp. chocolate spread into each dip and top with a
chocolate button

Collection of Recipes

My Mom collects recipes from all over the place. Recently she has made the decision not to bake anymore due to pains in her arms (she is 80 yers old) This is so sad, as her baking is legend. However she came across a recipe for Pear and Ginger Pound Loaf Cake and she asked me to bake it for her. I love baking as you know and my kitchen had that wonderful smell of warm ginger and pears whilst it was baking.

Pear and Ginger Pound Loaf Cake

7oz butter
7oz golden caster sugar
2 large eggs - beaten
1tsp. vanilla essence
7oz SR flour
1 tsp. baking powder
2 balls stem ginger - chopped
2 pears - peeled and diced
3 tabsp. ginger syrup (from the jar)
3 tabsp. sugar

Pre-heat oven to Gas 4/180C
Grease and base line a pounf loaf tin
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy using a wooden spoon
Add the eggs and beat well.
Add the vanilla ess.
Fold in the flour, baking powder
Then mix in the ginger and chopped pears - folding
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin - level with the back of a spoon
Bake for approx 1 hour until a skewer comes out clean

Make the glaze by heating the ginger syrup and sugar togehter over the heat.
Pour over the cake and allow to cool in the tin

Remove from the tin and store in an airtight tin.

Serve sliced with a cup of tea.

I will be delivering the cake to Mom tomorrow - hoping for a slice (just to make sure it tastes alright of coure)

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

White Chocolate Cakes

To-morrow at school we are holding our annual McMillan Afternoon Tea, raising money for cancer.A chance to bake, share recipes, eat cake and donate money to a good cause.
Baking is the theme for next week as well as it is National Baking Week. To help that cause along my Home Economics Department is baking cakes every day. We will be selling Breakfast Bars/Muffins between 8.00am - 8.30 am, then cakes at break-time and after school until 4.00pm. The money we raise will help children who suffer from malnutrition across the world. Bake a Difference and join our good cause.
Post your recipe so I can share it with my students.

One of my cake recipes is

White Chocolate Cake

25og butter
250g golden caster sugar
300g SR flour
½ tsp baking powder
4 eggs
150ml pot natural yoghurt
4 tabsp. milk
Few drops vanilla essence
100g white chocolate roughly chopped

250g soft cream cheese
100g icing sugar
100g white chocolate melted

1. Pre-heat the oven to Gas 4/180C

2. Grease and line baking tin 20cm X 30cm

3. Place butter sugar, flour, baking powder, yoghurt, eggs, milk and v. ess. in
a large bowl and beat until lump-free.

4. Stir in the chopped chocolate.

5. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 25-30 mins until golden, risen and
skewer comes out clean.

6. Cool in the tin.

7. Melt the rest of the chocolate. Stir icing sugar into the soft cheese,
then the melted chocolate. Chill.

8. Spread over the cake, then cut into squares and decorate.