Oct 1 used to be the official start of 'pudding season'. Actually they were meat puddings, as autumn was the time to kill meat for winter, but it seems a very good festival to revive! So to inaugarate pudding season once again, here's.....
two half cups of castor sugar
2 tb butter, melted
3 eggs separated
2 teaspoons grated rind
third of a cup juice (if using passionfruit add the juice of a lemon too, and use lemon rind)
half cup self raising flour
1 cup milk
Beat egg yolks and half cup sugar till pale; add rind, butter, flour, juice, milk.
Beat whites till stiff; add hafl cup sugar. Mix slowly and carefully into the other mixture.
Pour into an oven dish, or six small dishes. Place in a baking dish, place in a preheated oven to 200C; pour hot water into the baking dish till it's about half way up the dish with the pud in it.
bake 50 minutes for a large pud; about 30 for small ones. They should be golden brown but not burnt on top, and have separated into a light sponge on top with lots of creamy sauce underneath.
Serve with cream and icecream, though they are very good without.
Serves 2 large appetites, or 4 small ones
1 bunch asparagus
1 cup water
1 heaped tb butter
1 heaped tb flour
half cup cream
juice of half a lemon
1-3 tb chopped parsley
4 eggs, not too hardboiled ie cooked for about 6 minutes
possibly a little milk
salt to taste
optional: 1 tb parmesan cheese, grated
Boil asparagus in the water till it's as soft as you like it. Scoop out the asparagus and snap off the hard bottom bits- don't do this before cooking as they will flavour the water.
In another pan melt the butter; stir in the flour; slowly add the asparagus water, stirring well so it isn't lumpy. Add the cream; stir till thickened over a low heat. you may need to add milk to thin it. Add the lemon juice, the parsley, the cheese if you are using it. Stir again over a low heat while you add the chopped asparagus. Take off the heat as soon as the asparagus is warm- don't cook it any more.
Pour the sauce over the pasta; chop the hardboiled eggs on top of it., one or two per person.
Really Red Raspberry and Lemon Cordial
This is very red, very fruity and very very good!
2 kg sugar
1 packet frozen raspberries
2 cups lemon or lime juice
6 teaspoons tartaric acid (you can buy this in the supermarket)
4 cups water
Boil everything for ten minutes. Strain out the raspberry lumps in a strainer. Use a funnel to pour the cordial into clean- sterilised if possible- bottles.
Keep in a cool place, and if it looks or smells odd or starts bubbling throw it out! Just remember it doesn't have any preservatives in it, so it won't last very long before going bad. But it should be fine for two weeks or so. If the weather is hot keep it in the fridge, or freeze it if you want to keep it for more than a couple of weeks.
To use: just use like other cordial- put a splash in a glass and top with water.
ps you can use blueberries or blackberries or cherries instead of raspberries
Lemon Lime and Grapefruit Cleanser
This stuff is gorgeous! I only made up the recipe a few days ago, so I hope there are no long term side effects like fingers dropping off...shouldn't be....It really cleans grotty hands and filthy feet; it's also good to remove makeup but keep away from your eyes or broken skin as it will sting.It doesn't dry your skin out either, like soaps and detergents, and your skin smells great..but do keep it away from the stingable bits!
3 tb rolled oats or instant oats
2 tb avocado oil or virgin olive oil
3 tb bicarbonate of soda
6 tb sorbelene cream
6 tb water
a squeeze of lemon, lime or grapefruit juice
Rub oats between your fingers till it's powdery- only takes about a minute. Add bicarb, oil and sorbelene; mix well; add water. keep in a jar in the bathroom, with a half lemon, lime or grapefruit.
To use: empty a little into your palm, then squeeze on some juice. it will froth up to about three times it's size. Rub into your hands then wash off. you can also add the juice to the jar- about 6tb juice. Still works well but it will all go flat after a few hours.
Keep in a cool place. It has no preservatives so should be made fresh each week. If it looks or smells at all odd or looks different from yesterday throw it out.
ps don't eat it either
The Sensational Sausage Roll
This is about 10,000 times better than bought sausage rolls
500 gm pork and veal, or pork mince, or pork and chicken- or at a pinch beef.
2 finely grated carrots
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 finely chopped onion
1 tb fresh thyme leaves
4 chopped sage leaves
(or other herbs to taste)
3 crushed cloves garlic
1 cup grated zuchinni with an egg
finely chopped dried tomatoes (good with a basil flavouring)
4 tb parsley
You can use filo, puff, or flaky. (I like filo, Bryan loves puff)
Roll up the filling in the pastry. Don't make it too thick, or the pastry will burn before the insides cook, but don't make it stingy either. About the thickness of two or three sausages is perfect.
You can make long or small rolls. I like to join up the pastry by slightly overlapping each sheet, and making one enormous sausage, then coiling it up like a mat...turns a susage roll into something special enough for a dinner party, but call it something like sausage de campagne instead of sausage roll.
You can also chop each roll into small chunks for snacks.
Bake at 200C for15- 25 minutes, or till light brown- small rolls will take less time to cook.
The rolls are best straight from the oven but can be reheated. Keep in a sealed container in the fridge for 3 days or so. Not suitable to freeze.
Choc mint fudge
This is cheat's fudge - real fudge really needs a sugar thermometer. This is one of those never fail recipes, very rich and very good, but a bit squidgier and richer than ordinary fudge.
500 gm cooking chocolate
400 can sweetened condensed milk
1 heaped tbsp butter
6 drops peppermint essence (or cointreau or 1 tsp vanilla, or 1 tsp instant coffee)
Line a tray with baking paper or alfoil.
Melt choc, milk and butter in pan. Don't boil, just mix on a low heat for 5 minutes. Take off heat; add essence or othjer flavourings. Mix well. Pour into dish. Refrigerate till set, then cut into small squares.
Cookies are United States goodies. The word comes from the old New York Dutch word 'koekjes' - small, often spiced biscuits baked in ovens built into the side of the fireplace or grilled over the coals on a rack. Cookies - and biscuits - really only became popular in the 19th century, when more and more people had ovens of their own and didn't have to take the roast or bread down to the baker's, and they REALLY got going in the early 20th century, when kitchens would have biscuit barrels - or cookie jars if you were in the USA - for everyone to help themselves to.
When I was a kid just about all biscuits were home made - shop bought biscuits were a real treat. Now for most people it's the other way around.
Anyway, these are genuine US cookies, because that's where fridges first became popular too. These cookies are great as you can mix up a great batch, keep it in the freezer then take some out and bake them whenever you want them. - ten minutes to fresh cookie time. They're a good basic recipe too - make up the plain dough and add all sorts of other stuff to make 20 flavours of biscuit, oops, I mean cookie...
1 cup butter or marg
one and a half cups caster sugar
3 cups plain flour
1 tsp vanilla
Cream butter and sugar; add eggs one by one, then flour and vanilla. Roll into three long snakes. Wrap each in alfoil. Freeze. They may be kept in the freezer for about a month.
To use: Still frozen, slice cookies off the snake onto a greased tray; bake till very pale gold at 200 C. Remove from tray while warm and store in a sealed container.
A Few Possible Flavourings:
Chocolate: add 2 tbsps of melted chocolate to the mix.
Orange or lemon: omit the vanilla and add 2 tbsps grated lemon or orange zest.
Ginger: add 1 tb ground ginger.
Jam: put a splodge of jam in the middle of each cookie.
Peanut: add chopped peanuts - about three quarters of a cup - to the mix. They must be chopped or the mix may crumble.
Oatmeal: substitute 1 cup of rolled oats for 1 cup of flour (I like to add some ginger too to the oat cookies)
Choc chip: add 12 cups grated chocolate, well, maybe half a cup will do. Must be grated, not choc chip, as the mix may crumble.
Coconut: add half a cup coconut; this is also good with orange zest or a splodge of jam or both instead of vanilla.
Winter Fruit Salad
half a cup dried apricots
6 prunes, stones removed unless you want to choke your guests
half a stick cinnamon
2 cups water
half a cup sugar
4 tbrum or 1 tb cointreau (optional)
peeled segments of 2 grapefruit or four oranges or four tangelos, no white or membrane. (If you're a masochist you can use mandarin instead - tastes delicious but takes forever to peel the membrane off the segments.)
Cover apricots and prunes with water. Leave 24 hours. Strain off the water, add sugar and cinnamon and boil till reduced by half. Remove cinnamon. Add rum and fruit. Serve either hot or cold. Good with icecream after dinner or thick cream; also good with pancakes for breakfast.
Rich Rhubarb and Caramel Baked Custard
(one of Bryan's favourites)
2 cups cream
8 tbsps brown sugar
2 cups rhubarb, chopped
1 cup orange juice
ground nutmeg or powdered ginger
Simmer rhubarb in orange juice and 4 tbsps sugar till soft. Add water only if sticking.
Place in an oven-proof dish.
Beat the cream, eggs and remaining sugar with a fork or eggbeater for three minutes. Pour over the rhubarb. Dust on a little ground nutmeg or powdered ginger. Bake at 200 C for half an hour or till firm. Serve hot or eat the cold leftovers for a sinful breakfast.
1 can cherries, or 1 cup stewed cherries, with stones removed
2 cups self raising flour
2 dessertspoons butter or margarine
half a cup cherry juice
half a cup cream or buttermilk OR
1 full cup cherry juice
Turn the oven onto hot (275 C) NOW.
Rub the butter into the flour, add other ingredients and roll the dough out on a board sprinkled with flour till it's smooth. Cut into rounds with an upturned glass or cookie cutter if you have one (a heart shaped one if you want to go all romantic). Place scones in a greased pan, just touching. Brush them with a little milk - if you don't have a pastry brush the tips of your fingers will do.
Now place the pan on a baking tray, so the bottoms don't get too hard before the tops are brown; bake 15 minutes.
Take them out of the oven and cover AT ONCE with a clean tea towel. Leave for ten minutes. This will give them that lovely soft scone-like texture.
Eat hot with butter or jam and cream, or toast them for breakfast or reheat in the microwave (though they won't be as good reheated).
(To kids: only try this if you love curry)
half a cup popcorn (from supermarket)
4 tbsps olive or other oil
4 tb butter or margarine (or more oil can be substituted - I prefer to use oil)
1 tsp tumeric
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
half tsp ground chilli OR a good grind of black pepper if you don't like fiery popcorn
salt - optional
Take a thick bottomed pan with a lid. Heat for 30 seconds. Add the oil, wait 10 seconds, then add the popcorn. Stir well so it's all covered in oil then put the lid on. Turn the heat down about half way. Keep shaking the pot till it's all popped - will take about three minutes. Take off the heat but leave the lid on.
Place butter or oil in another pan with the garlic and spices, but not the pepper. Heat for about three minutes, stirring all the time. Toss through the hot popcorn. Add pepper now if you are using it instead of chilli - adding the pepper too early can make it taste a bit bitter.
Taste the popcorn and add salt if you like, but you probably won't need to!
Serve with you favourite video.
1 cup water, half cup honey, 2 tbsps butter, 1 tsp orange, lime, mandarin or lemon zest, 1 tbsp corn flour.
Mix cornflour with water. Add other ingredients. Simmer till it's smooth and thick, stirring all the time. Serve hot or cold.
Bee Sting Cake
This is very, very good and almost worth fighting the bees off to eat it. Or just don't take it outside.
200 gms butter/marg
1 tbsp finely grated orange rind
half a cup yoghurt
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups SR flour
half a cup or a little more orange juice
half a cup honey
1 tsp finely grated orange rind
1 cup water
Cream butter, rind and sugar. Add eggs one by one. Add flour, juice and yoghurt. Mix gently. Place in greased tray and bake 30 mins or till golden brown at 200 C. Remove from oven. Pour hot syrup on at once. Slice into squares. Store in a sealed container away from bees.
If you want to be really luxurious, cut slices in half and spoon on honey sauce as well.
Syrup: Boil for 3 minutes.
Orange and Ginger Muffins
200 gms butter or marg
quarter cup of milk
1 cup brown sugar
1 tb orange rind
1 tb powdered ginger
2 cups self raising flour
half a cup almond meal
half a cup orange juice
orange syrup (See below)
Beat butter, sugar, ginger and orange rind; add eggs one by one; add flour, milk, orange juice and almonds. Mix gently.
Bake in greased muffin pan or paper cases for about 35 minutes at 200 C till light brown on top. Remove from pan. Pour hot syrup over the hot muffins.
1 cup caster sugar
two thirds of a cup orange juice
one third of a cup water
Combine all the syrup ingredients in a pan; simmer and stir till sugar dissolves.
Pumpkin Fruit Cake
1 cup mashed pumpkin
125 gms butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla essense
500gm sultanas, or mixed fruit (I prefer just sultanas)
2 cups self raising flour
Line a large tin with two layers of baking paper.
Cream butter and sugar; add eggs one by one; then pumpkin, vanilla and fruit, then the flour.
The mixture should be quite moist, but if is seems too dry (which it may be if the pumpkin is dryish) then add a little milk or water or orange juice.
Pour the mix into the tin; bake at 200 C for one hour or till it's brown on top and a skewer comes out clean.
This cake is rich, moist, a wonderful deep golden colour and very, very good.
Pumpkin rock cakes
Place spoonfuls of the mix on a greased baking tray. Bake for 10 -15 minutes. Half a cup of mixed peel or 2 tbsps grated lemon or orange zest are good additions.
Bake in patty cases or a muffin tray. Again, a little orange or lemon zest are good additions.
Not Quite Cleopatra's Moisturising Cleanser
This is almost a genuine recipe - she did use a cleanser pretty much like this and she adored rose oil - even had the sails of her barge perfumed with it, so wherever she sailed people smelt roses.
2 tablespoons honey
2 tbsps powdered milk (or 1 cup ass's milk simmered for an hour)
1 teaspoon rose oil
2 tbsps of virgin olive oil, almond oil or avocado oil (from supermarket or health food store)
Heat the honey till it's runny. This should take no more than three seconds or the kitchen will be full of burnt honey fumes and your fire alarm will start screeching. Take the pan off the heat and mix in the powdered milk. (The milk doesn't dissolve as well if you don't heat the honey.) Mix in the other ingredients.
To use: smooth on and wash off.
3 tbsps sorbolene
1 tbsp avocado oil
a few drops of rose or lavender oil
Smooth on and wipe off.
Foaming Stain Remover
2 tbsps glycerine
2 tbsps salt
2 tbsps citric acid
2 tbsps methylated spirits
2 tbsps detergent
Then when its all mixed add 2 tbsps bicarbonate of soda and watch it foam.
Spoon it onto your stains, rub in well and leave till foam is discoloured and wash out. Repeat till the stain has gone. Wash and dry normally. NB Do test a bit of this in an inconspicuous place in case it fades the fabric and remember that the sooner you attack a stain, the easier it is to remove. And only use on washable fabrics!
There are more recipes and gardening advice in each
monthly web entry. See previous web entries.