Makes 10 fingers
Ready in 1 hour 10 minutes
This will keep for two weeks in an airtight container,
115g unsalted butter
55g caster sugar, plus extra for dusting (optional)
Few drops vanilla extract
175g plain flour
75g glacé cherries, quartered
1.Preheat the oven to 170C/150C Fan/Gas 3. Line the base of a 20cm shallow, square cake tin with a sheet of baking paper.
2.Cut the butter into squares and put in a mixing bowl with the sugar and vanilla. Stir with a wooden spoon until evenly mixed.
3.Sift in the flour and mix with your fingertips until the dough starts to come together. Gather into a ball, then roll out to a 20cm square.4.Put in the prepared tin and prick with a fork
5.Arrange the cherries on top to make six lines, pressing them in lightly. Bake for about 35-40 minutes
6.Mark into fingers while hot, then leave to cool for 20 minutes. Remove from the tin to finish cooling on a rack
7.Dust lightly with caster sugar, if liked, then gift wrap or store in an airtight container.
recipe and top picture from Asda Magazine
- 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 1/2 cups basmati rice
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 2/3 cup salted roasted almonds, coarsely chopped
- 6 dried apricots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 large Granny Smith apple, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
- Freshly ground pepper
recipe from food&wine.com
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A strange ride through the night:
Reaching one of the most romantic city in......... here are some culinary clues,
- 200g (7 oz) dark chocolate
- 200g (7 oz) unsalted butter
- 200g (7 oz) peeled cooked chestnuts
- 200ml (7 fl oz) milk
- 4 eggs
- 150g (3.5 oz) caster sugar
◦1 mug of dried breadcrumbs
◦1½ mugs of cream (or a mixture of cream and milk)
◦45ml (3 tbsp) golden syrup, maple syrup or honey
◦½ tsp white pepper
◦1 tsp ground ginger
◦½ tsp grated nutmeg
◦Salt and freshly ground black pepper
◦2-3 potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan 160°C/356°F/gas 4).
2. Cut the swede into large chunks and boil in lightly salted water until just tender, about 15 minutes. Pour half the breadcrumbs into the cream and set aside. When the swede is ready, drain it, reserving the water, and mash it roughly with a fork or potato masher. Add about half a mug of the cooking water to get a slightly smoother texture. Now add all the ingredients except the potatoes and remaining breadcrumbs to the mashed swede and mix well, seasoning with salt to taste.
3. Grease a large baking dish and line the bottom and sides with the sliced potato. Gently add the swede mixture to the baking dish, taking care to spread it evenly. Sprinkle the remaining breadcrumbs over the top and bake for 1 – 1½ hours, until the potatoes are tender and the breadcrumb topping is golden brown.
- Cut your peppers in stripes and sweat them in a table spoon of oil, when they are soft, blend them and add a good teaspoon of honey
- Cut your filo and line the ramequins or tartelettes moulds. Spread the pepper mixture onto the filo.
- Do not wash your pan, you are going to cook the onion until soft and the mince until brown when this is done top the pepper mixture.
- Make a bechamel and top the lot with it
- Now 20 minutes in an oven mark 180 and enjoy
And the next day we left for La Gomera, an even smaller island to experience more food, sun, sea.
Haricot derives from an ancient word "halicoter"which means cutting in pieces so this was right. 20 out of 20 Jamie. But there is a twist in my twit, traditionally "le haricot aux mouton" is prepared with potatoes and turnips no haricots in the pot.
- 2 chopped onions
- 1 lamb shoulder or breast (500g) cut in roughly in cubes
- 2 tins of white beans
- salt, pepper, parsley
- little bit of olive oil
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 tbs of flour
We stayed in really nice B&B if you are looking for a great place to stay, I would highly recommand Bishopsdale Oast. Coincidence have it that the owner's daughter is a cookery writer so I may have a give-away for you soon.
One could do worse than getting a pint and some nice though a little pricy food at the three chimneys, an old pub full of character .
In the space of no time, I came across two new (to me) purple vegetables. I harvested purple potatoes from the planter in the garden and bought a purple cauliflower at the local farmers' market. So would purple be the new green on the menu?
Now pay attention, this is the scientific bit: what does make food, purple?
The first of the season, appropriately is the traditional hand warming pumpkin soup, by the way, the recipe was send to me by Loseley butter's PR. I did not expect much from a tub of butter which calls itself summer meadow, but this is really a good product so if you come across it, don't hesitate to buy it; downside it makes this soup a little on the fattening side and you might end up growing larger rather than taller.
PUMPKIN SOUP WITH LOSELEY SUMMER MEADOW BUTTER
Loseley Butter 25g (1oz)
Onion 1, peeled and chopped
Carrot 1, peeled and chopped
Peeled Pumpkin 350g (12oz), roughly chopped
Milk 750ml (1 ¼ pints)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Natural Yoghourt 150g (5oz)
Dried Pumpkin Seeds to garnish (optional)
Melt the Loseley butter in a large, lidded saucepan and add the onion and carrot. Cook gently to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes, until all the vegetables are soft but not brown.
Add the pumpkin, milk and seasoning and bring gently to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes, until all the vegetables are soft.
Transfer the soup to a blender or food processor and puree until smooth, in batches if necessary. Return to the saucepan, reheat gently and serve swirled with yoghourt and garnished with pumpkin seeds. Accompany with hunks of warmed bread.
FOR THE SCIENTIFIC BIT
10 minutes preparation time
40 minutes cooking time
183 Kcal per portion
8.8g fat per portion of which
5.4g is saturated
Loseley Summer Meadow Butter is packed in a 250grm tub and costs £1.19p. Loseley has a give-away on their site, if you would like to give it a go : http://www.loseley.com/
Kate, to join the party send me your postal address by clicking on the contact me direct button,
really looking forward to it, not long to go now.......
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There has been a public house on the site of The Gun for over 250 years. The pub dates back to the early 18th century. It took its current name from the cannon which was fired to celebrate the opening of the West India Import Docks in 1802.
In the late 18th century, Lord Horatio Nelson acquired a property just up the road (still known as Nelson’s House) Lord Nelson would frequent The Gun and regularly meet Lady Emma Hamilton in an upstairs room (now called The River Room) for their secret assignations.
The Maitre d'ho opened the River Room for me, it has recently been restaured to its former grandeur. Engulfed by the smell of wood and beeswax I had no difficulties to let my imagination run. I was on the deck of a boat with the sea around me, it even had an imperceptable sway that it because this room with its high ceilings is high up above the river so one get the impression to be at sea. In the river room you really are "at the captain's table."
In 2001, a terrible fire destroyed much of the interior of the old building and the pub remained closed for 3 years. Then, current owners and brothers Tom and Ed Martin acquired the premises and spent about 9 months painstakingly restoring the magnificent Grade II listed building in close consultation with English Heritage. And they have done a really good job of it.
As the docks on the Isle of Docks flourished so did the pub, becoming the local for dockers, stevedores and boatmen. Remaining very popular today. On Friday evening, the restaurant room was full, nicely busing. We were shown to a table for 2, snuggly placed at the back where we had a good view of the diners and yes the table wobbled but I am yet to visit a restaurant where tables do not quaver.
The Gun - a food experience
The waitress brought plain and rosemary square rolls, I am telling you square rolls are all the trend. That or it is a small clue telling you "Not only a pub but a gastro pub." In pubs, you normally don't get square rolls. Too often, you don't get any bread of any description, outside that in your sandwich. Pubs do not offer you bread, you have to ask for it....if you are brave enough.
I agonised over the choice of starters. I wanted Pig’s head terrine & Smoked eel. Of course these 2 traditional pub dishes don't really go together, I needed to choose. Decision, decision.
My terrine was slightly too "loose" but very, very tasty and he liked his venison. Though pulled a funny face when he realised the elegant starter was a carpaccio version and each thin slices had barely spent more than 30 seconds in a searing hot frying pan. It may well have been a first for my partner but I am sure that he liked it: "But not as an every day dish, you understand".
Quiet right as this is not every day's food, and in my humble opinion it deserves its Time Out’s Best Gastropub title.
By then, we were both full so we opted for the cheese to finish our Gigondas (as the expression goes in France: un petit peu de fromage pour finir ton vin? or if you are lucky, un petit peu de vin pour finir ton fromage.) In this case we also had a glass of aged Port.
Golden Cross, East Sussex (soft, goat’s milk, unpasteurised)
Montgomery Cheddar, Somerset (extra mature, hard, cow’s milk, unpasteurised)
Fourme d’Ambert, Auvergne, France (creamy blue, cow’s milk, unpasteurised)
The bill for would have come up £128 for two including drinks and coffees.
"Proper" beer on the terrace with a view of the dome and the river added to the pleasure of an evening in a historical place which cleverly combines traditional British pub food and the restaurant experience.
Reservations: 020 7515 5222
Coldharbour, London E14 9NS
May not be the easiest place to get to but having said that it is not that difficult if you are prepared to walk more than 5 minutes and less than 10 from a tube station- buses are almost just outside-
Canary Wharf (DLR)
South Quay (DLR)
The Gun has private dining rooms for 14, 22 or 70 people and we can host parties for up to 200
Thing number 1: Would like to say "hi" to my only Indian reader, you may well be the only person to read Pebble Soup out of 1,139,964,932 Indian dwellers but I like you even better for spending a incredible 23 minutes reading it at each visit and if you and anybody else out there wanted to join the group of followers, do not hesitate to click on the left hand-side button.
Thing number 2: Tried to cook fennel for the very first time, last night. I thought I did not like fennel, I have a thing about aniseed. Strangely the aniseedy taste is very mild. This might be because as I learnt this morning, there are 2 kinds of fennels: the wilder kind which is stalky and which I remember from the south of France stuffed in fish.
And the bulbous kind which looks like..........well like the picture:
I do not know many people that cook fennel at home, may be some of you add it to the bouillon when making a stock. It could almost belong to the "curious ingredient" section. It goes really well with citrus which leads me to
Thing number 3: cooking in a bag or "en papillote" as we call it in French. Papillote is a Christmas chocolate treat, wrapped in a colourful paper containing a joke. A speciality from Lyon worth looking for.
As a cooking method it produces a light dish. Light as in healthy-light as it is steamed. It also reduces the kitchen or preparation time, which can only be good. The flavours blend together giving a certain homogeneity to the taste. In this case, fennel and orange which leads me to
Fish in a bag with fennel, orange and olives
Ingredients1 large fennel bulb, trimmed
4 white fish fillets, snapper, flathead or bream
Sea salt and pepper
1 small orange, sliced
4 bay leaves
2 tbsp small whole black olives
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp orange juice
2 tbsp flat parsley leaves, chopped
Preheat oven to 220C. Cut out four 36cm square sheets of kitchen foil or baking paper. Finely shave the fennel lengthwise.
Scatter the fennel in the centre of each square and place the fish on top. Season well. Arrange a slice of orange and a bay leaf on each fish and scatter with olives. Drizzle with olive oil and orange juice. Bring the two opposing sides of the foil up and seal as tightly as you can with a crimping pattern, forming a half-moon bag. Crimp the edges twice if you can.
Bake thin fillets for 10 minutes and thick fillets for up to 15 minutes. Remove from oven, open and drain the bag juices into a jug.
Transfer the fish and fennel to warm dinner plates, drizzle with the juices and scatter with parsley.
125ml red wine
500g minced lamb
1 small onion, grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 medium egg, beaten
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley, plus extra to garnish
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
For the tomato sauce
500ml tomato passata
2 tbsp tomato purée
2 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp sugar
1 bay leaf
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/gas 4. Put the bread in a bowl and soak in the wine for 5 minutes. Lightly squeeze out the wine – reserving it for the sauce – and put the bread pieces into a bowl with the lamb, onion, garlic, egg, parsley, cumin and cinnamon. Season and mix well.
2. Shape the mixture into 12 medium-sized balls, each slightly bigger than a golf ball. Put on a large, non-stick baking sheet and cook for 20 minutes, until golden.
3. Meanwhile, combine the reserved wine with all the sauce ingredients in a wide saucepan. Put over a medium heat and simmer for 20 minutes, until thickened. Season. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer for a further 10 minutes, turning halfway to coat. Discard the bay leaf.
4. Divide the meatballs and sauce between serving plates. Serve with mashed potato and garnish with extra parsley.
Per serving: 418kcals, 21.1g fat (8.5g saturated), 29.2g protein, 24.4g carbs, 11.5g sugar, 1.2g salt
3 tbsp vegetable oil
The menu makes the most of local products featuring moules, crabs as expected but also duck and steak. There is a wide range of prices to accommodate all budgets. You can shell out £2.95 for a salad or £15.45 for a steak.
But could I resist pizza, no! Let me explain, I don't like pizzas very much however he makes the best pizzas in the world added to that, I never bought a frozen pizza in my life so this was the opportunity to give it a go. I had to call on my very own and very special testing team to make for my like of likes.
Here they are: The team arrived promptly at 19.00, I had not started yet as I thought that I just had to slide the pizzas (without the cardboard box) in the oven. I was in for a surprise: The pizza which promised to be ‘just as good as any homemade pizza ‘Mama used to make’ has a fresh dough base which needs a hot baking tray for the dough to rise before your eyes.
- 238 000 tonnes of frozen pizzas were consumed in 2008 throughout the world
- Dr Oetker produces 400 million pizzas a year that's 1.7 million a day
- Each country has its preferences, in Italy the house pizza is a salami pizza, in Germany it is a variant of the salami which is the favorite, in Poland the best buy is a rather heavy pizza with a thick mushroom stuffing instead of the light tomato paste, as for the Brits, Restaurante mozzarella comes up top.
- It is a Norway that the most pizzas are sold.
Casa di Mama's Diavola with Calabrese salami, 2 cheeses, red onions and hot chillies scored 6.5 out of 10- the base was light and crispy. It was described as better than the other frozen kinds but may be not as good as the good corner shop's.
Quatro Fromaggi scored 7 out of 10, edam, mozzarella, emmental and blue cheese were judged a tasty combo and remember these are connoisseurs of very few words.
Going by the reaction, I would get them again but I had problems to locate a supermarket which stores them, only 1 out of the 3 I visited, carried the brand and not the toppings which were my first choice.
As Pebble Soup attracts more and more interest, I get to pick and choose foodie events which I think will make a good read. Clawson Panneer Exclusive Paneer lunch was one of them. Hadn't I been suffering from mild Dyscalculia I would have got to the Good House Keeping Institute on time. As it were it took me a while and a phone call to realise that 27 was really 72 and when I eventually push the door, there was no mistake, the smell of spices, the smiles and the mounting anticipation were all signs that something special was about to happen.
Clawson has teemed up with one of Britain's most interesting Indian chef, the very engaging Anjum Anand. Most of her recipes are very tasty, easy enough to rustle up at home after a day's work, she always gives plenty of ingredients alternatives which indicates that she is a cook as well as a chef.
have a look at the video and see if you can spot me
Paneer is ever so versatile as Anjum demonstrated in the course of the lunch by cooking paneer with noodles, in Fajitas, grilled as in tandoori, tikka masala, spinach curry and wait for it.............
a Layered Berry and Paneer Cheesecake.
- Clawson produces Paneer in England, the process is straight forward, Paneer is an unaged, acid-set, non melting chees made by curdling heated milk with lemon juice or another food acid, the making of paneer does not involve rennet making it good for vegetarians.
- Paneer means cheese in Indian.
- it is a good source of calcium and very rich in protein.
- One of the few types of cheese originated from the subcontinent.
- Personnally, I would have thought that Paneer was one of this ingredient that people look at but don't buy, well, I was wrong as the press pack told me that 2 packs of paneer are sold every minute totting this up to 1,000,000 kilos and yes! that is the correct number of 0.
Let's not forget the recipes
ANJUM ANAND’S THAI NOODLE, CLAWSON PANEER AND VEGETABLE CURRY
This unique dish is a quick nutritious, filling and really satisfying one pot meal. You can use lots of vegetables in this recipe. Anjum suggests aubergines, broccoli, peas or even mango and lychees if you like fruitiness in your curries - but you can use whatever you have at home.
Anjum gives her top tip for making this curry: “The staple food in this dish is Clawson Paneer cheese, but if you buy a good quality red curry paste and coconut milk, the rest is easy. You can also make the curry without the noodles and serve with Jasmine rice.”
3 tbs. vegetable oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 packet Clawson Paneer cheese, boiled for 20 minutes and cut into 1½cm cubes
3 tbs. red Thai curry paste
400ml creamy coconut milk
8 baby tomatoes, halved
2¼ tsp. sugar or to taste
3 fresh or dried Kaffir lime leaves
1½-13/4 tsp. lime/lemon juice or to taste
Good handful mange tout, washed
150g rice or egg-noodles, cooked according to packet instructions
1-2 tbs. coconut cream (optional for added richness)
Handful of fresh coriander or Thai Holy Basil leaves
Heat the oil in a large non-stick saucepan. Add the onion and sauté until golden. Add the red Thai paste and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the paneer, coconut milk, tomatoes, sugar and lime leaves. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.
Boil your noodles according to the packet instructions or until just done (I use the same water as the paneer). Drain and reserve 100ml of the water.
Add the noodles to your pot along with your beans, lemon juice, basil or coriander and the coconut cream, if using. Add most of the reserved water and simmer for another minute.
Taste and adjust seasoning, sugar and lemon juice to taste, add a little more water if you like the curry thinner, and serve with some extra lime/lemon wedges of the side.
To find all of Anjum's recipes click here
So, to make somebody feel special without too much trouble. let's turn to Delia who famously told the nation how to boil an egg and not so famously how to
Then we need to turn our attention to the hollandaise sauce.
2 large egg yolks
1 dessertspoon lemon juice
1 dessertspoon white wine vinegar
4 oz (110 g) butter
salt and freshly milled black pepper
Place the eggs in a food processor with salt & pepper and blend for about 1 minute at low speed.
Heat the lemon juice and white wine vinegar in a small saucepan until the mixture starts to bubble and simmer for a minute.
Return to the food processor, switch on at low speed, and pour the liquid slowly
Melt the butter over a gentle heat, in the same sauce pan, being very careful not to let it brown. When the butter is foaming, do the same thing as prior, slow steady trickle in the food processor.
you will need