Lemon and poppy seed gf cake 

Prepare a 2 lb/ 900 g loaf tin

Preheat the oven to 180c / gas mark 5

Ingredients:

170 g Self raising gluten-free flour      120 g light muscavado sugar    2 or 3 tbsp poppy seeds

140 g softened butter          4 eggs ( 3 if using non gf flour)    1 tsp baking powder

Juice and rind of 2 lemons – juice of 1/2 lemon for cake and 1 1/2 for drizzle topping

80 g sugar for topping (mix the sugar and lemon from 1 1/2 lemons together)

Method:

Put all of the ingredients for the cake (except lemon juice, rind and poppy seeds) in to a bowl and mix well. Add the lemon rind, juice from half a lemon and poppy seeds and combine. Put mixture in to the prepared tin and bake for about 35 mins – until skewer is clean.

Whilst the cake is still hot and in the tin spoon the lemon/sugar mixture all over the top of the cake. Once cool, remove the cake from the tin.

 

Steamed broccoli, cavolo nero kale and cod bake

A delicious dish that is assembled and then baked to heat through and crisp up the topping. Takes about 35 minutes from starting to eating 🙂

Ingredients: Broccoli, cavolo nero kale, large cod fillet, cheese sauce, plain tortilla chips, grated cheese and black pepper.

Method:

Steam the broccoli and kale. Gently simmer the cod in milk. Make a cheese sauce.

Once all cooked or made then assemble:

1.Put steamed broccoli and kale across the bottom of an oven proof dish

2.Break the cod fillet in to large pieces and arrange

3.Cover with the cheese sauce

4. Sprinkle crushed tortilla over the top and cover with grated cheese and black pepper

5. Bake in the oven until heated through and the topping is crisp

I served this with gf tortilla wraps smothered in garlic butter and baked till starting to crisp.

 

Baked apple stuffed with raisins and honey

A deliciously simple desert that reminds me of autumnal suppers as a child.

Take a large cooking apple and remove its core. Place on a oven proof dish. Stuff dried fruit of your choice into the hole and place a heaped teaspoon of set honey on top. Bake in the centre of the oven- gas mark 5 / 180 C until the apple is soft. I served this with a generous pouring of cream. If you wish to play around with the flavours and make it a grown up pudding – a drizzle of a liqueur on the dried fruit before cooking is a tasty addition.

Personally I like the simplicity of the flavours as it is.

What to do with all this produce…fruit liqueurs

There is only so much fruit that I can freeze – the new additional freezer we bought last year for the bumper crop of gooseberries, plums and pears was only half empty and this year’s bumper harvest of rhubarb, blackcurrants and redcurrants have filled it completely again. I am now faced with 5 full tub trugs of apples and a couple of tub trugs worth of damsons still on the trees! I am, however, not complaining and I will manage to find space in the other freezers for most of the produce.

It does however mean that I the liqueur making season is upon me ! People who know me always find it amusing that one of our cupboards is filled every year with an array of fruit liqueurs…amusing because I very rarely drink alcohol. There is little I enjoy more than being able to offer a tasty fruity tipple to accompany the food I make when visitors around.

The selection in the picture is my array of blackcurrant liqueurs – vodka, liqueur, cassis and gin. If you were to rummage in the cupboard you would also find: redcurrant cassis, rhubarb and orange liqueur, damson gin, sloe gin, gooseberry vodka and pear vodka.

All the fruit used, once strained from the liquid is put in to a pie or crumble – a deliciously warming dish that I call my drunk fruit desserts. Always a favourite with my husband 🙂

I will put all my recipes on my blog over the next few weeks.

What to do with some much produce…apple, honey and rosemary jam 

I first tasted this delicious combination at a friend’s house a couple of years ago. Whenever they visited some friends in France they would come back with a jar of loveliness called: Confiture de pommes au romarin et au miel de montagne. I acquired a recipe and then promptly forgot about it until recently. Recipe translated and tweaked resulted in 5 jars of apple, honey and rosemary jam in my kitchen yesterday. I resisted the urge to taste it until today to allow the rosemary to infuse the jam…delicious.

This is what I did:

Ingredients:

2kg of cooking apples – peeled, cored and chopped in to small pieces (pips saved)

100g sugar

250g honey – I used set

Juice of 3 lemons – keep pips

20 ml of water.

Rosemary sprigs – washed and dried

Method:

Put the sugar, water, lemon juice and honey in a large pan and bring to the boil – stirring frequently. Put the apple pieces in to the syrup mixture along with the apple and lemon pips wrapped in a piece of gauze. Bring back to the boil and simmer gently for about 15 minutes or until the apples are soft. Remove from heat and mash about half of the apple mixture down – I used a potato masher. Put back on the heat and simmer for anohter 5 – 10 mins.  Put in to prepared jam jars and push a sprig of rosemary in to the mixture ahead of sealing the jar.

I have no idea how long this will store  – probably quite irrelevant as one jar has nearly gone already. I didn’t treat this like an ordinary jam, cheese or jelly in that a setting point wasn’t reached. The consistency is of a very, very thick sauce. Delicious on toast but I would imagine equally scrumptious with pork or game.

Ginger cookies   – gluten free 

So…when is it a biscuit or a cookie?  These do not have the crack / snap of a biscuit but instead have the delicious chewy and slightly bendy quality that I think a  cookie should have (apologies to all biscuit and cookie aficionados). If left in the oven longer I am sure they would have been more like a ginger thin. The stem ginger chunks give a lovely warmth.

Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas mark 4      Makes  18 cookies  Lightly grease/ line a large baking tray

Ingredients:

350 g self-raising gluten-free flour        150 g dark muscavado sugar

100 g butter                                                    1 large egg

4 desert spoon golden syrup                     2 tsp ground ginger

5 pieces of stem ginger coarsely chopped

Method:

Put the butter, sugar and syrup in a pan and melt on a low heat. Remove from the heat and mix in all the other ingredients.  Spoon the mixture on to the prepared tray – allow for spreading. Bake for 10-15 mins. Leave to cool before removing from tray.

 

 

 

Ginger sponge pudding (GF) filled with Greek yoghurt mixed with chopped stem ginger

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Serves 4/6

Microwave  2-3 mins on full power  4/6 individual large ramekins e.g. Prestige /souffle dishes

Ingredients:

For the pudding:

100 g gluten-free self-raising flour       100 g butter

100 g light muscovado sugar         3 eggs (2 if not using gf flour

3 tsp ground ginger

For the filling:

6-10 tbsp Greek yoghurt                  4 pieces of stem ginger coarsely chopped

Method:

Put all the ingredients in to a bowl and mix well until smooth. Divide equally between the ramekins. Put in the microwave for 2 mins – test with skewer. Cooked when skewer comes out clean.

Mix Greek yoghurt with the chopped stem ginger. Scoop the centre of the pudding out and fill with yoghurt mixture and pop ‘lid’ back on.  Serve whilst puddings still hot.