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Posts from the ‘Cakes and puddings’ Category

A good home for a couple of spare apples – gingerbread pudding!

Apple gingerbread pudding

Apple gingerbread pudding

Two bramley apples had been languishing in the fruit bowl for a couple of weeks. This was their destiny – a fruity, sticky, warm and spicy pudding.

As is the risk with any dish made off the cuff, this didn’t turn out exactly how I envisaged. I anticipated a layer of cooked apple topped with a layer of sticky ginger sponge. However, the batter was such that the pieces of apple floated to the top whilst baking so I ended up with apple pieces throughout rather than the layered effect. Nevertheless, the end result was just what we were after.

 Set the oven to 160C. Peel and chop 2 medium sized bramley apples into bite size pieces and place in the bottom of a 20cm square baking dish. Then make the batter. In a medium pan melt 75g butter with 100g dark brown sugar and 130g golden syrup. Once melted together add 250ml dark ale, 150g plain flour, 2 tsp ground ginger and 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1 tsp baking soda. This will thicken and needs a good stir to get any flour lumps out. Finally add 1 egg and 120ml plain yogurt or sour cream. If you have some available, some finely chopped stem ginger would also work a treat. Pour over the apples and bake for about an hour, having a look after 45 mins, using a skewer or similar to check the middle for uncooked batter. This hot and spicy pudding would be excellent with some cool, creamy vanilla ice cream.

Can it really be autumn?

There have been definite signs of autumn this week: 1. I’ve had the heating on in the last couple of evenings. 2. My opaque tights have been on a couple of outings. 3. There is a crumble in the oven.

Maybe its time to let go of summer after all. Baking a crumble seems like a definitive acknowledgement of autumn.Whilst I am still trying to deny it, to stretch out the last of the long warm days, my food preferences do change perceptibly with the change of seasons, so my stomach is in autumn even if my head isn’t. Although I do enjoy the rhythm of changing cooking with the seasons. The allure of a crisp cool salad slowly wanes in September, to be replaced with a longing for warm spices, squashes roasting in the oven, mushrooms and chestnuts, thick soups and crumbles, all soothing as the nights draw in. Read more

An afternoon of PYO and a blackcurrant arctic roll

Blackcurrant arctic roll

Blackcurrant arctic roll

I absolutely adore blackcurrants. I used to grow them a few years ago – I had a bush that grew quite happily in a pot on the flat roof in my old flat, but when I moved and planted it out into the garden here, it promptly died and I’ve not yet replaced it. I picked a good crop of blackcurrants at the PYO without any particular plans for them. My first thought was a blackcurrant trifle, but R peculiarly objects to whipped cream. But some way of combining the tart fruit with thick cream and sweet soft cake stuck in my mind. A cake wouldn’t do, we wouldn’t eat it fast enough, so I decided to invent a new version of an arctic roll. I’ve not eaten an arctic roll for years. It is ripe for reinvention, there must be so many variations you could do. It must be set for a comeback, I almost can’t believe it’s been out of fashion for so long.

This one is definitely a weekend baking project and I’m afraid a bit washing-up tastic. But worth it. I’m sure there are many ways that this could be simplified, but it’s not complicated, it just needs time. Read more