Sunday, 10 July 2011

Allotment harvest

We came back from the allotment today, suitably exhausted and laden with produce: a trug full of broad beans, rhubarb, a bagful of curly kale, a bagful of potatoes and half a dozen onions and shallots.

Lovely day!!

Crumble for pud ..

Crumble is one of those puddings which can have any seasonal filling added to it ... tonight we had rhubarb and apple. For the filling, I just simmer the fruit with water and a little sugar to taste. If it's rhubarb I add a little ground ginger too :~)

Crumble topping recipe

8oz plain white flour
8oz plain wholemeal flour
6oz butter
7oz sugar

Rub the flour and butter together until it resembles breadcrumbs and then stir in the sugar.

Variations: You can swap (weight for weight) the flour for oats or chopped nuts although it's best not to go below 8oz flour as it acts to bind the crumble together. 

Double chocolate and Vanilla & Butterscotch cookies

Basic cookie recipe
Makes 24 medium - large cookies

8oz plain white flour
8oz plain wholemeal flour
1oz baking powder
8oz butter
8oz sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 fl oz (or just over) milk

Preheat the oven to Gas mark 4 (180 C)

 Place the flour and baking powder (unsifted ... it really doesn't need it!) and butter in a large mixing bowl. Rub together with fingertips until it resembles breadcrumbs then add the sugar, vanilla essence and milk. Mix together until the ingredients come together as a dough - you may need a drop more milk.

Bring the dough together into a ball and cut in half. Divide each half into four and each piece then into three. Flatten each piece onto a lined baking tray and bake for around 15 minutes until golden brown. Don't overcook them as they're better slightly soft and chewy.

Leave to cool on a rack.


For double chocolate cookies, add 1 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder to the mixture and omit the vanilla. You may need a splash more milk. I also added half a pack of butterscotch pieces.

For Vanilla & Butterscotch cookies, simply add a packet of vanilla fudge pieces and a packet of tiny butterscotch pieces (from the supermarket).

Needless to say, they're delicious and, even though I made enough to last the week for lunch boxes and school snacks, they're going down super fast! Even A is taking a big handful at a time!!

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Meet the girls ...

 Yes, we gave in to temptation and now have two chooks and a bantam. The white one on the left (above) is called Polly and she's a Sussex Star, on the right is a Speckledy called Holly. They're both aged 16 weeks.

Below, you can just spot our little bantam chick, a Pencil-tipped Pekin called Molly. She's 12 weeks old.

Tucked up for the night :~)