Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Pork Fillet in a Cornish Mead Sauce

Cornish Mead, Mmmmmm, delicious!  I found this basic idea in an old Cornish book and adapted it to my taste, Very simple, very quick, but good enough for dinner with friends or that special meal. My thanks to the Cornish Mead Co, in Penzance, for linking this to their website.

Serves 4

You will need a medium heavy duty pan.

1 lb Pork fillet [I used a little more]
2 large shallots, finely sliced
4 medium carrots cut into thinnish short strips
½ lb quartered chestnut mushrooms - or a mixture
1 pint of Cornish Mead [or half mead half dry cider, if you want it a little tarter]]
½ pint double cream
Oil for frying - I used rapeseed
1 tablespoonful plain flour
Seasoning- I used sea salt flakes and fresh ground peppers
plus a dash of mushroom ketchup [one of my new fave ingredients]

Take your fillet and cut it into ½-¾ inch rounds, then light bash between two sheets of polythene.
Quickly sauté these in the hot pan, with the oil, to nicely brown and then set them aside for a mo.

Tip your prepared veggies into the lovely juices and add a little more oil if necessary. Stir fry for 5 mins until just starting to soften. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon.

To the remaining juices, add the flour and stir while it thickens then add the mead and bring to the boil, let it bubble for a few moments then return the meat and veggies. Season well, to your taste. Bring back to simmering point then stir in the cream. Let it simmer gently until the veggies are tender and the pork cooked through.

All you will need is a lovely salad or some sautéd or boiled new potatoes. Perfect.

Note: Use the plain Honey Mead. While the Blackberry Mead is a great drink, it is not suitable for this dish.

Friday, 24 August 2018

Pippa’s Chocolate and Almond Dessert Cake

Many thanks to Pippa, who lives in Mawnan for this delicious dessert recipe. Just about one of the easiest I know,  it took about 5 or 6 mins to prepare. Plus no flour! 

You will need an 8 inch loose bottom cake tin, lightly oiled and lined. Pre heat your fan oven to 180C

4 oz ground almonds
2 oz flaked almonds, crushed or chopped [optional]
1 tsp baking powder
2 tablespoonfuls good quality cocoa powder 
2 eggs
2 oz caster sugar
1 tablespoon runny honey 
50 ml olive or sunflower oil
Zest of 2 oranges

Combine nuts, baking powder and cocoa then set aside. Place eggs, sugar and honey in a bowl and whisk for 3 plus minutes until very thick, pale and foamy.

Stir in the nut mix and orange zest, then trickle in the oil, whisking again for 30 secs.
Pour into your prepared tin and bake for 20 mins.

Serve warm or cold with fruit and cream, ice cream or creme fraiche. 

If used, the chopped flaked almond adds crunchiness. I decided to keep it smooth. Your choice.

Oh my, just wonderful. Keeps well too, just as good the following day.

Sunday, 19 August 2018

Carrot and Orange Tea Bread

A lovely recipe, perfect for slicing and you can spread it with a little butter too, if you like! Hey ho. Not sure where the recipe came from, but it has been in my clippings folder for decades, although as per I have altered it, as you do!  Grating carrot is a pain in the neck, I know, but this recipe is worth it.

You will need a 2lb loaf tin, well buttered and place a long strip of parchment across the tin to help you lift it out.

Pre heat your fan oven to 150C

9 oz plain flour
2 level teaspoonful cinnamon
3 teaspoonfuls baking powder
6 oz grated carrot
6 oz softened butter
6 oz caster sugar
the grated zest of a large orange
3 large eggs
3 oz finely chopped walnuts
a little milk or orange juice

In a medium bowl, place the flour, spice and BP. Stir in the carrot and set aside for a mo.

Cream the butter, zest and sugar until pale and fluffy, then beat in the eggs, one at a time. Fold in the remaining ingredients, along with a little milk and/or orange juice until you have a soft dropping consistency, then tip into your prepared tin.

Bake for about 1 hour 10 mins.  Leave in the tin to firm up for a short while them cool on a rack. Enjoy! Will happily keep for a few days, beautifully moist and freezes well.

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Peppermint Fingers

I got this recipe from the old Gwinear Parish Recipe booklet, full of interesting recipes and ideas. I often visit old churches, for one of my other hobbies - genealogy - and they often have recipe booklets for sale from the parish. The original recipe used marg and you all know by now that I won’t use that if at all possible. It also used drinking chocolate instead of cocoa.

You will need a Swiss Roll tin - I used my smaller one at 11” x 6”, well buttered. Pre heat your fan oven to 160C

5 oz butter
2 oz soft brown sugar [I used light]
3 oz crushed cornflakes
4 oz plain flour
2 oz cocoa

Melt the butter in a pan, add the flour, sugar, cocoa and cornflakes. Mix well then press into your prepared tin. Bake for about 12-13 mins. Do not overbake.

Peppermint topping:

4 oz icing sugar
peppermint extract

Place the icing and extract into a jug and mix with a small amount of water, to make a stiffish runny consistency and pour over the base while it is still HOT. Allow to cool.

6 oz good quality chocolate

Melt the chocolate and evenly spread it over the peppermint topping. Leave to set, then cut into fingers.

So yummy. A lovely tea time treat.

Thursday, 9 August 2018

Savoury Sausage Whirls

A scrumptious, delicious bake, great for parties and buffets. Very easily doubled to make a larger amount. Great warm or cold. This recipe was on the radio many many moons ago - Jimmy Young, I believe, so perhaps the 70s, although I have made a few changes, especially for the pastry given.  But you know I am a saddo and save and keep recipe ideas!

Please buy the best sausages [at least 90% pork] and take the skins off. Your choice! Nothing beats plain pork for me, although I do like the ones with some apple in them.

Pre heat your fan oven to about 200C and butter a flat baking sheet.

2½ oz butter and lard mix
2½ oz mature grated cheddar
8 oz plain flour
seasoning - sea salt, fresh ground pepper and some dried mustard
8-9 oz sausage meat
1 very very finely chopped onion or large shallot
1 small dessertspoonful veggie bouillon or even mild curry powder
a beaten egg
a little fresh grated parmesan

In a small bowl, rub the fats into the flour then stir in the grated cheddar. Mix well. Bind with cold water then gently knead into a dough.  Leave to chill for a few minutes in the fridge.

Roll out this cheesy pastry, fairly thinly, into an oblong.  Neaten and trim the edges.  Brush all over with the beaten egg, then carefully spread over the sausage meat, leaving the long sides clear. Sprinkle over the onion and bouillon [or curry powder. I use a mild Tikka sometimes, to get just a hint, but if you like it hot]…… Season as you wish, with a little salt and lots of fresh ground pepper.

Dampen the long edges again and carefully roll it up, making sure you tuck the first long end in really tightly.   Chill again for a short while, then with a very sharp knife cut into about ¾ inch slices. Place on your prepared sheet, brush with more beaten egg and sprinkle over a little parmesan and bake for about 30 mins. Oh my, just delicious. Trust me!!!!

Fab picnic and party food and quite different from sausage rolls.

Saturday, 4 August 2018

Old Fashioned Marble Cake

A very good stand by, basic recipe, loved by many over the last century. I generally like to bake it in a ring tin. This recipe is foolproof and never fails, the texture is fairly dense, making it moist and utterly delicious. It keeps well for several days. Trust me! Just lovely. 

Pre heat your fan oven to 160C. Melt some butter and brush the insides of your tin generously, then sift over a little flour. Shake off any excess over a sink.

7 oz softened butter
7 oz caster sugar
a dessertspoonful extra caster for the chocolate part
1 small teaspoonful vanilla extract or bean paste
a couple of drops of rum extract if you have it
3 medium eggs
9 oz plain flour 
¾ teaspoonful baking powder
3-4 fl oz whole milk, approx
2 tablespoonfuls good quality cocoa
2-3 tablespoonfuls rum
icing sugar to dust or make some topping as I did.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and vanilla until light and fluffy, then gradually beat in the sugar. When this is well mixed, add the eggs, one at a time. Sift the flour [I often don’t bother] and BP and fold these into the buttery mix alternately with the milk and rum extract. You need to add enough milk for the batter to fall heavily from your wooden spoon.  This will not be all of your milk, as you will need the rest for the chocolate mixture. All this will depend on the size of your eggs.

Take your prepared tin and gently spoon in roughly about two thirds of the batter. Do not level off.

With the remaining batter, fold in the remaining spoonful of sugar and the cocoa, along with a little more of the milk and the rum to make a heavy dropping consistency. Spoon alternate colours into your baking tin and draw a spoon carefully through to give the marbled effect and level off.

Bake for approx 45 mins. Keep an eye on the top and turn down if browning too much.

Leave in the tin for a few minutes then turn out. Dust with icing sugar when cold, or make a thick drizzle topping, as I did, using Icing sugar, a little cocoa and a little rum, then I grated over some plain chocolate. But is is equally good just plain.  Enjoy.

Note: If you use a regular tin, you may need to adjust the timings. Bake until just form to the touch.

Note: Good, heavy, quality ring [or bundt] tins can be very expensive. Keep an eye open on the Thursday/weekend bargains at Lidl OR look in the baking section of TK Max. This is where I bought the one I used for this cake and I bought it for a fraction of the usual price. I have two or three now, of different sizes and love baking with them!