Friday, 27 November 2015

oat cakes


These Scotch oatcakes came from Prince Edward Island, (called “Abegweit” by the Micmac Indians) where the recipe originated.  The Scots who settled on the island during the first half of the nineteenth century brought their oatcake recipe, which is very similar in appearance to packaged graham wafers.

Mix together:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/3 cup lightly packed brown sugar (I used brown sugar)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

With a pastry blender or two knives cut in:
3/4 cup shortening

With a fork, stir in:
1/2 cup water or milk (I did all these steps in my food processor by pulsing it)

(Dough should just cling together.)

Divide in three portions. Roll out each very thin on a a lightly floured surface. Cut into 2-inch squares with a knife or pastry cutter. Place 1 inch apart on un-greased baking sheet.

Bake in 375˚ oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

Makes 4 to 5 dozen oatcakes.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

first snow this season

woke up to a light dusting of snow this morning
thankfully it only lasted a day

Monday, 23 November 2015

wolf river apples

putting up a bushel of Wolf River apples for the winter

notes on the apples

Wolf River is an American cultivar of domesticated apple, which originates from the shores of the Wolf River of Wisconsin, known since 1875. Tree is exceptionally frost hardy and generally disease resistant. Fruit is large commonly weighing over a pound and fairly sweet, red blushed over yellow. Uses primarily for cooking, keeps shape in cooking, keeps good in storage, late harvest.

Sunday, 18 October 2015

roasted veg for thanksgiving dinner

1 medium butternut squash, cut in half lengthways, seeds removed, then cut widthways into 2.5cm-wide slices
45ml olive oil
Coarse sea salt and black pepper
6 large plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthways
3cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely diced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
30g dark muscovado sugar

For the lime yoghurt
120g Greek yoghurt
¼ tsp ground cardamom
Finely grated zest of ½ lime, plus 1½ tsp lime juice

To serve
5g coriander leaves, roughly chopped
30g cashew nuts, toasted and roughly chopped
10g crisp shallots (optional)

Heat the oven to 240C (220C fan)/gas mark 9. Mix the squash wedges with two tablespoons of the oil, two teaspoons of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Spread out on a large, parchment-lined baking tray and roast for 35-40 minutes, until golden-brown. Set aside to cool.

Turn down the oven to 170C (150C fan)/gas mark 3. Put the tomato halves skin-side down on a parchment-lined baking tray, sprinkle with a quarter teaspoon of salt, drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil and roast for 80 minutes, until softened.

Put the ginger, chilli, garlic, sugar and a quarter teaspoon of salt in a medium bowl. Mix to a paste, then spoon on top of the tomatoes and cook for 40 minutes more, until caramelised, then set aside to cool.

Put all the ingredients for the lime yoghurt in a small bowl, add half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper, mix well and put in the fridge until ready to serve.

Spread out the squash on a large platter and arrange the tomatoes in between. Drizzle over the yoghurt, sprinkle over the coriander, cashews and shallots, if using, and serve.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

fruit tea loaf

~ Tea Loaf ~

All ingredients need to be at room temperature.
Sift into a large bowl:

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

Melt and cool 2 tablespoons butter

Beat until light 1 egg then add in 1 cup milk and beat again.
Add the melted butter to the mixture.

Beat liquid ingredients into the dry mixture.
Add in 1 cup dried fruit.
 (raisins, currants or crystallized ginger)

I used a combination of dried cranberries, dried cherries and dried blueberries.

Place in a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 for 45 minutes.
Test with toothpick to make sure it is cooked before removing from oven.
Cool on a rack before removing from pan.

I doubled the recipe and made two loaves.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

sweet potato and lentil soup

for the soup

2 tsp cumin seeds
pinch chilli flakes
2 tbsp olive oil
600g sweet potatoes washed, peeled and chopped up
200g split red lentils
1l hot vegetable stock (from a cube is fine)
125ml milk
plain yogurt and naan bread, to serve

Heat a large saucepan and dry-fry the cumin seeds and chilli flakes for 1 min, or until they start to jump around the pan and release their aromas. Scoop out about half of the seeds with a spoon and set aside. Add the oil, carrot, lentils, stock and milk to the pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15 mins until the lentils have swollen and softened.
Whizz the soup with a stick blender or in a food processor until smooth (or leave it chunky if you prefer). Season to taste and finish with a dollop of yogurt and a sprinkling of the reserved toasted spices. Serve with warmed naan breads.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

cheese scones

Retro cheese scones.
 With cooler Fall weather already here I am looking forward to getting back into making soups.
I think these scones would pair really well with a hearty tomato soup.

Retro Cheese Scones

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
4 Tbsp. butter
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
2/3 c. milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 Tbsp. sugar

Combine all the dry ingredients.
Cut in the butter.
Add wet ingredients and stir until all flour is moistened.
Knead on floured board.
Pat into a 9 inch circle, cut into wedges.
Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake at 450 for about 15 minutes.
(Check after 12 minutes to make sure they do not brown up too much)

Monday, 18 May 2015

may 24 garden

These tulips are at the center of my garden and are at there very best despite the hazy days.

rare fringed beauties in a soft peach

the lilacs are fragrant 

Alliums have popped up everywhere

a carpet of flox

wonderful surprise- the iris bloomed today

More to come

Pink tulips