You only need the ability to mix to make this very easy mixed fruit tea loaf. It only took an hour to cook too so after a quick cooling we were able to tuck into a slice for afternoon tea. Hubby had his with coffee but he’s forgiven – it doesn’t really have a strong tea taste so if you don’t like tea, you need not worry.
It’s nice on it’s on and is fat free. However, if you are like me, you will have yours with a lovely hot cuppa and a thick smearing of butter. Yummmmy!
Here is the original recipe with my amendments in italics
- 300g mixed fruit (I used 90g apricots chopped up, 110g sultanas and 100g raisins)
- 175g raw cane sugar (I used Asda’s dark brown sugar which labels says is raw cane sugar)
- 300ml strained cold tea
- 1 medium egg, beaten
- 200g self-raising wholemeal flour (I used half wholemeal, and half plain so that it wouldn’t be too heavy)
- ½ tsp ground mixed spice
- oil and margarine for greasing the tin
- Start by preparing the fruit the night before. Put the mixed fruit and sugar in a bowl and pour over the strained cold tea and stir well. Then cover and leave overnight, this will make the loaf moist.
- The next day, preheat the oven to 180°C or gas mark 4.
- Add the beaten egg, flour and mixed spice to the fruit and tea mixture and beat well, until thoroughly mixed.
- Carefully pour the cake mix to a lightly greased and floured loaf tin, and bake in the middle of the oven for 1 to 1 hours 15 minutes. Test the loaf is cooked by inserting a knife and it should come out clean.
- Let the loaf cool in the tin for 5 to 10 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack to finishing cooling.
There are so many ways of making stovies that I wouldn’t dare give a definitive recipe. Each region, nay each household has their way of doing it. From what I can gather, stovies started out as a peasant’s meal using whatever bits of meat that could be found and eked out with a lot of root veg.
In the last few weeks I’ve been busy teaching a healthy eating cookery course. As some of the recipes are meat based, I’ve been getting Mr Plummy Mummy to try them out as I “teach” him how to cook them. And I’m trying out vegetarian versions by replacing meat with quorn.
Here is the amended ingredients list:
- 200g frozen lamb mince for meat version / 200g quorn mince for the veggie one
- 1 vegetable stock cube, made up with 1 pint of water
- 2 large potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 parsnip, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
- ¼ small turnip, peeled and thinly sliced (that’s a swede to the English, a turnip to the Cornish and I think a rutabaga in America)
- 1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- pepper to taste
So here is are some pictures of our efforts.
The meat was browned off without any oil. Then the veggies were put on top, the gravy added and the lid popped back on the pot. For my quorn version, there was no browning needed so I just added quorn to the pan, layered on the veggies and then added some vegetable stock. I had some minced garlic left over from another meal so I chucked that on top too. It didn’t take long to cook. I must admit that I had to have gravy with mine for a bit more flavour. I was very surprised that that I really enjoyed this dish as it’s a lot less spiced than my usual fare, but for a cold Spring day, it hit the right spot. It’s a pretty cheap meal too which is a huge bonus in my books.
In my mind there is nothing better than a hot, fresh from the oven dessert, especially on cold, snowy Spring days. I’m currently doing a Healthy Eating course and there are some great desserts on the menus. This one is a winner with my kiddo who likes it with a small scoop of icecream (bang there goes the healthy eating but gets her to eat fruit so I’m OK with that).
It’s so easy to make that there is no excuse not to give it a go.
Availably publicly on Change4life site
Apple and Raspberry Crumble
- 2 large eating apples (or 3 small eating apples)
- 100g / 4 oz frozen raspberries (can use any frozen berries. This time round, I used frozen forest fruits)
- 1 tbsp water
- 40g / 1.5 oz margarine
- 75g / 3 oz wholemeal self raising flour
- 40g / 1.5 oz demerara sugar
- 50g / 2 oz rolled oats or oatmeal
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder (not part of recipe but added by me. Mixed spice would work well too)
- Heat the oven to 180°C / 350 °F / gas mark 5.
- Peel, core and slice apples, and mix with raspberries.
- Place apples and raspberries in an ovenproof dish and sprinkle with tbsp of water.
- Rub margarine into flour; mix in sugar, oats and cinnamon.
- Sprinkle on top of the fruit mixture and press with a fork.
- Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until golden brown
Another quick post. Asda sell some great little cookbooks that aren’t very expensive. I have one called Tapas 100 everyday recipes which a Spanish mate who used to work in a tapas bar told me about.
This week, we tried the stuffed peppers which were very good with a side of garlic mushrooms, oven roasted potatoes and grilled tomatoes. The only change I would make for the future would be to use smaller peppers (the ones we had were HUGE) and roast for a little longer so they begin to lose that crunch and take on roasted in sweetness.
- 90ml olive oil plus little extra for rubbing on peppers
- 2 onions finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 140g Spanish short grain rice (I just normal rice)
- 55g raisins
- 55g pine kernels
- 40g chopped parsley
- 1 tbsp tomato puree dissolved in 750ml water
- 6 red, yellow or green peppers (or a mix)
- Salt and pepper
- Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees / gas mark 6
- Heat oil in a shallow, heavy based flame proofed casserole dish. Add the onions and cook for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes until onion is soft but not brown.
- Stir in rice, raisins and pine kernels until all are coated in the oil , then add half the parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the tomato puree mixture and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, shaking the casserole dish frequently, for 20 minutes, or until the rice is tender, the liquid is absorbed and small holes appear on the surface. Watch carefully because raisins can catch and burn. Stir in the remaining parsley, then cool slightly.
- While the rice is simmering, cut the top off each pepper and reserve. Remove the core and seeds from each pepper.
- Divide the stuffing equally between the peppers. Use wooden cocktail sticks to secure the tops back into place. Lightly rub each pepper with olive oil and arrange in a single layer in an ovenproof dish. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 30 minutes, or until peppers are tender. Serve the peppers hot or cool to room temperature.
That little Miss Muffet knew a thing or two having a bowl of curds and whey. But if I was her, I’d have discarded the whey and just made use of the yummy curds. Curds are what Indian people called paneer and is used for both savoury and sweet dishes. It’s been years since I made my own paneer which is a sign of pure and utter laziness as it’s so very simple to make*.
I had a surplus of semi-skimmed milk (thanks to an online shop I had forgotten about and had added a huge amount of milk to!). With a bag of fresh baby spinach in the fridge, I wanted to make saag paneer.
- 6 pints semi-skimmed milk
- 1-2 tablespoons white vinegar or fresh lemon juice
- Put the milk into a heavy based pan and bring to the boil. Keep stirring to ensure the milk does not stick or burn as this will ruin the taste of the paneer
- It had boiled when the surface of the milk makes a mound
- Take the pan off the heat
- Add the vinegar or lemon juice a little at a time until the milk separates. (I ended up using almost a whole unwaxed lemon – turns out fresh lemon is not as acidic. So if you have an older lemon, or are using vinegar then you won’t need too much)
- The separation is pretty obvious so if the whey still looks milk, keep going with the vinegar/juice
- The next stage involves removing the curds from the whey – put a muslin or J-cloth over a large bowl then pour the mixture in to strain the whey out. Bring the edges of the cloth together and squeeze. Now put a weight on and leave for an hour or more to squeeze even more liquid out.
This recipe yielded 262g of paneer from 6 pints of milk. I believe that full fat milk would produce more curds. I’d probably left the weighing a bit long as the paneer was hard. It can also happen if you use lemon juice rather than vinegar. I would not squeeze as much to use the paneer to make a dessert (like rasmalia….oooooh RASMALAI).
I cut the paneer into cubes and fried in a shallow pan a little bit before added to my saag paneer. All in all, a very easy ingredient to use.
*My most distinct memory of making paneer was when we lived temporarily in East Barnet. Mum was ill and would only live for a few months more. We lived in a maisonette with the most racist man living above us who regularly slashed our car tyres – doubly painful when we had to rush mum to hospital appointments. That day was lovely and sunny. I used the home made paneer to make a delicious rasmalai. Years on, now in my frozen Scottish kitchen I’m making paneer again, still thinking of Mum but very happy that with my daughter and husband I’ll do not have to deal with slashed tyres. Happy days.
I made this White bean dip the other day and it was delicious – very garlicky thanks to the 2 fat cloves I added*. The best thing…this dip only takes about 3 minutes to prepare – I didn’t have Italian parsley so just used the curled parsley growing on my window sill. Next time I make it I will get a stronger parsley and put in less garlic.
I had it with toasted pita bread and carrots for lunch one day, and as part of a huge falafel meal for dinner the following night (with fresh salad, carrots, humous, tzatziki and Cauldron Moroccan falafel bites). Don’t you love it when food is easy and takes no time at all but tastes so great?!
*Spanish garlic – the cloves are much bigger and fresher than the Chinese garlic that most superstores sell now.