Category / Recipe

Baking Charity Recipe

Kids’ Fairy Cakes

In a few weeks’ time I have volunteered to spend a day working with school children at Miriam Lord Primary School in Bradford. They are having an Aspire, Achieve, Dream day, and I am going to be talking to them about my background, Bake Off, uplifting bits and bobs from my life, and something practical too, but what?

Well if in doubt, all kids love to decorate a bun or a cupcake, so I have made the first batch of kids’ fairy cakes just now, this recipe made 54 small buns using a Victoria sponge ratio.

I will freeze this lot and then make exactly the same quantity nearer the time, then they have the fun part of frostings and sprinkles!

Ingredients:

400g Soft Margarine
400g Caster Sugar
8 Medium Eggs
375g Self Raising Flour
40g Cocoa Powder

Method:

1. Cream the margarine and sugar together
2. Beat in the eggs with a large spoon of flour
3. Fold in the rest of the flour
4. Spoon the mixture into small bun cases
5. Bake in the oven at 190 degrees (or 180 degrees in a fan assisted oven) for about ten minutes
6. Leave to cool on a wire rack

Recipe

Green Tomato Chutney Recipe

I got a call from my Uncle Graham this morning asking me if I could use a few green tomatoes which were left over from his summer tomato crop. Well, in actual fact, I had never done anything with green tomatoes before but not wanting to turn down his offer I said “Of course, that’s fab Uncle” and popped around the corner to collect them. (We live like a dozen houses from each other).

The only recollection I had of green toms was when I was a kid, my dad was always trying to ripen them, either in a drawer in the dresser or on a sunny windowsill, they never turned as far as I can recall.

When in doubt in these situations, I call upon chutney. My family will tell you, should you bother to ask, I am a bit of a condiment queen. When I was a kid the best thing about mam’s salad on Sunday tea was the Heinz Salad Cream.

Chutney is a big fave of mine, so I made some, took about half an hour to cook down and Bob’s your uncle. (I don’t have an uncle called Bob, but my kids do)!

Ingredients:

175g Brown Sugar
150ml White Wine Vinegar
1 Onion (finely chopped)
1 Cooking Apple (finely chopped)
125g Sultanas
500g Green Tomatoes
1 tsp Chilli Flakes
1 tsp Ginger Powder
1 tbs Garlic Puree

N.B. I used dried spices and a tube of garlic puree as that’s what I had in the larder, but fresh would be fine of course.

Method:

1. In a frying pan, dissolve the sugar in the vinegar under a low heat
2. Throw all the ingredients in and bubble down until they form a sticky, chutney consistency
3. Bingo! Done. Pop into sterilised jars (2 x 500g)

Great with cold meats and cheeses, bang it on the Buffet Table!

Christmas Recipe

Uncle David’s Favourite Mince Meat Recipe

I was just thinking this morning how it will be Christmas before we know where we are and I just happened to have all the ingredients in my store cupboard to make a huge jar of mincemeat for mince pies. It only takes ten minutes and little effort, with the resulting mincemeat much better than anything you can buy in the shops.

I have an Uncle David who is mince pie crazy. One year as a young man, he scoffed all my gran’s mince pies in one sitting. The following year she played a joke on him, baking him a tray full stuffed with cotton wool; each year he still remains optimistic that he will be plied with the real thing!

Ingredients:

700g Mixed Dried Fruit (any combination you like, cranberries, mango or (like me) just the standard currants, raisins, sultanas and mixed peel)
100g Glacé Cherries (chopped)
1 Cooking Apple (peeled, cored and chopped)
125g Unsalted Butter
50g Chopped Nuts (any will do)
225g Dark Brown Sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 and 1/2 tbs Mixed Spice
1 tsp Mace or Nutmeg
Grated rind and juice of 1 Lemon
150ml Brandy

Method:

1. Warm the sugar, butter and lemon in a large pan on a low heat
2. Add all the other ingredients (with the exception of the brandy)
3. Cook over a low heat for about ten minutes, stirring regularly
4. Remove from heat and leave to cool
5. Add the brandy and stir thoroughly
6. Place in a large sterilised Kilner jar or four small jam jars

Who still puts mince pies out on Christmas Eve? Not my Uncle that’s for sure!