Generally speaking I’m not too fussed about smoothies. I love fruit so eating it never feels like a chore and I also think that eating it rather than drinking it makes me feel more full (and therefore a lot less likely to reach for less […]
You just can’t go wrong with a Chelsea bun. Soft enriched dough crammed full of rich, sweet fillings and covered in finger-licking sticky glaze. Always a winner!
I love these warm for wintry breakfasts or with a cup of piping hot tea on a chilly afternoon. The soft sweet apple and tart, chewy, jewel-coloured dried cranberries are a perfect combination for this time of year.
150g strong white bread flour
80g wholemeal flour
7g easy blend yeast (1 sachet)
1 tsp sugar
big pinch of salt
125ml warm milk
250g(ish) cooking apples
2 tbsp soft brown sugar
1 tbsp cornflour
35g soft butter
75g dried cranberries
pinch of ground allspice
icing sugar and milk or warmed honey to glaze
Sift the flours into a large bowl and mix through the salt, sugar and yeast. Rub the butter into this mix. Warm the milk a little (so it’s just tepid) and use a fork to beat the egg into it. Gradually pour the egg/milk mixture into the dry ingredients and bring it all together to form a soft dough. Remember that the flour may not be able to absorb all of the liquid, so it’s a good idea to add the wet ingredients a little at a time.
Once you have a nice soft ball of dough, turn it out onto a very lightly floured surface and knead it for a few minutes until if feels smooth and springy.
Wash and dry the bowl you mixed the dough in so that it’s nice and warm and lightly oil it. Pop the dough in the bowl, cover with oiled cling film and put it somewhere warm for about an hour, until it has doubled in size.
Whilst the dough rises you can prepare the filling. Peel and core the apples before chopping them into quite small pieces. Whisk together the sugar, cornflour and allspice in a large mixing bowl and then toss the apple and cranberries in it.
Once the dough has risen take it out of the bowl and knead it again for a minute or two on a lightly floured surface. This means that all the air bubbles will be evenly distributed throughout it. Roll the dough out into a rectangle, a little bigger than a piece of A4 paper. Spread the surface with the butter and then scatter over the filling mixture. Roll the dough up tightly, starting at the long edge. Cut it into eight even-sized pieces and place these, cut-side down into a generously buttered baking dish. Re-cover with cling film and put the dish back in a warm place for another hour until the buns have risen and are sitting quite snugly in the tin.
Pre-heat your oven to 190°c. Bake the buns for about 30 minutes until they are golden brown.
Make a simple glaze by combining a couple of tablespoons of icing sugar with a splash of milk and brushing onto the buns or simply warming some honey and drizzling it over them.
When I was younger I would generally end up dodging breakfast, much to my mothers frustration I should imagine. I always felt that the extra 15 minutes in bed was far more preferable! I’m quite different now and get positively excited about the first meal […]
I’ve taken the delicious salad that Rach from our little community shared on here last summer as the flavour inspiration for these. I bloomin’ love beetroot and dill, alone or together, they put me in veggie heaven. These little vegetable patties are so delicious, crisp […]
Sometimes you want to be able to whip up a homemade sweet treat with the minimum amount of fuss. It’s nice to be able to sling a few ingredients into a bowl, give them a quick mix and be munching on the fruits of your (very little) labours 20 minutes later.
Muffins are almost always my favourite way of doing that, it’s so nice to have something freshly baked on the breakfast table but there’s no way that I’m prepared to get up extra early to achieve it!
If the addition of black pepper in these is a step too far for you then feel free to leave it out but I love it with berries, it gives things just a little bit of warmth rather than actual spiciness.
makes 10-12 depending on size
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
big pinch of black pepper
pinch of salt
3 tbsp honey
2 tbsp melted butter
couple of handfuls of blueberries
Pre-heat your oven to 220°c and line a muffin tin with paper cases.
Sift together the flour and raising agents before whisking in the cornmeal, salt and pepper. Using a separate bowl or jug beat together the melted butter, egg, buttermilk and honey (it helps if you warm the honey a little). Once they are well combined stir the liquid into the dry mixture, using as few strokes as possible. Briefly fold in the blueberries and then divide the batter evenly between the cases. If you like you can add a little sprinkle of extra pepper to the top of each one.
Bake the muffins for about 15 minutes, until they are risen and golden brown on top. Enjoy warm or cold.
I love visiting Brittany, probably because it’s quite similar to Cornwall. And because the food is so delicious. I can’t go to Brittany and not eat a galette at some point. Preferably filled with gooey, melty Emmental. Mr Colonial Cravings is a fan too, although […]
This tasty little vegetarian number makes a fairly regular appearance on our week night dinner menus. It’s a really quick and easy one pan wonder. It’s not limited to dinner time either, this is a great dish for brunch or lunch too. And it’s not […]
Can anyone resist a warm toasted teacake dripping with melted butter? I know I can’t. Home made teacakes (like most things) are far superior to their shop-bought cousins. The fruit is more juicy, the spices are brighter and the texture is less spongy. All in all they make a pretty delicious treat.
I use malt extract in my recipe in place of sugar and really like the extra depth of flavour that it adds. These don’t have the full on sticky richness of something like malt loaf (although that is one of my favourites), there’s just a nice little bit of extra sweetness from the malt.
These are delicious for breakfast or as an afternoon pick-me-up.
350g strong white bread flour
1 sachet fast acting yeast
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp allspice
30g malt extract
150g dried fruit (I used sultanas and apricots)
a little flavourless oil
Sift the flour and spices together into a large mixing bowl and then mix through the salt, sugar and yeast with a fork.
Combine the butter, milk and malt extract in a pan and gently warm them a little so that the butter melts (or just do it in the microwave) but don’t let it get too hot.
Add the warm liquid to the dry ingredients, a little at a time, bearing in mind that you may not need all of the liquid, until you have a soft but not sticky ball of dough.
Lightly oil your hands and the work surface and then knead the dough for 5 minutes or so until it becomes smooth and springy.
Wash and dry the mixing bowl (to warm it) and then lightly oil it and a piece of cling film. Place the dough in the bowl, cover it with the cling film and then put it in a warm place for about an hour or until it has doubled in size.
Mix together the fruit, chopping any large fruit so that it is all a similar size. Once the dough has risen scatter the fruit over the surface and start to work it into the dough. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead it for a minute or two to ensure that the fruit and air are well distributed through it. Divide the dough into nine even pieces and shape each one into a ball. Place them on a lightly greased baking tray, spaced a little apart and flatten each one slightly. Recover them and put the tray back in a warm place until the buns have doubled in size again. Pre-heat your oven to 200°c.
Brush the teacakes with a little milk and then bake them for 20 minutes, so that they are nice and brown. Leave them to cool on a wire rack and then enjoy them toasted and smothered in butter!