A Cornish girl's food adventures

Tag: brunch

Summer squash pancakes

Summer squash pancakes

How does this look for a summer brunch!? Golden fluffy pancakes that will help you on your way to your five-a-day? Yes please! I’m a sucker for anything that involves dill so these are a winner for me. They make a pretty hearty breakfast but […]

Berry Basil Smoothie

Berry Basil Smoothie

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 […]

Cardamom buns

Cardamom buns

I’m almost certain that homemade bread is good for the soul. The process of making the dough, the smell as it bakes and that first taste when it’s fresh from oven – it really does make me feel good. I love making a batch of something like this to indulge in over long weekend breakfasts.
I know that cardamom buns are a speciality in Sweden, particularly for fika (that’s a coffee break to you and I) but the only place I’ve ever actually tried one was in London so I’m not even going to pretend that these are in any way authentic. In fact they’re so in-authentic that I’ve adapted my recipe for coconut buns, which uses a tang zhong (roux) in the dough, but they are incredibly delicious! It’s the roux that makes these buns so deliciously soft and moist. Make it by simply combining 25g of bread flour with 100ml of water in a pan and cooking it until it becomes nice and thick. Leave it to cool before incorporating it into the dough mixture.

Ingredients

Makes 12

Dough
400g strong white bread flour
big pinch of salt
50g sugar
2 tsp instant yeast (1 sachet)
100g roux
70ml warm milk
70ml warm water
1 egg
40g butter (melted)
Filling
100g softened butter
100g sugar
25-30 green cardamom pods
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

pearl sugar to finish (optional)

Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and whisk in the salt, sugar and yeast. In a separate jug whisk together the melted butter, milk, water, egg and the cooled roux. Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the liquid mixture. Combine to form a soft dough and knead until it is smooth and springy. You can do this either by hand or with an electric mixer but to be honest the dough is so nice to work with that it’s very therapeutic to do it by hand.
Wash and dry the bowl to make it lovely and warm and then lightly oil it (use something flavourless.) Wipe a large piece of cling-film around the bowl to oil that too. Pop the dough into the bowl and loosely cover it with the cling-film and then leave it somewhere draught-free to rise until it has doubled in size, this should take about an hour.

Whilst the dough is doing its thing you can make the filling. Use a pestle and mortar to crack open the cardamom pods, remove the black seeds and discard the husks. Crush the seeds and coarsely grind them. Cream together the butter, sugar and spice to make a nice soft paste. Take the dough out of the bowl and pop it on a lightly floured surface. Give it a quick knead to knock some of the air out of it. Divide it into two even pieces. Roll each one out into a rectangle, about 14″x 10″. With the long edge facing you spread the filling over the lower half of each piece of dough before folding the top down to cover it. Press the edges to seal it and give it another quick roll. Cut each rectangle into six even pieces, slicing from top to bottom, then take each piece and cut it in half vertically stopping just short of the top so that the two strips remain joined. Twist the strips around each other and then into a knot, tucking the ends underneath. Place them on a lightly greased baking tray, spacing them well apart. I used two trays and put six on each. Lightly cover the buns and leave them to rise again for another hour.

Pre-heat your oven to 180°c. Once the buns have puffed up and risen, uncover them and brush them with a little milk before sprinkling on some pearled sugar (or Demerara) and bake them for 20-25 minutes, until they have a soft crust and are golden brown.

Apple and cranberry chelsea buns

Apple and cranberry chelsea buns

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 […]

Coconut and raspberry pancakes

Coconut and raspberry pancakes

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 […]

Beetroot and halloumi rosti

Beetroot and halloumi rosti

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 and crunchy on the outside but lovely and soft in the middle. The earthy beetroot goes wonderfully with the salty tang of the halloumi cheese and the delicate aniseed flavour of the dill.
The rosti are very versatile too, Mr Colonial Cravings likes them crowned with a soft poached egg, which would be a breakfast to really set you up for the day. I like mine with a dollop of creamy yoghurt and mint dressing and some avocado accompanied by a big handful of fresh green leaves.

Ingredients
makes about 10
850g potato
350g raw beetroot
200g halloumi
3 heaped tbsp chopped dill
salt and pepper to taste
butter and oil for frying

Start by grating the spuds, don’t bother to peel them, just give them a good scrub. Pile the shredded potato into a clean tea towel and try to wring out as much moisture as possible. Pop the potato in a bowl and microwave it for three minutes. This is the best way that I’ve found of starting to get the starches to break down and become sticky without adding any extra moisture.
Grate the halloumi and the beets and mix them with the potato. I find it easiest to let it cool a bit and get stuck in with my hands. Add the dill and the salt and pepper to taste (remember the cheese is quite salty) and mix them through too.


Squeeze together handfuls of the mixture to make patties about the size of a burger and fry them in batches in a heavy frying pan in a mixture of butter and vegetable oil (one stops the other from burning).
Use a spatula to press, coax and cajole the rosti into holding its shape and sticking together. Cook the rosti for 3-5 minutes over a medium heat until they are a deep golden colour before carefully turning them over to cook the other side. Serve hot with your favourite topping.

Blueberry and black pepper corn muffins

Blueberry and black pepper corn muffins

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 […]

Galette Saracin

Galette Saracin

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 […]

Butternut squash and feta frittata

Butternut squash and feta frittata

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 just for veggies, there’s plenty of flavour here so you won’t feel like you’re missing the meat.
If I’m really pressed for time I use prepared butternut squash ‘noodles’ but otherwise just plain old grated squash seems to work well. I like to serve this with a simple side salad and perhaps a hunk of crusty fresh bread if you’re feeling especially ravenous.

Ingredients
serves 2 greedy people
250g squash (grated or spiralized)
3 shallots
handful of spinach
4 eggs (2 separated)
splash of milk or cream
1/2 tsp chipoltle powder
thyme
salt and pepper
100g feta (I like the stuff that’s marinated in chili oil)
oil for frying

Thinly slice the shallots and gently fry them in a medium frying pan over a moderate to low heat. Add the squash and continue to cook until it starts to become tender and the shallots are just starting to brown.
Separate two of the eggs and put the whites into a large mixing bowl. Whip them until they hold a soft peak.
Lightly beat together the yolks with the remaining two eggs and a splash of milk or cream. Season this with salt and pepper and the chipotle powder and then gently fold the whipped egg whites into this.


Add the spinach to the frying pan and cook it very briefly before pouring over the egg mix. Keep the heat low and sprinkle over the thyme and feta. Pre-heat your grill and once the fritatta is partially set and cooked underneath so that it is nicely brown put the pan under the grill to finish cooking and allow the top to brown.
Serve immediately with a crisp side salad.

Malted teacakes

Malted teacakes

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 […]