Friday, 21 June 2013

So Yummy!


400g flour
1 tablespoon castor sugar

¼ teaspoon baking powder

200g butter

80ml ice water
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
Extra castor sugar for dusting


150 g castor sugar 

50 g cake flour 

½ lemon, zest and juice 

large pinch of salt
400 g fresh cherries, pitted

1 large egg, lightly beaten 
1 tablespoon water

2 tablespoons castor sugar

Preheat the oven to 180’C. For the pastry, put the flour, castor sugar,
baking powder and butter in a food processor and pulse to combine. While the motor is running, add the ice water and the vanilla and process until it forms a smooth dough. Divide the dough into two equal parts, shape them into disks, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
This pastry can also be made the day before.

Remove one disk of pastry from the fridge and place it on a lightly floured sheet of baking paper. Roll it out to about 3 mm thick, cut out rough circles and line 4 cm round tart tins.
Gently press the pastry into the tart tins and trim the edges, leaving a 3 mm overlap to allow for shrinkage. Place it in the fridge for 30 minutes to rest.
Line the prepared tart tins with baking paper and fill with baking beans.
Bake blind for 10 minutes, remove the baking paper and beans and bake for another 4 minutes.

For the filling, combine the castor sugar, flour, lemon zest and juice, and the salt in a bowl.
Add 100g cherries and crush them into the mixture with a potato masher to make a paste.
Add the rest of the blueberries and toss them in the paste to coat them.
Pour the filling into the cooked tart base. 

Remove the other disk of pastry from the fridge and place it on a lightly floured sheet of baking paper. Roll it out to about 3 mm thick, cut out 11cm circles, cut a heart out of the middle of each one and place the tops over the top of the tart fillings.
Brush the tops of the tarts with the egg and water mixture and sprinkle with a little castor sugar.

Bake the tart for 35–40 minutes until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling.
Serve warm with clotted cream or vanilla ice cream.

I know this cake has been around for ages but this is my new favourite cake!

2 x 410g tins crushed pineapple

300g flour, sifted
150g self-raising flour, sifted
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
440g soft brown sugar
90g desiccated coconut
4 bananas, mashed
4 eggs, lightly beaten
360ml sunflower oil

Cream cheese icing
60g butter
250g icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
80g cream cheese

Preheat the oven to 180’C. Line the base of  two 22cm round baking tins
with baking paper.

Drain the pineapple through a sieve and reserve 120ml of the juice.
Sift together the flours, bicard and spices in a large bowl and stir in the sugar.
Add the pineapple, reserved juice, coconut, banana, eggs and oil and mix together with a wooden spoon. Divide the mixture between the two baking tins and bake for 45-50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean. Allow them to cool.
For the icing, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and beat with electric beaters
until light and fluffy. 
Place the one cake on a cake stand and ice the top of the cake with half the icing. Place the other one on top and ice the top of the cake with the rest of the icing. Use a fork to make patters on the top of the icing.

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Beautiful fresh kumquats

As soon as I see kumquats in the shops I nab a few bags and make this delicious preserve!

Place the kumquats in a boil and cover with boiling water. Allow the water to cool and repeat the process. Once they have cooled for the second time, cut a cross in the bottom of each kumquat.
Place them in a pot of boiling water and cook for 15 minutes until the fruit is just tender. Pour off the water, allow them cool and squeeze out the pips.
Place the sugar, water and lemon juice in a pot and bring it to the boil. Add the kumquats and cook for 45 minutes until the fruit is translucent and the syrup has thickened and reduced by half.
Place the fruit in sterilized jars, top with the syrup and seal.

To sterilize the jars, place the jars on a baking tray in the oven for 10 minutes at 180'C. 
Boil the lids in hot water for 10 minutes.