Fruit

Two Autumn Tarts, and an explaination for my long absence!

Autumn seems to have arrived early this year – the hedgerows are burgeoning with black berries and orchard trees are heavy with soft fruits and early apples begging to be picked.  There is a limit to how much of this gorgeous produce one can consume while its fresh, so it is a busy time of year for cooks in the kitchen as we turn the excess into chutney, jams and jellies. I also like to make fruit pies that can be prepared for freezing and cooking later. It makes for very easy entertaining throughout the late autumn and winter months.

Here are two of my favourite recipe: 1: Fig Tart with Brown Sugar Frangipani and Spelt Pastry. 2: Apple, Pear and Blackberry Open Pie with a Dark Muscovado and Allspice Streusel Topping.   Continue reading

Cake for Breakfast: Clementine Breakfast loaf

Clementine

Clementine’s – the smallest of the tangerine family. tender, juicy and seedless.

Eating cake for breakfast may seem like a wicked indulgence but just stop and think about it before you reach for packet cereals.  Fresh fruit cakes are often lower in sugar, they use real fats like butter of olive oil, eggs for protein and you can pack them full vitamins with fruits or pureed vegetables like carrot or beetroot.  Last year food trend spotters thought that cake for breakfast would be the ‘in thing’ by 2017. A number of studies  also suggested that so long as you don’t indulge in rich gateaux that breakfast cakes are better for you and set you up for the day ahead better than propriety cereals.  After all the Spanish have been doing it for generations  – think Magdalenas and Spanish coffee cake.

This clementine cake ticks all of the boxes;  it easy to make, it stores and freezes well and its delicious and refreshing. Clementine’s  are at their best for one more month until the end of February. Continue reading

Beat the Blues, Make Marmalade

seville orange marmalade, oxford marmalade

Seville Orange Marmalade

“I got the blues thinking of the future, so I left off and made some marmalade. It’s amazing how it cheers one up to shred orange and scrub the floor.”
Author: D.H. Lawrence

The  marmalade that I set out for breakfast for house guests this  morning  had them in raptures and  was voted the best they had ever eaten!      In my household we like a gutsy, full flavoured marmalade with proper chunks. Its not a marmalade for the faint hearted … indeed, guests caught  picking out the  chunks and leaving them to  languish on the side of their plates – well – they don’t get asked again – not for breakfast at any rate !  Continue reading

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