Christmas Gingerbread Fridge Cake

Baking, Recipes, Uncategorized

Here’s a super quick recipe for you to try over the festive period. Perfect to use up chocolate from the selection boxes and biscuits left over from the biscuit tins. It’s ridiculously indulgent, but it is Christmas after all, and Christmas is all about excess!

Ingredients

200g milk or dark chocolate (or a mixture), chopped

150g butter, cubed

100g shortbread fingers

100g gingernut biscuits

100g dried cranberries

25 g pistachios

1tbsp golden syrup

1/2 tsp orange extract

For the topping

100g milk chocolate, melted

1 pack of mini gingerbread men (aprox. 25)

Method

  1. In a bowl, over a pan of simmering water, melt together the butter, chocolate, golden syrup & orange extract.
  2. Crush your biscuits roughly with a rolling pin or food processor. I like the biscuit to be quite chunky. Roughly chop the cranberries & pistachios.
  3. Mix the biscuits, cranberries and pistachios into the melted chocolate mixture.
  4. Pour into a square tin lined with greaseproof paper, and press down so the mixture is even and pushed into the corners.
  5. Leave to set in the fridge, then pour the melted milk chocolate overn the top. Top with your mini gingerbread men.
  6. Leave to set in the fridge again, then slice into squares.
  7. Enjoy!

gingerbread-tiffin-1-web

A girl with an appetite for all things creative,

Maria x

Mulled Wine Jelly

Food, Recipes

Hello,

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas, filled with lots of food & love. I’m apologising for the lack of posts in the past couple of months. I got a new internship, and was working 7 day weeks for a while, but I have now left my weekend job and for once in a very long time feel settled and fairly happy. I am loving my internship & am looking forward to what 2016 holds for me. I have set my self some personal goals, I’d like to remind my self that these aren’t simply New Year’s resolutions that won’t make it past January. Instead goals that I’d like to aim for and hopefully achieve by the end of the year. I’m not going to beat myself up about them if I don’t complete them, as I don’t know what life holds but I will work incredibly hard for them.

Onto the recipe, which is adapted from a Jamie Oliver recipe. If you have any left over red wine from the heavy festive period, or any cream left over from all those desserts then this is the perfect recipe for you. I used a bottle of mulled wine (the type that’s already infused and spiced) but you can use some red wine and add those festive flavours, such as cinnamon, star anise & cloves. To his recipe I added a clementine, mascarpone cream, which was actually left over from the filling of our Christmas Eve yule log. But just use what you have, double cream is fine!

Ingredients

300ml red wine or mulled wine
300ml cranberry juice
50g sugar
1 cinnamon stick
A grating of fresh nutmeg
2 clementines
5 gelatine sheets
4 tablespoons double cream
Zest of 1 clementine
Icing sugar to taste

Method

  1. Place the wine, cranberry juice, sugar and cinnamon in a large pan. Add the nutmeg and prick the clementines with a fork. Add to the pan and heat slowly until the sugar has dissolved. If you’re using plain red wine you will want to leave the mixture to infuse.
  2. Soak the gelatine in cold water for 5 minutes. Bring the wine back to a simmer (if you let it infuse). Squeeze the water out of the gelatine and add to the simmering wine mixture.
  3. Stir well until the gelatine dissolves. Combine both mixtures and pour into 6 glasses.
  4. Set in the fridge.
  5. To serve, whip your double cream to soft peaks, add icing sugar to your desired sweetness & add in the zest of one clementine. Dollop on some of your cream & serve with friends & family!

Mulled Wine Jelly 1

Enjoy the next few days & have a lovely new year.

A girl with an appetite for all things creative,

Maria x

Apple, Thyme and Lemon Sausage Rolls

Baking, Food, Recipes

Christmas isn’t complete with out an abundance of homemade sausage rolls. I always have the intention of making them to last over the holiday, but in reality I’ve eaten about 6 before they’ve even gone cold! I pack the rest of them away in an airtight container, and pick at them throughout the festive period. Knowing that I don’t need a sausage roll, nor do I really want one, but at Christmas you just eat and eat, because you can. Christmas time is all about over indulgence, because you know January is approaching and its going to be all about resolutions, healthy eating and working off these tasty sausage rolls in the gym!

I like to flavour my sausage rolls, this year I went for pork, apple and thyme. I love pork and apple, a classic combination, the sweet apple complements the rich pork. Thyme is a herb that also works well with the apple. If you made my apple and thyme sauce, and had any left over – you could put this in, instead of the apple.

Ingredients

1 apple – (I used a Nutribullet to make a pulp, you could use a few teaspoons of my apple sauce recipe, a food processor, or chop finely with a knife)

2 tsp dried thyme

Zest of 1 lemon and a few drops of lemon extract ( I use sainsbury’s taste the difference – the extract is optional, but adds a more intense lemon flavour, without adding liquid from the juice)

450g good quality sausage meat (I used my local butcher)

1 block of ready made all butter puff pastry (You can use filo pastry for a lighter version, but it is christmas after all!)

1 beaten egg for glazing

Method

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees, or 180 fan.

2. In a bowl, mix together the sausage meat, apple, thyme, lemon and seasoning with salt and pepper. Mix well to ensure the mixture is evenly incorporated. I tend to fry off a little of the mixture in a pan to test seasoning and flavour, you can then adjust accordingly.

3. With a rolling pin, and a little flour, roll out the puff pastry, to about 3-4mm thick, and keep it fairly rectangular. You want to then cut this in half so you have two long rectangles. If you wish to have smaller sausage rolls, you can cut this into three.

4. Divide your mixture and place in a long thick line down the middle of the pastry.

5. Roll the pastry up to encase the sausage mixture. Ensuring the pastry is sealed well.

6. Chill the long rolls in the fridge, for about half an hour.

7. Slice the long rolls into pieces – dependant on how big you like your sausage rolls. Place on a baking tray, I lined mine with silicone mats, you could use greaseproof paper. I snipped the top of each roll with scissors, purely to make them look nice.

8. Egg wash the rolls, and place in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and the sausage meat is cooked. The bigger your sausage roll, the longer they may take.

9. Take out of the oven, and let them cool on a wire rack. (If you can wait that long) Serve to friends and family, or devour too many of them by yourself!

Enjoy! Have a lovely Christmas

Sausage Rolls

A girl with an appetite for all things creative,
Maria x

Caramelled Oranges

Food, Recipes

This dish is a bit of a family tradition that we serve after Christmas lunch, every year without fail. It’s sweet, but is something refreshing to cut through all the lovely rich food we are all guilty of eating around the festive period. Oranges are so lovely in winter time, so sweet and juicy making it a perfect dish to serve to your loved ones after Christmas lunch.

Ingredients

225g Granulated Sugar

500ml Water

6 Oranges and their zest (I used Navel)

Method

1. Zest the 6 oranges

2. Place the sugar, water, and zest in a pan. Boil on a medium heat until the sugar is dissolved and you have a syrup consistency. (Not too thick though, as this forms the ‘sauce’)

3. Freeze the 6 tested oranges for a little wile to make them easier to peel and slice. This stops all of the lovely juice from escaping. We want to keep as much of the juice as we can. They do not need to be frozen solid, just firm.

4. Using a knife, cut the outer skin off, removing the white, bitter pith. and slice thinly making sure to save any juice. I usually use a plate, rather than a chopping board as this saves the juice from running everywhere and creating a mess.

Beware … you’ll get cold fingers! Have a glass of mulled wine, or something hot at the ready!

5. Add the juice, oranges, and syrup into your serving dish. You can discard the zest, or use it to decorate your dish. I placed some of it on a baking tray and dried out in the oven. You can keep this in a sterilised jar and use this to decorate cupcakes.

Oranges

A girl with an appetite for all things creative,
Maria x