Reader you may remember from an earlier post I was filmed for a slot on TV in the summer, so just so you have the recipe I have decided to write up a detailed post of the recipe I prepared. This savoury snack is great for the upcoming festive celebrations and also ideal for converting black pudding haters into black pudding lovers.
For both the slot on TV and this recipe I used "The Bury Black pudding company" black pudding, but I like RS Irelands Black puddings too, in fact most butchers locally make their own black pudding, Browns Butchers in Chorley are legendary. The recipe for these parcels is also featured in the Lancashire Recipe booklet that was published recently as well, so its becoming pretty famous. I love that this recipe features pretty lowly ingredients but by the end you have something glamorous and suitable for serving at any drinks party. I am also pleased to say as well that I used Lancashire cider in the sauce and homegrown rhubarb, in the filming this was fresh from the garden but when I remade this recipe for the blog post, it was from the freezer. The cider is from Doves Sykes an artisan cider producer from the Ribble Valley - Ribble Valley Gold is produced in small quantities and is a still dry cider ideal for drinking or cooking with. I have no idea as to whether the slot I filmed will be used on the show, today is Lancashire Day so I thought I'd post the recipe to celebrate the day. Update: the clip was used on Paul Hollywoods Pies and Puds on 27th November 2013 its currently avaliable on iplayer but Mr Lancashire Food has also made a copy of Youtube which you can find here I got a "nice one Linzi" from Mr Hollywood himself so he must have liked the recipe, why not try it for yourself. What you need
Rhubarb (fresh or frozen)
Cider (medium to dry)
Salt and Pepper
Filo pastry (shop bought fresh rather than frozen)
What you do
First pre heat the oven to 160C
Fry off the black pudding until a little crispy
Remove from the pan and set to one side
Now cook of the finely chopped onions until slightly soft, now add the rhubarb and cider (in my case a lovely local one)
Simmer until soft and the moisture has been driven off
Allow to cool before filling your parcels
Spoon your filling onto a single sheet of filo, folded in half and create your parcels
Place on a baking tray brushed with a little oil and cook until golden brown
Serve hot or cold either on its own or with a sweet chilli sauce if wanted
I am back on the John Gilmore show on the 26th November, taking part in the week long celebrations for Lancashire Week ! We will be on the Flag Market in Preston with the BBC bus, so come along and join in the fun, if you are in the city centre. We hope to be on air from about 2.30pm and will be talking all about food in Lancashire and especially "Butter Pie" as a traditional Lancashire delicacy.
These buns are amazing, soft, aromatic and stuffed full of fruit and spices, the perfect combination of flavours and great toasted or served simply buttered. Ok, so perfect buns aren't an instant thing but I promise you these buns are worth the additional effort and like any bread recipe its all about planning what you will do in the time your dough is working.
The other good thing is that you are in control of what you want in your buns, so in this mix we have a little crystallized ginger and chopped figs alongside the more traditional, raisins, sultanas and citron peel (hand chopped, ready chopped peel is vile), and you wouldn't want to spoil these amazing buns. To create the soft texture you need to use some fat in your dough, lard and dripping work well but you can also use white chocolate or even milk chocolate at a push, it makes the dough have a soft crumb, just the texture you want for your buns.
The buns would be great for festive celebrations and would easily adapted for Easter too, but frankly you'll love them so much you will eat them all year round !
What you need
600g strong white bread flour
150ml skimmed milk
14g dried yeast (2 pkts)
Approx 120ml warm water but this will depend on your flour and the temperature in your kitchen
1 tbsp golden syrup (you could maple syrup or honey instead)
25g caster sugar
50g white fat (dripping, lard, chocolate)
300g dried fruit mixed (whatever you like)
1 1/2 tsp mixed spices (ginger, nutmeg, cardamon, cinnamon, feel free to mix and match)
1 tsp finely ground salt
3 eggs - free range please
Another egg for glazing purposes
What you do
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water, I always add a little flour as I find this get the yeast activated more quickly and leave in a warm place until frothy and the yeast is clearly active.
Warm the milk and the syrup, caster sugar, white fat until melted and then add the spices, salt and the dried fruits. Allow to cool.
Add the beaten eggs to the cooled milk mixture.
In a large bowl combine the flour, yeast mixture and egg and milk mixture, stir until you have an loose dough. Leave this to rest for about 10 minutes covered, then knead again, do this again a couple of times but leaving it rest longer in between.
You should eventually have a soft well combined active dough, divide this your require number of buns, I went for 10 but these were monster sized.
Form balls and press flat, leave these to rest again on oiled trays until doubled in size, covered in plastic so the dough doesn't form a skin ( as this is an enriched dough it may take several hours)
Bake at 200c in a pre heated oven, brush the tops with a beaten egg if you want a shiny top.
They will be ready after about 15 minutes or so when well risen and golden on top, don't overcook them as they will go dry.
Cool on a wire rack and devour slathered with butter, toasted or just as they are.
I am entering this post in the Tea time Treats challenge hosted by Karen over at Lavender and Lovage and Kate who blogs over at What Kate baked. The theme is "Dried Fruit" and I think this bun more than qualifies.
As my contribution to "Recipe of the month" challenge hosted by Janice who blogs over at Farmersgirl and Sue who blog over at a little bit of heaven on a plate, I have chosen a recipe from Nigel Slaters kitchen diaries II.
The recipe is on page 322 and is recipe from August in the book, I fortunately managed to get hold of some English tomatoes to make the recipe with and I always have chicken thighs in the freezer I thought I'd give it a try. I pretty much followed the recipe to the letter except I didn't have any green tomatoes as you can see from the photographs the recipe turned out well enough but was a little too moist for my taste, so if I made it again I would roast longer to burn off some of the meat juices.
Nigel recommends you serve the dish with bread, rice or couscous to soak up the juices.
The theme for this month's Alphabakes is "O", I plumped for one of the more obvious O's - oranges, this easy bakes uses orange zest in the cake and the oranges juice in the glace icing which creates a lovely contrast to the soft crumbly cake. Using my trusty yogurt cake recipe I just added the finely grated zest, its a very versatile recipe and would also work well with lemon.
Oranges are great at this time of year and signal to me that the festive season is just around the corner. The resulting cake is beautifully elegant and ideal for afternoon tea, give it a try.
What you need
1C sunflower oil
2C caster sugar
3C self raising flour
Grated orange zest
For the glace icing
What you do
Mix all the cake ingredients together until you have a smooth cake mixture
Pour into 2 prepared loaf tins
Bake in a pre heated oven at 180c for approx 45 minutes until cooked through
Cool in the tin intially and then on a wire rack
Once the cake is fully cool, then mix the icing sugar with a little orange juice till the icing is the thickness of double cream
Firstly apologies for not the most wonderful of photographs, its a quick snap taken before demolishing this dish and I was very hungry. I love my slow cooker but up until recently I hadn't made a curry in it, its so nice to return home from work with supper ready and just needing some rice to accompany it.
I used some of the last of the courgettes from the garden and also some other waifs and strays from the fridge too, along with some trusty chicken thighs and a tin of coconut milk.
What you need
A Slow cooker
Chicken thighs - chopped into bitesize chinks
Onion - finely chopped
Mango chutney / bengali pineapple chutney
Courgettes - cut into quarter slices
Red pepper - cur into little chunks
Handful of frozen peas
Tin of coconut milk
Strong chicken stock
Salt and pepper
What you do
Preheat your slow cooker
Fry off the onion,pepper, courgettes and chicken
Place in slow cooker
Add the curry powder, chutney, coconut milk and a little chicken stock
Cook on slow for approx 6 -8 hours until the chicken is tender
For the last 40 minutes of cooking add the frozen peas, turn slow cooker to high
After much cha cha chaing (do you see what I did there) around what recipe I was to make for this months "Strictly" theme I plumped for a glitter ball cake. Based on a run of the mill victoria sponge recipe flavoured with lemon oil, filled with lemon curd, cream and meringue, then decorated with silver sprayed fondant and glitter ball cake pops.
Apologies for the poor photography my camera developed a problem on the night
This is my first venture into cake pops, I made mine using a lemon flavoured yogurt cake, crumbed and mixed with vanilla buttercream. The cake pop balls are shaped by hand into balls which then have a stick pushed through them which has been dipped into white chocolate so that it sets inside the cake pop. These are then left to set and firm up in the fridge.
Once your cake pops are firm and cold you are ready to finish them off , I dipped them in melted white chocolate and decorated with silver balls but you could use any sprinkles you like. The victoria sponge is an all in recipe and is very easy and produces reliable results, I just added lemon oil for a more intense lemon flavour. The inspiration for the lemon curd, cream and crumbled meringue filling comes from Fiona Cairns. What you need for the main cake
175g Self raising flour
175g butter - soft
175g caster sugar
1tsp baking powder
3 eggs- beaten
1 tsp vanilla paste
2 x 20cm round cake tins , lightly oil sprayed and base lined
Pre-heat the oven to 170c
What you need to do
Whizz up all the ingredients in your food mixer
Scoop in to 2 prepared pans and bake for approximately 20 minutes until lightly golden and cooked through when tested with a skewer
Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before removing from the tin and cooling fully on a wire rack
Once cool fill with your choice of fillings, I used a generous layer of lemon curd, freshly whipped cream and crumbled meringue.
I then covered with white fondant and sprayed it with a sliver shimmer spray.
For our 20th event for South Lancashire Clandestine Cake Club we paid a visit to a newly opened celebration cake and cake decorating shop in Chorley town centre. Cakes by Ruth is the home of talented cake decorator Ruth Potts and her lovely shop is a colourful addition to Lancashire's favourite market town.
Inspired by the new series of "Strictly" we had chosen the theme of "Strictly come baking !" for our evening event. Our bakers inspired as ever came up with a great selection of cakes. Despite a few no shows on the night (I try not take this personally !), we had an enjoyable event enjoying a lovely range of cakes and chatting generally about cakes and baking with Ruth.
Our cake selection featured
Waltzing mathilda cake - a gorgeous spicy bundt cake
Dancing Dolly cake - lots of buttercream, sponge and jam topped off with a dolly
Torta Mojada - Argentinian Wet cake - a moist decadent chocolate cake with citrus layers
Lucious Lemon glitter ball cake - lemon sponge with lemon curd, meringue and fresh cream, topped off with Lemon and white chocolate silver cake pops.
Tango'd cake - a freshy zesty orange layer cake
You've been tango'd - a orange and chocolate confection, very moist and moreish.
You can find Cakes by Ruth on St Georges Street, in Chorley town centre, the shop stocks a great range of decorating materials and of course Ruth can supply any celebration cake needs you may have. A massive thanks goes to Ruth for hosting our event and opening up specially on a cold November night for our meeting.
Yipee ! our first booklet has just been published, over the years we have been lucky to have recipes featured in various magazines and articles but this is our first cookery booklet, a collection of 20 modern Lancashire recipes.
Roughly 12 months ago I was approached by a publishing company to develop the recipes for the book, unfortunately the food photography isn't from Mr Lancashire Food as they chose to use stock images but none the less the recipes and frontis piece are mine. The book can purchased from major supermarkets, tourist offices and some book shops in Lancashire, plus online from Amazon or Waterstones.
So in celebration of Lancashire Day you can win one of five signed copies we have to giveway, just enter by completing the Rafflecopter below. Lancashire Day for the uninitiated is the 27th November it commemorates the date in 1295 when Lancashire sent its first representatives to parliament. A toast is made to the Queen, Duke of Lancaster and is celebrated across the county (even the metropolitan areas which aren't officially Lancashire any more).
Mr Lancashire Food has been oh so kind and bought me an early christmas pressie already, the latest work from Jamie Oliver (JO). Save with Jamie, features a selection of frugal recipes which aim to be popular with all the family, first impressions suggest this will be as popular as all his other books, of which I have quite a few.
To a lot of people Jamie Oliver can be a bit like marmite, you either love him or you hate him, personally I think that despite JO being a multi millionaire he has his feet firmly placed on the ground and admire the works he has done with young people and also with families encouraging them to get home cooking again.
The first recipe I chose to attempt from this book was his squash and spinach rotolo, JO's books always have a good Italian content and this one is no different, he has re invented one of his previous recipes from Jamie's Italy and made it more frugal by upping the vegetable content and more healthy too.
The recipe for the rotolo can be found here and its a recipe I would definitely make again as it made tasty supper dish, as always JO recipes are generous.
Its a lovely book, my only compliant is that its a bit lacking on the dessert front, otherwise it a great book and one that I am happy to have on my bookshelf. In the next few weeks I'll be cooking more from the book, again like some of his other books he uses mothership recipes to springboard to linked recipes using the leftovers from the mothership in other dishes. There is plenty of vegeterian choice as well as meat and fish dishes and most of these are pretty frugal.
On another note this is a cracking photo by Mr LF, in my humble opinion even better than the one in the book by the mighty Mr David Loftus no less.
Its been a wild weekend for weather in the UK and I am in need of comfort food and this soup certainly hits the mark on that score, using fresh local juicy carrots, a touch of warming ginger and the gorgeous smoky warmth of maple syrup this is a soup equivalent of a warm fluffy blanket.
Maple syrup is a natural product and I would love to go tapping maple trees but I don't think we can grow the right type of trees in UK, I have even found a website that tells you how to carry out the process.
On with recipe !
What you need
5 medium sized carrots, peeled and chopped into batons
1 white onion ,peeled- cut in chunks
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and cut into match sticks
2 cloves of garlic, peeled but left whole
1-2 tbsp sunflower oil
2 tbsp maple syrup
500ml vegetable stock
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Chives to garnish
What you do
Pre heat the oven to 200c
Place all the vegetables and ginger in a roasting tin and toss with the oil and maple syrup
Bake for about 45 minutes until the vegetables are slightly caramelised
Allow to cool slightly and place in a suitably sized saucepan, add the stock
Blitz with a hand held blender until smooth
Bring the soup to a gentle simmer and season to taste.
Serve when piping hot, garnished with snipped chives.
We hope you enjoy the recipe, we did if you'd like to leave a comment then please do so below. We love reading your comments.
This week we were fortunate enough to be invited to the Freemason Arms at Wiswell 5th Annual Game week celebrations.
Our evening was the Great British Menu night where two North West chefs were to compete to be the champion for the Region for the night. Our featured chefs, Mary Ellen McTague (Aumbry) and Chris Holland (Alderley Edge Hotel) have both previously competed on the Great British menu for real, so along we went to this cute country inn feeling like Prue Leith and Mathew Fort for the night.
The Freemasons Arms in situated in a cute village in the Ribble Valley and has the perfect blend of pub with high end restaurant food, calm, comforting and relaxing interiors blend seemlessly with beautiful food.
Our menu for the evening as appropriate for Game Week featured Hare, Deer, Mallard and Pheasant and seasonal vegetables and flavours. All diners were provided with voting slips for us to chose our favourite dish from each course, just like on the tv show and of course we had no idea which chef had createdw hich dish. Not having eaten at either chefs restaurant we weren't familiar with either chef's body of work and signature style, so we had no preconceived ideas of what to expect.
Onto our delicious menu, our welcome canape was a dinky little "hotdog" made of foie gras rolled in a coating and served in a lovely white roll with sauce and mustard, no picture I am afraid as they disappeared before I even had chance to grab a photo, they were delicious.
Hare Consomme vs Surf and Turf
Tasty and a little gamey consomme accompanied with rare hare fillet, earthy turnip shoots and crunchy cubes with an amazing English truffle garnish. A nice balance between the consomme and the meat dish. This was instantly our favourite.
We found the smoked roe deer tartar disappointing as we couldn't detect any smoke in the flavour and despite being a well balanced tartar the meat could have been anything. The langoustine on the other hand was well flavoured and autumnally complemented by the cinnamon sauce.
Winner - Surf and Turf - Chris Holland
Duck and Rosehip vs Pheasant Pie
Tender juicy slow roasted mallard with the rosehip wine syrup providing a delicious sweet and unusual sauce for the dish, roasted cabbage and a crunchy artichoke and sage crumb contrasting with the soft meat and the baked salsify was very savoury and tasty. Mr Lancashire Food's vote was won.
Buttery crisp pastry encasing a little pheasant and comforting savoy cabbage, chestnuts and bacon, moist pheasant fillet with a tasty gravy and celeriac puree. This one got my vote mainly due to the "pie" and the comfort food factor.
Winner - Pheasant Pie - Mary Ellen McTague
Pumpkin and Parkin vs Beetroot & Chocolate Cakes
This is where things started to get really interesting as we both love desserts, the perfect dish in our humble opinion, the sweet hum of nutmeg marrying beautifully with the parkin crumble and slightly sharp honeyed and oranged pumpkin, our only disappointment no popcorn in the ice cream could be found.
Moist dense chocolate cake and the most amazing hazelnut ice cream were our favourite elements of this dish, the beetroot mousse cake was very attractive in colour but lacked any real flavour for us and also the toffee and bee pollen were hard to detect in the dish.
Winner - Pumpkin and Parkin - Chris Holland
So our overall winner was Chris Holland, on a couple of courses it was a close run thing particularly the Pheasant Pie which divided our table. We really enjoyed our evening at the Freemason Arms and were delighted to meet foodie friends we have made through facebook and twitter. After service, the chefs Mary and Chris along with Steven Smith mingled with diners chatting about their food and how excited they were to be cooking for us. The diners were the winners on the night experiencing classic British courses from these talented chefs. If you fancy visiting the Freemason Arms then all their contact details are here. Here is an earlier blog post of a visit to The Freemason Arms We were kindly invited to attend this event on a complimentary basis, no payment was made for this blog post or a blog post requested as a condition of attendance. All the comments are my own opinion.
I decided to treat myself this month after seeing Jo Wheatley winner of the Great British Bake Off a couple of years ago singing the praises of this little gadget on facebook. So I promptly placed it on my Amazon wishlist, for there it to sit for a couple of months. I am not really a fan of purchasing through Amazon for a variety of reasons but I happened to have a gift voucher to spend plus I hadn't seen this gadget for sale in any of the kitchen shops I visit in my area, so I took the plunge and ordered it on line.
I have now had this little dinky blue stick for a couple of weeks and its turning out to be a valuable gadget to have in the kitchen, as a keen baker the last thing I want is an underbaked cake. Nordic ware are an American company world famous for their range of bundt tins but you don't need to be baking a bundt to make use of this tester, you just plunge the tip into your cake for 5 seconds and if the tip turns bright red your cake is done, obviously you don't want to be testing the cake until its ready, the rule I use is not to open the oven door until at least 3/4's of the baking time has passed. Its easy to use and so far hasn't let me down.
The opinions expressed in the post are my own and I have not be paid for this post, I purchased the item from my own funds.