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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in What we cook's LiveJournal:

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Friday, March 9th, 2012
5:38 pm
Citrus Chicken with Peppers and Mexican-style seasoning
2 Boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips/chunks
2-3 T olive oil
Bell peppers/mini sweet peppers, chopped or sliced (at least one Bell and/or a pile of minis)
A few cloves of garlic, minced
Salt, lemon-pepper
1 T chili powder (try more)
1 T oregano
A few dashes each coriander, cumin, and basil
¼ c lime juice

Sauté the chicken in the olive oil. Season with salt and lemon-pepper. When the chicken is cooked on the outside, but not all the way through, add the peppers, garlic, and other seasonings. Continue to sauté.
Add the lime juice when everything else is about done cooking.
Serve with quinoa or rice.
Thursday, December 3rd, 2009
10:13 am
Fresh cranberry-apple relish
1 bag cranberries (350g or so), chopped into small pieces (either by food processor, if you have one convenient, or by dad, if not; one sneaky trick that works for chopping for this recipe is to smash the cranberries in a bowl before chopping them so they can't roll away as easily)
2 medium apples, peeled and diced
zest from one orange
juice from one orange
1 1/2 cups sugar (you might be able to get away with just 1 c sugar)

Combine all ingredients; allow to rest overnight; mostly drain in the morning and serve with Thanksgiving turkey (serves 12, probably). Enjoy watching your father, who valiantly fought the bouncing berries the day before as they attempted to escape his chopping, take seconds and thirds and fourths...
Sunday, August 16th, 2009
10:26 pm
huckleberry ice cream
wiating to try tomorrow

Kurt's Homemade Huckleberry Ice Cream
From Hill's Resort

3 cups milk
2 3/4 cups sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups half-and-half
6 cups cream
1/2 gallon huckleberries, available this time of year at area farmers' markets
1/4 cup butter
2 cups brown sugar
6 Hershey bars, broken into pieces

Scald milk, white sugar and salt over medium-high heat, until bubbles just begin to form on the surface. Remove the milk from the heat and combine with the half-and-half and cream. Saute huckleberries with butter to release the juices. Add brown sugar and simmer for 10 minutes. Chill huckleberries. When cold, combine with cream mixture. Chill that mixture overnight or place in ice cream maker with rock salt and ice. After 20 to 30 minutes, remove the ice cream and fold in Hershey bars. Chill in the freezer for at least 2 hours.


Saturday, July 4th, 2009
10:31 am
more ice cream... avacado this time
Adapted from: www.ice-cream-recipes.com

3/4 pint (375ml) milk
2 ripe avocados

Take the avocados, peel and seed them then put into a blender with the milk and make a purée.
Pour the purée into a mixing bowl

1/2 pint (250ml) double (heavy) cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
beat until creamy.

Then transfer the complete mixture into an ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer's instructions.
Thursday, June 25th, 2009
6:50 am
fried egg on toast or SOS
Simple food-- yum... just discovered that if you add a little minced onion on top of the egg along with a dash of pepper while cooking it before putting the bread on it.... YUUUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMM!  Add turkey bacon and cheese (lick chops).
Tuesday, June 9th, 2009
6:55 pm
Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream
Once again acquired from www.joyofbaking.com and again switching from self post to Whatwecook.

We've only made the batter. tomorrow we will make the ice cream. We doubled the recipe. Hopefully it's not too much for the ice cream maker. If it starts to look like it, we can always not pour all of it in in one batch making. We oopsied and put the chopped strawberries in the batter... as opposed to waiting until near the end of the ice cream making process before adding them. We shall see what happens. We also added about 1/3 cup extra of the puree in the double batch, because we had it.

UPDATE: This recipe needed to be ice creamed in two batches. We didn't split it very evenly and so I'm wondering how much that affected doing two batches on one bowl freeze (the bowl needs to freeze for 15 hours and I was hoping that we could get two batches of the same ice cream on one freeze of the bowl. We did, but the second one didn't cream up quite as much and iced up a little bit in the freezer. I'm not sure if this could be rectified by having more even batches or not. I wasn't quite as fond of the strawberry chunks, but I suppose some might be.

The double recipe made 10 cups as opposed to 6...


2 cups (480 ml) half-and-half

1/2 vanilla bean or 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

4 ounces (115 grams) cream cheese, room temperature

3 large egg yolks

2/3 cup (130 grams) granulated white sugar

2/3 cup strawberry puree (sauce)

1 cup fresh strawberries, chopped

In a small saucepan, over medium-high heat, bring the half-and-half and the vanilla bean (if using) to the scalding point (the milk begins to foam up). Remove from heat, take out the vanilla bean and scrape the seeds from the bean with the back of a knife, and mix the seeds back into the half-and-half.

Meanwhile in a stainless steel bowl beat the cream cheese, egg yolks and sugar until light and fluffy (about two minutes). You can do this with a wire whisk or I like to use a hand mixer. Gradually pour the scalding half-and-half into the whipped egg yolk mixture, making sure you keep whisking constantly so the eggs don not curdle. If any lumps do form, strain the mixture first before heating.

Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (We ran into a small problem in that the liquid just barely fit in the top of my double boiler) and, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, cook until the custard thickens enough that it coats the back of a (wooden) spoon (170 degrees F) (77 degrees C). (We used a thermometer as we were running out of spoons-especially of the wooden variety as I only have one.)

Immediately remove the custard from the heat and continue to stir the custard for a few minutes so it does not overcook. At this point stir in the vanilla extract, if using, and the strawberry puree. Cover and let cool to room temperature and then refrigerate the custard until it is completely cold (several hours but preferably overnight).

Transfer the cold custard to the chilled container of your ice cream machine and process according to the manufacturer's instructions. Once made, stir in the cut up fresh strawberries and transfer the ice cream to a chilled container and store in the freezer. If the ice cream becomes too hard place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before serving so it can soften.

Makes about 3 cups.
Monday, June 8th, 2009
8:32 am
Lemon Mallows
This one we started by looking at Celing Taffi's strawberry mallow recipe and the recipes that she referenced. Then we found a lemon mallow recipe here: www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/lemon-marshmallows-recipe/index.html

It seemed a little small so we doubled it, but didn't have quite enough lemon juice so we added a bit of water to have the proper amount of liquid. Another recipe I read somewhere used lemonade crystals-- so I suppose we could have used some of them... but I'm not sure what to think about using part real lemon juice and part artificially flavored lemonade... We didn't put in food coloring-- completely unnecessary. We haven't tasted the official mallows yet because they are resting in the pan overnight, but the mallow goo left in the bowl had a light lemon flavor... and I'm thinking that when I make them again I will probably use more lemon juice and zest.

The recipe below is as we used it, except we doubled it. I decided to post undoubled, because some might rather have a smaller recipe.

to coat the pan
* 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
* 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

Lightly grease a small baking sheet and set aside. Sprinkle with a light coating of confectioners' sugar using a fine mesh sieve.

(we used a 9X13 and lined with foil that was lathered with the oil, but not confectioner's)

Put in mixer bowl
* 2 (1/4-ounce) envelopes unflavored gelatin (about 2 tablespoons)
* 1/2 cup lemon juice

then make syrup
* 1 3/4 cups sugar
* 3/4 cup light corn syrup
* 1/2 cup cool water
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest

Place a 2-quart saucepan over medium-heat , and add the sugar, corn syrup, water, salt, and lemon zest to the pan. Stir the contents of the pan occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to high (my stove needed to be at medium... but my stove cooks hot) and continue to cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer inserted into the syrup reads 250 degrees F.

Place the gelatin mixture in the bowl of an electric mixer, if not already there, and mix on low speed. Remove the syrup from the stove and slowly drizzle into the bowl of the electric mixer to combine with the gelatin. Be sure to add the syrup in a slow and steady stream until it is all incorporated. Once the syrup is combined with the gelatin, begin to increase the speed of the mixer until it is on maximum. Beat the candy until the mixture becomes white in color and nearly triples in volume. It took 5ish minutes in the KitchenAid, but the recipe said about 15.

Transfer the marshmallow to the prepared pan, and using a rubber spatula, coated with oil (we didn't coat enough- or else it wasn't a great way to do it- I'm not sure which), spread the mixture into the pan as best as possible. Wet your hands and press the marshmallow into the corners of the pan (sticky fingers). Sprinkle with the remainder of the confectioners' sugar and allow the marshmallow to rest, uncovered, overnight. (this is what we are doing now)

Release the marshmallow from the pan and place on a cutting board. Cut the marshmallow into 1-inch squares and toss each piece in confectioners' sugar before serving. Marshmallows will keep for up to 1 week in an airtight container at room temperature.
Sunday, June 7th, 2009
11:57 pm
Meringue's and Strawberry whipped cream dessert
Also acquired from www.joyofbaking.com

We made this because we had an abundance of strawberries and 6 egg whites left from ice cream (so we did a 1 and 1/2 batch). We made them open face with strawberry slices on top, where the recipe had the whipped cream sandwiched in between two meringues.

The biggest issue was that the amount of strawberry puree wasn't anywhere close to enough for a strawberry flavor. With what the recipe called for it still tasted basically like plain vanilla whipped cream. I don't remember how much more puree we put it... at least an extra 1/2 cup... and then it was really fruity :) ... also there was way more than a sufficient amount of whipped cream for the number of meringues we were able to make.

Note: If you are making them for a group. Make them shortly before they will be eaten because the whipped cream moistens the meringue and they become a really messy treat.

Meringue Recipe:

4 large egg whites, at room temperature

1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 cup (200 grams) superfine (caster) granulated white sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Strawberry Whipped Cream:

1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 tablespoon (14 grams) granulated white sugar

1/2 cup (120 ml) lightly sweetened strawberry puree

Fresh Berries on top

To make the strawberry puree we took 20 oz of strawberries, 1/2 cup water, and a little bit of sugar-- couple teaspoons and mixed it in the blender (Oh for a food processor). It made enough puree for both the whipped cream and ice cream.
11:45 pm
lemon sherbet...
... should be sherbert.

This recipe was acquired from www.joyofbaking.com We followed the recipe and added a smidge more sugar (1/8 cup more??). The result using the Kitchen Aid was amazing-- took less time than we expected based on our reading of the ice cream attachment manual... about 5 min in the mixer to reach a solid soft serve stage, and then a few hours of ripening to harder ice cream in the freezer. We really wanted to eat it sooner, but we sort of promised to wait until Chris got home before eating it.

The sherbet was VERY lemony, so depending on your lemon flavor comfort level you might want to add more sugar or less zest... but as Mrs. Piglet and I both love lemon-- we thoroughly enjoyed it.

Can't vouch for the making with out an ice cream maker part... The four servings is fairly accurate... I stretched it to 5.


1/2 cup (120 ml) of lemon juice (2 - 3 large lemons)

Zest of 1 large lemon

1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy whipping cream

1/2 cup (120 ml) milk

1/3 cup (65 grams) superfine (castor) sugar (Can use regular granulated white sugar that has been processed in the food processor for about 30 seconds)

In a measuring cup, stir together the lemon juice, lemon zest, cream, milk, and sugar. Taste and add more sugar if needed. Cover and place in the refrigerator to chill for several hours.

Once the mixture is thoroughly chilled, place in your ice cream machine and process according to the manufacturer's instructions. Once made, transfer to a chilled container and store in the freezer.

If you do not have an ice cream machine you can 'still' freeze the sherbet. Pour the mixture into an 8 inch (20 cm) or 9 inch (23 cm) stainless steel pan (will freeze faster in stainless steel), cover with plastic wrap, and place in the freezer for about four hours. Stir the mixture every half hour, to break up any large ice crystals that have formed. When the sherbet is firm (will not be rock hard) with a consistency somewhere between an ice cream and a sorbet, transfer the sherbet to a plastic container and place in the freezer.

Makes about 4 servings.
Friday, May 29th, 2009
3:44 pm
Flourless chocolate sponge cake
This cake sinks in the middle, but is still light and fluffy (and very chocolatey). But plan to be alarmed at what the layers look like after cooling!

For two 6" layers:
Prepare pans (line and grease). Preheat oven to 350F

Beat until thick:
3 egg yolks
1 tblspn sugar
1/8 tsp salt

Melt (I use the microwave, for behold, it is easy), stir thoroughly, and fold into the yolk mixture:
3 oz good dark chocolate (I used 60% cocoa Ghirardelli's chips for a good blend between "not ridiculously expensive" and "still tastes good")
1 tblspn water

Beat until somewhere between foamy and soft peaks:
3 egg whites
Add to the egg whites:
1/4 cup sugar
And beat until stiff.

Fold 1/3 of the whites into the yolk/chocolate mixture until thoroughly incorporated, then fold the rest in. Divide between the two prepared pans (trying not to deflate it too much in the process) and pop it in the oven (gently).

Bake for, if I recall correctly, something in the neighborhood of 20 minutes; refrain from jumping jacks while they're in the oven. When the top is just barely starting to brown browner, take them out and, if they're at all attached to the sides, quickly run a knife around the edge of the pan to release them. Allow to cool slightly. (at this point, they look very alarming; it's okay)

For ease of dealing with, I take a tip from smittenkitchen (where this particular version of this recipe is adapted from) and unmold them onto a lined cookie sheet (I used waxed paper). Peel off the liners, allow to cool, then pop them in the freezer until firm. This way, they don't crumble when you're trying to work with them, and it doesn't seem to negatively affect taste/texture at all. Stack with filling, fill with filling, or fail to resist the urge to eat an entire leftover 6" layer for breakfast (it's mostly eggs, right? Eggs are good for breakfast...). I thought three layers filled with whipped cream/pastry cream and frosted with whipped ganache was about the perfect height for a celebratory 6" cake; four would be unusually tall, but tasty, and two would be fine, but not very high.

3:28 pm
Pastry cream
A stiff pastry cream, suitable for piping or fillings or pudding pies or such things.

Heat 'til steaming but not boiling, stirring occasionally with whisk to prevent sticking:
2 cups whole milk
2 oz sugar

Meanwhile, combine in a large bowl:
1 1/8 oz cornstarch
2 oz sugar
a pinch of salt
And, once combined, add in:
5 egg yolks

When milk is hot, stir a small amount into the egg yolk mixture, then stir in the rest. Whisk vigorously, then dump back into the saucepan. Heat, stirring constantly, until mixture bubbles (splurts, really).

Take off the heat and add:
1 1/2 tsp vanilla (ish - you may want to start with 1 tsp and add more to taste)
2 Tblspn butter

Whisk until thoroughly incorporated. If lumps exist (usually when one is lazy in the earlier combining-things-together steps), and it's important that lumps not exist (or if it's for a wedding cake and it's just sufficiently important that lumps not exist *at all*), press through a strainer while still hot.

If you're using it for something where a "skin" on the pastry cream doesn't matter, gloop it into containers, cool slightly, then refrigerate. If you need to avoid a skin, whisk occasionally until mixture is no longer very, very hot. Transfer to the receptacle of your choice and press plastic wrap to the surface of the pudding/pastry cream, then refrigerate. Before using, whisk a bit to smooth it out.

If using this to stabilize whipped cream as a cake filling:
Whip cream. Whisk pastry cream to smooth it out. Fold 1/3 of the whipped cream gently into the pastry cream. Fold the remainder of the whipped cream extra-gently in. Run a whisk through to check that it's all incorporated, and fill the cake (or cream puffs) fairly soon (you don't need to work as fast as with, say, egg white-based things, but it's still wise to use it immediately).

It should be refrigerated, in general, but will hold up much, much longer than straight whipped cream will (it has been observed to remain light and fluffy three days; then the last of the cake was eaten, so I don't know how much longer it would have lasted). I used approximately equal parts cream (before whipping) and pastry cream; proportions can be varied significantly, though.

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009
9:29 am
Wholegrain Oatmeal Scones (to use up a single extra egg yolk)
1 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
2 tblspns light brown sugar
scant 1/4 tsp salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup milk
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 425F-ish. Combine dry ingredients. Mix in wet ingredients. Allow to stand, briefly, then divide dough in two, pat into circles on a baking sheet, and cut into wedges, separating the wedges slightly as you cut. Bake until golden. Would probably cover approx. three people for breakfast, or two if hearty eaters, or many more if they're the "I'll have half a muffin, please" kind of breakfast eaters. Also good as afternoon snack.

(based on allrecipes "Scottish Oat Scones" but... not quite.)
Tuesday, May 26th, 2009
4:52 pm
Almond sponge cake
Almond sponge cake:
6 eggs, separated
11 oz sugar (divided approximately in half or so)
1/2 cup potato starch
1.5 oz almond meal, toasted
dash salt
1/8 tsp cinnamon
2 tblspns lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp lemon zest

Grease and parchment line the pans (in my case, three 6" pans and 12 mini-muffin pans; it is wise to grease up the *entire* side of the pan, as this batter rises like there's no tomorrow). Start oven preheating to 325F.

Combine half the sugar with the potato starch, toasted almond meal, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Mix in egg yolks, lemon juice, and zest.

Beat egg whites in another bowl until foamy; add the reserved half of the sugar; continue beating until stiff peaks form.

Fold a third to a quarter of the egg whites into the yolk mixture to lighten it; fold in the rest of the whites until fully incorporated.

Divide immediately between the pans and bake until golden brown (~25 minutes for me).
If needed, run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake before cooling - this will allow the cake to shrink more evenly (and yes, it will shrink - don't worry about how ridiculously tall they rise).

Stack layers and fill with raspberry sauce; frost with a fluffy, lightly lemon-flavored, "crusting" seven-minute icing. Enjoy.
Tuesday, May 19th, 2009
4:23 pm
Sponge cake pan math: subtract 1/2 ounce from weight of batter before dividing
To avoid frustration when using a fancy-schmancy handy-dandy kitchen scale to compute by weight how much sponge-cake batter goes in each cake pan, subtract a half ounce or so for the bits that stick to the bowl before you divide the weight of the batter.

These pan-scrapings should stay in the bowl because 1. trying to get them out so that your weights come out evenly takes precious time during which your sponge is deflating, not baking, and 2. scrapings don't have much air and will be heavy and act weird when dumped on top of your otherwise feathery-light cake.

Or rather, pan scrapings should stay in the bowl until you put the pans in the oven, and then you should scrape them out and eat them because they are delicious and everyone likes delicious things.

This is my public-service announcement of the day. A vast fleet of gluten-free wedding cake prototype recipes will be coming sometime soon (if but so I don't lose the little bits of paper the scribbled-down notes are on).
Monday, March 9th, 2009
1:07 pm
I've been cooking and baking, really I have...
... it's just that I haven't been measuring anything all the way through. Oops.

I have a few notes, though:

1. Recently, I made two batches of pretzels, and have determined that two tablespoons of baking soda per 2 quart saucepan of water (3/4 full, topped up as it evaporates - I did measure this!) is just about perfect pretzel-making simmering water, at least according to my tastebuds. Basically, the water should noticeably taste of baking soda, but not leave a terrible *blech* in your mouth for over five minutes. Also, silpats are indeed magic for pretzels - any egg wash that slops over just peels right off, the pretzels come off beautifully themselves, and no aluminum to react with. Hooray! I suspect nonstick-coated baking sheets would also be fine, but might require a bit more cleaning between batches.

2. Homemade hot cross buns are tasty, even when part-whole-wheat. Make a wet, enriched dough using whatever's in your fridge (butter, milk, sour cream, eggs - I used milk, reduced-fat sour cream, and leftover egg yolks, and it seems to have worked) and some dried fruit zapped in the microwave (or simmered on the stove) in orange juice. Basically, make a thick batter first with a teaspoon or two of yeast, and some flour (and, since I generally don't have bread flour, a teaspoon or two of gluten added in) and a bit of salt and a bit of honey (1 tbs or so - I didn't put in much) and the wet dairy-ish stuff with dried fruit, then add flour to the batter, alternating between white and whole wheat, until the dough is tacky to the touch but is starting to pull away from the sides of the kitchenaid. Set it in a warm place (say, in front of one's heater) until it's doubled. Form into balls, let rise until around doubled, slash tops, and bake at 375 until done. I brushed the top with a mixture of milk and honey and popped them back in the oven briefly to dry it for a slightly sweet shiny glaze.

3. I'm beginning to think that one of the more perfect I-have-a-miserable-cold foods is garlic-ginger broth (with or without added chicken broth). Peel one head of garlic, chop it as finely as you feel like (I usually go for 1/3 clove-size pieces), slice about half that amount of fresh ginger, and simmer in a few cups of lightly salted water (or water with a can of chicken broth added. Once it's done, stir (the ginger settles) and drink it as-is for a restorative broth (mmm, clear those sinuses!), or add noodles, rice, egg, vegetables, mushrooms, potstickers, or whatever else for a more meal-ish thing.

4. Oh, and you can make wholegrain potstickers! Mix whole-wheat flour with a bit of salt and water until you get a soft, but not too sticky dough. Pinch off large grape (or small kumquat) sized balls of it, roll them into circles, and fill as normal with whatever you would customarily put inside potstickers. Warning: as with regular homemade potsticker wrappers, they'll stick together if they're too close to each other, unless you dust them with something (the prepackaged wrappers come pre-dusted with something like cornstarch, potato starch, or rice flour).

5. Also, pi(e) day is coming up next Saturday. Yum. We will be observing this holiday.

6. Jello jigglers are surprisingly popular amongst graduate students, even when just cut into squares instead of into funny shapes. And no, they weren't expecting them to be alcoholic.

7. Strawberry marshmallows can be made with strained smashed strawberries instead of double-concentrate - they're a bit less loud in their strawberryness and don't make your entire apartment smell like jam, but the end result is still distinctly strawberry-y, which is perhaps acceptable since this means that it's easier and quicker and all that to make them. They're also fantastic when covered with Ghirardelli's 60% cocoa chocolate (which is the easiest chocolate I've found to quick-temper, presumably because of the high cocoa butter content?); I want to make raspberry marshmallows, which I think would be even better, but I'll be waiting for raspberry season for that.

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009
10:19 am
Flourless chocolate almond cake recipe from the 1960s
I knew my mother had a flourless cake recipe she used to make for dinner-parties years ago. She suddenly remembered it, and used it for a party the other day; I begged the recipe off her. Gluten-free, and really rather rich!

Chocolate Almond Cake. 1960s Receipt.

1\4 lb bitter chocolate
3 oz butter
3 oz caster sugar
3 oz ground almonds
3 eggs (separated)
1 tablespoon rum or brandy
1 tablespoon strong black coffee
Break chocolate and melt slowly in rum and coffee, mix well. Put it
with butter, sugar and almonds in saucepan and stir over a low heat until
blended. Remove from heat and stir in well beaten egg yolks, and fold in
stiffly beaten whites. Turn into buttered, (nowadays lined with non stick
parchment, much easier to turn out) 7 or 8 inch cake tin and cook at 290 F
for 45 minutes or slightly longer. Turn out very carefully, and smother
with whipped cream. I used mixture of cream and greek yoghurt, very good
and not so calorific. Don't forget 290F is a very cool oven!
Saturday, December 27th, 2008
6:24 pm
Onion marmalade
This is still in the process of being made. I gather traditionally one uses red onions, but I didn't have any!

3 large onions
2 tbs olive oil
3 heaped tbs preserving sugar
250 ml white wine (should have been red, but I have small bottles of cooking white wine, and don't of red).
3 tbs balsamic vinegar
1 tbs wine vinegar
A little dried thyme

Chop onions finely, and put in heavy-bottomed pan with olive oil; cook slowly until really, really soft (about 20 minutes). Add the rest of the ingredients, bring to boil and simmer, uncovered, until most of the liquid has evaporated and it's all syrupy. Pot up in sterilised jars and keep up to 3 months (apparently) in the fridge.
6:18 pm
Raspberry jam
There seems something faintly odd about using frozen food to make an older form of preserved food, but jam is nicest when fresh. Very quick and easy. Makes about 3 1/2 lbs.

400 gramme pack frozen raspberries (c 1lb)
400 grammes preserving sugar (c 1lb)

Thaw raspberries and cook until juices begin to run. Add sugar, and continue to heat gently while the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, stirring frequently, and cook for 5 minutes. Test whether set on a cold plate (I found it took more nearly 7 minutes). Pour into sterilised jars, cover, and allow to cool.
6:11 pm
Mummy's cheese biscuits
These are seriously good!

This makes a baking trayful:

2 slices bread, and the same weight of flour, cheese and butter. Any kind of bread; plain flour (wholemeal is fine) and any kind of cheese, but the stronger-tasting the better.

Whizz in food processor until beginning to come together, knead lightly and roll out. Stamp out with cookie cutter, bake on greased baking tray at Mark 5, 180 (fan oven) or 190 (non fan) for 15 minutes.

Edited to add: Forgot to say you can season this with Tabasco and/or dried chilli flakes, 1/4 tsp dry mustard powder, and a sprinkle of dried mixed herbs. And, of course, you can scale up the quantities really easily - the idea is equal quantities of bread, flour, butter and cheese!
Saturday, December 6th, 2008
2:37 pm
Mint! Marshmallows
Combine thoroughly in the bowl of a kitchenaid:
1 cup water
4 packages powdered gelatin
1 tsp vanilla
Some small quantity peppermint extract*

Bring to 235-238F:
2 cups sugar
2 tblspns corn syrup
Enough water to moisten the sugar

Once sugar syrup has reached the appropriate temperature, pour immediately into bowl of kitchenaid (fitted with the paddle attachment, not the whisk!) and turn on to slow (just below whatever speed starts splattering the stuff outside the bowl). As it cools, turn up until it's on high. Once it's safely on high, spray pans (2 8*8 pans or one big cookie sheet or whatever) with cooking spray. Wait until marshmallow is exceedingly fluffy (it came up to the top of my kitchenaid paddle attachment!) and starting to hold its shape decently, like almost stiffly beaten egg whites. Stop the mixer, pull out the paddle attachment quickly, and quickly pour/scrape the stuff into your prepared pans. If you're piping it, there's a very small window to work with before it starts to set and stops piping attractively, so I'd suggest doing half batches and (*gasp*!) not doing anything too intricate.

Allow to cool and set completely. Turn out onto cutting board thoroughly dusted with whatever you're going to use to make them not stick to everything in sight (I generally use a 2:1 mixture of potato starch and powdered sugar), cut into squares or whatever other shape you'd like, and dust all sides with your powdered whatever. Store reasonably tightly covered (if you want them to stay moist) or not covered at all, in a dry environment (if you want them to get slightly tough and dry around the sides so you can toast them!).

* I used 1/8 tsp of legacy peppermint extract (only 1/8 tsp, because I was remembering that it was very strong); unfortunately, it was indeed so ancient that it had lost *all* its alcohol and was only oil. And peppermint oil is strong. If you have this alarming substance, only use a drop or two, as these marshmallows came out Far Too Minty, even with only 1/8 tsp. If you have regular peppermint extract, use your best judgment, but perhaps start with 1/8-1/4 tsp?
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