Saturday, 27 February 2010

Whole lemon pudding

1 lb plain flour
8 oz shredded suet
1/2 - 1 tsp salt
1 egg mixed with milk (or plain cold water)
1 lemon
4 oz Demerara sugar
pinch of grated nutmeg
pinch of ground allspice
1/2 tbsp of cold butter, cut into bits (not obvious how you measure this in tablespoons mind you).


  1. Grease a large pudding basin before you get your hands in the flour.
  2. Put a large saucepan of water on to heat.
  3. Tip the flour gently into a mixing bowl and add the suet. Grate a bit of the lemon rind into this, and add 3 teaspoons of the sugar. Mix these ingredients with a knife and then add the liquid (egg and milk, or water). Add enough liquid to mix to a soft dough with the knife and/or your hands.
  4. Put the blob of dough into the pudding basin and dig a hole in the middle of it. Continue to dig it out and pull it up the sides of the basin until you have a big cavity in the middle of the dough.
  5. Into the hole, place the lemon (cut in quarters), the rest of the sugar, the spices and the butter.
  6. Close up the hole by dragging the sides together and make sure it all seals across the top with no cracks or holes.
  7. Put a lid on the basin or tie it up with greaseproof paper and string.
  8. Put the basin in the pan of water (water should come two thirds up the basin) and boil over a low heat for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
  9. Lift the pudding basin out of the pan, remove the lid and turn the pudding out onto a serving plate (use a dish with sides, e.g. a flan dish because the juice will flow out when you cut it).
  10. Serve with custard, lemon sauce, golden syrup or cream.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

As you like it Sausage and Bean Stew

Essential ingredients:

4 or 6 tasty sausages
3 small or 2 large leeks
1 or two red onions
at least 3 cloves garlic
2 tins of tomatoes, chopped
One tin of butter, kidney or haricot beans
Herbs, salt and pepper

Optional ingredients:

Half a red pepper
Five to ten mushrooms
A few rashers of bacon
A stick of celery
1 glass white wine
Some like it hot - chilli powder, mustard seed, cumin or other spicy spices

Prick the skins of the sausages and brown them in the bottom of a large pan. While they are sizzling, chop up the leeks, onions, garlic, pepper, mushrooms, celery and bacon. When the sausages are looking brown, take them out, leaving their fat in the pan. Throw the chopped vegetables (and bacon) into the pan and start them cooking in the sausage fat (with the lid on). Cut the sausages into chunks, and throw them back into the pan. When the vegetables are just soft, add the chopped tomatoes and white wine, and season with salt, pepper, herbs and spices. Simmer with the lid on for at least twenty minutes. Then rinse and drain the beans and add them to the stew, and simmer with the lid off for another twenty minutes.

Serve with mashed potato, rice, or a big chunk of crusty bread.

Saturday, 6 February 2010

Cheese bread and butter pudding

Six slices of mature bread
6 oz grated cheese
1/2 pint of milk
2 eggs
Salt, pepper and mustard powder.

Butter an oven proof dish. Butter the slices of bread thickly. Cut them into triangles.
Lay some triangles butter side down in the dish to cover the base.
Sprinkle thickly with most of the grated cheese.
Add the rest of the bread butter side up, and sprinkle with a little cheese.
Measure the milk into a measuring jug and break the eggs into it. Add a pinch of salt, pepper and mustard powder to taste. Beat well with a fork and pour the custard over the bread.

Leave to soak for an hour or more.

Bake at 425º F, 220ºC, gas mark 7, for 30 minutes.
Serve at once, piping hot.

Yorkshire puddings, large and small

Ingredients (to serve 4 - 8 people)

4 oz plain flour
1/2 tsp of salt

1 egg
1/2 pt of milk

(or 2 eggs, and enough milk to make 10 fluid ounces with the eggs).

For best results use the liquidiser:
Break the eggs into the liquidiser. Add the milk. Whizz for a bit.
Add the salt and spoon in the flour, a bit at a time.

Blend for 30 seconds.

Alternatively, make the batter by hand:
Measure the flour and salt together into a large mixing bowl.
Make a well in the centre.
Break the eggs into the centre and add the milk (or combine these in a measuring jug first).
Use a wooden spoon to beat the liquid gently at first and then more strongly, gradually drawing in the flour in which the pool of liquid lies, until all the flour has been drawn in and the batter is smooth. Then beat hard to create an airy bubbly batter.

Cooking instructions:
Using either a large roasting tin, or a patty pan with either four yorkshire pudding cups or 12 bun cups, place a little dripping or lard in each cup. Put the pan into the hot oven and heat until the fat is close to smoking.
Pour the batter into the tins (all of it into the roasting tin, or a little into each cup) and return to the oven quickly. Bake in a hot to very hot oven for about 30 minutes for the roasting tin size, or 20 minutes for smaller ones. The puddings should be well risen, light and crisp, but not blackened on the top!

Serve with gravy, with roast meat, or as a pudding with golden syrup, fruit, warmed jam and cream.