Posts Tagged ‘pastry’

Cakes & Bakes: Butter pie

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

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home made butter pie | H is for Home

Last week was actually British Pie Week so, being big pie fans chez H is for Home, we just had to get involved! We went for the vegetarian variety and decided upon a local, Lancashire favourite – butter pie.

It’s my meal of choice when we get a take away from Grandma Pollard’s, our local chippy. It’s a very humble pie –  ;-) – the filling consists of few, very affordable ingredients – potatoes, onions and of course lashings of butter. There are free-to-pick herbs planted all around Todmorden courtesy of Incredible Edible, so we added a bit of fresh thyme too. I’ve not made it before but it proved a very quick & easy dish… and utterly, butterly delicious!

It’s a real celebration of simple ingredients. We served it with stir fried greens, drizzled with a little balsamic vinegar – pickled cabbage is another traditional accompaniment.

Cakes & Bakes: Butter pie

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: makes 2 portions

Cakes & Bakes: Butter pie

Ingredients

  • For the pastry
  • 115g/4oz plain flour
  • 25g/1oz butter
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of white pepper
  • Ice cold water (2-4 tbs)
  •  
  • For the filling
  • 2 medium potatoes (such as Maris Piper or King Edward)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 25g/1oz cold butter (made into curls using a peeler)
  • 50g/2oz butter (for softening the onions)
  • sprig of thyme, woody stalks removed
  • 4 tbs milk
  •  
  •  

Instructions

  1. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl
  2. Add the butter incorporating using your fingertips or pastry blender until it resembles fine breadcrumbs
  3. Add just enough cold water to make the pastry form a ball
  4. Put the pastry ball into a plastic bag (or wrap in cling film/Saran wrap), press out the air and refrigerate for half an hour
  5. Peel the potatoes and onion, slice the potatoes a little thicker than a pound coin, and the onion into half rings
  6. Parboil the potatoes until just soft but still holding their shape (8-10 minutes)
  7. Sweat the onions and thyme over a low heat in the butter until soft. Stir regularly so that they don't stick to the base or colour
  8. Roll out two thirds of the pastry and use to line a 20cm/8inch diameter round pie dish
  9. Trim the edges using a sharp knife around the circumference
  10. Drain the potatoes into a colander/large sieve and allow to cool
  11. Once cool, layer the potatoes, onions and butter curls into the lined pie dish. Season with salt and white pepper
  12. Using a pastry brush, brush around the edge of the pastry with the milk
  13. Roll out the remaining third of the pastry (also using the trimmings from the base if necessary) and carefully lift it over
  14. Using your fingers or a fork, press the edges of the top & bottom layers of the pastry together
  15. Remove any excess pastry lid with a sharp knife
  16. Make a few holes in the pie top to allow steam to escape
  17. Brush the remaining milk over the top of the pie
  18. Bake at 180ºC/350ºF/Gas mark 4 for 30 minutes until golden brown on top
  19. Slice & serve immediately
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-butter-pie/

Cakes & Bakes: Eccles cakes

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014

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Eccles cakes with cup of tea | H is for Home

Eccles cakes. In my opinion – they’re not cakes, or even biscuits – they’re pastries!

We watched the Great Sport Relief  Bake Off recently and one of the celebrities’ challenges was to make Eccles cakes. Whilst watching, Justin started going on about how much he loves them and why haven’t I made them yet.

To be honest, they’ve not really been on my baking radar. For one, they involve pastry which I’m not fond of making. For two, they’re just pastry with currants. But, to placate him, I agreed… and I always need the pastry practice!

I zig-zaged around the web and amalgamated a few recipes I found there. Most called for candied peel and/or orange juice, neither of which I like, to be added to the currants. I’m often a recipe purist but not in this case!

Remember a couple of paragraphs ago I said Eccles cakes are ‘just pastry with currants’? How wrong was I? They were flaky, fragrant, buttery & delicious… and NOTHING like the dried up old things you find to buy in the supermarket.

Cakes & Bakes: Eccles cakes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: Makes 12-15

Cakes & Bakes: Eccles cakes

Ingredients

  • for the puff pastry
  • 225g/8oz strong flour
  • 225g/8oz slightly-salted butter, straight from the fridge, cut into 1½cm cubes
  • 4tbs cold water
  • 1tbs lemon juice
  •  
  • for the filling
  • 15g/½oz butter
  • 100g/3½oz currants
  • 50g/1¾oz golden caster sugar
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1tsp ground nutmeg
  •  
  • to finish
  • drop of milk to brush the pastry
  • 1 egg white, beaten to glaze
  • 10g granulated sugar

Instructions

  1. Put the flour and 225g/8oz slightly-salted butter into a food processor and pulse about half a dozen times. Just enough to combine and not cream the butter completely
  2. Empty mixture out into a large mixing bowl, make a well in the centre and add the cold water & lemon juice
  3. With your fingerss, bring the mixture together just enough to form a loose ball of dough
  4. Empty mixture out on to a lightly floured surface and roll the dough out into a rectangular shape
  5. Fold the dough into thirds along the long end and roll out into a rectangle again
  6. Repeat the last step another two times before wrapping in cling film (Saran wrap) and putting it into the fridge for about an hour
  7. In a medium-sized saucepan, melt the 15g/½oz butter and remove from the heat
  8. Add the currants, caster sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg and combine well
  9. Preheat the oven to 220ºC/425ºF/Gas mark 7
  10. When the dough has cooled, remove from the fridge and roll out again to about a 3mm/?in thickness
  11. Using a 10-12cm/4-4¾in-diameter cookie cutter ( I didn't have one big enough so used a small glass bowl ) cut out 12-15 rounds
  12. With a pastry brush, one at a time, brush the circumference of each round with milk, put a teaspoonful of the currant mixture in the centre and carefully fold up the pastry to the centre
  13. Flip over and gently flatten with a rolling pin until you just about see the currants through the pastry
  14. Make three, small parallel scores on the top before putting it on to a greased 39cm/15in x 27cm/10½in baking tray
  15. With a pastry brush again, egg wash the top of each pastry, sprinkle with granulated sugar and put the tray in the oven
  16. Bake for 20 minutes, until the tops are golden brown
  17. Remove from the oven, allowing to cool on a wire rack before demolishing with a cup of tea! :-)
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-eccles-cakes/

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Cakes & Bakes: Mushroom and broccoli quiche

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

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slice of mushroom and broccoli quiche with side salad

It’s been a while since our Cakes & Bakes series featured something savoury – it’s been very cake-heavy of late! In order to redress the balance, here’s a very easy-to-make and very tasty mushroom & broccoli quiche.

You can buy a range of quiches quite cheaply in any supermarket – but you just can’t beat a home-made, straight-out-of-the-oven version though! Pair it with a side salad for a healthy, hearty afternoon meal.

Cakes & Bakes: Mushroom and broccoli quiche

Yield: 6-8 slices

Cakes & Bakes: Mushroom and broccoli quiche

Ingredients

  • For the pastry
  • 110g/4oz plain flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 50g/2oz Stork or other margarine, cubed
  • 2tbs cold water
  •  
  • For the filling
  • 25g/1oz butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 8 closed cup or chestnut mushrooms, chopped
  • 2-4 stems of tenderstem or purple sprouting broccoli (depending on length)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 275ml/½pint double cream
  • sea salt & freshly milled pepper to taste (we swear by Bart Bristol Five Blend peppercorns)
  • 75g hard cheese such as mature cheddar or Gruyère, grated
  •  

Instructions

  1. Sift the flour & pinch of salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl
  2. Add the cubes of Stork gently rubbing them into the flour until it resembles crumbly breadcrumbs
  3. Sprinkly over the cold water, 1tbs at a time bringing together the mixture with your hands until it forms a smooth ball of dough and the bowl is clean
  4. If it's still a bit crumbly you may need a few more drops of water. Be careful not to add too much
  5. Wrap the ball of dough in cling film (Saran wrap) and refrigerate for at least half an hour
  6. Preheat the oven to 170ºC/350ºF/Gas mark 4
  7. Once chilled, roll out the dough into a circular shape (with a circumference slightly larger than the dish)
  8. Carefully ease the rolled out pastry over the top of a flan dish or shallow tin. Press the pastry into the sides and base of the dish.
  9. Prick the base all over with a fork or skewer
  10. Bake the empty pastry base for 15-20 minutes
  11. Remove from the oven while you prepare the filling
  12. Heat the butter in a medium-sized saucepan on a low heat and soften the onions in it for a few minutes
  13. Stir in the chopped mushrooms and cook for half and hour or so, stirring often, until the liquid has evaporated
  14. Using a slotted spoon, evenly put the onion & mushroom mix on the pre-baked quiche base and lay the spears of broccoli on top
  15. In a measuring jug or similar, whisk the eggs together thoroughly before adding the cream and whisking again. Season with salt & pepper before pouring over the tart filling
  16. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the top
  17. Bake for 35-40 minutes until the centre is set and the cheese nicely browned
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-mushroom-broccoli-quiche/

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Cakes & Bakes: Pain aux raisins

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

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pain aux raisins on a plate with cup of coffee

Despite having almost permanently cold hands I’ve never been very good at making pastry. I thought I’d man up, face my fears and give it another bash. We love a real coffee with fresh croissant or Danish as breakfast-in-bed on a Sunday morning, so I thought I’d give pain aux raisins a try. I used a combination of Dan Lepard’s and Paul Hollywood’s pastry recipes with a little ad libbing of my own!

Cakes & Bakes: Pain aux raisins

Cakes & Bakes: Pain aux raisins

Ingredients

  • For the starter
  • 1 tsp fast-acting yeast
  • 75ml warm water
  • 50g strong white flour
  • For the dough
  • 125ml cold whole milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 250g cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-2cm cubes
  • 300g 00 flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Beaten egg, to finish
  • For the filling
  • 50g raisins, soaked in rum or cold tea for at least an hour or overnight
  • 25g Demerara sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon or allspice
  • 50g soft butter

Instructions

  1. For the starter, in a warm bowl dissolve the yeast in the warm water, beat in the flour until smooth, cover and leave for an hour to bubble
  2. In an electric mixer whisk the milk, eggs and sugar into the starter
  3. Using a dough hook, work in the butter cubes, flour and salt
  4. Scoop the dough out on to a floured worktop and quickly work it into a ball
  5. Wrap in cling film or put into a zip-lock bag and refrigerate for a hour
  6. Roll out to 1cm thick. Fold it in by thirds, roll it out again as before, fold it in by thirds again, then wrap and chill for 30 minutes. Repeat this rolling & chilling sequence twice more, Leave the dough in the fridge for 8 hours or overnight to rest & rise slightly
  7. Roll a piece of dough to 30cm x 18cm x 1cm thick
  8. Mix the raisins, Demerara sugar, ground cinnamon and soft butter
  9. With a spatula, spread the mixture evenly over the rolled out dough
  10. Roll up tightly towards you along the length, so you have a short, fat log shape
  11. Cut into wheels about 1½cm wide. At this point you can wrap each piece individually in cling film and freeze
  12. Line a baking tray with non-stick parchment paper, put the prepared pastries on top, cover loosely with cling film and leave to rise somewhere warm until almost doubled in size (1-2 hours)
  13. Once risen, brush with beaten egg and bake at 200ºC (180ºC fan-assisted)/390ºF/gas mark 6 for 10 minutes. Lower the heat to 180ºC (160ºC fan-assisted)/350ºF/gas mark 4 and bake for another 15-20 minutes, until crisp
  14. Leave to cool on the baking tray placed on a wire rack for 20-30mins
  15. Dust lightly with icing sugar
http://hisforhomeblog.com/cakes-bakes/cakes-bakes-pain-aux-raisins/

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Afternoon Scones

Sunday, September 11th, 2011

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homemade scones, homemade strawberry jam and clotted cream

I’ve been meaning to make some scones for a while – in fact ever since coming back from our holiday in Wells-Next-the-Sea. While we were there, I spent a sunny afternoon at Wiveton Hall Fruit Farm picking strawberries. I filled this massive punnet with sweet, fat, fragrant strawberries – specimens such as I’d never tasted before!

homemade jam made with strawberries we picked at Wiverton Farm on the North Norfolk coast

Those that didn’t get eaten there & then returned home with us and made into a massive pan of strawberry conserve. We gave lots away to friends & family and kept a couple of jars for ourselves. We’ve had it on toast & croissants, some was used as sponge cake filling, but you can’t beat it on warm, freshly baked scones!

baking ingredients to make homemade scones

To make the scones, I once again used a recipe from The Great Big Cookie Book by Hilaire Walden. Here it is:

Afternoon scones

Afternoon scones

Ingredients

  • 225g/8oz/2 cups plain flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 2.5ml/½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 5ml/1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 25g/1oz/2 tbs butter
  • 150ml/¼ pint/? cup milk or buttermilk

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas mark 7. Flour a baking sheet. Sift the flour, salt, bicarbonate of soda and cream of tartar into a bowl. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Gradually stir in just enough milk to make a light, spongy dough.
  2. Turn the dough on to a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Roll to 2½cm/1in thick. Cut into rounds with a floured 5cm/2in cutter.
  3. Place the scones on the prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with milk.
  4. Bake for 7-10 minutes until the scones are well risen and golden brown.

Notes

Serve with jam and a big dollop of clotted cream!

http://hisforhomeblog.com/cookery/afternoon-scones/

Rodda's clotted cream container & packaging

PS – We usually buy Rodda’s clotted cream which is delicious – but don’t you just love the packaging too?!