Friday, 27 July 2012

butterbean houmous

couldn't wait to eat it
Quickly made, butterbeans mixed some of the cooking liquid, together with a tablespoon of tamari, garlic, parsley, olive oil and lemon juice. Yum


half a tin of butterbeans (around 200g)
1 tbsp tamari
1 clove garlic
handful of parsley (leaves only)
olive oil
lemon juice (from half lemon/1 tbsp)
pinch of salt

I use a stick blender, but you could mash the beans with a fork, or use a liquidiser instead. If you are using a fork, remember to chop the pasley and garlic really fine, otherwise you'll end up with parsley in your teeth and surprising lumps of garlic every few mouthfuls. DON'T go mad with the blender, the beans may become a bit chewy.

  • drain the butterbeans, keeping back a little liquid
  • put butterbeans, garlic, tahini, roughly chopped parsley, a couple of slugs of olive oil and blend until smooth, no longer
  • add some liquid if it becomes a bit dry
  • taste, and adjust salt if you like

amazing olive oil made by friends
you are unlikely to find a better olive oil than the one we received from Paula, Kevin and Alice

Cassis cake

success, this is two hours later...
Our blackcurrant bushes gave some delicious fruit this year, not tons of fruit, they are just established, but the  currants were plump, round and wonderfully black. I cooked them up in a pan with just a little sugar and tried them with yoghurt, but the flavour was very strong. So I decided to try them in a cake, just stirred into a basic sponge mixture. Result? Delicious.

I lined a large tart tin, and treated it like pudding, because I knew the fruit would sink, and I thought it might be a fall-apart-a-bit kind of a cake.  It worked, because it wasn't too tall, and didn't fall apart, however in a deeper tin I don't think it would work. So stick to a big tin, or halve the quantities and use a smaller tin.

If you don't have home grown fruit, use some frozen berries.


see how the fruit sinks through the cake mix
for 10"/25cm tart tin


mugful of blackcurrants or berries 
heaped tbsp sugar

cook on low heat for around 20m, don't allow to burn

four egg sponge ingredients (it's a clue)

set at 200C

4 eggs
250g each sugar, self-raising flour, butter
1/2 tsp baking powder
tsp vanilla

I use demerera sugar

  • Mix the lot together thoroughly
  • pour mixture into lined tart tin
  • spoon fruit mixture on in five big puddles and stir through quickly with spoon handle (don't mix completely, you're just marbling the mixture)
  • cook for 30m and check
  • ready when skewer comes out clean
  • leave to cool completely before removing from tin

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Date and Walnut loaf

Chickens and date and walnut loaf