Almost too bright to look at, our small halogen heater is in the living room combating the cold of our old terraced house. Rather than putting the central heating on, or switching on the gas fire. I don’t know whether it is cost effective. Would running a blow heater be less expensive. I wish I knew where there was a comparison site to check on?
For instance, for baked potato’s I now part cook them in the microwave then bake the outside of them in the oven. But is this fuel efficient or should I just microwave them?
One pproblem is that the previous owner had the two reception rooms turned into a through lounge, plenty of space but more difficult to heat. As climate change increases and a move from fossil fuels is instigated what will be the new means of heating?
If you don’t eat meat or wheat read no further (or substitute gluten free and meat free).
I wanted to use up some shop bought short crust pastry and some small sausages.
I baked four small sausages in the oven, gas mark 6 about 15 minutes. I let them cool slightly and got the left over pastry out the fridge. I pressed lots of off cuts of pastry togethef with a larger piece so that I ended up with a large-ish oblong. Then I placed two sausages together onto the pastry at one end and the other two at the other end. I folder the pastry over and sealed it by pressing it together. I used a bit of milk to glaze the top. There was a small bit of pastry left over so I wrapped that around some bits of cheddar cheese.
I cooked the sausage rolls for twenty minutes on gas mark 6. The rolls had started to brown. I put them back on for another five minutes.
When I took them out they were cooked on top but a bit soft underneath. I think this was because there was still a bit of fat coming out of the sausages?
The resulting rolls were tasty but I wish I had used shop bought flakey pastry instead.
I decided to make a pear cake with a couple of large pears off the tree. I didn’t have a recipe to hand so followed the one on the back of my bag of self raising flour.
The ingredients were:
150 grams each of self raising flour, butter and sugar.
Three medium eggs
A small amount of water
This was to make a Victoria sponge. I decided I would add raw sliced pears into the base of my glass flan dish (I don’t have a cake tin or grease proof paper).
Method. It said cream butter and sugar together till its light and fluffy, then add the eggs and a bit of water. Then gently fold the self raising flower in.
Problem. I can’t eat sugar. So I used sweetener that you can bake with. The amounts were questionable. 150 grams when you don’t have scales. So I guessed the amounts and I think I put about 200 grams in. The sweetener said 200 grams was five tablespoons, so I used four instead. Then the eggs? I used three, but they were large. Finally I guessed a mug full of flour would be about right….
I creamed the butter and sweetener together and made it softish and fluffy. Then I slowly added the eggs. The mix started to curdle. I tried adding a bit of flour and it started to look like undercooked scrambled eggs! I got my hand whisk out and tried to beat some of the lumps out. Then I folded in the flour, I made a batter, but still saw flecks of butter in the mix.
So I spooned the mix over the pears in a well greased Pyrex flan dish. I put the cake in the oven on gas mark 4 (medium heat) initially for thirty minutes. When I checked it, there were bubbles of gas coming out of it and it was still pale. So I put it on for another twenty minutes. The bubbles were still happening but the surface felt fim and was golden brown. When I tapped it, it sounded hollow, and when I pricked it with a knife that came out clean.
I eased the cake out of its case. Some of it broke up because it had stuck in the dish. It was greasy, but I cut a section out and it held its shape.
It tasted eggy but nice. The pears had cooked through.
Next time I might start making it with flour, then rubbing the butter into that till its like breadcrumbs, adding sweetener, then making a hole in the flour before adding the eggs. I wish I’d remembered that before I made this cake.
An explosion in the kitchen? No hubby making apple bread. There was flour over the draining board, the crockery drainer, in the sink, on the floor. He got me to scrape the dough off his hands it was so sticky. He had added oats and rye flour to a bag of breadmaking flour which had added yeast. It wasn’t rising very well but he added cooking apples to the loaves.
Now they are in the oven, cooking, I wonder how they will turn out? In half an hour I will know.
Having lots of apples is great, but then you have to use them. I want to cook a pie or a crumble or a cake, I just don’t have the energy at the moment. I might even stew the apples and make some pancakes to go with them. It would be good with some lemon juice. Lots of choices, lots of ideas, hopefully tasty.
Cooking and dessert apples, over the last few days we have collected lots of them.
I have questions. Can you freeze apples if you just cut them up, or do you have to cook them first?
Crumble or pie? Cake or tart? I’m thinking of what to use them in. Do I cook them till they are mush and turned to puree then freeze it. Can I make Cider? I also have lots of pears on the tree, can I make Perry? I might bake them in the oven after removing the cores and then serve them with custard?
It’s looking OK. Bread made from a kit, added a few rolled oats and a bit of bran.
I used oats on the outside once it had proved and been knocked back. When I took it out of the bowl to put into a Pyrex flan dish it had trebled in size. It only shrank slightly when I put it in the dish. The kit I had used contained yeast and had mixed seed in it. It was cooked on gas mark eight (high heat) for twenty five minutes. Now it needs to cool. The loaf needs turning ouf of the flan dish but it’s too hot at the moment. I don’t have any oven gloves so will use a tea towel. Will have a bit later on with bread and cheese if it’s OK?
Made a couple of years ago… Now flour is never on the shelves in the supermarket, or if there is there is no yeast!
I think the photo shows we had brie with it, on burleigh ware plates.
It had a very good rise, probably because my hubby used flour and yeast separately. The problem with ready mixed bread making kits is that they don’t always rise well and you have to get the amount if moisture and temperature right so that it is soft enough to rise but not too squidgy. But you can always add extra flour if it’s too wet. The dough needs kneading to stretch it and get the gluten in it working. Obviously this doesn’t work with gluten free flour.
Making not made! I found some rye flour and half a pack of yeast in the cupboard. Hubby and I both worked on it. Really tough to knead. We added porridge oats because it was too squidgy and I’d run out of flour. It’s taking time to rise but hopefully it will be OK… X
Update, cooked OK its a bit doughy in the middle. Not bad. Had some hot with butter.
I did the drawing as today’s challenge was something you’ve made for the urban sketchers new challenge. It’s black ink pen in my A5 cartridge paper sketchbook.