Get ready for Easter and bring on the chocolate. Got some serious baking to do for the weekend and making a start with a Chocolate and Nut Brownie. I am going to cook up a batch today which will hopefully see us through the weekend, somehow I have my doubts.
A baked ham at Easter is now as traditional as at Christmas. There are many variations out there, I love this one made using Welsh Cider. I used a particularly lovely Welsh Cider for this recipe from Rosies Cider in Llandegla North Wales, you can of course use any of your favourite dry ciders.
If, by any small chance, you have any leftover Hot Cross Buns (rare, but you never know) don't throw them away. The buns make the most wonderful bread and butter pudding. The fruit and spices give the pudding a delicious flavour and the spice laden bread soaks up the lovely custardy sauce resulting in a soft, squashy, moreish pudding.
You can make a traditional pudding with buttered sliced bread but the beauty of a bread and butter pudding recipes is you can actually use any bread-like base. Old croissants, brioche, fruit loaf and as already mentioned, hot cross buns. Try them they are lovely and very, very easy to make
Photo © RFB Photography
Sunday is not the same without a roast.The cooking of the Sunday roast is (apparently) in decline. Some say it is because cooking it is so difficult, well it isn't. All you need are a few hints and tips to help you along. You 'll find mine below.
There are many advantages to cooking a roast over the quicker, easier cuts. Once the oven is heated for the meat you can cook the veg alongside, and then of course there's the cooking of the Yorkshire Puddings. A decent sized roast will often make more than one meal as well, turn leftover into a pie, mince, burgers or simply sliced in sandwiches.
- How to Cook the Perfect Roast More Sunday Lunch Recipes
- Perfect Yorkshire Puddings
- Gravy for Roast Beef
- Cauliflower Cheese Recipe
- Roast Potatoes
- Roast Parsnips
Photo © RFB Photography
Despite having many recipes to choose from, I have decided on a Spring Onion, Pea and Mint Soup, quick and easy to make and with all the flavours of spring. This is the best time of year for lamb, and with so much good Spring lamb around, eat it while you can
And to finish it all off, an Apple Pie, it never fails to please . Make the pie in advance and just warm it up a little before serving. That leaves plenty of time for those long walks, or whatever else takes your fancy.
I heard the news - though it may have been announced last week when I was out of the country - British Asparagus is in the shops. I have also now seen it too, so it is true. I love it. The season is short so we must all make the most of it. Growing and asparagus is not easy and our growers need all the help they can get. So tell everyone, British Asparagus is in the shops.
Photo © British Asparagus
The Irish have Barm Brack and in Yorkshire they have, you guessed it, Yorkshire Brack.
Yorkshire Brack is not dissimilar to a Rich Fruit Cake but with a stronger tea infusion and a little whisky (optional). Brack, just like Irish Barm Brack is a perfect tea time cake (or any other time you choose) spread with a little butter. The success of a Yorkshire Brack depends on the soaking the dried mixed fruits in a strong, preferably Yorkshire tea the night before.
If the waistline will not allow fish and chips, more gentle but just as tasty is a fish pie. A great way to eat fish and you can also throw in a few prawns or whatever takes your fancy to ring the changes.
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Photo © RFB Photography
All parts of the wild garlic, aka ramsons, plant (bulb, leaves and flowers) are edible, and, as the name implies, has a distinctive flavour of regular bulb garlic though not as heavy or pungent. If you are foraging for wild garlic bear in mind it does resemble Lily of the Valley plants but one rub of the leaves will identify which is which; the former will give off a garlic scent.
Want a great idea what to make with it? My friend, wild food expert and celebrity chef, Stephanie Moon's recipe for Wild Garlic Soup is delicious and so, so easy to make. Great stuff.
It is now officially spring and how wonderful it is to see the larder door slowly opening to all the wonderful, lighter, brighter foods that the coming seasons have to offer. I hear that soon there will be the first of the British asparagus, so cheering to know it is on its way.
Jersey Royals - are just about peeping out from the shelves and don't be surprised if you go walking out in the country there's the gentle scent of garlic wafting in the air - wild garlic has also put in an appearance. Forced rhubarb sadly may be coming to the end of its season but what exciting food already available and so much more to come. Enjoy.