Ant and I had this chunky new potato and bacon salad for lunch. It was very filling and would probably split between 3 portions rather than 2 for a lunchtime meal.
What can be better than a jacket potato on a cold January evening? A cheesy colcannon stuffed jacket potato, that’s what! We had baked beans and gammon with our potatoes, I just didn’t fancy speed foods, I needed some comfort foods!
When I was little, my mum would buy jars of mincemeat, strawberry jam and lemon curd so she could make mince pies, jam tarts and lemon curd tarts at Christmas. There were four of us children and we could get through a huge amount of these goodies so she’d always make a big batch.
When I had my own family, I tried doing the Christmas baking like my mum used to do, but I’m a really terrible pastry maker. They always seemed to turn out too hard to chew!
Now I buy the mince pies from Tesco!
Complete Farmhouse Kitchen Cookbook
This year I want to try again, but not only do I want to get better at making the pastry, I also want to make my own mincemeat.
Ant has a battered copy of The Complete Farmhouse Kitchen Cookbook which I always turn too when I want to find a traditional recipe for something. I don’t know how traditional most of them actually are but it just feels like they should be!
Traditional Mincemeat Recipe
I’m using Dorothy Sleightholme’s mincemeat recipe because she cooks the apples and it says doing so helps the mincemeat last longer.
Yields nearly 2kg
- 450g apples
- 15g butter
- 225g each of currants, raisins and sultanas
- 125g candied peel
- 125g dates, chopped small
- 225g soft brown sugar
- 175g grated suet
- grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 4 tablespoons rum
- Peel, core and finely chop the apples.
- Melt butter in a pan, add apple and cook gently to soften. Leave to go cold.
- Add the cooked apple and the rest of the ingredients to a big bowl and mix well together.
- Leave in the bowl, covered, stirring occasionally for the next 24 hours.
- Put in cold but sterile jars, do not fill quite to the top. Place waxed paper discs on top of the mincemeat and cover with jam-pot covers.
- Label and store in a cool, dry, dark place.
With an abundance of apples this year, I’m trying lots of new recipes to use them up! Today we have a recipe for Apple scones and we’ve served them with bramble jam and cream. Delicious!
- 225g self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
- 50g butter
- 4 tbsp golden caster sugar
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 1 apple, peeled, cored and diced
- 125ml milk, plus extra for brushing
- Fresh cream and bramble jam to serve – we got ur bramble jam from Tesco
- Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7
- Tip the flour into a large bowl with the butter then rub in using fingers until the mix looks like fine crumbs.
- Stir in the sugar and cinnamon, add the apple and give everything a mix.
- Pour in the milk and stir it in quickly, then fold dough over 2-3 times until it’s a little smoother.
- Tip onto a lightly floured surface; pat into a round about 3cm deep.
- Dip a 6cm cutter into some flour then cut out scones, flouring the cutter each time.
- Squash offcuts lightly back into a round and repeat until all dough is used up.
- Brush tops with a little milk then place on to a lightly floured baking sheet and bake for 18-20 mins until risen and golden.
- Allow to cool on the tray.
- To serve, split scones then spread with a dollop of cream and a spoonful of bramble jam.