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Showing posts from January, 2011

Reine de Saba

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Recently, I had a go at clearing out the scary place known as The Mysterious Store Cupboard and I found some ground almonds that I bought for a Tarta de Santiago that I didn't quite get round to making. I then found the ground almonds that I bought for the winter-warming Gingerbread that I still haven't bothered to make. Finally, I found the ground almonds that I bought for the Galette des Rois that I didn't make because I got distracted. So ground almonds had to be put to work. The Reine de Saba (the Queen of Sheba cake) is a well-known, classic French recipe – I'm fairly sure there's a version of it in one of Elizabeth David's books – but it has a lot of variations. For what it's worth, this is the way I make it and, happily, it's made a small dent in the ground almond mountain. 130 g  dark chocolate (around 70% cocoa solids) , broken up 30 ml Grand Marnier (or other orange liqueur) 100 g unsalted butter, cut into smallish cubes and allowed to so

Sloe Chocolate Truffles

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In my post last year about sloe gin I admitted that after I strain and bottle the gin, I then throw away the sloes. Until now  the recipes that I've come across for recycling sloes haven’t really worked for me. But shortly after writing that post, as I roved out on a fine autumn morning to view the fields and take the air, I met a lady gathering rose hips (sorry, for some reason this posting is turning into a traditional English folk song) . We got talking about sloe gin and she told me off (this happens quite a lot).  She told me that I shouldn't waste gin-soaked sloes and that I should try eating them with chocolate. Well, I've been thinking about that for a while and eventually I tried making these truffles. It turns out that she was right to tell me off, of course. To keep truffles smoother and lighter, I've tended to think that you have to make some kind of custard. I was in a bit of a hurry this time and so I used a decent shop-bought custard instead. The go

New Year Veg Soup

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So that's 2010 over and I notice that lots of bloggers are presenting their selection of the best of 2010. I've seen cookbooks, gadgets and recipes covered but I'm surprised that I've not seen anyone dealing with the vital business of The Best Songs To Listen To While Cooking . Well, after considerable thought, here's my 2010 selection. (Actually some of these might have been released in 2009, but who cares?) Best for stirring and beating:   The Imagined Village - Sweet Jane Best for cake baking and other happy tasks:   Stornoway - Zorbing Best for calm actions such as folding:   Richard Hawley - Remorse Code Best for cheering me up when things don't taste right and for reminding me just what's important:   Chris Wood - My Darling's Downsized Plus honourable mentions for ‘Bombay Bicycle Club - Rinse Me Down’ and ‘GĂ©rald De Palmas – Dans Une Larme’ for when I can’t decide what to cook. Happy New Year and let's hope 2011 is a good one. I have