Monday, 27 August 2012

Apple Streusel Cupcakes

The whole kitchen smelt wonderful when cooking these delicious moist buttery apple cinnamon crumbly streusel topped cupcakes so so yummy.
Because of the moisture from the apples you may find your paper cases (if you used them) can get wet, you can double case or add another case when cooked if they are a gift.Or don't use cases use a muffin tin :)

Preheat the oven 180 C / 350 F / Gas mark 4 
For the cake
  • 2 oz / 50 grams Butter
  • 2 oz / 50 grams Caster sugar
  • 3 oz / 75 grams Self raising flour
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 Cooking apples (peeled, cored and diced)
  • 1 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
  • A pinch of Salt
  • 1 tablespoon Milk
  • Icing sugar to dust
For the streusel topping
  • 2 oz / 50 grams Self raising flour
  • 1 1/2 oz / 40 grams Butter (very cold and diced)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Ground cinnamon

 First prepare the streusel topping, sift the flour into a bowl and add the butter. Rub together until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs, stir in the sugar than set aside.

For the cake, in a separate bowl beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Gradually add the eggs, one at a time, continue to beat until fully mixed.
Sift in the flour and cinnamon and add to the mixture also adding the milk, fold everything together. 

Spoon the mixture between 12 paper cases


Sprinkle the streusel topping evenly.
Bake for 20 -25 minutes or until browned and firm to touch.
Remove to a wire rack to cool completely before eating, dust with icing sugar before serving.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Food Network Fire Festival

I popped to Covent Garden yesterday to see the food networks fire festival  all things barbecue with from BBQs to grills, spider burners to smokers (it said that on their website), with free demonstration and a variety of food stalls. 
It was free to sit and watch the demonstrations unfortunately it was the hottest day of the year (so far) and the sun was shining directly down on the area so I just had a quick look at the demonstration. It was also very hard to take any photos because of the sun. It was good wandering around the food stalls, there were lots of nice looking and smelling foods to choose from, lots of grilled, stir-fried, roasted foods, sauces, dips, even cupcakes and breads.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Basil and Mozzarella Salad

Sometimes all you want is something super quick, easy and tasty. I always have herbs growing on the kitchen window ledge, basil is one of my favourites.
I also had an email asking what was the salad I had with my last post with the Chicken and Mushroom Rounds and this is it :)

  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Cherry or baby plum tomatoes
  • Small Mozzarella cheese balls (or just tear a large ball up by hand)
  • A little olive oil (your good stuff)
  • Seasoning of choice (if required)
I used small bowls to serve my salad but you could make yours on plates or a large bowl.
Pre-rinse your basil leaves and tomatoes

Place the basil in to the bowls

Add the mozzarella cheese balls

Add your tomatoes

Sprinkle with a little olive and seasoning and that's it you done :) eat and enjoy

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Chicken and Mushroom Rounds

Tasty chicken and mushroom rounds in a light puff pastry. You can make or buy your puff pastry, I made rough puff pastry and added a handful of dried herbs for extra flavour.
The rounds can be eaten hot or cold and are prefect for picnics in the summer or for adding to a lunch pack.
The ingredients are all cooked before baking the pastry, I find by doing it this way I don't have to worry about under cooked chicken (yuk) or having to overcook my pastry to make sure all the ingrdients are cooked. When the pastry is risen and brown the rounds are cooked  and ready to eat :)

Preheat oven 180 C / 375 F / Gas mark 5
  • 2 sheets puff pastry (or homemade puff or rough puff rolled out)
  • 1 Large chicken breast (or 2 - 3 chicken thighs)
  • 1 Onion (chopped)
  • 1 packet Mushrooms (chopped)
  • Chicken stock cube
  • 1 tablespoon Plain flour
  • 1 Tablespoon milk ( you can use water)
  • A handful of fresh herbs of choice (I used basil)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
In a frying pan, add the oil and chicken (I chopped the pieces into large chunks), brown the chicken and continue to cook until just cooked. Remove the chicken do not clean the pan. 

Add the onions and mushrooms to the same frying pan and cook slowly until the liquid comes out of the mushrooms (you are not browning them). Add the milk, stock cube and flour and cook stirring well for a couple of minutes.
Break up the chicken into pieces and add to the frying pan and stir. Set aside until cooled.

Cut rounds out of the puff pastry and place half  onto a prepared baking tray/ s, brush the edges with water. Add a dessert spoonful of the chicken/ mushroom mixture to your rounds. Don't over fill (also don't under fill)

Add the top piece and using a fork go all around the edge to seal. using the fork pick the tops of the rounds a couple of time (this lets the hot steam out as they are cooking). You can brush the tops with milk or beaten egg to graze for an shiny brown top.


Bake for 15 - 20 minutes until pastry is puffed up and brown. Serve 1 or 2 with a salad hot or cold.
Enjoy :)
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