Monday, 28 August 2006

Bank Holiday Baking - Malt Loaf

Today’s foodie interlude for the bank holiday was to bake a malt loaf, I’ll need to let in rest in a tin for a couple of days before it will be at its best. All sticky and juicy, I experimented slightly as the recipe said syrup but I had run out so substituted treacle and honey instead. Hopefully the flavour will be ok. The recipe makes a 2lb loaf tin.


  • 8oz Self-raising flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2tbsp Dark brown sugar
  • 6oz Dried fruit
  • 2tbsp Syrup or Treacle or Honey 2tbsp Malt extract
  • ¼ pint milk


Put the flour, salt, fruit and sugar in a bowl, then place the milk, malt and syrup (or whatever you are using) in a pan, melt together and then mix in to the flour. Beat until thoroughly mixed, pour into a greased and based lined loaf tin and bake for approx 1 1 ¼ hour @ 170 degrees. Cool on a wire rack, when cool wrap in foil and store for a couple of days until sticky if you can wait that long. Serve in thick slices, buttered if preferred.

Sunday, 27 August 2006

Raspberry Sorbet & other things !!!

Today I have been experimenting with a simple Raspberry Sorbet using local raspberries. I simply blitzed the raspberries and then pushed the puree through a sieve to remove the seeds. I then made a sugar syrup using ½ cup of sugar to the same quantity of water. I was really surprised as the vivid colour of the puree, especially once it was churned in the ice cream maker, really bright pink. The resulting sorbet after 20 minutes churning is delicious with a really clean bright flavour.

The sorbet instantly reminded me of the raspberry sorbet we enjoyed at the fantastic OCC (Otto’s creative catering) in Dunworley, southern Ireland. If you are every in the area you must partake of OCC. A fantastic organic/ local food / slow food / restaurant / cookery school. The food is amazing all fresh, seasonal and prepared with love. Book a table and experience some of the best food in your life.

Saturday, 26 August 2006

A place that thyme forgot

I am currently reading the above book, which is the record of the travels of William Black in search of local delicacies from around Britain. Amazingly enough he starts with Preston - England's newest city, my place of work. He bemoans the demise of Tripe - one of the beloved delicacies of Lancashire. I can't really remember it much from my childhood but my husband waxes lyrically about the UCP, on the strength of this reminisance I visited Preston market and found the tripe stall as mentioned in the book still thriving. I also later the same week whilst visiting Booths (heroic north west regional supermarket) was amazed to find tripe for sale in a packet on the butchery section.

I am yet to pluck up courage to try it, but I am told its best served with lashings of malt vinegar. I will let you know how I go on. This month has also seen samphire( succulent seaweed) being pickled, something I haven't done before. I remember fondly picking samphire on a day out at the seaside with my late Granddad and pickling it when we got home. The taste is still the same but I can't perfect the stripping of the branches with your teeth when you eat it, just leaving the stringy core.
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