Lemonade Scones

So as promised, here’s recipe one from our trip to Australia, AKA the most yummy scones ever. When we we’re away we spent a lot of time with our Nanna and this is one of her recipes. Our Nanna is an exceptionally good baker and we’ve always done a lot of baking with her, her sausage rolls and scones are legendary. So when she told us she had a new scone recipe and that it only used three ingredients, one of which was lemonade (!) we were a little sceptical! How could it possibly beat the amazing scones that we remember from our childhood? Well all I can say is yep the recipe is THAT good, go on give it a whirl this jubilee weekend and see what you think, we’re fairly certain you won’t be dissapointed!

700g self-raising flour
300ml double cream
375ml lemonade
100g sultanas (if you want to add them)

Sift the flour into a bowl and form a well in the centre.
Pour the cream and lemonade into the well and mix well with a wooden spoon and then with your hands to form a firm dough. (Add the sultanas once the dough starts to come together.)
Roll dough onto a floured surface and cut using a round cutter. I rolled the dough out until it was about 1.5cm tall, but I would suggest you did it to about 2cm, as my scones weren’t quite thick enough!
Place the scones on baking tray and bake on 220°C for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
Serve with clotted cream and jam.

We made about 30 scones, but like I say they were a little too thin, so I would think you’ll make about 15 if you roll the dough out until it’s 2cm’s tall.

The final product on my new Cath Kidston cake stand – love!

One other great thing about this recipe is the fun you can have by making others guess the ingredients! When I took the leftover scones into work, I asked everyone to work out the three ingredients. The flour proved easy to guess, as for cream and lemonade, those ingredients were a lot harder. I think I had lots of guesses of milk, water, butter, sugar and baking powder but not one person guessed that lemonade was a key ingredient!

– Fi x

Pizza

I don’t know about anyone else but I absolutely love pizza, if I go to a restaurant and it’s on the menu then 99% of the time I will have to order it. But I’m incredibly fussy about the topping I like. I will only eat pizza with these toppings; any kind of cheese, tomatoes, spinach, ham, egg, tuna, ham, rocket or bacon. I’m sorry but if a pizza has any other ingredients added I will certainly be picking it off. Which inevitably causes problems as I end up with greasy fingers and cheese under my nails. To try and combat this problem, Fi and I have been trying to move away from ordering take away pizzas. Instead we’ve been making our own pizza dough, which allows us to create our own individual pizzas and feel less guilty about the number of calories we’re consuming, because let’s be honest, a homemade pizza isn’t going to be as bad for you as a shop bought one. It’s also become a staple dinner option when we’re catching up with friends.

So, on that note, here is the recipe that we use. Makes 4 individual pizzas.

500g strong white bread flour
1 sachet of dried yeast
1 tsp salt
2tbsp oil
360ml tepid water

Mix the yeast with the water and add the oil. Put the salt and flour into a large mixing bowl.

Add the wet ingredients to the bowl of dry ingredients. Mix together to form a dough.

Turn out onto the work surface. The dough can be quite sticky at this point so make sure you sprinkle flour on the surface.

Knead the dough for about 10 minutes, or until it’s stretchy and smooth. Place into an oiled bowl and cover with cling film and leave to rise for 90 mins in a warm place.

We like to leave this in the fridge over night instead, so we always make it the night before we need it.

Once risen divide the dough into four pieces (or into however many pizzas you want to make) and start to flatten out, honestly I’ve found that it’s easier to shape it with my hands, but if you’d prefer to roll it out with a pin then go that way. Once you’ve got your desired thickness, start to compile your pizza.

In our flat, this means liberally spreading the base with a tomato sauce. We use either our homemade tomato sauce (recipe to come soon) or a basic pasata from the cupboard. Next add your cheese and other toppings. This is where you can get adventurous – I’ve seen people add everything under the sun to their pizza while others are satisfied with just your basic mozzarella and tomato. That’s the beauty of making your own pizzas no arguments over toppings or eating something that you don’t really want.

So get your aprons on and start experimenting with base thickness and toppings. Let us know what your favourites are. Also keep an eye out for our homemade tomato sauce recipe coming soon.

– Lau

Hot Cross Bun Bread and Butter Pudding

When it comes to puddings I never choose the fruit salad. It’s all about comforting food like sticky toffee pudding or apple crumble with me! But considering this love of such desserts, weirdly I’ve never made any of these puddings myself. They’ve always been made from others or they’ve been shop bought. I’d been meaning to make a pudding like this for a while, so when I saw this recipe for a variation on bread and butter pudding I knew I’d have to try it and considering it was around Easter, it seemed like the perfect time to give it a whirl! And I’m glad I did because it’s delicious! I defy anyone not to love it as much as, if not more than, a classic bread and butter pudding!

2 oz butter
6 hot cross buns (halved)
1 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp sultanas
¼ tsp grated nutmeg
¼ tsp cinnamon
350 ml milk
50 ml double cream
2 large eggs
1 oz sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Heat the oven 355°F/180°C/Gas 4.
Grease a serving dish with butter (1 litre in size).
Spread the hot cross buns with the remaining butter and cut in half diagonally.
Then place butter side up in the dish so that the slices overlap one another.
After doing one layer of hot cross buns sprinkle them with nutmeg, cinnamon, raisins and sultanas.
Repeat until the dish is filled and then sprinkle the remaining raisins and sultanas on top.
Next heat the milk and cream in a saucepan making sure it doens’t boil.
Beat the eggs with 3/4 of the sugar and the vanilla extract until pale in colour and light and airy.
Add the milk to the eggs and beat until combined.
Pour the egg mixture over the bread until all the liquid is added and then press the surface so that the bread goes into the liquid.
Sprinkle the remaining sugar on top and leave to rest for half an hour.
Bake the pudding for 40-45 minutes on 180 °C until golden brown, well risen and the egg is set.
Serve hot with ice cream or custard. Yummy!

**For a more orangey variation spread the hot cross buns with marmalade as well as butter.**

– Fi

Marmite

Now neiter Lau or I like Marmite but we did see this whilst in Australia and thought it was genius! It was in a little sweet shop in Leura, which is up in The Blue Mountains just outside Sydney. The shop was full of all sorts of things, including the biggest selection of Pez we’ve ever seen. Back to marmite though, changing the name like this is so clever and a great marketing ploy. There’s also another version, Ma’amite, that we saw recently that’s been done specifically for the Queen’s Jubilee, again genius!

– Fi

Aussie Inspiration

We’ve been fairly quiet over the last few weeks and that’s because we’ve been visiting family in Australia. Not only did we have a brilliant time seeing everyone but we also got a lot of new recipes ideas! The food over there was delicious but it did raise a few very important questions. Such as…

1) How come Tim Tams aren’t more prevalent over here? Seriously, there just the BEST things ever although I’m hard-pressed to choose my favourite out of all the yummy flavours. I think my current favourite is either Mint Dark Chocolate or possibly the Honeycomb ones.

2) Why do they have Musk Sticks rather than prawns? Musk Sticks are stick versions of the prawn penny sweets that you used to buy from the Pick ‘n’ Mix counter at Woolworths. So why if they have the sweets can’t they be in prawn shapes and what’s with the weird name?!?!?!

3) Why do Australians use the American names for vegetables? It’s not capsicum, eggplant or zucchini, it’s pepper, aubergine and courgette. Seriously I find that so annoying.

4) Why don’t more UK restaurants serve potato wedges with sweet chilli sauce? They taste a million times better than chips, plus anything with sweet chilli dipping sauce is always a no-brainer!

So not only did we have some yummy food whilst away we also found a lot of great new recipes including, scones that only need three ingredients (yes just three!), chicken and chickpea stew, marble cupcakes (see below) and some rather scrumptious looking pork hoisin pancakes! So watch this space for those recipes over the next few months, once we come to an agreement about which to do first obviously!

– Fi