The perfect flapjack

Greetings chums and how are you this fine day? Before I launch into the actual how to of this recipe I should probably let you in on a little secret…I’ve never made flapjacks before (despite the fact I adore it and think that it’s legitimately allowed as a breakfast food – it’s the oats). ‘Why?’ I hear you cry? Well I’m ridiculously worried I’ll suck at it. The consistency of a flapjack is so vitally important that I fear I’ll never be able to achieve the perfect chewy yet soft consistency that I favour. And I’d be devastated (and not to mention severely pissed off) if I spent all that time making them only to realise as I took that first bite that they actually tasted a bit shit really. So with that concern in mind I’ve always stayed clear of them. Recently I made flapjacks for the first time ever so I thought I’d share the brilliant recipe with you!

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They were piping hot but I still nibbled at them!

At the weekend I had a massive flapjack craving and thankfully the ingredients were in the cupboard so I thought I’d give it a whirl…and they were magnificent! Just the perfect consistency, thank goodness. They were chewy and soft and golden and just delicious. There’s a chance I might have eaten five in one go…they were that good it would have been rude not to! The recipe’s below in case you fancy giving them a whirl – you won’t regret it I promise! Flapjacks rule!

IMG_3174A half eaten flapjack

The all important ingredients:

  • 350g butter
  • 1tbsp/15ml golden syrup
  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 450g jumbo oats

And the super-simple recipe:

  • Melt the butter
  • Add the sugar and golden syrup and bring the mixture to the boil
  • Remove from the heat and add the oats. Stir together well
  • Pour into a lined baking tray and spread out evenly
  • Bake for 25 minutes on 180oC (until the top turns golden)
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 1 minute before cutting into squares
  • Then leave the flapjacks in the pan for another 15 minutes before separating them and moving them to a wire rack to cool
  • Eat and eat and eat until they’re all gone – hooray!

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Ready and waiting to be eaten!

Have you ever made flapjacks and were you successful with the consistency?

– Fi x

This recipe was originally posted on The Adventures of Fi.

Afternoon Tea at The Swan, Bankside

This past Saturday Fi and I were treated to afternoon tea at The Swan Pub on Bankside. This was a birthday present – a pretty awesome one if you ask me – from our Aunt and Uncle. The present also included a tour of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. So we did our tour, wandered around the exhibition and then headed next door for a champagne afternoon tea treat. There’s something so perfectly British about Afternoon Tea isn’t there? Plus added champers? A totally winning combination in my opinion!
Afternoon Tea
So afternoon tea at The Swan looked a little something like this.
 
Champagne Afternoon tea and cakes
And included…
– Brioche finger rolls with four different fillings; cream cheese & cucumber, egg & cress, ham hock & mustard and smoked salmon.
– Scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream
– cakes, so many cakes; shortbread jammie dodgers, mini chocolate eclairs, coffee opera cake and lemon curd madelines.
I think you’ll agree that it’s a veritable feast for anyone’s taste buds.
Now here’s a pic of Fi enjoying herself!
Fi enjoying afternoon tea
There aren’t hundreds of types of tea to choose from, like at some other hotels, and you don’t get offered seconds (or thirds) of the food but there is plenty of food to go around. And it’s a decent option if you want to do Afternoon Tea without spending lots and lots of your hard-earned cash.
Finally I really must recommend that you do the tour of The Globe Theatre – it was so interesting, very informative and the building is spectacular. Did you know it’s there is no metal in the construction? It is held up by over 9,000 wooden pegs – how amazing is that?
– Lau xx

 

Festive Food

I don’t know about you and your family but when it comes to Christmas in the Evans house it’s all about family time, as we spend the whole time playing games, watching Christmas TV, going on walks and of course making and consuming delicious food together! As this is a food blog we thought we’d share some of the yummy stuff we eat over the Christmas period. Sadly we won’t have the recipes for everything we mention, as they aren’t our creations, but we promise to one day rectify that with some guest bloggers – I’m looking at you Mum and Dad!

20121231-203805.jpgChristmas Cake – Every year we have a Christmas cake, well I say we but I really mean me and occasionally Dad as we’re the only ones who like it. Lucky me! Also I say Christmas cake but we should really use that term lightly. As while it does contain fruit and it does get spiked with alcohol it’s not a traditional recipe as I don’t like normal Christmas cake. So Mum makes her special version of Christmas cake.


Mum’s Mince Pies
– These are a classic at Christmas time and are simply delicious. I think what makes them so lovely is that they don’t have pastry over the entire top so some of the mincemeat goes all gooey and caramelised, yum! I’m salivating just writing about them!

                20121231-203833.jpg    sausage roll

Dad’s Sausage Rolls – Again another Christmas classic for our family. You know as soon as Dad has made the sausage rolls that Christmas is on the way! These are from my Nanna’s recipe which Dad has mastered absolutely perfectly with the crunchy pastry, sweet red onion and soft sausage meat.

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Christmas Dinner – This is my all time favourite meal of the entire year. The Evans family Christmas dinner consists of a super huge turkey, stuffing (inside and out of the turkey), roast potatoes, home grown roasted parsnips, roasted sweet potatoes, leeks in white sauce, carrots, bread sauce, sausages, bacon, gravy, cranberry sauce and of course the obligatory brussel sprouts! It’s tradition that you don’t get Christmas dinner in our house until you’ve been for a walk and then you can’t have any presents until you’ve had at least one brussel sprout. This tradition stems from childhood when my sisters and I HATED them (and pretty much all vegetables) and tradition has stuck , even after all these years!

Potato Salad – Again another tradition in the Evans family, we’ve had this for as long as I can remember on Christmas night with our cold meat. We don’t just have the leftover turkey but we also have a boiled ham and a roast beef joint. Oh it’s all so scrumptious!

Shortbread Biscuits – Lau makes these each year for us to share at Christmas, it’s usually what she eats instead of the Christmas cake as she’s not a fan of it – weird I know! Anyway this year we made star shaped ones, although they look a little burnt in this picture – more like gingerbread I think, but they honestly tasted delicious!

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Sherry Log – I make this each year for the big family get together that usually happens on Boxing Day and its definitely a firm favourite with all of the family. We’ve shared the recipe before so head to the Special Boxing Day Sherry Log recipe, we promise its easy and you won’t be disappointed!

So there you have it, this is the festive food that we make and share over Christmas, the most magical time of the year. So what about all of you, what festive food do you share over the Christmas period or what are the food traditions in your family at this time of the year? We’d love to know.

Happy New Year, Fi x

Sticky Gingerbread Cake

I think it’s a well established fact that we are both HUGE fans of gingerbread biscuits, I think we’ve written about gingerbread on numerous occasions! But considering this love affair/obsession with gingerbread men it’s strange that neither of us have ever made gingerbread cake before, craziness or what! So when I saw Nigella making sticky gingerbread cake whilst at home last weekend I knew we just had to give it a whirl. I mean gingerbread in a sticky, sweet cake of loveliness, we’d be crazy not to get baking!
So today we made it and it’s absolutely scrumptious, its so good that I’m sad that we’ve never made it before, we’ve been missing out for almost 28 years, what a travesty! The cake is soft, squishy, rich and moist, with a yummy treacly gingerbready taste. It’s literally worth dying for!

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Scrumdidliumptious Sticky Gingerbread Squares

So here’s what you’ll need:
150g Butter
200g Golden Ssyrup
200g Black Treacle
125g Dark Muscovado Sugar
2 tsps Ground Ginger
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda, dissolved in 2 x 15ml tbsps warm water
250ml Full-Fat Milk
2 Eggs, beaten
300g Plain Flour

Melt the butter, sugar, syrup, treacle, ground ginger, cinnamon and cloves all together on a low heat
Remove from the heat and add the milk, eggs and dissolved bicarbonate of soda along with its water
Beat the flour and all the liquid ingredients together until well mixed
Pour the mixture into a tin lined with baking parchment. We used a tin that was approximately 30cm x 22cm x 7cm)
Bake on 170°c for 50-60 minutes until the cake has risen and firm on top
Once cooked leave to cool in the tin before cutting into squares (we made about 30 squares of cake)

According to Nigella’s recipe you can make these up to two weeks in advance and then store in baking parchment and an airtight container. We didn’t try this but if it’s true that will be revolutionary!

So there you go, that’s how to make the most scrumptious sticky gingerbread cake I’ve ever tasted. So far I’ve had three pieces just plain, but I think my next one will be heated in the microwave with a touch of cold custard – perfect!

-Fi xx