Monthly Archives: January 2015

Seville Orange Marmalade

Seville Orange Marmalade © Sue Todd 2015

Seville Orange Marmalade © Sue Todd 2015

January and it’s that season once again, the Seville Orange Marmalade season!  Once you’ve made your own marmalade its impossible to go back to the stuff you buy from shops, it’s over sweet and so lacking in taste compared to the real thing.  Actually its much the same with any sort of preserves, home-made are always better.

I made this version of Seville Orange Marmalade for the first time just after moving home a few years ago, where I found myself with my very first AGA!   Not being very sure where to start I raced off to get some ‘AGA’ books.  This recipe comes from Mary Berry and her book ‘The AGA Book‘, which I highly recommend, it has a host of useful AGA information in it as well as some great recipes and instructions.  Everything is of course very easy in an AGA, but when confronted with one for the first time ….. it doesn’t seem possible. Continue reading

Gluten-free, Grain-free Banana Pancakes

Banana Pancakes, grain free, gluten free from English Country Cooking. © Sue Todd 2015.

Banana Pancakes, grain free, gluten free from English Country Cooking. © Sue Todd 2015.

These banana pancakes might be more aptly described as banana omelettes, but the idea of having a banana omelette really doesn’t appeal to me, so it took a while for me to come  round to this idea and try it out.  How ever I’m a true convert now.  Nutritious, scrumptious, so, so easy to do and fast.  What more can you ask?

Banana pancakes (or omelettes) are in vogue at the moment and there is stuff everywhere about them, with a number of variations, using cocoa,  vanilla extract and more.  With the view of more being less, I wanted to keep this quick and simple.  After all, there’s only one of us able-bodied at the moment, so fast and simple is good.

Literally just eggs and banana, you can’t go wrong I thought.  Well actually you can.  Do be careful when making these to keep them really small, not like normal pancakes and if you can’t flip normal pancakes (like me!!) then be prepared for these to look less than perfect.

They’ll still be edible and delightful to boot, they just won’t look quite so good – the proof of this is in the pictures where I’ve tried to dress them up prettily with fruit, but they had fallen apart substantially as I manhandled them over, in, and then out of the pan.  However it didn’t spoil the eating and they were so good I had them two days running for breakfast and they will feature very often for my breakfast now.

Banana Pancakes, healthy breakfast, grain and gluten free.  © Sue Todd 2015.

Banana Pancakes, healthy breakfast, grain and gluten free. © Sue Todd 2015.

Ingredients: (per person)

  • 1 medium banana
  • 1 egg
  • knob of butter or coconut oil
  • fruit and maple syrup to serve (raspberries, pear, blackberries and blueberries are all good)

Method:

Mash the banana well, you could blitz it with a hand held blender but it adds to the washing up, thought it will be faster and more effective.

Crack the egg open and beat it well before combining with the banana and mix up well.

Heat some coconut oil or butter in a skillet on a hot hob and add just a little bit of the mixture – about 1 tbsp of the mixture at a time for teeny tiny more manageable pancakes.  Let the pancake cook nicely on one side before flipping.  Once cooked lift out on to a warm plate and continue until the mixture is all used up.  You may find you can do a couple at a time this way.

Banana Pancakes and fresh fruit with maple syrup. © Sue Todd 2015.

Banana Pancakes and fresh fruit with maple syrup. © Sue Todd 2015.

Serve  with fresh fruit and maple syrup.  I used pear and some blackberries we had in the freezer, they were lovely.  I just defrosted the blackberries in a bowl on the AGA while they were being made.

Carrot Hummus, something healthy to start the year.

Carrot Hummus © Sue Todd 2015.

Carrot Hummus © Sue Todd 2015.

It’s that time of year where everyone is eating healthy food and the gyms are packed with those of us keen to shed the extra Christmas pounds.  Well we’re not going off to the gym and actually our diet hasn’t changed much even for Christmas, but we thought something healthy to start the year off was a good idea, so we offer you Carrot Hummus.

We stumbled across Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’ Carrot Hummus recipe while looking for another recipe, as yet unfound, its currently in one of those ‘safe’ places never to see the light of day.  It seems I’ve brought my penchant for safe places into 2015, oh well ….

Back to carrots…. This carrot hummus recipe works well with carrots that are past their best too.  I had a bunch of carrots that I suspected were headed for the compost pile – its currently feast or famine while I try to get the hang of this online shopping for groceries malarkey.  As we had more carrots than we actually need, we forgot about our original intentions and set too, to make this Carrot Hummus.  I have to say its fabulous and we had some for lunch today on toasted leftover french bread, along with some little quiches which also needed eating up like the bread.  It would work well to pop in a lunch box with crudites, pitta breads or on toast.

If you don’t have cumin seeds or coriander seeds but you do have ready ground cumin and coriander simply substitute these and miss out the toasting part.  It still tastes good.

Carrot Hummus garnished with basil and lemon © Sue Todd 2015.

Carrot Hummus garnished with basil and lemon © Sue Todd 2015.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds,
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds,
  • 6 tbsp of olive oil or rapeseed oil,
  • 1 tsp honey,
  • 500 g carrots, peeled,
  • 3 large garlic cloves, bashed,
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon,
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini, (or smooth peanut butter),
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Method:

If you are using a conventional oven, preheat it to 200C/Gas 6.  Using a dry frying pan, toast your cumin and coriander seeds until they are just fragrant, you don’t want to burn them, so no longer than a minute.  Then grind these with a pestle and mortar until you have a fine powder.  (If you are using ready ground cumin and coriander, miss this bit out!).

Take a large bowl and whisk together 4 tsps of your oil along with the honey and spices (toasted or non toasted).

Dice the carrots up into 4 to 5 cm chunks and put these into the bowl with your dressing and the add the garlic.  Mix it all up well and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Tip the carrots and spicy dressing into a small roasting tin and pop it in the oven to roast.  If you are using an AGA, use the roasting oven.  They’ll need about 35 minutes in the oven, but do take them out half way through and turn them so that they cook/brown evenly.  When they  beginning to char nicely around the edges and are tender then remove them from the oven and leave them to cool for a while.

Tip the whole lot into a food processor now, ensuring that you remove any skins from the garlic cloves.  Add the tahini, the remainder of the oil and the orange and lemon juice and whizz up in the food processor until you have a puree.  Taste the resulting mixture and add more seasoning if needed.  That’s it!  Simples!

 

Carrot Hummus © Sue Todd 2015

Carrot Hummus © Sue Todd 2015