Category Archives: BAKERY
Cranberry cupcake is an easy and quick recipe and can be made all year around as you can use frozen fruit. Cranberries are the deep-red, tart fruit of a low, scrubby, woody bog plant. They are a winter berry that has become synonymous with the Christmas table for many. The bulk of the world’s cranberries are now cultivated, mainly in certain parts of Canada and North America, but cranberries can still occasionally be found growing wild. One of the remarkable properties of fresh cranberries is their ability to keep for months on end in a cool place. This is because they contain large amounts of benzoic acid, which is a natural preservative.
The flavours of the Mediterranean simply ooze from this decorative Greek olive bread, speckled with black olives, red onion and herbs. Originally this bread was a Lenten food for the priests of the Eastern Orthodox Church, although now olive bread or elioti is produced all over the country and can be enjoyed at any time of the year. It is generally a white bread, enriched with a little olive oil, flavoured with marjoram or oregano and studded with black olives. Throughout Greece, local bakers produce their own particular bread, which necessarily becomes a favourite with their customers. In the cities, the more enterprising bakeries produce a wide range of breads flavoured with raisins, olives and herbs, but among the islands and in the mountains, most loaves continue to be of the plain, farmhouse variety – large and crusty and sometimes sprinkled with sesame seeds.
Apricot and plum brioche is real summer recipe. Both apricots and plums are seasonal fruits and it is easy to find very nice varieties. Apricots are at their best and cheapest in July, but avoid any fruit that feels spongy. Apricots can vary greatly in quality. If they taste woolly and bland when eaten fresh, cook them into a dish and they will become luscious and flavoursome. The British plum season starts in late July with the Opal variety and finishes in mid-to late-September with the Marjorie Seedling. Each variety has a 2-3 week season. Plums develop an intense flavour when cooked. They make excellent jam, jelly and fruit cheese, but can also be bottled. Strong spices such as star anise, cloves, vanilla, cinnamon and black pepper all taste good with poached plums. Cream and custard based accompaniments such as ice cream or rice pudding balance their flavour. Out-of-season imported plums can be cooked, but are much sweeter and taste best eaten raw.
Crumpets – golden and fresh from the griddle, a simple batter cooked until light and tender. In early times, they were hard pancakes cooked on a griddle, rather than the soft and spongy crumpets of the Victorian era, which were made with yeast. The crumpet-makers of the English Midlands and London developed the characteristic holes by adding extra baking powder to the yeast dough. The term itself may refer to a crumpled or curled-up cake, or have Celtic origins relating to the Breton krampoez meaning a “thin, flat cake” and the Welsh crempog or crempot, a type of pancake. They have a characteristic flat top with many small pores and a chewy and spongy texture. They may be cooked until ready to eat warm from the pan, but are frequently left slightly undercooked so that they may be cooled and stored before being eaten freshly toasted.