Friday, August 24, 2012

Luscious Lemon Curd & Announcing The World's Biggest Coffee Morning


As a child whenever I was taken to a patisserie, I was plagued by confusion. I could never decide between the various chocolate pastries on display and the pale yellow lemon tarts. While the chocolate pastries called out to me, it was the lemon tarts which captivated me.  While gazing at them, with my nose pressed against the glass of the showcase, I could so feel the tangy lemon-y taste, the crunch of the tartshell and my mouth would water. Chocolate, even though I loved it, never had a chance infront of the lemon tarts. I always opted for the lemon tart, unless I was so lucky that my parents bought me a lemon tart and a chocolate pastry each. An occurance, I almost never remember.



After coming to the UK, I tasted lemon curd and I was hooked. This pale yellow lemon-y spread tasted exactly like the topping of a lemon tart. I discovered that National Trust gift shops sell bottles of lemon curd. But everytime I wanted lemon curd (which was pretty often) I could not go visiting sites which the National Trust looks after! So I decided to find out how it is made. Found a plethora of lemon curd recipes and video tutorials on youtube. Decided to follow two chefs, I took Nigel Slater's ingredient list with a little tweak of my own and Elinor Klivans' method which she claimed was a foolproof method which produced lump free lemon curd each and every time.



I was not disappointed. I got creamy and luscious lemon curd. It was easy to make and there were no lumps, no straining, none of the horrors about lumps of cooked egg that I read about in some posts. Of course I am pleased as a punch. From now on I can make and eat lemon curd anytime I want. Only after making it, I was told by a friend that most super markets in the UK have it with the jams and the jellies. Oh well good thing I did not know about that, maybe then I would not have made the effort! But now that I have made the effort I am so happy with it.



Onto the recipe. Nigel Slater's ingredient list:
[This quantity yeilds two and a half bottles (of 250 gms each) of lemon curd.]

Zest and juice of 4 unwaxed lemons--I used 3 lemons and 1 lime
200g sugar--Next time I would increase the sugar a little, it was a little too tart for me, but then I added lime juice which is way more tart than lemon juice.
100g butter--at room temperature
3 eggs and 1 egg yolk


Elinor Klivan's Method:
  • Instead of simply combining the ingredients in the pan on the stove as most lemon curd recipes call for, mix the ingredients as if you are making a cake. 
  • Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, beat in the eggs slowly, and only then, at the every end add the lemon juice. 
  • The method works every time: the curd thickens properly, becomes satiny-smooth, and there's not one drop of cooked egg to strain.
  • Once the mixture is ready, add the lemon zest.
  • Pour the mixture into a heavy based non reactive saucepan.
  • Cook on low to low medium heat for 10 to 15 mins, stirring regularly, scrape the bottom as you stir.
  • Do not let the curd boil. 
  • After 10 mins or so the mixture will become thick and custard like.
  • In order to check, take some curd on the back of your ladle, run your finger through it, if it leaves a clear path, your curd is ready.
  • Remove from heat, stir occassionally while it is cooling down.
  • Put in sterilised bottles. The curd stays upto 7/8 days in the fridge.
The beaten curd mixture with lemon zest!

You can have the curd on buttered toast, it tastes lovely.  Apart from that there are numerous ways to use the lemon curd. I made a family sized lemon tart and took to a friends' party.



                                                                      *****

On the 28th of September this year the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning is going to  take place. This is a fantastic one day fundraising event hosted by Macmillan Cancer Support to raise money for people with lives affected by cancer.


Silver Spoon, the homegrown sugar people, are the official sugar sponsor for the event, and this year have decided to launch a fantastic competition as part of their activity. On the 24th August 2012 Silver Spoon and Macmillan are launching Silver Spoons Little Local Hero Awards. They are scouring the country for local heroes under the age of 18 who have done something truly special. Your local little hero could have looked after their little sister when they were ill, gone to great lengths to make Mother’s Day very special, or done something fantastic to raise money for charity. 

If you know someone under 18 in your local area who you think would be a worthy winner, just follow this link and explain in less than 100 words who you are nominating, why, and what you would bake them to say thank you www.macmillan.org.uk/littlehero.

Master P√Ętissier Eric Lanlard, star of Channel 4’s Baking Mad with Eric Lanlard, will choose a Silver Spoon National Little Hero and to celebrate he will bake them a special cake of their choice! 10 runners up will also receive a Silver Spoon Baking Hamper packed full of exciting treats.

There are sure to be some amazing stories from our local little heroes all over the country, but in the meantime don’t forget to register to hold your own coffee morning on the 28th September, just follow this link and you can help to raise money for people with lives affected by cancer. http://coffeeregister.macmillan.org.uk/2012/register.asp


Friday, August 10, 2012

Chocolate Barfis/Fudge...

I  deeply regret to inform you that my laptop in my service since 2009 has recently passed away. Before coming into my service, it had served my husband for a couple of years. The laptop has been loyal to us throughout its life, the last few weeks it had been really sick and could not carry on its duties. Now it is no more. It has left me, its present owner deeply shocked and aggrieved. I sorely miss my laptop. I feel as if my best friend is missing from my life. A friend who kept me company throughout the day and connected me with friends and family, shared the world news with me. Now that it is no more I realise what an important part it occupied in my life.

 With the passing away of the laptop, I feel like I have become homeless. True I have a high tech phone which people promise me that easily take the place of my laptop. But I need to know how to use that phone for my benefit and I just do not. These extra sensitive touch pads are beyond me. My fingers slip and slide and all the work I had done vanishes in a second! By then I am ready to tear out my hair in frustration. So the only other way is to hijack my husband's laptop when he is not working. Now that is easier said than done, since my husband is surgically attached to his precious laptop. But I am no less cunning I have figured out a way....it has be very late at night or very early in the morning. Now my husband works well past midnight most days, I tried to wait, but fell asleep on the sofa and got a frozen shoulder. Now the morning, he leaves for work around 7.30 a.m., so I figured it has to be around 6ish for me to get at least a couple of hours. So dear friends my life has now become a waiting game, I am always on the lookout for my husband not to use his laptop and then pounce on it. Of course you must be wondering why I don't buy a new laptop, I very much intend to, once I get the money. Right now there just isn't any.

Hence my long absence from all of your blogs, but I shall come back soon, very soon.

Not that the sad part is over, lets get on with the happy part i.e. the food part. 



For this month's Blog Hop Wednesdays I am paired with Jayasree's Samayalarai. My God the number of recipes she has in her blog is just awesome. And I loved the way she has organised it. I kept going through her recipes wondering what to make, of course when I could get hold of the laptop. Then I came across this recipe of Chocolate Nutty Rolls and I was hooked. Because ages ago, when I was a little girl, my mother had made this chocolate barfi with nuts. I remember it tasting great and me stealing bits of it from the fridge. I keep asking my mother for the recipe, but she has totally forgotten about it. But me, I just cannot get that taste out of my head. So reading this recipe, I felt this could be that one. It looked like a pretty easy recipe to make too. So I got together the ingredients and got to work. I have deviated a little, I have cut out the coconut from this recipe, also instead of making a roll, I have made these into little barfis.

Lets share the ingredients and the recipe.

 Ingredients:

1 tin of condensed milk
1/2 milk powder
6 to 7 digestive biscuits, finely powdered
4 table spoons of butter
1/2 cup of roasted nuts-- I used cashew nuts and hazel nuts

Method:

Roast the nuts and crush them roughly;
In a heavy bottomed pan, on low flame add the condensed milk and powdered milk and stir continuously, after a couple of minutes add the butter. Let it melt and mix properly. Then add the powdered biscuits a little at a time, mixing well. Once mixed, cook it for a couple more minutes, then add the nuts and mix well again.
Switch off the flame and oil your moulds and spoon in the mixture or turn these into rolls like Jayasree did.

It was not like the barfi my mother made. I do not know if I can ever find the recipe for that one. This one tasted yummy. Loved the flavour the biscuits added. This is on the sweeter side, so a little goes a long way. Also pretty easy to prepare in advance for guests.

*****
Sad girl clipart source clipart.com

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...