Cheese & Marmite Scones

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IMG_20150625_192835[1] 26/06/2015

This recipe makes 8 huge scones but I can’t get enough of them at the moment so only huge will do. I love cheese scones anyway but the Marmite in them makes for an extra tasty, flavourful bake. The Marmite is not too over-powering but blends with the cheese to create a gorgeous savoury scone.

The use of cream cheese in the spread means the scone stays moist and creamy throughout. No extra butter needed here, just a big appetite and a cuppa!

I think the key with this recipe is not to overwork the dough. Mix it until it has only just come together and lightly press and roll it to shape.

Ingredients:

  • 450g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 3 tsp Marmite
  • 1 large egg
  • about 250ml milk
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 140g mature cheddar, grated, plus optional extra for topping
  • 100g full-fat cream cheese

Method:

  1. Heat oven to 220C/200C fan and dust a baking tray with a little flour. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Put 1 tsp Marmite in a jug, add the egg and make up to 300ml with the milk. Stir in the oil then beat really well to dissolve the Marmite.
  2. Tip 85g of the cheddar into a bowl and mix with the cream cheese and remaining Marmite to make a spread. Toss the rest of the cheese through the flour mixture, then pour in the milk mixture and stir with the blade of a knife until it comes together. (You need to work quickly once you’ve added the liquid as it activates the baking powder.) Tip onto a lightly floured work surface and gently knead the mix, taking care not to overwork it, as it will make the scones heavy.
  3. Lightly roll the dough into an oblong about 20 x 25cm. Spread with the Marmite mixture and roll up from the longest side to create a tight, fat cylinder. Pat the ends of the cylinder to straighten them then slice into 8 pinwheels and put on the baking tray, patting them to make flattish rounds. Top with more cheese if desired. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden and cooked.
  4. Leave for a few moments on the tray to allow the cheese centre to harden a little then transfer to a wire rack to cool. Eat warm or cold. These are best eaten on the day they are made but freeze very well and are just as good defrosted and warmed through in the oven.

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Tollhouse Cookies

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IMG_20150616_172218[1] 25/06/2015

After a short break, moving house and no internet connection, I’m back with a baking vengeance bringing you all things tasty!

Who isn’t a fan of squidgy cookies filled with good things? I thought these would be a good start to try out the oven in my new house. I nearly grilled them but got there in the end and was left with soft, gooey chocolate cookies.

You can add any chocolate chips you like. I used a bag of white and a bag of milk chocolate chips. Add nuts if you like too. I think walnuts would be really nice in these. The dark brown sugar is definitely a must here as it gives the cookies an amazing rich treacle flavour.

Makes 24

Ingredients:                                                          

  • 4oz butter or margarine
  • 2oz granulated sugar
  • 3oz dark brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 ½oz plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6oz chocolate chips
  • 2oz walnuts, chopped (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper.
  2. Cream together the butter or margarine and the two sugars until the mixture is light and fluffy
  3. Break the egg into the bowl and add the vanilla extract. Beat this into the mix. Sift over the flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Stir to blend.
  4. Add the chocolate chips and walnuts (if using) and mix to combine thoroughly.
  5. Place heaped teaspoonfuls of dough 2 inches apart on the prepared trays. Bake for 10-15 minutes until lightly coloured. Allow to cool for a few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Apple & Blue Cheese Scone Bread

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IMG_20150610_114950[1] 10/06/2015

As with pretty much all of my recipes, I bake what I feel like eating at the time. This week, my fascination is with all things Ploughmans. By that I mean pickles, pork pie, ham, loads of cheese, apples, and fresh bread to dig into. This scone bread is a combination of a few of those things and uses Blue Vinny which is a creamy blue cheese local to me but feel free to use whatever you like. The scones are crunchy and light, creamy from the cheese, sharp and moist from the apple and extremely moreish. They are excellent served with pickles, ham and even more cheese and apple or even on their own with a bit of butter or as a side to soups and stews.

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz (225g) self raising flour
  • 2 oz (50g) butter or margarine
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 oz (75g) Dorset blue vinny cheese (crumbled, or other cheese of your choice)
  • 1 Bramley apple, cored, grated and squeezed of liquid
  • 1 large egg, beaten (mixed with 4 tablespoons milk)
  • extra milk for the glaze

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 220ºC. Grease a baking tray.
  2. Rub the butter or margarine into the flour, salt, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Stir in cheese and grated apple and mix well.
  3. Mix to a soft dough with the egg and milk, reserving a little for glazing. (Add more milk if the dough is too dry).
  4. Dust a surface with flour and roll out the dough to a round 1.5 cm (½ inch) in thickness and cut into 8 triangles.
  5. Place on the baking tray and brush with milk and a little flour. Bake for about 15 – 20 minutes until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  6. Serve warm with butter.

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These are definitely best eaten on the day of making or warmed through in the oven slightly the next day but they also freeze wonderfully and are great to have to just pull out of the freezer when you fancy a savoury treat.

Lemon Curd Coconut Slices

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IMG_20150530_132941[1] 02/06/2015

 

Here is a real homely, feel-good, taste-good baking recipe for a gooey lemon curd slice topped with marshmallow-like meringue and a subtle coconut flavour running throughout.

This recipe would also work really well with a tangy jam such as raspberry or blackcurrant.

Makes 12 slices

Ingredients:

For the base:

  • 100g butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g white caster sugar
  • 85g desiccated coconut
  • A pinch of salt
  • 3 large egg yolks (save the whites for the topping)
  • 4-5 tbsp lemon curd

For the topping:

  • 3 large egg whites
  • 75g white caster sugar
  • 50g desiccated coconut
  • handful coconut flakes (optional)

Method:

  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan. Grease a 20 x 23cm traybake tin with a little butter and line the base with a long strip of baking parchment that extends above the rim of the tin at either end – this will make it easier to get the slices out of the tin later.
  2. To make the base, tip the flour, sugar, salt and coconut into a bowl, mix everything together then rub in the butter with your fingers to make coarse crumbs. Stir in the egg yolks with the blade of a knife and bring the mixture together with your hands to make a dough. Press the dough into the base of the tin, smoothing it with the back of a spoon to make an even layer. Spread the curd over most of the dough, keeping it a little bit away from the sides of the tin.
  3. To make the topping, whisk the egg whites until stiff then gradually add the sugar to make a glossy meringue. Fold in the desiccated coconut then spoon over the curd layer. Scatter with the coconut flakes, if using, and bake for 25 minutes until golden.
  4. Leave to cool in the tin, then carefully lift out, using the parchment to help you, and cut into slices. These will keep in an airtight container for 2 days.

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