Easy low fat lunch.

Watch me make them on You Tube and you can find the recipe here.

Just a posh version of chicken nuggets and chips.

Oven-cooking is much safer than frying – and keeps the amount of oil to a minimum.

Make your own breadcrumbs from dry stale bread and store in the freezer.

Penny Melville-Brown OBE

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

penny@bakingblind.com

Posh chicken nuggets and chips

Posh chicken nuggets and chips

 

Pot up hot marmalade with your eyes closed!

Watch me do this on YouTube

The finished article

The finished article

Seville oranges may only be available in January.

A talking thermometer, preserving funnel and jug the same capacity as the jars make this possible.

I always simmer the fruit the night before so that they are cool enough to handle.  The fruit has to be fully cooked and softened before adding the sugar.

By keeping the amount of water to a minimum, you don’t have to boil the marmalade so long to achieve the setting temperature.

I test for the set on the stainless steel sink as it cools the marmalade quickly and is easy to clean.  The marmalade will set well when the surface of the test blob wrinkles when pushed by your finger.

You can add some liqueur or whisky to the pan before it goes in to the jars.

I get jars from the Jam Jar Shop (http://jamjarshop.com/): a quick wash and then place in a roasting tray in a very low oven – this dries, sterilises and warms the jars so that they are less likely to crack when hot marmalade is poured in.

Stock up early with these fabulous oranges – you can freeze them whole.

 

Penny Melville-Brown OBE

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

penny@bakingblind.com

 

You can find my recipe here (https://www.dropbox.com/s/dbvockd6glue2fs/170126%20BB%20recipe%20%20marmalade..docx?dl=0)

Don’t forget to remove the shell!

A comforting hearty soup for cold winter days – you can watch me make this on You Tube

Put the crab shell in to this chowder after adding all the flesh to get maximum flavour.

I get bacon from Greenfield pork (www.greenfieldpork.co.uk) – they also did a fabulous hog roast for a big party I gave.

I didn’t have any milk so added 2 heaped tablespoons of skimmed milk powder.

If you prefer a chunkier soup, put aside some drained spoonfuls of the cooked mix while liquidising and then return and stir through.

A dash of cream can make this soup even more luxurious – but certainly isn’t essential.

These quantities made over 3 pints/nearly 2 litres of soup

You can find the bread recipe at: https://www.dropbox.com/s/jryv9ozhile7lsg/170119%20BB%20recipe%20basic%20bread.doc?dl=0

And the Chowder recipe is at:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/8qvxm0czywjy4tk/170119%20BB%20recipe%20crab%20and%20sweetcorn%20chowder.doc?dl=0

 

Penny Melville-Brown OBE

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

penny@bakingblind.com

Chowder and mini loaves for 2

Chowder and mini loaves for 2

img_20170106_130030365

Fancy fish eggs on toast?

Delicious Mediterranean savoury dip – watch me make it on You Tube

In Athens years ago, they mixed taramasalata with mashed potato to make it go further.

If you can’t see, weighing on talking scales can be easiest and cuts down on washing up and other equipment: half a pint of oil weighs 8 ounces

To prevent the taste of the oil being too strong, I used half sunflower and half olive oil.

Smoked cod’s roe can be difficult to find depending on the season.  I ordered from my local fishmonger (http://www.leefishdeli.co.uk/contact) and it arrived within a couple of days.

Cod’s roe come in pairs – each is about 8 ounces weight so you could use one  with half the ingredients and freeze the rest for another day.

Smoked cod’s roe is not cheap but this mix made nearly 3 lbs weight at a cost very close to the supermarket version and, hopefully, better in terms of taste, texture and no other added ingredients.  If you would like to see my recipe, please follow this link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/jb45c53fs64qmhm/170112%20BB%20recipe%20Taramasalata.doc?dl=0

Penny Melville-Brown OBE

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

penny@bakingblind.com

Holiday entertaining

 

holiday-buffet

Watch my videos on You Tube

 

Managing a sit-down lunch for nearly 30 family and neighbours before Christmas was like a military operation: detailed OP Order with actions timed to the minute, full logistics for shopping and a Battle Plan for the seating arrangements.  But I kept the menu pretty simple: multiplying the cottage pie recipe by five (http://wp.me/p5FTN6-9T); using a couple of turkey thighs and drumsticks with mushrooms and truffles for another pie (http://wp.me/p5FTN6-9W); smoked cod, salmon, monkfish and prawns topped with potato for the third choice; really simple roast vegetables topped with toasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds for crunch.  Nearly 30 individual blind-baked flan cases filled with lemon custard or the chocolate and orange alternative was a simple dessert with fruit garnish and cream.

roast-veg turkey-pie

Ready for my Christmas buffet

Ready for my Christmas buffet

Everything could be prepared a day or more beforehand and just needed final cooking in the oven before serving from the hot plates.  And using foil containers with cardboard lids meant that they could be stacked in the fridge and needed no washing up – and there wasn’t a scrap left!

I particularly like table decorations that include lighting – they are completely pictured in my imagination even if I can’t see the final effect.  The front door Christmas wreath features old CDs to add a bit of sparkle – and cooking equipment is my traditional way of suspending it on the front door: it is amazing what you can do with a wooden spoon!

front-door-christmas-wreath wooden-spoon

 

Penny Melville-Brown OBE

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

penny@bakingblind.com

 

table-decoration table-decoration-4 table-decoration-3 table decoration table-decoration-2

Christmas cake decoration.

Turning delicious fruit cakes in to fabulous gifts.

Finished cakes

Finished cakes

Imperial Metric Ingredient
Two-thirds jar   Apricot jam
    Selection of dried fruit and nuts
8 ounces 225 grams Marzipan
    Icing sugar for dusting
16 ounces 550 grams Icing sugar
3   Egg whites
1 teaspoon   Glycerine
    Cake decorations (optional)
    Edible glitter

Place about half the jar of apricot jam in a heatproof bowl with a splash of water.

Heat on half heat in the microwave (or a pan) until quite warm but not hot.

Use a blender to reduce the jam mix to a fine slurry.

With a pastry brush, paint the tops of the cakes and press the fruit and nuts on top.  Carefully brush again with the jam mix to give a glaze and stick the decoration.  Sprinkle with glitter dust if using.

For cakes to be iced, roll out the marzipan using a little icing sugar to dust the surface and rolling pin.  Measure the diameter of the cake and cut a circle to fit.  If icing the sides too, measure the circumference and height of the cake and cut out a rectangle of marzipan to fit.

Ideally, allow the glaze to dry on the fruit decoration for 24 hours before handling again and leave the marzipanned cakes for 24 hours before icing.

To make Royal icing, place the egg whites in a very clean bowl and stir in the sifted icing sugar.

Once mixed, add the glycerine and whisk at high speed for 10 minutes until it becomes very stiff and meringue-like.

Place spoonfuls on the cakes and spread with a palette knife that has been heated in a jug of hot water.

Add cake decorations and glitter if using.

Allow to dry before handling again.

My tips:

I used the leftover brandy/fruit juice liquid instead of water to thin the jam.

If you are making small cakes, just icing the top is probably enough additional sugar.

For cutting the marzipan neatly, you may have a pastry or cookie cutter the right size.

I wrapped a piece of string around the cake to measure the circumference – the long side of the rectangle for covering the sides.

Sifting the icing sugar is essential – it is virtually impossible to beat out any lumps afterwards.

It is critical not to add too much glycerine – I did one year and the icing ran off the cake like droopy knickers!

Wrap the cakes in greaseproof or parchment paper and tie with a ribbon.

Penny Melville-Brown OBE

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

You Tube

penny@bakingblind.com

Cakes with icing and pewter decorations

Cakes with icing and pewter decorations

Christmas cake fruit decoration

Christmas cake fruit decoration