In our house we really like pizza, especially when the parents aren’t about and the cottage turns into the Sunday lunch stop for the Sister, Little Sister and Small Brother. It’s easy to make the dough and sauce ahead of time, leaving the final assembly for when everybody turns up. That way they also get to choose their own toppings, which keeps everybody happy. This is how it works:
With St Patrick’s Day being tomorrow, one’s thoughts turn to food. Specifically food of an Irish sort, which includes, naturally enough, all things potato. So when I was reading through my recently acquired copy of Margaret Bates’ Talking about Cakes with an Irish and Scottish Accent, her recipe for Potato Apple Cake caught my eye. She said it was a delicacy from the orchard districts of Co Armagh but didn’t give an exact recipe, describing it as two rounds of potato cake sandwiching an apple filling and cooked on the griddle.
It’s not that I need an excuse to bake, especially if there’s a cake and/or chocolate involved, but the radio was so full of International Women’s Day blather today – George Hook was particularly enjoying himself with his list of “top ten females” on Newstalk! – that I just had to make something to distract myself.
Sometimes, in this house, baking is not just for the bigger members of the family and, along with the Flapjacks and Shortbread, there’s even a tin marked with Little Missy’s name. It’s currently filled with these twice-baked Banana Spelt Biscotti, which I love because they are easily made, contain no sugar and it’s up to you about the kind of flour you use. These, along with LM’s favourite rice cakes, are perfect afternoon snacks – and easily portable – but she is quite happy to munch on them at any stage, and especially loves a small smear of marmite on the biscotti when we’re at home.
Sweet treats for the one you love: Chocolate Caramel ShortbreadNever mind flowers and forget about going out for dinner, with Valentine’s Day tomorrow, get baking for your sweetheart with this Chocolate Caramel Shortbread. This recipe makes plenty to devour and share but it’s so good that your biggest problem will be not eating the entire thing today.
Christmas is the time for long, leisurely brunches with family and friends. Make it easy with dishes that you can prepare in advance and whip into the oven just before your guests arrive. Caroline Hennessy, writing for EveryMonday.ie, gives you a few easy ideas that won’t have you losing your Christmas cheer. Click here for recipes for the Christmas Muffins (pictured on the right), Potato, Smoked Salmon and Cream Cheese Frittata and Buttermilk Pancakes with Cranberry Orange Sauce.
Cookery demonstrations + cakes + ovens + me = narrow escapes! On Wednesday night I was demonstrating some recipes in the community centre at Knockcarron, a really lovely renovated primary school in Co Limerick, when oven issues arose once again.
When the weather gets tough, it’s time to get baking. Just made Carmel Somers’ Banana and Chocolate Cake from her Eat Good Things Every Day cookbook and it’s a winner.