Milla, Monty and Betsy are back with another cooking video. When I suggested we make fish fingers with the fish we bought this weekend they decided it would make a great recipe.
Fish fingers have a pretty bad rep when it comes to feeding children but making them yourself cuts down on the processes and unnecessary ingredients.
They’re a quick and easy bake – despite adding in filming, these went from fridge to table in under 40 minutes. You could do it in 25 without the camera!
We added a Minty Pea sauce and salad to serve. The sauce goes down very well even with Milla who doesn’t like peas. I am a fan of Greek yoghurt with food but you could easily use natural yoghurt and extra peas to thicken it.
Fish fingers freeze really well. Batch cooking makes these a quick and easy after school supper. Simply cook, cool and freeze then reheat when ready.
Thank you to everyone who commented, liked and sent messages about their last video. You wouldn’t believe how happy they were to know you’d watched and enjoyed. One step closer to their dream of being as good as Jamie Oliver.
We have a plum tree in our garden which periodically gives us a crop of plums. This year we have a crop and after the children have gorged themselves on what they can scrump I might have a few plums for my favourite plum cake.
It may horrify you to know that I can take or leave cake most of the time but not his one. This cake is deliciously light with the sharp fruit cutting through the buttery flavour. The nuts add a toasted crunch which you didn’t know you were missing until this beautiful cake.
Plum and Hazelnut Cake Recipe
150g butter, softened
150g caster sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
75g self raising flour
100g ground almonds
70g blanched hazelnuts roughly chopped
6 – 7 small plums, stoned and thinly sliced
Preheat the oven to 180°C
First toast the hazelnuts until lightly browned and set aside to cool.
Prepare the plums then butter and line a 20cm cake tin.
Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
Beat in the eggs one at a time.
Sieve the flour into the wet ingredients and gently fold into the mixture.
Fold in the ground almonds followed by the hazelnuts.
Spoon the mixture into the cake tin and flatten the top gently.
Lay the sliced plums across the top, I like to arrange them in a circle but do bear in mind they will sink in so you don’t need to expend too much energy.
Bake for 40 – 45 minutes and test with a skewer.
Cool for ten minutes in the tin before turning out onto a rack to cool.
I’ve adapted this recipe from one in Nigel Slater’s Kitchen Diaries (an absolute must read).
My earliest memories of eating scones were at my Grandmother’s house. Granny’s house was my favourite place on Earth, not least because we always had afternoon tea and afternoon tea was a meal of cakes.
Whether it was a hang over from the days of taking tea between surgeries when my Grandfather was practicing medicine or from an earlier era I don’t know. All I do know is that there is something rather special about having four meals in a day.
It wasn’t until pregnancy that I began to appreciate jam and cream (I know); the rich and sweet combination is a real treat for the senses. Clotted cream always has to be Roddas – packaging and contents a true classic delight.
We make these at children’s birthday parties to hand out to the parents. Often I’m rubbing in an hour before we are due to start making them warm and moist when we slice into them.
Despite what you may think, scones are incredibly simple to make and a fast bake so perfect for unexpected guests or emergency pick-me-ups.
I prefer sultanas for their plumpness but you could happily use raisins if you don’t have sultanas in. I tend to use buttermilk if I have it or a mixture of milk and yoghurt but you could easily use milk when making these. I love the hiss they give off as you press the cutter into the dough.
I took these pictures on my April trip to Walnuts farm and the gorgeous cake stands and Italian jam are from The Hambledon who hooked me up with props for the day (love them to bits for this).
Simple Scone Recipe
450g self-raising flour (plus some in a dredger to dust)
2 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
100g butter, cubed
100g caster sugar
250 – 275ml buttermilk (yoghurt/milk mixture or milk are fine to substitute)
Preheat your oven to 225°C
Makes 12 – 20 depending on the size of your cutter!
Sift your flour, baking powder and salt into a large mixing bowl.
Add the cubed butter and rub it in lightly with your fingertips until you have a mixture like sand. I like to hold my hands high above the bowl as I do this to add air into the mixture.
Add the sugar and fruit and stir through to combine.
Stir in the buttermilk, a little at a time, using a palette knife. You are aiming for a sticky dough and depending on the weather you might need more or less of the liquid.
Flour your surface and turn out your dough. Roll it gently until it is about 2.5cm/1 inch thick.
Cut your scones from the dough with a floured pastry cutter, re-rolling the dough to get as many as you can.
Flour a baking tray and transfer your scones to the oven.
Bake for 8 – 12 minutes, keeping an eye and a nose on them, until they are golden brown. There is a tipping point between golden brown and bitter burnt tinge with sultanas so please stay close to the oven when baking these.
Cool on a rack and eat warm with lashings of butter or jam & clotted cream.
Do you get obsessed by foods? I recently bought the most amazing orzo salad from The Risen Pizza Co in Winchester which I just could not get out of my mind. I went back the next week to buy more only to find they had none – they only make salads for hot days.
After freaking out I decided I would develop my own recipe as it was just too delicious to wait for a sunny day.
I think I have a pretty good recipe going on but I’ll concede that the Risen Pizza Co orzo salad was uncommonly good and you must buy some if you’re in Winchester. Here is a picture of Dennis looking rightly proud of his salads and pizza.
Now back to my version! What I love about this salad is that it really doesn’t take long to bring together. I made it before heading to a friend’s barbecue recently and let it cool on the way over.
I am fond of red peppers and love the colour so I could easily double the quantity I use in the recipe. I get my char grilled peppers from a jar (got to love that convenience). You could char grill them yourself of course but I can’t think of a good reason why you would spend the time on it!
Roasted Red Pepper Orzo Salad
2 large char grilled red peppers
1 red onion, sliced thickly
A handful of basil leaves
A dash of extra virgin olive oil
Serves 6 – 8 as a side dish
Cook the orzo according to the package instructions
Heat a griddle pan and gently toast the onions. You want them to be lightly charred and soft
Put the red pepper, onion, basil and olive oil into a blender and wizz up until you have a smooth paste
Drain the orzo retaining a couple of tablespoons of the cooking liquid
Mix the cooking liquid and red pepper paste through the pasta and put it in a bowl