Food: Lime & lavender marmalade

As I mentioned in my previous recipe of my raspberry limemade, I still had a surplus of limes, that needed using. The solution: this delicious & floral marmalade. Great in porridge, on toast or atop a decadent cheesecake and so simple to make!

To make you’ll need:

  • 8 limes, sliced thinly
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 400g sugar
  • 600ml water
  • 1tbs dried lavender

Start by placing the lime juice, sugar and water in a pan. The sugar should start dissolving in the acid of the lime juice. Place on the hob and turn the heat up high. Now, start slicing the limes up thin, by using a mandolin. Make sure you use the safety guard provided with the mandolin as otherwise, it’s a guaranteed trip to the emergency room, for you.  After you’ve sliced up the fruits, drop them into the now bubbling water and cook on a simmer for 40 minutes. During the last 10 minutes sprinkle the dried lavender and stir, so it disperses evenly.  Set aside and leave to cool slightly before pouring into your chosen bowl/ jar. The pectin in the pith and flesh should help set the marmalade overnight.

Enjoy!

Advertisements

Drink: Semla Shake

Here’s a great recipe for fettisdagen (the Swedish Mardi Gras). It has all the flavours of semla buns, but none of the time-consuming process of proving and kneading. However, if you’re game for all that, then by all means this cocktail would be amazing paired with the decadent buns! You can omit the custard if you want, but it gives another dimension to the cocktail and hey, it is for Fat Tuesday, after all!

To make, you’ll need:

  • 1 Whole carton of Oatly milk/ unsweetened unroasted almond milk
  • 2 Scoops of Swedish Glace (Tofu Line) vanilla Ice cream
  • 3 Shots of Amaretto
  • 2 Shots of vanilla vodka (I used ABSOLUT, naturally)
  • 1⁄2 tsp Ground cardamom
  • 2tbs Oatly custard

To finish:

  • Soy whip
  • Cake crumbs

To make, put all the ingredients in a blender and whizz up until they make a sweet, aromatic cardamom laced cocktail. Get your glasses, in my case a vintage milk bottle, and fill with the mix. Top with some soy whipped cream, but be wary that it doesn’t sink, as it doesn’t behave exactly the way dairy cream does, it’s also a bit heavier.

Garnish with cake crumbs, vegan in my case, left over from a delicious Naturally Kind Food slice and you’re done!

 

Enjoy!

Drink: Death by Mocha Shake

Here’s an amazing decadent milkshake recipe using one of my fridge essentials, Oatly Chocolate milk. With the flavours of espresso, chocolate and Oreo cookie- this is one grown up shake for the inner kid in all of us!

Serves 2-3
To make you’ll need:

  • 200ml Oatly chocolate oat drink
  • 2 scoops of espresso/coffee ice cream – I used my homemade espresso gelato, recipe here
  • 1 shot Tia Maria
  • 3/4 packet of Oreo cookies.

For the decoration:

  • Some vegan whipped cream- I used Whiptop Whipped Cream
  • 2 Oreo cookies

The recipe couldn’t be simple enough!

Start by pouring the chocolate milk into a blender, along with the scoops of espresso ice cream. Then, add the Oreo cookies, crushing them in your hands as you place them in. Pour the shot of Tia Maria in and blend until smooth and creamy.

Get two sundae or soda glasses and fill them with the shake mix. To finish, top with the whipped cream, a couple of straws and a couple of Oreo cookies.

And Enjoy!

 

 

Food: Dark chocolate Easter eggs with a salted date caramel filling

With more vegan options this Easter, than ever, I’ve decided to join in and add one of my own. This recipe combines the deep bitterness of dark chocolate with the naturally decadent flavours of date, made into a salted caramel.

 

To make, you’ll need:

  • 400g good quality dark chocolate (70% minimum)
  • 150g dates
  • 180ml water
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • Splash of non-dairy milk ( I used Oatly oat milk)
  • Knob of soya butter
  • Pinch of quality sea salt ( I used Halen Môn)
  • 2 tsb non-dairy cream ( I again used Oatly)
  • Easter egg mould

Start by soaking the dates in boiling water for an hour (or in cold water for a couple of hours). Once this is done blitz up the mixture in a food processor until it becomes a thin, sticky sauce. Next melt the butter in a pan, then add the mixture, cream and reduce.

After  a few minutes add the cornflour (slaked in a splash of milk) and stir. Continue reducing until it forms into a thick caramel, this should take 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and set aside. It will thicken even more as it cools.

Once the caramel is cooling you can turn your attention to the chocolate. Chop up the chocolate finely and place into a glass bowl. Keep a third of the chocolate back.

Place the pan over a bowl of simmering water. As it melts stir occasionally. The next step you’ll need to do is temper the chocolate. Tempering the chocolate will ensure it has a glossy finish and a great snap. This reduces the size of the crystals in the cocoa butter leaving you with a smoother product.

The easiest way to do this is to remove the bowl from the pan and add in the third of the chocolate that you kept behind. This will cool the chocolate. Stir until the all the chocolate is melted. It should become nice and glossy.

Use the tempered chocolate to fill the moulds. Pour a ladle of chocolate into the mould and roll it around until the whole of the mould is evenly covered. Pour any excess back into the bowl and scrape around the edge of the mould with a flat knife. Set aside and leave to harden. Once the first layer has set repeat the process until you’re happy with the thickness of the egg shell. Leave to harden and cool completely for a few hours. When it’s done carefully remove from the moulds and spoon the thick caramel into the egg halves and garnish with a pinch more salt.

Enjoy and Happy Easter!

 

 

Food: Banoffee Trifle

Here’s a recipe for a fusion of two classic British puddings (and a good way to use up leftovers!)

 

You’ll need:

  • 140g banana bread, ripped up
  • 20ml Amaretto
  • 2 ripe bananas, chopped

For the custard:

  • 230ml double cream
  • seeds of a vanilla pod
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 50g  icing sugar
  • 15g dulce de leche

To Decorate:

  • 200ml  double cream, whipped
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 20g icing sugar, sifted
  • 20g flaked almonds, toasted
  • A square of dark chocolate, grated
  • 1tbs Dulce de Leche
  • Splash of milk

 

During the week I made a banana bread, using this trusty recipe from the BBC. With all the will in the world (and plenty of Chai to wash it down!) Tom and I were never going to finish it all – we had a lot leftover. Not wanting to throw it away before it went stale, I wanted to rescue it. It had me thinking about how I could make it into a trifle/banoffee pie fusion – two of my favourite desserts. This is one’s a decadent dessert that certainly isn’t for anyone on a diet. It could easily feed up to 6. Here’s how to make it:

To start, tear up the leftover banana loaf and place into a suitable bowl. It needs to be high enough to take the amount of filling. I’d recommend a clear glass bowl, so you’ll be able to see all the layers.

After tearing up the banana bread, drizzle some Amaretto over it, so it soaks in.

Now, it’s time to make the custard.

First scrape a vanilla pod into the cream and begin to heat until gently bubbling at the edges. You can even put a whole pod in to infuse if you want.

Meanwhile, add the eggs yolks and the sugar and whisk until they’re combined. Here’s the tricky part, carefully begin adding the the cream into the egg yolks making sure you keep whisking as you go – then do it vice versa back into the cream pan. Keep whisking on the heat until it coats the back of a spoon easily. Once made, pour the custard into a jug and leave to cool.

Chop up 2 ripe bananas and place them in a layer on top of the cake.

To the custard, (when cool) whisk in 15g of Dulce de Leche into it until its a light brown colour.

Now with a spatula, spread this tan mixture on top of the bananas. Cover the mixture with a layer of clingflim (to alleviate a skin forming) and leave to set in the fridge for 40 minutes to 1 hour.

While it’s in the fridge add icing sugar and vanilla into a bowl. Add the double cream and whisk until stiff peaks before setting aside.

Toast the almonds in a pan on medium heat until golden brown. Don’t take your eyes away from them, as they can catch quickly.

Once the bananas and custard mixture is set to a firm wobble, take out the fridge and remove the cling. Now it’s time to assemble!

Spread on a thick pillowy layer of cream on the sand coloured mixture. Grate the chocolate on top and sprinkle the golden almonds on top.

For an extra bit of naughtiness, take a tablespoon of Dulce de Leche and a splash of milk into a separate bowl. Mix with a spoon until smooth and pouring consistency and drizzle on top of the dessert. It is now ready to devour.

Enjoy!