Wishing you all a merry Christmas and a peaceful and prosperous new year!
Anna & Darcy xxx
These Apple Pie Slices are a quick and easy way to bake up some lovely pastries for guests, snacks, afternoon tea or even a naughty breakfast! (What? Apples are a fruit ergo it’s healthy!)
They are deliciously flakey and actually not too sweet. They are also super quick and easy to throw together!
They use my Apple Pie Jam as the filling but you could substitute with a bought apple jelly if you preferred. I would add a pinch of cinnamon to it though for maximum tastiness!
I also use bought puff pastry because nobody outside of the Great British Bake Off tent has time for that nonsense!
1 sheet pre-rolled puff pastry
1/2 jar Apple Pie Jam
3 tbsp milk
3 tbsp demarera sugar
- Heat the oven to gas mark 6 and line 2 baking trays.
- Cut your pastry into 16 equal pieces.
- Put a spoonful of jam in the centre of half of them.
- Prick the remaining slices with a fork to make little holes in the top.
- Put these pieces on top of the jam ones and press down all around with a fork to crimp the edges closed.
- Brush the tops with milk and sprinkle with sugar.
- Bake for 20 minutes until the tops are golden brown. You will probably have to switch the trays over halfway through if they are on different shelves.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool a little before you eat them. They are equally good cold!
These mini breakfast bites were one of the first things I invented for myself in 3rd year food tech! They are now a staple tradition in our household and I couldn’t imagine Christmas without them!
24 slices of white bread (2 meduim sliced loaves)
1/2 cup sunflower oil
24 quails eggs
12 rashers streaky bacon or pancetta
24 tiny button mushrooms (or 6 small mushrooms cut into quarters)
- Heat the oven to gas mark 7.
- Get out 2x 12 hole bun tins, I prefer the rounded ones but the straighter ones work just fine.
- Use a large round cookie cutter, checking that it is slightly bigger than the bun tins you are using, to cut out a large round from the centre of each slice of bread. (leftover crusts can be used to make bread sauce, or breadcrumbs to freeze for later use)
- Brush both sides of each round of bread and gently press into the bun tins.
- Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, until just turning crisp and golden.
- Take out the tins (being careful coz it’s hot!) and crack a quails egg carefully into each one. (I use a sharp knife to pierce the shells)
- Return to the oven for ~5 minutes until the eggs are just setting.
- Prepare your bacon/pancetta rolls by slicing each rasher in half then rolling up.
- Take the tins out of the oven again and add your bacon rolls and mushrooms.
- Cook for another 5-7 minutes until the bacon is cooked through.
- Serve immediately while hot and make sure you get some too because these will disappear fast!
December is here and ’tis the season for cocktails and canapé at every turn! I thought I’d take the opportunity to share one of my favourite canapé from last year’s Christmas festivities, Mini Yorkshire Puddings!
These are a fabulous little morsel that are quick and easy to prepare, you can even cook the Yorkshire puddings in advance and then reheat them but I do recommend using an oven to reheat rather than a microwave as you get a much better texture. You can even serve these at room temperature if there’s too much pressure on the oven space. Keep it simple and enjoy your party!
100g plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
oil/lard/trex for cooking (I favour Lard unless I have a vegetarian about in which case I switch to trex)
200ml creme fraiche
2 tsp horseradish sauce
1 tsp dijon mustard
~6 thin slices of roast beef
parsley sprigs for decoration
- Put the flour, salt, milk and egg into a tall jug.
- Blitz with a stick blender to combine (Keeping a good grip on the jug!)
- Leave to sit for around 20 minutes, half an hour, or longer if necessary.
- Get the oven nice and hot (Gas 6 / 200C or above)
- Put a small knob of Trex, lard or a dash of vegetable oil (just enough to cover the base of the tin) in each hole of a 24 mini muffin tin (if yours is smaller do this in batches) and place in the oven to get piping hot. (10 minutes or so)
- Pour the batter in to just fill each hole of the tin. (Careful of the hot oil!!)
- Place carefully in the oven and close the oven door.
- Leave to cook for 15-20 minutes until all poofed up and golden brown. DO NOT OPEN THE OVEN WHILE THEY ARE COOKING!
- Mix the creme fraiche, horse radish and mustard together in a bowl. Test to see if its got enough bite to it (or too much!) and alter to suit your tastes.
- Roll the roast beef up and slice into sections about 1″ long.
- Carefully spoon a little of the horseradish mixture into the centre of each Yorkshire Pudding, insert a roll of beef and decorate with a sprig of parsley.
- Grab and bottle of bubbly and go mingle with your guests!