Family, Recipes

How To Make Scotch Eggs

Katie demonstrates how to make scotch eggs – one of her favorite things to cook (and eat).  You can find a recipe for scotch eggs here.

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Family, Recipes

Recipe: Banoffee Pie (Ridiculously Yummy, Yet Easy to Make, Dessert)

Banoffee pie is a graham cracker base, with layers of banana and caramel, covered with a layer of whipped fresh cream!  It is up there as one of our favorite desserts, ever!  The best thing is, it’s sooo easy to make!

Ingredients

It is not necessary to use the fancy Great Value range as displayed below.  We just happened to be in Wal-Mart when I took a notion to make some that same evening.

1 Can (14 Ounces) of Sweetened Condensed Milk

1 Graham Cracker Pie Crust

1 Carton of Heavy Whipping Cream

2 Ripe Bananas

 Method

You can’t really go wrong with this.  Follow the steps below to make perfect Banoffee pie, every time.

Boil the unopened can for 2.5 hours

Remove the paper from the can as best as possible. Boil a pan of water and then place the can into it unopened. Boil for 2.5 hours, adding extra water as necessary.  While that is boiling you can get on with the next step.

Whip the cream!

If you’re tough like me, pour the cream into a bowl and whip by hand (using a whisk). Alternatively, whip the cream using an automated mixer. Just make sure it whips up nice and thick. Runny fresh cream is not acceptable. Think Cool Whip consistency, but do not use Cool Whip. Do not use fresh cream from a squirty can either. I don’t care how real it says it is. It ain’t.  Put the bowl of fresh cream in the refrigerator until later.

First banana layer

Just before removing the can from the water, slice up the first banana and put a layer at the bottom of the graham cracker pie crust.

Pour in the caramel

Remove the can carefully from the pan. Use a tin opener to open the can, and be on your guard for any hot caramel flying out. Open the lid fully and give the contents a stir (you may pour into another bowl before stirring). The caramel should be nice and thick. Pour it all over your layer of bananas in the pie crust. Put the pie crust in the refrigerator for about 1 hour (or until the caramel has firmed up a little).

Add another layer of bananas!

Once it has firmed up, add another layer of banana! I got a bit ahead of myself here and forgot to take the photo before I started to slap on the fresh cream.

Add the fresh cream!

Now you can add the fresh cream.  I like a good layer of it, but you can add as much as you’re comfortable with.  That’s all there is to it.

Delicious!

Stick the kettle on and pour yourself a big mug of tea. Cut out a generous slice of banoffee pie and enjoy!
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Best Posts, Recipes

How To Make A Cup Of Tea

The reason for this post is to educate my American buddies on how to make a quick brew.

At Story Church band rehearsal last Thursday, Jon very kindly brought along some Irish Breakfast tea to celebrate my birthday.  There were a lot of worrying questions regarding the making of a brew that frankly I’m concerned, so I decided to put together this tutorial.  Please read and follow the instructions below for making a cup of HOT tea.

Fill the kettle with water and bring to the boil. If you don’t have a fancy electric kettle, you can use a saucepan. Please do not microwave water. It is seriously frowned upon.

Get your cup ready.  It’s makes a difference what you drink tea out of.  Use a proper cup.  Fine china is perfect.  Do not use travel mugs, paper or polystyrene cups.  Please.

If you are cold, tea will warm you. If you are too heated, it will cool you. If you are depressed, it will cheer you. If you are excited, it will calm you. – Gladstone 1865

Take your tea bag from your air tight container.  Our tea of choice is Typhoo.  Lipton is not tea.  I don’t care what it says on the box.

Place the tea bag in the bottom of your cup.  Take a moment to smell the aroma of the tea.  You may have a little tea leaf dust on your hands.  This is perfectly harmless.

Fill your cup with boiling hot water (leave a little room).  If you can heat the water hotter than boiling that is even better.  If the tea does not skin your tongue when you drink it, it is not hot enough.

Make tea, not war. – Monty Python’s Flying Circus

Gently swirl around the tea bag in the cup with a tea spoon for a couple of minutes.  Did you know tea spoons are bigger than coffee spoons?  Anyway, the key word here is gently.

Now the tea bag is ready to be removed.  Using your tea spoon, squeeze the tea bag against the side of your cup 2-3 times.  It should have next to no water it in when removed.

Place the tea bag on the used tea bag stash.  It’s important to keep a stash of used tea bags and only empty when no more will sit on the pile without falling off.

There is no trouble so great or grave that cannot be much diminished by a nice cup of tea. – Bernand-Paul Heroux

Some people drink their tea black.  This is usually herbal or fruit tea drinkers.  Proper tea needs milk.  Don’t use coffee creamer or half and half.  Please have respect.  Use proper milk.  Don’t add too much milk unless you haven’t turned 10 years old yet.

Once the milk is in again take your tea spoon and gently stir.  If you like sugar, now is the time to add it.  I take sugar if I drink coffee, but never with tea.

Finally, pick up your cup and enjoy.

There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea. – Henry James, Portrait of a Lady.

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Family, Recipes

Recipe: Irish Potato Bread

Irish Potato Bread

One of the best things you can do with left over potatoes is make Irish potato bread. The great thing is, it’s real easy too.

  • Add some salt and butter. Quantity will depend on how much potatoes you have, and your personal taste. I added a little salt and around 1/4 cup of salted butter.
  • Mash up really good and smooth.
  • Get some plain general purpose flour and add a little. Mix with in with your hands. Keep adding flour and kneading until you have a good dough. Don’t add too much flour or you’ll dry out the dough.
  • Cut the dough into sections and roll out each part, one at a time. You should sprinkle some flour on the work surface before flattening them out. I didn’t use a rolling pin, but just used my hands.
  • Heat up a skillet. No oil should be needed. Place in a few sections at a time and brown each side.

Serve hot with a little butter.  It also goes great served with egg and bacon…!

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Recipes

Recipe: Irish Stew

Irish Stew Ingredients

Irish Stew ingredients with a wee cup of tea! 🙂

I’ve been meaning to publish this Irish Stew recipe for a while.  Traditionally, it’s supposed to be made with mutton (lamb), but I’ve only ever had it made with beef.  Some Irish families would use minced beef, but my preference is cubed stewing steak.

Ingredients:

  • 2.5kg (Idaho) potatoes
  • 1kg cubed stewing steak
  • 2-3 parsnips
  • 3-4 onions
  • 3-4 carrots
  • Salt & black pepper

Method:

  1. Place the beef into a large stock pot and then pour in boiling hot water to just above the beef.  It’s important not to put in too much water as it will affect how watery your stew will be.
  2. Put the pot on the hob and while the beef is stewing in the water, peel and cube the potatoes, peel and chop the parsnips, onions and carrots.
  3. Place all the vegetables in the pot.
  4. Place lid on pot and let it simmer.
  5. Stir occasionally to prevent it sticking to the bottom.
  6. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste.
  7. The stew is ready when potatoes are approaching a lumpy mash consistency and the beef is soft.
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Recipes

Recipe: Tartiflette

I had my first Tartiflette at a restaurant in France while on a skiing trip – it was amazing.  I found a recipe on the back of block of Reblochon cheese and have been making it ever since.  You might find it difficult sourcing Reblochon, so use Raclette as a good substitute.

DSC00500Ingredients

Method

  1. Par boil the potatoes in a little salted water.
  2. Chop the challots.
  3. Fry the pancetta in a little oil.  You may substitute the pancetta with cubed ham or chopped bacon.  Add the shallots and fry a little longer.
  4. Take the potatoes and slice enough for a top coat.  The rest can be chopped and put into the bottom of the oven dish.
  5. Add the fried pancetta, shallots and Crème fraîche and mix well.
  6. Now place the sliced potatoes on the top.
  7. Slice the cheese and layer on top of the sliced potato.
  8. Pre-heat oven to 425f.
  9. Place oven dish in the middle of the oven for 40-45 minutes (or until top is brown)

Serving

Serve with lettuce leaves, cold meats and of course, a glass of wine.

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Family, Recipes

Recipe: Scotch Eggs

scotcheggs

What’s this then?  A scotch egg recipe?

A few folk at recreate requested I post it, so here you are.

What You Will Need

  1. A pack of minced pork/sausage meat
  2. 5 Eggs
  3. Toasted coarse breadcrumbs

Preparation

  1. Hard boil 4 of the eggs.
  2. While they are boiling, beat the other egg and pour into a bowl.
  3. Place a good layer of breadcrumbs in another bowl.

The Messy Bit

  1. Remove the shells from the 4 boiled eggs.
  2. Divide the pack of meat into four.
  3. Flatten a meat portion in the palm of your hand.
  4. Place an egg in the center and wrap the meat around it.
  5. Ensure egg is completely covered and meat layer is as even as possible.
  6. Take and roll in the beaten egg bowl.
  7. Take and roll in the breadcrumb bowl.
  8. Repeat steps 3-7 for each egg.

Baking The Eggs

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 425.
  2. Place scotch eggs on a foil covered tray and place in middle of oven.
  3. Cook for 25-30 minutes.

Serving Recommendation

Best served with fries and Heinz Baked Beans!

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