Monday, 22 February 2016

Cajun Chicken traybake

We saw this recipe in Waitrose as part of the suggested meals during January.  It's taken us until February, but we've made it!

The ingredients we used were -
400g chicken thighs, skinned
1 red onion, cut into chunks
3 carrots, halved and cut into thick slices
500g sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
25g walnut pieces, roughly chopped (these can be omitted)
1 tbsp Cajun seasoning
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp runny honey

Having prepared the vegetables and chicken, they were placed in a roasting tin.

In a jug, we mixed the Cajun seasoning, oil and honey together and seasoned with freshly ground black pepper.

The seasoning mix was then drizzled over the chicken and vegetables.

Placing the tin in a pre-heated oven (180ºC fan) the dish was roasted for 30 minutes when we checked the chicken was cooked through (by inserting a fork and seeing if the fluid ran clear).  We also checked to see that the vegetables were tender.  We like to be sure chicken is properly cooked, so returned the dish to the oven for a further ten minutes whilst we prepared the accompanying sweetcorn and peas.

We liked the recipe and agreed it would work well as a slow cooker meal, and other vegetables like small potatoes could also be added to the mix.

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Apple Turnovers

Having used half a pack of Silly Yak gluten free puff pastry to make our Pecan Cinnamon Twists we decided to have a go at making some Apple Turnovers.

To prepare the filling, about 20g butter was warmed in a pan with a tablespoon of honey and a little ground cinnamon.

Adding a peeled, cored and chopped apple with some lemon juice to the pan, the filling was combined and cooked over a low heat for about 10 minutes.

The pastry was rolled to about 3-4mm thickness and then cut into squares.
Using a beaten egg, this was brushed along the edges of the pastry squares.

Placing small piles of the warmed apple mix in the centre of the square of pastry, the top left corner was folded over, on the diagonal, to the bottom right.   This formed a triangular Turnover.

Using the remainder of the beaten egg, the top of the turnovers was brushed with glaze.  Placing the turnovers on a non-stick tray they were then baked in a 170ºC oven for 10 minutes before checking them and returning them to bake a while longer until they were golden brown and crisp.

After cooling on the baking tray for a few minutes, the turnovers were dusted with icing sugar and served with lightly whipped double cream.

We'll definitely make turnovers again using Silly Yak Puff pastry as they were light, crumbly and easy to eat! 

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Small Spicy Bundt Cake

We found this recipe, printed out, from 2012 and finally decided to give it a go.  Using a 1 litre Bundt tin (from Aldi) we gathered the following ingredients
  • 375g plain flour (we used Dove's Farm Gluten Free)
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda (we used Dr Oetker)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • less than ½ tsp grated nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 125 ml sunflower oil
  • 72½g/dark muscovado sugar (we used a dessert spoon to break up the naturally forming clumps when it was added to the caster sugar)
  • 72½g caster sugar
  • 72½g pecans chopped (we used the OXO good grips chopper)
  • 225g cored, peeled and diced bramley (cooking) apples

   We greased the Bundt tin well with melted butter before lightly flouring with plain Gluten Free flour.

   The eggs were beaten with the vanilla extract and sugar until they had lightened and increased in volume.

   The sunflower oil was then added in a steady stream until batter was quite thick.

   Having sifted the flour, bicarb and spices into a large bowl, they were added, a spoonful at a time, to the batter, mixing well after each spoonful.

Next we folded in the pecans and diced apple.

   The mix (which was quite firm) was then placed in pre-greased Bundt tin and cooked in a pre heated oven to 180ºC for 40 minutes.  We checked with a skewer after 30 minutes but returned the oven until the skewer came out cleanly.

   We allowed the cake to cool in its tin for 10 minutes before turning onto rack to cool completely.

   Finally, the cake was decorated with water icing (you could also add chopped, spiced nuts) once completely cooled.

The cake was a huge success, and rose more than we'd expected it to... a variation we will try next is soaked date in place of the apple and walnuts instead of the pecans.