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Sunday, 28 December 2014

Christmas Recipes: Roly Poly Mince Pies

I made two different versions of mince pies.  This recipe is taken from the BBC Good Food 'Christmas Made Easy' book. They taste the same as the usual mince pies but look a bit different!  Personally, I'm not a mince pie fan but they went down well with our visitors and were extremely easy to make :)

Makes 12 rounds

50g/2oz golden caster sugar
375g pack ready-rolled puff pastry
411g jar traditional mincemeat
1 tbsp milk
25g/1oz flaked almonds

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees/fan oven 180 degrees/ Gas 6
2. Scatter the sugar over the worktop, unroll the pastry and put it on top of the sugar.
3. Roll out the pastry so it's a quarter bigger but still rectangular.
4. Spoon and spread the mincemeat evenly over the pastry leaving a 2cm border along the longest edges.

5. Fold over one of the longest edges over the mincemeat and then roll the pastry tightly into a sausage shape.
6. When you get to the other edge, brush the edges with milk and press down to seal in the mincemeat.
7. Press both ends in gently to plump up and chill the roll for at least 30 mins.
8. Cut the roll into 12 rounds, about 3cm thick.
9. Lay them evenly spaced on a baking tray and flatten them with your hands so they look like squashed Chelsea buns.

10. Scatter the flaked almonds on top and bake for 20-30 mins until golden brown.
11 .Leave them to cool for 5 minutes and keep them separate so they don't stick together!

Hope you like them!
Peebreeks xx

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Christmas Recipes: Winter Vegetable Bake

So I arrived back home in Somerset on Saturday to discover that my mum and dad were both still unwell and were starting to worry that we wouldn't be ready for Christmas Day. I asked Mum for a list of what to make and the recipes so that I could crack on!

The dish for the vegetarians this year was a Winter Vegetable Bake with crumble topping.  I actually adapted three different recipes which I took from the December edition of 'BBC Vegetarian Christmas' magazine and the BBC Good Food 'Christmas Made Easy' recipe book.
Hope you like it!

You will need:
2kg/4lb mixed root vegetables (I used sweet potatoes, carrots and parsnips)
300ml/1/2pt full-fat milk
85g butter
Black pepper and sage to taste

 For the topping:
50g/2oz butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
50g/2 oz fresh breadcrumbs (from about 4 slices bread)
25g/ 1 oz vegetarian-style Parmesan
3 tblsp pine nuts
a small handful of fresh thyme leaves.

1. Peel and dice all the vegetables.

2. Place vegetables in a large pan of water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20-25mins until veg. are soft enough to mash.

3. Drain the vegetables ,then add the milk and butter to the dry pan and heat until the butter has melted.
4. Tip the veg back into the pan, season with cracked black pepper and sage and mash over a low heat.

5. Remove from the heat and spoon into an ovenproof dish.
6.For the topping: Melt the butter in a frying pan and cook the onion for 5-6 minutes, until golden. 
7. Mix in the breadcrumbs and stir to brown and crisp a little.
8. Season with salt and pepper.
9. Take the pan off the heat and spoon mixture on top of the mashed vegetable mix.
10. Sprinkle on the  pine nuts.

11. Bake for 25-30 mins (longer if from chilled)  at 190 degrees, 170 degrees if fan oven or Gas mark 5 until golden and crisp on top.
12. Add a handful of thyme leaves on top before serving.
The end result was very tasty and a hit with all the vegetarians! What vegetarian recipes can you recommend for Christmas time??
Peebreeks xx

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Things I love Thursday! #21 (previously Smiling Sunday)

December already, eek! Welcome to my new followers, thanks for following my blog :)
Most blogs seem to call these posts Things I love Thursday, which would free up my Sunday so here goes...

Navy and mustard. These colours have been on the high street for Autumn/Winter this year and I love the combination. All the images below are via Pinterest.

This dreamy bed space lit by fairy lights.
Via Pinterest

This series of 'selfies' with the Northern Lights featured in The Guardian.
Via The Guardian Travel
This cute photo of dogs who are slightly different sizes.  I love the fact they don't care and have obviously been playing in the mud together! I actually sent this to a friend of mine as we are great friends and I am 6ft 1 and she's 5ft.  Friends come in all sizes. :)

Via Pinterest

This adorable deer jumper dress
Via Sugar Hill Boutique
These yummy-looking biscuit cushions :) I'd go for the custard cream or the party ring.
Via Lisa Angel Homeware
One of my favourite vegetables at this time of year is the lovely parsnip.  I like the look of this Jamie Oliver recipe for spicy soup, I reckon that a warming soup would be great for these chilly evenings!
These 1960's kitsch Christmas decorations, lovely!
Via North London Vintage Market
This sweet little Nordic Advent Village, you can fill the houses with sweets or little treats!
Via The Little Picture Company

Hope you're having a lovely December.  What's making you smile this week?  Let me know in the comments!
 Peebreeks xx