Sunday, 27 February 2011

Maple and Pecan Biscuits

The other day my husband asked me to make some biscuits with pecan nuts. Inspired by some danish pastries that we had recently, I decided to add a bit of maple syrup to the mixture and play around a bit, and this is the final result. All the cup measurements below were made using a 250 ml mug.


What you’ll need:

2/3 cup margarine

2/3 cup light brown sugar

1/2 cup maple syrup

1 egg

1-2 tsps vanilla essence

2 cups self-raising flour

Pinch salt

1 cup pecan nuts, roughly chopped or crushed

What to do:

1. Grease a couple of baking trays and pre-heat the oven to gas mark 5.

2. Cream together the margarine and the sugar.

IMG_7875 IMG_7876

3. Mix in the maple syrup – to get measure it and get it out the mug quickly, rinse the mug out with boiling water before measuring the maple syrup.


4. Mix in the egg and vanilla essence.


IMG_7879(The black bits are vanilla seeds in the vanilla essence that I used).

5. Sift and fold in the flour and the salt.

IMG_7882 IMG_7884 IMG_7885

6. Fold in the nuts and then put teaspoonfuls of the mixture on the baking trays, leaving a bit of space between each spoonful. Don’t worry about pressing down each drop of mixture before putting it into the oven – the biscuits will spread a little by themselves as they cook.

IMG_7886 IMG_7887 IMG_7888The biscuits don’t have to be spread out as much as this – I just wasn’t sure with this first batch how much they would spread.

7. Remove the biscuits from the baking sheets and cool.


Sunday, 20 February 2011

Exciting find!

Yesterday I found something that was, to me at least, very exciting! Olive oil from the Toplou monastery, which is in one of my favourite places on earth – East Crete. But I didn’t find it in Crete - I found it in Britain, in Aldi of all places. Sadly the camera battery was about to die so I couldn’t get a close-up picture of the designated origin sticker and write-up about it being from Toplou, so you’ll have to trust me on this one. Or find an Aldi and seek out your own Cretan olive oil.


Sunday, 13 February 2011

Roast Onion Humous

A little while ago, I tried roast onion humous from a supermarket and I really enjoyed it. So, I decided to try making it myself. I’m not sure if I’ve fully got it yet but this is what I came up with…


You’ll need two onions, roasted, 4 tablespoons of tahini (creamed seasame seeds, available from most supermarkets), 3 tablespoons of olive oil, 11 tablespoons of lemon juice (I should have measured this in cups rather than tablespoons!), 2 garlic cloves, 2 x 410 gram cans of chickpeas, pepper and salt. Chuck everything into a food processor and whizz together – I did this in a couple of batches and then mixed it all together because my processor isn’t big enough. Finally, add a bit of water if the consistency is a bit thick and adjust seasoning according to taste.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Seven Randoms

1. I love chocolate way more than I should. Which is why I just picked all the chocolate confectionary out of some pick ‘n’ mix leftover from Saturday when J (my husband) and I went to a movie. It’s a good thing that we recognise in this household that I eat way more chocolate than J does.

2. Speaking of chocolate, one of my sisters made some beautiful chocolate ducks as favours for the wedding one of my other sister’s just over a year ago. They were awesome. And in the process she learnt to temper chocolate. I still don’t know how to temper chocolate.

3. But I do know how to play around with melted chocolate and various fillings, including a chocolate truffle type filling, to come up with filled chocolate things. Maybe one day I’ll get round to posting how to do that.

4. I’m due to finish my PhD in September. I don’t know what job I’ll do when I finish but I am nervous and excited about what God has in store for my life.

5. Speaking of the PhD, I’m currently working on the first draft of my last big chapter. And it’s taking a long time. And I am desperate to finish. Sigh. But for now I just have to keep plodding on.

6. My wonderful husband has bought me flowers twice recently, because he knows how much I’m struggling with my work. Here’s a peak at my current bunch:


7. Taking pictures of yellow flowers by the yellow light of our living room light does not work very well. That’s one reason to look forward to the long days of natural light in summer…