Nigella’s sticky toffee pudding

THIS IS NOT MY OWN RECIPE!!

Source: http://www.nigella.com/recipes/view/easy-sticky-toffee-pudding-180

The legend of the Tesco sticky toffee pudding : I happened to stop at a giant Tesco on my way back from work one evening when I was quite hungry. Mistake number one. After shopping for ingredients for dinner (I mean after being side-tracked to buy dinner ingredients), I ventured into the naughty aisles at Tesco. Namely chips (or crisps if you are English), lollies, icecream and eventually the cold dessert section at Tesco. While this isn’t the most attractive section, my eyes were quick to spot the 2 for 1 pudding deals where the one was actually a pack of two puddings. So despite all the angels of health warning me against it, I came back home with 2 packs – one, apple crumble and the other, sticky toffee pudding. My partner surveyed them very suspiciously as he does with most of my “I’m trying something new from Tesco”  buys but settled on the sticky toffee for pudding that night.

Gosh, I’ve been in England too long as I find myself replacing the word “dessert” with ‘pudding’  and ‘chips’ with ‘crisps’ ! Anyhow, the story ends with the Tesco pudding being an instant success and several more naughty trips to the mini-Tesco next door to try and find the same. Tesco in the UK seems like McDonald’s in the US. You are never more than 200m from one ?

A few days later, I went into grandma mode and said – If Tesco can do it, so can I and i can do it better. As usual, google had all the recipe answers. What I worked out was that a sticky toffee pud (get with the program!) was very much like my Sticky Date Cake except there was molten caramel underneath it waiting to flow when you turned it over. Looking for recipes for decadent puds such as a sticky toffee pudding, with hundreds of recipes online, only one caught my attention right away. It was by the queen of indulgent puds – Nigella. Once it was ready, I could , in all  honesty, put my finger in my mouth and mime  Mmmm Mmmmm!

Enjoy!

Sticky and glossy toffee pudding with icecream

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Zucchini bake with olives, sundried tomatoes and feta

A colleague of mine who is a keen gardener and has an allotment, turned up to work one day with what he called “mutant zucchini”,  offering them to anyone interested. I asked him why they were named so and if one should be eating them given they were mutant. Apparently they just grew really rapidly and doubled in size overnight, thus making them mutant. Convinced that I wasn’t going to be eating anything toxic, I brought home 1 giant yellow and 1 giant green zucchini.

That was the easy bit. The hard part was to figure out what to do with them. Zucchini bread maybe – but I didn’t ave the patience or the time  to knead and allow the dough to rise. Zucchini cake – I didn’t think vegetable cakes would go down too well and I would end up with most of the cake in my belly. So I did the usual thing of querying fellow wordpressers for some ideas. Lots of great stuff out there but I settled on this one for proportions http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/zucchini_breakfast_casserole/. As with most recipes, I added my own things to it and removed things I didn’t feel like using.  I served my zucchini bake with a tomato chutney (that I will provide a recipe for) and some rosemary bread (thank you Waitrose!) . Hope you like it.

Zucchni bake with tomato chutney and rosemary bread

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Chocolate orange mousse or Jaffa mousse

I haven’t posted recently and that’s because the English summer FINALLY made an appearance, if only for a week. So rather than my usual pose on the sofa with the laptop on my lap, I chose to spend it outside. I went for rambles (walks) with my partner and his parents, had lunch in the sun and sat in a park and read my book – all to soak in some sunshine and warmth. It was just lovely.

But today, predictably, the English clouds have set in and it’s windy and the right weather to start whinging all over again.As a result, I’m back inside, with my laptop for company. I also think, it is about time I wrote another blog. I promised I’d give you the recipe for chocolate orange souffle last time and here it is.

Chocolate orange is a flavour combination I’ve come to love. Here in England, you get a “Jaffa cakes” and mini jaffas which are choc-orange covered biscuits/little sponge biscuits. My partner loves them and I will occasionally have an indulgent bite or two. I have posted an easy choc-orange souffle recipe before and this one is mousse version of these lovely flavours. I saw a recipe for Chocolate orange Pots in the book “New Bistro” by Fran Warde (http://www.amazon.co.uk/New-Bistro-Fran-Warde/dp/1845333306). At the same time, I saw another book with a recipe for chocolate mousse. I thought to combine the two recipes to make Chocolate orange mousse.

Chocolate orange mousse in teacups

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