Mango Tea Bread


I picked up a Mango at the reduced counter at my local supermarket for 20p,¬† looked through my cookery books and found this recipe… tastes lovely with butter and homemade jam ūüôā

Mango Bread

Makes 1 x 2lb loaf


  • 10 oz (285g) Plain Flour
  • 2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • half a teaspoon of salt
  • 4oz (115g) Margarine, at room temperature
  • 3 Eggs, at room temperature
  • 10 1/2 oz (300g) Sugar
  • 4fl oz (125ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 large ripe mango, peeled and chopped
  • 3 1/4 oz (90g) desicated coconut
  • 2 1/2 oz (70g) raisins

Method :

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F / 180 degrees C / Gas 4 and Line the bottom and sides of a 2lb loaf tin with greaseproof paper.
  2. Sift together the flour, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon and salt.. Set aside
  3. With an elextric mixer, cream the margarine until soft
  4. Beat in the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy.   Beat in the oil.
  5. Fold in the dry ingredients into the creamed ingredients in 3 batches.
  6. Fold in the mangie, two thirds of the coconut and the raisins
  7. Spoon the batter into the loaf tin.
  8. Sprinkle over the remaining coconut,   Bake until a skewer inserted in the centre  comes out clean, after 50-60 minutes.   Let it stand for 10 minutes before turning out onto a rack to cool completely.

Just wanted to add a wee warning….. I checked my loaf after 50 minutes because it was smelling like it was ready,¬†when I did it was still gooey in the centre, so I closed the oven door and gave it another 10 minutes.

After 10 mins¬†I went to get it out, and found that¬†centre of the loaf ¬†had sunk, because I skewered it…¬†¬† Don’t skewer test it until after 60 mins ūüôā


Recipe courtesy of “Muffins and Quickbreads” by Linda Fraser – ISBN 1-84309-585-8

Garlic Mushrooms on Toast


Frugal Jumbo Garlic Mushrooms on Toast.

I popped round to my local supermarket last night as I needed to pick up some cat food, and whilst I was in there I spied some Jumbo Mushrooms reduced to 5p per packet, an absolute bargin! I bought 2 packs.. so on the way home I had plans whizzing round in my head of everything I could make with them…¬† Garlic Mushrooms on toast…. Cream of Mushroom Soup…. and a mushroom pilaf… yumm..

So.. today I have already made lunch (above) the Cream of Mushroom soup is on the cooker bubbling away as I type this and as for the mushroom pilaf, that will be made tomorrow ūüôā

For the Garlic Butter I used :

  • Lightly Salted butter softened (at room temp)
  • 2 cloves of Garlic, finely chopped
  • about a teaspoon of dried oregano
  • Mix all the above until combined well
  • Turn the mushrooms upside down and Spread the butter all over
  • Place in an ovenware dish and bake in the oven at 180 degrees C for 15 minutes
  • Place a couple of slices of bread in the toaster
  • When the mushrooms and toast are cooked, place the toast on a plate, pour the excess garlic butter from the dish all over the toast, then place a mushroom on each slice and enjoy with a cup of hot tea


Banana Bread


I had some bananas in the kitchen that were starting to go spotty, and knowing that no-one would eat them, I decided to make Banana Bread with them… then everyone would eat that ūüôā

I have featured a banana bread/loaf in my blog before, but it was a different recipe…so thought I would give this¬†one a try, it is from the following¬†book …

Tamasin’s Kitchen Bible – ISBN 0-297-84363-X

Here’s the ingredients : –

  • 225g/8oz Self-Raising Flour
  • 3/4 level tsp Ground Mixed Spice
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 100g / 3 1/2oz Vanilla Caster Sugar
  • 100g/ 3 1/2oz Unsalter Butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 tbsp good Runny Honey
  • 100g / 3 1/2oz Sultanas
  • 450g / 1lb Organic Bananas, peeled and mashed with a fork.
  • 2 Eggs
  • The Juice of a Lemon

Method :

  • Preheat the oven to 180 Degrees C / 350 Degrees F / Gas Mark 4
  • Sift the flour into a bowl and add the mixed spice, salt and sugar.
  • Add the butter, beat in all the remaining ingredients and pour the batter into a greased loaf tin.
  • Bake for one hour, then turn the heat down to 270 Degrees C / 325 degrees F / Gas Mark 3 for a further 10-15 minutes.
  • Check with a skewer which should come out clean.¬†¬† Cool in the tin on a rack before turning out.¬†¬† Eat warm with creme fraiche or on its own.

Onion Focaccia


Focaccia, with its characteristic texture and dimpled surface, has become hugely popular in recent years.   This version has a delectable red onion and fresh sage topping.


  • 210ml / 1 cup of water
  • 15ml/1 tbsp olive oil
  • 350g/3 cups unbleached white bread flour
  • 2.5ml/half a tsp salt
  • 5ml/1tsp easy-blend (rapid rise) yeast
  • 15ml/1 tbsp chopped fresh sage
  • 15ml/tbsp chopped red onion

For the topping:

  • 30ml/2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • half a red onion thinly sliced
  • 5 fresh sage leaves
  • 10ml/2 tsp course sea salt
  • coarsely ground black pepper


  1. Pour the water and oil into the bread pan.   Reverse the order in which you add the wet and dry ingredients, if necessary.
  2. Sprinkle over the flour, ensuring that it covers the liquid.   Add the salt and sugar in separate corners, make a small indent in the flour and add the yeast.
  3. Set the bread machine to the dough setting.   If your machine has a choice of settings use the basic or pizza dough setting and press start.
  4. Lightly oil a 25cm-28cm/ 10-11in shallow round cake tin or pizza pan.   When the cycle has finished, remove the dough from the pan and place it on a surface lightly dusted with flour.
  5. Knock the dough back (punch it down) and flatten it slightly.   Sprinkle over the sage and chopped red onion and knead gently to incorporate.   Shape the dough into a ball, flatten it, then roll it into a round of about 25-28 cm/ 10-11 in.   Place in the prepared tin.   Cover with oiled clear film (plastic wrap) and leave to rise in a warm place for 20 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200 degree C / 400 Degrees F / Gas 6.   Uncover the risen focaccia, and using your fingertips, poke the dough to make deep dimples over the surface.   Cover and leave to rise for 10-15 mins or until the dough has doubles in bulk.
  7. Drizzle over the olive oil and sprinkle wih onion, sage leaves, sea salt and black pepper.   Bake for 20-25 mins, or until golden.   Turn out on to a wire rack to cool slightly.   serve warm.

Recipe courtesy of the book “BREAD” by Christine ingram & Jennie Shapter – ISBN-10: 0-7548-1788-1

Rapid White Bread (Breadmaker Version)

My son put in a request this morning for some home made bread… so I had a scan through my bread book (ISBN10: 0-7548-1788-1) for a quickie recipe to make 1 small loaf..

Here’s the recipe :

  • 210ml/7.5fl oz/1 cup of Water
  • 22ml/1.5 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 375g/13oz/3.25 cups unbleached white bread flour
  • 15ml/1 tbsp skimmed milk powder (non fat dry milk)
  • 7.5ml/1.5 tsp salt
  • 15ml/1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 5ml/1 tsp easy-blend (rapid-rise) dried yeast.


  • Pour the water and the sunflower oil unto the bread machine pan.¬†¬† However, of the instructions for your particular machine specify that the yeast is to be placed in the pan first, then reverse the order in which you add the liquid and dry ingredients.
  • Sprinkle over the flour, covering the water.¬†¬† Add the milk powder.¬†¬† Place the salt and sugar in separate corners of the bread pan,¬†¬† Make a shallow indent in the centre of the flour (but not down as far as the liquid) and add the yeast.
  • Set the bread machine to the rapid/quick setting, medium crust and press start.
  • Remove the bread at the end of the baking cycle and turn out on to a wire rack to cool.

Cooks Tip:

On the quick setting the yeast has less time to work, and breads may not rise as high as those cooked on the normal/basic setting.

In cold weather it may be necessary to use lukewarm water, to help speed up the action of the yeast.

Raisin Bread

Raisin Bread.

“This is really just a large, shiny currant bun.¬†¬† The syrupy glaze that you brush on the loaf after it comes out of the oven makes it look quite extraordinary – it’s as if someone has suddenly switched a spotlight on it”

To make one loaf :

  • Strong White Flour 500g, plus extra for dusting the work surface
  • Salt, 2 teaspoons
  • Easy-blend (fast action) yeast, a sachet or 2 teaspoons
  • Raisins, 150g
  • Milk, 125ml
  • Warm Water, 125ml
  • A large free-range egg
  • Orange marmalade, 2 good tablespoons
  • Lard or vegetable oil for greasing the tin.

For the glaze:

  • Granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon
  • Water, 2 tablespoons


  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Teaspoon
  • Measuring Jug
  • Tablespoon
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Cling Film or tea towel
  • Large loaf tin approximately 13 x 23 x 7cm, or a large round cake tin,
  • small saucepan
  • Wire cooling rack
  • Pastry Brush
  1. Put the flour in the mixing bowl with the salt, yeast and raisins
  2. Measure the milk and water into the jug.   Break in the egg and whisk everything together with the fork.   Pour the eggy liquid into the bowl of flour.   Spoon in the marmalade.
  3. Mix the flour and liquids together, either with your hands or with the wooden spoon.   When it becomes difficult to stir the dough, turn it out on to floured work surface,   Knead he dough, adding more flour a handful at a time if it is really sticky.   The dough will become smoother and smoother.
  4. When you feel that your arms are ready to drop off, poke a fingertip into the dough – if the dent you made bounces back and leaves just a little mark, then you’ve kneaded enough.¬†¬† Shape the dough into a neat ball, out it in the bowl and cover the bowl with cling film or a damp tea towel.
  5. Leavethe bowl of dough in a warm (but not hot) place, away from open doors and windows, for 1 and a half to 2 hours, until doubled in size.
  6. Grease the bread or cake tin with a scrape of lard or a drop of vegetable oil.
  7. When your dough has risen to a great big puffy, ballooned mass, twice its original size, flatten it with your fist.   Now pull it out of the bowl and knead it gently for a few seconds on the work surface.
  8. Flatten the dough out a little into a round disc, then roll it up roughly like a carpet so that you get a puffy sausage shape.   Place the dough sausage in the tin loaf Рit should come about half way up the sides (if your using a round cake tin, then shape the dough into a ball and tuck the sides of the dough underneath  to make the ball pillow up, then put into the tin).   Cover with cling film or the tea towel again and leave to rise for 20-25 mins.   Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220 degrees C/Gas Mark 7 and place a shelf in the centre.
  9. Oven gloves in.   Place the tin gently in the oven and set the timer for about 12 mins.   Then turn the oven down to 190 degrees C/Gas Mark 5 for another 10 mins.   Oven gloves on.   Take the tin out of the oven.   Turn the bread out of the tin and tap the base to see if it sounds hollow.   If not, put the loaf directly on the hot oven shelf for 10 mins to colour the sides and bottom.
  10. Meanwhile, make the glaze.   Put the granulated sugar into a small saucepan with the water.   Place on the hob, switch on the heat to medium and stir with the wooden spoon until the sugar has dissolved to make a syrup,   Let it simmer for a minute, then switch off the heat.
  11. Switch off the oven, take the bread out and let it cool on a wire rack.   Now brush the top and sides of the bread with the warm syrup.   It will shine beautifully.

How to eat your Raisin Bread

This loaf is probably at its best when slightly warm.¬†¬† Spread thick slices of it with butter and eat, licking your sugary fingers.¬†¬† If you’ve got any left the next day, eat it toasted and dripping with butter.


If you fancy a spicier bun, you can add a teaspoon of ground mixed spice to the flour in the bowl.   And you can shape the mixture into little buns rather than one big loaf if you prefer.   Bake the buns on a large greased baking sheet for about 15 mins at a slightly lower temperature, 200 degrees C/Gas Mark 6

Recipe courtesy of :

The River Cottage Family Cookbook by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall & Fizz Carr

ISBN : 0-340-82636-3


Cup Cakes & Bread


I did a spot of baking today.. some yummy vanilla cup cakes and a lovely loaf of bread…

You can find the recipe for the cup cakes here and the recipe for the bread as follows:

Ciabatta Bread:

200ml Water

30ml olive oil

30ml milk

3 scant cups of organic white bread flour

half a teaspoon salt

half a teaspoon sugar

quarter of a teaspoon of quick yeast.

I do mine in the breadmaker, just for the mixing and when the cycle is finished I take the dough out, knock it back, shape it how I want it and allow it to prove for another hour, then bake in the oven at 200 degrees C for around 2o mins.


Trip to Edinburgh..

I’ve had a really busy weekend, and not had much time at all to come on here.

 Saturday saw us taking a trip on the train through to Edinburgh, with a view to getting my son kitted out with a few bits n pieces.  He recently joined the RAF Air Cadets, and they have been brilliant in kitting him out with the majority of what he needs, and our trip to Edinburgh saw us completing his kit.

We headed off down Leith Walk to the Army & Navy Store, managed to get him his boots, fully waterproof ones, he needed a size 10!! I wished his feet would stop growing he is only 13! they had £20 off the retail price so it was worth the trip!, then we got him these wee twiddley green things (bit like cycle clips) for keeping his combats in at the bottom, a green T-shirt, and a dark blue army jumper for my OH for his work to keep him warm.

As we came out the shop it started to snow a wee bit, the wind was bitter cold too, so we did a brisk march back up the road, stopping off at Valvona & Crolla to pick up a few treats as we were getting visitors in the evening..

I picked up a lovely wedge of Montgomery’s Cheddar, this cheese is to die for, it is absolutely gorgeous ūüôā we also picked up a freshly baked huge big farmhouse Italian cottagey type loaf, a lovely big head of Italian Garlic and some fresh Italian tomatoes on the vine.¬†¬† I planned a cheese and wine evening for our friends.

Once we left Valvona & Crolla’s, the weather was getting worse, so the kids and I headed into the Omni Centre to get a spot of lunch, with the theory that once we had finished it, the weather would have improved slightly to allow us to head back for the train home.

We had a lovely lunch, and when we came out the snow/sleet had stopped and we headed along to the train station, got onto our train and went home.

Chelsea Buns (breadmaker version)


Chelsea Buns

Chelesea buns are said to have been invented by the owner of the Chesea Bun House in London at the end of the 17th Centuary.   They make the perfect accompaniment to a cup of tea or coffee, they are so delicious it is so difficult to resist going back for more!

This recipe is taken again from my book “Bread” IBSN13: 978-0-7548-1788-8.


  • 225ml / 1 cup of Milk
    1 x Egg
  • 500g / 4.5 Cups of Unbleached White Bread Flour
  • Half a teaspoon of Salt
  • 6 Tablespoons of Caster Sugar
  • 50g / 1/4 Cup Butter, softened
  • 1 Teaspoon Easy Blend Dried Yeast
  • 50g Caster Sugar to Glaze
  • 1 teaspoon of Orange Flower Water to Glaze

For the Filling:

  • 3 Tablespoons of butter, melted
  • 115g Sultanas
  • 3 tablespoons of mixed chopped candied peel
  • 2 Tablespoons of Currants
  • 2 tablespoons of Soft Light Brown Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of Mixed Apple Pie Spice

makes 12 Buns

  1. Pour the milk into the bread machine pan, add the egg, if your instructions for your machine specify that the yeast is to be placed in the pan first, reverse the order in which you add the liquid and dry ingredients.
  2. Sprinkle over the flour ensuring that it completely covers the liquid, add salt, sugar and butter in 3 separate corners of the bread machine pan, make a small indent in the centre of the flour (but not as far down as the liquid) and add the yeast.
  3. Set the bread machine to the dough setting, use basic dough setting, (if available), press start.
  4. Lightly grease a 23cm or 9inch square cake tin pan, when the dough cycle has finished, remove the dough from the machine and place it lightly on a floured surface.
  5. Knock the dough back gently, then roll it our to form a square that is approx 30cm or 12 inch.
  6. Brush the dough with the melted butter for the filling and sprinkle it with the sultanas, candied peel, currants, brown sugar and mixed  apple pie spice, leaving a 1cm half inch border along one edge.
  7. Starting at the covered edge, roll the dough up swiss roll fashion, press the edges together to seal, cut the roll into 12 slices and place these cut side uppermost in the prepared tin.
  8. Cover with oiled clear film, leave to rise in a warm place for 30-45 mins or until the dough slices have doubled in size, meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200 degrees C / 400 Degrees F / Gas mark 6.
  9. bake the buns for 15-20mins or until they have risen well and are equally golden all over, once they are baked, leave them to cool slightly in the tin before turning them out onto a wire rack to cool further.
  10. Make the glaze, mix the caster sugar with 4 tablespoons of water in a small pan, heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is completely dissolved, then, boil the mixture rapidly for 1 to 2 mins without stirring, until syrupy.
  11. Stir the orange flower water into the glaze and brush the mixture over the warm buns.   Serve slightly warm.

Garlic & Coriander Naan (breadmaker version)

This is a lovely recipe which I make regularly, but never actually managed to post the recipe here, until now.   Recipe courtesy of my book Bread ISBN-13: 978-0-7548-1788-8

They also freeze very well too. 

Makes 3

  • 100ml Water
  • 60ml Natural Yoghurt
  • 280g Unbleached White Bread Flour
  • 1 garlic Clove, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp black onion seeds
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp clear honey
  • 1 tbsp¬† melted ghee or butter
  • 1 tsp easy blend dried yeast
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
  1. Pour the water and natural yoghurt into the bread machine pan.   If the instructions for your bread machine specify that the easy blend dried yeast is to be placed in the pan first, then simply reverse the order on which you add the liquid and dry ingredients.
  2. Sprinkle over the flour, ensuring that it covers the liquid completely.   Add the garlic, black onion seeds and ground coriander.   Add the salt, honey and the ghee or butter in the separate corners of the bread pan.   Make a small indent in the centre of the flour (but not down as far as the liquid) and add the easy blend dried yeast.
  3. Set the bread machine to the dough setting (if available) & press start.
  4. When the dough-cycle has finished, pre-heat the oven to its highest setting.   Place three baking sheets in the oven to heat.   Remove the dough from the breadmaking machine and place it on a lightly floured surface.
  5. Knock the naan dough back (punch it down) gently and then knead in the chopped fresh coriander.   Divide the dough into three equal pieces.
  6. Shape each piece into a ball and cover two of the pieces with oiled clear film (plastic wrap).   Roll out the remaining piece of dough into a large teardrop shape, making it about 5-8mm thick.   Cover with oiled film while you roll out the remaining two pieces of dough to make two more naan.
  7. Preheat the grill to its highest setting.   Place the naan on the preheated baking sheet and then bake them for 4-5 mins, until puffed up.   Remove the baking sheets from the oven and place them under the hot grill for a few seconds, until the naan start to brown and blister.
  8. Brush the naan with melted ghee or butter and serve warm.