Pink Peonies

I popped out yesterday afternoon to do a spot of grocery shopping.. and look what I found… a bunch of peony roses in the reduced bucket, they were £4.00 marked down to 70p!

Needless to say they went straight into my basket 🙂 I’ve not done a frugal flower post on my blog for a long time.. so here we are 🙂

I absolutely adore peony roses, they are one of my most favourite flowers and I love them even more when can buy them for pennies rather than pounds ..

 

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Apple, Pear & Passionfruit Crumble

I made a yummy crumble today and thought I would post the recipe here.

It’s also a frugal crumble, because I picked up the apples, pears and passion fruit at my local supermarket reduced:

A bag of 5 Granny Smith Apples for 60p, 4 x passionfruit for 30p, and a bag of 6 pears for 23p

So not including my storecupboard essentials the crumble cost  50p!

Recipe:

  • 2 x Passion Fruit
  • 5 x Pears
  • 1 x Granny Smith Apple

For the Crumble Topping :

  • 60g / 2oz Rolled Oats
  • 175g / 6oz Plain Flour
  • 110g / 4oz Unsalted Butter
  • 110g / 4oz Demerara Sugar

Method :

  1. Peel & Chop pears and apple into an ovenproof dish
  2. Cut the passion fruit in half and scoop the insides over the chopped apple and pears
  3. Put all the crumble ingredients into a food processor and blitz
  4. Cover the fruit with the crumble mix
  5. Cook in the oven at 180 degrees C for about an hour or until the juices bubble up around the edges of the crumble
  6. Serve with Custard, Cream or Ice Cream

Have to say it was rather yummy and everyone enjoyed it 🙂 so 10/10 and would make it again

Frugal Foodie ~ Pesto & Blackberries

I picked up a few bargins when I stopped off  at the co-operative on my way home from work yesterday 🙂  I really should try and pop in there more often, after all I have to drive past it nearly every night 🙂

3 Pots of Basil  £1.10 each normally I got them reduced to 30p a pot saving me £2.40

2 Pots of Parsley £1.10 each normally I got them reduced to 30p a pot saving me £1.60

2 packets of Blackberries £2.00 each normally I paid 60p each saving me £2.80

= a total saving of £6.80!!

So tonight I made 2 batches of Pesto…. one for tomorrow night’s tea and one for the freezer,  the blackberries were frozen, they will be a welcome addition to an apple crumble this winter 🙂

Pesto Recipe is a case of throw it in the food mixture until I get the consistency I like

  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • 5 cloves of Garlic
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Put everything in a blender and whizz together adding the olive oil through the funnel

Cheese Scones

Well autumn has arrived and the tree’s are starting to turn beautiful shades of red and yellow, and it’s this time of year I love, It makes me want to bake 🙂

Cheese scones were beckoned by the oven today, and I found this wee recipe in one of my many cook books called “Porridge” by Margaret Briggs ISBN 978-1-86147-069-0.

I have quoted the original recipe below and then my modification to the recipe in bold alongside it, because when I added the milk and egg to the mix it was too runny.    If you wanted a smaller batch of scones, i’d suggest adding half the milk and keep to the original recipe.

You will need :

  • 120g (4oz) Oatmeal
  • 120g (4oz) Plain Flour (I used double the quantity of flour 240g / 8oz )
  • 60g (2oz) grated, mature cheese of choice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt (I would recommend a big pinch)
  • pinch of paprika (I used a pinch of chilli powder as i’d run out of paprika)
  • 40g (1.5oz) Margarine
  • 1 Egg (2 x small pekin Bantam Eggs courtesy of Brenda)
  • 150ml (1/4 pint) Milk

Method :

  1. Preheat the oven to 230 Degrees C / 450 degrees F or Gas Mark 8
  2. Sift the flour, salt, pepper and baking powder and mix with the oats
  3. Rub in the margarine, then mix in the grated cheese
  4. Mix the beaten egg with the milk and add to the rest of the ingredients to make a soft dough
  5. Knead lightly, turn onto a floured board and roll out to about 2cm (3/4″) and cut into 5cm (2″) rounds with a cutter or small glass.   Knead the offcuts of dough gently
  6. Brush with milk and bake for approximately 12 minutes.   Serve warm

Nutty Plum Crumble

This recipe is courtesy of  “The Best of Mrs Beeton’s Christmas” ISBN 978-1-898-80176-4

Serves 4-6

Ingredients :

  • 675g Plums, halved and stoned
  • 50g Sugar

Topping :

  • 175g Plain Flour
  • 75g Butter or margarine
  • 25g Demorara Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 75g Chopped Hazelnuts, toasted

Set the oven at 180 degrees C / 350 Degrees F / Gas Mark 4   Place the plums in an ovenproof dish and sprinkle with sugar

Make the topping.   Sift the flour into a mixing bowl and rub in the butter or margarine until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.  Stir in the sugar, cinnamon and hazelnuts.

Sprinkle the topping evenly over the plums, pressing it down very lightly.   Bake the crumble for about 45 mins, until the topping is golden brown and the plums are cooked.   Serve with custard, cream or vanilla ice cream.

The Perfect Carrot Cake

I was looking at Carrot Cake recipes this morning amongst the books in my bookcase, then had a browse around online and finally decided to make this one as I really fancied the recipe, plus I had all the ingredients 🙂

The recipe is from the website http://www.cakebaker.co.uk and the link to the acutal recipe is here   http://www.cakebaker.co.uk/MakingThePerfectCarrotCake.html

The cake is in the oven as I type this and has about 45 mins left to bake, once its all done and dusted I’ll post a picture

The Perfect Carrot Cake

Ingredients for the cake

  • 12½ oz carrots
  • 2 oz pecans
  • 4 oz self-raising wholemeal flour
  • 4 oz plain wholemeal flour
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 8 fl oz vegetable oil
  • 6 oz soft brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup

Ingredients for the topping

  • 7 oz cream cheese
  • 2 oz softened unsalted butter
  • 2 oz sifted icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essenceThese quantities make a 9” round cake / 1 x 2lb Loaf Tin
  • Start off by grating 12½ oz carrots and chopping 2 oz pecans. Put to one side.
  • Sieve together 4 oz self-raising flour and 4 oz plain flour (both wholemeal) with 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, ½ teaspoon nutmeg and 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda. (Tip the bran bits left in the sieve into the mixture.)
  • Whisk together 8 fl oz vegetable oil, 6 oz soft brown sugar, 4 eggs and 2 tablespoons’ golden syrup. (Heat the spoon first and the syrup will slide off easily.)
  • Add this to the dry ingredients and mix until it’s nice and smooth. Stir in the carrots and pecans.
  • Tip the mixture into a greased lined tin and cook at 160oC for an hour, or until cooked.
  • For the topping, mix 7 oz cream cheese, 2 oz softened unsalted butter, 2 oz sifted icing sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla essence, until smooth.
  • Allow the cake to cool and then add the topping

This cake will keep for a few days in an airtight container. That is, if you can resist it that long!

Fresh Raspberry Jam…

I picked the last of the raspberries out of the garden today, all 175 grams of them and really fancied making some jam

Ingredients :

  • 175 grams of fresh raspberries
  • 175 grams of Jam sugar

Method:

  • take a heavy based pot and add the rasps, warm on a gentle heat to get the juices flowing and mush a few down to get them going
  • Once they are juicy add the sugar and bring to the boil then turn down the heat a bit.. cook until a soft set is reached
  • place into a sterilised jam jar
  • makes 1 x 9 oz jar

Fruit & Nut Loaf

The recipe I used for this loaf was actually titled Sultana Loaf, but I didn’t have enough sultanas in the store cupboard and had to improvise, I used cranberries and chopped nuts to make up the shortage on the sultanas, it turned out ok, but I think I should have added a splash of milk to the mix because it turned out rather dry, still edible tho 🙂

Ingredients :-

  • 170g / 6oz butter
  • 170g / 6oz soft light brown sugar
  • 3 room temperature eggs, beaten
  • 285g / 10oz self raising flour
  • 340g / 12oz sultanas (I only had 170g the rest was made up with cramberries and nuts)
  • grated zest of 1 orange
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice

Method :-

  1. Heat the oven to 180 degrees C / 350 Degrees F / Gas Mark 4
  2. Take a 2lb loaf tin and pop in one of those fab loaf liners you get from lakeland
  3. Cream the butter in a large bowl using an electric beater until it is soft.   Add the sugar and beat until pale and fluffy
  4. Add beaten eggs a little at a time, beating well between each addition.   If the mixture starts to curdle, beat a little of the measured flour.
  5. Fold in the flour, sultanas, orange zest, mixed spice and mix well.
  6. Put into the prepared loaf tin and bake in the centre of the oven for 1-1 1/4 hours.   If the cake starts to get too dark, cover it with a sheet of greaseproof paper and turn the oven down to 150 degrees C / 300 Degrees F / gas Mark 2.   Extend the cooking time if necessary.
  7. The cake is ready when a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.   Allow the cake to cool for 10 mins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe Courtesy of Leiths Baking Bible ISBN 0-74765-8189-4