Thursday, 4 July 2013

Chocolate Caramel Muffins

It's a wet miserable day up here in Scotland (typical of the summer holidays!) so deiced to do some baking with the kids. My daughter picked this delicious summer recipe from the bakingmad website. It was a really easy recipe to follow, my 11 year old daughter did most of it herself. They also tasted amazing! I will make these again, for picnics or packed lunch boxes. It would be easy to swap the chocolate caramel drops for other ingredients too.

Makes 10 large muffins

110g butter or marg, softened
100g golden caster sugar
150 ml milk
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
300g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
100g pack of chocolate caramel drops (silver spoon brand)

Preheat your oven to 180c. Line a muffin tray with muffin cases.

Cream the sugar & butter together. Add the eggs, mix again. Add the milk a drop at a time & combine. Add the flour & baking powder & mix again. Gently stir through the chocolate drops & then add a large dollop of mixture to each muffin case.

Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, until firm to the touch & golden in colour.

Vichy Carrots

This dish get it's name from the brand name of sparkling water the original recipe uses for cooking these carrots. I personally just use a cheap bottle of sparkling water! This is my favourite way of cooking carrots.I love to sprinkle fresh parsley from my garden over them near the end of cooking for a fantastic flavour. These take longer to cook than just boiling our carrots, because we are simmering them slowly, but it is worth it for the end result.

Use your largest frying pan.

Serves 4

4 carrots, peeled & sliced about 1 cm thick
Sparkling water
Large knob of butter
Chopped fresh parsley
Salt & pepper

Lay the carrots in one layer in the largest frying pan that you have. Pour in enough sparkling water to just cover the carrots. Add the butter & season. Simmer gently for 15 minutes or until all the liquid has been absorbed. . Scatter over the parsley, stir & serve.

Swede (turnip) Bake

Up here in Scotland we call them neeps or turnips, but I know the English call them swede and Americans call it rutabaga! No matter what you call it, it's a tasty vegetable, and a great replacement for potatoes in a lot of dishes. This dish is lovely with a roast dinner or maybe some sausages. I think this has more flavour than potatoes, and make it quite often to go alongside roast chicken. I didn't add cheese to mine, but you can sprinkle some on top if you fancy it.

Serves 4

Butter to grease
1 swede, peeled and sliced in 0.5 cm thick slices
2 garlic cloves, crushed
200 ml double cream
Cheese to top (optional)

Grease an oven proof dish with butter. Preheat oven to 200c.
Place a layer of swede slices in the bottom of the dish. Add a little garlic on top. Layer more swede on top, with more garlic. repeat until you have filled the dish or have used all the swede. Pour the cream over the whole dish. Add cheese on top if you are using. Pop in the oven for around 30/35 minutes. A knife should go through all the layers of swede easily.