Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas Baking: Day 3 - Salted Caramel Fudge

Ok - so it is now almost New Years but I did complete most of the things that I wanted to give out before Christmas - I just ran out of time to blog about them!  So I thought that I would post them all anyway - here is the third item - salted caramel fudge.

This fudge is good - smooth and almost too sweet - but the salt really does work in some magical way to make it edible rather than "I feel sick".

I have made this before from a recipe I pinned on Pinterest but I cannot remember which one I used so I wrote out the recipe this time and I am pretty sure it is the same one because it takes exactly the same.








1 Can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup golden syrup
2 Tablespoons glcouse syrup - I used corn syrup
1 stick + 1 tablespoon of butter = 140g
180 g white chocolate chooped - grate it or do it finely.
Sea Salt for sprinkling


1.  Line a square tin with non-stick baking spray and then baking paper.

2.  Put all the butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan and melt them together until the sugar and butter dissolve - mine took about 15 minutes - I stirred most of the time.

3. Turn up the heat so it simmers and stirring constantly (or near enough) bubble it for 6 -8 minutes. 

The original recipe said that it would be coming away from the sides of the pan but I did not experience this.

4.  Turn off the heat - and remove it if you like - and stir in the white chocolate completly - near enough was good enough for me.

5.  Pour it into your prepared tin - sprinkle it with salt and let it set in the fridge - don't poke it or you will get a fingerprint.

6.  Cut into desired sizes - being careful not to push the salt in - it kind-of dissolved.  I found a hot, dry knife made it move through the fudge super quick.

I parceled mine up in clear sandwich bags and then in a decorated paper bag.  I also wrote a little note reminding my family to keep it in the fridge - it's hot here - but if it is Winter where you are- yours might last out of the fridge a bit longer.  I got about 40 pieces.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Baking - Day 2: Fig, Walnut and Fennel Roulade

So the second thing I am making this year for gifts is a Fig, Walnut and Fennel Roulade.  I know this sounds like some weirdly flavoured swissiroll but it's actually something that you would serve with cheese - in the same way you might have quince paste.

The recipe is from Feast magazine this month and was contributed by Matthew Evans.  I followed his ingredients but changed the method considerably.  Here is where you can find the original recipe and method or you can buy the magazine (well worth it for the delicious Tropfest menu they have in there - pretzels!!!)



1.  I blitzed the figs in the food processor because I had my tiny assistant in the kitchen who can now reach the bench and I don't like using knives near him.
2.  I toasted the walnuts and then added them to the processor and blitzed again.


3.  I crushed the fennel and cloves together in a motar and pestle - such a good smell.

4.  In a bowl I put the brandy, fennel seeds, cloves, black pepper and honey then dumped out the figs and walnuts and mixed it all (use a spatula - so much less much).

5.  I portioned the mix into little logs (I will wrap them like bon-bons) and then rolled them in some rice flour.

6.  I then wrapped each individually in baking paper and put them in a contained to be weighted down with a tin of food I will never use!

Note: It says in the recipe to weight them down for three days and that they will keep air-tight for 3 weeks so they should be perfect for Boxing Day - Yum!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas Baking: Day 1 - Muesli

This year - as I do every year - I am making home-made food items to give to my family and friends as Christmas gifts.  I love putting together bags of beautifully wrapped treats that I know they will enjoy.  Home-made food gifts is also a great way to keep the cost of Christmas down ans stay away from the crowds at the mall.

This year I plan to make:
 I have gotten the recipes from magazines, the internet and my own notebook.

The one I am starting with - because it is the easiest and will keep the longest, is the muesli.

I know I have posted the recipe before but if you would like to make this version you will need:

  • Oats
  • Puffed millet
  • Chia seeds
  • Dried apricots - chopped into pieces - I think scissors are the easiest
  • Dessicated coconut
  • Dried cranberries
  • Molasses
  • Almond Oil - or other nut/falvourless oil
  • Golden Syrup/Rice Syrup or Maple Syrup - some form of sweetener
  • Sunflower Seeds

Follow the method posted about here.

Step 1: Put everything into the baking dish

Step 2: Mix it all so everything is coasted with the sweeteners.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Menu Plan- when there it too much Christmas baking to do!

Please don't be alarmed - my child did not did the beer!

Argh!  So much to make for Christmas - so much in fact I cannot be bothered cooking proper meals - well almost.  I have tried to make this menu plan easy on me - minimal shopping and time spent in the hot kitchen away from the sparkling and Christmas food specials!.

Here we go:

16th - Monday - Poached Eggs with wilted spinach on sourdough
17th - Tuesday - Risotto with corn and prawns
18th - Wednesday - Grandmas
19th - Thursday - Vegetable Soup and Sausages
20th - Friday - leftovers (I am out with my lovey baby group Mums!)
21st - Saturday - Baked Eggs - Christmas Baking Day***
22nd - Sunday - Freezer meal (I am playing at the Church Christmas Carols)*

Can you believe this wasn't the cutest?

23rd - Monday - Pasta with fresh tomato sauce
24th - Tuesday - Laksa with prawns - Christmas Day baking**
25th - Wednesday - Christmas Day
26th - Thursday - Quesildillas with leftovers
27th - Friday - Corn fritters with smoked salmon and home made mayo
28th - Saturday - Vegetable soup and baked cheese
29th - Sunday - Home made pies (turkey/lentil)

Hates hats

*For the Carols service at Church everyone is taking a plate so I will be making two vegetable tarts - undecided yet but hopefully something without eggs as someone else always does a quiche.

**For Christmas Day I also have to bake two tarts - one will be Delia Smith's Thick Onion Tart - I make it every year and I am undecided on the other one yet (for a different household).

***I am making all of the gits for our family and friends this year and I am attempting to make a few different things this year.  I will hopefully remember to take photos of them and can share them with you.

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