Baking from the cupboards is proceeding along merrily; I don't feel too deprived in trying to make things out of what we have and it is more satisfying somehow than buying ingredients to make recipes that I have just read about. I am amassing a little stash of recipes I want to make when this challenge is over (i.e. when the cupboards are empty, which I am estimating will not be before the beginning of March), but I am having fun using things up from my extraordinarily well-stock cupboards. What have I to show for the last week?
1. CAKE. This week's cake was a new take on lemon drizzle cake. I had an orange that was really quite past its best, so I zested it and added it to a plain sponge mixture. The piece de resistance was the icing which utilised some tropical fruit juice that I had in the fridge (I think the juice contained orange, banana, mango and passionfruit); I just used that to mix my icing sugar and poured it over the top. It was a little different but very tasty!
2. BISCUITS. I was umming and ahhing over what biscuits to make for K to take in his packed lunch this week; obviously it being his first week in a new job, I didn't want to embarass him with cupcakes with sprinkles on or hippopotamus shaped shortbread. Then I read that Saturday was World Nutella Day which coincided with me having read this recipe on Friday. It was a no brainer. The mixture was a little too sticky for me to roll into balls as the recipe instructed so I filled cupcake cases with the mixture. When they came out of the oven I was a little concerned as they were more like cakes than biscuits but as they cooled they crisped up and hardened.
3. QUICHE. Obviously a good way around the baking from the cupboards challenge is meal-baking which is exempt, as while cake isn't quite necessary, dinner certainly is. I learnt to make pastry in my Kenwood mixer earlier this year and there has been no stopping me since. Quiche is such an easy meal - I make a little one and a bigger one, and they feed K for three meals with bread/potatoes and salad. This is the first time that I've attempted a quiche varieyt which was a staple of my childhood dinners - sweetcorn quiche! It sounds weird but sweetcorn combined with a very mild cheese like Cheshire or Lancashire cheese works so well.
4. Pastries. I made danish pastry from scratch over the Christmas holidays and never got around to posting pictures of the almond danishes or the mincemeat puffs that I made with it. It was a lot of effort so I was happy that I could freeze the remainder of the dough to use later on, and I dug it out of the freezer at the weekend. This enabled me to use up a bit more of the Christmas chutney that I made (and which has been languishing somewhat), and combined with goats cheese they were apparently very tasty. I also used some pesto to make some palmiers with it, but unfortunately they all disappeared before I got a picture. The pastry making was a faff but I did feel impressed with myself for doing it.
Neverwhere ~ Neil Gaiman
5 hours ago