All posts tagged: sugar

Pangrattato Al Pomodoro, 31p [VEGAN]

Firstly, a confession. This recipe is a twist on an Italian classic, Pappa al Pomodoro, which is essentially a bread-crust and tomato soup, with olive oil, salt and pepper, and sometimes garlic and basil or rosemary, depending on whose recipe you consider to be sacred. This version eschews the traditional, using dried stuffing crumbs to replace the bread and herbs. But Stuffing Crumb And Tomato Puree Soup didn’t seem like a particularly appetising recipe name, so I translated it into Italian as a nod to the original. Serves 1, from 31p, (This post contains affiliate links – I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any products.) First peel and finely slice your onion, and set to one side for a moment. Measure the oil into a heavy-bottomed saucepan, preferably a non-stick one, and warm it for a moment on a medium heat before adding the onion. Season with a little black pepper, and cook for 3-4 minutes, until starting to soften. Quarter your tomatoes and add those too – when …

Sticky Lemon Pudding, 30p

I couldn’t decide between making myself a sticky toffee pudding, classic in its stodgy saccharine comfort blanket, or a lemon drizzle, zesty and bright with its promise of sunny afternoons…so I took to the trusty barometer of reason, Twitter, to ask for help. The poll came back as a 52/48 split, and we all know how contentious those are, so in order to try to satisfy both sides of the pudding referendum, I mashed the two options together. The sticky warm component structure of toffee pudding, with the flavour profile of a rich lemon drizzle cake. I wasn’t sure it would work (but was willing to give it as many goes as was necessary for the name of, uh, research), but to my delight, it came out perfectly first time. [I made mine in a 135mm wide x 55mm deep x 165mm long mess tin, as after six cookbooks and eight years my solitary loaf tin has finally given up on me, and the mess tin holds a third less than a standard loaf tin …

Zero-Waste Banana Peel Ketchup, 43p

I first came across banana chilli ketchup while staying in a self catering apartment in Edinburgh. It takes a certain amount of planning to buy exactly enough food to sustain two adults for three days, wasting nothing, when your nearby shopping options are the Harvey Nichols food hall (ineffectual, expensive, but fun to walk around gasping at and making furtive notes at all the fancy pastas), or a Sainsbury’s Local, where fruit and veg are sold in large packets and nothing by the handful. I found a banana habanero chutney in Harvey Nicks by Mr Vikki’s, a small Cumbrian company, and we wolfed our way through two jars of it in a weekend. I knew that as soon as I got home and into my own kitchen, I would be knocking up my own version. And I have done it many times since, each batch slightly different to the last, and each disappearing into the homes of various friends who are absolutely obsessed with it. It’s an ideal accompaniment to a curry, or grilled cheese, …

Tinned Pear Cake, 36p [Tin Can Cook]

This soft, sweet, rich and heavy cake was written for Tin Can Cook, as I sat surveying tins of fruit and wondering how to plump up my pudding chapter. My eyes roved greedily over the tinned peaches, pears and cherries, looking for inspiration, and there it was. Fat, fulsome pears swimming sodden in their own slippery, succulent syrup – what a treat! I could barely wait as I sat typing up the recipe, my home rich with the scent of freshly baked goods, impatiently picking at the slice I promised myself as a reward for committing it to paper. I love this, and it’s all the better for using tinned pears; I hope you love it too. If you do happen to have ripe pears needing using up, first quarter them and carefully scoop out the seeds with the point of a small sharp knife. Cut away the very tip of the stalk and the woody star shape at the base, taking care to remove as little of the flesh as possible in the process. …

Cherry & White Chocolate Bake, 21p

I made this adaptation of my original – and very popular – Peach Traybake from A Girl Called Jack, last weekend for Mrs J’s local cycling club. She reported back that it had all vanished within minutes; the most popular of the three cakes at the tea stop by far. I was very chuffed – although I had also made the other two as well! Recipes for those to follow later – for now, please enjoy this utter delight. I used defrosted frozen cherries as they come ready pitted and are cheaper than fresh ones (I long for the careless frivolity of being able to spend both time and money hurling fresh cherries into cakes!) but tinned cherries and glace cherries work just as well. I’ll also be posting a vegan edition later down the line using applesauce in place of the eggs; I just want to test it first as this is a particularly moist cake so I’ve a feeling it won’t be a straight simple swap and that the other ingredients may need …

Beet Wellington, £1.34 [from ‘Veganish’]

This is one of my more difficult recipes, but I approach it in stages, treating the duxelles as a separate recipe on its own and making it in advance to lessen the workload a little. I can promise you that the end result is completely worth it – a vegan ‘special occasion’ dinner for Sunday roasts, festive feasts, date nights, or any other occasion where you really want to push the boat out. I have made many a vegetarian wellington, ranging from whole flat portobello mushrooms wrapped in spinach, to a black bean and chestnut version, but my favourite by far is this beet wellington, and not just for its nomenclature. It requires a little care in the assembly process, but then so does a standard fillet beef wellington, and this keeps as close to the original as possible with the inclusion of a mushroom duxelles and a crepe layer. The duxelles provides a distinctive depth of flavour, and the crepe layer, although it may seem overly fancy, acts as a barrier between the vegetables …

Rolly-Up Pancakes, 8p

Unless you’re very deft with your pans, don’t try cooking more than one at a time. Just serve them as soon as they’re ready, or keep them warm on a heatproof plate over a pan of gently simmering water. Makes approximately 10 from 8p each. Prices correct at time of publication 2 eggs, 25p (£1.48/12 medium free range, Asda) a pinch of salt, <1p (27p/750g, Smartprice at Asda) 120g plain flour, 4p (45p/1.5kg, Smartprice at Asda) 400ml milk, 20p (49p/l, Asda) 50g butter, melted, 29p (£1.45/250g, Smartprice at Asda) To serve: lemon and sugar Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl, and add the salt, flour and milk. Beat until you have a smooth batter, then cover with a tea towel and leave to stand for an hour. Melt the butter in a thin, shallow frying pan on a medium heat, tilting the pan to run the butter around it as it melts. Ladle in just enough batter to form a thin layer when you tilt the pan. When the pancake starts to brown around …

Peanut Butter Ice Cream, 43p

Caster sugar is generally more expensive than standard granulated sugar (currently £1.19 for 1kg compared to 69p for granulated at the supermarket) – but a few years ago I worked out that I could make my own substitute for it. All you need is a small powerful blender, and a bag of regular sugar, and you can blitz it up to a finely ground sugar suitable for making ice creams and floaty-light cakes with. Admittedly the blender is an initial investment, but I use mine every day for making soups from scrappy leftovers, hummus from cans of chickpeas, light and creamy batters for pancakes and yorkshire puddings – so it’s well worth digging into your pocket for in the long term, if you can. This recipe is from A Year In 120 Recipes, my 2014 book of seasonal, thrifty recipes, available here. Serves 6 from 43p each. Prices from Tesco, correct at time of writing. This recipe is not sponsored, however I make make a small fee if you click a link and make a …

Courgette Chocolate Cake, 16p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

Courgettes in cake came into fashion a few years ago, but I only really bothered with them when I had a glut of the green blighters one autumn. Desperate to get rid of them, I made them into wholesome soups, pestos, pasta sauces and smuggled a few into this big chocolate cake. The courgettes are virtually indetectable – a novel way of smuggling vegetables into your children or fussier members of your household – but the moisture gives a pleasurable density and a little heft to an otherwise light snack. Eat your greens, go on! Serves 6 rather generously at 16p each, (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) 2 courgettes, 40p (£1.60/1kg courgettes, Sainsburys Basics) 50g dark chocolate or 25g cocoa powder, 21p (84p/100g, Sainsburys own cocoa powder) zest and juice of 1 lime or 1 tbsp bottled lime or lemon juice, …

Pinwheel Biscuits, 9p each [A Year In 120 Recipes]

A few years ago, the Guardian asked me to write a recipe feature on a Christmas dinner inspired by Finnish traditions. I was a new food writer, and a little green around the edges, and I attempted it with gusto. Needless to say, it wasn’t the most authentic or brilliant of my recipe collections, and if I’d been asked again today I would have gently pointed them in the direction of a Finnish food writer, instead of trying to do it myself. However, I did learn to make these adorable pinwheel biscuits in the process, and although the liver and sultana casserole effort made headlines for all the wrong reasons, this recipe has stayed in my Christmas favourites. Makes 10, (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) 100g sultanas or prunes or 50g of each, 20p (99p/500g) 2 tablespoons marmalade or honey, …

Carrot Cake Rice Pudding, 33p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

I make my rice puddings with long-grain rice as I don’t often have pudding rice in the house, but you can make it with either. This recipe came about from a pile of carrots that needed using up (even with a rabbit in the house!) and ever more inventive ways to do so … If you’re a carrot cake fan, you can add a handful of sultanas as well, and some chopped nuts to the top. Serves 4, from 33p each. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) 2 large carrots, 6p (approx 300g), (20p/kg) 410g evaporated milk, or thereabouts, 64p (64p/410g) 500ml whole milk, 25p (49p/litre) 2 tablespoons sugar, 3p (£1.19/kg) 120g long-grain rice, 5p (45p/kg) a few pinches of grated nutmeg, 1p (84p/42g) 25g butter or equivalent, 15p (£1.45/250g) 2 tablespoons honey or golden syrup, 12p (£1.24/425g) First preheat your …

Tree Biscuits, 5p each [A Year In 120 Recipes]

My Small Boy and I make these every year – although they don’t always make it to the tree..!! (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.)   Ingredients (made 24 assorted sizes for £1.11) 300g plain flour, 9p (45p/1.5kg) 100g butter, 58p (£1.45/250g) 100g sugar, 12p (£1.19/kg) 2 eggs, 27p (80p/6 medium free range) 1 tsp cinnamon, 5p (59p/34g) First, the butter – because I make these with my son, I melt it in the microwave for a minute to make it easier to stir in. Traditionally, you would rub it into the flour with your fingertips, but once I started melting my butter in the microwave, I’ve never looked back. Whatever method you choose, you need to combine the butter and flour to form a breadcrumb consistency. Tip in the sugar and cinnamon, and beat in the eggs to combine to …

Red Wine Poached Pears, 46p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

This recipe is so easy that it’s hardly a recipe at all. I use tinned pears, because they’re cheaper and easy to tuck away at the back of a store cupboard, and serve them in a bowl with ice cream and a little grated dark chocolate. Serves 4, from 46p each (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) 1 x 400g tin of pear halves, 79p (79p/410g) 1 large glass of red wine, 92p (£2.75/750ml) 100g sugar, white or brown, 12p (£1.19/kg) a scant 1⁄4 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1p (59p/34g) dark chocolate, to serve, optional Drain two-thirds of the juice from the pears and pour the remainder into a saucepan with the pear halves. Pour over the red wine, then add the sugar and cinnamon. Cover and poach for 15 minutes. Remove the pears and set to one side. Bring the cooking …

Spiced Vegan Banana Bread, 11p

I almost had the audacity to call this recipe ‘Christmas-spiced Banana Bread’ as I am currently testing some new recipes for a December project (more on that below) but I didn’t think I could cope with the outrage of the Internet if I dared use the C-word halfway through September. So instead, euphemistically, this is an Autumn-spiced banana bread, warming, comforting, and pull-your-jumper-around-you warming delicious bliss. Based on the vegan banana bread recipe from A Girl Called Jack, but better. For best results you will need a small powerful blender to grind the spices into the sugar; I have used this one for years and absolutely swear by it as a blender, smoothie maker, curry paste machine and spice grinder, so it’s worth a look. And a third of the price of it’s hifalutin equivalent… Serves 6 very generously at 11p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you …

Peanut Butter & Banana Superpower Muffins, 10p

What do you do when you have a pile of black bananas sitting in the fruit bowl? I don’t even know how this happens – I generally work from home, bananas are my go-to snack because I can reach them and don’t have to do anything except peel them and shove them in. Sometimes they get sliced and flung in the oven to make dried bananas for the kids, sometimes I whizz them with yoghurt, milk and oats for a breakfast smoothie, but today I fancied neither of those things. It’s freezing. And raining a bit. And I’m a bit tired and gloomy. What I wanted, was to make those black and mushy bananas into Baked Goods. I started with these, as I’m a peanut butter fanatic…and as I started jotting down ideas, I thought, I wonder if I can make them flour less… And vegan… And thus, with a bit of science and substitution, the vegan oat peanut butter banana power muffin was born. So so so soft and subtly sweet and delicious that …