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Thursday, 28 May 2009

Garden Update + British Asparagus

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Redcurrants beginning to ripen

The sun is shining and everything in the garden is looking good. Veggies are planted and various fruits have been spotted.
I'm really excited as our mirabelle tree is absolutely loaded this year, compared to last year when we could count them on one hand. As soon as they ripen I'm going to be out there picking the ones I can reach, before the birds enjoy their feast.

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Hoping these mirabelles don't get eaten by the birds

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Tiny apples appearing

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One of 24 chilli plants that we have growing

The British asparagus season is here, so for a few short weeks we are enjoying the delicious spring spears.

I like to throw a few onto the bbq, then brush with a little butter and seasoning before eating - delicious!

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Er, how did a lone roasted potato get onto the barbie? Lol, not from me!

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This content belongs to Nicisme at Cherrapeno. All writing and photography copyright N Fowers © 2007-2009 unless otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Is It Time For Ice Cream?

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With the weather warming up and the evenings becoming longer, ice cream days are here again!
I want to SCREAM really loudly about this one, as it's soooo easy - 5 minutes to prepare for freezing and it's yet another recipe that you don't need to use a machine for.

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But before I get on to the ice cream, I want to show you the chocolate cups I came up with. You really need some silicone moulds for these as the chocolate shells pop out of them without any fuss. I've used sphere and pyramid moulds.
Melt about 50g of dark chocolate and pour into a piping bag made from baking parchment or use a ready made one with a very small (no. 2) nozzle. You can also just use a teaspoon to drizzle the chocolate into the moulds, less clean up this way! Drizzle the dark chocolate in a random fashion over the inside of the moulds (or you can do some proper designs) and leave to set in the fridge.
Melt 100-200g of good white chocolate and brush the moulds until well covered. Leave to set. You need to coat the moulds with several additions of the white chocolate to make a firm shell that won't break.

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You can now add the ice cream, or use them to hold summer fruits or mousse as in this recipe from Jen at Use Real Butter. Just make sure that if you are adding anything runny that needs to set, put the moulds onto a baking sheet or plate, and fill them up BEFORE lifting into the fridge/freezer - lesson learnt the hard way!!

chocolate, banana and Baileys ice cream

Now, the best part - the ice cream!
David Lebovitz says that "this is the world's easiest ice cream", and having made it a few times now, I have to agree. It's just melted chocolate, milk, banana, Baileys and rum, blended together and frozen. No churning, no stirring, no nothing!
I used half cream and half semi skimmed milk and swapped the rum for Frangelico - delicious.
Thanks David for a great recipe!

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Chocolate, Banana and Baileys Ice Cream
Adapted from this recipe by David Lebovitz

2oz (55g) dark or milk chocolate, broken into squares (I used milk chocolate)
3 tablespoons (40 ml) milk, whole or low fat (I used semi skimmed)
3 tablespoons (40 ml) cream
6 tablespoons (80 ml) Baileys Irish Cream liqueur
1 medium banana, peeled and thickly sliced
1 tablespoon (15 ml) dark rum (I used Frangelico liqueur)

Melt the chocolate with the cream and milk in a microwave, stirring every 15 seconds - or melt in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.

Using a blender, blend the melted chocolate/cream/milk mixture, the Baileys, the banana and the rum (or Frangelico) until smooth.

Pour into the chocolate shells, or other moulds or even a plastic container and freeze for at least 4 hours.

(Printable Recipe)

chocolate shells filled with ice cream

This is my contribution to this month's Sugar High Friday, being hosted by Zilla at Climbin' the Walls. She's asking for wheat free desserts to be submitted by 25th May 09.

This event was created by Jennifer at The Domestic Goddess. You can see all the previous themes here.

Sugar High Friday logo

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This content belongs to Nicisme at Cherrapeno. All writing and photography copyright N Fowers © 2007-2009 unless otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Another Slice of Cake!

Craving chocolate cake? I am..... again!

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This one is a rich fudgy, dense, dark chocolate cake with a wonderful chocolate icing from Laura at EAT DRINK LIVE. It's not a cake for the faint hearted as there's an awful lot of butter and chocolate in it, but having said that, it makes a big cake and will feed a crowd.

As you can see, mine took on the look of the Grand Canyon with its huge cracks, but it tasted pretty good nonetheless. The only change I made was to use a deep 9" cake tin rather than the 8" one that Laura suggested.

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Hop over to EAT DRINK LIVE for the recipe and to see Laura's great photos.
Thank you Laura for a lovely cake!

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This content belongs to Nicisme at Cherrapeno. All writing and photography copyright N Fowers © 2007-2009 unless otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.