Mayonnaise

IMG_8786The ubiquitous mayonnaise is used in so many ways, from fresh to grilling to oven baking. It is one of the simplest emulsions, using five ingredients. Taught to make it by whisking vigorously, I was more than happy to start using my immersion blender to do the work for me. This is really incredibly easy, and will make you question why you buy mayonnaise. I make it in pint jars, so no bowl or cup to clean out, just a measuring cup to put in the top of the dishwasher along with the working end of the blender. It is so nice knowing exactly what is in this oft-used spread. Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Cake

IMG_9724Chocolate cake, one of our culture’s go-to desserts for celebrations, or the cake that sits waiting for the family to come home to from a long day hike, is deservedly legendary. Moist layers of chocolaty crumb, layered and topped with creamy icing make it decadent and yet simple, while a thin sliver satisfies, a big slice is a worthy treat.IMG_9732

This is a great recipe that can be used for a three layer over-the-top fancy cake, or just a simple sheet cake to serve with a bit of ice cream and some sauce. It is incredibly versatile, and will work with many desserts that require a cake base. Continue reading

Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake

IMG_7016Even though today felt like spring, I know that winter is not yet half over… warm rich desserts still work this time of year. We may get a snowfall yet, but my cup is half full knowing that spring is almost here, or at least just around the corner. But, while the calendar still says winter, make a yummy mid-winter treat for your guests or family.

For a wedding between a British guy and an Indian girl last year, his request was to finish the meal with Sticky Toffee Pudding. We made a couple of changes to the traditional pudding after reading about the use of coffee for steeping the dates in BBC’s Good Food, and garnished it with gold leaf, bringing a little Bollywood to the dish (as remarked by a chef in the wedding party). For that event we topped it with a bit of whipped cream, but as shown here, a scoop of vanilla ice cream works beautifully as well. Continue reading

A Very Basic Pancake Recipe

IMG_8829Pancakes are usually made when we have the time to linger over breakfast (a rarity on a farm), have houseguests, or if it just happens to be a rainy Saturday. We’ll make extra, to be enjoyed cold with a bit of jam, as a mid-afternoon treat. My pleasure in making these is the fact that they are so very basic. Eggs, milk, flour. They are never too thick, or gummy, just completely enjoyable. No leavening agent required, as the eggs do the work.

Next time you awake to a lazy, rainy morning, give them a try with a knob of butter and a drizzle of real maple syrup. Continue reading

Rhubarb Muffins

IMG_4704Having been the baker for too many events to count, I have learnt what people are happy to see offered at a breakfast buffet.  If you have 250 people to serve, the buffet will need to have significant variety of loaves, cinnamon buns, muffins, coffee cakes, and scones.  Usually I would do about 5 varieties of muffins, including these rhubarb muffins.  No matter how many were made, they would be the first to run out.  The others were fruity and delicious, or filled with a nutritional punch to start the day, but these were the wanted.

As my file recipe has the amounts for 12 dozen clearly listed on it, I’m reminded just how many of these muffins I’ve made over the years.

Make them year round, as it doesn’t make too much of a difference whether you use fresh or frozen rhubarb, they both work beautifully.  Continue reading