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Thursday, 30 August 2012

Ham Pate for lunch

I had some baked ham left over so thought I'd make it into a pate for sandwiches and other snacks.

Whizz it all up in the food processor

Manuka Honey with Lemon

Ham Pate

You need twice as much ham as you do cottage cheese, and can add whatever flavourings suit you.
600g baked or boiled ham, diced
300g cottage cheese
1 tbsp whipping cream (optional)
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp  New Zealand Honey Co, Manuka Honey with Lemon (or other honey)

Whizz the ham in the food processer until chopped small, add the other ingredients and whizz until mixed.

Pack into a dish or box and cover.

I topped a baked potato with some of the ham pate and served with a simple tomato and basil salad.  It's a great way to use up left over ham it also extends it much further than serving it sliced.

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Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Win an Eric Lanlard Hamper with Silver Spoon and Macmillan Cancer Support

On the 28th of September this year the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning is going to be taking place. This is a fantastic one day fundraising event hosted by Macmillan Cancer Support to raise money for people with lives affected by cancer.
Silver Spoon, the homegrown sugar people, are the official sugar sponsor for the event, and this year have decided to launch a fantastic competition as part of their activity. On the 24th August 2012 Silver Spoon and Macmillan are launching Silver Spoons Little Local Hero Awards. They are scouring the country for local heroes under the age of 18 who have done something truly special. Your local little hero could have looked after their little sister when they were ill, gone to great lengths to make Mother’s Day very special, or done something fantastic to raise money for charity.
If you know someone under 18 in your local area who you think would be a worthy winner, just follow this link and explain in less than 100 words who you are nominating, why, and what you would bake them to say thank you

Master Pâtissier Eric Lanlard, star of Channel 4’s Baking Mad with Eric Lanlard, will choose a Silver Spoon National Little Hero and to celebrate he will bake them a special cake of their choice! 10 runners up will also receive a Silver Spoon Baking Hamper packed full of exciting treats.

There are sure to be some amazing stories from our local little heroes all over the country, but in the meantime don’t forget to register to hold your own coffee morning on the 28th September, just follow this link and you can help to raise money for people with lives affected by cancer.

We have a Macmillan coffee morning at work every year which I am singularly bad at finding time to bake for, mainly because it is generally at the end of the week and I do my baking at the weekend. However I do go along and EAT the cakes and make my donation.  If you would like some inspiration for what to bake for The World's Biggest Coffee Morning, then pop over to the Round up of the Cake Stall Cakes and Bakes for Tea Time Treats at Lavender and Lovage.  There were 68 entries, so there is bound to be something to suit your baking taste and ability.

Part One - Cake Stall Cakes and Bakes

Part Two - Cake Stall Cakes and Bakes

Tea Time Treats is run by Karen at Lavender and Lovage and Kate at What Kate Baked

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Monday, 27 August 2012

Chocolate Snap Bars with New Zealand Manuka Honey

Have you tried Manuka HoneyThe New Zealand Honey Co asked me to try their 100% pure Manuka honey with the addition of lemon and root ginger, two new exciting honey options that are great for cooking.

The first thing I would say is that the additional flavours are completely natural, the lemon tastes fresh like freshly squeezed lemon, with the added bonus of being packed full of Vitamin C. There are little pieces of ginger in the Manuka Honey and Root Ginger, the flavour makes it ideal for marinades and salad dressings.

New Zealand Honey Co have created their own range of recipes, which you can find on their website along with all the information about the digestive health and healing properties of the honey at

New Zealand Honey Co.’s new Manuka ‘Plus’ range is available in Morrisons stores nationwide the 'Manuka Honey and Lemon' and  'Manuka Honey and Ginger' are both  RRP £9.99 

I have also been creating with Manuka Honey, the first recipe I'm going to show you is a simple no-bake treat using Rice Krispies.

I don't often make these kind of bars and was pleasantly surprised to find a recipe on the Kellogs website for Chocolate Snap Bars  using honey in the base mix, here is my version:


Chocolate Snap Bars


100g butter
40g Manuka Honey with Ginger
1tbsp (10g) sugar
150g rice krispies
200g chocolate/chocolate chips or buttons

1. Cook the sugar, manuka honey with ginger and butter over a medium heat in a saucepan. Stir frequently, and once the sugar dissolves simply boil the mixture for five minutes, stirring all the time.  Be carefule that it doesn't burn, I had to throw my first batch out.
2. Next remove the pan from heat and add the rice krispies, coating them thoroughly. Press the mixture into a greased tin. 
3.  Put chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of water over low heat, stirring constantly. When it's melted, spread it evenly over cereal mixture. 
4.  Then simply leave to set, and cut into squares or bars when cool.

I'd have to say that the rice krispies don't stick together as well as with golden syrup or marshmallows, but the flavour of the honey is really good and the hint of ginger makes them a little bit more grown up.  More Manuka Honey recipes coming soon.

I'm entering these Chocolate Snap Bars into the new challenge at Maison Cupcake called Zero Baking Required anything goes as long as it hasn't seen the inside of an oven.

Disclaimer: I was supplied with Manuka Honey from the New Zealand Honey Co..  I was not required to write a positive review and any opinion expressed is my own..

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Saturday, 25 August 2012

Chocolate and Cherries - We Should Cocoa #24 Round Up

Many thanks to everyone who joined in the We Should Cocoa challenge this month.  It's quite a responsibility to host this well-established challenge and I wanted to do justice to it.  Any anxiety I had at the beginning of the month has long gone, as the trickle of entries turned into a regular flow with a few last minute minnies coming in at the last gasp!

First up is Lapin D'Or and More with this Paul Hollywood inspired Chocolate and Cherry Loaf made with dried sour cherries. 

Susie at Fold in the Flour is a bit of a brownie addict and has been experimenting with The Ultimate Brownie Recipe to create these Dark and Delicious Cherry Brownies.

More brownies, this time from 'reluctant baker' Fiona at London Unattached.   Fiona was persuaded to take part in the challenge and turned out these glorious Chocolate Cherry Brandy Brownies

Johanna at Green Gourmet Giraffe went to great lengths to make her Chocolate Cherry Cookies , sourcing the dried cherries at a local middle eastern store and then finding they had stones in them and having to remove them late at night as she made her cookies.  That's dedication for you!

Quite possibly the prettiest entry for the We Should Cocoa challenge this month, is White Chocolate and Cherry Mousse which comes from Kit at i-Lost in Austen.  Kit accompanies her gorgeous creamy dessert with a quote from Jane Austen's Persuasion.  Personally, I think that dessert is worthy of a picnic at Box Hill!

Do you like Biscotti?  If so you are going to love these Triple Chocolate Cherry Biscotti from The Spice Garden, apparently they are truly orgasmic!  You can't ask for more than that, can you?

When Tiffin met Rocky Road at Lancashire Food, Cherry Choccy Rocky Road was born! Linzi has created a melange of all things chocolately and sugary and come up with a real winner.

Anyone who is a regular reader of my blog knows that I am a big fan of instant trifles and Sian at Fishfingers for Tea is obviously of the same mind!  She has created a Black Forest Trifle, using the classic combination of chocolate cake, cherries and cream and it looks like a winner.

I'm sure  Caroline at Cake, Crumbs and Cooking is trying to confuse me with her recipe Nigella's Chocolate Pistachio Fudge which contains no Pistachios but cherries instead! It's a quick and easy sweet treat.

Ros, the More than Occasional Baker has had these cookies on her 'bake list' for ages. She brought back some Hershey's Kisses from a holiday in America just to make them! Cherry Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies are sure to be a hit combining almonds, cherries and chocolate in a bite sized morsel.

More cookies, this time from Kate at Turquoise Lemons.  Kate chose to make Cherry and Dark Chocolate Cookies using chopped dark chocolate and glace cherries.  A simple but effective recipe which could easily be adapted to carry other ingredients.

This is a really pretty dessert created by Elizabeth at Tango Like Raindrop: Black Forest Waffles. It was a special treat for 'Wednesday Pudding Night' and went down a storm with Elizabeth's family.

A childhood favourite now with Australian Crunchies from Karen at Lavender and Lovage, perfect for a lunch box treat.

I feel a little bit responsible for Dom, of Belleau Kitchen, not achieiving 1st prize in the Aby Village Show with his Deep Filled Cherry Pie with chocolate shortcrust lattice top, could it be that he was placed third because of the chocolate pastry?  Whatever, it's done and dusted now and I think that pie looks fabulous and he was robbed!

This little Chocolate and Cherry Pudding was cooked in a Slow Cooker!  Baking in Franglais discovered it while looking for a slow cooker recipe and was so taken with the idea that different pudding combinations are already planned.

Janet, from The Taste Space, is spot on when she says that everything looks better in a Mason Jar!  This Chocolate Cherry Granola Parfait with Banana certainly looks good presented like this.

Using a Richard Bertinet recipe, these Chocolate Cherry Tarts from Under the Blue Gum Tree combine juicy cherries,  gooey chocolate and nutty almonds into tarts of crumbly, crisp perfection.

Hannah took us on a beautiful trip down memory lane with her Kentish Cherry Fondant Cake at the Corner Cottage Bakery.

 Chocolate Rum and Cherry Cheesecake is the entry from Cake of the Week.  This indulgent dessert is actually made with a sugar substitute so a bit more healthy than you would think!

Choclette of the Chocolate Log Blog, Queen of all things chocolately, and co-owner of the We Should Cocoa challenge brings us a traditional cherry dessert from the Limousin region of Francewith a chocolately twist: Chocolate Swirled Clafoutis. It also gave Choclette a chance to show off her lovely red clafoutis dish.

My own entry was a Chocolate Cherry Cake and very tasty it was too!

Hungry Hinny had planned a Black Forest Gateau but in the end made these cute little Cherry Chocolate Brownie Cupcakes with a cherry surpries hidden inside.  These cakes were destined for a friend who is gluten intolerant so with a little extra thought from the Hungry Hinny, no one had to miss out on a treat.

Now for some Chocolate and Cherry cookies from Sharky Oven Gloves.  I love the big chunks of chocolate, hazelnut and dried cherries in these cookies.

Homemade by Fleur really excelled herself with this stunning Chocolate, Cherry and Blackberry Profiterole Mountain inspired by her holiday in France. 

These little Cherry Ripe Bars submitted by Mainly Baking come from a Dan Lepard recipe and are inspired by an Australian confection of the same name.  Chewy, sticky and very rich, but totally delicious in small quantities.

A slice of rich Cherry Chocolate Cake from Cookbooks Galore who describes it as "a Black Forest Gateau without the topping".  It doesn't look like there is much left anyway!

 Congratulations to Anne at Anne's Kitchen on passing her English and Maths GCSEs.  Anne celebrated with Cherry, Cranberry and Chocolate Oaty Cookies another big success.

Thank you so much to everyone who took part, I hope I haven't missed anyone, these were all the recipes on the Linky.  Remember to check The Chocolate Log Blog on 1st September for the new challenge ingredient.

PS:  I was pretty sure I would miss some entries, a couple went to the WSC email address rather than the linky so here are a few more chocolate and cherry treats for you.

Chocolate and Cherry Cake from Lucy at the Kitchen Maid.

BFG Ice Lollies from Gill at Tales of Pigling Bland

Very Chocolatey Chocolate Cherry Cookies from Jaim's Kitchen

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White Chocolate and Strawberry Cream Cake

I've had a birthday recently, yes another one, they definitely come round quicker every year.  Quite often I end up with a bought cake from M&S but as I was on holiday at home, I decided to make my own cake. 

I chose this White Chocolate and Strawberry Cream Cake from the Great British Bake Off book from 2011, the recipe is widely available on the web so I've linked to one which is a reliable source.

The cake was relatively easy to make although it did stick to my tins a little bit, so make sure you grease them very well or use cake release spray.  I probably slightly overbaked my sponges too as they seemed to still be wobbly in the middle. However, it didn't affect the taste or moistness of the sponge they are just a little darker than I would have liked.  Putting the cake together is 'a piece of cake' and the 'value' strawberries I used were ideal, being smaller but packed with flavour rather than water. 

As most of you know I like to enter cooking/baking challenges and was rather perplexed because this didn't fit any of them.  Then I remembered Bookmarked Recipes  run by Jacqueline from Tinned Tomatoes  and founded by Ruth from Ruth's Kitchen Experiments.

I'm hoping that I can just sneak in as this is the last Saturday of the month and the round up is due.

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