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Photos and random thoughts from the Starry-Eyed Girl

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Treat-Size Plum and Apple Pies for #SundaySupper

My contribution to the 4th July celebrations comes in the form of treat-size plum and apple pies. Fusing American and British flavours that are common to both our heritages, these bite-size pies are perfect for sharing with friends and family.

Recipe

(makes 10)

For the pastry:

  • 6oz plain flour
  • 3oz butter
  • drop of water to bind pastry dough
  • egg yolk to glaze pastry

For the filling:

  • 1 large cooking apple
  • 2 plums
  • 2 tbsps caster sugar
  • 1 tsp mixed spice

Method

Grease a shallow cupcake tin and preheat the oven to 180C.

Put the flour and butter into a large mixing bowl and rub lightly between your fingertips until it is all mixed together and looks like breadcrumbs. Then add a little water, a few drops at a time, and bring the mixture together to make a dough. Handle the dough as little as possible - wrap in clingfilm and put in the fridge to chill for at least half an hour.

In the meantime, put a pan on the stove and fill with water. Peel and chop the apple and put into the pan along with the caster sugar and bring to the boil, stirring well to help the sugar dissolve. Simmer gently until the apple is beginning to soften, then add the plum pieces and cook for 5 more minutes Drain and set to one side.

Flour a work surface and rolling-pin and remove the pastry dough from the fridge. Roll out until it is less than 1cm thick and use a small, round cookie cutter to cut circles of pastry. Keep the remnants of the pastry. Press into the cupcake tin and stab each one with a fork to prevent the base rising. Blind bake for 10 mins.

With the remaining pastry, roll out and cut into thin strips, long enough to stretch over each pie.

Remove the pastry cases from the oven and spoon some of the apple and plum mixture into each case. Twist the strips of pastry and secure to the cases with egg yolk. Glaze the twists with egg yolk then sprinkle with mixed spice. Bake for 15-20 mins.

Serve hot with cream, or take along to a picnic to eat cold. Enjoy!

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#SundaySupper celebrates 4th July!

Although I am British and should not technically celebrate the American Day of Independence, I will take any excuse for a party. Furthermore, as a secret would-be freedom fighter, I see a lot to celebrate in any independence day.

Phew, now that I have managed to philosophize my way into celebrating, let the fun begin! There are some wonderfully patriotic dishes from across the food blogging network this weekend so there is plenty of imagination and inspiration to go around and to help you celebrate in style!

As always, join us on Twitter from 5:30pm EST today and see Family Foodie for more details!

Salads and Sides:

Desserts:

Filed under recipes sunday supper 4th July

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Bread and Butter Pudding for #Father’s Day #SundaySupper

Bread and Butter Pudding is a British classic - and it is one of my favourite puddings in the whole wide world. (I’ve travelled far and wide enough to feel I can justify saying that!) There is nothing fancy about it, no specialist ingredients, just bread that’s a day or two past its best and a few other things you’re bound to have in your stock cupboard.

When I was a child staying with my grandparents, my grandad and I would race to see who would finish pudding first, and this is the only pudding I could ever beat him on. it’s full of good memories, of warm kitchens and cozy nights in with my grandparents, of simple food and of love.

There are many, many variations on bread and butter pudding; some adding chocolate, swapping bread for brioche, or using cream rather than milk. However, this is a back-to-basics version and I would choose it every time.

Ingredients:

  • About half a loaf of bread, sliced, buttered and cut into squares (stale is fine - the custard soaks in so well)
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1/2 a pint of milk
  • 2 tbsps caster sugar
  • rasins and sultanas
  • mixed spice

Method:

Grease a square baking dish and preheat the oven to 180C.

Put the caster sugar and milk into a pan and heat gently, stirring all the time until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is heated through - but do not boil.

Whisk the eggs together in a bowl then add the milk mixture a bit at a time, whisking well.

Place squares of bread into the dish so that they cover the bottom. Sprinkle with a handful of the raisins, sultanas and some mixed spice. Pour over enough of the custard to soak all the squares. Then repeat for another layer. For the final layer, repeat, but omitting the raisins and sultanas. You should use up all the custard.

Place into the oven and cook for 40-45 mins until the top is browned and crunchy and the custard has set. Serve immediately, with cold milk for pouring.