Rhubarb & Orange Charlotte

Deliciously tasty rhubarb with a hint of tangy citrus flavour makes this scrumptious dessert the perfect family treat …

Serves: 8:   Cals per portion: 387;   Prep time: 35 mins;   Cook time: 1 hr 10 mins

Ingredients:

  • 2 lb (900g) fresh rhubarb
  • finely grated rind and juice of 1 small orange
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 6oz (175g) Demerara sugar
  • 1 ½ oz (40g) plain cake crumbs
  • 800g farmhouse loaf of white bread
  • 5oz (150g) butter, melted
  • 1 small egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp Demerara sugar

Step One – Using a sharp knife, trim away leaves and root ends from each rhubarb stick. Slice rhubarb into 1 in (2.5cm) long pieces. Wash rhubarb pieces thoroughly and pat dry with absorbent kitchen paper. Place the rhubarb in a large saucepan along with the orange rind and juice. Slowly bring to the boil.

Step Two – Simmer for 5 mins, stirring occasionally, until the rhubarb starts to soften. Stir in ground ginger, Demerara sugar and plain cake crumbs, then set saucepan aside. Using a sharp knife, slice the bread into ½ in (1.25cm) thick slices and remove all crusts. Discard ends of loaf.

Step Three – Grease a 2 ½ pt (1.5 litre) charlotte mould or a 6 in (15cm) round cake tin. Trim two bread slices to fit neatly inside the mould base. Brush one side of bread with melted butter. Place bread, buttered side down, in base of mould. Brush the bread with more melted butter.

Step Four – Reserving two bread slices, trim the remaining bread to fit around the side of the mould. Brush both sides of each slice with melted butter and arrange around side of mould, overlapping as you go and pushing the bread against the mould. Brush over the joins with beaten egg.

Step Five – Preheat the oven to Gas 5, 375oF, 190oC. Spoon the cooked rhubarb into the mould, pressing down against the bread.  Trim reserved bread to fit over mould as a lid. Press down to cover rhubarb.  Brush lid with beaten egg and cook in the oven for 1 hour, or until charlotte is golden brown.

Step Six – To turn out, run a palette knife around edge of charlotte and invert on a warmed serving dish. Sprinkle with Demerara sugar and serve with custard.

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Self-Saucing Dark Chocolate, Fig and Hazelnut Pudding

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine November 2015

Self saucing dark chocolate pudding

Slow-cooking isn’t just for savoury dishes – you can make delicious and comforting puddings and cakes in the slow cooker or on the stovetop.  They have used healthier alternatives to refined sugar, such as rice syrup, honey or, in this recipe, coconut sugar.  This pudding’s autumnal ingredients of figs and hazelnuts, and a rich chocolate sauce, mean it will be a favourite.

Serves : 6-8  –  Preparation Time : 10 mins  –  Cooking Time : 45 mins

Ingredients: 125ml melted butter; 235g coconut sugar; 225g self-raising flour, sifted; 1 egg, lightly beaten; 250ml almond milk; 2 tsp vanilla extract; 55g cacao powder; 6 dried figs, coarsely chopped; 100g dark chocolate, coarsely chopped; 4 tblsp blanched hazelnuts, toasted, coarsely chopped

Step One: Preheat the oven to 180oC (350oF/Gas 4).  Grease a 2.5-3 litre baking dish.  In a bowl, combine the melted butter, 155g of the coconut sugar, flour, egg, almond milk, vanilla and 3 tablespoons of the cacao powder.

Step Two: Fold in the figs, chocolate and 3 tablespoons of the blanched hazelnuts, then spoon into the dish, spreading it out evenly.

Step Three: Scatter with the remaining sugar, cacao power and hazelnuts, then gently pour over 625ml of boiling water.

Step Four: Cook in the oven for 40 minutes until set, then set aside for 5 minutes before serving.

Some of the ingredients from Amazon:

Slow cooking recipe book:

Psychologies Magazine:

Passion Fruit and Mango Brulée

Although you’ll save even more time by using canned mango, peeling and cutting a fresh one is well worth the few extra minutes – the taste and texture is so much better.

Serves : 4  :   Prep : 6 mins  :   Cook : 4 mins  :  Cals per portion : 440

Ingredients: 1 large ripe mango; 2 x 200g tubs Greek yogurt; 2 passion fruit; 250g tub mascarpone cheese; 2 tbsp light Muscovado sugar

  • Cut flesh from mango. Put pieces into the base of four ramekin dishes.
  • Beat the Greek yogurt and the seeds and juice from the passion fruit into the mascarpone cheese to form a thick creamy mixture.
  • Spoon the yogurt mixture over the mango, then sprinkle the sugar over the top.
  • Grill until the sugar melts and forms a hard crispy caramel. Cool before serving.

Rhubarb and Apple Crumble

Serves : 4-6  :  Prep : 15 mins  :  Cook : 20 min

Rhubarb and apple make a delightful combination of flavours in this traditional favourite.

Ingredients: 1 oz / 25g butter; 1 1/2 lb/ 700g rhubarb, chopped; 1 lb/450g cooking apples, peeled and sliced; 1 tsp/5ml ground ginger; 3oz / 75g caster sugar; 3 tblsp/45ml water Topping: 6oz / 175g plain flour; 3oz / 75g butter, softened; 3oz / 75g demerara sugar; 2oz / 50g ground almonds; 2pt / 1.2 litre ovenproof dish

  • Melt the butter in a pan over a gentle heat, then fry the rhubarb and apples.  Add the ground ginger and caster sugar and simmer gently, covered, for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to Mark 6 / 400oF / 200oC.
  • To make the topping, sieve the flour into a mixing bowl and rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and ground almonds.
  • Spoon the rhubarb mixture into the dish. Pile on the almond crumble, smoothing it to cover the fruit. Bake the crumble for 25-30 minutes, until the top is golden.

Easy Upside Down Apricot Pudding

Always keep a couple of packets of sponge mix in the cupboard for a fast, easy pudding.

  • Stir 5 tbsp apricot jam into 225g / 8oz of no need to soak apricots and put into the base of a 1 1/2 pint pudding basin.
  • Make up 2 sponge mixes (you’ll find that one is not generous enough) according to the instructions on the packet and spread over the fruit.
  • Microwave on medium for about 8 minutes or bake in a tin half filled with water and entirely covered with foil at Mark 5 / 375oF/ 190oC for 40 minutes or until the sponge is risen, springy and firm to the touch.

A few things Apricotty and Puddinny that you may like …

Apple and Pear Crumble

Golden autumn fruits combine wonderfully in this popular family pudding.

Serves: 4-6; Prep: 25 mins; Cook: 35-40 mins baking

Ingredients: 500g (1 lb) cooking apples, peeled, cored and chopped; 500g (1 lb) firm pears, peeled, cored and chopped; 2-3 tbsp granulated sugar
Topping: 175g (6oz) plain flour; 75g (3oz) butter or block margarine, diced; 40g (1 1/2oz) caster sugar

  • Preheat oven to 200oC/400oF/Gas 6.
  • Put the apples into a heavy based saucepan. Add 125ml (4 fl oz) water and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer over gentle heat for 5 mins.
  • Drain the apples and add to the pears and sugar. Mix well with a large wooden spoon and turn into a 23cm (9in) ceramic flan dish.
  • For the crumble topping, sift the flour into a mixing bowl. Add the butter or margarine and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the caster sugar.
  • Spoon the crumble evenly over the apples and pears. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the crumble is golden and the fruit is cooked. Serve hot, with custard or cream.

Cooks tip: There are several variations to try with the same crumble topping. A lovely summer recipe is to use 250g (9oz) of strawberries and 4 firm peaches. Slice up the two fruits and mix with 4 tbsp granulated sugar. Put straight into the flan dish and spoon the crumble mixture on top. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve hot or cold.

A book with more crumble recipes and a dish to bake it in.

And something for the chef to wear.