Monday, July 20, 2015

Sunday baking

I've been meaning to write about Mellisa Harrison's 'At Hawthorn Time' basically since hawthorn time, but it's a book that deserves a thoughtful review - which means it wants some time devoting to it - and yet again I've allowed myself to be distracted. 

It was a productive sunday in the kitchen though. I've been playing with Olia Hercules 'Mamushka', made my first jam of the season, and managed to make a loaf of bread along with other chores, which all makes me feel very virtuous (or possibly smug). 

The jam was raspberry and vanilla courtesy of a kilo of them from my mothers garden. The recipe is the Fridge Jam from the river cottage handbook on preserving and is basically half pectin enriched sugar to fruit. Half the fruit and the sugar is mashed together, the rest added whole, then it's gently heated until it the sugar melts and it starts to boil. It needs 5 to 7 minutes at a rolling boil and then skimming before going into sterilised jars quite quickly. It's a lovely jam  - relatively low sugar and doesn't at all need vanilla but it was a day for tinkering.

'Mamushka' has been inspiring reading for the last month or so but it's taken me a while to actually make anything from it - I can't wait for autumn though, there are lots of colder weather recipes I want to try. Fortunately a Polish supermarket has not long opened around the corner which will help with finding ingredients. I went in on Friday evening looking for twarog (cheese) to finally make the Ukrainian cheesecake, where thanks to google translate I managed to avoid buying a flavoured version, and cast very covetous eyes on the polish cheesecake. Unfortunately I did something I never normally do - broke the eggs straight into the mix, and for the first time ever found a bad one. I baked the cake anyway - everything was already in it - and tried a small (very small) piece with no obvious ill effects but still dumped the cake just in case.

Partly inspired by the Polish cake, and partly by a Japanese cotton cake my sister makes, Sunday's version was a bit lighter with cream cheese and self raising flour added, instead of cottage cheese and semolina. The results are pleasing either way. The recipe calls for 100g if butter, melted and allowed to cool, a greased 1kg loaf tin, and the oven heated to 160 degrees C. 500g of cottage cheese (or cream cheese), 3 eggs, 100g of sugar, 200g of flour (or a split of flour and semolina) the butter, and a tablespoon of vanilla extract get mixed together, poured into a tin and baked for an hour or until done. 

1 comment:

  1. Lovely to hear about your cooking adventures. Your jam looks wonderful and so does the bread!