Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Salted Caramel, Chocolate and Hazelnut Shortbread Squares

With the demise of the Clandestine Cake Club - which I think is continuing as just a Facebook page - a few of the local members decided to try and keep a group going on our own. For our first meeting I decided to stick to a familiar recipe rather than experiment. Now that we are no longer bound by CCC rules of large cakes only, and as the attendance wasn't going to be huge, I decided to make a traybake of shortbread squares filled with a fudgy layer of salted caramel and chocolate, following  this recipe which I have used before. Using this recipe also meant that any leftovers would keep for longer than a cake would - I already have too much cake in the freezer!



I followed the recipe exactly as written in the link above, so no need to write it out again. In the end, there were only a few pieces left for me to bring home, but they were as delicious as the first time round!

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Courgette Slice, with Bacon and Herbs

I make this recipe more often than I write about it, as it's become a staple warm weather dish; it makes an excellent meal when accompanied by salads. Depending on how filling the salad selection is, it will feed 4-6 people. The added flour also makes it sturdier than a frittata, so it's ideal for carrying to picnics, and of course, with no pastry, it's quicker and easier to make than a quiche.

This time, I was starting with bacon, so there was an extra step involved to fry the bacon until crisp and drain off the excess fat. If ready-cooked ham is used, it's just a matter of chopping and grating the vegetables and mixing everything together. The resulting mixture is then baked in a 23cm/9" parchment lined round baking dish at 195C (175C fan) for about 50 minutes, until firm and golden. I find that it's best eaten at room temperature, or even slightly chilled, rather than warm.

Ingredients:
300g coarsely grated/sliced vegetables (I used 200g grated courgettes, 70g grated carrots and half a red pepper, which I sliced very finely)
1 large onion, finely chopped
100g grated cheddar cheese
200g smoked bacon lardons, fried until crisp, then drained of fat (or 150g ham, cut into small strips)
A small bunch of fresh mixed herbs, finely chopped (I used sage, winter savory and lemon thyme)
5 large eggs
125mls sunflower oil
130g SR flour
Seasoning to taste - a little salt and plenty of pepper, plus a few chilli flakes, if liked