Chia seed pudding

An extremely quick breakfast packed with nutrients!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tbsp Maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • Selection of fruit as desired

 

Method:

  1. Mix all the liquids together in a bowl until combined
  2. Add the chia seeds to the bowl and whisk to ensure there are no clumps
  3. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge overnight
  4. Serve with fruit

Perfect pancakes

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Ingredients:

1 beaten egg

100g plain flour

300ml milk

Method:

Sift plain flour into a bowl. Make a well in the centre and add the egg and half of the milk.

Whisk the two liquids together gradually incorporating the flour. Once all flour is mixed in add the rest of the milk.

Heat the pan and grease it with some butter. Add some of the pancake batter and swirl it around so it coats the base of the pan. Leave to cook until browned and then flip. Cook remaining side until browned then transfer to a plate to serve.

Chocolate Cake

I made this recipe when I was in school, it’s from a kids cookbook and has since become one of my trusted recipes. The cake is a simple sponge with a chocolate ganache icing.  I’ve added fruit on top because fruit makes any dessert look spectacular.

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Ingredients:

For the cake:

  • 3 beaten eggs at room temp
  • 175g unsalted softened butter
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 150g self-raising flour
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

For the icing:

  • 100g milk chocolate
  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 200ml double cream at room temp

 

Method:

  1. Grease the 20cm cake tins and line the bases with baking parchment.Preheat oven to 180°c
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together in a bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the egg.
  3. Sieve the flour, cocoa powder , and baking powder into the bowl of creamed butter and sugar and then fold the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture.
  4. Divide the mixture equally between the two greased and lined cake tins, smoothing the tops with a palette knife. Bake for 20-25 mins or unti firm. Take care not to overbake the cakes or they will become dry.
  5. Turn the cooled cakes out onto a cooling rack. Break the plain and milk chocolate into a bowl and gently melt them over a pan of simmering water.

For the icing:

  1. Remove the bowl from the pan. Allow the chocolate to cool for 5 mins and then stir in the cream. Leave the mixture to thicken for a few minutes.
  2. Make sure the cakes are completley cool before putting on the topping. Put one cake on a serving plate and spread a quater of the topping over it.
  3. Put the other cake on top and spoon over the rest of the topping. Spread it over the top and the sides until the cake is evenly coated. Leave to set.

Strawberry Tartlets

These are a timeless classic and taste absolutely gorgeous! I lost the original recipe for these tartlets but the one below should work just as well if not even better.

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Ingredients

For the pastry

  • 200g (7oz) plain flour
  • 125g (4oz) unsalted butter
  • 30g (11⁄4oz) icing sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk

For the crème pâtissière

  • 350ml (12fl oz) full-fat milk
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 100g (3 1/2oz) caster sugar
  • 15g (1⁄2oz) plain flour
  • 15g (1⁄2oz) cornflour
  • 1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 600g (1lb 31⁄2oz) strawberries
  • 3 tbsp apricot jam, sieved

Method:

Blend the pastry ingredients in a food processor until the mixture first forms clumps and then comes together in a ball.  If you need to add water, 1 tsp will be enough. Roll the pastry onto a lightly floured board, to 5mm (1⁄4in) thickness, and use to line a 25cm (10in) loose-based tart tin or tartlet tins. Chill for 30 minutes.

Heat the oven to gas 5, 190°C, 170°C fan. Line the tart with nonstick baking paper and baking beans. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the paper and beans, then bake for 5 more minutes. Leave to cool.

To make the crème pâtissière, heat the milk almost to boiling and then leave to cool for a few minutes. Put the egg yolks and sugar into a bowl and whisk until thick and pale. Add the flour and cornflour and whisk until smooth. Gradually whisk in the milk.

Return the mixture to a clean pan and stir over a medium heat until it begins to thicken. Stir vigorously, turn the heat to low, and simmer, stirring continuously for 2-3 minutes, until the mixture is very thick. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Pour the crème pâtissière into the tart case and spread level. Chill for 4 hours, or until set.

Hull the strawberries and arrange snugly on top of the crème pâtissière, pointed ends up. Gently heat the jam in a pan with 1 tbsp water, stirring. Remove from the heat and cool. Brush over the fruit.