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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

The Big Strawberry & Banana Smoothie with Honey

Here's how you make a smoothie in the manner:

Take a handful of strawberries or other berries of your choice. Frozen berries are fine for this purpose. Peel and chop up a small banana. Stick 'em in a blender. Add a few scoops of vanilla ice-cream or frozen yoghurt. Add a splash of milk, or if you're feeling healthy half fat milk. Go light on the milk at first: you can always add more to thin it out if it's too gloopy. Add a blob of honey. Blend. Yum!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Halloween Cookies

Chocolate bars will always takes centre stage, but cookies are a perfect Halloween treat. Pumpkin-shaped cookies and ginger-spiced favourites make colourful and tasty alternatives at your Halloween party.

You will Need:
· 1 cup butter
· 2 cups white sugar
· 3 eggs
· 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
· 3 cups plain flour
· 1 teaspoon baking powder 10 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1. Cream butter or margarine and sugar until light and fluffy; add eggs, one at a time, beating well. Mix in the vanilla. Combine flour, cocoa powder and baking powder; add and mix well. Wrap dough in waxed paper and chill for 2 hours.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Divide dough in half. Roll out each half to 1/4 inch thick. Cut with desired shaped cookie cutters. Place on lightly greased cookie sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes.

My Neighbour Jean's Mum has Festive Treats

Aunty Mary writes:
“My neighbour Jean has her mums recipe book (she’s 95) which she has been hand writing since she was 12 when she first started working as a cook. This is her recipe for mince pies which were so delicious when I tasted them that I could of cried with happiness………

The Pastry (Makes 12 mince pies with lids)

8oz Margarine
12 oz Flour
2 Tablespoons of Cold water

Place the margarine, water and 1 tablespoon of the flour into a mixing bowl and beat with a fork until creamy, gradually adding the rest of the flour spoon by spoon until all the flour is mixed into a dough. Wrap and leave in the fridge for 1 hour. NB this pastry is very short, take care when rolling it out.

The Mince Meat

8 oz of each sultanas, currants and seedless grains
4oz Mixed Peel
10oz baking apples, peeled & grated
¾ teaspoons of mixed spice
Juice of one orange and one lemon
4oz sherry
5oz Vegetable Suet
4oz Soft Brown Sugar

Wash the fruit, mix and chop everything together. Place in clean airtight jars to keep happily for 2-3 weeks

The Mince Pies

The above and a beaten egg to coat

Gently rollout the pastry cutting 12 large and 12 small (lids) circles, place the larger into a floured bun tray, add the mince meat to reach two thirds up, wet the sides with beaten egg and place the lids on gently pinching the sides together with the back of a fork, finely coat the lid with more beaten egg. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes at 220c until golden brown, serve warm with a dollop of whipped cream (brandy optional) or cold for a festive treat."

QuirkyKitchen tip: Mini Mince pies can be easily made in a smaller bun tray; they’re great for kids and your conscience.