Tag: 1970’s recipes

Blackberry and Apple Pie

So, today we’ve reached R in The A-Z of Cooking (1977) and…what?  Yeah, I know the heading for the post is Blackberry and Apple Pie. But we’re at R already; you should know by now that The A-Z is never going to give you Roasts or Rice or Root Vegetables. Anyone want to guess the “R” in blackberries or apples or pie?  No?  Good thing because you may as well be shouting “Rumpelstiltskin”.   The R in question is “Reheatable”. What makes this even weirder than the normal bonkers of The A-Z is that you’ll quite likely never need to reheat this Blackberry and Apple Pie because it is so good that you’ll eat it in one go!

Blackberry and Apple PieIf you follow me on Instagram, this picture may be somewhat familiar as I posted it the day I made it which was waaaaayyy back in February. As they say, good things some to those who wait!  The February baking also explains the heart-shaped decorations because nothing says “I love you” like pie right?

Pie Pastry 5The pastry for the Blackberry and Apple Pie came together really well which was awesome because pastry and bread, even after just doing two months of bread with Tasty Reads, are still things that frighten me!  I used frozen blackberries so my mixture was quite wet so when before I placed the filling into the pastry I sprinkled some almond meal into the mix.  This helps to soak up any juices that would have resulted in that anathema to the British Bake Off – the soggy bottom.  Having recently spilled my water bottle all over my lap en route to the gym and having to do an entire class feeling like I had wet my pants, I am also totally against the soggy bottom!

Blackberry and Apple Pie2

Blackberry and Apple Pie3Okay, I know I need to work on my edges but come on, you gotta give me points for the hearts right?  

Blackberry and Apple Pie4Long story short.  This was one of the best recipes so far from The A-Z of Cooking.  Shame it was hidden away in “R for Reheatable”.  If I was going to randomly allocate it a category, it would certainly fall under “T for Totally Awesome”.  Here’s the recipe, including my l’il almond meal trick.

Blackberry and Apple Pie
A delicious and easy to make Blackberry and Apple Pie
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For The Pastry
  1. 200g flour
  2. 100g butter
  3. 1 tbsp castor sugar
  4. 1 egg yolk
  5. Water
For The Filling
  1. 500g cooking apples
  2. 1 punnet fresh or 250g frozen blackberries
  3. 1-2 tbsp almond meal
  4. 1 tbsp lemon juice
  5. 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  6. Sugar
To Serve
  1. Vanilla Ice Cream (optional)
For The Pastry
  1. Sift the flour into a bowl.
  2. Add the butter and rub until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  3. Add the sugar, the egg yolk and enough water to make a firm dough.
  4. Roll out half the dough into a circle and line a 22cm pie dish.
For The Filling
  1. Peel, core and slice the apples.
  2. Mix them with the blackberries, the lemon juice, the almond meal, and sugar to taste.
  3. Spoon the filling into the lined pie dish.
  4. Heat your oven to 425F or 220C.
  5. Roll out the rest of the dough and use it to top the pie. Seal the edges, trim neatly and decorate as you wish. Make sure you include a hole in the centre, either as part of the decoration as I did or, just with a skewer. This will allow the steam to escape.
  6. Sprinkle with sugar.
  7. Place in oven and bake until the pastry is golden-brown, about 30-40 minutes.
  8. Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired!
Adapted from The A-Z of Cooking 1977
Adapted from The A-Z of Cooking 1977
Retro Food For Modern Times http://www.retrofoodformoderntimes.com/
 Back to work tomorrow after an Easter break filled with doing a whole heap of nothing!  I feel like I’m getting back into the swim of blogging regularly.  Let’s hope my holiday filled May doesn’t derail my best intentions!

Have a wonderful week!  And enjoy the pie!

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Strawberry Whip

Today we’re whipping it, whipping it..kind of mediocre  as we stroll down Avenue Q of The A-Z of Cooking (1977).  Quick Desserts is the chapter and Strawberry Whip is the verse.

Strawberry Whip1

I’ll give The A-Z this.  The Strawberry Whip is quick to make.  However, I’m going to come right out and say it.  This was not for me.  But surprisingly not for the reason I thought it would.  The strawberry whip is a cross between a milkshake and an ice cream, kind of like a thickshake. 

I am not a milk drinker. 

Even as a child, a glass of milk would make me  gag.  So, I fiddled with the recipe provided by The A-Z because there was no way I could have faced it.  I halved the milk and doubled the ice cream.  I left out the ice cubes.

Strawberry Whip4

And I still had to give it up after about three mouthfuls.  Not for the reason I thought I might which was the milky strawberry mix.  No, it was because my first mouthful was of straight whipped cream and that was me gone.  I KNOW!  What kind of freak doesn’t like whipped cream?  This kind of freak apparently.. . And I semi-defy anyone to eat a whole mouthful of whipped cream and enjoy it.  Oh?  You did?  And you liked it?  You’ll LOVE the strawberry whip then!

Strawberry Whip1

However, whilst we’re bitching about it?  Don’t even bother with the brandy.  I felt it was a bit redundant to add vanilla to vanilla ice cream so
I used the brandy.  I couldn’t taste it at all.  My recommendation would be to save your booze (and your vanilla) for when it counts. 

Strawberry Whip3

Strawberry Whip3That’s all folks, we’re done with Q.  But before we hit R, the bunny cometh, and to celebrate I made bread.  It was good.  Really good.

Next time…

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Rumanian Herb Omelette

Oops…I P’ed too early last week.  Which, although unfortunate is a lot better than peeing too early!  So, tonight we’re taking a step back in the alphabet along with our step back in time and heading back to the letter O in The A-Z of Cooking.  The chapter I skipped is called “On Your Own” and is, of course, meals for one.  I eat a lot of meals on  my own so I was looking forward to trying some of the recipes starting with a Rumanian Herb Omelette.

Rumanian Herb OmeletteIt may surprise you to know that my knowledge of Rumanian (Romanian?) food is…well…sketchy…would be an overstatement!  Non-existent except for a herb omelette would be another.  But how authentic is the herb omelette?  I turned to the keeper of all knowledge aka Google.

This article on Romanian Food doesn’t mention an omelette. It does have a beef salad cake though!

No omelette on the Wiki either.

This wiki does.  But there doesn’t seem to be anything specifically Romanian about it.  In fact, it seems like a fairly bog standard omelette recipe. 

So, now feeling somewhat older but none the wiser, here is the recipe from The A-Z of Cooking.

Rumanian Herb Omelette Recipe2

 

The addition of sour cream seems suitably Eastern European and added a nice flavour to the eggs and herbs.  The flour?  Hmm…I’m not entirely sure about it.  The texture of the omelette became slightly more pancakey than a normal omelette which was not unpleasant, but not altogether necessary.  Maybe, in this age of cro-nuts and cruffins I should be embracing the concept of a new hybrid food a little more enthusiastically but I’m not sure the world needs an omecake or a panlette!

Rumanian Herb Omelette2Having said that, this was a tasty, quick and easy meal for one and perfect with a side salad.  Mine was a very simple chopped avocado, shaved fennel and balsamic vinegar. 

I also used tarragon, parsley and chives as my herbs because (smirk smirk) I have them all growing in my garden.  You can pretty much use what you have or what you like but this was a deee-licious mix!

Okay, back on track now and next time we’re looking at Q.  Will it be 100 things to do with a quince?  Quirky food?  Quiet food?  Find out next time!

Have a great week!

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Potato Almond Balls

When a chapter called Nuts about Nourishment contains a recipe for Deep Fried Mashed Potato Balls, you know it has to be 1977.  And that we are about to delve into The A-Z of Cooking.  Potato Almond Balls.  I was so excited about these, I ate salad for a week to pre-compensate for the delicious calorific overload. 

And then they didn’t work.

potato-almond-balls
The problem was that the egg and almond crust split in many places…and when it did, the mashed potato kind of disintegrated. So in a lot of instances I ended up with the almond crust and not much else.  Where they remained whole, they were totally delicious sprinkled with a bit of smoked paprika and dipped in some of my favorite green sauce.

I’m putting the failure of the balls down to the wrong temperatures.  Either the balls were too cold or too warm or the oil was.  Is it significant that The A-Z of Cooking has no pictures of this dish?  It is possible that their Potato Almond Balls also broke into bits? 

Here’s the recipe for anyone who wants it, I hope you have better luck than me!

potato-almond-balls-2

To counteract the effect of deep fried potato balls (and because I had no other photos) I thought I would give you all an update on my attempts at the C25K running program.  Today I started week 7 of the program and ran for 25 minutes which was not only the longest time but also the furthest distance I have done so yay me!

Mind you, this is probably a very apt description of both my pace and my style:

Personally, given my new obsession with the ‘My Favorite Murder Podcast,, this might well become my mantra:

And this is probably closer to the truth:;

Next time in The A-Z we are moving onto O for some “Old Fashioned Favourites”.  I was hoping to be done with it by the end of the year but given it is nearly December (how the hell did that happen?) it seems unlikely.  I’m now aiming for end of summer.

Have a fabulous week everyone!

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K is for Lasagne?

Hanging around?  Nothing to do but frown?  Rainy days and Mondays getting you down?

What you need to cheer you up body and soul my friends is some comfort food.  And the best comfort food in existence is home-made lasagne. It MUST be home-made!  The horrible facsimile that is food court  / take away lasagne ( you know the one – ten layers of pasta with only a layer of a thin tomato sauce separating them, with maybe a tablespoon of meat in the entire dish, no bechamel to speak of, a glut of cheap and nasty Parmesan on top and a pool of oil at the bottom – will only further deepen your despondency and ennui with the world). 

Lasagne al forno4jpg

No, what you need to soothe your soul is a  rich meat ragu, lots of cheese, oodles of bechamel and for a really retro kick, curly lasagne noodles.  Hallelujah and praise the angels.  THAT lasagne is heaven in a baking dish.  And if it doesn’t put a glint in your eye and a spring in your step, then you’re dead already!

Lasagne al forno2I have a Garfield like love of lasagne but an equally strong aversion to making it. Here’s why

  • Usually, by the time I have made the ragu, I’m either tired or hungry (or both) so I turn it into a Bolognese.
  • Lasagne is  a mofo of a thing to make – half a day at least, and that’s if you multitask!
  • The fussiest eater in the world does not eat anything with white sauce so no bechamel for him
  • You cannot make lasagne for one.  Or two.  It’s a four person dish at an absolute minimum.
  • Even my love of lasagne does not equal eating it everyday for a week. 

Lasagne al forno3So I don’t feel I am wrong in saying that the last time I made lasagne was probably in the early noughties.  So I  was excited to see that the very first recipe in the K section of The A-Z of Cooking (1977) was for lasagne. The time had certainly come for me to make it again and even more, I was delighted to discover why it was listed under K and not L of Lasagne or P for Pasta.  Are you ready?

  • K is for Kitchen Aids
  • A freezer is a kitchen aid
  • Lasagne freezes like a dream!  Who knew?

Lasagne al fornoSo, without further ado, here’s the recipe.  I made some minor changes, instead of water in the ragu I added equal parts of beef stock and red wine. And also cooked the lasagne, then cut it into individual servings, wrapped them up and froze them.  They can then be heated in an oven or microwave for lunch or a no fuss supper.

Lasagne RecipeNow you have the recipe, why no make and freeze some lasagne –  because you know that a rainy day or Monday will come around all too soon!

Hope you are having a great week!

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