Any jam and almond tart recipe      

I haven’t forgotten about my New Year’s resolutions and I know the clock is fading fast, but I’ve been plugging along behind the scenes working away at the list.

I have a confession to make, for some reason I love buying jam. I don’t have something in mind to use it for, although I would love it if someone would make me fresh scones on a daily basis. I just like tasting it at markets, buying lots of different flavours and it just sits there in my cupboard begging to be used. Recently I bought a whole stash of Walsh’s homemade jam made in Boorowa and when I went to put them in the cupboard, I noticed I didn’t have any room left because it was filled with other jams, chutneys and relishes. I have a problem (one of many) but let’s work on that part later. When I found this recipe I was so happy that it was delicious and buttery, it was also a tart and best of all it used roughly a jar of jam!

This recipe for a tart base is so easy! I’ve used orange marmalade and peach and mango jam so far but I’m dying to try this with more of a berry style jam or Black Horse’s plum and cinnamon (which is one of my favourite jams).

Any jam and almond tart

Original recipe taken from here.

Ingredients

Filling

  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 30g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 150g flaked almonds
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup of jam

Pastry base

  • 150g unsalted butter
  • 225g plain flour
  • 3 tablespoons of chilled water
  • 4 tablespoons cornflour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Equipment

  • greased tart tin
  • saucepan
  • spatula

Method

  • Throw all the pastry ingredients into a food processor and process until a dough has just formed.
  • Press the dough into the tin and ensure an even surface. Refrigerate the dough in the tin for at least 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C
  • Place all the filling ingredients except the jam into a saucepan on low heat, stirring until butter has melted and then set aside to cool
  • Take the tart tin out of the fridge and spread the jam over the pastry base and then layer the flaked almond mixture evenly on top and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden (keep your eye on the tart towards the end as the almonds can burn easily)

Tips

  • I’ve been making my tarts at 180C with a fan but I found after 25 minutes the almonds get very dark, maybe it is supposed to be 160C fac forced
  • Both time I’ve made this tart, I didn’t have time to wait for it to cool before taking it out of the tin; despite looking like a quick and easy recipe, you have to be patient and allow for some cooling period or you’ll end up with the corners crumbling in the tin and a not so pretty tart (like mine).
     Yes I realised I forgot to take a photo until after I put it in the ovenIt is lovely when it is warm; the jam is runny, the pastry is crumbly and the top is crunchy- yum. 

Pancake trial #3

My lovely American friend invited me over for brunch which entailed bacon, home-made hash browns and very fluffy thick pancakes, she happily gave me the recipe and I needed to try for myself if it was as easy as she said it was. The recipe is supposed to be easy to remember: 1 of everything, although you have to remember it is only one tablespoon of sweetener or your teeth will fall out. 😉

Ingredients

  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • 1-3/4 cup milk (depends on how thick or thin you like your pancakes)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey
  • Butter for cooking

Equipment

  • Fry pan
  • Mixing bowl
  • Measuring cup for easy pouring of the batter
  • Spatula

Method

  1. Throw all the ingredients into a bowl and mix only until all the ingredients have just been incorporated. Apparently it doesn’t even matter if you don’t get all the flour pockets, just don’t over mix it
  2. Let it stand in the bowl for 10 minutes
  3. Grab a measuring cup for easy scooping, I chose my 1/3 cup for smallish pancakes
  4. Heat the pan on medium heat and throw a knob of butter to oil the pan
  5. Once the butter is bubbling, scoop a portion of your pancake batter in and it should spread nicely to create circles. I was able to fit two in a big fry pan, because I only added 3/4 cup of milk, it was thick and stayed put
  6. Flip the pancake once bubbles have formed (should only take a few minutes).
  7. Once flipped, it only needs around another minute to brown the other side.
  8. Remember to adjust heat based on your stove top so the pancakes do not burn

Tips

This mixture made only 5 fluffy pancakes, it is good portions for one or two people and ensures you’re not eating pancakes for the next week.

They reheat well after a 10-15 seconds in the microwave.

You can also add some berries (frozen or fresh), after you’ve poured the batter into the pan

Throw all the ingredients in a bowl, mix, rest for 10 minutes, scoop, cook, flip and eat, it is that easy.
TimmyC has his with maple syrup and ice cream, I prefer mine with Lyle’s Golden syrup.They’re so fluffy!!I think I have found a winner, these pancakes are thick and fluffy, the ingredients list is easy to remember and are basic staple to the kitchen pantry/fridge. I will just have to keep an eye on the cooking so they don’t look so brown around the edges. That is one out of five completed for my New Year’s resolution. It’s already August, eeep!

Pancake like object trial#2 aka crepes

TimmyC’s love of pancakes quickly shifted to crepes when he discovered their crispy buttery goodness a few years ago and I thought while I was trying to get a good pancake, I could probably look into crepes as well.

A wonderful Belgian friend of mine made me some crepes for breakfast the last time I stayed with her; the crepes were delicious with a subtle sweetness from the vanilla sugar she uses. I didn’t find it needed much else but a touch of cinnamon to enjoy its buttery crispy goodness but she had hers with bacon, banana and syrup. Her recipe comes from an old photocopied recipes from Belgium and she was also nice enough to translate it for me so I could try to make them when I got home.


 

Crêpes (makes 15)

I had to double check with my friend that I had written down the right type of flour, I just thought it was an odd concept for something so thin and crispy to have self raising flour.
I forgot to make a well for my wet ingredients which just meant I had to mix a bit more but it incorporated together in the end.

Ingredients

  • 200g self raising flour
  • 30g caster sugar
  • 10g vanilla sugar
  • 500mL milk
  • 4 eggs
  • Butter for frying

Equipment

  • Fry pan with shallow sides
  • Spatula
  • 2x Mixing bowls

Method

  1. Sift flour into a bowl
  2. Mix through both sugars
  3. Make a well
  4. Mix wet ingredients in another bowl
  5. Put eggs and milk in the well and mix until everything is incorporated
  6. Ladle the batter into medium hot buttered pan.
  7. Swirl the pan instantly to cover the bottom of the pan evenly with batter
  8. Loosen edges with spatula when bubble start to form
  9. Flip the crepe without dropping it on the floor
  10. Cook for less than a minute on the other side or until golden brown

Tips

We were eating them by the stove top because we were impatient and we liked them hot. My friend placed all of the layers on a plate kept it warm in the oven until she was done cooking. You will have to keep adjusting the heat to the pan so the crepes won’t burn.

For my own convenience, I cooked them all in one hit and just microwaved them when I wanted one; they were hot but lost their crispiness. They looked ugly at first but it takes a few tries to get them thin and flip them without breaking.

Choose your condiments and you’re on your way! Tim likes maple syrup and ice cream (you’ll see a trend) but I like it plain and simple with hints of icing sugar and cinnamon. Layers of crispy thin crepes

New Year’s Resolutions

So by now, most people who had made a fleeting fitness New Year’s resolution would have given up (if you haven’t good for you!). I on the other hand, have made another type of resolution that I’m sharing with you all in hopes to keep me honest and get me through to fulfilling them before the end of the year.

I want to cook several things this year, wait let me rephrase that, I want to cook several things really well this year. I may or may not have made them before and it might seem like simple humble items but they make a good basis for a classic cooking repertoire.

1) a bread like object

There are so many different types of bread, I’m not going to limit myself just to one. I’ve never worked with yeast before, but I love the smell of fresh bread (who doesn’t) and tasting warm bread with real butter is absolutely divine. If you have any recipes or tips that would be great!

2) a curry

I love a good chicken curry but if I can, I want to make a flavoursome tender red meat curry that basically falls apart as you put a spoon through it.

3) pancakes

it might seem weird but I’ve never made a successful pancake outside of the pre-mixed shaker containers. It has always been my dirty little secret as a foodie, but with Shrove Tuesday coming up, there is no time like present.

4) tarts

After my love of making cupcakes and my failure of making macarons (which TimmyC has definitely made up for), my next big love was going to be making tarts. I have made some but haven’t gotten around to getting to the perfect recipe. I think tarts are gorgeous, delicious and very instagramable.

5) ice cream/sorbet

My lovely sister gave me the ice cream Kitchenaid attachment possibly two/three years ago now and I’ve never done anything with it. In my defense, that was roughly when I met Mr Frugii and my need for ice cream was taken care of. I should really throw that thing in the freezer so when the feeling arises I can make ice cream straight away without delay.

 
There are probably other things that I also want to make but these 5 resolutions are a good start. If you have any ‘fool proof’ recipes that you would like to share, that would be super handy. Have you made any resolutions this year?