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More Dough for Your Dosh with Papa John's

More Dough for Your Dosh with Papa John's



Pizza delivery company Papa John's has just launched their new ‘Papa’s Deep Crust’. Papa’s Deep Crust is almost double the depth of a regular Papa John’s pizza and is cooked in a specially designed pan, using an extra cup of cheese compared to other Papa John’s pizzas.



It also features a specially developed tomato sauce, and as an even tastier treat; it’s now on offer until 26th November 2017 priced from £10.99 from Papa John’s outlets nationwide.

Papa John's prides itself on using fresh ingredients, ensuring the use of fresh never froen dough.  The specially formulated recipe features a buttery seared crust for fuller flavour and a light and fluffy deeper dough, almost double the depth of a regular Papa John's Pizzas cooked in a specially designed pan to offer an even more indulgent taste than before.

A new recipe tomato sauce has also been created, using Californian vine-ripened tomatoes which go from field to can in six hours. Added to this is a blend of signature spices and extra virgin olive oil which are then reduced to create a richer tasting sauce, complementing the new thicker base perfectly.

 Every ‘Papa’s Deep Crust’ pizza uses an extra cup of cheese, which is spread all the way to the edge of the dough to create a caramelised, crispy cheese crust. Each pizza is then completed with all the favourite pizza toppings, including fresh “store cut” vegetables.

We were asked if we would like to try the new pizzas and I can tell you they did not have to ask us twice.  We love Papa John's Pizza and it is normally the pizza I order when we do a takeaway pizza.  Deep dish?  With more of that delicious crust, a special sauce and extra cheese????  Bring it on!!



We were sent two pizzas to try.  "The Works" and "Cheese & Tomato."  Both looked gorgeous, and came with that signature hot pepper and garlic sauce dip.  Doesn't this look fantastic??


 And they smelled just as good as they looked . . .  but what about the taste.  Did they deliver on the promise?


The toppings were generous . . .  with just the right amount of meats, peppers, onions and peppers. Yes, that sauce was really gorgeous.  I have always felt that a good sauce "makes" a pizza.  If you have a bad sauce, your pizza will be just blah.  This sauce delivers plenty of flavour!  And this was especially noticeable in the Tomato & Cheese pizza. There was lots of cheese without it being over the top.  Far too often pizza shops are stingy with the sauce and cheese.  This was perfect!


The crust was really nice.  Not doughy at all.  At least we did not think it was.  The edges were crisp and the dough soft and light with a done just right bottom.  It was substantial without being stodgy.


I have to say up front that Todd has never really been a pizza fan.  He usually tolerates them on my behalf because I am a tru blu Pizza lover.  He declared this the best pizza he had ever eaten and he said it was quite enjoyable. High praise indeed coming from him.  I, of course, adored it.  We both gave them The English Kitchen's Two Thumbs Up.  These were really good pizzas, and, as has always been my experience with Papa John's,  they arrived with perfect timing and were nice and hot.


‘Papa’s Deep Crust’ can be ordered with all the toppings available in the original Papa John’s range, including ‘half and half’ and ‘create your own’. An even tastier treat, the new ‘Papa’s Deep Crust’ is on offer until 26th November 2017 priced from £10.99 (including ‘create your own’ with up to four toppings) from Papa John’s outlets nationwide - making it a deep-lightful addition to a night in relaxing in front of the TV.

Disclaimer Note - We were sent two pizzas from Papa John's free of charge to try out, but were not required to give a positive review in return.  Any and all opinions are our own. We simply loved them!

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Marie Rayner
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Corkers New Olive Oil Potato Crisps

Corkers New Olive Oil Potato Crisps



Pioneering company Corkers is proud to announce the launch of its new Olive Oil crisp range. A first for the UK hand-cooked vegetable crisp market, Corkers have sourced the finest olive oil to craft a lighter tasting crisp, working to return value to the often discounted hand-cooked crisp market while still maintaining the classic Corkers crunch. Constantly striving for innovation, the Corkers team spotted a gap in the market for a new premium offering. Corkers have partnered with the Muela family, producers of award-winning olive oil from the Mueloliva farm, to cook its quality potato and vegetable crisps. Established in Spain in 1947, Mueloliva is a family business and a renowned producer of premium olive oil. Like Corkers, the Muela family take their ingredients seriously, using only the best green olives from the family’s 3,000 olive groves in Andalucia. With such attention to detail, the Muela family and their oil are the perfect pairing for Corkers’ distinctive Naturalo potatoes, devised specifically for the peat-rich fenland soil of the Corkers’ Cambridgeshire family farm. Crafted from potato to packet on Corkers’ Willow Farm, the family have more recently planted parsnips, beetroot and carrots – ensuring the ingredients for their vegetable crisps receive the same loving Corkers care. The launch of the new range also follows £1.5 million investment in production and packaging equipment at Corkers’ Willow Farm in Ely, Cambridgeshire this summer, and the creation of an extra twenty four jobs. With both Corkers classic and vegetable ranges getting the Olive Oil treatment, the resulting light, crunchy crisps will come in a selection of seven distinctive flavours - inspired by the Spanish countryside surrounding the Muela family’s farm.

Bringing a taste of the Mediterranean to this quintessentially British brand, flavours include: Lightly Sea Salted, Sea Salt and Balsamic Vinegar, Black Truffle, Rosemary & Garlic, Mediterranean Cheese & Roasted Onion Parsnip, Sweet Potato, Beetroot with Sea Salt, Sweet Potato with Sea Salt.

 Launched on 24th August 2017 and priced at £1.99, stockists will include independent delicatessens and farm shops nationwide. This is all in addition to the Corkers other brilliant ranges



Corkers Hand Cooked Potato Crisps
Simply Sea Salt; Cheddar Cheese and Chive; Sea Salt and Cider Vinegar; Sweet Thai Chilli; Pork Sausage and English Mustard; Duck & Hoisin Sauce; Sea Salt and Black Pepper

Available in 40g and 150g bags Recommended retail price: £0.90 - £1.00 (40g) and £1.80 - £2.00 (150g)



Corkers Hand Cooked Vegetable Crisps 
 Parsnip with Honey & Black Pepper; Sweet Potato & Chilli; Sweet Potato, Parsnip, Carrot & Beetroot

Available in 40g and 125g bags Recommended retail price: £1.30 (40g) and £2.79 (125g)

Corkers Popcorn Sea Salt -
available in 20g and 70g bags Recommended retail price: £0.90 (20g) and £1.50 (70g)

Sweet and Salty
available in 30g and 90g bags Recommended retail price: £0.90 (30g) and £1.50 (90g)


SO WHAT MAKES CORKERS SO SPECIAL? 

Britain loves a crisp. In a school lunchbox, sharing with friends, as a ‘nibble’ with drinks, elevenses at our desks – crisps are practically a British institution. But not all crisps are created equal. The vast majority of crisp brands in this country buy potatoes from farms across the UK, fry them up and call them their own. Corkers do it differently.

You see Rod and Ross created their very own Naturalo potato that is only grown on the Taylor family farm in the rich peaty Cambridgeshire fens. It is the perfect frying potato and helps give Corkers their unique crunch. The potato is white skinned which makes the crisp less greasy. Once harvested, they are driven just a few minutes down the road to be stored at the optimum temperature in order to prevent the starch turning to sugar. This means that when fried, Corkers Crisps maintain an authentic potato taste rather than undertones of burnt sugar, which can often be detected in other brands. Corkers also slice the potatoes thinner than other premium crisps before they are fried to ensure that they are less abrasive on the pallet.

Since they are grown, stored, prepared, cooked and packaged on the farm, a crisp with better provenance would be difficult to find. The result of this attention to detail is a light, delicious crisp that is full of flavour. There are no MSGs and the flavours are created using natural British ingredients. So visitors to Corkers HQ can dig up their own spud, fry it up, flavour it and enjoy the most authentic British crisp ever made in under an hour!

 I quite like Corker's Crisps.  They have a nice variety of product available with very tasty flavours.  Non-greasy and delicious.  I love that there is no MSG and that they are a totally British product. Two thumbs up.

Note - I was sent some crisps free of charge for reviewing purposes, but was not required to write a positive review in exchange. Any and all opinions are my own.
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Marie Rayner
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Scrambled Eggs in Toasty Cups

Scrambled Eggs in Toasty Cups



Scrambled Eggs on Toast are a very popular and quick supper dish served over here in the UK.  I had probably been living under a rock, but . . . . in all honesty, it wasn't something I had ever heard of, or even considered, prior to moving over here!  I'd eaten plenty of toast with scrambled eggs, but had never had my scrambled eggs served on TOP of the toast.


 When I was working at the Manor, quite often Todd would make me scrambled egg on toast when I got home from work.  I would be too tired to want to cook for myself, but totally starving. (No I did not eat at work.  They did not feed their employees. That was one of their rules.  Rich people eh . . .  go figure.) Scrambled eggs on toast never tasted so good as when Todd made them for me.  He's a great Scrambled eggs on toast maker, but I reckon he got plenty of practice at it when he was a bachelor!


This recipe today takes Scrambled Eggs on Toast to a whole new level . . .  because they are not just ON the toast, but IN the toast! 


Well, not in the actual toast per se . . .  but piled into buttery crisp toast cups, that are very easy to make.  You can be baking the toast cups while you make the eggs.


Making these cups is as easy as cutting the crusts off slices of bread, buttering it on both sides and then pressing the slices down into muffin cups. You then bake them until they are nice and crisped up.  Fresher bread works best as it is more maleable, and will press down into the cups with less risk of tearing or breaking.


The Eggs are delicious  .  .  . free range eggs beaten together with cream, strong cheddar, and chives are scrambled in a knob of butter . . .  softly scrambled.  Seasoned with some salt and pepper and another knob of butter folded in at the end, ensures that they are delicious and moreishly tasty.  Pile them into the warm and crisp toast cups, put a bit of salad or sliced tomato on the side, and breakfast, lunch, or even a light supper is served!



*Scrambled Eggs in Toasty Cups*
Serves 4

Eggs and toast, toast and eggs.  Delicious with an impressive presentation, plus also very simple to make. 


For the toast cups:
8 large medium thick slices of whole wheat bread
(Try to use as fresh as you can)
4 TBS softened butter

For the eggs:
6 extra large free range eggs
6 TBS single cream
60g strong cheddar cheese, grated (1/2 cup)
4 TBS snipped chives
2 large knobs of butter
Salt and pepper to taste

You will also need:
a few TBS chopped chives or flat leaf parsley to garnish



Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6.  Trim the crusts off the bread and trim them to equal sized squares.  Press lightly and then butter them on both sides with the softened butter.  Press firmly into 8 medium muffin cups.  Bake in the preheated oven until crisp.  This will take between 15 and 20 minutes. Set aside and keep warm while you scramble the eggs.


Put a large non-stick skillet on medium heat to warm up. In the meantime beat together the eggs, cream, cheese and chives in a bowl. Drop a knob of butter into the heated skillet. Once it starts to foam tip in the egg mixture. Let it sit for about 30 seconds or so and then using a wooden spatula start to bring the egg from the edges into the centre, folding and turning slowly as the egg begins to cook. (You can’t rush scrambled eggs) Cook only until the egg is mostly set, but still moist and then remove from the heat and throw in the last knob of butter, folding it in. Taste and then season. Sometimes the cheese gives it enough flavour that you don’t need any seasoning at all!


Place two of the toast cups onto each of four heated plates and divide the scrambled eggs between them.  Garnish with the additonal chives or parsley.  Serve immediately.



These make a lovely presentation for a special breakfast at the weekend.  I can't think of anyone who wouldn't be pleased to be handed a tasty plate holding a couple of these! Egg haters maybe 😲 Bon Appetit!


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Marie Rayner
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Easy Oven Stew

Easy Oven Stew


 This has to be the easiest and tastiest stew around.  I clipped the recipe from a newspaper many moons again and I have been using it ever since.  Not every time I make a stew, but whenever I know I am going to have a really busy day and am wanting something delicious for our supper that isn't going to take a lot of faffing about!

 
This fits the bill perfectly. It pretty much cooks itself.  With just a bit of peeling and chopping, your work is pretty much done, and if you use frozen chopped onions and buy your meat already cubed, then it doesn't take long to throw together at all.

 
There is no browning on top of the stove.  You just put the meat, onions, garlic and seasonings into a casserole dish/roaster and bang it into a really hot oven for about 10 minutes. Your meat will have started to brown itself by then. There is no messing about and no fat spatter all over the top of your stove.


Everything else simply gets stirred in.  Cubed potato and swede, sliced carrots and parsnips.  A tin of tomato soup, some water, Worcestershire sauce and a small packet of cream of mushroom cup-a-soup . . .  dry.

 
You stir that all together, pop on a lid and then let the oven do the rest.  I find about 2 hours does the trick nicely, but have left it in even longer than that sometimes when I get super busy.  Just make sure it doesn't bake dry.  

 
The soups create a delicious thick gravy, the meat gets lovely and tender, the vegetables just right.  I like to serve this with buttered bread and pickles beets.  Oh boy but it is some good.


 
*Easy Oven Stew*
Serves 4

This is a quick and easy stew to make. Other than peeling the vegetables and chopping them up there is literally no work to do. Your oven does it all! It’s just plain delicious too, so it’s a win/win combination! 


1 pound of well trimmed stewing beef, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 clove of garlic, peeled and crushed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tsp mixed herbs, or summer savoury
1 TBS Worcestershire Sauce
1 tin of condensed tomato soup (Campbells) (295g or 10 3/4 ounces)
1 soup tin of water
1 single serving size envelope of cream of mushroom cup a soup mix
2  carrots, peeled and thinly sliced (1/4 inch slices)
1/2 small Swede/ rutabaga, peeled and cut into cubes (1/2 inch cubes)
2 parsnips, peeled and thinly sliced (1/4 inch slices)
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes (1 inch cubes) 


Pre-heat the oven to 230*C/450*F. Put your beef, onions and garlic into a deep casserole dish with a lid. Season with some salt and pepper to taste and then place the casserole (without the lid at this point) into the heated oven and bake for about 10 minutes, just until the meat is beginning to brown. 


Remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 160*C/350*F. 

 
Put soup, dry soup mix, and the water into the casserole dish along with the mixed herbs. Put the lid on and bang it back into the oven and let it bake for about an hour. At the end of the hour remove it from the oven and stir in the vegetables. You may need to add more water as the mixture should have reduced by then, and you want the liquid to just barely cover the vegetables and meat. Put the lid back on and return the casserole to the oven. Bake for another hour or until the vegetables and meat are tender. 


Remove from the oven and let stand for about 10 minutes before serving. 


I like to serve bread with this for mopping up the gravy!


I've also heard this called Lazy Man's Stew.  Lazy or Easy, no matter what you call it, you and your family are sure to love this simple stew.  Bon Appetit!


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Marie Rayner
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Roasted Root Vegetable Soup

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup


 
One thing which I really love about autumn is that we start to want to eat soups, stews and casseroles and to move away from lighter eating.  Our bodies begin to crave heartier!  Heartier doesn't always have to equate with heavier, or calorie laden however!  This soup is a great example of hearty sustenance, yet light!

 
A simple mix of root vegetables are cut up and roasted in the oven with just a touch of oil to help to caramelize them a bit.  Roasting and caramelising vegetables really brings out their natural sweetness and earthiness in some cases . . .   Carrots and parsnips are especially suited to roasting.

 
Today I roasted parsnips, carrots, sweet potatoes, swede (rutabaga), red onions and shallots.  But you could use any combination of vegetables you like.  Butternut squash would also be lovely.   I scattered some herbs and seasoning over the veg before roasting.



Once the vegetables have nicely roasted you simply combine them in a pot with vegetable or chicken stock and simmer them until they are very, very soft . . . 
 

Once that happens I use my stick/immersion blender and blitz them util they are smooth. You could also put the soup through a sieve to make the mixture really smooth.  I'm rather lazy so I just use the immersion blender. You could also use a regular blender or a food processor, but be careful to vent it by leaving off the cap of the blender and cover with a towel, holding it down.  Hot things tend to expand and explode under the pressure of blitzing in a completely closed container. The last thing you want is hot soup all over the kitchen or your skin!

 
You also don't want to be eating vegetable puree, so keep some additional stock that you can add to the finished soup to thin it out if you think it is too thick.  I like my soup thick, but not too thick!  I want it to be soup!

 
I always toast some bread croutons to float on top.  Because it is pretty much autumn now, I cut some buttered whole wheat/rye bread out with an oak leaf cutter, sprinkled it with some herbs/seasonings and toasted in a hot oven until they were crisp and golden.  Seriously tasty on top of soup and they look really nice too!


*Roasted Root Vegetable Soup*
Serves 4 generously
 
One of my favourite soups to make in the autumn when all of the root vegetables are ripe for the pulling and the days are becoming cooler.  Delicious. Its a balance to end up with soup instead of vegetable puree, so make sure you add enough stock so this doesn't happen.  The amount will largely depend on the vegetables you use! 

4 pounds assorted root vegetables, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
(I like to use a mix of carrots, sweet potatoes, parsnips, rutabaga, onions, and shallots)
2 - 3 TBS olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp thyme leaves (you could use a couple sprigs of fresh thyme if you have it)
1 1/2 to 2 litres of good chicken stock. (6 to 8 cups)  

 
Preheat the oven to 220*C/425*F/ gas mark 7.  Toss the vegetables in a bowl along with the oil, seasalt, black pepper and thyme.  Spread out on a lightly buttered baking sheet in a single layr.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until tender, giving them a stir a couple of times.
 

Heat 1 1/2 litres of the chicken stock in a saucepan.  Add the roasted vegetables and heat through.  Remove from the heat and, using an immersion blender, blitz until smooth.  Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.  If the soup is too thick, thin with the remaining chicken stock until you have the consistency you want.  Heat through again and serve hot, ladled into heated bowls or mugs.


Low in fat, high in fibre and vitamins, and easy on the pocketbook, this soup spells winner all round!  It is a really tasty way to get in some of your five a day! Serve some crusty bread or rolls on the side and nobody will be complaining!  Bon Appetit!
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Marie Rayner
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Chocolate Meringue Cake

Chocolate Meringue Cake




Today you are going to see something which you do not very often see in my kitchen.  CHOCOLATE CAKE!  And not just any CHOCOLATE CAKE, but a delicious CHOCOLATE MERINGUE CAKE!  Combining two of the things that the Toddster loathes . . .  chocolate cake and meringue.  ☺ I know  . . .  he's not normal!


This is a delicious flourless chocolate cake . . .  so it's great for those on a gluten free diet.  No leavening except for eggs and there are rather a lot of them, but no mind.  It was all in a good cause.  Too bad it wasn't fat free too, but alas, it is not . . .  there is butter and sugar in it too . . .  and lots of goooooooooood dark chocolate.



And that is just the base . . .  the meringue on top is loaded with plenty of chocolate as well, grated instead of melted . . .  and folded in.  That way you get a crisp shell . . .  with a marshmallow centre, stogged full of  lots of flecks of ooey gooey chocolate.



Decadent . . .  Tick.    Rich . . .  Tick.   Delicious . . . Tick.  Irresistable . . .  Tick.

Yes, this one ticks all the boxes.  This is a cake that will be very much enjoyed, by all . . .  well, maybe not by Todd, but meh . . . you win some you lose some. 😀 More for me.  



*Chocolate Meringue Cake*
Serves 8 to 10
A delicious two layer, flourless chocolate cake.   This is completely gluten free.  It uses a lot of eggs.   Use any leftover egg yolks to add with a couple of whole eggs to make an omelete or something.  


for the cake layer:
135g of soft light brown sugar (3/4 cup)
150g of butter, softened (2/3 cup)
6 large free range eggs, separated
350g dark chocolate, minimum 70%cocoa solids, melted (12 ounces, 2 1/3 cup)
for the meringue:
4 large free range egg whites
225g caster sugar (1 1/2 cups, super fine)
1 TBS cornflour (cornstarch)
100g dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa solids, grated (2/3 cup or 3.5 ounces)  

 
Preheat the oven to 180*C. 350*F/ gas mark 4.   Grease and line (the bottom) of a 9 inch spring form cake tin.  

Whisk the sugar and butter together until light and creamy.   Whisk in the egg yolks, whisking them in one at a time.   Fold in the melted chocolate.  Using a clean bowl and beaters, whisk the egg whites until they form SOFT peaks. Using a large metal spoon, stir in one spoon of the egg whites to slacken the dough, then fold in the remaining egg whites.  Pour into the prepared baking tin.   Bake for 25 minutes.   The centre should still have a bit of a wobble.  

While the cake is baking, and using a clean bowl and scrupulously clean beaters,  whisk the egg whites for the meringue along with the corn flour until they form stiff peaks.   Whisk in the sugar, one tablespoon at a time, until you have a stiff, shiny meringue.   When the cake is ready, fold the grarted chocolate into the meringue.  Spoon this on top of the cake.  

Return the cake to the oven and bake for a further 25 minutes or until the meringue is crisp.  It will puff right up but sink a bit as it cools.  Allow to cool in the tin for 20 minutes before unmolding and serving.

Note:  Don't freak out if you think the cake won't fit in the tin once the Chocolate layer is baked and you go to add the top meringue.  Just pile it on.  It will work out fine.    

I find that frozen chocolate is easier to grate.  It doesn't melt in your hands.  Use the coarse side of a box grater.


This is the perfect cake for entertaining.  Decadent and delicious.  It will have everybody oohing and ahhing.  And Gluten free. What more could you ask for??  Fon Appetit!



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Marie Rayner
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Spotted Dick

Spotted Dick



This is a recipe I first posted about 8 or so years ago when I first started this blog.  I felt that it needed updating, and certainly needed better photographs than the original one I had.  That was very early on in my food blogging days, and I really didn't know what I was doing and I did not have a very nice camera.  Since then I have integrated things into the blog like posting dual measurements, for both North America and over here, and I must admit, much nicer photographs. At least I think they are!


I have to confess when I first heard the name of this British Pudding I was quite captivated. It sounded quite rude and I remember giggling rather nervously when someone mentioned it. It did rather intrigue me though. I suspect this is a rather naughty name given to it by rather naughty school boys.


Once I tasted it, I was truly smitten, and could well understand how this was one of Todd's favourite desserts, or puddings as they are lovingly referred to over here. My first taste of it was from a tin that we had bought at the local shops, which in no way compares to the real thing, made with your own little hands. Imagine a sweet, slightly stodgy but light dough studded with sweet currants, served up warm with lashings of lovely sweet custard . . . this truly is good.


I have also heard this pudding referred to as spotted dog and figgy duff. It's quite like a roly poly, studded with dried fruits, or in this case dried currants. By a roly poly I mean a sweet suet dough shaped into a sausage, wrapped and tied in greaseproof paper and then steamed until done.


 If you have read any of Beatrix Potter's stories you will remember that Tom Kitten was rolled up into a roly poly pudding by Samuel Whiskers. Thank goodness Samuel didn't succeed and Tom managed to escape! Although being immersed in a sweet pudding might seem like a bit of a dream come true to a pudding afficionado, I don't think somehow that Samuel had quite the same pleasant end  for Tom in mind . . . 


*Spotted Dick*
Serves 8 


This is great simply cut into slices and served hot with butter, drizzled with some double cream, or with a bit of demerara sugar sprinkled on top, but for the true British experience one really must have it served with lashings of warm custard poured over. 


25g soft butter for greasing (1 3/4 TBS)
350g plain flour (2 1/2 cups)
2 TBS baking powder
150g shredded suet (2/3 cup, or 5 1/4 ounces)
75g caster sugar (1/3 cup + 1 TBS)
150g dried currants (scant cup)
2 TBS brandy
25g butter, melted (1 3/4 TBS)
the finely grated zest and juice from 2 un-waxed lemons
1 large free range egg, beaten lightly
150ml whole milk (5 1/2 fluid ounces)
150ml double cream (5 1/2 fluid ounces) 


Warm the brandy just until it is warm. Remove from the heat, stir in the dried currants and then set aside to infuse for half an hour minimum. 


Butter a piece of greaseproof paper, or wax paper, measuring about 60 cm (24 inches) square with the soft butter.  Set aside.

Whisk the flour, baking powder and caster sugar together in a bowl. Drain the currants, reserving any liquid. Stir the currants and sue into the flour mixturet. Add the melted butter. Stir in the lemon juice along with the lemon zest and beaten egg. Stir the reserved juice from the currants, milk and cream together. Slowly add this to the mixture, stirring, until you reach a slightly stiff (firm but moist) dropping consistency. You may not need to use all the liquid. 


Spoon the mixture onto one end of the paper, creating a sausage shape about 3 inches in diameter. Roll up in the paper, being careful not to roll it up too tightly.  I like to pleate it shut at the end.  Make sure you leave space for expansion, or else the mixture will not be able to rise properly and will end up heavy rather than light when done. 


Tie the ends tightly closed with some string. Place the pudding in a hot steamer fitted with a lid, over steaming water. Cover and steam for 1 1/4 hours until cooked. Check the bottom of the steamer from time to time and make sure you keep it topped up with hot water. 


Remove the pudding from the steamer and unwrap. Cut into slices and place in bowls. Serve with lashings of warm custard for the whole spotted dick experience! 


Note - Alternately you can spoon the dough into a buttered pudding basin (medium sized).  Cover lightly with a sheet of pleated buttered greaseproof paper and secure with a string, then steam, covered, over simmering water in the top of a double boiler for the same length of time.



*Proper Custard*
Makes about 3 cups
Printable Recipe


This is also known as creme anglaise. Be sure not to let the mixture boil once the eggs are added, or you wil end up with a curdled mess. You only need to heat it up enough to cook the eggs. The custard is ready when it coats the back of a wooden spoon.


8 egg yolks
75g caster sugar (a generous 1/3 cup)
300ml whole milk  (1 1/4 cup)
300ml double cream (1 1/4 cup)
1 vanilla pod, split


Beat the egg yolks and sugar together in a bowl until well blended. Place the milk and cream in a saucepan with the vanilla. Scrape the insides of the vanilla pod into the mixture before you add it. Bring the mixture just to the boil.


Pour a little of this mixture into the eggs to temper them, and beat it together well. Pour this back into the pan and whisk together. Return to the heat and using a whisk, lightly stir until it begins to thicken. DO NOT BOIL.


As the egg yolks warm, the cream will get thicker and create a custard. Keep stirring until it coats the back of a wooden spoon. Remove from the heat and pass through a fine sieve. Leave to cool a bit before using. Serve warm or allow to cool completely,stirring occasionally.
 


The dish was originally mentioned in Alexis Soyer's "The modern Housewife or ménagère", published in 1849, in which he described a recipe for "Plum Bolster, or Spotted Dick".  The name has long been a source of amusement or embarassed titters.  Whatever the case . . . its delicious and well worth the time and effort to make it.  Bon Appetit!
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Marie Rayner
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