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Crunchy Coconut Biscuits

Generally speaking, I’m not the best baker. In fact, if truth be told, I’m terrible. Richard often makes fun of the fact that most of my bakes end up with some deformity or another – soggy bottom, flat cake – you see where this is going. For someone who has such a passion for food and cooking I suck at baking! That said, I persevere time and again – I figure one of these days I’ll create something wonderful.

This week I decided to make coconut biscuits. If you’ve ever tasted coconut rings, they are fairly similar, perhaps just a little crunchier. They actually turned out well, much to my own surprise – so I thought I’d share the recipe with you. Coconut is one of my favourite ingredients, it’s the versatility of it that I love – use it in sweet and savoury dishes, either way it’s delicious.

This recipe is an adaptation of Coconut Biscuits from a book called Biscuiteers Book of Iced Biscuits, which despite it’s very un-snappy title is a wonderfully illustrated book packed with fabulous looking (and tasting) biscuits. The book has everything from old fashioned favourites, such as custard creams and bourbons to iced baby shower, birthday, Easter and Christmas themed biscuits.

coconut

Coconut Biscuits
 
Author: 
Recipe type: Sweet
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Delicate coconut flavoured biscuits with a crunchy texture
Ingredients
  • 350g Plain flour
  • 100g self raising flour
  • 140g granulated sugar
  • 100g desiccated coconut
  • 125g butter, diced
  • 200g golden syrup
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
Instructions
  1. Place the flours, sugar and coconut into a mixing bowl and stir to combine the ingredients.
  2. Add the cubed butter and tub together with the dry ingredients using the tips of your fingers until you have a fine breadcrumb consistency.
  3. Make a well in the centre and add the egg and golden syrup, bring the mixture together using your hands, drawing in the flour from the sides of the bowl until you have a dough that comes together.
  4. Transfer the dough to your worktop and flatten into a disc, cover with cling film and chill for 20 minutes before rolling out.
  5. Preheat your oven to 160 degrees (fan). Place baking paper onto a baking sheet ready for the biscuits.
  6. Roll out the dough until it is the thickness of a pound coin, cut out your biscuits using a cookie cutter and bake for 13-14 minutes (until lightly golden).

And of course, no biscuit would be complete without a hot beverage for dunking…

chocolate

 

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Autumn: the perfect season – and Jamie’s PBJ Brownies

Call me barmy, but autumn is definitely my favourite season; the sound of the rain lashing down on the window pane whist the day creeps into night, the crisp golden leaves blowing in the wind. There is something quite wonderful about this moody weather when you are tucked up in bed with the feather duvet wrapped around you, heating on and a lovely cuppa in hand. Utter bliss.
The colours of autumn really are magical, rusty orange leaves, plump pumpkins and nutty brown pine cones, in contrast to the cold weather it makes me feel all warm inside. Should the beautiful colours not be enough to make you feel warmed through, pulling on your thick woolly tights, hats and gloves will surely do the trick.
As the autumn gets into full swing I’ve many projects up my sleeve, some crafts for the kids, calving pumpkins and baking cookies for bonfire night, we will explore Bluebell Woods, which is a beautiful woodland close to our home (albeit the bluebells will be long gone), but in their place we will discover acorns, berries and squirrels jollying about. I had an idea for autumn leaf collages; they can stick the leaves together and pop them into frames for their bedroom wall, what could be better than displaying the beautiful crimson and golden leaves to mark the turning of the seasons?
But, undoubtedly, the thing I love most about this time of year is the food. Country casseroles and puffed up pies with thick bubbling gravy; what’s not to love? Richard bought me a copy of Jamie’s Comfort Food for my Birthday – perfect for this weather. Not so perfect for my Slimming World… but a few recipes here and there surely couldn’t hurt. I made Jamie’s PBJ brownies – and they are delicious… recipe below.
The other, perhaps more obvious reason, I love the autumn is that we inevitably start to see the supermarket shelves fill with mince pies and advent calendars. I smile to myself every time I hear someone groan that it’s only October and why do the supermarkets feel the need to bring Christmas to us so early. I can’t help it, I love it. It’s the anticipation of it all. I love to shop for presents, I love to wrap them and I love to set about making something delicious and festive in the kitchen.
 
This year I’d like to do lots of baking – sausage rolls, mince pies and many other delicious treats to offer friends and family over the festive season, not to mention the mulled wine! Anyhow – enough about Christmas for the time being, here is the link to the PBJ Brownie recipe. I hope you enjoy as much as I did.
 
 
Ice-Lollies

Fruit Purée Ice Lollies

Despite the fact that it’s July, the weather seems to have been rather horrid. The past couple of days we’ve seen torrential downpours and intolerable sticky humid nights. Typically, the few sunny days we have had have been during the week when most of us work. Nevertheless, it is July; it is summer, even if the weather is hell bent on convincing us otherwise. Having said that, this week is set to be the hottest of the year so far…
Remember those plastic ice lolly moulds you had as a kid? Yep – you know the ones I mean, almost everyone has one of these lurking somewhere at the back of a cupboard or drawer. Perhaps it’s lost at the back of the ice box in the fridge? If you’ve got one – find it. If you’ve never owned one – buy one and get making these delicious fruit purée lollies.
Today’s recipe is ice lollies of course, or popsicles if you are from across the pond. Not just any old ice lollies either – healthy fruit purée lollies to help keep your bikini body in shape. These fresh and fruity lollies couldn’t be easier to make and you really can pick which ever fruits you like. I choose Mango and Raspberry. You do need to add a little sugar to the raspberries as they can be quite sharp, add sugar and taste to ensure you get the balance right. You can also add a little fresh orange juice to the raspberries to dilute the tart flavour.
These lollies are simply delicious and so refreshing on hot and sunny day – the kids love them too. They will keep in the freezer for a good few months. Next I’m going to try coconut and raspberry lollies with natural yoghurt and coconut milk for a creamier lolly.

Is it just me, or are Mangos slippery little blighters? I still can’t cut one without a struggle, so hats off you if you’ve mastered it. Mangos have a flat long pit in the centre, the trick is to try and cut around this, a good guide for cutting them can be found here.

Mango & Raspberry Ice Lollies

1 mango, diced
1 punnet of raspberries
3 tspb of sugar
Place the mango into a large glass jug and blend into a purée using a stick blender. Do the same with the raspberries, except this time add the sugar as you blend.
Pour the mango purée into the ice lolly mould, making sure you leave room at the top for the raspberry purée . Place the mould into the freezer for 1 hour, remove the mould and add the raspberry purée – place the full moulds into the freezer and leave for at least 4 hours.