Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart {gluten-free}

This Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart makes a lovely festive lunch. The richness of the stilton and woodsy notes of the chestnuts are sharpened with the zesty cranberry sauce.

Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart

The holiday baking starts here. I hadn’t meant to leave it over two weeks in between posts but I have been working on the market stall every weekend for the past few weeks, doing winter fairs and my usual spot at Tottenham Green Market and it’s left little room for anything else. It’s been the best ever season for my stall which I finally transitioned to be 100% gluten-free in October and I have had a brilliant response from it. I am still working on tweaking the recipe for a few of my more popular wheat cakes to taste just as good in their gluten-free form so any spare half hour I have I am flinging cakes in the oven. There is a lot of half eaten cake in our house at the moment.

Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart

I hadn’t even really thought how turning my stall gluten-free would affect my preserves and it was only when looking at my ingredients list that I noticed cheeky gluten hiding in a few of my recipes. The ale in my Boxing Day Ale Chutney has now been swapped for a gluten-free variety, the flour in my Piccalilli has been substituted for cornflour and tapioca starch but doom fell upon my kitchen during the curse-laden end of my Traditional Mincemeat prep. I was ding donging merrily on high along with spotify, happily pouring in boxes of suet to all the other ingredients, when what to my wandering eyes should appear but a treacherous coating of flour on each individual strand of suet. It was way too late by then to salvage the situation so instead of tossing the lot which I couldn’t bring myself to do I now have one thing on my stall that isn’t gluten-free. I still have a lot of love for it despite its tainted status as it’s a pretty fantastic mincemeat, made with real beef along with the suet. Not a veggie fantasy. I am also soothed by the fact that my Cranberry and Cointreau Mincemeat is naturally gluten-free so ingredient intolerant customers do not have to go without.

Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart

One of my favourite preserves at this time of year though is the ubiquitous cranberry sauce and once you have tried a homemade version you will be convinced, like me, to eat it all year round. I make loads of jars of it at the end of November when the supermarkets just begin to stock up and from then on I am pretty much game to serve cranberry sauce with anything. This Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart though is where the cranberry sauce really shines. It pairs so well with the stilton and chestnut that you really don’t need to look any further if you are wondering what to do with the rest of your jar after the turkey has been eaten.

My mum, who hates stilton, took an extra slice home with her after visiting this weekend. Luke, who always claims he hates quichey things, was thrilled when I made the tart two days running for supper. Cole though made it clear that he preferred the tart when he was eating it from our plates rather than his, so you might want to take his feedback into consideration when serving it out. Also, if you eat the tart straight out of the oven then you get that melty cheese factor which is so good. By letting it rest out of the oven for a couple of hours the tart will firm up so it’s a bit more stable if you like it that way or if you need to transport it anywhere.

Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart

I have wanted to experiment with gluten-free pastry for a while now but had heard so many crumbly, dry or soggy horror stories that I have been putting it off. However, my happy experiences with the recipes in Alanna Taylor-Tobin’s Alternative Baker encouraged me to give her pastry a go as well. I changed things a little as I wanted to make a savoury tart rather than a sweet tart but I mostly followed her instruction for her buckwheat flaky pastry and I have to say that the pastry tasted great on the very first go. Both the texture with the flaky snap of the tart case, and the buttery taste which is made more complex by the variety of flours, including one of my faves, buckwheat, has left me thoroughly satisfied that this can be my new go-to pastry.

I have since made this tart a few times and except for an extra two minutes to sift the different flours together, this pastry comes together just as quickly as my normal wheat flour version. In fact quicker as you don’t need to work the pastry as much or bother with chilling it every time you go near it as the gluten doesn’t need to rest.

Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart

I am really enjoying my gluten-free experiments these days, it is forcing me to try new things and think about my ingredients in a different way rather than relying on the dominance of wheat flour. It makes every little success in the kitchen that bit more rewarding as careful thought has been put into every ingredient. I know I am opening up my recipes to a wider audience and it doesn’t hurt that I can now eat everything on my stall, give or take a mincemeat.

Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart

This Stilton, Chestnut and Cranberry Tart makes a lovely festive lunch. The richness of the stilton and woodsy notes of the chestnuts are sharpened with the zesty cranberry sauce.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time2 hrs
Course: Appetiser
Cuisine: British
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 760kcal

Ingredients

For the pastry:

  • 80 g sweet white rice flour
  • 25 g oat flour
  • 45 g buckwheat flour
  • 30 g cornflour
  • 15 g tapioca starch
  • 15 g ground chia seeds
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 115 g cold unsalted butter cut into very thin slices
  • 1 egg medium, lightly beaten
  • 2-4 tablespoons iced water
  • A few tablespoons of a gluten-free flour blend for rolling
  • 1 egg beaten for the egg wash

For the filling:

  • 15 g salted butter
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 400 ml crème fraiche
  • 175 g Stilton crumbled
  • 100 g vacuum packed chestnuts roughly chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 75 g cranberry sauce

Instructions

To make the pastry

  • In a large mixing bowl combine the flours, chia seeds and salt.
  • Rub the butter into the flour in between your fingertips so it resembles very rough breadcrumbs then stir in the beaten egg with a fork.
  • Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time and start to bring the dough together with a pastry scraper. It should start to form quite quickly.
  • Tip the dough onto the work surface and bring the ball into a round ball. You want the pastry to still be a little sticky.
  • Wrap the pastry in greaseproof paper and flatten the ball slightly.
  • Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to chill.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
  • Dust the work surface with a gluten-free flour blend then roll the pastry out into a circle large enough to line a 25cm tart tin.
  • Once you have lined the pastry in the tin and neatened the edges with a knife, place greaseproof paper over the pastry, so it comes up the sides, then fill the tin with baking beans.
  • Place the tart tin in the oven for 20 minutes. Take out of the oven then remove the baking beans and parchment and brush the surface of the pastry with the beaten egg.
  • Place back in the oven for a final five minutes to seal the pastry. Remove from the oven and leave to cool to room temperature before adding the filling.

To make the filling

  • First prepare the onions by adding them into a saucepan along with the salted butter. Cook on a low heat for 25-30 minutes until the onions are completely soft, translucent and just beginning to caramelise around the edges. Leave to cool for half an hour before adding to the other ingredients.
  • Pre-heat oven to 180°C.
  • Whisk the eggs, egg yolks and crème fraiche together, then add the stilton, chestnuts, caramelised onions, salt and pepper. Do reserve some of the stilton and chestnuts for crumbling onto the top.
  • Pour the filling into the ready-baked pastry case and then dot the remaining stilton, chestnuts and cranberry sauce on top.
  • Place the tart in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
  • You can either eat the tart straightaway hot from the oven or leave to come to room temperature where the tart will firm up a little more.

Nutrition

Calories: 760kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 58g | Saturated Fat: 34g | Cholesterol: 389mg | Sodium: 913mg | Potassium: 378mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 2070IU | Vitamin C: 8.7mg | Calcium: 263mg | Iron: 1.9mg

Piccalilli

Piccalilli is the perfect preserve for your festive table. Bite-sized pieces of Autumn vegetables fragrant with curry spices which is excellent with any kind of cheese or cold cut.

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

There was one word with which people always used to describe me; my school teachers, my work colleagues, my family, friends, strangers on the bus, the butcher, the baker, the weirdo on the corner. All of them would mutter a singular word in my direction as I floated past, filofax in one hand, iphone in the other. Organised.

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

I never really took kindly to that word, as surely it’s just another way of saying god she’s boring, always making those lists and getting things done. What a teacher’s pet. Boo, let’s all go off down the pub and leave her at home. Ha ha, what a loser.

I would also get the bum job of booking our holidays. This meant researching the itinerary, making a powerpoint with appropriately fun fonts to share with the world on a domain specifically bought for the purpose, taking all the photos on the trip then sorting them into the photobook on our return complete with on point bon mots, then printing them out for Christmas presents, sourcing personalised wrapping paper for every recipient and ribbons to match; finally making sure everything was couriered off a week before to ensure a proper punctual Christmas.

Ah, the good life. The me I knew and loved and now have lost. As then came baby.

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

My house keys are currently misplaced. For the third time in the past month. No doubt I will find them in a shoe or the blender in a week or two. I have forgotten numerous vet appointments (sorry Billy Buddy), play dates (sorry Cole). I have been to weddings and sent thank you cards three months after the fact, if at all (sorry all of this year’s newlyweds). I have a multitude of blog posts half finished, mostly for recipes that are now irrelevant with the changing seasons. I haven’t been out for dinner in about four months as I can’t be bothered to find a babysitter and I’m now just about to cancel our anniversary holiday at the end of the month as I haven’t got around to booking the hotel as quite frankly it sounds more hassle than it’s worth. Just the thought of another wrestling match with the travel cot from hell is enough to make me shudder.

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

There is one job though that I have forced myself to do, and blimey if I haven’t gone and completed it with weeks to spare. And that is my Piccalilli. To be fair, I had to finish it really as I’m planning on selling it at the Christmas fairs I am attending later this month and empty jars just don’t sell as well.

My Piccalilli is so important to make as it is the most popular preserve on my stall. Without fail it is the first to sell out but I have to make sure I keep a couple of jars back for my family each year, otherwise there will be cheese knives at dawn on Boxing Day if there is no Piccalilli to enjoy with the cold cuts.

For years I would make it just for us, sometimes along with another chutney or jam but the Piccalilli was the break out star and soon became the number one preserve that was clamoured for and I pretty much set my whole preserve stall up around it.

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

Now is the best time to make it as although you can eat it freshly bottled and has a lovely bright taste if you do, if you allow the Piccalilli to rest for a few weeks, the vinegar has a chance to mellow and the spices are given room to breathe and really envelop the vegetables.

The only real labour of making a Piccalilli is the chopping of the vegetables which I like to be bite-sized so they can nestle happily in a sandwich or on a cracker without weighing it all down. The vegetables should then be brined overnight which helps them retain their crunch. Then all that’s left to do the next day is to quickly poach them in vinegar and sugar before adding them into your delicately spiced curry dressing. I stick to the traditional vegetables of cauliflower, green beans, cucumber and onions. Although by using romescu and purple cauliflower the Piccalilli is given wonderful texture and a beautiful rich colour.

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

If you are thinking of making homemade gifts this year then I don’t think you can ever go wrong with chutneys and pickles, at least that’s what I say whenever I hand a festively wrapped jar over to an unsuspecting recipient. They always give a good show of being appreciative and that’s the main thing. Plus I think if I can pull myself together enough to knock up a few jars then it gives me hope that one day I can be that organised loser so beloved once more.

Piccalilli

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 45 mins
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: British
Servings: 20 servings
Calories: 201kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 white cauliflower
  • 1 purple cauliflower
  • 1 romescu cauliflower
  • 800 g small onions
  • 700 g green beans
  • 3 cucumbers
  • 3 red chillies sliced
  • 100 g salt
  • 1500 g white wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • teaspoons ground allspice
  • 525 g granulated sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 50 g tapioca flour
  • 50 g cornflour
  • teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder I used a Jamaican curry powder blend but any will do
  • 3 tablespoons mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper

Instructions

  • Cut the cauliflowers, onions, green beans and cucumbers into bite-sized pieces then place in a large bowl, along with the chillies and sprinkle with the salt. Cover and place in the fridge overnight.
  • The next day drain the vegetables and rinse with cold water to remove the excess salt.
  • Place the vegetables in a large preserving pan with the vinegar, nutmeg, allspice and sugar. Crush the garlic with the salt and add that in too. Bring to the boil, then turn down to simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Take off the heat then remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon leaving the liquid behind. Pour the liquid into a separate jug and set aside for a moment.
  • Sift together the tapioca flour, cornflour, turmeric, ginger, curry powder, mustard powder and pepper. Add 200ml of the reserved liquid and blend together to make a smooth paste.
  • Pour the paste into the preserving pan and with the heat on very low, slowly pour the rest of the reserved liquid into the paste, whisking all the while.
  • Bring to the boil, then cook for 5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened.
  • Add the vegetables back into the sauce, stirring to coat thoroughly. Turn off the heat.
  • Decant into sterilised jars and store in a cool dark place until needed.

Notes

Yield 10 300ml jars

Nutrition

Calories: 201kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2325mg | Potassium: 531mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 345IU | Vitamin C: 60.7mg | Calcium: 62mg | Iron: 1.8mg

If you like this recipe then you may like…

Courgette Relish

Courgette Relish on a wooden box with forks

Pickled Golden Beetroot

Pickled Golden Beetroot

Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Tahini Turmeric Dressing

Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Tahini Turmeric Dressing

Turkey, Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Turkey, Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita is one of the best ways to use up leftover turkey.

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Although the last bauble was plucked from the tree yesterday, carefully bubble wrapped, boxed up and sent back up to the attic for the next eleven months I am still eeking out the last vestiges of Christmas.

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Turkey curry is the only way to usher in the new year. This curry feels so happy, healthy and hearty that it is encouraging me to take a running jump into January. I have been making the same resolution to throw off all my excess baby weight every month since June last year so I refuse to make yet another promise to myself that is let down by exhaustion and lack of time.

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Instead I will be focusing on falling back in love with food. It is no secret that I haven’t posted here much, of course I barely have a second to myself but since it is also true that we will always make time for the things we really want to do I have to confess that food has not been my friend of late.

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

I have been tired and hungry, stopgapping my energy loss with sugar and letting Deliveroo do all my heavy lifting at mealtimes. However times are achanging and I have definitely been feeling a little of my trusty spark back. These past 6 weeks I have begun to wean Cole and he has been taking to food as if he has been waiting for this moment the whole of his tiny little life. His unparalleled enthusiasm is reminding me how excited I used to get about mealtimes. We are doing baby led weaning which basically means we are foregoing purees and diving into the main event, it’s absolutely wonderful to see him polishing off fishcakes, turkey and brussel sprouts and omelette and he is inspiring me to find myself again in my love of food.

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

I have cooked from scratch more this past six weeks that the whole of the last seven months put together and I am relishing every minute of it. Thanks to Cole I have finally managed to perfect falafel, houmous and cornbread muffins, rekindle my love of swiss bircher museli and start every meal with a fat wodge of melon (– it’s teething time!)

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

However, this curry is not for my little one, there is only so much under seasoned food mummy and daddy can subject themselves to so this is one for us grown-ups. I make a curry every year on Boxing Day and this year’s was so particularly good that I dug out another tupperware of turkey from this year’s stash in our freezer and re-fashioned it slightly for a lighter month (goodbye double cream and roast potatoes!) but I have to say it has lost absolutely nothing in the translation. This turkey, kale and peanut curry is so deeply flavourful and the rough earthy kale which is tucked into the curry at the last minute is not merely a nod to trends but a necessary backdrop to the whole affair.

Turkey Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

The accompanying cucumber and coriander raita is so alive and refreshing that it sparks a complete contrast to the comfort of the curry and the two pair admirably together. If you can take it you must sprinkle on some more chilli, a further crumble of peanuts and a smattering of coriander. This flavour of this curry will knock you for six then pick you up and give you a wonderful cuddle.

Bring it on 2016, I am so excited about the year – and the food- to come!

Turkey, Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita

Turkey, Peanut and Kale Curry with Cucumber and Coriander Raita is one of the best ways to use up leftover turkey.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr 15 mins
Total Time1 hr 45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 560kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 large onion peeled and diced, about 250g
  • ¾ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • ¾ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ¾ teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
  • ¾ teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • ¾ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ red chilli sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 inch ginger peeled and grated
  • 1 teaspoon mango chutney or any other chutney you have hanging around
  • 200 g tomatoes quartered, about 4
  • 50 g roasted unsalted peanuts , roughly chopped
  • 275 g leftover turkey
  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 160 g kale I used cavolo nero
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cucumber and Coriander Raita

  • 100 g cucumber
  • 200 ml natural yoghurt – the best you can find
  • Handful of coriander leaves finely chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/8 teaspoon caster sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Heat a large flat bottomed pan with the coconut oil then add the diced onions. Fry on a very low heat for about 30 – 40 minutes until the onions have caramelised.
  • Pour the fennel, cumin, mustard and coriander seeds into a small frying pan over a low heat for one minute, keeping a close eye so they don’t burn. Tip them into a pestle and mortar and pound until they have completely crushed.
  • Add the toasted spices into the caramelised onion along with the curry powder, turmeric, chilli, garlic, ginger and mango chutney. Stir in then add the tomatoes.
  • Cook on a gentle heat for about 15 minutes until the tomatoes have reduced to a pulp.
  • Add the peanuts, turkey and coconut milk then simmer on a low heat for a further 15 minutes until the curry has thickened.
  • Meanwhile prepare the kale by removing the stems of the kale and discard, then slice the kale leaves finely. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil then blanch the kale for a 3 minutes. Drain and squeeze the kale to remove the excess water.
  • Stir the kale into the curry then remove from the heat and serve with the cucumber and coriander raita.

Cucumber and Coriander Raita

  • Cut the cucumber in half and remove and discard the seeds by scooping out with a teaspoon. Then grate the cucumber into a medium sized bowl.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until thoroughly combined and the sugar and salt has dissolved into the yoghurt.
  • Leave to chill in the fridge until needed.

Nutrition

Calories: 560kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 42g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 203mg | Potassium: 991mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 4560IU | Vitamin C: 68.2mg | Calcium: 190mg | Iron: 6.1mg

Devils on Horseback

Hot and Smoky Devils on Horseback
So this week I finalised my Christmas menu for what I’m going to be cooking for all the family when they arrive from Christmas Eve onwards. It wasn’t that hard to be honest, as I took the menu I made for last Christmas and merely changed the header from Christmas 2013 to Christmas 2014. Gone are the days of festive experimentation, that is now what my blog is for.

Hot and Smoky Devils on Horseback

Like any family, mine is picky and I have to cater across the board. Some don’t like smoked salmon, some can’t imagine Christmas without it. For those that hate the sight of Christmas Pudding, not to fear, there is trifle on hand. Then of course I have the usual brussel sprout debate, shall I bother with them when only a couple of people eat them? There is no question, unless I want sulks over the lunch table. A couple of years ago I broke from tradition and made a Ham Hock and Chicken Pie on Christmas Eve instead of the usual Honey Glazed Ham and there were definite murmours of discontent despite the pie being one of the best things that has come out of my kitchen. Lo and behold when I visited a certain member of my family over New Year a Baked Christmas Ham was presented for supper. The hint was duly noted.

Hot and Smoky Devils on Horseback

I don’t know how it came to pass that Devils on Horseback have to make an appearance by about 11am on Christmas morning just after we have finished opening our presents, especially since we’ve been stuffing ourselves with bacon rolls all morning. But then, there is always room for more bacon. I hate to admit it but I was getting a little tired of them each year so this time round I have jazzed them up a bit and I have to say that it has reinvigorated my love for them. They were missing a bit of oomph for me so I have mixed in some hot and smoky chipotle in adobo with a generous amount of citrusy marmalade and spread it on the bacon rashers before rolling them up with the prunes. Now, they have bite, a Chrismas kick with the marmalade and to finish it off I have given them a glaze of marmalade after they emerge from the grill to avoid the bacon going dry if they are going to be sat on a plate for a bit. Not that they will as they are usually wolfed down within seconds.

Hot and Smoky Devils on Horseback

Hot and Smoky Devils on Horseback

Just make sure you use good bacon and freshly opened sticky prunes.

The Devils on Horseback go down well with everyone, except of course for Mum who balks at the idea of sweet and savoury things together and wouldn’t touch them with a bargepole. Oh well, you can’t please everyone.

Hot and Smoky Devils on Horseback

Devils on Horseback

Easy Devils on Horseback are given a sweet hot and smoky twist.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Course: Appetiser
Cuisine: British
Servings: 24 servings
Calories: 77kcal

Ingredients

  • 90 g marmalade
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle in adobo
  • 200 g stoned prunes about 24
  • 12 rashers smoked streaky bacon halved widthways

Instructions

  • Turn the grill onto its highest setting.
  • Mash up 60g of the marmalade with the chipotle until evenly mixed.
  • Spread about ½ teaspoon of the marmalade and chipotle mixture on one side of the bacon rasher.
  • Place a prune at one end of the bacon rasher and roll up, securing with a cocktail stick.
  • Repeat with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Place the devils underneath the grill and cook for 3-4 minutes each side.
  • Meanwhile melt the remaining 30g of marmalade in a small saucepan until runny.
  • Once the devils are ready, remove them from the grill and brush with the marmalade to glaze.
  • Serve immediately.

Nutrition

Calories: 77kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 82mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 100IU | Vitamin C: 0.4mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 0.2mg

Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

Bramley Apple Mincemeat Pudding is a must at this time of year. It’s an excellent way of using up all your excess mincemeat or makes a lighter alternative to Christmas Pudding at the end of your festive feast. Both the regular flour and gluten-free recipes are listed below.

Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

If you are looking for ways to use up that jar of leftover mincemeat then look no further than this recipe.

I am a mincemeat fiend. Making the mincemeat is one of my very favourite cooking jobs to do. It fills my kitchen with the heady scent of brandy, plump fruits and warming spices.

It’s pretty telling that I have several mincemeat recipes on this blog and each one I try to make every year:

So it perhaps comes as no surprise that I usually have a lot knocking around my kitchen throughout the season. It’s an incredibly versatile festive ingredient though so don’t worry if you’ve made too much. I’ve got your covered.

I have to say though this Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding is just about my favourite way to use mincemeat. The tartness of the Bramleys give a lovely contrast to the sweetness of the mincemeat. Plus, it’s:

  • Light
  • Fruity
  • Easy
  • Festive

Some Christmas desserts have the propensity to be a bit of a faff but this pudding takes moments to mix up and bake, perfect for cold nights in front of the fire.

Plus it works with every single mincemeat I’ve ever tried: shop bought or homemade, suet or suet-free.

Other recipes to use up leftover mincemeat

Alternative to Christmas Pudding

However this Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding is not just the means to the end of a jar of mincemeat though. It can be an excellent dessert choice for the big day itself.

If you know you have some Christmas Pud haters at your festive feast this year then this pudding is guaranteed to be a people pleaser.

Do you need more alternatives to the traditional Christmas Pudding?

Lemon Raspberry Trifle
Chocolate Chip Clementine Christmas Pudding with Cointreau Sauce
Steamed Chocolate Pudding with Chocolate Custard
Sticky Toffee Baileys Pudding

How to Make Bramley Apple Mincemeat Pudding

1. Mix diced bramley apples with sugar, lemon zest and juice. Pour into a buttered baking dish and set aside.

2. Cream the butter and sugar.
3. Add the eggs.
4. Stir in the vanilla extract and mincemeat.
5. Sift the flour with the baking powder and salt and mix with the rest of the ingredients.
6. Stir in the milk.

7. Pour the batter on top of the apples.

8. Bake for 45 minutes in an oven pre-heated to 170°C
9. Sprinkle over caster sugar. Serve warm with custard.

Baker’s Tips

  • If you can’t get hold of Bramley Apples then any tart cooking apple will do the job.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until creamy and light which will help the sponge to lift.
  • Use medium eggs.
  • Use really good vanilla extract and the best mincemeat you can find. Homemade is especially good.
  • Place the pudding to bake in the centre of the oven to ensure even baking.

FAQ’s

  • What Size Baking Dish? 25 x 19 x 6cm
  • Make Ahead – If you want to make ahead of time to avoid the bother on Christmas Day then I recommend baking it a day or two before. Cover with foil then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes just before serving.
  • How to Freeze – This pudding freezes really well too. Cool in the baking dish then double wrap well in both cling film and tin foil before freezing. Defrost thoroughly the night before then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes, covered loosely with foil.

How to Make Gluten-Free Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

This recipe was developed before I became gluten-free but since I couldn’t bear to live without it once I made my lifestyle switch I quickly came up with a gluten-free version.

The recipe is exactly the same but instead of 150g plain flour, whisk up the following blend of flours:

  • 55g sweet rice flour
  • 40g oat flour
  • 30g millet flour
  • 25g almond flour

The result is amazing and just as fluffy and deeply delicious as the original recipe.

How to serve Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

  • Lashings of Custard
  • Single Cream
  • Brandy Cream
  • Ice Cream

If you make this Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

My parting words: Be adventurous with your mincemeat!!

Print Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

Bramley Apple Mincemeat Pudding is an excellent way of using up all your excess mincemeat or makes a lighter alternative to Christmas Pudding.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 513kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 bramley apples peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons soft light brown sugar
  • grated zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • 150 g butter
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs medium
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons mincemeat
  • 150 g plain flour *for gluten-free version see notes
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar to sprinkle

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 170°C.
  • In a large bowl mix the bramley apples with the sugar and lemon zest and juice. Pour into a buttered baking dish and set aside
  • Cream the butter and sugar for a few minutes until light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, mixing until thoroughly incorporated.
  • Stir in the vanilla extract and then the mincemeat.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt then mix into the rest of the ingredients until just combined.
  • Finally stir in the milk.
  • Pour the batter on top of the apples then bake in the oven for around 45 minutes until the sponge has browned on top and an inserted toothpicks comes out clean.
  • Sprinkle over the teaspoon of caster sugar and serve with lashings of custard.

Notes

  • Bramley Apples - If you can’t get hold of Bramley Apples then any tart cooking apple will do the job.
  • Mincemeat - you can use any mincemeat but homemade tastes the most delicious
  • Baking Dish 25 x 19 x 6cm
  • Make Ahead - Bake the pudding a day or two before. Keep in the fridge. Cover loosely with foil then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes just before serving.
  • How to Freeze - Cool in the baking dish then double wrap well in both cling film and tin foil before freezing. Defrost thoroughly the night before then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes, covered loosely with foil.
  • Gluten-Free Version - The recipe is totally the same except instead of plain flour I use the following flours all whisked together:
    55g sweet rice flour
    40g oat flour
    30g millet flour
    25g almond flour
    The result is amazing and just as fluffy and deeply delicious as the original recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 73g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 136mg | Sodium: 423mg | Potassium: 229mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 775IU | Vitamin C: 2.8mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 1.7mg

Update Notes: This post was originally published in December 2014, but was republished with clearer instructions and tips in July 2019.

Cream Baked Roast Potatoes

Cream Baked Roast Potatoes are beautifully rich, tender and crisp. A really luxurious way to pamper your potatoes and your guests on special occasions.

Cream Baked Roast Potatoes

I first had these potatoes at the old Fire Engine House restaurant in Ely, Cambridgeshire where my in-laws live. It’s a lovely restaurant set in the old fire engine house (the name probably didn’t really need explaining). A small bar is situated in the front of the house in a little sitting room area with a roaring fire and gives the illusion that you are guest in somebody’s house. Somebody who is incredibly lucky with a fully stocked bar in their front room. When your table is ready you are led through the house, past the kitchen so you can have a good old nosy at the chefs and into the back dining room that leads out onto a pretty garden. The food is traditional but not the same old same old that is served boringly in gastropubs. All their produce is local, seasonal and all made in their lovely kitchen from the relishes to the jams that accompany the dishes. However where they really won my heart is when they came round just as we were finishing our mains and asked if we wanted seconds. Not only did that cater for my incredibly greedy nature but it also seconded the feeling that you were round at a friend’s house. A very well to do friend with a really fancy house. The staff could not have been more welcoming and when I said how delicious their roast potatoes were, well they told me the recipe.

I didn’t even realise good old faithful roast potatoes could be improved. I mean, I think they must be the most moreish food in existence, there is always room for another potato. This past year I eschewed all white potato in favour of sweet potato as I was living more or less a paleo lifestyle (that is if you don’t count the cake I was eating on a weekly basis) but recently I have re-introduced it to my diet and nothing is making me currently happier than my Sunday Roasts with a traditional roast white potato, crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.

This week I came across my scribbled notes that I had taken after dining at old Fire Engine House and was reminded of those flavour busting crisp yet creamy potatoes I had eaten by the truckload at the time.

 

It turns out that they are even more special than I had remembered and this time of year when we are preparing our most indulgent recipes for the festive season there is no excuse for not accompanying your turkey with these rich little beasts. The potatoes are cooked twice, first baked in cream, milk and garlic until they are soft and have absorbed most of the garlicky cream, then they are tipped into smoking hot fat and roasted for half an hour so that the cream bakes around the potato like a little crisp jacket, trapping all the flavour and soft texture that was captured during its initial bake.

They do take a little longer to cook than your average roast potato as I like to keep these ones whole but really they are no more bother as they pretty much sort themselves out in the oven. The end result is so worth it that I think you’ll have trouble going back to your usual boring roasties. Make sure you choose potatoes of a similar size to ensure even cooking so each one is as creamy to the fork as the next.

Cream Baked Roast Potatoes

Cream Baked Roast Potatoes are beautifully rich, tender and crisp.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 20 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: British
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 691kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 kg potatoes
  • 400 ml double cream
  • 400 ml whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 cloves
  • 5 black peppercorns
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed with the back of a knife
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 50 ml olive oil

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 160°C.
  • Peel the potatoes then place into a large casserole dish.
  • Pour in the cream and milk and ensure the potatoes are fully submerged and then add the butter, bay leaves, cloves, black peppercorns, salt, garlic cloves and thyme.
  • Put the lid on the casserole dish and bake in the oven for 1½ hours until the potatoes are cooked all the way through.
  • Remove the dish from the oven then turn the heat up to 180°C.
  • Pour the olive oil into a roasting tray and place in the oven for 3 minutes for the oil to heat.
  • Then remove the potatoes from the cream with a slotted spoon and place gently into the hot oil of the roasting tray. Coat the potatoes with the oil and place in the oven to roast for 30 minutes, turning the potatoes halfway through.
  • Remove from the oven and serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 691kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 56g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Cholesterol: 155mg | Sodium: 423mg | Potassium: 1249mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1720IU | Vitamin C: 30.2mg | Calcium: 257mg | Iron: 8.2mg