Week One Hundred & Fourteen – Mary Berry’s Tarte Tatin & Sticky Gingerbread

Week 114 and I am actually blogging about this bake the day I baked it ( I won’t mention that I have only just completed the blog for last week’s bake!)shh

I dipped into Mary Berry‘s Baking Bible and found a lovely pudding – her Tarte Tatin and the sticky gingerbread recipe. My kitchen was going to have some lovely aromas today! I began with the Sticky Gingerbread recipe.

Mary Berry's Sticky Gingerbread

Mary asks you to put the syrups, sugar and butter in a pan and melt while weighing the other ingredients into a large bowl and mixing. Then mix all the ingredients together and pour into a traybake tin that has been lined with grease proof paper . I used my trusty Lakeland traybake foil tin and lined it with paper and popped it in the oven for about 50 minutes. The smell made our mouths water and we were delighted when the timer pinged. The difficulty was keeping everyone away from it until it was cool, cut up into squares and photographed for the blog!

Kim's sticky gingerbread

The second recipe was Mary Berry’s Tarte Tatin. Mary asks you to put the butter and sugar in a pan and melt gently, our this into the bottom of a sandwich tin or springform tin and then line with the sliced cooking apples. Top with the pastry from her recipe and bake for 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden and crisp. This is where I had a slight issue with Mary’s guide to times. I checked my tart tatin after 20 minutes, the pastry was still quite raw and the oven was up to temperature because I had already baked the gingerbread. I set the timer for another 10 minutes, then another, and another. Finally the pastry was golden and crisp rather than pale and soft. Mary then asks you to pour the juices from the tin into a small pan and heat until caramelized. Turn the tart onto a plate and pour the caramelized liquid over the tart and serve warm.

Kim's Tart Tatin

This was a lovely recipe to make and smelt gorgeous but looked messy. I looked at other tart tatin’s on Google images and was relieved to see that most looked like mine so I heaved a sigh of relief.

phew

Today is also Mother’s Day and I would like to wish my mum and my other mum a lovely day with all my love now and always.

mothers day

Week Seventy Seven – Mary Berry’s Iced Gingerbread with Stem Ginger & Fork Biscuits

Week seventy seven and what a week it has been! I had returned to work on half days and was thoroughly exhausted and hubby had a rather unpleasant encounter with a hot kettle! Plenty of wet towels, an ambulance ride and a six hour wait in A&E and we eventually got home. Not the ideal evening I had planned curled up on the sofa with painkillers and my trusty hot water bottle but needs must. I am now a dab hand with Jelonet and  latex-free bandages…more skills to add to my repertoire!

Evil Kettle

I picked up Mary Berry’s Baking Bible with a heavy heart this week given the recent events and the fact that I seem to be eternally tired while I continue to recover from my op. I scoured through Mary’s recipes trying to summon up some enthusiasm and having given up on that, settled on gingerbread and fork biscuits. The gingerbread recipe was quite simple and was one of her ( I am eternally grateful) throw everything pretty much in a bowl and mix. The only variance to this was adding the bicarb and milk to the mix and beating it in. I then poured the mix into my prepared tin and into the oven it went. I had to set the timer for an hour and then after an hour, turn the oven down and bake for a further half an hour.

Mary Berry's Iced Gingerbread with Stem Ginger

I think my oven is getting old and temperamental as from the time the gingerbread went in to the time it came out, the oven door was not opened once yet the cake sank in the middle….and no, I didn’t open the door, even the tiniest bit to check it! I looked through the window with the light on. So I turn the cake out and ice it upside down so all the icing doesn’t pool in the middle of the cake! Oh and thanks to hubby, I didn’t add the chopped up stem ginger to the icing as he “wasn’t keen”!!!!

Kim's Gingerbread Kim's Iced Gingerbread

The second recipe had to wait until the gingerbread had cooked as it required a hotter oven. It was Mary’s fork biscuit recipe which looked quick and simple and I used her suggestion at the bottom of making them citrusy by adding some grated orange peel. The recipe was again quite simple, mix the four ingredients together, and form a dough. Divide the dough into approximately 16 walnut size balls and use a fork to flatten the biscuits. Bake for about 15 minutes.

Mary Berry's Fork Biscuits

The resulting biscuits didn’t spread out as much as Mary suggests they do but they were light and quite tasty. I am keen on the Mary philosophy that they don’t all need to be the same size either to taste okay!  I might consider doing these again.

Kim's Fork Biscuits

I am missing all my favourite programmes at the moment- no more Great British Bake Off, no more Mary Berry Cooks and no more Dr Who at the moment. Having been off for a few weeks recovering though, I have watched an awful lot of TV lately and when I list what I have watched and enjoyed recently, you will get an insight into my TV tastes…lol….so here we go…..Haven, The Mentalist, The new Ironside, Hawaii Five O, The Following, Revolution, About a Boy, Grimm……see no soap operas in sight …..

Week Eighteen – Mary Berry’s Gingerbread Men

Mary Berry's Gingerbread MenWhat could I find to fulfil the challenge but to also fit in to the hectic schedule of Christmas?

Gingerbread of course. It’s very Christmasy!

I added some icing hats and scarves to complete them and make them look more seasonal.
Kim's Gingerbread ManThe only thing I would do differently next time is to add more ginger as they have a very subtle flavour.

What ever you are doing this Christmas, I hope your celebrations go well.

Happy Christmas. x

Week Eleven – Gingerbread Traybake

My hubby actually asked last week if Mary Berry’s Bible had any gingerbread recipes in it as he fancied some gingerbread……well when I looked, there are several gingerbread recipes so I read each one carefully as my thumb is still out of action and I needed a recipe that I could manage with one hand.

So, most of this recipe involved weighing most of the ingredients into a large saucepan, heating gently, to melt them all together, adding the flour and spices and finally beating in four eggs and some milk. The last part was bit tricky but I managed it without needing hubby’s help and only dropped one egg on the floor and the dogs thought their luck had changed!

This recipe calls for quite a lot of each ingredient and I found at the end of the mix that the tray I used, (the size that Mary Berry recommends in her recipe) there was too much to fit in this so I dug out a smaller round tin and lined that and ended up with a tray bake AND a round bake too………

The gingerbread seemed easy enough to make, loads of treacle in it though so it’s going to be very sweet. It baked well and was ready at the recommended time. I took both tins out and let them stand for a while before turning them out onto the cooling rack.

 

Once they were both totally cool, I made the topping, Mary recommends using icing sugar, a small amount of water and some finely chopped crystallised ginger. This is when my hubby made me laugh, he asked what the topping was made of and when I told him about the crystallised ginger, he said “BLEUGHHHHHH!!” I was highly amused that he asked me to make a GINGERBREAD cake but didn’t want TINY amounts of GINGER on the topping……..MEN!!!!!