Tag Archives: sweet

Rhubarb Mini Crumbles

You know we love our mini crumbles right? Quick, easy, delicious and perfect for a little naughtyness after dinner! This one is a very seasonal version with some beautiful pink rhubarb bought at the same time as the celeriac from this post.

Lovely Rhubarb

To make two little ramekins of spring you’ll need:

  • 1 long stick/2 sticks of rhubarb, chopped into roughly 2 inch pieces
  • Sugar, to taste
  • 20g  unsalted butter, cubed
  • 30g plain flour
  • (optional: small handful of oats)

Pop the rhubarb in a small saucepan with a splash of water and add 1 tbsp of sugar to start with. Once it’s bubbling give it a taste and add as much sugar as you want, we think ours had about 2 tbsp of sugar in. Preheat the oven to 180°C while the rhubarb bubbles away for about 10 minutes.

Rhubarb In Pan

Rhubarb Stewing

To make the crumble topping rub the butter into the flour with about 1 tsp of sugar and add in the oats if using until you have a lumpy-sand texture. All that’s left to do is divide the rhubarb compote between two ramekins, top with the crumble and bake for about 15-20 minutes. We served ours with a little scoop of vanilla icecream on top for extra indulgence!

Rhubarb Crumble with Ice Cream

Go on… treat yourself this weekend!

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Cinnamon Rolls

If you’ve been following our instagram recently you’ll have spotted this little beauty. Not completely stuffed to bursting with all of the wonderful home-made treats provided by Mama Fats over the festive period – not to mention the mountains of chocolate we received on Christmas day – we thought we’d top it all off with some extra-special cinnamon rolls, especially for Bird’s Birthday! We’ve got a lot more confident with our bread making in the last year, and couldn’t have imagined attempting something like this at the turn of 2013. This is a really easy recipe though, and as long as you give the dough time to rise you’ll end up with beautifully fluffy rolls, a real treat! Even Fats’ little brother loves these, and he “doesn’t like cinnamon” (at least one of us must be adopted…).

For 12 cinnamon rolls, you’ll need:

  • 500g strong white flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 150g light brown sugar (we used light muscovado sugar)
  • 1½ tsp dried yeast
  • 175g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 200ml milk
  • 2 free-range eggs, plus one egg yolk, for glazing (in all the excitement we forgot to glaze ours!)
  • flavourless oil (e.g. sunflower, vegetable) for oiling
  • 1 orange, zest and juice (optional)
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon

Start by making the dough. Mix together the flour, 50g of the sugar, 75g of the softened butter, the salt and the yeast in a large bowl, making sure that the butter is well rubbed in. Add the milk and one of the eggs and combine with your hands – it will start off quite sticky and very messy, but should come together once the flour has been incorporated. Put the mixture onto a clean surface and knead for about 10 minutes, until the dough is nice and springy. Place in a bowl, cover and leave to rise until it has doubled in size – it should take about 1 1/2 hours, but this depends on how warm it is.

Cinnamon roll dough before rising
Cinnamon roll dough before rising
Cinnamon Roll Dough After Rising
Cinnamon Roll Dough After Rising (and a bit of prodding…)

To make the filling take the rest of the butter, sugar, cinnamon and optionally the orange zest, and combine together in a bowl with a fork to form a paste.

Once the dough has risen, oil a surface and tip the dough onto it. Roll out the dough into a rectangle so that it is at least 30 cm long in one dimension, and about the thickness of a pound coin (3-4 mm). Smear over the filling, ensuring that it reaches the sides of the dough that will form the ends of the roll.

Cinnamon Roll Dough Rolled Out

Cinnamon Roll Dough Covered in Filling

Now roll it up tightly – you’ll get a good roll if you ensure that the first roll is really tight. Slice this up into 12 rolls of even width, and place into a lined and oiled baking tray, leaving a small gap between each roll. Leave to prove until most of the gaps are filled in.

Cinnamon Roll Dough Rolled Up

This is what they look like before proving - make sure there are some gaps for them to expand into
This is what they look like before proving – make sure there are some gaps for them to expand into
After proving - almost good enough to eat already!
After proving – almost good enough to eat already!

Preheat an oven to 200ºC. Brush the rolls with the yolk of an egg, to get a nice glaze – we forgot this bit, but they still worked out alright! When the oven is up to temperature, put the rolls in and cook on 200ºC for 10 minutes, before turning the temperature down to 180ºC and cooking for a further 20 minutes. When they’re nicely golden on top, take them out and leave to stand on a cooling rack for a little while, but not too long – these are absolutely delicious when they’re warm! If you forgot to glaze yours like we did – or if you just want a bit of extra orangeyness – you can glaze again with a mixture of orange juice and melted butter once they come out of the oven.

Cinnamon Rolls Done

These won’t stick around for very long, especially if you’re surrounded by a sweet-toothed and hungry family! They’re really good reheated too, so you don’t have to eat them all at once…

Spontaneous Pear Crumble 2 Ways

We recently came into possession of a couple of pears (by way of a charity walk-to-work day organised by Bird!) and we thought that rather than just eat them we’d make them into crumbles – much more interesting to blog! We’ve done these mini crumbles before, with apple, but we thought we would give you a couple of more interesting flavour ideas. We’ve gone with a couple of contrasting flavours – a sweet, spicy sugar syrup with cardamom, cinnamon and star anise and a tart, fruity alternative made with raspberries.

Ingredients – for the topping, you’ll need (makes 2 mini crumbles):

  • 1 tsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 1/2 tbsp brown sugar

To make the topping, simply rub together the butter and flour in your fingertips until you get breadcrumbs, then add the sugar and mix together. Easy or what?!

To make the sweet and spicy crumbles, you’ll need (makes 2 mini crumbles):

  • 1 cardamom pod
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 pear

To make the sugar syrup, add all of the ingredients to a pan and bring to a boil over a medium heat. Leave it bubbling away to let the flavours infuse for about 5 minutes. If you see the sugar syrup start to darken, stop – it’s done! Chop your pear up into small (~1 cm) cubes and put it into 2 ramekins (or other small dishes), pour over the sugar syrup (taking out the whole spices) and cover with a couple of centimetres (just over half an inch) of topping.

Is it too early to start talking about Christmas...?
Is it too early to start talking about Christmas…?

For the fruity berry crumbles, you’ll need (again, makes 2 mini crumbles):

  • 2 tbsp raspberries
  • 1 pear

Almost no preparation required here, just chop up your pear up into small cubes and put it into 2 small ramekins, and cover with topping. We keep some frozen raspberries in the freezer, which are useful for all sorts of things in the winter.

Raspberry and Pear

Once the crumbles are assembled, place in an oven at 180 C for 20-25 minutes – you should see the top go a lovely golden colour. Sit back and enjoy your tasty, warming winter treat!

Crumble and Coffee
Spicy Pear Crumble and Coffee
Pear and Raspberry Crumble
Pear and Raspberry Crumble

Glazed Mango and Coconut

It’s been a long week. It’s been raining, windy and we had the Thursday blues… we needed dessert! Time for an indulgent, exotic treat. We had Thai food last night (as our Instagram followers will know) so wanted a dessert which fitted in with this, and after some conspiring over the phone on our walks home from work we came up with a mango-y, yoghurt-y, coconut-y kinda thing. We didn’t really have a clue how it would turn out but we have a rule – if all nice things go in then you’ll end up with something nice!

Preheat the oven to around 150°C and once it’s heated up put some flaked coconut (not desiccated!) in a small roasting dish and whack it in the oven. You want it to be lightly golden in places by the end so keep an eye on it and mix it around every few minutes as it toasts quickly.

While it’s toasting take the cheeks off the mango. A mango stone is pretty flat which means either side there are lovely big hunks of mango which come off neatly like so:

Mango slice

Then go to town hacking up as much of the rest of the mango as you can, making sure you remove the skin on these pieces too. Once you’ve done this put all of the little pieces (not the cheeks) in a blender and whizz up with a bit of water until you have a rough puree. Then heat a griddle pan, and after lightly dusting the cheeks with icing sugar to help with the caramelisation, put the cheeks cut side down into the pan. This should take around 5 minutes on a medium to high heat, try not to check them too often as you want beautiful lines, but do keep an eye. Once it’s cooked put it on a clean surface to cool down for a few minutes and do the same with the toasted coconut.

Dust mango

Mango cook

Cooked mango

Then it’s time to put it all together! Grab a few spoonfuls of natural or greek yoghurt in a bowl and lightly ripple about half of the mango puree through it. Place the caramelised mango on the yoghurt, spoon over the rest of the puree and top with the crunchy toasted coconut.

Mango and coconut dessert
Just what we needed to brighten up a wet Thursday!

Mini Apple Crumbles

We love dessert, but then who doesn’t? Sometimes when you get home from work though cooking dinner feels like enough effort, and dessert seems like just too much bother for a weeknight. It doesn’t have to be! This apple crumble is so easy to put together and then gives you about thirty minutes to relax with a coffee or a glass of wine while it cooks and you end up with a simple, comforting pudding to round off your meal.

All you need for this is 1 apple (cooking apples work best but we’ve used different varieties before and they’re all fine), flour, butter and sugar. Everything else is optional, we added some oats and a little cinnamon to our crumble topping but you can make it as simple or complex as you like. You could use almost any fruit for this, or even a mix – apple and blackberry, raspberries, pears, peaches – you name it, you can crumble it!

Preheat the oven to 170°C. To make the crumble topping simply rub plain white flour into around 2 tbsp of butter until you have a large breadcrumb consistency. You don’t want to add too much flour, this is a more buttery mixture so some larger lumps are normal. To this add a couple of tbsp of sugar, we wanted ours quite sweet to contrast with the tart apples but if you were using a sweeter fruit then maybe tone down the sugar a bit. We then added a handful of oats and around 1/2 tsp of cinnamon because it works beautifully with apples. That’s the topping done!

Don't worry about those lumps... it's buttery goodness!
Don’t worry about those lumps… it’s buttery goodness!

So just chop the fruit into a medium dice, coat with a little sugar if it’s a tart fruit and place in ramekins – you want it to be at least 2/3 of the way up, it will shrink down a lot when cooked. Sprinkle your crumble topping on top, we pile ours high! Put it on a baking tray and in the oven for about 20-30 minutes, until the top is golden-brown. Let it cool for a moment and then tuck in.

Crumbly mountains
Crumbly mountains

This would have been even better with some cream or ice cream but it was a pretty spontaneous dessert so we didn’t have any in. Give it a try for an indulgent moment with minimal effort.

We had ours after bangers and mash... what will you have yours after?
We had ours after bangers and mash… what will you have yours after?