Sunday, December 18, 2016

Christmas baking

Me baking mince tarts: 

"Hmm that recipe looks a bit boring. I think I'll add some roughly chopped chocolate, a decent dollop of the disaster marmalade I made earlier in the year (it's more or less solid), a handful of mixed nuts, coffee granules and assorted Christmassy spices - cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves and cardamom. Oh, and then there's those chili flavoured coconut chips that are a little bit odd and the last of the coconut butter. Could work out ok." 

And it all got mixed in with the minced fruit which has been marinating in coffee flavoured vodka for a few days. 

They look a bit rustic but taste pretty darn good!

And then there were the individual Christmas cakes. In my mind Christmas baking is associated with spice. Lots of it. I found three Christmas Cooking books on the shelves, but none of them included spice in the rich fruit cake recipes. Not a skerrick. What's going on? In desperation I ferreted out the trusty old Cookery The Australian Way, and spice was included, though not very much.

Then, trusting my not entirely reliable memories, I added more than stated quantity of spice to the mix. I'd found some apricots and other forgotten end packs of sad looking dried fruit in the pantry, and had left it all soaking for a few days along with raisins, in the coffee flavoured vodka that had gathering dust on the shelf, then added extra mixed nuts. There was more marmalade to use up - will it last forever? and some chocolate that had fallen behind the vegetable crisper in the frig. May as well add that too!

Into the patty pans in the muffin tin (my token attempt at portion control), then a bit of guesswork with the timing and taadaaa. We have success!

The pantry now looks a lot neater having used the end packs of fruit, our tummies are chubbier and the house smells fantastic with all the spice. 

Perfect taste treats for picnics over Summer!

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