Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Cook the Books - March

Week 1:
I am so over baking for my family, though I think the hot weather at present is also contributing to this.  While trying to find a recipe that hopefully wouldn't melt in their lunchboxes, I came across a long forgotten book in my collection -  Superb Slices by Family Circle.  Sesame Apricot Slice didn't require chocolate, jam or icing, it is almost like a muesli slice, so it seemed to fit the bill for a lunchbox treat.

Also made was the Uncooked Chocolate Tart from Annabel Langbein's  Endless Summer Annual 2015.  By the third and final day of eating this, the filling was set really well.

Verdict: Not an overly sweet slice, definitely like a baked muesli bar like in texture, but yummy all the same.  The Scout, Miss B and Mr J were all very complimentary about the chocoate tart, and think I should use up the rest of the jar of chocolate hazelnut spread and make another one.   If I made the tart again - I would do it at least 24 hours before it was required, to give it a decent chance of setting.

Week 2: 
This week saw my Delicious board being used to source recipes.
  • The Beetroot and Carrot Cake with Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting had long been a recipe I wanted to try, now that I have finally started to use the grater attachment on my food processor, cakes like this are a lot more enjoyable to make.  The batter was quite pink when I put the cake tin in the oven, but it cooked out to be a beautiful golden colour and very moist cake.
Verdict:   The cake was a big hit with all the family, and will definitely be made again, possibly I would halve the amount of cream cheese used in the frosting, there was a good amount left over, and unfortunately I had to scrape the bowl clean.
Crisp and cool, this slaw was perfect with pork steaks on a hot evening.  The diced apple in it was a big hit with Mr J.  I guess you could make it with green cabbage, but I would keep this as a red cabbage recipe only.

Week 3
Two new recipes this week also.  First up Tikka Chicken  from A Free Range Life Summer Annual . We didn't bother about threading the chicken onto Kebab sticks and just barbecued the tenderloins. To accompany this I made a recipe, I clipped from a magazine some time ago - Golden Spiced Rice.

Verdict: Both definite make again dishes from all the family.

Week 4
Lentil Salad with Sultanas and Basil Roasted Tomatoes.  This is one of those recipes that I have clipped out of a magazine, goodness knows how long ago, and glued into a large notebook.  For once the pantry gods were smiling on me, and I had all the ingredients on hand.  I used the last of the tomatoes and basil  from my garden. I couldn't find golden sultanas in the supermarket, so just used regular ones.  We had it at room temperature with roast chicken
Verdict: A nice earthy and mildly spiced tasting salad. Even the males in the household said they would eat it again.   Cold leftovers were good for lunch  the next day too

April will no doubt see more autumnal flavours and ingredients being used in my recipes.  Is anyone else doing their own Cook The Books this year?


  1. I need to do this Julie. Been saying i need new recipes for so long. Feeling very guilty now reading your post!! :)

  2. Oh love your blog post Julie. I must remember when I need to make these types of recipes. They all look very yummy. Great reading. Thanks so much!

  3. I must be hungry - all of those dishes look yummy! Interesting that the beet cake didn't turn out pink :)

  4. Coleslaw...I love coleslaw. I am hungry now!!

  5. All of this yumminess is making my mouth water. :) I'm especially interested in the lentil dish. Thanks for all your reviews. Looking forward to trying a couple of these.

  6. The cake and the coleslaw sound especially good!


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