Tag Archives: Apple

Parsnip, Pecan and Maple Syrup Cake

Parsnip and Maple Syrup Cake

The recipe for this cake caught my eye recently on the BBC Good Food site and begged to be baked! Funnily enough I’d been searching for a little birthday cake inspiration and this happened to be the first one that popped up. Not the obvious choice for a birthday cake, but I made it nevertheless for Mr F’s recent Big Day. And being the winner of the Good Food’s 20th Birthday Cake Competition and coming complete with an enormity of rave reviews how could I not?.

I’ve been meaning to try my hand at baking with parsnips all parsnip season, and was particularly delighted to find such a gorgeous recipe. So far my foray into veggie baking has taken me to Beetroot (wonderful in a choccie cake, sadly baked pre-blog but must be made again!), Squash, Pumpkin (Chocolate Pumpkin Cake), Courgettes (Courgette Cake with Homemade Lemon Curd) and of course Carrots. Do please enlighten me if there’re any other veggies worthy of caking up?

Parsnip, Pecan & Maple Syrup Cake

Since I barely changed a bean of this recipe (other than slightly lowering the sugar content and upping the amount of apple), I’m not going to re-write the recipe but it can be found on the BBC site by clicking here: Caroline Berwick’s Parsnip & Maple Syrup Cake.  Please do try it too, it’s a wonderfully moist and wonderfully flavoured cake that’ll wow the most ardent of parsnip haters.  And the mascarpone and maple syrup centre is truly heavenly!.

Being a ‘bookmarked recipe’, I shall be entering it to Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes February Bookmarked Recipes Round-Up.

bookmarked recipes new logo

As parsnips are well and truly in season (though I fear I only have two or three biggies left in the ground) I’m entering the recipe to Ren’s Fabulicious Food Simple and in Season event, this month hosted  by Cake, Crumbs and Cooking.

Simple and In Season

Parsnip Cake

One Year Ago:     Beef in Guinness

You might also like:

Chocolate  Pumpkin Cake

Chocolate Pumpkin Cake

Clementine & Almond Cake

Clementine & Almond Cake

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70s Flashback Stuffed Marrow

‘Tis another courgettie recipe today I’m afraid, though this time of the overgrown kind. One somehow went unnoticed and I found myself happening upon a marrow last week. Loving a bit of 70s foodie nostalgia I thought I’d give stuffing it a go. Interestingly it was way tastier than my less-than-fond childhood memories of waterlogged flavour-lacking marrow dinners. This was a meal I would gladly leave future courgettes to grow into gargantuan proportions for, and indeed I am.

It’s also a very simple to put together dish, made in minutes, albeit taking upwards of an hour to bake in the oven.

I’m entering this blog into Lavender & Lovage’s July Herbs on Saturday Challenge, this month hosted by Vanesther at Bangers & Mash Chat.

My homegrown sage

For 2 to 3 big people or a family of four:

a 750 to 1000g marrow or overgrown courgette

2 tablespoons of olive oil, plus a little extra for brushing

a small onion, diced

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

a heaped desertspoon of chopped fresh sage leaves

a small eating apple, skin peeled and core removed, grated

300g of pork mince

salt and pepper

Preheat your oven to 180ºC/Gas Mark 4.

Slice the marrow or courgette in half lengthways, scoop out all the loose flesh and seeds from the middles to make two boats. Cut up any fleshy parts and set aside, discard the seeds (I actually kept mine to sow next year). Brush the two halves with a little olive oil and place snugly in an appropriately sized ovenproof dish.

Heat the olive oil in a deep side frying pan on a medium heat. Add the onion and fry for 5 minutes until a little softened. Stir in the chopped garlic and sage and cook for a minute longer. Stir in the grated apple quickly followed by the pork mince, set aside diced courgette flesh and a generous pinch or two of salt and pepper. Give everything a thorough stir and take off the heat.

Spoon all the filling into the marrow halves. Cover with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 50 minutes to an hour (depending on the size of the marrow). Remove the foil and bake for a further 20 minutes.

Great served with a simple green salad and plenty of good quality bread to mop up the lovely juices.

Here’s some other courgettie recipes you might like to try, Courgette & Sausage Carbonara, Courgette, Spinach & Pesto Risotto, King Prawn, Courgette & Spinach Thai Green Curry, Courgette, Feta & Basil Bruschetta.


Sticky Apple Pudding

As I’ve said before I don’t make many baked puddings these days as our gas oven is so awful they tend to come out with a barely cooked top and a very burnt bum. But after steaming christmas puddings a few weeks ago I had a rather rare brainwave that I could steam a pud and bypass the dratted oven altogether. Amazing.

So here it is, christmas pudding aside, my first ever steamed pud, and what a triumph. Not a pretty triumph, but a wonderfully sticky and ever so naughty triumph….and a triumph not too suitable for those sticking to a New Year diet! And even if you don’t have a dodgy cooker like me please try a steamed pud, they’re so moist and sticky and utterly delish. Watch out for lots more Chez Foti steamed pud recipes coming up.

I set out to make an apple pud, as we still have lots of stored surplus from our apple harvest in the Autumn, and besides we all love an appley pud. So I took a normal steamed apple pud recipe (which is essentially just the same as a sponge cake recipe but with apples on the top) and stickied (loving my new word there) up the apples with some good old Golden Syrup and added lots of lemon zest to the sponge base. Yum. Combining the lemon and apple together worked marvellously, my winter pudding heaven!

Enough for 4:

3 tbsps of golden syrup

65g butter, at room temperature

3 apples, peeled, cored and cut into a small dice

a little flour and butter to grease and line the pudding basin

65g caster sugar

1 lemon, zested

1 and a half eggs, beaten

85g self-raising flour

3 tbsp milk

Place the golden syrup in a deep frying pan or saucepan along with 20g of the butter. Heat until bubbling a little and add the diced apple. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly.

Meanwhile  beat together the rest of the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, preferably with an electric whisk. Add the lemon zest and beat in the eggs. Then beat in the flour and milk.

Grease and line a small pudding basin. Add the sticky apples first, then pile the cake mixture on top.

Cover the basin with a couple of layers of foil or baking paper forming a pleat on the top, and tie round the sides with string to secure firmly in place.

Place the basin in a saucepan of simmering water (the water level should come to about two thirds of the height of the basin) and simmer for an hour with the saucepan lid on. It’s cooked when you can insert a fork or skewer and it comes out clean.

When cooked turn out on to a plate and serve immediately with lashings of custard.

If you like this recipe, how about trying my Bread & Butter Leftovers Pud


Pork, Pumpkin & Pepper Stew

A gentle warming stew that’s perfect for these cooler Autumnal evenings.  And like most stews, so very very easy to put together.  And another great way to use up yet more pumpkin!  A word of warning on the pumpkin though.  Quite often when you buy the very big pumpkins in the UK for Halloween they can be very tasteless for cooking with, no matter how much roasting and flavouring you add they’ll never be great.  If you do have a pumpkin to use try roasting a little of it in the oven before using, just to have a taste check.  You could always substitute Butternut squash as a more reliable tasty alternative.

To add a bit of extra spark I tend to add a touch of chilli, but really it’s not necessary

Enough for four:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 small peppers or 1 very large one, preferably red, roughly chopped into big chunks
1/2 red chilli or good pinch of dried chilli flakes (optional)
600g pumpkin, cut into 2cm chunks
a small apple, peeled cored and chopped into fairly small pieces
500g pork (lean and boneless), cut into 2cm chunks
2 bay leaves
1½ tbsp fresh chopped sage leaves, or 2 tsp of dried sage
1½ tbsp tomato puree
250ml dry cider
450ml chicken stock
salt and pepper

In a large saucepan or casserole dish place the olive oil and onion, cook for a few minutes until the onion has softened a little.  Then add the peppers, chilli (if using), pumpkin, apple and pork. Stir fairly regularly so nothing catches and burns, cook for about 10 minutes.  Add the bay leaves, sage and tomato puree and cook for another moment or two before adding the cider.  Allow the cider to cook down for about 5 minutes or so before adding the stock.

Cook for about 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the pork and vegetables are all soft and very tender.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with plenty of mash, and maybe a nice steamed green vegetable on the side.


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