Jammymummy's Blog

Divine given creativity – recipes, knitting patterns and alike

That courgette time of year again – Glut time

So, last year I planted four courgette plantsImage result for courgette plant– all four got eaten by the slugs.  I planted a second lot of four – they too got eaten by the slugs.  No glut last year!  Organic allotmenteering at its worst.

This year, I planted seven plants so that if the slugs chose their favourite four, I would still be left with three….. but due to a hot dry spring, the courgettes prevailed and I am in serious glut land!

As happens in these events, I am hiding it in all food!  The usual places- soup, courgette and mozzarella slice, ratatouille, ragu sauce.

This year a new place – Chocolate cake! mmmmm

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Wild Garlic Focaccia Bread Recipe

I love foraging, and have decided that I shall do even more of it this year.  Why waste any of the bounty of creation?!   So far I have had a nibble of some Jack by the hedge, and am picking wild garlic at any point when I have got time to make something lovely with it.

Last year I made Wild Garlic Pesto and lots of Focaccia.  This year I have made some garlic butter which I have in the freezer, and a lot more of the Wild Garlic Focaccia!  It always goes down a treat with a family meal and freezes so well.IMG_20160502_230856278DSC_0867

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Another vegan and sugar free recipe – flapjack

This Easter weekend we are seeing my sister who is trying a vaguely vegan and sugar free diet (for health reasons) , and my nephew who is properly vegan.  I thought that I would make some flapjack to share with them, and adapted my mum’s flapjack recipe to make something for both of them.

Using stevia, maple syrup and raisins for the sweetness, I hope that you enjoy making this flapjack recipe – or granola bar if you live on the other side of the pond!

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Crumble Topping – sugar free and vegan

Unable to find a vegan and refined sugar free crumble recipe that really hit the mark, my sister made this up for one of our Christmas puddings.

Unbelievably scrummy: the apricots had been prepared and frozen by my mum: picked by my brother from his tree in the Czech Republic and driven 886 miles when they came over in the summer to see  us all:  I did my part by having seconds.

I know that it isn’t truly sugar free, but it is free of refined sugar and is certainly more healthy for you than an average crumble.12404327_10153806844459407_1353834000_n

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Vegan and Sugar free Christmas Cake

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I’ve not developed this recipe myself, but my mum just found this recipe online and I wanted to share it as a Christmas Cake alternative for those people that have a vegan/sugar free diet requirement.

Christmas Cake idea

To make it look a bit more Christmassy I popped it in a 6″ round tin, and it only took an hour to cook rather than the time they said – my nose told me it was cooked before (see previous posts about cooking by smell!)

The photo shows it part way through it’s cooking, and there won’t be a finished photo until my sis has had some at Christmas!   As it hasn’t got all the sugar that normally helps a normal Christmas cake to keep for so long, I am going to pop it in the freezer with the Quincemeat that I have made for her mince pies and bring it out the day before.  Made sugar free, with vegan suet and lots of mixed spices…. the proof on these will be in the tasting!

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Date, Pecan and Oat Cake/Tray Bake – vegan, sugar and fat free recipe

IMG_20151116_125034325Sometimes our health and the health of those we love leads to change.  Sometimes sugar and animal protein free baking can help with specific health conditions, but the recipes haven’t been all that forthcoming for me.  So, I made this up the other week for someone special.

This is nowhere near as light as a slice made with sugar and eggs, BUT it is super good for you (unless you are allergic to gluten or nuts).

Date, Pecan and Oat Slice Recipe is right here.  For other free from recipes, please go to this great website.

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Foraging Fun in the Fields – Damson and Apple Jam Recipe

Whilst out walking in the fields yesterday, I came across a bumper crop of Damsons.   For the last few years I have either missed them, or the fruiting hasn’t been anywhere near as good.  This is a good year!!

Not wanting to be too greedy, and also only having taken two ice cream tubs for Blackberries with me, I only pocketed (literally) one and a half pounds of the fruit so that the next forager could be as blessed by the bounty.   This would only have made about 3 jars of jam, so to bulk it up, I used an equal weight of apples that I just happened to have sitting on my kitchen floor.

I have written up the Damson and Apple Jam recipe here  but here are a few extra little pointers, should you so wish.

You can either stone the Damsons before cooking, or scoop them off as they cook.  I prefer to use a cherry/olive pitter to stone them before cooking so that there aren’t any that escape my eagle eyes for odamsonsne of my kiddies to then hurt their teeth on. If you haven’t already got a Cherry Pitter, I can strongly recommend getting one.  This is the one that I have, and it’s been serving me well for many years.  Obviously if you do not stone them before, you will need to add about an extra 6 oz in damsons to the initial mix.

Some people always chop apples into lemon or salt water so that they don’t go brown whilst you are preparing them all.  I didn’t bother with this jam as the damsons will colour the jam beautifully.  Much easier and cheaper.

In some recipe books it says to add the stones to the pan whilst boiling, this helps get as much pectin off the fruit as you can.  The best way that I have found to do this is using a ball and chain tea diffuser like this and make sure that if you buy one, it is a large one.   The added bonus of this is that you can then pop the diffuser in a large mug, pour some boiling water on it, leave it to soak for a bit, and you have a delicious fruit tea. How about that for thrift?!

Anyway, if you happen to find some Damsons, I hope that you enjoy this
recipe.

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Seasonal eating

I’m still in two minds about whether to keep the allotment or not, I’m sat here with lots of jobs to do at home thinking that I shouldn’t really be doing this, but actually picking the veggies and fruit at the plot.   Cabbage, lettuces, french beans, courgettes, squash, beetroot, blackberries, parsley, tomatoes, all ripe for the picking.allotment 2008

Was a bit surprised just now though to see that Nigel Slater has a section in the Guardian for Blackcurrant Recipes, mine were all over about a month ago.  I know that I live in the south east, but surely for those of us who grow our own, they must all be over now?? ( They look delicious though for 11 months time.)

Courgette and french bean recipes are what we need this week Mr Slater!!  Or ways to use up wind fall apples…?

A starting place to look……here

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Hidden vegetable time of year – hidden courgette

This is the joke in our house, the courgettes are fruiting aplenty so I have to hide them in pretty much every thing that I make to use them up – hence the Hidden Vegetable time of year.

I managed use up 4 today!  2 in Jackie’s Courgette slice, 1 in a Ratatouille Puff Pastry Slice and 1 in some Blackcurrant Jam. I didn’t follow the Blackcurrant and Courgette Jam recipe as I had a good amount of Blackcurrants for a batch of jam, but wanted 1/4 lb of something to just round up the weights, so I chopped the courgette finely and popped it in when I was softening the fruit before adding the sugar.

Today’s recipe was:

3 1/4lb Blackcurrants

1/4 lb Courgette

2 pints water

4lb sugar

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Frogs Spawn Jam – Gooseberry Jam / Guzgog Jam Recipe

Having carefully plucked the Gooseberries from the bushes, with only aAmphibians-Common Frog-spawncu-15-03-09 couple of slight puncture wounds from the vicious spikes, I have made a scrummy batch of Gooseberry Jam.   Such a shame it looks like Frogs Spawn… but it does worry the children that I might actually be telling the truth!   (mean mummy??! )

4lbs Gooseberries

12tbs water

4lbs Sugar

(Have a peek at my other Jam recipes to see how to make jam…. got to finish making an Elvis Wig so haven’t time to write it all up I’m afraid!)

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