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  1. I'm busy working on batches of mallows for a bakesale, I was wondering... has anyone tried mixing space dust/popping candy into a batch? would they remain stable and poppy or would they turn to mush?
  2. I use a bit of colmans English mustard powder to my gingersnaps (actually, gingerchews). cayenne, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and cloves. at Christmas I do cookies with a little black pepper too.
  3. I have a recipe for chocolate and walnut chip cookies using duck fat... I render my own lard to use in lots of baking (gingersnaps, griddle cakes and scones etc) I should think you could try using it in any of those recipes... griddle cakes (singin' hinnies, welsh cakes and tattie scones) are gorgeous using lard. also Scottish Aberdeen butteries (a shorter, Scottish take on a croissant) are traditionally made with lard, despite the name as butter would ruin the texture.
  4. well... my quest to eat organic food has landed me with some cooking challenges! I've found a farm with onsite butchery and they are happy to cut almost any special order you request. A few weeks ago while perusing the library copy of "pork and sons" I saw a recipe for pork cheeks bourgignon. Great thinks I, so I have 1.5kg cheeks arriving Thursday... Has anyone cooked cheeks before? I'm thinking they'll be tender but will need a long slow cooking. Moving away from the winey recipe, I was considering whether braising them in milk (with lemon, oregano and garlic) might be a workable (and tasty) option. Any specialities I should try, as of right now I'm willing to give anything a shot
  5. In 2008, I will eat more locally produced things and try to cut my reliance on the supermarket I will make more time to experiment with new recipes I will find a lovely patch of mushrooms! I will learn the basics of cheesemaking I will teach mike some basic baking skills I will read everyday!
  6. mmm... brownies, with large chunks of unswetened cream cheese in the middle. sweet and salty and creamy
  7. I'm loving this blog so much! just about my favourite thing in the world to do on holiday is just walk, poke my nose into neighbourhood grocery stores and try to figure out what everyone is eating and cooking. those pastries look wonderful now to make a coconut paste danish.....
  8. go Scottish! a hot water and lard crust is traditional for scotch pies, macaroni pies, bean and potato pies and steak pies. a good recipe for scotch pie can be found here and the others are fairly intuitive! for macaroni pie start with a thickish macaroni cheese (leftovers are perfect) and just bake as directed in the scotch pie recipe. I love hot water crust, tonight we are having bean and potato pies for our dinner (I'll try to take pictures, they are delicious) we do, we all love pork pie for Christmas breakfast... I made our own last year (from rcmb) and it was lovely, I decorated the crust with pigs cut from the pastry scraps that, a few pickled things and some cheese.... mmm
  9. as we speak, on my stove I have a double boiler of the crock pot cajeta simmering, ok, it's no longer crock pot, mostly because my slow cooker died about an hour into the cooking still, it's been hovering around the 200 mark for a few hours now and is getting darker but not really any thicker. the top of the pan has crusty/sticky stuff round it which I stir in from time to time. I'm going to give it another four hours, then see what happens with the consistency before adding the reserved cup of milk. looking at your pictures it needs to be a lot darker/thicker before it's done. currently it pours off the spoon like thin cream.
  10. our local chemist sells 450g tubs of liquid glucose, in amongst the clove oil and potassium permanganate tablets etc... try asking at boots and so on, it should be readily available
  11. wow!! hello (and sadly goodbye) from edinburgh. I've enjoyed this blog an awful lot (nami nami being one of my favourite places!) and the pictures of Tallin are wonderful. thank you so much
  12. it could be that, I was using a sugar syrup cement (as instructed in a book I had) but I think from seeing you say that and also from reading a recipe from an older book on baking cookies that royal icing should be the glue of choice. I can colour it right? because snowy white seems innapropriate for halloween! but green slime or dripping gore, that would be ok
  13. oh yeah! I'm in, I love halloween and try to persuade the others here to embrace the holiday spirit (sorry, couldn't help myself) too. so.. gingerbread houses, I have to come clean, traditionally I've been really unlucky with them, mostly with the icing cement actually, it doesnt glue/hold/just makes the biscuit soggy and crumbles. but I have time to experiment I guess. we dont really get much halloween candy here in the uk, so perhaps I'll have to try some alternatives... we'll see!
  14. foraging in scotland, it really is a huge larder wild strawberries (rarely found these days) and wild raspberries (though these suffer from maggots often.) wild garlic (ramps I think) in season are delcious and grow like weeds, they can be found almost everywhere. jack by the hedge, another garlicky leaf, but milder than ramps and good for soups. blaeberries, tiny wild blueberries that grown on exposed bits of hillside, this year is going to be a great crop, the weather (though bad for us humans) has been great for blaeberries. brambles, yum, my favourite, but I think this may be a bad year for them unless the rain lets up over the next couple of months. elderflowers and elderberries, one for fritters and drinks, the other is for jams, jellies and cough syrups. rowanberries, great, these (once you shoo the clinging spiders off) make a pinky red jelly that is good with lamb or venison. it's a bumper crop this year, and they're so red! rosehips, for rosehip syrup (full of vitamin c) or rosehip spread, like a fruit butter and delicious on toast. crabapples, for jelly I dont know enough about mushrooms so I leave them be... yes puffballs are recognisable, but I rarely see them these days. beech nuts can be eaten, but it takes a lot of foraging to get very many! tasty though. chickweed is great in salads, also dandelion greens. young nettles for soups, or beer/wine making. we never look for shellfish, partly because our family isnt keen on fishy things, partly because our local shores are very polluted. since we recently moved to an area which is populated by ancient beech forests on nice soil we are thinking of training one of our dogs (a spaniel with a busy nose and a huge appetite) to hunt for truffles.
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