Friday, 26 November 2010

Dinner with the Domestic Goddess and cherry moon biscuits

Last night, five friends and  I were treated to a gorgeous dinner at the home of the Mrs. P, the Domestic Goddess. Our dear friend Mrs. P has many times fearlessly entertained us over the years. She never seems daunted by a kitchen full of hungry ladies (including a vegan to make things more difficult!) and always makes the evening fabulous and memorable.

For our starter we all had a yummy carrot and potato soup. This is a winner! Happy faces all round.

The Domestic Goddess's Carrot and Potato Soup

500g/1lb carrots
1 med. potato
1 med. onion
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried sage
1 bay leaf
2 pints veg. stock
1 tsp yeast extract
salt & pepper

Fry the onion in a little oil in a large saucepan until soft and clear. Add the chopped vegetables and saute for 1 minute.

Add the remaining ingredients and bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 minutes.

Cool slightly, remove bay leaf and blend using a liquidiser.

Reheat when needed and serve adding seasoning to taste.

Next, Mrs. P made a beautiful looking lasagna as the non-vegan main and a fab mushroom and aubergine curry with flatbreads for the vegan main. I haven't got the recipe for this one yet but I'll ask her for it because I want to eat it again!
Pudding was brought along by the Culinary Queen, Mrs. H. To my delight, she had made her famous Summer Pudding. This is a conversation stopper like no other (if you don't count mutterings of 'Mmmm' and 'Sumptious!' as conversation).

The Culinary Queen's Summer Pudding

White bread slices to line a large pudding bowl (I'm guessing maybe 6 slices - she didn't tell me that bit)
2 packs of frozen mixed berries
1 pack of frozen raspberries
Sugar (to taste I guess)

In a saucepan, boil up all the fruit with the sugar for a good while until the sugar is dissolved, the fruit is well cooked and you have lots of lovely red sweet juice.
Line a large bowl with slices of bread. Fill with the fruit and top with a layer of bread slices.
Put a plate on top of the pudding with some weights on top to press it all down. Let it sit like that in the fridge for several hours.
When ready to serve, Overturn the pudding onto a large plate and it should hold its shape.

With coffee, we were treated to Choices dairy free caramel chocolates courtesy of ever wonderful Mrs. C. I've seen these in the Free-From section in the supermarket but this was my first chance to try them - and they were goood!
Also in that photo are my Cherry Moon Biscuits, which I made up because I fancied buying glace cherries the other day and I also felt my blog was in need of another Prince reference. These were pretty nice but some were a little darker than I'd have liked. Because they are so thin they cook super quickly and you have to catch them before they burn.

Cherry Moon Biscuits

100 g plain flour
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp mixed spice
1/4 tsp baking powder
40 g sugar
65 g margarine
8 glace cherries sliced thinly

Preheat the oven to 200c.
Put all the ingredients except the cherries into a mixing bowl and combine to make a soft dough.
Flatten half the dough onto greaseproof paper into a rectangle, say 6" by 4" then lay out your cherry slices on top of the dough.
Roughly cover with the other half of the dough and a layer of cling film.
Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to about 2mm thick. You should see the cherries through the surface of the dough.
Cut out large circles using a glass tumbler for the outside of the moons and then lift the circles onto a greaseproof paper lined baking sheet. Now take out take out the insides of the moons using a shot glass to make the fingernail moon shape.
Re-roll the leftover dough and keep cutting moons until it's all used up.
Bake the biscuits for 5 or 6 minutes but keep an eye on because they burn easily!

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