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P1020473

Madeleines are a very delicate tea-time treat. They are best served warm, and absolutely must be served fresh. The great news is that you can make the batter in advance, even the night before. And they only need cooking for 6 minutes or so.

There are lots of things you can use to flavour madeleines: try using lemon or orange – just add zest and a little juice, or 85g of chocolate chips, or in this case: vanilla.

The recipe I’m following comes from Annie Bell’s Baking Bible.

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 90g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp runny honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • a pinch of salt
  • 100g plain flour
  • 1 level tsp baking powder
  • 80g unsalted butter, melted

Mix together the eggs, sugar, honey and vanilla in a large bowl. Sieve and fold in the salt, flour and baking powder.

In a separate bowl, gently melt the butter. Allow to cool slightly and fold into the other ingredients.

Put cling film over your bowl and refrigerate the batter until you are ready to use it.

Preheat the oven to 240C (or 220C for a fan oven).

Grease your madeleine tin with melted butter, or Cake Release.

Put about a teaspoon of the batter in each mould.

Place the tin in the oven and immediately reduce the heat to 220C (or 200C for a fan oven). Cook for 4 minutes.

After 4 minutes reduce the temperature of the oven to 190C (or 170C for a fan oven). Cook for a further 2-5 minutes.

Run a knife around the edge of each of your madeleines, and allow them to cool in the tin. If you like you can dust with icing sugar before eating.

P1020476

MAKES 24

 

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P1020459

A perfect meal for a wintry June evening… This is a low-calorie, herby chicken dish that could as easily be made in the slow-cooker.

Ingredients

  • 2 rashers of lean, unsmoked bacon, chopped
  • 2 chicken breasts, chopped into chunks
  • 3-4 shallots
  • a sprinkling of dried rosemary and herbes de provence
  • 1/2 glass of white wine
  • 300ml chicken stock
  • 1 (410g) can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1/2 red pepper, chopped into chunks
  • a handful of sliced kale

Heat the oven to 200C.

Dry fry the bacon in a non-stick oven-proof dish for about a minute, then remove from the pan. Add the chicken and shallots and allow to brown. Then add your herbs. If you like you could add a splash of white wine here, allow to reduce, then add the chicken stock.

Return the bacon to the dish, along with the cannellini beans and red pepper.

Put in the oven for 25 minutes.

Just before you are ready to eat, add the sliced kale and cook for another five minutes.

If you prefer, you can transfer the cassoulet to a slow-cooker and heat on ‘low’ for 8-10 hours, adding the kale 20 minutes before the end.

SERVES 2.

Here's one I made earlier

Here's one I made earlier

Hi, my name's Helen and I live in London with my husband and two children. When I started piping the potato on my shepherd's pies, my husband suggested that it might be a good idea for me to find an outlet for my creativity, so here we are. I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, the extra twist is that I don't eat meat (I do eat fish though) and Jim, who loves meat, is always on a diet. Here are a few recipes that I have enjoyed making for my family.

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