Tag Archives: bread

Bread sauce

Bread sauce is probably one of my favourite things, the combination of bread sauce and good sage and onion stuffing is very hard to beat.  It always reminds me of Boxing Day when we go for a walk in the morning and then return to cold turkey and stuffing and reheated bread sauce – my mouth is watering just thinking about it.  I was inspired to make some after reading a Rachel Eats post on Sunday lunch where she had cooked some to go with her slow roast pork.  So I made some to take to my mum’s for sunday lunch this week to go with the duck that she was roasting. I will be following a tradition and making it for Christmas Day, and making sure there is plenty so that I can enjoy some on Boxing Day. This recipe is adapted from the classic by Delia Smith.

1 onion, peeled and chopped in half
12 cloves
1 bay leaf
10 black peppercorns
425ml (15 fl oz) whole milk
25g (1 oz) butter
4 tbsp double cream
75g (3 oz) breadcrumbs
salt and pepper to taste


Stick the cloves into the cut onion and place in a pan with the bay leaf  and the peppercorns.  Pour the milk over.  Bring the milk to boiling point and then take off the heat and cover and leave to infuse for at least two hours.

Strain the milk into a jug and then pour back into the pan. Add the butter and the breadcrumbs and place onto a gentle heat and stir occasionally until the breadcrumbs have swollen and thickened the sauce.  This will take about 15 minutes.  You can now leave it to stand until you are ready to serve.

Just before serving add the cream and reheat gently. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve in a warmed bowl.

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English muffins

muffin and jam

I decided to do a special breakfast yesterday, well it’s half term and we were all off yesterday and having a day together.  So I got these started early (about 7ish) and we were enjoying them by 9 am.  Hot off the griddle and spread with butter and jam they were really tasty.  The recipe makes 12 muffins so we had plenty left over so I made Eggs Benedict for last night’s tea.  The muffins will keep though for a few days in an airtight tin, and can be split and toasted.

You can of course buy these muffins, but it really is worth the effort to make your own and it really isn’t that much effort.  I use my trusty tortilla pan to cook them but any heavy based pan or a griddle will do the job.

450g (1 lb) strong bread flour
225 ml (8 fl oz) milk
55 ml (2 fl oz) water
7g sachet of easy blend yeast
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tsp salt


Measure the flour, salt and sugar into a large bowl and mix well.  Place in a low oven (100°c) for 10 mins to warm through.  Measure the milk and water into a small pan and heat over a gentle heat until hand hot.  Take the flour out of the oven and add the yeast and gradually pour in the milk and water .  Mix with your hands until the dough comes easily into a ball away from the sides of the bowl.  The mixture may need a little less or a little more liquid so add the last bit with care.

Take the dough out of the bowl and knead on a worktop surface for about ten minutes or as long as your arms will bear. It should be springy and elastic. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with clingfilm rubbed with a spot of oil (the oil on the inside). Leave to prove until it has doubled in size, this will take about 45 minutes in a warm kitchen or longer if left in a cool spot. I have never tried this but if you leave the dough in the fridge overnight it will be risen ready for the morning, so this may be a good plan if you don’t feel like waiting for a couple of hours for your breakfast.

When the dough has doubled in size take it out of the bowl and put it onto a lightly floured worktop and roll the dough out to about 1 cm thickness.  Using a scone cutter cut out 12 muffins.  You will need to re-roll the leftover bits of dough.  Place these onto a floured baking sheet, re-cover with the oiled clingfilm and leave for about 25 mins until  risen.

Heat the pan over a medium heat until hot and then place the muffins on the pan.  Turn the heat to low.  Cook for 7 minutes on the one side until nicely browned and turn and cook for another seven minutes until cooked through.  You will have to do this in batches.  Those you don’t want to eat immediately can be cooled and kept in an airtight tin.

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cooking muffins

Cooking the muffins