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Savvy shopping, seasonal eating and thrifty recipes. Spend less on groceries and enjoy better tasting, easy to prepare meals your friends and family will love – all on a budget.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Chocolate Hazelnut Swirl Bread

I baked this delicious loaf for GBBO Bread Week, my family could barely wait until I had taken photos to devour some.  Our house smelled delicious, the scent of freshly baked bread combined with hazelnut and chocolate.  Oh my goodness, the loaf is SO good.  Great any time of day, from breakfast and brunch through to afternoon tea.  



Chocolate Hazelnut Swirl Bread

300g strong white bread flour
1/2 tsp salt
20g sugar
1 1/2 fast action yeast
185ml milk, I used whole milk (you could use oat/almond milk instead)
1 Tblsp oil
100g chocolate hazelnut spread (I made my own)

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix until a rough dough forms.  Then either turn out the dough and knead until smooth and elastic (approximately 10 minutes), or knead in a stand mixer with a dough hook fitted for 5 - 7 minutes.

Once kneaded, put the dough into a lightly greased bowl, cover with cling film and leave in a warm place until doubled in size.  Once the dough has risen, knock it t ack and roll out to 40cm x 30cm (16in x 12in) rectangle with the longest side facing you. Spread the dough with a thin layer of chocolate hazelnut spread, leaving a 2cm (3/4 inch) border.  Roll up the dough tightly from the longest side and pinch the seam and ends to seal.  Turn the roll seam side down and fold the roll of dough in half then twist the halves around each other twice to make the swirl.  Tuck the ends of the roll in neatly then place the dough twist into a greased 2lb (900g) loaf tin.

Cover with greased cling film and leave in a warm place for the dough to rise once again.  My loaf took around 45 minutes in a warm kitchen.  Whilst the dough is rising, preheat your oven to 210C/190C Fan/425F/Gas Mark 7.

Take the clingfilm off the risen loaf then bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes until golden and cooked through.  Leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes before transerring to a wire rack to cool completely.


Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Yorkshire Puddings

It was Batter Week on The Great British Bake Off this week, and they were tasked with making 12 uniform and identical Yorkshire Puddings.  I have no idea if that is actually possible without making at least 3 or 4 batches as my Yorkshire Puddings tend to have a mind of their own and rise however they like.  


I was totally delighted that my Dampfnudeln earned me a Star Baker badge last week from Jenny who is hosting The Great Blogger Bake Off.  Hurrah! 



No pressure for this week then!  I baked my Yorkshier Puddings on a grey Monday afternoon before the school run and they all rapidly disappeared.  Toddler boy and 16yo had 4 each as soon as they were cool enough to devour.  I had a couple and there was one each left for my middle two daughters.  I had to bake another batch at their insistence.


I was intending to fill the Yorkshire Puddings with a creamy chicken and vegetable mixture to use up leftover roast chicken but they disappeared before I could even entertain making anything to fill them with.

Some of the school run Mums mentioned that their mothers used to give them Yorkshire Puddings with a dollop of jam as a snack after school, as did another lovely blogger on Instagram.  My daughters now want it to happen on a regular basis, I'm not sure about that but it will definitely become part of our after school snack repertoire.  Do you just save Yorkshire Puddings for roast dinners or do you eat them at other times?

Yorkshire Puddings

vegetable oil
2 large free range eggs
100g plain all purpose flour
100ml milk, I used full fat whole milk

Preheat your oven to 225C/425F/Gas Mark 9. 

Put a little oil into every hole of a 12 hole muffin tin and put into the oven for 10 - 15 minutes whilst you make the batter.  

Beat the eggs, flour and milk together in a jug until light and smooth.  Carefully remove the tray from the oven, then pour the batter evenly into each hole of the muffin tin.  Put the tray back into the very hot oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until risen and golden.


I am once again linking up with Mummy Mishaps and The Great Bloggers Bake Off.

Mummy Mishaps

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Dampfnudeln

I have been trying some of the technical challenges from The Great British Bake Off and made these delicious dumplings last weekend.  I had eaten Dampfnudeln before but not attempted to make them myself.


After having attempted making Dampfnudeln before the bread episode of Bake Off aired, I watched with great interest to see how they got on. The instructions the contestants were given were very scant indeed and it was no wonder that almost all of the struggled with the task.  I dare say that Paul Hollywood would not attempt Dampfnudeln often himself, and obviously had been scouring the globe for tricky recipes for the contestants to make.  With the right recipe and clear instructions the dumplings weren't difficult or faffy, and tasted very nice indeed with custard.


Dampfnudeln

500g bread flour
100g sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
7g sachet instant yeast
150ml whole milk
2 large free range eggs
70g unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Poaching liquid
25g unsalted butter
pinch of ground cinnamon
150g whole milk
25g sugar

Custard and plum sauce to serve, homemade or storebought.

Put all the Dampfnudeln ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook fitted and mix until a soft dough forms.  Knead using the mixer for 7 - 10 minutes or until the dough is really smooth.  You can of course mix and knead the dough by hand but I was short on time and patience so on this occasion let my mixer do the work for me.  Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl with greased clingfilm and leave in a warm place to rise until doubled in size, this took about an hour in a warm kitchen. 

Once the dough has risen, knock it back and then divide it into 12 equal portions and shape into balls.  I weighed mine to make sure they were all equal and each of the 12 balls weighed 75g.  

Put the poaching liquid ingredients into a wide heavy based saucepan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved and the butter melted.  Take the pan off the heat and add the dough balls.  All the dough balls need to be touching the base of the saucepan in a single layer.  Put the lid on the saucepan and leave the dough balls to rise in the warm liquid for 15 minutes. 

After 15 minutes, put the saucepan back onto a low heat and cook the dumplings for 20 minutes before you are tempted to remove the lid.  A glass lidded saucepan would've been very handy but sadly mine was a cast iron saucepan and the lid was most definitely not see through.  After 20 - 25 minutes remove the lid and cook the dumplings uncovered for 5 - 10 minutes until all the liquid has been absorbed and the base of each dumpling is golden and caramelised.  

Serve the dumplings with warmed custard and plum sauce.  


Many thanks to Tesco who provided me with a Giftcard to purchase some items for this bake.  You can check out their baking recipes here.  


I am entering this bake into The Great Bloggers Bake Off hosted by Mummy Mishaps.

Mummy Mishaps




Friday, 2 September 2016

Versatile and Thrifty Flatbreads - Sweet or Savoury, for Credit Crunch Munch

I've taken over as co-host of Credit Crunch Munch from Fab Food 4 All so thought I would share a frugal and delicious recipe that I used often over the summer holidays.

Summer School holidays are always tricky, there's the endless requests for snacks and occasional moans of boredom.  Children seem to suddenly develop appetites akin to ravenous, roaming packs of grazing animals.  Fear not! These flatbreads kept my children busy whilst making them and also fill ed them up.


You could make mini flatbreads for lunchboxes and freeze them once baked for low fuss lunches, or after school snacks/dinners when a quick and filling meal is needed before/after after school clubs.


I used all purpose plain flour instead of bread flour as it is much cheaper and works perfectly fine in this recipe.  We made 5 large savoury flatbreads and 2 sweet ones, all of which freeze well and were almost the size of a large baking sheet.  The cost of the dough was roughly 46p made up of 30p flour, 10p yeast, 4p oil, 1p each salt and sugar.  Toppings of course would be an additional cost, as would the energy used be the oven to cook the flatbreads.



Versatile and Thrifty Flatbreads

900g/6 cups plain all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
7g sachet instant dried yeast 
2 Tblsp oil
625ml/2 ½ cups lukewarm water

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl.  Mix until a soft dough forms then knead for 10 minutes by hand, or 5 - 7 minutes in a stand mixer, until the dough is smooth and elastic.  Put the dough into a lightly greased bowl and cover with cling film.  Leave to rest prove until doubled in size, this took about an hour in a kitchen that was 25C.  

Once the dough has proved, tip it out onto a well floured surface and knock it back by kneading for a minute or two.

I divided the dough into 5 equal pieces, you can divide the into however many you like depending on the size you require your flatbreads to be.  I rolled each portion of dough out to about 1cm thick then transferred to lined baking sheets.  Preheat your oven to 210C/190C Fan/425F/Gas Mark 7.

Add whatever toppings you would like then let the dough rest for 10 minutes or so.  We made savoury flatbreads by spreading some diluted tomato paste (2 Tblsp tomato paste mixed with 2 Tblsp water), sprinkling over chopped pepper, spring onion and sweetcorn, then finely grating over some cheddar cheese.  I made sweet flatbreads out of two portions of the dough by kneading through a couple of handfuls of sultanas and topping the bread with a little melted butter and cinnamon sugar.    

Bake the flatbreads for 20 - 25 minutes until golden around the outside and cooked through, mini flatbreads will take less time to cook.  When cool enough to handle slice the flatbreads and serve.  You can freeze the flatbreads for another day if you cannot eat them all in one sitting.



Now it's your turn!  

Credit Crunch Munch
is a joint challenge run myself and Helen at Fuss Free Flavours.


To take part, blog about a food related money saving idea and add your post to the round up Linky.

Tweet using #CreditCrunchMunch and mention @utterlyscrummy and @fussfreeflavours

Please use the logo and also link to this post and Helen’s Credit Crunch Munch page.

Closing date of the challenge is 28th of the month.

By entering you are agreeing to let us use an image from your entry on this site, and to pin to Pinterest.

Please be respectful of other people’s copyright.

But feel free to send your recipe to as many other blog events as you like!

Here's a few ideas to ger you started:

Dishes using cheaper ingredients – cheap cuts of meat or vegetarian
Meals using leftovers
Meals using up the ends of packets
Substitutions of cheaper ingredients
Packed lunches
Meals that use less energy to cook
Pressure cooking
Slow cooking
Faster cooking – less oven time for example
Batch cooking for the freezer
Sustainable foods
Food you have grown yourself
Meals from reduced food in the supermarket







Thursday, 1 September 2016

Chocolate Viennese Whirls

When I discovered that they were baking Viennese Whirls on The Great British Bake Off this week I knew I had to give them a go. Of course I had to bake a chocolate version! Deliciously buttery and light biscuits sandwiched together with a rich dark chocolate ganache, how could I not bake them?!


I made sure my butter was very soft indeed so that the mixture was easy to pipe, and that I used a fairly big nozzle. I probably should have put the piped biscuits into the fridge for half an hour or so to ensure the piped biscuits looked more professional, but I'm not that bothered and they tasted totally scrumptious, so why faff if there's no need. I can just see the look of dismay on Paul and Mary's faces.

This batch of Chocolate Viennese Whirls cost £3.66 to make, or approximately 30p per Whirl.  Cost breakdown, exclusive of energy costs, is as follows: £1.02 butter, 25p icing sugar, 13p free range egg, 40p cocoa powder, 11p plain flour, 90p chocolate, 85p double cream.  You could serve the Whirls as plain biscuits and not sandwich them together with ganache, in which case the batch would cost £1.91 or 8p per biscuit for 24 biscuits.


Chocolate Viennese Whirls

300g very soft, but not melted, unsalted butter
1 cup icing sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 free range egg
2 1/2 cups plain flour

Chocolate Ganache
300ml double cream
400g dark chocolate, finely chopped

Beat the butter and icing sugar together until pale and flufffy, I used hand held electric beaters.  Carefully beat in the cocoa powder then the egg.  Mix in the flour by hand, using a wooden spoon, until completely combined  

Preheat your oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas Mark 4/350F.  Line two baking trays with non-stick baking paper.  Put the biscuit mixture into a large piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle.  Pipe biscuits about 2 inches in diameter onto lined baking trays, allowing a little room for the biscuits to spread.

Bake in the preheated oven for 12 - 15 minutes.  Leave to cool on the trays for at least 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the ganache
Heat the cream until almost boiling then add the chopped chocoalte.  Stir until completely combined.  Leave to cool until mixture reaches spreading consistency.  

Spread a the underside of a biscuit with a generous amount of chocolate ganache then place another biscuit on top. I managed to get 12 biscuit sandwiches from this recipe.  


I'm entering my Whirls into The Great Bloggers Bake Off, hosted by Jenny at Mummy Mishaps.

Mummy Mishaps


And also The Bake Off Bake Along co-hosted by Rhyme and Ribbons and This Particular.