What a week! The poor kids have had rain nearly every day of their school holiday. They have done well to get outside at every given opportunity but it’s not quite the same as if the sun were shining and the grass dry enough to play on without turning into a swamp. We did have one dry afternoon so I quickly made up a batch of these turkey burgers and some delicious Monkeygland sauce, packed them up in a bag and headed off to the village green with a selection of bats and balls and let the kids burn off some energy before tucking into these delicious burgers.
The burgers are low fat and make a nice change from the usual beef burgers. I nearly always use turkey mince if I’m making homemade burgers as it is both cheaper and healthier than beef. The key is to not overcook them, keeping them as moist as possible. Once you’ve added all the extras and some delicious sauce, you’ll hardly notice that they are not beef burgers. Now the sauce may sound a bit odd and I have no idea where the name came from as it has nothing to do with monkeys or glands. It is a typical South African sauce and is found on nearly every menu which has burgers on it. It is sweet and rich but with a nice kick from the chilli. Every South African is familiar with Mrs Ball’s Chutney so we would typically use this brand of chutney. It is available in most of the UK supermarkets and is definitely worth a try. The recipe makes more sauce than is needed for 6 burgers but it stores well in a sterilised jar and if kept in the refrigerator.
I am very honoured (and proud) to have two guest bloggers today. They are Sean, who is 7 years old and Kirsty who is 5 years old and as you can probably guess they are my children.
It is half term holidays at the moment and the weather has been so bad that the kids have been stuck indoors for the last couple of days. It was while I was cooking lunch that my son asked if he could make dessert and then put it on my blog. At first I said no but then thought why not. It would give them something constructive to do and pass a couple of hours. I often make these pink and white fruit kebabs as they are perfect for after a heavy meal, they’re healthy and look pretty on the plate too. If you don’t want to go to the trouble of making your own strawberry sauce then just use 120g pureed strawberries and mix with 90g of strawberry yoghurt and 2 tblsp of double cream.
While I was getting everything ready, my son came up with the idea of doing a video. I have no idea how to edit videos so this is the original unedited version.
Just a bit of fun on a cold and wet day.
PS Apologies to my kids for cutting their heads off at the end of the video.
I’m off to count how many times my son says ‘pop it’ 🙂
I was recently asked to make some cakes for our local village hall who host coffee mornings for the elderly. A chocolate cake is always a popular choice but I wanted something a bit lighter and fresher for my second cake. I always have plenty of lemons at home so opted for a lemon drizzle cake. My first attempt looked lovely but was a bit dry so I made a few changes to the recipe and made up another cake. Again, it looked lovely but the texture was completely wrong. I very nearly gave up but decided I would try once again. With a few more tweaks and no more lemons left the cake came out soft and fluffy with a definite hint of lemon.
I opted to decorate the cake with a mixture of fresh pomegranate seeds and pistachio nuts which give the cake a lovely almost jeweled topping. It is one of my favorite taste combinations but if it is not to your taste then the cake is just as good left plain or with a sprinkling of lemon zest over the top.
Fresh cherries and a cherry bakewell tart in May?
I wouldn’t normally buy fresh cherries so early in the season but for all the wrong reasons I found myself picking out the bright red ones this morning and not caring about all the air miles involved in getting them to this country.
It was with a touch of sadness that I was thinking about a family on the other side of the world. I don’t know the family involved but as a blogger I have come across the Baby Boy Bakery blog many times. It is a blog which celebrates the life of a young family and is full of beautiful pictures of a young boy with the most beautiful red hair. To learn that this beautiful young child was taken so tragically and so early from his family is just heart breaking. People from all over the world have shown their support by posting images of red balloons and one of the most poignant of these images is of a little boy floating away with a bunch of red balloons attached to his hand. I must’ve had this image in my mind when I was shopping in our local Farm Shop because as I looked at a display of bright red cherries all I could see was that they looked like bright red balloons. So there I was buying my fruit and veg, looking at a pile of cherries and crying for a little boy that I never knew. Crying for what his parents must be going through. Crying for all the times I’ve been annoyed with my children over silly little things. Crying for all the times I should have given my children a hug but didn’t because I had something else more important to do. Just crying because no parent should ever have to go through the loss of their own child. When I got home I made a quick picture with the cherries and photographed it. It is now up on my fridge to remind me of how precious life is. When my daughter saw the picture she was slightly bemused as to why I had a bunch of cherries on some blue card. “Don’t you think they look like red balloons” I asked. “No, they just look like cherries” was the response.
Maybe they do just look like cherries but to me they mean so much more.
I have to admit that this is not really much of a recipe but more of a reminder about how delicious and easy fresh fruit sauces are. They take minutes to prepare and can be used in so many different ways. Why buy a sauce which is packed full of preservatives when you can make something which tastes far nicer and is better for you and it only takes minutes to prepare? It is a great way to use up less than perfect fruit and it keeps for ages in the freezer. I freeze mine in ice cube trays and then bag them so that I always have small portions for whatever I decide to make.
The strawberry sauce which I made for this post was for strawberry ripple ice cream which was polished off before I could photograph it. It is also great mixed into a milkshake, served over fresh fruit and yoghurt in the morning, swirled through a meringue mixture or as a dessert sauce. Raspberries work equally well and make a perfect sauce to go with my lemon fridge tart which by the way is such an easy dessert and freezes beautifully (ok, it’s actually my Mum’s recipe – thanks Mum).