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Category Archives: British

Old English Trifle

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Ain’t it a beauty? Don’t you just hate to wanna stick that serving spoon into it 😉  This is probably the best loved of English cold puddings , the trifle has a long and distinguished history, related to the Tipsy Cake.


I use home baked Jam Swiss Roll but you can also use Ladyfinger Sponge/Italian Sponge Fingers


…slice Jam Swiss Roll into 1cm slices and line base and sides of a large glass serving bowl …I love to use a clear, see through glass bowl to show off the lovely spirals of the sponge … looks like a Charlotte Pudding/Cake in the making ya 😉


Sprinkle about ¼ cup of sherry allover the Jam Swiss Roll  … in the background, you can see bowl of strawberry jelly that has just begun to set …


….pour partly set jelly over sponge tools, refrigerate until jelly is set …


Meanwhile, make your custard … you can make from scratch or like me, make it by blending custard powder and sugar with a little of the milk in a pan ….


…stir in remaining milk ….


…stir over heat until custard boils … keep stiring …


…stir until custard thickens …remove from heat, stir in essence …


…cover with cling film and leave aside to cool


Now, start to assemble the layers of your trifle … layer peaches over jelly …


…seen here, in between the peach layers, I added mixed fruits and also mandarin oranges as well because I’m making a super-size glass bowl of it …


…now, pour in the custard …


…top with whipped cream, refrigerate and then just before serving up, decorate with grated chocolate or chocolate rice and fresh fruits/strawberries



100g packet strawberry jelly crystals

300g jam sponge roll

¼ cup sherry

425g can sliced peaches, drained

300ml carton thickened cream, whipped

for the Custard :

2 Tbsp custard powder

2 Tbsp castor sugar

2 cups milk

1 tsp vanilla essence


  • Make jelly according to directions on packet, refrigerate until jelly is just beginning to set
  • Cut sponge roll into 1cm slices, place over base and around side of large glass serving bowl, sprinkle with sherry
  • Pour partly set jelly over sponge roll, refrigerate until jelly is set
  • Meanwhile, make the custard by blending custard powder and sugar with a little of the milk in a pan then stir in remaining milk … stir over heat until custard boils and thickens … remove from heat, stir in essence then cover with cling film … set aside for it to cool
  • Place peaches over jelly (+ any other fruits you may be adding on), spread evenly with custard and top with whipped cream …refrigerate
  • Just before serving up, decorate by grating some chocolate allover the cream top and  with fresh fruits, e.g. strawberries, if desired

Jam Swiss Roll

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I made these Jam Swiss Rolls because we are hosting a dinner party and I was gonna make an Old English Trifle for the dessert … I made 2 portions because I needed enough to line a big glass pudding mould … I must admit I was sooooo tempted to start stuffing me face with these rolls when it was done … extremely tempting 😉


Preheat oven to 200°C … grease and line base & sides of a 26cm x 32cm Swiss Roll pan with paper and grease paper … set aside


You will need 3 eggs, separated  … ½ cup castor sugar; ¾ cup  triple sifted self-raising flour; 2 Tbsp hot milk and ½ cup jam, warmed … you will need extra castor sugar when rolling up the Swiss Roll


Beat egg whites in a small bowl with electric mixer until soft peaks form ….


…gradually add sugar to beaten egg-white, beating until dissolved between additions …then add yolks 1 at a time, beating well until thick and light …


…fold in the triple sifted flour and milk … pour mixture into prepared pan ….


…spread batter out evenly in the pan … brake in hot oven (200°C) about 8 minutes


Meanwhile, place a sheet of paper same size as sponge on bench, sprinkle lightly with some extra castor sugar


When sponge is done, turn immediately onto paper, quickly peel away lining paper …cut off crisp edge from long sides …


…spread sponge evenly with jam …


…commence rolling sponge up fro short side with help of paper …


…lift rolled sponge onto wire rack to cool …


Voila! easy-peasy quick to make Jam Swiss Roll ready to be enjoyed 🙂  … ideal for puddings like English Trifle and  Charlotte Pudding or Cake

Sticky Toffee Pudding (2)


I had earlier posted a recipe for Sticky Toffee Pudding .. that is also a very good recipe which makes a smaller pudding but I must say, THIS recipe is by far the best ever! Best served with warm with couple scoops ice-cream … no ice cream here as I had none … lol


You will need 280g dates, stoned and chopped


Boil the dates in 425ml water for about 5 minutes until soft and pasty


Cream 115g unsalted butter and 350g soft light brown sugar until pale & creamy … here, as always with all my puddings & cakes, I would discount the sugar used by about ¼


You will need 350g self-raising flour and 4 eggs, beaten


Add the beaten eggs into the creamed, pale butter & sugar mixture and beat to mix well


Add 2 tsp of bicarbonate of soda to the date paste (this will make the mix fizz) .. .


…no quickly beat the dates, flour and 2 tsp vanilla extract into the creamed egg mixture


Pour the mixure into a buttered 9.5″ x 9.5″ x 2″ baking dish or pan … I used a Pyrex casserole dish which works well … and bake for 1 hour until just firm to the touch … I advise you to check the colour of the pudding after 45 mins … if the top looks well browned, lay a sheet of foil on top to stop it singeing before it’s cooked through


Ta-daaa!! The pudding is done .. what I’ve done here to keep the pudding moist and even richer is I poked about 30 holes right through and then pour some of the toffee sauce over the pudding, making sure the sauce soaked into the pudding through all the holes … sliced into 16 squares …..


…serve up warm with hot toffee sauce poured over the pudding and if so desired, with couple scoops of Vanilla Ice-Cream, too … to make the toffee sauce … mix 600ml double cream, 115g demerara sugar (again, I discount about 1/4 of this amount) and 4 tsp black treacle altogether in a saucepan over low heat and stir together until blended, bring to the boil and transfer to a jug to serve

Smoked Haddock & Colcannon


A very quick and easy meal to whip up … either for lunch or a light dinner … simple yet delicious!



2 smoked Haddock fillets .. this is dyed as I can’t get undyed ones …


Peel, cut potatoes into quarter and boil with some salt


Blanch the cabbage or kale and chopped it up …. finely chop the onion


Mash the potatoes, add in the chopped cabbage and mix well … add a little milk if the mashed potatoes is too stiff


Add the cooked onion and mix well with the the mashed potatoes & cabbage/kale


Season with freshly ground pepper and salt


Turn the potato mixture onto a very hot pan ….


… spread potato mixure out .. fry until brown …


….cut it roughly into pieces ….


…continue frying until it is crisp and brown


Lay the haddock fillets in a shallow microwaveable dish and pour the milk over to half cover


Ingredients :

2 smoked haddock fillets, preferably undyed about 140g/5oz each

            good splash milk

            2 eggs

1 tsp vinegar

For the Colcannon :            

300g  potatoes, peeled & boiled

300g curly kale or cabbage, blanched

milk, if necessary

50g butter

1 medium onion, finely chopped

salt & ground black pepper

Methods :

  • To make the Colcannon : mash the boiled potatoes 
  • Chop the blanched kale/cabbage …add to the mashed potatoes and mix well … stir in a little milk if the potato is too stiff
  • Melt a little butter in a frying pan over a medium heat and add the onion …cook until soft …remove from heat and mix well into the potato & kale/cabbage mixture
  • Add remainder of butter to the pan … when pan is very hot, turn the potato mixture onto the pan and spread it out
  • Fry until brown, then cut it roughly into pieces  and continue frying until they are crisp and brown … set aside and keep warm
  • Lay the haddock fillets in a shallow microwaveable dish and pour the milk over to half cover
  • Cover with cling film and microwave on High for 4-5 mins until the haddock flesh flakes easily
  • Meanwhile, get a pan of water on for the eggs … add a tsp of vinegar to the water … crack the eggs into the simmering water and poach for around 1-2 mins until the white is set, but the yolks are still soft
  • Divide the colcannon between 2 plates ….top with the haddock then a poached egg 

Eve’s Pudding


Eve’s pudding is a type of traditional British pudding now made from apples and Victoria sponge cake mixture. The apples are allowed to stew at the bottom of the baking dish while the cake mixture cooks on top. The name is a reference to Eve and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil 🙂


Core, peel and slice or chop apples into chunks


Mix the bron sugar, apples and lemon juice …tip into an ovenproof dish, spreading evenly and set aside


I added fresh black-currants in between the apple layers … this is optional … add dried currants if you so wish or raisins 😉


Beat together the butter and caster sugar until light & fluffy then gradually beat in the beaten eggs ….


… gradually fold in the lemon rind, flour and ground almond


Spoon sponge mixture evenly over the apples


Sprinkle the flaked almonds, if using, over top of sponge mixture and bake until risen and golden brown


Just you look at that awesome red syrup … that’s the reason why I added fresh black-currant 😉


Serve up with a generous pouring of home-made custard over it … yummmeh yums 🙂



115g butter

115g caster (superfine) sugar

2 eggs, beaten

grated rind and juice of 1 lemon

90g self-raising flour

40g ground almond

115g brown sugar

550g cooking apples,  cored, peeled & thinly sliced

25g flaked almonds, optional

100g fresh black-currants, optional

Home-made custard, to serve


  • Preheat oven to 180ºC
  • Beat together the butter and caster sugar in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy
  • Mix the brown sugar, apples and lemon juice and tip the mixture into an ovenproof dish, spreading it out evenly … set aside (if using currants, sprinkle in between layers of apples)
  • Gradually beat the eggs into the mixture, beating well after each addition then fold in the lemon rind, flour and ground almond
  • Spoon mixture over top of the apples in an even layer and then sprinkle the almonds over, if using
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes until risen and golden brown
  • Serve up with home-made custard

Braised Oxtail

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This is a traditional English recipe ….oxtail requires long, slow cooking to tenderise the meat but the resulting flavour is rich and well worth the effort


Oxtails, trimmed and cut into pieces


Coat the pieces of oxtain in the seasoned flour, shaking off and reserving excess flour


Ingredients …from top left clockwise … beef stock, carrots, sliced onions, sliced celery sticks (middle) … on white plate …bay leaves & few sprigs of fresh thyme, chopped parsley and grated orange rind


Brown the oxtail pieces in batches


Lift oxtail pieces out of pan and set aside … stir in onions, celery and carrots … cook vegetables quickly until beginning to brown and then tip in any reserved flour 


Heat until bubbles begin to rise to the surface, then add the herbs … cover and put into the hot oven


Braised Oxtail is traditionally served up with plain boiled potatoes to soak up the rich gravy, though mashed potatoes would be good, too 😉


Ingredients :

2 oxtails (about 1.5kg), trimmed & cut into pieces

2 Tbsp flour, seasoned with salt and pepper

3 Tbsp oil

2 large onions, sliced

2 celery sticks, sliced

4 medium carrots, sliced

4 cups beef stock

1 Tbsp tomato purée (paste)

finely grated rind of 1 small orange

2 bay leaves

few sprigs of fresh thyme

salt & ground black pepper

chopped fresh parsley, to garnish


  • Preheat the oven to 150ºC …coat the pieces of oxtail in the seasoned flour, shaking off and reserving excess
  • Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a large flameproof, heavy-based pan and add the oxtail in batches, cooking quickly until browned all over…lift out and set aside
  • Add the remaining oil to the pan and stir in the onions, celery and carrots … cook the vegetables quickly, stirring occasionally until beginning to brown … tip in any reserved flour and then add the stock, tomato purée and orange rind
  • Heat until bubbles begin to rise to the surface, the add the herbs ….cover and put into the pre-heated oven … cook for 3½ to 4 hours until the oxtail is very tender 
  • Remove from the oven and leave to stand, covered, for 10 minutes before skimming off the surface fat … adjust the seasoning, dish out and garnish with parsley … serve with boiled new potatoes or mashed potatoes

Daddy’s Beer Battered Fish & Chips

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If anyone does this well, my hubby certainly does … I, personally, have yet to master the batter so light as crispy as he does it so whenever I fancy a break from the kitchen, yups! it’ll be ‘FISH & CHIPS’ night 😉


Seen here, made with a lovely Croaker fillet 🙂


Here, it’s some lovely Cod Fillets … first coated with flour then coat with the beer batter


for home-made chips, click here ‘How To Make Perfect Chips‘ for the the Perfect Chips recipe 🙂


Heat a wok of oil for deep frying and fry the battered fish fillets until batter is brown and fish cooked through


Seen here served up is the Cod Fillets Beer Battered Fish & Chips … served with some garden peas & tartare sauce … yummeh!


Ingredients :

fish fillets of your choice, 1 fillet per person

garden peas (frozen or fresh)

120g plain flour

pinch of salt

1 Tbsp olive oil

150ml beer

Egg white from 1 large egg

Methods :

  • In a bowl, mix the flour, salt, oil and beer and beat well together
  • Cover and let stand … just before you use the batter, beat the egg white until stiff and fold into the batter
  • Heat wok or deep fryer with enough oil for deep frying
  • Coat your fish fillets with plain flour then dip into batter to coat evenly
  • Deep fry fillets until batter is golden brown and fish cooked through
  • Serve up with mushy peas or boiled garden peas & some home-made chips