This morning I wanted to say a huge thank you for all the lovely messages from those of you who have my book! I can't quite believe that after all those months of work it is out - a week early which took me by surprise!!! I can't tell you how nice it is to think that some of you have it on your cook book shelfs and I really hope that you will enjoy the recipes. I am always here if you have any questions and will see if the publishers will let me publish one of the recipes on my blog for you. Thank you too for all the messages of support whilst writing it - they really did keep me going at times when the sheer number of recipes to test each day became overwhelming!
You would think that after writing so many recipes I would have run out of ideas for new cakes but..oh no... I am still coming up with new ideas. These were yesterday's harvest offering - it is our village harvest festival this weekend and harvest supper on Monday - a LARGE casserole is looming this weekend! These Harvest buns have been eaten already (not by me I hasten to add) so they must be good! I love damsons as they are so tangy and if you have not had time to make jam you could add some chopped damson flesh instead (stones removed of course)
Damson and Blackberry Harvest Buns
Preparation time 15 minutes baking time 20 - 25 minutes
225g/8oz caster sugar
225g/8oz self raising flour
2 heaped tbsp creme fraiche
2 heaped tbsp damson jam (or plum jam would be fine too)
2 handfuls of blackberries (about 150gz would be about right - I used mine straight from the freezer and they worked fine)
zest and juice of 2 lemons
1 tbsp icing sugar
Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4/180/350 and place muffin cases in two 12 hole muffin tins. Cream together the butter and sugar until light until an electric mixer. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each egg has been added. Fold in the flour, creme fraiche, jam, blackberries and lemon zest gently until everything is incorporated. Spoon the mixture into the cake cakes and bake for about15 - 20 minutes until the cakes are golden brown and spring back to your touch. Remove the cakes from the oven and heat the lemon juice with the icing sugar, bring to the boil and then spoon over the cakes. Serve warm or cold.
Reaching the final of Masterchef 2007 was a rollercoaster of emotion, with huge highs and lows, but I loved every minute and learnt a huge amount. I owe a great deal to John and Gregg who had faith in my ability when I did not believe in myself. Since competing on the programme my life has changed considerably. I now write cookery columns for two magazines, give cookery demonstrations and am just working on my 13th cook book - unlucky number for some but not for me!!! I love all forms of country cooking, using seasonal and locally sourced produce. This blog is to enable me to share with you a few of my recipes and baking ideas. Enjoy Hannah xxxx