Saturday, 23 April 2016

Hairy Dieters Jerk Chicken

This tasty little number from the second Hairy Dieters cook book had been catching my eye for a while. I finally got around to trying it a week or so ago. I made extra and it was lovely cold the day after. 

Serve 4 - 6

2 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
lime wedges, to serve
flaked sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

6 spring onions, trimmed and roughly chopped
20g chunk of fresh root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
2–3 scotch bonnet chillies, stalks removed (I used regular chillies)
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
(or 1 tsp dried thyme)
1 tsp ground allspice
½ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cinnamon
3 tbsp dark brown sugar
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1½ tbsp dark soy sauce


To make the marinade, put all the ingredients in a food processor and blitz to make a thick purée. You’ll need to remove the lid and push the mixture down a couple of times with a rubber spatula until you get the right consistency.

Put the chicken on a board and trim off as much fat as you can with good kitchen scissors. Slash each thigh a couple of times with a sharp knife, put them all in a bowl and season with a little salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Tip the jerk marinade on top and mix well, then cover and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 220°C, and line a large baking tray with baking parchment. Place the chicken on the tray, shaking off any excess marinade as you go and shaping the pieces back into neat thighs if they have opened out during marinating.

Bake the chicken for 25 minutes or until it is all thoroughly cooked, deep golden brown and charred in places. Serve hot or cold with lime wedges for squeezing and a large mixed salad. You could also serve small portions of rice if you like.

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Sticky Ginger Cake with Ginger Fudge Icing

I've just finished a piece of this cake. I couldn't wait, it was still a little warm. It's just one of those cakes that you just savour with each mouthful and wonder why you haven't made it more often. I just gave my nephew Max a piece, he took a bite closed his eyes and just nodded his head, it said it all really. It's from a book called '101 cakes and bakes', by good food magazine, and it's years since I made it last, I have a feeling I won't leave it so long til next time . 

Serves 16
200g unsalted butter
175g molasses sugar
3 tbsp black treacle
150ml milk
2 large eggs
4 pieces stem ginger drained from syrup and chopped
300g self raising flour
1 tbsp ground ginger

for the icing
4 tbsp ginger syrup drained from jar
300g golden icing sugar
140g unsalted butter softened
2 tsp lemon juice

Preheat oven to 160C
Butter and line 23cm round tin
Gently melt butter, sugar, treacle
Cool briefly then stir in milk
Beat in eggs and add chopped stem ginger
Stir in flour, ground ginger and pinch of salt
Combine thoroughly
Spoon mixture into tin and level surface
bake for 35-40 mins or until firm and risen (don't worry if it cracks slightly on surface)
Cool in tin for 1 hour then transfer to wire rack
Skewer the top of the cake and pour 2 tbsp of the syrup over.
Beat together icing sugar, butter, lemon juice, and remaining ginger syrup and spread thickly over cake