Sunday, August 02, 2015

How to make your own Ribena / blackcurrant syrup...

I know some people can drink water, just plain water, I'm afraid I'm not one of them... Give me wine anytime! ;) Or coffee! But water... and yes, I know we should, we probably even have to drink such and such amount of water everyday, but I simply can't... I almost have to force myself do drink a glass of water - unless I was running, training etc, but that really rarely happens, that "training" part...

To try and drink something besides coffee (of which I usually consume something in a region of 3-4 cups a day...) I'm trying to flavour my water. Just recently I took an advantage of fresh strawberries and dropped 4 of them into my bottle with water - amazing result! I really didn't think it would make such a difference and that the strawberry flavour would be so distinctive - at this point I should probably stress out that I just can't stand water with lemon... just can't!

We're all familiar with probably one of the most famous syrups - Ribena - which is simply a blackcurrant syrup. So... being an owner of two big blackcurrant bushes in my garden, which were full of fruit this year (and somehow no birds found them before me!) I decided to make my own Ribena. It's super easy and you have only two ingredients! What you're waiting for - make your own! :)

home made Ribena


How to make it...

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Gooseberry crumble...

I love a nice crumble. They're easy to put together, you can use almost any fruit and you can be quite adventurous with the crumble topping. This recipe was taken (although slightly changed) from Paul Hollywood's "Pies & Puds" cookbook. Unfortunately I didn't have few of the ingredients he was calling for, so had to improvise. I was particularly interested by the crumble topping - I've never made it using oats, but I have experimented with adding nuts into it. The result - very crunchy, somehow "rustic", delicious crumble which went perfectly well with gooseberries, apple and a splash of Calvados!



How to make it...

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Blackcurrant and peach jam...

We all love summer, don't we? I love this time of the year for many reasons, but one in particular - abundance of fresh fruit and the many ways I can preserve them for cold, winter months. I think of it as capturing all that sunshine, warmth, freshness in a jar and enjoying it by a cosy fire on a cold, miserable, winter day.
I'm lucky enough to grow some of the fruit myself - blackcurrants being one of them. I took a little plastic box and decided to go and pick up all that dark purple beads. Was hoping for a little bit to be able to make some kind of cake or cupcakes but ended up with... almost 800 g of the stuff! After "cleaning" and picking it I was left with little over 700 g. But there was a small problem - the fruit were very sharp and sour! No sweetness to them at all! I didn't want to end up adding tons of sugar to balance it out, so decided adding some other fruit. Having peaches at hand, and not any peaches but my favorite - "doughnut"/flat peaches, which were very ripe, sweet and juicy at that point - I decided to experiment a little. Below, the result of my jam creation :)


Peaches turned out to be the perfect fruit to pair with blackcurrants. They balance each other very well. You're getting a bit of sharpness form the blackcurrants, but it's balanced, toned down by sweet and mild taste of peaches. Hope you'll try and make my "combo" - fantastic on a buttered toast!



How to make it...