Thursday, November 18, 2010
I have never made a gingerbread house but I couldn't resist trying out the Wilton Gingerbread Mold. To make things a little easier for myself I used the Wilton Gingerbread Mix and the Wilton Frosty White Icing Mix. Wilton is an American company so the directions on the gingerbread mix say to add 1/2 cup vegetable shortening and 1/2 cup water to the mix. I compromised and used 110g of margarine and 120ml water. The mix is so easy to use. I just threw everything into the Kitchenaid and within a minute it had combined to a soft cookie dough.
The mold itself is very heavy duty aluminium and the mold pieces are on both sides so it means that you have to bake a total of 3 batches. I simply spread a little Wilton cake release with some kitchen roll over the mold and pressed the dough into the shapes (no need to roll out the dough but I did run the roller over the dough once it was in the mold to get it kind-of level) This picture shows one side that has a roof piece, side piece, the chimney, footpath and 2 little gingerbread men. You need to use this side twice, and the other side just once.(2nd side = front and back of house, santa sign, tree, large gingerbread man and 2 candy canes)
The gingerbread dough pressed into the mould
All the pieces before constructionOne of my Facebook friends recommended that I decorate the pieces before the construction and this definitely made things a lot simpler. Using the white icing I outlined the windows and the candy canes on the sides of the house and filled in the door. A put a jelly tot wreath above the door and put a few red stripes on the candy canes were added and I filled in the faces on the gingerbread men, and traced the 'North Pole' sign. I covered a square cake board in white fondant and then left everything overnight for the icing to harden off. Next day I mixed another batch of white icing (about the texture of stiff toothpaste) and generously spread on the edges of the front and sides of the house and stuck then in place with plenty of icing under the house. Miraculously they held in place and I was able to attach the back wall without the need of any props. I left the house to settle for an hour before I attempted the roof pieces and luckily that fitted like a charm! Having left it another while to settle, I then attached the chimney and added the finishing touches of 'snow' and sweets, the tree, sign and gingerbread men. I love the detail of the tiles on the roof and the footpath and a light dusting of icing sugar really highlights them. All in all I was very happy with my creation and would definitely do another. Admittedly, the mold is an investment, but could easily be shared between friends and family and would last a lifetime. Something to hand down through the generations....
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
- Place the chicken breasts between sheets of plastic wrap. Pound them with a heavy rolling pin until they are about twice as large, but not so thin you can see through them.
- Sprinkle each one with a little nutmeg, thyme, and seasoning, followed by a few leaves of the raw spinach, dividing these equally between the 2 pieces.
- Cut three quarters of the cheese into 2 finger-size pieces. Place one in the middle of the spinach on each chicken piece. Roll up the chicken pieces “swiss roll” fashion, tucking in the side edges to enclose the cheese. Secure with thin string or cocktail sticks.
- Heat the oil in the shallow casserole over medium heat on the hob. Add the onion and fry gently until it is just beginning to soften. Add the chicken roulades and brown them evenly on all sides.
Scallops of pork or turkey make a delicious alternative for this dish.
- Gradually add half the hot stock around the roulades with a little seasoning. Cover and simmer slowly for 30 to 40 minutes until the chicken is very tender.
- Lift the roulades out of the pan and keep them hot on the upturned lid. Carefully remove the strings or cocktail sticks.
- Add the remaining stock to the cooking liquid and bring this to a simmer.
- Blend the cornflour with a little of the milk, then stir this and the remaining milk into the liquid, simmering and stirring until the sauce thickens.
- Finely grate the remaining cheese into the sauce, stirring until it melts.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning before returning the roulades to the sauce to reheat.
Posted by The Kitchen Dresser at 1:42 PM
Monday, August 30, 2010
|Free ceramic pie birds from Le Creuset|
The pie bird is available via redemption - you just fill in the form that comes with the pie dish and send it away saying what colour bird you need to match your pie dish. Its such a lovely idea and looks very impressive.
Simply place the pie bird funnel in the centre of the dish before covering the pie with the pastry lid. Roll out the pastry lid, cut a small “X” shape at the centre. Lift the pastry lid into place, lining up the “X” cut with the birds head. Gently press the cut edges at the centre around the shoulders of the bird. The top of the funnel should poke up through the pastry. Trim excess pastry from the pie edge and finish as required, or as the recipe suggests
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Simple Strawberry Jam
There are only 4 ingredients in this simple strawberry jam.
- sugar (I use granulated)
- lemon juice - if not using 'jam sugar' - see below
- small knob of butter
Posted by The Kitchen Dresser at 3:15 PM
Friday, April 30, 2010
Red still remains a popular colour for kitchen accessories, and these new vintage style metal caddies and bread bin should fit easily in many kitchen's colour schemes. In a lovely warm cream and red, they have a retro look with a cute gingham band around the base and red handle on the lid. These are very reasonably priced at only €4.95 for the tea, coffee or sugar caddies, €10.95 for the biscuit caddy and €21.95 for the bread bin. http://www.kitchendresser.net/vintage-gingham-523-c.asp
Posted by The Kitchen Dresser at 5:35 PM