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Easter Biscuits

Traditionally, Easter biscuits are made with currants but this version is made with wild blueberries. Watch out though – one mouthful and you’ll be hooked!

Easter Biscuits15 minutes preparation time plus chilling
18 minutes cooking time
81 Kcal per biscuit
4.1g fat per biscuit of which 2.5g is saturated
Makes 24–6 biscuits
Dough is suitable for freezing
Suitable for vegetarians

Plain flour 175g (6oz)
Mixed spice 1 tsp
Butter 110g (4oz)
Caster sugar 110g (4oz), plus extra for sprinkling
Lemon 1, grated rind
Wild blueberries 75g (3oz) (see Cook’s Tips)
Egg 1, beaten

1 Sift the flour and spice into a large bowl. Add slivers of butter and then rub it in with your fingertips. Stir in the sugar, lemon rind and blueberries and then add the egg and mix to a firm dough.

2 Knead the dough briefly on a lightly floured surface and shape into a sausage about 20cm (8in) long and about 5cm (2in) wide. Wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for an hour or in the freezer for half an hour.

3 Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/ Gas 4 and lightly grease a large baking sheet. Unwrap the chilled dough and cut into 5mm (1⁄4in) thick slices. Put them on the baking sheet, spaced a little apart.

4 Bake the biscuits for 15–18 minutes until they are pale golden in colour. Cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes, sprinkle with a little caster sugar and then transfer the biscuits to a wire rack to cool.

Cook’s tips
•The wild blueberries in this recipe are semi-dried and they are available in tubs in the same fixture in the supermarket as the dried fruits.
•Use currants or add orange rind if you like.
•For a more fancy biscuit, roll out the dough and cut with a shaped cutter.

Recipe taken from Year Round Dairy Cookbook

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It’s nearly garden centre time again!

Apparently, Charlie Dimmock and Ronseal are launching an Urban Gardens Week this year, 11-18 April, to encourage novices to have a go and make their outdoor space beautiful!

Herbs a' Plenty, a project from Seasonal Garden Ideas

Herbs a' Plenty, a project from Seasonal Garden Ideas

Not sure about that – beautiful would be good, edible is more likely. I’m thinking of herbs this year – and they’ll make the garden (mine is very small) smell great, too.

I love basil and usually have a pot on the go from the supermarket – some keep growing and last for ages, others, well, don’t! Basil’s great with tomatoes however you have them – soup, sauces, added to stews or vegetable bakes, grilled or raw.

A cheese sandwich with some lovely fresh bread and maybe one of the goat’s cheeses you can get these days, plus sliced tomatoes and some torn basil is hard to beat. Flat-leafed parsley is another favourite, and chives, and a woody bush or two that’ll keep going for a few years – thyme maybe. And some mint – but that’s definitely going in a pot or it’ll take over. Could have some fresh mint tea to go with the sarny. Always assuming successful planting, of course.

I’m opting for plants rather than seeds to give myself a fighting chance, and then we just need a lovely sunny day and lunch outside is sorted – well, we can all dream!

Happy gardening.

Marion
The Dairy Diary Team

 

Fancy winning a copy of Seasonal Garden Ideas?

Win a copy of Seasonal Garden ideasTo enter simply complete the form on our website www.dairydiary.co.uk/competitions.html and don’t forget to “Like’ the page for an extra chance to win!

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Competition | Win Seasonal Garden Ideas

Win a copy of Seasonal Garden Ideas

Win a copy of Seasonal Garden ideasDip into Seasonal Garden Ideas at any time and you will find an inspiring selection of projects, each perfect for a morning or afternoon in your garden.

A double-page planting calendar helps you to easily identify suitable projects from each of the four seasons. When you turn to a project you will be delighted with how the information is clearly laid out to make the task so straightforward.

Each of the 77 projects is illustrated with a beautiful colour photograph.Seasonal Garden Ideas is a truly inspirational book that will delight both novice and experienced gardeners alike.

To enter simply complete the form on our website www.dairydiary.co.uk/competitions.html and don’t forget to “Like’ the page for an extra chance to win!

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Stuffed Mediterranean Chicken

Healthy, wholesome Italian food at its best.

Stuffed Mediterranean Chicken from Good Food, FastTime 30 minutes
Calories per portion 494 Kcal
Fat per portion 28gof which saturated 8.8g
Serves 2

Olive oil for oiling a baking tray and to drizzle
Skinless chicken breasts 2
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Mozzarella 4 slices
Ready-roasted peppers 4 from a jar
Basil leaves a few
Vine-ripened cherry tomatoes a handful
Baby spinach leaves a handful
Toasted pine nuts 1 tbsp
Ready-made croutons a handful
Vinaigrette to serve

1 Preheat the oven to 220°C/Gas 7 and lightly oil a baking tray.

2 Make slits along the sides of the chicken breasts to make a large pocket in each. Season inside and out. Stuff each generously with 2 slices of mozzarella, a couple of ready-roasted peppers and some basil leaves.

3 Place on the baking tray with the tomatoes and drizzle with a little more olive oil. Roast for 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the tomatoes are soft.

4 Meanwhile, toss the spinach with the pine nuts and croutons. Dress the salad with the vinaigrette and serve alongside the chicken and roasted tomatoes.

To make vinaigrette, whisk 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard with 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar and 6 tablespoons olive oil.

A Good Food, Fast | Dairy Cookbook recipe.

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Dairy Diary 2013

We here on the Dairy Diary team are already starting on the 2013 edition – can you believe it?

So, to us, not only are the months flying past as we make our way into April, but also the years.

Cutlers' Hall, SheffieldIf you are busy looking ahead to plan your wedding for 2012 you might like to know that the beautiful Syon Park, near Richmond in South West London, is opening up it’s diary dates for weddings and events. I admit I have never been, but it looks gorgeous! Perhaps a good place to take a picnic and walk through the lovely gardens if we have a much sought after spring weekend?

Instead of taking along some boring, dry sandwiches you could try making the Savoury Biscuits from the 2011 Dairy Diary, page 67. My husband had the good fortune to recipe test these, and they are incredibly moreish! Lovely with some cheese roulade or pate.

However, as I live in Sheffield and am married to a silversmith, I suspect I shall be spending at least part of my weekend touring the Cutler’s Hall in our City Centre as part of Galvanize Sheffield, a festival of contemporary metal design. If I am lucky I may get whisked off for a pub lunch afterwards… maybe I should make a batch of biscuits too for a light supper when we get back?

Have a great week

Karen
Dairy Diary Team

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A meat thermometer takes the guesswork out of cooking, whether you are cooking poultry and pork safely or cooking beef rare. You can leave the thermometer in the meat while it cooks, so you can easily see when the meat has reached the correct temperature. If you don’t regularly use a meat thermometer, you should get into the habit of using one. A meat thermometer can be used for all foods, not just meat.

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Savoury Biscuits

What can be more delicious than freshly baked biscuits?

Stilton Savoury BiscuitsMakes 25
Time 35 mins
Calories 102 per biscuit
Fat 7g of which 2.8g is saturated
Suitable for freezing
Suitable for vegetarians

Plain flour 175g (6oz)
Mustard powder ½ tsp
Butter 50g (2oz)
Blue Stilton cheese 50g (2oz), crumbled
Cheddar 50g (2oz), grated
Crunchy peanut butter 175g (6oz)
Egg 1, beaten

1 Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Place flour and mustard in a bowl. Add butter and rub in until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

2 Stir cheeses into flour. Add peanut butter and egg and mix well.

3 Roll out on a floured surface to 0.5cm (¼in) thick. Cut assorted shapes out of dough.

4 Place on baking sheets and bake for 10-15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or cold.

A Dairy Diary recipe.

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