Bake the Blues Away

Oct 11, 2012 by

Is there anything more depressing than relentless rain?  So far this autumn has been glorious but when a day dawns like today, what’s there to do but roll up your sleeves and start to cook.

My oven is knackered or at least it should be dispatched very soon to the knacker’s yard; so I try to make the most of it while it isn’t clicking.  The automatic lighter senses that the oven temperature is dropping due to the door seal being perished and this very annoying clicking starts.  Or so I have been told by the gas man.  But until I can afford to buy a super-duper, state-of-the-art replacement, it and me continue to rub along together. 

I was very pleased with myself recently, filling it up with a Cassoulet made with Toulouse sausage I brought back from France. Now I know the French around Carcassonne would probably have apoplexy at my version of the classic but it is really, really good.  Recipe can be found here.  I also roasted a big piece of pork belly sitting in a shallow baking tray on top of diced up celery, carrots, onions, garlic, fresh thyme and sage.  I covered it with foil after the crackling had become nicely browned and crispy and continued to roast it for 3 hours.

I made my beetroot and blue cheese tart using a piece of Bellingham Blue.  Bellingham Blue is a blue cheese made from raw milk and it is really creamy and delicious.

And then in a fit of madness last weekend when it was really warm and sunny I headed off down the lane where I used to walk the Big Boy and where I found Sarkozy the donkey.  I hadn’t been back since the big Boy died as I couldn’t bear to. I was hoping there would be a few blackberries left.  Amazingly there was.  Lots of big luscious ones.  So in no time I had 500g picked.

I made these lovely little muffin-style buns.

They are just a basic Victoria sponge mix with 150g each of butter, sugar and flour (with a teaspoon of raising agent) and 3 eggs.  I sliced about a quarter of a cooking apple into the little silicon bun moulds and added a few blackberries.  Spooned some of the sponge mix on top and baked in a moderate oven until browned, risen and firm to touch, about 15 minutes.

This mix made 12 buns comfortably. 

They would be delicious served warm with some homemade custard or whipped cream or just on their own with a nice pot of tea.

When you next switch on your oven, make the most of it and utilise all the space.  It makes sense.

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  1. I just came across this. We would love you to get on board on July 15th. Spread the word as we want this to go worldwide

  2. Oh yea plums and maybe a hint of Marsala or some other liquour yum!

  3. Ooh I like the look of those, nice n easy 🙂 I have some plums waiting to be used up, may give them a go 🙂

  4. They were really good and you can use any fruit in season.

  5. These muffins look good.

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