Seeing as i'm stuck on the ferry to shetland with nothing to do, except blog and read blind willow sleeping woman, a collection of short stories by Haruki Murakami i thought i would treat you all to a nice christmassy blog... and yes i do know its a little early but i probably won't get another chance to update this till after the new year so i figured i would get it done before Christmas was actually upon us so without further ado here it is a round up of christmas inspired things from recipes to books and songs/poetry all about that special winter holiday (god that sounds cheesy when i read it back)...
CHOCOLATE CHRISTMAS CAKE
the following recipe is a copy from nigella lawsons feast book and can be found in the chocolate cake hall of fame chapter. It has now become the cake of choice in our family and imo is much better than a traditional fruitcake...
you will need
50g piece candied orange peel
175g softened butter
175ml runny honey
125ml tia maria ( or any other coffee flavoured liquer, for a change cointreau would probs work as well)
juice and zest of 3 oranges
1tsp mixed spice
4 tblsp cocoa powder
3eggs beaten together
150g plain flour
75g ground almonds
half a teaspoon each of bicarb and baking powder.
prepare the tin in the normal method for baking a fruitcake and preheat the oven to gas mark 2 or 150 degrees celcius. Place all the ingridients except for the eggs, flour, almonds bicarb and baking powder in to alarge heavy based saucepan and bring to the boil simmer gently for 10 minutes then REMOVE from the heat and let it cool for 30 minutes. Once cooled add the remaining ingredients and stir gently, pour into prepped tin and bake in prehated oven for 1 and 3/4 - 2 hours it should feel firm on the top when cooked although the skewer method doesnt actually work as this makes quite a sticky cake so it the skewer will come out ;looking sticky even when its had the full cooking time ...
we've all heard the traditional 12 days of christmas song but this is one of my favourite versions
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2O0GOfolNA&feature=related i dont think i would be able to sing the traditional version now even if i wanted to ....