Tag Archives: golden syrup

Banana Splits – and make ’em sticky! (with home made toffee sauce)

A banana split is a lovely pudding and you can make them as simple or exotic as you like.  The essential ingredients are a banana, some vanilla ice cream and some sauce, but you could add whipped cream, other fruit such as strawberries, raspberries or peaches and there isn’t a pudding on earth that isn’t enhanced by the judicious application of chocolate sprinkles or hundred and thousands.

Better still, you can make super fast toffee or chocolate fudge sauce in a few minutes in the microwave, out of storecupboard ingredients.   You can make it in a saucepan, but why give yourself the washing up?

It has fruit in therefore it's health food


1 x jug
1 x microwave

1 x big knob of butter
2 generous tablespoons golden syrup
Cocoa (chocolate version only)

Melt the butter in the jug
Add the golden syrup and mix well
If you’re using cocoa, bung that in now as well
Place in the microwave on full power for 4 minutes
Remove and stir vigorously
If it’s starting to thicken take it out
If it’s still very runny give it another blast for 2 minutes
You can serve it immediately or
you can leave it for 10 minutes and it will thicken up still more
When the jug is empty fill it with cold water immediately to make it easier to wash up
Pour it attractively over your banana split and decorate as you see fit


Filed under Food, Recipes, Storecupboard

Chocolate Crispy Cakes – for the able and less able

I haven’t made chocolate crispy cakes since I was ever so wee, and they are generally considered to be a recipe which an amoeba with acronyms could manage.  Despite being an accomplished and confident cook, The Wartime Housewife Buggered It Up. (Sounds like an Enid Blyton re-vamp – I shall publish at once).

I had two bars of milk chocolate in the larder, so I thought I’d use those.  On exposure to the slightest heat, the chocolate solidified into a glutinous, granular mass which resisted all attempts to absorb the syrup.  I stirred and stirred but nothing happened.  I became reckless.  I added an ounce of butter which made it separate, so I added a great dollop of double cream and went at it with a stick blender.  Result!  In went the cornflakes and bish bash bosh.  Crispy cakes with a satisfyingly toffee-like texture.

This is what I should have done:-


1 x heatproof bowl
1 x saucepan
12 x paper cases
a tray to put them on

6oz / 180g dark chocolate
2 tablespoons of golden syrup
3oz / 90g cornflakes
Mini eggs to decorate

Melt the chocolate into a heatproof bowl over a pan of hot water
Stir in the golden syrup
Stir in the cornflakes until they are evenly covered in chocolate mixture
Spoon the mixture into 12 paper cases
Arrange the mini eggs on top – you could also put a tiny fluffy chick in the middle if that’s your bag
Put them in the fridge to set.


Filed under Food, Recipes, Seasonal, Slider

Another emergency storecupboard pudding

Lovely roast dinner on Sunday night and, having spent the afternoon in a local country park, getting intermittently drenched and steamed, we were pretty hungry.  A warming pudding was called for but the cupboard was bare.  I didn’t even have any custard powder, can you imagine?

So I went to the larder to see what was there.  I only had two eggs, no cream, no fruit and precious little butter.  But I had cocoa and raisins.  I made a basic 4442 chocolate sponge mixture to which I added raisins and this went in with the roast.  I then made some chocolate custard to go with it and this is how it was made:-


1 x medium mixing bowl
1 x electric food mixer
1 x ovenproof pudding bowl
1 microwave proof jug or a medium saucepan
1 stick blender to be on the safe side

4oz / 120g butter
4oz / 120g white sugar
2 eggs
4oz / 120g white self raising flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 good handfuls raisins (this makes it health food)
a little milk to thin it down

2oz / 60g butter
1 heaped tablespoon plain flour
1 heaped tablespoon cocoa
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 brimming tablespoon golden syrup
½ pint / 300ml  milk (full fat makes it creamier)

Grease the pudding bowl
Pre-heat the oven to 180 / 360 / 4
Beat the butter and sugar until it is pale and fluffy
Beat in the eggs
Beat in the flour and cocoa
Add the raisins and a little milk if necessary
Put the mixture into the pudding bowl and bake for 30 minutes or until a knife poked into the middle comes out clean

Chocolate custard:
Melt the butter in the jug or pan
Stir the flour in briskly
Then stir in the cocoa
Add the golden syrup and vanilla extract and mix together as well as you can
Gradually add the milk using a brisk figure of eight stirring action
Heat, stirring constantly on the hob until it thickens
Alternatively pop into the microwave for 3 minutes, stir thoroughly then heat for another couple of minutes until nicely thick
If any lumps persist, take the stick blender to it to get a lovely creamy consistency
Serve poured over the hot chocolate pudding.
Have a lie down.


Filed under Food, Recipes, Storecupboard

Roly Poly

This is not an instruction leaflet for beginners gymnastics or even a portfolio of podges, although, as we progress, the two may become inextricably linked.  No picture again I’m afraid.

I had a request from Mr Parrot for a recipe for suet pudding.  I realize this is not the ideal weather for a warming, fuel food but you must understand that I am merely a slave to the nostalgic whims of my readers.  If suet pudding is demanded, suet pudding will be forthcoming.

Roly Poly pudding first appeared on English tables in the 1800’s.  Suet pastry is wonderfully versatile in that it can be filled with steak and kidney, jam or syrup and some of you may remember being given Plough Pudding which has a filling of bacon, onions and sage.  Gosh I feel hungry just thinking about it.  I won’t torment you with the variation to turn it into Spotted Dick – I will save that one for the cooler, darker days.

The trick with suet pastry is to be gentle with it; use as little water as you can get away with and handle it as quickly and lightly as you can.  Incidentally, if you’re not a vegetarian, don’t mess with vegetarian suet.  It just isn’t as good.

It is ideal energy food and a good filler-upper, particularly for manual workers or when meat is scarce or simply too expensive.  One should never feel guilty about eating this sort of food; it’s not as though it turns up on the table every day.  My justifying mantra is this.  Turn down the heating, go for a walk, have a pudding.


1 x grater
1 x baking sheet
Baking parchment or greaseproof paper
1 x large mixing bowl
1 x rolling pin
1 x palette knife
1 x pastry brush

6oz / 180g self raising flour
a pinch of salt
3oz / 90g shredded suet
rind of 1 lemon – finely grated
5-6 tablespoons of jam or Golden Syrup
A butter paper and extra flour for greasing and dusting

Preheat the oven to 180 / 360 / 4
Line the baking sheet with the parchment or paper
Sift the flour and salt into a bowl
Stir in the suet and lemon rind
Stir in just enough water to be able to pull the mixture together into a soft dough
Quickly and lightly, pull it together with your fingers into a ball, adding a little more water if necessary
Lightly flour the work surface and knead the dough lightly with your fingers until it is smooth.
Very gently, roll the suet pastry into a rectangle about the size of your baking tray (8×12” / 30x20cm ish)
Using your palette knife spread the pastry with the jam or syrup, leaving a gap of about an inch all the way round the edges
Brush these empty edges with water
Very carefully roll up the pastry, but not tightly or this will squish out all the filling
Put the roll, seam side down onto the lined baking sheet
Place it in the oven for 30-40 minutes until it is nicely risen and golden brown
Leave it to cool for a while before serving or it will scar your mouth for life
Cut into thick slices and serve with custard, or cream if you have an unnatural and unhealthy aversion to custard


Filed under Food, Recipes, Seasonal

A very rich and very versatile Chocolate Cake

I developed this recipe firstly because we are a chocolate cake kind of family, but secondly to cope with celebration cakes that may need to last a while.  It is really rich and sticky and is easy enough to make for a tea time favourite, but because it is quite dense in texture, it can be shaped quite easily for special occasion cakes.  This can be made from storecupboard ingredients.

The engagement cake

A friend of mine is having an engagement party tomorrow, so I’m using this recipe (x3) for the cake.   I will show it to you when I’ve finished it.


1 x medium mixing bowl
1 x measuring jug
1 x electric mixer
2 x 8” cake tins
1 x wire rack for cooling

6oz / 180g self raising flour
2oz / 60g cocoa
¼ tsp baking powder
6oz / 180g white sugar
4oz / 120g butter
2 eggs
6tblspns golden syrup
¼ pint / 150ml milk

1 quantity of buttercream or mock cream for the filling

Pre-heat the oven to 160/325/4
Grease and flour the two cake tins
Sift the flour, cocoa and baking powder into a bowl
Stir in the sugar
Rub in the butter until the dry mixture is like very fine breadcrumbs
Beat the milk, eggs and syrup together
Beat the liquid into the dry ingredients until smooth
Divide the mixture equally between the two tins
Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a skewer poked into the middle comes out clean
Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

When completely cold, sandwich together with the buttercream.

A nice treat is to pipe butter cream shells or stars to form a circle around the top edge, then pour melted chocolate in the middle.  Spread it out so that it goes right up to the edge of the buttercream circle.


Filed under Entertaining, Food, Food Presents, Recipes

A Very English Dinner Party in Three Parts. Part 3 Treacle Tart

And finally the pudding!

TREACLE TART – serves 6 gentlefolk or 4 gluttons

1 x 8″ flan dish
1 x mini chopper
1 x small saucepan
1 x rolling pin

8oz / 240g golden syrup
1 tblspn lemon juice
2oz / 60g fresh white breadcrumbs
1 packet of shortcrust pastry
butter and flour for greasing and rolling out

Pre-heat the oven to 190 / 375 / 5
Grease and flour the flan dish
Roll out the pastry onto a floured surface and line the flan dish, trimming off the excess and dampening the edges
Roll out the excess and cut out 8 strips about as wide as your little finger to decorate the tart
Warm the syrup and lemon juice in the pan then thoroughly mix in the breadcrumbs
Pour into the flan case – remember this syrup mixture will be very hot, so don’t dip your finger in!
Arrange the strips of pastry into a lattice on the top
Bake for approximately 35 minutes

Serve with custard or cream. 
For instructions on how to make Real Custard, see the post ‘Custard Continuum.’


Filed under Entertaining, Food, Recipes


Flapjacks 01.08.09These are the stickiest, most delicious flapjacks you will ever eat.  They are also quite rich so I would only advise small pieces (ha ha).  The recipe below is for a standard flapjack but you can add sunflower seeds, chocolate drops, pine nuts, raisins, nuts or anything you like to ring the changes.  Add them with the oats if you do this.


1 x large saucepan
1 x 7″ x 11″ (18cm x 28cm) baking tin
1 x cooling rack (the insert from a grill pan will do if you don’t have one)

1 x 12″ square flat baking sheet if you have one to catch the drips and save you having to clean your oven!


9oz  (250g)  butter
6 tablespoons golden syrup
9oz (250g) dark brown sugar
12 oz (360g) rolled oats
1 pinch salt


1.     Preheat the oven to 180oC / gas mark 5 / 360oF

2.     Melt the butter in the saucepan on a moderate heat

3.     Add the golden syrup and stir in

4.     Add the dark brown sugar and stir until they are all dissolved     together.

5.     Add the oats and salt and stir until completely combined.

6.     Pour the mixture into the baking tin

7.     If you have a baking sheet put the tin on it to catch any drips

8.     Place the tins in the centre of the oven and bake for 25 minutes

Check that it is forming a golden brown crust all over, if not give it another 5 minutes

Remember that as you are using dark sugar, the flapjacks will be darker than shop bought

9.     Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack for 10 minutes

10.   Cut into 12 square in the tin then leave until completely cool

11.   Remove from the tin and try not to eat them all at once

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Filed under Food, Recipes