Posh prunes and custard

posh prunes and custard 2

My blogging friend Janie from The Hedgecombers is off on an incredible road trip across Wales this month, discovering the best places to eat and drink in the country. Lucky bugger! While she’s otherwise engaged, she’s handed over the reins of her blog to some fellow foodies, including me.

My recipe for Posh Prunes and Custard has just appeared over on The Hedgecombers if you fancy giving it a try, and do check out Janie’s tasty offerings while you’re there. I’m sure you’ll be tempted by more than a few…

Chocolate, beetroot and prune muffins

chocolate beetroot and prune muffin text

I realise beetroot’s appearing rather a lot on this blog at the moment. I think I might actually be addicted to the stuff. Which is handy, as we have rather a lot in the veg patch and they keep turning up in the weekly veg box too.

Beetroot and chocolate muffins are a bit of a favourite here and for some reason I was seized by the idea of throwing in some chopped prunes when I baked a batch last week. I know it sounds a bit odd, but it’s good to experiment. Continue reading “Chocolate, beetroot and prune muffins”

Mutton with prunes

My adventures cooking mutton continued this week as I made a lovely dish the Italians call spezzatino con prugne. Or at least that is what it’s called in The Silver Spoon where I discovered the recipe.

Regular readers of this blog will know I’ve been experimenting with mutton over the last few weeks and I’ve discovered it really is a splendid meat. I am now a firm champion of the Mutton Renaissance campaign. So far I’ve cooked Irish stew and mutton curry, both of which were quite delicious.

When I came across the mutton with prunes recipe it appealed to me straightaway. Mutton has a deep rich flavour that I felt would work with something sticky and fruity like prunes.

However while I was cooking it, I have to admit I did have second thoughts. The brown mess in the pan wasn’t looking as attractive as the photo in the book. But my doubts were unjustified. It might not be the prettiest dish in the world, but it sure is good to eat.

It’s another very simple recipe, calling for only a few ingredients. There’s something quite old fashioned about it; I can easily imagine my mother-in-law making it for a lunch gathering.

And as with all these mutton recipes, the meat could be replaced with lamb.

Mutton with Prunes

Serves 4

200g prunes, stoned
300ml dry white wine
600g diced mutton (remove as much fat as you can)
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove
50g butter
2 tbsp passata, maybe a little more
salt and pepper

Place the prunes in a bowl, cover with the wine and set to one side.

Put the mutton in a pan, add cold water to cover and bring to simmering point. Add the onion and garlic, cover and simmer over a medium heat (or in a warm oven) for about one hour. Season and then drain well, reserving the cooking liquid.

Melt the butter in another pan, add the passata and mutton, and cook over a high heat for a couple of minutes. Lower the heat, drain the prunes and add them to the pan.

Simmer for around 20 minutes, adding more cooking liquid if the meat starts drying out. I ended up adding most of the liquid, plus a little more passata.

Serve with rice or mashed potatoes and a green salad.