Monday, 5 October 2009

Edible gifts

Fellow bloggers have been raving about Cedric’s marrow cream, a luscious sweet creamy recipe that I also wanted to make, but was unable to as I had no marrows of my own. Then surprise, surprise a new friend sent me a jar in the post. I was so overjoyed and just wanted to turn the lid and dip my finger in to taste the sticky cream, but D stopped me in my tracks. ‘We have three jars of preserves already open’. He was right. We ought to finish those first. However, I am looking forward to trying these soon, as soon as the jar of spiced tomato and apple chutney, mixed berry jam and the pear jam are finished. I don’t like having too many jars open, plus we don’t have that much room in the fridge.
I was also fortunate to get a jar of hedgerow jelly. Both the marrow cream and hedgerow jam are new to me, and both I am looking forward to trying, so please do come back in about a fortnights time, when I sure will have tried these two edible delights. I was also sent some marrow seeds. Yes next year, I will grow my own and make some of my own marrow cream. Thank you so very much Nic.
D made dinner yesterday which comprised of mashed potatoes, steamed carrots and broccoli. He always makes far too much. So we had some left over, well the thrifty me instructed him not to throw these away, but it would be our food tomorrow. Here it is ‘recycled grub’ in the form of vegetable cakes served with a slices of roasted baby pumpkin and some broad beans that I picked from plot 11 yesterday. The broad beans may look glossy, but they tasted a little bit old, past their season I think.

Some of you will know that I try to make some muffins or flapjacks for the working week ahead, well yesterday I made these Orangey Date flapjacks. A Muslim friend of mine who had bought too many dates for the Ramadan fasting period last month, gave me a box to enjoy. I had eaten through most of the box, taking a date every time I went to the fridge for something, but with what was remaining, I decided to make these Orangey Date flapjacks. Although the orangey and date flavours came through. I found these flapjacks a tad on the dry side, then I noted the porridge oats I had used for them, had expired a few months ago. I think next weekend I should check out my store cupboard ingredients, there are bound to be foodstuffs in there that are more than a year out.
Orangey Date slices
285g dated, stoned
8 tbsp orange juice
Grated zest of 1 orange
225g plain flour
110g porridge oats
½ ground mixed spice
140g butter, melted
1 tbsp sesame seeds (optional)
Preheat oven to gas mark 6. Put the dates and the orange juice into a saucepan together with the orange zest and cook over a very low heat until the dates form a paste. Meanwhile combine the flour, porridge oats and spice together in a bowl with the melted butter. Mix thoroughly. Put half the oat mixture in the bottom of the prepared tin and press down firmly with the back of a spoon. Spoon over the date paste and evenly spread out. Cover with the remaining oat mixture and level gently. Sprinkle over sesame seeds if using. Bake in the centre of the preheated oven for 20 – 25 minute.


  1. Everything looks so lovely, Mango. You are an industrious cook and gardener. I don't believe I have ever tasted hedgerow jelly or marrow cream. What are they? I love that you make so many jams and jellies and stash them away to enjoy and for gift-giving. You are a bit of a squirrel, like me, when it comes to doing that!

  2. What is marrow cream? the only marrow i know of is bone marrow iiik!
    The vegetable cakes look great! My dad always makes too much too when he cooks :)


  3. Thank you so much Barbara,
    For such wonderful words.

    I am in good company with the jam and jelly making, and the giving of these as gifts is a new one to me, before I was always fortunate to receive home-made gifts.

    This particular hedgerow jelly is made from elderberries and blackberries.

    Barbara and Rose,

    The marrow cream is made from the vegetable known as marrow, a bit like a overgrown courgette/zucchini. It is made with some butter and lemons. It had been described by those who have made and tried it, that it is a bit like lemon curd.

    So rest assured Rose, it has no 'meat content at all' and is completely vegetarian.

  4. Great to receive gifts like that and especially ones you can try before making yourself.You made me smile with the store cupboard as I often find I forget to check sell by dates too, I dont think I would admit it to using them online!!

  5. Peggy,
    Your so right about the edible gifts. I can't wait to try out the marrow cream.

    I'm glad I made you smile. You know I did hesitate for a moment when I was writing about the Orangey date recipe, whether or not I should let readers know that my oats had past its sell by date. But because I described the as flapjacks as dry - I didn't want to put of readers from trying the recipe especially if it was fine, but my ingredients weren't. So I thought the best thing to do was say so why the flapjacks may have been dry.

  6. I love the potato veggie cakes--great idea!


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