Tuesday, 28 July 2015 00:00
Budget Baking to Warm Up Winter Written by 
Budget Baking to Warm Up Winter Robyn Smith

We all know that winter is for warming up on dessert. And, with a wintery chill in the air, the best kind is served hot. Say hello to your sweet, warm comfort food to keep the winter blues at bay.

This berry crumble is easy, quick and best served straight from the oven, smothered in custard or Chantilly cream.

Money-saving’: mixed frozen berries are the most cost effective but look out for specials, and seasonal berries. Or mix things up and change the berries to any fruit that takes your fancy – fresh, frozen or tinned.
Hot Berry Crumble

Serves 6
Cost per portion: R11

350g frozen berries
10ml lemon juice
15ml sugar
100g butter, softened
100g brown sugar
50g desiccated coconut
50g oats
1 tsp cinnamon
250ml cream
15ml icing sugar
2.5ml vanilla essence

Equipment: oven-safe dish

1. Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a stoneware or glass dessert dish.
2. Lay frozen berries evenly across the base of the dish, lightly sprinkle the lemon juice and 15ml sugar over the berries.
3. Place the butter, sugar, coconut, oats and cinnamon in a mixing bowl.
4. Using your hands, mix the dry mixture together until it looks similar to cookie dough or breadcrumbs.
5. Crumble evenly over the berries.
6. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
7. Remove and allow to cool slightly.
8. Meanwhile, make the Chantilly cream by whipping the cream till soft peaks appear.
9. Add the icing sugar and vanilla essence and mix slightly.
10. Dish up and serve warm, with cream, making sure to get some berry sauce too.

Leftover love: if there is any pudding leftover, eat cold for breakfast with plain yoghurt or stir into hot oats. Yum!

Banana bread is a classic, and one of those recipes that everyone should keep handy. Not only does it fill your home with a delicious home-baked aroma but is also the perfect accompaniment to a cup of tea. To top it off, it’s a great healthier alternative to cake smothered in sugar and more exciting than bread. Plus it’s affordable too. How’s that for winning?

This recipe makes 1 loaf, but can easily be made into muffins. Muffins are wonderfully handy for breakfast on the run, snacks or lunchboxes. Banana muffins also freeze beautifully.

Health tip: this recipe has a relatively small amount of sugar in it, but feel free to cut it down even ½ a cup of sugar instead. Just pop in another smashed banana and you’re good to go.

Traditional Banana Bread
Makes 1 loaf
Cost: R16.50

2 large bananas
80g butter, melted
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch salt
250ml brown sugar
1 egg
5ml vanilla essence
375ml cake flour

Equipment: loaf pan

1. Preheat oven to 180°C and grease your loaf tin with baking spray or butter.
2. Secret to sweetness: While the oven preheats, place your bananas in their skins inside the oven to ripen, and sweeten. Remove the bananas once they are at least half blackened.
3. Unzip the bananas and mash until smooth.
4. Mix the melted butter with the bananas.
5. Add the bicarbonate, salt and brown sugar – mix.
6. Whisk the egg and then add to the mixture along with the vanilla essence.
7. Sift the cake flour into the banana mixture and stir in until just mixed.
8. Pour into loaf pan and bake for 45-60 minutes.
9. Remove the loaf once a skewer comes out clean and the top is golden brown.
10. Allow to cool, then serve with butter, jams and a cup of tea.

Try adding chopped nuts, dates, tinned pineapple pieces or dried fruits to your mixture to shake things up and change the flavours and textures.


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