Join award-winning food writer and acclaimed cook Kate Young as she guides us through recipes in her Cotswold's kitchen from her books The Little Library Cafe and The Little Library Year Featuring Hunny (Honey) and Rosemary Cakes, Welsh Cakes and Toad-in-the-hole...
Recipes with Cookbook Author Kate Young
Hunny and Rosemary Cakes with Kate Young
Hunny (Honey) and Rosemary Cakes by award-winning food writer (The Little Library Kitchen, The Little Library Year) and friend of Glen Eira Libraries, Kate Young. Join her as she takes us through this delicious family favourite.
115g/4oz/heaping½cup dark brown sugar
200g/7oz/1½cups plain/all-purpose flour
1 ½tsp baking powder
½tsp ground cinnamon
1tbsp finely chopped rosemary leaves
2 eggs, beaten
100g/3½oz/scant½cup cream cheese
300g/10½oz/heaping 2cups icing/confectioners’ sugar
Rosemary Honey Drizzle
150g/5½oz/heaping ½cup honey
2 sprigs rosemary
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/Gas 4 and grease the muffin tins with a little of the butter. Place the rest of the butter, along with the sugar, honey and 1tbsp water, into the saucepan. Heat gently, stirring only once, until the butter is melted and the sugar dissolved. It will look like it’s separated, but don't stress, this is normal. Set aside to cool.
- Sift the flour, baking powder and cinnamon together, and add the finely chopped rosemary.
- When the honey mixture is cool, stir in the beaten eggs. Add to the dry ingredients and stir until the mixture is smooth.
- Divide the mixture between the well-greased tins, making sure they are all around two-thirds full. Bake for around 25 minutes, until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the tins, then turn out and transfer to a wire rack.
- Whisk the cream cheese until light and airy. Sift the icing sugar and beat it into the cheese, to create a smooth and creamy icing that holds its shape.
- When the cakes are completely cold, ice them using a palette knife to drop the icing onto the cake, then round it off at the edges.
- To make the rosemary honey drizzle, put the honey in a saucepan with the rosemary leaves and bring to the boil. As soon as the honey starts bubbling, turn off the heat and allow the flavours to infuse for at least 20 minutes. Pour the mixture into a jar – it will keep for a good few weeks, and tastes wonderful on roasted carrots as well as cakes.
- To serve, warm the rosemary honey in the saucepan and spoon over an iced cake. Eat immediately.
Welsh Cakes with Kate Young
Makes around 16
2tbsp golden caster sugar (plus extra for sprinkling)
2½tsp baking powder
125g butter, cut into small cubes
- Mix the flour, sugar and baking powder together in a bowl. Rub the cold butter through the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the raisins and stir through.
- Make a well in the centre of the mixture and add the egg and milk. Beat them together slightly with the fork, then slowly start bringing the flour mixture into the liquid. Continue until all flour is incorporated and you have a rich dough. Don't over mix – stop when the mixture has just come together.
- Lightly flour your work surface and flatten the dough with your hands (there's no need to be too neat) until it is a consistent height – about 3cm thick works well. Flour the rim of the glass and cut out rounds of the dough. Repeat until the dough is used up. You can form the final cake by hand.
- Heat the pan over a medium-low heat until it's too warm to hold your hand over. Place the Welsh cakes in the pan, giving them a bit of space to ensure that you can easily flip them. When they have browned underneath (around 4 minutes), flip them over and cook for a further 4 mins. Remove from the pan, sprinkle with sugar and set aside while you cook the rest. These are best eaten warm, though they’re not bad the next day, toasted and spread liberally with butter and jam.
Toad-in-the-hole with Kate Young
For the batter:
- 120 g plain/all-purpose flour
- 3 eggs
- Pinch of salt
- 300 ml milk
For the 'toad':
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp flavourless oil (or beef dripping if you have some)
- 8 fat sausages
- 5 stalks rosemary (optional)
- 10 sprigs thyme (optional)
For the gravy:
- 1 tbsp butter (or oil, if you prefer)
- 3 small red onions, sliced into semicircles
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp plain/all-purpose flour
- 500 ml beef stock
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas Mark 6. Tip the flour into a bowl, make a well in the centre, crack in the eggs and whisk. Add the salt and then whisk in the milk until you have a smooth, runny batter. Set aside for 15 minutes, while you cook the sausages.
- Add the fats to a pan, heat until bubbling and fry the sausages over a medium heat until they are cooked. Allow them to blacken and blister in places.
- Scatter the herbs over the sausages, stalks and all. Pour the batter into the smoking hot pan, around the cooked sausages. It may spit a bit, so protect your arms with a tea towel. Put the tin straight into the hot oven. Bake for 25–30 minutes, pulling it out when the batter is risen, crisp and browned in patches.
- While the toad-in-the-hole is in the oven, make the gravy. Melt the butter in the saucepan and, once it is bubbling, add the onions. Cook for 10 minutes over a medium heat until softened.
- Add the sugar, stirring until it has dissolved into the butter. Pour in the Worcestershire sauce, and stir through. Sprinkle in the flour and stir to coat the onion. Pour in about 100ml of the stock and whisk until the sauce surrounding the onions is smooth. Add the rest of the liquid and bring to the boil, stirring with the wooden spoon until thick. Remove from the heat and warm again when you’re ready to serve. Season to taste.
- Remove the toad-in-the-hole from the oven and serve immediately. Make sure that everyone has plenty of crispy bits from the sides of the dish and a generous slug of the gravy.