Monday, 22 June 2009

The Flavour of the Month

I used to think of June as the strawberry and mangetout month. Certainly they are two crops that are ready first in early June. But that was before my raspberry canes became established. Now the flavour of June is definitely raspberry! So far this month I have made raspberry jelly, raspberry lollies, raspberry ripple ice-cream and raspberry trifle. I have also put 3 lb of raspberries in the freezer to make jam. And with new raspberries becoming ripe every two days there is no let up in sight. And let's not forget that I still have raspberry cordial in the fridge from using up the last of last year's frozen raspberries a few weeks back.

Raspberry Jelly

3 tablespoons cold water
1 tablespoon or 1 sachet powdered gelatin
8 oz (225 g) raspberries
4 oz (110 g) granulated sugar
15 fl oz (425 g) cold water

Put 3 tablespoons of cold water into a small pan and sprinkle over the gelatin, then stir and set aside for 5 minutes. Put the raspberries, sugar and 15 fl oz of water into a large pan and bring to the boil. Leave the fruit to simmer for 5 minutes until soft then press through a sieve to make a puree. Heat the gelatin over a low heat for a minute or two until clear then stir this into the raspberry puree. Pour into suitable containers/moulds and chill for 2-4 hours until set.

Raspberry Trifle

1 pint (600 ml) of raspberry jelly (see recipes above)
4 trifle sponges

Raspberry cordial
1 pack of ready to make custard powder
Whipped cream or squirting cream

Make raspberry jelly as shown in the recipes above. Place trifle sponges into the bottom of suitable containers and pour over enough raspberry cordial to cover (you may also like to add a splash of sherry). Allow the sponges to soak up the liquid and become mushy. You could also add a layer of fresh raspberries too at this point. Pour the jelly over the sponges and refrigerate for 2-3 hours until set. In the meantime, make up the custard as instructed on the packet and allow to cool completely at room temperature. Once the jelly has set, pour the custard over the top and level off. Return to the refrigerator for at least another hour. Add the cream and the decorations just before serving.

Raspberry Ripple Ice-cream

4 oz (110 g) raspberries
1 oz (25 g) icing sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
8 fl oz (225 ml) semi-skimmed milk
2½ oz (70 g) icing sugar
10 fl oz (284 ml) double cream
2 cm vanilla pod

Blend the raspberries and push through a sieve to remove the seeds. Stir the icing sugar and lemon juice into the raspberry puree until smooth. Pour the milk into a pan then split the vanilla pod in half length ways and scrape the seeds into the milk. Put the pod pieces in too then gently heat (but don’t boil) the milk for 3-5 minutes to infuse the vanilla flavour. Stir in the icing sugar and remove from the heat to cool. Once cool, add the cream and stir well. Pour the raspberry sauce into the bottom of a suitable container(s) then gently pour the cream mix on top. Freeze the mixture for 2 hours until beginning to freeze then stir with a fork to break up the ice-crystals. Return to the freezer for another 2 hours then stir again, making sure to stir the raspberry sauce unevenly through the ice cream. Repeat again 2 hours later than return to the freezer until solid.

Raspberry Lollies
8 oz (225 g) raspberries
2oz (55 g) icing sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
4 fl oz (110 ml) water

Put the raspberries in a pan with a splash of water and heat gently, stirring to break them up. Blend the raspberries and push through a sieve to remove the seeds. Stir the icing sugar and lemon juice into the raspberry puree until smooth. Add the water and stir then pour into lolly moulds and freeze.

Despite netting my strawberries, pests still manage to get in and eat them!

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