Tag Archives: Baking

Kitchen Essentials – Bowls and Jugs

So Bowls and Jugs, they’re maybe not as essential as ingredients and pots and pans but as you start to cook more and more, you will begin to find that for some recipes (particularly baking) they are a big help at the least and in some cases essential (measuring jug).

We have a selection of mixing bowls and measuring jugs but I would recommend 4 mixing bowls and 1 measuring jug as a minimum.

A selection of Bowls and a Measuring Jug
Our essential bowls and jugs

The first of the bowls is a very large plastic mixing bowl that Elly picked up in “Homestore and More” for less than a tenner and I use that for making pizza bases, bread and salads. As it’s plastic it’s great for dough, if some sticks just rub it and it rolls up and falls back into the bowl to be mixed back in.

We also have a set of 3 Pyrex bowls that stack neatly inside of each other in the press and these get used for mixing everything and anything. They can go in the dishwasher so we don’t have to worry about cleaning them and because they’re different sizes it means we don’t have to use a huge bowl unless we need to.

As for a measuring jug these are so useful I honestly could not cook without one. Ours is, again, a Pyrex half litre measure but it also has imperial and cup measurements on it as well.

Pyrex bowls and jugs are great because they are heat resistant so you can pour boiling water in without fear of the glass shattering, which is a major added bonus :)

Recipe: Mango Muffins

Mango Muffins
Mango Muffins

Ingredients;

2 ripe mangoes, peeled and coarsely grated
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups plain flour

Makes approx 18 small cupcakes/muffins

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When I tried to make this, I discovered that the easiest way to get the flesh off the mango is to peel it with a potato peeler and then grate it on the coarse side of your grater, and then I chopped it lightly to make the pieces a little shorter. You can also substitute tinned mango if fresh is not available, in this case just mash the mango to a paste with your hands.

Cup measures can be bought in most large supermarkets or homeware stores these days and I find them much easier to use than having to weigh everything. A plastic set is best, as you can use them in the microwave if needed and they can also be cleaned in your dishwasher.

To melt butter, place it in a microwave proof container and heat for 20 secs on the lowest power setting (usually 30%), remove, stir and repeat until fully melted.

Preheat your oven to 180 C.

Start by mixing your mangoes and melted butter.

Add in the sugar, egg, vanilla extract, baking soda & salt and mix well.

Finally, mix the flour in and stir until fully incorporated, the mix should be damp and very sticky.

Place paper muffin covers in your muffin pan and spoon in the mixture until it sits just below the top of the pan. These muffins won’t rise very much.

For small muffins, bake for approx 40 mins at 180 C, if you are using a large muffin pan, then increase the time to approx 50 mins.

To check that muffins are done, stick a cocktail stick into one, and swirl around. If it comes out clean or with just crumbs, then they are done. Remove from tins and leave to cool.

Will store for approx 5-7 days in an airtight box.

Recipe: Banana Bread

Freshly sliced Banana Bread
Freshly sliced Banana Bread

Ingredients;

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 1/3 cups mashed banana (approx 3 bananas)

You will need 2 bowls and a 2lb loaf tin. The older and browner the bananas, the better this recipe will turn out.

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Preheat your oven to 190 C.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a second smaller bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar (easiest done with a hand mixer). Stir in the eggs and banana to this bowl.

Finally add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir well until the flour mix is incorporated fully.

Liberally grease your 2lb loaf tin with cooking spray or butter and pour in the mix.

Bake at 190 C for approx 50 mins. Test if it is done by sticking a cocktail stick into the loaf and swirling around gently. If the stick comes out clean or covered in crumbs, then the loaf is done.

Remove from loaf tin and leave to cool before cutting. Gorgeous served with a thin spread of butter or some Nutella. This loaf will improve after a few days storage, keeps for 5-7 days in an airtight container.