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|Ruth and Mark
We saw his just arrived in Currys and we just have to know if the "near boiling point" output is actually good enough to make proper tea. Can you help? Are you willing to initiate some scientific (or otherwise) research?
Ruth and Mark
|Nicey replies: That looks interesting mainly due to its energy saving claims. It seems good for small offices maybe. Not sure that we feel brave enough to take one on though..|
||Hello Nicey and Wifey,|
I'm French, and I lived some seven years in England, I thoroughly enjoyed these years. But I still have my tea without milk nor sugar.. Which stops me from enjoying the strong brew I often get in most tea places, even if I ask for a very weak tea.
Only posher places allow you to remove the tea bag before the tea is undrinkable, or give you a jug of water to weaken the tea...
Are you all horrified out there???
Now for custard: yes I admit having enjoying some custards, school dinners ones, home made ones made from Bird's I suppose, but I love trifle, and I have an excellent English recipe that doesn't use jelly, but home made custard (from eggs and milk, but with a special tip which I will reveal on your site if anyone would like to hear it), and also using mostly fresh fruit. Of course in summer I use fresh strawberries, peaches, apricots, to the delight of my French guests who first say "What? Not an English dessert!!
Anybody interested in my recipe?
And to finish with, another addition to British shopping abroad: in the little town of Foix (Ariège) where I live, there is a litttle shop called "Simply British" where you can find all this delicious stuff, even Marmite among other things, that I used to have to bring back from England every time I went there on holiday. The shop is run by an English lady, and the adress is Rue des Chapeliers, should you wish to visit that lovely and peaceful part of France. (By the way, lots of British people have bought houses and are settling or plan to settle there at retirement.There is even a B and B place run by English people, and an English restaurant with a English chef, who makes delicious puddings with custard...The place is called Gaia and the 3 ^places are in the same street in Foix
Voilà tout, merci for your site, and I look fotward to any queries!
Keep up the good work
|Nicey replies: Apart from your dubious tea mangling ways you seem otherwise very well adjusted.
Actually the YMOS and I went fruit picking on Sunday at our local fruit farm which is literally the other side of the road from NCOTAASD HQ, even if it is half a mile away down that road. Having gone a bit mad on the raspberries, I juiced the excess added sugar and set it with some gelatine to make fresh raspberry jelly. Some trifle sponges and strawberry blancmange later and we had pudding. Yes I did briefly agonise over the custard vs blancmange issue, but I have a backlog of strawberry blancmange.
So far in our tea tours of France we have never made it down as far as the Pyrenees, but we would love to visit one day.
I would have to disagree most strongly with Katie Drummond's Dad on the eating of fruitcake in summer. A good fruitcake can and should be enjoyed all year round. He may be confusing it with Christmas Cake which is understandable but should not put you off a decent slice of fruitcake at any other time.
I thought you might like my recipe for Tea Loaf which combines tea and fruitcake in one glorious loaf. I make at least one of these a week and have found the recipe to be endlessly adaptable to all manner of different combinations of fruit and for practically any occasion. It is the perfect reason to make a pot of tea. It is a doddle to make and you can chuck it together in a matter of minutes while drinking the rest of the tea.
2 oz butter
4 oz caster sugar (or soft brown sugar)
8 oz self raising flour
5 fluid oz tea
8 oz dried fruit
1 tsp of mixed spice (or whatever you like)
soften butter in microwave or let it stand out until soft
add sugar and beat a bit then add egg, tea and everything else
Stir until well mixed then put into greased and lined loaf tin
bake at gas mark 4/5 for about 40 minutes until firm.
I have tried this with various additions of spices, honey, nuts etc.
I make a pot of tea to use in the cake and drink the rest of the pot to sustain me during the making of the loaf. Making it with still hot tea allows you to dissolve a spoonful of honey or treacle in the tea should you wish to add that to the loaf.
My most frequently used combinations are;
date and walnut - add 2 oz each of dried dates and chopped walnuts
cherry ; add bit of vanilla essence and as many cherries as you feel you need
cranberry ; (did this for christmas) - mixed spice, cloves, 2 oz dried cranberry, 2 oz mixed peel
ginger; 2tsp ground ginger, 2 oz chopped crystallised ginger, tbsp treacle in the tea
And I was also quite taken with the less usual combination of prunes and aniseed ( adapted from a recipe in the sunday paper) which made a really moist loaf. I'm off to have a crack at your recipe which looks great.
Thanks again for all the entertainment and information
|Nicey replies: Thank you for that I'm going to make some bread in a while so I may give that a whirl as we are in an alarming zero cake situation. Also your recipe is very light on eggs and butter which is interesting and handy if you are running low on both.|
I was fumbling through my old Delia Smith book the other day and came across a Neiman Marcus Cookies recipe which came on an email in 1998 from a friend. With the recipe was a story about woman who had enticed by the cookies to ask for the recipe, was given it and charged $250 for the privilege. It would seem disseminating the recipe was her revenge on the Neiman Marcus corporation. Anyway, long story short I made the cookies (halving the recipe because it claimed to make 112 cookies per batch). They were delicious and soon disappeared at work, at home, with friends, with neighbours etc etc. Fine crunchy biscuits made with nuts and chocolate chips and (substituted by Cadbury) Hershey bars!
So here’s the thing – was the Neiman Marcus Cookie recipe email a true story? Does anyone else remember getting this email or hearing about it on the web about 10 years ago – and would anyone like me to transcribe it in full. (Beware the biccies are more-ish and horribly fattening).
|Nicey replies: Hiya Trina,
Yes somebody did forward on that mail to me. I remember thinking that it was entirely fabricated for many reasons. How could they just charge her all that money without her permission and if they did then she should have taken them to court. Also she must have been a bit mad to write to a company and seek their recipes as they are subject to change and not disclosed to anybody. Also the company must be mad to do that, for the two reasons stated.
Finally people receiving recipes in unsolicited messages was basically the plot for the monster movie Species.
||Greetings Nicey, Wifey and YMOS|
I just thought I'd drop you a quick line to thank you for the fruit cake recipe - absolutely delicious (although I'm afraid my family couldn't wait the stipulated week before sampling) I also digressed slightly from your instructions, due to not reading carefully enough, and put the cherries in with the rest of the fruit instead of at the end, and forgot about sprinkling the sugar on top until after it came out of the oven. However, I don't think these were fundamental errors, as it certainly tastes good.
Maybe there's a follow-up book here - tried and tested NCOTAASD recipes for tea accompaniments?
All the best to the Team
|Nicey replies: Terriffic glad to hear you all enjoyed the cake, and thanks for having a go at it. I only say put the cherries in right at the end to ensure they stay whole as they can get shredded especially in mixers. Many's the time I've forgotten to put on the crunchy sugar, but never mind, its all good.
Actually it's one of the YMOS birthday's today so we have all just had big wedges of my tried and tested chocolate cake dressed up in milkybar and cadbury's buttons, with a big pot of tea.
This is the same model as I made Wifey for her birthday. Maybe I'll be persuaded to give up the recipe to this too as I have got it nailed now!