Are you going on a self catered cottage holiday in the UK soon and fancy trying some new recipes in the kitchen? Why not try your hand at making some delicious old-fashioned sweets? Here are some recipes that you can try in your cottage kitchen:
400g icing sugar and some extra for dusting
1 egg white
A few drops of red or black food colouring (optional)
Thin String (optional)
- Sieve the icing sugar into a mixing bowl. In another bowl, whisk the egg whites until they’re frothy, then mix the egg whites into the icing sugar until it forms a paste.
- Dust your work surface with icing sugar then turn out the mixture on to the surface and knead it until it becomes smooth. If you find the dough is becoming sticky, dust with more icing sugar. Now you can add food colouring if you like and knead it into the fondant, or you can divide the fondant into portions to make mice in a number of various colours.
- If you’re using jelly moulds in the shape of mice, press the warm fondant into the ungreased moulds and then smooth off the undersides. Now add a small piece of string for the tail (if you wish). Keep the filled moulds on a clean tray and leave the sugared mice to dry at room temperature or a cooler room for around 24 hours until they become firm. Using a cocktail stick you can now remove the mice from the moulds and apply small drops of food colouring to each mouse giving them a nose and eyes (if you like).
- Alternatively if you don’t have moulds, divide the fondant into 12 portions and wrap the ones you’re not handling in cling film to prevent them from drying out. To shape them, pull off a small amount of fondant from 1 portion and shape the head. Use what remains to form an oval shape for the body before pressing the head against the body while both are still soft enough to do so. Add the tails and decorate the head as previously mentioned and arrange the mice nicely on a clean tray and leave to dry for 24 hours.
Rhubarb & Custards
450g granulated sugar
½ tsp cream of tartar
1 tbsp liquid glucose
2 tsp citric acid
1 vanilla pod
3-5 drops of red food colouring
Caster Sugar (for dusting)
- Preheat the oven to 120c/fan 100C/gas mark ½. Place the granulated sugar, water, cream of tartar and liquid glucose in a saucepan over a medium heat until the sugar becomes dissolved whilst stirring gently.
- When the mixture boils, remove the sugar crystals that are stuck inside the pan above the bubbling solution. Keep the mixture bubbling forcefully, without stirring until it reaches 143.C (the soft crack stage). Take the pan off the heat and stir in the citric acid.
- To make the custard, scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod on to your silicone mat before pouring half the syrup over them. Put the saucepan over a low heat to keep the remaining mixture in a syrupy state.
- Pull the sugar for around 10 minutes until the candy gets its glossy, creamy texture. Work fast as the sugar will cool quite quickly, which means you’ll only have a short window to pull it before it stiffens. When the candy gets its needed texture, place it into the oven until you have created the rhubarb.
- To make the rhubarb, pour what’s left of the sugar syrup on to the silicone mat. Leave it to cool between 10-15 minutes until it’s cool enough to pick up. Add in the food colouring and then repeat step 4.
- Take the custard from the oven and roll both colours into cylinders (the same diameter and length). Put one on top of the other and roll them into a single cylinder.
- Finally, stretch out the candy cylinder until it becomes thick. Then divide it into 2.5cm lengths using kitchen scissors. Shape the sweets, and then roll them in caster sugar whilst still warm. Let them set for up to 2 hours and store in an airtight container.