19 November 2010

All About Rye Flour, Rye Nutritional Benefits and Rye Production and Uses

But there's much more to rye than as an ingredient for weight-loss diets. It can be a wholesome, nutritious and attractive part of our meals. Rye breads are delicious and quite easy to make and there are a good many other uses for this versatile ingredient. It is also a good food to consider from a green living perspective, especially if you are close to the major growing regions, because it is easier to grow than wheat in some climates and therefore requires fewer inputs.

What's here?

This page gives some nutritional information on rye and looks at its history and cultivation.

Rye flour - what it is

Rye is a grass (Secale cereale) which is quite closely related to wheat and barley. It grows wild in Turkey and was largely unknown in most of Europe until after the Roman era.

One Roman writer (Pliny the Elder) dismissed it as
"a very poor food (which) only serves to avert starvation".
Nevertheless, it has gradually become a staple food for many European peoples. This is partly because it grows reliably in relatively cold conditions and on poor soils. It is doubtless also because rye breads have a subtle natural sweetness and flavour.

Rye was a popular grain with the Saxons and Vikings. Early methods included sowing both wheat and rye together. Depending upon the weather, one crop would dominate. The mixed flour was known as "maslin" flour.

Russia and Poland remain the world's largest rye grain producers. Organic rye is now being grown in many places, including Finland, Lithuania and North Dakota, USA (where it is used to make vodka).

Germany is noted for its diverse breads and bread-making techniques. Rye bread is one of their favourites (schwarzbrot). In Denmark, too, rye bread (rugbrød) holds an especially esteemed position.

As a flour it has far less gluten than wheat but it has other properties which make it a desirable bread ingredient. Most rye breads are made from a mixture of wheat flour and rye flour, as pure rye bread can be rather heavy and chewy.

It is also difficult to get a good texture with pure rye bread because of the low gluten content. Rye flour is especially well suited to use with a sourdough starter; some of the very best breads are made this way.
There is a very easy recipe for making rye bread here.

Rye and nutrition

Rye is packed with good nutrition. It contains high levels of proteins and fibre. It contains good amounts of iron, calcium and zinc and a whole slew of B vitamins. There's also vitamin E aplenty. Unfortunately by the time it has been refined to "light rye" and mixed with wheat flour, the resultant bread may not hold its own against wheat wholemeal bread. The best rye breads for nutritional value are made from dark rye.

Rye has been the focus of recent research by the Finnish company Fazer which hopes to promote rye more widely as a health food, even for children. They have found rye to be a good source of "prebiotics" and fibre, making it a valuable food for cancer prevention. It is also recommended as having a role in preventing type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Rye contains a lot of soluble fibre which slows down the release of carbohydrates and sugars, so that you feel satisfied for longer after eating it compared to wheat bread. The sugars in rye are largely "fructans" - a type of fructose, which accounts for the slightly sweet taste. Fructans allow this plant to thrive in relatively cool conditions.

Many of the benefits of eating rye come from the fact that it ferments in the gut to produce valuable nutrients such as short-chain fatty acids and arabinoxylan. Short-chain fatty acids help the immune system by promoting lymphocyte production and they also lower cholesterol production and stabilise blood sugar levels. Arabinoxylan is thought to act much like beta-glucan from oats. Beta-glucans are responsible for some of the heart-healthy attributes of oats and have a whole bundle of health benefits credited to them.

Ways to use rye flour

Rye flour can be used in a host of products. Rye bread needs no introduction to most people but it's perhaps worth noting that there are many different types of rye bread, from traditional Jewish rye bread with caraway seed flavouring, to the tasty black bread of Russia and Poland.

Rye flour can be used for pancakes, blinnies, muffins and drop scones. Use it just as you would use wheat flour - or mix it 50:50 with wheat flour for a lighter result.

You can also bake your own homemade crackers using rye flour.

Rye is also making a bit of a come back - as beer! Small breweries and home brewers are brewing up delicious new beers using rye as the principal grain ingredient.


Recipe: A simple rye bread recipe

Sieve together equal quantities of strong white flour and rye flour and a good teaspoonful of sea salt.
Add 2 tablespoons of molasses or malt to 1/2 pint of warm water (mix boiled water and filtered cold water together to get water which is tepid).

Add two teaspoonfuls of dried yeast and leave the mixture to bubble up for about 15 minutes.

Put a dip in the centre of the flour and add the molasses or malt mix and add 2 tablespoonfuls of vegetable oil. Work the fluid into the flour gradually. You should get a dough mix which is slightly sticky but not sticky enough to actually stick to your fingers once everything is well mixed. Now knead the mixture thoroughly for a good five minutes, so that the dough becomes more elastic feeling.

Set the dough to rise in a warm place for 1 - 2 hours - long enough that it doubles in size.

Knock the dough down with your fists and give it another really good knead (5 minutes or more). Divide your dough into two loaves and shape them as you like. I find they cook a little more evenly in a bread tin. Let the covered dough rise again until the it is again twice the size.

Pop the loaves into a medium oven (gas mark 6) and bake them for around 40 minutes. You may want to take them out and turn them over after about half an hour, so that the bottom cooks properly. Turn the oven down a notch at this point.

This gives loaves which are slightly sweet with a good texture - not too dense. If you want an even sweeter result add a little more molasses or malt. You can also add caraway seeds to the mix before kneading. Another good variation is to add a little cocoa powder - about 1 tablespoonful.


Recipe: Low GI Banana Bread Recipe


1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 cup ground flaxseed
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
3 very ripe, medium bananas, mashed
6 tbsp brown sugar
3/4 tbsp lemon juice plus enough skim milk to make 3/4 cup (or use 3/4 cup buttermilk)
4 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup chopped walnuts


Preheat oven to 180 (350) degrees. Spray loaf pan with non-stick spray. Measure 1 tbsp lemon juice (freshly squeezed is best) into a measuring cup and pour in skim milk for a total of one cup. Do not stir. Allow to sit for 5 minutes. Alternatively, you can simply use 1 cup of buttermilk if you have this ingredient on hand.

In a large bowl, blend flour, flaxseed, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt and set aside.

Beat egg whites and sugar. Add bananas and vanilla and beat lightly.

Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and combine until well mixed. Add walnuts and stir until combined.

Pour mixture into loaf pan and bake 40 to 50 minutes.


Recipe: Whole Wheat Bread Recipe


3 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1/3 cup milk
1/4 cup honey
1 cup warm water
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 packet dry yeast


Step 1: In a large mixing bowl combine 1 cup of water ( at a temp. of 110 to 120 degrees F ) with the salt, the honey, the yeast, the oil and the milk and stir until mix.

Step 2: Mix in the flour and stir until the dough starts pull away from the bowl.

Step 3: Place the dough on a lightly flour surface and knead the dough for 6 to 10 minutes or until the dough become smooth.

Step 4: Place a small amount of oil in a large bowl and place the dough in the bowl and flip the dough to cover the dough with oil. Cover the bowl with a towel and let the dough rise for approx. 1 hour , the dough should double in size. Note: This made take longer if the room is cold.
Step 5 : Take the dough out of the bowl and place on a lightly floured surface, shape the dough into a 8 inches log and place into a lightly grease loaf pan.

Step 6 : Loosely cover the pan with lightly oil plastic wrap and let raise for 30 to 60 minutes until the dought raises approx.1 inch above the pan.

Step 7: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F place in center of oven and cook for about 40 minutes after 20 minutes loosely cover the pan with aluminum foil , test if the wheat bread is done by thumping the bottom of the bread it should sound hollow. Let brad cool on a rack then slice.


16 November 2010

Recipe: Rich Tomato Sugo (for use on pizza as base topping)

For 2 x 25cm (10in) pizzas

2x 400g cans plum tomatoes
Salt and freshly groud black pepper
2teaspoons sugar
1tablespoon mixed dried herbs
2 garlic cloves, crushed

1. Tip the canned tomatoes into a small, heave-based saucepan. Season well with salt and pepper.

2. Stir in the sugar, dried herbs (try oregano, rosemary and thyme) and the garlic. Mix well and bring to the boil.

3. Reduce the heat to barely a simmer, cover the pan and cook over gentle heat for 30 minutes. Take off the lid and simmer for another 15 minutes until really thick. Rub through a sieve if you like.

Source: Best Food Fast, Book 11 - Perfect Pizza & Bread ~ Pg 15

Note: I use a food processor to get it fine

Recipe: Basic Pizza Dough

Makes 1x25cm (10in) base

175g (6ox) strong plain white flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon easy-blend (instant) yeast
150ml (1/4pt) warm water
1 tablespoon olive oil

1. Mix the flour, salt and yeast together in a warm bowl. Make a well in the centre and add the warm water and olive oil. Using your hands or a wooden spoon, mix to a soft dough.

2. Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead it for 5 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. (Kneading is a good exercise - the more vigorous you are, the better the dough!)

3. Return the ball of dough to the bowl, cover with cling film or a clean, damp tea towel, and leave somewhere warm until the dough has doubled in size. This will take between 45 minutes to 1 hour.

4. Preheat the oven to 200 deg C/425 deg F/Gas 7. Lightly oil a baking sheet and put in the oven to heat. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 3 minutes.

5. Roll out the dough into a 25cm (10in) circle and place on the heated baking sheet. To shape in the Italian way, you can stretch the dough by hand.

6. Crimp the edges of the dough to stop the toppings falling off. Brush with oil and leave somewhere warm for 10 minutes. Cover with toppings and bake for 25 minutes.

Source: Best Food Fast, Book 11 - Perfect Pizza & Bread ~ Pg 12 & 13

Note: I get 2 large thin base pizza bases out of this recipe

Recipe: Basic White Bread

Makes 2x 900g (2lb) loaves

1 teaspoon salt
450ml (16fl oz) warm water
1 tablespoon dried yeast
750g (1lb 10oz) strong plain white flour
3teaspoons salt

1. Dissolve the sugar in 150ml (5fl oz) water. Sprinkle the yeast and whist. Leave for 20-30 minutes until frothy on top. (If using instant yeast, please see the note at the bottom of the recipe)

2. Put the flour and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in yeast mix and the rest of the water, mix to a dough.

3. Turn the dough out on a floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball, put in a a bowl and cover with oiled cling film or a clean tea towel, to prevent a skin forming.

4. Sit the dough somewhere warm for 1-2 hours until doubled in size. Knock back, cut the dough in half, shape each peace and put into 2 buttered 900g (2lb) loaf tins.

5. Cover and prove for 30-40 minutes until the dough fills the tins. Dust with Flour and bake at 220 Deg C/425 deg F/Gas 7 for 30 minutes or until the loaves sound hollow when tapped on the base.

Source: Best Food Fast, Book 11 - Perfect Pizza & Bread ~ Pg 8

Note: If you are using instant yeast, do not use sugar and do not dissolve it in the water. Mix the instant yeast in with the other dry ingredients before adding the warm water.

15 November 2010

Recipe: Yummy Peanut Brittle

75 g Margarine
340 ml (1 ⅓ cups) Huletts White Sugar
125 ml ( ½ cup) Huletts Golden Syrup
250 ml (1 cup) Boiling Water
325 ml (1 ½ cups) Salted Peanuts

Over a gentle heat, stir the margarine, sugar, syrup and water together in a pot until the sugar is dissolved.
Turn up the heat and, without stirring, boil the mixture for half an hour. To test if ready, drop a little of the mixture in cold water. If it is ready it will set hard and crack when broken.
Remove the pot from the stove and stir in the nuts. Pour into a greased tin (roughly 20 cm x 20 cm) and allow to set.
Break into pieces when hard and store in a jar.

Recipe: Ginger Biscuits

2 cups (225 g) 8 oz flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons baking powder
4 oz (100 g) margarine
1/2 cup (100 g) 4 oz sugar
1/2 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda (Baking soda) dissolved in 1 teaspoon hot water
2 large tablespoons golden syrup (substitute light corn syrup), warmed

1. Sift the flour, ginger and baking powder into a bowl.

2. Rub in the margarine. Add the sugar, then mix to a dough with the bicarbonate of soda mixture and syrup.

3. Roll the mixture into walnut-sized balls and place them on greased baking sheets.

4. Press down the centre of each ball with your thumb.

5. Bake in a preheated moderately hot oven 200°C (400°F) Gas mark 6 for about 10 minutes.


Recipe: Peanut Butter Biscuits

Using a hand held electric beater or if you prefer a wooden spoon (the wooden spoon just takes a bit longer) beat the following ingredients together:
1/2 cup peanut butter (smooth or crunchy)
125g butter or margarine
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup sticky brown sugar

If you don't have sticky brown sugar then substitue with white sugar. I've done this many times as there is not always money for expensive brown sugar, or it's simply not possible to get to the shop. The biscuits taste pretty much the same.
Still using your beater add:
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 large or extra large egg (no need to beat the egg seperately, just plop it into the bowl)

Grab a spoon and mix in the following:
1 and 1/4 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Okay now you have your cookie dough finished, it usually takes about 6 minutes to do so it's pretty quick. Tip it out of the mixing bowl and wrap the dough in plasic cling wrap. Put it in the fridge to stiffen up a bit for 30 minutes.
This gives you 30 minutes in which to clear up the ingredients, and hopefully sit down with a cup of coffee!

Then take your dough out of the fridge and place balls of it, I usually do walnut sized, onto a baking tray. Press down with a fork either dipped in flour or my personal favourite, sugar. I know, so unhealthy, but oh so yummy!Now if you want crispy cookies push down quite hard making a thin biscuit. If you want chewy peanut butter biscuits then push down lightly, thicker peanut butter cookies are more chewy when baked.

Bake in a pre-heated moderate oven, at about 180C or 360F. They'll stay in for about 8 - 12 minutes, just keep checking them. Everyone's oven is different.So times vary. You're looking for a biscuit that is slightly brown along the edges.

Once they come out of the oven put them on a wire rack straight away to cool.I usually get about 36 biscuits out of this recipe.

Allow them to cool, and then go wild! They are absolutely divine!


13 November 2010

Recipe: Gordon Ramsay's Rough-Tough Puff Pastry

250g strong plain flour
1 tsp fine sea salt
250g butter , at room temperature, but not soft
about 150ml cold water

Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Roughly break the butter in small chunks, add them to the bowl and rub them in loosely. You need to see bits of butter.
1. Make a well in the bowl and pour in about two-thirds of the cold water, mixing until you have a firm rough dough adding extra water if needed. Cover with cling film and leave to rest for 20 mins in the fridge.

2. Turn out onto a lightly floured board, knead gently and form into a smooth rectangle. Roll the dough in one direction only, until 3 times the width, about 20 x 50cm. Keep edges straight and even. Don't overwork the butter streaks; you should have a marbled effect.

3. Fold the top third down to the centre, then the bottom third up and over that. Give the dough a quarter turn (to the left or right) and roll out again to three times the length. Fold as before, cover with cling film and chill for at least 20 mins before rolling to use.

Gordon's Tips: Leftover trimmings should be stacked up and chilled or frozen for another use. Don't scrunch them together in a ball or you will lose the layers. To re-roll, allow to come back to room temperature.

09 November 2010

Baking and cooking tips

Did you know that it is the sugar content of biscuits and cookies that gives them that appetising golden brown colour?

When baking, cream your sugar with your butter or margarine VERY WELL, as this incorporates air into the mixture, which contributes to a much lighter baked product.

Sprinkle a little Huletts Castor Sugar over the top of custard to prevent a skin from forming.

Adding a pinch of sugar to dishes containing tomatoes will counteract the acidity of the tomatoes and leave a smoother taste.

Sugar not only lengthens the freshness of baked goods, but is crucial when using a recipe that calls for yeast. Sugar hastens the rising of the dough, and improves both the texture and taste of breads and cakes.

To keep your biscuits fresh, add a sugar cube to the container. It will absorb any moisture in the air before the biscuits do.

Sugar helps to delay the coagulation of protein in eggs, improving the texture of baked goods. For example, it helps to prevent custard from splitting during cooking, and ensures a smooth texture.

Coat your fresh fruit with a layer of sugar before freezing, or freeze them in sugar syrup.

When sugar is stored properly (in a cool, dry place) it will last for years, and is often used as a natural preservative, for example in canned fruit, jams and marmalades.

Sugar should form part of a well-balanced diet and, if eaten in moderation, will not have any harmful effects on health, such as obesity or skin disorders.


Baking Conversions

Metric Conversion Table



¼ teaspoon 2 ml
½ teaspoon 3 ml
1 teaspoon 5 ml
2 teaspoon 10 ml


1 tablespoon 15 ml
2 tablespoons 30 ml
3 tablespoons 45 ml
4 tablespoons 60 ml


¼ cup 60 ml
1/3 cup 80 ml
½ cup 125 ml
¾ cup 200 ml
1 cup 250 ml
1 ½ cup 375 ml
2 cups 500 ml
4 cups 1000 ml (1 litre)

Most regular cake tin sizes

Cake tin (round) 20 cm
Cake tin (square) 24 x 24 cm
Loaf tin 23 cm
Lamington tin 16 x 26 cm
Oven pan 24 x 34 cm
Rectangular tin 20 x 24 cm
Ring tin 22 cm
Swiss Roll tin 23 x 32 cm

Metric Conversions on old recipes


Liquid measures

30 ml 1 fluid oz
60 ml 2 fluid oz
100 ml 3 fluid oz
125 ml 4 fluid oz
150 ml 5 fluid oz (¼ pint / 1 gill)
190 ml 6 fluid oz
250 ml 8 fluid oz
300 ml 10 fluid oz (½ pint)
500 ml 16 fluid oz
600 ml 20 fluid oz (1 pint)
1000 ml (1 litre) 1 ¾ pints

Dry measures

15 g ½ oz
30 g 1 oz
60 g 2 oz
90 g 3 oz
125 g 4 oz ¼ lb)
155 g 5 oz
185 g 6 oz
220 g 7 oz
250 g 8 oz (½ lb)
280 g 9 oz
315 g 10 oz
345 g 11 oz
375 g 12 oz (¾ lb)
410 g 13 oz
440 g 14 oz
470 g 15 oz
500 g 16 oz (1 lb)
750 g 24 oz (1 ½ lb)
1 kg 320 oz (2 lb)


Recipe: Wholenut Fruit Cake

250 g Maraschino Cherries, whole
500 g Whole Dates, pitted
30 ml Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
500 g Whole Brazil Nuts
210 g (375 ml) Flour
2.5 ml Baking Powder
Pinch of Salt
30 Eggs
200 g (250 ml) Huletts White Sugar
5 ml Vanilla Essence

Soak the fruit overnight in liqueur. Preheat the oven to 150°C. Grease and line a 30 cm loaf pan.
Place the fruit and nuts into a large bowl and sift the flour, baking powder and salt over the mixture.
Beat the eggs with the sugar until thick. Add the vanilla essence. Pour over the fruit mixture. Mix well. Spoon into prepared pan, spreading evenly.
Bake for 1 ½ hours. Remove from oven, leave to cool slightly, turn out and leave to cool on a wire rack.
When cold, extra brandy can be poured over the cake. When serving, cut slices very thinly for a stunning effect.

Hint: Cut into slices, wrap in cellophane and sell as individual slices.


Recipe: Jolly Pastry Bell

1 roll Ready Rolled Puff Pastry, thawed
1 Egg for glazing
12 g (15 ml) Huletts White Sugar
250 ml Fresh Cream
Kiwi Fruit

Preheat oven to 200°C. Roll out the pastry and cut out a bell shape. Place the bell on a lightly greased oven tray, brush lightly with water and prick well with a fork. From the remaining puffy pastry, cut out strips (2.5 cm wide), a small circle, and star shapes. Make a border around the bell with the strips, place the circle at the top of the bell, and place the stars at the bottom of the bell for decoration.
Glaze the border, stars and circle with the egg. Sprinkle sugar on the border. Bake for 15–20 minutes until the pastry has risen and is golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool before adding the filling.
Beat the cream until stiff. Add a little sugar and liqueur. Spoon into cooled pastry shell.
Wash and cut fruit and place on cream. Sprinkle with a little icing sugar before serving to create a snow effect.


Recipe: Easy Fruit Cake

150 g Self-raising Flour
150 g Nutty Flour OR Wholewheat Flour
225 g Butter
225 g Huletts Caramel Sugar
1 Lemon Rind, grated
5 Eggs
450 g Mixed Cake Fruit
125 g Glacé Cherries
25 ml Huletts Golden Syrup

Cream the butter, sugar and grated rind together.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well, after each addition. Add the syrup.
Combine the self-raising flour and the Nutty or wholewheat flour.
Cut the cherries in quarters and add, along with the cake fruit, to the flour.
Add to the creamed mixture. Mix well.
Spoon the mixture into a deep 23 cm round cake tin and bake at 160°C for 2–2 ½ hours.


Recipe: Luxury Fruit Cake

1250 ml (5 cups) Flour, sifted
5 ml (1 tsp) Salt
5 ml (1 tsp) Ground Mixed Spice
5 ml (1 tsp) Ground Cinnamon
5 ml (1 tsp) Ground Ginger
500 g Butter
500 ml (2 cups) Huletts SunSweet Brown Sugar
8 Eggs
15 ml (1 tbsp) Grated Lemon Rind
750 ml (3 cups) Sultanas
750 ml (3 cups) Raisins (seedless)
500 ml (2 cups) Currants
500 ml (2 cups) Chopped Almonds
500 ml (2 cups) Chopped Glacé Cherries
375 ml (1 ½ cups) Chopped Candied Peel
3 ml ( ½ tsp) Bicarbonate of Soda
60 ml (4 tbsp) Strong Black Coffee
15 ml (1 tbsp) Vinegar
125 ml ( ½ cup) Brandy
Glacé Cherries and Blanched Almonds for the top

Sift the flour, salt and ground spices together.
Cream the butter and sugar, then beat in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the lemon rind.
Combine the fruit.
Coat the fruit with a little of the sifted flour mixture and fold into the butter mixture, alternating with the dry ingredients.
Dissolve the bicarbonate of soda in the coffee. Stir in the vinegar, coffee mixture and brandy to form a dropping consistency.
Spoon the mixture into one 28 cm square cake tin which has been lined with a double thickness of foil or brown paper. If using foil, do not grease.
Bake at 150°C for 2 hours. Lower temperature to 120°C and bake for a further 2 hours.

Note: Also makes 1 x 18 cm round tin, 2 x loaf tins (20 cm x 9 cm x 6 cm), or 6 x mini loaves.


Recipe: Festive Fruit Cake

500 ml (2 C) fruit cake mix
125 ml (½ C) glacé cherries, halved
62 ml (¼ C) brandy
125 g butter - room temperature
125 ml (½ C) Huletts sugar
4 extra large eggs
500 ml (2 C) cake flour
5 ml (1 t) baking powder
5 ml (1 t) mixed spice
10 ml (2 t) cinnamon
5 ml (1 t) ginger
10 ml (2 t) bicarbonate of soda
250 ml (1 C) milk
62 ml (¼ C) Huletts molasses

Soak the cake mix and cherries in the brandy overnight.
Cream butter and sugar together and add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition until light and fluffy.
Sift the flour, baking powder and spices together and fold into the creamed mixture.
Dissolve the bicarbonate of soda in the milk and add to creamed mixture along with the Huletts molasses.
Add the fruit and mix well.
Spoon the mixture into a deep greased and lined 22 cm tin and place into a preheated oven at 160ºC for 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean.
Decorate with blanched almonds and glacé fruit if desired.


Recipe: Gingerbread People

Makes about 20 gingerbread people

125 g Butter OR Margarine
125 ml ( ½ cup) Huletts SunSweet Brown Sugar, firmly packed
1 Egg
625 ml (2 ½ cups) Flour
5 ml (1 tsp) Bicarbonate of Soda
15 ml (3 tsp) Ground Ginger
40 ml (2 ½ tbsp) Huletts Golden Syrup


125 ml ( ½ cup) Huletts Icing Sugar, mixed with a little boiling water to make a small quantity of glacé icing

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat well. Gradually add the sifted dry ingredients and the syrup, mix well, and knead lightly. Divide the dough into 6 portions and roll out each portion until 3 mm thick.
Cut out gingerbread figures with cookie cutters or cut around cardboard shapes with a sharp knife.
Bake in the oven at 180°C for 10 minutes. Leave to cool on the trays.
Spoon the icing into a small plastic bag, snip off one corner to make a piping bag. Pipe on features and clothing.


Recipe: Caramel Popcorn

20 ml Butter OR Margarine
375 ml Huletts SunSweet Brown Sugar
90 ml Cold Water
6 cups Popped Popcorn

Melt the butter and add the sugar and water.
Stir over a moderate heat until the sugar is dissolved, then bring to the boil. Cover with a lid and cook for about 3 minutes or until the steam has washed the sugar crystals down from the sides of the pot.
Boil for about 25–30 minutes or until the soft ball stage has been reached (when a little syrup is dropped into iced water it forms a ball which flattens of its own accord when picked up with the fingers.).
Remove from the heat and pour over the popcorn, stirring gently to coat completely.
When cool enough to handle, mould into balls or lollipops and insert a small stick, if desired.


Recipe: Creamy Fudge

Makes 54 squares

900 g (4 ½ cups) Huletts SunSweet Brown Sugar
300 ml (1 ¼ cups) Milk
30 ml (2 tbsp) Huletts Golden Syrup
100 g Margarine
397 g can Full Cream Sweetened Condensed Milk
5 ml (1 tsp) Vanilla Essence

In a heavy-based saucepan, dissolve the sugar in the milk over a low heat.
Add the syrup and the margarine. Bring to the boil and boil for 2–3 minutes.
Remove from the heat and stir in the condensed milk. Bring to the boil again and boil steadily for about 25–30 minutes or until it reaches the soft ball stage (when a little syrup is dropped into iced water it forms a ball which flattens of its own accord when picked up with the fingers).
Remove from the stove and add the vanilla essence. Beat continuously until the fudge begins to thicken and is almost at setting point. Pour into a greased 27 cm x 17 cm pan. Cut into squares when almost hard.


Recipe: Neat Nutty Treats

Makes about 20 treats

1 packet Marie Biscuits
100 g Margarine
60 ml ( ¼ cup) Huletts White Sugar
5 ml (1 tsp) Vanilla Essence
2 Egg Whites (keep them separate)
Finely chopped nuts

Put the Marie biscuits in a plastic bag and break into crumbs with a rolling pin.
Mix the crumbs with the margarine, sugar, vanilla essence and 1 egg white.
Shape into balls about 2.5 cm in diameter and dip each ball into the remaining egg white.
Roll the balls in the chopped nuts and refrigerate until hard.
Place into sweet cases if desired.


Recipe: Yummy Peanut Brittle

75 g Margarine
340 ml (1 ⅓ cups) Huletts White Sugar
125 ml ( ½ cup) Huletts Golden Syrup
250 ml (1 cup) Boiling Water
325 ml (1 ½ cups) Salted Peanuts

Over a gentle heat, stir the margarine, sugar, syrup and water together in a pot until the sugar is dissolved.
Turn up the heat and, without stirring, boil the mixture for half an hour. To test if ready, drop a little of the mixture in cold water. If it is ready it will set hard and crack when broken.
Remove the pot from the stove and stir in the nuts. Pour into a greased tin (roughly 20 cm x 20 cm) and allow to set.
Break into pieces when hard and store in a jar.


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