Tag Archive | apples

Apple and Blackberry Oaty Muffins

Sometimes I do try to bake a little cleaner, I don’t always use tonnes of sugar and chocolate! These little Apple and Blackberry Oat Muffins are based on an a Rachel Allen recipe in which she uses apples and sugar to make a fresh apple sauce.

400 apple sauce- puréed apples in a jar!
100ml Sunflower Oil
75g Porridge Oats
225g Plain Flour (sifted)
3tsp Baking Powder
36 Blackberries


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius and line a 12-cup muffin tray with paper cases. Pour the apple puree into a bowl and stir in the oil and oats. Sift in the flour and baking pour and fold gently.

Divide the mixture between the muffin cases and place three or four blackberries on top of each muffin.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown and lightly springy to the touch. Cool in the tin for five minutes before placing on a wire rack to cool.


So they didn’t rise very much and the texture was a bit odd but otherwise they were delicious!

Melissa xx

Apple pastries

I wasn’t going to share this recipe because it’s embarrassingly easy, but I’ve been asked to…. I don’t have any photographs of the process so you’ll have to use your imagination!


I had been given a bag of home grown bramley apples by a dear friend and have had great fun making pies, turnovers and chutnies. These apple turnover pastries can be made and in the oven in minutes.

1.3kg/3lb Bramley apples, peeled, core removed and quartered
75g/2½oz soft light brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 lemon, zest only

For the pastry:
Plain flour, for dusting
500g/1lb 2oz puff pastry
1 egg


Roughly chop the apples into bite-sized pieces. Put them in a large saucepan with the sugar, cinnamon, ginger and three tablespoons of water. Stir together well, cover with a lid and put on a low heat to cook for about eight minutes. Then give it a stir and cook for another 8-10 minutes, or until the apples are soft but not too mushy.

Remove the apples from the heat. Finely grate the zest from the lemon over to taste, and leave to cool completely.

I used ready roll pastry and manged to get four oblongs out of each sheet; cut down the middle of both sides and arrange them on the lined baking sheet.

Crack the egg into a mug, whisk it lightly and then using a pastry brush, brush around the edge of each pastry rectangle. Then put a couple of chunks of the apple on one half of each rectangle. Then fold the other half of the pastry over the apple and use your fingers to press the edges down to seal. Press in nice and tight to the apple so everything is snug and cosy. I used a fork to crimp the edges.

Brush the pies liberally with the remaining egg and sprinkle with caster sugar and mark a hole in the top of the pastries with a sharp knife. Put them in the oven for about 25 minutes until crisp and golden brown.


It might be Saturday, but the party will still be in full swing over at Angie’s place for Fiesta Friday!


Melissa xx

Advent Calendar Day 7: Mulled Apple Juice


Dr Doolittle and I went for dinner with two dear friends last night (The Hot Stove was amazing). Ruth had spent the afternoon making mulled apple juice. I’d never heard of it! It seems like a great alternative to mulled wine. So, this morning I’ve had a quick look and here’s a recipe The National Trust website….


1.5 litres apple juice
4 tablespoons caster sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
6 whole cloves
6 whole allspice berries
Peel of an orange – cut into strips
Peel of a lemon – cut into strips
5cm piece of fresh ginger

Pour the apple juice and sugar into a large stainless steel saucepan.

Place the cinnamon sticks, cloves, allspice berries, ginger, orange peel and lemon peel into a muslin bag. Secure with kitchen string then drop the spice bag into the juice mixture.

Place the saucepan over a medium heat for between five and ten minutes or until the mixture is very hot but not boiling.

Remove from the heat and discard the spice bag. Ladle the juice into big cups or mugs, adding a fresh cinnamon stick to each cup.


I’m off out to buy apple juice!

Melissa xx

Fruity Garden Tarts- 100th post!


I can’t quite believe that I’ve written 100 blog posts in just 11 months. I’ve been visited thousands of times by people in 62 countries- lucky me!

To celebrate I’m using my garden grown produce to make some fruity free-form tarts to bring to Angie’s for Fiesta Friday.

The blackberries have really taken off in the garden, so as well as packing up the freezer, Dr Doolittle has made several scrumptious jars of blackberry jam. The apples are back too, so I picked a couple especially for these tarts. Oooh, has anyone got any elderberry recipes? We’ve got plenty of those popping up and I’d love some new ideas!




400g plain flour
200g cool butter, cut into cubes
50g caster sugar
2 egg yolks
6 tbsp blackberry jam (I used a jar of Dr Doolittle’s homemade blackberry jam)
200g of blackberries (a small handful per tart)
2-3 apples, cored and chopped
Brown sugar



Sift the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter to make ‘breadcrumbs’. Stir in the sugar. Beat the egg yolks then pour into the flour mixture. Mix gently with a round-bladed knife then mould by hand into a soft dough. If necessary, add a little cold water. Wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge for 20 minutes before rolling out.

Preheat the oven to 190°, I turned the rayburn off!

Roll out the pastry and cut into 6 equal circles (I cut around a soup bowl) and place onto a lined baking tray.


Spread blackberry jam over the bottom of the pastry. Place a handful of berries on each circle. Dice the apples into small cubes and scatter evenly over the pastry, leaving a border to allow for a boarder.

Brush the pastry borders with beaten egg or milk and then pinch up the pastry to create a wall around the tart.


Sprinkle with a little brown sugar and cinnamon.  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.


Serve with icecream or cream or custard… Or just eat as it is!


Melissa xx

Remember you can join me on Twitter @the_glen_house


Garden apple strudel- the cheats way!

I can’t believe this is party #24 at Fiesta Friday! I’m exhausted just thinking about it and I’ve missed a few… Angie at the novice gardener must be in a constant party-like-state, I couldn’t do it, I just don’t have the stamina!

This week I’m bringing a really quick and easy bake, inspired by a cookbook collection cheats chocolate ganache tarts post yesterday, (if you haven’t met Donna, then you really should go visit). Donna’s post described how she cheated by using shop bought pastry tarts; just like Donna, when I’m feeling that life is just too short to spend hours making pastry, I cheat too!

All this pastry talk reminded me of a quick bake I did last week. I needed to free up space in the freezer and all the other ingredients I needed were in the pantry, so that was free and easy. I should point out at this stage, that because I was clearing the freezer and cooking half a dozen other things that evening, I didn’t take many photos!

The apples I used were the last of the amazing crop to come from The Glen House garden. They had been sat in the freezer alongside my emergency stash of frozen pastry. Once again, free and easy!

This is not a classic apple strudel please don’t moan, this is my cobbled together, ‘out-of-the-freezer-and-pantry’ strudel…..


375g ready-rolled puff pastry
Flour for dusting
4 medium bramley apples
100g sultanas
100g pecans
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp milk
Caster sugar for dusting

Preheat the oven to 180°C, I of course turned the rayburn off! On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry, so it is thinner than a coin.

Chop the apples and spread over the pastry, making sure the apple is evenly spread, followed by the pecans and sultanas and a sprinkling of cinnamon and nutmeg. I used these nuts and spices because I love the taste, you can leave them out….


Press the pastry together along the seam, seal with a fork and brush all over with milk. Transfer to a lined baking sheet.

Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until golden and puffed up. Leave to cool on a wire rack. When cold, sprinkle with some caster sugar, then cut into slices.


It was delicious served alongside another freezer cheat- shop bought icecream!

Happy Friday,

Melissa xx

Tasty books #5 Apple pie

Just after we moved into The Glen House in the autumn of 2013, we realised that we had an abundance of apples, (you can read all about it in the original post here). Suffice to say, we still have apples in the freezer! Guess what’s coming next….


This apple recipe is brought to you from James Martin’s book ‘Great British Dinners’. It’s full of classic British dishes like Lancashire Hot Pot and Spotted Dick and Custard. It also has some ‘new’ British favourites such as Chicken Tikka Masala and Mousska. All the recipes are extremely easy to make and follow.



700g cooking apples (I used Bramleys, as he suggested)
finely grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemons
1 tsp ground cinnamon
100 g caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1 lightly beaten egg
25 g butter
675 g ready-made shortcrust pastry
flour, for dusting (I used puff pastry AND YES it was shop bought…. If it’s good enough for James, then it’s good enough for me).


Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4.

Quarter, core and peel the apples, then slice them thickly into a bowl. Sprinkle with the lemon zest and juice. and the cinnamon. Stir in the sugar and mix well.

Brush the rim of a deep pie dish with beaten egg. Tip the apple mixture into the dish and dot with the butter.

Roll out pastry on a floured board and place on top of apple mixture, trimming about 1cm beyond the edge of the pie dish.

Cut three small holes in the top of the pastry to let out the steam.

Brush the pastry with egg wash, then dredge with caster sugar and then bake for 35-40 minutes until the fruit is tender and the top is golden brown. Serve with custard!


Melissa xx
You can find me on Twitter @the_glen_house

Garden grown apples

In the far corner of The Glen House garden stands a tiny apple tree. It couldn’t have been growing there for many years, but wow does it pack a punch!


It was covered in gorgeous, juicy sweet-but-tart fruit.


So we waited and waited, dreaming of all the yummy things we could make and bake…. Until it was time to pick them. Bags of them!


So we’ve had savoury dishes….


Like pork chops with apples; the recipe goes something like, bung whatever veg you have in a roasting tin with some thick cut pork chops and apples and a few pears and whack it in the Rayburn! Then we had apple pies with fresh
nutmeg and cinnamon. Easy to make and even easier to eat!


So for a first day with the apples we ate very well! The rest have been cleaned, cut, bagged and frozen.

Two weeks on….

And I’ve taken out 450g of frozen apples, lined a dish with them, adding flour, brown sugar, butter, an egg and milk to make a kind of apple spongy thing. A little like an apple brown betty or apple charlotte but not as cakey….


Half an hour in the Rayburn and ta-da! Tasty indeed!

Melissa xx