Soft nougat brioche on a snow filled day!

Soft interior; crunchy exterior

Soft interior; crunchy exterior

The snow is bucketing it down and strong gusts of wind make it look like we are somewhere in the Arctic – not in a small British town west of London! It is wonderful.

I am guessing the school will text message around noon to say it will close at 1pm and have decided that I want to take full advantage of this! When the children come it will be film, hot chocolate and sweet roll time…Can’t wait!

It is a simple dough and really easy to make; please do not let the word yeast put you off!

The dough for these soft sweet rolls is already made (a bit keen) and the nougat filling is sat next to me on the counter – a few bites already missing….

Sweet Dough Brioche (makes around 12)

200ml milk

1.5 tbs butter

3 tbs sugar

25g fresh yeast (or 1.5 sachets dry)

1 tsp ground cardamom (you can substitute this for cinnamon)

pinch of salt

425g flour

Nougat – lots or 150g (you can substitute with chocolate)

  • In a small saucepan add milk, butter, sugar and yeast and turn on low heat. You want to make the milk luke warm in order that the butter melts and the sugar dissolved – however not too hot as this will damage the yeast’s ability to rise properly
  • Give all the ingredients a good stir with a wooden spoon and turn off the heat once the butter is half way melted and the sugar seems dissolved
  • Pour the mixture into a large bowl
  • In a separate bowl add the flour, salt and cardamom.
  • Pour the flour mixture into the milk and combine with either your hands or a wooden spoon. Save a little of the flour until you are sure you will need it all
  • If it is too sticky and does not form a soft dough ball – add a little extra flour. Conversely, add a little warm milk if you find you have added too much flour and it is too dry
  • Once combined, knead for 5 minutes and return to the bowl – covered with a clean tea towel
  • Place the dough ball close to a good heat source (over a radiator, next to tumble dryer….) or in a warm room
  • Leave the dough until it has doubled in size – takes between 30 minutes and 1 hour depending on what yeast you used and how warm your room is
  • Once you are happy with the dough, knead it a bit and flatten it out on a floured surface
  • Place the nougat on the dough – do not be stingy!
  • Close the dough around the nougat and, using your hands, create little dough balls (sort of like rolling a snow ball)
  • Place the finished brioche on a lined baking tray and leave under a tea towel to rise for 30 minutes
  • Just before placing in the pre-heated oven, brush the brioche with milk
  • Bake in the oven for 12 minutes at 225C – they will be lovely and brown when done (and tapping them underneath should sound hollow)
  • Once out of the oven brush with melted butter – this gives a nice, subtle salty taste to the brioche
  • At this point you can sprinkle some sugar on top too….(go on, if you are going to be naughty you may as well go for it).
  • Enjoy!

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Lemon and Luke Warm Water

It may seem silly to dedicate a whole recipe page to this very simple drink but it really can change how you feel and look – and believe me – when you have young children any little bit of help is mostly welcomed!

 

  • Feeling of a cold or flu coming on: drink the freshly squeezed juice of 1 lemon in a glass of lukewarm water every 2 hours.
  • Sore throat: add the juice of 1 lemon and 1 teaspoon (5ml) of sea salt to 1 cup (250ml) lukewarm water. Gargle three times a day for 1 minute to diminish the burning sensation.
  • Tonsillitis:  gargle every 2 hours for at least 30 seconds with the freshly
    squeezed juice of 1 lemon. Tilt the head back to allow the antibacterial and antiviral properties of the juice to flow into the back of the throat.
  • Healthy looking skin: drink a glass of half the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon with lukewarm water twice a day (morning and night)
  • Promote weight loss: drink a glass of half the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon with lukewarm water twice a day (morning and night)

Have a read on lifemojo.com for more ideas!

Lemon, Honey and Ginger Tea

This is simply heaven! If you are feeling sniffly and cold, perhaps a bit sickly, or just in need of a pick me up – look no further! It is a vitamin booster if ever there was any and it tastes great too!

As ginger and lemon are strong flavours you may have to play with the dosages a bit to make it suit perfectly to your taste buds! This is how I love to drink it!

Juice of 1 lemon
4 tbsp runny honey
Good chunk of fresh ginger – peeled and finely chopped
Boiling water – enough for 4 cups of tea
  • Get a flask or a tea pot
  • Place the ginger, lemon juice and honey in it
  • Pour your boiling water over this and leave for 15 minutes to infuse
  • When ready to pour you can either sieve into cups or simply avoid the bits of ginger that come with the tea while you drink!
  • Snuggle up on the sofa, cover yourself with a blanket and close your eyes…heaven!