Thursday, 21 January 2016

Almond croissants

Yesterday I made almond croissants! Yes the kitchen smelled delicious and I do love the whole anticipation of cooking, especially when it is a bit of an unplanned adventure.

I popped out to the supermarket at 8pm, and found lots of lovely reduced items, including croissants for 40p. Croissants always remind me of holidays in France, though these would be but a pale comparison of the freshly baked croissants from the boulangerie.

This summer my cousin had told me how delicious almond croissants were - they are truly divine. To use up leftover croissants, they are filled with frangipane and baked again to make more of a sweet Danish.

I used a simple frangipane recipe shown below, but it used vanilla essence, whereas I will be using almond essence in future for a stronger almond flavour. This is my first attempt, but next time I will also spread more mixture on top to stop the croissants getting too dark. And maybe a sprinkle of sliced almonds to top them off.

100g ground almonds
100g butter
80g golden caster sugar
1 egg
1 tbsp. vanilla extract (or almond)

Mix all the ingredients together. Stuff and spread your croissants, then bake them for 18 mins at around 180 deg C. This made enough mixture to generously stuff 4 croissants and would have stretched to 6.

I also bought 3 packets of dill reduced to 10p each. I have hung them in the kitchen to dry out, so that I can chop and store them for sprinkling on salmon. It is nice to feel that I have got a bargain and saved some food from being wasted.

I should probably mention that I have started a new job and I am back working the 9 to 5 again. 2015 was so busy for my little consultancy, that I had been working days and nights to try and keep up. Now that I am starting to get my evenings back I can enjoy cooking and blogging again.

I am not sure how things will work out with my allotment. Spring is fast approaching and I have barely started the gardening jobs that were due back in the Autumn! I am not ready to give up on it yet though. I just love that I still have a supply of my home grown potatoes and squash in the garage, and raspberries and runner beans in the freezer. It is so nice to announce at each meal that I have grown the cabbage, or the tomatoes in the sauce.

What began as a journey to be more green, by eating organic, locally grown food and reducing waste, seemed like hard work from the outset. Yet it has turned out to be rather enjoyable. Food makes me happy. I enjoy growing it, shopping for it, cooking it and sharing the end result with family and friends. I love that I substituted a handful of weeds for parsley in my stuffing at Christmas and no one was the wiser. But most of all I love..... almond Croissants ;-)

What do you love about food?