I was reading the Guardian few days ago, before St Patrick’s day and came across with this recipe.
To bake or not to bake?
Yes why not, not because I want to celebrate St Patrick’s but much more after a few days waiting for the tests from the doctor and was told there is nothing wrong with me, perhaps just some virus that caused me to slump on bed for days with high temperatures and dizzying spells, I was cleared.
Besides I was invited for lunch at some friend’s house, so why not bake indeed.
And Athens has been gloriously warm the whole week that brings out the best of me, in spite of the shocking thing that happened to my neighbour, physically attacked by thieves few steps from my own door.
Yes, crime is up and I found myself in a state of shock for the whole evening. I did not realised it much that I actually sat on the sofa for hours and barely moving.
I know as well I could not let fear paralysed me, so off I went to the farmer’s market. I came back with bunches of freesias and some some discounted bruised apples which would be perfect for baking.
This recipe is easy the only change I did was add an extra apple but just when it was baked that I wished I grated some nutmegs too.
225g (8oz) plain flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
110g (4oz) butter
125g (4½oz) caster sugar
1 egg, free-range if possible, beaten
50–120ml (2–4fl oz) milk, approx.
1–2 cooking apples –
2–3 cloves (optional)
Beaten egg, to glaze
Barbados (muscovado) sugar
Softly whipped cream
24cm (9in) ovenproof pie plate
Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl.
Rub in the butter with your fingertips until it resembles the texture of breadcrumbs.
Add 85g (3oz) caster sugar, then make a well in the centre and mix together with the beaten egg and enough milk to form a soft dough.
Divide in two. Put one half on to your greased ovenproof plate and pat it out to cover.
Peel, core and chop up the apples.
Place them on the dough with the cloves, if using, and sprinkle over the remaining sugar – the amount you need will depend on the sweetness of the apples.
Roll out the remaining pastry and fit it on top. (This is easier said than done as this “pastry” is very soft like scone dough. You may need to do a bit of patchwork if it breaks.)
Press the sides together and cut a slit through the lid.
Brush with beaten egg and bake in a moderate oven (180C / 350F / gas mark 4) for about 40 minutes, or until cooked through and nicely browned.
Dredge with caster sugar and serve warm with brown sugar and softly whipped cream
Thank you Anton and Eva for such lovely lunch and stimulating conversations.
Anthony and I met at school in Athens, he is originally from Sri Lanka with a Greek citizenship.
Like me, he left his country during the conflict of the civil war, while we left Philippines due to political grounds during the country’s dictatorship.