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What you need:

350 g  plain flour plus extra for rolling out
1 level  tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 level  tsp ground ginger
1 level tsp ground mixed spice
125 g  butter
175 g  light soft brown sugar
1 medium egg
4 tbsp  golden syrup
Ready to roll icing (white)
76 g  colour writing icing,

What you do:

Preheat the oven to 180C /350F / Gas 4.
Line two baking trays with baking paper. Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and cinnamon into a large bowl. Rub in the butter and then stir in the sugar.

Lightly beat the egg and golden syrup together. Add to the flour and mix to make a dough. Chill the dough for 15 minutes.
Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of ½ cm thick. Cut shapes out with gingerbread cutters, remembering to take off a few limbs and head for added gore.

Place on a baking tray, leaving a gap between them in case they spread a little.
Bake for about 15 minutes. Leave on the tray for 10 minutes then move to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Decoration:
Use the red writing icing along the edges of the missing limbs and heads as blood.
For the skeletons and mummies – either pipe with white writing icing or roll out the ready to roll icing to 3mm thickness and cut shapes slightly smaller than the gingerbread. Lightly brush the gingerbread with boiled water and carefully place the icing on top. Using the black writing icing decorate as a skeleton or mummy!

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What you need:

1lb 2oz /500 g beef fillet
1lb /454 g brown mushrooms
8 slices Parma ham
Dijon mustard for brushing beef fillet
1lb /454 g puff pastry
egg wash
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 red onions, finely chopped
1 glass white wine
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
extra virgin olive oil

What you do:

Preheat oven at 220C / 425F / gas mark 7

Season beef with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat a pan with olive oil and fry beef on high heat until is brown. Leave to cool

In food processor mix mushrooms, onion and garlic. Add this puree on the pan and fry for a few minutes. Add a glass white wine and let to evaporated alcohol.

On the plastic foil put first layer Parma ham, then mushrooms puree and beef (brushing beef with mustard). Easy roll all in plastic foil and keep on fridge for 30 minutes.

Unwrap the meat from the cling film. Roll out the pastry and put the meat on the center. Egg wash the edge of the pastry and roll up the pastry. Turnover and egg wash over the top. Mark the pastry using the back of a small knife to make a cross hatch.

Baking  for around 30-35 minutes.

Rest a few minutes before using.

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What you need:

1 large steak , such as sirloin, rib-eye or rump
1 tsp olive oil
1 ciabatta bread roll, halved
1 tsp Dijon mustard
handful watercress
50g Stilton
splash balsamic vinegar

What you do:

Heat a frying pan or a griddle pan. Rub the steak with the olive oil, season, then cook for 2-4 mins on each side or until done to your liking. Put the steak on a plate to rest.

Put the roll halves cut-side down in the pan for 2 mins to soak up the meat juices and toast until golden brown. Spread the toasted side with the mustard and pile the watercress on top.

Cut the steak in half, sit on top of the watercress, then crumble over the Stilton. Drizzle with a splash of balsamic vinegar, tip over any steak resting juices and serve.

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What you need:

2 1/2 lb / 1 kg of ready cooked mash potatoes
1 large or 2 small tins of drained pilchards ( bones removed)
1 oz / 25 g butter
1 clove of garlic ( crushed)
2 tbsp of chopped fresh parsley
2 oz / 50 g cheese ( grated)
1 tbsp of lemon juice
1 egg ( whisked)
5 oz /150 g fresh bread crumbs

What you do:

In a bowl , mix together the sardines, crushed garlic ,parsley and mashed potato together .
Season well and shape mixture into 10 fishcakes
Dip each cake in beaten egg and roll in breadcrumbs to coat
In a large frying pan heat the butter in a pan and fry fishcakes until golden.
Drain on paper kitchen towel and serve

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What you need:

1  packet lemon cake mix
2 eggs
75 ml vegetable oil
Zest of 2 lemons
2 Tbsp lemon juice
½ teaspoon lemon extract
75 ml icing sugar

What to do:

Preheat oven to 190C / 375 F / gas mark 5.

Line baking tin with grease proof  paper.

Pour the cake mix into a large bowl. Stir in the eggs, oil, lemon zest, lemon juice and lemon extract until mixed thoroughly.

Place the icing sugar in a bowl.

Drop heaping tablespoonfuls of dough into balls and roll in confectioner’s sugar until lightly coated and place on baking sheet.

Bake for about 10 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Cool for 2-3 minutes on the cookie sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

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What you need:

4oz / 115g icing sugar ( sifted)
2oz / 55g condensed milk
1oz / 25g milk or plain chocolate
few drops of peppermint essence
few drops of green food colouring.

What you do:

In a bowl, mix together the sifted icing sugar, condensed milk & a few drops of peppermint essence. Knead together until it’s a soft dough & firm.
Split the mixture into half.
With the first half, roll out to roughly 1/4″ inch / 5 mm thick, then cut into rounds (or heart shapes) with a small cutter & place on grease proof paper to set. Using a fork gently place onto the rounds to make a pattern on each one.
With the other half add a few drops of green Colouring & knead in until the mixture is all green.
Repeat as with the 1st half, rolling & cutting into shapes.
Place in a cool place to dry.
In a small bowl melt the chocolate. Dip one side of the peppermint creams into the melted chocolate and place on grease proof paper and place in fridge until set.

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What you need:

170g (6oz) of plain flour
6oz / 170g of unsalted butter (or salted butter)
5oz / 150ml of cold water
pinch of salt.

To make the pastry :

Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the butter. Mix the butter into the flour with your fingertips.
Stir in the water and mix the ingredients together to form a soft dough.
Turn out onto a floured surface and knead further to make a firm dough.
On a floured work surface roll the pastry into a rectangle shape.

What to do:
Preheat to the oven to 190C / 375F / gas mark 5
spread with mincemeat and roll up the pastry. Brush with milk cut into slices, place on baking sheet. Cook for around 15 mins or until lightly browned, then sprinkle with icing sugar and leave to cool.

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What you need:
12 oz/350 g plain flour
8oz/ 225 g butter, cubed or an half & half mix of margarine and lard
1 beaten egg + 1 cold water as needed
1 jar of mincemeat
icing sugar ( to dust )

To make the pastry…

Place the flour, butter  into a large clean bowl.
Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, working as quickly as possible to prevent the dough becoming warm.
Add the egg to the mixture and using a cold knife stir, add cold water a teaspoon at a time until the mixture binds but don’t make it too wet that it is sticky.
Dust a work surface lightly with a little flour and roll out two-thirds of the pastry to 1/8″/3mm thick. Cut circles to line the cups of your tin, don’t worry if the pastry doesn’t come to the top.
Fill the pastry lined tins 2/3 full with mincemeat.
Roll out the remaining pastry to the same thickness and cut smaller circles to fit as lids on the tarts or to be decorative, cut stars or other fancy shapes.
Dampen the edges of the tart bases with a little cold water and press the lids on. Make a small hole in the surface of each pie with a small sharp knife to allow the steam to escape.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20 mins or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the icing sugar.

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What you need:
1lb / 450g Penne pasta
1lb / 450g pork sausage meat
700g sugocasa tomato sauce
9oz / 250g mozzarella cheese ( drained & roughly diced)
1oz / 25g freshly chopped basil leaves ( plus extra to garnish )

What to do:

Preheat the oven to 200C / 400F / gas mark 6.
Boil a large pan of water & cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet.
In the meantime, pull off pieces of sausage meat & roll to form balls to the size of your choice.
Drain the pasta and pour into a large oven-proof dish ( or roasting tin).
Stir in the tomato sauce and mix well.
Add the mozzarella cheese, sausage balls, and chopped basil leaves and mix altogether.
Cook in the oven for around 20 mins until the cheese has melted & the meatballs are golden in colour & cooked thoroughly.
Sprinkle on the remaining chopped basil leaves to garnish and serve immediately.

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