Deanna baked some delicious red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting topped with edible red glitter. She also prepared some fruit kebabs made of strawberries, grapes and kiwis. Janet currently has cravings for salty food like pretzels and crisps, so we made sure there's plenty of that.
I cannot have afternoon tea/coffee without scones, so I baked a batch of Nigella's buttermilk scones. This is such an easy recipe. I measured out the dry ingredients last night and in the morning I just need to rub some butter and vegetable shortening, and mix in a tub of buttermilk to form a dough. Cut out into scones with fluted cutter and 12 minutes in hot oven... done, freshly baked scones.
With the scones, it's only right to have Cornish clotted cream and though I prefer a generous drizzle of golden syrup on top, today I went for a more traditional route and had strawberry jam... home-made strawberry jam.
It's true, you can buy perfectly decent strawberry jam from the store and it's quicker and cheaper, but you know, this feeling of smugness... is priceless. Nobody needs to know that it's so easy to make this jam.
Easy Strawberry Jam
Recipe by Ina Garten
3 pints fresh strawberries
3 cups superfine sugar (or use caster sugar)
2 tablespoons orange flavoured liqueur
1/2 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and small-diced
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
Place strawberries in a colander and rinse them under cold running water. Drain and hull the strawberries. Cut the larger berries in half or quarters and leave the small berries whole. Place the strawberries in a deep, heavy-bottomed pot (I use le creuset) and toss them with the sugar and the orange flavoured liqueur.
Bring the berry mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring often. Add the apple and blueberries and continue to keep the the mixture at a rolling boil, stirring occasionally for about 25 to 35 minutes. Skim and discard any foam that rises to the top. Allow the mixture to room temperature and then store covered in the fridge. It will keep for at least 2 weeks. To keep the jam longer, pack and seal in sterilised jars.