July 2020

Red Hamburger Relish

Posted on July 17, 2020 at 11:50 am in

As a child I frequently had Bick’s Hamburger Relish. The availability of this product in the USA is spotty at best, so as usual I made it myself. This recipe is really, really close to what I remember, and you can easily make a half batch.

  • 7 cups ground cucumbers (approximately 7 medium sized cucumbers, weight roughly 3.5lb/ 1.6kg), any liquid drained
  • 5 cups ground onions (approximately 1.25lb / 570g), any liquid drained
  • 1/4 cup / 60ml / 72g pickling salt (substitute by weight with any non-iodine salt such as sea salt or kosher salt)
  • 3 to 4 large red and green peppers, ground
  • one 28oz/795g can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 to 3 1/2 cups / 720 to 780ml white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. celery seed
  • 1 1/2 tsp. allspice, ground
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup / 120 to 180ml brown sugar
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup / 120 to 180ml cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp. mustard seed
  • 1 tsp. ground cloves
  • 3 to 4 cups / 720 to 960ml white sugar
  • 3/4 cup / 180ml flour (or GF substitute such as xanthan gum)
  • Makes about 10 to 12 pints
    Mix ground cucumbers, onions, and peppers with salt in a large bowl. Let stand overnight and then drain.
    Cook all other ingredients in a large pot and boil for about 5 minutes.
    Add cucumber mixture and bring back to a boil.
    *May add extra sugar, spices, vinegar to get desired taste.
    Boil for 15 minutes and pour into sterilized jars and seal.

    I know the recipe says hamburger relish, but this is equally lovely with sausages or other grilled meats. And yes, I increased the mustard seed to 2 tablespoons because I like mustard seeds. Why else make it yourself if you don’t customise it?

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    Chocolate and peanut butter mug cake

    Posted on July 11, 2020 at 1:53 pm in

    As an added bonus, you can easily make this keto friendly or vegan. Makes 2 decent sized mug cakes, or 1 if you have a huge mug and are feeling gluttonous!

    Whisk together:

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1/4 cup / 60ml milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • Whisk into the liquids:

  • 1/2 cup (120ml) almond flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup / 60ml sweetener (sugar, monk fruit, erithrytol…)
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • Let the batter sit for 15 to 20 minutes to let the gum do its thing.

    Portion the batter into your mug as follows:

  • 1/4 cup of batter
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup of batter
  • Microwave on HIGH for 90 seconds and check. The surface should be just set. If it isn’t, zap for another 15 seconds at a time until it is. (If you’re being gluttonous and put the whole batch into a gigantic mug, you might want to microwave for 2 minutes and check then for done-ness.)

    Let your mug cake sit for a minute or two before you tuck in to avoid the “molten chocolate lava” feeling.

    If you want to amp up the chocolate flavour try adding a little instant coffee powder. Start with just a little, maybe 1/4 teaspoon, because you might end up in mocha town instead.

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