Friday 30 November 2012

3D Printed Ice Structure

If you're local to me, you will have noticed it rained a lot earlier in the week. And that it was very cold last night.

Well. It appears somebody didn't cover up the sandpit.

While amusing, this is not what this post is about though.

This is:

This ice structure is poking out of another outdoor toy that wasn't covered up.

How did this happen?

It looks like a triangular shaped ice tube. It may not be too clear from the pictures, but the walls of the structure are made of ice and the inside is liquid water.

I imagine that due to the temperature the water under the ice needs space to expand and pushes up through what must have been the last small opening. Each time the water pushes a bit higher the edges freeze, constructing the walls layer by layer - a bit like a 3D printer might do it. Whether this is actually what happened I don't know.

To check that it was actually ice, I tapped against one of the walls and it came crumbling down, spilling some of the liquid it was holding back.

[UPDATE 30/11/2012 17:16 GMT]

Apparently, this is called an ice spike and they don't happen often in "non-distilled" water - making me feel all warm and fuzzy that I found one in our garden.

Sunday 1 January 2012

Mincemeat Turnovers

Every New Year's Eve I crave oliebollen, but since these require deep frying and hence too much faff, I make appelflappen. Apple turnovers are the only traditional Dutch New Year's Eve food that isn't deep fried, but baked in the oven instead.

Last year I made the filling for the appelflappen from scratch. This year I used a jar of mincemeat instead. Far from traditional, but if the number of these minceflappen that my daughter ate is anything to go by then it was a success! Using a jar is definitely easier than making the filling from scratch, but I thought the mincemeat turned out a bit runny. I think I prefer the more traditional apple turnovers, but think that the ease of using a jar will probably win me over to make these again next New Year.

500gr puff pastry
400gr mincemeat
1 beaten egg
About 2 tsp sugar

Pre-heat fan oven to 200°C.

Roll out puff pastry thinly.

Cut pastry into twelve squares of about 12cm.

Place small heap of filling in centre of each square.

Fold each square over to form a triangle.

Brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake in oven for about 10-15 minutes.

1 January 2017

I made two batches yesterday for a party, but because I only had one jar of mincemeat I made one version with a more traditional apple and sultana filling.

For the mincemeat version I heated the mincemeat in a pan and drained the liquid off through a sieve. This helped the consistency of the mincemeat turnovers, but not necessarily the flavour!

For the apple and sultana turnovers I used one cored and peeled and chopped apple and an inexact amount of sultanas and currants soaked in sherry with speculaas kruiden (cinnamon would do). Before folding the pastry over the filling I put a thin marzipan sausage on the filling.
This version was much tastier than the one with mincemeat and is the one I will be making in the future.