Don’t worry, being pregnant hasn’t driven me to the edge of insanity with mixtures of jam and gravy. They weren’t served together. Much to my family’s relief too I’m sure.
Instead I planned out our Sunday dinner with a mind to trying out Colman’s instant gravy paste as well as trying out something for dessert with Super Jam.
So I’ll start with the main course. My first plan was shepherds pie with vegetables. But by 1pm I was yawning and feeling like my early morning start was indeed getting the better of me, even my back was hurting. So I decided to take a little less complicated route and make mince with jacket potatoes.
Our family is firmly split with the cow camp and the veggie camp. When it comes to mince the veggie camp consists of the children and myself, and on the cow munching side we have my husband who refuses to eat what he describes as odd vegetarian stuff. However I am a very doting wife and will cook him his cow, even if the smell has me running for the door for gasps of fresh air. I manage. Just.
So I did the usual, got the potatoes scrubbed and prepared and into the oven, wishing I had more Bannisters’ ready baked potatoes (today I would really have appreciated them). Got the beef mince cooking, prepared onion and mushrooms (they have to be chunky so my daughter can pick them out with not being keen) and browned them off.
I usually use stock cubes at this stage and then thicken the mince at the later stages. Something I always remember helping my own Mother with when I was younger. (cornflour and water)
But this time I was trying out Colman’s instant gravy paste. It comes in a tube a bit like an upright toothpaste tube. Nice and neat to have in the cupboard. The easy to use instructions suggest two teaspoons for every 250 ml. Each tube has five servings. You simply dissolve the paste with hot water, it thickens as you stir.
There are three varieties, beef, chicken and onion. I used the beef with the beef mince and then the onion with the vegetarian. The onion one is vegetarian.
The beef paste was a little stiff to get out, and it is a little tricky to measure teaspoons out as it sticks to the spoon. But all the same, easy to use. The paste dissolves in the water, although does need a considerable stir. It’s better than instant granules though as you don’t get lumps. Like any instant gravy product, the more you use the thicker it gets. So you can adjust to your own taste.
I added the gravy to the mince and vegetables and simmered until ready. The gravy behaved lovely, didn’t stick to the pan in globules.
I served the mince over jacket potatoes. with broccoli on the side. It was very tasty, and everyone commented that the gravy was very nice. Thank you Colman’s, a success.
Colman’s gravy paste has no artificial flavours or preservatives. Always appreciated with foods I feed my family. They are available in all major supermarkets RRP £1.59.
Meanwhile I had decided to make dessert from scratch. I had been reading the Super Jam cookbook with interest and found a recipe for New York Cheesecake. Sounded good. So yesterday afternoon, while grooving in the kitchen to Tiesto, I put the lovely Super Jam apron on and followed the recipe on page 119.
The next stage was to whisk cream cheese, them add suger, Super Jam, and milk. At this point I had decided to use an electric whisk. All I can say is that thank goodness for the apron! It was like a scene from a comedy film, many things covered in splatters of mixture. Particularly me. Oh dear. Silly me used a wide bowl. I should have used a more enclosed bowl. I learnt my lesson, and cleaned up. And continued.
You then add two eggs, and whisk more (stand back small children, husbands and electrical equipment). I managed this without too much drama.
The Super Jam cookbook is wonderful. a lovely read. I have been sitting down in the afternoons and reading it. It’s nice because it’s easy to read, it tells the story of Super Jam and related things. I had tears in my eyes reading some of it. It’s truly lovely. The recipes are easy to follow and the book looks lovely. I know several people that would appreciate this book. My Mum for one.
I love the idea of the Tea Parties. An idea brought about by Fraser Doherty himself after visiting elderly people with his own Grandmother. The Tea Parties are social events to bring people together, to drink tea and eat jam! Fabulous. There is now a tradition of people making tea cosies. All this information can be found in the book and more so on the website.
The jam is also fabulous. I cannot find fault with it at all. My son is the biggest jam fan in this house. He has tried the jam on toast, on bread, on scones. He really likes it. It’s great because there is no added sugar. Any sweetness comes from the fruit itself or added grape juice. There is blueberry and blackcurrant, raspberry and cranberry, and strawberry. Delicious.
The jams are gluten free, nut free and vegetarian.
After reading about Super Jam origins, I’m really impressed with Fraser Doherty. He left school at 16 and was determined to make something of himself. To create this great product, well I really hold my hat off to him. Bravo!
Available from supermarkets or online.Priced £1.79 each or packs of six for £8.95.
Super Jam really is super.
Fuss Free Ratings: Colman’s instant gravy pasteTaste:5/5 We tried the onion and the beef paste, and both were enjoyed very much. No MSG means the gravy does not have a salty bitter taste. Very nice.Value: 4/5. RRP £1.59 for five servings. This works out a little more expensive than standard gravy granules, but the standard is better.Convenience: 5/5 Handy, tasty and easy to use.
Super JamTaste: 5/5. Delicious. Fruity and enjoyable. Not syrupy.
Value: 4/5. More pricey than bog standard supermarket jams. But due to the quality and difference in standard, I’d quite happily agree to being worth it. 4/5Convenience: 5/5. Super Jam has many uses, it’s fab. Enjoy it on scones and bread, on your porridge or great for baking with.
Colman’s instant gravy paste:
Beef: Typical Values per 100ml prepared:
of which sugars 0.12g
Salt (based on sodium) 1.182g
Raspberry and Cranberry per 100g
Thank you for the Colman’s and the Super Jam products