I’m no sports fan but I have to say that the Commonwealth Games have piqued my interest and even raised some weirdly nationalistic emotions in me (and I am certain I haven’t got a drop of Scottish blood in me, sadly). Ross Murdoch, who is a student at my university, won a gold medal in the men’s 200 metres breaststroke final. I see those athletes when I go to the university swimming pool for a leisurely swim, and I’m so proud of them and what they’re doing. Go team Scotland! I’m actually going to see the gymnastics tomorrow, so if you happen to see me come and say hi!
It seems fitting then to share a typically Scottish recipe with you today. I was holding out on this one because the weather was just too nice not to share my ice cream and summer recipes with you, but what better occasion to have tablet than while watching the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow?
For those of you not familiar with this Scottish delicacy (and I was one of you less than a year ago) tablet is sort of like fudge but with condensed milk added to the mix. Needless to say that butter and condensed milk are decidedly not suitable for a vegan diet. Thankfully vegan butter and coconut milk will do the trick! This recipe does take a wee while to make as you need to patiently condense the coconut milk and be careful not to let the sugar burn, so stay by your stove at all times! And yes, there is a frightening amount of sugar involved… But the great thing about this recipe is that it only requires four ingredients!
Adapted from this BBC Good Food recipe.
500g (1lb) demerara/unrefined cane sugar (not soft brown sugar)
180g (1 + 1/4 cup) vegan butter
75ml (1/3 cup) coconut cream (scoop the fat out of a can of chilled full-fat coconut milk)
125ml (1/2 cup) water
In a large saucepan heat the water and add the butter.
When the butter has melted and the water is just about to boil, add all of the sugar to the pan. Dissolve the sugar in the hot buttery water, stirring regularly.
Bring the liquid to the boil, then lower to a simmer.
Add the coconut cream after a few minutes of gentle simmering. Keep stirring for the next 20 minutes. The sugary liquid is going to bubble up a lot (hence the importance of a large saucepan) so you must keep on eye on it. After twenty minutes it will have reduced considerably and become a thick, creamy sauce.
Test the consistency of the mixture by dropping a little on a cold side plate; if it sets within 30 seconds, it’s ready.
Remove the mixture from the heat. Pour into a large mixing bowl and beat ferociously for 10 minutes. (An electric whisk is convenient at this point, but you may also consider this your workout for the day.) Then pour into a shallow tray of 13cm x 18cm ( 5 inches x 7 inches). Cool on a wire rack before transferring to the freezer for at about half an hour.
Slice into 12 large (or 24 small) cubes.
Enjoy with a good cup of tea or coffee for a delightful afternoon treat!
If you’re watching the Commonwealth Games, who are you rooting for?