Saturday, 31 January 2009

Coraline junkets (not to be confused with the Coraline Junket)

About 10 days ago,Neil Gaiman Twittered about going on the Coraline Junket – and my immediate thought was ‘Hmm – junket…. I wonder what a Coraline junket would taste like?’

I started to look for recipes for junket, and discovered that it is basically just milk, sugar and rennet, plus whatever flavourings take your fancy. So I decided to buy some rennet and get junketing.

I swiftly discovered that rennet is not an easy substance to get hold of. Apart from making junket, it’s only use would appear to be for making cheese, so it’s perhaps unsurprising that it’s mostly available in industrial amounts only. However, as one of my characteristics is a degree of stubbornness even in pursuit of the pointless, I keep looking and eventually tracked some down.


The next step was to decide what a Coraline junket should contain. Button eyes of some kind, obviously, but what else??

I recently re-read ‘Coraline’ in preparation for the film http://coraline.com/ (Out on 6th Feb in the USA, 8th May in the UK) which I will be seeing in Dublin on 15th February. Coraline, left alone, caters for herself with toast, frozen pizzas (neither of which seems suitable to include in a dessert) but also with chocolate cake and apples.

So, chocolate, apples and button eyes.

The chocolate came from Cadburys ‘Giant Chocolate Buttons’, which after I little trial and error I found I could drill into with the point of a knife to make proper button holes.








The apples were sliced, buttoned and dried in a cool oven, and I was ready to go. . .






In the end I made 2 junkets.

The Coraline junket, made with grated chocolate & cinnamon, and garnished with apple.















And the Other junket, such as one might find on the other side of the door.

I did consider adding blue sugar sprinkles to the junket but could only find multicoloured sprinkles, and I am not (yet) sufficiently far gone as to be willing to sort these by hand and pick out the blue ones.

25 comments:

Phiala said...

Fun!

You can make blue sugar sprinkles very easily. Put some sugar in a container with a tight-fitting lid, add some blue food coloring, and shake until it all mixes.

I've made cheese, but never junket. I'll have to try it sometime.

jwordsmith said...

I suspect you ARE sufficiently gone...

Excellent, though!

Simon Dyda said...

So what does it taste like then?

Tamidon said...

how did it taste?

brienze said...

For those of us on the left coast of the Atlantic (Neil linked you, so there will be many of us here soon)... what does a junket taste like? I've never heard of one, but it looks more or less like a milkshake? Is it traditional to float something in it or is that just for the Coraline theme?

Dragonsally said...

excellent. We used to get these little tablet things you added to milk to make junket. Had it a lot in the 60's (not well? Have junket) I wonder if you might be able to find them still?

oddharmonic said...

@brienze: a junket is like a thin pudding (a dessert pudding, not a savory one). You can buy rennet tablets for making it in the US; they're sold under the brand name Junket and are usually found in grocery stores near baking ingredients or the powdered gelatin.

Kathryn said...

Wow--this perfectly describes me when I just canNOT let something go: "...one of my characteristics is a degree of stubbornness even in pursuit of the pointless." Perfect description--thanks! And the junket looks nummy too. :)

Siri said...

You are an amazing woman - marmalade and junket. I put an apple in my pre-packaged salad and felt all Suzie-Homemaker.

Sheesh.

Siri said...

Tickybox.....

brienze said...

@oddharmonic thanks for the explanation!

Ticia said...

I've said it before (earlier today) and I say it again... You rock!

spacedlaw said...

That is great! My junket did not look anything that fancy. A lack of buttons, I fear...
I like how you went over to make and Other Junket.

LauraJ said...

A splendid use of brain-the-size-of-a-planet. Creativity can touch every facet of your life, whether it should or not.... (I mean these things warmly but they look snarky and really, I love the buttons) re sugar sprinkles: thebakerskitchen.net

Marjorie said...

OMG Neil Gaiman linked to my blog!

Hello & welcome to everyone new, and thank you for coming!

Phiala - thanks - I did think of that, but only when I woke up in the night, about 4 hours after posting! If I'd thought of it sooner I'd have put some on the rim of the glasses (like salt for margharitas)

@Simon & @Tamidon - the actual junket is fairly bland (a bit like thin yogurt) so it mostly tasted of apple & cinnamon, which is what I added to it. Although if I make it again I think I shall put more fruit in)

@Brienze as far as I know it's not traditional to float something on top - I just wanted some Coraline themed decoration, and was happy that the buttons turned out the way I wanted.

@LauraJ - it didn't come across as snarky ;-)

LyleD4D said...

You're completely potty, but I'm dead impressed with your tenacity and creativity.

Although I'm going to join in the chorus with "What did it taste like?"

Marjorie said...

@Lyle, But you know that I'm potty. . .

It tasted, yknow, blue and junketty.

AletaMay said...

Wow. Very impressive! And now I know what junket is!

Siri said...

You are so rocking rollicking cool. Neil Gaiman Twittered You. Wow.

And, I made the mistake of googlecating rennet. Err. Ermm.. does it really taste dessert-like?

Phiala said...

Silly Siri! :)

Rennet is an enzyme that thickens milk. Mostly it comes from artificial sources, though as you apparently discovered that wasn't the original source.

It's more like yogurt, honest!

Siri said...

When it comes to dairy products, I've learned not to ask too many questions, and to forget the answers quickly. I love yogurt. I love cheese. Milk, meh. Heavy cream, yum. Sour cream, meh, again.

Still, I'd eat a Coraline junket.

Phiala said...

Siri - :) I make yogurt and cheese and sour cream, so I have to know what goes into them. Milk goes on cereal and that's it. And I'm lucky enough to be able to get my milk in glass bottles from the dairy down the street with the cows out back.

Marjorie said...

Siri, this was vegetarian rennet (although only because that's what there was) I did know the original source (Possibly from reading Laura Ingles Wilder?) but I think with a few drops pre pint of milk you'd be quite safe!

Coraline Junket for anyone who wants it, in June!

Siri said...

This means you are really coming in June??? I'm so happy! It means I can meet someone about whom NG Twittered!

Really, I'm happy to be able to meet you because of who you are, not who twitters about you. I'm impressed by the marmalade, too - I've also always considered that a hard thing to make.

Someday, I'll talk about my last effort to make Toll House Cookies. It still to soon....

Marjorie said...

Yes, I'm definately coming in June ;-) decided that the chance to meet the fiends in person was too good to miss.