bread, food blogging, food photography, recipes, soup, thefoodygrail.com

Roasted Vegetable Soup with Savoury Croissants.

Vegetable soup.
Squash, sweet potato and roasted pepper soup served with savoury croissants. Finished with a warming chilli and garlic oil.

As the rustic shades of Autumn invade the last green remnants of summer, it’s time for a hearty and warming soup. Butternut squash, sweet potato and roasted red pepper make for a wonderful creamy soup. Served with a chilli- garlic oil and accompanied with  savoury croissants flavoured with anchovies and sun dried tomato.

Ingredients:

Soup:
1 butternut squash – peeled, halved, seeds removed and chopped into large chunks.
Note: Use other varieties of squash if you so wish – equivalent to one butternut variety.
1 sweet potato – peeled and cut into wedges.
1 large red onion – peeled, halved and cut into wedges.
2 roasted red peppers – skins removed.
2 sticks of celery.
1 dessert spoon of dried marjoram.
3 cloves of garlic
1 tabls red wine vinegar.
40g butter.
1.2 litres chicken stock or veg stock if you prefer.
10 sprigs or 3g of fresh parsley.
Drizzle of olive oil.
Seasoning – salt and pepper.

Garnish:
100ml chilli oil infused with 1 crushed clove of garlic.
5g chopped fresh basil.
Optional: 50g of grated Parmesan cheese.

Savoury Croissants:
227g strong bread flour.
23g unsalted butter.
1/4 tsp of salt.
10g or 3 tsps of easy bake yeast.
125ml warm milk.
1/2 a beaten egg – approx’ 27g
20g chopped anchovies.
30g sun dried tomatoes – chopped.
90g chilled butter – cut into small dice.

Method/cook:

Soup:
Set oven to gas 6 or 200°C / 400°F
Place your chopped squash in a roasting tray – drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper and marjoram. (see image)
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Now place your sweet potato wedges and onion wedges into a roasting tray – drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper and marjoram.
Roast your squash, sweet potato and onion for 45 mins’ until lightly charred and soft.
In a large pan melt the butter. Add the chopped celery, roasted pepper and garlic – sweat until celery is softened. (see image)
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When celery is soft add the vinegar and reduce. Set aside.
Once the roasted veg’ are cooked add them to the softened celery and pepper. With the pan on a medium heat, further brown the veg’ by cooking for 10 mins’. (see image)
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Add the stock and parsley to the veg’ and simmer for 20 mins.
Once simmered, blend all the veg’ to a creamy soup. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Savoury Croissants:
Rub the 23g of butter into the flour. Mix in the easy bake yeast and salt.
Add the warm milk and form into a dough.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for ten minutes.
Once kneaded, place in a floured bowl and cover with cling film or a damp cloth. Leave to proof until doubled in size.
Note: The dough can be chilled in the refrigerator after first proof then rolled and formed the next day.
Once proofed, knock back the dough and knead for 10 mins’.
Combine the chopped anchovies with the chopped sun dried tomato – set aside.
Now for the rolling and layering of the dough.
Roll the dough into a 36cm x 21cm oblong. (see image)
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Place half the 90g of butter and half of the anchovy and tomato onto the middle third of the pastry. (see image)
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Fold the top third of pastry over the butter. (see image)
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Place rest of butter and the rest of the anchovy and tomato mix onto the top third of the pastry. (see image)
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Fold up the bottom third of the pastry. (see image)
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Turn the pastry clockwise one turn. (see image)
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Roll out the pastry to a 46cm x 14cm oblong. (see image)
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Fold the top third of pastry over the middle third. (see image)
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Fold the bottom third up over the top third. (see image)
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Chill the pastry for 30 mins’ to firm up the butter.
Once chilled, turn the pastry clockwise one turn. (see image)
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Roll out the pastry again to a 46cm x 14cm oblong. (see image)
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Fold as previously explained and chill again for 30 mins’
For the final roll, turn the pastry one turn clockwise.
Roll out to a 56cm x 17cm oblong. (see image)
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Once rolled, cut 8 – 10 triangles with a sharp knife. (see image)
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Roll each triangle up from the widest end. (see image)
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Place the rolled dough triangles on baking trays lined with parchment paper. Egg wash and leave to proof until doubled in size. (see image)
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Note: Make sure the points of the dough triangles are tucked underneath so that the croissants don’t unravel.
Set oven to gas 5 or 190°C / 375°F
Once proofed bake for 25 minutes until golden brown.
Cool on baking racks once baked.

Serving:
Serve your hot soup topped with chopped basil and a drizzle of chilli and garlic oil.
Optional: Grate over the soup with Parmesan cheese.
Accompany the soup with warm savoury croissants.
Enjoy!

baking, celebration, christmas, desserts, food blogging, food photography, pastry

Christmas Tart

Christmas Tart
A moist tart full of festive fruit and topped with a light sponge. Encased in a crisp buttery pastry.

A moist tart that is an ideal Christmas treat. With lashings of moist fruit, soft sponge and a crisp sweet pastry, it won’t last long. It makes a wonderful alternative to a rich Christmas pudding and will accompany a freshly brewed pot of tea…to a tee. Simply decorated, with a glazed top and glittery fondant stars it creates a stylish looking pastry.

Ingredients: (Makes 10″ tart)

Pastry:
250g plain flour. Extra for rolling dough.
156g chilled butter – cut into cubes.
62g caster sugar.
84g egg – approx’ 1 1/2 eggs.
1/2 tsp salt.

Fruit filling:
50g raisins.
100g sultanas.
50g veg’ suet.
25g mixed peel.
50g soft dark brown sugar.
50ml brandy.
1 tsp mixed spice.
Juice of 1/2 orange and all the zest
Juice of 1/2 lemon and all the zest.

Jam for tart base:
3 dessert spoons of ginger jam/preserve for base of the tart.

Sponge:
60g self raising flour – sieved.
50g ground almonds.
1 tsp mixed spice.
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon.
2 beaten eggs – at room temp.
1tsp vanilla extract.
100g caster sugar.
100g soft butter.

Apricot Glaze:
3 dessert spoons of apricot jam.
2 tabls of water.

Decoration:
50g of fondant easy roll icing. Rolled to 3mm thickness and cut into star
shapes with cutter.
Edible glitter spray – lightly spray each star.

Method/cook:

Fruit filling:
Mix all the ingredients together. Leave to macerate for 24 hours in a cool place.

Pastry:
Beat the egg and sugar together until well mixed – set aside.
Add the salt to the flour.
Rub the butter into the flour to create a crumb texture.
Once all the butter has been rubbed into the flour add the egg and sugar mix.
Combine all ingredients into a dough, wrap in cling film and chill for several hours.
Note: This dough is quite sticky, so use a little extra flour to bring it all together. Refrigerate for several hours before rolling.
Once chilled, roll out and line a 10″, loose bottomed, flan tin. Pop your lined flan tin in the refrigerator to chill. Set aside.

Sponge:
Combine the flour, ground almonds and spices. Set aside.
Cream the butter and the sugar.
Gradually mix the beaten egg into the creamed butter and sugar . (Note: Eggs at room temp’ will lessen the risk of splitting when mixed with the butter. If your mix starts to split before all the egg has been added – mix in a couple of tabls’ of the flour mix.)
Add all the flour mix to the butter mix. Combine, thoroughly, with a balloon whisk. Set aside.

Preparing the tart for baking:
Set oven to gas 5 or 190°C / 375°F
With your fruit macerated, flan tin lined with pastry and the sponge mix made, it’s time to prepare the tart for baking. Place your lined flan tin on a baking tray.
Firstly, spread a layer of ginger jam over the base of your flan. (see image)
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Next, drain any liquid from the macerated fruit mix. Put a layer of the drained fruit mix on top of the jam layer. (see image)
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Finally add the sponge layer over the fruit. (see image)
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Bake on the lower middle shelf for 35-45 mins’. The tart is cooked when the middle of the sponge is firm to touch. After 35 mins’, give the centre of the sponge a light press with your finger. If the sponge is firm and springs back up after lifting your finger – it’s baked. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Time to prepare the apricot glaze.

Apricot glaze:
In a pan, slowly heat up the apricot jam and water to a, simmering, runny consistency.
Sieve the glaze to remove any apricot bits.
Now spoon the hot apricot glaze over the top of your hot tart.
Leave the tart to cool in the flan tin.

Serving:
Turn out your cooled tart and decorate with glittery fondant stars.
Serve generous slices with whipped cream.
Enjoy.

chicken, cooking, food blogging, food photography, recipes, restaurant food

Griddled Chicken and Chicken Skin Bites. Served with Salted Peanut and Caraway Bread.

Griddled Chicken
Griddled Chicken with Crispy, Chicken Skin Bites. Served with a Honey and Paprika Yoghurt. Accompanied by a Salted Peanut and Caraway Bread.

This chicken dish is top of the pecking order when it comes to ease of cooking and combination of flavours. Yoghurt and honey sweetness are a perfect match for charred chicken, crisp chicken skin and crusty peanut bread. With roasted tomatoes, that burst to create a light sauce – ‘dip dip hooray’ – it’s a rustic family meal for sharing or to wow your friends during an informal dinner.

Griddled Chicken

Ingredients:

Chicken:  (Serves 4 and needs to marinate overnight)
8 boned chicken thighs – with skin.
200ml Greek yoghurt.
1 clove of garlic – crushed.
1/2 tsp salt.
1/4 tsp black pepper.
1 heaped tsp paprika.
35g honey.
2 tsps of coarse sea salt.

Yoghurt Dressing:
120ml Greek yoghurt.
Pinch of salt.
Pinch of white pepper.
2 tsps of runny honey.
Paprika for sprinkling/dusting.

Garnish:
12 Vine tomatoes.
3 sticks of celery – cut into 6cm lengths.
2 tsps Paprika.
Salt and black pepper for seasoning.
Drizzle of olive oil.
1 tabls chopped parsely.
4-8 curls of butter.
4 cooked corn on the cob – cut in half.

Peanut Bread:
200g strong bread flour. Extra for kneading.
100g salted peanuts – ground.
5g easy bake yeast.
50g unsalted butter.
135ml warm water.
Olive oil.
Sea salt to sprinkle on top of loaf just before baking.
Caraway seeds to sprinkle on loaf just before baking.
Note: Don’t add salt to the dough mix as the salted peanuts contain salt.

Method/cook:

Peanut Bread:
Set oven to gas 8 or 230°C / 450°F
Rub the butter into the flour.
Add the yeast and ground salted peanuts.
Add the warm water and combine to a dough. Add a touch more flour if to wet.
Knead the dough for 5 mins’.
Place dough in a floured bowl, cover with a damp cloth or clingfilm. Rest the dough in a warm place to proof until doubled in size.
Once the dough has double in size, knead again for 3 mins’. You shouldn’t need to flour the surface for the second knead – due to the butter in the dough. But if it does stick, add a little flour as possible to stop it sticking.
Place the kneaded dough in a greased and floured baking tin.
Sprinkle with caraway seeds, sea salt and olive oil. Press into the top of the dough with your finger tips – six or seven good, heavy handed, prods – to incorporate the oil. (see image)
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Cover with cling film or a damp cloth and proof again until doubled in size. Bake for 25-30 mins’ until golden brown. Once baked, turn out onto a baking rack. Set aside.
Tip: If the loaf isn’t crisp on the bottom after baking. Remove from the baking tin and pop back in the oven for 5 mins’

Chicken:
Mix the yoghurt, seasoning, spices, garlic and honey set aside.
Remove skin from the chicken thighs and trim the skin into oblong pieces. (see image)
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Set the skin aside and store in a refrigerator until ready to cook.
In a bowl coat your chicken thighs with the yoghurt mix. Chill overnight.
Once your chicken thighs have marinated you are ready to proceed.
Set oven to gas 6 or 200°C / 400°F.
Place your trimmed chicken skin pieces on a deep baking tray, lined with silicon paper. (see previous image) Season the chicken skins with sea salt and roast until crisp – about 30 mins’.
Note: The baking tray must have high enough sides to retain the oils/fat dripping from the chicken skins.
Once the skins are crisp (they will shrink to yummy bite size morsels) remove from the oven and set aside. Also, save the oils/fat produced from cooking the skins – it’s full of flavour and will be used when serving later.
Set oven to gas 7 or 220°C / 425°F. Ready for the chicken thighs.
For the thighs, heat a griddle pan to a medium heat. Seal and char the marinaded thighs on both sides. Note: Because of the honey, it is easy to over char the chicken so don’t have your griddle pan smoking hot.
Once you have sealed and charred your chicken, place in the oven for 20 mins’ to cook through.

Garnish:
Set oven to gas 6 or 200°C / 400°F.
Place your celery and vine tomatoes on a roasting tray.
Drizzle with olive oil, season and sprinkle generously with paprika.
Place your cooked sweet corn on the tray with your tomatoes and celery to re-heat.
Roast for 30-40 mins’ or until tomatoes are soft and the skins begin to split. The celery will retain a crunch and the sweet corn will be hot. Set aside your garnish and keep warm.
Tip: Cook the garnish at the same time as the chicken skin – save time and energy.

Yoghurt:
Mix the yoghurt, seasoning and honey. Set aside.

Serving:  (Can be served as a sharing dish or plated for each diner.)
To serve plated: Dress each plate with several good teaspoons of the yoghurt dressing – random blobs, splodges or cheffy smears. (Drizzle extra honey, over the yoghurt, if you like the sweetness) Sprinkle over the yoghurt with paprika – be generous.
Next, add two pieces of cooked chicken thigh to the centre of each plate – brush with the fat/oil saved from cooking the skins. Top with several pieces of crispy chicken skin.
Add 3 roasted tomatoes and three pieces of roasted celery to each plate.
Finally, sprinkle each plate with chopped parsley.
Serve with hot corn on the cob and warm wedges of the crusty peanut and caraway bread. Don’t forget your butter curls.

Enjoy!

christmas, desserts, food blogging, food photography, ice cream, sweets

Poached Pears in Blackcurrant with Chocolate, Pistachio and Sultana Ice Cream. Served with Parisian Scrolls, Whipped Cream and Caramel Nibs.

Poached Pears.
Pears poached in blackcurrant served with a chocolate and pistachio ice cream. Accompanied with Parisian Scrolls and caramel nibs.

Christmas is here…according to the supermarkets. Don’t remember retail festivities starting quite this early.
So here is another early Christmas dessert – poached pears. I adore poached pears, but not in red wine, so these are poached in blackcurrant juice. With typical festive spices, such as cloves and cinnamon, these sweet pears are a real winner for the holiday season.
Accompanied by a lush ice cream, crunchy Parisian Scrolls and melt in the mouth Caramel Nibs – that kids and grannies’ will fight for – it’s a dessert to please most families.
Everything can be made in advance giving more time – for kitchen slaves like myself – to enjoy the company of friends and family.

Ingredients:

Ice Cream: Makes approx’ 900ml.
200ml water.
100g sugar.
100g dark chocolate.
300ml Milk – I used lactose free milk.
150ml coconut milk – full fat tinned.
1 dessert spoon of cocoa powder.
2 dessert spoon of skimmed milk powder.
1 tsp vanilla extract or seeds from 1 vanilla pod.
1 tsp of ice cream stabiliser. (optional)
70g sultanas.
70ml rum or brandy.
60g pistachio nuts – crushed.
Tip: Tinned coconut milk contains creamy coconut solids and liquid. Use the creamy solids and make up the 150ml with the coconut liquid.

Parisian Scrolls: (makes 18-20)
130g caster sugar.
2 egg whites – equal to 80g.
65g warm melted butter.
60g plain flour – sieved.
1 tsp vanilla extract.
Pinch of salt.
20g melted chocolate. For dipping ends of baked scrolls – optional

Caramel Nibs: (makes 260g)
120g honey.
120g double cream.
50g golden syrup.
60g white chocolate.

Poached Pears: (Serves 6)
6 firm fresh pears – peeled with stalks still attached.
200ml water.
500ml blackcurrant juice/cordial with 50% juice.
Juice and zest of 1 lemon.
6 cloves.
3 cardamon pods.
3 star anise.
2 bay leaf.
1/2 cinnamon stick.

Method/cook:

Ice Cream:
In a small dish, soak the sultanas in rum or brandy – for at least 5 hours.
Add the water and sugar to a pan. Slowly bring to a boil. Once boiling simmer for 5 minutes to create a light syrup. Set aside to cool.
In a thick bottomed pan add the milk, coconut milk, cocoa powder, milk powder, vanilla and stabiliser. Bring to a boil then simmer for 3 minutes. Sieve into a clean bowl and set aside to cool.
Once the the milk mixture is cool add the syrup and any excess liquid from the soaked sultanas – don’t add the sultanas.
Churn the ice cream mix in an ice cream maker.
When your ice cream has formed, remove from ice cream maker and mix in crushed pistachio nuts and soaked sultanas. Freeze for several hours in a suitable container.

Parisian Scrolls:
Set oven to gas 5 or 190°C / 375°F
Melt butter and add vanilla. Set aside.
With a hand mixer whip the egg whites and salt to stiff peaks.
With a balloon whisk, fold the sugar, flour, butter and vanilla into the whipped egg whites. Combine thoroughly.
On a baking tray, lined with silicon paper, place 2 teaspoons of the mixture three inches apart. With the back of the spoon spread each portion of mixture out, using a circular motion, to a 10cm-11cm circle. (see image)

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Bake on the middle shelf for 8-10 mins’. The outer edges will bake to a rusty brown while the centers will be lighter in colour.
Remove tray from the oven, leave for 10 seconds then quickly lift each wafer, flip over and roll. The wafers are hot so asbestos fingers are required – no pain no gain. Set aside to crisp up on cooling racks. (see image) When cool, dip ends of scrolls in melted chocolate – this is optional.

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Tip: Perform a test bake or two to get your technique correct.
Don’t be tempted to over bake the parisian scrolls, as over baking will cause them to brake in the rolling process.
I usually bake two to a tray until all the mixture has been used up.
Store your baked and cooled Parisian Scrolls in an airtight container.

Caramel Nibs: (Sugar thermometer needed)
Note: When making this caramel never leave the pan unattended. It will boil over and burn. Take your time, lightly stir regularly once boiling.
Place the honey, cream and syrup into a thick bottomed pan.
Slowly bring to a boil then turn down the heat slightly.
Using a sugar thermometer, bring caramel to softball temperature – 116°C / 240°F
Once reaching the required temperature, remove from the heat and mix in the white chocolate. Pour the caramel into a heat proof tin/dish lined with parchment paper. I use an oblong dish that is 21cm L x 7cm W x 3cm D. (see image)

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Leave the caramel to cool at room temp’. Once cool, wrap in cling film and refrigerate.
When you are ready for serving with the ice cream etc; cut off small chunks/nibs with a sharp knife.  Use as and when ice cream is on the menu or you just fancy a, melt in the mouth, caramel hit.

Poached Pears:
Add the liquids, spices and lemon to a large pan.
Trim the bottoms of your peeled pears so that they will stand upright.
Place your pears into the pan with the other ingredients.
Bring the blackcurrant liquid to a boil and pop on a lid. Simmer the pears for 35-40 mins’ or until soft. Once cooked remove from the heat.
Place the pears in a clean dish and pour over the blackcurrant liquid. (see image)

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Leave to cool, then chill in the refrigerator.

Serving:
Now that all your prep’ is done it’s just a matter of serving as you see fit. The dessert can be plated for each individual or the poached pears can be presented in a serving dish with the ice cream and Parisian Scrolls offered on the side. Don’t forget your caramel nibs.

chicken, food blogging, food photography, recipes, salad, savoury, spices

Spicy Chicken Roulade with a Mango Salad and Dressing. Served on a bed of Quinoa.

Spicy Chicken Salad
Spicy chicken roulade with a mango salad and a mango and lemon dressing.

A quick and tasty chicken salad that’s perfect for an alfresco lunch or dinner.
The chicken can be served hot or cold and makes for a great picnic food also.
This is my first dish to incorporate Quinoa seeds. Quinoa is a wonderful, protein packed, alternative to rice and is gluten free. I will certainly be using it again as it went down well with my family of foodie guinea pigs – Quinoa originates from the Andes funny enough.

Ingredients: (Serves two)

Chicken Roulade:
1 large chicken breast or 2 small breasts.
30g unsalted butter.
Seasoning.
Juice of half a lemon.
For the filling:
2 cloves garlic sliced.
1 medium green chilli finely chopped.
15g fresh ginger chopped.
Juice of half a lime.
1 tsp ground coriander.
1 tsp ground cumin.
1 tsp ground turmeric.
1/2 tsp five spice.
1/4 teaspoon of coarse salt.
Pinch of black pepper.
2 tabls olive oil.
1 red onion finely chopped.

Mango Dressing:
140g of fresh mango.
Juice of half a lemon.
100ml warm chicken stock.
Seasoning.

Quinoa:
80g Quinoa seeds.
350ml chiken or veg’ stock.
Seasoning.

Garnish:
Fresh leaf salad.
10 Slices of red chilli.
4 wedges of lime.
Slices of fresh mango.
Sprigs of fresh coriander or parsley.
Drizzle of olive oil.

Method/cook:

Mango Dressing:
Put all the ingredients into a food processor and blitz until smooth.
Set aside in the refrigerator.

Quinoa: (I used tri-colour seeds)
Rinse the quinoa seeds in cold water.
Bring the seeds to a boil in the stock.
Once boiling simmer, with a lid, for 10 minutes.
Once cooked, drain, season and set aside.

The Roulade Filling:
In a pestle and mortar grind the garlic, chilli, ginger, salt and pepper.
Once ground, add the lime juice and the spices – combine and set aside.
In a frying pan, gently heat the olive and lightly fry the red onion until softened. Once the onions have softened, add your spice mix and lightly cook out the spices for 3 minutes. Set aside to chill in the refrigerator.
Note: A well chilled filling will be easier to roll later when forming the roulade.
Tip: Add a touch more oil if the pan becomes dry.

Prepare Chicken Breast:
Butterfly the chicken breast by slicing along its length. Only cutting halfway into the breast and opening out. (see images)
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Once you have butterflied the chicken breast, place it between two layers of cling film, or in a polythene bag. Flatten out the chicken breast using a rolling pin, meat mallet or tenderiser.  (see images)
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Don’t worry if the chicken breast has a tear or hole.
Once the chicken breast has been batted out, season with salt and black pepper. Now cover with a layer of your well chilled spicy filling. (see image)
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Roll up your breast meat and wrap tightly in a layer of cling film – twisting the ends. Wrap in a second layer of cling film and again twisting the ends. (see image)
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The roulade can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator.

Cooking The Roulade:
Bring a pan of water to a simmer.
Place your roulade, in the cling film, in the simmering water and pop on a lid.
Simmer the roulade for 20 minutes.
I use a saute pan with a lid. (see image)
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The two ramekins stop the roulade from floating about in the simmering water – less risk of the cling film coming undone.
After twenty minutes remove the roulade, still in the cling film, and place in a cold frying pan. Leave the roulade to cool for 10 minutes then remove the cling film. Juices will run out when you cut the cling film.
Note: The roulade will contain juices that will run out when the cling film is removed. You want to retain them.
After removing the cling film, put the frying pan on a low heat and add the butter.
Lightly brown the roulade – being careful not to burn the butter.
Once the roulade has browned (see image) add the lemon juice and set aside to keep warm.
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Serving:
Serve slices of the chicken roulade on a bed of Quinoa.
Arrange fresh slices of mango with the salad leaves – spoon over some of the mango dressing.
Garnish with wedges of lime, coriander herb and slices of fresh chillis.
Drizzle with olive oil.

Enjoy!

baklava, desserts, food blogging, food photography, panna cotta, recipes, restaurant food, sweets, thefoodygrail.com

Wild Blackberry and Baklava Dessert.

Wild Blackberry Panna Cotta and Baklava Dessert.
Blackberry Panna Cotta with an Apricot and Nut Baklava.
Served with Whipped Cream, Sharon Fruit and a Blackberry Sauce.

British hedgerow meets Italian cream meets Ottoman delight.
Wild Blackberries are growing in abundance here in England at the moment. I don’t think I have ever seen so many fruits – it’s a bumper year – but a word of caution.
My first container was half full when an elderly lady appeared with three Great Danes…I will only pick fruits growing above chest height from now on.
After a few hours picking and culling the little black jewels, I put 500g of fruit to one side and froze the rest.
The recipe for today is a Wild Blackberry Panna Cotta with an apricot and nut Baklava. Served with whipped cream, Sharon fruit and a Blackberry sauce.
This dessert can be made in advance, chilled in the refrigerator and served when ready.

Ingredients:

Blackberry Panna Cotta: (makes 5 150ml desserts)
500ml double cream.
200ml skimmed milk.
1 tsp vanilla extract.
1/2 tsp agar agar or setting agent of your choice.
300g fresh blackberries.
70g sugar.
4 tabls water.

Blackberry Sauce:
200g fresh blackberries.
25g sugar.
Juice of 1/2 lemon.
2 tabls water.

Apricot and Nut Baklava: ( makes 20 x 25 tray bake)
15 20cm x 25cm sheets of filo pastry.
300g ground mixed nuts (100g each of walnuts, hazelnuts and almond)
180g melted butter.
150g dried apricots – pureed in a food processor.

for the Baklava syrup:
100g sugar.
210 ml water.
180g honey.

Garnish:
2 ripe Sharon fruits.
15 fresh blackberries.
125ml double or whipping cream.
10g ground and roasted mixed nuts. (optional)

Method/cook:

Blackberry Panna Cotta:
Add the blackberries, water and sugar to a pan and bring to a boil.
Once boiling, turn down the heat, add the agar agar, simmer for 4 minutes.
Next, blend the blackberry and agar agar mix then pass through a fine sieve. Set aside.
Bring the milk and double cream to just boiling. Thoroughly whisk in the blackberry and agar agar mix.
When combined, divide into five 150ml dariole moulds. Leave to set overnight.
When set, and ready to serve, loosen the at the edges then dip the moulds in hot water for 1 minute. Turn out your Panna cottas on to serving plates.

Blackberry Sauce:
Put all the ingredients into a pan.
Bring to a boil and simmer for 4 minutes.
Once simmered, pass through a sieve and set aside to cool.
Once cooled, chill in the refrigerator.

Apricot and Nut Baklava:
Set oven to gas 3 or 160°C/325°F
In your baking tray, place a single sheet of filo pastry and brush well with butter.
Do this with a further 4 sheets of filo – brushing each layer with plenty butter.
Now add a layer of ground nuts Approx’ 8 tabls’ and a layer of apricots. (see image)
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Add a layer of filo and press down. (see image)
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Now brush with butter and again add a further 4 layers of well buttered filo.
Add a further layer of nuts, followed by 5 more buttered layers of filo pastry.
Bake in the oven for 45 mins’ to 60 mins’ until golden brown.

Now make the Baklava syrup:
Place all ingredients into a pan, stir and bring to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes.
Once boiled, turn down the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Set aside.

Once the Baklava has baked, cut into squares. Leave to cool and then pour over the warm Baklava syrup.
Leave to soak for several hours – preferably overnight.
(see image – minus a few irresistible squares)
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Serving:
Turn out your Panna Cottas on to serving plates.
Add two squares of Baklava.
Spoon on ripe Sharon fruit.
Top your Panna Cotta with whipped cream and Blackberry sauce.
Garnish with fresh blackberries.
Optional: top cream with ground and roasted mixed nuts.

Enjoy.

bread, broth, food blogging, food photography, oxtail, pickles, quenelles, recipes, restaurant food, savoury, soup, thefoodygrail.com

Glazed Oxtail with Prawn Quenelles, Oxtail Broth and Pickled Radish. Accompanied by Mini Miso buns.

Glazed oxtail in an oxtail broth.
A rich glazed oxtail dish with prawn quenelles, pickled radish and mini miso buns.

“Oxtail and Prawns!!” I hear you exclaim. The same indignation, to my choice of ingredients, was forthcoming from two family members. Not one to take umbrage, I set out to offer them the ‘proof in the pudding’ as it were.
Later that day, the soothsayers of culinary fusion were not only eating ‘oxtail and prawns’ but their negative words also.

Ingredients:

Oxtail: makes approx’ 1.5 litres of broth.
600g oxtail or 4-6 cuts of oxtail.
270g celery or 4-5 sticks – chopped.
150g red onion or 2 small red onions – chopped.
150g carrot or 1 large carrot – peeled and sliced.
50g unsalted butter.
1.2 litre of rich beef stock. One Knorr rich beef stock pot is fine.
1/2 litre of water.
3 tsps tomato puree.
2 bay leaves.
2 sprigs of fresh thyme.
2 tsps chopped parsley.
2 garlic cloves – sliced.

Glaze:
300ml rich beef stock. Half a Knorr rich beef stock pot is fine.
3 dessert spoons of honey.
2 dessert spoons white wine vinegar.
1 dessert spoon of light soy sauce.
Black pepper to season.

Prawn Quenelles: makes approx’ twelve if using teaspoons.
200g cooked prawns.
20ml double cream.
1 egg white.
1/2 tsp wasabi paste.
Seasoning – salt and pepper.

Pickled Radish:
4-5 radish sliced.
1 level dessert spoon of sea salt.
50ml white wine vinegar.
1 1/2 dessert spoons of sugar.

Mini Miso Buns: makes approx’ 12 buns.
200g strong bread flour.
125ml warm water.
1 tsp sugar.
7g fresh yeast or 1 dessert spoon of dried yeast or 1 tsp of easy yeast.
2 tsps ground coriander.
2 heaped tsps miso paste.
1 egg yolk mixed with 2 tabls of water for egg wash.
1 tsp of caraway or sesame seeds.
Extra flour for kneading.

Garnish:
1 spring onion cut in to fine strips.

Method/cook:

Oxtail:
Set oven to gas 7 or 220°C/425°F.
Place cuts of oxtail in a baking tray. Drizzle with oil and roast in the oven until well browned. Aprox’ 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
While the oxtails roast start to prepare the broth.
Melt the butter in a large pan.
Add the celery, onion and carrot to the butter and sweat until soft.
Next, add the tomato puree and cook out for several minutes.
Add the stock, water, herbs and garlic and bring to a simmer.
Once simmering remove from the heat.
When the oxtails have roasted, add them to the broth and simmer for 2-3 hours, or until the oxtail meat is tender.
When the oxtails are cooked turn off the heat and skim off any fat. Leave the broth and oxtails to cool in the pan. Once cooled remove the oxtails and set aside.
Season the broth with salt and pepper. Blend the broth with a hand blender and pass through a sieve. Set aside.

Mini Miso Buns: (Don’t add salt as the miso paste is salty.)
Firstly mix the flour with the coriander – set aside.
If using fresh yeast or active dried yeast, dissolve yeast with the warm water and the sugar.
After yeast has fermented, and frothed up, add to the flour and coriander. Form a dough and kneed for 5 minutes.
Place dough in a floured bowl. Cover the dough and leave to prove, in a warm place, until doubled in size.
Next, on a floured surface, roll out the dough to approx’ 13cm x 11cm. Spread with miso paste (see image)
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Fold the dough over a 1/3 (see image)
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Fold the dough over another 1/3 to create an oblong (see image)
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Spread more miso paste over the top half. (see image)
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Fold the bottom half of the dough up over the top half. (see image)
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Roll out the pastry to approx’ 20cm x 30cm. (see image)
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Roll up the pastry in to a sausage shape. (see image)
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Once rolled, cut in to 10-12 slices. (see image)
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Lightly dust each slice with flour and press down with the palm of your hand. (see image)
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Place your dough portions on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with caraway or sesame seeds. Leave to prove and double in size. (See image)
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Once proved, bake at gas 7 or 220°C/425°F for 20 minutes.
Once baked place on a cooling rack. (See image)

Once cooled, store the buns in an airtight container.

Prawn Quenelles:
Place prawns, egg white, wusabi and seasoning in a food processor.
Blitz to a smooth paste.
Add the cream and blitz until thoroughly combined.
Using two teaspoons, form quenelles with the prawn mix.
Steam the quenelles in a bamboo steamer over a pan of simmering water for 4 minutes. (see image)
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Note: If you don’t have a steamer, poach the quenelles
in simmering water.
When the quenelles are cooked, remove from the steamer, and set aside.

Pickled Radish:
In a dish, sprinkle the slices of radish with the salt.
Leave for 2 hours and drain off any liquid.
Rinse the radish in cold water and then dry.
Heat the vinegar and sugar in a pan. Once boiling pour over the radish.
Leave the radish for 1-2 hours to pickle. Set aside.

Glaze:
Set oven to gas 7 or 220°C/425°F
Place all the glaze ingredients in to a saute pan and bring to a simmer.
Add the previously cooked oxtails.
Spoon over the glaze and place in the oven to re-heat.
Cook the oxtails in the glaze for 35-40 mins. Baste at 10 minute intervals.
When the oxtails are heated, remove the pan from the oven, place on the hob, and continue to reduce the glaze for several minutes while basting the oxtails.
Set aside and keep warm.

Now that all the prep is done it’s time to put the dish together.

Re-heat the broth and the quenelles.
Place a ladle full of broth into each of your warm serving bowls.
Place a glazed oxtail into each bowl, followed by portions of quenelles and pickled radish.
Garnish with spring onion and drizzle with extra glaze.

Enjoy.

food blogging, food photography, steak pie, steak pudding, thefoodygrail.com

Baked Steak and Madeira Pudding with a Cauliflower and Mustard Purée.

steak pudding
Baked Steak and Madeira Pudding.

Steak pudding is a British classic. It can be baked, as in this recipe, or steamed.
Fit for any high class ‘gastropub’ this meaty main, with a rich gravy, will not disappoint.
Served with a cauliflower and mustard purée, roasted fennel, sweet shallots, Girolle mushrooms and a side of chunky fries.

Ingredients: (makes four puddings)

Beef Filling:
400g diced stewing beef.
50g seasoned flour.
500ml beef stock.
100ml madeira wine.
2-3 tbls olive oil.
1/2 onion – chopped.
3 button mushrooms – halved and sliced.
15cm stick of celery diced.
1 bay leaf.
1 tsp fresh thyme.
1 tsp fresh parsley.
Seasoning – salt and black pepper.

4 small pickled gherkins – diced. Set aside for later.

Suet Pastry:
350g self raising flour.
75g butter.
100g veg’ suet.
1 level tsp salt.
150ml cold water.
Extra flour for rolling out dough.
Extra butter for greasing moulds.

Roasted Shallots:
12 shallots – peeled.
Drizzle of olive oil.
Seasoning.
1 dessert spoon of sugar.
Tip: Trim the root end, don’t remove it, as the shallots will fall apart when roasting. You want them to keep there shape.

Cauliflower and Mustard Purée:
1/2 cauliflower – cut in to florets.
Seasoning.
Drizzle of olive oil.
2 tsps of English or French mustard.
Juice of 1/2 lemon.

Roast Fennel:
1 fennel bulb – sliced.
Drizzle of olive oil.
Seasoning.
2 tsps dried Marjoram.

Girolle Mushrooms:
20 Girolle mushrooms. Brush off any dirt and remove any stork ends that are blemished. Don’t wash them.
Knob of butter.
Seasoning.
Squeeze of lemon.

Chunky Fries:
3-4 potatoes cut in to chunky fries.
Vegetable oil for deep frying.

Fresh Fennel Herb and Thyme to garnish. Or just use fresh parsley.

Method/cook:

Steak Filling:
Set oven to Gas 4 or 180°C/350°F.
Coat your diced Steak in the seasoned flour – set aside.
In a sauté pan, soften and lightly brown the onion, button mushroom and celery in 1 tabls of oil. Once cooked, remove from pan and set aside.
Using the same pan add another tabls of olive oil and brown your seasoned steak.
Note: If the pan becomes dry add another tablespoon of olive oil.
When the steak has browned add the Madeira wine and flame to burn off the alcohol.
Tip: At arms length, tilt pan toward flame so that the Madeira catches light – be careful, as the flame will initially be vigorous before the alcohol burns off.
Now add the stock, herbs and seasoning. Stir and bring the contents of the pan to a simmer, pop on a lid and place in the oven for 2 hours to cook – or until the meat is tender.
When the meat is cooked, now in a rich gravy, remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Suet Pastry:
In a bowl mix the flour, suet and salt.
Now rub in the chilled butter until dispersed into the flour mix.
Add the water and combine in to a dough.
Now line the individual pudding/dariole moulds. I used 8cm x 5cm moulds.
Firstly, grease your moulds with butter.
Divide pastry in to four portions.
On a floured surface, roll out each portion of the dough to a 20cm circle. (see image)_V2A7660
Line each, greased, mould with a pastry circle. Press the pastry in to the bottom and around the sides of each mould. Remove any air pockets in the base. (see image)
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Trim off excess pastry and set aside to make pastry lids. (see image)
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Now roll out trimmed pastry portions to 15cm circles. Cut out pastry lids using a mould as a template. (see images)
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Chill your lined moulds and pastry lids for 1 hour.

Filling the puddings:
Remove the pieces of cooled steak from the gravy. Break any large pieces of steak in to smaller pieces.
Place pieces of steak into the base of your lined moulds – fill only 1/3. Top with a few chopped gherkins. (see image)
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Now add a dessert spoon of the gravy that the meat was cooked in.
Top with more meat and gherkins then finish with a dessert spoon of gravy. Keep the remaining gravy for serving later.
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Wet the edges of the pastry around the top of the moulds and top with pastry lids – press the edges to create a seal. With a knife, make two incisions in each of the the lids. (see image)
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Bake your puddings for 35-40 minutes at Gas 6 or 200°C/400°F.
Tip: The puddings can be prepared a couple of days in advance and baked on the day.

With the puddings made, the rest, being the veg’ and garnish, is very easy indeed.

Cauliflower and Mustard Purée:
Set oven to gas 5 or 190°C/375°F.
Place your florets of cauliflower in a baking tray.
Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Cover with tin foil and roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until cauliflower is cooked.
Once cauliflower is cooked, blend in a food processor along with the mustard and lemon juice. Set aside.

Roasted Shallots:
Set oven to gas 5 or 190°C/375°F.
Place your peeled shallots in a roasting tray.
Drizzle with oil.
Season with salt and pepper.
Sprinkle with sugar.
Roast for 30-40 minutes until onions are soft and golden brown. Turn several times during roasting so that the shallots turn a golden brown all over.
Once cooked – set aside.

Roasted Fennel:
Set oven to gas 5 or 190°C/375°F.
Place slices of Fennel in a roasting tray. (see image)
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Drizzle with oil, season and sprinkle with marjoram.
Roast for 35-45 minutes.
Once cooked – set aside.

Girolle Mushrooms: (Cook these just before serving)
Lightly fry the girolles in butter.
Season with salt and pepper.
Finish with a squeeze of lemon.

Fresh Fennel Herb and Fresh Thyme for garnish.

Tip: The cauliflower, fennel and shallots can be cooked at the same time as the steak, at Gas 4 or 180°C/350°F. They will take longer to cook, as the oven temperature is lower, but it can save on the overall cooking time.
The vegetables can also be prepared and cooked in advance and warmed up at the same time the steak puddings are baking.

To Serve:
Put your fries on to cook in a deep fryer.
Heat up the gravy left from cooking the steak.
Tip: The gravy can be blended and sieved for a smooth texture – I prefer to leave it.
Spoon some of the hot gravy on to your serving plates.
Arrange your cooked steak puddings, cauliflower puree, veg’ and garnish.
Serve with a side of chunky fries and glass of red wine. Enjoy.

desserts, food blogging, food photography, lemon curd, mousse, shortbread biscuits, sorbets, sweets, thefoodygrail.com

Vanilla and Lemon Curd Jelly Dessert served with an Orange Sorbet.

Vanilla and lemon mouse.
A summer dessert with orange sorbet and buttery shortbread

A light vanilla mousse, layered with a tangy lemon curd jelly and garnished with slices of, Zespri SunGold, kiwi and a passion fruit syrup. With an orange sorbet accompaniment, it makes for a beautiful and refreshing summer dessert.
Lets not ignore the shortbread base recipe. It’s a, melt in the mouth, buttery sensation with enough to make extra biscuits – you can’t have enough shortbread…gone already.

Ingredients: (Makes four 9cm x 4cm round desserts or six rectangle 12cm x 4cm x 3cm desserts)

Shortbread: (for base and extra slices as accompaniment)
165g softened unsalted butter.
73g caster sugar.
225g plain flour – sieved.
20g cornflour – sieved.
1 tsp vanilla extract.
Zest of a lemon (optional)
1/4 tsp of salt.
Extra flour for dusting and rolling dough.
Caster sugar to sprinkle on uncooked shortbread.

Lemon Curd Jelly:
135g caster sugar.
2 large eggs
Juice and zest of 4 lemons – approx 130g – 135g.
1/2 tsp of agar agar or setting agent of choice. (equiv’ to 1 leaf of gelatin)
140g unsalted butter – cut in to cubes.

Orange Sorbet: (makes approx 450ml)
300ml fresh orange juice.
Zest of two oranges.
130g sugar.
200ml water.
1g silk gel (optional)
Note: Silk gel stops sorbets from becoming to icy/solid. Also less sugar syrup can be used in your recipes.

Vanilla Mouse:
170ml double cream.
120g cream cheese.
20g caster sugar.
1 tsp vanilla extract.
Juice of 1 lime
1 tabls water.
1/2 tsp of agar agar or setting agent of choice. (equiv’ to 1 leaf of gelatin)

2 egg whites.
40g caster sugar.
Pinch of salt.

Passion Fruit Syrup:
100ml water
2 dessert spoons of sugar.
1 passion fruit.

Garnish:
4-5 Kiwi fruits. Zespri SunGold are so sweet – they are ideal.
3-4 Passion fruits.
Fresh Cherries or summer fruit of your choice.
12 sprigs of fresh mint.

Method/cook:

Shortbread: (oven gas 5 or 190°C / 375°F)
Cream together the softened butter, sugar, vanilla, lemon zest and salt.
Combine the sieved flour and cornflour.
Make a dough by adding the flour mix to the creamed butter mix.
Bring all the ingredients together, wrap in cling film, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Once the dough has chilled, roll out on a floured surface to 1cm in thickness.
Using your round or rectangle moulds – the same moulds you will use to set your mousse and curd – cut out your shortbread.
Use up all the shortbread mix by cutting further rectangles or rounds that can be served as a biscuit accompaniment.
Place your shortbread shapes on lined baking sheets, sprinkle with caster sugar, and bake for 10 minutes at gas 5 or 190°C / 375°F – middle shelf.
Tip: After 5 minutes baking, turn your baking trays so that the shortbread at the front go to the back. Bake for the remaining 5 minutes. This gives your shortbread a more even bake.
When your shortbread has cooked, remove from the oven, and immediately, while still hot, re-cut the shortbread with your round or rectangle moulds. I have used both as an example. (See image)
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Re-cutting the shortbread is important, as the shortbread expands during baking and you want the biscuit bases to fit inside of the moulds.
Once cooled, store shortbread in an airtight container. Eat the trimmed pieces.

Lemon Curd Jelly:
Except for the butter, place rest of ingredients into a thick bottomed pan and combine, thoroughly, with a hand whisk.
Note:
If using leaf gelatin – soak in a dish of water first before adding.
Put the pan over a medium heat and, while stirring, slowly bring the contents to just boiling.
Remove from the heat and stir in the butter.
Sieve the curd and set aside to cool.
Once chilled, store in an airtight container and refrigerate to chill.

Orange Sorbet:
Create syrup by bringing the water and sugar to a boil in a thick bottomed pan.
Once syrup boils add the orange zest and silk gel and simmer for 5 minuets.
Once syrup has simmered leave to cool.
Add the fresh orange juice to the syrup and strain.
Chill the orange and syrup mixture in the refrigerator.
Once chilled, churn in an ice cream maker and store the resulting sorbet in a freezer.
Note: If you don’t have an ice cream maker, place the sorbet mix in a suitable container and pop in the freezer. Stir the sorbet mixture every couple of hours until it creates a soft, but frozen ice.

Passion Fruit Syrup:
Bring the sugar and water to a boil.
Once boiling reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Leave to cool.
Add the seeds and juice from the passion fruit. Chill and set aside.

Vanilla Mouse:
Whip the double cream to soft peaks – set aside.
Mix the cream cheese, vanilla and 20g of caster sugar. set aside.
Place lime juice, water and agar agar in a pan and bring to a simmer. Once simmering take off heat and set aside. Note: If using leaf gelatin – soak in a dish of water first before adding to the warm lime juice.
Whisk egg whites, with a pinch of salt, until stiff peaks form. Then add the 40g of sugar to the stiff egg whites and whisk for 3 minutes.
With a hand whisk, combine the warm agar agar and lime juice to the cream cheese mixture.
Now add the whipped cream to the cream cheese mix and combine with hand whisk.
Now fold in the egg white mix until well combined.

Making the individual desserts:
On a baking sheet, place a shortbread biscuit in the base of your moulds.
Now pipe a layer of vanilla mousse in each mould – a third of the way up. (See image)
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Follow the vanilla layer by piping a lemon curd layer.
Now pipe a final vanilla layer, on top of the curd layer, and smooth with a palette knife. (See image)
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Chill your individual layered desserts for several hours to set – overnight if you can.

Serving/plating:

Once the desserts have set, carefully run a thin bladed knife around the edge of the moulds. With the mold still in place, slide a palette knife under the whole dessert and transfer to a plate. Carefully remove mould.
Garnish the top of each mouse with passion friut and mint sprigs.
Serve with slices of, Zespri SunGold, kiwi fruit, a scoop of orange sorbet and a drizzle of the passion fruit syrup.
I added a couple of fresh cherries, but any summer fruit will suffice.
Serve with extra shortbread biscuits.

Enjoy.

chocolate, chocolate cream, desserts, food blogging, food photography, ice cream, licorice, liquorice, recipes, restaurant food, sweets, thefoodygrail.com

Fruit Tart with Liquorice Ice Cream and Blackcurrant Jelly.

fruit tart with liquorice ice cream
Fruit Tart with Liquorice Ice Cream. Served with Chocolate Cream and Blackcurrant Jelly

A melt in the mouth sweet pastry filled with a tangy fruit compote and topped with a dark chocolate cream. But it doesn’t stop there; Jelly and ice cream will take you back to your childhood…Mmm liquorice and blackcurrant.

Ingredients: Makes 6 tarts.

Liquorice Ice Cream: (makes approx’ 500ml)
3 egg yolks.
75g sugar.
300ml whole milk.
30ml double cream.
20g skimmed milk powder.
1/4 tsp salt.
1 tsp vanilla extract.
1 1/2 tspns liquorice powder.
1 tsp liquorice syrup.
1g ice cream stabiliser. (Optional)

Pastry for tart cases:
200g plain flour.
125g chilled butter.
50g caster sugar.
1 beaten egg.
Pinch of salt.

Blackcurrant Jelly:
100ml blackcurrant cordial (50% juice).
100ml summer fruit juice.
1 level tsp Agar Agar or jelling agent you prefer.
Note: I prefer agar agar as it sets to a gel at room temperature and makes wonderful soft jellies.

Fruit Compote:
180g Frozen summer fruits.
3 dessert spoons sugar.
Juice of 1/2 lemon.
3 tbls of cold water.
1 heaped tsp of cornflour.

Chocolate Cream:
150g Dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
110ml skimmed milk.
35ml double cream.
1 1/2 tsps sugar.
1 tsp vanilla extract.

Garnish:
6 fresh strawberries
6 sprigs of mint.
Zest of 1 large orange.
Or use fresh fruits of your choice.

Method/cook:

Ice Cream:
Mix 2 dessert spoons of the sugar with the ice cream stabiliser. Set aside.
In a thick bottomed pan heat the milk, cream, milk powder, salt vanilla, liquorice powder and syrup to 82°C / 180°F. Note: Bring to a simmer if you don’t have a thermometer.
When the milk mixture has reached the required temperature, remove from the heat, and leave to cool for 3 mins’. Stir in the sugar and stabiliser mix.
With a whisk, cream together your egg yolks and remaining sugar in a heat proof bowl.
Now add your hot milk mixture to the egg yolks and sugar to create a custard – combine with a hand whisk.
Note: Make sure that your milk mixture isn’t to hot as it will scramble the egg.
Pour the custard back into your thick bottomed pan, and on a low heat, stir until the custard thickens. When the mixture coats the back of a spoon remove from the heat.
Note: If you have a thermometer. Heat and stir the custard to 60°C / 140°F and cook until the custard has thickened, about 5 mins’.
Strain the custard into a clean bowl and leave to cool.
Once cool refrigerate until chilled.
Once chilled, churn your custard in an ice cream maker.
Store your finished ice cream in a suitable container in the freezer.
Note: You can make this ice cream without the stabiliser but it will freeze to a firmer texture.

Jelly:
Heat all the ingredients to just boiling.
Pour the hot fruit liquid into an oblong mould or dish, lined with cling film. Pop any bubbles that may form. Set aside to set. (See image)
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Tart Pastry cases:
Rub the chilled butter into the flour and salt.
Combine the sugar and the beaten egg.
Make a dough by combining the the egg mix to the flour mix.
Wrap in cling film and chill until pastry is firm.
Note: Initially this pastry mix is quite sticky. Have some extra flour ready to sprinkle over your hands when combining into a dough. Refrigerate the dough overnight, if you can, as it will help when it comes to rolling out.
When the dough has chilled divide into 6 equal portions and roll each piece into a circle – large enough to line 10cm tart cases.
Line six 10 cm tart cases with pastry. Bake blind for 10 minutes at gas 6 or 200°C/400°F
After 10 mins’ remove tart case from the oven. Remove parchment and baking beans and bake for a further 5 mins’ at gas 3 or 160°C/325°F.
Once baked remove from oven and leave to cool.
Note: Baking blind – line uncooked pastry tarts with parchment and weight down with baking beans, dried peas or rice. This stops the bases of the tarts rising (See image)
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Fruit Compote:
Except for the cornflour, in a pan, heat all the ingredients to a simmer.
Mix the cornflour with 2 tabls of water and add to the simmering fruit mixture.
When fruit mixture thickens remove from the heat and set aside to chill.
Note: Don’t be tempted to add extra sugar to the compote. A slight tang or sourness is required to balance out the overall sweetness of the final dish.

Chocolate Cream:
Put all the ingredients into a pan and heat gently. As the chocolate melts whisk all the ingredients together until smooth.
Place in a clean receptacle to cool. Once cooled, place in refrigerator to firm to a piping consistency.

To serve:
Dust the edge of each tart case with icing sugar.
Half fill the tart cases with fruit compote. Top with a swirl of chocolate cream.
Turn out the jelly and cut into cubes. Arrange on the plate with slices of strawberry.
Tip: Slices of strawberry will stick to the sides of the moist jelly cubes – it gives a little height and interest to the dish.
Pipe more chocolate swirls around the plate.
Place a scoop of ice cream topped with orange zest with your finished dish.
Enjoy.