Recipes

You will need a 23cm (9in) cake tin with a removable base, or a rectangular cake tin. First, make the pastry. Place the flour, the butter and the sugar in a food processor and whizz briefly.

Add half the beaten egg and continue to whizz. You might need to add a little more egg - but not too much, as the mixture should be just moist enough to come together. If you're making the pastry by hand, rub the butter into the flour and sugar until it resembles breadcrumbs, then using your hands, add enough beaten egg to bring it together.

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Put the apple chunks in a small saucepan with one teaspoon of water, cover the saucepan and cook it over a low heat for about 8-10 minutes until the apple chunks are cooked down to a pulp. Allow to cool.

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Remove the tough outer leaves from the savoy cabbage. Cut the head of cabbage into four, cutting from top to bottom. Cut out the core, then slice the cabbage crossways into fine shreds, about ¼in (5mm) thick.

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Pour the whole milk into a small saucepan and add the slices of carrot, the slices of onion, the sprig of parsley, the sprig of thyme, and the peppercorns. Bring the mixture to the boil, then decrease the heat and simmer for four to five minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to infuse for about 10 minutes.

While the milk infuses, make the roux. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over a low-to-medium heat and add the plain flour. Allow to cook for two minutes, stirring regularly. Set aside.

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Put the piece of back bacon or the smoked pork loin, whichever you're using, in a large saucepan, cover with water, and bring slowly to a boil. Drain, refill the pan with fresh water, and repeat. This is to get rid of the salt - which appears as white froth on the water - so it may need to be done again, depending on how salty the bacon is.
 
Taste the water to check for saltiness and keep checking and boiling the bacon again in fresh water until you are happy with the flavour.
 
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Put the cubed potato, the finely chopped onion and the sausage pieces in a large saucepan and add the bacon cooking water, the chicken stock or the water, whichever you are using. Add a little salt and freshly ground black pepper - but don't add too much salt if you're using bacon cooking water. Place over a medium heat and bring to a boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes, until the potatoes are just tender.

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Strawberry and rhubarb has to be my favourite summer flavour combination and in this recipe, 
the two juicy fruits lie underneath a 
thick blanket of crunchy, buttery deliciousness.

Method

Preheat the oven to 170°C, 325°F, Gas 3.

Grease a 1L (1¾pt) pie dish with butter, then add the rhubarb pieces and the sliced strawberries and scatter over the caster sugar.

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You can, if you wish, barbecue a whole chicken, though the bird needs to be spatchcocked first. This will flatten the chicken so that it will cook evenly on the barbecue.

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Brush each of the aubergine slices generously with the olive oil and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Allow the barbecue to get quite hot, then cook the aubergine slices for at least 4 minutes on each side. They should be golden and slightly charred, as well as good and soft, and not tough or hard. You could also do this on the hob on a good cast-iron griddle pan rather than on a barbecue.

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First, make about 8 long incisions through the fat of the butterflied leg of lamb or pork, to allow the marinade to soak in.

Heat a pan. Add the cumin and the coriander seeds, and cook for about |half a minute, until they’re toasted, then add the black peppercorns and the cardamom seeds, and toss in the pan for a few seconds.

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