Saturday, November 17, 2018

Spring Chicken Terrine - Red Tractor November


The Red Tractor calendar recipe for November is Spring Chicken Terrine.  I am not a huge fan of terrines, but they are OK.  Terrines are great for picnics or serving with crackers or bread as a starter at a dinner party.

This month's calendar quite is as follows:


When I was at University, jacarandas struck terror into the hearts of students, as legend had it that you were doomed if you had not started studying before the jacarandas bloomed.  It was also said that if a falling jacaranda flower hit you on the head, you would forget everything for your exam.  For this reason, this month's quote brings back that feeling of Swat Vac and exams - not the most pleasant feeling in the world.

This terrine is made with a mixture of pork mince, chicken mince, spinach and prosciutto. My terrine was a half recipe only.  I quite liked it, though would have loved some chilli to give it a bit of oomph.  Instead, I gave it oomph by serving it with mustard pickles and gherkins:  


If you would like to try this terrine for yourself, you will need:

500g pork mince
500g chicken mince 
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon fresh chopped thyme
2 tablespoons green peppercorns
2 eggs
1 packet frozen chopped spinach, thawed and with excess water squeezed out
Splash of balsamic vinegar
100ml chicken stock
salt and pepper
12 slices prosciutto

Preheat your oven to 170 degrees Celsius.

Mix the minces together in a large bowl.

In a small frypan, saute the onion until soft, and add to the bowl of mince with the allspice, peppercorns, thyme eggs, spinach, balsamic vinegar and chicken stock.  Season with salt and pepper to taste, and mix together well (your hands work best for this).

Grease a terrine dish and line with the prosciutto, reserving two slices for the top.  Put the mince mixture into the prepared terrine dish and pack down well.  Place the two reserved slices of prosciutto on top and press down well.

Place the terrine in a baking tray, filled halfway up the sides with hot water.  Put the baking tray in the oven and bake the terrine for one and half hours or until cooked through.

Remove the terrine from the oven and allow it to cool to room temperature on a wire rack.  Once cooled, cover the terrine with foil, and place a heavy object on top of it and put it in the fridge to chill overnight.

Serve with bread, crackers and your choice of condiments.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Ginger St Clement's Pudding Cake


When I saw the recipe for Helen Goh's Ginger St Clement's Pudding Cake, I knew that I had to make it.  I didn't see the recipe until a month after it had been published, and it has been on the backburner for a couple of weeks.  However, I finally got around to making it last night.  And by a happy coincidence, I discovered that today, 15 November, is International Bundt Day!  So without exerting any extra effort, I can participate in this event.


This cake is called St Clements Cake after the Old English Nursery rhyme starting "Orange and lemons say the bells of St Clements".  This is because the cake contains both orange and lemon flavours, as well as ginger, and is topped with a lemon yoghurt cream.

In the cake itself, I subbed out the lemon zest for orange zest, meaning the only lemon is from the lemon cream.  I did this because I had zested the orange before chopping up the rest of the orange for the cake, and did not want to waste the zest or the flesh of a lemon when I could just use the orange zest in the cake and solve both problems at once.  I upped the ante on the orange flavour by rubbing the orange zest into the sugar before creaming it with the butter, a step that is not in the original recipe.

This cake is really good.  I could not taste the ginger that much, but the orange flavour shone through brightly.  The cake is not overly sweet, and while I definitely feel that the lemon yoghurt cream added to the enjoyment of the cake, this is a cake that stands well on its own.  And it's a bundt cake - perfect for International Bundt Day!


If I have tempted you to try this cake, you will need:

150ml milk
100g plain Greek style yoghurt
280g self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
120g crystallised ginger (I didn't find any in syrup so just used the regular kind)
1 orange ~150g, peeled, cut into chunks and seeds removed
50g toasted flaked almonds
125g unsalted butter
200g sugar
zest of 1 lemon (I used the zest of the orange)
2 large eggs

Mix the milk and yoghurt together in a bowl and set aside.

Sift the flour and salt together and set aside.

Put the ginger and orange chunks into a food processor and blitz until chopped (but not pureed).  Add the almonds to the processor bowl and pulse until combined.

Preheat your oven to 190 degrees Celsius and grease and flour a 3 litre bundt pan.

Rub the zest into the sugar in the bowl of the stand mixer.  Add the butter to the bowl and beat together until smooth and creamy.Beat in the eggs, one at a time.  Add the ginger and orange mixture to the bowl and beat on low to just combine.

Add one third of the flour mixture to the bowl and mix in, then one third of the milk and yoghurt mixture.  Repeat twice more until all of the flour and all of the milk and yoghurt have been mixed in.

Scrape the batter into the prepared bundt tin and bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool in the tin for 30 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To serve, make the lemon yoghurt cream by combining 150ml of Greek yoghurt with 150ml of lemon curd in a bowl and spreading over the cake (I served it on the side instead).


Tuesday, November 13, 2018

TWD - Chocolate Cream Puffs with Marscapone Filling


This week's Tuesday with Dorie recipe sprang from Dorie's idea for chocolate choux pastry and a little romance.  It is chocolate cream puffs with marscapone filling.

The choux buns are made with a little cocoa in the dough to make them chocolate flavoured.  The hardest part of choux buns for me is stopping them from deflating while they are cooling.  M top tip for avoiding this is to stick a thin skewer in the top of each bun immediately once it is out of the oven to release the steam inside (which can cause it to collapse).  For me, the recipe made 12 choux buns.

The filling is marscapone lightened up with whipped cream that has been kissed by rosewater and tinged pink.  (That is where the romance comes in.)  To make them pretty once assembled, icing sugar is dusted over the top of the buns.

I am a sucker for a choux bun, so I did like these.  However, I prefer a crème patisserie filling to the cream - that's just a personal preference.

To see what everyone else thought of what they baked this week (either these or a gateau basque), visit the LYL section of the TWD website.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Lindsay's Cafe, Faulconbridge


Last week, we travelled to Sydney for a four day weekend.  It was marvellous to get away from it all for a while, and the weather was kind to us.

On the Monday, I ticked off a bucket list item by visiting the Norman Lindsay Gallery and Museum at Faulconbridge in the Blue Mountains.  You can read more about it here.

On the way there, Tim and I stopped for morning tea in Springwood, comprising coffee and a delicious Portugese custard tart from The Bakers Wife Juicery and Salad Bar in Macquarie Street, across the road from the train station: 


They also do a cracking range of raw sweets.

After we had our coffee, we ventured on to the Norman Lindsay Gallery at Faulconbridge by bus:


Inside the gallery, the Lindsays' kitchen remains for viewing, set up like it was back in the day when the family lived there:



The easiest option for getting lunch while at the Norman Lindsay Gallery is Lindsay's Café, which is attached to the etching studio.  You can eat your lunch indoors while being treated to lovely bush views:  


The food at Lindsay's Café is home style - not fancy, but it does the job quite nicely.  


Tim ordered the Duck Salad (seared duck, orange, walnuts, peas, quinoa, mixed leaves, orange garlic dressing) ($24):



He said it was just fine, not the best salad he's ever had, but good.

I ordered the Beef Burger (beef patty, gruyere, onion rings, BBQ sauce, tomato, mixed leaves) ($21): 


The beef patty was more rissole like than patty like, but again, this meal tasted fine, and the smoky BBQ sauce and onion rings were nice touches.

I saw that there was an Orange and Pistachio Cheesecake ($12) on the specials board, and I was so up for that:


Again, it was not the best cheesecake I have ever had and was not very sweet, but I did enjoy the crumbly pistachio base.

Ensure that you leave plenty of time for lunch as service is at a sedate pace, in keeping with the bush theme of the café.  However, the serving staff were friendly, and asked us how our meals were.

In keeping with the food theme, here is a larger than life model of Albert, The Magic Pudding, on the verandah of the gallery:


For the uninitiated, Albert is a self-regenerating pudding that never runs out, and he changes flavour from steak and kidney to apple pie.  This makes him the target of pudding thieves.  Unfortunately, he is a rather grumpy pudding, hence the filthy look he is giving me.

Lindsay's Café is a peaceful place to eat that enhanced our visit to the Norman Lindsay Gallery. 

12 Norman Lindsay Crescent
Faulconbridge NSW
Ph: (02) 4751 9611
Open 10-3 on weekdays and 9-4 on weekends

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Chocolate Yoghurt Bundt Cake


An age ago, I made a delicious Chocolate Yoghurt Bundt Cake from p188 of the 100th (and last) edition of Donna Hay Magazine (sold out online but I have seen copies of it in the shops still).  This handsome looking cake is super easy to make as well as delicious.  The chocolate flavour comes exclusively from cocoa, so it is also relatively inexpensive.



If you would like to make this cake (and to be honest, why not?), you will need:

3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1/4 cup buttermilk (or just sour the equivalent amount of milk with a little lemon juice)  
1 cup natural Greek-style yoghurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 cups self-raising flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius, and grease a 3 litre capacity bundt tin.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, buttermilk, yoghurt, vanilla and sugar.  Fold the flour and cocoa through the mixture until it is smooth.

Pour the batter into the prepared bundt tin and bake in the preheated oven for 50-55 minutes or until cooked through.  Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool in the tin for about 5 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool.

To ice the cake, put 1 1/4 cups icing sugar, 1/4 cup cocoa and 2 1/2 tablespoons boiling water together in a bowl and mix until smooth.  Pour the icing over the cooled cake and allow it to set before slicing and serving the cake.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Rhubarb and Butterscotch Layer Cake


Recently I saw a lovely sounding recipe for Rhubarb and Butterscotch Layer Cake on Stuff.co.nz, from Birdwood’s Gallery and Cafe in Havelock North, New Zealand. With a superb sounding flavour combination like that, I could not resist making it.

The cake itself contains chopped rhubarb, and is filled with caramel cream cheese icing and rose- tinged rhubarb pieces.  There are supposed to be four layers, but I halved the recipe to make a two layer cake.


My cake is nowhere near as pretty as the original, but it sure tasted good.

 Tempted?  You will need (for a half recipe):

Rhubarb filling

110g rhubarb chopped into 1cm pieces
1 tablespoon sugar
a dash of rose syrup

Place all of the ingredients into an ovenproof dish and bake at 180 degrees for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Caramel Icing

150g sugar
1/4 cup water
 1/2 cup heavy cream
200g cream cheese

Combine the sugar and water and bring to the boil; turn down the heat a little allow the mixture to simmer until it turns a golden brown colour, then remove from the heat.  Immediately but carefully (as the mixture might spit) whisk in the cream.  Return the mixture to the heat and continue stirring until smooth, then take it off the heat and allow it to cool.

Place the cream cheese into a food processor and blitz until smooth, then add 1/2 cup of the caramel mixture and blitz until smooth.

Cake

115g softened butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
50g sugar
2 eggs
115g self raising flour
3/4 cup sliced rhubarb
25ml cream

Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin.  Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Place the butter, both sugars, eggs and flour in a food processor and blitz to combine. Add the rhubarb and cream and blitz for 10 seconds.  Scrape the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven or until cooked through.  Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before unmoulding onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Using a serrated knife, cut the cake in half horizontally.  Top one half with half the cream cheese icing and all of the cooked rhubarb.  Place the other half of the cake on top of the filling, and cover the top of the cake with the remaining icing.

Serve and enjoy.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

TWD - Cranberry Five Spice Cookies


For Tuesday with Dorie this week, the recipe is Cranberry Five Spice Cookies. These came about because Dorie is obsessed with Chinese five spice powder and likes it in both savoury and sweet applications.

The cookies involve making a very sticky dough seasoned with Chinese five spice powder and mixing through chopped salted peanuts  and fresh or frozen cranberries. Cranberries other than in the form of craisins are like the Tasmanian tiger here - sightings are sometime reported, but they are rare (and expensive). For that reason, I subbed in frozen cherries. They did not have the tart zing of cranberries so maybe I should have used craisins.

I topped my cookies with finely chopped peanuts mixed with a little Chinese five spice powder.

The end result was fine, but didn’t really grab me.

To see what everyone else made this week and what they thought of it, visit the LYL section of the TWD website.