Chicken Liver Pâté

Chicken Liver Pâté

Homemade pâté is an incredibly satisfying dish. This subtle chicken liver pâté is very quick and simple to cook and tastes fantastic.

Great served with homemade melba toasts and pear chutney.

Chicken Liver Pâté
Serves 4

Ingredients:

400g Chicken Livers (Roughly Chopped), 1 Shallot (Finely Chopped), 175g Unsalted Butter (Cubed), 1 1/2tsp Fresh Thyme Leaves, 100ml Madeira, 65ml Double Cream, 1tsp Sea Salt, 3/4tsp Ground Mace, 1/2tsp Ground Ginger, Zest 1 Orange

Method:

1) Place a frying pan over a medium heat and add a little butter. Fry the shallot and thyme for 5 minutes or until soft. Turn up the heat and add the livers to the pan. Fry the livers, stirring frequently, until well seared but pink in the centre (around 3-4 minutes). Transfer the mixture to a food processor.

2) Place the pan back over a high heat. Add the Madeira and reduce until syrupy. Transfer the reduced Madeira to the food processor. Add the cream, sea salt, mace and ginger to the processor and blitz until fine. Add 100g of the butter and process until completely smooth.

3) Pass the mixture through a sieve and pipe into serving dishes. Top each dish with a little orange zest and a small sprinkling of sea salt. Melt the remaining butter and skim the impurities from the top. Spoon this butter over the pâté in the serving dishes to seal. Transfer to the fridge for at least 2 hours or until fully set.

Enjoy!

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Venison, Olive Oil and Lava Salt

Venison, Olive Oil and Lava Salt

The simple pairing of venison loin with salt and olive oil, influenced by a tapas dish served at Bodega El Placer in Mijas, Spain, is a personal favourite and has featured in many of my recipes.

Seared venison loin and olive oil acts as a great canvas for trying different types of salt. Here I have used lava salt harvested in Hawaii which imparts a great mineral taste to the venison. The dish works equally as well with smoked sea salt.

The venison is best served well done to bring out its iron richness. Use the best quality extra virgin olive oil you can get your hands on to ensure best results.

Enjoy!

Asparagus and Duck Egg

Asparagus and Duck Egg

This is the perfect weekend brunch dish and a great way to welcome the new asparagus season!

Butter poached asparagus is paired with fried duck egg and air-dried ham and seasoned with a little truffle salt. Go easy on the truffle salt as it can easily overpower and ensure your duck egg is super crisp on the bottom for a great contrast of texture.

Asparagus and Duck Egg

Asparagus, Duck Egg, Truffle and Ham
Serves 4

Ingredients:
32 Asparagus Spears
4 Duck Eggs
4 Slices Air-Dried Ham
Truffle Salt
Black Pepper
Olive Oil

Method:

1) Cook the asparagus in the following manner: Cooking Vegetables.

2) Meanwhile, fry the duck eggs in a little olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Ensure the bottoms crisp up well.

3) When ready, place around eight asparagus spears on each plate with the duck egg and a small amount of ham. Sprinkle with a little truffle salt and cracked black pepper.

Enjoy!

Curried Scallops

Curried Scallop

As you many have noticed, I love cooking scallops! Not only are they delicious in their own right, they are incredibly versatile – a great canvas for a multitude of flavour combinations.

Pairing aromatic indian spicing and scallops makes for a delicious starter. Accompanied by a cumin yogurt dressing, oven dried tomatoes and toasted corn kernels, this dish is very easy and quick to prepare and may easily be scaled up for a dinner party.

Make your own spice blend to crust the scallops by grinding together a mixture of your favourite whole spices in a spice grinder or pestle and mortar – I use a mixture of cumin, coriander, ginger, turmeric, fenugreek and clove.

Curried Scallops
Serves 4

Ingredients:
8 King Scallops (Roe & Skirt Removed)
12 Cherry Tomatoes (Halved and Oven Dried)
Freshly Ground Spice Blend
100ml Natural Yogurt
2 tsp Ground Cumin
Coconut Shards (Lightly Toasted)
50g Canned Sweetcorn
50g Golden Sultanas
100ml Fresh Apple Juice
50g Caster Sugar
50ml Water
1tsp Coriander Seeds
1 Inch Piece Cinnamon
3 Cloves

1) Hydrate the sultanas by soaking them in the apple juice overnight in the fridge. Prepare the syrup glaze by combining the caster sugar and water in a small saucepan and bringing to the boil. Remove from the heat and add the cinnamon, coriander seeds and cloves. Set aside to infuse for at least 2 hours.

2) Combine the cumin and natural yogurt to make the dressing. Lightly fry the sweetcorn in a little olive oil over a medium heat until they are golden and crisp (around 5 mins).

3) Season the scallops with a little salt and dust well with the spice blend. Fry the scallops in a little olive oil in large non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Ensure you achieve a good crust on the exterior (by having the heat high) and cook for around 1 minute each side – be careful not to overcook.

4) To serve, place the scallops on top of the yogurt dressing. Drizzle the scallops with a little of the syrup glaze. Garnish with coconut shards, toasted sweetcorn, the sultanas and the dried cherry tomatoes.

Enjoy!

Goats Cheese Tart

Goats Cheese Tart
 
If you are looking for a delicious, simple starter to serve to friends, this is the recipe for you. Creamy goats cheese and mild Stilton make a fantastic base for this tart, their saltiness countering the sweet caramelised red onions perfectly. Great served with a peppery watercress salad and air-dried ham.

Serve it in the middle of the table and let everyone tuck in – they will not be disappointed!

Goats Cheese Tart
 
Goats Cheese Tart
Serves 6 as a Starter, 3 as a Main

Ingredients:
300g Ready Rolled Puff Pastry
3 Red Onions (Sliced)
25g Unsalted Butter
Mild Goats Cheese (A Thick Wedge)
75g Mild Stilton
2 Pears (Thinly Sliced)
Handful Thyme Sprigs
Black Pepper
Juice 1/2 Lemon
1 Egg Yolk (Beaten)

Method:

1) Make the caramelised red onions: Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onions and cook for around 30 minutes, stirring frequently, until caramelised.

2) Pre-heat the oven to 200C. Lay the pastry on a parchment lined baking sheet. Score a line 1cm from the edge of the pastry all of the way around – being careful not break through the pastry. Prick the pastry inside of the line with a fork.

3) Spread the caramelised onions evenly over the base inside the scored line. Crumble the goats cheese and Stilton evenly over the onions. Top with the sliced pear and thyme and season generously with black pepper. Egg wash the outside of the pastry around the filling. Place in the oven and cook for around 20 minutes or until the pastry is cooked and the cheese browned.

4) Just before serving, drizzle the lemon juice over the tart and cut into equal slices.

Enjoy!

Baked Mushrooms

Baked Mushrooms

 

Baked mushrooms were a favourite during my childhood and made a great stop-gap when supper seemed a long way off! Great comfort food, these mushrooms are ideal for those occasions when you need to throw something tasty together quickly – making a fantastic starter or side dish.

Baked Mushrooms
Serves 2

Ingredients:
4 Portobello Mushrooms (Peeled)
3 Spring Onions (Chopped)
1 Garlic Clove (Chopped)
1/2 Red Chilli (Chopped)
100g Reblochon Cheese
Small Handful Thyme Leaves
Small Handful Flat Leaf Parsley (Chopped)
4tbsp Olive Oil
Small Handful Panko Breadcrumbs
Cracked Black Pepper
Juice 1/4 Lemon

Method:

1) Pre-heat your oven to 190C. Place the mushrooms on a baking tray. Top the mushrooms with equal amounts of spring onions, chilli, garlic and thyme. Place a good slice of Reblochon cheese over the top and top with a little Panko breadcrumbs and chopped parsley.

2) Drizzle the mushrooms with a generous amount of olive oil and a good amount of cracked black pepper. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until the mushrooms are cooked and the cheese is melted and golden.

3) When ready, remove from the oven and squeeze a little lemon juice over each mushroom.

Best served on a well charred piece of toast with a rocket and parmesan salad.

Enjoy!

Scallops

Scallop, Pineapple, Cauliflower, Chive

 

Scallop with Pineapple, Chive Oil and Caramelised Cauliflower Purée.

Up until about a year ago I was obsessed with scallops – ordering them everywhere I went. But it was all too much of a good thing and I quickly went off them. Flicking back through the pages of Momofuku I stumbled across a dish of raw scallop with dashi and pineapple. Distaste aside, I knew this was the basis of a cracking little canapé.

Fearing I may be throwing myself in at the deep end by serving the scallop raw and with a shortage of dashi, I paired seared scallop with finely diced pineapple, chive oil and a little caramelised cauliflower purée. The slight tartness of the pineapple cutting through the sweetness of the scallop and cauliflower – a little smoked Maldon sea salt perfectly enhances the flavour of the scallop.

When cooked well the scallop is a glorious thing, but consume one which has been under or over cooked and you may well be put off for life. The secret is to sear them in a screaming hot pan to achieve a good crust on the outside, flipping them after only 30 seconds to 1 minute – anything more and you risk them being overdone.

Served in the shell, this makes a fantastic canapé but would scale up well for a starter or main.

Scallops, Pineapple, Cauliflower, Chive
Makes 6 Canapés

Ingredients:
6 Fresh Scallops
1/2 Pineapple Finely Diced
1 Small Bunch Chives
75ml Rapeseed Oil
1 Cauliflower into Florets
25g Butter
50ml Milk
Lemon Juice
Smoked Maldon Sea Salt
White Pepper

Method:

1) To make the cauliflower purée: Par-boil the cauliflower and pat dry. Melt the butter in a large frying pan and sauté the cauliflower for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a blender and blend with the milk to form a smooth purée. Pass through a fine sieve. Season to taste with salt and a little white pepper and keep warm.

2) To make the chive oil: Combine the chives and rapeseed oil in a small blender or spice grinder. Pulse until smooth and well combined.

3) Heat a little olive oil in a large pan and sear the scallops over a high heat for 30 seconds to 1 minute each side. Meanwhile, combine the chopped pineapple with a little lemon juice.

4) To serve: Place the scallop on top of the cauliflower purée, spooning a little chive oil and chopped pineapple on top and around the scallop. Sprinkle with a little smoked sea salt to finish.

Enjoy!

STILTON GALETTE

 

 

 

 

My mother presented this dish to me tonight and I couldn’t get enough! So much so I thought I would share it with you. It is surprisingly light and as stilton and pear is a classic combination this will surely be a winner with any guests. I was served the galette as a starter; however, it would make a great side dish or main meal for two. I think I will try making a bigger one and serve it in the middle of the table for all to tuck in!

This recipe would work equally well with any type of medium/strong cheese or whatever you have in the fridge. Strong mature cheddar and some caramalised white onions would be delicious. You can make the galette a day ahead and keep it covered in the fridge – great for a dinner party.

(Please ignore the ‘caramalised’ edges – I trimmed them off!)

Stilton Galette

(Serves 4 as a starter)

Ingredients:

5 Medium Waxy Potatoes (peeled and soaked in water to remove starch)

1 1/2 Firm Pears (peeled and cubed small)

150g Blue Stilton (or other strong cheese)

Cracked Black Pepper

Olive Oil

Step 1: Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Thinly slice the peeled potatoes (much easier if you use a mandolin or the slicer attachment on your food processor).

Step 2: Line a baking tray with silicon paper or use silicon baking mats. Overlap the sliced potato to create 4 rectangles. Sprinkle the cubed pear on to the potatoes. Crumble the stilton over the potatoes ensuring you keep it to the centre to stop it from ‘spilling’ out.

Step 3: Brush the edges of the potatoes with a little olive oil to help them crisp. Season the galettes with cracked black pepper.

Step 4: Place the galettes in the pre-heated oven for approximately 25 minutes, or until they are golden brown and the potatoes are cooked.

Great served with a small salad dressed with olive oil and lemon and some sliced pear.

Enjoy!