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Category Archives: Baking

Chorizo, Mozzarella and Red Onion Chutney Pastry Roses

 Do not be put off my how cool these look! They are SO simple to make – well, assuming you use ready made puff pastry, otherwise they’re going to be a little bit of a labour of love (but so worth it I’d bet!) My recipe and tips for making proper puff pastry are here – its not really hard, it just a bit time consuming.

I created these roses to sell at an East Dulwich WI bake sale after being inspired by these apple roses. I don’t like apple and wanted to make something savoury (and meaty as usual) so thin slices of chorizo seemed like a good idea.

Experimenting to get the cooking time right so that the pastry is cooked all the way through but without burning the bejesus out of the top of the chorizo did take a bit of doing.  After a few attempts, I hit on a method of covering the pastries for the whole (quite long) cooking process. I also abandoned the original plan of baking them in a muffin tin as this didn’t allow the pasty room to expand outwards which made them a little dense. Photos come from various batches I made so please excuse the varying quantities throughout.

They were a sell out at the sale which was a little gutting as I really fancied eating one by the end of the day! Cannot complain at that tho!

Makes 10

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Ingredients:

1 Sheet Ready Rolled Puff Pastry
Flour for dusting
10 tsp Red Onion Chutney
150g finely grated Mozzarella Cheese
25 Slices Chorizo
1 Egg

Equipment:

Large Roasting Tray
1 cup(ish) Uncooked Rice
10 Paper Muffin Cases
Rolling Pin (or a roll of clingfilm)
Pastry Brush
Enough Foil to Double Cover the Tin


Preheat the oven to 180c or equivalent.

Prepare a large roasting tin by lining the bottom with 1 cup of uncooked rice or some other fat soaking material – this will stop chorizo fat melting everywhere and smoking the place out. Lay 10 muffin cases out ready to fill.

Lightly dust the work surface with Flour. Take 1 Sheet Ready Rolled Puff Pastry out of the packet and cut it in half with a sharp knife straight through the paper whilst still rolled. Set aside one half for now and unroll the other being careful it doesn’t crack as you’re unrolling.

Place the half pastry sheet on the floured surface (portrait wise) and gently roll it a little thinner until its a third to a half as big again. Concentrate on rolling it wider rather than longer.

Cut the pastry with a sharp knife into 5 equal strips.

Spread 1 tsp of Red Onion Chutney along the middle of each strip.

Split half of the 150g finely grated Mozzarella Cheese amongst the 5 strips, sprinkling it lightly over the chutney.

Cut 20 Slices Chorizo in half with a sharp knife or scissors. Lay 5 halves of chorizo along the top half of each strip. Leave a gap at either end of each strip and overlap the slices slightly. Leave only a tiny piece of the slice pointing over the top of the pastry edge.

Beat 1 Egg in a small bowl and brush egg over the bottom part of exposed pastry. Gently fold the bottom half of each strip over the top and lightly press down.

Egg wash the exposed pastry on each strip then gently roll each folded strip into a rose shape. Place each into a paper case and lightly egg wash all of the exposed pastry.

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Lay each paper clad rose into the roasting tin on-top of the rice.

Repeat all of the steps with the second half of the pastry to create 10 roses in total.

Cover the whole tin in 2 layers of foil and put into the oven for 1 hour and 20 mins. Check it a little earlier if your oven runs on the hot side.

Leave the roses to cool a little on a wire rack before digging in. They can also be reheated in the microwave or just chow down on them cold. Lush!

 

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Cedges Recommends – janespatisserie.com

If you follow me on Instagram or my Facebook Page you may have noticed that I’ve recently baked quite a lot from this one website.  The recipes are super easy and gratuitous to boot. Who isn’t going to be enticed by Cheesecake Cookie Bars or Twix Cupcakes?

I don’t necessarily wish to reproduce someone else’s recipes on this blog but I did want to showcase some of the items I’ve made and provide links to the recipes I used. There are a couple of photos that I’m quite pleased with although I’m generally not so enamored by the camera on my replacement S7 – the photos seem to run a little dark but as I’ve smashed the screen on it within 6 weeks of having it, the new replacement thats has just arrived will hopefully be better!

Let me know if you try any other recipes from the site and how they go.


Millionaire’s Brownies

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Anyone who knows me will know my long term love for Millionaire’s shortbread, indeed Maureen of Manaccan was once upon a time regularly sequestered to make me a batch under the pretense that it was going to be sold in our Cornish Village Shop. Technically it was nothing special or fancy but boy do I love that soft caramel layer which I have historically really struggled to make myself.  This recipe, whilst requiring some boiling of the caramel mixture was pretty foolproof and I never felt in danger of it splitting or going grainy.

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The brownie element of this was the absolute perfect texture. It held its own whilst being very rich and fudgy without being wet. I struggle a little with very rich chocolate however – I’m more of a milk chocolate girl so this was overall a little rich for me….so next time I thought I’d try another version with a different base….


Millionaire’s Flapjacks

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The swirl on that! This recipe was also spot on and for my taste was a little less rich with the flapjack base providing a still pleasantly yielding alternative to the brownie. I did add 200g of milk chocolate chips to the base because they were to hand and I’m a big fan of chocolate chip flapjack. I did add them when the flapjack mixture was still a little warm so they melted quite a lot into the mixture but I’m going to call that a happy accident!

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The biggest problem I found with both of the recipes was getting the chocolate topping to slice without cracking all over the shop – I’m all for a bit of rustic but I’d like some of the topping to not fall off – I’m sure there is an optimal point of setting to do the slicing but I’m yet to find it! The trick I did employ was to turn the whole block upside down onto a chopping board and then slice it – the pressure of the knife on hard chocolate above soft caramel is part of the issue so the upside down method deals with this somewhat.


Biscoff Fudge

If you are not familiar with ‘Biscoff‘, I cannot recommend it enough. The generic name  is ‘Speculaas‘ and its basically those little slightly spiced biscuits that you get on the side of a fancy coffee. It is now available as ‘Cookie Butter’ which is essentially biscuits whizzed up into a paste with a bunch of oil. Its not exactly health food but never mind! You can buy it, like with peanut butter, in ‘crunchy’ and ‘smooth’ varieties from pretty much all of the supermarkets.

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So the fudge – so so easy. Its basically condensed milk, white chocolate, a little bit of butter and the Biscoff spread melted down together with icing sugar beaten in at the end and left to set in a tray in the fridge. I used the smooth variety as that is what I had in the cupboard and as I was baking this was a bake-sale, I needed to keep the cost down so I didn’t add any crushed biscuits as I’d have needed to purchase these separately.


Nutella Fudge

People seem to go nuts for Nutella (unintentional pun I promise!) – everyone knows what it is and I don’t recall coming across many people that don’t like it. I can take it or leave it on the whole – I like it occasionally but sometimes I find it a little overpowering. As I was baking to sell this however, Nutella seemed like an excellent crowd pleasing option to try.  Again I didn’t add the suggested Kinder Bueno garnish to keep the ingredient cost down but I think a bit of crunch would work very well.

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The recipe is almost exactly the same except the Biscoff spread is substituted for Nutella and the white chocolate for milk chocolate. I struggled to beat the icing sugar into this mix quite so well but I think that might actually be the colour just showing up the lumps of icing a little more. It doesn’t taste grainy and because there isn’t a total shedload of sugar in the recipe, it isn’t too sweet.  Surprisingly, it is actually a not overpoweringly Nutella-y and I’m a much bigger fan of this fudge that I thought I would be.


Peanut Butter Fudge

Another crowd pleaser, I’ve become increasingly fond of peanut butter over the last couple of years – I think its salty nature is extremely appealing. To complete my trifecta of bake-sale fudges, it was the obvious easy flavour to go for.

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I think its my favourite. Until I have a piece of the other flavours, then they’re my favourite again! Either way, this is super accessible and the texture is great – I went with crunchy peanut butter this time. Again its almost a straight swap of the Biscoff spread for peanut butter in the recipe – I can’t wait to start experimenting with other flavours – I have some passion fruit curd in the cupboard which I think would go excellently in a white chocolate based fudge. I’d also like to make this peanut butter version again with dark chocolate chips. I think that will be happening sooner rather than later!

Simple Victoria Sandwich Cake

Its a classic and one of the first things I ever baked. So simple and so good. Very little more needs to be said.

But I will anyway. Traditionally, the sponges are sandwiched only with jam. But I find this a bit boring so I add buttercream with the jam. And traditionally, the sandwich is topped with only caster sugar but again – Zzzzz – so I’ve used a basic white glace icing.

Confession time (I have lots of these). Actually two confessions. Firstly I made this cake with proper butter which is of course traditional and lauded by the traditionalists but actually I think it makes the cake a little on the heavy side. I should have stuck with what I know and used light margarine – I’d recommend you make this substitution. Secondly I made the whole recipe in ounces – as it should be but because I try to cater to allsorts, I’ve included the metric equivalents. Those over the pond should either invest in scales or google the conversions. Oh there is a third confession actually, I ate a good portion of the cake batter straight from the mixing bowl.  No regrets.

Serves 10

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Ingredients:

10oz (280g) Salted Butter (Or Light Margarine)
10oz (280g) Caster Sugar
5 Large Eggs
4 tbsp Milk
1 tbsp Baking Powder
10oz (280g) Self Raising Flour

3oz (80g) Butter
6oz (160g) Icing Sugar
1 tbsp Milk

5oz (140g) Strawberry Jam

3oz (80g) Icing Sugar
1 tbsp Milk


Preheat the oven to 180c or the equivalent.

Line 2 15cm round cake tins with liners or butter and flour.

Weigh 10oz (280g) Salted Butter (Or Light Margarine) and 10oz (280g) Caster Sugar a large mixing bowl and beat together until light and creamy.

Tip – make sure the butter is at room temperature or very carefully soften it in the microwave – cut it into small cubes and spread them out around a plate or bowl and nuke for 4-5 seconds at a time – you don’t want to melt it.

Tip – A hand whisk or stand mixer is ideal for this but it can be done with a wooden spoon and elbow grease. 

Add 5 Large Eggs one at a time giving the batter a good whisk between each egg addition.

Tip – The mixture will likely split – do not panic, do not start again, do not weep gently. Keep whisking, it turns out that it really doesn’t matter!

Add 4tbsp Milk one spoonful at a time whisking the batter as you go.

Add 1 tbsp Baking Powder and 10oz (280g) Self Raising Flour and fold this into the batter by hand until just combined.

Tip – Don’t use a mixer here as the gluten in the flour will overwork and your cake sponge will turn out tough. 

Split the mixture between the two tins and spread out to even layers. Bake for 20 minutes then check if it is done, give it another couple of minutes each check until it is done.

Tip – ‘Done’ will be when the sponges are golden brown on top and a skewer poked into the middle of the sponge comes out with only crumbs stuck and no liquid batter. I don’t condone overcooking as the cake will be dry but on this occasion, ‘actually cooked’ should be aimed for.

Leave the sponges to cool on a rack, in the tin at first unless you used liners in which case it should be easy to life them out still in the paper and onto the rack.

Wait until the sponges are totally cold before filling and icing.

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Make the buttercream by mixing 3oz (80g) Butter,  6oz (160g) Icing Sugar and 1 tbsp Milk for 5 or so minutes until it is light and fluffy.

Tip – Do not substitute the butter for spread in this part of the recipe – the butter taste and texture is essential to this bit but do make sure the butter is softened before starting the mixing.

Tip – I tried to use my new old Kenwood to make this but ended up having to go back to the old trusty electric hand whisk. You’ll not get a good light buttercream without some kind of eclectic assistance or you’ll end up with the rock hard layer of butter icing of my youth.

Spread the buttercream over one half of the sponge making sure it is relatively evenly spread and just shy of the edges.

Tip – The buttercream will squeeze out as you apply the top layer so if you spread it to the edge now, it will squirt out and make a mess. Not the end of the world admittedly.

Tip – If you can be bothered, I suppose you could pipe the buttercream for a super neat edge.

Spread 5oz (140g) Strawberry Jam over the second half of the sponge – you can go a bit closer to the edge this time as there will be less splurging.

Tip – Jam can be lumpy, even the seedless smooth stuff that I buy so I give it a good stir whilst still in the jar so it makes it easier to spread evenly.

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Put the jam covered sponge on top of the buttercream sponge and give it a good press together.

Make the glace icing by mixing together 3oz (80g) Icing Sugar and 1 tbsp Milk until smooth and spread the icing over the top of the cake by dumping the whole lot dead centre and spooning it outwards with the back of the spoon until the edges are nearly reached.

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Serve in great hunking slices with a cup of tea. In a cup and saucer (japes).

Fully Loaded Bacon and Mozzarella Turnovers

This is something I recently made to use some of the excess puff pastry that I made on my recent pastry course at Denman College as described in my post about Proper Sausage Rolls. You could of course just use ready made puff pastry, but as I’m now a convert to how relatively easy it is to make a batch of proper puff and freeze it in small blocks, I’d really recommend making your own.

This is a classic combination, oft found in a local Greggs, regularly hoovered up by me. To twist the classic, a layer of onion marmalade would make an excellent addition spread on the pastry before the bacon and cheese is added.

Makes 4

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Ingredients:

1/2 quantity of Puff Pastry (or 1 ready rolled sheet or block)
8 Rashers Middle Bacon (or 12 of Back Bacon)
250g Pre-Grated Mozzarella
1 Egg


First a tale of what not to do with your puff pastry:

I thought to myself, hey – I’ve seen pastry rolled out between two sheets of greaseproof paper before – that seemed to work when rolling out my butter when making the pastry – that seems a good idea to try to keep the mess down here.

So I popped my small square of pastry between 2 sheets, rolled it out then pulled the first layer off…..and OMG disaster. Less of a sheet of rolled out laminated pastry, more of a ooey-gooey mess. So I put this back in the freezer, still flat in its paper and cut off another block. Which I rolled out properly, with flour.

Learn from my mistakes people.


What to do instead:

Preheat the oven to 200c.

Roll out your 1/2 quantity of Puff Pastry into a large rectangle and cut into 4 squares/rectangles.

Tip – Probably be better to aim for something a little squarer than mine if you’re going for neatness. 

Fry or grill 8 Rashers of Middle Bacon (or 12 of Back Bacon) until desired done-ness.

Tip – As usual I went for a light fry. Do bear in mind that the bacon will get a second cooking  in the oven so I wouldn’t go too crispy at this point. 

Lay 2 rashers of middle bacon (or 3 rashers of back bacon) diagonally on each square of pastry.

Sprinkle 250g Pre-Grated Mozzarella evenly between the 4 squares.

Tip – I use the pre-grated stuff here as regular mozzarella would be much to wet. You could easily substitute this out for any other preferred cheese. 

Beat 1 Egg in a small bowl and use a pastry brush to egg-wash all over the exposed pastry.

Bring the 2 corners of pastry into the middle of the bacon and cheese and fold in any sticking out edges. You can be as neat or as rough and ready as you please.

Move each pastry to a lined baking tray and egg-wash all over the top of each.

Pop in the oven for 12/15 minutes until a good golden brown.

Try to give it a minute to cool before eating them all.

 

Cedges Learns – Pastry Weekender – Part 4 – Proper Puff Sausage Rolls

The third type of pastry made on my weekend pastry course at Demnan College was Proper Puff Pastry. Not as scary as it feels and not quite as successful as it could have been. I think if we had only been making puff pastry and only chilling (the pastry and me) in between, it would have been better. Also the time spent faffing around to get the butter the right shape and thickness in a hot room didn’t help. There should have been more refrigerating at key melting moments. I’d recommend starting the pastry the day before you need it or in the morning to bake in the evening. I’ve added into my suggested method below where i think fridge resting time should happen.

I’ll definitely be trying this again and I’m more than happy to use the rest of the pastry I made that didn’t make sausage rolls (most of it). I’ve already used it to make bacon and mozzarella turnovers and they were a damn success (recipe coming soon). We only made a tiny number of sausage rolls on the course weekend but I’ve scaled up the recipe to use half of the puff pastry recipe. It freezes well and there is little point in going to the effort of making a smaller batch. If you want to make a mega batch of sausage rolls however, just double the amount of sausagemeat/sausages.

Makes 16

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Ingredients for the Pastry:

240g Plain Flour
240g Butter
130g Cold Water (yup – weigh it!)
Sea Salt Flakes

Ingredients for the Sausage Rolls:

500g Sausagemeat (about 8-10 Sausages)
1 Egg


To start the pastry sieve 240g Plain Flour into a medium mixing bowl and add 30g Butter in small piece and a generous pinch of Sea Salt Flakes.

Add 130g of Cold Water and mix to form a dough. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for a few minutes until its a smooth and slightly elastic ball.  Pop it in the fridge whilst ‘plasticizing’ the butter.

Take the remaining 210g Butter out of the fridge where you have sensibly left it until now.

Put the butter in the centre between 2 sheets of greaseproof paper and go to town on it with a rolling pin. You are looking to make a nearly square rectangle about 20cm x 20cm.

Tip – In reality this involved a lot of cutting off dodgy edges, re-rolling, re-folding and re-beating. By the time I was done, the butter was rather quite soft (but it was a delightful neat shape!).  We didn’t refrigerate it at this point. We should have.

Put the butter square still in its greaseproof in the fridge for 15 minutes.

Tip – Or freezer for 5/10 minutes if you are impatient.

Take the dough out of the fridge and roll the dough into a rectangle about 20cm by 30cm just a little larger than a sheet of A4 (standard size printer) paper.

Take the butter square out of the fridge, peel off one layer of the greaseproof paper and lay it butter side down on the dough rectangle.

Tip – If all has gone well, the butter should be the same width and about 2/3 of the length of the dough.

Fold the unbuttered dough third over the butter. Then fold the whole thing in half. If you look at the end, you should now have layers of dough/butter/dough/butter/dough.

Tip – This is called a ‘normal turn’ or ‘half turn’.  

Re-fridge the dough at this point for 15 minutes. 

Roll the dough back out to its original size then fold again – this time try the ‘book fold’. Bring one short edge into the middle, then also bring the opposite edge into the middle to meet it. Now fold the whole thing in half (like a book).

Tip – Alternatively you can stick with the ‘normal turn’ and keep repeating this.

Reroll the pastry back to the original size and repeat either the ‘book fold’ or ‘half turn’.

Wrap the pastry in cling film and refrigerate for at least 15, ideally 30 minutes . Repeat the process 2 or 3 more times giving 2 folds and refrigerating for at least 15 minutes each time.

Cut the whole pastry block in half and freeze one half until needed again or set aside for use later.

Roll the pastry block out into a rectangle to the thickness of 1/4 cm and using a sharp knife, cut into rectangle into four strips (horizontally).

Take 500g Sausagemeat (about 8-10 Sausages with the skin removed) and split into quarters. Roll each quarter into a long sausage and place one in the middle of each pastry strip.

Tip – If you wet your hand before handling the sausage meat, this will stop it sticking to you in a sticky mass. Re-wet between dealing with each quarter.

Make an egg wash by beating 1 Egg in a small bowl.

Brush the egg wash around the exposed pastry edges and roll the dough around the sausagemeat to form rolls.

Tip – Wet your finger a little and gently press along with pastry seam – this will allow the pastry to meld together and reduce the likelihood of the pastry coming apart as it cooks.

Using a sharp knife and being gentle about it, cut the end off of each roll to neaten it up and then cut each of the 4 long rolls into 4.

Move each roll to a lined baking tray (maybe 2 or 3), seam side down and refrigerate for 30 minutes until you want to bake them.

15 minutes before wanting to cook them, preheat the oven to 200c.

Take the sausage rolls out of the fridge and generously egg wash over the top and sides of each of the 16 rolls. Score the top of each roll with a sharp knife.

Tip – not liking waste, you’ll see that I also baked my trimmings for some tasty little cooks treats straight out of the oven.

Bake for 15 minutes until light golden brown.

Tip – If you have a cooking thermometer, the centre of the rolls should reach 75c.

Try to let them cool a bit before serving but I think we all know they’re not going to last long!

Chocolate Chip Brioche Pudding

Last weekend I was up in Harrogate for my friend Gemma’s birthday and, mostly due to her 5 month pregnancy, it was a much quieter affair than usual. (We did of course spend some time in her shop, The Champagne Concept!) I usually end up baking something and this year we headed to Gemma and Laurence’s friends’ house (they have actual born small kids and a big house so its easier) with a raclette based feast and this pudding.

I started with a Nigella brioche bread and butter pudding recipe and adapted it to be chocolaty without being too chocolaty. It worked a treat actually although I’d probably cover the top with foil for the first or last 10 minutes of cooking to prevent it browning quite so much.

Serves 6-8

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Ingredients:

500g Brioche Loaf
8 tbsp Milk Chocolate Spread
100g Dark Chocolate Chips
2 tbsp Caster Sugar
5 Eggs
500ml Double Cream
250ml Semi Skimmed Milk


Preheat the oven to 170c

Slice a 500g Brioche Loaf into 16 slices (half it, half each half then quarter each quarter)

Tip – Try not to push the bread down as you cut or the slices will be a bit pathetic!

Lay 8 of the brioche slices out on a board, then dollop 8 tbsp Milk Chocolate Spread over them.

Make sandwiches using the remaining slices of brioche and the cut each in half diagonally. You should now have 16 pieces again.

Line an oven dish.

Tip – Use a pre made liner if you have one but if you need to make one, take a square of greaseproof paper and fold it in half (neatly). Fold it again into quarters and then make a triangle keeping the centre of the paper as the point. Fold again to create a narrower triangle. Hold the paper over your dish with the point roughly in the centre. Cut the paper into a pie piece shape to make it a bit longer than half of the base length and one side. Open it up and ta-da you have a liner. To make it fit properly, scrunch the whole thing up a few times then open it back up – this softens the paper and makes it more pliable – Magic!

Squidge the 16 triangles into the dish – I tried to be pretty but I had to give up a little in the end and just mush it all in!

Sprinkle over 100g Dark Chocolate Chips making sure they fall into all of the cracks and crevices.

Separate 3 Eggs and discard the whites.

Make up the custard by mixing 2 tbsp Caster Sugar with the 3 egg yolks, 2 whole Eggs, 500ml Double Cream and 250ml Semi Skimmed Milk.

Pour the custard over the pudding and leave it to soak in for a minute or two before putting it into the oven for 45 minutes.

Tip – As I mentioned, I’d be inclined to check the pudding after 30/35 minutes and cover it with foil if it was looking too brown.

Serve the pudding fresh from the oven with lashings of custard. Or Cream. Or crème fraiche if you must.

Cedges Learns – Pastry Weekender – Part 3 – Quiche

 Following on from my post about my recent course at Denman College and the Tart au Citron with a sweet short-crust pastry, here is the recipe for the second type of pastry that we made; savoury thyme short-crust.  We used this to make a simple Bacon and Gruyere Quiche. The pastry quantity we were given made just enough pastry for a small (15 cm) quiche but the filling made enough to fill nearly 2 of those so I have scaled the pastry up to make a larger (20cm) quiche.

Many of the tips I picked up and shared in my Tart au Citron post apply here. I’ll endeavour to not repeat myself so if you’re looking to up your pastry game, please have a read through that post first. I will also try and corral all of these tips into a pastry section on my Tips page soon.

Being honest, I prefer my Smoked Bacon, Courgette, Mushroom, Chive and Mozzarella Quiche to this one. But next time I make that, I will be using this herb pastry instead of ready made puff as I did before.   Lets face it – I think double cream is the way forward in a quiche filling!  My second confession is that although I have labelled this quiche to serve 8, I ate the best part of a smaller version in a morning to myself. It turns out I’m a quiche fiend. You’d guessed that already hadn’t you?

I also apologise for the lack of photos in this recipe – I clearly got distracted by the actual baking!

Serves 8

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Ingredients for the Thyme Pastry:

180g Plain Flour
90g Butter
2/3 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
Water
Sea Salt Flakes

Ingredients for the Filling:

250g Bacon
90g Gruyere Cheese
450ml Whole Milk
3 Eggs
Pinch Cayenne
Sea Salt Flakes


Start by making the pasty.

Sieve 180g Plain Flour into a medium mixing bowl and add 90g Butter torn into small pieces.

Tip – Make sure the butter is good and cold.

Remove the leaves from 2/3 Sprigs Fresh Thyme and add to the flour and butter along with a pinch of Sea Salt Flakes.

Tip – Adding the thyme now means that the leaves will get rubbed along with the butter which will release the natural oils and increase the herb flavour throughout the pastry. You could really taste the difference here. 

Using the tips of your fingers, rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Tip – This rubbing in method is the more traditional way to make pastry rather than the creaming method used in the Pate Sucree. Technically you could use the creaming method here but realistically you have nothing to cream the butter with (sugar is used in the Pate Sucree) so you’d simply be whisking the butter and its not worth doing. Also the rubbing in method is kind of therapeutic.

Tip – To bring the larger lumps that need more rubbing to the top of the bowl, give the bowl a shake and watch them magically rise to the top.

Add cold water to the flour mix 1 tbsp then 1tsp at a time, mixing thoroughly before adding more. Stop adding water as soon as the dough comes together.

Tip – There is a surprisingly little water needed so go easy. If you do go too far, just add a little more sieved plain flour.

Lightly knead the dough out of the bowl for 20-30 seconds until smooth then wrap in cling-film and refrigerate for 3o minutes.

Lightly oil a loose bottomed 20cm tart tin.

Once the dough is chilled, unwrap it and roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface until a little bigger than tart tin, including the sides.

Line the tin with the pastry, making sure the pastry is pushed right into the corners of the tin then trim the excess pastry away by rolling the pin over the top. Using your fingertips, gently ease the pastry up the sides a little to combat shrinkage.

Tip – Unlike with the sweet tart, this pastry case is not blind baked as the pastry would be burned before the filling is properly cooked.

Tip – As before, don’t be tempted to prick the base of the pastry, this just increases the chance of leakage and soggy bottoms.

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Pop the lined tin into the fridge to chill again whilst making the filling.

Use scissors to cut 250g Bacon into small pieces directly into a frying pan. Fry the bacon until your preferred level of done-ness.  I like mine quite lightly fried.  Set the bacon aside to cool a little.

Preheat the oven to 200c.

Finely grate 90g Gruyere Cheese.

Combine 450ml Whole Milk, 3 Eggs, a pinch of Cayenne and a pinch of Sea Salt Flakes in a mixing bowl.

Take the tart tin out of the fridge and sprinkle the bacon over the pastry base.

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Sprinkle the grated gruyere over the bacon then place the tin onto a baking tray.

Pour in the egg and milk mixture then (carefully) put in the oven

Check the quiche after 20 minutes. It is ready when the filling is just set. I like my quiches, like most of my food, quite underdone so I took mine out of the oven when it was a light brown – cook it a little longer until is more of a golden brown if you prefer.

Leave to cool before taking the quiche out of its tin.

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It looked like I had a problem – my filling had overflowed all over the baking tray and the tin was vaguely glued to the pastry. With a bit of wrangling with a sharp knife around the sides and a large knife worked between the tin base and the pastry base, I managed to release my quiche to the comment of “Oh, its not too bad!” from our tutor. In isolation it could have been considered a very backhanded complement but having just discussed the likelihood of the spillage causing a super soggy bottom, I was just as surprised by the result as she was! Actually I was super pleased how mine turned out. Just cooked and very tasty, just how I like it.

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Slice and serve with something dull and traditional like new potatoes and a side salad. Or just sit down, tear off pieces with you hands and eat the whole thing like I did! Or go on a picnic.