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Category Archives: Breakfast

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 Classics – The Triple Decker

Now I am quite sure that I don’t come from the only family that has partook in a 3 layer breakfast sandwich delight on a regular basis but I’m yet to come across one. As a result, ‘The Triple Decker’ or ‘Trip Dec’ is a little legendary in my friendship circles.

Now this is not diet food and probably not recommended for consumption everyday but as a weekend breakfast – nom! It is also best not messed around with. The addition of some fried mushrooms is acceptable. Some baked beans to dip it in is mildly acceptable. Use of any bread other than plastic white sliced will ruin the entire point of the sandwich. The addition of ketchup is an abomination and will not be tolerated. Don’t even mention that brown stuff. Bacon should be cheap – ‘dry maple cured 100 day aged Gloucester old spot’ streaky bacon is not appropriate. Back bacon can be substituted for the middle bacon – both are preferably procured from the supermarket value range. Streaky bacon is pointless.

This is a proper northern breakfast sandwich – for the love of god butter the bread.

Serves 1

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Ingredients:

2 Rashers Unsmoked Middle Bacon or 3/4 Rashers Unsmoked Back Bacon
3 Slices Thick White Sliced Bread
Butter
1 Large Egg
Salt


Start by frying 2 Rashers Unsmoked Middle Bacon or 3/4 Rashers Unsmoked Back Bacon on a medium high heat in a non-stick frying pan.

Tip – Use a non-stick frying pan. Using some kind of non-stick pan does not make you better than everyone else nor does it put you on some kind of higher echelon of cook – it makes you a chump. I’d recommend the Kavalkad from Ikea – cheap as chips – keep a few in the house, replace them when the non-stick starts to go – ultimately significantly cheaper than spending £40 on a pan that loses its non-stick in a year anyway.

Meanwhile cut any dry crusts off 3 Slices Thick White Sliced Bread (I went for removing the top and bottom crusts but the sides were nice and soft so I left them). Liberally butter all 3 slices of bread, one of them on both sides (for the middle section).

Once cooked, remove the bacon from the pan and place on one slice of the buttered bread. Lay the double buttered slice on top.

Crack 1 Egg directly into the frying pan you used for the bacon. If you’re using that non-stick pan I recommended, you won’t need to add any oil.

Push any runaway egg white back towards the yolk as the egg starts cooking.

Once the egg white is cooked enough for the egg to hold its shape, use a fish slice to flip the whole egg over in the pan. Use the edge of the spatula to gently press down on the white all around the egg yolk to make sure the white is cooked through. Flip the egg back over to make sure the white is cooked though.

Place the cooked egg on top of the bacon bread stack and gently break the yolk and spread it over the whole surface of the sandwich to ensure yolky goodness in every bite.

Sprinkle the yolky egg with a small pinch of Salt (preferably sea salt flakes – the one nod I’ll sanction towards the poncey).

Lay the last slice of bread on top of the egg (butter side down obviously) and press down gently.

Cut the sandwich into two halves making sure to wipe any egg yolk left on the knife on top of the sandwich.

Eat – expect to be messy – keep kitchen roll close by but don’t employ it until all egg yolk has been licked off of the plate and your fingers.

Sweet Potato and Sweetcorn Savoury Pancakes

I had a recipe for sweetcorn pancakes quite some time ago – I think from the BBC Good Food website and they were served with avocado and roasted tomato.  For a little while it was one of my favourite dishes with some added coriander and bacon (of course i added bacon!). I’ll be damned if I can find the recipe and none of the others I could find even remotely matched up.  All I could remember was that it involved wizzing up half the sweetcorn into a mush and involved separated eggs with the whites whisked. So last weekend, i decided it was time to try and crack the recipe. And to be fair, I think I just about did!

These are perfect as a brunch dish or light summer meal. They would also make a nice little starter or side to some grilled meat and salad They’re also easily made veggie, just leave out the bacon or make them wheatarded suitable by using white spelt flour.

Makes 20 – Serves 4/5

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Ingredients:

1 large Sweet Potato (2/4 cup cooked)
200g Smoked Streaky Bacon
2 large Eggs
1/2 medium Red Onion
1 tin Cream Style Corn
1 tin Sweetcorn (or use 350g Frozen Corn)
3 tbsp Cornmeal or Instant Polenta
1/2 cup Plain Flour
1 tsp Sea Salt Flakes
1 tbsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Dried Chili Flakes
1/4 cup Light Creme Fraiche
Frylight Spray


Prick 1 large Sweet Potato all over and pop in the microwave for 15 minutes until soft all the way through.

Tip – If you don’t have a microwave, buy a microwave. Life if too short.

Tip – If your microwave hasn’t yet arrived, you can cook the sweet potato in the oven. I don’t know how long for. I’ve never been that patient. Start the day before?

Meanwhile, cut 200g Smoked Streaky Bacon into little pieces (use bacon) and fry in a dry pan until nearly crispy. Set aside to cool.

Separate 2 large Eggs and whisk the whites until firm peaks.

Tip – Use a stick blender whisk or electric hand whisk if you have one.

Query – If you don’t have any kind of electric whipping instrument – are you the same person who doesn’t have a microwave? And are you a masochist?

Put the yolks into a mixing bowl and give them a 2 second whisk while you have it out.

Tip – Only go from white to yolk, don’t go from white to yolk or the whites will never whisk up.

The sweet potato should be cooked by now so take it out of the microwave and chop it into quarters and leave it to cool.

Finely dice 1/2 medium Red Onion and add to the egg yolks along with 1 tin Cream Style Corn, 1 tin Sweetcorn (or use 350g Frozen Corn), 3 tbsp Cornmeal or Instant Polenta, 1/2 cup Plain Flour, 1 tsp Sea Salt Flakes, 1 tbsp Baking Powder, 1 tsp Dried Chili Flakes.

Remove the flesh from the sweet potatoes and use the back of a fork to make it into a puree. Add this to the mixture and stir everything together.

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Stir in 1/4 cup Light Creme Fraiche until fully combined and then fold in the egg whites.

Warm a medium frying pan on a medium heat and spray in 4 sprays of Frylight Spray.

When the pan is hot, using a large desert spoon or ideally, an ice cream scoop, add four scoops of the mixture into the pan on a medium heat. Use the back of the scoop or spoon to pat the mixture down into thinner patties.

Cook for 3 to 4 minutes before flipping each pancake over and cook the second side for another 2 to 3 minutes until golden brown.

Tip – Be gentle, they’re quite fragile pancakes despite being fairly dense. 

Continue to cook the pancakes in batches of 4 until all cooked.

Tip – I also experimented with baking these in the oven. I put the same size scoop of mixture onto a lined baking tray, patted them down and then cooked them in the oven at about 200c for 30 minutes. They didn’t need turning and i didn’t use any oil. You could obviously cook more than 4 at a time this way. The result was a chewier outside than when pan fried but not in a bad way, and this version would hold up better as a picnic or packed lunch item.

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Serve with more creme fraiche, Smushed Avocado and quartered cherry tomatoes. Adding some bacon wouldn’t hurt.

Scotch Pancakes with Bourbon, Peach and Ginger Compote

I love pancakes. Thick, thin or savoury, I’m in. I’ll extend to their near cousins the waffle too. And I’m not shy about having them for meals that aren’t breakfast or brunch either.

This is a pretty classic scotch pancake recipe made a little more grown up with the addition of booze.  I last made this on pancake day as the dessert course for a major pancake feast. Serve with some crème fraiche to cut through the sweetness of the compote. The scotch pancakes can of course also be made and topped with anything else like golden or maple syrup.  Bacon would be a great addition for breakfast.

Apologies for the shoddy photo.

Serves 4 – 262 Kcal per serving

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Scotch Pancake Ingredients:

125g Self Raising Flour
2 tbsp Caster Sugar
1/2 tsp Sea Salt Flakes
1 Large Egg
150ml Skimmed Milk
Frylight Spray (not the Olive Oil one)

Bourbon, Peach and Ginger Compote Ingredients:

1 tin Peach Slices or Halves in Juice
1 ball Stem Ginger
1 tbsp Dark Brown Sugar
2 tbsp Bourbon


To make the compote:

Chop 1 tin Peach Slices or Halves in Juice into small pieces and add to a small saucepan along with a finely diced 1 ball Stem Ginger and 1 tbsp Dark Brown Sugar. Place on a medium heat and bring to a gentle boil, stirring the sugar in until melted.

Add 2 tbsp Bourbon and leave the compote to simmer gently while you make the pancakes.

Tip – Add a little water if the compote starts to become dry. 

To make the Pancakes:

Measure 125g Self Raising Flour, 2 tbsp. Caster Sugar and 1/2 tsp Sea Salt Flakes into a medium mixing bowl and stir to combine.

Make a well in the centre of the bowl and add 1 Large Egg.  Start adding 150ml Skimmed Milk bit by bit and whisking the batter until all the milk is combined. Try to whisk any lumps out when the mix is still quite thick as they are harder to get out a more liquid batter.

Turn the oven onto a low heat to keep the batches of pancakes warm as you go along.

Heat a medium frying pan to just smoking point then turn down to a medium heat.

Spray the pan with 3 sprays of Frylight Spray.

Using a tablespoon of batter for each, make 4 piles of batter in the pan, leaving room for each to spread a little. If they spread and touch, it isn’t an issue but try to make them not touch for rounder pancakes.

When little bubbles start to appear on the surface – about a minute, flip each pancake over. Start with the first one you put in the pan and work round in the same order.

Leave the pancakes for another 30-60 seconds and check the colour underneath. when golden brown, remove from the pan and transfer to a plate in the oven to keep warm.

Repeat the process until all of the batter is used, there should be circa 16 pancakes made in 4 batches.

Serve 4 warm pancakes per portion with the warm compote and some crème fraiche.

They can be rewarmed for 20 seconds in the microwave or in a dry pan and will keep for a couple of days.

The compot will last up to a week in the fridge.

Simple Supper/Brunch – Parma Ham, Asparagus and Poached Egg

This is a super simple 10 minute meal, probably a quick brunch and a perfect opportunity to put into practice any new found Egg Poaching Skills.

I had this for a quick tea and it would be perfect with some warm bread like this Oregano and Chilli Sodabread.

Serves 2 – 380 Kcal (without bread)

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Ingredients:

400g Asparagus
Frylight Spray
12 slices Parma Ham
4 Large Eggs
Sea Salt Flakes


Boil a kettle of water.

Prepare 400g Asparagus by snapping off the thick bottom ends where they naturally break.

Tip – If the asparagus is especially thick stemmed, use a peeler to shave off some of the tougher outer stalk from the bottom half of each stalk.

Cook the asparagus in a frying pan on a high heat using a few sprays of Frylight.  Keep the asparagus moving around the pan by gently shaking it every 20 seconds or so so no one side catches. They’re done when the stems are a little soft to the touch and a little charred. This should take 4 to 5 minutes.

Remove the asparagus from the pan and cover with foil to keep warm.

Fill the frying pan with the now boiled kettle water and poach 4 Eggs.

Tip – See here for a  guide to Poaching Eggs

Serve the poached eggs, warm asparagus and 12 Slices of Parma Ham over 2 plates.

Sprinkle a few Sea Salt Flakes over the eggs and asparagus.

 

Sweet Potato Cornbread Breakfast Slice

I eat breakfast everyday – I love breakfast in fact, its easily my favourite meal of any day (except brunch which is essentially uber breakfast) but trying to have a high protein and low calorie breakfast that I can pre prepare then microwave at work in the mornings is quite tough. I’ve generally settled on a routine of 2 boiled eggs, a slice of ham and an actimel which I can happily eat every day. Variety is great however so I thought I’d try to experiment with a savoury cornbread slice incorporating boiled egg which would also add to my 5 a day which my usual breakfast wasn’t doing.

I’ve made sweet potato cornbread a couple of times, adapting a couple of different recipes online to fit the ingredients that I had at the time (usually no buttermilk) but found it super sweet so when I came up with this, I knocked the sugar content down massively, replacing it with a little honey. You could remove the honey all together but it does help bring out the sweet potato flavour which is otherwise quite mellow.

The options on variety on this are endless, it would be easy to make vegetarian, removing the bacon and replacing with red pepper and replacing the chorizo slice with some spinach leaves for example.

This recipe makes 6 slices, ideal to have 1 warm from the oven then 5 to package up for the week’s breakfasts. Each portion is very substantial and easily keeps me going until lunch for relatively few calories.  I warm each slice for 30-60 seconds in the microwave before eating but these would be perfectly good to eat cold if you can’t!

6 slices – 326kcal per serving

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Ingredients:

2 large sweet potatoes
7 eggs
1 cup of mushrooms
3 lean rashers of back bacon
¾ of a cup of fine polenta/cornmeal
½ cup of plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sea salt
2 tbsp runny honey
2 tbsp light spread
¾ cup of milk
6 thin slices of chorizo


Preheat the oven to 180c or equivalent – a tad higher if its not a fan oven.

Pop 2 large sweet potatoes in the microwave for 10 or so minutes to cook through. Once cooked slice in half or  into quarters and leave to cool.

Tip – You could use an oven but obviously this will take longer and a crispy skin isn’t needed here.

Meanwhile, boil 6 eggs until medium/hard boiled as you prefer and run under cold water to cool them. Leave to the side.

Tip – I have an egg timer from Poundland that goes in the water with the eggs and tells you what stage they are – it works a treat and takes into account factors that your clock timer doesn’t!)

Finely dice about 1 cup of mushrooms – any type you fancy and fry in a couple of sprays of Frylight until a little brown. Set aside.

Tip – I fry on a very high heat so any water evaporates quickly and they brown rather than boil.

Tip – You could at this stage do the same with any other veg instead or as well such as courgette or red pepper.

Finely dice 3 lean rashers of back bacon and dry fry until desired doneness and set aside.

Tip – I use scissors to cut bacon – much easier than a knife unless your knives are super sharp.

Tip – You could also use streaky bacon or cooked ham instead. Or a little sausage. Or both!

Add ¾ of a cup of fine polenta/cornmeal, ½ cup of plain flour, 1.5 tsp baking powder and 1 tbsp sea salt into a large bowl along with half the bacon and all the mushroom pieces.

Tip – If you don’t have sea salt flakes and use runny salt, halve the amount of salt used.

Tip – I usually make this with white spelt flour so my wheat-arded friend can eat it.

Warm 2 tbsp runny honey and 2 tbsp light spread together in the microwave until just melted

Tip – I use Flora Light or a supermarket equivalent for most of my baking but you could use any butter or spread here.

Scrape out the now cooled sweet potato from it’s skin and mash to a smooth-ish paste and add to the honey and melted fat, ¾ cup of milk and 1 whole egg. Mix to combine.

Tip – I use skimmed milk as standard but any cow milk should work. You may need to add a little more the thicker the milk.

Mix the wet and dry mixtures together. The mix should be quite thick but drop off a spoon..add more milk to loosen if needed.

Line a 30cm by 20cm tin with baking parchment, a silicone sheet or with butter/spread.

Tip – A smaller tin will make thicker slices, a bigger tin will make thinner slices. Use what you have but in this case you need to make sure there is room to lay out the boiled eggs. You could I suppose use a loaf pan and keep the eggs whole and upended.

Tip – I use loaf liner sheets from Poundland – 2 for this size tin, stretched out and overlapped.

Turn half of the cornbread mix into the tin and spread until even.

Peel the cooled boiled eggs and slice in two lengthways. Lay the eggs in the tin with yolks upwards. Lay them out with two halves next to each other in 6 portions – see the picture!

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Lay 6 thin slices of chorizo on top of the eggs to stop the rest of the cornbread mixture mingling with the yolks.

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Spoon the rest of the mixture to form a top layer and smooth it out.

Tip – I spooned the mixture on, one pile on each slice of chorizo and spread it outwards so the chorizo didn’t move off the eggs.

Split the remaining bacon pieces into 6 little piles to mark out the 6 portions.

Bake for 35-45 minutes – it will stop being wobbly and be a little brown on top – you’ll know when it’s ready – trust your gut – don’t overbake as it’ll be sad and dry 😦

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Once a bit cooled, slice into 6 portions. Eat one and bag the rest individually. Nom. I can’t see why these wouldn’t freeze well but I haven’t tried it!