ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Pastries and Pies

Cinnamon Swirls

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Oh it’s that time of the year where cinnamon is a staple ingredient in your household and no better way to use it than to make cinnamon glazed swirls……oh so yummy!

For the swirls:-

1 puff pastry sheet

spoonful of butter melted

3 tbsp caster sugar

3 tbsp brown sugar

1 tbsp cinnamon

For the Glaze:-

1/2 cup icing sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla essence

10ml milk

 

  1. Pre-heat oven to 190deg
  2. Roll out pastry sheet, brush with butter then sprinkle sugars and cinnamon evenly over pastry sheet
  3. Carefully start to roll the pastry up not too tight but not too loose
  4. Using a sharp knife, slice the roll into 6 or 7 sections evenly.
  5. Grease a baking tin or tray and place the swirls upright leaving a little space between each to allow for expansion of pastry.                                                                                            20161120_100000
  6. Bake for approx 20-25 mins until golden brown
  7. Meanwhile to make the glaze, mix the milk and vanilla essence with the icing sugar until you have a thick but not too thick consistencey, if too runny just keep adding more icing sugar. Using a spoon drizzle over swirls once removed from oven, allow to harden and serve……oh so yummy!

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ALL · Pastries and Pies

Spinach, Tomato and Egg Pastry Breakfast Square

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With some puff pastry left in the fridge and looking for a tasty Sunday brunch thought I’d have a go at a puff pastry tart. Such a simple and easy yet tasty delight. The fillings are endless too, I now have so many ideas going on in my head for next time…….goats cheese being one of my favourites.

 

1 sheet of puff pastry

1 egg whisked for the wash

2 egg yolks

handful cherry tomatoes – halved

handful of spinach

salt & pepper to taste

 

  1. Firstly cut your pastry into a square, about 5″ x 5″, using a sharp knife draw a square around the pastry about 1 cm in, be careful not to cut right through.                                                     20161120_093927
  2. Brush the pastry with the egg wash.
  3. Place the spinach in the square then the cherry tomatoes around the edge. 20161120_095524
  4. Place into a preheated oven at 190 deg for approx 10 minutes.
  5. After 10 minutes, pour the remaining egg wash into the centre and then place the egg yolks in the middle, put back in oven and continue to cook for approx 10-15mins.                        20161120_095616
  6. Remove and serve……Yum!

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ALL · beef · Meat Dishes · Pastries and Pies

Empanadas with Soffritto Filling

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So Rio 2016 is upon us, to help celebrate I decided to try my hand at a Brazilian themed dinner. I was so pleased with my results, so tasty! Here you are, my recipes:-

Empanadas are little pockets of leftovers, I filled mine with Soffritto, Mince and Black beans filling.

Traditional Empanada dough is made a bit like an unsweetened tart crust: flour, salt (and any other seasonings), and butter are mixed to combine, then eggs and water are added until the dough comes together. However, I cheated for quickness and used shop bought ready rolled shortcrust pastry.

For the Soffritto:-

1 carrot

3 celery sticks

1 large white onion

1 tbsp olive oil

  1. Chop all the ingredients into very fine pieces (cubes).
  2. Heat the oil in a pan and add the onion, cook until translucent and slightly browned. Then add in the carrot and celery, reduce to a low heat and cook for approx 1 hour until its all browned. The flavour that comes from the vegetables is amazing and almost caramelised like.
  3. At this stage you can eat it on its own or add any other meats or flavourings.

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For my filling for the Empanada’s I added to the Soffritto mix:-

200g Browned mince

200g Black beans

2 tbsp Chopped Chilli

1 tsp salt & pepper to season

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When the filling is ready, you are now ready to make your Empanadas

  1. Roll out your pasty into circular shapes, I used a 4″ pastry cutter.
  2. Take a dessert spoonful of the filling and put onto pastry
  3. Wet you finger and wet the edges of the pastry, fold over the pastry into a half moon shape and seal with your finger or a fork.
  4. Place on a greaseproof paper baking tray and brush with either milk or egg wash.
  5. Bake in a preheated oven at 200 deg for 25 minutes.

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Also check out my Brazilian Cheesy Bread here:- https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2016/08/06/brazilian-cheesy-bread/

 

 

 

ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Desserts · Pastries and Pies · Snacks and nibbles

Toffee Apple Custard Tarts

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I was inspired to try these by a local baker I met this week, I have to say I didn’t quite get the custard as I would have liked but they did taste absolutely divine.

Makes 6-8

For the filling:
3 large free range eggs, plus 2 large free range egg yolks, lightly beaten
1 pint of single cream (2 cups)
2 ounces caster sugar (a scant 1/4 cup)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 whole nutmegs, grated
1 tsp of softened butter

For the toffee sauce:

150g caster sugar

75ml pot double cream

25g butter

Base:-

3-4 sheets Filo Pastry

1/2 Lady Red Apple – sliced very thinly

 

  1. Place the cream and vanilla into a saucepan and bring it up to a simmer.
  2. Whisk the beaten eggs and sugar together in a large heatproof jug.
  3. Slowly pour the hot cream over the beaten eggs, whisking continuously.
  4. Whisk in half of the nutmeg.
  5. Carefully pour the whisked mixture into the pastry case and scatter the rest of the nutmeg over top.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes, then place the sliced apple on top carefully, place back in the oven for a further 20 mins or until the filling is golden brown, firm in the centre and slightly puffed.
  7. Meanwhile, cut the filo pastry into squares, size to fit your muffin tin. Lightly grease your tin.
  8. Brush the filo with melted butter and place 3 squares on top of each other to form a star shape, carefully press into muffin tin. 20160416_151009
  9. Now to make the toffee, tip the sugar into a heavy-based frying pan, stir in 4 tbsp water, then place over a medium heat until the sugar has dissolved.
  10. Turn up the heat and bubble for 4-5 mins until you have caramel.
  11. Take off the heat, then carefully stir in the cream and butter.  20160416_150921
  12. Once oven has finished, remove and spread the toffee over the top and allow to cool for about 1 hour. Serve! Yummy!

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ALL · Pastries and Pies · Snacks and nibbles

Delicious Creamy Cheese Puff Twists!

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I had some left over Pastry and creme Fraiche……….oh what to do………Creamy Cheese Puffs….oh yes that is the answer….these are absolutely delicious! Perfect for my lazy comfort Sunday afternoon.

 

1 Roll of lighter Puff Pastry

1 tub of creme fraiche (I only used half a tub)

Grated Chedder Cheese

1 egg beaten for glazing.

 

  1. Roll out pastry sheet and brush with egg, cover half with the creme fraiche (you could of course use cream cheese too)  Make sure not to put too much in or it will run out, just a light covering. Use back of a spoon to even out.                                                                                                             20160207_151651_resized
  2. Sprinkle grated cheese on top of creme fraiche evenly.                             20160207_151750_resized
  3. Fold over the pastry to make a parcel, press down around all the edges. The cut into strips about 2.5cm wide. 20160207_152129_resized
  4. Place a baking sheet onto a baking tray and preheat oven to 180 deg.
  5. Holding both ends of the strips gently twist in opposite direction to create your twist. Lay onto baking sheet and glaze with remaining egg mixture.   Place into warm oven and bake for approx 25 minutes.                              20160207_152505_resized
  6. Make yourself a cuppa and watch the magic happen! 20160207_152925_resized
  7. Remove, allow to cool for a few minutes as they will be roasting hot in the middle. Simply Enjoy! Yummy!

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ALL · Cakes and Biscuits · Desserts · Pastries and Pies · Snacks and nibbles

My Nutella French Patisserie Delight

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Makes 8 portions

I cheated a bit with this one and bought shop bought pastry. (Jus-~Rol) 1 x box

1 Jar Nutella

1 egg for glazing

a little flour for rolling.

 

1. Take out pastry from packet and split into 4 or 5 sections, Roll each section out to desired size using a little flour on surface to prevent sticking, you don’t want the pastry too thick or too thin.

2. Take one section of the pastry and spread nutella evenly over top, take next section of pastry and lay on top, then again spread with nutella etc, etc, keep on layering and spreading until you come to your last pastry layer and just lay that on top.

3. Take a large cutter or something circular like a cake tin lid to cut around pastry stack and make nice and neat all the way around.

4. Now come the tricky bit, take a small glass and position in the middle, the cut out your sections evenly.

5. Now take each section pull towards you slightly and twist about 3 times and seal the end.

6. Once all sections have been done, brush with some egg wash for the glaze.

7. Bake in a preheated oven for about 15-20 mins or until golden brown. (or as per packet instructions)

8. Break up sections and serve once cooled….oh so yummy!!!!

ALL · chicken · Meat Dishes · Pastries and Pies

Chicken and Leek Pie

Blind Bake Pastry, with cooking beans

2013-03-03_18.56.512013-03-03_18.38.46Blind Bake Pastry, with cooking beans

 

SHORTCRUST CHICKEN AND LEEK PIE

2 chicken breasts – cut into chunks

1 Leek, finely chopped

300ml Milk

1 Chicken Stock Cube (Mix with milk)

Salt and pepper to season

2 tablespoons of plain flour

1 teaspoon of nutmeg

15g butter

1 roll of ready rolled pastry

*Roll out and place pastry into tart tin.

*Prick the base with a fork and lay greaseproof paper on top of pastry

*Tip in the baking beans

*Place in oven at 190deg for 15 mins

*While pastry in oven, gently fry off chicken until lightly browned then remove from pan

*saute the leeks for about 5 mins and remove from pan

*Melt  butter in a pan gently, stir in the flour until a smooth paste

*Add stock cube to milk and add to pan little at a time until it thickens slighty

*Add back the chicken and leeks

*Add seasoning and nutmeg, stir and gently simmer covered for about 15 mins

*Remove greaseproof paper and baking beans from pastry and add in the chicken, leek mix

*Cover with pastry or lattice, brush with little milk

*Select Shortcrust Pastry setting and cook