Tag Archives: cream

Quiche Lorraine

I cheat and use store-bought shortcrust pastry with my quiches. If you have the time to wait for the dough to rest, and don’t mind clearing up the mess (which I always seem to make tons of whenever making pastry) go right ahead.

Quiche Lorraine reminds me of growing up in the suburbs in Sydney and having a slice of quiche with a salad on the side. You can’t really not like it – salty bacon and sweet sauteed onions enveloped in a warm eggy pillow – with pastry. It’s pretty easy, too – just make sure you blind bake your base properly, or it will end up soggy instead of crispy and short, giving you good contrasting textures with each bite.

Ingredients

  1. 1 -2 sheets ready made shortcrust pastry
  2. 1 large onion, diced
  3. 6 rashers (or more if you want) bacon, diced
  4. 200ml heavy cream
  5. 3 eggs
  6. 1 cup grated gruyere or cheddar cheese
  7. salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200C/390F
  2. Line the base and sides of a loose-bottomed tart tin with the pastry
  3. Prick the base, line with baking paper and add pie weights/rice/beans before blind baking in the oven for 15 minutes
  4. Remove the baking paper and pie weights and put back in the oven for an additional 5-10 minutes until cooked through and lightly browned
  5. While the base is baking, make your filling
  6. Sautee the bacon on medium-high heat until brown and crispy and remove from frying pan to cool
  7. Reduce the heat to low and cook onions until soft and translucent
  8. Mix cream, eggs, cheese together in a jug.
  9. Season with salt and pepper – remember not to oversalt as the bacon and cheese will provide additional seasoning
  10. Once the base is ready, sprinkle your bacon and onion on the base, and pour in the eggy/cheese mix over
  11. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C/320F and bake quiche for 30 minutes or the middle is just wobbly (it will continue to cook a little more once out of the oven)
  12. Remove from oven, let sit for 5 minutes before removing quiche from the tin
  13. Enjoy hot or cold as leftovers the next day ūüėČ

 

 


Salmon pasta

A deliciously creamy pasta that is freshened by a good squeeze of lemon.

Ingredients: (for two)

  1. 1 onion, diced
  2. 1 glass of white wine
  3. 200g hot smoked salmon, flaked (you can also use normal smoked salmon)
  4. 150g dried pasta – I like to use spaghetti
  5. 200ml cream
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
  7. Juice of 1/2 lemon, plus extra to serve
  8. Handful fresh dill, chopped – other herbs that would work if you can’t get fresh dill would be chervil or flat leaf parsley and you can also use dried dill if your supermarket is like mine and always seems to have the fresh herbs you don’t¬†need that night

Method:

  1. Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the pack
  2. While the pasta is cooking, sweat the onions until translucent
  3. Turn the heat to high, add the white wine and cook for 3-4 minutes to cook off the alchohol
  4. Add the cream and cook on medium heat for another few minutes until thickened
  5. Season to taste – remember that the salmon will add salt
  6. Add the salmon
  7. Add the lemon juice and herbs
  8. Add the cooked pasta (should be juust al dente as it will continue to cook a little in the sauce).  Reserve some of the salted water that you cooked the pasta in and you can add that to thin out the cream sauce to make it silky and coat the pasta.
  9. Serve with lemon wedges and a sprinkle of chopped fresh dill

Pavlova

pavlova with fresh cream and berries

Pavlova is another one of those desserts whose origin seems locked in battle between Australia and New Zealand. ¬†I don’t care who “invented” it, I’m just grateful for it, no matter where it comes from.

It’s a dessert which seems to invoke fear in people trying to make it, but I have made it enough times to know that with some basic rules, it’s a simple and impressively sweet treat to make. ¬†You end up with this perfect blend of crisp outer shell with marshmallowy centre, topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit.

The basic rules:

  1. Use a clean bowl and beater – any oil, egg yolk, water, soap etc will limit the volume that you will get from your egg whites
  2. If you’re in humid weather, beat your egg whites with the airconditioner on. ¬†Humidity also minimises volume
  3. I make my pavlova a touch less sweet, but you need at least 50g of sugar per egg white to keep the stiffness in the meringue mix
  4. Make sure you add the sugar to the egg whites gradually, making sure you beat well until the sugar is dissolved (taste some of the mix, if it’s gritty, you need to beat it more)
  5. When the cooking is done, let the pavlova cool in the oven with the oven door closed or at the most open only a crack or your pavlova will collapse

OK that’s a few more than I thought, but really, it’s not that difficult, honest !

Ingredients (to feed 6 people or 4 greedy ones)

  • 4 egg whites at room temperature
  • Pinch of salt
  • 200g castor sugar
  • splodge of vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons cornflour
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • Whipped cream and fruit to top

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C
  2. Beat egg whites with salt until satiny peaks form
  3. Add castor sugar in small batches, beating well between each so that the sugar has dissolved
  4. fold in the vanilla, cornflour and vinegar
  5. Pile on to a tray lined with baking paper (you can draw a 15cm circle on the underneath of the baking paper to help), flatten the top a little (so you can add the topping)
  6. Put into oven and immediately turn the temperature down to 150C and bake for 30 minutes
  7. Reduce the temperature to 120C and bake for another hour
  8. Turn off oven at the end and let the pavlova cool in the oven
  9. Top with fresh whipped cream and fresh fruit

potato gratin dauphinois

You can pretty much serve me potatoes any way and I’ll love them – mash them, bake them, chip and fry them, or coat them in cream and cheese and bake them.¬† After not having cooked for a week and with a whole Saturday afternoon and evening ahead of me, I decided to make my-friend-Christine-inspired potato gratin dauphinois with truffle oil as a side dish to the free-range chicken I picked up from the butcher downstairs at Great World City this morning, and was roasting for dinner (wow that’s a long sentence).

I was trying to find a recipe for it in the Larousse Gastranomique that D had bought me for Christmas, and was surprised that under the many many potato recipes, there was none to be found for potatoe dauphinois.

So, I improvised, and I have to say that the potatoes beat the chicken by a long shot !

Potatoe gratin dauphinois:

Smash a clove of garlic and pop in into a saucepan of 200ml heavy cream and 100ml full cream milk and heat until there are bubbles around the edges of the saucepan.

Remove the garlic, and add in a cup of grated Gruyere cheese and stir till it’s melted into the cream/milk mixture.¬† Add in a few drops of truffle oil at this stage.¬† Season with salt and pepper to taste and add some freshly grated nutmeg.

Peel about half a kilo of potatoes (I used Russet), soak them in water so they don’t burn, pat dry, finely slice with a mandolin and add them to the cream/milk/cheese mixture to coat.

Arrange in a buttered gratin dish and top with more grated Gruyere, dot with a bit more truffle oil and bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 1 1/2 hours or until the potatoes are cooked.

Enjoy the smell of your kitchen/flat as it bakes!