Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Fruit tart with lemon and marscarpone.

I have promised various people that I would post this recipe. It is what I call a store cupboard pudding. It can be whipped up in ten minutes flat with very little thought, is super easy and looks so impressive. The only really important thing is to make sure that the lemon biscuits that you use are good quality otherwise it can end up being slightly bland.

500g Lemon biscuits
100g Butter melted
500g Marscarpone
1 Lemon
75g Icing sugar
Aprox 20cm tart tin

Pulverise the biscuits and add to the butter, place the mixture into the bottom if the tart tin. Cook for about tin minutes at 120C to firm up the base. In another bowl mix the marscarpone, icing sugar, zest and lemon juice. Spread this on top on the biscuit base and decorate with any soft fruit of your choice.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Goan Fish Curry.

One of the advantages of working as a lodge cook in Scotland is you do get some fantastic kitchen sink views. This is a photo of one that I think is hard to beat. The disadvantages include your kitchens looking like this! Having said that this particular kitchen might be basic but at least the oven is consistently hot which is a rare treat.

I am afraid I must again apologise for another not great photo, this dish doesn't hold very well and there weren't any left overs for me to stage a more artistic photo with. This is more of an aromatic curry that a hot one. I always make it with cod loins but you could use monk fish or some prawns as well if you have them. I tend to serve this as a main course but you could probably serve it in smaller porions as a starter.

1 onion finely chopped
1 tsp mustard seeds
A lump of fresh ginger
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp turmeric
4 garlic cloves crushed
2 red chilies
2 tsp tamarind paste
2 tomatoes roughly chopped
400ml coconut milk
500g white fish cut in large chunks
Handful of fresh coriander

Soft the onion with the mustard seeds over a medium heat. Add in the rest of the spices and cook for a couple of minutes to release the maximum flavour from the spices. Add in the coconut milk, tomatoes and 100ml of water bring to the boil, allow to simmer for 10 minutes or so until it has thickened slightly. The length of time needed will depend on your coconut milk if you are using low fat milk this will take longer as it is thiner than the full fat version. At this stage the curry can be left to sit until just before you wish to serve it. Add in the fish and bring to back up to a simmer it will only take about 3 minutes for the fish to cook, it should be translucent. Don't over cook the fish or it will simply fall apart and you will end up with a curried fish soup! Serve with a smattering of chopped fresh coriander

Friday, 17 August 2012

Polenta, goat's cheese and roasted cherry tomato canapes.

175g Polenta
850 ml Water
200g Soft goats cheese
Cherry tomatoes

Bring the polenta up to the boil in the water and then reduce to a simmer. If you aren't cooking for a vegetarian you can use chicken stock instead of water. Stir occasionally if you don't have quick cook polenta this should take about 15 minutes until you have a porridge like consistency. Spread the mixture out on a roasting tin until it is just under a cm thick, leave to cool. Once cool is should be solid and can be cut with a pastry cutter. Fry the rounds until they crisp on the outside.

Chop the herbs and mix them into the goats cheese. Season add lemon juice if you think that you need to slacken the mixture off, this really depends on goats cheese which you use.

Cut the cherry tomatoes in half, drizzle with olive oil and roast at 160C for about 30 minutes until they resemble sun dried tomatoes. If you don't have time to do this you can just use sun dried tomatoes instead.

This can all be done and assembled well ahead of time. Serve at room temperature.