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Emma x

Category: Pastry

Passion Fruit and Chocolate Profiteroles

Passion Fruit and Chocolate Profiteroles

Every afternoon tea stack needs some choux pastry, and who doesn’t love profiteroles? These ones are stuffed with a passion fruit creme patisserie which gives a great tang to marry with the rich chocolate ganache on top. If you’re not a fan of passion fruit these also work really well with orange zest  or even just as plain vanilla creme pat.  If you’re not keen on making creme pat you could even go super traditional and just fill the profiteroles with whipped cream!

Recipe

Makes 25

Time: 2 hours

Ingredients

For the choux pastry

  • 110g Unsalted butter
  • 120g Plain flour
  • 3 Medium eggs

For the filling

  • 250ml Whole milk
  • 1 tbsp Vanilla bean paste
  • 50g Caster sugar
  • 3 Egg yolks
  • 10g Cocoa powder
  • 10g Cornflour
  • 25ml Passion fruit curd (or coulis – preferably with no seeds)

To decorate

  • 100ml Double cream
  • 100g Dark chocolate

Method

  1. Begin by making the choux pastry. Put the butter and 450ml water into a large saucepan. Bring to the boil and wait until the butter has melted.
  2. Tip in the flour and mix really quickly with a wooden spoon until the mixture has formed a ball and is lump-free. Tip the dough into a bowl and spread it out as much as possible to help it cool down. Leave until cool (about half an hour).
  3. Meanwhile pre-heat the oven to 180˚C. Then line 2 baking trays with baking paper. Draw 10-15 circles, about 4cm in diameter, with a pencil  on each baking sheet (it can be useful to use a lid or cookie cutter as a stencil to help!) Then turn the paper over so that the lines are on the other side.
  4. Now add the eggs to the dough, one by one, beating well in between each addition. You might not need all the eggs so between each addition test the consistency. You want the mixture to be thick and to hold it’s shape but to be pourable, if you pick up a bit of the pastry with a spatula and then shake it once you should get a ‘V’ shape of dough hanging off the end of the spatula.
  5. Transfer the pastry to a piping bag with a 1cm round nozzle. Pipe blobs of pastry onto your lined baking trays, using the circles you drew earlier as a guide. Then dip your finger in some water and dab down on any peaks or mis-shaped bits of the mounds.
  6. Bake the profteroles in the oven for 30-40 minutes until golden brown and risen. Then take the profiteroles out of the oven, quickly prick each one in the side with a knife and then put them back in the oven for 5-10 minutes to dry out even more (this will stop the profiteroles from collapsing once out of the oven). Then leave the profiteroles to cool completely on wire racks.
  7. Now make the crème patisserie filling. Put the milk and vanilla into a saucepan and bring to the boil.
  8. In another bowel mix the sugar, egg yolks and two flours until fully combined. Once the milk is heated, remove the pan from the heat and gently pour the milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly.
  9. Once combined pour the mixture back into the pan and put the pan back over a heat. Whisk on a medium heat until the mixture boils and thickens.
  10. Take the mixture off the heat and stir in half the passionfruit curd. Pour the custard into a jug and cover with cling-film to prevent a skin from forming. Set aside for later.
  11. Now make the ganache. Chop the chocolate up finely and then put it into a bowl.
  12. Pour the cream into a small saucepan and bring just up to the boil. Then pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate and whisk until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth.
  13. When the profiterole shells have cooled down slice one in half with a sharp knife and place the ‘tops’ next to the ‘bottoms’.
  14.  Pipe a blob of the creme patisserie into the base of each of the bottom shells. Then spoon a little of the passionfruit curd over the top of the creme pat.
  15. Next take one of the top profiterole halves and dip it into the ganache. Run your thumb along the side to stop drips and then repeat with the rest of the tops.
  16. Finally put the tops of the profiteroles onto the bottoms and serve!

Thanks for reading!

Emma x

 

 

 

 

Bakewell Tartlets

Bakewell Tartlets

As the summer is coming to an end we’re starting to hit peak jam making time where any fresh fruit left over from the summer is being stewed into lots of jam. Down the bottom of our lane we have tonnes of apple and damson trees which are currently laden with fruit ripe for the picking. These can be used to make amazing jams and compotes which work really well in desserts like these delicious bakewell tartlets.

These are by far my favourite tart to make as they don’t require blind baking (baking the pastry before adding the filling) as the filling is baked with the pastry. This makes them so much easier to make and a lot less hassle than most other tarts, so they’re my go-to pastry. The main components of a bakewell tart are pastry, jam, frangipane (an almond cake mix) and icing. Beyond that the whole concept of bakewell tarts are pretty flexible and easy to play with.  I’ve made bakewell tartlets for this as they can be cut into quarters which make great bite-sized treats for an afternoon tea stack! You could also just make these as one big tart which is fab for cake sales and sharing.

Recipe

Makes 4

Time: 90 minutes, plus chilling time

Ingredients

For the pastry

  • 175g Plain flour
  • A pinch of Salt
  • 2 tbsp Caster sugar
  • 115g Unsalted butter
  • 1 medium Egg yolk
  • 2 tbsp cold Water

For the filling

  • 60g Unsalted butter
  • 60g Caster sugar
  • 1 Medium egg
  • 30g Self raising flour
  • ½ tsp Baking powder
  • 50g Ground almonds
  • A few drops of Almond essence
  • 2 tbsp Raspberry jam

To decorate

  • 100g Icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp Lemon juice
  • A few flaked almonds (optional)

Method

  1. Begin by making the pastry. Put the flour, salt and sugar into a bowl and mix together with a round bladed knife to combine. Add the butter and then use the knife to cut the butter up into small chunks. When you can’t cut the butter up any further, go in with your hands and rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  2. Add the egg yolk and water to the mixture and stir again with a round bladed knife until the mixture comes together to form a dough. Wrap the dough in cling film and then chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile make the filling. Put the butter, sugar, egg, flour, baking powder, ground almonds and almond essence into a bowl and mix together until smooth.
  4. Pre-heat the oven to 180˚C. Take your pastry out of the fridge and divided it into 4. Roll each portion out on a floured surface into a thin disc and then line a tarlet tin with each of them. I find the best way to do this is to carefully lay the pastry over the tin and then to ease into the shape, before pressing into the flutes of the tin. Then take a rolling pin and roll over the top of the tarlet tins to remove the excess pastry.
  5. Spread a little jam over the base of each of the tartlets. Then portion out the frangipane and spread it so that it covers the jam and is even.
  6. Put the tartlets onto a baking tray and bake them in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the frangipane and pastry is golden brown. Set to one side to cool.
  7. To prepare the decoration put the icing sugar and lemon juice into a bowl and mix together until smooth.
  8. When the tartlets have cooled drizzle them with this icing. Then Sprinkle the tartlets with flakes almonds (optional) and serve!

Thanks for reading!

Emma x

Mad Hatter’s Tea Party

Mad Hatter’s Tea Party

“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast” – Lewis Carrol, Alice in Wonderland.

We’re at the end of book themed month (where did that go?!) and so I’ve decided to end like we started and do a week of recipes themed around one book – this time that good old favourite Alice in Wonderland! I’m from Oxford and there’s loads of Lewis Carrol references around the city that I’ve been trotted around since I was very young, so I’ve always had a fondness for this crazy story. Although it’s technically a children’s book I think the actual themes and plot are pretty incomprehensible and I remember being really confused with it as a kid, but re-reading the book now in my early adult years I’m finding it much more insightful and interesting.

So, back to why we’re here, the food! When doing an Alice in Wonderland themed week on a food blog it’s kinda compulsory to do a Mad Hatter’s tea party so that’s what we have. This is an all bells and whistles afternoon tea, but you could scale it back if you don’t want to spend two days baking. If you really don’t want to bake that much you could just take inspiration from what I’ve put together and buy the elements from a shop. I have to admit to being sooo tempted to just buy a bakewell tart on my way out of the shop when I was buying the ingredients for this! In my opinion a ‘complete’ afternoon tea needs…

• Finger sandwiches

• Scones

• Some kind of cake

• Some kind of biscuit

• Something made out of choux pastry (e.g a profiterole)

• Something made out of Shortcrust pastry (e.g a tart)

• And of course lots of tea!

I’ll be posting a recipe a day which you’ll be able to find on the main page of my blog, or on this post where I’ll be collating all the links…

First up is the base of all afternoon teas – finger sandwiches!

Afternoon Tea Sandwiches

Scones

Banana, Cinnamon and Rum Friands

Bakewell Tartlets

Passion Fruit and Chocolate Profiteroles

Chocolate Ginger Biscuit Shards

Thanks for reading!

Emma x

Rhubarb and Custard Cruffins

Rhubarb and Custard Cruffins

If I’m being honest, cruffins to me sounds more like a dodgy disease than a bake, but thankfully it’s not. It’s actually a delish fusion of a flaky croissant and a muffin, resulting in a kinda cruffin lovechild if you will. The croissant dough is shaped and then baked in a muffin tin, and then these pastries are traditionally filled with all sorts of custards, creams and jams.

Whilst rhubarb and custard are a great classic combo, custard will go with pretty much anything so don’t feel as though you have to go with this particular pairing. My Dad really hates rhubarb and he won’t go near the stuff, so if you’re likewise averted to rhubarb you can use any other fruit jam you like.  I’d recommend going for something with a bit of bite, like a lemon curd or a raspberry jam rather than a strawberry or cherry jam, as otherwise things can get a bit sweet. Likewise, if you don’t like custard, whipped cream works really well to! If you do use cream though make sure you chill them in the fridge when not needed, and eat them within 2-3 days.

Recipe

Makes 8

Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • Butter for greasing
  • 350g Ready-to-roll Croissant pastry (see mince pie croissants recipe if you’d like to make your own dough!)
  • 175ml Whole milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla bean paste
  • 2 Egg yolks
  • 30g Caster sugar
  • 25ml Double cream
  • 13g Custard powder
  • 2 tbsp Rhubarb jam
  • Icing sugar to dust

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180˚C. Grease 6 hole in a 12-hole muffin tin with butter.
  2. Unroll the croissant dough on a worktop and cut the dough into three, equally sized rectangles. Then cut each of these strips diagonally to make two right-angled triangles from each rectangle.
  3. Lay them so the long side is facing you. Then roll up the triangle along the long side to make a tight coil with a flat base. Then take a knife and cut the roll in half from the top to about half way down the roll. Then stand the dough up on it’s flat edge and twist the two tails round eachother, pressing them into the dough at the end to join it together. Then put the cruffin into a hole in the greased muffin tin. (This process can be seen in the photo at the top of the post).
  4. Break the egg into a bowl and beat with a fork. Then brush the pastry with the beaten egg to glaze. Bake in the oven for 15-17 minutes until crisp and golden. Then leave them to cool on a wire rack until needed.
  5. Now make the custard filling. Put the milk and vanilla into a pan and bring to the boil.
  6. Meanwhile put the egg yolks, sugar, cream, and custard powder into a bowl and whisk together to make a smooth paste. Pour the hot milk over the egg mixture, whisking constantly until combined. Then put the mix back into the pan and pop back on the heat, still whisking constantly. Continue to whisk until the mixture thickens. Then pour the custard into a bowl and leave to cool.
  7. When the cruffins and custard have cooled down you’re ready to start filling! Spoon the jam and custard into a two separate piping bags with small round nozzles. Then pipe a little of the jam into the middle of each cruffin, followed by some of the custard.
  8. Dust with icing sugar and serve!

Thanks for reading!

Emma x

Cornish Pasties

Cornish Pasties

So back into the south for some inspiration this week. It’s kind of a necessity to eat a pasty at some point when you’re in the West-country, and though there’s dozens of kinds out there for the picking, a good old Cornish pasty will always be my favourite. When I think of pasties I think of wandering barefoot along the beach with a warm, slightly over-flowing pasty in hand. Flakes of buttery pastry flying into your face in the wind, and shooing off seagulls left, right and centre. This might not paint the most relaxing experience of dining there is, but it’s rough, rustic and nostalgic which is what I love most about it.

I know that quite often people hate pasties because they’re thought of being greasy and stodgy. These homemade ones are a lot cleaner than you’d think, and the rough-puff pastry is way lighter than the stuff you find on traditional pasties.  The key is to make sure you season the filling A LOT as it’ll totally transform the flavour of the pasty and make it really moreish. Traditionally beef skirt is used to fill a pasty as it releases gorgeous juices that taste amazing. That said, beef skirt is almost impossible to find in a local supermarket, so if you can’t find it I’d recommend using frying steak, escalopes or any cut of beef that’s relatively thin.

Recipe

Makes 6

Time: 90 minutes, plus chilling

Ingredients

For the pastry

  • 450g Strong bread flour
  • Large pinch of salt
  • 100g Cold, unsalted block butter
  • 100g Cold lard
  • 200ml Cold water

For the filling

  • 200g Potatoes
  • 1 Small onion
  • 100g Swede (1 small)
  • 200g Lean beef skirt (or frying steak if you can’t find beef skirt)
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • 1 Beaten egg

Method

  1. Begin by making the pastry. Put the flour and salt into a large bowl. Then take the chilled blocks of lard and butter and grate them into the butter. I’d recommend giving everything a little mix regularly as you do the grating so that the fats can be coated in flour, this will stop them all re-forming into a lump when you mix it all together.
  2. Then take a round-bladed knife and mix the fat into the flour so it’s all coated. Pour the cold water into the bowl and continue to mix to form a soft dough.
  3. Tip the dough out onto a surface and knead a little to bring the dough together into a ball. Wrap the pastry in cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Now prep the filling. Peel the potatoes, onions and swede. Then chop the potato into chunks, about the thickness of a £1 coin. Then finely chop the onion, and chop the swede into chunks the same size as the potato.
  5. Now prep the meat. Using a sharp knife remove any gristle from the meat, but leave the fat as it’ll add great flavour to the pasty. Then chop the meat into chunks about the same size as the potato.
  6. Pre-heat the oven to 180˚C.
  7. Split the pastry into 6 and then roll each one out to a 14cm diameter circle. Using a plate as a stencil can be helpful here to get a neat circle.
  8. Distribute the onions between the pastry discs, spreading them in a semi-circle over one half of the dough, leaving a 1 cm boarder around the edge for sealing. Sprinkle over a little salt and pepper. Then top with a layer of swede, then meat and finally potato, seasoning a little between each layer.
  9. Take a cup of water and dip your finger into it. Then moisten the rim of the pastry circle with your finger. Fold the unfilled half of the pastry over the filling and use the edge of your hand to gently seal the pastry.
  10. Now it’s time for the crimping that’ll keep the pastry together. Working from right to left fold the pastry over itself and then press down. Repeat along the seam of the pasty to make a rope pattern until you reach the end.
  11. Put the pasties onto a baking tray and brush with the beaten egg. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown, then reduce the oven temperature to 160˚C and continue to bake for 15 minutes. Then turn off the heat and leave the pasties to cool/keep cooking in the oven for another 30 minutes. Serve!

Thanks for reading!

Emma x