Our latest feast

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Fettucine Carbonara

Delicious and rich, this pasta dish makes the ultimate occasional indulgence.  I say this as it is definitely something that you wouldn't have too often for two reasons.

The first being that the flavours are so decadent and mourish that it is hard to stop at one bowl full even if you have eaten enough.

The second is that it isn't the best dish to cook if you are on a diet.  I do try and lighten up a lot of the recipes that I cook but some you just have to keep it basic and stick to the original recipes.  (However saying this I have made this one gluten free by swapping out the pasta).

My kids adore this dish - it is definitely a comfort meal and it's one that I go to as it is very quick and easy to prepare, cook and serve.

Fettucine Carbonara

Serves: 4

400 grams gluten free fettucine, or pasta of your choice
1 tablespoons olive oil
250 grams pancetta or bacon, cut into strips
1 large brown onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
300 ml pure cream
3 eggs
1 cup finely grated parmesan, plus extra to serve
1/3 cup chopped continental parsley

Boil a large saucepan full of water and cook pasta following packet directions until al dente. Drain well.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. 

Add pancetta and onion. Cook for 8 minutes or until pancetta is golden. 

Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Whisk cream and eggs in a bowl. Stir in parmesan and season with salt and pepper. 

Add pancetta mixture and cream mixture to hot pasta and toss to combine. 

Stir through parsley and serve immediately sprinkled with extra parmesan.

(Click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Bakewell Tart

March and April see a string of birthdays in our family.  This year we were bless with our daughter turning 18 and our son turning 21 both in March.  April followed up with our niece's 8th birthday, Dad/Grandad's birthday and of course, hubby turning 50!  No shortage of candles in the House of Murray that's for sure. 

There were several French Vanilla Cheesecakes made along with a couple of Gluten Free Devil's Food Cakes (Chocolate Mud Cakes) but for Dad/Grandad I really wanted to make something that was old school and being that we are all from British background this Bakewell Tart really hit the spot.

A Bakewell tart, as I believe it should be, has a crisp sweet shortcrust pastry base, a layer of thick jam, a generous frangipane filling and flaked almonds.  But honestly, like with everything, everyone has their own versions and there are so many recipes out there to follow.

All I can say is that Dad/Grandad was very happy with his birthday Bakewell Tart (not to mention everyone else in the family).  

Bakewell Tart
(Recipe adapted from Delicious Magazine UK)

Serves: 8 - 10

200 grams plain flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tablespoons icing sugar
100 grams unsalted butter, chilled and diced
1 large free-range egg, beaten
1 tablespoon milk

150 grams  unsalted butter, at room temperature
150 grams caster sugar
3 large free-range eggs, at room temperature, beaten
150 grams ground almonds
grated zest of 1 lemon
6 tablespoons cherry or raspberry jam
2 tablespoons flaked almonds

Sift the flour, icing sugar and a pinch of salt into a large bowl. 

Using your fingertips, rub in the butter until it forms fine crumbs. 

Add the beaten eggs and milk and lightly bring together to form a firm dough, taking care not to handle it any more than necessary. 

Shape into a disc (which will be easier to roll out later), then chill, wrapped in cling film, for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.   

Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured surface to 4mm thick. 

Lift pastry, trying not to stretch and place over a 23cm fluted, loose-bottomed tart tin or a quiche/flan dish.  Using your fingers gently push the pastry into the tin. Trim the excess and prick all over with a fork. Chill for 30 minutes.

Place the tin onto a baking tray.  Line the pastry case with baking paper and fill with baking beans or rice.

Place tray in oven and bake for 15 minutes, then remove the beans/rice and paper.

Cook for a further 5 minutes until pale golden and dry on top.

Meanwhile beat the remaining butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy. 

Beat in the eggs a little at a time, then fold in the ground almonds and lemon zest.

Spread the jam evenly across the base of the pastry case, then spoon over the sponge mixture, levelling the surface with the back of the spoon. Scatter with almonds. 

Bake for 35-40 minutes until golden, well risen and just set in the centre.

Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then lift onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely, if desired (we enjoy ours still warm).

Happy Birthday Dad/Grandad