June 2, 2020 – Published in Design & Decor Spring 2012 issue
Feasts for a crowd
Mouthwatering earthy flavours you won't be able to resist.
Words: Liz Said
(All ingredients in the recipes may be purchased from Scotts Supermarket)
SPINACH RAMEKINS WITH STILTON CHEESE SAUCE
350g frozen leaf spinach, thawed
½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
Freshly ground black pepper
3 eggs beaten
8 tablespoons single cream
300ml full cream milk
½ small onion
1 bay leaf
15g plain flour
75g Stilton crumbled into small pieces
15g parmesan cheese grated
Freshly grated nutmeg
Drain the spinach thoroughly and mix with the nutmeg, salt and pepper, the eggs and cream. Spoon the spinach mixture into 6 individual ovenproof dishes or ramekins, greased with oil or melted butter.
Stand the dishes in a roasting tin and add sufficient hot water to come halfway up the sides. Bake in a preheated oven for about 40 minutes.
Remove from the oven and carefully run a small knife around the edge of each dish and unmould the ramekins and serve with the cheese sauce.
Put the milk into a saucepan with the onion and bay leaf and bring almost to the boil; remove the pan from the heat and leave to infuse for 20 minutes; strain the milk through a sieve into a jug.
Melt the butter in a saucepan and heat until bubbling. Tip in the flour and stir quickly to combine; cook the mixture gently, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for 1-2 minutes to make a smooth, pale roux.
Remove the pan from the heat and gradually whisk in the warm milk, stirring constantly until the sauce is completely smooth. Return the pan to a moderate heat and cook, stirring, until the sauce comes to the boil.
Add the cheeses and the nutmeg to the sauce and cook over a gentle heat, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes until the cheese is melted and the sauce is smooth and glossy.
1 cauliflower about 1.5kg
120g streaky bacon
375g Maltese sausage
2 tablespoons oil
For the sauce:
1 litre milk
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 egg yolks
120g Havarti cheese grated
2 tablespoons chopped chives
Trim the cauliflower, cut off the stalk and divide it into medium-sized florets. Wash the cauliflower under cold running water then cook it in boiling, salted. Water for 5 minutes; strain and leave to drain well.
Peel and finely dice the onions and finely dice the bacon; chop the Maltese sausage into pieces about 5mm thick. Heat the oil in a pan and fry the bacon in this; add the onion and sausage and fry briefly; season with salt and pepper to taste and add the cauliflower florets; mix all the ingredients well together.
To make the sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan, sprinkle in the flour and stirring continuously, cook for 1-2 minutes without allowing the roux to discolour; pour in the milk and stir to a smooth consistency, then season with salt and pepper.
Beat the egg yolks with the cream in a bowl and stir into the sauce to bind it; stirring continuously, bring the sauce briefly to the boil, then strain it through a fine sieve.
Return the sauce to the pan, reheat, add the grated cheese and stir until it has melted; take off the heat and add the chives.
Butter an oven dish and turn the cauliflower mixture into this; pour the sauce over the mixture and place the dish in a preheated oven at 200°C to bake for 30 minutes.
600ml fresh whipping cream
4 medium egg yolks
75g caster sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla sugar
25g demerara sugar
Strawberries, chocolate curls and mini Easter eggs to decorate
Preheat the oven to 150°C, Gas Mark2. Pour the cream into a bowl and place over a saucepan of gently simmering water; heat gently but do not allow to boil.
Meanwhile whisk together the egg yolks, 50g of the caster sugar and the vanilla essence; when the cream is warm, pour it over the egg mixture briskly whisking until it is mixed completely.
Pour into 6 individual ramekin dishes and place in a roasting tin; fill the tin with sufficient water to come halfway up the sides of the dishes; bake in the preheated oven for about 1 hour or until the puddings are set; to test if set, carefully insert a round bladed knife into the centre, if the knife comes out clean they are set.
Remove the puddings from the roasting tin and allow to cool; chill in the refrigerator preferably overnight. Sprinkle the sugar over the top of each dish and place the puddings under a preheated hot grill.
When the sugar has caramelised and turned deep brown, remove from the heat and cool; chill in the refrigerator once more for about 2-3 hours before serving.
Decorate with the strawberries, chocolate curls and eggs.