Panetonne Trifle

Years ago ‘The Age’ published a recipe for a Trifle made from Panetonne, Raspberries and Orange juice. For some reason I always think I haven’t kept the recipe, but I have and now that I’ve dug it out, I remember it was in the Saturday mag which is an insert into the paper. Quite simply this is one of my FAVOURITE desserts! It’s so good, that even though I keep thinking, no, I won’t make it this Christmas, looking at it, I think how can I not?

I leave out the alcohol and don’t bother with the Meringue and use whipped cream instead. But I will give you the full recipe and you can decide what you prefer.

1356409016298

You will need:

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

500g Raspberries (Frozen is fine) – you can also use a mix of berries, but the raspberries are gorgeous.

2tbs maraschino liqueur

zest of 1 orange

1kg Panetonne sliced into 1-2cm rounds (1/2 an inch) – you will find these at any good Italian grocer, the market etc and in Australia you should get a very nice one for no more than $10 I go for one with sultanas etc in them.

Crema Pasticcera

8 egg yolks

250g Caster sugar

100g plain flour

1 litre milk (1000mls) 2.11 USA pints according to Google

1 vanilla bean split

Meringue

6 egg whites

1 cup caster sugar

What to do:

Heat the sugar and water in a small saucepan until the sugar has dissolved. Cook until syrup has reduced to about a cup. Remove from the heat and add a handful of berries and the liqueur, mix well and set aside.

Cut the remainder of the berries into small pieces and mix with the orange zest. If the raspberries are small or you’re using frozen berries you won’t need to cut them up.

To Make Crema Pasticcera:

Whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a stainless steel bowl for 5 minutes until creamy, add the sifted flour and stir until smooth. Heat the milk and vanilla bean in a saucepan to just before boiling point. remove vanilla pod, then slowly whisk the hot milk into the egg mixture. Return the mixture to the saucepan and whisk until thick over a steady heat – Do NOT walk away! Allow the mixture to cool for 2 minutes before removing it from the stove. Place the Crema Pasticcera (Custard) into a clean bowl and cover with a piece of baking paper that is tucked down into the bowl, touching the custard which prevents the formation of a skin, refrigerate until cold.

To Assemble:

I think ideally you want to assemble the trifle in a glass bowl so you can see the layers. Place a layer of panetonne around the bottom of a large bowl, then pour over 1/2 the berry syrup. Place a layer of custard over the panetonne and then some of the berries and repeat the layering process until you have used up all your ingredients.

To make Meringue:

Whip the egg whites and sugar until they form stiff peaks. Pipe or spoon the meringue over the top of the last layer in the bowl and run a flame torch over the meringue till it begins to colour. This is where I substitute the meringue for whipped cream, not because I don’t have a blow torch, but because it’s already RICH enough and I am always a bit hesitant about whether the meringue will be cooked.

This would easily serve 8-10 people, as it’s really rich and we always have leftovers which are very yummy for a boxing day breakfast ūüėČ

Advertisements

Spaghetti Bolognaise aka “Sk betty”

So this working mother thing requires a heck of a lot of organisation, especially with 2 children under 4 who are starving & tired when they get home from child care. So Thursday being the day off and market day I decided to make a supply of Spag Bol or Sk betty as it’s become known by Zachie.

You will need: (to make this much and enough for 3 adults & 3 kids)

1.5 kg Minced Beef

2 large brown onions, diced

2 large cloves of garlic, crushed

3-4 large mushrooms, diced

4 400gm tins of crushed gourmet tomatoes.

handful of chopped parsley

lug of olive oil

2 tsp smokey paprika

Salt & pepper

3 bay leaves

1 cinnamon stick

1/2 cup tomato paste

3 tsp powdered beef stock (Massell)

3 tins of water

In your largest pan fry off the garlic & onions until they’re translucent, add the diced mushrooms & fry off. (I dice the mushrooms fairly finely so they’re about the size of the mince meat) then add the meat in batches so that it is all browned & broken up before you add more, you want to fry & brown the meat not stew it. Once it’s all cooked & mixed in you add all the crushed tomatoes & fill the tins with water and add 3 tins worth of water, add tomato paste, paprika, beef stock & salt & pepper to taste.

Don’t add too much salt at this stage as you can always add more towards the end of cooking. Add the chopped parsley & bring to the boil, simmer gently for 1 &1/2 hours stirring regularly until the sauce thickens. Pack into freezer proof containers & freeze, when I am freezing sauce I leave it a little runnier than I would if I am serving it straight away so that when the time comes to use it I can simmer it a little to increase the flavour.

This quantity gave us 2 large 2 litre containers 1 small one for the kids and a bit leftover which I was thinking I could put on nachos or something.

To serve, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and cook spaghetti until it’s al dente, approx 12-15 mins, serve with lots of grated parmesan.

P.S. The gourmet tomatoes I get from UCG wholesalers in Preston – Bell Street they’re 79c a tin, so unless the supermarkets have them on special, that’s the best buy in my opinion, also love Annalisa tomatoes too.

Stuffed Eggplants

Yummy hey? Now this is a little fiddly, but oh my goodness they’re delicious and worth it. I am deliriously happy as this was my second attempt at these tasty little morsels, this time with meat & hubby loved them! They’re great because you can make them and then stick it in the fridge and leave it there for a day or so, or even freeze them and then take them out in the morning and stick in the oven when you get home from work etc.

You will need:

8 Lebanese eggplants (they’re the long skinny ones)

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

500g lamb mince

2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed.

1 Litre of tomato passata or 3 tins of crushed tomatoes

1 heaped tsp smokey paprika + 1/2 tsp extra

1 heaped tsp ground cumin  + 1/2 tsp extra

small handful of finely chopped parsley

200g danish feta

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 brown onion diced.

Cut the eggplants in half & scoop out the flesh leaving the skins intact. Set the flesh aside. Place the skins in a large pot of boiling salted water and ensure that they remain submerged under the water. (a smaller saucepan lid on top of them works)

Dice the remaining eggplant flesh and pan fry in extra virgin olive oil with the garlic & onion until golden and tender, add the mince and ensure that you break up any lumps, continue to saute until golden brown. Add the spices & salt & pepper, then 500ml of the tomato passata and stir to combine.

Drain the eggplant skins and set aside to cool slightly.

In another saucepan add some garlic, olive oil 1/2 tsp paprika & cumin with salt & pepper to taste, and the remaining tomato passata, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 5 mins, check taste for seasoning.

Take a large oven proof dish and pour the tomato sauce onto the base of the dish, fill the skins with the stuffing and place in the tomato sauce – nestle in close together but don’t over fill them too much. Once they’re all done, sprinkle with any remaining meat sauce, parsley and top with crumbled feta.

Cook in the oven for 30 -40 mins at 180 degrees celsius or 350 farenheit. Serve with crusty bread & a green salad.

You can easily omit the mince meat if you’re vegetarian and add some finely diced celery & or mushrooms at the same time as you pan fry the eggplant.

Lemon Oil, Pesto Oil, Harissa

So cutting right to the chase, these are very simple and lovely gifts to give for Christmas, when you’re invited for dinner or keep for yourself, they’re quite simple & easy to make, you just need to ensure your bottles are clean & sterilised and slightly warm before you fill them.

Lemon Oil

Lemon Rind from 1 lemon

500 mls Good quality olive oil

Wash the lemon thoroughly and remove the rind with a potato peeler, ensuring there is no pith on the rind, warm the olive oil to 180 degrees with the lemon rind in the pan. Allow to cook slightly and pour into a bottle or jar. Allow to steep for a week, then drain to remove the rind and re bottle. Keep in a cool dark place.

Pesto Oil

Handful of Basil stems

2-3 cloves of garlic

Rind of parmesan cheese.

500 mls good quality olive oil

Wash the stalks of the basil & place into a saucepan with the cloves of garlic & parmesan rind, add the olive oil & bring to 180 degrees, allow to steep and when it’s cooled slightly pour into a large jar and place in a dark cupboard, leave for a week. Then drain and re bottle into sterilised bottles.

Harissa

This is a tear inducing chilli paste that’s native to Morocco, so of course it’s well loved in our house, but not by me, because I don’t do chilli, at least not with this much punch. You will need preserved lemons to make this so if you haven’t already had a go at making them ¬†either buy some, or get on it and a month or so you will be able to make the harissa.

You will need:

15 large red chillies

1 head of garlic

2 preserved lemons

1 Heaped Tbsp Ground Cumin

Olive oil

I would recommend you wear rubber gloves before you start this. Remove the stalks from the chillies, if you want to you can remove the seeds as well, but it’s not necessary, do bear in mind though that with the seeds it’s going to be even more potent.

Peel the garlic & rinse the 2 preserve lemons, in the bowl of a food processor place all the ingredients except for the olive oil. Puree until the ingredients begin to combine, start pouring in the olive oil, you want a chunky consistency, not¬†completely smooth, taste for seasoning, although you shouldn’t need any extra salt as the preserved lemons should have enough residual salt. Add at least a heaped Tablespoon of ground Cumin at this stage. Place into small sterilised jars & cover with a layer of Olive Oil, store in the refrigerator & use in moderation unless you want your socks knocked off!

Serve with bread, your tajines, as part of an antipasto platter or as a dip.

Spaghetti Marinara

This is my easy cheats version of Spaghetti Marinara made with just a few simple ingredients, as Hubby always takes last nights dinner to work for lunch the next day this makes for a very easy friday night dinner as left overs aren’t required.

I am usually making this for 2 adults & 2 kids, the kids mostly have just the pasta with tomato sauce and 2 or 3 prawns, so if you’re serving more just increase the quantities accordingly.

You will need:

A handful of Shelled Prawns

8 Mussels, cleaned with the beards removed

large scoop of Pippies, Clams or Vongole depending on what you call them

1 finely diced brown onion

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 400g tin crushed italian tomatoes.

handful of freshly chopped italian parsley

Salt & Pepper.

Olive oil

1/2 a pkt of spaghetti (or more depending on how hungry you are)

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. When it’s boiling add the spaghetti and cook until al dente. (approx 12-15mins) Heat oil in a frying pan and add the garlic & onions and saute until translucent, add the tomatoes, rinsing out the tin with a little water and add that to the pan as well.

Bring to a simmer & allow to cook so the liquid is reduced and the sauce thickens, add the cleaned seafood and stir, cover with a lid (or oven tray as my frying pan doesn’t have a lid) and allow to cook until all the shell fish have opened. Discard any that don’t open as they could be off and therefore make you sick.¬†Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

Drain the pasta and either toss into the sauce or vice versa & Va bene dinner is served.

Just remember the purists among us will say no parmesan cheese with seafood (I think it’s because it makes the seafood taste sour)

Perhaps serve with some crusty bread to mop up the juices