Friday, 27 November 2015

Recipes: Tis' the Season

Christmas tree meringue pyramid with Spiced Berry filling (pictured above)

This looks spectacular and is perfect for entertaining. Make the meringue layers ahead of time and store in an airtight container then simply assemble on the day.

Ready in: 1½ hours
Serves 6-8

Ingredients
4 egg whites
240g caster sugar
Selection of winter fruits i.e. 4 ripe plums, 1 small pear, 50g cranberries
4 tbsps bottlegreen spiced berry cordial
50g green grapes
6 physalis
1 Clementine
2tbsps Cointreau
300ml double cream
Icing sugar

Method
Pre-heat oven to 140c, gas mark 1. Line 2 large baking trays with non- stick baking parchment. Draw 5 circles: 5cm, 8cm, 11cm, 14cm and 17cm.

Place the egg whites in a large bowl and whisk until stiff, gradually add the caster sugar continuing to whisk until very thick and holding its shape.

Spoon or pipe the mixture into the circles. Bake in the oven for approximately 1 to 1½ hours until crisp and dry.

Meanwhile pour the bottlegreen spiced berry cordial into a saucepan, bring to a simmer and cook until reduced by half and syrupy. Cut the plums and pear into bite-sized wedges and add to the syrup with the cranberries, cover and allow to just cook in the warm syrup, they should still hold their shape, cool and then chill. Grate the rind from the clementine, remove the pith and cut into segments, halve the grapes and open out the physalis.

Whisk the cream until standing in soft peaks, stir in the grated clementine rind, and Cointreau.

Place the largest meringue circle on a serving plate, top with a layer of cream and then arrange some of the fruit on top. Continue to layer until you have a tree shape, Top with a physalis as your Christmas star. Dust with icing sugar.

Duck breast with candied Clementine and Elderflower sauce

This makes a perfect supper dish when entertaining over Christmas, easy to make and bursting with flavour – it's even special enough to replace the turkey on Christmas day, especially if numbers are small.

Ready in 40 minutes
Serves: 4

christmas-recipes-590-2

Ingredients
4 duck breasts
3 clementines
6tbsps bottlegreen elderflower cordial
1tbsp cornflour
150ml chicken stock or water

Method
Pre-heat oven to 200c, gas mark 6. Heat a dry frying pan, cook the duck breasts skin side down for 5-6 minutes until the skin is golden, turn them over and cook for a few more minutes until sealed. Place on a baking tray and continue to cook in the oven for 10 minutes, a little longer if you want them well done. Leave to rest.

Drain off all but 2tbsps of the meat juices, place in a saucepan, mix in the cornflour to a smooth paste, gradually add the chicken stock or water and the rind and juice of 1 clementine. Gently heat, stirring until smooth and thickened, season to taste.

Thinly slice the remaining clementines, place in a shallow pan with the cordial. Bring to a simmer, cook gently until the cordial is syrupy and the clementine slices softened and candied.

Slice the duck, serve with the orange sauce and candied oranges,

Accompanied by new potatoes and a watercress salad or green vegetable.

Cooks Tip: Make the candied oranges ahead of time, keep chilled and simply warm through.

Elderflower & lime shortbread stars

Perfect for the Christmas festivities, these delicious biscuits are tangy, fragrant and very more-ish!

Ready in 30 minutes
Makes 18

christmas-recipes-590-3

Ingredients
100g softened butter
50g caster sugar
3tbsps bottlegreen elderflower cordial
1 lime
200g plain flour
150g icing sugar
Silver balls and ribbon

Methods
Pre-heat oven to 180c (160c for fan assisted oven) gas mark 4.

Cream together the butter, caster sugar and 2tbsps of the bottlegreen elderflower cordial, add the grated rind of the lime.

Sift in the flour and mix to a dough, knead lightly.

Roll out on a lightly floured work surface, cut into stars approximately 7-8cm diameter. Place on lightly greased baking trays, cook for approximately 10-15 minutes until pale golden, cool on a wire rack.

Mix together the sieved icing sugar, remaining 1tbsp of bottlegreen elderflower cordial and enough lime juice to make a smooth, spreadable icing. Ice the biscuits and decorate with silver balls. Leave to set for several hours.

Cook's tip: If using as decorations make a small hole in the uncooked biscuit with the blunt end of a skewer, carefully thread a ribbon through after the icing has set.

Pear and stilton toasts with spiced cranberries

Serve as a party canapé or a stunning festive starter, this recipe has all the flavours and colours of Christmas, everything can be made ahead of time and simply assembled on the day.

Ready in 30 minutes
Makes 12

christmas-recipes-590-5

Ingredients
3 slices white, medium sliced bread
1 small pear
4 tbsps bottlegreen spiced berry cordial
100g cranberries
50g stilton
2tbsps double cream
Handful of rocket leaves

Method
Toast the bread on one side, remove the crusts, cut horizontally through the middle and halve. Each slice will give you four triangles, 12 in total. Grill the remaining side until golden and curled, taking care not to burn the corners.

Cut the unpeeled but cored pear into 12 slices. Place the cranberries and bottlegreen spiced berry cordial into a small saucepan, heat until the cranberries have softened, add the pear slices, continue to cook gently for a few minutes until just softened, cool.

Place the stilton in a bowl, add the cream and fork together. Divide between the toasts, top with a pear slice and a spoonful of cranberries, finish with a rocket leaf.

Cook's tip: Make the toasts ahead of time and store in an airtight container.

RED CABBAGE, APPLE & TURKEY COLESLAW WITH SPICED CRANBERRY AND ONION DRESSING

 

Turn any left over turkey into this fabulous colourful salad, perfect after all the rich festive food and ideal for Boxing Day entertaining.

 

Serves: 6

Preparation time: 20 minutes

 

Ingredients:

1 medium red cabbage

1 red onion

1tbsp olive oil

150g cranberries

6tbsps bottlegreen spiced berry cordial

2tbsps red wine vinegar

1 Cox’s apple

40g halved walnuts

100- 150g cooked left-over turkey

 

Method:

·         Trim the stalk end of the cabbage, carefully pull away 4 whole leaves, reserve.  Finely slice the remaining cabbage, place in a large mixing bowl.

·         Peel, halve and finely slice the red onion, heat the olive oil in a saucepan, add the onion and soften, add the cranberries, cordial and vinegar, continue to cook over a gentle heat for approximately 10 minutes until softened and syrupy, cool.

·         Quarter, core and dice the apple.  Stir the cranberry dressing and apple into the red cabbage until coated.  Toss in the walnuts and turkey.  Serve spooned into the red cabbage leaves, serve with cold meats or as a delicious baked potato topping.

 

Cooks Tip: The Cranberry dressing makes a delicious relish to serve with sausages.

 

  MINCEMEAT PINWHEELS Nothing could be simpler than these tasty mincemeat pinwheels, ideal for entertaining and perfect for unexpected guests – a made up, uncooked roll will keep for several days in the fridge, simply slice and cook as you need them. Ready in: 20 minutes Makes: 20 1 x 375g Jus Rol puff pastry sheet 1 x 400g jar good quality mincemeat 2tbsps bottlegreen cox’s apple and plum cordial Icing sugar • Pre-heat oven to 220c (200c for fan assisted ovens) gas mark 7. • Unroll the pastry sheet. Mix the mincemeat and bottlegreen cox’s apple and plum cordial together, spread evenly over the pastry. • Roll up from the longest side like a swiss roll. If time, chill in the fridge for 20 minutes. • Cut into 1½cm slices and place on a lightly greased or lined baking tray. Cook for approximately 7-10 minutes until golden and risen. Cool on a wire rack. Dust with a little icing sugar. These are best served warm. Cook’s tip: Add a little grated apple to the mincemeat.

Red cabbage, apple & turkey coleslaw with spiced cranberry and onion dressing

Turn any left over turkey into this fabulous colourful salad, perfect after all the rich festive food and ideal for Boxing Day entertaining.
Serves: 6
Preparation time: 20 minutes

christmas-recipes-590-6

Ingredients
1 medium red cabbage
1 red onion
1tbsp olive oil
150g cranberries
6tbsps bottlegreen spiced berry cordial
2tbsps red wine vinegar
1 Cox’s apple
40g halved walnuts
100- 150g cooked left-over turkey

Method
Trim the stalk end of the cabbage, carefully pull away 4 whole leaves, reserve. Finely slice the remaining cabbage, place in a large mixing bowl.

Peel, halve and finely slice the red onion, heat the olive oil in a saucepan, add the onion and soften, add the cranberries, cordial and vinegar, continue to cook over a gentle heat for approximately 10 minutes until softened and syrupy, cool.

Quarter, core and dice the apple. Stir the cranberry dressing and apple into the red cabbage until coated. Toss in the walnuts and turkey. Serve spooned into the red cabbage leaves, serve with cold meats or as a delicious baked potato topping.

Cooks Tip: The Cranberry dressing makes a delicious relish to serve with sausages.

Mincemeat Pinwheels

Nothing could be simpler than these tasty mincemeat pinwheels, ideal for entertaining and perfect for unexpected guests – a made up, uncooked roll will keep for several days in the fridge, simply slice and cook as you need them.
Ready in: 20 minutes
Makes: 20

christmas-recipes-590-4

Ingredients
1 x 375g Jus Rol puff pastry sheet
1 x 400g jar good quality mincemeat
2tbsps bottlegreen cox’s apple and plum cordial
Icing sugar

Method
Pre-heat oven to 220c (200c for fan assisted ovens) gas mark 7.

Unroll the pastry sheet. Mix the mincemeat and bottlegreen cox’s apple and plum cordial together, spread evenly over the pastry.

Roll up from the longest side like a swiss roll. If time, chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Cut into 1½cm slices and place on a lightly greased or lined baking tray. Cook for approximately 7-10 minutes until golden and risen. Cool on a wire rack. Dust with a little icing sugar. These are best served warm. Cook’s tip: Add a little grated apple to the mincemeat.



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