Do real men eat Quiche?

How to make a man sized quiche

Its a bit of a poser this one, “Do real men eat quiche”? Well, to my mind, plonk a large slice of quiche, containing, bacon, eggs, mushrooms, cheese etc, in front of them & as long as you call it a breakfast quiche & they are not vegetarian, they probably do.  Just look at it this way, the quiche in the header photo is just, breakfast on a pastry plate!

Below, you will find the recipe for a man sized breakfast Quiche. The pastry recipe you will find as a previous   Christmascountdown post, by clicking the link.  At the bottom of the page, you will also find some variations, which may also help you use up your Festive leftovers, when the time comes.

bacon, eggs, cheese, pastry, cream,
Bacon & Eggs. Tempted?

Big Breakfast Quiche  

Time taken 45 mins + cooking & chilling.  Equipment 1. 13cm Deep fill flan tin.

225g Short crust pastry   Follow the link for recipe 

200g Bacon off cuts. (Cheaply bought from your butcher. You get nice chunky bits)  Dry fried.

5, Large Free range eggs

200 ml Milk

200g Chestnut Mushrooms, sauted

2 Fresh Tomatoes, Sliced

150g Grated Cheddar Cheese

1 Tab Olive oil.

Seasoning + (Cayenne pepper, nutmeg & thyme if liked)

METHOD

Make the pastry, according to the recipe, pop in the fridge to chill while you a preparing the filling.

Preheat the oven to 200f 400c Gas 6  With a large tin baking tray inside.

Dry fry the bacon, remove & drain on kitchen paper add, 1tbspn oil to the pan & quickly saute the mushrooms.

Lightly grease flan tin with oil.

Line the tin with pastry, crimp the edges & placed the cooled bacon & mushrooms on the base.

Beat together eggs, milk & seasonings, pour into the tin.

Place the tomato slices on top & spinkle with the grated cheese.

Carefully place on the heated tray, in the oven & bake at the above temprature for 15mins. Reduce the temp to 180c 350f Gas 4 & bake for a futher 25 – 30mins, until puffed up & golden brown.

Serve to your man with a side of baked beans.

Variations:

 Replace the bacon & veg with smoked salmon, chopped dill & blanched fennel.  Use 2 Whole Eggs & yolks of 3. Replace 1/2 the milk with double cream. Omit Cheese.

Use, pitted black olives, sundried tomatoes, garlic, roasted green peppers & Bazil. Top with Grated Parmesan.

Blanch Tenderstem Broccoli Spears, add to pastry shell & top with crumbled Blue Cheese.

Use, chopped left over turkey & veg. Cheat & pour over a can of Cambells Condensed Chicken Soup. Use left over pastry to make a lid. ( Roll trimming to the size of your tin) Place on top ofthe filling, brush with milk & make a small steam hole in the middle of the lid. You now have a turkey & Veg pie. And YES real men do eat these.

Don’t  forget, you can always line a small patty tray to create, individual tartlets. Great with drinks.

If you have any questions, please ask, by leaving a comment in the box below.

Until tomorrow.

Mascapone Pastry

Rough puff pastry

Day 4 of Countdown to Christmas & we are back to pastry.  Rough puff pastry, but to be exact, Mock rough puff pastry. This dough is very easy to make, but care must be taken when mixing the ingredients. There is a long chilling time involved, which makes it easy to make & plonk in the fridge until the next day. Kept chilled & wrapped in cling film, it will last for 1 week, which makes it ideal to whip out & create those little Christmas canapes or impressive afternoon tea pastries.  It is also a very rich mix, which is suitable for both sweet & savoury recipes. You can use french patisserie flour, but I like to use Maize Bite Flour, for a crisp flaky texture & a golden yellow apperance.

Mascapone Rough Puff Pastry   Makes 225g   Time taken 15mins + 8 hrs chilling time.   Allegens: Dairy

175g. Maize Bite Flour or French Patissere (Plain Flour)

175g. Chilled butter

175g. Mascapone Cheese

Pinch of salt.

METHOD

Sift the flour & salt into a bowl.

Chop the butter in with the flour, it must be no bigger than the size of a baked bean. (See video below).

Add the mascapone & bring the mixture together with the blade of a knife.

Do not over mix, it just needs to come together in a ball.

Wrap in cling film & place in the fridge for a minimum of 8 hours.

Chopping butter into flour

When ready to use, roll out on a lightly floured surface 1/2cm thick & use as required.

The header photo shows, parmesan & blue cheese twists, to make these roll out the pastry into an oblong, sprinkle with grated parmesan & blue cheese & fold in half.  Cut into strips, see photo’s above & twist the pastry, sprinke with more parmesan. Place on a baking tray, lined with non-stick paper & bake in a pre-heated oven, 220c 425f Gas 7 for 10-12 mins, until golden.

Variations:  Roll out as above, stamp into small circles & pipe with hummus, pate or herbed cream cheese, for drinks party savouries.

Roll out as above, cut into wide strips spread with harasia & roll around mini chorizo sausages. Bake as above.

Instead of your usual pastry, use to make your mince pies.

Roll out as above, Cut into small oblongs & bake as above, sandwich 3 together with a fruit conserve, whipped cream & fresh or frozen raspberries, Dust with icing sugar before serving.

Now you have the idea, I am sure you can have fun making your own shapes & sweet & savory fillings/toppings.

For me, its a large G&T with some olives & the twists in the photo.

Until tomorrow. Enjoy your evening.

Chocolate & Coconut Truffles

Recipe for Dairy Free Truffles

Day 3 of the Coundown to Christmas recipes & tips brings you the delight of chocolate. In particular dairy & gluten free Coconut Truffles, very apt for Truffleicious you may think.

We all love chocolate, but there are varying degrees of this comforting confectionery. Many of the cheaper varieties are mainly made up of sugar, & additives. Food regulations state that the ingredients list must show the components of the product in a decreasing scale. Therefore, if the first ingredient listed is sugar, then sugar is the main ingredient of the product. So, my mantra for purchasing any food product is “Always read the label”.

For the recipe below you must use chocolate that has a cocoa butter content of above 72%. Block creamed coconut must also be used, not a tin of coconut milk as this is all part of the setting agent in the finished truffles.

Coconut & Rum Truffles.

Gluten free, Dairy free, Vegetarian, Vegan.  Time taken, 45mins + chilling

Makes 40.

INGREDIENTS

250 g Dark Chocolate (above 72% cocoa mass)

1/2 Pack of solid creamed coconut 

60 g Desicated Coconut, (fine variety)

150 ml Rum, OR Malibu OR Water if you want to avoid alcohol.

150g Coconut, or Cocoa Powder for Rolling.   These can also be dipped in melted chocolate when set.

METHOD

Place the the coconut cream & your prefered liquid in a saucepan & bring to the boil, stirring.  Cool for 10mins.

Chop the chocolate into small chunks & place in a large bowl.

Pour the coconut mixture onto the chocolate, stirring briskly, from the centre, until you have a thick glossy emulsion. Stir in the fine desicated coconut.

Chill & roll into balls, with you fingers. Coat each ball with your chosen coating, or dip in melted chocolate. 

Leave to set & there you have it, the perfect gift for friends & relations or if like me, you are a bit of a Piggy, Eat them yourself.

Chocolate, truffles, liqueurs, home made, Coccoa fat,
A little of what you fancy.

Until tomorrow Foodies, have a lovely evening.

Don’t forget, if you have a question or would like to see a particular recipe on The Christmas Countdown. Please leave a comment in the box below.

Perfect pastry

How to make perfect pastry

Day 2 of our Christmas countdown deals with pastry. Ok, there are plenty of ready made pastries on the market, but there is nothing nicer & more satifying than making your own.

Apart from the fact that there will be no hidden, additives in your homemade pastry, you also have the opportunity, to ring the changes, by using different flours. You need to experiment with this, as some flours, Rye for example, produces a lovely nutty tasting pastry, but it can be quite heavy, needing the addition of a bit more liquid than when using normal plain flour.

Always, use the best quality flour that you can afford, cheap flours contain bleaching agents, to retain the whiteness & the quality of the wheat used in the milling, is not always of great quality. All this reflects in the final taste & texture of your finished result. I personal use Mathews Cotswold flours, in all my baking. In the photo above, you can see pastry made with their Maize flour, which make a beautifully crisp, golden pastry, suitable for quiches, tarts etc.  Recipe below:

Short crust pastry. 

Makes 1kg enough to line 4 x 20cm Quiche or Tart tins.  Allegens:: Wheat, Egg.

450g Maize Flour

115g Unsalted butter- chopped into small pieces.

115g White Cooking Fat – chopped into small pieces.

1 medium free range egg, beaten & made up to 8 tbspns with ice cold water.

Large pinch of salt.

METHOD

Place the flour & salt into the bowl of a stand mixer.

Using the K beater, mix on speed 3 until the mix resembles breadcrumbs. DO NOT OVER MIX.

With the mixer running, gradually add the egg & water. Until the mix forms a ball. Remove from the bowl & lightly knead on a floured surface. Wrap in cling film & chill for 30mins, untill ready to use. Never over work your dough, & keep all ingredients chilled. Warm over worked pastry, results in oily, heavy pastry. Always bake in a metal tin, placed on a pre heated oven tray (place in oven, when switching on). This conducts the heat better. NO soggy bottom. As a general rule, this pastry bakes at 200f 400c Gas 6 for 15mins, reducing to 180f 350c Gas 4 for a futher 20mins, depending on your recipe & oven.

The above recipe makes, 1kg of pastry. you can halve the quantity, but I think it is always better, from a time point of veiw, to make a larger quantity, & divide it into portions & freeze for later use. You can line 4 tins with the pastry & pop into the freezer. When needed you have them ready to fill & bake.  

To make a gluten free version of Shortcrust pastry. Replace the above flour with the following:

200g Buckwheat Flour

250 Brown Rice Flour.

Omit the egg & use nine tablespoons of chilled water. Follow the method as above.

Apple, shortcake. tart, pie
Fill you flan.

Have fun choosing your fillings, both sweet & savoury, get creative

On tomorrows Christmas Countdown, we will be dealing with Rough Puff Pastry & Christmas Cake Pies?

Lemon Mincemeat

How to make Vegan Mincemeat

We all like those little pies full of tangy, vine fruits & spices, I say all, but, thats not quite true. Vegans are appalled by the addition of suet, in these festive fillers. 

All is not lost dearest Vegans, you shall have a pie. For I have created this luscious mince meat, especially with you in mind. Bursting with a tangy lemon flavour, using dried, cherries, berries & ginger & soaked in a shot or two of Greek Metaxa. Delicious.

Vegan, Mincemeat, Lemon, Mincepies, Homemade,
A taste of Sunshine

Vegan Lemon Mincemeat

Makes 2.5 kg      Time taken 1 hour  G/F D/F Vegan, Vegetarian  Allergens: NUTS

Ingredients:

6, Large Unwaxed Lemons

450g, Mixed Dried berries, cherries & cranberries.

225g, Crystalised Ginger or other fruit to your liking.

100g Shelled, green Pistachio nuts.

5, tbspns Olive Oil.

700g, Soft brown sugar.

1/2 level tspn each of nutmeg, ground mixed spice & cinnamon

200ml Brandy. ( I use Metaxa 5* Greek)

Method

Halve the lemons & squeeze out the juice & reserve.

Quarter the lemon peel, remove flesh & excess white pith

Place the prepared skins in a saucepan, cover with cold water, bring to the boil & simmer for 30mins.

Drain, cool slightly & place in a food processor, with the crystallised ginger,

Process until finely chopped.

Turn into a bowl & add the olive oil, pistachio nuts, dried fruits, strained lemon juice & sugar. Mix well with a wooden spoon.

Add the spices & brandy, stir well again & pack into sterilized jars. Cover & seal.

This is a gorgeous & unusual recipe for mincemeat with a tangy flavour. Can be used immediately, but improves with keeping.

Dried fruit, Mincemeat, homemade, food, cookery
Dried Berries & Cherries

Tomorrows Countdown to Christmas recipe will be Pastry, plus a gluten free version. Also a fool proof rough puff, with a difference.

Until tomorrow. Have a great evening

About

Cookery & Food Experience, what I can offer you.


TRUFFLEicious is based at Great Chalfield, Wiltshire, in a stable we converted into a 5* hygiene registered kitchen, within the grounds of Great Chalfield Manor.

I have been working as a private cook/recipe developer for more than 40 yrs, mainly in private family houses, for Polo functions and at Harrods. During this time I have built up a large repertoire of my own recipes, which I have created & developed over the years, to suit our ever changing tastes & dietary needs requirements. 

“My aim is to supply 100% Homemade food, made from fresh, natural, local ingredients, which contain NO nasties”.

I am a great believer in cooking food from scratch, using fresh natural ingredients. You may like to read my related article Taste have we lost it?

Food & Cookery for the small business

I am available, on a consultancy basis, to advise on any food related matters, you may wish to discuss with a fully experienced Cook/recipe developer. These may include:

  • Creating recipes from your own product. 
  • Assisting you in creating a new food product.
  • Creating recipes for all dietary requirements.
  • Writing food & recipe blogs for your business.
  • Food Hygeiene.
  • Advise on food legislation & regulation for the small food business.

Home Cooking

I also offer a Cookery Tuition Package (in your own home)

The difference between us & other cookery schools is:

You choose what you would like to learn to cook.

You may want to:

  • Brush up on your basic skills.
  • Learn to cook dishes for various dietary needs.
  • Batch cooking from scratch – time management.
  • Special occassion cookery.
  • Healthy eating & nutrition.
  • Nutritional foods & cooking for older people
  • Ecconomic purchasing & cooking for families.
  • How to use your leftovers.

These are only suggestions, we are able to accomodate any aspect of food & cookery.

Should you wish to chat with us about any of the above topis, please contact me at info@truffleicious.co.uk

TRUFFLEicious is registered as a food business with Wiltshire Council & our Scores on the Doors are 5*. We hold current public & product liability insurance & Food Hygiene Certificate.

Visit our sister sites for more information

>> TRUFFLEicious 

> > http://www.truffleiciousteaches.com

 

Spiced Potato & Carrot Bahji

Spiced Potato & Carrot Bahji’s

I love a nice spicy, crispy Bahji, served with a nice fresh crunchy salad & a big bowl of chilli & cucumber ratia, for dipping. The only thing I don’t like is the fat content. Traditionally, Bahji’s are deep fried, which gives them that gorgeous, crunchy texture, it also gives them a high fat content. Well foodies after playing around a bit with my ingredients & cooking methods, I have come up with these little low fat, gluten free, dairy free vegan & vegetarian Bahji balls.

Carrots, Potatoes, Bahji's, Oven baked, low fat
Hot from the oven

INGREDIENTS: SERVES 4. GLUTEN FREE, DAIRY FREE, VEGETARIAN, VEGAN, Oven temp 200c 400f Gas MK 6.

500g Potatoes, grated. Put in a tea towel & squeeze to remove excess water.

2 medium red onions, grated ( I find red onions more digestible for lowfodmap diets)

200g Carrots, grated

5cm, Fresh Ginger, peeled & grated

2. Fresh red chillies, finely chopped

1tspn Turmeric powder

3 tspns Cumin Seeds

1 tspn Salt

5 Tbspns Gram Flour

Juice of 1 Fresh Lime

2 tbspns Rapeseed Oil

Fresh chillis & Corriander to serve.

es, bahji's, vegetables, low fat, oven baked
Assembling the spicy Veg mix

METHOD:

Place the drained potatoes, carrots, onions, chillis, ginger, spices and salt in a large bowl, & mix together well. (get you hands in).

Add the gram flour & mix well again.

Add the lime juice & oil & mix well again, adding a little more oil if necessary to produce a sticky mix.

Line a baking tray with non stick parchment, roll the mix into small ball, & place a little apart on the tray.

Bake for 25-30mins, checking half way through & turning if necessary.

Remove from the oven & sprinkle with fresh corriander & finely chopped chilli’s

Serve with a grated carrot, spring onion & red pepper salad, a bowl of corriander & chilli yoghurt & mango chutney.

Enjoy.

Another little tip, for low fat nibbles. 15mins before the Bahji’s are ready, Sprinkle some pumpkin seeds in a single layer on baking parchement. Sprinkle with a little salt & some spice of your liking & bake.  Beats peanuts anytime.

pumkin seeds, low fat, nibbles with drinks, vegetarian, gluten free
Spicy, low fat nibbles

Chocolate & Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter & Chocolate Recipe

It’s been a busy few weeks in my Stable Kitchen. Dreaming about chocolate & peanut butter one night – there are worst dreams -, I have created this decadent dessert, just for you.

I have been developing new recipes for my home made breads, which are now available from my Kitchen. Half-term also means more visitors keen to try my home made Ice Cream.  If you have made any of my recipes over the past few months, it would be great to hear your comments www.truffleicious.org/visitors-book 

The recipe below is great for a summer party. No need to spend hours in the kitchen with this one. You could also utilise the best of our summer fruits, by replacing the bananas with fresh raspberries & for extra decadence serve with extra raspberries & dark chocolate sauce.

Food, Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Raspberries, Recipe
A decadent dessert

CHOCOLATE & PEANUT BUTTER PIE

Serves 12.  V. Contains nuts. Oven 180c/359f/Gas Mk 4. Prep:  15 mins, plus cooling & chilling Cooking 10 mins.  Equipment: 1.23cm Flan Dish.

For the Base:

250g Chocolate Biscuits, finely crushed.

70g Melted Butter

Mix the above ingredients together & press into the base & sides of the flan dish. Cook for  10 mins, until set & leave to cool.

For the filling:

2 Bananas, sliced

170g Cream Cheese

140g. Smooth Peanut Butter

200ml Greek Yoghurt.

Lay the sliced bananas over the base of the cooled base. Beat together the remaining ingredients & spoon over the bananas. Level the surface & chill in the fridge for 30mins.

For the topping:

115g Plain Chocolate, broken into pieces

25g Unsalted Butter

150ml Double Cream.

Melt the butter & chocolate together over a pan of simmering water. Remove from the heat, stir in the cream & beat until the mixture is smooth. Level to cool for 15-20 mins until the mixture thickens. Gently spread over the top of the filling. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.

Free Food Bonanza

Autumn is the time for fruitfulness. The hedgerows are a free food bonanza abounding with different fruits & nuts. So, a foraging I will go & who doesn’t like food for free?

apples, crab apples, foraging, jellies, syrups
Ripe for the picking

I remember – just – as a child, my maternal Grandmother, a country woman born & bred. had a large Japonica bush, growing under a front room window. How I loved the beautiful pink flowers it produced during the summer months. My Grandmother however, didn’t have time for growing things you couldn’t eat, to her, the Japonica bush earned it’s keep in the autumn, by producing its fruits, which she turned into a delicate translucent pink jelly, which was served at tea time, with huge floury scones. I can still taste them today.

Walking my faithful hound the other morning, we passed trees laden with cob nuts, sloes elderberries, cooking apples, tiny crab apples & mulberries.  Wild red currants & white currants dangled in tempting clusters, while brambles were covered in fat juicy blackberries, some white & pale pink, awaiting more sun to ripen them, others the deepest, darkest maroon, just begging to be picked.

Blackberries, foraging, jam, syrups, jellies
“Taking my straw basket I went foraging”

We all know the old favourites Blackberry & Apple Pie/Crumble, Elderberry Wine etc but what about some of the more unusual things you can make with your foraged food?

Below are a couple of recipes you might like to try. Hopefully they may encourage you to get out into the countryside & enjoy the fresh air, knowing that on your return you have that feel good factor from the exercise & the means to produce some delicious, home-made goodies.  They will also make, well received, Christmas presents.

home made,elderberry syrup,foraging, hedgerows, healthy eating
Foraging for juicy elderberries

ELDERBERRY SYRUP.    GF/DF/V/Vegan

INGREDIENTS:

2.25 kg Ripe Elderberries. Weight when stripped from stalks

600 ml  Water

1 small egg white, whipped to a froth. ( For Clarifying)

Preserving Sugar.

Brandy.

METHOD:

Wash the berries, crush lightly.  Place in a large oven proof casserole (Not metal) with the water. Cover & place in a low (160c/180f /Gas 3) oven until the fruit is pulpy.

Strain through a jelly bag. Measure the juice, allowing 325 g sugar per 600 ml.

Place the juice in a saucepan, with the frothy egg white & bring to the boil, whisking occasionally. When boiling, remove all the scum & froth& add sugar. Reboil, skimming frequently, allow to simmer 3-4 mins.

Remove a couple of tablespoons of the syrup, set aside to cool to test the thickness of the syrup. Continue to simmer if necessary.

Pour into sterilised bottles, adding a teaspoon of brandy to each bottle. Seal & store.

Use as a drink, diluted with water or soda ( full of Vit C), or best of all add a small measure to your favourite Gin & top up with tonic. Cheers.


Here is a recipe to use up those windfall apples, or those you have foraged from the hedgerows.

HERB JELLY  GF/DF/V/Vegan

INGREDIENTS:

Washed, unpeeled & uncored apples. Roughly chopped up.

450 g Preserving sugar (warmed) for each pint of juice.

83 ml Water.

124 ml wine vinegar.

Pared rind & juice of one lemon.

Large Bunch of herbs of your choice. Mint, Lemon Thyme, Basil, Lemon Balm, Marjoram etc  Leaves removed from stalks. Tie stalks together, finely chop leaves.

METHOD

Place the apples in a large casserole container (No metallic) & stand in a pan of water, on the hob.  Simmer, until the apples are reduced to a pulp.

Strain the juice through a jelly bag, add the water at the end. (Do not squeeze the bag as you will make the jelly cloudy).

 Boil the strained juice for 20 mins, add the warmed sugar, stirring all the time until dissolved.

Add the herb stalks, lemon rind & juice, and vinegar to the jelly & boil for a further 7 mins. Test for setting.  Add the finely chopped leaves to the jelly.  Pot into sterilised jars.

These jellies are delicious served with hot or cold, meats & pies.  They can also be served as a side to the cheese board & the basil jelly make a particular tasty side to tomato based dishes.

So guys, happy foraging & cooking. In addition to having food for free, you also know your products are preservative, colouring & additive free.

Bon appetite.

Countryside, foraging, walking, recipes, free food,
From Days gone by

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Food

We tend to think of Christmas as a time of food & feasting, but for me, Summer will always be the time, when feasting on fresh healthy food comes to the fore.

I can think of nothing nicer than whiling away a hot summer’s day with friends, whilst enjoying a delicious light lunch. Maybe you grow your own herbs & veg to make your own salads & dressings. Serve them with this light summery dish, made the night before. Toss a salad on the day & serve with my Small batch, Artisan, Fennel & Sesame Bread.   Add some fresh strawberries & raspberries for dessert & Voila a tasty, healthy, summer meal.

SMOKED SALMON & CUCUMBER MOUSSE

Gluten Free. Vegetarian.        No Cooking time. Prep time: 20mins. Chill Overnight.

Equipment  1.2Ltr Ring Mould.

Serves 6 as a main Course, 12 as a starter.

INGREDIENTS.

Tspn Olive Oil for greasing

200g Smoked Salmon Slices.

1 Medium Cucumber, finely diced.

225g Cottage Cheese, Sieved,

7g Sachet of Gelatine

150ml Water

150ml Homemade Anchovy Mayonnaise

150ml Greek Yoghurt

METHOD.

Lightly grease the mould with olive oil.

Line the sides of the mould with the smoked salmon slices.

Finely dice the Cucumber.

Put the water into a small saucepan, sprinkle the Gelatine over & allow to soak for 5mins. Place over a very low heat, until dissolved. DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL.  Allow to cool.

Place the cottage cheese, mayonnaise into a bowl & mix well.

Working quickly, add the cooled gelatine mix to the cheese & mayo. Mix well.

Add the diced cucumber & fold in the Greek Yoghurt.

Season with white pepper. Pour into the mould, shake to level to top.

Cover with cling film & allow to set overnight.

Bread, Baking, Small batch, Artisan, Bakery
Bread. The Staff of Life

TO SERVE

Loosen the edges carefully with a palette knife & turn out onto a serving dish.

Decorate the edges with lemon slices & fresh herbs.

Serve with Crunchy Cos Lettuce & herb salad and a lemon Viniagarette dressing and slices of my fresh Fennel & sesame Bread.

Don’t forget the Chardonnay.

Chardonnay, wine, summer eating, summer drinking, food
Half empty. Half full ?