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Ingredients for the cranberry compote:
80ml red wine
Zest and juice of one orange
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
Ingredients for the posset:
250ml double cream
100ml egg yolk
1 orange juice and ½ zest
30g dried cranberries
15ml white wine vinegar
240g dark chocolate - 50% to 60%
Ingredients for the shortbread:
15g rice flour
75g chopped pistachios
Cinnamon sugar to dust (50g sugar and 5g ground cinnamon)
Chocolate posset, cranberry compote and pistachio shortbread
Posset is amazingly simple to make, the resulting silky texture is almost magical. At Christmas a cranberry compote is the perfect accompaniment.
Cranberry compote - method of work
1. Place all ingredients into a pan and bring to the boil
2. Turn down and simmer for 30 minutes or until all is soft and becomes a sticky consistency looking like jam
Chocolate posset - method of work
1. Scald the milk and cream just bringing it to just under boiling
2. Whisk the yolks and the sugar together in a bowl
3. Pour the milk and cream over the egg mix whilst whisking all the time
4. Put back into the pan and add the orange zest and juice with dried cranberries and vinegar
5. Place back on a medium heat not allowing it to boil and you are looking for the mix to coat the back of the spoon without running all off, then add the chocolate and mix well
6. Pour into the preferred dishes and allow to set in the fridge. These can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 days
7. When serving add the cranberry compote on top and around and finish with segments of clementine or orange
We like to use rice flour in our shortbread as this gives it a more crumbly texture. Adding pistachios and cinnamon sugar too is our nod to Christmas.
These shortbread will add a crunch your dessert when served alongside the chocolate posset.
Method of work
1. Sieve the flours together into a bowl
2. Mix together the butter and sugar to a smooth paste in another bowl
3. Now crumb the fat mix into the flours and pistachio, bring to a smooth dough working it in quickly
4. Roll out into a rectangle approx. 1cm deep and allow to rest in the fridge
5. After 15 minutes of resting, create small holes with a fork ensuring not to go fully through to the work surface, 50% depth is good. Bake at 140°C until crisp this will take around 40 minutes
6. When you have removed from the oven cut into finger size pieces with a serrated knife whilst hot and then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and allow to cool.
750ml whipping cream
1 vanilla pod
320g egg yolk
250g icing sugar
250g butter at room temperature
2 eggs at room temperature
600g plain flour
1 egg yolk (for egg wash)
Another all time favourite from our restaurant menu, perhaps it brings back fond childhood memories or perhaps just the smooth creamy texture is enough to leave you wanting more!
Put the cream into a pan, scrape in the vanilla seeds and pop the pod in too for added flavour. Start to bring the cream to the boil, whilst heating up whisk the egg, egg yolks and sugar until the consistency of the mix is light and fluffy and can hold a ribbon shape when the mix is drizzled from the whisk. When the cream reaches the boil, pour the cream over the egg mixture, whisking while doing so, (so as not to scramble the mix). Pass the mixture through a sieve into a jug, leave to cool slightly, covered with cling film to stop a skin developing.
Beat the sugar and butter together until light and fluffy in a mixing machine and using a paddle attachment (this will take about 10 minutes). Add the eggs one at a time whilst continuing to mix, only adding another egg when the first is fully incorporated. Finally add the flour, when the mixture comes together as a dough stop mixing so as not to overwork the mixture.
Wrap the pastry in cling film and leave to rest in the fridge for 20 minutes minimum, but can be left overnight if you wish to make the night before. Roll it out on a floured surface and line your desired tart case. Blind bake the pastry at 170°C for 15 minutes or until lightly golden in colour and when cooked give it a quick egg wash using just the yolk. Leave the base empty and return it to the oven at 100°C, pour the filling into the case whilst in the oven and cook until the mixture wobbles very slightly in the centre of the tart. Depending on the depth of your mould it could take anything up to 1hr 15 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the oven door slightly open to allow the tart to cool for 30 minutes before removing and leaving to cool further.
Serve cold with good quality ice cream or sorbet. We love to serve with rhubarb ice cream or sorbet, as it creates a classic combination but your family favourite may be even better!
For the rhubarb crumble
For the topping
264g demerara sugar
8g baking powder
110g macadamia nuts (toasted and roughly chopped)
160g desiccated coconut
60g ground almonds
Rhubarb is in season from April and on into much of the summer. If you are lucky enough to grow some in your garden, do remember stalks should be pulled rather than cut to prevent rotting of the remaining stump.
This crumble is obviously great served with custard but perhaps in the summer some pouring cream or caramel ice cream could be a nice alternative.
Slice the rhubarb into 2cm thick pieces and place into the bottom of the pie dish, sprinkle over the sugar and grenadine and mix with a spoon
For the topping in a separate bowl rub the flour and butter together with your fingertips until it looks like a crumb mix
Now mix in the rest of the ingredients and place on top of the rhubarb mix
Place in a pre-heated oven at 170 degree C/gas mark 3 and cook for 40 minutes, until the crumble is golden brown.
For the pavlova:
120g egg white
240g caster sugar
5g corn flour
10ml white wine vinegar
For the lime cream:
60g icing sugar
Zest of 2 limes
Juice of 1 lime
6 leaves mint chopped
For the macerated strawberries:
2 lime zest and juice
Serves 12 - Individual nests
Equipment bowl, whisk, piping bags, baking tray, electric mixer
For the pavlova:
1. In an electric mixer whisk the egg whites to a medium peak, sprinkle in one third of the sugar and continue whisking for another 2 minutes.
2. Add another third of the sugar and whisk for another 2 minutes, finally add the remaining sugar and give a final 2 minutes whisking.
3. Add the corn flour and white wine vinegar and whisk to incorporate.
4. Put the mix into a piping bag, and put some grease proof paper on to baking trays, draw a 10cm circle 12 times. Pipe the mix into the circles starting from the middle of each circle, make sure the bag is touching the paper allowing it to spread out to the edge of the circle and then lift up to a point.
5. Bake at 150°C for 30-40 minutes then leave to cool in the oven for a further 45 minutes with the oven off to dry the mixture, best to leave overnight.
For the lime cream:
1. Place all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk until a soft peak is formed.
2. It wants to just hold in the whisk and if it drops into the mix and holds a peak is good to put into piping bag.
For the macerated strawberries:
1. Cut the tops off the strawberries, then cut in half and place into a bowl.
2. Zest the lime and then squeeze the juice onto the strawberries.
3. Sprinkle over the sugar and mix well. Allow to sit for 1 hour.
Remove the top of each meringue and fill with the lime cream and then the macerated strawberries and juice. Put the top back on and dust with icing sugar