Alfresco, picnics, BBQ

Artichoke Pithivier

Artichoke, olive and preserved lemon ragout

Artichoke halves cooked gently in a tasty wine and cream reduction with olives and preserved lemons.

Traditionally a Pithivier is a French celebration cake for Twelfth Night.  An elaborately decorated  buttery  puff pastry encases a rich almond frangipani. Served warm with glacé fruits and sweet wine it is my idea of heaven. I have a number of recipes including one for a chocolate almond crème filling which I will share  with you in time for Christmas.

More recently the idea of encasing savoury and vegetable fillings has been  adopted  by restaurant chefs and it is quite commonplace to find such dishes as oxtail or game Pithivier on a menu. Some chefs add delicious insult to injury by encasing creamy gratin dauphinoise in rich butter puff paste!   Continue reading

White Chocolate and Coffee Roulade with a Mango Coulis

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White chocolate and Coffee Roulade with Mango

 

Roulade remains a firm favourite for summer desserts, this white chocolate roulade is a bit different and well worth adding to your repertoire.  The coffee filling adds an intensity of flavour that compliments the sweetness of the chocolate. The texture is moist and less crumbly than a traditional roulade, making it easy to slice into thin scrumptious pieces. Served  with fresh mango and a mango  basil coulis,  or other fresh summer fruits, this makes for a distinctive end to any summer party or event. Continue reading

Cracked Wheat Gazpacho Salad

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Cracked Wheat Gazpacho Salad.

 

34 ° and its too hot to cook – here is a delicious no cook salad for summer heatwaves when turning on the oven is more than you can bear.  Serve it very simply with and a fresh green salad and something like a cool fresh mozzarella sliced and scattered with fresh herbs, and drizzled with fragrant olive oil. Or with cold cuts, cold poached salmon, prawns or simple antipasti. This beautiful salad also makes an ideal accompaniment to another of Stirring Stuffs no cook salads –  Tarragon chicken mayonnaise with grapes  . Continue reading