Celebrations

Well that didn’t exactly go to plan: Disaster to Delicious! Herb Cured Smoked Haddock Brandad

Puree of Herb Cured Smoked Haddock

Brandade of cured smoked haddock, Quails egg mayonnaise and sourdough croutons

Cookery bloggers don’t usually tell you about the dishes and the ideas that don’t work out, we have a horrible habit of writing up the successful recipes, giving readers the impression that we never make mistakes, that those delicious ideas we have in our heads always work out as planned. But as any cook will know disasters, and things that don’t quite go to plan happen, perhaps especially for those creatives amongst us who have a tendency to get carried away, inspired by ingredients, flavours and aromas; those of us who dream about how to deconstruct recipes and add our own twist to a dish.

Preparing for the Easter weekend I had one such (luckily not ‘binworthy’) moment with a new recipe idea. It didn’t work out as planed and as I was pondering how to remedy the situation it occurred to me that the thinking process that this time turned a near disaster into something delicious might be worth sharing with you – it might come in handy next time you get caught out with a dish that hasn’t gone quite as expected, encourage you to ask questions about the flavour and texture in order to work out if you could create something that might work, rather bin your efforts too quickly in a fit of pique. Continue reading

Russian Meringue Cookies

a mound of meringue cookies with easter chick

Chocolate Orange and White Chocolate and Pine Nut Meringue Cookies

 

Something a little different for Easter. These meringue cookies are wonderfully easy to prepare and a great way to use up leftover egg whites from your Easter Lemon Tart. They make delicious gifts and a very sweet ending to an Easter Feast. The texture of these meringue treats is very seductive – wisps of meringue dissolve as you bite into soft chocolate and crunchy nuts. Below I share two of my favourite versions: White Chocolate and Pine Nut , and Chocolate Orange and Pecan Nut.  The white chocolate in the first recipe takes on a tantalizingly caramel flavour, reminiscent of Dulce Du Leche, and the chocolate orange zings with flavour. The most exciting thing for any imaginative cook is that these meringues lend themselves to experimentation – different chocolates and nuts, dried fruits such as cranberries and candied peel. Or experiment with the original Ukrainian/Russian noodle version (see below).

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