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SPICED XMAS PIKELETS SERVED WITH VANILLA PEACHES, YOGHURT + MINT - Recipe by GourmetGirlfriend
As you know both La Madre & I are big on reducing waste. Christmas can see a lot of unnecessary food waste as we tend to over-cater & then get left with things we have had our fill of. This recipe was devised as a way to re-invent your fruit mince tarts (although I can’t imagine there being any of the La Madre ones left over – they are sooooo good). It keeps the lovely aromatic spice of the tarts but the addition of the poached vanilla peaches, plain yoghurt & fresh mint helps give a freshness that suits it perfectly for a post Christmas breakfast.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- 6 fruit mince tarts
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 cup self raising flour
- 1/2 cup milk
- Vanilla peaches (recipe on my blog)
- Plain Greek style yoghurt (drained if you like it thicker)
- Fresh mint
Carefully remove the fruit mince from the tart and reserve the pastry shells and the pastry stars. Place the fruit mince into a mixing bowl.
Put the pastry shells (but not the stars) into a food processor & blitz using the pulse function till they resemble a breadcrumb with some larger pieces. I think it is nice to have some textural difference.
Place the crumb into the mixing bowl with the fruit mince.
Now add the eggs, flour & baking powder and combine well. The mix should resemble pikelet batter. You may need to add a little extra milk to get the correct consistency.
Gently fry several at a time in a lightly buttered non stick pan. Don’t turn till the holes that appear remain (about 2-3 minutes). Flip and cook on the other side for a minute or so.
Remove to a serving platter and top with Vanilla Poached Peaches and a generous dollop of yoghurt. Decorate with the pastry stars and some fresh mint & drizzle the poaching syrup over it.
RED ONION & ROSEMARY RELISH by GourmetGirlfriend
This recipe was written especially to go in La Madre’s Ciabatta rolls with Greenvale Farm pork to make a super deluxe bacon butty to celebrate World Bacon Day. It is easy and relatively quick & you can keep the leftover Relish in a sterile jar in your fridge for a couple of weeks.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- 1kg red onions
- 1 stalk rosemary, chopped fine
- 3 tablespoons EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
- A little water if necessary
Cut the onion in half and then slice finely.
Heat a non stick pan to a medium heat and add the EVOO.
Add the onions & rosemary immediately and stir frequently. Add the salt.
As the onions become soft and translucent add the sugar.
It will caramelise quite quickly. Don’t let the onions brown, so you may want to turn the heat down to low to prevent this.
Add a little (1/4 cup at a time) water if you need too. I do this to help cook the onions without letting them brown. This process takes about 20-25 minutes.
Let the water evaporate off & add the Red Wine Vinegar. Stir well.
Now add the Balsamic Vinegar, stir through for about a minute and take off the heat.
Let cool and put in a sterilised jar. It will keep for a couple of weeks in the fridge.
WORLD BACON DAY DELUXE BACON BUTTY
DELUXE BACON BUTTY by Ruth Bruten aka GourmetGirlfriend:
I LOVE Bacon. LOVE it….and many other portions of the Pig too it must be said. Needless to say I was thrilled to be a part of this collaboration to celebrate World Bacon Day!
I think it is my new favourite day in fact!
I have a very good friend who after many, many years of being vegetarian was turned back to omnivorous life after being subjected to the delights of the perfume of the frying pig in London. Who can blame her? It was the Bacon Butty that did it…I understand. I really, really do.
So in reverence to bacon, here is my take on the humble Bacon Butty. I have ‘Deluxed’ it up! It is celebrated here using Ciabatta Rolls from La Madre Bakery & Bacon from Greenvale Farm.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- 1 La Madre Ciabatta Roll
- 3 rashers Greenvale Farm Bacon
- A little oil (but not much)
- 2 tablespoons GourmetGirlfriend’s Red onion & Rosemary Relish (see recipe)
Heat a non stick fry pan to medium heat and a little bit of oil to the pan.
Place the rashers into the pan and cook to your taste (some in my family like them soft, others super crunchy, it is up to you)! Remove from pan and set aside.
Slice the Ciabatta roll in half and place in pan with the outside of the roll facing up (the purpose here is to toast the inside of the roll using the delicious bacon fat for extra fab flavour to your Butty). Remove when lightly brown.
Add a good slathering of Red Onion & Rosemary Relish and then top with the bacon.
Pop the top on, thank the fabulous person who invented Bacon and demolish!
La Madre Pressed Picnic Baguette - Recipe by GourmetGirlfriend
This recipe is a perfect fit for the La Madre baguette. It is a great picnic treat. You can use whatever ingredients you wish but I think the must haves are chargrilled vegetables - eggplant, capsicum or zucchini - better still use them all! They give a gorgeous rich flavour. The ingredients are placed in the loaf and then weighted and placed in the fridge overnight to let the flavours infuse through the bread. The next day you have an incredibly tasty baguette that is packed with flavours. The recipe below is the mix of ingredients I used but feel free to play and add your favourite things.
- 1 La Madre sourdough baguette
- 4 slices of chargrilled eggplant
- 4 slices of Provolone Dolce cheese
- 6 slices of chilli salami
- Handful of rocket
- Few springs of basil
- 2 radishes, sliced
Slice the baguette in half. On the bottom half of the open baguette lay the slices of eggplant first. This allows the lovely flavoured oils of the vegetables to be absorbed by the bread. Place the salami and cheese on top finishing with another layer of chargrilled vegetables.
Wrap the baguette tightly in clingfilm and place on a large plate. Place another plate on top of the baguette and pop a brick or filled bowl of water on top of the plate. (Place the baguette in the fridge first to avoid disasters!)
Marinate overnight. When you are ready to eat, unwrap and top with the fresh ingredients. Slice into portions and serve. Wipe mouth and smile.
This sourdough light rye loaf was my second attempt with a banneton. And it was a whopper, I wondered whether it might grow beyond my baking stone while baking. But I’m very happy with the result.
It’s my tribute to Suzi, the tirelessly caring and stoic Hungarian woman who fostered me when I was very young. Her influence manifests as part of the fabric of who I came to be. And it was in her home that I first ate sourdough rye bread.
I got a taste for it, often there was Hungarian apricot or cherry jam for it, but even Vegemite came to life on a simple slice. I loved it especially when spread with körözött or Liptauer - as her adopted Austrian mother called it - mostly Suzi added slices of sweet green banana chillies, a beautiful combination with körözöt’s creamy paprika flecked caraway flavours.
When I first heard her offer her guests toast as a snack I found it odd. The bread my mother had fed me was Dad’s preferred tasteless squares, limp commercial bread, nothing special that you would offer a guest.
But once I ate Suzi’s oval ‘Continental’ bread as it was known at the time, I understood how special it was. And later the realization of how special grew another layer.
Suzi was a Holocaust orphan. She suffered physically, emotionally, mentally during WW2. It never left her, it shaped her.
While like many Jewish survivors little was said about a time they felt was better forgotten, I knew her parents perished in Auschwitz, a horrific concentration camp. I knew what had led to her arrival in Australia.
She and her brothers came to Australia to be adopted by relatives but were split up. It was a complicated and unsettled childhood.
She didn’t get along with her adoptive mother who chose her brother and hadn’t wanted her. But Suzi’s older brother would not be separated from her. Luckily she found parental solace in another couple who quietly fostered her with no declaration or fanfare, much as she later did for me.
The people in their circle were mostly also Holocaust survivors. And they had suffered all manner of depravation, desperation and horrific trauma. Some had lost their entire extended family, or their children, spouse or parents.
They did not judge me, there was no orthodox prejudice against an outsider. They accepted that in my own way I too was alone. To them Australia was a place to relish the bounties and freedoms without looking back, to adopt new customs and people. To enjoy.
From them I learnt to share whatever I have, no matter how little it might be. And they taught me the value of food, a respect for not wasting a scrap and to never take anything for granted. The simple joys, the notion of being safe, to have bread, to share, be well fed and housed.
Their ways seeped into my psyche. It made me a smiley person because in spite of whatever personal trauma I may have had, they had given me these basic things to ground me, and reasons to rejoice.
Later in life Suzi became an avid home baker. Her kids joke that no one ever left her house without a loaf of bread. With a dash of her typical sarcastic humour, her bread oven machine was placed by the coffin at her funeral and offered for sale. The service featured a photo of her with bread of all shapes and sizes.
Underlying all of Suzi’s motivation was a need to give back to the world in exchange for her survival. A distant remembrance of the kindness of strangers who helped a little girl escape the horrors of oppression. A big brave hearted soul, kneaded and knocked back to rise into a humble yet sustaining force of life, The Mother.
The happy hermit’s life celebrated by a juicy, sweet yet sharp, homegrown tangelo