Thursday, November 20, 2014

Potato Boulangère - Cooked in a Steam Combination Oven

I've made this Jamie Oliver recipe numerous times, it's quick, easy and a healthier option to the usual potato dauphinoise.  Potato Boulangère is simply thinly sliced potatoes, onions and stock layered up in a dish.  I like Delia's recipe too......

When I chose my new kitchen the purchase of a steam combination oven was an indulgence, especially as I had no idea if I was going to be happy with it but now I don't know how I managed without it. The advantage of cooking in this type of oven using the fan/steam mode is food doesn't dry out and also cooks quicker, I cooked this dish in just over 30 minutes at 200°C Fan/Steam.

Steam ovens have to be used with caution, when I first used mine I had one or two nasty burns and I learnt very quickly that my best friend was going to be a set of of double oven gloves that have an extra long cuff, a protective steam layer and don't let the heat through.  I'd recommend C'est Ca because they never let me down.

Adapted Recipe:
750g maincrop potatoes
1 onion, sliced
sage leaves
200ml vegetable stock
Parmesan cheese

Conventional Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
2. Peel and thinly slice the potatoes, add a layer over the base followed by a layer of onions, season. Build up the layers finishing with a layer of potatoes.
3. Pour the stock over the potatoes, season. Grate the Parmesan over the potatoes, top with a few fresh sage leaves. Top with a few pieces of butter. Cook for an hour until golden and the potatoes are cooked through.

The original recipe is on the Jamie Oliver website.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Prezzo, Victoria Place, London: Christmas Menu - Review

Interior showing the open plan kitchen
Kitchen Delights London Reporter @PaulFoodie eats Christmas dinner with a twist......

Noticed anything recently? The TV adverts literally change overnight at this time of year to feature length Christmas campaigns! And no sooner have you seen the John Lewis ad - it's Christmas!

Well I embrace it at this time of year, and as such, I was excited to do a review of the Prezzo sparkly Christmas menu.

Eye catching Prezzo Christmas Menu
Prezzo is very reasonably priced and for under £25 you can get yourself a three course meal and a glass of Prosecco, which isn't too bad at all.

With so much choice it took us ages to choose our meals
We visited Prezzo in London's Victoria. It's modern, open plan and you can see the chefs at work, service was speedy and prompt.

The Christmas menu was surprisingly generous. We're not just talking about a couple of options here, and I was beginning to think that I was looking at the wrong menu there's so much choice!

Don't expect a festive turkey here but do expect some Italian classics with a Winter/Christmas twist. I spotted things like walnut pesto pasta, and pea and pancetta soup.

For our starters.........

Mozzarella in Carrozza
I opted for lightly fried mozzarella which was served with a pomodoro sauce, this was very warm and cheesy, whilst my dining companion chose a crispy pasta dish made up of three large pieces of ravioli topped with Parma ham and basil on a tomato sauce. It was enjoyable but looked as though it was drowning in tomato sauce.

Crispy Pasta
For mains......
After taking ages to decide, I went for the dish I thought sounded the most like Christmas - roast duck leg with a red wine jus. It was really tasty and went well with the sauce which had loads of juicy mushrooms and potatoes. My dining partner was less keen on her choice - a risotto with goats cheese, but she later admitted that she should have gone for a meaty option and was jealous of my duck leg.

Roasted Duck Leg
And dessert...
Some real winter offerings here. I had a beautifully served amaretto bread and butter pudding with vanilla ice cream. Well presented with lots of flavour and juicy sultanas - yum!

Amaretto Brioche Bread and Butter Pudding
The second dessert we shared was the chocolate orange slice with popping candy on top. It scored well with us for the dark chocolate and richness, but I couldn't taste the orange enough and the popping candy was a little sorry for itself as it never quite plucked up the courage to pop.

Chocolate Orange Truffle Slice
We chose our meals from the Christmas Premium Menu. All in all, you won't beat this for a good value treat.........

Disclaimer:  We were guests of Prezzo, all thoughts are our own.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Plum Slice is Always Nice!

Amazing Plum Cake with Ice Cream
Last September I was sent an email inviting me to attend the Range Leisure Autumn Feast with Uyen Luu who is a blogger, cookery book writer and supperclub owner.  Sadly I was unable to attend and reluctantly/happily! passed the invitation onto @PaulFoodie who is the London Reporter for our blog.

I've been told on many an occasion that the food, wine, event, the company, including Jeanne of Cook Sister, made a truly memorable evening for all.

I love dessert and whenever I go out for a meal I mostly start by looking at the dessert menu first. I thought I'd replicate the Plum Cake with Ice Cream that Uyen Luu cooked on the evening of the event........
Deliciously tender and buttery
I'd recommend getting the best plums possible because the 'ripen at home' ones from the supermarket tend to go mouldy before they ripen and the fruit needs to be as tasty as possible.

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