This tarte tatin may just be one of the yummiest things I’ve eaten this year. You don’t just caramelize the shallots, you caramelize the HECK out of them. The pastry recipe sounds kind of fussy when you could just as easily use a food processor, but this method does actually make some seriously flaky awesomeness. Enjoy!
Shallot and thyme tarte tatin
Ingredients (Serves 6)
- 60 gr butter, cubed
- ¼ cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1 kg French shallots, peeled and ends trimmed
- 2 ½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 12 thyme sprigs, plus extra to serve
- salt and pepper, to taste
- crème fraîche, to serve
- salad leaves, to serve
Simple flaky pastry
- 1 ¼ cups plain flour
- pinch of salt
- 125 gr butter, frozen
- ⅓ cup chilled water, approximately
- To make the flaky pastry, put the flour and salt into a medium mixing bowl. Coarsely grate butter onto a chilled plate. Add to the flour and use the end of a firm spatula to push and cut through the flour and butter all over, mixing until evenly combined.
- Sprinkle the chilled water over the flour and butter mixture. Continue cutting the dough until evenly combined and the mixture starts holding together. Press a little of the mixture between your fingers: if it holds together easily, there is no need to add more water. If it doesn’t add an extra teaspoon of chilled water at a time and mix and test again until it is ready.
- Bring the pastry together with your hands and transfer to a lightly floured, cool benchtop. Lightly knead the pastry with your fingertips for about 30 seconds or until smooth and soft (you should still see butter pieces). Shape the pastry into a disc, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- To prepare shallots, melt the butter in an ovenproof 20–22 cm heavy-based frying pan over medium-high heat. Sprinkle with the sugar and stir with a wooden spoon until well combined.
- Add the shallots, root-side down and packed tightly, in the pan. Reduce the heat to low and cook, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Turn the shallots over and cook for a further 20 minutes or until they are very tender when pierced with a skewer and caramelised. Sprinkle over the balsamic vinegar, season well with salt and pepper and cook for a further 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for 1 ½ hours or until cooled completely. Sprinkle with the thyme sprigs.
- Preheat oven to 200C. Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured benchtop to about 5 mm thick and then cut into a circle about 26 cm in diameter. Place the pastry over the cooled shallots in the pan, carefully tucking the pastry edge around the shallot and down the side of the pan. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes or until the pastry is deep golden and cooked through and the shallot juices are bubbling. Remove from the oven and set aside for 10 minutes to cool slightly.
- Place a serving plate with a lip over the top of the tart and invert. Sprinkle with extra fresh thyme sprigs and serve immediately, cut into wedges and serve with crème fraîche and salad leaves.
This is quite a rich breakfast or brunch, basically a glorified cheese toasty.
Ingredients (Serves 2)
- 225 gr strong cheddar, grated
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 2 teaspoons flour
- 4 tablespoons Guinness
- 4 slices bread
- Fried egg, sunny side up, for serving
- Over a medium-low heat, mix together the cheese, butter, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, flour and pepper in a saucepan until smooth.
- Slowly incorporate the beer, one tablespoon at a time, ensuring the mixture remains thick. When combined and thick, remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
- Toast bread on one side only. Spread the rarebit over the untoasted side, then transfer to a grill and toast the rarebit until golden brown.
- Transfer to a plate and top with fried egg.
Homemade peri peri sauce tastes damn good! And it can pack a serious punch. Pile in the chillis and Tabasco and get ready for the tasty, tasty fire!
Peri peri chicken
Ingredients (Serves 4)
- 2kg whole free-range chicken
- 1 lemon
- 1 small bunch herbs, including rosemary, oregano, thyme and parsley
- 150ml red wine
Peri peri sauce
- 5 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1-5 red chillies (depending on heat preference), chopped
- 2cm piece of ginger, grated
- 50ml vegetable oil
- 25ml red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon Tabasco
- 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 3 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon caster sugar
- 1 lime, zest and juice
For the vegetables
- 3 red onions, peeled and quartered
- 500 gr baby new potatoes, halved
- Preheat the oven to 200C. Bring chicken to room temperature and place in roasting tray. Pierce lemon with a knife and microwave for 30 seconds. Place lemon and herbs into chicken cavity. Season and drizzle with oil. Place in the oven and cook for 40 minutes.
- For the peri peri sauce, combine all of the peri peri sauce ingredients and stir to combine.
- Remove chicken from the oven and coat in ¾ of the peri peri sauce. Place onions and potatoes in roasting dish with chicken and return to the oven for 50 minutes or until liquid runs clear under leg when pierced with a knife. Remove chicken from oven and roasting tray and set aside, covered loosely with foil, to rest for 15 minutes. Transfer vegetables to a clean tray and return to oven (turned off) to keep warm.
- Carefully skim or pour the oil out from the roasting tin, leaving the juice and sticky bits behind. Put it on a medium heat and add the remaining sauce and the red wine. Allow to simmer for a few minutes, scraping up all the sticky bits from the bottom.
- Quarter chicken and serve on the bone with sauce, vegetables and a salad of your choice.
Tapas is such a beautiful way of eating – the Spanish are certainly on the money! Here, a simple recipe can be combined with any number of Spanish classics to create a meal of mini treats! The Romesco sauce is excellent with any number of tapas, so share the love with some fried chorizo or prawns, or keep things vego with padron’s peppers or smoky cauliflower (roasted with smoked paprika) and a rocket salad.
Spanish chick pea balls and Romesco sauce
- 2 x 400 gr cans chickpeas, rinsed, drained
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon rind
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 2/3 cup dried multigrain breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons plain flour
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh continental parsley
- 1 egg, lightly whisked
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- Rocket leaves, to serve
- Olive oil
- Lemon wedges, to serve
- 3 red capsicums, cored and halved
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- ~40g slice of crusty bread, crusts removed, coarsely chopped
- ½ cup slivered almonds
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 long fresh red chilli, coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh continental parsley
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 300 gr can diced tomato
- Lemon wedges, to serve
- Preheat oven to 180C. Coat capsicum halves in half of the oil and roast for 30 minutes. Set aside to cool, then peel the skins from the flesh. Discard skins.
- To make the sauce, heat remaining oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Cook bread and almonds, stirring, for 2-3 minutes or until golden. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Set aside to cool slightly. Transfer to a food processor. Add the roasted capsicums, chilli, parsley, coriander and paprika. Process until combined. Add the tomato and process until combined. Transfer to a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap.
- Process chickpeas, garlic, lemon rind, coriander, cumin and paprika in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl. Add breadcrumbs, flour, parsley and egg. Use a fork to stir until mixture just starts to come together. Stir in 1 tablespoon lemon juice and season. Roll mixture into golfball sized portions. Place on a tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to chill.
- Heat oil in a heavy-based frying pan over medium heat. Cook one-third of the chickpea balls, turning occasionally, for 4 minutes or until golden brown and heated through. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Repeat with remaining balls in 2 more batches, reheating oil between batches.
- Serve with chickpea balls drizzled with sauce and lemon wedges.