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Food is evocative. And the memories it evokes can last a lifetime. Its been over 20 years since our father passed away yet I still get the strongest memories of him whenever I smell cheese scones baking.
It’s one of my favourite childhood memories – waking up on weekend mornings to the smell of my Dads cheese scones baking for breakfast. I don’t know what recipe my Dad used but his scones were always absolutely delicious.
In honour of what would have been his 71st birthday this week we had cheese scones for breakfast this morning. This is my recipe. In 20+ years of scones I don’t think I’ve quite been able to replicate Dads yet but I’m getting close… I’ll just have to keep trying.
This delicious scone recipe is a take on the lemonade scone recipes you hear about. We don’t often have lemonade in the house but do have a soda stream machine, so have easy access soda water should a scone craving take hold. By all means use lemonade instead, but if you do, omit the sugar.
Similar to my simple muffins recipe, this scone dough is extremely flexible so can be made into sweet or savoury scones with whatever flavour combinations take your fancy. For sweet scones up the sugar to a 1/4 cup, and throw in 1/2 cup of sultanas or currants, orange rind or chopped dates. Obviously don’t add the cheese! And there are endless varieties of savoury flavourings – I like to add finely chopped rosemary and a few chilli flakes, or curry powder, diced onion and parsley, or even chopped sun-dried tomato and feta.
Best eaten fresh, this recipe will yield 9-12 scones or 15-18 mini scones, depending on the size you cut them. They do also freeze well as a handy lunch-box addition.
Serves: 12 scones
- 2 cups plain flour
- 2 heaped tsp baking powder
- 1 cup grated cheese
- ⅓ cup grated parmesan cheese, or parmesan powder
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tbsp finely diced chives
- ½ tsp salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup cream
- approx ½ cup soda water
- additional grated cheese to top scones before baking
- Preheat your oven to 180C. Line a baking tray with grease proof paper.
- Sift the flour and baking powder together into a large bowl. Add the cheeses, sugar, chives, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Pour on the cream and mix with your hands, rubbing the lumps that form gently until you don't have any large lumps left. Splash in the soda water bit at a time, mixing with your hands after each addition, until a dough forms. The dough should be soft, but not so wet it sticks to your hands.
- Turn out on to a floured bench and gently knead for a couple of minutes.
- Pat the dough down to approximately 1.5 cm thickness and cut the scones into your desired shape. Place on the prepared baking tray, top with the additional grated cheese.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden. Serve warm with lashings of butter.
For Dad x
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Traditionally made with apples as a gorgeous dessert, a Tarte Tatin combines fruit caramelised in butter and sugar with flaky pastry. Baked upside-down, the pastry goes beautifully crisp while the fruit softens and the juices create a delicious sauce with the caramel.
This tomato version made a wonderful lunch dish, with the tomatoes most definitely the star, showing off their natural sweetness. To assemble the tarte took very little time at all, making it a nice easy meal to prepare when having guests for lunch.
Serves: 4 servings
- 2 brown onions, cut into quarters then sliced thinly
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp soft brown sugar
- 800g cherry tomatoes
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp soft brown sugar
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 100g feta, cut into small cubes
- 5 fresh basil leaves
- 2 brown onions, caramelised as above
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 sheets of flaky pastry
- 1 egg, lightly beaten to egg wash the pastry
- extra basil leaves to garnish
- First, caramelise the onions. For convenience I caramelised my onions the day before I made the tarte and I found it worked well. Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat and add the sliced onion. Cook gently for around 20 minutes. Its important to cook the onions without them taking on any colour. They should be very soft and translucent and will start to smell quite sweet rather than 'oniony'. Add the brown sugar and cook for 3 more minutes. Set aside.
- To make the tarte tatin in a 30 cm flan dish preheat your oven to 200C. Lightly grease a flan dish.
- If using frozen pastry, allow it to defrost at room temperature. Measure the pastry against your chosen dish to make sure you have enough to completely cover the size of the dish. You want enough to cover the dish with an extra couple of centimetres around the edge to tuck in. I always find I have to join two sheets together to get the right size. To do this, rough up the two edges you are going to join with a fork, then lay one over the top of the other and press down and smooth with your fingers.
- Place the butter, brown sugar and balsamic vinegar in a frypan and cook over a medium heat for 1-2 minutes until the butter has melted and the mixture has bubbled for a moment. Remove from the heat and add in your tomatoes. Stir well to coat the tomatoes in the glaze, and then transfer them to your flan dish. Pack the tomatoes in tightly, without bursting any.
- Sprinkle over the cubed feta, poking cubes into any gaps between the tomatoes. Roughly tear the basil leaves and sprinkle over. Season well with salt and pepper. Spread the caramelised onions over the tomatoes (I found it was easiest just to use my fingers for this), and then lay your pastry sheet over the top. Tuck in. It doesn't have to look perfect because this will become the bottom of your dish. Poke a couple of small holes in the pastry to act as vents. Brush with the egg wash.
- Bake for around 30 minutes until the pastry is golden and puffed.
- Remove from the oven and let it sit for at least 30 minutes until the dish is cool enough to handle. Using two tea-towels or oven mitts, pick up the dish and lay it in one hand. Gently place your other hand on the pastry and holding the pastry carefully, gently tip it over the sink, pouring off any excess juice that has formed while the tarte has been cooking. The tarte will now sit quite happily until you're ready to serve it.
- When ready to serve, check that the pastry hasn't stuck to the side of your dish. If it has, gently loosen it with a sharp knife. Now this bit always makes me very nervous, but even if your tarte breaks during flipping, it will still taste amazing. Lay your serving platter or a large plate over the pastry. Place one hand on your serving platter and one on the bottom of the flan dish. Quickly flip them over to release the tarte. You'll need to be quick and careful because some juices may run out.
- Garnish with fresh basil leaves and serve immediately otherwise the pastry may go soggy.
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I just love these little citrus puddings. They’re the perfect dinner party dessert for me – fast to prepare in advance, a little bit indulgent and taste spectacular. Despite the fact they are made from basically nothing but cream and sugar, they are surprisingly light and don’t leave you feeling like you’ve over done it.
I don’t even know how they work! Something scientific to do with the combination of boiled cream and the citrus juice causes the pudding to set beautifully so it has an almost creme brûlée consistency. Creamy, tangy, rich and delicious, these incredibly easy citrus puddings will surprise you. The combination of sweetened cream and citrus is an all time favourite and the almost custard-like texture of these desserts will keep you making them over and over again.
Today I used ruby-red grapefruit, but these puddings are equally amazing with lime, tangerine or even only lemon juice. If you’re going to use only lemon, just use the 1/2 cup measure and don’t worry about additional juice of 1/2 a lemon.
So quick to create and only using the one pot, we often make these when dining with friends and I’m almost always asked for the recipe. Try them – you’ll be hooked!
Serves: 4 puddings
- 500ml pouring cream
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup grapefruit juice
- juice of ½ a lemon
- Put the cream and sugar into a pot and bring to a gentle simmer.
- Keep simmering gently, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes until the cream has reduced slightly. Keep an eye on the pot because cream has a tendency to boil over quite easily.
- Pour in the juices and bring back to a simmer. Simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Allow the mixture to sit in the pot for 5 minutes to cool ever so slightly before pouring into individual ramekins or serving glasses. Set in the fridge for 4 hours or so until firm.
These desserts are lovely served with a piece of crisp biscotti to dip into it, or with fresh citrus segments or berries.
Our philosophy is simple. Good produce, prepared well, eaten for pleasure. Food is a passion. We whole-heartedly believe in using fresh, seasonal produce, and organic, free range meats and poultry whenever possible. Free range eggs are a must. When time and situation permit, there is nothing like […]