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WARM SALAD OF LEEKS, JERUSALEM ARTICOKES AND WINTER LEAVES

This is a truly French inspired salad which I have adapted from the magnificent chef Raymond Blanc. This is one of the few recipes I make every year; it is perfect!



Serves 4

4 medium leeks, outer layers removed
4 Jerusalem artichokes (320g)
Squeeze of lemon juice
60g mixed winter leaves, such as rocket, mizuna or frisee

For the dressing


1 Tbsp Dijon mustard


1 Tbsp white wine vinegar


2 Tbsp water


3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil


Sea salt and black pepper


1 tsp chives, finely chopped


1 tsp flat leaf parsley leaves only

Method


Slice the leeks into short lengths on the diagonal and wash well.  Scrub or peel the Jerusalem artichokes and submerge them in cold water with the lemon juice, then slice each one into 4 even sized pieces


Place the leeks and Jerusalem artichokes in a large steamer (a colander or sieve will do) over boiling water and cover tightly with a lid.  Steam over a high heat for 15 minutes.


Check that the leeks and Jerusalem artichokes are cooked by piecing them with the tip of knife.  The blade should go through easily and if in doubt simply taste them. Remove from the heat when tender and set aside while you make the dressing.

To make the dressing – in a small bowl, mix together the mustard, wine vinegar and water, gradually whisk in the oil, adding it in a steady stream to blend thickly into the dressing.  Season add the herbs, taste and adjust as necessary.

To assemble the salad – in a bowl, toss the steamed vegetables in half of the dressing.  Check the seasoning. Arrange the vegetables on a platter or individual plates, dress the salad leaves in a bowl with the dressing and toss lightly with your fingertips.  Scatter over the dressed salad leaves and serve

BREAD AND BUTTER PUDDING

This is another classic pudding which has seen a demise of late, probably due to the carbohydrate count.  But hey sometimes you have to overlook a little indulgence and enjoy a pudding like this which is comforting, fluffy and sort of custard-creamy like in texture.
This is the perfect pudding to make on Sunday after the farmers market as you have a good excuse to use up the left over (stale) bread.  I actually used old toast bread but brioche, old croissants, bloomer  (white )loaf all work fantastically in this sort of pudding.
It is best to make this a couple of hours a head of eating as it seems to settle down and taste even more delicious served warm.

serves 4-6

380ml cream                                                    80g sultanas, soaked in 50 ml rum, kirsch or a hot water
380ml milk                                                      30g butter, diced plus extra for greasing
1/2 tsp vanilla extract                                      200g bread or brioche (choose is yours)
4 free range medium eggs                               icing sugar for dusting
2 egg yolks
180g caster sugar

Method
To make the custard – in a saucepan, bring the cream, milk and vanilla to the boil.  Remove from the heat and let stand for a minute or two.  In a large bowl add the eggs, yolks and sugar and whisk together, then whisk in the hot creamy milk.  Set aside.

To assemble the pudding – butter the baking dish, pour in a layer of custard and scatter over the sultanas.  Cut the bread or brioche into 5mm thick slices.  Dip into the pan of warm custard to soak, then layer in the baking dish, overlapping the slices and building up layers to fill the dish.  Let stand for 20 minutes or so, to allow the bread to fully absorb the liquid.  Reserve the rest of the custard.

To bake the pudding – preheat the oven to 170C
Top up the dish with the remaining custard and dot with the butter on top.  Stand on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 30-40 minutes until the custard is lightly set (this will continue to cook on standing).

To serve – Preheat the grill to high, dust the surface of the pudding  with icing sugar twice to get a good covering and then place under the hot grill for a few minutes to glaze.  Add a final sprinkling of icing sugar before serving.

LEMON CAKE

We all have our favourite recipes tucked away and this lemon cake created by Raymond Blanc is one of mine.  It is light, moist and perfectly balanced.  I particularly like it for afternoon tea.

Makes 12 slices
26 x 9cm loaf tin

butter to grease
5 free-range medium eggs
300g caster sugar
150ml cream
finely grated zest of 3 lemons
25ml dark rum (optional)
pinch of salt
80g unsalted butter (or if using salted don’t add pinch of salt)
240g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
for the glaze
50g apricot jam, warmed
finely grated zest of 1 lemon, plus 3 Tbsp juice
150g icing sugar

Method
To prepare the cake – Preheat the oven to 180C.  Lightly grease the loaf tin and line with greaseproof paper.  In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, cream, lemon zest, rum (if using), salt and melted butter.  Sift the flour and baking powder together, then whisk into the egg mixture until smooth.

To bake the cake – Spoon the mixture itno the loaf tin and gently level the surface.  Bake for 50 minutes – 1 hour, turning the tin around halfway through cooking.  To test the cake, insert a small knife or skewer into the middle – if it comes out clean, teh cake is cooked.  Turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool for 10 minutes.

To glaze – Lighlty brush the cake all over with warm jam.  Leave for 5 minutes.  Mix the lemon zest and juice with the icing sugar in small pan and warm over a low heat until smooth.  Brush the lemon glaze evenly over the top and sides of the cake and leave for a few minutes to set.
Place the cake on a baking tray in the oven, turn off the heat adn leave for 3-5 minutes to dry the glaze – it will become translucent.  Allow to cool before slicing.

RAYMONDS TOP TIPS

  1. Leave some paper overhanging the sides when you line the tin; this will enable you to lift out the cake by the paper, making it easy to de-mould.
  2. Do not leave your cake to cool in the tin, as this would prevent the steam from escaping, making your cake heavier.
  3. Brushing the cake with jam creates a barrier so the lemon glaze is not absorbed.
  4. If the glaze is too hot it will re-crystallise, losing its shine and crispness.
  5. The lemon glaze must be even and thin; if it is too thick it will run in the oven.

OTAGO FARMERS MARKET

Good Morning – what can i say except that it is cold – very cold! But hey i have fantastic food to cook and that’s all that matters!
Edmonds fresh fish will be there with tubs of fresh fish – i will be cooking portion sized flounders, scattered with fresh chilli, garlic slivers and a squeeze of lemon, placed under the grill until the skin is bubbly, golden and delicious.  I will also be using organic broccoli from Bydone and teaming it up with pasta from Pasta Doro and once again a little chilli.  I will be making silverbeet pie which is a fantastic way to use greens whether they be silverbeet (chard), spinach, kale or cavolo nero, if you don’t have Parmesan simply use cheddar cheese or something to your liking and finally i will have a wonderful selection of apples from Harwarden orchard which i will be grilling with a little honey, butter and lemon.

SILVER BEET PIE

Rustic country pie made with plenty of hearty winter greens makes for a perfect lunch or dinner.

Serves 8

Filling

1kg silverbeet, kale, spinach, cavalo nero


3 Tbsp olive oil


1 leek, washed well and cut thinly


1 onion, sliced thinly


3 rashers smoked bacon (optional) finely chopped


3 cloves garlic, made into a paste


1 tsp fresh rosemary or thyme leaves, finely chopped


Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg


½ tsp chilli flakes


3 eggs


½ cup parmesan, pecorino or vintage cheddar grated

Crust

1 cup breadcrumbs, fresh or dried


3 Tbsp olive oil


½ cup grated parmesan, or pecorino cheese


Cracked pepper

Method
Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil.
Meanwhile, remove the stalks from the silver beet and from any other large greens you may be using.  When the water is boiling add the stalks first and cook for 2 minutes then add the leaves, cook for a further 2-3 minutes.  Drain well and cool on a tray lined with a clean cloth (this will soak up any excess moisture and cool the greens without losing any excess flavour).
Preheat the oven 180C
In a large fry pan heat the oil and add the bacon, cook over moderate heat for 2-4 minutes or until the bacon has started to colour.  Add the onions, leeks and rosemary and cook until soft (5-8 minutes). Remove any excess water from the greens and chop roughly, add them to the pan along with the garlic, chilli flakes, nutmeg and seasoning.  Cook for a further minute or two allowing the flavours to mingle, remove from the heat and place in a bowl to cool.
Meanwhile brush a deep pie dish or cake tin with 2 tablespoons of oil and scatter enough breadcrumbs to coat the dish well.
Add the eggs, half the grated cheese, half the breadcrumbs and mix well to combine. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.  Pour the mix into the prepared pie dish and spread out with the back of a spoon.
Mix together the remaining half cup of breadcrumbs, half cup of grated cheese and tablespoon of olive oil.
Season with salt and pepper and mix well.
Sprinkle this crumb mixture over your pie and bake until set and lightly browned, about 45 minutes. (If the top begins to get too brown simply cover with foil.)
Cool to room temperature before slicing.
Pasta doro stand at the farmers market

PASTA WITH BROCCOLI AND CHILLI

400 g slaters, penne, orecchiette pasta


1 head broccoli, cut into florets


1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped finely or a pinch dried red chilli flakes


2 cloves garlic, finely sliced


olive oil, for frying


grated parmesan, to serve

Method

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, add the broccoli and cook for 1-2 minutes or until it is tender to the bite. Remove carefully from the water and drain.

Add the pasta and cook until tender (read cooking instructions on packet).  Drain pasta, reserving about 1 cup of the pasta water (this will be used in the sauce).

Heat a generous amount of olive oil in a large, heavy-based pan, then add the chilli and garlic and cook for 1 minute over a gentle heat.

Add the broccoli and drained pasta and toss well until heated through. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Add 1-2 tablespoons of the pasta water and add a generous handful of the freshly grated parmesan cheese.  Toss to combine.

Serve with more grated parmesan cheese and freshly ground pepper.

WHOLE GRILLED FLOUNDER OR SOLE

1 portion

1 whole fresh flounder or sole


1 chilli, de-seeded (optional) cut thinly


1 clove garlic, sliced thinly


1 lemon


2 sprigs fresh thyme, parsley or coriander


Salt and freshly ground pepper


Good quality oil

Method

Preheat the grill on your oven to hot and place the oven rack about two down (allowing enough room to fit fish).


Wash the fish under cold water and pat dry.  Using a sharp knife on the dark coloured skin slash the skin 2-3 times across the fish and then cut another 2-3 times in the other direction. 

Lightly drizzle enough oil to coat both sides of the fish.  Place the fish cut side up on a baking tray.  Sprinkle with a little chopped chilli, garlic slivers, and a little of the chopped herbs.  Season well with salt and pepper, a squeeze of lemon juice and place under the hot grill until the skin begins to bubble and the flesh turns from an opaque white to a solid white (about 5 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish). 


Remove from the oven, using a fish slice carefully transfer the whole fish to your serving plate and drizzle over any juices.  Serve with more fresh lemon and crunchy salad.

GRILLED APPLES

2 servings    
        


2 dessert apples, Balaraic or peasgood nun such (fantastic cooking)


Juice of ½ lemon


30 g butter, melted


1 Tbsp runny honey

Method
Preheat the grill on your oven to hot

Halve the apples and remove the stalk and core.  Squeeze over a little lemon juice and brush with melted butter.  Place on a baking tray flat side down and pop under your preheated grill (about 10cm away from the element) until the apples begin to brown, about 10 minutes.  Turn them over and brush with a little more butter and lemon juice and grill until the apples start to colour.  Pour the honey into the hollows where the cores were, and return to the grill.  When the honey bubbles, and the apples are tender to the point of a knife, they are done.

Best eaten with cream or ice cream!

Alison would like to thank the following vendors for their fantastic produce

PASTA DORO – pasta


EDMONDS FRESH FISH – fish


HARWARDEN ORGANICS – apples


KAKANUI PRODUCE – chillies


BRYDONE ORGANICS – broccoli


ETTRICK GARDENS – silverbeet


JUDGE ROCK WINES – wine


LEVITIO BAKERY – bread

GRILLED APPLES

Now this is what i call an instant dessert! Fresh apples, cut in half, core removed, butter, lemon and honey added.  Grilled till bubbly, caramelised and scrummy – served warm with cream or icecream! Told you quick, delicious and easy!

2 servings            

2 dessert apples, Balaraic or peasgood nun such (fantastic cooking)


Juice of ½ lemon


30 g butter, melted


1 Tbsp runny honey

Method

Preheat the grill on your oven to hot

Halve the apples and remove the stalk and core.  Squeeze over a little lemon juice and brush with melted butter.  Place on a baking tray flat side down and pop under your preheated grill (about 10cm away from the element) until the apples begin to brown, about 10 minutes.  Turn them over and brush with a little more butter and lemon juice and grill until the apples start to colour.  Pour the honey into the hollows where the cores were, and return to the grill.  When the honey bubbles, and the apples are tender to the point of a knife, they are done.


Best eaten with cream or ice cream!

SILVERBEET PIE

Rustic country pie made with plenty of hearty winter greens makes for a perfect lunch or dinner.
Serves 8

Filling

1kg silverbeet, kale, spinach, cavalo nero

3 Tbsp olive oil

1 leek, washed well and cut thinly

1 onion, sliced thinly

3 rashers smoked bacon (optional) finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, made into a paste

1 tsp fresh rosemary or thyme leaves, finely chopped

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

½ tsp chilli flakes

3 eggs

½ cup parmesan, pecorino or vintage cheddar grated

Crust

1 cup breadcrumbs, fresh or dried
3 Tbsp olive oil
½ cup grated parmesan, or pecorino cheese
Cracked pepper

Method

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil.

Meanwhile, remove the stalks from the silver beet and from any other large greens you may be using.  When the water is boiling add the stalks first and cook for 2 minutes then add the leaves, cook for a further 2-3 minutes.  Drain well and cool on a tray lined with a clean cloth (this will soak up any excess moisture and cool the greens without losing any excess flavour).

Preheat the oven 180C

In a large fry pan heat the oil and add the bacon, cook over moderate heat for 2-4 minutes or until the bacon has started to colour.  Add the onions, leeks and rosemary and cook until soft (5-8 minutes). Remove any excess water from the greens and chop roughly, add them to the pan along with the garlic, chilli flakes, nutmeg and seasoning.  Cook for a further minute or two allowing the flavours to mingle, remove from the heat and place in a bowl to cool.

Meanwhile brush a deep pie dish or cake tin with 2 tablespoons of oil and scatter enough breadcrumbs to coat the dish well.

Add he eggs, half the grated cheese, half the breadcrumbs and mix well to combine. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.  Pour the mix into the prepared pie dish and spread out with the back of a spoon.

Mix together the remaining half cup of breadcrumbs, half cup of grated cheese and tablespoon of olive oil.
Season with salt and pepper and mix well.
Sprinkle this crumb mixture over your pie and bake until set and lightly browned, about 45 minutes. (If the top begins to get too brown simply cover with foil.)
Cool to room temperature before slicing.

 

OTAGO FARMERS MARKET

Different approach today lets get straight into it – Menu today is all about parsnips, pumpkins and wicked organics salad leaves.  Parsnips always get a bit of slack, actually they get pretty much overlooked as a main ingredient.  I am going to herb them up in a creamy mash, then i am going to roast some up and add to a some outdoor grown organic leaves and spiced up with a zesty dressing.  I have made an emergency pot of soup again as the weather is a little on the cold side.  I am using bones again but they are economical and full of flavour; i have added chickpeas, leeks, and handfuls of herbs, simmered for many hours and served steaming hot! 
The glorious quince are still on the menu and today they are teamed up with fresh walnuts from the nut company to produce an irresistible tart.  And sadly due to the weather Edmonds fresh fish can’t get out fishing so i won’t be able to roast off those plump, moist little flounders with a hint of fresh chilli, squeeze of lemon and a scattering of herbs – sorry got carried away.  Hopefully i can do this next week (weather permitting).

Ettrick Gardens

Produce is still in plentiful supply – Greens are robust and nourishing, pumpkins are sweet and silky, broccoli, caulis and brussels sprouts have started showing up at various vendors which is a welcoming addition.  Nuts are fresh and versatile, and yes berries are still available as are quinces.  Apples and pears are here to stay for many months so enjoy the many varieties on offer.  As your quite aware I’m only touching the surface of what is gracing our market.  Don’t forget about the amazing array of meats, fish, cheese, cakes, coffee, beer, wines and mead.  Garlic and garlic products, honey, chillies, tofu and pies not to forget to mention the impressive collection of plants available.  Take the opportunity to look around some time you will be amazed at what you may find.

(Amazing) Cardrona Lamb

See you soon and have a great day!

HERBY MASHED PARNSIPS

Mashed parsnips are a great flavoursome alternative and it will go with pretty much anything that you would put mashed potatoes with.

Serves 4

600g parsnips

4 spring onions
large handful parsley
6 stems fresh thyme
knob of butter
50ml cream
Freshly ground pepper

Method
Peel the parsnips and cut each into chunks. Put in a large pan, totally covered with salted water and bring to the boil. Put a lid on top, reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes or until tender, then drain.

Meanwhile finely chop the spring onions and parsley. Strip the thyme leaves from the stems, place into a small pot with the cream and warm through to allow the flavours to mingle.
Return the parsnips to the pot with the butter; add the herb infused cream and seasoning. Vigorously mash and then use a spatula to make them really fluffy. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary and serve.  Fantastic with a roast meats, fish or simple on its own!

Alison doing her thing in the mobile kitchen

PARSNIP, PUMPKIN AND WALNUT SALAD

Serves 4

2-4 parsnip’s, peeled and cut into even sized rounds

300g pumpkin, peeled, de-seeded and cut into even sized pieces
2 sprigs thyme
4 cloves garlic, roasted
2-4 Tbsp good quality oil
Freshly ground pepper and salt
100g fresh walnuts
1-2 lettuces, washed well and drained
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
5 Tbsp apple cider, red wine balsamic vinegar
1 tsp walnut oil
250 ml extra virgin olive oil, rice bran or rape seed oil

Method


Preheat the oven 180C on bake

Place a suitable tray in the oven to heat up.


Place the parsnips, pumpkin, garlic and thyme together in a bowl. Drizzle lightly with a little oil, season with salt and pepper and toss together to coat all the ingredients in the oil and seasoning.

Place the parsnips onto the preheated hot oven tray and roast for about 20 minutes, remembering to turn half way through cooking. 

Add the walnuts to the same tray and roast until lightly golden (about 5 minutes).  Remove from the oven and cool.

In a small bowl mix together the Dijon mustard, vinegar, walnut oil and extra virgin, season lightly and mix to combine.
Pick through the salad leaves, removing any tough stalks, and discoloured leaves.  Try to avoid cutting the leaves with a knife as this will turn the leaves brown, tear with your fingers if needed.  Place them into a suitable size bowl and add the cooked parsnips etc.  Drizzle over the dressing and toss lightly with your fingers so every ingredient is coated in dressing.

Serve immediately – please note that if you want to get the salad prepared earlier do everything but do not add the dressing until right before service or your salad will go limp and eventually slimy looking.

QUINCE AND WALNUT TART


This is a fantastic tart to celebrate quinces and walnuts; this is truly an autumnal delight.

Makes one 23cm tart

ingredients

200g quince paste

for the pastry  (or you can use ready rolled sweet pastry)
120g unsalted butter at room temperature, diced


75g icing sugar, sifted, plus extra for dusting


2 egg yolks


250g plain flour


2 Tbsp cold water

for the topping

200g softened butter
200g sugar
200g ground walnuts or ½ and ½ with ground almonds
2 large eggs

Method


To begin sweet pastry – in a large bowl, mix the soft butter and icing sugar to a cream: then beat in   the egg yolks and add the flour, with your fingertips rub the butter mixture and flour together to achieve a crumbly texture (this can be done in the food processor). Add the water and press the mixture together to form a ball.
With the palms of your hands, knead the pastry on lightly floured work surface until it is blended (maximum 30 seconds). Wrap in gladwrap  and chill for 30 minutes (this helps the dough lose its elasticity).
Line a 23cm tart tin by rolling the pastry on a lightly floured bench, evenly roll out the pastry into a circle to fit you tart tin, about 3mm thick.
Roll the pastry over the rolling pin and unroll it over your tin. With one hand lift the pastry and with the other gently tuck it into the bottom edge of the tin so that it fits tightly. Be careful not to stretch it. Cut off excess pastry by rolling the pin over the top edge of the tin. Take a small ball of pastry and gently press it all around the base of the tart to ensure a snug fit. Prick the base of the pastry all over with a fork and refrigerate for 30minutes (this helps prevent shrinkage during cooking)

Preheat oven to 160C

Cooking the pastry; Line the pastry case with tin foil and fill with dried beans, pushing them against the side. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and lift out both foil and beans. Return the tart tin to the oven and bake for a further 20 minutes.
Turn the oven down to 140C.

Meanwhile to make the walnut filling; in a medium size bowl soften the butter and cream together with the sugar until pale and creamy.  Add the eggs one at a time and beat well between each addition.  Add the ground walnuts (and almonds if using) and mix gently to combine.
To assemble; spread the quince paste evenly over the base of the pastry. Spoon on the walnut mixture and gently push around to cover most of the quince, as it cooks it will spread out.

Bake in preheat oven for 35- 45 minutes or until firm to touch.

Cool before serving.

TOASTED PUMPKIN SEEDS

Pumpkin season is well and truly here so why not make the most of the whole pumpkin; seeds and all!

Print Options

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

    Prin

    One medium sized pumpkin


    Salt


    Olive oil

    Method

    Preheat oven to 180C.
    Cut open the pumpkin and use a strong metal spoon to scoop out the insides. Separate the seeds from the stringy core. Rinse the seeds.
    In a small saucepan, add the seeds to water, about 2 cups of water to every half cup of seeds. Add a half tablespoon of salt for every cup of water (more if you like your seeds saltier). Bring to a boil. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and drain.
    Spread about a tablespoon of olive oil over the bottom of a roasting pan. Spread the seeds out over the roasting pan, all in one layer. Bake on the top rack until the seeds begin to brown, 10-20 minutes. When browned to your satisfaction, remove from the oven and let the pan cool on a rack. Let the seeds cool all the way down before eating. Either crack to remove the inner seed (a lot of work and in my opinion, unnecessary) or eat whole.

    WHOLE GRILLED FLOUNDER OR SOLE

    1 portion

    1 whole fresh flounder or sole


    1 chilli, de-seeded (optional) cut thinly


    1 clove garlic, sliced thinly


    1 lemon


    2 sprigs fresh thyme, parsley or coriander


    Salt and freshly ground pepper


    Good quality oil

    Method
    Preheat the grill on your oven to hot and place the oven rack about two down (allowing enough room to fit fish).
    Wash the fish under cold water and pat dry.  Using a sharp knife on the dark coloured skin slash the skin 2-3 times across the fish and then cut another 2-3 times in the other direction. 
    Lightly drizzle enough oil to coat both sides of the fish.  Place the fish cut side up on a baking tray.  Sprinkle with a little chopped chilli, garlic slivers, and a little of the chopped herbs.  Season well with salt and pepper, a squeeze of lemon juice and place under the hot grill until the skin begins to bubble and the flesh turns from an opaque white to a solid white (about 5 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish). 
    Remove from the oven, using a fish slice carefully transfer the whole fish to your serving plate and drizzle over any juices.  Serve with more fresh lemon and crunchy salad.

    Alison would like to thank the following producers for their fantastic produce

    ROSEDALE ORCHARDS – quince


    WAIRUNA ORGANICS – parsnips


    LEVITIO BAKERY – selection fresh baked goods


    TE MAHENO – pumpkin


    NUT COMPANY – fresh walnuts


    JUDGE ROCK WINES – wine


    BRYDONE ORGANICS – lettuce
    EDMONDS FRESH fISH – fresh fish

    QUINCE AND WALNUT TART

    This is a fantastic tart to celebrate quinces and walnuts; this is truly an autumnal delight.
    Makes one 23cm tart

    200g quince paste

    for the pastry  (or you can use ready rolled sweet pastry)

    120g unsalted butter at room temperature, diced

    75g icing sugar, sifted, plus extra for dusting

    2 egg yolks

    200g  plain flour

    2 Tbsp cold water
    for the topping

    200g softened butter

    200g sugar

    200g ground walnuts or ½ and ½ with ground almonds

    2 large eggs

    Method

    To begin sweet pastry – in a large bowl, mix the soft butter and icing sugar to a cream: then beat in   the egg yolks and add the flour, with your fingertips rub the butter mixture and flour together to achieve a crumbly texture (this can be done in the food processor). Add the water and press the mixture together to form a ball.
    With the palms of your hands, knead the pastry on lightly floured work surface until it is blended (maximum 30 seconds). Wrap in gladwrap  and chill for 30 minutes (this helps the dough lose its elasticity).
    Line a 23cm tart tin by rolling the pastry on a lightly floured bench, evenly roll out the pastry into a circle to fit you tart tin, about 3mm thick.
    Roll the pastry over the rolling pin and unroll it over your tin. With one hand lift the pastry and with the other gently tuck it into the bottom edge of the tin so that it fits tightly. Be careful not to stretch it. Cut off excess pastry by rolling the pin over the top edge of the tin. Take a small ball of pastry and gently press it all around the base of the tart to ensure a snug fit. Prick the base of the pastry all over with a fork and refrigerate for 30minutes (this helps prevent shrinkage during cooking)
    Preheat oven to 160C
    Cooking the pastry; Line the pastry case with tin foil and fill with dried beans, pushing them against the side. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and lift out both foil and beans. Return the tart tin to the oven and bake for a further 20 minutes.
    Turn the oven down to 140C.

    Meanwhile to make the walnut filling; in a medium size bowl soften the butter and cream together with the sugar until pale and creamy.  Add the eggs one at a time and beat well between each addition.  Add the ground walnuts (and almonds if using) and mix gently to combine.

    To assemble; spread the quince paste evenly over the base of the pastry. Spoon on the walnut mixture and gently push around to cover most of the quince, as it cooks it will spread out.

    Bake in preheat oven for 35- 45 minutes or until firm to touch.

    Cool before serving.

     

    TOASTED PUMPKIN SEEDS

    Pumpkin season is well and truly here so why not make the most of the whole pumpkin; seeds and all!
    Toasted Pumpkin SeedsPrint Options
    Print (with pho

    One medium sized pumpkin


    Salt


    Olive oil

    Method
    Preheat oven to 180C.
    Cut open the pumpkin and use a strong metal spoon to scoop out the insides. Separate the seeds from the stringy core. Rinse the seeds.

    In a small saucepan, add the seeds to water, about 2 cups of water to every half cup of seeds. Add a half tablespoon of salt for every cup of water (more if you like your seeds saltier). Bring to a boil. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and drain.

    Spread about a tablespoon of olive oil over the bottom of a roasting pan. Spread the seeds out over the roasting pan, all in one layer. Bake on the top rack until the seeds begin to brown, 10-20 minutes. When browned to your satisfaction, remove from the oven and let the pan cool on a rack. Let the seeds cool all the way down before eating. Either crack to remove the inner seed (a lot of work and in my opinion, unnecessary) or eat whole.

    HERBY MASHED PARSNIPS

    Mashed parsnips are a great flavoursome alternative and it will go with pretty much anything that you would put mashed potatoes with.
    Serves 4

    600g parsnips


    4 spring onions


    large handful parsley


    6 stems fresh thyme


    knob of butter


    50ml cream


    Freshly ground pepper

    Method
    Peel the parsnips and cut each into chunks. Put in a large pan, totally covered with salted water and bring to the boil. Put a lid on top, reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes or until tender, then drain.

    Meanwhile finely chop the spring onions and parsley. Strip the thyme leaves from the stems, place into a small pot with the cream and warm through to allow the flavours to mingle.

    Return the parsnips to the pot with the butter; add the herb infused cream and seasoning. Vigorously mash and then use a spatula to make them really fluffy. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary and serve.  Fantastic with a roast meats, fish or simple on its own!